Search

A Good Idea

Updated: Feb 14, 2021

So in 1999 Kevin Smith made a comedic movie called Dogma (NOT for kids). This movie pokes a lot of fun at humanity and Catholicism in a way I'm pretty sure most people found offensive, but I personally found humorous.


The basic plot is that the last scion (scion = living descendant of Christ), Bethany, is sent on a mission by the Metatron (angel who serves as the voice of god) to stop two semi-fallen angels from exploiting a Catholic loophole that would let them back into Heaven and thus end all existence. Bethany is accompanied (among others) by the recently-returned-to-the-living 13th apostle (left out of the bible), Rufus.


One night Rufus and the Scion get to talking and the following conversation takes place.:


Bethany: What was he like?

Rufus: He likes to listen to people talk. Christ loved to sit around the fire and listen to me and the other guys. You know whenever we were going on about unimportant shit, he always had a smile on his face. His only real beef with humanity is the shit that gets carried out in His name - wars, bigotry, televangelism. The big one though, was the factioning of all the religions. He said mankind got it all wrong by taking a good idea and building a belief structure on it.

Bethany: Having beliefs isn't good?

Rufus: I just think it's better to have ideas. You can change an idea. Changing a belief is trickier... People die for it, People kill for it...


I'm not sure when I came to this same conclusion, but I know it was after seeing this movie. Some point after coming to this conclusion on my own, I had this moment of realization that, "Oh wow, Rufus was right."


So this post is for two different things.


(1)

I don't do organized religion. I do ideas. I learned in my teen years, that I’m not going to believe everything any religion preaches without proof that they are right. If you want me to turn over my autonomy, kill, shame, preach, or sacrifice for an ideology I wouldn’t personally subscribe to on my own, I’m going to need significant evidence. I have not found a religion yet that can provide that.

In fact, instead of evidence, what I have found is a lot of politics went into most religions. Power struggles have bastardized, changed and molded religions to the point where it’s very easy for me to understand why they’ve been dubbed, the opiats of the masses. It’s also hard for me to forget that historically many religions were literally used to enslave populaces to the leaders whims based on “divine” right.


That being said, that doesn’t mean that there aren‘t some good ideas to be found in religion, but I don’t see why I have to ascribe to any belief system in order incorporate those ideas into my own practice. I don’t have to believe that Jesus was the son of god in order to believe that I should love my neighbor. So I’m not going to. I’m going to pick what I feel I should, and leave the rest.


As far as leaving them as ideas rather than form my own religion, I know that I have and probably will change. I like this about myself. I want to leave myself open to change and not hinder my continued growth as a person by feeling too attached to any belief that I have outgrown.


This entire blog is a list of ideas, concepts, mantras, and moments, that collectively I believe, practice, aspire to, and/or are in general important to me. They may (and some for sure will) change. These posts are snap shots based on how I currently think at the time of writing them.


(2)

My not realizing the truth of what Rufus said at the time of originally hearing it is a great example of a future post "Everything Happens in Its Own Time."


I heard, in plain language, what I would come to believe is the truth at a time when I wasn't ready to hear it as truth. I remember thinking that it sounded really smart, but it wasn't my truth at the time. I was still looking for a UNIVERSAL TRUTH, like meaning of life stuff. At the time, I felt absolutely lost without that UNIVERSAL TRUTH, and this didn't meet that standard according to my then self. I have since come to believe in Douglas Adams's the meaning of life is 42 (another future post) and that helped me open up to all the other truths I was rejecting along the way. Sometimes you just have to wait to be the person you're going to be.


4 views0 comments