Monday, December 13, 2010

Original Sin

I mentioned in a previous post Chris Hedges' fatuous statement that "the enlightenment made the mistake of dropping the wisdom of original sin".  I would like to return to that rather extraordinary viewpoint for a minute.

First, the doctrine of original sin, as many will undoubtedly already know, is the idea that ALL humans are born sinful because Adam and Eve ate of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  Only a mind poisoned by stewing for too long in the odious juices of religion could even conceive of calling such a notion wise.

It is wise only from the viewpoint of those who make their living peddling god's forgiveness.  It ensures that everyone will need their services--if they believe such nonsense, that is.  Thanks to this doctrine every human being is a sinner.  No matter how virtuous an individual is, he still needs priestly intervention with god, who, being the wrathful narcissistic psychopath the bible says he is, apparently intends to punish humanity to the nth generation for a couple of bites from a piece of fruit.  (This god character is worse than the craziest neighbor anyone has ever had to share a fence with.)

Notice, too, the nature of what was in the fruit and therefore in the sin:  Knowledge of good and evil.  Apparently, thinking for oneself, especially about matters of morality, is an extremely serious offense in the eyes of god--or, rather, those who claim to speak for him.  This is clearly part of the long term scheme by the clergy to set themselves up as the ultimate and only authority on matters of morality--a moral system in which authority is the only important parameter in any event.

As much as I like and admire Hedges and his other work, his book and statements about the "new atheists" are nothing less than an exhibit proving that even a little religion infecting a person's mind is too much.

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