Wednesday, 18 August 2010 00:00 GFP Columnist - Trevor Hill

Will the Real ‘God’ Please Stand Up!? - Not one of mankind’s smoother moves, religion and all that goes with it has purposely messed up people’s brain cells longer than anything else that has ever existed on this planet. Whoever first muttered the word ‘god’ should’ve been beaten with a club and tossed to a sabre tooth tiger.

Religion has entered into our very being in such a way that nothing else compares to its grasp on the human psyche. It goes deeper into the conscience than any other man-made brainwashing device or ideal ever could. Even politics don’t do the same level of brain damage that religion does.

Nothing can escape its hold on so many minds, the world over, in hundreds of different languages, for hundreds of cultures, for hundreds of different ‘religions’, for thousands of years. This is the world’s biggest business with world-wide franchise opportunities.

Just trying to hold a civil conversation about religion is a major challenge and it rarely lasts long. In lieu of this delightful human circumstance, it was decreed that Jerusalem was to be the ideal place to stick the three major religions, Christianity, Islam and Judaism all bundled together at the same cozy spot – literally. What can go wrong?

Because we silly humans can’t deal with anything we have no answer for, we created religion. This idea was to provide bizarre answers for everything from why there are stars in the sky, to the mystery of birth, which as we now know is a direct result of having sex. Unfortunately, the religious dogma we came up with was a tad overcooked, and as a result, religion has turned out to be responsible for more wars and pain than any other human created venture.

There is no mystical reason why any of us are here. Whatever the answer is of “why” we are here will not take away from the fact that each and every one of us was given birth to by our birth females. It doesn’t get any more “special” than that. We all arrived the same way no matter what the Harry Potter book says.

The answer to life won’t be found in a sacred religious book, up in the stars, or under the earth. It won’t be found on top of the highest mountain or in the deepest valleys. It won’t be found on the couch, in the fridge, on the internet, or in the darkest corner of your mind.

Nor will it be found in the mind of another.

I am not a theologian, nor do I want to be one. I’m not a Senior Religious Expert Correspondent like those on Fox News or the Discovery Channel. I’m not Catholic, Muslim, Protestant, Jewish, or Gnostic. I am just…me.

I don’t believe in the Great Pumpkin, the Easter Bunny, invisible entities, or the guiding hand of fate. I don’t believe in destiny, or worship the sun, the moon or the stars, and I don’t believe in a mystical stage of life, or forever.

I believe what I see and what my brain tells me what I believe is real. Or a reasonable facsimile. That’s it. There’s no more – there’s no less.

Or am I missing something, and all these gods and religions below are right?

God, Bhagwan, Allah, Satnam, Yahweh, Jehovah, Bahá'u'lláh and there are more funny names.

And those fine folks come from these exciting religious groups...

Baha'i Faith, Buddhism, Christianity: Other Christian Denominations (Eastern Orthodoxy, Oriental Orthodox and Assyrian Churches, Protestantism, Restorationists, Anglican Communion, Pentecostals); Confucianism, Hinduism, Islam, Jainism, Judaism, Shinto, Sikhism, Taoism, Vodun (Voodoo).

We’re just getting warmed’s the next group of happy cults,

The Amish, The Brethren, Catholic Church (Roman Catholic), Children of God, Christadelphians, Christian Science, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons), Community of Christ: (Formerly the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints), Eastern Orthodox churches, The Family (David Berg - aka Family of Love), Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, Gnosticism, Jehovah's Witnesses, LDS Restorationists: a group of denominations who link their history to Joseph Smith's church, Messianic Judaism & "Jews for Jesus", Progressive Christianity, Quakers (Society of Friends), Seventh-Day Adventist Church, Unification Church, United Pentecostal Church International, Unity Church in Canada, Unity School of Christianity, Worldwide Church of God, The Way International.

And of course, these guys...

Ásatrú (Norse Paganism), Druidism, Goddess Worship, Wicca, Witchcraft.

And finally, this bunch of fun folks...

Caodaism, Damanhur Community, Deism, Druze, Eckankar, Elian Gonzalez religious movement, Gypsies, Hare Krishna, Ifa: the religion of the Yoruba people of West Africa, Lukumi, Macumba, Mowahhidoon, Native American Spirituality, Rom, Roma, Romani, Rroma, (a.k.a. Gypsies), Santeria, Satanism, The Church of Satan, Scientology, Unitarian-Universalism, The Creativity Movement (formerly called World Church of the Creator), The Yazidi branch of Yazdanism, and Zoroastrianism.

Pretty trippy eh? There are still many others, and then there are the “radical religious extremists”, mustn’t forget that weird ass group.

So…tell me about your god. Tell me about how he/she/it is the “right” god, and the “right” religion. Go ahead…take your time.

In the meantime, while I wait, how about this, religion has kept men and women from reaching their true potential as humans and developing true humanity. Without religion, we would have had to learn more about each other than about what kind of god you have and why is he/she/it/ trying to smite me?

Culture is not religion.

Instead of us wasting precious time inventing religious dogma, all we had to do was believe in ourselves and each other. Again, a simple procedure.

Religion is the end result of frightened people who needed to frighten other people more, to rule others and to get what they wanted. It still goes on today and someday humans must give up this childish way of trying to justify their existence.

This religious business has the ability to drive humans to do extraordinary acts of violence in the name of whatever god they’re hooked up to. Are these god sanctioned events? Is there something wrong with your “god” then?

How can an intelligent species accept the reality of a god, any god, like those listed above; or accept the reality of any religion – when there are so many? Doesn’t the fact that there are so many different kinds of religions make the entire arrangement redundant?

If any old Tom, Dick, or Joseph Smith can throw together a “religion”, then the whole idea of religion truly is, nothing more than detrimental man-made hooey. All of it!

The entities that you worship are not responsible for your life or your actions. You are. And if you feel the need to strap a bomb to your butt in the name of your favourite Lord then more power to ya. I’m sure it’s the right thing to do; after all, Allah, God, Jehovah or whoever, said it was cool.

This religion stuff isn’t going to change until the inevitable happens – whatever that’ll be, I dunno, perhaps an asteroid.

Don’t waste your time trying to find the answer to life, you’ve only got a one-way ticket, and besides, the answer is simple; while you’re here, live your life! It isn’t rocket science people!

Now, will the real “god” please sit down?!

Image Courtesy of Jaz's Pagan Page - by Solar Web

The Series...

- The Asteroid Can’t Come Any Faster: The Final Part - Humans: We Are Not Special 

- The Asteroid Can't Come Any Faster: Part 2 - Politics: The Power Game for the Rich and the Psychotic 

- The Asteroid Can’t Come Any Faster: The Series Introduction

Download the PDF of the Introduction and the Complete 3 Part Series

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