A Culture of Hate

This post is going to be inflammatory.  It shouldn’t read that way, but it will.  I am not coming from a place of being inflamed, just tired.

I have really grown exhausted with this culture of hate that we live in.  What hate?  Take a look out of your kitchen window.  Hate rides on the air, looks for cracks and seeps into our homes.  Hate travels into our eyes and ears, saturating our minds and hearts.  You may say, “Well I don’t hate anyone!”  I’m sorry, you do.  If you did not hate, your life would be an unmanageable mess.  Some people hate injustice, some hate curse words,  some hate PBS.  Hate is the excuse we use to eliminate things from our lives.  Sometimes the excuses are valid.  Most often, they are not.

Western culture has fought hard to eliminate the need for God to exist.  In many ways it has succeeded.  We hold ourselves to a basic moral code at best.  Kind of like, don’t murder (unless you HAVE to),  and uh, well, don’t murder.  One could get up in arms and say, “I believe that everyone should be treated kindly!”  No, you don’t.  Sorry, I don’t either.  Let me illustrate:

I believe in the Creator.  I believe life begins at conception and that abortion is MURDER.  I think evolution is ludicrous, bunk science, with natural selection being the only part that kind of makes sense.  I think liberals are misguided and are leading us into communism, which in turn leads to dictatorship.  I think public schools should be called government schools.  I believe there is an active, enforced, program of indoctrination going on in universities.

Are you angry yet?  If you presented the flip side to me.  I would at the very least be highly irritated.  I may even want you treated unkindly.  Not by me, of course.  And I would only want you punished enough to “show you the light”.  Thus begins the process of me “hating” you and eliminating you from my life.

If you hate, dislike, are uncomfortable, or disagree with something, that makes it okay, easy, necessary to destroy eliminate or ban. Hating God makes it okay to brand Christians as morons.  Hating atheists makes it okay for them to burn in hell.  Hating people makes it okay to kill them,  their culture,  their belief system.  Hating the unborn child makes it okay to remove it. Hating abortion makes it okay for a woman to die during one, or in the least for it sterilize her.   Hating the oil companies makes it okay to kill 9 million jobs.  Hating the President makes it okay for all of the Solyndra employees to go down in flames.   Hating big agriculture makes it okay to shut off their irrigation water and starve people around the world.  Hating independent farmers makes it okay for the Health Department to descend on a dinner party and forcefully throw all of the food away.  Hating vaccines makes it okay for vaccinated children to get autism.  Hating anti-vaccine parents makes it okay for children to die of whooping cough.  Hating the boy who is dressed like a typical teenage punk makes it okay to shoot him.

Well, THEY should know better.  Be better informed.  Be more intelligent.  Be more resourceful.  Be less stupid. Be like ME.

The arrogance.

I know it is easy to look in the mirror and think of all the beautiful things I THINK I have done for mankind.  But I haven’t.  I do more harm than good.  Daily.  I can turn on a news channel that will back up my views.  I can get the spin on any story and go spout “my” opinion to my friends and neighbors.  I can even make it sound really great.  I appear so informed.  But, I am so naive.  So are you.   We are chasing the wind.  We have too much knowledge and very little wisdom.  (Maybe we should quit hating our elders and locking them up in a closet somewhere.)

The basic biblical concept of loving your neighbor as yourself is lost on today’s society.  Why?  Because we have expunged anything related to God from our lives.  If we hadn’t we would remember that ALL have fallen short.  ALL of us are in the same boat.  We would KNOW that whoever is the least is the greatest.  Jesus, Others, You.  In that order.  That is where true JOY comes from.  We would know that hating someone in your heart is the same as murdering them.

Here we are.  We are here.

Unless hate is eliminated we will come to the same conclusion.  I am sorry to report that hatred will not disappear.  This is a broken world.  Only One will fix it. Until then, we hate.  Even if we raised our children to never judge (hate) a person for the color of their skin, hatred would just take another form.  How virus like!  Even if we raised our children not to hate others because of their beliefs, hatred would morph itself around another cause.  Hate can be so subtle and prettily packaged.  (I’d rather go naked than wear fur, you fur wearing troglodyte!) (Choosy moms choose Jif!)

Sigh.  It’s hard.  I think that’s why the Bible says “Faith, hope, love…but the greatest of these is love.”  Love is much harder, but I am willing to try.  Are you?

