What hurts – Religion Itself, or the Bastardisation of Religion? 

Mention the word ‘religion’ and it either goes very quiet or incites an unexpected debate, should you have struck a believer. And in many (possibly most?) circles, it is anything but fashionable to profess to being religious. Unless you are famous, of course; in which case, you get away with murder, or just about.

But what is it that makes us cringe, shrink, turn the other way, ignore the remark or smile limply – in other words, what makes us scramble for shelter at the mere mention of the word?

Is this an aversion against religion itself or is it more and much deeper than this? The former is certainly the easy and handy answer in our world of shallowness and profanities, of abuse, terror, angst, cruelty and obvious godlessness (oh God, don’t mention God please!).

But what if our aversion to religion is deeper than the easily observable mess the world is in? Why indeed such repulsion and disdain? Surely it must run deeper than a mere “what good has religion ever done?” “Religion is so outdated and yesteryear” or “leave me alone with organised religion”, to name but a few of the many possible and seemingly plausible objections.

I used to be an expert at these objections and have listed only a few of my milder if not outright weak and impotent utterances here. Nothing like an ‘intelligent’ person to take the mickey out of religion and give it a marathon run for its money!

But was there a deeply buried hurt underneath this façade of bravado and intelligence, combative posturing and explosive verbiage?

Looking back at it now I can say without a shadow of doubt that it was a deep inner knowing of a true religion that made me react so strongly if not verbally violently at times, the knowing of a true religion that:

  • doesn’t distinguish between races, skin colour, gender, education, social standing, etc.
  • doesn’t hold some as more deserving than others
  • doesn’t label one lot of people as chosen at the expense of everyone else
  • doesn’t call one single person a ‘Son of God’ to the exclusion of all others, no matter how magnificent that person’s contribution to humanity has been
  • doesn’t support greed, lies, murder, genocide, money laundering and corruption
  • doesn’t harbour criminals in their midst and thinks itself as above the law
  • doesn’t turn a blind eye to hypocrisy, deception and deceit
  • doesn’t spawn suicide attacks
  • doesn’t demand faith or allegiance
  • isn’t based on belief systems
  • isn’t self-serving
  • doesn’t preach of sin, purgatory and hell
  • doesn’t subscribe to the void or nothingness
  • doesn’t demand obedience or subservience
  • … and this list is endless, as you can well imagine

So what then is true religion, you may ask? And does it exist?

Well, if you are still with me and haven’t politely or even brusquely turned away, it does exist and it is called The Way of The Livingness. It is not a new religion by any stretch of the imagination but it is the true religion in my book, and for many. The Way of The Livingness is based on the Ageless Wisdom, the unwritten deep knowing at the core of every human being – every woman, man and child. Its modern representative is the world teacher Serge Benhayon, founder of Universal Medicine.

The Way of The Livingness is the antithesis of all the points listed above and so much more – and then some; it is all we have always deep down known religion to be in its untainted, uncorrupted, pure and unadulterated state; it is the direct and bodily felt connection to God from the depth of the inner-heart. It is true religion in the meaning of its deepest roots (religare = to bind) and it does bind us, if we so choose and in our own timing, to and within the All we all unavoidably belong to; and it does so even when we think it doesn’t concern us and turn the other way. Why? Because we cannot but be what we are, whether we like it or not, agree with it or not.

By Gabriele Conrad, Goonellabah, NSW Australia

Related Reading:
The Way of The Livingness – Where can I Register?
The Way of The Livingness – It’s My Religion
Why Serge Benhayon and The Way of The Livingness Makes Sense

549 thoughts on “What hurts – Religion Itself, or the Bastardisation of Religion? 

  1. The Way of The Livingness is true religion, ‘It is true religion in the meaning of its deepest roots (religare = to bind) and it does bind us, if we so choose and in our own timing, to and within the All we all unavoidably belong to; and it does so even when we think it doesn’t concern us and turn the other way.’ Beautiful.

