“You can tell you have created God in your own image when it turns out that he or she hates all the same people you do.”
I’m mad as hell about some of the craziness going on in the world lately. It starts with little kids in our school yards picking on other kids, and all kinds of people verbally and physically attacking any group or minority not fitting whatever is considered the cultural norm of the moment. I could go on ad infininum but the list is too long to commit to here, and gets far far worse.
It goes all the way to the likes of Sharon Angle running against Harry Reid for Senator of Nevada. In defense of her pro-life platform that would refuse abortions even to victims of rape or incest, the only one she seems to be running on, her ignorant defense when challenged is that as mere mortals how do we know why these things happen? “They may be part of God’s larger plan!” The victims should therefore be forced to go ahead and have the baby, no matter how young they may be. What kind of God, one who is supposed to be omniscient, would ruin the life of a child–or any woman or other human being–as part of his larger than life plan? What about the rapist? Should we begin passing out Medals for those who “carry out the bigger picture of God’s plan?”
“Two wrongs don’t make a right. Lemons can be made into lemonade.” –Sharon Angle in a radio interview in late June
I may be ignorant about religious matters, especially as taught by the fundamentalist religious right, but if we relate all suffering to God’s larger plan, would that not mean that any kind of act we might consider evil, and I can think of more than a few off hand that fall under that same category of “part of God’s bigger plan: ethnic cleansing that still goes on all over the world all these years after Hitler’s death, rape of all ages from babes in arms to frail old women, or murder, admonishing women–as in the 1998 Southern Baptist Conference resolution that “a good wife submit herself graciously to the servant leadership of the husband” to name just a few that bother the hell out of me. Therefore, either evil does not exist because any- and everything could, or might be, part of God’s bigger plan.
Makes you want to practice Yoga, right? In an effort to find some sort of peace in a world gone mad? But wait! If you’re a Christian, then practicing Yoga would be a sin! Just today Southern Baptist Seminary President Albert Mohler is calling for Christians to avoid yoga and its spiritual attachments because the stretching and meditative discipline derived from Eastern religions is not a Christian pathway to God. He objects to “the idea that the body is a vehicle for reaching consciousness with the divine.” Any good Baptist knows the only way to God is through blind faith. (And I do mean BLIND!)
Epicurus was an ancient Greek philosopher. For him the purpose of philosophy was to attain the happy, tranquil life, peace and freedom from fear, the absence of pain, and by living a self-sufficient life surrounded by friends. He taught that pleasure and pain are the measures of what is good and evil, that death is the end of the body and the soul and should therefore not be feared, that the gods do not reward or punish humans, that the universe is infinite and eternal, and that events in the world are ultimately based on the motions and interactions of atoms moving in empty space. His take on God was this:
Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God? — (Epicurus)
If you’re getting tired at my harping on religion, I’m really sorry to bore you, but if–at 68 years–I have not learned to be true to my convictions, and willing to stand up for what I believe in, even if it invites criticism, what good are all those years I’ve lived? Maybe if more of us do so, there will be less intolerance is the world.
I admit I’m swayed much more by old Epicurus than I am by the fundamentalist Christians. Using their own logic, if I am Christian–and I was born one–can I not say that He sent Epicurus to try to instill reasoning power so that readers of the Bible question the veracity of taking on face value what the writers assert. They were only human. Or, as Christine O’Donnell in Delaware might point out, they were ME. Therefore, say I unto Sharon Angle there’s more than one way to interpret this verse from the New Testament.
Hebrews 4:13 —And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account.
In my eyes, Sharon Angle is a lemon! So are the Southern Baptists who believe in and support their 1998 Conference resolution and Albert Mohler (above) and Christine O’Donnell too. According to the Polls, Nevadans seem to be trying hard to make lemonade out of Sharon. Republicans I’ve been watching may be crazy enough in their desperation to hold on and gain seats in both houses are working real hard on a recipe for both Angle and O’Donnell. But no matter how much sugar they dump into it, I’m not having any !!!!