The Holy Bookmark, a tool to counter religiously inspired violence

On 26 March, following the London terror attacks, the Dutch (atheist) comedian Arjen Lubach proposed a tool to counter religiously inspired violence, “The Holy Bookmark.”


While this may seem funny, it is at the same time very useful tool. This is how it works. Whenever someone decides he wants to act in the name of his religion, there are a few steps that need to be followed to avoid that this results in violence.
Lubach gives the following examples:

Example 1: Terror attack

I am inspired to commit a terror attack. > I want to act in the name of my religion. Yes. > Will this affect the lives of other people? Yes, that seems obvious. > Do the other people agree? No, I don’t think so. > Don’t do it, jackass!

Example 2: Food donation

Your church or mosque wants to collect money for a food package in Africa. I want to act in the name of my religion. Yes. > Will this affect the lives of other people? Yes. > Do the other people agree? Yes! They get food. > Fine!

Example 3: Female genital mutilation

I want to circumcise my daughter. I want to act in the name of my religion. Yes. > Will this affect the lives of other people? Yes, my daughter. > Do the other people agree? No, it’s a baby. > Don’t do it, jackass!

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The Observatory of Religious Freedom in Latin America is a program of the Foundation Platform for Social Transformation, a registered charity in Voorburg, The Netherlands under Chamber of Commerce #50264249.

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