Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Feel Good Hit Of The Summer

After hearing the story of an acquaintance whose engagement disintegrated into a nightmare, it reaffirms my belief that our capacity to be cruel to one another is boundless. Anytime you feel as though you've been party to an unpardonable offense, you can be sure there is someone else with a story that will make yours read like Dude, Where's My Car? It's a reason why, slowly but surely, people are migrating en masse from organized religion. Our desire to stay connected to something beyond ourselves ("spiritual but not religious", in modern parlance) may be hard-wired into us; a by-product of being the only animal that is sure of its own mortality, yet unsure of what (if anything) follows. As technology increases our ability to indulge, we realize that ancient archetypes of good and evil are no longer relevant because the dichotomy burns and seethes inside each of us. There is no need for devils and demons anymore. They were created to personify consequence to primitive people who could wrap their heads around eternal hellfire, but were millenia away from the complex evils we cultivate now. Like Stairway To Heaven at a high school prom, we still have the oldies-but-goodies like rape and murder, but we've given them free-market competition from the defter hands of emotional abuse, identity theft, cyberterrorism, and a thousand other insidious afflictions. It's not hard to understand why millions of people still cling to superstition- in a world of utter chaos, it orders one's existence. But man is the angel that fell from heaven. Compared to us, the red-horned dude with the pitchfork is a buffoon who simply can't compete.

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