The view from down here


May 24, 2008

I look around and the rapture still hasn't happend yet. I've been waiting for a while now for these people to get off my planet, but they're still here. Considering that they're all wrong anyway, I guess we'll have to find some way to put up with them.

But maybe not their religion. It's about time to set that on the curb.

It is now fashionable, or at least more accepted, to not be religious. At least nobody is being executed for heresy much these days.

For many people, it started with the DaVinci Code and the concept that the commonly understood history of the church may not be true, or even more shocking, the church may have actually lied. That was the real sub-text of the movie, as I see it. The bloodline of Hay-Zeus Christo was interesting, for a while, but that was just the scantily clad stage assistant. The real sleight-of-hand was the introduction of doubt.

Then came Harris and Dawkins and Hitchens, all unapologetic atheists. The beginning of the end.

If they're right, and there's an all-powerful man in the sky, then prove it. If god is god, then he can open up the sky and wink at us from behind the moon. How ya doin' god? All fine down here. Could ya zip up the sky - we're losing all the ozone.

It's bloody well past time to stop defending why we don't believe in some utterly preposterous package of lies and fairy tales and begin demanding that the rest of the world defend their two thousand year reign of insanity.

It's well past due for the proud and pious steeple people to explain why it's okay to hurt, lie, cheat, steal, and not be held responsible for that. Yeah - John 3:16 - I got it, now you tell me why you think it's okay to let someone be murdered for you. After his great sacrifice he came out of the cave and flew up to sit at the right hand of god, who was himself. Some big sacrifice. He died for me? Then why isn't he dead?

And this is the tale that has ruled the world? Utterly fucking amazing.

There's a reason the story holds beyond the visceral threats of eternal fire and cradle-to-grave indoctrination. The thing is there's just enough of the original Gnostic message floating around that people can still sort of relate to the idea of rising above the crazy, their own death of the animal and rise in spirit.

Maybe we need a new religion that lets people anchor the madness of their lives in some spiritual connection, but which is utterly devoid of the Caesar/Papal King James mindfuck that has been bulldozing mankind for way too long. It's a difficult path. So many people are hungry to be told what they think. There will always be cult followers, from strange bands of child abusing polygamists to Catholics of the Big Blood Cult who want someone else to lay it all out for them.

We seem to need a social/spiritual structure, so why not create one that is relevant for today, one that lets us anchor our lives in modern myths of community, justice, and playing nice together.

Let's drop the man in the sky bit. That's been done to death (on a cross, actually).

We are animals on a planet. We spin through space and around the sun. We're alone in the deep emptiness of space. Let's rejoice in the sun. Smile back at the moon. Mark the seasons. Plant. Harvest. Love.

Our modern government has taken over much of the social infrastructure that churches and kings once managed. Maybe this should be our sacred thing. Our lives, our land, our honor are left in the hands of invisible power peddlers. That seems much more important than getting trapped in the god/no-god debate. That's done. We have real work ahead.

Maybe it's time to ignite a new spirituality, grounded in community and responsibility and caring for the land. Why not worship the sun, the stars, the seasons and our relationship to the ball we live on. This is our home, and we should know better than to give our lives over to debt peddlers, oil tycoons, pharmers, pushers, priests, and politicians.

For those of you capable of being awake, let's stop letting the old power make all the rules. No more apologies. No more defensive pandering. I find it amusing when Christians get angry over some issue and have to actually defend themselves, rather than getting to be right just because everybody says so. No more free rides.

Don't let christians off the hook. Stop begging politicians to lie to you about what they can give you. Imagine how different the world would be if we all went to our city council meetings and knew the names of the people on our county commissions, communicated with our senators, and actually expected our leaders to represent us. But to do that, they need to know what we think and who we are.

I don't know if we can stomach another new religion or another mega church of latter day christian scientologist, but maybe we don't need to. Life itself is sacred. Waking up is sacred. Going to work and paying your bills is sacred. Paying off your credit cards and turning off the TV are sacred things. Be decent when you drive. Go watch the clouds. Take care of your family and curb your dog.

Copyright 2008 Daniel LaFavers