Tuesday, September 26, 2006

A quote to think about

I found this while researching one of my favorite topics, crazy religious fanatics:
"The fiercest fanatics are often selfish people who were forced, by innate shortcomings or external circumstances, to lose faith in their own selves. They separate the excellent instrument of their selfishness from their ineffectual selves and attach it to the service of some holy cause. And though it be a faith of love and humility they adopt, they can be neither loving nor humble." -Eric Hoffer "The True Believer"
While a quote like this requires a wider span of time to contemplate, and I have no information about its author, I have a few thoughts/interpretations:
Many so-called "Christians" who advocate murdering abortion doctors and intolerance of homosexuality, go on "missions" to pass out Bibles rather than food, are acting out of self-interest, not devotion to any higher power. In religious groups (or any other fanatic sect of similarly downtrodden people), they find an outlet for their need for power, in the assertion of "superior" beliefs. Religious ideals of mercy and compassion can't be shown, because their goal is to assert their superiority, not to help anyone. Not that all fanatics are selfish. Some genuinely believe they are doing "God's work," either through self-delusion or a misinterpretation of holy texts. Like I said, this requires more time than I currently have to give it full justice.
This quote reminds me of something Colin Wilson wrote in A Criminal History of Mankind, that some people have a need for dominance and, in the absence of a specific, positive talent to get them noticed, they turn to criminal behavior, for which the only prerequisite is a lust for power and a lack of conscience (if the crime isn't motivated by a specific economic need as well, but like John Haigh, murderer for profit and pleasure, "There are easier ways to make money.") as a way to assert the power and superiority they believe they have.
I better stop now, while I'm ahead, before I write something stupid. I just wanted to post a blog that was more than me whining about the lack of love in my life. In the face of my depressed ramblings and absence from public life, I have gotten great support from friends, including Jennifer, who invited me to Midian tomorrow night to be free of my problems with men. I'll try to go, since her invitation was so kind, and I really need to get out, but weeknights are never good for me, especially without a car, and I'm still worried about running into a certain someone. But if I feel up to it, I'll see Jennifer, Sharon and Amanda at Midian tomorrow night. I'll just tell myself if I see that guy, I shouldn't care, because he has made it clear that he doesn't care, and there are far better guys for me out there, along with some great friends who continue to invite me places to cheer me up, even when I more often than not don't show up because of stupid flashes of melancholy. I haven't been to Midian yet. I really should check it out. Being alone in my room with only my thoughts can't be too good for me, even if I do see a certain guy if I go out. Better to confront it and decide firsthand that I'm better off without him than to keep mulling over things alone in my room.

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