Shuck and Jive

Opinions expressed here are my own and do not represent the views of the congregation I joyfully serve. But my congregation loves me!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Prop 8 and Superstition

The California Supreme Court has upheld Proposition 8. The 18,000 couples will stay married. From the SF Chronicle:
Prop. 8, which declared that only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California, passed with a 52 percent majority after an intense and expensive campaign. Sponsors, mainly affiliated with Christian conservative groups, raised nearly $40 million for the measure and opponents more than $45 million - combined, a record for a ballot measure on a social issue anywhere in the nation.
One can safely say that if it weren't for the Christians, there would be marriage equality in California. Christianity as it presently and persistently manifests itself is anti-equality. Christianity bases its system of ethics on superstition (ie. the Bible as the work of a divine supernatural being). Christianity is a superstitious cult.

If there is going to be any forward movement for humanity, we will need to relieve ourselves of our superstitious past. This will include the evolution of Christianity into something that is reasonable and decent. The key will be discarding the authority of any supposed "special revelation."

The Bible is a book. It is like all books, creeds, liturgies, songs, and rituals, created by human beings. Most of the Bible isn't even that good. Until we can admit that reasonable piece of common sense, we will continue to make life more miserable for our fellow creatures and for Earth itself.

I am not giving Islam or any of the other institutionalized forms of superstition a pass. Islam is more superstitious than Christianity simply because it has not developed higher criticism to the extent that Christianity has.

Oppression based on bigotry masked and endorsed by superstition will get worse before it gets better. The way out of this is for progressive Christians (and Muslims) is to reform our institutions and rid them of superstition. If we do not, we give space and permission for those who wish to harm others (ie. anti-gay zealots) under the cover of superstitious dogmas regarding our sacred texts and creeds.

Part of the problem is that moderates and progressives allow the conservatives to set the terms. For instance, the phrase, "high view of scripture" means what exactly? Well it means that it has supernatural authority and origin. Not only is that preposterous for any one who happens to live in the 21st century, it is also harmful. A supernatural authority by definition is beyond criticism. Where does that lead us for those who use that authority as justification for denying basic civil rights to other human beings?

What is amusingly pitiful is to see moderates and conservatives in a pissing contest over who has the higher view of scripture as if that were an ethical value! You think it is an improvement to think that The Three Blind Mice was channeled by Divine Mother Goose?

Christian conservatives will only be able to maintain oppressive power when moderates and progressives continue to play into their hands. The basic dogmas and superstitions of Christianity need to be challenged and progressives need to assert boldly that superstition is not an ethical value.