God is on MY side now

| August 16, 2011 | 21 Replies

I’m tired of justifying my actions based on moral and pragmatic grounds; it’s too often too much work trying to explain that I am motivated to make my tiny corner of the world a better place, or that I’m trying to avoid needless suffering. Justifying my actions based on real-world consequences often requires planning, empathy and evidence-gathering, and I’ve decided that this is too much work.

What’s the solution? I have quite recently realized that I am a believer in God, which makes me special and unquestionable.

My new outlook germinated about a month ago when I noticed Rick Perry having such an easy time justifying anything he desired, based on things God allegedly told him. Why are you running for President? Because God told me to. Why are going to dismantle social security? Because God told me to. What are you going to do about Wall Street Banks? God will tell me after I allow those nice men to wine and dine me.

Such freedom! I was jealous of Rick Perry, so I adopted God too. I like this new power. Because I am now one of God’s special people, when you question me, you question God Himself . . . so you’d better not ever have the arrogance to question me or God. You want to fight me buddy? God’s me Buddy. I like being God, Jr. It’s armor to protect me from all forms of intellectual and moral challenges and evidence. Having God as my Pal lessens my cognitive load, making life much easier, and it’s going to allow me to quickly cut through a lot of moralistic red tape. It’s going to let me invoke my program without having to explain myself.

Invoking God is a terrific substitute for having well-considered reasons for one’s thoughts and actions. Claiming that God is on one’s side makes up for being a “C” student, and it also makes up for being an adult ignoramus. Bonus points: Most news reporters don’t have the guts to ask pointed questions about candidates’ alleged special relationships with God. They won’t ask, “Does God like you better than God likes the other Republican candidates?” or “Why would God tell more than one Republican to run for President?” or “Aren’t you too old to be claiming the literal existence of the type of God that resembles a fairy tale character?” or “Didn’t many of the early American settlers come to America to escape the Dominionist government you are now proposing? Watching each of the GOP candidates somberly claiming that God supports him or her has been pissing me off because those candidates have been getting exceptionally free rides from the media (except from The Onion).

All of this has pissed me off until today. Today, it occurred to me that if you can’t beat them, join them. My new plan is to start invoking God whenever I want to justify any of my conduct or thoughts. Now don’t accuse me of lying—I’ve carefully thought this through. I’ve already made my position on religion perfectly clear (See my five-part “Mending Fences” series, starting here). That series presented me with a clear personal revelation: I’m a believer in something very much like Albert Einstein’s version of God. Einstein said, “I believe in Spinoza’s God, who reveals himself in the lawful harmony of all that exists, but not

Image: Wikimedia commons

in a God who concerns himself with the fate and the doings of mankind.” That pretty much describes me. Thus, I’m a believer in “God.” I can thus claim a special relationship with God as honestly as Rick Perry.

How do I know that God approves of everything I do and think? Since I’m part of the universe, and God is the systematic order of the universe, I am coextensive with God. Oh, and I also decided to stop thinking so much. In my new approach to life, I merely close my eyes and can feel God’s approval. How could I not, since God’s physical order permeates me?

The funny thing is that ever since I started publicly acknowledging that I believe in God and especially since I’ve stopped thinking so much, I’ve come to realize that God approves of everything that I’m doing and everything that I’m going to do for the rest of my life. Therefore, I no longer have any need for evidence, or any type of worldly justification. I have no further need for logic, empathy, discipline, planning, resourcefulness, tolerance, honesty, self-control, humbleness, social justice, diligence, moderation or ethics. I’m also taking a page from all of those “deep” and “sincere” believers: Since God can destroy cities yet still be good by definition, everything I do is also good, by definition, since God and I are now copasetic.

Therefore, I have a new short answer for anyone who questions anything I do or say: “God wills it.” Why do I sleep in on Saturday? God wills it. Why do I insist that people should protect the Earth and live sustainably? Why do I believe in empathizing with the poor and the sick? God wills it. Why do we need to get private money out of elections? God wills it. Why do I oppose arrogant and manipulative ignoramuses like Rick Perry? God made it especially clear to me that He wills that. And just this very moment God revealed to me one more thing: that anyone who loudly proclaims that that he has God on his side is dishonest, deluded and potentially dangerous.

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Category: Anti-science, Politics, Psychology Cognition, Religion

About the Author ()

Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich lives in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where he lives half-time with his two extraordinary daughters.

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  1. Thoughtful blogger makes excellent points | Rickytw's Blog | August 16, 2011
  1. Tim Hogan says:

    You are not Rick Perry and his ilk. Mr. Perry and his ilk are immoral nihilists bent on using whatever means possible to impose corporate fascism as the official religion of the United States.

  2. Perhaps you should spend some time praying to your new-found god and see how far it gets you. At least you’ll be one up on many of the politicians to claim to be supported by God. Unfortunately, the rest of your characterizations are really off the mark and come from a willful ignorance of and rejection of Scripture as anything more than a mere “fairy-tale”.

    • Erich Vieth says:

      Thanks for clarifying this, Joseph, but my God tells me that your God’s scripture was written by fallible human beings and that it’s too full of contradictions to be of much use in solving modern political issues.

