Tuesday, August 5, 2008

The Trouble with Us or, The Trip to Similarity

"Our people knew there was yellow metal in little chunks up there; but they did not bother with it, because it was not good for anything"--------Black Elk

The problem with America, and the rest of the world for that matter, is religion. And that is really an odd thing, since they all teach basically the same thing. I include the Jews, the Catholics, the Protestants, the Sunnis, the Sikhs, the Hindu, the Buddhists, the Muslims and the Great Triad, and any I may have forgotten. I also include that vast sect that only worships gold. And I think the problem lies in the ten percent of the brain that we actually use. The brain, in its current evolutionary state, is unable to counteract the self-righteous neuron cluster. In fact, the findings from a recent neurological conference at Harvard has determined that due to sociological and biological pressures, we cannot alter the belief that we are right in whatever we do.

The actual view bears this out. Our worship of gold has led us to current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Muslim view of paradise led to flying planes into the twin towers. The Aztecs, the Incas, the Toltecs are all gone in the name of god and gold. We have beaten Native Americans into an alcoholic and drug laden blob of a nation, in the name of manifest destiny. I cannot speak of Africa, or Australia or Bosnia, but it is the same there; I just don't know the details. We, as a race, are guilty of a self-righteousness bordering on pathological, and we bear it most often in the name of god or gold.

I am all for diversity, but not at the expense of commonality. A boy or girl can longer honor the grandfather or the grandmother; the spirits of the earth are all dead; and soon enough, Santa will have no workshop--the North Pole will be gone. We plow ahead with a deadly single mindedness. And in our wake, we leave a barren landscape.

We have reached a point where we are only happy if we take way more than we need. The accumulation of wealth, or spirituality, has led us as a world to become a collection of aggressive packs. The pope evangelizes, the mullah incites to violence, the rabbi preaches cultural protection, the press proselytizes, the CEO profitizes, and the good ole US of A, well, the just jam democracy down the throats of anyone who won't listen.

Thankfully, I have a pirate in my life, and pirates can unlock writers block by thinking of one word for you. Today's word is DOGMA.

And the question of the day is "Why does dogma make us so comfortable'? I have my opinions, and I will share them, but I don't wish to sound too dogmatic.

Dogma makes us comfortable because it eliminates the need for any original thought. When we accept dogma, we no longer have to admit that we only use 10% of our brains. If Jesus, or Allah, or Yahweh says we are the chosen people, the ones who will find paradise, then we can say we adhere to dogma and our sins will all be forgiven. We can rape and pillage and steal and cheat without consequence. And please, don't throw the law in my face--that's just dogma for sale.

Dogma also makes us comfortable because it binds the pack and eliminates the need for meaningful conversation. Just say a prayer, or buy some stock, and the genocides in Germany and Bosnia and Darfur become little more than troublesome inconveniences.

And lastly, dogma eliminates the need to live your own life; you can just live the life you're supposed to live according to whichever Grand Poobah you choose. Just follow the party line.

I've made my choice. I'll accept the Golden Rule, and I'll make up the rest as I go. I honestly don't give a flying fuck if you buy anything I say. I will not belong to any pack, I will find my own red road, and I will try to help whoever stumbles across my path. To bastardize a fairly new expression, "You are right, and so is everyone else".

It is high time for us to stop caring if someone else thinks, or believes, as we do. And it is certainly time to accept that you will never change their mind. So go ahead. You take the high road, and I'll take the low road, and I'll be in paradise before you.

1 comment:

Gail said...

Hey Fallen Angel,

I like this writing, a lot!! A real lot! I have fallen victim to the "God-trap' at times when I come to a "give-up" because I believe I have 'done all I can' and so I 'turn it over to God'!! What??? Dolan pointed that out, that it is just a convenient way of relieving myself of any further trying, obligation and so forth. I am guilty at times of doing just that. A dogma of all dogmas if that which I turned over to God still needed me. Fuck me and my horse I rode in on. Not to be confused with your horse, of which you are afraid.

Like I have said, your powerful words have an impact and they challenge values and beliefs and hit nerves. It is good, all good.

I love you Fallen Angel, I do.