“A casual stroll through the lunatic asylum shows that faith does not prove anything.” – Friedrich Nietzsche
I wonder, more often than is probably healthy, you, any mental process, and healthy – seriously? where is the line between acceptable religious belief and schizophrenia requiring medication. Clearly, Society draws the line at any religious belief that calls for one to kill oneself, but the maiming and killing of someone else seems to be OK, in fact required, for some religions. True, a great many people within those same religions condemn that sort of treatment in this day and age, the good old days were a simpler, messier time yet no one goes so far as to say the strict adherents are psychotic or schizophrenic and need medication. not even the pharmaceutical industry!
“Religion is the opiate of the masses” – Karl Marx sort of
The full quote from Karl Marx is: “Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people”.
And yet, the “War On Drugs” (I think the slogan’s creator was “on drugs”; it should be against drugs) seems to have passed over religion altogether. religion, pass over, cute… not Nor has Cool-Aid been outlawed, despite the insistence by a large portion of the population that it has some sort of mind-altering properties and drinking it is, in some way, harmful.
“Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.”
– Mother Teresa
We all know that old aphorism, “The devil is in the details,” and it seems Mother Teresa knew the value of that principle, even if she chose to put it into different words. ya think?
Very likely, the difference between psychosis and religious belief is actually a numbers game. Strictly speaking, a religion is a set of guiding beliefs and their associated behaviors. You can, in fact, have a legitimate religion with only one member, not according to the tax guys but when you start talking to the object of your beliefs, which is typically invisible, the mental health industry will lock-on to your scent almost immediately. word of advice: don’t talk to random visible objects either
If, on the other hand, you belong to a religion of millions upon millions of people, you can get away with, pretty much, anything. That’s what’s so cool about countries where you can’t even live there if you don’t belong to their religion – the entire country accepts that the same invisible being is running things, so you can even go so far as to start a war with another country and no one will say you’re all a bunch of psychos ’cause, entire country of psychos!
Some people have all the fun!
Now don’t get me wrong, I understand there are a great many good things done by religious groups.
The fact is, though, any large group of human beings, all acting for the same purpose, is an awesome (in the classical sense) thing. A large group of humans willing to take it on faith that their entire life should be thus-and-so is not thinking critically about doing good or bad and that, my friends, is a scary motherfucker.
So, you might guess that I am an atheist, and you would guess wrongly. To be perfectly clear, hahahaha… you’re killin’ me! I have my own code of morals and ethics, which don’t need to be dictated to me by an invisible overlord; they tend toward what should be common courtesy and decency. Those do not make me a “religious” person, though, even if I do believe in a sort of Universal power; I won’t bore you with the details. I have no problem calling my spiritual entity God, for the sake of convenience – others would probably find a gruesome way to kill me for that. some large group of people not thinking critically, for instance
Although I have a very scientific, analytical mind, I have my own reasons for believing in what a good many other “rational” people would consider a delusion – my own schizophrenic aberration. That’s cool. And while I believe what I do using, largely, the same type of rationale many “real” scientists use to believe in “string theory”, now, that’s a scary cult that does not stop me from employing the most popular purpose for the existence of any deity: the fall guy.
“Announcing your intentions is the best way to hear God laugh.” – a lot of people, really, but I’m quoting Al Swearengen from the HBO series, Deadwood
For the most part, I will take the hit for any ridiculous mistakes I make, but sometimes things are just too complex to ascribe any single blame to anyone other than God. Lazy? Sure. But there we are. Sometimes life is just too messed up, and I am simply too tired to untangle the causality knot:
“Hi, God! Why did you do that to me?”
On the other hand, if you regularly ask the question, “Why does this always happen to me?” you need to review this post.
“The Lord has a plan. We always think the plans are A, B, C and D, and everything is going to be perfect for us and it may not be that way, but it’s still his plan.” – Tony Dungy
When something goes horribly wrong in one’s life, the first thing we do is – well, the first thing is to look for someone to kick… hard… real hard. But that soon gives way to damage control and mitigation. making it feel less shitty That’s when the thread-bare adages make their appearance: It’s for your own good. It will all turn out the way it’s supposed to – according to God’s plan.
But… what if the God’s plan is to drive you batshit crazy?
Welcome to a new week, Bitches!