Archive for the Social Category

Faith Based Fraud in US Government

Posted in Agnostic, Atheist, belief, biblical "values", Christianity, culture, Government, politics, random, religion, Social, thoughts on November 1, 2016 by chouck017894

Special interest handouts by political office holders in the United States have become big-time  “faith” privileges over the last few decades, increasing dramatically after the Religious Right gained control of the Grand Old Party in 1996.  The fast changing legal status for churches and faith system institutions have not been shy in underhandedly trying to “liberate” religious organizations by granting them more lenient rules than is permitted to their secular counterparts.

Such deliberate disregard for the democratic principles by religious extremists holding congressional positions, such a separation of church and state, is hardly due to any spiritual morals.  This dangerous and frightening chipping away at long standing principles of democracy has occurred under pressure from extremist religious groups that have muscled their way into the political arena.  The deviously devoted never make it comprehensible as to why an “omniscient/omnipotent” God should or would have to rely upon the use of deceitful persons to achieve “his” intentions.  But the raucous, self-serving religious extremists have effectively infiltrated our Congress, the US Supreme Court , and federal and state courts, all of which have too often casually conceded to the demands that “faith” groups (Christian only) should be protected from any government impositions!  (Related blogs: Rise of Holy Agitators, September 1, 2016; Spiritual Vanity, The Sin of Fundamentalism, October 1, 2016)

This has been pushed upon the nations’s widely diverse citizenry by devious religious fanatics who paint themselves with false eminence that reflects neither the principles of true democracy nor any higher spiritual values.  These predatory religious wolves have accomplished this betrayal of democratic principles by camouflaging themselves with traditional sheep’s clothing.  Thus disguised they have methodically selected, one by one, various supporting regulations of democratic comportment by inserting into those regulations their faith system’s claims of exclusivity with the Creator.  This has purposefully disfigured and betrayed the numerous longstanding laws of equality and spiritual freedom that the “fathers” of the nation intended.  As a consequence so many democratic principles have been mauled to such an extent that the “faith” pretenders may often thumb their noses at requirements leveled upon everyone else.  As an example, their “public” buildings and organizational programs may be only slightly related to their faith system.  That bears the foul odor of theocratic ideology.

Under these contrived special-interest allowances, unethically obtained, even the day care centers that have religious affiliations were once actually exempted from licensing requirements in a number of states.  In Texas, for example, the religious day-care facilities and drug-treatment programs were once exempt from state licensing.  However, protected by their privileged status by the “faithful” serving in state government positions the abuse and disregard for patients in those facilities proved to be greater than in nonreligious facilities.  Another example: The health care system operated by the Seventh Day Adventists was actually allowed to bar nurses from joining unions.  And many states permit tax-free churches build or expand their facilities in ways that clearly violate zoning ordinances with which everyone else must comply.  Religious-front operations have routinely discriminated in choice of employees, or have expressed their piety in heartless neglect of employee misfortune.  In these faith system front operations even persons that may suddenly be stricken with some physical malady have been unceremoniously dumped, which would never be tolerated in non-religious organizations.  How these self-serving practices follow the teachings attributed to Jesus, such as “love one another“, or “do unto others as you would have done unto you” is never explained by them.  

Special privileges which have been extended by faith aggressive politicians into government to certain (Christians only) faith system organizations is not fair or just or moral in a nation that has been built upon dedication to the freedom of choice and the pursuit of happiness.  And practicing bigotry and narrow mindedness as some religiously obsessed do is neither righteous nor spiritual in a Creation which is rampant with lavish diversity of life and variety of expression.  A true democratic society can function only within conditions of equality and respect for each individual within the nation.  Attempting to inject one particular man-concocted faith system into the politics of a nation which has been dedicated to freedom and liberty for its diverse people can only accomplish catastrophe for all.  Enlightenment will never be attained in an indulgence in spiritual avarice.

Rise of Holy Agitators (in USA)

Posted in Atheist, belief, biblical "values", Christianity, Fundamentalism, politics, religion, Social, theology on September 1, 2016 by chouck017894

In the early 1950’s in the USA television was a new craze.  Quick to note the craze some enterprising guys still clutching their freshly printed Bible studies diplomas sought to serve the Lord by preaching their revealed word using that promising medium.  The Lord seems to have been well pleased.  For example, by May of 1985 the evangelical marketer Pat Robertson was even being featured in a cable magazine called On Cable.  Filled with boundless self-righteousness and vanity Robertson declared that he sought to remake America into a “biblically based Nation”  .His fiery right-wing politics was characterized by him as “conservative, religious, and a biblical point of view.”  He did’t mention that the authors of those biblical views had written their point of view in the Bronze Age.  Blissfully unconcerned, Robertson latched onto their point of view and it was so slickly packaged that by 1985 his organizational effort was siphoning in more that $70 million a year from bedazzled followers.

