(Please Note: I mean no offense to anyone’s faith in the following article, Christian or otherwise. As long as you respect other people’s beliefs you’re awesome with me!)
One God religions have always unsettled me. Hell, they’ve downright scared me to my spiritual core more than once. It seems monotheistic faiths are so… unhealthily focused on their version of God, wearing blinders to other people’s different perspectives on religion.
It seems to me following one God and one God only, is kind of, well, limiting. Being a Solitary Anarcho-Heathen Fifth-Dimensional Shaman and, by default, polytheistic, I value my multiple choices in Deities, Psychopomps, and Spirits. Some days (especially if I’m in a good mood) I’ll praise a peaceful Goddess like Inanna, an Earth Mother. If I’m in a bad mood (maybe my goddamn cornflakes were soggy during breakfast and I couldn’t find the promised prize in the cereal box), I’ll ask a vengeful angry God in a suitable pantheon to drive my enemies in rout before me while I listen to the lamentations of their women. Sorry, that’s a line from the classic movie Conan.
The Old Testament God is an excellent example of a generally pissed-off Deity, but I generally don’t ask for His help because He thinks He’s the only One in this particular Universe. Talk about ego! The last time I pointed out the error of His ways by bringing up the fact that someone like Dr. Phil exists, Jehovah got all up in my face about being a “jealous God” and how I should stop coveting my neighbor’s ass. But, really, you should see my neighbor’s ass when she’s washing her car in the summer… it’s a work of God. Her derriere, I mean, not the car.
But when you get right down to the nitty-gritty of spirituality, it’s all about the choices, inn’it? The Freedom To Choose. Free Will. And being locked in a faith that only allows you to worship one God is kind of like going into a clothing store and being allowed to buy only pants when you need a wardrobe:
SlackerDan: Hi! Nice store. I’d like to see your formal Hawaiian shirts, please.
Clerk: Sorry. Nope. You can only buy pants.
SlackerDan: But.. but I want some Hawaiian shirts. And maybe a hat?
Clerk: Only pants with us folk! And you too, if you know what’s good for you.
SlackerDan: Well… how about some pleated socks?
Clerk: No, you infidel! Pants! PANTS! There is only PANTS!
(CLERK STABS SLACKERDAN)
Having only one God locks a person to that God’s viewpoint. If such a God has some particularly bad traits, such as insisting that all non-believers should be murdered, then those spiritual directives are exhibited by that deity’s followers. A polytheistic faith, however, allows for many different Gods and, therefore, perspectives.
Let’s look at Christianity. Christianity is, well, monotheistic. Monotheistic in the sense that the Holy Ghost, God the Father, God the Son, Mary the Mother of God and the Saints are by-default worshiped as well but that’s beside the point. There is but one God, his name is Jehovah or Yahweh, and Don’t Piss Him Off. Like I said, he’s a jealous God, and people can only buy pants in his store, or they’ll go to Hell. Ignore the fact that He brags on and on about giving mankind Free Will; if you don’t keep boosting His Frail Delicate Ego, God will pull the mighty Lever Of Retribution and the floor will fall out from under you.
To me, that just doesn’t sound right, or even fair. Who appointed this guy God? If you’ve ever read the Bible, you’ll notice at the beginning the word “Elohim” describing God… but the word means MANY Gods, a pantheon. Only until a little while later does Jehovah show up and say, “You shall have no other God before me.” It sounds to ol’ SlackerDan that this God is kind of like a rogue God…He snuck away from the rest of the more reasonable Gods to bully us little ol’ human ants around to make Him feel better about Himself.
Let’s look at the Christian God’s bad points and see how they magnify in His usually lucid, calm Followers:
God Bad Habit #1: Angry; No Sense Of Humor.
Follower’s Exhibited Traits: If you even try to make a Jesus joke to some Christians, such as the one ending with the punchline, “Peter! I can see my house from here!”, they will look at you with great horror and indignation while thrusting a Bible ¾” down your esophagus.
God Bad Habit #2: Jealousy.
Follower’s Exhibited Traits: There Can Be Only One, to paraphrase the movie, ‘Highlander II: The Quickening’. Attempts at explaining that you only follow Ooh-Grah, Lord Of Dance And Budgies, will only generate frustration and loathing in your typical Christian. And that Christian will be jealous, too, because their God doesn’t allow them to dance OR keep budgies as pets!
God Bad Habit #3: No Fun Allowed.
Follower’s Exhibited Traits: Everything that God wrote down as “verboten” in the Bible turns out to be fun, dammit! Blasphemy, hey, we do it all the time. Just try accidentally slamming your willy in the sliding shower door and not curse the Almighty! Sodomy, great fun if you haven’t tried it. Kind of like a carnival ride, whole bunch of screaming and bucking up and down. Masturbation …c’mon! C’MON! Just TRY “loving yourself” in front of a Jehovah’s Witness while answering the door! No sense of wackiness whatsoever, those Elders!
