Author Topic: Roads Less Traveled and Faulty Maps  (Read 668 times)

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Offline Eloi McQueequog

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Roads Less Traveled and Faulty Maps
« on: July 15, 2011, 07:03:49 PM »
“Friar V. asked me my religious views. My mother, I told him, belonged to a respectable cult, Christian Science, which I never had much respect for. My father was a former Baptist, but he lost his respect for that when his minister taught him to drink and play poker at summer camp.
Years later, when I was a child, my father was told he would be likelier to be promoted in the Army if he was churched, so he climbed his family tree and determined that, as a Scot, he ought to be Presbyterian. Unfortunately, the church he picked, for its brand, architecture and location, was of the sect that first defined the “fundamentals” in which a fundamentalist must believe. I summed up by telling Friar V. I became a Pentecostal in order to marry, and recently the local rabbi told me I am a Jew.”

That short account, from
Cat'smeat Witnesses at http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1792125490#!/note.php?note_id=120395128022312
is what I tell Christians I respect when the issue is not germane to what we are doing. I do not add that my father came from a long line of quiet hypocrites*, free-thinkers, and soft-shell baptists who believed all God's chillin's get wings.  I was given the choice between my mother's gnosticism, my Dad's Cartesianism, and striking out on my own.  I chose my own path, and have gradually noticed I am in the desert, and all my maps are for England, Middle-Earth, or outer space.  The desert is a nice place, once you realize you are not lost, and stop looking for the Buckingham Palace or the forest.

However, as anyone who has read any of my other posts knows, I am agnostic and polytheistic.  Ancestry is not the sole determinant of religion, not even for someone who is barely Jewish enough to be killed by Hitler or make aliyah.  But as long as people want to kill Jews, I claim to be an agnostic polytheistic Jew, since I have the right (unless I am taking to Jews, then I am an apicouros, Hebrew for materialist, from Epicurean.
And, Yeah, I know people want to kill Muslims, but I have no valid grounds for making the claim to be Muslim, and I wouldn't want to because Muslims [some of them] want to kill me,  I am not a Zionist.)

The testimonial Forum seems to have been the place were Christians and ex-Christians were to give their accounts of their spiritual journeys and/or, for Christians to proclaim their proclaim their creed.

I qualify as an ex Christian, as a Christian atheist who believes Jesus is dead, and the very concept of God is wrong, as a Messianic Jew who believes Yeshua was the Messiah** (It did not work) and even as one who believes Rastafari is the Savior.

So, what follows*** are the accounts of what directions various monotheistic maps gave me, and where I wound up by following those.  Keep in mind I was also following maps with Cartesian co-ordinates, and other fictional maps.

*According to the Devil's Dictionary, Hypocrisy is the religion of the majority of the human race.

**And, as Messiah, made King David look like a moral paragon.  Yeshua sold out after he died and went into the wine making business, and got really bad when he got two partners and took over Rome.
YHWH, who had gotten really drunk after Job told him off and didn't even remember if he'd boffed Mary, finally swore off alcohol and went to Mecca to found AA.  I think the Bible and Q'ran together are funnier than Dune, once you know the back stories.

***I will now start writing my Monotheistic dialogues.
What's so funny about peace, love, and understanding?

Offline Eloi McQueequog

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Re: Roads Less Traveled and Faulty Maps
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2011, 09:09:32 PM »
Part One: The Road to Rastafari and Monotheistic Maps
Chapter one: I learn to read with insatiable curiousity.
What follows are the accounts of what directions various monotheistic maps gave me, and where I wound up by following those.  Keep in mind I was also following maps with Cartesian co-ordinates, and other fictional maps.

