How Happiness and Love Can Win
This picture describes how I feel a lot of my ideas are, Last Poppies on the Riverside by Bert Kaufmann.
I was raised in south east Texas and on the north side of Houston. In order to gain free time, my parents would send me to various sunday schools, wednesday church outings, anything they could devise to get me out of the house so they could be young adults with each other. I am not saying this to complain or whinge, I am merely setting the precedent of the things I am going to muse on this time around. I ended up going to some seven different churches in my life, the strangest and grandest one being the german lutheran church my grandpa and grandma went to. All of these places filled me initially with desire to know more about spirituality, as I am definitely more Jungian than Freudian, but all of those desires were quickly squashed. My mother always worried like an idiot over my eternal soul, where I knew there was only one way to learn, and that is to learn, not accept, not believe, but to learn. Honestly, it is her fault, for insisting I read the encyclopedia they bought for me, I read the whole thing, from Aa to Z, and all the years updates as well. Before that, I was quite happy perusing the limited library available at my house, which was boring books on knitting, to somewhat decent hot rod technology and hunters stories from my step dad. I was asked to leave the last church group when I was 12, because I brought Electric Light Orchestra’s Discovery album to a youth group allnighter. The album is still recognized as one of the lightest, most polished, unoffensive albums ever, and that album did indeed get me thrown out. I was put with a deacon of the church that threw me out, the youth group leader, in private tutelage of the bible, and he asked me which books or chapters I would like to study. J.R.R. Tolkien is my favorite writer at the time, so I asked to study C.S. Lewis’s The Screwtape Letters and the bible chapter of revelations. I figured my soul was up for grabs, I better get some interesting stuff to keep my interest as high as possible. The deacon’s response is actually, I learned later, absolutely typical of an american when pushed to the limits of the knowledge they might have. “You are not ready for such things, you are not an advanced christian, and can not handle such information. It really funny how yanks constantly seek to belittle those around them, such that stupidity is granted more excess and allowance than intellectual ideals. If I was a xtian, I would have been delighted to have such a young student take on such visceral challenges, but instead, I just declined all the lessons after two meetings, and never went into a church again, except to study its architecture.
Ending the relations with christianity does not mean I didn’t study any spirituality however, I did indeed get involved in everything pagan and new age that I could find. New age stuff started to disinterest me in about two years, but a love for the occult and paganism stretched out eventually over 20 years, before I became a card carrying atheist. The best part of paganism to me, was the ability to allow whoever to think or worship whatever they wanted, to try new rituals, or different models of fortune telling, to include all who wanted into the circle, and to let go those who didn’t feel a part of the community, freely, without judgement. Never before in my life had I had any sort of freedom intellectually, instead, school, home, society all wanted to keep me down, keep me on a propaganda american worship basis, and it was just relieving to go sit in a coffee house with some witches and and what not and just talk. Pagan circles never let me out, never told me I was wrong, but instead taught me the entirely worthy effort of producing different ways to achieve different things, imagined or not, spells or a relaxing tea, and never was my ideas, ideals, or efforts thrown out in the garbage bin. I was also lucky to have Jungian center in Houston, where I purchased a Jung tarot deck and learned about archetypes and other philosophies from the Jungian sect. Ok, ok, there was some hippy philosophy in there as well, and a lot of cherish and love stuff from all that, that crept in as well. Over the years I developed an idea that I am presenting a little bit of here, that focuses on what could happen, if we were to rise above what we are right now.
If we can get rid of money, focus on taking care of each other as a total society, we will find all the time in the world to educate, reason and change the warlike path of our race. I reason by way of both life experience, and the wealth of empirical data that has been given us. I grew up in a poor neighborhood, and not ONE of us kids had a decent life by any measure. Kids were abused, beaten, thrown away, ignored, and by and large totally misjudged and pushed in all sorts of chaotic directions. Now this may give rise to differences in abilities and what not, but if most of your childhood is spent learning to adapt to major trauma, how will you react the rest of your life? We were also bussed to a rich kids high school, and man, did the disparities show themselves at that point, all the sudden we had people around us who had been supported monetarily (as if that was not enough,) and mentally by their parents or guardians. Suddenly, we were not popular or nice enough, we were rejected, solely by the clothes we wore and the music path we chose. The rich kids parents had the time and money to spend on their kids, and it was painfully obvious to us who had been thrown aside in the sudden kill off of the upper lower class of the reaganomics era.
Perhaps, just perhaps, if we made us truthfully equal in regards to opportunity for support and education, most of the trash people in this world would become responsible educated decision makers, and not just a populace to be manipulated at will.