Drooling on the Pillow

Monday, November 14, 2005

Old Time Religion 

Pat Robertson believes, or claims to believe, that the town of Dover, PA is due for some divine retribution because they voted out school board members who believe in Intelligent Design. Frogs, locusts, dead babies or famine; he wasn't specific, but he was clear that bad times are on the way.

For the record, I have to admit that I'm sympathetic to the idea of intelligent design (lower case) as I, though an agnostic, believe that something had a hand in creating the universe. It's not a position I'm going to advocate or defend. I don't have any pursuasive arguments or reasons to believe that, I just do. The reason I still call myself an agnostic is that whatever the ontology of the entity I'm positing, it's being has to be of a nature so far beyond our puny earthling brains as to be profoundly ineffable. Could be an old guy with a beard, could be a ham sandwich.

More likely, it's something that cannot be expressed, cannot be conceived, cannot be understood even in the barest of outlines. One of the most interesting innovations of the Judeo-Christian tradition is the concept that God exists outside of time. While it tangles them up in the notion of predestination, it's also one of the deepest and most important conceptualizations made by man. Some guy sitting in a tent almost four thousand years ago had a theoretical understanding of the nature of time sophisticated enough to realize that God couldn't be contained within it.

It's a little depressing to realize that that Semitic genius set in motion a train of thought that eventually coughed up Pat Robertson. Looks like we got off the rails there, somewhere.

My grandfather was old-time religion personified. A lovely, generous, hard working guy, when it came to the bended knee he was hard, unyielding and perfectly sure of himself. If you strayed off the path he was the proverbial ton of bricks. I know for certain, though, that he would rather have cut out his tongue than get caught speaking for God. He was concerned with his life, his behavior and making his life as perfect a reflection of Christ's teachings as he could. He expected his family to do likewise, but beyond that, life was life, people were people and we were all sinners.

I like to think he would have buried Pat Robertson under a mountain of bricks.
Weblog Commenting and Trackback by HaloScan.com Listed on BlogShares