Ronin of the Spirit

Because reality is beautiful.

Triumph of Existentialism and Atheism

Every kid wants to be a hero. We all ran around the house with a bath towel cape at one point, thwarting our imaginary nemesis, enlisting an annoying little sibling or long suffering family dog for our trusty sidekick. At some point, we lose the towel and the spider-man underoos but for at least few the dream never dies. Some us do grow up to be everyday heroes: firemen, cops, EMTs, etc., but most of us don’t.  We go to college or get a good union job in the local factory and with time we stop thinking that we sold out. We change our definition of success until the daily grind meets it.

For me the desire to do something great and noble that I could truly be proud of never left me. I believed in a great story, written by the unerring hand of God and that God had a role for me in his unfolding drama.  God was the decider of human affairs. If I was to amount to anything in this world, it would be by the hand of God. I’ve been a very relational person my entire life, always aware of my emotions and the emotions of others. I could be carried up to the heavens with a single compliment or beaten down with a single harsh word. However, I had deep sensitivity to reality, an almost hyper-awareness of how feeling that something is true does not make it true. I poured myself into Christianity because it was the only context I had for greatness.

Adolescence didn’t cure me of these thoughts, but it did change me in two ways that weren’t compatible with Christianity. First, I became sexually aware. I thought about sex constantly and frequently while masturbating. Also, I began to struggle with occasionally despondency. God’s commands about sex and sexual fantasy are clearly withing marriage, and a Christian should be full of peace and joy, even in the midst of anguish, echoing Job’s “The Lord gives and takes away. Blessed be his name.” Relational as I way, this deeply concerned me. Love is shown in actions, sin “nails Christ to the cross again” so every time I was lusting I was hurting my friend and savior. I wanted a girlfriend and friends, and had none and few respectively. Christianity teaches that ones relationship with God is the fount from which all relationships flow, so when I was hurt, and lonely, and blue my pain was magnified by my additional failure to be totally content with God.

When high school was over, I was a full blown neurotic. The only thing I knew that I wanted to do with my life was to be great.  I had heard college was full of sex, drugs, and rock’n roll. To me, my inability to shut off my sexual desire showed my lack of self control. I knew the guilt that I would feel if I partied and slept with strangers, and out of fear of suicide in response, I went to Bible college instead.

Like so many young men away from home for the first time, the next part of my story begins with “So, I met this girl.” She was a little blond butterfly, social, friendly, and bouncy. I was so proud that she would even talk to me. At the same time, sensitive as I was, I knew she’d be hurt badly, torn apart inside. I could see it on her like a shadow.  Now in part I pursed her because she was cute, in part because she was aching. And I pursued because she was wounded in part because I wanted to help her, but in part because I hated myself. I thought I was trash, and thought when she realized what a filthy, disgusting person I was, only if she was desperate for man, only if she was broken inside, would she not leave me.

However, in the end, I broke up with her, believing her not to be a part of God’s plan for my life. I came home, and got a crappy job, followed by some random college classes. This became a pattern: work pointless jobs and fail out of college classes. I worked talentless, pointless jobs for almost nothing. I did it for two reasons. First, because I believed this was my path to greatness, from the lowly and humble to the top of the company by hard work and godly decisions making.  The other reason I believed this was because I still thought I was trash. I needed approval so badly and handled rejection so poorly that I took jobs any sane person would have turned down, because only when my peers were drug addicts, the developmentally disabled and the mentally ill did I feel I was appreciated enough in comparison.

During this time, I met the woman I am now married to. We did marry for love, but alloying that love was lot of desperation. For sex on my part and to get started having babies-for-Jesus on hers. I failed out college a last time, saying God needed me somewhere else, not that I hadn’t been proactive enough with my advisers about my needs as a student.  We were called to an inner city mission in Kansas City. The pain of previous failure would be worth it when we got to partner with God to save the city from Darkness. My daughter was born.

