America’s Divide - The Religion Thing

It’s so easy to insult and dismiss. It’s even easier to ignore it all together.
Actual constructive engagement, man that’s a tough one to achieve.
But, I am a bit driven, and I got this egg that I’m struggling to crack, no matter how much it beats me up.
From much personal research and experiences its starting to soak in on me how unique my experience with this existence around me is,
meaning this Earth-Centric perspective I inhabit.
Physical Earth and her story is first and foremost,
(which to me is the only fundamental reality there is.)
with me and society being temporarily overlaid up that underlying reality.
None of this precludes being embedded in and actively engaged with the society and friends and family around me.
But, I appreciate it as, hmmm, ever see drops of water on a hot metal plate, skittering and dancing until we are used up,
something like that. :slight_smile:
My impression is that most people are busy playing within their own minds under the spell of an underlying assumption
that their particular personal mindscapes contain the ultimate reality, if they work it hard enough.

Jordan being a dime a dozen example of, what in essence is more self glorification than struggling for
insights into how we fit into the physical reality that created and sustains us
and that we are destroying at breakneck speed.

For whatever reason I was stripped of that long ago, from my beginnings I felt like a stranger in a strange land,
striving to experience and comprehend it as well as possible.
{oh boy, that one sentence intro got away from me. :red: }

Faith-Based thinking v Dogma Driven Tribalism. The opposing sides: Children of the Intellectual Enlightenment vs Faith-based dogmatism spearheaded by the evangelical movement.
Okay, after the Demo State Convention, I had to jump right into the Bluegrass Meltdown Greenroom coordinating thing, since it was the following weekend. Since then I've been busy trying to keep two waiting clients happy. Long hours, coming home head filled with reviewing the day and trying to think and plan ahead for next phases. So I haven't done any work on that piece. Now that a few weeks have past I'm disappointed to report that from my DSC effort, not one email, the two blogs aren't seeing much visitation and most of that is Russian (I assume bots). Another bust. And around here locally the vicious, malicious recall effort] (Built on lies and a totalitarian attitude) has succeed to gather enough signatures, after being given two extra weeks. Indicating once again that my fears were justified and that the Democratic Party response was as pathetic and impotent as ever when it comes to confronting the absolutist religious-rightwing-GOP and their litany of lies and deceptions. Now I have a day for myself and I've got two days until my FourCornersFreePress deadline - trying to get my thoughts in order.
Beyond winning in the 2018 elections, we need to nurture a massive grassroots movement of informed and engaged voters who are willing to confront faith-based delusional thinking on an individual level, while also standing behind those we elect to make sure they get their jobs done. Faith-based thinking demands a rejection of serious science along with hostility towards learning from down to Earth evidence. This attitude is enabled and reinforced by a constant flow of contrived high pitched fear-mongering and paranoid machinations towards “the other" be it different people or ideas. Why have we allowed their religion and God a free pass? When these people despise us and want to crush us? Look at what they broadcast, it’s no secret. The powers behind this movement are absolutists, and they do literally want to crush us and the governmental agencies and regulations that strive to protect our health and well-being, and they’re playing for keeps! Why not challenge people to realize no human has ever been born capable of understanding the true “God Almighty of Light and Time, Creation and Love" ? We are ALL self-absorbed with our own day to day struggles to survive and thrive, while all we see and hear and experience gets interpreted though our individual preconceptions, egos, insecurities and desires. How can anyone of us presume to grasp something as aged and all encompassing as God? Remind evangelicals that even their Bible, in the Book of Job spells out that God is beyond human understanding. It makes sense. After all, God’s Universe is over 13 billion years old, our planet Earth is about a 1/3rd of that. Try to imagine the breadth of creation, the infinite folds within folds of cumulative harmonic complexity unfolding one day at a time. That is what God embodies. Can you imagine that? The true God Almighty can only be guessed at. Which is why humans have created countless ingenious religious and philosophical shadow plays, since the dawn of man. Ask yourself and others: How could such an entity be impressed with our petty repetitive, yet ultimately self-serving, worship? Wouldn’t such a God of Creation and Love be paying more attention to how we are nurturing our brothers and sisters along with this Earth we all depend on? There have been way too many decades of placid acquiescence to self-certain fantasy thinking which has allowed these people to completely unhinge themselves for our physical reality here on Earth, the one we depend on for our survival.
Don't tell them, Show them, I'm told. It's great writing advice, but not everything fits into that format. What's that advice mean in context to what the above is written about? Where are my key infractions? If it's hostile or condescending - where? how? Anyone into engaging this issue?

