It should be said that I am a lover not a fighter, and what I love most is beauty in any form. However, this can result in... overly high expectations. As a person who too often sits on her pedestal of self-righteous judgment, monitoring how the world is "going down the tubes" and martyring herself on the Hellfire of what she deems contemporary incompetence, the articles of this blog will offer my cynical, social, intellectual, and pop cultural observations, which will both serve to vent my frustrations and-- after some counteraction-- convince me that the human race still has a chance. Sometimes you have to remind yourself that "Life is Beautiful," always was, and always will be, even when it isn't, wasn't or won't seem to be. “I still find each day too short for all the thoughts I want to think, all the walks I want to take, all the books I want to read, and all the friends I want to see.” — John Burroughs (Photo of London Library after the Blitz of 1940).

Saturday, September 28, 2013


Pop Artist Nelson de la Nuez's "No Comment" comment
on Jesus Christ.

I am temped to hate the world because...

People use God as an excuse to be "Arsenals." I'm using the word 'arsenal' both because it sounds vaguely like a popular swear word connoting a person of lackluster interpersonal skills and equally communicates the appropriate images of ammo, explosions, massive wartime attacks, and Sunday Bloody Sunday that I associate with such people. See, the Arsenal's arsenal is typically full of potentially harmful thoughts that when fired about with total abandon have the equivalent impact of social grenades. Far too many of these people fire at at will when they feel the paranoia of some example of impending doom. They lash out prematurely in the defensive attempts to destroy their chosen, damnable opponent. Blow it up now; ask questions never. Why 'never?" Because Arsenals already know. They know everything. God told them. I mean, he told a lot of other people too, in different religions, in different regions of the world, but NO. Each Arsenal knows the true message that the true Lord wants to spread.

I don't even know how to begin broaching this subject. I think it goes without saying that it's an impossible thing to argue God, because even if He exists, we don't know the first thing about him. If we did, we wouldn't be so confused about exactly who He is and what He wants. Everyone seems to have a different take. Sometimes He wears the face of Jesus Christ, sometimes Krishna, the Third Eye, Allah, Jehovah, Yahweh, Jah, or the Alien Engram Warrior #scientology?. Whatever the image, the amorphous void that is everything promises glorious, immortal alternatives: eternal salvation, loads of virgins, or spiritual high-fives. It's a wonderful cover, this God we all fight over. He's like a spiritual beard. You wear him to convince people that what you're doing is "righteous" when actually he's just camouflaging your own possibly vile intentions, fed by your insecurities, fears, etc. God is man's most abused scapegoat. We also blame him when something goes wrong. "How could He let this happen!?" Man, ease up! What did He have to do with it? If I'd be He, I'd be pissed.

"South Park" did what it does best by satirizing one of mankind's
worst examples of hypocrisy- Faith for 'Profit' with Eric
Cartman as the singing 'Prophet.'

Growing up, I was led to believe through my family's very brief experience of church-- my Pops yanked us out when he got sick of the BS-- that the Almighty had a beard, and was really powerful, and could make all kinds of things happen. He was also portrayed as a bit bi-polar. On the one hand, he was this incredibly giving, forgiving, omniscient, omnipresent being who could make your dreams come true and reward you with eternity on high. On the other, if you were a bad person, he'd give you the cold shoulder and let Satan take you off to Hell in a chariot of fire. ("Oh well," little Meredith thought. "I always preferred a good barbecue to a mountain resort. It gets cold at those elevated levels, and I hate being chilly"). God was kind of like a measuring a stick for decent behavior: the ultimate in checks and balances. He's the standard method with which we overcome the animalistic, immediate satisfaction side of our humanity (Satan?) and balance it with a hopefully civilized approach toward life with generosity of spirit, patience, and kindness (God?). Shaking on this tricky balance beam is our ever in danger sense of self.

This, I believe, is the true Holy Trinity everybody's always talking about: Id-Ego-Super Ego. First a tempestuous child is introduced to Santa Claus-- "You better watch out, you better not pout... He's makin' a list," etc, to quell his selfish, whining, "me, me, me" behavior. The lesson is, "You get toys when you're good." Later, he's unceremoniously told that Santa is dead, and he's given God. The Alpha/Omega becomes the next idol/hero to keep his morality in tow, keep the maturing man in line, and establish what is expected of him in adulthood. "You get Heaven when you're good." So, what happens when you outgrow God and find out He's dead-- just another myth? Who do answer to then? I'd imagine we're all expected to grow into our own "Father" figures as we mature, establishing law and order within our domain, and handing down these tools of civilized life to our children, those we love, and those we merely encounter. We inspire others by paying it forward, (Haley Joel Osment style). Imagine the damage one can do when his personal Godhead is swelled to the size of that giant golf ball thing at Epcot Center. Oh, the danger...