The long-standing Constitutional ideals and values placed upon diversity, variety and plurality by the American people were regarded by Robertson as being “extreme dangers” to a secular state.  Respecting the rights of minorities was being threatened in his lofty view of how a “biblically based nation” was supposed to be run.  Robertson pontificated that children in public schools were being taught “a collective philosophy that would lead citizens away from God toward Marxism, socialism, or a communistic type of ideology.”  Oh he was talented at scaring  the be-Jesus out of the gullible.  In his humble opinion, therefore, he found it logical to denounce the Department of Education as being “unconstitutional.

Not shy about telling the nation what God wanted for it, Robertson asserted that the United States Supreme Court had departed from history and the constitution.  He reasoned and worried publicly about the “encroachment” of the judiciary.  they just didn’t seem favorable to the idea of a  theocracy.  Thus Robertson charted course to “engage” in what he termed “advocacy journalism,” and his Christian Broadcast Network news teams began spewing out reams of propagandist mini-documentaries with heavy “conservative” (read theocratic) messages.  (He must have been delighted some years later when the Supreme Court became composed with five of the nine Justices being Republican and staunch Catholics. And it was a Republican dominated Supreme Court that would later tell the nation that our redeeming leader was to be the Born Again George W. Bush.  Hallelujah!)

Robertson’s Christian Broadcast Network news teams were headed by a man who was once editor of The Washington Times, which just happened at that time to be owned by the “Reverend” Sun Myung.  This strange bedfellow happened to be loaded down with questionable North Korean connections.  Not to fear.  The “born again” population, Robertson averred, was seriously under-represented in our national government.  Posing as a caring messenger, he declared, “The basic thing people do not understand is that evangelicals in America are not plotting to take away the rights of everyone else.”  (Trying to eliminate the Department  of Education would therfore simply be a god-inspired money saving move.)

Robertson worked hard at presenting himself as the modern age version of a biblical prophet.  For sure the biblical prophets had dared to mix it up with politics–which was always in regard to a very select group of people.  True to form, Robertson declared, “God is going to thrust his people (meaning fundamentalists) into positions they never dreamed they were capable of taking on.”  (George W. Bush & Company certainly did seem to fulfill that prediction.)  If the heavy tilt of religiously obsessed persons in governmental positions today is any indication, and if their corruption of true democratic principles is an example of a “biblical based nation”, can we  truthfully say that their sly take over of the Republican Party in 1996 was “fairly benign”?

Well, today, several decades later, Robertson’s Christian Broadcast Network and Regent University is pulling in over $400 million a year peddling the same old far-right political propaganda and implications of heaven’s special favoritism.  But his empire is upstaged now by an old rival from the same earlier era which is now marketed as the Jerry Falwell Ministries/Liberty Counsel/Liberty University.  That deceptive use of the word “liberty” is to sabotage the US Constitutional safeguard of church-state separation–the guarantee of religious freedom (liberty) for everyone.  Peddling this anti-democratic baloney the Falwell empire today rakes in over $600 million a year.

Amazingly there are other claimers of God’s especial favors who wage war on every person’s freedom to worship as they choose–all of which rakes in multimillions a year for being staunchly un-American and pro theocratic.  Take the so-called Focus on the Family that has the gall to endorse.Right Wing political candidates; it is lucrative and nets the Dobson “family” over $92 million a year.  And there is the so-called Family Research Council (an off-shoot of Focus on the Family) that holds an annual “Value Voter Summit” and draws in over $14 million for their un-American stance.  And there is the American Family Association that is against about everything that grants civil freedoms.  The Reverend Donald Wildman who heads this “Association” boldly proclaims that separation of church and state was invented by Hitler, no less.  Duh!  For that heavenly enlightenment his anti-Constitution bias nets over $17 million.

Other grandiose named outfits include American Center of Law and Justice/Christian Advocated Serving Evangelism.  That imposing mouthful defines the purpose, which is to force–force–fundamentalist beliefs into all public schools.  Allied with the Pat Robertson empire in spirit and money-love it pulls in over $57 million a year.  Justice is again implied with the so-called Alliance Defending Freedom, but the only Council for National Policy aimed for is to allow them to axe the federal law which bars tax-exempt churches from actively intervening in partisan elections.  God, it seems favors that antidemocratic stance to the tune of over $47 million a year.

Ahh, but there are even more would-be religious oppressors out there.  It is all strictly spiritual guidance, of course.  Take the bewildering Concerned Women for America (affiliated with the Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee) which indulges in heavy prejudices against the Creator’s intentionally wide-ranged diversities of life.  This anti-feminist lobby was founded by Beverly (!) and Tim LaHaye, who (in 2015) raked in over $14 million for their discriminatory activities.  Not content with that, Tim LaHaye also headed up the Council for National Policy which presumes to evaluate prospective GOP candidates.  This membership-only outfit drew only a little more than $2 million.  Still another agitator operation is Ralph Reed’s Foundation and Freedom Coalition whose primary purpose for existence is to attract more fundamentalists to vote.  Their holy reward—over $3 million per year.