Here’s the next section and I’ll spare you all the last section. :cheese: But this one contains the heart of what I’m trying to enunciate.

God and religion may be a human need, but that doesn’t mean we can master it. God belongs inside our hearts and is reflected in our behavior, but instead its been hijacked by greed driven interests who demand denial of geophysical and humanistic realities. Which is okay when confined to the privacy of home and church, but making it the basis for public policy is lunatic. I’m not attacking God, I’m attacking the misuse of God’s name! I’m asking for realistic humility, and a recognition that God is too big for personal relationships with humans who are already totally preoccupied with their own wants and needs during their short walk across Earth’s stage. Then comes Jesus. Why not put Jesus and his story into a more realistic light? The Passion of Jesus, is beautiful, meaningful, and an endlessly useful parable for countless people. But, he is not the ticket to an idyllic after-life. Jesus is a guide for this life. To help us through our own times of trials and tribulations here on Earth, during our lives. Consider that in the course of many lives comes a time we must face our own mortal sins and failures. Doing so successfully requires going through stages of personal crisis, reflection, pain and transformation that Jesus outlined for us and that his teachings and love can guide many through. The process culminates with an annihilation of the self, a death on a cross of our own making. Time passes, if one has been honest there is a morning after, as we awake renewed. Different, better than before, ready to continue living with a transformed appreciation and perspective, a reborn spirit. But, it’s not only our self-created crosses that Jesus speaks to. Sometimes life deals out sudden overwhelming losses, Jesus can be there to comfort, guide and support some through the loss and darkness and back to another day and the sunlight. All this is beautiful and necessary and this is what has given Christianity it’s staying power, Jesus as hope in suffering and an example to live by. As for Jesus as the one and only way to Heaven, that’s the stuff of fairytales and con-men seeking control over others. Think about it in some depth. What are we but a union between body and spirit? Without your body, healthy or frail, liked or hated, who are you, what are you? What can be experienced once we die and our bodies fall away? The spirit and energy our bodily vessel held and nurtured through a lifetime of growing and experiencing is released and absorbed by the living world you’ve just departed. There’s much beauty and peace to be found in that reality, but it takes deep understanding of Earth and time. It can seem harsh, though from my personal experience I know truly substantive spiritual strength comes through deeper appreciation of Earth’s Evolution and its intimate connection with who and what I am. This is what provides me with a spiritual foundation and peace of mind in the face of death, that no preacher or Bible or words can come close to matching.

I can’t completely tell what you’re advocating and what you’re quoting as a way to show what you oppose.
I listened to On Being this morning. It’s a story of Jewish guy who held Shabbat dinners during college and invited the grandson David Duke. The grandson eventually changed his thinking. What’s different about this one is there was no intention to change, but instead befriend. Also, the two guys, who are interviewed together, don’t say this is the only way to make this change happen. They just tell their story.

I’m not attacking God, I’m attacking the misuse of God’s name! I’m asking for realistic humility, and a recognition that God is too big for personal relationships with humans who are already totally preoccupied with their own wants and needs during their short walk across Earth’s stage.
Just trying to find something to respond to, I'll take this. I get the sentiment. I've said this myself. Moderate Christians say it too. Unfortunately, most of them don't understand what they are saying. I think you get it, but the problem is, you're speaking into a culture that doesn't. So, "misuse of God's name" becomes "you're wrong about God, and I'm right". Somebody does actually have to be right, but we don't have the data or the consensus on what that is, so even if you are right, enough people will perceive you as wrong, that making progress on cooperation and compromise is very difficult.
Just trying to find something to respond to, ...
Yeah, that about sums it up. I myself haven't been able to do anything with it, or related ideas, today. A few starts, but in the end I'm feeling too depressed and empty and what I've written I don't like, so spent more time doing yard work than wordsmithing. Despite all that's happening in the news, I'm getting that same awful feeling towards the upcoming election that I did two years ago. The Democrats still don't get it. They seem to think they do and are satisfied with that, but the conversation seems to be the same droning on and on, without connecting. Deja vu all over again. I would so love to be proven wrong this election. In any event, I'm tossing in the towel on this one. Maybe next month I'll be ready for another try. Though I know it won't make one damned bit of difference one way or the other. That's probably what's most depressing. We seem hell bent on making the future as ugly and difficult as possible. :down:

Not that I’m totally rolling over, I’m lined up to do some phone banking for Karl Hanlon, Colorado Congressional candidate.*
That’ll be some interesting fodder for me.
Yeah, a certain level of ‘denial’ can be a good thing, just keep marching forward,
stumble and you have a choice, stay down, or get back up and moving again.