I'll sleep when I'm Dead...

I'll sleep when I'm dead... my credo... my motto... my downfall

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

7 Deadly ReaSins - #1 Guilt

To recap, we are exploring my compiled list of the seven reasons for each and every person's acceptance of religion into their lives and subsequent dismissal of science and reason. Trust me, everyone around you with a belief in 'a God' can be put into one (at least one) of these categories. Today we are discussing number one the list: Guilt.

This, in my opinion, is the most obvious reason. This can be something as simple as a personal pact made between the individual and God in a time of extreme desperation. ie. "God, if you get me out of this situation, I'll devote my life to serving in your image." This can also be something as deep seeded as a peace offering made between someone and "their maker" over something that they did or happened to them. For example, a child who accidently caused the demise of a sibling (or just feels responsible for their siblings passing), holds that guilt for their entire life, turning to religion to fill the void.

I believe most of the priests with pedophile tendencies or behavior most likely fall into this category as well. They have lived with the knowledge that their desires are wrong, so in a valiant effort to mask or subdue the behavior, they turn their sights on God. The problem with this scenario is too often the distraction of religion only leads them to a more accessible batch of impressionable victims. At least they turned to religion with good intentions right?

Another common example of "guilt" as a trigger for religion is in the form of infidelity. A spouse cheats and doesn't get caught. Most of the time, getting caught is the point or the exciter. When they don't get caught, the guilt of the situation eats at them until they turn to the shoulder of religion to wipe the slate clean.

If "guilt" is a trigger, why do so many people stick with it once the guilt subsides? This is what bothers me more than anything. In some circumstances, the guilt may never fade. In others, it should fade quickly for most people able to participate in the act that caused the guilt in the first place. Some people who are able to use religion to overcome the guilt may like the results and decide to stay in order to use it for future use? Honestly, I am unable to fathom this, but it does seem viable.

Next up on the list is "Redemption". Stay tuned, I will hopefully elaborate sooner rather than later.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

"Why do they believe in God?" - An Introduction

"The 7 Deadly ReaSins"

Let me start this off with my religious background. I was raised by a close-lipped agnostic father (who kept his opinion to himself at all costs) and an openly religious mother. Although she did not attend church, her faith was sealed at a young age when she "allowed the 'holy spirit' to enter her body" when she welcomed Christ into her life. The feeling had moved her and she was often very vocal about the experience during my childhood. I, on the other hand, was questioning the existence of God at an early age. I was even asked not to return to my neighbor's Sunday School in the summer between first and second grade. True story. My mother was told I wouldn't quit disrupting class with my constant questions and insistent allegations to the validity of what was being taught. That being said, my lack of faith eventually blossomed into teen angst sprinkled with a downright disposition to all aspects of religion and the church in general.

As I grew older, my feelings of anger tapered to apathy. If it didn't affect me, I didn't really put much thought into it either way. I am, for all intents and purposes, an atheist and I have, to a large degree, a higher than average knowledge base and education in all aspects of most of the world's religions. I don' think you can possibly argue against or for something unless you have a true understanding of both sides of the fence.

Why am I an atheist? I could go on for days about the obvious flaws and holes in religion (which I will, no doubt, eventually do given the life of this blog), but instead I'll hit the few main points. First up, there are so many religious belief systems, often contradicting each other. This means that most of them are based on false information and inconsistencies passed down and distorted over centuries of bastardized word of mouth and poorly recorded history. Everyone can't be right. Next, most religions are based on rhetoric that is centuries old at the very least. When these religions were established our basic understanding of the world around us was skewed by our inability to see the bigger picture. Now, we know the earth is round, we are not the center of the universe and most miracles are explained through science rather than divine intervention. Last religion can be broken down to it's basic purpose - control. It controls what you do, say, feel, and in some cases eat. Control is always a tool for a means to power. Power gives way to Corruption. Giving yourself over to a power structure where you are the bottom of the barrel just seems unintelligent to me. Color me crazy, but I'd rather keep my options open. Why can't people see that religion was initially created to answer the unexplainable questions about the world around us (now explained in every seventh graders Earth Science textbook) and later harnessed to keep the peasants and slaves from rising up and destroying the class structure.

Besides the obvious problems with the validity of religion, my main question seems to be, "why do people buy into the hype?" I have over the years narrowed the possible reasons to a list I like to refer to as the "7 Deadly ReaSins".

  1. Guilt
  2. Redemption
  3. Proximity
  4. Social
  5. Marriage
  6. Heritage
  7. Self Esteem

Over the next week or so, I'm going to explore each of these "7 Deadly ReaSins". Stay tuned and see what develops. I'm sure the sparks are gonna fly.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Why is Prostitution illegal?

Someone needs to explain to me why prostitution is illegal. I mean, I understand that the letter of the law states that it IS illegal throughout the United States (parts of Nevada being the exception). The question is, "why?" The economy sucks ass and we really should look into this as a possible income for the states at the very least.

The textbook definition of prostitution is "the act or practice of engaging in sexual acts for money." That sounds a lot like "dating" to me. It all boils down to semantics. In fact, if you think about it, it's possibly more about property values than moral values.

If someone decides to stroll the shady back alleys looking for a good time, what happens if they approach the ladies of the night with the following line? "Yes, I'm looking for a date. I don't want to pay you for sex, but I'm willing to pay you for your time to sit and talk. Then after we get to know each other, if you decide I'm a nice guy and you would like to have casual sex, I would be willing to give it a shot. But I am ONLY paying you for your time to sit and talk." Just a thought.

Or, what if you videotape the sex? You can pay someone to star in a porn film without being arrested for prostitution, so what's the difference? I am sure this has more to do with licensing and zoning for filming. But there is definite gray area here. Can I get away with prostitution as long as I have a camera phone, a business card and I get the hooker to sign a waiver?

