You’ve Got to be Joking
What I have really been struggling with the past few weeks is the concept that there are tens of millions of Americans who actually believe that the Earth is only a few thousand years old, and the events described in the Old Testament really happened. Granted, maybe I’m a bit old to be grasping this, but until recently I have more or less fooled myself into believing that only a few of these people actually believed, and that most of them were more or less conforming for the sake of fitting in. I grew up in a religious household, don’t get me wrong, but it was a liberal modern denomination, Episcopalian to be exact. We said grace before dinner, we went to church sometimes, Sunday School on occasion … but no one ever expressed the idea that the events in the Old Testament were literally true. Heck, I remember drawing dinosaurs as part of a Sunday School lesson, liberal Christians have no problem with science and its understanding of the Earth and the Universe.
Tens of millions of Americans apparently do have a problem with the scientific view of the Earth and the Universe, and instead believe that a supernatural being created it all a few thousand years ago. This is the logical equivalent of believing that the Earth is flat. These people aren’t mentally ill, they for the most part had at least some scientific education in the school system, and for all practical purposes are functioning members of society. Granted I haven’t met too many of them, but the ones I have met seemed like nice normal folks to me.
And even more interesting, most of the people who don’t believe aren’t all too upset by it. Imagine if tomorrow morning 50 million Americans woke up and insisted that a nine foot tall invisible rabbit was following them around. Most people would be pretty shocked, and would think there was something wrong with these people. Especially if they insisted that this rabbit had impregnated a virgin, who grew up, was killed, and was then brought back from the dead by the very same rabbit. These people would be rounded up and locked away for their own good.
Instead, they are increasingly running the show. Now maybe the people at the top are simply using the Christ myth to manipulate people, but that is still disturbing on so many levels. I guess people encouraging people to believe in nonsense is part and parcel of human culture, but it’s still an ugly sight. Especially when all of those who are so deceived don’t have much trouble recognizing that other people’s religious beliefs are absurdities. It’s depressing and I’m depressed about it. How much future can the human race have when its individual members are easily persuaded to believe in dogshit nonsense? And the idea that Jesus resurrected from the dead, the Earth is only a few thousand yeas old, or there was a global flood (for starters,) … are dogshit nonsense. Turtles, turtles all the way down makes as much sense.
It kinda throws a monkey wrench in the idea of intelligent design too. What kind of God would design people who can easily be persuaded to believe in crap? Which leads me to think that if there is a God, a great designer who set this all in motion with the Big Bang, he must be a little disappointed with these folks. By not appreciating the amazing universe that God created, a universe where the act of creation never ended, and new stars, galaxies, and forms of life are created continuously … aren’t the Evangelists the ones who are denying God? By their own logic, by worshipping a Bronze Age myth put to parchment, aren’t they the ones worshipping a golden calf? The Bible is no more the word of God than a Spiderman comic. Claiming that it was divinely inspired is no different than claiming Stan Lee was divinely inspired. Heck, I could claim God inspired me to write this blog.
On the other hand, this is giving me at least some insight into how people believe other silly things. That however is a topic for another blog post. Have a great week everyone, it’s good to be back.
(The above image came from a site offering free religious imagery. It’s Jesus rising into heaven. Well, white Jesus. Another mythical being. If there was a real Jesus, he wasn’t what most people would call white. And he no doubt suffered from an early case of Jerusalem Syndrome.)