  2. What came up for me reading this was the feeling of how it is ‘not cool’ to be religious and on some level I held this. On reflection I feel this was more in my teenage years than anything else and although I knew with every cell in my body about reincarnation, there was a bigger purpose and plan that was not being lived and God (with an awareness that it was not just one being or but many which I now know to be called the Hierarchy) I would not ever talk about this and still really don’t. But that is okay because it is not about selling my beliefs to others to make myself feel better or so others ‘get it’, it is just about being true to me. Religion has been totally bastardised like many other things in this world which we, humanity, have allowed to happen. I read something the other day which for me, described religion beautifully which is, it is ‘about the way we live in respect of and in connection to our own innate divinity.’

    1. Agree Vicky, religion as it stands has been totally bastardised; true religion would not hold some as more deserving than others, since we are all equal.

  3. There is so much harm in the world perpetuated by our choice to keep circulating bastardised version of what is true and divine. The word religion is a significant example of this as it directly relates to our natural and innate connection to and living our divinity. It makes a big difference when any of us choose to cease playing this false game and instead choose to return to living and expressing our true essence.

    1. Bastardised versions of what is true and divine circulate because we let them, either by actively instigating and supporting the notion or by the act of an apparently innocent bystander who thinks it is of little or no concern to them – until such time that it bites us in the bum, even if many lives later and without recollection of our past choices.

    2. Harm is allowed through us continuing to allow bastardised version of words, like religion. True religion ‘doesn’t support greed, lies, murder, genocide, money laundering and corruption’.

  4. I have always been religious and interested in all things religious but what never sat well with me was how different all the religions are and how people can get bent out of shape and defend their version.

  5. The trick question; Have you stopped beating ‘X’, is a can’t win situation. If you say Yes, you were doing it and No, you are still doing it. Religion has become the same kind of question: you stand next to the pool or jump into the deep end. There is no dipping in our toes! Why are we determined to live a life doing, all of the ‘doesn’t’ things on your list? Or, is this the question we don’t answer for what it will expose?

  6. It is the lies and hypocrisy that exposes current religions and this is what creates distrust and disillusionment. We all innately know and feel truth, and equally, know lies when they are presented.

  7. What I feel affects us the most is the bastardisation of religion. It seems deep in our psyche we all remember times when the religion of the day turned against us and or exposed itself as hypocritical in some way that deeply affected us.

  8. ‘What hurts – Religion Itself, or the Bastardisation of Religion?’ Great title Gabriele and definitely a concept for us all to ponder on deeply in unraveling our issues with the word religion.

  9. What I love about this new religion, which is really ancient is that I was so separated from it and now loving re-discovering what I had moved away from. Religion is about everything and for me what I’m experiencing is claiming my real voice and developing loving relationships with people around me – this is true religion for me.

  10. If I were to answer this question, ‘what hurts – religion itself, or the bastardisation of religion, I would say, bastardisation. As religion itself is felt within us when we are young, growing up, you know what feels true within and what doesn’t and our senses just know it.

    My relationship with Religion has evolved since meeting Serge Benhayon, a presentation that religion is within us all, not owned by one person including him. Religion is being re-empowered for what it truly is and thus re-empowers the person for who they truly are too.

    1. Religion is a very personal affair between whatever it is for one person and them; and for some, that might be their football club or beer, regardless. Religion is not the domain of institutions and officialdom and because that is what we have made it to be, it engenders distrust and distaste.

  11. As a child when I learnt that there are people who spoke a different language that I would not understand but there is such thing called translation, I was fascinated and confused at the same time that how could we know that we have got it right, that we know we are understanding exactly what the other meant? And what if there was a deliberate intent to manipulate the meaning of the word? Language is fascinating, but if we do not have a universal consensus on the meaning of the word, how can we ever come to share and keep the integrity?

    1. To a child it would indeed seem strange that we do not speak the same language worldwide; and we have wilfully turned words into another form of division between us, even if we do speak the same language.

  12. We are all aware of the atrocities that have been imposed in the world and upon us through and in the name of religion, we know it from what we have witnessed through the ages and our bodies know it from what we have experienced through the ages. It is no surprise that we are repulsed by the abuse of our sacred relationship with God by ourselves and others. What institutionalised religion represents today is a further move away from our innate at-one-ment with God and how this connection can be naturally lived through the lives we live. The Way of The Livingness represents everything that true religion is and the way we can live our Godliness here on earth, as is intended.

