Thursday, October 28, 2010

Nonsense

Even the Christians can't agree. Yes, homosexuality is a sin. No, it's not a sin, it's just the way some people are born. God hates fags. Jesus loves everyone. Jesus is God. The bible says, hate the sin, love the sinner. No, that's not even in the bible, that came from somewhere else. The bible says a man who lays with a man shall be put to death. But that's the Old Testament, so it doesn't count. Well, it sort of counts. Wait, I'm not sure . . .

If even the Christians can't agree, then how are the rest of us supposed to take them seriously with regard to their beliefs?

If the bible is the One Universal Truth, then why is it so damned cryptic and confusing and open to interpretation? One would think that if something were meant to be The One Universal Truth, a guide by which the average person is supposed to live, then it would be crystal clear and devoid of contradictions or ambiguity. It wouldn't be so hard to understand - so hard, in fact, that apparently only scholars and preachers really understand it, and the average Joe has to attend bible study classes in order to try to figure out what it all means (and really, what they're getting in bible study is a spoon-feeding of their particular sect's interpretation of hand-picked bible passages; go to a bible study for a different denomination, and you're likely to get a whole other interpretation). If it were the One Universal Truth, it would not have spawned a thousand different religions. One would think.

Here's another thing: Christian selfishness. I am sick to death of signing onto Facebook and seeing threads, or overhearing conversations at school as I wait for my kids to be let out, centered around requests for prayers for the most selfish, trivial things. And yes, even your husband's job loss, or your daughter's upcoming surgery - even my husband's cancer - are extremely trivial things if one looks at them in the context of a worldview. And isn't that what we should all be doing, looking at things from a worldview, and not just telescoping in on the things immediately surrounding us? If there are people who really and truly believe that there is power in prayer, that there is some All Powerful Entity out there listening and taking an interest in the human race, then shouldn't those people be putting their prayer power to more altruistic use? How about praying for an end to hunger, an end to violence and war, an end to babies dying of horrible diseases, an end to catastrophic "acts of God"?

My theory is that people tend to pray for things that are, in the end, safely in the hands of fellow humans. They pray for new tires for their car, or money to cover Jimmy's braces, or that their dog Spot's broken hind leg heals, or that Susie's surgery goes smoothly, or that mortgage interest rates go down, because really, they know that these are all things potentially controllable by human forces. It's safe to assume that those things will work out, thanks to human involvement (and if they don't, it's all part of God's plan). Does anyone actually pray that there be no more deadly earthquakes or hurricanes? I doubt very many people do, because they probably realize the futility of it, and that just might shake their faith a little.

I know, I sound pissed off, don't I? I guess I am. It's a constant irritant to me, this whole religion thing, this whole god thing. People who live their lives according to some ambiguous book, by principles they can't even fully explain - all in the hopes of scoring enough points to get into Heaven in the afterlife. I mean, if you're going to adhere adamantly to certain principles, at least be able to back them up - the whys and wherefores - in a concise manner. Otherwise, your credibility just goes pretty much to the dogs for me.

And the picking and choosing. The self-proclaimed "Cafeteria Catholics" (and I'm sure there is an equivalent in every religion). If you're just going to go with what works for you and forget the rest, why bother with religion at all? I am here to testify that one can be a good person of high morals and values for its own sake, and not for the sake of any religion.

The afterlife - now there's a golden carrot if I ever saw one. I'm thinking there is no afterlife. And therefore, we should take the utmost care of the here and now. We should be taking care of one another, taking care of the planet, loving and accepting one another, reaching out, accepting. Gosh, just imagine a world like that! Sounds like Paradise, doesn't it?

4 comments:

diane rene said...

I'm with ya on this one. which is why, when I hear people judge another, and then cover it up with, "well the bible says ..." I follow with, the bible also says, "there is only one true judge, and honey, you ain't it".

but that is the hypocrisy of handing out a list of rules and the 'right-way' of doing things and then telling people, you aren't supposed to judge others.

I have to admit, I do enjoy listening to them contradict each other.

Alex and Kristi said...

Right on!

Talley Images said...

Lisa... its funny, I was just going to email you and ask how that book swap went that you talked about awhile ago with another mom... :)

Anyway, Im going to answer for myself, as a Christian and I am not being defensive/offensive or disrespectful, so I hope I dont come across that way

I think what it comes down to is that Christianity has become something that it was never intended to be... it was never meant to be about the religion, but its all about a relationship with God

And I think that is where boundary lines get fuzzy... everyone relates to God differently - we are human, so we relate as humans - with our limited understanding... think about it - you are friends with several different kinds of people - some are good, some are bad, some are selfish, some are sweet - you wouldnt want to be judged just by all the people who claim to "know" you, right?

I think that last sentence of yours "We should be taking care of one another, taking care of the planet, loving and accepting one another, reaching out, accepting" - personally, that is what Christianity is all about... I know its not for everyone, but it is for me.

For me, Christianity is about loving the overlooked, and putting others above yourself.... if you ever heard me pray - I dont pray for healing or things or whatever - I think thats nonsense... if you really believed that God is God, then you would get to know Him, not ask Him for anything/everything, but rather if you believe He is God, then whatever He gives out is good, even if it doesnt feel like it at the time (hope that doesnt sound like nonsense) - but I think that selfishness is not a "Christian" trait, but a human trait - even my non-Christian friends are very rarely satisfied with what they have... :)

And because Christianity is about a personal relationship, I think that is what makes the Bible so interesting - we all relate to it on a different level... and I think once you do have a personal relationship with God, then I think alot more of it starts clicking into place because you start understanding the Author and where He is coming from... (once again, hope that makes sense)

Of course, Ive come to my own beliefs mostly on my own... Ive never been one to believe people just because they said something - in fact, I often drive people mad with the many, many questions and asking for proof in what they are saying....

Ok - I really hope I havent come across as preachy - never my intent... just trying to offer a different perspective... if you ever want to ask anything, then Id be cool with that - Im not one of those people who dont know why I believe things - now, my explanations can be a bit weird sounding (ha ha), but I do know what I believe (and yes, I totally agree, alot of "Christians" have no idea what they believe, and I have a hard time calling them "Christian" b/c of that)

Cheryl said...

To quote a very wise man: “True religion is real living; living with all one's soul, with all one's goodness and righteousness.”
~Albert Einstein
Some people actually accomplish this under the banner of the "religion" of their upbringing or choice; unfortunately, many more do not.
I do believe in the afterlife (personally, I think it is life after life after life until we get it right)and only the old souls really understand that it is between our soul and our God and all the rest is just so much clutter...