Why are religious people and believers in God always so angry and argumentative about life? Apparently David Ford has come a cropper within his church for speaking out of turn about gay marriage.I sometimes wonder why anyone would bother joining a club if they didn’t want to abide by the rules.How simple can it be? if you want to join a golf club and they ask that you dress in a certain way….wear the right tie and all that…. then you’ll probably comply, just to get in through that door .How hard can it be? If you don’t want to join in with a bunch of people in a religious belief who have all these interesting rules and arcane notions and ideas , why would you bother at all ? Why would you put yourself through all that hassle arguing the toss about stuff that you can never prove anyway? Those are the kind of questions I always ask myself when the radio airwaves fill up with “experts” quoting chapter and verse as though it was the final word .
Why would David Ford want to be part of a church where they argue at every twist and turn about what the Bible says about this and that ..what God’s take might be on this gay-marriage business….and so on…. and so on ….
Let us tune this racket out just for a moment …….. all that noisesome flac ……take a deep breath and gather our resources….clear the tubes …and our baffled heads….
DF…..Just imagine entering through the corridor to the door of an office with the legend emblazoned in filigreed , ornamental gold -leaf lettering on the frosted window-pane, which reads :
“PK DOG DETECTIVE AGENCY”
In smaller script below …
“Sometimes Psychiatrist, Snake -Oil Salesman and Seller of Peanut -Butter Sandwiches”
You spot a long leather couch in this oasis of calm and your host bids you to relax in the cool of the afternoon…..
PK : Lie back on the couch Mr Ford and try to relax.These are only some simple questions. I’ll just sit back here in the shadows and take some notes.I understand that you’ve recently thrown down the old harness, so to speak ,and are on the cusp of retiring from the political graft and grind.Are you getting ready to kick back and use that All -Ireland Free Bus Pass and get away from it all ….no more driving or worrying about traffic, or even time….put your feet up and finally enjoy life….eh?
DF : Well that was the plan before this business with the elders of my church came up…it’s such an annoyance to end on this sour note.
PK: Oh I see…… There ‘s been some differences of opinion with your colleagues, I take it?
DF: That would be putting it bluntly, i suppose. They object to the idea of gay matrriage.They figure that God might not like the idea of homo-sexuals getting married and they can probably pin-point an exact quote to that effect in their Bibles.
PK : I’m assuming you take great stock from the Bible and your religious beliefs afford you much comfort and add a sense of purpose to your life, Mr Ford?
DF : Ha!!…Well they did up until this point,I have to admit, Mr PK.
PK: If I was to ask you to draw or paint your idea of God , would you be able to do it? I mean…if you had the artistic skills and wherewithal to do that, how would you present your idea of God? I mean would “your” God be a male or female God ….or maybe both at the same time?
DF: Well …I’ve never given it much thought, but I suppose my God would be a male god …you know with a beard and so on….maybe a bit longer than my own, I suppose ….I like that paternalistic idea of a father- figure….a shepherd looking after his flock of lost sheep.
PK: So, your God wouldn’t be a woman then …He’d be a tough , strong leader …a bit like Donald Trump or Nigel Farage…that kind of thing …Someone that people would look up to, follow and believe in , eh?…Cast their vote for and so on…. Someone to draw down some respect then?
DF : Well…I mightn’t go as far as that!. ..Donald Trump!!!?…. Nigel Farage!!!!?….Maybe someone like Abraham Lincoln or Nelson Mandela (with a beard and Morgan Freeman’s voice)might fit the picture a little better.
PK: So it definitely wouldn’t be a female , like Hilary Clinton or Arlene Foster , then?
DF: Well…no …I hadn’t really thought about it too much. I suppose. it’s all in the Bible anyway, as you probably know.
PK: What does it say about God in the Bible?…I mean …did he or she have a sex-life? Maybe that’s too crazy a question….but if we are trying to identify with this creature, it might be valid enough. Some say he was able to perform surgery on Adam, his first creation and make a woman out of a rib….so anything’s possible, eh?. People put such great store in the idea of sexuality , after all. Maybe he or she was bi-sexual or gay , eh? I mean he/she knows about everything….right?…… and he knows just exactly what’s going to happen next year and the year after that, so he must have gathered a lot of knowledge and experience from somewhere.Did you ever wonder where he got all that information from ?….or even where he might have come from him/her self?