God Bad Habit #4: Smiting.
Follower’s Exhibited Traits: History pretty well sums this one up. Just look anywhere Christians have been in history, and you’ll quickly notice the words “crusade” and “inquisition”. They seem to have toned things down a little bit, thank God (heh). But God help you (and He won’t, because you don’t follow Him, Heathen!) if you’re a doctor providing abortions under the Cosmic Law of the Right to Choose…then, you’ll probably get a holy water blessed .306 sniper rifle bullet right in your most tender chakra point.
God Bad Habit #5: Annoying People.
Follower’s Exhibited Traits: Only go to church on Sunday. Follow these Ten Commandments. Eat fish on Fridays. Read the Bible. Convert everyone around you. Good Gods, people, it’s not so much what you believe in a religion, it’s the error in believing that non-believers are wrong and evil that’s the problem. This erroneous perspective alone has killed millions of people all throughout history. It’s a viewpoint so toxic it’s almost as bad as thinking Nickelback is a good band.
A word about holy rituals. A ritual is a framework to express your joy towards divinity, but you don’t have the right to drag everyone else in a two-point-three mile radius into it on a BLOODY SUNDAY MORNING WHILE I’M TRYING TO SLEEP AND YOU KEEP RINGING THOSE INCESSANT CHURCH BELLS!!?!?!
I could go on and on, and Lordy, I do love talking about religions. But I hope you see my point: there are many perils to monotheism that, to me, just don’t make it worthwhile. Let’s look at the JOYS of polytheism now:
#1: You Get To Choose
You’re a wacky devilish type? Worship Loki! You’re a loving nurturing type, follow Isis (the Egyptian goddes, not the terrorist group; the two are very mutually exclusive). You’re large and muscular with the ability to fuse people’s rib cages while hugging them? Praise Thor! He’s into that kinda stuff. Match up all your good traits with a God or Goddess and you’ll grow like a family-sized chocolate bar with an infinite spiral of creamy nougat. Wait, that made no sense, whatsoever.
#2: If You Piss Your God Off, There’s Always Another
Let’s say you follow the God of Justice, Tyr. You strive to live a life of justice and balance but one day you screw up and do something that you just know goes against everything that God stands for. Maybe you dressed up in a clown suit and directed traffic, badly. Or got drunk and had a threesome with your grandmother and your grandmother’s Alsatian. In any case, if you’re not feeling particularly ‘Just’ at the moment, switch over to a more reasonable laid-back God… say, Dionysus. Oh, sure, Tyr will be mad, but run and hide behind your new chosen Deity and you’ll Be Just Fine. Never touch the poodle again, though.
#3: Every Day Is A Spiritual Holiday
Being a polytheist means you can legally ask for ANY day off work WITH pay! Tell your boss that August 27th is dedicated to “Mombaar The God Of Ignominy” and if you DON’T get time off with salary, you’ll sue his and the corporation’s ass off. As well as August 28th, since that’s dedicated to“Gelpus The Hairless Mammal God”, and August 29th, “Waning Of The Fairy Tributaries”. Oh, and the 30th.. and… and…
#4: The Gods Are Just Like You
You think you have problems being shallow, petty, vindictive and argumentative? Well, there are many Gods like that too! For every ‘Happy’ God or Goddess there’s one or two (or seven) who are deeply, and I mean deeply, maladjusted. So if you’re psychologically healthy or you’re about to drive your car into a mall full of people while under orders from the Moon, we’ve got a Deity For YOU!
#5: Better Religious Artwork
I think many Christians would agree that much of the “art” in their religious work is either really crappy and/or really scary. Oh, sure, there’s some very nice stained glass out there, and the Sistine Chapel is okay to look at if you’re stoned, I guess. But the bulk of religious material is accompanied by either deeply upsettling pictures of Jesus bleeding to death, or deeply upsetting pictures of Jesus in his bathrobe surrounded by small innocent children. Nowhere in the polytheistic religions do they support wearing bathrobes, especially Voodoo.
So, there ya go, God forgive me. For every reason why Christianity is deeply flawed, there’s a supporting reason for one to engage in the Joys Of Polytheism. Try a New Flavor, Worship A New God….Today and Every Day!
Please note: if you’re Christian and I’ve offended you, I suggest masturbation. Always relieves my tension, and I don’t have to feel guilty about it. Hell, if it WAS supposed to be Sin, would God have created my issue #52 of Big Milky Knockers magazine? I don’t think so.