We went to that inner city saving church for 2 years. In many ways they were good years, but in the end, the church was a lot more interested in feeling like they were changing the world then changing it. Also the work environment I was in was filled with pornography, dirty stories, drugs, and cursing. To obey God and flee temptation, I quit my job, fully expecting God to give me a job that paid better, perhaps one SO nice, we wouldn’t have to take welfare anymore. The whole church prayed for us, but no one would help us.

Needing to hear that I had done the right thing, I called my brother, a pastor. He called me a fool and said that I was a failure as a father and husband.  I hung up the phone and sobbed like a little girl for three hours. When I could breathe again, I walked outside and sat on the porch. I looked at the clean new Cadillacs and broken beer bottles. I watched the drug dealers and the prostitutes mingle. I thought of my little girl upstairs. And the weight of it hit me. I was twenty five years old. My life was a third over and I had shat it all away.

In the words of Social Distortion “Well I’ve searched and I’ve searched/To find the perfect life/A brand new car and a brand new suit/I even got me a little wife/But wherever I have gone/I was sure to find myself there/You can run all your life/But not go anywhere.”  It was all my fault. I had done this all to myself. I was everything that Christianity said I was supposed be, possessing all the values that the Bible said I should have. I had lived in constant, slow, misery trying to find my place in God’s plan. I said out loud “American Christianity is a black hole. It’s never going to change anything. I’m going to find God on my own, and I am never trusting anyone else to take care of me or my family again. I’m never taking anyone’s word on what Truth is again, because the people that told me to obey God are sitting on their asses with good jobs and safe homes and I am sitting in fucking hole with loaded shotgun behind the door.” Three months later, the Air Force paid me for the privilege of moving all of my belongings to a prestigious a training school in Southern California.

I kept a promise to myself to truly understand scripture on my own. I read the Bible cover to cover and investigated the history of the early church.  A child could tell you it’s all just make believe. I didn’t make the cut in the 95% fail rate program, and for the first time in my life, the failure didn’t crush me because I didn’t care. I’d made my decision, I’d done my best. I took another career in the Air Force. I studied more and more about the Bible and began to study the things the Bible had argued with science. Science won.

And then I told my dear sweet wife, the one who had married me to raise sweet little Christian children with that I was atheist. It broke her heart. She would not have married me 5 years previous if I had been an atheist. I told her she could leave me, if she wanted a divorce I would give her one and she could have any portion of my income she wanted as long as I got to keep my daughter with me. She declined, and instead we began to get to know each other. And she fell in love again with the new me.  The me that didn’t think it was sin to sleep with other women, but chose her anyway.

And with time, the questions she had always had about Christianity became insurmountable to her. She progressed from Deist, to agnostic, to atheist.  For the first time in our lives, our future was what we made of it, not what our God ordained leaders said it was, not what the Bible said it should be, not what the Church said it was.  Our future was whatever we made it to be.  We worked our asses off. We got out of debt, became full time students, and began saving money. We started writing our own story.

That’s the key to atheism. I’m not a nihilist; I don’t think life has no meaning. I’m an existentialist. I think my life has the meaning I give it. For the first time in my life I am writing my own story. The things I did, the things I valued never belonged to me. Atheism has not cured me of occasionally struggling with despondency or even the rare depression I fall into. Importantly, neither did Christianity. Atheism gives me the freedom to accept occasional bouts of blue funk without feeling like a moral failure. Nor does atheism require to me to reject my emotional sensitivity and relational orientation as not manly enough. It takes away the right for others to tell me the best way to be…me.

Am I happy? Yes and no.  As I said, atheism and existentialism have not cured me of situational depression or high strungness. What is had cured is my belief that I need to be cured of my own identifying characteristics . I will make no apologies for what I am anymore, and ultimately, being content with who I am is a long way toward happiness. My whole life I wanted to do something great, something noble, something worth remembering. Now, I am. I am making something wonderful: me.

I am worth working on.  And starting from that single point, my dreams matter and are worth making real.

July 31, 2009 Posted by | atheism, Christianity, Religion, Self discovery, skepticism, Slice of life, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Breakup poetry.

