Monday, March 28, 2011

No Worries

I was supposed to stay in Austin another day or two, but I felt like coming back to my parents' house yesterday.  I'm still not sure why I felt like it.  I never felt like ditching Austin before - especially not to go to Houston since I thoroughly dislike Houston.  I like my parents' house, though.

I like it at MeanJean and JimBob's house out in the hills west of Austin, too, but I think I may be freaking out about moving in June.  I'm cool with not knowing what I'm going to do or where I'm going to go in June, but talking to friends about the whole thing is unsettling.  I may be calm in this uncertainty, but the minute I start talking about moving somewhere in June with friends who care about me, I start wondering if maybe I should be more worried.  The weird thing, though, is that I think that I am totally calm about it.  If I had to attribute this calmness to anything in particular, I suspect that thing is A Course in Miracles.

The Course is even harder to talk about a lot of folks think that it's crackpot bullshit.  That attitude reflects the whole Love vs Fear thing we all live with every single day.  I'm not worried about it either - although I will say that the Course is causing me to reflect on all the Redemption and Retribution kick I went on last year under the direction of The Preacher from The Mountains regarding That Guy Who Won't Talk to Me.

The Course is written in the voice of Jesus Himself and addresses perceptions - most particularly misperceptions that many Christians have about what He said in the Bible.   I was reading some stuff about Retribution today.  Jesus says God isn't about Retribution, Punishment and Judgment.  That's a misperception people have about God based on their own fears - specifically the fear that they're being Judged.  I can dig it.

However, it logically follows that The Preacher was turned on by Retribution not because of God but because of his own damn self.  The trouble with listening to Preachers is that they are people too - just like anyone else - but they have a way of acting as if they have some special authority on account of God.

I was curious about God last winter which was why I was listening to The Preacher.  I'm pretty sure he was listening to me because my perception of Bible stories fell outside of his habitual experience.  But, you know, in my view it's just as likely that The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy was directly channeled to Doug Adams from God as the Bible was supposedly channeled to the folks who wrote it down - before a bunch of Priests got their hands on it and fucked with the Translation.  Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings could have been channeled, too, if you want to get technical about the whole thing.  On Walden Pond, Leaves of Grass and Cat's Cradle.  Any book, any day could have come from God.

The way you tell the difference between Divinity and Bull Shit is that Divinity is all about Love and Bull Shit (in this context) is all about Fear.  Michele Bachman claims to be divinely inspired, for example.  Fear-based bullshit has enabled her to attain a position of power among other Fear-based crackpots such as the people who believe Fox News.   There isn't an ounce of Love in any of it.  

My atheist friends say there is no God, but I maintain that atheists are just as stuck on the idea of God as Grandpa in the Sky as Conservative Christians.   I can't see why anyone would believe in a God like that either - not even when Gramps says that He likes you best because you're a White American and the more money you have the more it shows he likes you.  My aunt is so devoted to Grampa in the Sky that she has traveled to foreign lands for the purpose of converting the indigenous people to Christianity.  I've always thought that her life was so chaotic when she was growing up in that abusive, alcoholic home that she needed a God who was as OCD as she is.  She feels better when someone is in control.

She's willfully ignorant about a lot of things which seems to be common among Conservative Christians - particularly Conservative Christians who believe what they see on Fox News.  My atheist friends are generally an intelligent, educated bunch.   Mostly, they seem to be unable to accept God exists because there is no way to prove it.  The trouble I have with that argument is that atheists seem to be rejecting the existence of something humans can't really explain as if the most important criteria is that they be able to make sense of God.  As much as I believe Grandpa in the Sky is a human construct, that doesn't mean there is no God.  It means there's no Grandpa in the Sky.

If all we can ever know is limited by our own frames of reference - how can any human be convinced that everything that could possibly exist does, in fact, exist within that limited frame of reference?  Lots of people think there is no God just because it can't be proven - but they'll believe in String Theory or something equally as goofy just because some mathematician can write an equation.  As if creation itself is an equation.

And even if creation can be reduced to an equation, all that stuff is physical.  There's more to life than The Physical even if Atheists don't think so.  I still don't see why anyone - Scientist, Philosopher, King or Preacher - thinks anyone should accept their authority on the topic of God.  Or any topic, for that matter, unless it's something concrete.  Like Taxes.

I'm going to have to accept someone else's authority on Taxes once we close on the apartment in June, that's a fact.  If I'm lucky, the greed of Republicans will finally work in my personal favor.


Debra She Who Seeks said...

It's easier to control people with fear than with love. Hence, fear's ongoing popularity with religious leaders, politicians, advertisers, etc.

Gail said...


Ya, fear is a powerful motivator, for sure. I know folks who live that way - I stay clear. So, June huh? Wow. I don't know what to say. Except perhaps, "go west young woman"!!
Love you

Susan Tiner said...

I don't know if bullshit is the opposite of divinity but agree that divinity = love.

I hope you get a fantastic price for the apartment :-).

PENolan said...

Susan, Bull Shit seems to be my generic term for pretty much anything that is annoying me this morning ;) This book, as well as a few others I have run across, says Fear is the opposite of Love.

Gail, I don't know what to say either

Debra, it's easy to see once you start looking.


I believe in the Goddess..
did everyone like the kolaches?

Mr. Charleston said...

You could be confusing fear with anxiety. They are similar. Fear of the unknown is mostly anxiety. As opposed to fear of life and limb, like being kidnapped or eaten by a lion.

I know it sounds cliche, but I believe there really is a light and dark side of the Force. But there is still only one Force. Whether it be light or dark has everything to do with how you look at it. Every morning you can make a conscious decision of how you are going to view and live the day.

Like most people, I often fail to keep a positive attitude even though I know it only hurts me and those around me. The happiest people I have ever met are happy because they chose to be.

PENolan said...

Granny, they LOVED the kolaches and the pecan puffs too.

For the purposes of this discussion, however, all divinity is the same. The Patriarchy has no place in the Divine.

Fear is Fear, Mr. C, no matter what you call it. And we choose to look at other people through Fear or through Love. It's simple, really - although it doesn't change the facts of any given situation. Like disease or war or not being able to feed your kids. I'm not very far along in the The Course and haven't gotten to that stuff yet, but other books I've read - like The Power of Now and A Return to Love - talk about those situational realities in ways that challenge our perceptions and habits.

Jennifer said...

My mother prescribes to the Grandpa in the Sky god too. These days he's a malevolent one, apparently those Japanese people really pissed him off.

Anyway, like your aunt, I know that my mother's version of god came out of her past, and its her way of managing the cards she's been dealt. It wouldn't take a psychologist to notice that men have deserted her all her life - her father dying when she was young, my father, and then my step father. She didn't want to manage on her own, but she had to. Her god fills a need. As does any version (or non version) for any of us.

As for fundamentalists all over the world - their gods are used to justify the hard-ons they get from dominating.

Having said that, I don't run away from any little ol' mystery. Right now I'm not needing to define the mystery with a construct - other than it is not malevolent, and it does not encourage hate and dominance. What I need, I suppose, is the love - in all its wonderful mystery.

mac said...

They way I see it, religions and gods exist to control us.

If anything, divinty resides inside us all.
Namaste :-)

PENolan said...


Blog Archive