GodGiven

GodGiven
The Creation of Adam; by Michelangelo; 1508–1512
"We're never less powerful than when we're armed and asserting our folly as some GodGiven right …"

I was up early again this morning pondering how I might distinguish between the various rights asserted by those around me. The right wing gun nuts insist that they merely enjoy a GodGiven right to bear arms, though I recall no actual scripture reporting the granting of this authority. Others proudly sing that God somehow "shed his grace on thee," which I interpret as meaning "God shed his grace on me", or somebody, though I have no clue what shedding grace might entail or what might logically result from this act. Mention of it does seem to reliably encourage pride, the sort of pride which supposedly does not immediately precede a fall of any kind. Grace seems the iffiest of gifts, whomever might bestow it, for it always seems more resident in the eye of the bestowed than anywhere else. In spite of the widespread belief in the existence of godless heathens, each and every war ever fought seems to have been engaged in by self-certified God's own representatives on this earth versus self-certified God's own representatives on this earth, and expressly for the greater glory of God; not their God, but the one and only true God, who just happened to be on "our" side.

God gets used as an excuse for almost everything, and I suspect that she's not all that pleased with these attributions.
Had she not taken an oath of a strict hands-off policy, nobody would ever get away with these sorts of tyrannies, for the less logically defensible any position seems, the more the deity gets invoked. Were it not for the proliferation of fine, upstanding representatives, I suspect that we might live in peace, but these damned envoys keep screwing up the possibilities. I'm no exemplar of right living, but it never seems that any right resulted from any God giving anybody anything, but through some more human agency. Sloughing off responsibility seems at the very least a shady tactic, imminently questionable and almost always ultimately deep-down objectionable. "What God hath brought together, let no man bring asunder" proclaims the preacher in a traditional wedding ceremony. The divorce rate seems steady enough that someone renders asunder a significant percentage of relationships that God purportedly brought together, so the attribution seems at least curious. A simple statement of intentions, fully acknowledging human frailty and the very real possibility of changing situations, should suffice. No need to bring God into the incantation.

It's not so much that I'm precisely Godless, but it might be that God seems more me-less. God could care a good goddamn about little old me. I think it near the height of presumption to believe for an instant that God's actively intervening in human interaction. Anyone might well take solace from holding some reassuring belief in higher powers watching over them, but only imperil themselves should they take this oversight too literally. God seems more interested in encouraging our humility than our pride, perhaps primarily, if any granting ever occurred, having granted the right not to ascribe pridefulness to any deity. Anyone touting their faith seems to demonstrate a clear lack of faith. God doesn't muster armed militia, and has no need to. Wars were always human doings, and ones for which we unavoidably own full responsibility. Christian soldiers are first and foremost oxymoronic, a fundamental contradiction of both logic and religion. If God doesn't play dice with the universe, neither does she choose sides. If she's rooting, she's rooting for something more meaningful than any us or any them.

It's always been difficult to comprehend any deity. They always seem to be looking down on us light-heartedly. We seem to take some things so damned seriously. Trespasses, most prominently. We step on each others' toes better than a whole herd of rampaging buffalos, most violations inadvertent. Even the deliberate ones seem uninspired by any higher being, perhaps better explained as colliding contexts, separations intruding upon each other. The much-vaunted rights of man seem primarily man's business, so granted and also sometimes taken away, providence perhaps at best appreciatively observing. Those damned Others seem the root of the problem, those who unconvincingly assert the source of their dominion, as if they're somehow special or something. We might not be much here, but we seem to insist upon being much less whenever we digress to ascribing our own passions to some otherwise completely innocent passing deity. She'd, quite frankly, probably just as soon be left out of the argument and get back to placidly appreciating how well her children get along. We're never less powerful than when we're armed and asserting our folly as some GodGiven right, and, believe me, the impotence shows.

©2020 by David A. Schmaltz - all rights reserved








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