Golf and Other Religions
Please be advised. This page does not reproduce the story or article in full. The full story or article is contained inRoybob’s Book on Golf: The Hucks, A Golfer’s Divine Comedy, and a Religious Philosophy of Golf.
The Golf Gods: Towards a Religious Philosophy of Golf
Golf and Other Religions
Adherents of religions that originated in the Middle East (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam) tend to regard their religions as exclusive of one another. For example, if one is Christian, then, generally speaking, one is not also Jewish or Muslim. If one is Jewish, then, generally speaking, one is not also Muslim or Christian, and if one is Muslim, then one is not also Christian or Jewish. These religions tend to be mutually exclusive.
Adherents of Eastern traditions, on the other hand, may not regard religions as mutually exclusive. Hindus, for example, believe that all people are ultimately Hindus; but, simply put, not all people are yet aware of their ties to Hinduism. In China, it is not uncommon for people to be Taoists, Confucians, and Buddhists all at the same time. The syncretistic nature of Chinese religion is illustrated by the story of an emperor who meets a scholar who is wearing the kind of scarf that devoted Buddhists wear. The emperor asks, “Are you a Buddhist?” The scholar points to his cap which is the kind of cap that Taoists wear. The emperor asks, “Are you then a Taoist?” The scholar points to his shoes which are the kind of shoes that Confucians wear. The emperor asks, “Are you then a Confucian?” The scholar, then, points to his Buddhist scarf. It is not at all unusual for a Buddhist priest to attend a Taoist temple and to memorize the teachings of Confucius. These religions traditions may not be in exact concord or agreement on some issues, but adherents find a way to merge their beliefs or work out any problems.
Golf is not an exclusive religion. One can practice the religion of Golf along with any other religion one desires. One can certainly construe the religion of Golf in a manner that differs from my thinking, making Golf, perhaps, more compatible with other religions. Hence, one can be a Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Jew, Taoist, Confucian, et cetera and still be a Golfer.
The full version of this story or article is contained inRoybob’s Book on Golf: The Hucks, A Golfer’s Divine Comedy, and a Religious Philosophy of Golf.