Saturday, June 28, 2008

Annie's Little Litmus Test

Welcome to "The Gods Are Bored," where the local blueberries are in and the hummingbird-friendly hanging baskets just went on closeout sale!

Say what you want about New Jersey. Something comes out of all those smokestacks that makes great blueberries. They're probably carcinogenic, but hey. They taste awesome.

I've had this habit of submitting the people I know to a little litmus test to see if they'd be amiable companions or not. It's a really simple test: Do you believe in Santa Claus, or some variant thereof?

Generally speaking, there's a small window of time in which people don't believe in Santa Claus (or some variant thereof, including faeries). That window usually opens around age 8 and ends at age 16. I call that era of life the "cynical time."

Some people never leave the "cynical time." They trust their own senses, they don't believe in any higher power, they think the human race is the be-all and end-all, and that be-all ain't a pretty picture.

Here in Chateau Annie, we subscribe to the wisdom of the late, great Robert Anton Wilson.

In his many books, Wilson said that if the human brain was a computer, it would have a great deal of unused space, just waiting to be filled with programs and data that would lead to enlightenment, especially extra-sensory perception. In other words, what we perceive with our five senses isn't necessarily all there is to perceive in the vast universe. And when more of us tap into our Sixth Sense, lying useless in most brains, we'll move up the ladder.

Spirit beings like Santa Claus, faeries, angels, gnomes, daemons, etc. lodge themselves in that part of the brain circuitry we haven't yet fully put into play. Ditto the bored gods and all other deities. You doubt there's a higher power out there? So that puts you at the top of the spiritual food chain? *shudder*

When someone tells me they think Santa Claus is some scam parents pull on their kids, I think to myself, "Pass on this person." Many, many adults believe in Santa Claus (or some variant thereof, including faeries).

I'm an adult, and I believe in all sorts of higher powers, including Santa Claus (or some variant thereof). Why? Because human beings can't possibly be the best sentient beings this universe has produced.

If humans are the penultimate of the universe, I'd like the Flying Spaghetti Monster to zap the entire concoction and start over. Perhaps adding more basil, thyme, and oregano.



THE Michael said...

We didn't make God in our own image......we made him from a plate of pasta!

I have always been THIS close to atheism, but I STILL refuse to surrender to a mindset that declares with the same intolerant finality that all that normal, sane people percieve is all there is.

Thus, Wicca is the only "path" I can tred with any sense of intellectual comfort. But, that's just me. I am sure that pastafariens feel equally served.

But no, no Santa here. And I can't bring myself to believe in those little people who keep hiding my stuff. Or opening my doors. Nope. They don't exist, no matter what kind of mayhem they "aren't" creating around here, the bastards!

Emily G. W. Lilly said...

Santa Claus is a state of mind--the spirit of the good father inhabits the bodies/minds of the parents for a fleeting season (and turns them all giddy in the process), and causes them to leave gifts for their children.

_I've_ felt his presence during our Solstice Eve (and earlier, our Christmas Eve) late-night fun!

He's real--does this mean that I can be your friend? :-)

yellowdog granny said...

i remember when i was 9 years old some smart ass boy decided to tell me there wasn't a santa claus...i jumped on top of him and whupped up on him until he said it was all a lie...and I feel the same way today..

Maeve said...

A couple years ago SkyOne? in the UK released Terry Pratchett's The Hogfather at Christmastime. It has the honor of being my #1 holiday movie now. I don't know if I believe in Santa, but I believe in the Hogfather.

Anne Johnson said...

Emily, you perfectly sum up my view of Santa Claus. BFF!

Thalia said...

You know, I'm not so sure about that Flying Spaghetti Monster. I am shocked, actually to see that He has not been baptized in Red Sauce. I don't know if I can worship a Deity so, well, ascetic. Just not my tastes, I guess.

(Mmmmmmmmm, tastes. Mmmmmmm, spaghetti.)

I see you mentioned daemons. Hurrah!! I believe in them, oh yes oh yes!!

Mama Kelly said...

I may be 39, but I still believe in Santa Claus, and fairies, and spirits, and such.


Anne Johnson said...

Every Commenter Here is BFF!

Thalia said...

Praise be to the Flying Spaghetti Monster!

And praise be to Anne, who hath spread His divine wisdom!

For, lo, I have been touched by His noodly appendage, and lo, I have been divinely inspired!

For I now sit down in communion with Him.

To a big ol' plate of spaghetti and meatballs. AND red sauce.

Praise be, and YUM!!

Big Tex said...

You are all heretics - it is pronounced "Flying PASKETTI Monster." His noodly appendage will not be mocked.

Anne Johnson said...

I thought it was Flying Bisketti Monster. What do we know about his forgiveness quota? Like, do you have to be free of carbohydrate consumption to get into his heaven?

Thalia said...

I don't know; I may well be part of heretical sect, what with the red sauce.

But alas! What the Flying Spaghetti Monster giveth He also taketh away.

I had a good three quarts of sauce and more than a dozen meatballs left over from last night, but when I came back to the kitchen to put it away after letting it cool I found I had left the stove on. On low, so the house wasn't on fire, but it had been there long enough it had burnt to the bottom of the pan and there was no salvaging it.

Alas! Ai! Woe! For I am hungry now, and lo! Leftovers would have been so nice.

For all we have in the house otherwise is cereal and skim milk. :/

Anne Johnson said...

Oh great. Just what we need. Another deity with vengeance on the brain. I had a higher opinion of the FSM than that, but you just can't set much store in these one-god pantheons.