By: David Worrell
To: Jesse Jones
I considered responding to your slightly modified annual Thanksgiving screed,
but I thought it'd be more fun to forward it to Curry. I know how much you
miss him, Jesse. Here's his response.
>> From : Jesse Jones
>> To : All Heathens
>> Subj : Christmas
I thank you from the bottom of my heathen heart. Here I was thinking you had
skipped the annual Thanksgiving Day Rant this year, but now I see you've just
delayed it a month, modifying the script to suit a different holiday. Bravo! My
faith in your consistency is restored.
JCJ> So what excuse are you using this year to celebrate Christmas?
JCJ> Pagan antecedents?
Pagan origins? Nah. Because Satan Claus is coming to town.
JCJ> Secular recognition of the value of universal good will?
There is no point in tossing out any underlying practical secular values.
Especially not when it's easy enough to wash away the superficial sham of
Those who claim that their religion (or in a more ecumenical spirit, religion
in general) monopolizes good will possess an arrogance that is matched only by
the absurdity of that pompous dogma.
> A convenient time of giving?
Certainly a traditional one, though perhaps we share - you and I and many
others, as well - the notion that giving is best when unbounded by ritual times
and places, and by mere convenience.
> God is trying to say something to you, if only you will listen.
A corpse that speaks? Or is that you behind it waving its stiff arms and
waggling its dumb, gaping jaw?
How much better it is to give the stinking carcass of superstition a decent
burial, rather than bowing down in respect to a dead idea and the maggots who
feed off of it, who through their writhing grant it a semblence of life.
> You are just like the Athenians to whom Paul preached -- hedging
> your bets and clinging however tenuously to that which empowered
> your forbearers.
That's it - get 'em where it hurts....tell those "evil heathens" how much they
cling to the superstitions of their forebears. Tell them how it's impossible to
change, impossible to learn enough to keep what is good while disposing of
dogmas and graduating from gods. You tell'em, Brother Jesse.
Oh, and don't forget to tell them how they're all empty inside while you're at
it. For the sake of nostalgia, if nothing else.
> Why else do you stay here for years? Are you called by some force
> to abuse and humiliate believers?
The same force that calls so many theists to feel every criticism, even helpful
ones, as nothing but abuse and humiliation - and still they flock to the forum
to beg for it? Is there a name for that?
I remember when you danced around the question of why you yourself stayed as a
regular or semi-regular participant of HolySmoke, as I'm sure many others do as
well. Could it be a craving for the human reality that lies behind the curtain
of religious make believe?
> Or is there something that makes you hope you will hear a word that
> puts you in touch with the divine?
Try thinking it through. Whatever divinity we designed for the gods originated
with us - with humanity, the inventors of gods. As did, to be fair, the
*barbarity* we designed for them. They are reflections of our own cultures,
changing from time to time, from place to place.
Mythology. Metaphor. Make believe. There be gods here!
Gods and other shadows of human imagination are a part of our history, from
Ahuru Mazda and Vishnu to Allah and Eris and all the multitudes in between.
Another part of our history is religious superstition, substituting these mere
shadows for their sources, elevating the abstractions to presumed perfection at
the expense of real people who were condemned by tradition and indoctrination
to propagate ignorance, and what is worse, to worship it.
To give ignorance a name, to call it God and make it the answer to all selected
questions by default, to run from a question because it is "blasphemous" even
to ask it, now that's tragic.
To vent your spleen at people who do not believe your dogmas by asking them
what "excuse" they have to celebrate Xmas, that's just petty.