It is no secret amongst my atheist, agnostic, no-religious-tag friends…who are many…that I intensely dislike religion! Loathe it! You only have to look at what is happening in the Middle-East right this moment to start to understand why I have no belief in God. Oppression, murder, hate, abuse, destruction, mind-control, misery are some of the words I use to describe religion.
In my opinion, never has a bigger con-job been fostered on the world than religion. How we, as supposedly thinking and evaluating humans, allowed this to happen is, at times, beyond me. Sorry, but St Peter standing at the pearly gates to allow you to wander down the streets of gold is pure fantasy in my books, let alone a guy in a red body suit accessorised with horns and pitchfork turning up the flames and poking everyone in the bum. Don’t even start me on the twelve virgins!
Indo not deny the existence of Jesus. He is a historical fact, and mentioned in Flavius Josephus’s “History of the Jews”. However, virgin births, holy spirits, feeding 5,000 with a loaf of bread and a fish, changing water into wine, walking on water, rising from the dead and shooting up into heaven – well…..it just doesn’t hack it in my book! If he was anything, he’d be a Jewish radical who had a fanatical following, got under the skin of the Roman oppressors, and they crucified him to shut him up.
YAnd all these people who love to quote the bible – which one, people! It has been chopped and changed so many times by so many religions that the original tales would be lost in history.
So, has religion been absent from my life? Not by a long shot. My father was Catholic (non-practicing), and my mother was a Methodist (non-practicing). I was christened Congregational (now absorbed into the Uniting Church), though basically left to my own devices. I was never influenced to join any of the three. In 1968 I converted to Catholicism due to attending a Catholic boarding school. Even after that I still questioned the validity of much that I was instructed to believe. Mind you, conversion was very much influenced by ritual, custom, colour and movement. I encountered molestation by the Marist Brothers…not personally, though observed it going on….and eventually saw the priest who baptised me arrested for molesting his altar boys. I spent time in an enclosed monastery, and found a world of control and megalomania. This was the final straw for me.
Ever since, I have been anti-religion. Do I respect any religion and any religious leader? Yes! Buddhism and the Dalai Lama. That is it! A religion that keeps to itself, doesn’t promote or door-knock, doesn’t hate or discriminate. If you become a Buddhist you are free to mould the religion to suit your own path. That is how they should ALL be. Unfortunately the rest are nowhere near it.
So you can imagine how my hackles rose when Joi Russell sent me a friend request on Facebook recently. Being a member of the Starts At 60 group on Facebook, I checked out Joi’s profile – if I had looked harder alarm bells would have rung. Smiling face with hubby, older woman…I assumed someone from the group, so confirmed request. Wrong move! The next thing I know, the following message was received:
“My dearest Happy New Month. thanks so much for accepting my friend request and i am very sorry for intruding into your privacy. I am .Mrs Joi Russell a 53 years old Widow suffering from a long time cancer of the breast which is about claiming my life, My dear i have an important message from the Lord i tried sending you a message but it was not going through cos my facebook is acting up, so i will like you to please mail me on mrsjoirussell@—–.com so i can pass the good news of the lord to you.
Your swift response will be appreciated.
Mrs Joi Russell
mrsjoirussell@_____.com (will not include email address).”
Naturally, I also have a message for the Lord, so this was my reply to Joi:
“I thought you were someone else, but sad to hear about your cancer.
That’s funny that you have a message from the lord for me, as I have a message for him. Tell him it’s time to stop this fiasco called religion which is continuing to cause hatred and war and violent deaths in this world! You know, religion has caused more trouble and deaths than even war could manage. It has tried to force people to follow one religion, and if you thought differently, they killed you. Then we have the Crusades, and the Inquisition who revelled in torturing, then burning people alive. Then we have the wonderful missionaries who decided to force their religions on people in remote areas, thus destroying cultures that were thousands of years old. Religion burnt books, destroyed art and sculpture, killed scientists and academics who didn’t think their way. Then we have Henry VIII, who deciding to break from one religion, and make himself the head of a new one, destroyed churches and monasteries, putting monks who fed and sheltered the poor out on the street, thus making many peoples lives harder thsn they already were. We won’t even go into him chopping off the heads of his wives, and the chopping and changing between religions with following king and queen, and people being killed if they didn’t follow the religious trend decided by whoever was ruling. Then we have the Muslims charging around the world for hundreds of years killing anyone who believed differently to them. Then, of course, we have the fundamentalist and the Ku Klux Klan who hate everybody in the name of religion, and use hate speak and threats in an attempt to force their beliefs on others. Then we have immense wealth in certain churches, while all around them is poverty and misery, bishops and cardinals walking around dressed in silk, ermine, gold and precious stones. We can then throw an overwhelming amount of child abuse into the mix, and the cover-ups to try to get everyone to think it doesn’t happen. I could go on and on about the amount of hate, misery, war, destruction and death religion has caused. So my message to the lord is simple…FUCK OFF AND LEAVE US ALONE, YOU NON-EXISTENT ENTITY! ENOUGH US ENOUGH!”
That pretty well states my stand. Don’t get me wrong – I wish Joi well, and hope her remaining time is kind to her. If this delusion brings her some consolation, then she should hang onto it.
BUT – don’t ever send je religious crap and expect to escape without a caning. You will NEVER convert me. When we die, we become part of the Earth’s recycling process. That is my belief!