Ok, seriously, I have to stop posting my random, mostly high school-ish poetry, but I am having so much fun I can’t stop.  Haiku time, kids.

In breakup we both

lost some one we truly loved.

You lost more than I

July 28, 2009 Posted by | poetry, Self discovery, Slice of life, Uncategorized | , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Sister in Christ

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Brother this and brother that
Hold me I’m scared
and have I gotten fat?
Love should be shared

So tell me your prayers!
I’m ever so blessed
To have brother who cares
when I feel distressed

When I feel depressed
eyes stained red
Kind words confessed
He kisses my head

His white armour does shine
This man I love, “brother” of mine

Truly, I loved you
There could be no denying
My heart surely was true
But, a bit I was lying

Strong passions raised by your pining
I first feared your kindness
But you told me of love
How holiness makes blindness
Purity, gift from above

Would descend like a dove
And I believed
I fell for your drug
My heart was relieved

You were my “sister” appointed by Jesus
Divine friendship crafted to free us

Never had I loved with abandon
Trusted so completely
I wasn’t my way. I planned
relationships discretely

Scared to let love defeat me.
But you, I loved madly
Without contract or treaty
It couldn’t end badly

With the Lord as our daddy
Holy union, perfect, platonic
Life couldn’t go sadly
Love was our tonic

High on Jesus, love, and each other
I was truly happy being your “brother”

But a line had be crossed
A road had be started
The switch had been tossed
The train had departed

To and fro my emotions darted
I couldn’t shut it down
I became broken hearted
Needing more of the sound

Of your voice, heard round
Me. And every part of you.
needed to be around
I wanted all of you

I need to have all, the whole.
Union of flesh as well as the soul

Every time you touched my face
You called me brother
And I felt like disgrace
Because my feelings were other

Skin hot like a lover
You affection was damning
My smile a cover
Of the pain you were fanning

I hated my standing
Torn on the fence
One foot on your landing
The other intent

On running away from your sighs
and the adoration plain in your eyes

I didn’t know how to feel
I loved you so much
Not knowing how to deal
With hunger for your touch

Was it love or lust?
That drew my eyes
To your petite bust
And voluptuous thighs?

Wrong or right to despise
Myself, to feel a louse
For wanting you to abide
In my own house?

Torn up, I told you my feelings
You went sick, your stomach reeling.

I, your “brother”, no less
Wanted you for more?
This was plain incest
And I was a whore

The bands of union tore
You offended, left with a fight
your friend  no more
Because I didn’t love right

Years since that night
I’ve thought and thought
Relationship’s a rope tight
Upon which we walk

You told me to love you free
And did and loved indeed.

I would have gone back
And kept lying
At first when it was black
and felt I was dieing.

But after much sighing
I now know my statement
It was true love shining
And not abasement

Finished with self effacement
I wanted your body for your soul
Not for lusts enchainment
Intimacy means loving the whole

person, flesh, spirit or other.
Fear of love, not love, made you call me brother.

July 26, 2009 Posted by | atheism, Christianity, poetry, Politics, Religion, Self discovery, Slice of life, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Life, Love, Sex, and Porn

Aching loneliness in my soul
Led me down paths strange
Shoveling cinder and coal
Burying me in burning shame

It seemed a simple thing at first,
Images of women’s kindness
Did amply slake my thirst
And restore in me fineness

But my thirst would not be stayed
By such innocent mintage
Twas like sipping lemonade
But wanting headier vintage

Searching out stranger strangers
Seeing things which ought not.
Watching clips of varied dangers
Finding not that which I sought.

Then, forgetting mad dreams
I flesh and blood pursued
In hope and without schemes
I let myself be used

Steamy pictures o’ erotic tangles
Had awfully prepared me
For a real relationships’ tangles,
Arguments, tears, and pleas

Porn and I then parted ways
Religion was my watchword
I fantasized not of other lays
And followed always cross-ward.

Religion didn’t heal me
From the aching at the start
In fact, it just buried the real me
And broke my aching heart

Investigation of church’s claims
Left me scratching my head
The church had nefarious aims
Obsessed with others’ beds.

