My favorite video of the day.  What makes this video so great is, at first, I had no idea whether this was real or parody.  You’ll quickly figure it out, unless, of course, you’re stupid.  Heh.  This video is absolutely brilliant!

Enjoy, you fiendish monsters!!

Salvation is selfish.

October 26, 2008

Today, I’ve been thinking about the whole idea of salvation, as it is understood in the Christian religion.  Salvation, of course, is only attainable by “accepting Jesus as your personal lord and savior” and living a life free of sin, according to the good Christians.

Living a life free of sin, according to the devout, is of the utmost virtue.  And sin, of course, is defined by a human interpretation of the bible, which is taken to be the “word of god”.  (I sense a little room here for fallability and subjectivity, don’t you?)  Christians want the rest of us to accept their way as THE way, because some book of dubious origin said so.  (Like the ignorant bumper sticker I saw once – “god said it, I believe it, that settles it.”  They just think they’re so fucking cute, don’t they?)  But it seems to me that to live one’s life in constant fear of a celestial surveillance in hopes to gain said surveillance’s favor in an afterlife is psychologically twisted to the point of morbidity.  It strikes me more as an “alien despotism”, to borrow a phrase from Bertrand Russell.  And for that same fear of banishment from some desirable “heaven” to be the sole motivation for one to do good in the world would reveal not a strong moral character, but a truly selfish and cunning one.  It would rather that living a good and decent life in pursuit of one’s own good and decent hopes and desires without intruding on the good and decent hopes and desires of others, I should hope, would be its own reward here in this life.  Frank Zappa sang it a little more plainly: “Do what you wanna, do what you will, just don’t mess up your neighbor’s thrill.”

Religion is a paradoxical duality of sorts – a wholly individual thing and yet at the same time a collective entity.  Each member of any religious sect partakes individually in its rites – usually by birth or marriage, but somewhat willfully.  In the Christian religion, each member seeks “salvation through Jesus Christ” and yet they are all swept up together in a collective fervor that knows no reason or logic; rather, they are blindly following some handful of teachings and rituals that are self-contradicting, divisive and exclusive at best.

Salvation just strikes as such a selfish enterprise.  All of this charity and good-will seems to be just for show – because, in the end, it is each individual Christian who is hoping and praying that all of this “good deeds” stuff will add up to the correct sum on some score card and allow them admittance into the most aristocratic, elitist club in the universe.  Too bad for them that all scientific evidence and logic point to the contrary – that god’s heaven is the stuff of myth and fable, and each us – devout or not – are headed straight for the collective compost pile.