On a review of Durkheim:
As an ex-Catholic, misled by ten years in a Dominican Academy and three
in a minor seminary, I find the pseudo-theologizing of Durkheim
yawnable. I'd say you only need a solid family to grow up in, not the
phoney promise of an eternity of pleasure or pain, depending on how
independent your ethical behaviour has been. When Walt Whitman asserted
that the hinge of the human hand puts to scorn all machinery, and that a
mouse is miracle enough to stagger sextillions of infidels, I see no
need for religion. Piety yes, but Belief? Blah. I was taught that
mankind was only a few thousand years old.
And an unfeeling God the
Father sent his only begotten Son on earth to save humanity from itself.
What childish fantasies. Although I taught American Literature as a
profession, I soon realized that its Exceptionalist attitude was simply
false Puritan theology, slyly politicized. If I had it do over again (my
life that is) I'd be a paleontologist, using the greatest gift, reason,
to speculate on how life began billions of years ago, by studying the
everyday miracles of fossils.
My 5 year old son, Danny the Dino Man, has
converted me. When I regard the most recent new religions like
Mormonism, Scientology, S.Korean Moonbeamery, and most disgusting of all,
the TV evangelists who promise you riches if you pray (prey?) hard
enough, I shudder in disgust.
My Heaven is the lucky gift to be alive, treating others the way
you love to be treated. The miracle of conscious life is the only one
that interests me. The rest is polsyllabic palaver.