An Extraordinary Power Trip
Posted on February 17, 2016
An Extraordinary Power Trip (when you think you have God in your corner)
How many times have we seen it?
Jimmy or Susan, Muhammad or Abdullah, discover ‘religion’. Oh, boy. Fasten your seatbelts. Hide the whiskey bottle. Here comes the red hot poker. You can burn the Kaffir Infidel with it, sure, but… you can also scorch your own tiny mind. It beats any other addictive drug, ranging from America’s Alternative Religions (baseball, football, pornography and watching Kanye West making a racist twat of himself) all the way to the more mild stuff, i.e. Cocaine, driving drunk and sneakily dodging taxes. Religion is the opiate that beats ’em all. Right across the board, from Christians to Fuzlims, from Hindus to Jehovah’s Witnesses, and from New Age spiritual flute listeners to Old Age grumpy Pot Smokers, you WILL regularly trip across the same interesting phenomenon. To wit: Johnny the grocery store shopping-trolley logistics-coordinator, who is transformed, by the hand of God or Allah, into a divine and inspired being. A leader of Men. Empowered – by God or Allah – to sit in judgment (these dark days often with a meat cleaver) on his sinful apostate neighbors.
What, we may ask, is so unceasingly and wearily tiresome about Johnny when he gets that ‘chosen-one’ idea in his head? Those of us who have been around the block a time or two (and have the scars, bullet holes and outrageous medical bills to prove it) get so caustic because we’ve bloody well ‘seen it all before’. Many times. We’ve seen the ‘high’ that comes with a deluded sense that Johnny has a direct line to God or Allah. We have seen the utopian, fanatical glint in the eye of the preacher. As he (or she) (or it) thunders from the pulpit, wagging a furious almighty finger at the unwashed rabble huddled below his new found Mount Sinai. We can indeed almost SEE the invisible halo of righteousness and divinity descend from the Heavens, and slowly float down in a golden cloud, and settle over Johnny. We can certainly see its effects. Johnny becomes, often overnight, what might be diplomatically termed a thundering pain in the neck.
Religious Mania comes reliably (tediously so) in all sorts of forms and incarnations. We have the mostly benign form of Mania that afflicts many well meaning people. An example might be the Jehovah’s witnesses. Love ’em or hate them, they are not going to chop your head off, enslave your daughters, or kill your sons. They are genuinely concerned about your soul. That’s kind of nice of them, because, if yours is anything like mine, it needs all the help it can get. Having not just broken most of the Commandments, but totally annihilated them, I would be wise to accept any and all offers of salvation. Play it safe, sort of thing. But no, with that particular stubbornness of a mischievous old sod, I delight in playing games with the guy with the halo of God wrapped around him. I used to infuriate wife and family by always inviting Jehovah’s witnesses inside for a cheering cup of tea. They were always nice, nobody ever produced a cleaver, or even asked for money. And they looked dog tired from all that walking, and demoralized from all those doors slamming in their faces. Not to mention the pointed recommendations to go perform unusual anatomical exercises upon themselves. So, me being me, soft hearted sort of codger, I’d invite them in, and treat ’em nicely. You could sense the relief, and a smile would warm their tired faces. Then, of course, the fun begins. I have issues with ‘organized religion’ but I’m not an Atheist either. I kind of know my way around many Holy Books. So they would start doing their Jehova’s thing, and I would gently point out some of the issues I have issues with. Like, “How come God only saves 144,000 of you guys? Doesn’t that seem a bit unfair? How about refusing blood transfusions?” Pretty soon, the cups of tea finished, and the dawning of realization that they were maybe being quietly out-argued, (and played with), they would suddenly remember an important appointment, and ske-daddle out the door. Thanking me politely for the tea and cookies. My wife would remonstrate with me afterwards, (while I’d sit there giggling) and I would explain that I admired their moral courage (who wants to go knock on strange doors and be told to take a running jump all day long?). Also, in my own way, I kinda felt sorry for them feeling sorry for me. I’m probably a hopeless task. Old War horse. Unrepentant.
