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Posts Tagged ‘full of shit’

Me Of Little Faith: What Doesn’t Kill Us Makes Us Trite

August 16th, 2010 No comments

One downside of reconnecting with old friends on Facebook is finding out just how little in common you currently have with them. Another is that they bring their new friends with them.

Recently, a high school classmate of mine pondered why life had to be so complicated, then declared:

“It’s a test to see if we can handle all of our problems!…before we go to Heaven!!!”

Shortly thereafter, his friend commented:

“What doesn’t kill you will make you stronger…You know what they say, God doesn’t give you anything that you can’t handle.”

A half hour later, another one redundantly followed up:

“Just remember God doesn’t give us anything we can’t handle and what won’t kill us will make us stronger……”

Ah yes, just as Jesus said.

I don’t know if it was the repetitive platitudes or the abuse of Friedrich “God is Dead” Nietzsche, but I was compelled to jump in.

“Alternately, we’re all just tiny, briefly-existing specks in an incomprehensible vast and uncaring universe who have created gods in our own image to keep the nightmares away. There’s nothing about this world that makes me think there’s any┬áhigher power taking a personal interest in the day-to-day struggles of its inhabitants.”

“Once you take eternal punishment and eternal reward off the table, what’s left? Do the best you can with what you’ve got, and try to leave the world a slightly better place than when you entered it.”

Of course, I knew perfectly well that wouldn’t be the last word:

“David, Do you think the universe and world, just popped up, one day?… I know in my heart there is a God! and everything happens for a reason!..I guess we’ll all find out one day!”

Okay, sure. Or we won’t. Whatever.

I really wanted to say, “No, you think the world just popped up one day. Specifically, Day Three. I think it took about thirteen billion years.”

And “Everything happens for a reason?” I dearly wish that I could figure out who first came up with that spurious bit of received wisdom and pimp-slap them. “Everything happens for a reason” is the empty philosophy that brought us M. Night Shayamalan’s Signs, in which Mel Gibson’s wife was cut in half by a car just so she could tell him that it was okay to hit an alien with a baseball bat. Because God had no other way to impart that admittedly helpful advice.

It’s our way of reconciling our belief of a kindly old man in the sky with the reality that a whole lot of awful shit happens in the world. No all-powerful, infinitely benevolent ├╝berbeing is setting things right in Darfur, North Korea or any of a hundred similar hellholes that dot his favored planet. That bothers us, so we chalk it all up to a divine plan that we simple people cannot possibly comprehend. We needn’t do anything because all the bad folks will be sorted out when the final trumpet blows.

Sure, many things happen for a reason. That Afghan girl with no nose or ears* who was on the cover of Time a few weeks back? The reason that happened was that her fuckhead family and some religious fanatics wanted to set an example for any other uppity women who might complain about the cruelty and virtual slavery under which they live.

Oh sure, if you want to feel better in the middle of the night, you can imagine that the bearded sky-man allowed that atrocity to happen as part of his grand scheme. And hey, losing her facial features didn’t kill that girl, so she must be stronger. If they’d cut off her feet as well, she’d be nigh unstoppable.

It’s all a test. I hope she passes. It’d suck if she couldn’t handle what God gave her.

*Remember when Disney got all those complaints about their animated film Aladdin? Specifically, the lyric “Where they cut off your ear if they don’t like your face?” Just sayin’.

Categories: Rant Tags: ,

I Can Scarcely Believe It, Girlfriend

June 1st, 2009 No comments
Categories: TV Tags: , ,