Oddly, these material obsessed, self-appointed faith merchants seem to have little appreciation for what Jesus is alleged to have preached.  .For example, in Matthew 6;5 (King James version–among the many translations): “And when you pray do not be like the hypocrites for they pray standing…so that they may be seen of men.  They (in that manner) have their reward.”   And in Matthew 7:1-3 (KJ): “Judge not, that ye be judged.  For with what judgment ye judged and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you.”

Perhaps those faith merchants of fundamentalism should get their greedy noses out of their elaborately constructed feeding troughs and actually follow the teachings they claim to epitomize.

 

 

Ignoring Creation’s Law of Diversity

Posted in belief, faith, random, religion, Social on January 29, 2016 by chouck017894

The centuries of methodology in expressing “faith” in eastern and western cultures have too often proven to drift into extremes of expressing reverence.  The totally passive acceptance of one’s station in life as it was once submissively practiced in Eastern belief systems was the devotion to conformity which mired too many spiritual seekers in the grip of fatalism.  It stressed what might be termed “going with the flow,” but it offered no suggestion that the flow of events are fluid and alterable.  As a result much of eastern cultures endured a long history of experiencing disease, poverty, illiteracy, and lack of basic needs.  The plus side of eastern faith systems was the understanding that each person’s “calling” was to strive for mastery through interacting with higher power, a connection which they correctly recognized as dwelling within.

On the other extreme, Western cultures have been persuaded through control-addicted spirit merchants to concentrate on imitating higher or “divine” power by attempting physical domination of exteriors.  As a result western cultures thus tended to delve deeper and deeper into technological artificiality which have often bent natural forces into extreme contortions.  This, too, can drift into a kind of fatalistic stupor which gets constant rerun billing nowadays in fantasies of an approaching Apocalypse.

In a larger sense both eastern and western faith systems have erred for the same reason: they have often pushed their particular man-concocted faith system’s approach to extreme and in doing so have ignored the Creative Power’s use of, and demand for diversity and variety.  Consequently neither eastern nor western faith systems have fully opened themselves for the practice of respectful interaction with Creation’s diverse and varied components.

To a faith cultivated western mind any suggestion of establishing such a balance between the attempt to dominate nature and seeking to enfold the divine potential which is held within oneself suggests to them a loss of their precious individuality (known as ego).  And yet the underlying and contradictory message of religious counsel in western cultures is that we mus submit to an ultimate authority, personified as a human-like Creator.  In addition that style of holy counseling is generally muddied with the inference that submission to the creative power can be accomplished only through the regulations which are imposed by their particular man-conceived faith system.  In contrast, the more passive eastern practices inspired little more than the implication that their souls might never attain those envisioned rarefied pinnacles of spiritual snobbery which is implied as continuing in a heavenly caste system.  It is thus the extreme affectations within both the eastern and western belief systems which blind the believers to Creation’s law of diversity and variety with consequently mires them all in needless and unintended limitation of spirit.

World societies, their public issues, their concepts of law, justice, education, science and management of material wealth are all influenced and maneuvered by whatever  man-conceive faith system happens to have achieved a temporary authoritative position in their particular region of the world.  Unfortunately the creed, doctrines, dogmas and schemes of order are but the inventions of man and therefore their functions are intentionally self-serving.  The result of man-formulated faith markets is that man’s orchestrated “faiths” are not always–indeed rarely are–the true champions for moral conduct and ethical behavior as they habitually claim.

The theatrical indulgences referred to as religion is commonly defined as the expression of man’s belief in and reverence for a superhuman power o powers which are regarded as having created and govern the universe.  It is when that “abiding faith” gets channeled into an obsession to compel others to practice “reverence” in their specific man-invented manner that one’s faith ceases to truly honor the creative power which is active as the Life Principle.  This in turn results only in all devotion and reverence of seekers being turned in upon the faith system itself. That herding technique into cult-like activities is nothing more than a hard marketing ploy, and that faith system is not a manner by which genuine reverence is transmitted to the power which is active within each seeker.   When “faith” is made into nothing more than a posturing management organization it has degraded itself by pursuing only worldly advantages for the system itself.  Under this false flag these regimented faith systems intentionally thrust themselves between the seeker and the ultimate power instead of guiding and instructing each seeker in how each one may personally approach and be infused by that all-embracing power.

