Something has been bothering me for quite some time now. I think for almost as long as I can remember. The unwarranted fear of this nonexistent place called hell is truly an unfortunate thing. An underlying, subterranean social cancer, one might say. It used to keep me up nights as a child and well into adulthood; tossing and turning the precious night hours away; imagining myself and everyone I ever cared about screaming in perpetual agony for all eternity in a pit of never-ending hellfire. I honestly think that religious inculcation is child abuse and that people who put the fear of hell into their children should have their children taken away from them. And it’s ironic that the two gods most responsible for breeding this fear of eternal destruction are the god of the Bible and the god of the Koran. The two most despicable deities man ever invented: deities whom, according to their very own holy texts, are responsible for the most atrocious and deplorable crimes ever committed against humanity. Many of which are acts a human being could never execute, i.e., Zechariah 14:1-2 where Jehovah sends an army into Jerusalem to ransack the homes and rape the women. Or Deuteronomy 28:53-57 and Jeremiah 19:9 where he makes people eat each other and their children. Stephen King doesn’t even write this shit! What is supernatural and also inhuman about such verses, and all the others the Bible is peppered with, besides the most obvious, is that God takes away the freewill of the people being forced to commit these evils with a clear conscience, and controls them like their pawns on a chessboard. This is something a human tyrant could not do no matter how badly he may want to. There is no character in all of literary fiction more worthy of eternal damnation than such a being as this. People actually pray to him, it’s disgusting!
“Belief in a cruel God makes a cruel man.” – Thomas Paine
There are so many miserable, divorced Catholic and Orthodox women out there who had a horrific marital experience, and who now either live in loneliness or in constant guilt and fear for their mortal souls, because they currently “live in sin.” Allow me to elaborate. In Christianity – and the Catholic and Orthodox churches are the only ones who have remained dogmatically true to this – divorce and remarriage to somebody else is only permitted by the lunatic from Nazareth if the first spouse was guilty of infidelity. By any other reason and remarriage is an act of adultery. Meaning, if a man beats the living hell out of his wife on a regular basis, and even gambles her money away, she may leave him only to remain single for the rest of her life, because he did not cheat on her. If she finds another man – one who treats her right, and gives her the good life she deserves – both are guilty of adultery and will be thrown into a lake of fire and sulfur for it for all eternity. This is how evil and sadistic the Christian god is! This is why I hate him so much! He’s the most malicious monster of monsters! What, should the poor, abused woman remain with her tyrannous husband until he beats her to death one day? And why should she remain alone forever if she does the right thing and leaves him? Does she not deserve happiness? Such detestable misogyny! Thankfully, marriage (at least heterosexual marriage) is being slowly abolished along with Christianity itself. And on a side note, if you compare Matthew 19:9 to Mark 10:11-12, Christ contradicts himself on the matter. (The reason being, of course, that the gospel writers didn’t know each other, and so couldn’t check each other’s notes.) In Matthew, divorce and remarriage is allowed due to unfaithfulness. However, in Mark, it is not allowed at all, and is adultery on all counts. All of this nonsense is a perfect example of what Richard Dawkins rightly calls “obnoxious morality.” Heh. I like that.
Now, like I said, there has been something on my mind for quite some time now. Almost all my life. It is the existential problem, as I see it, between the day to day interactions of people with the different belief-systems of hell. Not to mention the psychological problem of a believer (in such a place) in consorting or even acquainting themselves with a nonbeliever. It is a matter of inauthenticity and self-deceit. And as someone who used to be Christian, it is a problem which I once experienced within myself, all the while wondering how other believers dealt with it. Allow me to illustrate my point.
A Christian wakes up on Sunday morning and goes to church with his wife and kids (unless, of course, they are Seventh Day Adventists). When consorting with his fellow believers, he does so with a belief in his mind that he may also consort with them for all eternity after death in the bliss of heaven. When he interacts with family members of the same creed, it is with this same species of feeling. Nothing along the lines of convinced fear for their mortal souls exists. But the next day he goes to work. He interacts with fellow coworkers of many different superstitions other than his, along with those who carry none at all. But he smiles to all of them. He wishes them well. He bids them good day. He gives them high fives. He works with them earnestly to achieve their goals and deadlines. He gives them assistance, encouragement and praise. Nobody acts like there is an apocalypse on its way to swallow the majority of the human race into eternal, fiery torment. Well, most don’t anyway. Yet, as far as he is considered, he knows it as fact that most of them (unless they are of likeminded faith) are going to burn in hell forever and ever. And if he is a Catholic Christian he even feels this way about his Protestant coworkers, and they, if they are indeed devout, think this way about him. His Muslim coworkers feel that way about him, as well, along with all their other non-Muslim coworkers, whom they also feel that way towards, no matter, of course, how good they are as human beings.
