Wednesday, December 15, 2004
As L. Ron Hubbard said, the real money's in starting your own religion
This is brilliant.
Ozymandian - moronic inferno:I really really really wish I could write like this.
First of all I just want to point out that I am not a Christian. At least I don't think I am. Then again maybe I am. I'm not really sure. As a small child I was briefly subjected to the rituals and oratorical ravings of the Catholic mass. My mother was a loyal visitor to one Roman Catholic emporium or another and for many years and I would accompany her on some of these visitations. I was also present for some pseudo cannibalistic orgy called a first communion. But I recall little of the affair or how exactly I came to earn a place at such an occasion in the first place. What I vividly remember of the event for the most part was being fed an ash-dry tasteless wafer which unfortunately lodged itself to the roof of my mouth without me fully understanding why I was being subjected to such cuisine in the first place. Ultimately this experience caused me to begin gagging and cacking and retching. Panic stricken I reeled up, tongue lolling wildly about in my head, I dropped thrashing to the floor where I dug the horrible thing from the roof of my mouth with my finger and flung it away from me like someone freeing themselves from the strangling coils of a small python. So concluded my religious training.
My father never showed any interest whatsoever in these sacrosanct junkets and instead spent his Sunday's yelling at lawn mowers or wading a trout stream flinging dry flys into the tangled voracious dry fly eating foliage overhanging shady fishy pools. For which he would then give thanks by offering a few words on behalf of some holy order of deciples called the God Damned Dirty Bastard Sons of Bitches. Whoever they were. Just to acknowledge, one would surmise, God's divine role in the ill conceived placement of tangled voracious overhanging frondescence. Then he'd thrash his way out into the creek to engage in a hellish battle of wits pitting man v. tangled foliage v. monofilament and leader. Once again unleashing an additional round of firey sermonizing which I will refrain from repeating here but much of which was also preached to the lawn mower on various alternating sabbaths.
Since my dad seemed to spend a good deal more time actually conversing, more or less, directly with the father, the son, and the holy goddamned ghost, it seemed logical to me that I'd probably stand a better chance of actually getting to know the Creator if I were allowed to follow my old mans strict regimen of worship. As opposed to being strangled to death by some hoo-doo shaman with a rosary garrotte and a bag of stale cookies.
In any case, what I'm getting at here, is that aside from the occasional wedding, or funeral, or baptismal dip, I haven't attended a church for any good reason in decades. Which leads me to believe that my original subscription to Catholicism ab ovo usque ad mala may have fully expired. Hoo-boy.
I bring all of this up because I'm satisfied that it qualifies me as some kind of specialist on the subject of theology and religion and other important stuff in general and I just wanted you all to be aware of my flawless credentials. Plus, I have a fancy degree from an art school where I spent several years looking at Italian Renaissance oil paintings and illuminated manuscripts depicting fat naked ladies and Saints and white guys on horses with swords. Not necessarily in that order or all on the same page. If ya know what I mean. I've also read a good deal of Will and Ariel Durant's History of Western Civilization, which I've thouroughly enjoyed and would recommend to anyone. Although, if you're over the age of fifty, and still haven't cracked one of these volumes, I would suggest you hop to it because, assuming you live to be ninety, you might still keel over stone cold dead before you flail your way through forty percent of the material contained therein. Tick-tock. Times a wastin'.
Also, I believe, given my obvious expertise, that I'd make a good religious figure. In fact I'm thinking of becoming one sometime after the new year. It's a lucrative and lively trade and clearly in demand. I'm thinking of something in apocalyptic end time prophecy sales, management, and dispensational accounting. Possibly publishing. On the other hand it might just be fun to buy me a used camper van and a catering tent and hit the road as the Pastor Animus Poole; The Bawl and Jump Hellfire Hotdog!
Why the hell not? Hey, it's become increasingly evident to me that American Christianity is sinking rapidly to the bottom of the genotypical pond. Sinking like a sack of sash weights. Not to mention drowning aesthetically. Retreating back to some kind of fundamental primordial infantile playpen where it will ultimately, in the end, lay gurgling like an imbecile, batting stupidly at whatever colorful blowmolded plastic gee-gaw is dangled before it's worshipful eyes. Religion as teething ring, rattle, and inflatable "terror-eyes yellow balloon."
I offer you privilege and amnesty from tribulation. A secret rapture will be yours alone on the condition of absolute faith in my Word. You will join an Elect, moral, virtuous, purged of original sin, peoples just like you, sulphur free, and you will return a conqueror. Redeemed. Kind of like a membership to Sam's Club but without the parking congestion. Go forth and multiply. Everything, and I mean everything, you need to know to secure your own salvation and future heroic legacy is available on six easy to use video tapes for three easy payments of $19.95 each. Restrictions may apply. And on and on and on.
A few summer seasons of this kind of hornswoggle and harangue and I could afford to buy myself a small market radio station and and/or a Republican House Rep from xxxxx and then perhaps a gaudy television ministry complete with phone banks with a hotline to the fabulous beyond - if ya know what I mean - and a vacation home in the Panhandle and so on and so on and so on.
On the other hand - I could just go ice fishing with my brother. Imagine that.
"Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair."
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