Hi…I’m…uh…well, it’s still not important. I’m a recovering fundamentalist. I grew up in the Christian faith, was an ordained minister in the Episcopal Church by the age of 16 and “baptized” again by the age of 21.
I’m sorry. I wish I knew back then what I know now. I wish I was smart enough to be a scientist and a skeptic back then. I wish I was compassionate enough to be a humanist. I wasn’t. This was my bad. Christians may claim the market on compassion and empathy, but sadly, nothing could be further from the truth.
I see all the little trinkets and bumper stickers and propaganda asking, “What would Jesus do?” Apparently, Jesus would kill people, or at the very least, want them to die.
Maybe Jesus just wants a fundamental change in your biology or personality. It’s not too much to ask, after all.
I tried so hard to be a fundamentalist, but the more I listened to myself, the more ridiculous it began to sound. When you hear the way these people speak about others, who would want to be associated with them?
“After all the things I’ve done I hate myself for what I’ve become.” Maybe others should as well. So, I gave it up. People tell me all the time, “Let go and let God.” I didn’t start to really be concerned about the human condition and the world around me until I let go of God.
I’ve tried the religious thing: it didn’t work. I’ve tried the “always positive nothing’s ever bad” thing: it didn’t work. I tried the politically correct thing: it didn’t work. I think the best you can do is try to be the person your dog thinks you are. You know; the benevolent god that bestows blessings on those who beg for them, provides affection when the world seems bleak, and discipline those that don’t act appropriately.
I’ve prayed and watched people intensely. There’s never been any evidence to me that there’s an interventionist god. I wish there was. I really wish there was. I could finally get some answers or resolution to these mundane, “earthly” things that dominate my life.
I can’t give myself to any one religion or belief. They all possess a version of the truth. When we scientists come up with the “Theory of Everything,” I’m sure we’ll confirm some things and disprove others. In the mean time, lighten up. You’re not all right. You’re not all wrong. You’re all somewhere in between. Seriously, lighten up. Stop being so damn bitchy towards people and things that don’t fall in exact line with what you believe in.
This is the All Father. I hope some of you recognize him. I wonder if he’s lonely right now because nobody ever asks him for favors anymore. I know, I know, that’s Paganism, blasphemy, idolatry or whatever sin you want to tack onto it this week. I’m going straight to hell just for asking the question. I want you to shed a tear for Odin, because at one time he was the big, bad reigning deity on the block. You see, there’s no such thing as the one true religion. If you’re a monotheist, all you are is an atheist who’s made an exception. It doesn’t matter if it’s Jesus, Allah, Yahweh, Buddha, Ahura Mazda, Thor, Zeus, or the Great Green Arkleseizure. You simply made one exception. I hope for all of our sakes, it’s the right one.
Otherwise, you could be on the wrong end of this:
The truth is, I’m rooting for all of you. Even if you wish harm on people because of their sexual preference, hate the president because you think he’s a Nazi, or wish we all gave the one-armed salute to the god/government/ideology of your choice. The real test of humanity and enlightenment is to accept those whose ideology differs so much from your own, and treat others as you would yourself.