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Faulty gauges

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A moderately amusing anecdote from my working life in Papua New Guinea concerned the frequency with which motor vehicles stopped on the side of the roads because of a lack of fuel.  The novel explanation was proposed that the non English speaking drivers believed that on the fuel gauge E = enough, and F = finished.

It occurs to me that Christian churches might also have gauge problems and be blithely motoring on towards irrelevance and oblivion in the mistaken belief that they have unlimited fuel available from their Creators bottomless bowser.

Their eye might however, be on the wrong gauge, for there is another multipurpose gauge which rarely fluctuates from "full".

It measures self indulgent ritual.

It measures irrelevance to the educated and questioning minds of young people in the 21st century.

It measures ignorance of, and callous disregard for, the reality of humanity and planet Earth. That a member of the Popes entourage-of-pomposity recently in Australia seriously suggested our little blue orb needs more population is ample evidence.  So is the refusal of churches to seriously address the worldwide AIDS epidemic because supplying condoms conflicts with outmoded religious doctrine.

It measures discrimination. The refusal to allow women access to all roles within churches is an insult to human intelligence. They nurture, and are caring.  Something I suspect religion should do more of.

It measures arrogance and disrespect.
Who gives the 2 smartly suited, just-out-of-childhood, religious salesmen the right to intrude into the privacy of my domain, and have the temerity to suggest that I need to live a better way of life?
I am living my own better way of life.  It is one that I have consciously, thoughtfully and carefully planned and developed over several decades, and has included my own theological considerations.  I am very much at peace with my world. Moreover, I have the modesty to understand that "my way" is not necessarily applicable to anyone else and rarely feel the need to proselytise.

It measures profiteering.  Often from those who can least afford it.
The building of crystal palaces.  The conduct of crusades at sporting venues in the poorest countries on earth, all designed to inspire blind and unthinking religious fervour and a monumental outpouring of cash.  

Perhaps it might just be better for everyone when the fuel runs out, and organised religion just slowly pulls over to the side of the road to let more important vehicles go past. 

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About GOF

"Life is like a sewer. What you get out of it, depends upon what you put into it." (Tom Lehrer)

2 responses »

  1. Well said. The opposition to stem cell research doesn't exactly endear them to those who choose to live a rational life either.

  2. I agree. Plus a whole lot of other stuff I omitted in the interests of brevity. I don't want to appear too biased against religion 😉


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