I found myself having a rather interesting conversation with someone yesterday whom I shall call ‘R’. The conversation did not deliberately begin with this man, but was in response to another blogger’s post about how ‘partial’ God would seem to be in the scriptures.
Let me just clarify here that although I do not believe in a god/s, never have, never will, I do however respect that others may not share my view. And that’s just fine, I understand that the diversity of life is part and parcel of my experiences here in this strand of my existence. I am completely accepting of the fact that any judgement I pass is essentially a reflection of me at some level.
Anyway, the conversation began with my response that in summary what I thought the author of the post was saying in not too many words, was that his understanding of his god was that he was in short, selfish, discriminate, exclusive, dogmatic, and that somehow that was ok. It was ok, to ostracise those who did not fit into his gods’ neat little plan for world domination. I merely made a very succinct observation of his post.
Of course as usual, the author whom we shall call ‘R Junior’ didn’t respond (has not yet responded). However, within moments I received a response from this other man whom we have established as ‘R’, who proceeded to give me a long diatribe about my definition of selfishness not being quite the same as his, or in fact that of the author’s, which had me rolling my eyes and tutting loudly as usual, and which I thought was a little presumptuous. But I digress here a little.
Again I responded in brief, suggesting that my definition was in fact quite succinct, whereupon once again, another diatribe that I skimmed through as I was certain it was all very unnecessary given that anyone else would have come to much the same conclusion on reading the article – providing of course they spoke the same kind of English as me, i.e. the discourse of the non-religious lay-person that is. The nuances are apparently remarkably slight, and easily overlooked.
So, being little old mischievous me, with a wont for playing El Diablo Abogado, I decided that I would up the ante and reveal myself to ‘R’ as God.
“Well I am God, and I say you are all silly people barking up the wrong tree. As you can neither disprove or disqualify my claim, then you will just have to assume that I am stark raving bonkers, but also accept that none of you is self-aware enough to understand the magnitude of what it is I’m saying to you. You do not speak for me, you speak only for yourselves, and in that you will only see yourselves.”
Nyeh… from my perspective I think not. If you are going to make such topics open to broad discussion then you have to expect the odd interjection now and again. Debate is healthy right? And as clearly stated within the article itself, based on the opinions of the author, that I obviously did not fall under the auspices of his God, so therefore I was beyond his God’s reach, and thus it was a case of my saying whatever happened to come to mind, because his God really wasn’t going to give a damn.
Suffice to say that, along with ‘R Junior’, ‘R’ has not responded. Which is a shame, because I was ready to point out that any or, in this case, zero objection to my claim just illustrated quite clearly how quickly he was willing to disbelieve in any power outside of himself. I know from previous encounters that ‘R’ believes quite indiscriminately that God is a power that is beyond his own reach per se. And apparently the Christian God is supposed to work in mysterious ways is he not?
So I had to ask myself the question: How would ‘R’ or any other ‘R’ of a similar disposition know their God, and at the very least a sign from their particular brand of God if they were not willing to accept the source of the message no matter where it came from, without first passing judgement, and/or discriminating?
I mean come on, religion does not operate along the same reasoning, or dare I say skepticism, as scientific validation, there isn’t any doubt involved when it comes to validating God’s existence. God is not theoretical, [well it/he/she is in a sense because of the etymological reference of the word ‘theory’, or ‘of god’ in greek, if you go back far enough, with the stem ‘theo’ meaning god. But again digressing, and the subject of another post].
I can only assume, you see, that the lack of response was because ‘R’ had decided to go for option ‘A’ and plumb for my being ‘completely bonkers’. Of course I like to think that maybe ‘R’ had been waiting for a sign from his God and that I had fulfilled that little wish for him (probably not what he had hoped to hear, but there you are, beggars can’t be choosers!).
Except what I am left believing is that doubt in their belief systems is very much on the consciences of both ‘R’ [who was mighty quick to respond when he thought he had a leg to stand on] and ‘R Junior’ who incidentally I think believes he is above me, again judging my previous encounters with him. At least this is in keeping with the general beliefs expressed in the post in question, that because God is selfish, then God’s devotees are allowed to be selfish too. Thus my original observation was indeed quite accurate.
What’s my point you might ask? Why have I decided to take the time and effort to write about this at all?
Well, because I think that it’s a real shame to proclaim acts of selflessness and goodness under the flag of a cause that discriminates as to who receives that blessing. Not a view I share I might add. Does it make me the better person? Is this what this is really about?
Why should anyone get deferential treatment when it comes to matters of well-being and leading a happy fulfilling life? Why should anyone feel that they must miss out or lose because they do not fit in to the social mould that they happen to find themselves participating in? Why is it so important for so many to divert focus from the validity of subjective experience?
You tell me. I can tell you what I think, but that might take a book to explain.