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Faith: Intellectuals Welcome

Here I go on my first topic.  I’m gonna get all preachy, and snarky.  I’m gonna close my eyes and plug my ears to science.  I’m going to babble and froth at the mouth.  When you ask questions I am gonna shout scripture and end every statement with “Thank Ya Jeeezuss!”  Um. No.   I will say that a “Thank You, Jesus” is no problem for me.  Just using the broad brush of in-tell-ect-chew-alls, dahling,  to paint a self portrait.

I, Lizzie Love Ya, am a woman of faith.  You cannot separate me from it.  Well, not unless I am really mad at my husband.  Then it just kind of hides under my shirt telling me to shush my mouth.  I believe that the Bible is the 100% inerrant Word Of God.   I believe in the prophecies, commandments, and that Jesus Christ was only begotten Son and Savior of this world.  I believe in the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.  I believe life is a grand test.  A marathon to be run daily, slow and steady, until I fall at the footsteps of my Heavenly Father and hear those wonderful words.  “Well done, my good and faithful servant.”

My belief does not give me a superiority complex over people who choose the path of atheism or other religions.  I would not be an adequate Christian if it did.  There would definitely be a disconnect between God’s command to love one another, and my actions, if that kind of thinking was going on.  My belief does not suddenly cut off my desire to learn anything new.  I enjoy breaking out into spontaneous beat boxing and would love, one day, to learn to be quite good at it.  My faith in God does not dampen my infatuation with science, the universe, or achievements in areas of healthcare and technology. (Also home improvement.)  My faith does not dictate what books I read with regard to any of those subjects.  Anyone who knows me would let it be readily known that I am well read to the point of being annoying, and that I was once nicknamed “LizIReadABookAboutIt”.

I know that many out there have suffered at the hands (or lips) of someone who said they were a Christian.  Let me be the first to apologize for all of us.  We are a flawed bunch.  We mess up while trying to be well meaning.  We ruin things that we have no business touching.  We stumble when we are angry and say awful things.  We try to mentor people when we still need mentoring.  I know from personal dealings with some “Christians” that there are wolves in sheeps clothing.  I knew one down right maniacal woman who called herself a Christian.  Luckily God put a drive in me to keep seeking and keep asking, so she failed to turn me away from my faith.  Thank You, Jesus! 🙂

That said, when I go through a situation with a jerk who happens to be an atheist, buddhist, or Zoroastrian, I don’t walk away shaking my head at their religion.  I shake my head at the person.  I don’t mutter things like, “Well if that’s how an atheist behaves, I don’t want any part of that garbage.”  Nopety-nope.  I just chalk it up to them being a pompous, arrogant jerkface who doesn’t want my time or company.  Okay…no. big. thang.

I often run up against the argument that belief in God was a system created to oppress  people.  I don’t know about your religion, but that’s not how my faith works.  I don’t feel oppressed or suppressed.  In fact, I feel more free than I ever have in my life.  Free from guilt, free from my past, free from who I might have been without God in my life.  I could have been ugly.  I was well on my way to it.  I stepped on people, I had a foul mouth, a foul heart, a foul spirit.  I didn’t care.  Everything hinged on my happiness, my tra-la-la, my lust, my unicorn fairydust sparkles with crystal lite and creamy nougat.  AKA: The Deep Pit of Selfishness. Self Preservation was my religion.  I do admit, with great sadness, that Christianity has been hijacked and used control lives and gain wealth by certain peoples and “religions”  that I shall not name.  Jesus had no problem naming them and pointing out who their father was.  (Hint, it IS the devil.)

You don’t need to be enrolled in any particular religion to be practicing one.  As humans we are programmed to serve.  If we do not fill that hole with God, the world fills it with true oppression.  It all boils down to that one thing.  That thing that consumes our lives.  The thing that becomes so ingrained in us that we will put it before the well being of our fellow man, or our children, or ourselves.  It can be food, animals, the environment, sports, fitness, or substances.

I do place my faith in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob ahead of my fellow man.  By filling my heart with Godly things, I emit His love, thereby helping my fellow man.  If I place food ahead of my fellow man, I grow large, I become unhealthy and I burden those I love.  If I place animals before my fellow man, I let my brother go cold and hungry.  If I place the environment before my fellow man, I tell my sister she is worth less than a tree.

