God Shmod

Posted: July 17, 2011 in Uncategorized

You know those people, (usually celebrities), that you’ve never met but still hold in high regard. For my money, Bruce Willis is one. Bruce is the epitome of cool. It seems that he would be as comfortable having a beer in the dingiest of pubs as he would walking the red carpet of a Hollywood blockbuster premiere. I have never seen or read an interview that left me thinking he was a bit of a tool. The way he handled his and Demi’s divorce and her subsequent marriage to Ashton Kutcher left me in awe; safe to say that I had a bit of a man crush.

Reading Jane’s article today I was reminded of an interview I read with Patricia Heaton. (Don’t ask me why it reminded me of the interview with Patricia Heaton, my brain works in mysterious ways.) I always had a thing for Patricia Heaton when she was on Raymond. Mature age dame that always looked the business. I have read other interviews with her and knew that she had had plastic surgery, just enough to cure some wrinkles and other slight imperfections. I’m not a fan of plastic surgery unless it’s used to fix things like dog attacks, car accidents and machete wounds but, hey, each to their own. Whatever, I still liked Patricia Heaton.

So, I was reading this interview where she was talking about her new show, The Middle with The Janitor from Scrubs, and she started talking about her plastic surgery again. Okay, I’m still in. She then dropped the ‘G’ bomb and I’m glazing over. She didn’t just mention God like our black ‘homies’ do. You know, “I’d like to thank God for giving me more talent than you”. No, she was into ‘it’, talking about spreading the word of God to everyone and everything. I no longer liked Patricia Heaton.

There are other actors I have lost respect for because of religion, Jason Lee for instance. He may have been a pro-skater, played Brodie in Mallrats and named his kid Pilot Inspektor but Lee has fallen into the clutches of Scientology, along with bum brothers Tom Cruise and John Travolta. Scientology, to me, is the worst of the worst of religions that even comes with a built-in GST. How holy you are depends on how your bank balance looks.

Religion has been tackled more than once by the Tribune but I just can’t stay away, and neither, it seems, can religion. Can we make this clear? Man has always created his own Gods. They were first used to describe the workings of the Universe, eg. Ra, in his flaming chariot moves across the sky during the day to explain the Sun. Sometime in the past, about 400 BC, God cancelled his/her outsourcing policy and took back control of everything, at least that’s the way we who have been brought up in the Judeo-Christian system were led to believe. Maybe Telstra and Optus could have a look at this; although I don’t know how well it’s worked out for God.

Religion has been used to explain to people why their beloved ones died early, “They’ve been taken to a better place.” Why heaven would be so much better than being with their family and loved ones has never been sufficiently explained to me but there we are. It has essentially been used to explain every mystery in the universe until recently.

Why is it that we are now able to witness the birth of new stars and the death of old ones yet never have we come across anything which proves that God exists? Surely by now even the old boy would be thinking, “They may just need a sign.” We now live in an age where unless you can hold it, touch it and taste it it’s just not real. Most religious types will now, at this point, trot out the old faith argument and that you just gotta have it.

I’m sorry, I don’t have it. If I did want to believe that a fictional character from a book controlled the universe and everything I’d probably go with Terry Pratchett’s Rincewind. The universe seems just like the sort of mess that only he and his librarian mate could come up with. We are still told, however, that God has a plan. Good on him/her, maybe though, if he/she wanted the plan to come to fruition, he/she should let someone in on it.

Now, back to Patricia Heaton for a second; I couldn’t help but wonder what God would think of Patricia’s journeys under the medical knife. Surely if you believed that deeply in God wouldn’t you be prepared to let yourself age gradually and gracefully, a la Helen Mirren? Wouldn’t plastic surgery be an affront to God’s handiwork when he/she created you? Or do these people justify it with some crackpot phrase like, God gave us plastic surgery so it’s a sin not to use it?

Ahhhh, no. See, man created plastic surgery to fix all the things that ‘God’s plan’ had done to people. (See aforementioned dog attacks and so on.) Man then saw the potential in creating insecurity in people so that they could use plastic surgery to make themselves more betterer.

What I keep asking myself is why the hell religion has hung around for so long? Is it that ingrained in our psyche that we have to believe or feel guilty if we don’t? Why do we have to go to a place on Sunday to feel closer to him/her? Why can’t God just fade away like other horrible fads, you know, men’s skinny jeans, fluorescent colour clothing, leg warmers and ugg boots…….ummm……wait.

This article first appeared in the February 2010 issue of The King’s Tribune.

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