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Hold on to what is good even if it is a handful of earth.
Hold on to what you believe even if it is a tree which stands by itself.
Hold on to what you must do even if it is a long way from here.
Hold on to life even when it is easier letting go.
Hold on to my hand even when I have gone away from you.
- Pueblo Blessing

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Friday, Jun. 17, 2005 - 4:58 a.m.

Cost of the War in Iraq
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WARNING!!!! if you know me personally, you may read my diary, but if you do, you take the chance of hearing things you don't want to know, misunderstanding what I've written and being hurt by it. If you are unsure if it is ok to read, save yourself and me the grief and heartache, and ask first!!! Please note that this is a DIARY, ie my subjective feelings, hearsay, suppositions, and outpourings of ranting of the moment. It does not represent objective news, the whole of what I think of a topic or someone, or even a thought-out representation of any of the above. Keep that in mind. Thanks. * Here is a Diary Etiquette Read Me.

There's a Lesson in there Somewhere

Yes I've been working hard. Yes I've also wasted a little time. Watching this video. Which made me shudder, thinking of the hooplah over saving stem cells and comatose women. Yes, Terri Shiavo's autopsy has come through. The vision center of her brain was dead. Many other areas of her brain were dead. No she wasn't going to have a miracle recovery. She was too fucked over. But then people should rewrite the constitution and Bush should get up at 4am to do special interventions because life is so precious. But besides blowing people to smithereens in order to shock and awe them, and to free them (no one is freer than a dead person)... there seems to be very little concern about the kid who dies every three seconds.

Where are the people who shoot abortion doctors? Why aren't they shooting those who stand in the way of food and medical care for those already alive and suffering? Is it better to let a child of three die of diahrrea? A child of five die of malaria? A child of ten die of starvation? Somehow it seems that aborting unwanted children before they even have a brain isn't really the heartless thing. The thing that we need to be called "murderers" for. Let's hear it for the children who are walking and talking and who have feelings and relationships, friendships and hopes for the future. Dang.

The other day in the park, when this couple asked me if I knew anyone who wanted a year old pyrenee des montagnes dog, just an hour after a friend had called griefstricken over losing his aged pyrenee de montagnes dog... and I said "oh that's great! what a coincidence", they said "God works in mysterious ways".

Now maybe God should be more concerned about the children dying one every three seconds of preventable diseases.

Maybe God should work a bit to prevent things like the two year old kidnapped Canadian boy who was shot by his captors today because "he cried too much". I wonder if his parents feel like God works in mysterious ways. What were we to learn from that? That terrified kidnapped children need comfort? That the kidnappers were bad people? That parents shouldn't be seen to be wealthy foreigners or their kids will die for being scared and hungry and tired?? I am sure that it was a valuable thing in the grand scheme of things... it will make something better somewhere I am sure that a toddler was shot in cold blood for crying too much. You know the "everything happens for a reason" people will come up with something.

I am sorry, one doesn't need one's child shot to death on the other side of the world in order to "learn" something. I am sure there are less drastic ways. But apparently this all powerful god is the kind who can only teach through death and destruction and despair. He couldn't have people having a revelation during a dream or something, and wake up with a desire to be better. No, he needs to have tsunamis drown people and kidnappers shoot people, and families watch their children die from internal parasites in order to "teach us" something.

I am sorry, that Father Who Art in Heaven is an abusive asshole much like my friend's father who slammed his fingers in the door to break them to teach him not to waste his time drawing.

That is why I don't believe in this Father Who Art in Heaven. Because quite frankly I think it is less pessimistic to see these things as unintentional unfortunate random happenings that follow cause and effect with physical stuff plodding along. Much like we squish ants under our car wheels, or bacteria get squashed when a bear walks across a surface. It seems to me that a world where an allseeing creator who LOVES US and wants us to BE WITH HIM ETERNALLY allows, indeed provokes and encourages such things happening is way more cruel than a world where things just happen without reason. Getting my fingers slammed in the door cuz the door was swinging shut with a spring, and my hand was leaning on the frame as I spoke to someone seems to me way easier to deal with than my father who created me and loves me taking me across the room and putting my fingers into the doorframe, and taking the door in his hands and slamming it onto my fingers to teach me something.

Today on the Religion Report or Ideas or something on CBC Radio, there was some interfaith conference thingie on saving the environment.

And some guy was talking about going on a retreat where they were given only a sleeping bag and left on the arctic tundra for 24 hours with nothing to eat. He said that it looked flat and empty and grey. But when he got down on his knees he could see there was life everywhere... tiny miniscule colored flowers covering the whole ground.

HE said "it was only in the attitude for prayer that I could see the actual beauty of the world".