So I left the sacred fold
Trading one lonely for another
Finding bits of soul I’d sold
And myself, and my lover

When porn was viewed
By more secular angle
Without religious skew
Or tempting fallen angel

I realized I was never seeking
some erotic chemical high
Twas on beauty I was tweaking
Eros when most shy

To strange pastures I went
Not for tolerance built
To creepy content I was sent
Driven by crushing guilt

Atheism, ironic blessing
Freed me from guilt’s’ bully
To be myself without missing
The parts that are not “holy”

Free from guilt and shame
I view what I find lovely
I’m not driven by pain
And skip what misogyny makes ugly

And I can see clearly
With all the women I view
Real women I loved dearly
And almost always you

My taste has improved
I’m not looking in dark places
With all the shots perused
Trying to find you in their faces

But such an awful thing to say
And even worse to do!
To shape images like clay
To dream of loving you

The dream I often visit
Is us physically together
But, somehow, not illicit
A love that time could weather

I would be scorned
I seek images in replacement
I want to love and be loved in return,
You’d gag at my abasement.

None of them are right
None of them are you
All of them are right
All of them are you

So, to what cannot be
Between us, (though we love you)
Onan and I will  see
What can I substitute

But it would misleading,
To blame only the ‘net
Your image is fleeting
For we’ve nott met yet

Morning dew gleams
Moon beams shine brighter
Life is better it seems
When love’s circle is wider.

I don’t want love to still
At some arbitrarily limit
I do seek a thrill
But only if love gives it.

I want love’s full expression
In context of friendship
Where physical affection
Is compassions apprentice.

So, I am seeking another
to have and to hold
Addition and keeping
Not substitution of old

I want to love with depth
A true equal and partner
But also with breadth
A circle out farther

July 23, 2009 Posted by | atheism, Christianity, poetry, Politics, Religion, Self discovery, skepticism, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Attention Deficit Disorder

I’ve been told I have ADD, but I never jumped through all the hoops of real diagnosis, treatment, etc. That said, I don’t know how you normal people do it.  I don’t know how you do the same job for decades at a time.  I got up at six today like I have for about 3 months now.  I get in the same car, go to the same job, and do the same thing.

I am not depressed. Just bored. I am taking full time classes right now.  That’s boring too.  Takes about week to get into the swing of things, then I know the teachers expectations and I bored. I’m thinking about starting my own business, which means I will have to show up at the building for years.  I guess I must.  I do like supporting my family, and that’s hard to do when you change jobs every few months.

But I don’t know how you normal people do it.  I don’t know how you get out of bed in the morning to go do the same thing you did yesterday.  Or how you decide a career, or plan for retirement. (50 years of the same thing? Really?) Sigh.  I’d write more, but I need to put on the same uniform I’ve been wearing for three years, get in the same car I’ve driving for ten months, to drive to the same site I’ve been working at for 4 months.

July 23, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Is the American System Good for the World?

This is TJ’s blog.  TJ asserts that the United States is responsible for numerous attrocites and gives references.   The references are largely solid, by my understanding, and, in part, I had this to say:

“In essence the links you have sent me say the US government lies, has poor or evil foreign policy, and uses it’s military for short term profit. Well, of course. No sane person would argue that. The case you need to prove is not that the US government does evil. All large organizations do evil. The case you need to prove is that the US governmental system does more evil than other available alternative systems, when given the same resources”

Specifically, I asked for a per person or per dollar measure of the attrocities, and TJ’s response was…

I appreciate that you say that no sane person would argue what you distilled my links to say: “The US government lies, has poor or evil foreign policy, and uses it’s military for short term profit.” But seemingly sane people seem to argue this all the time; most republicans seem to believe that our military escapades do in fact in some inexplicable way protect our freedoms here at home (even if they are willing to sit idly while these freedoms are stripped away by the government). In fact, I find it hard to believe that this tremendously damaging behavior to our safety and the safety of the globe would be allowed to continue unabated if only the insane would argue it.

