Religion is the art of the loophole

Mary is unfaithful to her husband. Every Sunday she confesses this to her priest, says her penitence and feels quite relieved.

Is confession and penitence really just an easy why to avoid guilt?

Aamina wears her burqa whenever she leaves the house. The only part of herself that she can influence to feel beautiful are her eyes. She spends a lot of time to get her make-up just right. And her glittering Dior handbag is very nice.

One of the goals of the burqa is modesty, to hide a women’s femininity as to not excite men (who seem highly inflammable). Don’t all these workarounds to feminize however possible the women wearing the burqa seem to go against the whole point?

Naomi, a practicing jewish mother of three, wears an extravagant long red wig, instead of the traditional headscarf.

According to jewish law, married women should not show their hair, also for modesty. Doesn’t an extravagant wig seem particularly hypocritical?

Examples range from major side stepping to the mundane actions of everyday life. They are surprisingly widespread and accepted by society and religion. Why does the dogma not openly change? The seemingly important part – obeying the law of god – is not respected, but the more frivolous part – what the neighbours will think – stays paramount.

Religion is the art of the loophole.

It boils down to tribal unity, us versus them. I’m a good christian because I confess my sins, not like those debauched women. I am a good muslim or jew because I am recognised as such by others.

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