Secularism: suffering from demons

Could Secularism be sublimating its loss of face or faith in faith or religious faith? What?? Let me put it like this, is secularism copying the fate of religion by losing its mass appeal ? Is this a symptom of a mature or immature society?

Today we (society) need to believe in a secularism because it upholds the recognition of evil (some suggest a reinvention of the devil) because it doesn't need an accompanying belief system of the existence of God. Do business with the idea of a version of amorality and wrong doing, but don't take care to embrace the flip side of the existence of something bigger than us that is life enhancing??!! To me this confluence of a shared fate of contemporary secularism with minority status of Judea-Christianity in today's Britain starts with the controversial Garden of Eden story. We learn that Adam and Eve are thrown out of the Garden paradise because of biting into the forbidden fruit from the tree of Knowledge. No, lets start earlier than that in the book of Genesis : Contemporary analysis has argued that it was Eve's curved body shape from hip to rib -cage that 'enabled' the idea of Adam being the spare rib taken from Eve that accounted for the her body shape in contrast to Adam's 'full body shape'.

There is also a secularist interpretation of the Adam and Eve narrative that the serpent(the devil) was actually symbolically and psychologically a 'male conspiracy' rendered a warning to women about the 'male aggressor'. Or that the 'serpent' could denote the brutality of 'evolution' and all the blood spilt for a Darwinian interpretation of the exit from a sugar coated view of nature to one of survive or die rather than Adam and Eve committing 'original sin'? This is where i have to say goodbye to the over-reaction of 'creationism' that makes a mockery by short-circuiting' science as always the 'evil of our day' by disseminating the dirty word of' 'evolution', where science deforms God and all his works and values the tired 'anti-Christian message' of 'sin or be sinned against'! I am so sorry but 3.7 billion years ago evolution created homo sapiens on earth and the last ice-age killed-off the dinosaurs! As a Christian one has to face-up rather than deny or avoid. Without getting too preachy, I think it would be what Jesus would have wanted us to do today. I think debate is healthy and I think Jesus was ready for the Pharisee's then and as much as he is ready today to debate such matters. Perhaps we could understand the 'Big Bang' as the 'God moment' here is very much contemporary thinking? Where science meets God?

It is however true to say that politics and secularism has evoked some of the more prurient explanations of over-sexualization by Freudian obsession with concepts of desire and over-dependency on maternal influence. But here is the point, that secularist's have depended on a linear literal interpretation by Biblical 'fact'. Why? Because the singular inflexibility of the religious interpretation of the book of Genesis offers the raft of hungry anti-religious hostiles ready to mock and ridicule the perceived spreading fairy dust on the brutality of survival of the fittest when eat or be eaten could have been the standard. Cling-on to simplistic analysis of the Christian church especially if you like but recognize that secularist's have under-represented and underestimated the diversity of significance to the Garden of Eden 'parable'. Indeed secularist determinism still brags about its wry and ironic disgust at angels flying around with cherubs shooting arrows whilst in the real world death and destruction is the norm. But who fears the 'long shot' of the existence of God more than Christian's fear losing the clarity of their faith? Secularist's will never be happy however to be cast in such a light.

Pendulemic swings from faith to secularism Just as the diaspora's of Jews, Africans and in my own ancestry, the nineteenth century diaspora of the Irish tells us that mankind has a need to leave and to arrive, a migration instinct that rivals Native Australians to go on 'walkabout' and that revives the duality of loss of home and sometimes a fleeing for ones life to escape. This reminds us of the omnipresent nature of being thrown out of our own Garden of Edens sometimes because of levels of strict religious authoritarianism or political intolerance ( and FYI before you think it, of course this issue does not impinge on the Brexit vote because it was the majority of the voters who democratically threw Europe out of Britain by throwing Britain out of Europe and because it was also more of an economic long-term argument, or should have been, and not mass political enmity to mainly Europeans). Any linear self-righteous inflexible demand or imposition is never the best antidote to intolerance. It is often stated however, that governmental political secularism in today's France has been truly successful, but that 21st century Islamic extremism has attacked France because it refuses to engage in a 'religious war' with Islamic extremism!!?? Even tolerance by separating antagonist's can be seen as a provocation!!?? Perhaps numbers of practicing Catholics in France has gone down but it is secularism that has become the beneficiary that has subsequently become the target!!?? How is that even on the agenda??

As a result, we do experience an alienation and a feeling of being an exile in conditions we no longer recognize and we fear injustice, criminality and poverty as well as direct threats to our loved ones inside all our 'own homes'. Such terror kicks-in a need to literally and metaphorically migrate to the future without not just the religious but also the secular baggage and beyond the grip of 'conflict-idolatry' to affirm the attraction to the light of democracy and its diversity. If that means accommodating the pendulum of religion and the secular., well I'm in.

Democracy by 2 by 2 on Noah's Ark could be interpreted as restoring diversity and representativeness actually extends beyond the stand-off between secular and the religious. Here harmony and some common ground forms the bridging of a duality that otherwise separates into conflicting 'values' etc. Human error and human iniquity is not the only common denominator between the secularists and the Catholic Christians. Uncompromising blind adversarial friction doesn't have to end in mutual dissatisfaction, but it does recognize how much the pendulum is prepared to mark the potential for renewal and restorative respect. Let me speak plainly : God is no longer seen as the opiate of the people by many secularist's and many Christian's have discarded their view of hard line anti-religious Marxist Leninist's because they are only of residual significance to a past adherence advocating anti-religious spite in the Soviet era of nihilistic narcissism. Yet there does remain an over rationalisation of the 'failed Christian dogma' heralded by secularists as a concurrent end of paradoxically Marxism per se in the post Cold War era. But if the pedulumic agenda does oscillate between 'aspirational secularism' and intemporate Creationism as contemporary extremes, what will bind them together but a common ground for fear against evil and ones demons personified by the 'serpent and servant of corruption and violent terror torturing and contriving to violate individual free choice and respect of mutual common ground separated however by clear delineated mutual disagreement.

© 2019 Stephen Hornsby-Smith

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