If I were a better person and on my way to heaven, I’d feel sorry for these folks. Sorrier.
They’re children. Sixty year old children. And not particularly bright children either.
BOISE (AP) — A group of residents has opened a small creationist museum in Boise that they hope to expand to as much as 450,000 square feet and display a full-sized depiction of Noah's ark.
``We want to show a lot of science that's being censored and not presented to the public,'' Doug Bennett, the museum's executive director, told the Idaho Statesman in a story Wednesday.
The Northwest Science Museum opened Saturday with what organizers are calling a Vision Center.
They said the goal is to build a full-size museum to present biblical stories from the book of Genesis as a literal telling of the world's origin. Entry is free, but organizers plan to charge admission if they can get enough money to build a larger facility.
Read the whole story at the Magic Valley, Idaho Times-News. There’s video.
Scripture admonishes us to have a child-like faith.
But should we have to have a child-like intellect to go with it?
A full-sized Noah’s ark.
A supposed grown-up wants to build that.
From the Gospel of according to Saint Groucho.
“You have the brain of a four year old child, and I’ll be he was glad to get rid of it.”
The reason to feel sorry for them is that they need to believe in a special, magical creation. They need to believe that there’s an all-knowing, all-powerful God who created the world with us specifically in mind, that he created us because he was lonely and wanted someone to talk to in the evening after a hard day of keeping all the stars up in the sky and the planets spinning and sun shining and the rain falling. (For some reason, all powerful as he is, he put us in charge of the plants and animals.) He wanted company. Our company.
Angels are boring conversationalists, I guess, yammering on about who got whose wings and when and how, with the cherubim dishing on the seraphim and the seraphim looking down their noses at the cherubim and both resenting the archangels while the ophanim are off sulking because nobody remembers they’re in the hierarchy. The ophanim are like the Ravenclaw of the heavenly choir and they pretty much only exist in the video games where they’re usually chosen as avatars by somebody’s pretentious big sister who’s read “all the books! Three times!”
These folk need to believe the world was created specially for them because it means they were specially created. God wanted them particularly to exist. He knows them. He loves them. He’s looking out for them. He has a plan for them.
Take God out of the picture and you’ve essentially taken them out of the picture too.
It’s a little sad, how there can be adults who matter to themselves only if they have some magic sky wizard’s constant attention.
That is a child-like faith. The faith toddlers have in their parents that causes them to lose it when they look around the playground and don’t immediately see mommy or daddy.
It’s a little sad that there are grown-ups who are that terrified to be on the own. The reason it’s not a lot sad is that their religion doesn’t stop there.
It’s not enough for them to be special. Their sense of specialness has to be reinforced by others’ un-specialness.
Having God’s special attention isn’t really special if everybody has it.
For me to be special, you have to be, well, not special.
So they divide the world into the special and the not special, the Saved and the Damned, and are constantly on the lookout for evidence that they’re saved and you aren’t.
This is a fundamentally nasty way of thinking. Not Christian at all. Not Christ-like, at any rate. And it would be bad enough if they kept it to themselves, inside their churches and “museums.” But they don’t. They’ve mixed it up with their politics, finding common cause with folks who are perhaps less religious but equally fervent in their belief that the world is divided between the Damned and the Saved, but calling the two categories by various other names like Makers and Takers, Us and Them.
Together they’ve created a party devoted to doing what was supposed to be God’s work at the end of time, separating the sheep from the goats here and now and meting out punishments and rewards on their own and according to their own judgments of who’s special and who’s not.
I know, I know, I keep making this point again and again. You don’t need to hear it anymore. But I keep hoping that one of these posts will make it onto the screens of some members of the Washington Press Corps who, for thirty years or more now, have been courting these folks as a market to be exploited and so cover them as “jess folks” and cover the sharpers, con-artists, mountebanks, and demagogues in Congress, at the pulpit, and on TV who manipulate them by encouraging them in their ignorance and hate and fear as if these sharpers, con-artists, mountebanks, and demagogues are responsible and principled leaders and thinkers. I’m hoping they’ll cut that out.
And I keep hoping that some of the few remaining real conservatives and Christians visit and realize just what they’ve allied themselves with, which is not fellow conservative and Christians but Right Wing reactionaries and fundamentalists, and what those folks’ agenda is.
And I keep hoping some Democratic politicians will stop by and be encouraged to give up mealy-mouthing on the subject and straight-forwardly confront the danger these folks present.
And I’m rehearsing.
Someday I might find myself in conversation with one of these folks and instead of smiling and nodding patronizingly I’ll do the right thing, the charitable thing, and tell them what they should have been told a long time ago.
Don’t worry. I’ll put it more tactfully. I’ll use their own language.
“About that child-like faith of yours,” I’ll say, “Well, ‘When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.’”
See? It’s true.
“The devil can cite scripture for his purpose.”
That’s from the gospel according to Saint William.