Tuesday, August 18, 2009

God, the unGodly.

In instance after instance in the so called 'source book' for God, we find God commiting genocide, judging unfairly, being guilty of favouritism etc., pressing home the point that our standards of goodness and fairness pale in comparison to God's.

But with a little smooth talking this can be explained away from every and any point of view that you might take. The stories are not exactly as happened due to mortal influence of misinterpretation, stories being altered to the 'best fit' of a different language and interpretation from language no longer fully understood etc.

We can use double-think. Feeling smug that God, who we praise and worship 'showed them who is boss', while being willing to turn-tables on the gist of the story to allow a benevolent God.

E.g. In the story of Moses, we are encouraged to enjoy the come-uppance of Pharaoah when, powerful as he(as man-god) is, Yahweh, can bring him to his knees. If it's pointed out that this is a cruel story, the emphasis is changed to the benevolent God setting some rules and the evil Pharoah just being evil.

Seems to me that since God can do anything, He could have, instead of hardening Pharoah's heart, instead of getting in a 'cock-measuring contest', he could just as easily have softened Pharoah's heart to just let the Hebrews go. Same result, but hardly the propaganda message, to the Hebrews, that Yahweh was more powerful than even Pharaoh.

We are told that free will is a notion that we cannot live without, if we can only know all our options, a good person(or any intelligent being) would pick the best one.

If I, a lowly human being can see an 'option B' where God sends Pharaoh a dream instead of bullying the Pharoah into 'letting HIS people go', it puts apologists in a position where they have to try to explain God's carnage(as it is written) in human terms while they are trying to explain that God's reasons CAN'T be explained in human terms.

But I think that 'the religious' use the same tactic in politics too, where they, the Godly can excuse themselves of completely lacking goodness either because their example, 'God's Biblical deeds', is a shining example to them, or, because as in their understanding of the Bible, they can switch point-of-views on themselves thereby fooling themselves that their selfish reasoning is, if not 'good', then at least Godly.


"Dropping an atomic device on innocent people is evil!" Yes or No?

(If we imagine the hated communist regime of the 20th. Century, we'd have to say 'YES', and that is why we need to have an appropriate, devastating response to this kind of threat.)

"Torturing people is evil and we ought to hunt down perpetrators of such heinous crime and bring them to justice!"

(If we imagine being incarcerated in some backward and/or evil regime for breaking their unjust rules, we would certainly hope that anyone torturing us would get their come-uppance, right?)

But the Godly can agree and disagree. Taking their example from the 'Good Book', they can hold their heads up righteously and say, "YES, dropping an atomic bomb on innocents is evil, unless WE'RE doing it!", and, "YES, torture in inhumane, unless WE'RE doing it!"

... and just as the Bible explains that whatever God does, is Godly, whether it would be unGodly if anyone else did it, then whatever they do is Godly EVEN IF they think that it would be unGodly of someone else to do it.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The POWER... compels you.

One of the things people need to learn as they are growning up is how to manipulate others.

What works for one person may not work for others. We have various tools to manipulate others, brute force, humour, logic etc.

What I think it boils down to, is that we are stuck here, not only in the confines of reality, things are what they are, but also within the confines of our perception of ourselves and others, as in, "Who is the boss of whom?"

You might not ever verbalize, or even run it through your streaming consciousness, "Who is the boss of you and who are you the boss of?", but you know, you have a good bead on what 'kind' of person, what 'category' of person that you're the boss of, and of course what kind of, or category of person is 'the boss of you'.

Never mind the supposed ultimate question, "Why am I here, why am I alive?", the question that we're all trying to answer, all the time, is, "Who is the boss of whom?"

This 'real' question has no answer. Well, it's being 'answered' all the time, but it's all a matter of persuasion, self-image. It IS the spiritual, the unknowable puzzle that we strive to solve from the day we realise it exists until the day we die.

We have the power of money, the power of brute force, the power of guile, which is like 'Rock, Paper, Scissors'.

Is there such a thing as free will, or are you compelled to be you by the powers which you perceive yourself to have, or to lack?

My pet bird gets up in the morning, sings his morning song, which, sadly, sounds like a deafening squeeze toy, then proceeds to acknowledge us and to re-establish his dominance over all the mirror images of himself in the house. He has a couple of favourites, the one he sleeps beside, the bathroom one, and some he loves to hate, the one on the headboard of my bed, the one in his 'basement'(under his cage).

I say that we are just like him, we get up in the morning and play exactly the same games as him, but with our family, our bosses etc.

Short of becoming a hermit or committing suicide, there is no escape from our condition, it's what we 'really' are.