Thursday, March 15, 2018

Fostering A Desire for Freedom Through Control

Sigmund Freud once said that because of people's desires, which if allowed to be followed to their natural ends would prove fatal to society, there would always be a need for some kind of control. Freud was a product of the intellectual and cultural paradigms he had been born into, of course, which is why his study of the human mind never included those who were born wholly outside of societies that had, at their core, an ethos for fabricating consumers just as much as submissive obedient citizens. 

Reinhold Niebuhr touched on this idea, and how the controlling elements of society were the root of so many of modernity's woes, in his book, Moral Man, Immoral Society. Such an idea was even echoed in Rousseau's quip that "man is born free but is everywhere in chains." 

The seed of this control starts with the acceptance of irrational beliefs, including the idea that it is necessary for any given society to have a ruler or king of some sorts, which children are first conditioned to "believe," and then fashioned to become emotionally addicted to and dependent upon, through religion. 

From this apple, which teaches them their Church or their religion is "like God, knowing right from wrong," all other structures of power find their legitimacy, and thus their control. Religions then claim that the "desire" a person feels, the "hole" they seek to fill, is one that can only be filled by God, rather than a genuine freedom from such ecclesiastical control. 

The "believer," by this point, has long since abandoned the notion that their "faith" is actually the root of the very problem it purports to solve, or that it is simply a control mechanism disguised as, and indeed marketed as, the only "true" ticket to freedom. (Even the devil would be impressed with this ability to sell bondage by labeling it as "freedom" but that is how all marketing works, if you think about it. That's why H.G. Wells said "advertising is legalized lying.")

 Like a drug pusher who has convinced his addicted consumers that the only cure for what ails them is more of the drug he's pushing, so religion works everywhere to convince people that the longing desire they have for freedom and happiness can only come from religion, even though religion is always the first link in the many chains we are conditioned to  wear. 

And like religion's claim to be selling "freedom" through the imposition of its dogmatic requirements for "salvation," so the "believer" enthusiastically works to forge their own chains by convincing themselves they are necessary to defend agaisnt all those who think they are simply insane.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

The Power Disparity Between God & The Devil

The real and perhaps only miracle of religion is how it succeeds in blinding "believers" to the incredibly obvious problems of their faith, which only ever show how purely man made their "belief" systems really are, while at the same time convincing them that they can win eternal paradise through the religious devotion to denying such problems are problems at all, even though they are so painfully obvious to everyone else. 

Take the power disparity between God and the devil. 

According to the Bible, the devil was a pretty exceptional angel, compared to all of the other angels. In fact, the Bible describes him as the highest angel of them all. So even though Lucifer is pretty exceptional compared to all of the other angels, this by no means makes him a god, which is the very thing he apparently got in trouble for wanting to be. 

So then why is there this constant power struggle between the Devil and God? This is like saying there is a power struggle between a glass of water and the pacific ocean, or between an atom and the entire universe. 

No matter how "great" Lucifer may have been as an angel, it makes no sense to conclude that any angel - or even ALL of the angels, since God simply created them all - would ever amount to mere gnats to a God that is like an elephant the size of Jupiter, a planet which happens to be 300 times larger than the earth. 

And yet, we are supposed to simply "believe" that all of the problems between our desire to be good and our penchant for being evil, boil down to a cosmic chess match between God and his nemesis Satan, with all of us being forced to be pawns in order to maintain the requirement of "free will."

 Free will, it should be noted, is the idea that we are all perfectly free to follow God or Satan, which is why we can all be deemed to deserve eternal hell for choosing to follow the later, even though nothing we do is ever good enough to win eternal heaven for following the former; God just decides to grant us access to heaven as a "gift" because he's such a swell God. 

On the one hand, Catholics claim that Satan chooses to expose himself everywhere and in practically everything, and always in the simplest, subtlest and most clever of ways, while on the other hand, the only way God chooses to expose himself most clearly to the world is through highly complex and complicated theological explanations; a sacred bible that is as murderous and genocidal as it is ambiguous and self contradictory; and a Catholic Church that for decades has been hiding, and thus aiding and abetting, pedophiles and pederasts under the raincoat of its religion. 

And we are all expected to chose wisely or suffer the eternal consequences. This, then, is the extreme irony of all of this, for God promises to throw Satan and his minions into an eternal lake of fire, but only AFTER the world has ended,which is precisely the point in time where throwing Satan into a lake of fire won't matter to ANYONE!