At the end of the day, whatever God is-- be He a literal creator of us or a figurative sense of the universe and how this all comes together-- the concept of Him is far too expansive to be condensed into any discernible form, hence the multiple religions. Actually, organized religion is a contradiction in terms, for there is no way to 'organize' one's spiritual existence, mental enlightenment, scientific fact, outer space, the laws of nature, mathematics, ghosts and goblins, etc, into one comprehensive thing. There can merely be one's utter awe and humility before all prospects of it. This is why I like to say "God is a sandwich." You order him how you want him, but when you discard the Ham, or order extra cheese, or whatever, you're not accepting the whole enchilada. (Ok, now I'm just mixing metaphors of cuisine, but you get what I'm saying). My theory is, if you can't bite into the whole thing, you may as well just acknowledge the fact that this gigantic, mouth-watering yet intimidating thing is there, and go about your business. Don't kid yourself that you can swallow it all in one bite. Human beings aren't big enough for that. 

The Westboro Baptist Church spreads God's word and those
good ol' Christian Values.

Too bad not everyone knows that. Too bad some people build their God to suit their own tastes and then go around spouting invented, gluttonous self-prophecy about how the world should be and what people need to do to live in the light of God's mercy-- strangely while not mimicking God's mercy by living in his merciful image. Too bad people can't accept that we are just completely and utterly out of control and that the most we can do is try to hold it together and exist with some measure of order, sanity, and calm. Whatever protective fortress you build for yourself is not impenetrable. You can cross all your t's (literally), but that doesn't mean a hurricane's not going to sweep your seaside villa into the ocean. You can criticize others and their beliefs to further fuel your own perceptions, and therein your sense of security, but in no way shape or form does that make you right and free from criticism. You don't know, you hypocrite. Practice what you preach, which is that there is only One, all-knowing God, and you ain't him. To claim that you know what He wants is to play the part of  the Arsenal of the universe and to consequently slap the very monotheistic religion you hold so dear in the face with your own self worship. And this goes for atheists to. You don't know either, so stop bad-mouthing other people and standing on your pedestal of judgment when other people believe in something you don't. Clearly you do believe in God, because you act a lot like Him. Christ...

I've used this metaphor before, but in pretty much all things left in mankind's hands, one can either use the Hammer of God to build or to bludgeon. The difference is in the hand of the (be)holder. I'm a fairly unshakable person, but it truly angers me (and my Hell fires) when people perform outright malicious acts in the name of God, A) because, as aforementioned, the vanity the Arsenal is exhibiting is a self-righteous vanity that insults the name of God they shout from atop their soap box and B) none of this would hold up in court-- the court of Man. Sure, there may be a higher power. You may be called before the Judge you claim to know at the End of Days, but you aren't there yet, pal. You only have humanity now. You have only us to work with, answer to, collaborate with, etc. If you blow up an abortion clinic and tell the jury "It's what God wants," your case isn't going to be very strong. You're done for. Where's God then? You gonna call him in as a witness? He can't help you. You're going to jail. And I bet if/when you do answer to Him, he's gonna be non-plussed with your behavior. Exhibiting hate-fueled acts of mass murder to protest baby murder? While killing pregnant mothers in the process??? I don't know about God, but ignorance is absolutely the true Devil. (Ah-ha-ha-ha-men).

If there is a God, I am willing to lay down good money that
he loves Gary Larson.

Why are we all such jerks? For example, I really wish people would stop criticizing homosexuals for their lifestyle or for wanting to unite themselves in a loving relationship because God things it's "wrong." Cut the crap. Seriously. Just admit that you think it's wrong. You hate gays. Leave the Deity out of it. You don't like gays because their existence throws what you know as reality-- marriage, babies, church, Heaven-- out of balance. (Eek, that sandwich just got a little bigger, didn't it)? Rather than opening your mind a little wider and, OMG, thinking (accepting the awesomeness that is God), just get all insecure and nervous and condemn homosexuals. An alternative lifestyle threatens your sacred, clean and polished, impenetrable version of life, so the former must be incorrect and, most importantly, stopped. Hello? Is there anybody in there?! Just because you believe in God doesn't mean He shares your dumb ass opinions. Just admit that you're an Arsenal. And don't use the Bible as proof of His word. God didn't sit at his desk with a little quill pen and write that thing. It was written by men, with their own opinions and perspectives corrupting the material, which was only further corrupted as passed down over the years through multiple, fallible hands. (The multiple authors are also to blame for the very inconsistent portrait of the Almighty presented in that entertaining, Homer-like text).

