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Sacha Guitry once said, "You can pretend to be serious, but you can't pretend to be witty." Oh yes, I'm the great pretender.
(pilot episode: 20 January 2004)

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Lead Us Out Of The Dark Ages, My Lord

I think it’s crafty that the Philippine Catholic Church built into their belief system the idea of humility and obedience as a way of making sure their followers tow the line. How? The story of Satan’s Fall shows how pride and disobedience led to the former angel’s descent into disgrace.

Humility and obedience, such a powerful combination. You cannot question authority or teachings, because to do so would be disobedience. If something doesn’t make sense, you should have the humility to accept that some teachings really do not make sense.

I am not surprised that such mentality is espoused and even flaunted by our bishops. Their call for an investigation on the 159 professors of the Ateneo de Manila University who declared their personal stand for the RH Bill is, for me, a sign of the Church Hierarchy flexing their supposed muscles. This, despite the fact that the Ateneo president already clarified that the University’s stand is similar to the CBCP, and that in the classrooms the stand of the Church against the RH Bill is also taught.

What seems to get the bishops’ goats is the fact that the University allows dissenting opinions to not only be discussed openly, but for faculty members to make a public stand that’s contrary to the Church.

I can understand it if the Church wants pre-school and even high school kids of Catholic institutions to be fed the Church’s line. But here’s where I disagree with the bishops: by college level, the students should be encouraged to think and decide for themselves.

After all, as adults we eventually grow up. Life and Experience will teach us that not everything Mommy and Daddy said is true. There is no Santa Claus. Religion is the opium of the masses. And love stories don’t end in “Happily Ever After” with fade out; instead, they continue on with new complexities and complications alike.

One of the reasons why I stopped going to mass was because, as I grew older, the more I found the parish priest’s homilies too simplistic. It’s as if he was talking down to an 8 year old. More and more the mass became irrelevant to me.

I humbly believe in a God who is not irrelevant nor detached from reality. He is a God who makes sense, who appeals with Reason, not Fear. He may not come down to do miracles first-hand like in the Old Testament, but He shows His hand through other people’s actions. That’s the God I choose to believe in, a God that exists in the Now and not in the Dark Ages, a God that is different from that of the Philippine Catholic Church.



Anonymous said...

You nailed it once again, joel. Like my lolo used to say, "You don't religion, for God is already in your heart.".

Anonymous said...

aack, I see I left out a word; I meant to say "You don't need religion...". What a doofus.