God could chose to do this now, of course, and save countless numbers of his "beloved children" whom he allows the devil to work so diligently everywhere to drag to hell along with him - which for God would be far, far easier thing to do than creating the entire universe - but as Jesus used to say, "Where's the fun in that?" 


The Axe Body Spray of Loving God On Command

"Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength."

We see this quote in Deuteronomy 6:5, Matthew 22:37, Mark 12:30, and Luke 10:27. 

How utterly insane it is for someone to "love" someone on command. Yet not a single Christian sees anything odd about this at all, and instead think people deserve whatever eternal tortures await them for failing to do so. 

If we changed the word "God" in this quote to, say, Government, or Nike, or Kim Jong-il, Joseph Stalin, Jim Jones, Howdy Dowdy, or even oneself, the Christian would immediately and rightly object. But when it is "God," even though such a word is far too abstract to mean anything definitively useful, the Christians seems to think it is even more natural to "love" on command than to sleep, breath, or eat. 

As such, the only thing more fascinating to the atheist than the Christian who thinks people should never "love" anything or anyone on command, except when it is their own specifically "Christian" God who is so commanding, is the lengths those same Christians will go to to deny that the threat of eternal hell has anything whatsoever to do with their decision to follow such a command with all the alacrity of a dog obeying his master's command to fetch a stick.

And perhaps even more curious, is how the Christian will argue so forcefully that they "love" god, not because the same Bible that commands them to do so also assures them of being roasted for all eternity for failing to obey,  but because of their own "free will." 

It is this adamant conviction that they are "loving" God of their "own free will," and not because they were commanded on pain of eternal hell, that convinces them their "love" is what makes them worthy of eternal paradise, ya know, with the God who commanded them all to "love" him, lest He cast them all into the eternal ovens of Auschwitz. 

 And since we are all called to "be like Jesus," and Jesus is in fact God, the next time I am in a bar I will simply tell the first "Christian" woman I encounter that I command her to "love me" with "all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength."

If the Bible is to be trusted, I am sure such a "command" will have the very same effect as Axe Body Spray, prompting a stampede of bikini-clad women to run toward me from everywhere. And as they do, looking almost like animals running through the wilderness, I'll just stand there with a satisfied grin on my face - holding my Bible.


Tuesday, March 13, 2018

How Catholic Apathy is Like God

When Lucifer eventually displeased God, at least according to John Milton's telling of it, God cast him out of heaven the same way he cast Adam & Eve out of the Garden of Eden. But that was about it. 

God did not declare emphatically that "monotheism" is the one true perspective on god, and then set up an inquisition shortly thereafter to torture and kill anyone, or even any angel, who dared to question His authority as God. 

But that's pretty much the very opposite of what the Catholic Church did, and what every religion has ever done. Indeed, since the days of Noah and Sodom and Gomorrah, apparently no God has ever taken it upon himself or herself, to directly instruct his "beloved children" on how He or She wants them to behave. This is true whether we are killing each other in World Wars, with atom bombs, or committing genocides every time He turns around. 

 In fact, the only way the Catholic Church has ever acted like God is when, to protect its own earthly power, it decided not to warn anyone about how its own priests and nuns were raping children, in the same way God decided not to warn anyone that King Herod the Great, in a similar attempt to protect his own earthly power, was going to murder all of the male children in the vicinity of Bethlehem. 


The Discovery of a New God

How would a person go about discovering a "new" God?

In 1781, William Herschel  noticed an object he first suspected to be a comet. The object had been catalogued before, but the motion had not been detected. Herschel eventually recognized it as a new planet circling the Sun, and after several years, wherein astronomers had established the orbit of that new planet, it was named Uranus, for the Greek god of the heavens.

Now, let us assume that the "god of the heavens" is the Christian God, which was only discovered to be the "one and only God" roughly two thousand years ago, since for countless thousands of years before that, the vast majority of people on the planet (that we know anything about) believed in the existence of multiple gods.

So how would one then go on to test that"monotheism" is correct, and that polytheism is incorrect? How do we discover, in other words, whether the "monotheism" hypothesis is true or false? After all, it is not as if people had come up with some scientific method for "testing" how many gods there were.

In 1820, more ancient observations of Uranus were uncovered, and they raised a problem, because they were at variance with the orbit that had been established. While various hypotheses were put forward in the 1830s to account for the difference, astronomers eventually settled on the idea that an unknown planet, beyond the orbit of Uranus, was causing it to deviate from the established orbit.

