Christianity versus Fatalistic Religions in the War Against Poverty
Most literature and many aid efforts concerned with poverty relief and development function on mathematical assumptions. Those who have more should share with those who have less, thus creating equality. Some would add a moral component saying that those having more are morally wrong and must have gained their surplus from outright theft or unfair trade. But on the side of the needy, religious and secular efforts see only a material problem. Both neglect the devastating power of bad ideas based in religion and social customs. Yet what anyone believes about the building blocks of life will have results; their ideas are like eye glasses that either distort or bring into focus an objective reality. Development work must focus on developing people's ideas. Cultural change must precede material changes.