Category Archives: Religion

Christian Examines Faith Through Darth Vader, Foul Language

Do you like strange religious writing? The kind without cliches? That hits pressure points you didn’t know you had, sometimes popping joints back into alignment, other times throwing your back out? How about religious writing that’s NSFW, i.e., tosses around a few swear words for effect?

The Cynic Testifies is a blog of mine. It chronicles the thoughts and experiences of the last person I ever expected to become a Jesus Freak:

Me.

The_Cynic_Testifies

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World So Sweet

As I rummage through the ephemera my mother left behind (journals, art, receipts, psychiatric prescriptions, etc.) I remember a prayer we used to recite before dinner:

Thank you for the world so sweet,
Thank you for the food we eat,
Thank you for the birds that sing,
Thank you, God, for everything.

My mother didn’t make that up. “World So Sweet” is a folk prayer, i.e., the original author is unknown. You can speak it or sing it. My mother and I spoke it.

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The Space Shuttle: Our Tower of Babel

I find myself genuinely mournful of the space shuttle program. I was born in 1980; the program launched in 1981. It was always there for me.Space travel will continue, but the space shuttle program was more than that. It was a symbol of something strident and hopeful.

The space shuttle program, in my mind’s eye, was the white spaceplane, the NASA logo, the American flag emblazoned on spacesuits filled with heroes. My heroes.

The space shuttle program was the televised launches. The countdown, the ignition, the launch, the blinding blaze of rockets, the disappearing of a handful of astronauts into the heavens.

The space shuttle program was our Tower of Babel. We built it for science, yes, but really we built it to reach God.

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A few reactions to my first cautious steps into a study and experience of Theosophy.

I went to a Theosophy class at Theosophy Hall in downtown Los Angeles last night with my most excellent roommate Pedro. I enjoyed the experience. I wasn’t sure what was going on during the presentation and ensuing discussion – were they seeking the truth? conveying the truth? – yet the experience was so intellectually stimulating that I left feeling quite aware of my surroundings.

One guy gave me some free printed matter, which I read today. I also did some background research on the oh-so-trustworthy Internet. (I trust you can hear the measured sarcasm on that last point.)

My impressions are not all roses, though.

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A few thoughts on menstruation, boys behaving badly, ritual, and the Gulf oil spill.

You’re weak, ladies and gentleman. Weak, whiny, woman-girls and man-boys. And it’s because we as a culture have no meaningful rituals to separate childhood from adulthood. If we had stronger, more jarring initiation rites to mark the time between childhood and adulthood, we would all be less pathetic and whiny and heartless as adults.

And if we replaced our self-indulgence with a healthy fear of Mother Earth, the Gulf might not be your “oops” garbage dump.

The world needs to wake and make a big deal of a girl’s first menstruation. Her body is becoming a vessel capable of sustaining the species, and we should use it as a time to help the girl become aware that she must eventually let go of the trappings of childhood and accept her place in the world as a mature and responsible and strong human being.

Continue reading A few thoughts on menstruation, boys behaving badly, ritual, and the Gulf oil spill.