I have officially written a truckload about religion, but here's the final cut. Here's what my final word is about everything I have stated in my previous blogs. The terminal summary of it all that will wrap up the whole thing definitively and express the very existence of God:
It's actually not that important.
There it is. In a nutshell. As you probably gathered I have my opinions, and I'm entitled to them as much as the next guy. Even if some of them are kind of defective.
The whole concept of a polemic is that you poke at something to see if you can make holes in it. If it's a good system then it doesn't matter what any one individual says, but instead the system holds up to what it's supposed to do. On the other hand, if a bunch f people say things like: 'Hell yeah those priests need to be held accountable...' then it's likely that people need to talk about change.
And one thing I tried to avoid during this whole multi-part rant was to express my opinion without stating my beliefs. If no one is completely sure if I am a Hindu or a Wiccan or an Atheist then I did what I set out to do there. If there is one thing I cannot stand it's someone claiming to attempt a polemic but then use it just as a soapbox of their own beliefs.
One thing I do ask is that people don't make the assumption that I have formed these opinions with no data. I've actually studied religions for many years. Often enough someone refutes what I say with: 'You wouldn't have said that if you have read the Bible.' Well I have. Cover-to-cover, several times. As well as many other religious tomes. How many Christians can say they have studied the Q'ran, and vice-versa?
What it comes down to is this. I really don't care if you're a Baptist, a Lutheran, a Muslim, a Jew, a Barker, a Quaker, a Taoist, a Pagan, a Rastafarian, or someone who follows Shinto. Heck, you can claim to be a Jedi or to worship the Spaghetti Monster for all I care.
But one thing I will note: Way too many individuals who claimed they 'loved all their fellow man' in one blog seemed to have less conviction in other blogs when the god (or gods) in question were not ones they worshiped personally. And that's a shame. How is it that so many religions preach universal love, yet so many individuals who follow them are universally apathetic?
It is important is that you...not as a 'church' or a 'religion', but as an individual, follow a system of beliefs and philosophies that make things better for everyone else. With that, starting on the individual level, then groups and churches of all kinds can then help to improve the quality of life for all of humankind, and as it follows then so can religions do the same thing.
As long as you're doing that, I've got no problems with you. In fact, I can often respect those that have the strength of faith to believe what I cannot.
On the other hand, if you're one of those muckraking ignorant bellwethers that can't do much on their own and have to constantly look over their own shoulders to make sure the crowd is with them; if you're the kind of individual who would exploit a rich tapestry of history, philosophy, and mythology for your own personal gain while taking advantage of others; if you would actually use your status as a believer to forgive your actions of harm upon another...in those cases I have no curse base enough for you. The closest I can come is to wish that the hell that you believe in truly exists and that you shall be tormented there for your misleading, misanthropic misdeeds. In other, simpler terms: Fuck you with a red-hot rusty rake.
And if there is any real shame to all of this, it's that the people who need to know this the most already feel in their hearts that their shit doesn't stink.