The Battle Between Good and Evil, All Personal Like
Do you still remember that subatomic freeze
hint: not involuntary
When you took what you hoped was not your last breath
On your knees while frightening things occurred to you?
You prayed for the stupid to surrender, dead and demonic though they be,
And for dead men to be pleased,
And for your tarnished soul to somehow become shiny again in an instant.
The problem with the stupid is stupidity.
Of course they wouldn't surrender.
Someone taught them a gun in the mouth was delicious,
And so we come to the dead man.
Even beyond the grave you sought paternal approval.
Though distracted by his frieze
(what I have decided to call His creation in its entirety when examined in a frozen moment.
I also decided to name it. I hope I don't get in trouble for this. Detention is quite harsh.
“The Perfection of all Things in their Ultimate, Unveiled Form”)
Sleep panic crept out of the nuclei.
Hint: that freeze was involuntary
Weakness left the mind, shift ended, determination's turn.
Creatures from the Unspeakable Dimension hate... Hate
All the good people of Earth.
An heroic weapon must be crafted to defeat them:
A set of treatises that correct readers' past perceptions
Regarding the Holy Trinity, this author's beliefs and, as fans,
What they really should consider the best way to act and the best things to believe.
It shall be named!
Christianity for Ultra Dummies
[I am the original ultra dummy. Nya nya nya nya nya, called it. (Somewhere a loudspeaker: “Sure, you were the first.”)]
1. Jesus Christ died for our sins. His Dad gets super mad if anyone takes that lightly, like by calling it a formality. Even He gets angry if that fact is disbelieved or ignored.
2. The Ten Commandments may have been handed down in the Old Testament, but as it turns out they continue to hold weight after the arrival of the New Testament. “An eye for an eye” went out the window. Walk right through the door with unpaid for goods, though, and losing an eye may still come of it. [Goes without saying, right? lol]
3. One can generally screw up, often and hugely, and still things will work out, at the time. Eventually, however, all the little details become huge, and all the big issues become life or death or larger. The best thing to do is do everything right the first time, and continue to do everything right until the end of all your time. If that is impossible due to a bad case of derpis maximus, believe it will become an issue of: “Do it right this time, or this is your last time to do anything.”
4. Heaven is light on cash. Nothing is free, except salvation, and even it starts to come with a cost if you need it too much. The cost could be your assistance (the nice person way), or the cost could be... well, I wouldn't know.
5. Fifth, and finally, lip service will get one damned (translation: the ultimate ban). Sooner or later one will either be sincere in one's heart, or one's heart will be gone. Congratulations to all the people this would never apply to. We are the best sort of people, after all.
The Holier Than Thou Column
… in which I attempt to give advice about things I am absolutely not qualified to give advice about, because I think it is the right thing to do. Luckily I am so unqualified the advice I try to give may be about things nobody has ever thought about giving advice about before, and so may accidentally become useful. Sadly, being unqualified and an idiot means this section will likely be very short.
- Never trust yourself in religious dilemmas. Always seek the input of an actual member of the clergy if something is really bothering you. That's the correct advice. Nobody ever gave me that advice. The closest thing I ever got was, “Talk to your parents.” I never took that advice. Any problem I had that would have required me talking to my parents would likely have been troublesome enough to get shuffled off to the other parent... if I had ever taken the initial advice, which, again, I didn't. So, let's just skip the dumb part and say, “If your head is really all messed up, please talk to your priest about it.” This may not apply to protestant religions. I am not sure.
- Never leave the stove on when you leave the house. I am qualified to say that, at least.
The Immaculate Misconception
The bad blood between protestants and Catholics began in the old world. Sadly a lot of real hatred came out of it. Hatred carries with it an express elevator to evil. It is a very powerful emotion, and is very difficult to vanquish. So not surprisingly there are still swirls and eddies of ill feeling here in the new world between protestants and Catholics. I have never encountered a Christian here in America who would fault somebody for the brand of their faith, but I have met protestants who were taught some strange things about Catholics.
