Saturday, January 19, 2013

Not Holier Than Thou - Not Less Holy Than Thou

I felt a need to sit down and write today. I don't know why - maybe it's because I keep seeing a bunch of stuff in my FaceBook newsfeed from people that is quite religious in nature and seems to imply that if you're not Christian then you're not a moral, good person. Maybe it's because an internet friend's child has had experiences in school that I am afraid my child will eventually have.

I am NOT Christian. But I am a moral person. I have a good sense of right and wrong. I am teaching my child to be a moral person. I feel that spirituality is a PRIVATE matter and should not be trumpeted to the Heavens every single day - or that you don't HAVE to trumpet it to the Heavens in an effort to "prove" that you are a good person. I feel so strongly about this that I have to admit that I question the convictions and mental stability of people who have a need to pepper their statuses and FaceBook walls with religious-related photos or references. Every day. Multiple times a day. I find this OVERLY overt religiosity offensive. Now, the fact that these types of activities makes me question the morals and convictions of those people is something that I'm not proud of. I'm human, which means I am a seriously flawed individual - as is every other single person on the planet.

I fear the religious bigot; those people who feel it is ok to tell someone else that they are "wrong" for their beliefs, that it is perfectly fine to make those people feel smaller or insignificant. Those are also the same people who scream "repression" whenever someone else either wants to be left alone for what they believe or wants the freedom without judgement to practice their own spirituality or religion without encumbrance or even wants to make sure that the laws in our country are free from ANY religious influence. I respect people who have a different belief than I do and will fight for them to be able to believe and worship as they choose or not worship if they are atheist. I don't want your religion shoved into my face all the damned time, though. I fear that my son will be bullied because his Mommy isn't a Christian, or Jewish, or Muslim, or Buddhist ... This is already happening to the parents of a little boy who is just a few days younger than my son. And it's happening in an area of the country that is honestly known for being MORE tolerant than Virginia is. I also am afraid of my own extended family judging me because I don't fit into the "majority" religion in this country. Our society in the US has a really bad history of being tolerant of those people who do not fit into the majority in this country. People have been beaten, hanged/lynched, pressed to death, shot, stabbed etc. just for being different, and this history goes back to before the American Revolution.

NOBODY is "holier" than anybody else. Your god is probably the exact same god as my duo, just seen through a different lens. That doesn't make you "wrong" or me "wrong" ... it just makes us different. We come to an understanding of the universe from different backgrounds and different life experiences. To a degree it's selective perception that comes out of different cultures, different knowledge bases, different families, different norms. Nobody has the exact same family dynamic as anybody else - not even siblings. My experience of my parents and siblings is different from my sister's and from my brother's. It is colored by my particular life experiences, which include experiences that are external to my "family of origin". It doesn't make me right and my siblings wrong or vica-versa, it just makes us different.