Circumcise

Circumcise: (v) to cut off the foreskin of a young boy a baby as a religious rite,

It is so much easier to believe in God if you don’t read the Bible. Opening up the Good Book immediately reveals some pretty bad things.

You can become one of those type of followers who rationalizes the meaning, or worse, places it in context with the times, but you always
look like you’re trying to explain the reasons that your uncle diddled his niece.

Simply reading the Bible often makes God come off as an asshole who is in charge of a bunch of sons-of-bitches. Especially when you consider there is supposed to be some significance in trimming off the stinky tip of a poopy-smelling penis.

Yes, at one time it was considered to be a spiritual experience which set the decapitated victim apart as being one of God’s “true people” instead of one of those still wearing a fleshy penis-hat.

You see how ridiculous it sounds?

That’s why I always insist it’s much easier to be an atheist than a believer. I, myself, am circumcised, because I grew up in Ohio, to parents who tried to be faithful to the Judeo-Christian standard, which insisted on trimming the pecker.

It has never done anything for me personally.

I’ve never had a conversation about it with anyone until now.

I’ve never had a woman gasp in delight upon seeing my circumcised unit because she was impressed with my choice.

I’m not so sure there was ever a reason for it, because later on in the Book the Apostle Paul makes fun of it and says it was completely stupid.

So I guess it depends on what chapter you read. If you’re only going to read the opening part of the story, you’ll believe that dick tips have special significance to God. But if you catch the story later on, you’ll realize that apparently God got over it, and no longer felt that it was in spiritual fashion.

 

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Atavistic

Atavistic: (adj) relating to or characterized by reversion to something ancient or ancestral.dictionary with letter A

So there’s a word for it.

I have described this condition many times, but never realized that the word “atavistic” existed. How blessed I am to have stumbled onto this idea of pontificating on dictionary words!

Because I certainly know that our society suffers from atavistic attitudes.

As I have tried to discern my ways and negotiate my path in this journey of life, I have found that every time I draw a line in the sand and say that everything behind it is holy, and everything in front of it is acceptable or up for discussion, I have repeatedly found myself redrawing the line in the sand–back a bit further each time.

  • It’s made me grumpy.
  • It’s made me wonder if I’m a sellout.
  • It’s made me curious if anything sacred actually exists.

But then one day I realized that my problem in life was that my own experience was not matching up with my proclaimed convictions. In other words, I was pursuing an atavistic lifestyle, which was often honoring the traditions of my parents or forefathers instead of what I discovered for myself.

I will go so far as to say that I don’t care what the Apostle Paul had to say about God. I am happy that he had an experience he decided to write down, but unless I have a fresh encounter of my own, I will have a tendency to defend his opinions instead of uncovering the truth for myself.

So when I realized that I was hearkening to former eras (which I discovered today was “atavistic”), I cleared my head and came up with three things I know to be true:

  1. I can’t share a vision, but need to have one of my own.

Even if my goals do not agree with everyone else, they must be borne out in my own soul, and believed in my own heart–without doubt.

  1. I don’t have the right to tell anybody else what to do.

That would include expressing disapproval. If I am a mature person, I will understand that it all plays out. Foolishness never ends up wearing the king’s cap. In the long run, it is deemed foolish.

  1. Being merciful is the only way I can obtain mercy.

Since I require mercy from time to time, I should probably be making deposits in case there would be a need for a sudden withdrawal.

Now, I will tell you–these three ideas were not common sense to my family and ancestors.

They are my experience.

They keep me from being out of step with my own conscience.

They keep me from being a hypocrite.

 

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Thank you for enjoying Words from Dic(tionary) —  J.R. Practix

Append

dictionary with letter A

Append (v.): to add to the end of a document or piece of writing.

Much truth comes out through silliness.

I have found this to be very accurate and on point.

When we’re unable to speak our feelings clearly, we often cast to the wind a sideways remark, later insisting that we were “just kidding.”

For instance, certainly the people who wrote the books of the Bible had no comprehension that thousands of years later, souls would be poring over their thoughts, seeking eternal insights for their internal workings. If they had, they probably would have added an “append” at the end, or a P.S. which read, “By the way, when I wrote Chapters 4-7, I was grumpy and suffering from indigestion” or, “Just kidding.”

Likewise, the delegates who attended the Constitutional Convention knew almost immediately that they had left out some very important ideas, so they added a ten-point “append,” which we now refer to as the Bill of Rights. (Also some of them from the Northern colonies probably wanted to take their quills and jot down an apology to the black race for the three-fifths assessment of their value.)

