Monday, June 9, 2014

Posted by Charles R. Marquette

 "The Christian god can easily be pictured as virtually the same god as the many ancient gods of past civilizations. The Christian god is a three headed monster; cruel, vengeful and capricious. If one wishes to know more of this raging, three headed beast-like god, one only needs to look at the caliber of people who say they serve him. They are always of two classes: fools and hypocrites."
                                                                                                     ~Thomas Jefferson


It is utterly impossible to drive, or walk, through a black community anywhere in the United States without noticing the glaring amount of backward superstitious huts we call “church”; where negroes herd together every so often to get a dose of spiritual zest administered by these jawing-neck-wagging negro preachers in their peculiar oratory style of delivering the same old worn out sermons and, also,to show off their Sunday best and await for the “second coming” of the king of a religion that was used to enslave them not only physically but mentally as well. Awaiting a “king” who presumably existed and roamed around Palestine jiving about lots of things but never spoke one word against slavery. This is a place where they go to grovel and wallow in their supposed unworthiness and seek “salvation.” Offering their god praise and presents by way of propitiation—a form of bribe to ward off his wrath, since he is a god that is well-known for being psychotic and bipolar thus easy to lose his temper and kill every freaking body and everything else.

There you will find one of these religious huts in every corner and in between—quite often next to each other separated only by a wall. And they keep building new and bigger ones as if we were having a shortage of them.

It’s no secret that religion was one of the main weapons used in the enslavement of our people—Islam and Christianity. And religion, of any kind, has been the means by which "hope" is maintained by a people without any basis for "hope." On account of this fact alone, we are certainly the people most justified to be anti-religion, to utterly despise religion and treat it with the upmost contempt—every one of them—but more so those of our oppressors; yet we seem to be the most religious people on the planet. But worse of all, notwithstanding those huts of death are the only institutions largely independent and run by negroes themselves, we have not developed a workable doctrine of our own, for own particular needs and circumstances, and instead, we have borrowed from the unworthy and loathing religious dogma of our oppressor; which has been worked out in conformity to the needs of the oppressor, his idea and value system. And as if that weren't bad enough, the center figure they worship and claim to be their "Lord and Savior," is a guy who looks just like their former slave master whom they romanticize and declare to have a "Personal relationship" with. It seems to me--given the horrific and length of suffering black people went through--that the ideal Jesus would look just like us; but instead, they have accepted a blue-eyed, blond-hair dude whose "suffering"--according to the scripture--amounts to nothing more than a rough weekend.

 This loathing doctrine impresses upon the oppressed the idea that they are worthless sinners in need of redemption, and that believing in the impossible is their only hope, so any pragmatic struggle to change their plight is futile and that, in fact, they should rejoice in their predicament because it has been “divinely ordained” by a celestial entity who will reward them for all their suffering, not here and now, but after they die. In other words, they should see, however warped and sinister it may appear, their pain, misery and suffering as actually a “blessing in disguise” that is part of a “plan” designed by this deity with them in mind. It’s then no surprise why all the good stuff religion promises will take place in some future and not in the present—at the only point of actual contact we have with reality. So in the meantime what they must do—tells them the religion of their oppressor—is to fix their affections on the invisible, regard this life as a probationary period, to wallow and grovel in their supposed unworthiness, and beg for the rest of their lives span for some promised “salvation.” The present is only for penance and to be grounded in doctrinal mandate. Arguably the greatest psychological damage, in my judgment, done to the negro people has been perpetrated by religion, and possibly the most difficult to reverse. Indeed they are in need of “deliverance”—but deliverance from the power and effects of religion. Complete liberation from ignorance and illusion if they are to regain their self-worth, their dignity and their sanity.

Very religious yet dysfunctional

Why are we, as a whole, so dysfunctional? Why do we, as a whole, fall behind everyone else in every respect? Why our communities are plagued with every social ill more so than any other community? An alarming 57% of our black children are born to black single mothers. Why the incarceration rate for black men is higher than any other group? Except for funeral homes, a few barber-shops and a couple of soul-food restaurants, what else do we owned in our communities? Where are our black-owned grocery stores? Where are our clothing stores, our furniture stores, our car dealership, gas stations? Where are the black banks with balls and backbone that stand on their own feet worth of mentioning? We produce almost nothing! We manufacture nothing yet we are the biggest consumers! Every one of those business are owned by outsiders who are neither members of the black community nor part of the community and care nothing about blacks in general; and who come in, not to invest, but only to get our money while displaying an attitude of contempt and superiority and yet, in the face of all of this, we still support those bastards. This is fucking heart wrenching and embarrassing to any black with intelligence, pride and dignity.

