(GOD) complex

by 8:43 PM 0 comments

I've been aware of a continuing convergence of three disparate ideas lately, and it's finally solidified in my head to the point where I can write about it. pre://d.o.mai.n is off for edit, and I'm wrapping up a teaser trailer video project for an upcoming video game, so I've found the time to start rededicating myself to this site.

The three topics I would like to cover are the government, big business, and God. Not just them individually, but how they intertwine, how some are trying to imitate the other, and how none of them seem to be able to protect us from ourselves lately.

I know that some of these are sensitive subjects, so please understand that I'm not here to sway anyone in one direction or another, or talk down to people of faith or push an agenda.

To some this might come across as a manifesto, and it's definitely not that, it's just an outpouring of random ideas that I've been slowly corralling over the past few weeks. Feel free to ignore it if you wish, but I think there are a lot of you out there that are worried about some of the same things I am, and if what I've written below causes you to notice a few things happening around you that you otherwise might not have, then I'll be content. 


Constant Vigilance! Haha. Try not to take it too seriously. That's why I'm posting this with a grain of salt. Nobody run out into the street with pitchforks, mmmkay?

All I'm looking to do is work through my thoughts on the convergence of these subjects, and as I do this best through writing, I thought I would share it here and see if any of you out there have anything to add. I ask again that those of you that consider yourself religious bear with me. I think that by the end of this you will understand that I'm not speaking of God from an angle of undermining your faith, but rather someone from the outside looking in at the population as a whole.

People are very defensive of their deities, which I can understand, so if any of this offends you, just look at it as a thought experiment. That’s what I do when I see people going to church or praying. I see it as a psychological experiment, and not one that I look down upon or despise. Blind faith in a god that I cannot see of feel doesn’t mean I’m not intrigued by the concept, or that I have any better answers to offer in regards to the big questions regarding existence and purpose of life.

So don’t take offense. I mean, you can, will just be a waste of time-I’m not your enemy.

This all started earlier today during a conversation regarding my growing irritation at the misuse of authority prevalent in the world today. I suppose it’s always been that way, but with the internet and the Patriot Act, it’s just gotten so much more omnipotent.

The conversation started a day earlier, asynchronously with another coworker. She stated that the only difference between today and the world of George Orwell’s “1984” is that we don’t have government mandated morning “hate” sessions on the TV. The more I thought about it, I realized we even have that. There are countries that our government counts as allies every bit as evil as the ones our news outlets breathlessly try to convince us are a hairs breath away from unleashing the apocalypse. Orwell’s hate TV’s were more deliberate than Fox News stewing up hate for North Korea as they ignore Turkeys treatment of it’s citizens. Why does Turkey get a pass? Easy, they’re allies. Our government works with their government, and turns a blind eye to the way they've been treating Turkish citizens the same way they tried to diminish the Occupy Wall Street protests.

Am I saying that the government controls the news media? Absolutely not, don’t be ridiculous. That would violate the first amendment. What I’m saying is that the same people that control the government control the news media. Corporations have used lobbying, direct and indirect payoffs, and other spheres of influence to dictate legislation for decades. Corporations are multinational, multi-market hydras that more often than not operate as though they are above the power of most governments, because in most respects, they are. Assuming continued profitability, they are immortal, with each generation of leadership learning the ropes from those that came before, continually replenishing themselves with new blood and new ideas. The ideas change, but the objectives stay the same-profit and power over the countries in which they do business.

If they don’t want to pay taxes in a particular company, they can either move their operations to a tax haven, or simply use shell corporations and off shore banking to hide their profits. Example? Apple. Click Here

If has reached the point where intellectual property theft or gaining unauthorized access to digital systems has become a less severely punished crime than rape, assault, even murder. Examples? Click Here and Here

With the support of such powerful entities, it’s no doubt easy for the government to feel they are deserving of the power of omnipotence (a traditionally "godlike" power) via electronic means over the internet and satellite and drone surveillance in the real, all under the thinly veiled guise of national security. Example? Click here

And it’s been going on even before the internet. Example? Click Here

Omnipotence? Omnipresence? Apparently I’m not the only one that takes the concept of God as metaphor seriously. The only difference between me and the powers that be is that I don’t want to BE God. We really shouldn't be surprised, its what they do, see an unexploited market and try to corner it.

It has been said that faith (and by extension, God) is nothing but a system of control. I'm not qualified to make that kind of call, but I believe it has been employed to that end often enough by unscrupulous people.

If you accept that some people believe God is such, then it's an easy jump to go from there to groups of people believing that they can be godlike if they simply amass godlike powers. Becoming all seeing/hearing, such as the PRISM program recently uncovered, is one such power. And make no mistake, this is all about power.

Between the government waving flags of FUD (Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt) in order to get us to consent to becoming glorified mats in a maze, and big business telling us to accept what they are offering because they've already colluded with all of the other companies in their industry to provide little choice, it's easy to feel let down by it all. Examples? Exhibit A Exhibit B

Then I thought.....wait a sec, God lets people down too.

Then I thought about it (some more), and I wondered why I felt that way. My personal philosophy on god is that if a god exists in the mold of what most Americans believe, then he surely isn't concerning himself with whether or not you pass your math test, or about the results of the pregnancy test your girlfriend just pissed on in the bathroom, no matter how hard you pray.

I very much believe in the concept of “god” as a metaphor, or at least that is the extent we can understand him/it. If god is to be everywhere, and a part of everything, then by extension wouldn't that mean that god would be a natural, physical force?

Every time I read about dark matter, the mysterious substance that physicists have only recently developed the means to detect has it’s fingers in everything around us, but we can neither see it unaided or understand it, much like god. If God is impossible to understand, and only asks for our civil obedience in order to allow us a happy life/afterlife, then how is it much different than what the government/corporations are doing?

I mean, if you are able to put your faith in god, an entity that you have neither seen nor heard (practically, not metaphorically), then why is such blind faith impossible in corporations or our government? I believe that the government and most major corporations to be merely out to satisfy their own self interests. That sounds so obvious when I read it back (does that count as editing? lol), but so many people in this world confuse evil with selfishness.

In writing, antagonists are far more believable when we know their motivation. Corporations have obvious motives, as do corporations. God's (again, if he/it exists) motivations are a mystery. I use the term “if” with god not because I don't believe, but because I'm open to possibilities, like any good Agnost. Like characters in a novel, god is an incompletely defined entity, and each of us fill in our own motivations and thoughts where description proves insufficient.

God is given the benefit of the doubt because often faith involves what you want god to be, because there are various theories as to what god actually IS. That makes people of faith able to make god whatever they need (often a good thing), and frustrates atheists by appearing as another “rubber sheet theory”. Another way to say it is that faith is a deeply personal choice, much as (to a lesser extent) the companies and government officials we choose to endorse or do business with (Apple fanboi's, I'm looking at you).

The fact that they are much more clearly defined in our physical world makes them fallible in ways that god can be excused from. A lack of quantifiable knowledge of god allows us to fill in those gaps with a hope that is beyond any would-be surrogates (government and big business).

Here is where I get to my point. The most popular concept of God is of a loving caretaker, a creator, and ultimately (either directly or through his children), a savior. Governments and corporations can never be this for us (regardless of belief that god can be or not), yet we continue to allow them to take on more and more of that responsibility with every expansion of the Patriot Act or trivializing of the Constitution. The more we allow them to concentrate power and influence in the hands of a few, the more we will deserve the subjugation that will follow.

Chris Godsoe

Developer

Christopher Godsoe is a science fiction author in Central Maine. A single father, he spends his time enjoying video games with his son, cooking, and is an unrepentant film buff.