      And one other thing, Joseph. Perhaps you can pray to YOUR God, asking him to regrow the amputated limbs of people who have been in accidents. Let me know how that project goes. My God doesn’t believe in prayer. My God says that there is no evidence that your God answers prayers. My God says that people need to get their hands dirty and fix their problems with hard work and smart thinking, and that prayer is merely wishful thinking. So sayeth my God.

  3. Xtech says:

    The word God comes up frequently in the foreplay chat leading up to war or violence. Maybe ‘God’ is another word for rage, righteous indignation and cruelty, the very things that require us to suspend our suspend our normal sense of fairness and decency and empathy for our fellow human.

    “Oh my name it is nothin’, My age it means less
    The country I come from, Is called the Midwest
    I’s taught and brought up there, The laws to abide
    And that land that I live in, Has God on its side…

    … But now we got weapons, Of the chemical dust
    If fire them we’re forced to, Then fire them we must
    One push of the button, And a shot the world wide
    And you never ask questions, When God’s on your side.”

    – Bob Dylan, 1964

  4. Mike M. says:

    Call me a cynic, but Rick Perry may not really believe in God at all. Professing a strong belief in God, petitioning for God’s intervention, and expressing that one hears the voice of God has proven to be politically advantageous. These messages resonate strongly with legions of Americans. Invoking God is actually mandatory for any sitting President. Perry aspires to sit in the West Wing of the White House, so he may simply be “working the angles” and making himself as appealing as possible to the greatest majority of citizens. I also suspect evangelists and megachurch leaders the likes of Pat Robertson, Jimmy Swaggart, etc do not believe in God either, but instead are operating as cunning businessmen who have discovered an easy avenue to millions of tax-free dollars.

  5. Jim Razinha says:

    I remember one exchange from the otherwise forgettable 1985 film “Ladyhawke”. Rutger Hauer says to Matthew Broderick something like “God has told me you are to help me.” Broderick’s reply has stuck with me: “I talk to God all the time and he’s never mentioned you.”

  6. Karl says:

    I’ll grant you that there are way too many people whose words and actions and even their collective associations appear to take and use the name of God towards their own personal agenda. There are a fair number of all people from various worldviews, be they atheistic (who don’t wish to use the term), agnostics, and all manner of various religious faiths like deists that believe “divine” providence is actually a destiny of their own making. Having the ability, strength and power to accomplish something doesn’t always mean “God” is in the matter, or even voting his good pleasure at the accomplishment.

  7. Erich Vieth says:

    Here’s Rick Perry, doing his little fundamentalist religious dance regarding evolution. It’s clear that he rather trust preachers than scientists in matters of science. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/08/18/rick-perry-evolution-video_n_930802.html My God says he’s making a big mistake.

  8. Timn Hogan says:

    Oops, Erich! I had a dream last night I was God! All DI posters and readers must send their money to me and all their valuables, too so they may obtain boons from me! If you do not, I will make Rick Perry’s hairdo President and “Dr.” Michelle Bachmann Vice President for two terms as your punishment! Hear me and obey!

  9. IFKaramazov says:

    I can just imagine Obama watching the news and hearing that God has called on another Republican candidate to run for office. Disturbed, he crawls off into his room, hugs his knees to his chest, rocks back and forth, and wonders, “Why isn’t God calling me to run for office again? Does he not like my performance?”

    So he pressures a few AGs to settle with major banks, authorizes the Keystone pipeline, and calls for more tax breaks on the top .1%. “This,” he thinks to himself, “will surely win me God’s favor.”

  10. Erich Vieth says:

    My God says that Michelle Bachmann is fantasizing that the recent hurricane is a message from her god. My God tells me (I can feel it in my bones) that a real God would talk in plain language, not obtusely through natural disasters.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/08/29/michele-bachmann-hurricane-irene_n_940209.html?ncid=edlinkusaolp00000009

  11. Mike M. says:

    Crazy Town. It just doesn’t get much nuttier than Bachmann’s latest divine revelation. This type of thinking represents a special sub-set of politicians that actually got elected and now hold an office in the US Government. Surreal, nearly incomprehensible. I’ll be frightened later, once I stop laughing.

  12. Erich Vieth says:

    Michelle Bachmann now says she was joking. My God says she wasn’t joking and that Bachmann really meant that her god sent a hurricane as a wake-up call to America. http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/08/bachmann-campaign-irene-wakeup-call-quote-in-jest.php?ref=fpblg

  13. Mike M. says:

    Erich – My Goddess just whispered into my ear, and She said that you and your God are correct, and She also declared that Bachmann’s retraction or “explanation” is simply damage control and PR revisionism.
    Gosh, She’s smart. I think my Goddess may be cooler than your God.

  14. Tim Hogan says:

    My son’s cat Spock told me last night he was God, that both Michelle Bachmann and Erich were possessed by false gods and that you all should send me your cash, valuables and negotiable instruments lest ye too be damned to suffering in soiled kitty litter forever (take that allergic to cat folks!)!!

  15. Mike M. says:

    Erich – I’d introduce you to my Goddess, but I think you already know Her.

  16. Erich Vieth says:

    “The more I study religions the more I am convinced that man never worshipped anything but himself”

    Sir Richard Francis Burton (1821 – 1890)

  17. Erich Vieth says:

    “White House spokesman Jay Carney invoked scripture Wednesday to back up President Barack Obama’s suggestion that God wants policymakers to get busy and create more jobs.”

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/11/03/biblical-blunder-at-white_0_n_1073011.html?ref=politics

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