Rigid, uncompromising faith systems (known as fundamentalism) always bear the mark of Cain upon themselves–the ugly blotches of deceitfulness, trickery, intimidation, coercion, lies, seeking to bring down democratic principles, naked intolerance, slanderous allegations, hateful rhetoric, political scheming, shameless discrimination, threats of violence and outright terrorism.  Even in the United States, founded upon and dedicated to personal freedoms, we have seen the mark of Cain magnified and exemplified in the Religious Right’s attack upon life’s diversity and variety by inciting the spiritually naive through such low tactics. These false prophets are the ones who consistently attempt to obliterate the wise Constitutional precondition of church/state separation.  Only false faith finds it necessary to indulge in endless proselytizing, manipulating cohorts into governing offices (such as the Senate, the House, the Supreme Court)  with subversive intent, and even blatantly attempt to subject all men and women in our military branches into forced discriminatory religious observances.  These hard line tactics are immoral and unethical and designed only for extracting material and political advantages for themselves, not a formula for true democratic comportment, and certainly not a means for any spiritual advancement.  Such assertive faith systems can, however, point to their priest-written tales in the Old Testament for holy examples of godly approval for indulging in such treacherous behavior.

When one ignores Creation’s law of  diversity and feels that their personal faith must be forced upon others, that fixation openly demonstrates that it is merely selfish aggressiveness and is not a secure inner faith.  That power which they bow down  to is nothing more than a disguised and driving fixation for material power and physical dominance–the gnawing desire of self-importance (ego).  Such an inflexible “faith” is thus only mutated idealism in which personal ego is regarded as their holy connection.  And in that induced spiritual stupor the hardliners of those by-the-book faith systems mistakenly believe that they alone hold a priority rank with the Absolute.

 

Evaluating Corporate Style Monotheistic Faiths

Posted in belief, culture, faith, history, random, religion, Social with tags , , , , , , , on February 13, 2015 by chouck017894

Any man-fashioned faith system is basically designed as a power structure: it was not resolutely assembled for the benefit of mass spiritual enlightenment but is designed to broaden the faith system’s authority. Like any commercial endeavor the service that is offered is gauged by customer demand, and commercial demand is stirred up by advertising. In the faith business the product is a manufactured illusion; the merchandise offered is emotional assurance that a higher power looks after them—but that power only functions if subscribers submit, obey and partake of all the rites, rituals and ceremonies that the self-appointed authorities have set in place for business practice. Consequently those formalized procedures are cleverly fashioned to appeal to the ego of the seekers, not crafted to empower everyone’s personal connection (called “spirit”) to Creation’s Source.

Principles of righteous conduct are comparatively self-evident to any balanced mind: seek understanding, control avarice, value individuality, honor love, demonstrate compassion, respect all life, recognize that all things are interrelated, etc. For the most part the three corporate styled monotheistic faith systems of today’s western cultures choose to market the principles of caring conduct by claiming to possess favoritism of a compassionate god. The general work ethic of these sister faith systems, however, is to force their formalized concept of a God-Creator upon everyone else, which results only in constant conflicts. Thus for each of these monotheistic systems, their calls to devotion happen to exploit identical unrighteous principles: submit, obey, and resist tolerance. Notably lacking in the basic practices of these formalized faiths is any real respect for life’s intended diversity. To achieve this lack of sympathy the strategy that is traditionally used is to obstruct knowledge, curtail science, stifle natural desires, belittle intimate pleasures–in short, reduce yourself to a robotic religionist. All this is standardized by their priest-written books which are claimed to be “revealed” commandments.

What is the architectural foundation for this? It is the concept of monotheism, a doctrine that there is only one Creator-God, male of course. It is a principle which permits erecting a business machine upon the assertion that the all-embracing, all-inclusive power which created and sustains everything has censored himself to play favorites with segments of the human species that he created. This is a tactic which is then buttressed by utilizing man’s fear of death which further allows the charlatans to peddle their faith system’s insurance policy which offers a glorious afterlife in a cloud-lined country club atmosphere–but only if you follow the rules.

The three self-serving monotheistic faith systems of western cultures could never survive as a controlling power if the peace and brotherly love to which they give much lip service was really practiced by them. Instead the self-appointed representatives of heaven stimulate the egos of seekers with notions of exclusiveness. Peace and brotherly love happen to make for a limited meal ticket if such tolerance was actually allowed to be demonstrated by followers, for that would allow seekers to truly embark upon achieving personal alignment with universal power. Such freedom of spirit would deprive the self-proclaimed ambassadors of God and the public image as having been heavenly approved for godly service. Each of these three corporate styled faith systems claim to teach love, tolerance and peace, but curiously after over two millennia of these sugary claims the world has not yet witnessed any proof of such divine conduct on their part. Instead, all three by-the-book religions have to resort to whitewashing and disguising their bloody histories of violence, prejudice, deceits, contrive theatrical ceremonies, and similar excesses of shameless spiritual pretentiousness. With these pretensions each of these faith systems have shamelessly taught seekers to hate without cause.

