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Saturday, July 14, 2012

Religious Costumes and the temptation to be different

Do you feel bias towards any of the religious guys, just because what they wear? I hope not, as almost all religious men (and women) make a statement through their clothes, that they are different; they are not among us, but above us.
A sampling of religious costumes, a comprehensive piece is in the making.
The clothing gives them the instant recognition that they are wise men and women, is that needed? Shouldn’t genuine respect be earned by one’s wisdom and knowledge, rather than external manifestation?   

I am gathering costumes/clothing worn by religious people in every possible tradition and always wondered, what is the need to wear clothes that differentiate you?   Isn’t religion about humility, where we are all on par with each other? 

I am not talking about simplicity in clothes; these are fashion statements, look at the hats and color theme, the beards….  They are not like us, they are different, and wear different clothes.

Honestly, if your  Rabbi, Imam, Pundit, Pastor, Clergy, Shaman, or Gyani, wore clothes like the audience, and gets on the pulpit, how many of you would give him or her same respect as the one in the costume, regalia?

I have been giving talks (sermons) on pluralism and religion, and have always wondered should I fashion myself differently than my congregants?  No, sir/ma'm, I will not yield to that temptation.

Your “well composed” comments with your express permission will become a quote in the article I am writing for the Foundation for Pluralism.

Mike Ghouse is committed to finding pluralistic solutions for any given situation; sometimes he fails and sometimes finds the solutions. Unless efforts are made, nothing will change. Pluralism is an attitude of respecting the otherness of others.  You can find links to most of mike’s work at www.MikeGhouse.net and www.Theghousediary.com for almost all of his writing.  

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