Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A personal view on Christianity, life and humanity.

Christianity By Faith

As a child I grew up in an upper class home, with parents who believed in god. They never talked about religion with us kids and let us make up our own minds about what we wanted to believe in. I suppose that if we had asked them about the creation, about life and death, they would have told us their beliefs. But they never needed to. School took care of that. I went to a protestant school, where we from the age of 6 were taught about Christianity.

We learned the stories in the bible and about this religion on a daily basis. This would have been okay, but no one bothered telling us that this wasn’t history. No one told us this was a belief, a religion. We were taught as if this was truth. As children we believed every word the teachers said. Because they were teachers. For us the bible was just another history book that told us about the past.

The disciples were as real as Neanderthals. Jesus as real as Napoleon. So as a child I was a Christian. Because we were not told that there was someone called Darwin, that what we had learned was belief and not truth, and that the bible was nothing more than a written collection of stories about what people believed in 2000 years ago. No one told us the bible was not a history book. No one told us about a theory called evolution.

I grew up in the Netherlands, but moved to Norway at he age of 10. Completely unaware of the scientific theory of evolution that already was accepted as the truth throughout the world of science, I kept up my belief of an almighty god that had created the world in six days. I started singing in a choir, at a local parish. I loved singing and made many friends there. But the parish taught me all about

Christianity put into practice. Pressure, threats, greed, outing, narrow-mindedness and plane intolerance. I got to the point that Christians made me sick to my stomach, they were so fucking sanctimonious it was sickening. I left. To this day I still despise Christians and even hate them.

After my break with Christianity I searched for other religions that would give me the tolerance and answers I so desperately needed. I found Buddhism. It gave me peace with myself and I was a true believer for three years. But I could not let go of my hate and despise for Christians, and I had a harder and harder time believing in the idea of nirvana. Even Buddhism required some belief, and I had grown to be critical of anything that could not be proven. I left Buddhism as I started my first year of college.

And at my first day of college, in my very first lesson, I came in contact with science. Not religious make-believe, not fantasy. But cold, hard facts. At the age of 16, someone finally told me the truth. They told me about Charles Darwin and about evolution. Lightning struck, and from that moment on I was an atheist. I never looked back.

Religion is comfort, it is based on fear and superiority. Fear of what happens when we die. The idea of humans being superior of all beings on this planet. It gives comfortable answers, and allows us to make up a fantasy of eternal life. That we never will die, never will suffer again and that we all will live forever with family and friends that have died before us. It sounds more like a bedtime story for kids.

Seriously, GROW UP! What the fuck is so scary about dying? We live right now, right here. When my life is over, it is over. Why do you need to live forever? Death is a part of life. Our death gives life to others. If we were meant to live forever, then we would have lived forever. We live, give birth to a next generation and then we die.

And why do you need to feel that you are superior to others? What makes you think that you are better than any other creature on this planet? Because of our intelligence? How intelligent are we really? How do you measure that? By how many species we can extinct?

By how many forests we can cut down? By how much poison we can put into the air, the water and the earth? By how fast we can destroy the balance that enables life on this planet? By how many wars we fight? By how many atom bombs we build? How intelligent are we REALLY? Are we smarter than the predators who kill the sick, old and weak prey, so that only the strongest and healthiest animals give on their strong genes to their offspring?

Are we smarter than the earthworms who contribute to fertilizing and turning the soil all over the planet? Are we smarter than the trees, the plants or even the grass, who their entire life work to clean our air of carbon monoxide and create oxygen? Are we smarter than every creature on this planet?

Smarter than the creatures who live in balance with nature? In balance with the forces that allow them to live? Why do we have to feel that we are better than them? Why is it so hard to understand that we are all equal? To understand that we are all related and share the same planet?

To understand that we all have one thing in common, namely life. We are not only idiots, we are evil. The planet is better off without us. Many species have become extinct during our planets history. But we are the first species to have the ability to eradicate not only our own species, but every living thing on this planet.

We are even intelligent enough to understand this, and still we continue our selfish path to total extinction. That is not just stupid, that is plane evil. We are digging our own grave and stand with one foot in it. But instead of stepping out and filling up the hole, we jump in, and make it even bigger. We make it bigger and cover it so that others will fall too.

There are a few exceptions, some native peoples and tribes live in harmony with nature and everything living around them. Some individuals do too. But their attempts to fill our graves are not enough. A shovel can’t fill up graves fast enough when a million bulldozers dig new graves every second. A helping hand can’t pull a man out of a grave if he doesn’t want to be helped.

There is a big difference between intelligence and wisdom. It is sad to say, but humans have evolved towards intelligent stupidity instead of wisdom. An intelligent and hungry tribe would look at a herd of bison and invent a way of catching them. They would build a trap, or chase them off a cliff.

Then they would have plenty of food for the next months. A wise and hungry tribe would kill the oldest and youngest bulls, the oldest and youngest cows, and let the rest escape. Because they want to eat next year as well. By letting the best cows and bulls survive, they know that there will be calves born to feed them next year.

That this herd will continue existing for years to come, to feed them and their children in the future. A wise man thinks not in term of days or months, he thinks in term of years and generations. He wants his children to have a good life, his great-grandchildren to be proud of the way their great-grandfather took care of their future.

We may be intelligent, but unfortunately wisdom is not humanities strongest attribute.

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