When some faith system then attains political clout it inevitably slides into the sensuous “sins” of brutal power management which they legitimation by quoting cherry picked verses from their own priest-crafted, self-serving “holy books.” For example, does not the Torah attest that God urged the Israelites, his “chosen ones”, to slaughter the inhabitants of Canaan to attain the “Promised Land”? Indeed, the holocaust that is glorified throughout the book of Joshua is not exactly spiritually uplifting: in chapter 12 alone there is listed the killing of thirty-one kings. And for the promoters of Gospel, was not Europe brought into God’s favor by use of torture and fiery destruction during the Inquisition by self-proclaimed representatives of the Prince of Peace? And does not the Quran avow that Allah (the merciful) sent hordes of angels to slay opponents of Mohammad’s possession of Mecca? Such is the deceptive propaganda preached by all by-the-book faith systems. The uncompromising justification for any acts of brutal domination is always in the name of an alleged prejudiced holy spirit. Nowhere in such “faiths” is the truth ever acknowledged that each and every thing is manifested through and from one Source, and that each and all things are therefore interrelated and equal before that creative Source. There is, of course, no ego manipulation in teaching that truth, and thus little material or political profit is possible in promoting such truth of impartiality before the Creator.

It has been noted elsewhere in these postings that regional conditions in which these faith systems originated shaped the spiritual teachings which were worked into the political governance of tribal stability. Thus today, to the Jews and Muslims, God is still promoted as something like a bellicose tribal leader; and those “others” who are not of these implied favored people of the Creative Principle supposedly decrees “cut them off.” For example, Psalms 118:10 (among many interpretations) “…all nations surround me; in the name of the Lord I will surely cut them off…” In Christian faith, which was conceived and nourished in the militant Roman Empire, God is viewed more as a commander-in-chief, with priests, bishops and preachers placed in charge like generals over the lower ranks.

How glaringly different the by-the-book dogmatism practiced in the western cultures’ faith systems today when compared to the way the belittled Pagans approached spiritual understanding. Pagan understanding was that spiritual things are highly personal and meant to be experienced by each person individually. The reason why Pagans did not actively solicit others to join any particular sect was the belief that the impulse for spiritual enlightenment must originate within the person himself. It was not viewed as a commercial subject. The Pagans knew that the first place of one’s spiritual preparation had to be within one’s own heart. Spiritual preparation, they understood, was not something acquired through exterior pressures. To the Pagan, regardless of which small sect he or she might be drawn to, it was always accepted that those in any superior position were like elder brethren who, just as the postulate, were sharing in a similar search for divine understanding.

Also noted in these posting is the fact that those belittled Pagan cultures had much more spiritual freedom–and tolerance for each others spiritual connection–than the world has been privileged to since the programming imposed by the by-the-book monotheistic faith systems which have turned spiritual yearning into a product for sale.

Abuse of Democracy Within US Congress

Posted in culture, Government, history, life, logic, politics, random, Social, thoughts with tags , , , , , on February 4, 2015 by chouck017894

Remembering that religious right factions took over the US Republican Party in 1996, and that Republican dogmatists now (2015) control both houses of Congress, perhaps we should review their method of “progress.” The nation had thrust upon it in 2000–through dubious means which happened to be decided by five Republican-Catholic leaning Justices of the Supreme Court–confirming presidency upon a self-admitted born again believer who then quickly lied the nation into a needless and costly war, and who relished torturing captives taken in that drummed up war. After his devious eight year term in office was over the Republicans in Congress spent the next six years deliberately obstructing the bulk of law making which could have advanced the bulk of US citizens. Indeed, the 2014 Congress turned in the worst record of representation of the citizens in the nation’s history. With over half of Congress also being long-stocked by millionaires, perhaps we should look into past member’s track records.

There are 535 members of the United States Congress, members who are responsible for establishing the nation’s laws which are supposed to guarantee equal justice for all citizens, and which should also apply equally to the citizens’ representatives. There have always been freeloaders among the “membership,” and experts at double talk, addicts of pretentiousness, and those who do business under the table and/or behind closed doors. There have been untold episodes of conflicts of interest, endless self-promotions through a feeding trough called “ear marks,” childish tantrums of spite called “filibusters,” and even outright indifference for the nation’s Constitution. All of this can be and has been indulged in while taking a healthy salary (paid by taxpayers), self-granted government paid medical coverage, generous expense accounts, and even a self-granted pension plan (paid from tax payers’ wallets) after they exit their stint of “service”—even if only after one term. Speak of entitlements!

In other words, politics, like religion, attracts people with huge ego problems and who are divinely untroubled with any heavy personal scruples. Perhaps we should not be surprised, therefore, at these disquieting statistics of Congressional members (a sample is from 2011).

* Three members were incarcerated for assault
* Seven members were arrested for fraud
* Eight were arrested for shoplifting
* Fourteen were arrested on drug-related charges
* Twenty-one were defendants in lawsuits
* Seventy-one could not get a credit card because of bad credit
* Eighty-four had been arrested for drunk driving
* One hundred and seventeen were involved, either directly or indirectly, in bankrupting at least two businesses
* It is unclear how many were/are adulterers and/or brothel clients
* Too many in office continue to pretend that they have superior religious guidance for their material double dealings

The Founding Fathers of the United States well-knew that human nature is easily tempted. For this reason they sought to devise safeguards so every citizen of the new nation might have a better chance in the pursuit of happiness and freedom of spirit. Governing power, therefore, was not to rest in one person’s hands as in kingdoms, dictatorships or theocracies. Therefore three branches of government were specified to act as the hallowed trinity of democracy; the executive, the legislative, and the judiciary. For the most part, that system has well-served a broader spectrum of people for the bulk of the nation’s 239 year history.

