Life Will Answer – The Book: Do Unto Others? Pt 2

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Earlier this year I published an eBook entitled Life Will Answer. It’s an exploration of life, religion, and the tenuous connection one has with the other—at least as has been defined to date by the various theologies of past and present-day believers.
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Life Will Answer – The Book: Do Unto Others? Pt 1

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Earlier this year I published an eBook entitled Life Will Answer. It’s an exploration of life, religion, and the tenuous connection one has with the other—at least as has been defined to date by the various theologies of past and present-day believers.

A fundamental point of the book is that Life has been established to honor and answer the choices each and all of us make—whatever they are and however they may be judged by the standards and guidelines we as a society have established. I do not accept the notion that there is a God offering wildly arbitrary thumbs-ups and thumbs-downs, or that this Deity has edicts we’re free to abide by or not, although if we don’t there will be hell to pay.

I wrote that book on the premise that there is More to this life than the narrow-minded, conflicting, and occasionally dangerous notions religions offer. Given the several thousand religions claiming followers, it’s absurd for any collection of humans to insist that their Deity tells them It is the One and Only. Several thousand of Its peers take issue with that.

I don’t pretend to be a religious scholar to any measurable degree. I am at best a casual observer of some religion-based behaviors, but given that I have also authored a book discussing those matters, perhaps that makes me more than a casual observer.

So in conjunction with that work, I’d like to offer some observations on related issues of the day by following up with some additional thoughts on last week’s post.

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Even those of us who do not give credence to the notion of a God issuing pronouncements and making demands on Its followers nonetheless would assume that if such an Entity existed in any form for any reason, its presumed magnificence would rule out any concept of a narrow-minded, ignorant, hypocritically judgmental Deity.

Any group, organization, association, or nation which allows narrow-minded, mean-spirited ignorance to serve as the platform from which decisions are rendered impacting all members will wind up with the consequences of narrow-minded, mean-spirited ignorance.

Perhaps it’s just me, but I’m thinking this all suggests a problem or two.

There can be little doubt that one of the defining characteristics of religious extremists/fundamentalists is their astonishing depth and breadth of hypocrisy. To their credit, they keep getting away with it, and perhaps they will for some time to come. Bully for them. (Payback is a bitch, however.)

But as with most other bad decisions premised on bad facts with bad motivations, the eventual outcome will only be a bad one. When fear and paranoia serve as guides, it’s hard to imagine benefits accruing beyond a very short term.

Right-wing Justices, theoretically chosen for their impartiality and judicial acumen, among other desirable traits, have morphed into ecclesiastical analysts, interpreting Constitutional principles and mandates according to religious edicts chock-full of ancient-times nonsense. A great anything does not operate on the thin edges of farce, yet we are slowly but surely turning the great and important policy and cultural decisions of this nation to a band of witless morons.

That we reap what we sow should accord cause just about all of us to shudder. The Supreme Court’s idiotic Hobby Lobby decision to grant an inanimate object any semblance of individual beliefs long-reserved for those with a brain is just the latest example of the ripple effects flowing from ignorance and fear. Those unwilling to open their minds to the inevitability of change or the possibilities of change for the better, and the simple recognition that nonsense duly-honored by citizens from several thousand years ago is probably not the best guide for 21st Century America, should at the very least recuse themselves from making or promoting any decisions affecting anything other than items in their garages.

What rationale for catering to fears and idiocy makes sense for a country whose very same citizens clamor about their patriotism and honor and values and morals and the exceptionalism of their guiding principles? They honor and worship a Deity who has decided that some of Its presumed very own creations are to be treated unequally and unfairly because … because, uh … why, exactly?

[S]ome people in the faith community have taken a shortsighted approach to religious freedom over the last few years in an attempt to turn the First Amendment into an opt-out from any public policy with which they do not agree. [1]

Where is the line to be drawn in the wake of this immoral and embarrassing decision?

As the same writer notes:

Private establishments could be granted the right to refuse service to customers who have been divorced or have had abortions, who commit adultery or fail to live up to a limitless number of potential religious standards. Nearly any business regulation could be challenged on religious grounds, and judges will be forced to make ecclesiastical evaluations or allow our entire legal code to crumble.

That’s not a stretch. The slippery slope is now a lot steeper and lot more slippery.

Given the Right’s clearly-demonstrated strategy to pursue any and all means to oppose policies and decisions inconsistent with their fundamentalist nonsense, or to force their preferred narrow-minded policies on citizens with broader and more enlightened perspectives on 21st Century life, it’s just a matter of time before the next fear-driven attempt is made to chip away our liberties in the guise of preserving those very liberties.

That’s a curious agenda to pursue, and the costs will play themselves in the years to come, with very little assurance that these awful decisions will prove to have anything other than awful consequences.

~ My Photo: sunrise at Long Beach, Rockport, MA – 08.22.05

Sources:

[1] http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rev-dr-c-welton-gaddy/conservative-religious-freedom_b_5022431.html; A Truly Conservative View of Religious Freedom by Rev. Dr. C. Welton Gaddy – March 25, 2014

Life Will Answer – The Book: Understanding Imagination

 

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Earlier this year published an eBook entitled Life Will Answer. It’s an exploration of life, religion, and the tenuous connection one has with the other—at least as has been defined to date by the various theologies of past and present-day believers. Continue reading

Purses

 

The Middle Age Follies

A Slightly Skewed Look At Life

By And For Those Of Us On The North Side Of 50

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 Men have it easy. Admit it. Whether we’re preparing for a ten-day excursion to the most exotic of exotic locales, or a trip to the local hardware store, or doing any number of manly things in manly ways with our manly friends, one and only one item accompanies each and every sojourn: our wallet. Continue reading