New Blog Discovery and Semi-Rant/Explanation

I recently discovered a culture blog on a website called SuicideGirls.com (wiki page). I purposefully left the link off for the website, because of the following:
  • Contrary to what its name would lead you to believe, it's nothing related to girls committing suicide...
  • Quite the contrary, it's a wonderful thought-provoking and intelligent community...
  • I realize the remainder of the website can be quite risque and pushes the envelope. Peruse at your own risk, and realize much will be NSFW.
I've only read their Culture blog, and one particular, recent entry gave me something to think about in a similar vein to what Bill Maher discussed in his Religulous movie. Here's what caught my attention:

"Many years ago, peasants were stealing from each other and murderers were running rampant throughout the world. To deal with the mayhem, rulers came to the conclusion that putting the fear of God in the masses would keep them in line. Organized religion started as a way for those in power to get what they needed from the people."

That's pretty close. And it's not entirely untrue. But there's more to it than that. It wasn't just that the rulers _ the upper classes, the fat cats in power _ who got together in a dark room somewhere, smoked some cigars and made a decision to create religion in order to control the rest of us. The development of religion was the work of the internal "ruler" we all carry with us wherever we go _ that little voice in every one of us, whether peasant or king, that wants order and longs for control.

OK. So chuck it up to my Matrix Syndrome. Things we take for granted because we're told they're so, actually may not be so at all, or at least, not in the same way they're being pushed on us. I don't take many things for their face value.

Now for a disclaimer (now she says!):
I'm not
posting these types of anarchist or "alternative-thinking" items on my blog because I am of a strong opinion AGAINST religion. I'm of a strong opinion about very few things, actually...but I do have lots of opinions ;o)

I think I have a knack for noticing subtle, otherwise unnoticeable patterns around me. I try to bring these issues up as kindly as I can, when I see people who approach me for my opinion about grey situations they're fuzzy about. Sadly, and as would be expected, I am not so clear in identifying/catching and handling these types of patterns within my own personal realm--but am getting better, and like any project it requires work and repetition to get it right.

So why do I share things that are pointedly and pungently poking at religion and republicans, and other traditionalist institutions, on this blog?
I like sobering nuggets that help exercise people's thought processes, and clear up the cobwebs of why we do things, instead of just going along like zombie sheep. I hate going along as part of a herd of sheep--it's, or it should be, unconstitutional to be honest. Most of all, I want people to try to think clearly, strategically, and logically about things that can easily sway them...we all have weaknesses don't we? We're human after all. We also have opposing thumbs and self control.

It's important that people be reminded to keep their wits about them in things that may lead them to a certain level of escapism, with possible negative repercussions if taken to an extreme... and it's so easy to take things that make us happy, even if temporarily, to an extreme...voluntary or involuntary, conscious or subconscious...things such as religion, commitments, responsibilities, peer pressure, needing to belong, propaganda, social groups, lifestyles, aspirations, etc. We always look for connections with our fellow humans, it's natural. However, it's because of the inevitable complications that arise from these connections that we
owe to ourselves to keep our wits about us and decision-making abilities in the "on" position, at all times. Always remember to keep the long-term view in your sights.

I think I'm making this my new year's resolutions: stay on game, stay focused, look for the long-term view.