That planet, they eventually discovered, was Neptune.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Belief-ism: How Religion is Like Racism

Religion teaches people that "beliefs" are what really matter, and that having the "right" beliefs is the only thing that can prevent a person from otherwise becoming a raving psychopath who would rape you as soon as murder your children.

 It is our "beliefs" after all, that are necessary for making people moral, without which we would all quickly devolve into cannibalistic savages. But for the rosary and mass at 7 a.m. every morning of the week, even grandmothers would be selling heroin to kids in kindergarten and doing drive-bys for a parking space at the grocery store.

It is this absurd notion that one "belief" is somehow better at making us more "moral" that leads people who subscribe to whichever "belief" is lauded about in a given society as being the one necessary for doing so, that makes them think that their "thoughts" and "ideas" are therefore better than the thoughts and ideas of those who do not subscribe to the same "belief." And all those who do not, like the Native Americans or African slave who were not Christian, are therefore expendable simply because of they do not posses in their brain the right "beliefs" to make them worthy of being treated like equals.

It is to assume, in other words, that only when someone starts with a certain "belief" can they ever actually contribute anything truly meaningful to the world, let alone discover "truth" and "meaning" and "joy," and all the rest. 

In this way, the color of our "beliefs" are interpreted as a kind of racism, as if the color of one "belief" should be ranked above or below the color of another "belief," which could properly be referred to as "belief-ism." 

Belief-ism, then, is simply the belief that my beliefs are better than yours - for finding happiness, promoting morality, understanding the nature of love and sex, interpreting the "proper" function and meaning of everything in the universe, deciphering the fabric of reality, finding cures for cancer, whether God exists at all, etc etc -  in the same way that racism is the "belief" my biology is better than yours. 

But it's my "belief" that such a belief is not only demonstrably false, but that it is precisely such a "belief" that has caused all of the very problems in the world, that every organized and indeed institutionalized "belief" system claims to only ever be working to combat. 

It is not necessarily the "beliefs" themselves, however, but the obstinate quest to maintain those "beliefs" in the face of any and all evidence or reason, as well as the absurd notion that by doing so, or even dying or killing for that "belief," one is somehow serving and pleasing a "God."

While it is considered the noblest thing ever to die for one's beliefs, for the sake of our eternal soul, it is a far nobler (and indeed sane) thing to let our sacred "beliefs" die instead, for the sake of each other. 

Sunday, March 11, 2018

The Right to be Wrong

Perhaps the central and biggest problem with all of the major religions is that they have never defended the right of a person to be wrong. 

It is far easier for an atheist to defend the right of the Branch Davidians to "believe" in a God, for example, then for a Christian or even the Catholic Church, to defend the right of atheists to believe that Christianity is simply a cult based on claims that are as self contradictory and unsubstantiated as they are utterly unfalsifiable. 

Both oppose the beliefs of the other, only the difference is that the atheist opposes religion because he does not want to be burned alive or beheaded by a religious zealot, while the Christian or Muslim opposes atheism because he does not want to burn alive for all of eternity for failing to do so. The former can tolerate the "beliefs" of the latter, even if they seem utterly irrational, if only they would stop trying to "convert" (i.e. indoctrinate or simply impose by force) the world to how they think everything should be run. The latter, however, thinks they are ordered by God to eradicated the former, and that "tolerance" is worthy of eternal hellfire. 

In other words, Christians work to convert people to Christianity for basically the same reason Iraq's elite military core, the Republican Guard, fought for Saddam Hussein: both know that if they don't they'll be summarily executed by their "ruler."  

For the Christian, being "wrong" is to be an agent of the devil, a heretic, a threat as much to the salvation of a person's eternal soul as to the eternal "truth" of their "beliefs." 

This is why the Christian and the Muslim cannot defend the right of a person to be "wrong," because like Amway, they build up their treasures in heaven by "saving souls" here on earth. While they claim that the devil is trying to harvest souls for hell, in other words, Christians run around trying to harvest those same souls in order to increase their own heavenly rewards (or to at least help ensure they don't just miss the quota for salvation). 

I oppose religion, since it is simply a cult of mind control, but that certainly does not mean I would ever support any system that would ever deny someone's right to be wrong.

Fostering A Desire for Freedom Through Control

Sigmund Freud once said that because of people's desires, which if allowed to be followed to their natural ends would prove fatal to so...