Monday, July 14, 2008

A Fragile Religion

I guess many of you have already heard about the little storm raging through primarily the blogosphere. A student senator from the University of Central Florida (UCF) takes a friend to Catholic mass to show him what it means to be Catholic. So, instead of immediately eating the Eucharist after it is given to him, he take it with him to his seat to show the friend before consuming it. The person handing out the Eucharist get angry, and the senator decides to take it home instead of eating it in the church. He later return it, but by that time, an evangelical atheist, PZ Myers, has jumped into the arena after which the Catholic League, or better, Bill Donohue, comes to the defence of the Catholic Church and starts a campaign to get PZ Myers fired. Death treats are mailed to both the UCF student senator and PZ Myers. Nice job guys, it is obvious to me that for some Catholics, a transubstantiated cracker is apparently worth more than a humans life. O, I forgot, a non-Catholic's human life as he obviously needs to be excommunicated.

Personally, I think it is fine to anybody to do whatever they see fit, as long as they do not force me to believe things the way they see it. That Catholics believe that the wafer has been transubstantiated to the body of Christ is one thing. To use physical violence to get it back, sorry, no go. Some go as far as saying it was a hate crime. My good grief, really.

What interest me more is the fragility of the believe of many Catholics. Apparently, the act of one person can bring down a whole community. Yes, really!
"We have to make acts of reparation," Gonzalez said. "The whole community is going to turn to prayer. We'll ask the Lord for pardon, forgiveness, peace, not only for the whole community affected by it, but also for [Cook], we offer prayers for him as well."
Well, isn't this a wonderful thing to give to your enemies? The perfect weapon to bring down whole communities. You steal a Eucharist, hold it in a zip-lock bag, and you have the fate of the whole community in your hands. Did someone already demand ransom for a Eucharist?

It made me look at my own religion. My religion is something that is in me, not in the objects I use. The objects I use are just ways to represent some things, they are nice, but I could do without them. Once, I complained to a friend that I did not have rune stones. He responded: "Of course you have runes tones, just take some scraps of paper, draw the rune stones on it, and there you go." He was right, and it is one of the central ideas that I like about Heathenism, their practical angle to life, religion and the universe.

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