Considering all the ‘isms’
The world is struggling with today –
It would be hard to say
Whether – in reading religious texts –
One should feel enlightened –
Or one should feel frightened
06.28.95 – 07.24.95
Copyright by Minh Tan on listed dated of completion
and published in Perspectives, ISBN 0-9686250-0-2.
Notes to this poem…
One account that I can find on-line today, in Jun 2008, lists 234 different isms of the world, each representing a philosophical, political or moral doctrine or a belief system, most of which are religious and traditional so they have been around far longer than the 13 years which had passed since I had written this poem. There are other criteria of exclusions from this list, too, so more exist.
This is not meant to focus on the numbers, but rather the concept of the multitude of isms related to religious text in existence for some time now. While the source may be questionable for credibility, I don’t think it is questionable enough to demonstrate my point in the poem to back my intuition of all the isms within religion with which the world struggles. There are plenty, and plenty, in my opinion, that far more frighten than enlighten. If there were any enlightenment to be had in reading about these isms, it would happen from you thinking about it and walking away from it as you should. That’s why I wrote this poem and other than that, I think it’s fairly obvious.
The O-series of poems are one stanza poems composed before I got onto writing haiku and tanka, and short poetry while in action or traveling by select means like plane or ferry. These poems are 3-9 lines long with at least one rhyming couplet, and not of the short forms just mentioned. For the sake of elegance, I just called the collection One.