This blog contains material I wrote and posted on multiply.com between the years 2005 and 2011 only. It does not contain any new material. For newer writing, please check my main blog (Bill the Butcher).
Monday, 26 November 2012
The Parable of the Cup
So spake the Exalted Brother to his People, in the Time of Trouble:
Brother and sisters, these are testing times!
As you know, we of the One True Faith refuse to wash our cups. It is a terrible sin with us. It has been a terrible sin with us since the days when our True Founder, God’s Anointed One, first established this, our Faith, in the sands of the Great Desert on the other side of the world.
Now why did the Founder order us not to wash our cups? Is it not true that he did so because only the sharing of the cup seals the true Relationship between people, makes of them Brother and Sister, all equal in the Faith? Is that not so, my Friends?
Yes, it is true, perhaps, that the Founder lived in a Society where water was so scarce that to waste a drop was a Mortal Sin; and so, perhaps, in such a society cups might be left unwashed that Water might not be Wasted. But still, oh Brothers and Sisters, how can that, alone, be the basis of our Beloved Founder’s Holy Pronouncement? We know from His life that each word that dropped from His lips came not from common dross, not from the petty concerns of the daily grind, but from Inspiration most Divine, do we not?
Therefore, in response to His command, we refuse to wash our Cups, though we do live in a land where – by His Divine grace – water flows and we want not. It is our Duty to Obey the Holy Word.
But now, the forces of Evil, in the shape of the Doctors and the Men of Science, tell us that we must, with the most immediate effect, wash our cups. They tell us that the dread Disease that is ravaging the World, this Rotting Disease that affects the face and destroys the brain, is also spread through Unwashed Cups. Brothers, Sisters, ‘tis but the Ploy of the Devil; for the Rotting Disease is God’s Ordained Punishment upon us for our sins. And it is spread by a hundred other means – by kissing, by eating of the same Fruit, by other Means as yet Undiscovered, and by such other Acts that are Abominations in the Sight of Our Lord. But the Devils’ Disciples ask us to Wash our Cups, tempting us directly into Mortal Sin.
Brothers and Sisters, see ye the Trap that awaits Us? By tempting us to Sin, the Disease will not be halted – no, verily, it may spread even Faster because of the False Belief that washing Cups renders one Immune. Therefore, Brothers and Sisters, refuse ye to Wash the Cup; and Spread the Message among the Multitude – that the Cup Must Never be Washed. And verily the Lord will reward you in the Afterlife of Joy.
All right, I know that’s stupid. It was meant to be. But the travails of a Religion of the Unwashed Cup in the face of a cup-borne Face Rotting Disease is a close parody of what happened in Africa, where the former UnterhauptstürmführerWaffen SS Josef Ratzinger, sorry, I mean the former Josef Cardinal Ratzinger, alias “God’s Rottweiler” and the scourge of liberal theologians, sorry, I mean the Vicar of Christ on Earth, the Holder of the Keys of St Peter, the Pope Benedict XVI, said AIDS “cannot be overcome through the distribution of condoms, which even aggravates the problems". Now, while I believe every religious head has the right to be a nut in his or her own, unique way, that right stops right where it becomes inimical to the health and well-being of people. For example, if it was a bearded and turbaned gentleman with a Muslim name who proposed that his religion enjoined on the true follower to take up sword or AK47 and wipe out the evil infidel, everyone would have been very properly horrified, even if not a single one of this person’s followers had taken him up at his word. But then, when Herr Ratzinger says that condoms should not be used, he is going as far beyond the bounds of religion as the aforesaid bearded gentleman. He is, in effect, denying to his co-religionists, who have been taught that he is infallible, the only reliable and effective tool most of them can have access to which can protect them from HIV as well as other sexually transmitted diseases. The little fact that it can also help achieve a measure of population control in an overcrowded and desperately impoverished continent isn’t really relevant to this, but of course denial of contraception is another of Benedict’s pet causes.
So, if a religious madman can ask his followers to go chop heads, and a few of them go out and chop a few dozen heads, it’s a crime. But if a religious madman asks his followers to deny themselves the only means they can avail of, to protect themselves from a deadly disease, isn’t it equally a crime? Which of them ends up killing more people?
I’ve read that sources in the Vatican say Benedict, who also recently reinstated a Holocaust denier, is a disaster. But they’re stuck with him, for as long as he’s alive, since he doesn’t have to and will not ever relinquish power. Nor can they have ever expected anything different from him, with his history of persecuting all liberal strains of thought during his stint as Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, where he got his nickname. But they still elected him.
Of course, it isn’t as though the Vatican hasn’t other problems. Here in India, for instance, a former nun named Sister Jasme has just written a book (in Malayalam, unfortunately, a language I do not speak, so I’ve seen only a few excerpts in English in the papers) in which she describes the priests using the nuns for sex and so on, the lesbian relationships that grow in the convents where nuns seek solace in each other and so on – all mortal sins according to Benedict and his ilk.
What was it about the pot calling the kettle West African?
Oh, and the Vatican is now debating the profound question of whether it should call for a boycott of Dan Brown's prequel to The Da Vinci Code, called Angels and Demons.