Monday, December 22, 2008

On Their Terms or Not At All

Maria Farrell at Crooked Timber hits a bullseye while expressing disappointment at the Pope's latest blathering.

The religious fundamentalists simply don’t want other people to be happy. The only joy they can conceive of is that which they allow. There’s no rendering unto Caesar what is Caesar’s for them. The law of their angry God is inadequate by itself, and needs to be enforced by the laws of men and the power of the state. Their joy is won only in a zero sum game. Sharing it destroys it.

It's wearing on her.

I keep on keeping on in the Catholic Church, mostly because it’s what I was brought up in and where I most feel the pain and joy of just being alive. I’ve even been lucky enough to find a home from home in a Catholic community that not just welcomes but celebrates every person in it. But days like today force me to ask myself if it’s even the right thing to continue to associate myself with an institution whose leadership behaves so shamefully.

One of the commenters summed it up.

I can’t help but comment that you just explicated a fine argument against basing any of one’s happiness on traditional organized religions. Find your community and joy elsewhere. The one power you possess to end the power of the Pope to oppress members of your community? Reduce the numbers who join a community of oppression and leave that anachronistic institution.

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