Sunday, August 23, 2015

Hamstrung By Ignorance

On my morning stroll around the subdivision, I had a conversation with a new neighbor who inquired about my church affiliation (yea, I know, he asked the wrong person).

I told him that I don't "do church" anymore, as I no longer have any interest in attending. Of course he wants to know why and my response was, "without going into a long story, just research the history of religion, specifically Christianity, and maybe you'll see why I no longer subscribe to religion."

The neighbor then asked me if I believed in God. I told him that I do not identify with Atheism and do believe there is a divine presence that orchestrates the universe, and not just this one tiny planet. His response, "so you believe in God?" I stated, "you can call it what you want." He says, "no, it's God." This statement ignited the fuse which forced me to share my perspective regarding religion and Christianity.

He attempted to quote Bible scriptures to me and I told him that I'd read the Christian holy book, that I grew up in the Christian faith, that my mom and dad were devout Christians, thus, there's no need to recite archaic, primitive scriptures to me.

I told the guy that Christianity never set well with me, it never resonated, so I began to study independently, over 30 years ago.

The rest of the dialogue went something like this (my neighbor, we'll call him Bob):

  • Bob: "Was it one event that led you away from the church?" 
  • Me: "No, just an accumulation of evil, going back to the Crusades, the Inquisition, and a plethora of other sinister events throughout history. Also, consider this Bob, our ancestors that were brought over on slave ships, Christianity was forced on them and the institution of slavery itself is supported by Bible scripture." 
  • Bob: "But the Bible says ..." 
  • Me: "Bob, the Bible is not the 'be all that ends all' in evangelical debates, as you and most Christians believe it to be.
First of all, If you study religious history objectively you'll see that approximately 40 men wrote the articles that would later become what we know as the Holy Bible. The men who wrote these manuscripts, inspired or not, were not writing the articles to include in a holy book. Articles written over, at minimum, a 1000-1500-year time frame were collated by 300 or so churchmen (bishops) at the Council of Nicaea in 325AD. The meeting was presided over by Emperor Constantine I."

"Second, the men who wrote those articles, thought planet Earth was flat; thought our planet was the center of the universe, and it's not even the center of its own planetary system."

"Third, when astronomers like Galileo Galilei and Giordano Bruno, from their cosmological findings, pointed out major discrepancies between the book purported to be from God and the actual universe (which was in stark contrast with the Church) Galilei was censored and placed under house arrest for the remainder of his life and Bruno was burned alive."

"Research the Crusades, the Inquisition, and on up through the 21st century and you will see nothing but evil associated with your belief system. You've been religiously conditioned since birth. In other words, you have been brainwashed to the highest degree."

"Bob, we could go on and on, all I ask is that you do the research. I'm not trying to proselytize to you, not trying to steer you in one direction or the other, all I ask is that you research independently as I've done for the past 32 years."

What African Americans who identify with Christianity are dealing with is referred to as the "Stockholm Syndrome." Stockholm Syndrome, or capture-bonding, is a "psychological phenomenon in which hostages express empathy and sympathy and have positive feelings toward their captors, sometimes to the point of defending and identifying with the captors." 

At this point (surprised that he was still listening), Bob attempted to change the subject.

  • Bob: "What do you think about gay people?" 
  • Me: "To each his own, I'm heterosexual, as long as they don't bother me, I'm OK with whatever lifestyle they choose."

Bob also asked me whether I was married or not, and if I had a girlfriend. It's then that I realized that Bob may have had an ulterior motive.

Anyway, after my rather odd conversation with Bob, the title of this article came to mind: "Hamstrung By Ignorance."

Fundamentalist believer's are so benighted by blind faith and utter ignorance where metaphysical matters are concerned, that it will take another one or two incarnations before they begin to see the real truth about our amazing universe and who we really are as energetic, thinking beings.

In closing, I'll leave the reader with three quotes that just might assist in enlightening those who remain shackled by canonical folklore, myths, and outright fabrications.

"Do not believe in the strength of traditions, even if they have been held in honor for many generations and in many places; do not believe anything because many people speak of it; do not believe on the strength of sages of old times; do not believe that which you have yourselves imagined, thinking that a god has inspired you. Believe nothing which depends only on the authority of your masters and priests. After-investigation believe that which you have yourselves tested and found reasonable and which is for your good and that of others." ~ The Buddha

"Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." ~ Martin-Luther-King

"Our Bible reveals to us the character of our God with minute and remorseless exactness. The portrait is substantially that of a man—if one can imagine a man charged and overcharged with evil impulses far beyond the human limit; a personage whom no one, perhaps, would desire to associate with, now that Nero and Caligula are dead. In the old Testament His acts expose His vindictive, unjust, ungenerous, pitiless and vengeful nature constantly. He is always punishing—punishing trifling misdeeds with thousand-fold severity; punishing innocent children for the misdeeds of their parents; punishing unoffending populations for the misdeeds of their rulers; even descending to wreak bloody vengeance upon harmless calves and lambs and sheep and bullocks, as punishment for inconsequential trespasses committed by their proprietors. It is perhaps the most damnatory biography that exists in print anywhere. It makes Nero an angel of light and leading, by contrast." ~ Mark Twain

© Copyright 2015 - All Rights Reserved. Author, Taskeinc

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