Sunday, March 31, 2013
Crucifixion and Love
I was raised in the Catholic Church but it never took. Even early on, I could not bring myself to believe in a God who thought the way to prove to his people that he loved them was to crucify his son. To me, there was a huge disconnect there. I guess everyone else took the statues and pictures of Jesus on the cross with a crown of thorns on his head for granted, as most Christians do, but I could never see them without a sense of horror. I still feel that way.
I looked through many pictures to decide which one to include in this post. Oddly enough, most pictures of Jesus on the cross don't show any blood or the wounds of his scourging. What? We can handle seeing someone nailed to a cross but we don't want to see the sight of the blood that would have been streaming down his body as a result? In this picture, Christ's arms are in a relatively unstressed position rather than drawn down in agony as they actually would have been. In many of the pictures, Jesus looks relatively serene and pain-free, although I doubt that would have been the case. So, we accept the crucifixion but we whitewash to make it seem not so torturous as reality would have been?
I call myself an agnostic because I don't know the answers. I lean toward reincarnation simply because it seems like a more just system than the roulette wheel Christians believe in. ("You, Baby Girl, you'll become Malia Obama and you over there, you'll be molested, beaten, hungry, cold before being killed at age 13 in a drive by shooting. Sorry, Kid, luck of the draw." I'm not adamant about reincarnation though. I don't try to convince anyone of its truth. Maybe when we die, everything just goes black. There may even be an afterlife, roughly analogous to heaven. I don't believe in hell though.
There again, the only kind of God I could believe in wouldn't send people to burn unto infinity for the most minor crimes anymore than he would consider nailing his son to a cross to be an example of love.