I’m not talking about recycling.  I’m not talking about turning a blind eye to jerks tearing up the planet.  Nature is not renewable.  You can’t rip up a majestic mountain and expect it to grow back.  It won’t.  It will be different.  Forever.  What I am talking about is the slavery of  fundamentalist environmentalism imposed on people.  I will go into that on another post.

My faith in God tells me to love.  So I do it.  I don’t care what you are doing in the bedroom and who it’s with.  I still love you.  God loves you too.  Until the day comes that all people are without sin, I’m not going to throw stones.  Sometimes Christians like to point out that homosexuality is an abomination in the Old Testament.  Yeah, so was being a lazy child who disgraced their parents.  Both instances called for death.  With Christ’s sacrifice the law was fulfilled. His GRACE is sufficient.  That’s why I don’t go around with stones in my robe ready to chuck them at adulteresses.

If you are an atheist, God love ya.  I mean really.  This life is your reward.  Do it.  Do it big.  You believe you get one chance to make a splash?  Splash big.  Do cannonballs.  All I ask is that you extend that view to your neighbor.  He or she only gets one chance to impact the universe, too.  That outlook makes life crazy precious.  Hold tight to it and to other people, for in that view, you are just bits of flotsam carried along in the universal stream.  You are neither greater or lesser than your fellow man.  Both hillbilly and Harvard professor are both the same happy accidents.  Both forgotten mere minutes after death by the Universe’s Clock.  Rejoice in the easy path you’ve chosen.  No hell awaits you, no choir of angels, no loved ones to meet again.  Sounds a heck of a lot easier than my path.

One of the biggest ways that my faith is affirmed is the absolute worldly hatred of it.  Seething, passionate hatred.  It’s comical.  I would defy anyone to imitate the Dalai Lama  in this manner:  a buck toothed idiot with a thick Southern drawl saying “My religion is very simple.  My religion is kindness.” Yeah, I sooooo see that happening.  The only moron who would make fun of the Dalai Lama would be the one who was a racist boob that poorly mimicked Asians. ( Racism is a religion, too.)

In closing, I would just say, “Hey Jingle Bells, grow up.”  Faith does not equal stupidity.  Belief in evolution does not an intellectual make.  Intellect has nothing to do with faith or the sciences.  It has to do with what each human finds stimulating.  My reading materials are just different than yours.

And I still love ya.

Funny About Love.

When I was a teenaged, boy-crazy, uncoordinated, knock kneed girl, having a boyfriend was a big deal.  I was so desperate to catch and keep the object of my affection that I would morph into whatever he wanted me to be.  If he wanted dark and brooding,a classic rocker,or  reggae junkie, funny, pothead, super skinny, cult religion, no religion, you name it, that was me.  I took on the look, the voice, the mannerisms of whatever he needed to find me worthy.  I lost myself in becoming him.  It never took long for him to realize he wasn’t that in love with himself and I would get dumped.  Heartbreak.  Tears. Depression.  Why?  I was everything he needed me to be, so there must have been something wrong with just plain old me, right?  Ironically, when I was completely broken and rediscovering who I was without him, he would come back.  Only for a while, until, again, I was back in the same old copy room.

Sad to say, this carried on into my young adult years.  I only became somewhat liberated from that thinking when I went through a divorce.  Then, like a complete idiot, I latched onto someone who batted me around like a dog toy for more years than I care to mention.  After that clown, I hit bottom and there was something wonky in my thinking. I realized I had something to offer.  I didn’t need to do a complete overhaul on myself for love.  At that point, I figured, why be serious about anyone?  I was on a voyage of self discovery and renewal of my faith, I did not need the hassle.  Ironically, that’s when Jon was dropped into my lap.

I didn’t have to become anything for him.  He liked to debate, but didn’t need me to agree.  I can turn my nose up at his music, or love of westerns.  He tells me unabashedly how he tolerates sci-fi movies because he loves me.  For him, I am fully me. Because of that gift we have given to each other, I don’t have to pretend that his drinking is okay.  I don’t have to stay here and tolerate it just to keep him with me.  And because he knows me fully, and loves me as I am, he knows that he wants doesn’t want lose me.

Love is crazy.  The idea that we have to be a carbon copy of another person in order for them to love us is insane.

This morning I looked out my kitchen window and it was clear as a bell. I saw this:

Sampson and Tipsoo

These two have been love birds for years.  They snuggle, they fight. She looks for him every day.  It’s sweet.  It’s inexplicable.  It’s just fine.