THE LAST HURRAH OF THE FALSE GODS
This is strictly adult literature. In other words, you young people might want to check it out first, before you let your parents get ahold of it.
The time has come for the human race to be excruciatingly honest, with and about ourselves. Why excruciatingly honest? Well, because sometimes the truth hurts. You know what I mean? It can be easier to live in denial than to courageously face ugly facts about ourselves. Instead, we tend to point fingers at one another and criticize someone else for their mistakes and ignorant actions. But those days may be about over.
Psychologically and emotionally, the human race seems to be deteriorating. Our mood has been declining for years. How much longer can this go on? I mean, we seem to be headed for hell in a handbasket.
So why don't we admit the real truth: Our philosophies of life aren't working for us. If they were, we would be progressively more happy, not less happy. Our lifestyles aren't really life styles at all. They're lives of quiet desperation, becoming more desperate all the time. There's nothing stylish about them. They don't contribute to our well being -- they detract from it.
Something needs to change, but change doesn't come easy. Particularly when the change involves some of the fundamental ideas we have about life in general. Altering minor details in the way we live may not be that difficult, but seriously examining the very philosophies we live by usually proves to be too much of a challenge. Most of us go to our graves clinging to the notion that the basic view of reality that has been handed down to us is perfectly legitimate. It just doesn't occur to us that
our well being, our personal growth, and even our survival may require a willingness to examine alternative philosophies of life.
A common element of the prevailing philosophies of most human cultures is the high degree of emphasis placed on human beings. There seems to be an unstated assumption that people are the most important part of the universe -- that the world more or less revolves around us and our activities. While most of us profess a belief in some sort of spiritual presence, which we call God, or Allah, or whatever, that we supposedly believe is the ruler of everything, our actions tend to speak louder than our words. And they betray us. In reality, we think we are God!
To drive home this point, let's examine one concept put into practice by almost everyone on earth -- the concept of nation states and their governments. For thousands of years we have banned together in various groups, which we call nations or countries, and instituted governments, in an attempt to regulate our affairs and control one another's behavior. If the officials of these governments are popular, or if they have been elected by the masses, their is a common perception that all citizens have an obligation to obey their rules.
But doesn't this contradict our supposed belief in some sort of Divine ruler? Surely our practice of allowing governments to be given the authority to define good and evil for us is tantamount to declaring that they are God. And since our governments are extensions of ourselves, isn't it fair to say that we human beings have essintially elevated ourselves to the status of God?
With billions of false gods roaming the earth, it's no wonder our problems seem to constantly increase. When billions of ego-maniacs stubbornly insist that our own way of life is sacred -- look out. When we all believe that we more or less have life figured out, there's trouble ahead.
Consider that this Divine Spirit that most of us claim to believe in is infinite -- which it probably is -- and that we human beings are finite -- which we obviously are. That means we are infinitesimal specks, insignificant nothings, in this enormous, infinite universe. It should logically follow that not a single person on earth is intelligent or talented enough to be exempt from a requirement to constantly re-evaluate our behavior and make an attempt to reform it. It should be obvious that we all need to learn, and grow, and change -- not just for awhile, but for a lifetime.
However, when life's realities seem to be telling us that our behavior is counter-productive, or that our way of life is contributing more to our demise than to our well being, it's not uncommon for us to become defensive and refuse to change. Our habits are so deeply entrenched that we just don't like to give them up, or even admit there's anything wrong with them. It's easy to find rationalizations to pacify our conscience while we continue to live by our false philosophies.
As a case in point, let's examine our practice of nations going to war in order to deal with crisis situations. In spite of the fact that more people are in a worse mood all the time -- more depressed and anxiety ridden and angry and afraid and nervous -- we still believe that wars are making the earth more peaceful. So why aren't we in a state of bliss already? We've had enough wars to "end all wars" and to "save the world for democracy" and to "set up an ideal state" and to "conquer evil with good," that we ought to be just jumping with joy and dancing in the streets. But it's painfully obvious that joy is a scarcer commodity all the time.
