What’s the difference between ‘God’ and ‘Good?’ That’s right! Just one little ‘o.’
Forget all the gods, goddesses, saints, ghosts, blessed virgins, ‘our ladies’, dogma, the real estate, the artwork, the tax exemptions, the costumes, the posing, the marketing, the social sanctions, the endless blathering, the electioneering from the pulpit (illegal, but happens more and more, doesn’t it?), the back-room dealing with politicians, the endless legal battles in the quest for justice for all the victims of pedophile priests and the Vatican cover-up, the endless bickering among various flavors of the same religion, the crazy bigamist cults, the wackos, the Wacos, the funny hats, the funny beards, the funny hair, the fetish paraphernalia, the hoodoos, voodoos, snake charming, blathering unintelligible nonsense, apocalyptic prophesies, holy books, holy days, free parking, and pretending to know things neither you nor anyone else does, and lying to children and filling up their minds with the same dangerous religious nonsense that your parents taught to you!
I could go on and on, couldn’t I?
People, what is the ‘Golden Rule?’ Simple:
“Do not do anything to another person that you would not want done to yourself or to someone else you care about.”
Now, to be fair, if I held strong religous beliefs I wouldn’t cotton to some stranger taking liberties with me by writing blogs and telling me that all my beliefs were utter nonsense to me personally, and globally have the potential for world-class destruction if given free reign to do what all religions ultimately want to do, which is to dominate and saturate the peoples of the world with their ‘One True’ belief system.
(It’s as if religious people are so insecure in their rediculous beliefs, the only way they are going to feel comfortable is if the whole world believed as they do. I suppose you could say the same thing about atheists, but I don’t think any atheists are going to fly airliners into skyscrapers or gleefully attempt to escalate our present World War III to its illogical apocalyptic end to presage the second coming of everyone’s Lord and Savior – whether they know it or not – Jesus H. Christ. But, I digress…)
But, since all religious beliefs are grounded in childish superstitious nonsense, you could say that I am a responsible adult talking down to a bunch of unruly children who are playing with chain saws irresponsibly, when it would be safer for them to sit quietly and play tea party (no reference to the current political craze) with their dolls and other imaginary friends – you know, their gods, goddesses, saints, ghosts, blessed virgins, ‘our ladies’, etc.
So, be offended if you like. Better yet, try to imagine living your life (or even someone else’s life, I’m not particular) as though there were no god, satan, heaven, hell, saved/unsaved souls, human sacrifice, cannabilism, original sin, vicarious redemption, guilt, shame, fear, dread, etc, etc, etc. Try to imagine just doing no harm to another sentient creature one day at a time, and just minding your own business as best you can.
To give your imaginations something to work on, check out Society without God – What the Least Religious Nations Can Tell Us about Contentment by Phil Zuckerman. The nations in question are Denmark and Sweden, two of the most secular nations in the Western world “filled with residents who score at the very top of the ‘happiness index,’ and they enjoy healthy societies which boast some of the lowest rates of violent crime in the world (along with some of the lowest levels of corruption), excellent educational systems, strong economies, well-supported arts, free health care, egalitarian social policies, outstanding bike paths, and great beer.”
Sounds like Heaven on Earth to me. (And, isn’t that the only place it really could be?)