My demand for a solid metric for suffering met this (reasonable) response: I don’t quite understand how you could or should expect to wait until the U.S. government is as efficient at causing suffering as say, the Sudanese regime, before trying to do everything in ones power to combat injustice.

Fair enough.  My reasons are as follows. Not all claims have a burden of proof. If you tell me you went out for cocktails with your aunt last night, I’m not going to fight to verify it. If you tell me I should donate large sums of money to you because of reason X, Y and Z, then I am going to verify your claim with rigor proportional to the money you request.  The degree to which claims are investigated and skepticsm is applied is proportional to the risk which is undertaken.

The claim is made, “The American Government should change the way it does things.”  A government is many things, but perhaps above all, a system.  A system is defined by all its parts.  Neither a track, nor a bridge, nor a junction is a railway network, but their sum is.  Changes in a system must be made holistically system wide, or the changes make things worse, not better.

The system can only do what the system was designed to do.  A railway network made for passengers will never work optimally for freight and vice versa.   No amount of refinement can change this because the cause of the failure is systemic.   All systems do what they are designed to do.  Changing the CEO of the railway will not change this.  Changing standard operating procedures will not change this.  Nothing can change systemic failure but systemic change.

If the system produces attrocity better than anything else, it is because that is what the system was designed to do. The issues of military policy, foreign policy, and civil intelligence, are systemic.  Stopping attrocity in those areas will not be achieved with a mere reshuffling of the buercracy.  It requires sweeping changes to the whole US government system.

Such a change is an enormous risk, and for the risk to be justified, the case must be made strongly that the proposed replacement system is better, and define what “better” means.

It is not enough to say the U.S. does harm.  Money is power.  A man with a million dollars could start library, a scholarship, or a charter school.  Or he could commit an act of unspeakable terror upon innocents.  Power is nuetral.  A million dollars can buy a million dollars worth of help or a million dollars worth of harm.  We must prove the current system does more harm and less good then the proposed replacement.  The U.S. currently has 20% of the wealth in the world.  Logically, we have 20% of the power in the world, and we use that power to achieve 20% of the harm done in the world, and 20% of help.

If the new system reduces the harm at the expense of the help, then then there is no net change, and attrocity will continue on, merely with new actors.  Further, the global community is a system as well.  The new system must not only allow for more help then harm, it must not impact the global system in such a way as to increase other nations’ capicity for harm.  Remember the the example of Sudan.  If the cost of reducing American harm is increasing Sudan’s capacity to do harm, the Sudanese system is significantly more efficient at producing harm.  Hence, America’s reduction in harm is offset, and again the attrocities continue with new actors.

For this reason, I do not support any change to the system, regardless of the local harm reduction, until the case is made that a change to the system will actually result in a global net loss of harm.  Otherwise, any fighting we do to change the system will, despite good intention, only result in more people being harmed.

July 21, 2009 Posted by | atheism, Christianity, Government, Politics, Religion, skepticism, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Usual crappy poetry.

magdalen

A fallen women

I still dream of you sometimes, and I don’t know why.

Sometimes I am positive the only thing I want from you is the sex we never quite had.

Other times, I think I miss the companionship that we lost in the end.

I don’t know my own mind about you.

And I haven’t known you for so long, it doesn’t even matter anymore.

But some nights, I dream about you.

I wake up in the morning, and you are long gone.

And I miss you, in some way.

July 21, 2009 Posted by | poetry, Self discovery, Slice of life, Uncategorized | , , , | 11 Comments

Johannisbeeri Tarts

Begin by finding a convenient path to a Johannisberren bush (red currants)

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Now, follow the path to the bush.

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Pick some currants, put them in bowl and smush them. This is about a 1 1/2 lbs plus or minus a 1/2.  I added some heavy sprinkles of sugar.

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Follow this recipe in the BH&G cookbook (My favorite because it is ring bound and lays flat.)

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Flour a pan, flour the table, flour the rolling pin, and roll out the dough.

