#Religion is supposed to inspire good, morality and compassion towards others. But so often in today's climate that is not the case. Wars are fought, disagreements are had and hatred grows as a result; all in the name of religion. The question is, why does religion bring out the worst in us? 

The good

It is important at the outset to state that religion can be a very good thing. It is often the case that one is religious and follows a particular religion because they believe in the God of that religion. That could be either Allah (Islam), Jesus Christ/God (Christianity) or Hashem (Judaism). The immense #Love that one has for their God causes them to try and follow the laws and ethics that the religion promotes. With regards to Islam, as stated on www.goodnewsnetwork.org, peace is at the heart of the Quran. The Holy Quran: 2,208 states that "enter absolutely into peace. Do not follow in the footsteps of Satan". Furthermore Surat al-Mumtahana, 8, also states the importance of being just to others; "God loves those who are just".

Such positive values are also demonstrated in the New Testament. With regards to respecting others, Mark 12:31 states "Love your neighbour as yourself". Furthermore, Matthew 7: 1-5 states, "do not judge, so that you may not be judged". Numerous examples of a promotion of morality can also be found in the Old Testament (also known as the Torah). Whereas Exodus 23; 4-13 states that "do not join your hand with the wicked", Deuteronomy 15.11 proclaims the need to "open wide your hand to your brother, to the needy and to the poor" as stated on www.ijs.org.au. It is clear that in all of the three main religions, the emphasis is on peace, justice, helping others and forgiveness. 

The bad

But the question to be asked is, if such morals and values are promoted, why do so many negative things happen in the name of religion and God? One major problem I believe, is the fact that there are competing ideas between the religions with regards to the future. Within Islam there is a focus on the coming of the Prophet Muhammad. The Quran (21.107) states that "And We have not sent you (O, Muhammad), except a a mercy to all the creation". Within Christianity there is the second coming of Jesus Christ. As stated on www.bibleinfo.com and from John 14:1-3, Jesus stated that "I will come again and receive you to Myself". And in Judaism there is Moshiach. As stated on www.chabad.org, a key principle in the Judaism is that one day a Jewish leader will come to Jerusalem and bring the Jews from all around the world to Israel. That figure is meant to be Moshiach.

The problem is intensified by the love that many have for their own God and the intense desire to follow that God at any cost. Therefore, if the deity of Christianity promises one thing that the God of Judaism does not, it can create major problems. An attack on one's own God creates an attack on their whole belief system as a result. It is because of this that hatred, division and ultimately wars are created as a result. We can see this today with the battle between the West and the Islamic State (IS). With the desire to create a caliphate around the world and the threats (they feel) posed by the Crusaders and the Zionists, this has consequently created a major global problem. IS want a #War, they want the enforcement of the Islamic Jihad (spreading the religion around the world) and they want to destroy all those who challenge their beliefs.

The consequences

And that, in many ways, is the true problem with religion. Whilst it promotes and encourages love, compassion and morality, the problem is the conflict that it creates. The lack of hard evidence proving which belief system is correct also creates problems in that we do not know which religion is right. The separation of individuals and the competing ideas creates tension, division and war. It was meant to inspire good, but unfortunately it has done the exact opposite and that is a major worry for us all.