The next step up from the mostly very gentle, well meaning Jehovah and mellow Bahai types, are the Mormon straight shooters. I’ve had them around, in their starched white shirts and their backpacks, the gleaming light of righteousness reflected brilliantly off their clean shaven and well scrubbed faces. All the way from Utah. Missionaries, sent to save the dark heathen. Okay, I’m sure I qualify. Same thing, I would offer them a cup of tea. Wait for the opening gambit, and start my little counter game. Question the origins of their texts, and their various interpretations. In my experience, the Mormons were much more brisk than the Jehovahs. To the point. They were there, on a mission of God, to deliver their Message. Did I realize the momentous nature of their arrival? More importantly, did I accept the Salvation being offered? When I would politely demur, fairly briskly, they would move into the bit where they move on from the village, and ‘shake the dust off their feet’. I kind of sensed sometimes that they did that a lot. Shaking the dust off their feet, I mean. They would depart, politely but firmly, and you could often sense a coldness had crept in. Dismissive. Here they had travelled, on a mission of God, all the way from Utah, and this dumb heathen was too lost in his dumb darkness to grasp the hand being stretched forth to him, to lift him out of the dumb slime of his equally dumb existence. Too bad! Onwards down the road, on our bicycles, onwards in the golden Light of God…! I sometimes would peer out the window, to see if they literally shook the dust off their feet, but if they did, they must have done it sneakily, because I never saw it.
Next up, the Born Again Christian. Oh boy.
My favorite memory was when I was real young, wet behind the ears, innocent as the driven snow, but convinced I knew everything. I was a university student. Wholly enlightened. And there was some meeting scheduled, and I went along. Outside, I got approached by a fellow student with this dangerous gleam in his eyes. At the top of his voice, I mean, loudly, no, megaphone-on-steroids loudly, he made an inquiry.
“BROTHER ARE YOU SAVED…?”
It boomed off the walls. Reverberated. Somewhat horrified (well, I’d never met this kind of fruitcake before) I made the mistake of replying to the inquiry. True to my form of perfectly understanding the world (up to that point, anyway) I replied:
“Errrr….. I’m not quite sure.”
Big mistake. Beckoning his chum over (“Hey, we’ve got a repentant sinner here!”) I now found myself with two raving, gibbering, foaming lunatics in my face, waving bibles.
“BROTHER ARE YOU SAVED? DO YOU NOT KNOW THE MEANING OF THE BLOOD ON THE CROSS…?”
I backed away, nervously. I should have kept my mouth shut. And run for cover.
“Errrr…. Can’t say that I do…?”
I had NO CLUE what they were even on about. In my mind I vaguely saw a wooden crucifix bleeding blood, and it seemed rather grotesque, not to mention biologically speaking slightly improbable. I wasn’t even as far as figuring it was the unfortunate dude nailed to the cross that was doing all the bleeding. I backed up as far as I could, into a corner. My escape was now firmly barred by two screaming, (120 decibels plus) gibbering lunatics, waving bibles, quoting scripture, and terrifying the living bejayzus out of me. I remember everybody was looking. I felt wholly humiliated. When I finally broke free, I swear I ran. I was a conformed Atheist for years afterwards. Now I’m sure they maybe meant well, but there was also a glorious Godly ego trip involved here. It’s not every day you get to terrify somebody with your apocalyptic visions of hell and salvation, blood on the cross and the Holy Book, in the secure knowledge that YOU are saved and special, YOUR place in Heaven is assured, and GOD LOVES YOU and has APPOINTED YOU to bring these HEATHEN WRETCHES out of their terrible DARKNESS…
Society in the West, as whole, (except the Fuzlims) (and the crawling political classes) tend to protect Free Speech. Religious Freedom is included. (except if you’re a Fuzlim). People frown on you if you say that Free Speech should be banned, and that unbelievers should be killed. If I suggested that today, I would be mercilessly mocked. Too clean shaven. But if I waited six months, grew a beard, adopted the Fuzlim dress, and made a video entitled “DEATH TO THE KAFFIRS- RAPE THEIR WOMEN-BURN THEIR CHURCHES”, and if this video featured my new bearded, wide eyed Fuzlim persona hysterically screaming blue murder, I would be alright. Because then I could count on a zillion liberated, morally righteous, intellectually superior defenders of humanity, to rush to my defense. I could say my prayers five times a day in the middle of the road in France, deliberately blocking all the traffic (despite being offered multiple other suitable locations), I could walk outside the White House with a placard that said: “KILL ALL INFIDELS, DEATH TO AMERICA, CASTRATE THE POPE, BURN ROME” and nobody would blink an eyelid. “It’s their culture”, everybody would say understandingly. Of course America is the Big Satan. And I could always rely on that nice Missus Hillary Clinton who famously said, with a slightly lecturing tone (impatient head mistress type tone):
“99.9 per cent of Muslims are peaceful and tolerant people who have nothing what-so-ever to do with terrorism.”