The most common weirdness I have found involves the virgin Mary. There are those who believe Catholics worship the virgin Mary. Praying to the mother of our savior does not constitute worship, especially considering those prayers are only a portion of the prayers that Catholics offer up to the heavens. I find it odd that there are those who would not include Mary in their prayers, but I have theories as to why.
First and foremost, male hegemony becomes very pronounced in some protestant denominations. Women are very nearly seen as chattel in a number of faiths. I'm very much on record as an advocate for the rights of women, so my thoughts about treating them as chattel could not be clearer. To bring the point back home, some protestants find prayers to Mary offensive. To categorize those prayers as worship is basically a derogatory way of expressing either: their feelings of superiority for refusing to bend a knee even to the mother of God because she was a woman, or a subconsciously perceived threat to masculine superiority, or simple misogyny.
Sometimes Catholics also offer up a prayer to a saint. Saints deal with very specific issues. Again, this is not worship. It is a prayer to God with the intercession of a holy being who specializes in the subject of the prayer. If a mother prays for her child to make a safe journey, then as a protestant she makes the plea to God and is done. As a Catholic she would also pray to God, but she might also pray for Saint Christopher to speak to God on her behalf, and do everything in his power as a Saint, because she wants all the help she can get for her prayers to help her child arrive safely. We all worship God, but some of us reach out to those who surround God and ask for help from them as well. It's as simple as that.
It is a very old tradition to light a flame for our ancestors, and for the living. The Chinese have been doing this for thousands of years. So have Catholics. For this practice to receive criticism indicates a high level of ignorance, and that sort of prejudice really does not deserve much consideration. There is no cure for stupid.
Educated minds see through cultural prejudices and misconceptions. In a better world, the educated help those who have not had the good fortune to have learned to be equinanimous. With humility and respect it is possible to change the minds of even the stubborn. My writing is hardly a vehicle for such change. Unfortunately I have spent far too much time baiting the bulls for the kill to try to gentle them down at this point. But you, as the reader, have the luxury of being able to go through life respectful and intelligent, to make the world a better place, a place free of prejudice.
One Day, During Catechism
I grew up, as a child, two blocks from St. Thomas Moore elementary school in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Even from that distance I could hear the screaming and gnashing of teeth as young children were flayed alive and lowered into hot oil, er, I mean the sound of happy playing youngsters. Catholic private school has always had a reputation for instilling discipline in students, but I have never met anyone who complained about it. Apparently it doesn't take very much disciplining for a student to never step out of line again. Either that or I just hung around with goodie goodies growing up (likely).
I wanted to attend that school. My grandparents wanted me to attend that school. I believe my father too wanted me to attend that school. As luck would have it, my mother fought her way out of her years long drug and alcohol fueled stupor just in time to take me away from my paternal family and place me in public school. She did it through the courts, but I will write my tirade about that at another time. This is about the difference between Catholic school and public school.
Ah, public school, where my first language (Spanish) was forbidden, and where fat kids with speech impediments like me were the favorite punching bag toy of every fit boy during recesses. Children aren't supposed to go to hell. That's funny, because I could have sworn the devil was outside every recess enjoying the shit out of himself.
We played games. Soccer was the game where I tried to run up and down the field, but mostly got stuck breathlessly stumbling back and forth around midfield. The other boys were careful to keep me near the action, otherwise they could not run up and kick me in the legs one after another, every pass. Football was even more fun. Those flags were mostly just a guideline, it seemed. There were a million reasons I wound up on the ground that had nothing to do with bullying. I have to hand it to those kids. They could think on their feet.
When my paternal grandmother, Wilma Day, found out about all the fun “sports” a tactical nuclear bomb went off in the principal's office, which leads to another exciting story about hell. Some of the boys got in trouble. I believe witnesses were called in, because I did not tell on anyone, and yet the most egregious offenders were identified. They did get in trouble. They did not take it laying down.
