Charles Mercieca - IAEWP

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How Capitalism Undermines Christianity and Destroys Every Other Religion

Charles Mercieca, Ph.D.
Executive Vice President
International Association of Educators for World Peace
Professor of History and Philosophy
Alabama A&M University

It is ironic that the United States of America, which claims to be a predominantly Christian nation, adopts a governmental system that strongly promotes capitalism.

Capitalism Contradicts Christianity

Capitalism has been identified with consumerism which consists of a successful business plot that makes people purchase anything conceivable as a means of having more and more, supposedly to feel better and happier. To this end, every device has been designed to make people buy and consume even when they do not have any personal cash available. This is revealed in the creation of the credit card system which enables people to buy whatever they want and then they pay it back in monthly payments with high interest rates. Once people cease to make their monthly payments, everything is confiscated from them and they are even evicted from their home and literally thrown in the streets to live there mercilessly like strayed animals.

Throughout the last two millennia, the Fathers of the Christian faith have advocated to Christians to live frugally, to have merely only those things which they need absolutely, nothing more and nothing less. They insisted that Christians should spend most of their time in complete union with God through prayer, meditation, fasting, and penance. They taught Christians to avoid a life of comfort, gluttony, and worldly pleasure.... elements that prevent the human soul from assimilating itself with God.

Capitalism advocates the building of a never-ending capital. There is no such a thing as enough. If one makes 100,000 dollars, one yearns to make more and more without limit. In the meantime, the mind gets fogged completely into the material things of this world with virtual no time left for the upliftment of the human spirit to the Creator. Statistical studies demonstrate that Christians who renounce seeking for more and more and, instead, thank God for what they have, tend to live a healthier and a happier life.

What has been stated about Christianity applies equally well to other religions, above all, Buddhism and Hinduism. The reason is simple. Capitalism is generally built on greed that makes the human life turn itself from a life of simplicity to one of complexity. Capitalism brings a lot of stress to people unnecessarily. In capitalism everything and everyone becomes a means to a further end: the continued accumulation of a capital, mostly money.

Righteousness as Main Goal of Religion

Christianity, as well as every other religion, teaches that our end in life is righteousness, at times referred to as God. Everything we do should lead us to perfect union with God. According to the Blessed Virgin Mary in Medjugorje, union with God is what heaven is all about. This is the secret of genuine happiness, satisfaction, serenity and anything positive about life. In fact, the Blessed Mother emphasized that heaven does not start after life is over but in this very life itself and it keeps on going afterwards for all eternity.

Experience has demonstrated repeatedly that people who accumulate money and wealth do not enjoy much peace of mind. It has been proven statistically that, percentage wise, more rich people commit suicide than poor people. Capitalists learn it the hard way that they cannot buy happiness with wealth and money. In fact, quite a few of them end up giving almost everything they have for charitable causes after which they express they find satisfaction and happiness. We may be all familiar with the traditional ascetical saying: The art of living is the art of giving. This is the antithesis of capitalism which is built on the axiom: The art of living is the art of accumulating anything conceivable.

Capitalism nowadays is in serious trouble. The United States, which may be considered as the architect of capitalism, is now the greatest debtor on earth, owing to date some $5 trillion dollars. Regardless of what we may hear to the contrary, capitalism is built on gambling. In gambling one may win big or lose big. Those who are well versed in gambling tell us that more gamblers tend to lose than win and that gambling, in the long range, is not worthed at all. This explains why in most religions gambling is singled out as sinful.

In gambling millions of dollars are thrown into the pockets of greedy and selfish owners of casinos with nothing substantially positive going to improve the environment and the life of the people in general. If the money accumulated by capitalism were used to eradicate the problems of hunger, cancer, and homelessness, our world would have been much better and more peaceful.

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