That is insane. How in hell did he manage to get that take on it? Only a previous committment to interpreting everything through one's religion would read it that way. Funnily enough I thought that prayer was usually done looking to heaven, not with your eyes lowered to the ground? Or with your hands folded in front of you and your eyes closed? Or in other religions, with your eyes closed and your forehead on the ground. I have never seen a portrayal of someone praying wherein they have their eyes open and look at the flora on the ground in front of them. Never.

That is the attitude of a curious child, of any religion or no religion. That is the attitude of the scientist who is curious to see what is there. That is the attitude of the secular person who is interested in the physical world more than the unseen spirits in the heavens. That is the attitude of the attentive animal looking for food. Of the dog or the worm or the person who has lost something they've dropped. Not the attitude of prayer.

That is not to say that looking at the real world, the wonders of nature in all its intricacy, isn't spiritual. That is not to say that living in the moment and opening your eyes to the actual physicality of it isn't spiritual. No, indeed it is very aweinspiring, leading to humility of the human spirit, a sense of wonder, an appreciation of the complexity and enormity of both the vast vistas of the tundra much larger than human scale, coupled with the complexity and enormity of the microscopic workings of nature much smaller than the human scale, and how we see only that which is large enough and impacting enough on us personally for us to notice, or that which is small enough and impacting upon us personally enough to notice.

How many of us look at the moon or the clouds for more than a few moments every month? Too big. How many of us consider the bacteria in our guts that allow our very life to exist unless we have a digestive ailment? Yup.

But religion? How does religion come into it necessarily?? When you know that there are so many different ways of seeing the world, the adherants of each totally convinced that they are right, and that believing what they believe, in the creator that they believe in, will save them for eternity... That there are THAT many different religions, each with millions of believers... how can one believe that any single one of them has the one answer? That everyone else who believes THEIR religion JUST as much, who are just as intelligent, observant of the world, versed in scriptures and rituals, caring and loving, that all those others are wrong?

And how can you not believe the others have got it wrong if you chose to believe one?

Personally I think they all have it a bit right. That there is something bigger than us, but it is too big. Much like we cannot hear radio waves without a radio, or smell what a dog smells, we cannot know. We can all see the world is large. That there is more than we can comprehend. That we want and need to explain to ourselves and others. That we hunger for a meaning. That killing others is bad, that hurting others is bad, that wars and disease are bad. Maybe not bad for the planet, or the animals, but for the humans to whom it is happening it is bad.

One doesn't need religion for that, though apparently some do. But it seems that the only way to put it all together is to realize that everyone is equally right, and therefore no particular group that is claims exclusive "right" is right. That even the atheists and the agnostics are right. As right as the Catholics and the ancient Egyptians, and the Gnostics and the Aztecs.

If there is a One Christian God Our Father, he is a weird cruel one at that. One that didn't give an effin fuck that the Egyptians and the Aztecs had it wrong for thousands of years. I mean really. What is that? Suddenly he decides that he will send his one son to Bethlehem to save um, those who hear about him somehow in the next two thousand years? What about all those who didn't have a chance before? Why the hell didnt he send that Christ to the first generation of sons after Adam and Eve?? I don't get it. Perhaps only after those 4000 years (I am going with the biblical timeline of earth being 6000 years old, so that means Christ was 2000 years ago... leaving 4000 years between Adam and Christ)... perhaps only after those 4000 years God the Creator of All His People decided to be into forgiveness of sin. Dang. And to think humans carry a grudge! Sheesh!

OK. The kids dying of starvation and disease and the little kid getting shot. Yeah. Lessons for us all. Remember to get baptised in the church of your choice in case you die tomorrow... your eternal soul depends on you chosing the right one. If you get baptised a Christian, and it really is the Great Spirit of the autochtones here in Quebec, you are screwed forever and ever. And if you chose to be Jewish and it really is Christ you have to believe in to win the lottery you are screwed to. Happy Religious Russian Roulette.

nite nite.

Go back one to see my previous entry tonight about Children's Book Classics.

And here is a very cool site called "ishotmyelf, which is a site where women do photoshoots of themselves... they have to handhold the camera, and be between 107 and 18 years old. hehe. What I linked to there is the faqs page which is fun. Look also at the free tour. Cheers!

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previous meanderings - future past

Goodbye Michael. May your next life be kinder to you. - Thursday, Jun. 25, 2009
Taking Care of Your Cows - Thursday, Jun. 25, 2009
Saint Joseph robs the cradle and eats spaghetti - Sunday, Jun. 14, 2009
sticky notes and broken irises - Friday, Jun. 12, 2009
The FOODCOMMANDER - Monday, Jun. 08, 2009


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