So what exactly and how much has religion done for us? In terms of the advancement of our race, how useful has our spirituality been to us? If such is the condition of our people, despite we have a church in every corner and in between, then it’s a valid question to ask: What exactly has been the role of the church in our communities? And we have every fucking right to ask those questions. Common black folks are the sustainers of those churches. Those churches have collected $420 [billion] in tithes since 1980! I’m willing to accept—with some reservation though—the argument that often surface in defense of the black church whenever it becomes, with justified reasons, the subject of criticism. The argument essentially points out the important historical role the church [played] in the lives of black people during slavery and post-slavery in America. OK, fine, but what about today? Actually for the last one hundred years. Here I’d let the eminent Dr. Woodson explain it:

“While serving as the avenue of the oppressor’s propaganda, the Negro church, although doing some good, has prevented the union of diverse elements and has kept the race too weak to overcome foes who have purposely taught Negroes how to quarrel and fight about trifles until their enemies can overcome them.” 

Indeed we are very religious people—there’s no denial about that. Many negroes love to parrot, as if it were some special virtue, the tiresome platitude: “We’re a very spiritual people.” That cannot be disputed, but to that I will add that we are too spiritual to the point of absurdity, to the point of being irrational, to our own detrimental. Our spirituality hasn’t done jack shit for us in terms of the advancement of the race. That’s spirituality without substance. In fact, our spirituality is precisely what unscrupulous preachers prey upon. This spirituality is seeing by these leeches-preachers as a commodity to be exploited for their own personal gain. The sermons’ appeal, then, cannot be to reason and critical thinking but only to emotion to render the unsuspected vulnerable to be fleeced, to be exploited, to be robbed. Most of those religious huts are the preachers’ pimping posts where they swindle the gullible by means of deception. Appealing to their emotion, necessities, fear, and guilt trip, the sheepishly congregated bamboozled negroes are then fleeced monetarily and their spirituality made a joke of by these religious pimps with honed cunning skills.

Now, here’s something embarrassingly interesting. The religionized means of exploitation which has been going on for a very long time within the walls of these religious huts found on almost every corner in our communities, not only remain unchallenged, but have been rationalized, excused and justified by the very same people who fall prey of these well-kept institutions of failure headed, too many of them, by religious pimps, shrewd swindlers, tricksters, parasitic charlatans who know exactly what appeals to the deprived masses and thus the reason why they remain largely unchecked. Oddly as it may sound, the personal wealth of these skillful religious tricksters obtained by means of deception is, in some twisted way, a matter of pride for the victims. So any one who dares to expose or criticise those tricksters would be attacked by the victims themselves. Thousands more will continue being fleeced by these religious con men who go by the title of "Reverend," but any form of criticism will remain silenced. And this speaks volume of the single-mindedness, insurmountable cognitive dissonance, and sheer ignorance our communities wallow in. For anyone who wishes to study in-depth the “Stockholm Syndrome” black people can best provide a point of reference and arguably the best living example of it.

 The black church cannot entirely be blamed for the unwanted predicament most blacks find themselves in—that would be unfair. I know enough History to understand that the effects of slavery and post-slavery, as one independent variable, must be examined in conjunction with the effects of other variables. But that fact doesn’t exonerate the church from its role in keeping the great majority of blacks in their unending state of stagnation and inertia. For this is, in fact, one of the many variables contributing to the black people’s condition. Their sermons carry no message of pragmatism. Not as much as a hint of ways to finding practical and applicable solutions to the many challenges facing the black communities. After all these years they still haven’t developed, and there’s no indication they ever will, a doctrine and procedure of their own, for their own unique problems and circumstances. Their sermons are sermons of inertia, mental crippling, dependency, fear and false hope for the unattainable. On Sundays when the excessive display of emotions—evoked by the oratory style of these jiving-neck wagging negro preachers—and all the theatrical buffoonery is over, the negroes go home back into the same predicament they were in. Nothing has changed and most likely nothing will change because they were not given the tools to bring about change. They just were told to read from the bible this verse and that verse, pray and wait for Jesus--that's it! No plan of action for economical empowerment, moral and social uplifting of our peopple.

This is the stark reality of the condition of our people. It does reveal the tragic extent to which a dominant group can shape and control even the thinking process of the oppressed people. Blacks [may] have been physically emancipated but not mentally. The psychological shackle is conspicuous and deeply ingrained in their psyche. And the black church has been very instrumental in maintaining and reassuring that the blacks remain right where they are.

"I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use." - Galileo