Right. Perfectly said. You can always count on Missy Hillary to do her homework carefully. Especially in an election year.
The Divine Message from God featured prominently in the radiant face of the very pretty young woman who turned up at our Sheriff’s Office. To inform us unsubtle members of the Law Enforcement Agency that God had instructed her to come and bear loving witness to the Love of God and witness to the poor unfortunate souls, incarcerated in our jail. Presumably, by our un-loving hands. In a religiously zealous and tolerant America, of course, she was immediately let in, on orders of the Sheriff himself, and my colleagues told me the corridors soon rang to the shouts, not of ‘Allahau Akbar’ but of “Praise the LORD”. Different God, same intensity of divine emotion. She was apparently very popular, and hugely successful in her ministry. The poor unfortunate souls warmly received the Gospel about the Blood. They hugged her closely, tears pouring down their un-loved faces. It was, admittedly, unkindly suggested by some that this was something to do with the shape and size of her mammary glands, but others resolutely dismissed such base innuendos as being disrespectful to the Power of the Holy Spirit. After a few months, she even fell passionately in love with one of her ‘Born Again’ spiritual children. Fancy that. God works in mysterious ways. So mysterious, that there has to be a perfectly sensible explanation for the fact that she agreed to smuggle her boyfriend in some much needed drugs. He had no difficulty apparently of convincing his love to perform this small service for him. Bemused, we got to watch both of them sharing the same side of the bars. The inside side.
Maybe these and other events led to a hardening of the cynic in me, and a reluctance to go with the ubiquitous flow. Indeed, it has been suggested that I am nihilistic in my outlook, which I deny. But it does perhaps explain the day I shocked the entire Evangelical Church of Cheyenne.
I always found myself drawn to observe the religious life of widely different communities. I have an interest in just about any religious or spiritual expression you can mention. Thus my presence in an Evangelical Church should not be construed as being totally of that persuasion. I have attended many diverse services in my time, and I intend to continue to do so. But on this occasion, I was increasingly aware of a young man, who seemed in all respects quite ordinary, with one exceptional ability. He too communed directly with God. I don’t mean the usual run-of-the-mill direct communions with God of the type mostly ordinary mortals have to put up with. This young man, who I shall call ‘Bud’ was the chosen one, to whom God conveyed urgent messages, requiring immediate and dramatic attention. Thus the shout:
“BROTHER! I HAVE A MESSAGE FROM GOD FOR YOU…!”
…came more and more frequently during Church services. In 90% of the cases, this Divine Intervention was placed through the Medium of Bud. Everyone would gather around, including the Ministers, and there would be many “Praise the Lord!” incantations and emotional gasps of spiritual ecstasy. I would observe al this with great interest, and then I would pay careful attention to the resulting missive from up high. I formed the impression very soon, that the transmitted super urgent messages from God, requiring immediate and dramatic attention, were remarkably un-dramatic. Bordering even on the banal. Once the hullabaloo and the “Praise God!” chorus had died down, and everyone had gathered around, what followed was inevitably some mild expression of approval or disapproval, and a mini judgement here or a micro exhortation there. Nothing real seismic, and I had to wonder, in my own black hearted manner, why God would choose to interrupt a more or less orderly church service in such a nuclear fashion, to drop a relative minute, three inch bomblet on the quaking citizens of Hiroshima. After a while, being of a mischievous and slightly heathen disposition, I formulated a plan. And decided to bide my time. I was thus well prepared for the momentous occasion, when the Good Lord, in His Infinite Wisdom, ordained that Bud would communicate with ME. Of all the worthless and wholly undeserving worms, even I was the recipient of Grace.
“FRANCIS! BROTHER! I HAVE A MESSAGE FROM GOD FOR YOU…!”
(Praise the Lord! Praise the lord!) (did somebody just faint?)
