Of glaciers and fallen angels.....

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I've still been trying to get a grip on my last post, but instead of the high school climbing wall, it's rather more a glacier, sheer face as smooth as glass. Was threshing (and I do mean threshing) around a few thoughts with the incisive Lucretia, but one in particular seemed to be gesturing to me in a way it has not done before. As often as a tragedy renders the victim incapable of living (not existing, but living), is it also overcome. Stories abound of people finding light were many saw only darkness. When I was a church going youngster, the church I had grown up in was attacked, leaving many dead and even more injured. And yet so many who were present now speak of the event with reverence, of how it was the source for so much good. And I'm not disputing that and I'm not speaking ill of the human capacity to transcend personal tragedy. The thought that has been twisting through my mind is this: If there is indeed a Creator, an omniscient presence, I don't think it a giant leap of logic to assume this entity is responsible for hard-wiring our brains to be able to continue functioning through high-level trauma. But when you think about it, isn't that just a little disturbing? That God (for want of a better term) foresaw the kind of trauma that would occur and thought, "Well okay, I'll just change a few circuits here and there, write a new line of operational code and hey presto!" But "Free Will!", I hear the masses cry. "God can't be held accountable for the sins of men." Let's just define this 'free will' thing that you all seem to hold so tightly to. Does a child not have free will? They make mistakes and learn how to manipulate and are the source of both joy and frustration. A parent may impose guidelines and institute a set of controls, but as is often the cry of parents around the world, you can teach them what you think they should know, you can ground them, fight with them, scream at them, love them; but they will still develop into their own person. That seems alot like the nature of free will to me. Yet I know of no parent who, knowing their child was about to endure unimaginable suffering, would let them walk straight into it. Yes death is a natural part of life. Murders happen, car accidents happen, planes crash.......I accept that and I accept that God cannot interfere with that. But what happened to that couple is not natural. And don't blame the devil either. A fallen angel who desired more power than he was entitled maybe, and that's a debate for another time, and he may be involved in a 'battle for souls', but to be the source of that kind of evil? I don't buy it. And for those who may worry that I'm off to slaughter a few kittens, drink their blood and get my freak on, don't. Skrambled is doing a good enough job for me. Although it may not appear so, I do keep an open-mind, and I'm not going to bash any who may comment from a religious basis. I'm just seeking a greater understanding. So if you think you know, please tell me.

7 Responses to “Of glaciers and fallen angels.....”

  1. Blogger Luke 

    Hey sharp! Thanks for the plug.
    The problem I have with this is the whole idea of trying to figure out who's to blame for it - in the philosophical context. I can't relate to apportioning the blame for this atrocity on God, Satan, Fallen Angels or any greater cosmic force that an individual happens to put their spiritual store in.
    This thing was committed by MEN, who were probably mentally unstable, drunk, high, fucked in the head, (all of the above) at the time.
    Gang rape is a reality, it happens all the time. This was an act of degradation and violence not just against those two people but against society as well. Rapists do not rape because they want sex, it is a complete Power trip for them - and that's, sadly, what this was about.
    That young couple were in the wrong place at the wrong time and if the man or woman had been sufficiently armed, this horror would have ended in an entirely different way, I suspect.

  2. Blogger Fence 

    I'd have to agree with Lucretia about not blaming god/gods/spirirts/puck of the forest. People are responsible for their own actions. End of story. Even if you do believe in a loving caring God, free will means that everyone has to be able to do what they want. Those fucks decided they wanted to rape and murder. The devil has an easy job, people are not nice, and it doesn't take much to get some to act in horrible ways.

    We had a case here in 2004 where teenagers gang-raped a woman. This is an extract from the Irish Times at the time of the case:

    "The woman's partner was locked in the boot of his car by the four youths before the rapes took place in the vehicle.

    The gang, three aged 16 and one aged 15, taunted the man as they attacked his partner. "We're raping your bird," one of the four told him. One of them also laughed in the woman's face and asked her for a kiss, while an accomplice was raping her.

    The Limerick city teenagers are: Thomas O'Neill (16), Darragh Ryan (16), both of Lenihan Avenue; Dean Barry (16), Garrglass, Ballinacurra Weston; and Jason Ring (15), Crecora Avenue, Ballinacurra. They pleaded guilty to raping the 35-year-old woman on January 23rd this year."

  3. Blogger the wheel 

    There are so many stories like that in the world. Maybe if there is a God, maybe he isn't perfect, as so many religions would have you believe. Maybe he/she/it realized after creating us that he fucked up big time and couldn't reverse it, so he/she/it added the additional operational code you spoke of to help people cope with the various malfunctioning individuals in the world who do such evil things.

    This is all hypothetical, mind you. I'm inclined to believe that some people are just animals that are fucked in the head, irrespective of any divine influence or even free will.

  4. Blogger JP 

    It's a terrible thing to have happened. What's even more terrible is that things just like it happen everyday. I'm reminded of the US and Uk armies, who ,arch into a country to libterate it from an evil dctator, and then proceed to visit personal atrocities upon the citizens of that country.

    You know what? People are no good, That should come as no surprise, ever. Perhaps what we should puzzle about is that people are ever capable of commiting acts that aren't cruel, selfish and wrong.

    Just my 2p.

  5. Blogger banzai cat 

    Eh, talk about fortuitious. I'm currently reading James Morrow's "Blameless in Abaddon", 2nd of the Godhead Trilogy. Very apt.

    Personally, I believe people are stupid, not evil. But we have hopes that stupidity will weigh on incompetence heavily enough to bring out goodness in the day. I know, I'm a bit of an optimist.

  6. Blogger forgottenmachine 

    "Perhaps what we should puzzle about is that people are ever capable of commiting acts that aren't cruel, selfish and wrong."

    Ah, JP, a cynic after my own heart.....

  7. Blogger ScroobiousScrivener 

    First off: I'm not religious, and I don't tend to think in terms of blaming God/Devil/anyone but humans for human or natural atrocities. Having said that, though, I don't think there's any contradiction between believing in a good and powerful God, and observing the horrors of life. Especially once you accept the good that can come out of evil, as you yourself have remarked on.

    God* is not a parent. Is obvious: God is not human. Human parents are hardwired through evolution to protect their kids, and that instinct can even override their usual ethical choices - for instance, parents who help their kids cover up for a crime that they do not condone. Let's assume that God's non-human motives are somewhat different. Let's imagine that the ultimate purpose of life is, say, learning. Some people will succeed in learning; some won't; some will learn only that without an interfering God, they are free to be as evil as they like, and will go party. God doesn't specifically intend this to happen, but he's also not going to prevent it happening, because he's not motivated by the desire to protect. If he were, one might even wonder why he bothered to create this world. Safety does not = learning; without learning, what's the point?

    That's one theory to ponder, anyway. I have to add that in my own fucked up life (and I got some stories, yo), there is absolutely nothing that I regret, because out of all the bad stuff came good stuff. I think that's how it's supposed to work.

    * Not his real name ;-)

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