Even if you’re not particularly hostile to religion as an institution, it’s hard to deny…religious zealotry and sadomasochism do sort of go hand in hand. Evidence this clip from the conservative Political Action Committee (CPAC) in St. Charles, Missouri.
The speaker in this Video is David A. Keene, addressing the CPAC audience with this statement:
“If we remember what it is we’re about, what it is we want to accomplish, and if we organize around those principles and stand for them, people will stand with us. They will make those calls. They will pound the pavement. They will demand of those who they elect to public office and whose salaries they pay through their taxes that they represent them, and not some mayor from New York, or some president from Chicago who’s on his way to Lord knows where when he leaves office.”
After this, an unknown audience member shouted “HELL!,” which prompted a pretty hearty laugh from the room.
Keene himself didn’t respond, except to glance pointedly downward at the podium. That slight tightening of the skin over his cheekbones as he lifted his head might have been a smile in his eyes…but it might also have been the light.
A heavily religious person’s mind functions on two main precepts: Dominionism, and Retribution. Dominionism in the sense that you have to accept God’s control over everything; even in this, there are heavy overtones of the domination-submission paradigm that defines sadomasochism. That might be part of the reason why religion is so often associated with terrible, dehumanizing abuse of women, children and those who aren’t members of that religion. And it’s without a doubt the reason behind the popularity of crucifixes.
But more so, the world just doesn’t make sense to the zealot unless the other guy gets what YOU THINK he has coming. That’s why the Book of Revelations exists — it’s the ultimate mastubatory tome for those who feel they’ve been wronged. It’s the promise of retribution, far more than the promise of salvation. Which is a given, in the mind of the self-righteous.
Don’t believe it? OK. Think about how many fire and brimstone speeches you’ve heard, how many movies you’ve seen, how many promises of JUDGEMENT you’ve heard, how many books have been written about the horrors of the End Days. (Here’s a whole website devoted to nothing but masturbation material for supposed “Christians.”) Now, try to remember as many books or movies about the Kingdom of Heaven and Eternal peace that follows.
We all know the imagery from Dante’s Inferno…can anyone even REMEMBER anything about the rest of the Divine Comedy?
The promise of Hell is the ultimate threat, and Divine Retribution is generally the first weapon wielded by those pathetic, those hateful, those powerless to hurt a perceived “wrongdoer.” When you can’t hurt someone yourself, the first words are usually “GAWD’S gonna GIT you!”
Corinthians: This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God
The Bible said many times that a Christian’s first job is to save souls. Accepting his own salvation, a Christian should live to save others. Taking perverse joy in the damnation of another (real or not), isn’t just un-Christian…it’s the literal definition of evil. If the Christian’s goal is to be more like God, and God (supposedly) doesn’t enjoy suffering, then why laugh at the idea of one of God’s beloved creatures suffering in Hell? God wouldn’t do that. But you know who WOULD?
“I do not believe that you can threaten people into goodness.” Cassandra Clere, Clockwork Angel
Evidently not. If that were the case, the threat of Hell would have kept these righteous Conservatives from laughing at another human being, even one designated as an enemy, being damned to eternal suffering. But, here’s an idea…
Maybe we should pray for them.
“But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. If someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic. Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you.” — Jesus, bleeding heart liberal, Luke 6:27-36