Monday, August 23, 2004

Off my faith

My daughter asked me if I ever believed in God and it was a very timely question because I remember being her age, sitting in the car (13 - I might've been 12), and having this thought that 'of course, it all made sense, there has to be God'

Like people a lot older - who should know better - I wasn't thinking the next step, which is, that even accepting the existence of a deity, what form does He/She/It take and does it necessarily follow that the current models fit the profile?

A friend opined that you can't dissemble religious belief by examining and deconstructing its vulnerabilities. But I think you can. My Nana always brought up the 'argument' that her father had put whenever there was a doctrinal debate: "No one's ever come back to tell us". But it is nowhere near that hard for both Christianity and Islam have their Holy Word written down. Anyone game enought to risk the Divine Wrath only has to do as W.C. Fields did; he was asked what he was doing reading the Bible and replied "Looking for loopholes"
And the Holy Bible is full of discrepancies. If you're really pained, finding yourself caught up in organized religion and seeking a way out then I can recommend no greater course than comparing the Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. These all tell the same story - the birth, life and death of Christ - and all are written through them rather than by them i.e. they have the same Author. They should be entirely consistent with one another. If they are not then forget worrying about whether Moses would still have been alive at the time some of the Old Testament scriptures attributed to him were written, go straight to the heart of the matter. Ask any clergyman what the most important focus is and he'll point you to the gospels so take him at his word and be surprised.


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