One day we all went out to recess. I had to go to the bathroom in the middle, so I went back inside, tinkled, and went back outside. Not long after “class” resumed I was called to the office. Someone had smeared feces all over the walls of the bathroom I went to during recess. The janitor saw me go in the bathroom and leave, and had seen nobody else. I was accused of the dirty deed. The principal eviscerated me in the office. Nothing I said in my defense made any difference. I was summarily paddled and my mother called (her full custody meant my father was not involved). The napalm and 50 cal gun turrets didn't make it to the school until I managed to talk to Wilma on the phone that afternoon. All that accomplished was a principal whose face had lost several layers of skin, but you get the picture.
God and a kindhearted teacher named Mrs. Moore ended my stay there in the abyss. My grades had been abysmal. That's because they weren't teaching me anything. I was reading at college level in the fourth grade. My teacher recognized my absolute boredom and asked that I be tested for special programs. I was removed from the reach of the bullies and savages and placed in the Gifted and Talented Program. My poor sister was not so lucky. Though she was just as intelligent as I, she was slightly dyslexic and could never have aced all the tests to be placed in the program.
Meanwhile, in Catholic school, children were taught at the level that fit their intelligence. Bullying may have existed, but those students had to contend with their guilt in the eyes of God and all their ancestors in heaven. They were being taught the finer points of the beauty of God's great plan alongside reading the classics, advanced mathematics and science. Yes, Catholic schools teach science. Most of the Luddite hatred of science comes from the protestant sector. Recesses did not involve human punching bags, and circle jerks were something Catholic school boys would have found absolutely disgusting, and rightfully so.
I did not have the good fortune to attend Catholic school. I had been plucked from a happy, spiritually clean environment and imprisoned in a home with a Baptist seminary washout for a stepfather. I was forced to attend Baptist church on Sundays, where I learned about true ignorance, bigotry, racism and hatred. I believe they hoped to make me one of their own, but they were too late. I had become too intelligent, and had learned too much about the beauty of true spirituality before the Baptists got me.
I did get baptized, but I had already been Christened. The members of the church all wanted to know if I felt the power of the holy ghost when it happened. I didn't talk much, same as now. I'm certain I mumbled something that made the questions stop.
By contrast, the first time I received the holy communion, years later, I felt as though I had been shot between the eyes by a diamond of pure energy. The sensation was staggering. I have never been a religious person. It was not a feeling I conjured into existence with zealous hopefulness. It existed all by itself.
To end this long and pointed story, I feel somewhat deprived because I was not able to attend catechism. I did not receive a formal Catholic religious education. I love my mother too much to blame her, because she meant well. The law and the courts, on the other hand, I blame with every fiber of my being. My hatred of the law... well, that's another story.
An Obscure Take on Testaments
The difference between life before Jesus and life after Jesus' birth has always been presented to me as ideological. The shift in religious values and doctrines always seems to occupy the language of sermons and discussions and debate when dealing with the difference between the Old and New Testaments of the Bible. There is a widely ignored aspect of the shift in reality that has never been brought before me by any man educated in the word of God: The physical aspect.
Before Jesus sacrificed Himself for humanity the pantheons of good and evil sometimes walked the earth in physical form. God approached Abraham in physical form. There were numerous instances of angels approaching humans in the flesh. Needless to say, the minions of evil took physical form and strode the earth as well. As far as I know there is no record of any of those wonderful entities or those things touching a human, as that has always been forbidden) but they weren't apparitions. They could be seen and spoken with just as though they were human. That made their power in the earthly realm exponentially greater.
The next time any of you have a vision or a nightmare, of good or of evil, just consider this. If Jesus had not sacrificed Himself to save us, then you would not have been able to use your mind to break free from the experience. Instead of a frightening thing your mind experienced, you would have been face to face with a tangible being.
Imagine encountering the most dangerous murderer who ever lived and then wanting to get away; then imagine the murderer could find you anywhere, at any time, to speak with you if he/she so desired, and not the police, but only a holy man could get rid of them. Now think of who made that impossible. His name is Jesus Christ. If you have it in you, then you should thank Him as often as you can. If you don't, one day you may find the things I am writing about are not the least bit imaginary.
Note: I will be continuing this entry as a series.