Freedom of Religion equals freedom from religion. If it were not so other’s religions could be forced upon you. Your freedom to be Christian allows you to be free of Islam. As a Christian you are free of Islam, because you do not believe it.
I am free from your religion.
Because I do not believe it.
You are free to think I am devils spawn.
That I am possessed by a demon.
That I am angry at God.
That I hate God.
That I am separated from God by sin nature, and so forth.
However I cannot be any of these things because I am not of your religion. I do not operate under the assumptions your faith requires. I do not look at the world that way. I do not believe it.
To call me any of these is religious bigotry, it is painting the beliefs of your religion onto me, when I do not believe it.
I am sure you think “BUT IT IS TRUE!” because you believe and have faith.
I am not of your faith however, I have never agreed or assented to any of the things you are claiming about me inside the religion I am not a part of. Now your faith is telling you bad things about me just because I do not believe. Things which you cannot prove in any real way about me, but which you nonetheless believe about me, by faith.
This is your faith, not my reality. You may believe it is my reality, but the moment you start telling me what you believe about it, you begin to paint me into your religion. I do not believe or care to be painted into your faith. Thanks, but kindly no.
Try to walk in another’s moccasins. If you were being told by Muslims how very wrong you were, every day, all the time. If you were called such things as I am, threatened with the hell of another’s religion, because you did not believe in Islam, would you not see it a religious bigotry?
I didn’t choose not to believe, I am unconvinced. I have heard all the arguments for your religion, many, many times in fact, they do not convince me. I have read your books too, and do not find them convincing. I do not consider your central text divine and holy, but a work of ancient literature, much like you view the tales of Hercules.
This in no way makes me a part of your religious belief because you believe. If that were true then all Christians would burn in a Muslim hell. Muslims may believe this, and some Christians may believe the inverse about Muslims, you may both believe it about the other. You may even all believe it about me. Yet the moment you tell me this you are painting a religion I do not believe onto me, by faith.
Please do not do this, you would not like it yourself were it done to you. Feel free to try and convince me if you must, but do not assume I am under your faith because you believe. That is not “Freedom of Religion” anymore, that is freedom for your religion alone.
“I am for freedom of religion, and against all maneuvers to bring about a legal ascendency of one sect over another.”
— Thomas Jefferson