Peace to all the gods and the earths
Allow me to open this one up with a joke, borrowed from the movie "Pursuit of Happyness." You may have heard of it.
"One day a man was drownding in the water, and a boat came by and said, 'Do you need any help' and the man said 'No thank you, God will save me' and then another boat came by and asked 'do you need any help?' 'No thank you, God will save me' Then he drowned and he went to heaven. And he asked God 'God, why didn't you save me?' and then God said "I Sent you 2 big boats you dummy!" Lol
That's a joke as told by a 5 year old.
Now that we've gotten the funny out of the way, let's talk.
For those of you who do not know I was raised in a hispanic family which for as long as I can remember has always been religious. No Jesus freaks on our side thank God, but still God fearing. My mom has always been a firm believer in God, she took us to church every Sunday for a few years while we were kids. I've got a few aunts who do not miss a mass, be it Saturday or Sunday. For the most part my cousins, my brother and myself were all sent to Private/Catholic school, where we wore uniform, learned about the bible, church, learned how to pray and of course were introduced to God.
So naturally, like billions of others I am catholic by way of upbringing. Remember when I said I am not an atheist, however I can understand where they come from? Well That's still true. I am still not an atheist, but the older I get and the more I go through the more I work on reinforcing my faith, all while gaining a deeper understanding of atheists.
So fast forward to a few weeks ago, I was driving around and I must have heard something on the radio that triggered my mind to start running. (I'm literally thinking all freakin day, of so many random things, some pointless, some funny, some serious etc. So it doesn't take much to trigger it) So the subject that came to mind was God. And I started to think of how much people put on him, or her if you're a feminist of some sort. "God, help me with this" "God be with me on this" "Thank God" "For God's Sake" "Oh my God" etc. etc. Nothing wrong with it I guess, but my problem is people treating God like some sort of magical fairy without actually putting in any work of their own. Or even worse, blaming God for things that mankind has obviously done.
Like this morning. I was giving my mom a ride to work and I began to complain about the snow. For a little over five or six years now, I've been thinking that the snow is man made. No, I'm not a conspiracy theorist, but I do tend to think about certain things. Like, how is it that sometimes, it's mid March and it still snows? Or better yet, how the hell is it that there's snow in Atlanta? ATLANTA!? The south! But whatever, that's a whole different post all together. I tell my mom, "I think all this annoying ass snow is man made." To which she responds, "You sound like these crazy people" and by crazy people she meant conspiracy theorist. So I began to explain myself and she gave me a typical, hispanic, catholic mother cop out response. "Only God knows. If he gave people the intelligence to come up with weather control, than it is in his power to just make them stop!"
I laughed it off and left it alone. I mean, theres no way I'm going to convince a woman in her 50's of anything that she doesn't want to be convinced of. But it did inspire this post. It's that kind of response that tends to bother me a bit. It's okay to pray for better days, it's perfectly okay to believe in a higher power, regardless of what you call it. However, I feel that some things should be blamed on man and not the higher power you believe in.
To say that God gave people the intelligence to come up with weather control is no different than a person claiming insanity at the moment that they decided to kill someone. "The voices in my head told me to do it. I went crazy!" That's no different than a 4 year old sneaking cookies out of the cookie jar and blaming it on his/her imaginary friend. Feel me?
It bothered me because it reminds me of people who claim to pray, but then don't work. You see a prayer is an assist.
Let me explain how an assist works. See in basketball, when Rajon Rondo is running out of options to score, he finds the open man who is sometimes already making his way to the basket. Rondo passes the ball to his teammate and that point it's out of his control what happens. When his teammate receives the ball and shoots it, dunks it, or lays it up for the two points it is recorded as an assist for Rondo's stat sheet! Good work Rondo!
Still need me to break it down further? Well check this scenario: You and ya best friend Mike are going out. Mike will be meeting some girl there when ya arrive. Now you thinking, "well damn, imma be the only loser by myself?" So Mike takes pity on ya ass and makes sure to make a call and tell whoever he'll be meeting "Hey, bring a friend for my nigga Rob" and just like that, Rob too has a date for the night. However, no different than in basketball, Rob still has to put in work after Mike gives him the assist! Make sense?
Ok, good, so then in this case you have to consider the big man upstairs your teammate. He'll give you the assist, but you still have to get passed whatever defender is in front of you to score. He'll give you the assist, but if you wanna see what shorty look like under her clothes you gotta be the one to put in that work to get her number and create a relationship! Feel me? No man has ever prayed for a million dollars and went back to bed! No! He prayed and got his ass up and went to work to do whatever it is that he had to do to get that money.
No single woman prays to find a man and then stays in on Friday night without so much as checking her Facebook feeds! No! She prays and then she gets her ass up and tells her friend Rachel "We bar hopping tonight!"
This has always been my problem with religion. To so many, so many times it is used as a cop out or as an excuse. How many wars have been fought in God's name? And how many times has he been blamed for the mistakes you made? Seriously, as people with free will it's important to start taking responsibilities for our own actions. Be your own god.
Remember the ancient Egyptians? Or the Mayans or any civilization of people that existed before Christ? They had gods (plural.) They believed that there was a god of EVERYTHING. One god brought out the sun each morning and another the moon each night. One god was the god of war, another the god of victory. One was the god of the ocean and another was the god of whatever else. We look back on those civilizations now and probably think, "how foolish." Well I feel that's how foolish one sounds when accrediting every single aspect of life to God and none to mankind, good or bad.
In my travels I have met two men who are 5%ers (If you do not know what that is, I suggest you do your research.) They believe that every man is his own god. That we should do well for ourselves and our fellow man and that every man is a part of God's whole body! Arm Leg Leg Arm Head. < Get it, see what the highlighted letter spell out? For so long this is what I've felt religion should be. A guide to living a better life, not a means to judge and prosecute. Do good, live good and help other do good as well. BE YOUR OWN GOD. Have your belief in a higher power if you must, but have some of that higher power within yourself.
I'll never forget the day in religion class, freshman year in Mr. Fellicisimo's class where he explained to us that it is important to have God in our lives, however it is more important not to think that EVERYTHING is God. That tree outside of your window, while it may be God's work it is not God himself. The car you drive, the home you live in, the talents you have. You may have gotten the strength to work hard enough to afford those things through God, but they themselves are not God.
It's ok to take responsibility for the things you do! If he is a fair and just God like I've been taught, then he has no problem with this. Think for yourselves.
Understand like the joke in the opening of this post, it is important to see God's work in front of you and not expect some sort of fairy tale miracle. Sometimes the answer to your prayers come in the form of a boat while you're drowning.
As for me, I have my faith and I am a believer in God for reason I feel don't need to be shared. But I don't use my God as a cop out. If I don't understand something, I try my hardest to do whatever research necessary to figure it out. Not blindly say "I leave it in your hands."
Don't use God as a cop out. God Bless!
Stay Up and Stay Tuned!