True to my quietly formulated Master Plan, carefully crafted over the time of my observations, I replied in a suitable manner. The way I do. Straight face, calmly, with little emotion I replied:
“BOLLOX! NONSENSE! YOU’RE MAKING IT UP, BUD. YOU LOOKING FOR ATTENTION AGAIN…?”
(Shock, horror, Ministers running from all directions…) (nobody knew WHAT to say…)
Bud hung his head. “I’m sorry”, he said.
Somebody asked him, aghast: “Bud, have you been making all this up?”
“Yes”, said Bud. “I’m sorry.”
A full and frank confession being made, (no more Divine messages), it was left for a trio of Ministers to take me to one side. I was complimented on my ability to see through this deception, but asked to give some thought to my “delivery”. Apparently “Bollox!” in the Holy House of God is not part of the normal vernacular. I agreed to work, indeed, on my delivery. And crept home, chastised. Chuckling to myself.
I can smile at many of these harmless manifestations of man’s ability to raise himself into the Mind of God. If there is a God -and there may well be- then we are but a speckle on a speckle on a pixel on a pimple on a very large dromedary’s… hump. A speck of Dust in a World of Galaxies. A tiny tear shed into the Ocean of Life. It is foolish to raise ourselves up to be something awesome grand which we clearly are not. Sadly, I have to depart totally from this gentle tone, in dealing with the last two cases in my ‘Encyclopedia Nuttanica’.
Thus for a while, I billeted myself in Cheyenne, Wyoming. I was doing an Airframe and Powerplant course at the local technical college. These days they call it an Aircraft Maintenance Technician Course. But in those days they just called us Aircraft mechanics. Or grease monkeys.
I started to go to a twice weekly Bible class, presented by a steely eyed Pastor and his quiet, very sweet wife. The three of us shared the rent in this old house. Well, his bible studies were packed. He also controlled the room with a rod of iron. People worshipped him. They recoiled at his anger. They knew exactly when to ‘Praise the Lord!”, when to cringe, and when to be fearful at the Lord’s Terrible Wrath. Everybody was submissive. Except one Irishman, of course. Me. I kind of enjoyed debate. I wasn’t supposed to, but I disagreed with him publicly on many points. Ignoring his dark scowl, and his steely eyes, and the moral righteousness of this Great Man, I slowly formed the impression of a Power Freak. Over a period of time, it seemed to me obvious that he had to have complete control over everybody, and that I vexed him. He didn’t have ANY control over me, and he never knew WHAT I was going to say. Or query. As time wore on, in unguarded moments, he let slip titbits of information that only strengthened my impressions.
“How did you come to Jesus?”, I had once asked.
“The Lord came to see me while I was having a bath.”
“While you were having a BATH?”
“Yes, he stood in the door and told me it was my last chance to be saved.”
I guessed then that if God wished to visit our steely eyed Pastor in his bath, it was entirely possible that He would do so. He creates the rules. As well as cockroaches and Taxes. But what was a little perplexing was that on his own admission, our Pastor had previously been a drug dealer and an alcoholic. When I gently tried to suggest (in public) that he had enjoyed the Mother of all Trips, he dismissed that suggestion with a casual dis-interest. No, it had been the genuine thing. God had come to visit him in his bath. Finish. No further discussion allowed. I tried to picture our steely eyed pastor in his bath, surrounded by his favorite plastic toy battleships, and his little Yellow rubber duck, negotiating his salvation with God, but I found the image perplexing.
Another titbit came along when he started talking about Black Magic. In his previous career, not content with alcoholism and selling drugs, he had also been a devout practitioner of the Occult. Now my curiosity was well aroused. In response to my questions (we were not yet irrevocably at loggerheads) he told me a few of his pursuits. One always stuck in my mind. He said he would go up into the mountains, alone, and perform a ritual whereby he would recite solemn prayers to the Dark Forces, and move slowly around in a circle. The object was to encounter a ‘cold’ area. If you succeeded, he maintained you could feel the temperature drop in one specific location. That was a sign you had found what you were looking for…
In the fullness of time, we were to fall out. But not before he had told me that I had been discussed within his obsequiously loyal group. It was felt by everybody that “something was following me around”. A consensus. The implication was that said entity was not benign. I shrugged it off, and I don’t think I was supposed to. The final straw came when he accused me of running up hundreds of dollars’ worth of calls to a sex line. I was amused -the charge was nonsense- and that pretty well sealed my fate. They moved out of the shared rent house, angrily. And took their Bible group with them. The rub of that was this:
I didn’t make those calls. I can’t think of anything more silly than breathing heavily down a telephone line with some unseen old biddy, who is probably a toothless Meth Head with a face like the Lunar Surface. And a bad case of body odor. And odd socks. Who in his right mind is going to pay through the nose for that dubious privilege? I know his sweet little wifey didn’t make those calls either. There were only three of us sharing the house. So who did? But ‘something was following me around’. They could all sense it. Right. Sure. Uh-huh.