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Pour berry glop into middle. Fold like so…

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Bake at 375 for about 45 minutes.  Allow to cool and eat evidence before photo can be taken.

July 7, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Boobies and Feminism.

Several months ago, I was reading an ongoing message-board about feminism.  A lot of the guys were saying things that I found reasonable, and a lot of the women were pretty distraught with the guys’ statements.  One women, a self proclaimed feminist, made a point that went something like this…

“You have no idea what you are taking about.  You aren’t even entitled to an opinion because you don’t even have the facts to form one.  You are reacting to what you think feminism is, instead of what it is.  Take a single semester class in women’s studies.  Read a single book on feminism.  At the least, go to feminism101.  Just please, don’t ask a feminist to take the time to argue with your strident ignorance of the most basic principals of feminism.  Know what the hell you are talking about, and we will go from there.”

I was offended, and yet…Did I really know anything about feminism besides what I had heard from Rush Limbaugh and my pastors?  I had no real facts, instead I had my feelings, about second and third hand “facts”.  So, I sat down and read through the Wikipedia article on feminism, read through the feminism101 site, and took a cursory pursing of women’s studies.

The majority of expectations feminism holds for society and the individual strike me as both reasonable and moral, so I make an effort to meet these expectations.  Most of them are very simple, like “Women should have the same value as men.” or “Rape is caused by the addition of a rapist.”  Some are more complicated, like “Don’t view women objectively”, the subtleties of of which are little difficult at first. Observe the following images…

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In this image, the woman’s breasts are the center, the focal point.  The eye naturally goes to the central portion of an image.  In fact, if you draw an imaginary line from the top left corner to the lower right, and another from the upper right to the lower left, you will see the lines cross almost perfectly in her cleavage.

Now, compare that to this image.  Again, the cleavage is perfectly centered in the “cross” of the image.  The total focal point of the image is the breast. It’s superficially similar to the first, except something uniquely subtle and horrifying has happened in this image.  It’s not a woman anymore! The first image is a naked woman, and breasts are the focal point.  The second is just a picture of breasts, completely divorced from the human being that is them and the sum of all her other parts and thoughts.  There is no mouth to speak, no eyes to communicate subtle emotional state, no hands to suggest ability, and little body to express body language, age, or strength.  The breasts are completely dehumanized, an independent object with no humanity.

I agree with feminist ideology that objectification harms the objectified and the objectifier.  That said, I love me some boobies.  Often, I make eye contact with women not because I want to, but because my desire to stare at their breasts reminds me to.  I find breasts captivating.

There is no real reason to be captivated by them.  I haven’t been in middle school for a long time.  Seeing something I enjoy no longer produces any fantasies about it.   Nor am I in high school anymore, I have no urgency to see women I don’t know, in any state of partial undress.  If the opportunity provides itself to glance, I take it, but I’m not out looking for it.

In fact, it’s mildly frustrating.  I wish I could turn it off sometimes.  Today we were at the grocery store and a woman was going up the same isles we were, but from the opposite directions.   Her breasts were just really interesting.  I successfully didn’t ogle, stare, ect., but the amount of effort it took not to was irritating. It wasn’t a sexual thing, but a bouncing bosom is simply more fun to observe then rows and rows of nearly identical consumer food products.   Why? I dunno.   Some people say evolution.  Some people say sin.  All I know is that for two swinging sacks of mostly adipose tissue, they sure get my attention.

Ultimately, that relates to my greatest disappointment with feminism (and several other ideologies, for that matter).   For most males, the female breast, in almost any context, is more fascinating than any other viewable item in that context.  When feminism seeks to teach society acceptable and unacceptable ways to act upon that fascination, everyone wins.  When it seeks to pathologize that fascination, everyone loses.

My apologizes to the vast majority of feminists who respect the makeup of both sexes and merely seek to see women valued equally to men, you folks are not whom I am referring to.  Thanks for reading, all.

July 5, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Inventing Government

I like to invent things (even if only on paper) and I do so in spurts of enthusiam for different things.  For the last year or so, my enthusiam has been about religion and government.

