Coming Soon: The Religion of Reality 

Coming Soon: The Religion of Reality

This is one of those raw moments of thought, one of the blessings and also of the curses of blogging, I think.

The idea of "the religion of reality" has struck me. Now my task will be to identify it within my own paradigm and then to seek its kin in history.

But from extended considerations on the nature of God among humanity, and from my perspective that deities are human creations, not vice-versa, and in watching some of the most rational people I know regaling in the most absurd of ritualistic hopes (e.g. friends who are baseball fans) it has struck me that even upon the death of the Abramic monotheisms under the weight of honest logical examination, one cannot purge religion from humanity. We can, in fact, leave aside considerations of the HIndus and Buddhists, as well as tribal traditions and local customs ever-dying and ever-reborn with each generation, as the latter especially serve the larger point.

But people will always find something to worhsip. It need not be God; there is State, Wealth, Happiness, Liberty, Self--any of these things can be raised to a ritualistic tradition equalling a nontheistic religion.

And so far, this is, technically beside the point.

The larger point has something to do with why people read fiction, and what it is they take away from poetry and stories that feeds the intellect, nourishes the intuitive. It struck me that the death of the Abramic monotheisms would be a boon for the writers, whose pseudo-myths would become one of the primary methods of examining abstractions.

Life is never black-and-white. Politics tempts with illusion; religion tempts with layers of illusion; in either case, redemption is the biggest lie.

And it struck me that it is very difficult to write the stories of my life and times. While many, if not most, writers will tell you to write what you know, this idea is subject to any number of interpretations. Cady's "Singleton" and "The Jonah Watch" know their settings and characters inside-out. Hemingway's "The Sun Also Rises" knows Hemingway. Diversity of individual character, variation in depth of perception, differences in scope and vision. Yet writers also know confusion and vagary well, and layered deep within introspective genres (horror, science fiction, fantasy, and the short-lived "-punk" (cyber-, splatter-, &c.) at least is a sublimation of myth and moral assertion that weaves its own composite tapestry of ideas.

But what I know right now is minutiae and pure silliness.

Trying to explain the trivial realities spilling over my waders is a little like trying to explain anything in one sentence. The difference between five and fifteen minutes seems useless to many when applied to somebody else lying in bed late in the morning. But how many pages of background would it take to explain how it is that someone constantly saying "five minutes" when they mean fifteen, thirty, or more screws up the flow of reality to the point that one cannot plan anything ....

How is it that I'm thirty and I have to essentially ask permission to piss?

You see, on the one hand, to put that story to words, including all of its human significance, would represent an achievement in literary perspective and expression, but I guarantee you that it would be the most boring story in the world. Like anything, the more complete the information, the less likely anyone is going to pay attention. I could be the Truman Capote of interpersonal failures to communicate. But this sort of realism is just a drag on most people. Who wants to pick up a book or go to a movie and endure painstaking and unnerving exploitation of reality in order to make a minor metaphysical point?

And yet without the abstract, people seem to forget the reasons why we do anything. And so we feed daily on "News McNuggets", cast the world in dualisitic terms according to classic superstition: Good vs. Evil, Right vs. Wrong. Reality is never so simple as that. In our hearts, we all know this.

And so, at the end of the day, this disorganized pile of words comes to justify the simple notion that humans do not respond to reality, but to compressions, simplifications, mythologizations, and eventually deifications of reality.

Thus, COMING SOON: "The Religion of Reality".

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