Sunday, July 03, 2011

4th of July Reflection: Jesus Has Dropped the Ball

Welcome to "The Gods Are Bored" on the Fourth of July weekend, 2011! America, America, God shed disgrace on Thee.

At the turn of the previous century, America was a nation where the vast majority of citizens labored long hours for minimal pay, in dangerous professions, while a slim minority lived like royalty. Gradually the lower classes began to find their voices, and they were backed by Christian ministers and people like William Jennings Bryan, who, for all his myopia on evolution, held the radical belief that Jesus would want the rich to be more fair to the poor -- and the government should lead the way by acting like Jesus.

Judging by today's government, it seems that Jesus now favors that slim royal few. Or maybe He still cares about the rest of us, but his many busy priests aren't listening. Either way, there's no call for social justice from our nation's mainstream religion. Christians don't care if other Christians lose their jobs and their homes and their health care.

Here's what I read on the front page of today's New York Times:

"With the final numbers counted, median pay for top executives at 200 big companies last year was $10.8 million, a 23 percent gain from 2009."

In the meantime, who among us hasn't had to give back raises, pay more for benefits (if you even have them), watch pension funds dry up, and see the nation's social safety nets maligned bitterly by people who claim to be Christians?

HOOOOONNNNNK! That's the final buzzer on you, Jesus. Your people aren't paying a bit of attention to You. The only ones left who think they're doing Your work are sloshing around rain forests, trying to downsized even more bored gods.

It's time to reinstate some bored deities who will look out for the helpless and the hopeless, the way Jesus' people used to do. I suggest we call upon Mother Goddesses from multiple pantheons to take up this important job. Surely They will do it. They're probably waiting for their cell phones to ring, tapping their fingers in anticipation.

If we Pagans want to have an impact on society, we need to advocate for the hopeless and helpless on behalf of our deities. We need some kick-ass Ancient Wisdom to mend the social contract.

I can't speak for the rest of you, but from now on, every time I attend a rally for any cause that I believe in, I will be dressed in my full Druidic attire. The Gods, stirring from their boredom, are weighing America in the balance and finding it wanting. Lets take Them with us as advocates for truth and justice.

Placing a call to Columbia now.


Anonymous said...

Great post. Ironically reminds me of the Emperor Julian realizing - too late - that one of the reasons why Christianity was winning over Paganism was because the Christians at the time cared for each other; not just espousing compassion but actually living it. We've certainly come full circle.

Anonymous said...

Columbia is an amazing Goddess. I've got a post up about her at my blog, as well.

Dancing With Fey said...

You know, Jesus really is a great guy, it's just that some of his so called followers don't really understand what he taught.

And there are plenty of Christians who know what Jesus is really about. They just aren't the vocal ones who get all the attention.

John Beckett said...

Sarita is right. Jesus is a great guy, and he does have a good many followers who try to live like he did. Unfortunately, they are greatly outnumbered by those who don't care if those who don't look / think / pray / love / sound like themselves are living in a very real hell right here right now.

And none of that excuses us from doing everything we can - both magically and mundanely - to create Peace and Justice for ourselves and for everyone else.

There is no better advertising for Bored Gods than a good example.

The Traveler said...

@john- /signed!

Oh and Anne I don't know if you've ever traveled into the Discworld with Sir Terry Pratchett, but I think you would find the book Small Gods very apropos to this particular phenomenon in christianity.

Intense Guy said...

"Real Christians" would follow the golden rule (and keep their pants zipped up if married).

Lots of fake Christians out there..

Little Nut Tree said...

"There's no call for social justice from our nation's mainstream religion."

On the contrary. There are loads of Christians (ministers, priests and otherwise) in America who are involved in and/or calling for more social justice. Shane Claiborne springs to mind as just one among many. You've even had pagans and druids blogging about them: the Wild Goose festival line-up was composed almost exclusively of Christian leaders who consider social justice and the environment to be major areas of concern. I can absolutely understand that you're angry about some, even much, of the stuff Christians have done and continue to do - many of us are convinced that our God is just as angry and saddened about it as you are! but there's no reason to polarise the issue even further by declaring categorically "pagans good, Christians bad" - isn't that one of the things you hate us doing to you?

Funnily enough my druid friend who passed on the link to your blog also linked me to another Pagan blogger who is writing a lovely series about things pagans and Christians can teach each other and work on together, which I think is a much more positive attitude. Here's a link in case you're interested.

I second the recommendation for Small Gods. Great book, regardless of your beliefs.

Anne Johnson said...

Thank you, Little Nut Tree, would you please tell the helpful people to speak up a little bit louder? I know there are many Christians in the green movement, and I know we should all be working together on this, but as a member of a small faith I keep looking for the big faith to do more, because it has more members who carry more weight.

PS - If you are new here, please be advised that my tone is irreverent, I'm nothing like Alison.