religious magic

Do we become believers in religious magic because our parents, family members, neighbors, friends and even presidents of our country believe in religious magic?

And I can see why. It was very comforting to me when I believed the promise that I was going to be happy forever and ever in heaven, no matter how bad things might get here on earth.

I was just graduating from babyhood when this form of magical stories became my constant companion, and I accepted them without questioning, and magical thinking became my normal type of thinking when it came to my religious status.

What might shake me out of this default mode?

When I was twenty-nine years old I began to have doubts. I imagined being born and raised in India in a family which practiced and believed in the Hindu teachings, and in my imagination as I grew older and worshipped along with them, I became a believer in the Hindu Gods and in the Hindu teachings as my imagined parents did as children.

I realized that my Hindu self would believe just as sincerely in the correctness of the Hindu beliefs as I was believing and trusting in the correctness of my Christian beliefs.

Then I began considering the thousands of religions on earth, all with their different beliefs and each claiming their beliefs to be correct and true while also claiming all other religious folks unfortunately are worshiping the wrong God or Gods and are proclaiming false teachings, and therefore, these folks will suffer forever and ever for their religious mistakes.

These thoughts were enough to get me thinking about the extreme odds against all of these magic-spewing religions being true. Then I thought about the extreme odds against my beliefs being the only religious beliefs on earth which were true. How could I be so lucky?

Then I came to see the almost surety of these many thousands of organized religions were the products of human beings, and I changed my mind about doubt being an enemy and found it to be a very useful tool.

Is there a moral to this story?

Is it that sincerity means everything when it comes to religion and doesn’t mean a thing when it comes to truth. Does truth just sit here, there and everywhere and doesn’t care whether it’s noticed or not?

 

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the number-one trait hobbling humankind

What is the number-one trait hobbling humankind?

Could it be the propensity to believe in the magical and miraculous? (Richard Dawkins is the first person I heard use the term “magical thinking”) Do religions grow by promising eternal life and by telling stories of miracles and eternal punishment which are truly believed by those who are spreading the stories and promises?

There is real comfort received from sincerely believing one will have a wonderful life after death, a life which goes on forever and ever where it will be impossible to become bored. The promise of living joyously throughout eternity is claimed to be the case because it comes from a source that cannot lie but the promise comes with conditions.

A new believer in Christianity is assured he or she is one of the chosen who were predestined before the foundation of the world to live in glory with God and His angles forever and ever as stated in the Bible.

It is also promised that after judgment, all the rest will be spending eternity receiving continuous torture in a place filled with fire and brimstone. A fear tactic if I’ve ever seen one. Why will we suffer? Because we never heard “the Gospel” or we said “no thanks” to “the good news” when we had the chance or chances to accept it.

Can this source be trusted? Probably not with 36,000 other groups claiming that they have sacred scriptures which can be trusted? Is the “Gospel” just a miraculous story passed down to us which has a wondrous dramatic ending and delivers huge magical promises which give hope, longing, and comfort to those who truly believe in magic? Why do we believe? Is it usually because of how we were brought up or were we having a terrible life and the hope of heaven seemed so comforting or were we scared straight not wanting to be tortured forever?

Which of the two statements below has a far better chance of being true?

Every human will be aware forever…is a true statement.
Every human will be aware forever…is a false statement.

(A hint is below.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

One is magical thinking and the other is based on reason.

 

does dogma corral

Is it that love accepts and understands and hate wants change without a reasonable wait?

Is true spirituality conformity or rebellion? Do I belong because of fear? Have I become intoxicated by thought and do I douse my fear with the fuel of membership and tradition?

Does seeking give experience but little comfort because I’m threatened by it?
Is conformity easy because it’s the default road?

It’s expected that I follow the rules but does dogma corral my awareness?