As religious faction have pushed more and more into the inner circles of government since 1996 (when religionists took over the Republican Party), emphasis has shifted from loyalty to a golden democracy into a furious pursuit of democratic gold for power seekers. In the process neither genuine democracy nor spiritual integrity have been enhanced. The founders of the US were altruistic, and they believed that serving in any of the three branches of government was to be taken on as an honor, not as a self-serving career move.

But from at least the late 1990s the thrust of those who have wormed their way into government positions from the Right have vigorously chopped at the very roots of democracy. And the carnival which this brand of politicians have made of politics is shown in the fact that they proved incapable of any real solutions to national problems. Instead they kept public attention muddied with faith system obsessions such as a woman’s right to choose, people’s’ lifestyles, and even who they should love. When their grab for power and materiality has been successful they shackled democratic principles in attempts to do such things as take away workers’ rights, deny senior the protection which the seniors had paid into for years, have sought to downgrade education standards, actually gave personhood rights to corporations, stolen from the poor and siphoned it to the rich, reduced environmental standards, and just sat on their hands and did nothing about gun shows where anyone could and can buy quantities of guns without any background checks.

The point of this mini review is that there is a desperate need for Congressional Reform, and that has been summed up in the proposed 28th Amendment to the US Constitution which covers the following eight considerations:

1) Term limits for Congress members consisting of twelve years only should be established, which would, however, include one of three possible options; A) two six-year Senate terms; B) six two-year House terms; C) one six-year Senate term and three two-year House terms.

2) There should be neither Tenure nor Pension provisions to Congress members for having held the honor of their office. Every Congressman receives a salary, usually with an expense account; and they continue to get paid for that past honor even after leaving office, which certainly dishonors the concept of true democracy. Indeed, a member of Congress can retire with the same yearly pay after only one term! Is that self-granted entitlement available anywhere else in the workplace?

3) Equally dishonoring of true democratic principles is the special favor Congress members bestowed upon themselves which frees “members” from participating in Social Security which is relied upon by the very people the “members” are supposed to serve. Democratic principles as conceived by the Founding Fathers require that Congress participates with the American people; that means that properly all funds which have been amassed for Congressional retirement payouts (from taxes) should always have been placed in the Social Security system just as it is for the private citizens whom they serve. That Congressional graft scheme must be corrected.

4) If Congress members want a retirement plan they may and should do as the rest of the American citizens are obliged to do and purchase that security cushion on their own. That self-granted Congressional retirement plan is but another graft scheme.

5) What average citizen has the ability to give themselves a pay raise? Why does Congress have the undemocratic clout to vote themselves a pay raise? Rightfully, Congressional pay should rise only by the lower of CPI–or by three percent. That’s what they impose on the elderly–but they have reneged even on that raise for those depending on Social Security.

6) Person elected as representatives of the people do not represent the people when they grant themselves special privileges. Another case in point, Congress enjoys a special health care system, and have excluded themselves from the Healthcare Reform which everyday citizens have to rely on. Properly the Congressional “members” should participate in the very same health care system as all other American citizens. Elected representatives are neither moral nor true to the democratic principles upon which the nation was founded by implying that they are a privileged class; they are servants of the people.

7) The legislative branch of government determines the laws of the land: that office does not mean that those in-office are above the law. Congressional members must comply equally by each and every law which Congress has imposed upon the American people. (As one little example which members slipped into law, did you know that Congressional members are exempt from being prosecuted for sexual harassment?)

8) All of these listed points considered here make it clear that the proper thing to do for true democratic governing is to void all past and present self-serving contracts of Congressmen for Congressmen, and this should be made effective immediately. The above mentioned seven points of undemocratic indulgences were self-contracted by Congress “members”–certainly their self-granted entitlements are not for the betterment of private citizens. It is crucial that American citizens stand up and confront their elected “officials” about these self-granted privileges the lawmakers enacted for themselves. These self-serving entitlements are in direct opposition to the laws they have imposed upon the rest of the nation’s citizens.

The Creator’s Demand For Diversity

Posted in belief, biological traits, culture, environment, faith, history, humanity, life, lifestyle, nature, random, science, sex, Social, thoughts with tags , , , , on February 1, 2015 by chouck017894

Man is such an egotistical creature that he believes that he can ignore Nature’s subtle warnings. Perhaps that is because our revered ego-driven, man written “holy books” happen to assure us that the human species was given dominion over all life forms on this little planet. Unfortunately, those ego-driven priest authors happened to also believe that this little planet, which they perceived to be flat, was the center of the universe. Well, that’s not exactly an in-depth assessment, and human ego is pretty much a whore.