  13. The only conversations I seem to have with people about religion is them sharing how hypocritical or harmful the teachings have been and how they have thrown out all religions as bad news. I confirm that what they have felt is true and we have every reason to be repulsed by the hypocrisy. But I also make the point that these man-made religions are not what God or religion is about and it is men who have changed things to suit their own agendas.

    1. Great way to proceed. I’ve had people react very surprised when it’s pointed out to them that God is NOT a catholic. Astounding indeed but these myths and misconceptions are commonplace.

  14. I never understood why religion was so influential in our world, yet none of it made any sense to me.
    Thank you Serge Benhayon for presenting something that made sense to me, so that I can approach the concept of religion in a new light,

    1. I agree Ken – The Way of The Livingness makes sense to me like no other as it represents the truth of who we are, all which we can live in connection to through our everyday lives and truly be ourselves.

    2. I agree Ken and feeling the lovelessness and emptiness in it with most. It is like an empty shell (vessel) proclaiming about love or worse sinning when you can feel there is no true connection to that love within their body. In other words just talking words but not truly living them. Serge however was the first person I met who lives 100% to his best ability of what he knows to be true, incredibly inspiring for someone to actually truly walk their talk consistently so.

  15. Looking back I have always felt this tension with religion and how it did not feel true yet I did not how to express or truly claim any of this. Now I do thanks to studying with Serge Benhayon, Universal Medicine and exploring The Way of The Livingness.

  16. The Way of The Livingness is a way to live to reconnect you to your inner connection to God and the love that you innately are.

    1. The Way of The Livingness is true religion, the only religion and the religion that all humankind will one day belong to – it needs no intermediaries between God and us, it is the direct line that it has, in truth, always been.

  17. Thank you, Gabriele, for delineating so clearly that what is commonly referred to as ‘religion’ is not religion in its true meaning and that there is a true expression of religion which is The Way of The Livingness.

  18. Wow this is like the chicken and egg question…I pondered on the question in the title of this blog and to me the bastardisation of religion is the separation. It divides us and attempts that one group thinks its better than the other.

    True religion is not tainted, it is pure just like a chick just born out of its shell or a newly born baby full of love and no agenda.

    1. Love has no agenda and religion has no agenda; institutionalised religions on the other hand do have agendas, aplenty. And any and all proselytising is testament to the fact.

  19. I have been reading a lot about the corruption that is occurring in evidence based practice and it definitely struck me that evidence based practice is akin to conventional religion, which really is a bastardised version of religion. Soon we may come to have the same distaste for evidence-based practice.

    1. Once it is official that evidence now means that a sponsor has paid for the result, the word ‘evidence’ is destined to go the same way as did religion – misinterpreted, misunderstood and maligned.

  20. Clearly I am focusing on this topic at the moment because I find myself back reading your blog as if it were the first time! I know that any religion that has Love at its core – which essentially is every single one – would never be able to justify child abuse, corruption, suicide bombers or anything else on your list.

    1. To call ‘religion’ what is clearly not religion is an abomination and nothing but an abomination.

  21. Every person has the right to embrace religion or not. That is free will. Those who embrace it have the right to choose which version of religion they embrace (well they may not be that free particularly when you just go by family tradition). Those who choose not to embrace religion usually come up with a statement that justifies this. The statement is what it is, but it is never the truth of the reason why that statement is coming out of their mouths. Understanding what is behind, though, is of great value.

    1. Rebuking the widely accepted bastardisation of the word ‘religion’ comes as no surprise and is imminently understandable. Denying God is another matter, though. It is a violent and self-destructive reaction to a truth deeply felt.

      1. Atheism and Agnosticism are two paths away from God based on a deep deep hurt. The difference between them is that in the case of the atheist, there is a given upness and in the agnostic, an arrogance that God has to prove to me that he is worth my trust again. The first one does not expect anything further and will move in a way that creates constant situations that confirm the vacuum one has chosen to live in; the second is desperate to have that signal but will never admit it and will move in a way that the signal will never reach him/her.

      2. Great analysis of what atheism and agnosticism are about and how they play out; both stances and adopted beliefs are rooted in as yet inconsolable hurts that have not been addressed.

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