Essentially, just stop claiming you know anything and be humble before the fact that you don't; that the only thing concrete in this life is death, a thing you know nothing about. Stop dressing it up as a mystical fairy land of perfection and hedonism and id-fed self pleasure, so you don't have to face your fellow man nor your actions toward him. Stop pretending you have a front row ticket to the land of your ultimate desires. Stop exaggerating your own inner cosmos and calling it God, so you don't have to be scared to death of death anymore. You're never gonna be safe, no matter how many people you mind-manipulate, no matter how many you condemn to boost your own morale. In doing so, you're still not safe from God, and God is the true death, isn't He? Let people work this muck of a life out in their own way, whatever religion they choose to adhere to, whatever way they choose to live. It has nothing to do with you. All you have are your own actions. You may have to answer to this alleged God one day, but no one has to answer to you.

Yes, I am tempted to hate the world...

Willie and Carol Fowler of Atlanta fed 200 impoverished people
 with the food that was to be used at their daughter's
cancelled wedding.

But I don't, because...

GOD EXISTS. Perhaps not as a literal figurehead, but figuratively as an idea. He-- we'll just go with that pronoun-- is the name we have given to the Universe and everything that is beautiful, possible, and far reaching about it. He is all we know, all we don't, and how it all comes together in its mysteries and perfections. He is a force, a scientific genius, a mad mathematician, a doctor, and a sense of peace that comes over you when you fall to your knees and pray to your own resilience to get through a slew of horrible midnights to a better tomorrow. He is the enormity of us and the ultimate ideal of the magnificence we can do unto each other. After all, we are allegedly his children, aren't we? We are created in his image and are thus universes unto ourselves. We create our own space, create our own children in our own image, and spread our words, pass judgment when necessary, and offer forgiveness to those who wrong us even when the pain they've caused us feels unforgivable. We have the power of life in our bones, in our fingertips, and we extend our hands to others, perpetuating a vision of life and promoting a higher level of existence.

I would like to think that the majority of the members of our human race have pure intentions, good intentions. Sometimes we become fickle, we stray, we turn our backs on our brothers in moments of weakness or selfishness. We do this because we're fallible, we screw up, and we have oceans of stress thrust upon us in literal and figurative tidal waves, tornadoes, volcanoes, famines, plagues, and earthquakes. And we quake in fear. But in these moments, we have each other to turn to-- the other gods of God's creation-- to look to for guidance, to bring us back to our center, to help us pay retribution for our errors, learn from our mistakes, and get closer to the greater person we want to be. We don't have God here. We only have each other. The origin of our species was a profound burst of freedom that leaves us on our own, together, to figure this out. We don't have a Santa Claus anymore. We don't have a babysitter. This is it folks. The plus side is that we can and often do overcome the darker aspects of it. 

For all our faults, we conquer our own manifestations of evil time and again by both seeking out and feeling Love. If anything, God is Love. That is the true paradise, the true sense of worthiness, the true window into the profundity of All this experience is. Love is Heaven, and we are fools to seek outside ourselves to find it. It is forever in our power to open the pearly gates wider, create fact from myth, and defy the demons we're always running from. It is in our power to ascend by surrendering; by giving up the (holy) ghost. We cannot know. We can only be humble before the massiveness of Life, admit that we are our own makers, and that paradise on earth was the first promise we were offered. Heaven came later. This is our garden. If you want to do right by God, you have to tend to this. Now. So erase tomorrow and the ever after from your thoughts. Ignoring this responsibility is to offend the God of your existence and play into the hands of the Devil whom you claim to defy. Stop building walls. (Are you safe yet)? Stop spouting commandments that aren't yours to say. (Are you safe yet)? Stop pointing the finger of blame to avoid your own personal condemnation. (Are. You. Safe. Yet)?

There is no safety in life. There is only peace, and even that is fleeting. We cannot predict the motions of Mother Nature, but we can control our own actions by defeating unspeakable disasters and continuing to pass on the purer sides of ourselves. Be kind. Find God in another human being-- one who is waiting to reveal his or her own inner kindness illuminated back in your unarmed, welcoming smile. Our power to do this makes us Gods. It defeats all hate, all evil, all terror. Nothing over the huge gaping span of our existence, has ever destroyed our Love. Our capacity to Love. Not even us. This is God. God exists. And so do We.


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