What if you approach an employee, with the following: "Whadya say we go to the utility closet and have some sex?" If you proceed to follow through on the deal, can you be arrested as the employer for paying your employee while you both engaged in a "sexual act"? Jesus, this is getting very bizarre. What if you're married to the employee? Or just dating? It's all very subjective.

Last scenario. You go to a massage parlor. A reputable massage parlor. You tell the therapist that you have a lot of stress in your groin muscle and it needs to be worked out. She (or he) proceeds with a deep tissue massage on your nether regions. One of the side-effects of this type of massage is an expulsion of "stress", built up in the form of ejaculate. A necessary evil in relieving the stress and pressure in this region of the body. Which, I might add, can very easily be argued as directly relieving pressure causing you stress and pain. Which is why you went to the massage parlor in the first place! Is this a sexual act or an alternative medical procedure? You decide.

When any man asks a woman to dinner, he's hoping for sex. Ugly I know, but it's nearly the truth. Many women feel obligated to satisfy their date's sexual needs to some extent after a good time and an expensive dinner. Ugly, I know, but it's nearly the truth. This might be a kiss goodnight, a little heavy petting or even a blow job... Is this prostitution? Aren't we trying to pay our dates in the form of surf 'n' turf and a movie for some after hours nookie? Semantics.

I think most liberal minded people aren't that bothered by legal prostitution in Nevada, or the production of porn in California... because they don't live in Vegas or the San Fernando Valley. I believe people are more worried about prostitution disturbing their property value than the moral implications. If people are allowed to stroll the corners near your home or your child's school, that's gonna cause a shit storm, but what about designated areas miles away from residences? Regulated by the state, receiving a fair tax on the deal and highly maintained and overseen for the transmission of sexual diseases and it could be very profitable. C'mon Obama, forget about the assholes in Detroit and let's focus on making hooking legal, for the economy's sake... "Yes, we can".

Now that I have you thinking, what exactly is a "sexual act"? The law defines a "sexual act" as "contact between the penis and the vulva or the penis and the anus, and for purposes of the subparagraph contact involving the penis occurs upon penetration, however slight; contact between the mouth and the penis, the mouth and the vulva, or the mouth and the anus; or the penetration, however slight, of the anal or genital opening of another by a hand or finger or by any object, with an intent to abuse, humiliate, harass, degrade, or arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person."

Let's break down the definition a little farther. "Money" is defined as "any article, substance or circulating medium of exchange, measure of wealth, or means of payment, including but not limited to, coins, paper money or demand deposits such as checks."

Taking the above definitions into consideration, we can now redefine Prostitution as follows:

Prostitution - The act or practice of engaging in contact between the penis and the vulva or the penis and the anus, and for purposes of the subparagraph contact involving the penis occurs upon penetration, however slight; contact between the mouth and the penis, the mouth and the vulva, or the mouth and the anus; or the penetration, however slight, of the anal or genital opening of another by a hand or finger or by any object, with an intent to abuse, humiliate, harass, degrade, or arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person for any article, substance or circulating medium of exchange, measure of wealth, or means of payment, including but not limited to, coins, paper money or demand deposits such as checks.

Holy shit. Breaking that down, I think I can get away with a 'rub and a tug'? Or at least argue my way out of trouble, right? Well, that's another adventure in and of itself. Ok, I'm off to Craigslist to start my search for a willing massage therapist with a strong grip and an objectionable set of scruples...

I'll keep you posted.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Let's Get Started

You are probably asking yourself right now, "Who is this guy and what makes him so smart?" First of all, I'm really not that smart. I'd like to think of myself more as a survivalist than an intellectual. I simply take the time to study my surroundings, think before I act, use common sense whenever I can and am a pretty good judge of character. I've also taken a great deal of time working on living my life through "the bigger picture" rather than stewing over every problem as it arises. Who am I? A thirty-two year old career professional, happily married with two kids. An average Joe, nothing more - nothing less.

A few weeks ago I was walking through my local grocery store and saw a rack of self-help books. I stopped out of curiosity. What could possibly possess people to purchase one of these books? From the capped teeth and happy days smile of the self-help guru on the cover to the corny titles (Discovering the New You or Yes You Can, a Guide to a Better Tomorrow), they screamed "scam". Now don't get me wrong, I am sure there are some people out there who might pick one of these books up, read it cover to cover and reach a new level of personal enlightenment, but this can't be the norm. Give me a fucking break.

This got me thinking. What is really wrong with America? Hell, the whole world at this point? My uncle recently told me in a moment of honest clarity, "Average isn't what it used to be." Amen. We have grown to expect less and less of ourselves. We expect everything to come easy or not at all. Working hard for your own success is a thing of the past. The rich get richer, the poor get poorer, and we've accepted it as the new paradigm. This has to stop.

This blog is intended to simply open your eyes to the apathy, atrocities and loss of common sense surrounding you everyday. It will give you hints and tips on how to ultimately live your life to the fullest. This will be an entertaining journey, with some laughs, some tears and more than a few gasps of shock I'm sure. Plus, and most importantly, it will give me a chance to finally get a bunch of shit off of my chest about everything from forwarded emails to raising children. We'll discuss diet, exercise and the reason we're all fat (or think we're fat). The insurance companies will surely take a beating along with the entire Medical industry. I can't wait to get into the many facets of religion and politics. Marriage, relationships, sex and even pornography will be held up to the light as well. Reality TV, pets, team sports, credit card debt, speech impediments, spanking your kids, spanking your spouse, racism, education, the workplace - nothing will be sacred. Buckle up, I'm pulling back the curtain and tossing a wrench into this dying machine.

Relax. Enjoy. Think.