This admittedly crude appraisal of human egotism and arrogance (and its intimate attendant, greed) was spurred by a mid-2014 report concerning the dilemma of some ordinary fish. Seems that man’s self-interest had seeped into various streams and rivers (in the Susquehanna, Delaware and Ohio river basins of the US), which resulted in turning some fish species into what was delicately termed “intersex” fish. Gasp! Some of those damned male fish were found to actually be carrying eggs! Well, let’s not start pounding the pulpits just yet. Something very basic is shown here, something which illustrates that everything which exists in Creation is composed of interchangeable polar elements and thus nothing is ever exclusively representative of one energy pole or its opposite.

As for the dilemma of the river fish population referred to, their altered sexual identity reflects the natural interchangeable aspects within the energy pool of all life. The home waters of the fish happen to have been blessed with hormones, but hormone-mimicking chemicals compounded by man’s arrogance and greed contributed to the identity crisis of the fish. The waste waters that man dumped into the streams carried estrogenic chemicals used in agriculture and released in animal wastes, and the internal organs of the fish which regulate the release of hormones were being redirected.

Those ancient and much revered priest myth-makers apparently were never informed by God about hormones or chromosomes or DNA, nor was it revealed to them how the chemistry of the brain actually determines a person’s physical-mental-sexual makeup. Unfortunately even today, two to three thousand years after “revealed word” was set down as sacredly unchallengeable, the blindly faithful ascribe to principles drafted by those crafty men and completely ignore what modern science research has revealed. For example, research shows that the effects of sex chromosomes and chemical sex hormones do not have an undeviating manner of lining up in strict accordance to one narrow and specific anatomical structure as hateful religious prejudices love to pretend.

Furthermore, anatomist research shows that there are naturally considerable variations in the human brain–its shape, thalamus, structure of the cerebrum, etc.–which are extremely variable and are as individual as fingerprints. This means that mental and/or sensory properties connected with brain structure may freely align within vastly different ranges, and thus no two persons will ever be exactly the same–including identical twins. So, as far as religious approval of racial or sexual expression goes, one feature was never intended to define all. To the horror of religious extremists, that almighty Creation power which is diverse and variable in shaping life forms (dare we say democratic), and which is personified as “God,” did not use a cookie cutter technique to fashion every person’s racial, physical or category in life. Instead of trying to understand that variety and diversity are the underpinnings of all Creation, they choose instead to spew endless reams of hatred from their pulpits. Stated in biblical terms, their egotism and ignorance “runneth over.”

Religious fanatics should awaken to the fact that there is an intentional alterable holy code used in the production of all life–the code of the hormonal-chromosomal-chemical “design” which decrees great necessity for diversity and variety in human physical, mental and emotional expression. This seems to be problematic only for those who choose to work themselves into melodramatic clamoring over anyone who is perceived to be too different from themselves due to their taught ego-gratifying beliefs. Certainly the endless assortments of life forms which may be observed around us shows clearly that the Creative Principle (God) holds absolutely no grudge or spite over “his” handiwork which is diverse and varied.

within these God-allowable differences there is purposely left open the allowance–the tolerance–for all expressions of life and love. The far-reaching hormone and chromosome chemicals control the total development of the body, brain and intelligence. And these continue to do so in a wide range of ways throughout the duration of each person’s lifetime. Therefore, for political and/or religious factions to pretend that some humanlike Creator expects only one narrow expression of life or love to be striven for by every individual is not true spiritual understanding, and it is not moral instruction. In fact, such an unyielding stance against life’s intended diversity and variety with Creation amounts to outright sacrilege.

Perhaps, considering the thousands of different man-invented faith systems (over 4000 have been documented), it would do well to remember what research science has also revealed through intense study. The brain contributes only two percent of a person’s body weight, but it needs and uses twenty percent of the body’s energy. But as religious fanatics and political extremists consistently prove, very little brain is needed for a body to function and bring distress upon everyone around them.

Sacred Uncertainties

Posted in Astronomy, belief, Bible, Christianity, culture, enlightenment, faith, Hebrew scripture, random, religion, scriptures, Social, theology with tags , , , , , , , on January 1, 2015 by chouck017894

For the majority of persons of the western world today who have been indoctrinated into the Christian faith systems, few are aware that there is yet to be found any original copies of any of the books which are honored as the New Testament. There are age-old copies, to be sure, but they are just that–copies. Usually of copies. And the Hebrew Scriptures, so proudly declared to be meticulously accurate reproduction of god-dictated word, many uncertainties happen to linger there which necessitate footnotes (as in the New Revised Standard Version). In fact various passages are integrated where translators were uncertain what the original text really was (as, for example, in 1 and 2 Samuel). This presents a tragic predicament for world cultures because of the many uncertainties which continue to hover over and cloud all man-written “sacred” texts (including the Quran). Despite their glaring faults the questionable texts have been used as models upon which were fashioned each culture’s morals, ethics and spiritual trust. Thus it is sacred uncertainties which have served as foundations for three by-th-book faith systems which routinely reflect their holiness in constant murderous conflicts.

