Thursday, November 01, 2007

10.9 Million Worth of, "It's All about ME !

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I am so happy to learn from Albert Synder on Matt Lauer this morning that the Phelps group out of Kansas is going to have to pay 10.9 million for not respecting Mr. Snyder's and his dead son's rights to their choice of religion and privacy.

For me, religion is a very private matter. We are all faced with the obvious, existence appears to cease, when all the molecules of the body decide not to cooperate with one another. It is also obvious that we all hit this state, usually within one hundred years or less. For some reason, the fact gets co-mingled with a whole set of beliefs about how we should behave while here, often with consequences in the afterlife, if there is one.

Of course with 6.6 billion people on the planet, there is no wonder that Yale University records at least 1300 major and different belief systems around these concepts. They can't all be right, can they ? Some belief systems do allow for them all to be right, but most express the notion that they have got the one, and the only, truth about what happens after death. This has led to quite a few wars, and currently fuels the Bush vs Osama situation, at least on the surface.

I frankly feel that extreme cases of religion fanaticism are really cases of "It's all about me!" gone wild. The Phelps case is really an amazing example, as they are very self aware that they are trying to attract attention to themselves, and are breastbeating themselves as a public spectacle, with the goal of "promoting their view of the afterlife and rules for admission to happy places, and unhappy places." (That's paraphrased, this is a family friendly blog.) Others hang themselves from fish hooks for hours to prove their version of God(s) loves them. I do not understand this behavior at all. Do they really need to go to such extremes to "prove" to themselves and the world that God loves them, or do they just want all the rest of us to look at them, and thus re-affirm their insecure grasp on existence ?

I don't know who neglected these people as children, or if that even has anything to do with this affliction, but I do know that it is really annoying to the rest of us, and life threatening (maybe better to say, "life-shortening"?) in some situations. Stem cell research blockage, forcing children to be born into unloving homes, and other "look at me" issues all seem to be nurtured by some basic inner need for security and a fear of death. The power of reason and logic mean nothing to these people.

They are a silly as I was, assuming that other people will follow my lead, if I just show them the path, which is so obvious to me. After my first marriage dissolved and I couldn't convince my parents to invest in real estate in the 60's and 70's, back when a Victorian in downtown Aspen Colorado was going for 30 grand, I grew up a bit and stopped trying to change people, and went on to finding people I agreed with, or vs versa. Yes, I do blog my beliefs, but that stems from a belief that I might acquire of few more like minded friends, and that it is important to make a public statement about one's beliefs, but in a way that does not get in everyone else's face. No one forced you to read this far, you made that choice, as you make all your choices. The Phelps offered the Snyders, and many, many others, no such privacy.

Yes, the Phelps are getting attention here. Let them gnash their teeth, their treasury will soon be dry, and more tolerant people shall prevail. It is not smart to shout "fire" while going up the down escalator. When faster than light drives arrive, and every nut group can get a planet of their own, then maybe there will be peace, at least for a while. The lovely little children on those planets will become teenagers........

During the Sixties, there was a bumper sticker which said, "Those who claim to know the Truth are very irritating to those of us who do."

1 comment:

Ted said...

How long do you think it will be before some Consivertive Judge overturns the ruling and they get away with it all?

I hope it doesn't happen. Those ASSTARDS belong in Hell.

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