Monday, August 14, 2006
Thank you, but I'm my own moral agent
First, you're born wrong. Corrupted. You're never going to be a good person, not on your own. Sure, you may do good things, but that doesn't make you good. Nothing in this world can make you good. In the fundamentalist world, Mother Theresa is burning in hell because she wasn't a "born-again" Christian, she was just Catholic. Also in the fundamentalist world, a serial killer who accepts Jesus on his death bed is going to Heaven, regardless of the things he did in this life. That's how it works. People are powerless on their own. They cannot be anything other than sinful and corrupted. Moreover, they are joyful in their sin, making them even more wretched and vile. There is no complete list of sin, so you can never make certain what to avoid. The rule of thumb that I used when I was still involved in the church was this: If it makes you happy, and it isn't centered around the church, it's probably a sin. Or close to one, so you should confess anyway. It's standard procedure to pray for forgiveness for sins you weren't away you committed. Because you did committ some, being human and all.
Then, because you cannot be good on your own, it stands to reason that someone has to make you be good. That would be God's job. Now, God could do this by being loving and giving you rewards and being accepting. But no. That's not how it works in this world. You are punished for stepping out of line. Not just for major transgressions. No, for anything. Look at a man who is not your husband? Bad! You'll be zapped for that. Tell a lie to get out of detention? Ha! Punishment is on the way. Forgot to read your Bible? What are you, stupid? You are so going to get in trouble for that. And don't even think of skipping church. Even though you want to, even though you disagree with what's being taught. That just means you're not faithful enough. It just means you need to pray harder. You just need to be better. Because if you don't, you'll be punished. And how does God punish you? Well, that could be anything, really. That new promotion you didn't get? That was God. The car accident? God too. Not getting into the college you wanted? Should haven't sworn at your mother.
There are rules, so many rules. No one can follow them all. But if you don't follow them, then you could get cancer. Or your child could be sick. Or maybe your teenage daughter will get pregnant. All punishments from God. Nothing could just happen. No way you could be responsible for your actions. You can't be. You aren't good. You can't make good decisions. You have to be told what to do.
All other faiths are cults. Catholics? Not christians. Mormans? Definately a cult. Unitarians? Ha. Everyone goes to Heaven? Clearly, they must be of the Devil.
Oh, yes. The Devil. He's more powerful than you can ever imagine. Clearly, he's as powerful as God, otherwise why does the church spend so much time talking about Him and so little talking about God? Sit through a sermon on any given Sunday and you'll hear about sin and Satan and punishment. What you won't hear about, until the very end when they're trying to get you to come forward and be saved, is the God loves you. God Loves you? What sort of love is it that is going to send most people to Hell for eternity? What love is it that inflicts all this punishment? What love is it that tells you you were wrong from birth and there's no changing that fact?
They truely believe that, if left to their own devices, humans would do nothing but run around killing and raping and doing the worst things possible. Because they honestly believe that's our true nature. Our true natures is to be animals.
And that's why Fundi churchs are loosing young people at a rapid rate. Because no one can live like that. No one can stand the stress and the pain and the anger and the self-hatred for an entire lifetime, not if they really think about it. No one can look at their fellow human beings and see depraived animals constantly and remain sane. So, those of us who value our sanity run far, far, far away. Fast.