Basic beliefs, most of which originated in Bronze Age tribal cultures, were heavily colored by fears and superstition. In addition the words which have been handed down through century after century have been altered–sometimes accidentally, more often deliberately–by the countless interpreters and translators who put their own spin on the declared meaning in those copied words. Predictably the declared meaning said to be god-relayed in those man-written texts was always interpreted from the events of the interpreter’s timeframe. The fundamental philosophy which brought about all the age-old written “holy” words conveniently allowed for such self-defensive flexibility and manipulative license. And it is precisely this philosophical elasticity which stimulates the addictive fascination for what is revered as holy word. It provides anxious seekers with ego gratification–which is commonly praised and promoted as spiritual fulfillment. Unfortunately, the stories in extreme antiquity were knowingly penned to illustrate cosmological and/or life-purpose points. Regrettably these were often indirectly, and more often intentionally, colored by later scribes personal likes, dislikes, envy and jealousies, which consequently provoked irrelevant posturing and theatrics rather than radiating any genuine spiritual enlightenment.

The faithful who cling unquestioningly to sacred texts (Hebrew Scriptures, New Testament or Quran, as examples) like to believe that those compositions which have been accepted as revealed and sacred, contain no mistakes, no textural booboos, no additions, and no faulty assessments. But every such textural “holy” work was produced by human hands, and even the most faithful humans fall far short in cosmic awareness to serve as infallible spokesmen for the perfection and broad diversity which is the creative and sustaining power which is the all-enfolding Source.

The discovery in 1947 of a number of parchment scrolls which contained Hebrew and Aramaic scriptural texts and liturgical writings of an ascetic community which dated from c. 250 BCE to about 70 CE are known as the Dead Sea Scrolls. The intensive research on these scrolls brought to light the startling fact that those texts, which are around a thousand years older than any previously known “old texts,” contained a stockpile of significant differences from the Hebrew Scriptures which are today considered to have always been rigidly inviolable. Time and circumstances since the era of the Scroll’s authorship brought with them alterations that resulted in textural content which became more or less standardized only around 1000 CE. Thus the western world today has become victim to what may be termed sacred shell games.

Genuine history is routinely forgotten in what has become accepted as holy word. For example, the OT book of Esther was rewritten from an older version which some scholars have said had been composed by some Roman author. Rabbi Akiba ben Joseph(c. 50-132 BCE) was one of the most eminent teachers of his timeframe, and he headed the school at Jaffa–and it was he who rewrote the text known as Esther. And the Jewish code known as the Mishnah was developed by him partly on the basis of his own teachings. In the original Roman account of the Esther tale there was a character named Haman (or Aman or Hamin) who vowed to kill all Jews. (Some scholars say that Haman was modeled upon a Roman aristocrat, Arius Piso.) The Jewish holiday feast of Purim was established ostensibly to celebrate the deliverance of the Jews from that threatened massacre by Haman. The rewritten book of Esther and the association of Haman with Roman aristocracy (Piso) therefore served as a covert reminder to all Jews of the alleged conspiracy of the Romans to destroy the Jews.

Once a faith system has compiled its self-serving literary collection and stamped it as “canon” (an ecclesiastical code or laws), that man-written anthology is advertised and marketed as containing all knowledge and information which is ever necessary for a believer to attain godly protection, salvation or entrance into Paradise. Thus have sacred theatrics and devised by-the-book directions been set in place as the edifying mechanism over mankind’s social and spiritual evolution (or lack thereof).

Today, contented that the faith systems which we have been taught as holding divine knowledge and which supposedly extends privileged access into a higher and exclusive domain, we are kept uninformed of how and from what that belief slowly and haphazardly evolved. Every man-contrived faith system has been built upon the awe and wonder that our ancient ancestors had felt for the celestial panorama which was then unmarred by the light and air pollution we humans produce today. In our self-enveloped bubble of technology we have been led away from the ancients’ awareness and veneration of the universal phenomenon, and those observations and practices became intentionally modified and disguised. Why? Because the”Pagan” sources from which those holy words were “revealed” had openly respected such things as solstice periods, time of equinoxes, phases of the moon, constellation grouping of stars, and their associated cycles with nature. These and other such natural observable facts played calculated influences in every man-contrived by-the-book faith system which dominate societies today, and those natural wonders are camouflaged and smothered under priest-invented “histories” and theatrical performances.

Man, it’s almost enough to drive an atheist to attempt a prayer! Lord, rest your hand upon the heads of your earnest seekers, and your other hand over the mouths of the self-possessed proselytizers.