26 April 2010

My Phlangy

Imagine I told you that there was club that could heal your broken phlangy. Wait a second, you might ask, I don't have a broken phlangy. I'm not even entirely certain I have a phlangy. No problem they tell you, all you have to do is agree that you have a broken phlangy and they'll make-sure your phlangy is in tip-top shape.

That doesn't sound like a great deal does it? The logical thing would be to ask them to prove you have a phlangy correct? They assure you that you do, otherwise you wouldn't be alive. You see you need a phlangy to live you see, and if you're alive that means you must have a phlangy.

But it's broken of course, and desperately needs to be fixed.

Now imagine that the people that are a part of this club think you are a terrible person for walking around with your broken phlangy. How could anyone live like that? You must not be a normal person, there's something wrong with you. Why would anyone choose to have a broken phlangy when there's a club, right there, that can fix it for you? Everyday you hear people talking about how awful it must be to have a broken phlangy, and how grateful they are that they got their phlangy fixed.

Does it sound silly?

I hear this argument, literally, every day. Only they don't call it a phlangy - they call it a soul.

I don't believe I have a soul - at least not in the way a religious person does. I believe that there are things deep in our subconscious that cause us to behave in certain ways and to appreciate art and beauty, but I do not believe in some part of me that was created when I was born and will live on after me when I die.

Religious people, please keep this in mind when you are trying to convert me to whatever doctrine you follow. You may know how to save my soul - but you're offering to fix something I don't believe I have. And as silly as the phlangy club might sound to you, you sound infinitely sillier to me.

1 comment:

  1. As a somewhat religious person, I find myself cringing when I hear other thoroughly inculturated religious people talking like this. I think it's because most of the time they hang out with other religious people and all start to use the same language and forget that others don't. I'm fluent in Christianese (and it's really helpful when I'm arguing with them because I can turn it on its head & ask them to prayerfully consider something or other) but I figured out really early on that not everyone speaks that way or thinks of life in those terms.

    I don't even think of life in those terms anymore, though as I said it's helpful to understand what the hell they're talking about. There's a good video somewhere which asks "do you even know what you're saying?" but I can't remember where.