First, the blog was fired up by something I read on CNN and this blog will contain controversial material. So if you are among the religious, perhaps you should give this one a pass:
I read the first article, it wasn’t bad, a little dry but it was an “okay” read and then, to be fair, I read the Pastor’s piece.
Little parts of my brain began to scream for mercy and then I read this quote, “But death is not normal or natural—it’s an enemy and the consequence of sin.”
I swear, my brain cells began to pack up their kits and threatened to leave town.
So, let me get this straight…the baby who dies as the result of some sort of neglect or violence is guilty of sin, therefore dies – yet Josef Mengele, the perpetrator of unimaginable terrors against men, women and children, lives into his late 60’s – Rudolf Hess lives into his 90’s…. Martin Luther King Jr. dies at 39, yet Josef Stalin lives to be 75.
That pastors/reverends/priests et al can stand there, with their bare faces hanging out, spouting carefully selected bits and pieces of the bible, completely and apparently, deliberately, ignoring huge tracts because they are inconvenient appalls me. That people listen and heed what they have to say, stuns me.
I believe there is no god; there are no pantheons out there in the great beyond, no imaginary friends on whom we may call for favours or boons.
I believe that the bible is a compilation of stories, fiction and personal editorials – not unlike the blogosphere of the internet. Written in dead and dying languages, translated where no true translation is possible; if you speak more than one language, you are very aware that even the simplest direct translation can’t be done. Every language, every culture, every dialect has its own unique character that does not translate.
Here’s a little piece that I found to be very interesting and while it may be objectionable to some, the truth of it can’t be disputed.
I was raised in 2 Christian belief systems until I was old enough to recognize hypocrisy – I was about 8 or 9 at the time. It happened in Sunday school, in a “progressive” protestant denomination – United Methodist. I had some question to ask, and admittedly, I did ask a LOT of questions…I asked and was told that “I was not a good Christian because I asked too many questions!” That did it. My intelligence was activated and took a stand against such blatant ignorance. That was the end of blind faith for me. I had already given up on the Roman Catholic doctrines at that point…the whole limbo thing and baptizing newborns, original sin…and a few other glaring hypocrisies shut the whole thing down for me. So, there I was, a little kid with no faith at all. Questions but no answersforthcoming.
I determined that if I wanted answers, I would have to find them for myself.
Did a lot of reading, a lot of observing various folks I figured may have some answers and I had a modicum of success. I remember picking up a book somewhere, had something to do with Wicca – a very, very early book that spoke of initiating young girls. Distasteful stuff but aside from that, it seemed interesting but I was a single mom, I had no time for religious studies. Too busy trying to pay the rent and buy food.
A few years later, I did begin to read, research a bit more. Farrars, and the UK folks – figured Wicca might be a way to fill, what I thought, was a spiritual void. According to the rest of the world, at any rate, I had a spiritual void. I didn’t but I thought I did.
I can’t take things at face value. I cannot take anyone’s word as, pardon the pun, gospel. So, I started researching the whole Wicca thing and eventually discovered it was simply another example of “religious” bullshit.
Now what. Well, during those formative years, I had the great fortune to meet and become friends with a terrific couple. I would bounce ideas and concepts off them. We did not always agree and that was perfect. That we could agree to disagree was/is one of the most important lessons of my life and one with which I continue to struggle.
I moved on to Thelema. Researched the hell (again, pun not intended) out of it. I discovered that Aleister Crowley, for all his brilliance and perhaps because of his brilliance was a gigantic, arrogant, asshat with a huge helping of a propensity to bullshit. BUT and this is a huge BUT – the basic philosophy behind Thelema spoke volumes to me.
The Thelemic philosophies are how I try to live my life and in retrospect, all the research, all the reading, the frustrations have lent themselves toward this place where I find myself now. Perfectly content without heaven or hell. Living my life as I see fit, no Summerland in the forecast. I believe there are more things in life than dreamt of in our philosophies but if I am not shown these things? If I don’t discover these things…no biggie. Nobody knows what happens in the end. And that’s no great big deal. It shouldn’t fill anyone with fear. We all die. All of us. Every single living organism on the face of this earth will die. Cease to exist. Dust in the wind.
And this is why it is so important to live a good life. Not because there is some wonderful paradise on the other side but because we have a certain amount of time to create a life of which we can be proud. We have a duty to leave some sort of positive legacy for those who will follow and who,perhaps will learn to leave something good behind as well.
God or gods/goddesses have nothing to do with it. This is about personal responsibility. This is about being our own gods and creating our own reality. Every man and woman is a star – whether we choose to shine brightly or not, is our own choice and nobody, nothing, no deity or imaginary friend can create the light for us.