For example, when I was seven, in '66, the same year I was dragooned into Sunday school. I not only was told I was going to Hell for believing in Dinosaurs and learned about Aslan, my father introduced me to Sokrates, Descartes, and even a casual mention of Bishop Berkley.  I had already learned of the Olympians and the Aesir, and shortly thereafter I discovered animism, then Buddhism, then Hinduism in the encyclopedia.  (The most important fact of my existence is that I became addicted to reading when I was seven.)
At this point, a few things were obvious.  First, Eve was the hero of Genesis, and the story was as good as, say, the Greek myths..
But, Noah's Flood was a crock of shit, and it would be wrong to believe these things were literally true.
That meant I was incapable of not going to hell, since I seemed to lack a talent for lieing to myself.
Therefore, I didn't have to pay attention to any of it, and was free to follow my already deep and profound Jungian relation with the Greek myths.  (I already had meet the Sphinx, but that story must wait for a future chapter with Freud)
It was also obvious that, while pagan gods did require not belief of one the way this YHWH, Jesus, and Allah did, it would be hard to venerate them alone.
One other thing, at least, was obvious to young Tam (as my family called me).  That was that, whatever else was going on, animism was correct, and everything I experienced was aware and interacted with me.  Tam was also, coincidentally, one of the last people to see the orgone bands in the sky before they broke up.  I remember that, and my brother Dogbite seeing them too, and telling Tam he had seen them breaking up in the last five years.
So those were the maps I started with.

Directions given to me by People reading Christian Maps, and my own readings of the map

1st Genesis 1 and 2, I gave this what I later learned was the gnostic meaning.  Eve was the hero, YHWH was the villain, and the snake was a god in the box plot device.  This may have been what created the impression I was a Satanist when I told the teacher Eve was right.  They said I misread the map, it pointed the way to hell
2nd After his own intro to Christianity, my brother George was excited about Aslan, and successfully persuaded me to go back because there were people in the place who were actually worshiping him.
3rd Next week, the flood.  I asked why there weren't any dinosaurs in the map.  Weren't they killed in the Flood?  I was told I was going to hell for believing there ever were dinosaurs.
4th After deciding it would be wrong to listen to those people, I asked my Dad if we had to go back.  He said yes, his colonel had told him he wouldn't be promoted if he didn't go with his family to church,
That part of the map, at least, was accurate, but useless, as I had no intention of going there.
5th I told Dad of my experience so far, up to my anger at being told I was going to hell for being able to tell truth from lies.
My father apologized, and introduced me to philosophy.  I asked him if he was a philosopher, and he told me no, he had wanted to be an anthropologist tho.  He explained that to me, and suggested, since I had to go, be a good soldier, and think of myself as an anthropologist studying a hostile tribe, looking for useful intelligence.
6th My experience as an anthropologist an  looking for intelligence.
Didn't find any.
7th DAD:  “What did they tell you in Sunday school today?”
Thomas (Tam, by this point) “They told a really cool story about this guy who was a prince, but he started working working for civil rights, but that didn't work, so he became a terrorist and used biological warfare, and then he drowned an army that was chasing his people by blowing up a damn...”
MOM “Who told you that nonsense?”
Thomas “Mom, you should have heard it the way she told it.”
8th Next week “how stupid is this guy?  He was just told by GOD killing people is wrong!”
Teacher “They were Satanist”
Thomas “No, they weren't.  They were worshiping a calf!”
Class “You're a Satanist!”
9th The first time I heard of the Neronian martyrs, I thought “Damn, what a role!”
I realized I would die to be on stage.  This awoke a very intense interest in the theatre, masochistic sex fantasies, and a firm commitment to become a Christian if I thought it was likelier to get me killed than being an atheist.
I had already learned the delights of being beaten for witnessing against superstition

10th, Dad went to Nam, Mom went back to Christian Science.  My brothers refused to join any cult so whacko when the army would still make us get shots (and George had allergies)  I wasn't consulted.
But, in third grade, the teacher was reading a local story about a child of peons seeking a magical crucifix.
Finally, curiosity overcame me and I asked, “What is a crucifix?”
I heard the most amazing sound as every other child in the room gasped in horror.  Before they could kill me, the teacher said “Wait a minute.  He might not know what a crucifix is.  He might be a Protestant.  Are you a Protestant?”
By this point I was terrified, but I answered “What is a Protestant?”
The teacher looked like she wanted to let the class kill me.  Instead she told me what a crucifix was, and finished the story.
I was now disgusted as well as terrified.  When I got home, I confronted my mother and said, “I nearly got killed at school today for being a Protestant*!  Are we Protestants?”
She replied, “We are Christian Scientists.”
That sounded like the best news I had ever heard, “What do we believe?” I asked hopefully.
“We believe nothing is real but the thoughts of God.”
As my hopes crashed around me. I realized here was another person whose opinions I did not need to listen to.

I spent the next ten years being known as the Satanist who lies about it and pretends there is no God, while in my heart I was a pagan.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2011, 09:12:11 PM by Eloi McQueequog »
What's so funny about peace, love, and understanding?