But they act like everything is A-OK. But how can it be okay? If most of their coworkers, acquaintances, and the majority of humankind, who they claim are their brothers and sisters, are going to end up in the most horrific, nightmarish place imaginable, then should they not naturally be in a constant state of nausea and deep, dark depression, peppered with bouts of solemn weeping? How can they say that they are filled with their god’s love, yet not be in the constant turmoil of the conflicting feelings between wanting to be content and happy, and feeling nothing but the most ceaseless fear, pity and sadness for the accursed lot of people who they know and do not know? How then can they say that they love them, when they act like everything is fine and show no concern for them whatsoever? And, indeed, the only way for them to function properly from day to day is if they push these terrible feelings down into the trenches of their guts, and these morbid thoughts into the abyss of their mind. And in so doing, every “hi, how are you?” from a believer to an unbeliever is completely fallacious, because it does not matter how they are, hell awaits them. Every “good morning” and “good night” is tainted with a falsehood that increases along with the smile they are both presented and present with. Every “I hope you‘re doing well” is tainted with a morbid disingenuousness, because it does not matter how they are doing in this world if an eternity of weeping, and whaling and gnashing of teeth is their inevitable, godforsaken end, and deep down inside every believer knows it. But they have to act like everything’s okay. They must lie to themselves that everything is okay so they can have some semblance of peace in a life where it is already so hard to find. Otherwise, the thoughts and images of most of the people they know and care about (even family members of different beliefs) suffering to no avail would weigh down on them to the point where they could no longer function in society. So, as a defense mechanism, they push them away, and their conscience does not, in turn, constantly bite and nip at them for not always feeling remorse for their fellow man, woman and child, and for not proselytizing every chance they get in order to save them, making a complete nuisance and pestering bug of themselves. They may even “convince” themselves the miserable, absurd lie that all those people actually deserve what they are going to get, because it is decreed and handed down by their infallible, righteous, divine Judge. Either way, they teach themselves the abysmal habit of looking at themselves dishonestly. All this is a form of cognitive dissonance. The type of thing George Orwell termed doublethink.
And so instinctual concern and compassion for those whom, according to their holy writ, are damned forever, is smothered away and replaced with a weaker, tainted, plastic one. And the bad conscience that comes with this is now and then appeased by praying for the infidels and heretics to “come to the light.” Then they can tell themselves that though most are going to burn anyway, at least they’re doing their part. Yet, according to those two monsters of monotheism (Christianity and Islam), everyone who has ever lived or will live is predestined to either go to heaven or hell. So they should know very well, then, that there is no point in praying for them at all. It is futile. All this has implicitly bred in all believers in hell (and there are a few billion of them) an inauthenticity and callousness like no other. For if they actually considered what it all actually meant, and dwelt on it for an extended period of time, that, say, a beautiful human being (a philanthropist perhaps) is to burn in hell simply for not being baptized or for eating pork, for example, their natural care for their fellow species would have their conscience scream at them at how wrong it all is, and they would begin to doubt, as most actually do, whether they would like to admit it or not. And this doubt would grow and grow until it completely swept over their mind, heart and conscience and eventually blossomed into the emancipation of the fruits of a healthy skepticism and naturalistic world view. They would be cleansed of such a poisonous, masochistic superstition. No longer would they have to believe that most of the innocent, smiling or frowning faces which they see from day to day are going to end up in unending punishment at the hands of a merciless, totalitarian god, who we are supposed to believe is a god of love. For if the believer accepts all this madness for what it is, he or she would have to admit the simple fact that such a god has no love in him at all.
And if the aforesaid Christian man was raised Muslim, he would believe what Muslims believe about the matter: namely that all non-Muslims, like him, are eternally damned to hell. And if he were raised a Hindu or a Buddhist, he would be damned by both of these monotheistic standards, and, most importantly – it would not be his fault. And if either Christianity or Islam is correct, most people are handed at childhood onwards with a one way ticket to perdition. And, indeed – it is not their fault. No, no; this is most certainly NOT okay!
Now, let us say, hypothetically speaking, of course, that if this madman from Nazareth, this Lion of the Tribe of Judah, this Jesus Christ, were to return one day, with a double-edged sword coming out of his mouth, to throw the vast majority of the human race into a lake of fire and brimstone for all eternity, simply for not believing in him, or for not believing in him strongly enough, would it not be our duty to prevent such an unimaginably horrific and horrible thing from happening? Would it not be, out of our love for mankind, an obligation and privilege to crucify him and everything he stands for – once and for all?!
I think so...I think so...
If it wasn’t for the fear-tactics of hell and the devil, Christianity and Islam would have been footnotes in history!
Peace. Love. Abort Christ!