Do you know what a conundrum is? Sure, you do. You may not know it by name but, very likely, you know it from personal experience, possibly many times, in your lifetime—certainly, I know I have. A ‘conundrum’ is a confusing, and oftentimes difficult problem, frequently offering two or more contradictory solutions—in other words, ‘bedamned if you do, and bedamned if you don’t ‘—seemingly no way to win.
A classic example of a conundrum is playing out on the world stage, right before our eyes, even as I write. The US and its allies are faced with a major conundrum regarding Russia and Ukraine. If they back Ukraine to the limit, they risk another world war and, possibly worse yet, a nuclear war at that. If they stand idly by, Ukraine will fall to Russia, and a potential NATO ally will be lost for the foreseeable future, possibly forever.
On a personal basis, which may apply to many from time to time, would be the conundrum a single parent faces with the sudden illness of a child. The parent needs to work its minimum wage job, but a babysitter arranged for at the last moment would cost as much or more than what the parent would make that day. As the old saying goes, ‘if you want to dance, you got to pay the fiddler’—no easy way out of a conundrum.
The conundrum I wish to address is that which organized Christianity finds itself in today. Just yesterday, I noted a twitter remark, made by a pastor, lamenting the fact that after six years, he and his wife and children were packing up and leaving. He related how when they moved to this place six years before, they envisioned their entire life there, raising their children and ‘tending the flock’. The implication of the twit was that ‘the flock’ had withered away—he couldn’t support his family there. I sense that exact scenario is playing out in so-called Christian religions everywhere. It has gotten so bad in the Roman Catholic Church, of which I am a member, that Pope Francis has called a two-year synod presumably to address the concerns of the membership and, possibly, institute some of their wishes—smooth their feathers–stop the bleeding.
The Church conundrum lies in this situation: on the one hand, the Church risks losing iron-clad control; on the other, it risks losing membership. Percentagewise, there are very few of us ‘old dudes’ around who remember the days of absolute dictatorship in the HRCC—I do. For the first thirty-five to forty of my eighty-eight years, that was the attitude of the church: In a nutshell, the church claimed its authority straight from the Apostles; it professed the Ten Commandments of Moses and, just as importantly, it professed and mandated the six commandments of the church (attend mass on all Sundays and Holy Days of obligation, confess at least once a year, receive Holy Communion during the Easter Time, observe all church laws regarding marriage, observe all days of fast and abstinence, and tithe in a general sense). A deliberate breech of any one of those sixteen commandments would be a mortal sin and would send one directly to hell if you died before confessing it—no questions asked. I can’t recall hearing a single mention of any of those sixteen commandments during my last forty years, and I have attended mass regularly. I think I know why. The Church, in its attempt to solve its conundrum, knows that we old dudes will be gone soon, and the young, having never heard of those ‘church commandments’, allows the Church to conveniently ‘swept them under the carpet’ as though they never existed.
However, a conundrum of loss of membership persists for the church to solve. If the church attempts to rear its ugly head of authority and dictatorship over our souls, young people will fall away at a greater rate than now. On the other hand, if the church loosens it iron-clad grip, it fears an even greater loss—so it punts with a synod. I strongly suspect this synod is designed to deceive people into thinking they are in control.
It has never been a policy of the church to admit its mistakes, such as the bad popes, the Crusades and their implications, the Inquisition, and the selling of indulgences—just to name a few. The church knows those of us who care will soon be gone and the young don’t know and do not care enough to investigate church history. I would be terribly surprised if, upon polling a thousand thirty-year-old and younger Catholics, even fifty of them would be familiar with any of that diabolical history.
The absolute only way the conundrums of religion can be solved is for all to recognize and admit to the essence of God as ‘A Perfect Rational being’. That would require the abolition of all known religion and start anew with a recognition and acceptance of The Worldwide Communion of Spirituality which means the recognition and acceptance that the image of God is imprinted onto each particle of energy of which everything in this universe is made–each particle is a mirror image of its generator, creator. Each particle is perfect in both form and function, each is indistinguishable from its counterparts, each is unchanging and unchangeable. Therefore, they exit in eternity. Collectively they are a mirror image of God–they are God.
Now, do you see that happening? Neither do I. After all, it has always been about power, control, and money—it still is. Such ideation would obliterate religion’s power-base and would immediately negate its need for existence.
If you will read my book, Wilderness Cry-a scientific and philosophical approach to understanding God and the universe, and its sequels, Peace in Spirituality, and Provocative Catholic, you will gain insights you never dreamed of. To learn more about me, you may like my semi historical and humorous little book, Growing Up in Fancy Farm Kentucky. They are available hardcopy and e-book, Amazon-Kindle and from me, firstname.lastname@example.org
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