So why don't we just own up to the real truth? That every war since day one has been nothing more than an act of terrorism -- a nauseating atrocity -- orchestrated by some group of people who have deluded themselves into believing that their criminal behavior is justified for one reason or another. Since the writer of these words lives in the USA, and is more acquainted with it's history than the history of other countries, let's look at some of the things it has done in warfare. The better part of the population of two entire cities, men, women, and children, were murdered in cold blood with atomic bombs during world war II, just to get someone else to surrender. During the Vietnam war, numerous villages were literally executed by incineration, by burning them to a crisp with napalm, using the cowardly and truly insane excuse, "It became necessary to destroy the village in order to save it." During the first war between the USA and Iraq, how did we noble Americans get Saddam Hussein to surrender? By slaughtering tens of thousands of Iraqi soldiers whom we knew were helplessly trapped in concrete bunkers, who had no chance to either retreat or surrender. A true massacre if ever there was one. And now, as these words are being written, America is engaged in a sham "war against terror," in which we have arrogantly taken the lives of thousands of innocent people. If we accomplish anything by this current psychotic episode, hopefully it will be to prove that we are, in fact, the largest terrorist organization on planet earth.
America is certainly not alone in it's guilt. Practically every nation on earth, as well as rebel groups and militias, and even supposed religious organizations, have, at one time or another, exhibited the same kind of murderous behavior.
By now, you'd think we'd at least be starting to get the message -- that war ultimately makes matters worse. But, no, not us. Our old habits are too hard to break. So whenever some idiot starts shooting people, the rest of us start shooting too, assuring that the vicious cycle goes on and on.
Another blatant example of our addiction to false philosophies is our obsession with material possessions. It should be very clear to us by now that happiness can't be acquired by filling our lives full of more and more toys to play with. Yet, the more unhappy we become, the more desperately we try to buy our way out of our misery. And then, the more miserable we become. Another vicious cycle.
Let no one think that Americans are any better off than anyone else because of our high level of material wealth. The joy factor in this country has been declining for years, despite our abundance of money and the things that money can buy. Those who envy Americans for our wealth and who attempt to emulate our way of life, be forewarned: You're wasting your time. Don't follow our ignorant example of trying to buy happiness. It just doesn't work. Instead, reflect on the meaning of life and try to figure out how to find real contentment. Perhaps you can show us the right way to live. We certainly don't know, and we need all the help we can get.
Before we move on to suggestions as to how to alleviate this sad state of affairs, let's discuss one more example of our habit of perpetuating ignorance. The practice of turning human beings, and women in particular, into sex objects. Human sexuality has always been treated rather casually and women have been treated like toys that exist for the amusement of men for centuries. Doesn't this seem a bit dangerous? After all, sex is one of the most powerful forces in the universe. It has the power to create a human life. It's use or misuse affects the well being of the people involved. Casual and disrespectful treatment of such a powerful force contributes to an overall decline in emotional and physical health.
More and more women are voluntarily turning themselves into something less than human beings -- into things that exist for men to use for entertainment. It's no wonder more people suffer from anxiety and depression and other emotional ailments all the time. No doubt, part of the reason is our lack of respect for our sexuality. To the women of the world, we say: Take back your soul! You are more than just a body. You're a magical being, with a spirit hiding inside of you, waiting to burst forth. Refuse to follow the fashions and fads of the times, that attempt to reduce you to a piece of meat. Refuse to put yourself and your sexuality on public display. Don't give in to the whims of simple-minded men and their primitive attitudes.
The burden of leading humanity in a new direction rests on the shoulders of young people. Why? Because, as a general rule, the older we get, the more convinced we become that our way of life is just fine, and the less inclined we are to seriously examine our fundamental ideas about reality. Only someone with youthful energy and a rebellious attitude can rise to the daunting task of charting a new and realistic course for the human race.
But even for young people, change will be difficult. There is such tremendous pressure to conform to the prevailing ideas and attitudes that it takes a true revolutionary, a committed rebel, to break societies chains and embark on a new path. And, above all, it takes the proper motivation. Just the realization that we are headed in the wrong direction isn't enough. We must also have an abstract purpose -- a belief in something very mysterious and infinite and unexplainable -- to provide the incentive to look for that new path.
The habit of reading is a valuable asset for a person dedicated to revolution. Hundreds of books are available in stores and libraries. They can give us valuable clues as to how to turn ourselves around. They certainly can't give us exact formulas for finding enlightenment, but their words may at least provide us with some hints -- as well as much needed inspiration. Those who take advantage of the opportunity to read the works of others who have been committed to personal growth and change will probably find some of those books to be extremely helpful.
The human race may now be at a critical point in it's history. Our inner turmoil, our psychological and emotional distress, is rising to an alarming level. The time has come to deal with it, once and for all. And we simply can't deal with it by following blindly the same unrealistic philosophies that are the cause of our problems. Our survival demands that we courageously face this truth.
There's handwriting on the wall. And it's written in giant letters for us all to read. And that handwriting is saying, loudly and clearly:
Change! Change or die!