DF: I can’t say I’ve ever given it a lot of thought to tell you the truth. I mean , knowing everything is quite a feat…I’ll grant you that…….and creating everything out of nowhere and nothing ,is some skillset, really.Who could begin to figure that lot out except maybe , God himself?
PK: That’s a cute way to look at it alright ….the circular argument…..So you reckon he knows all there is to know and that’s the end of it, eh and we shouldn’t really worry our wee heads about anything else.? Don’t eat from that Tree of Knowledge or it’ll be all bets are off. That’s all there is to it? I mean… he knows all about the mess that the world is in because he created it to be like that in the first place .Who’d know better?He knew we’d screw it all up anyway….way back before he made it all up, but he went ahead and did it anyway ,because it was the only entertainment he could think of; he was bored, so he let us all get on with it, anyway? He knew that they’d crucify Jesus…didn’t he? Jesus said he was God’s son ,so I suppose he might have looked a bit like his old dad, eh….a younger version…say how old was God when all this was happening…I mean in relation to his son? or was he only a methaphorical “son”? a sort of poetical Son of the Earth type of son? you’d never know really.
They were all crazy as a box full of snakes, back then in the bad old days , anyway ,so he knew they’d do it ,didn’t he? He knew the crazy buggers would believe every word Jesus said and string him up and hang him out to dry, anyway. He figured it all out before he did it anyway…didn’t he …Take a look around you …they’re all still as crazy as a box full of frogs !!!! Say…..Do you reckon God might be a bit of a sadistic cove?…You know …a bit crazy too…like all the rest of his creations?
DF: Now that you come to mention it ,Mr PK, you might have a point there.I swear I haven’t had much time to give it a lot of thought.Crazy , eh? …Like father….like son…..I suppose….
PK: …No …I’m not saying that at all.It’s just a notion , really. You’ll have plenty of time to think about it all now ,anyway, DF…I’m just asking what you think , yourself.Your personal take on the situation, if you like … …not all that stuff that your colleagues think…..Do you think that God could have been gay, for example ?…You know , given that he was God and that , he could have been anything he wanted to be , couldn’t he?He could have been like a sea-horse… Maybe he was male, female and gay all at the same time. You know…the way seahorses flip back and forth. People do say , sometimes, that ” God is Love”….. that would certainly cover all the bases , now …wouldn’t it?….Sexually ,anyway…eh? Say….I wonder who God would have sex with , eh ? I wonder… is there a Mrs God or another Mr God ….just thinking out loud there ,DF….not to worry.Just lie back and relax.Would you like Doreen to bring you a coffee?
DF: My head’s beginning to spin ,PK…you would’t have a couple of “Anadin” headache tablets in your desk , would you?
PK: Coming right up, DF….would you like a little glass of something with that, eh?You know you should really read that “Book of Genesis” ,in the Bible , again. The underground cartoonist Robert Crumb published a really great version of it a few years ago.You know the fellow who made up the character “Mr Natural” fifty years ago . His book is full of really great poetry and writing.He copied the whole tale exactly as it was written in the Bible ,in the very same exact way it was translated by Robert Alter and appears in the King James Version. Man….some of those people back then lived for ever and ever….hundreds of years sometimes…..but the whole human family tree is there …right from the beginning of time ….every little thing…right there…all those crazy names …begetting this and that forever…it’s hard going at times ,I’ll grant you …. but he’s left nothing out…even all the sex and murders and so on…I think you might enjoy it.He’s some artist , that Crumb. I have to say though that it might shock the children or the more genteel ladies and gentlemen of your circle. The illustrated cold truth is really not for the faint -of -heart.
Tell you what …I’ll have a copy for you when you come back for your next appointment.In the meantime, try and relax a bit more ….and maybe join a different club, eh? See you next week, then, DF. This will all blow over and the world will look a whole lot different with your feet up and a cool glass in your hand. Take care…..