The other day after sensationally claiming that the religious practice of Ash Wednesday is idolatry, many Catholics came for my head. Deservedly so. No, I’m not remorseful but I’ve since admitted their right to react as they wish. In what seemed a reflective compromise later same night, I wrote, “when it comes to matter of faith, your opinion can only be contrary, it can’t be superior”.

And that’s the universal truth about matter of faith. It is a personal encounter that is dependent on conviction and societal standards (mores, norms, expectations, realities) Yea, your religious conviction is only as practicable as wherever you find yourself allows. If your God needs human sacrifice for appeasement or atonement for example, You don’t come and sponsor facebook adverts to that effect. The society considers it barbaric!

Ironically our upbringing is shaped by our parents/guardians religious conviction and societal standards of their time and space. Kids are incapable of religious convictions for same reason we think they should reach certain age before they can drink, smoke or have sex. They are only amenable to religious indoctrination. You can give them inherited religious sentiments.

Most kids grow up with these rigid religious upbringing that hardly factor in their own conviction and present societal realities. They live what is not their conviction for better part of their formative years. The struggle to resolve the conflict this breeds as they grow is the fertile ground for hypocrisy. They end up growing up to become adults that live double lives. They fluctuate between living their religious indoctrination and their reality.

Except for few nonconformists, many try to accommodate the incompatibility. But at best, they end up being hypocritic.

A girl from a particular faith is taught that wearing trousers as a female is a sin. She grows up and travel to where there are self confessed bisexuals and wearing trousers is in fact a corporate norm. Within her she can’t define what is wrong with a female wearing trousers. She wears it at work but whenever she returns to her parents, she neglects her reality and live their convictions, the one she inherited and lived for better part of her life too. Hypocrisy.

While humans are inherently hypocritic, I think parents will do well to bring up kids that can develop their personal religious convictions as they grow older rather than inherit their parents/ guardians’ own.

Personally, I avoid being caught in hypocrisy by never having a hard stance in matter of faith. I allow my environment and present realities shape my actions.

Indoctrination will expose you as hypocritic when you’re confounded by certain exposure.

Or how else do you explain an undergraduate in one of Nigerian Christian universities faking her own kidnap just to travel down to another state to be with her boyfriend? Her realities (urge for sex) was simply incompatible with her religious upbringing ( premarital sex is a sin) and the only way to resolve the conflict is to become a poster girl for hypocrisy! She’s trending on the social media as you read.