The Easter period rolls around again, meaning a big weekend for most people around Australia. The rising road death toll is a prominent news item already, as morons hit the road with no consideration to their or other people’s safety after a big night on the booze. And just now I watched the highest Roman Catholic official in Australia, Cardinal George Pell, extol the virtues of love and tolerance as central to the Christian faith. Of course, I scoffed at that. The Christian church has a long history of bigotry, violence, intolerance, and superiority unrivaled in other faiths. To say that Christianity is centered on love is to be blindly ignorant.
In answering a question regarding the possibility of a combined Anglican and Catholic communion, Pell wisely suggested that he would never see it in his lifetime, but added that he and Peter Jensen, the Anglican Archbishop of Australia, were both eagerly co-operating in Easter messages to the nation. That is not hard to grasp, considering that both are rooted in a conservative and fundamentalist tradition, giving them much in common. In talking about Christianity, Pell could not escape an air of superiority over other faiths, yet of course he pulled out the magic word, love. It’s amazing how Christians can throw that word out so easily, yet rarely exhibit it with the same quality as can be seen outside the church.
This is just as much an indictment on myself as it is on others – yes, four fingers are pointed back in my direction. When it comes to loving, I am a farce. The problem I have is that I consistently find more acceptance and love outside rather than inside the Christian circles I have known (which, given the Internet, are rather broad circles). It brings to question the so-called influence of the Holy Spirit, particularly amongst the churches that loudly proclaim its presence. It is more an excuse than a valid argument to suggest that this is just simply human nature. I believe it a fundamental flaw of the whole tradition, not just some fucked-up people.
So what’s the answer? In short, to be expanded upon in a long article I’ll be writing, I’ve been holding on to a tradition long overdue for a rehaul. The Christian myth does not really speak to me right now; in fact, I’m becoming more enamored by Eastern traditions. Christian faith works for some people but not for others. Divine presence and truth are embodied in multiple traditions across the globe, there is no one superior ultimate truth. This is the first Easter where I have come to doubt the traditional message that Jesus died for my sins and rose on the third day.
Hopefully, this will grow more positive as I blog further over Easter…