My final specimen in my ‘Encyclopedia Nuttanica’ is the now all-too-common ‘Fuzlim’. Here, we have to draw a sharp red line under all the previous specimens, and open up a whole new sub section. I always say you ‘fly’ a small helicopter. You ‘fly’ an open cockpit biplane. But if that is the verb of your choice, you cannot apply it to what you do with a large commercial aircraft, or even a big two pilot heli-whopper. You don’t ‘fly’ them. You sit in them, and watch the auto-pilot do stuff. You ‘operate’ them. You ‘machine watch’ them. You twiddle your fingers, get bored, and ‘wish you were there’. You cannot use the same word. It’s like ‘painting’ a Rembrandt and ‘painting’ a concrete parking garage. It doesn’t compute.
Where the word ‘religion’ is concerned, same-same. The hostility against ‘all Muslims’ I find unwise and unwarranted. The word ‘Muslim’ is broadly used, and includes a vague indication of ethnic origins. They are by no means ALL fanatical, hate filled FUNDAMENTAL muslims (hence my made up word ‘Fuzlim’). Beware scoring an own goal, and alienating 1.6 billion people on this planet unnecessarily. But I have NO PROBLEM verbally lampooning the 10 to 40 per cent (depending where you go) (according to surveys) of Muslims who rigidly, unyieldingly, profess allegiance to Muhammad. If YOU see Muhammad as the ‘Perfect Man’ who did everything right, including sanctioning and encouraging all the grotesque and vile excesses that have taken place during and after his miserable cutthroat life, then I despair. You are my implacable enemy, and there is no way of sugar coating it. You want me dead, or conquered, and I want you cured of your contagious sickness, or, let’s face it, d-e-a-d. I refuse to recognize Fundamental Islam in the same category as all the previously described movements above. You don’t belong there, and you don’t deserve the many rights you claim under the banner headline “Freedom of Religion”. You Fuzlims are the worst. You are on an extraordinary power trip, because you think you have God on your side. You also remember daily the words of Ghaddafi of Libya, when he said:
“We have 50 million Muslims in Europe. There are signs that Allah will grant Islam victory in Europe, without swords, without guns, without conquest, and will turn it into a Muslim continent within a few decades. “
I fear it will come to even greater bloodshed than we have already seen. Rivers of blood have flowed since the beginning of the 7th century in the name of your vile so-called ‘prophet’. A point consistently overlooked is the fact that more Muslims have been massacred by Muslims (by far) than by anybody else. Europe will not turn into a diseased, Shariah afflicted third world slum without a terrible fight. Caliphate dreams or not, there are many ‘Muslims’ who abhor the crazed violence as much as non-Muslims do.
Fundamental Islam is NOT a religion. We can’t ‘fly’ Islam like we can ‘fly’ other ‘religions’. Islam takes us for a drone ride, on a frightening auto-pilot, where we find ourselves strapped in helplessly for the brutal Kamikaze ride.
What is Fundamental Islam, if it is not a ‘religion’? How about a political ideology, a fascist, Nazi style, extremist, empire building obsession. A 7th century cult, that somehow should never have been born. That should have died out, as opposed to butchering hundreds of millions of innocents in the name of ‘Allah’.
Our politicians, craven, opportunistic and cowardly, may seek your votes and your oil money, your approval and your bought peace. We who know better, can see though such appeasement and naivety.
Europe, beware the ‘Fuzlims’ and beware appeasement. Remember The 1939 Munich Agreement, and “Peace in our Time’.
The Trojan Camels are massing inside the gates.
Last edited by Francis Meyrick on February 19, 2016, 8:30 am