General, cultural Christianity as well as my personal upbringing, instilled in me the paradoxical idea that government is (omnipresent) God in abstentia, along with some other conflicting ideas like freedom being a gift from God, but only for good people not for undesirables like homosexuals or the inner-city poor.   These ideas were among the many that burned off like fog in the sun when I de-converted.

But it left me with a ticklish problem.  If the purpose of government wasn’t the “or else” in the statement “Obey God’s rules, or else!” what was it? I studied different ideologies and rejected them one by one.  Some ideologies contained more truth than others, but ultimately I found a lot of them were based on false premises, and unconfirmable or unconfirmed data.

Since I’ve been fascinated by revolutionary movements since I was child (When I was 9, I planned out an eloborate and violent coup of my school giving it up not out of moral qualms  but because I realized ultimately, any resistance I offered adults would not result in children being granted our constititional rights, but serve as pretext to steal the few we had.) I had decent working knowledge of revolutionary movements, further enhanced by some pretty hard reveiw of revoltionary movements I undertook to offer advice to my so called “revolutionary church”.

This knowledge served me well, as world history is the story of the revolutionary movements that worked.   Even within the scope of revolutions that effectively won, most revolutionary movements struggle enormously with the task of switching from David to Goliath.

War represents a reversal of normal values.  Normally killing people and taking their stuff is socially condemned, in war, it is applauded.  Civil war is worse because it is more specific.  Normally killing your neighbor is socially condemned, in civil war, it is applauded.  The same key that increases a revolutionary movements’ chance to succeed increases the revolutionary movements’ chance to successfully transition for revolutionary movement to rule. That key is how the members respond to the entrenched ideology of the existing government.

People gather together around ideologies, from NASCAR tailgating parties, to the ritual cannibalism of the Eucharist.  If a revolutionary movement gathers under hating the existing system, it is gathering around hate and no change of system will change the organized , systemic, rage.  Most likely the hate will destroy unit discipline within the revolutionary cabal and it will collapse into organized crime and terrorism. (Al-qaeda and the Tamil Tigers). Should the the hate-based group stay organized under a strong and ruthless leader (such as Lenin) as well as defeat the existing government, it will transition to power by entrenching the existing system at the point of a gun.  This is why so many revolutionary movements become everything they abhor.

Contrariwise,  if a revolutionary movement gathers around the postive change that it wants to make, it can often become a competeing voice in the existing system, growing in legitimacy and power.  Should it succesfully overthrow the incumbent government, it has a post-revolution plan.  Since the people revolting were gathered around something besides destruction they tend to have better idea of what to do with power once they have it.  For an object lesson on this,  juxtipose the American to the French revolution.

The government classes I had studied as outstanding young Christian gentleman were centered on what was wrong with the existant American system.  They offered no plan, no system, no roadmap for post-change improvement.  It was believed, I think, that no roadmap was nessisary.  When things were “made right” God would magically make everything work.  Question: Why did terrorists attack? Answer: Because we we’re too soft on queers and babykillers.   When we stopped allowing shows like “Will and Grace” to be broadcast and made abortion illegal, or at worst difficult to get, then the terrorism situation would improve in the total absence of systemic change.

So I addressed my desire to understand government, and the flaws I percieved in various ideolgeous by trying to invent a new government.  I won’t make any argument against the componants of the existant system until I can offer a better peice.  Not a peice I feel better about, mind you, but one that does the componants’ function better.

And finally, it must be remembered we speak of a system here.  By definition, systems are interconnected.  If 3 foot rail gauge is better than Standard for a rail system, you can’t make one line narrow gauge and expect improvement.  Systems must be integrated fully to function at all.  Thus, I can’t offer a single better peice to governmental theory.  In the absence of total systemic improvement, individual peicemeal improvements are actively destructive.

I’m trying to invent a whole new government from the ground up, with consistancy and reason throughout.  It’s the largest, and most encompassing inventing I’ve tried.

July 1, 2009 Posted by | atheism, Christianity, Government, Politics, Religion, Self discovery, skepticism, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment