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photo by Sheri Dixon

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Sons of God Vs. Sons of Bitches

I've been accused of being anti-Christian, or anti-Baptist or anti-Creationist. Not angrily, more in a very sad and disappointed tone.

But I'm not anti-Jesus.

I believe that Jesus was a very good man who did very good things and preached what people needed to hear. Do I believe he was the Son of God? Yes. So was Mohammad, so was Buddha, so were any number of good men (and women) who tried to show the human race how to be more human, less narcissistic, materialistic, cannibalistic.

I am, unapologetically, anti-religion.

I believe Matthew 18:20 "For where two or three gather in my name, there I am with them".

I believe that Jesus meant that literally- if there are just a few people, everything's cool. Any more than that and sides must be chosen, leadership fought for, individual agendas are slipped in...quietly and innocently.

I'm also pretty sure I've stated all the above before, but there's a reason for the reminder. Just so no one thinks this is an Anti-Christian rant about the demented coward who shot up Oslo.

Because it's not.

What it IS is me being sick to death of the finger pointing and the blame regarding the relative "badness" of any given religion.

Are there parts of the Quran that are bloody and violent and horrifying? Hell, yeah.

Are there parts of the Bible that are bloody and violent and horrifying? Hell, yeah.

How can good Christians say "That madman is not like the rest of us" and expect to be believed without question when after 9/11 the good Muslims said "Those madmen are not like the rest of us" and were vilified with blanket hatred?

Because here's the thing. It ain't the religion.

It's the scholarly interpretations of what the original authors and characters "really meant" that takes a simple message and skews it to fit a convenient doctrine.

It's an entire society living by rules set forth not necessarily by a divine being, but by the guys who wrote it down, re-copied it, translated it, revised it, "cleaned it up a bit here and there"...remember the Telephone Game in elementary school? Where one person starts out whispering into his neighbor's ear "Jack's grandma bakes the best cookies" and by the time it makes it around the circle the last person says "My bicycle is green".

What if "Kill the infidels" was originally "Tolerance is divine and women shall be venerated"?

What if "No one shall enter the gates of Heaven unless he believe in Me" started out "Be kind and non-judgmental and thou shalt be rewarded"?

It's the believer and how the voices in his/her head interpret the interpretations and bend them further to fit their own ideas of how the world works (or should work).

Most of society- any society- are reasonably sane people who will not willingly harm other people. To really rile up folks en masse and make 'em do things so awful, so horrible, so abnormal takes the full-on, un-questioning, Mission From God fire in the belly that caused what happened in Auschwitz or the Crusades or the witch hunts.

The same intensity is magnified when in a single brain and causes what happened in Oslo. And Oklahoma City. And New York City. And Pennsylvania. And anywhere else in the entire world something heinous has been done in the Name of God (whatever name you call him by).

So I'm not anti-Jesus.

I'm anti- anything and anyone who says it's OK (actually REQUIRED) to separate our species into good/bad, have/have not, saved/damned because if there IS Someone out there who will make the thumbs up/thumbs down call at the end of my life I want HIM (or Her) to do it- we're talking Divine Being here, I don't think the opinion of anyone else matters.

And I'm anti- any excuse someone gives to kill others under the guise of Belief, or Faith, or Religious studies- I've never ever heard anyone say "Jesus told me to blow up a day care center" or "Mohammad told me to topple a building". It's always "According to the (insert holy book of choice)...according to the teachings...the writings...the holy law".

I believe the Sons of God did their best. They've just had real assholes for scribes, translators, editors and messengers.

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