There isn’t anything I write each day in my columns and blogs that I would want to become everlasting “gospel” for humankind. Maybe I should close with T.I.C. (Tongue In Cheek). So I reserve the right to append all of my pennings almost immediately.

If we really believe that documents are divinely inspired, then we must clarify by saying that they are not divinely scrawled. Even in the process of inspiration flowing through the human being, it picks up some trash, ignorance and dirt along the way.

The truly intelligent reader of great manuscripts must possess the discernment of the spirit which inspired them.

  • So I listen to Beethoven not to worship his talent, but to appreciate the creativity and the frailty which make it human.
  • I read Thomas Jefferson knowing that he had higher ideals than his morals could acquire.
  • And I study Moses and the Apostle Paul from the Good Book, understanding that the yearning they had to be universal was somewhat stalled by their sheep-herder and tent-maker mentalities.

It doesn’t limit the beauty.

It just brings focus to it.

 

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Thank you for enjoying Words from Dic(tionary) —  J.R. Practix

Anglican

dictionary with letter A

Anglican: (adj) relating to or denoting the Church of England or any Church in communion with it.

If my only job were to teach and promote atheism, I would choose, as a platform for my presentation, to just share pieces of church history.

In no time at all, the most ardent believer, based upon the information I shared, would shake his or her head, turn his or her back and walk away from the “stinky pew.”

Why? Because faith is meant to be a leap, not a step.

When men like Martin Luther, John Knox and John Wesley decided to depart from the Catholic Church, they eventually got around to holding committee meetings about who they would become, and ended up keeping much of the religious ceremony, traditions and superstitions of the Mother Church from which they allegedly wanted to orphan themselves from.

Nowhere is this more evident than in the Anglican Church, which, when it came to America by boat, became the Episcopals. With its founder, Henry VIII (an unlikely theologian) it continued to take on the heavy burdens and abstract practices of the Church of Rome, while loosening the belt on the underbelly of less important issues.

It is the problem with the religious system–at least in the Christian faith.

Even though we have a movement which dubs itself Protestant, there really isn’t a lot of protesting going on. What actually occurred in the Reformation was a reaction instead of a revolution.

Rather than returning to the teachings of Jesus, which would have expanded the vision of the Christian movement to include all cultures and all people, the Protestants basically embraced the teachings of the Apostle Paul, while sprinkling in portions of Catholicism.

Therefore, Christianity is the most “choiceless” option of spirituality available. This is why many of our young people end up dashing among Buddhism, Muslim, Judaism and agnosticism. Even the denominations that are much more relaxed in their approach, like the Pentecostals, still maintain the seeds of the Vatican, with communion, offerings, trappings and ritual.

The Anglicans essentially left the church of Rome because their King, at the time, wanted a divorce. There’s nothing spiritual about it, and until we actually have a soulful awakening, returning us to the tenets of our founder from Nazareth, the church will continue to be a jumbled mishmash of ingredients, thrown together in a dark kitchen, baked in the oven … with the aspiration that it will end up to everyone’s taste.

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Addendum

Words from Dic(tionary)

by J. R. Practix

dictionary with letter A

Addendum: (n.) an item of additional material, typically omissions, added at the end of a book or other publication.

At the risk of offending those who worship religion instead of finding a gospel that loves people, let me say that I find it difficult to believe that a book that had its last chapter written nearly two thousand years ago and was compiled fifteen hundred years ago is not in need of so me addendums.

After all, we do it with everything else.

Yes, we call it the Bible and just to make sure nobody messes with it, we add the adjective “Holy” to its title.

But there are things within the confines of that book, or series of books, that tell us that the discovery of God and humanity is meant to continue through the workings of the Holy Spirit. There are strong indications that there should be further insights and perhaps additions as mankind progresses, constantly putting the whole concept of Christianity to a test drive.

Without this, we have the conviction that the Model T Ford is the culmination of all automobiles. We would never have gotten the Corvette Stingray.

Should the world be viewed in the light of the Biblical prose? Or should the Biblical prose be discerned in the light of discoveries made in our world?

Now there’s a great question.

  • For instance, since we found out that the earth is round, is it all right for us to go into the Holy Scriptures and find references to “the circle of the earth” and applaud those notations, setting aside any verse that’s “flat-headed?”
  • Since now we know more about shrimp, is it now all right for us to eat them?
  • Since we’ve abolished slavery, might we put in an addendum that all previous references to it in the Holy Book were erroneous “tippings of the turban” to the powers that were?

After all, the Apostle Paul said that only three things would ultimately abide: faith, hope and love.

So anything that increases our faith in one another and God, makes us more hopeful, and generates love is certainly worthy to be touted from one generation to another. Yet anything that poses that the Amorites needed to be slain by the Israelis, or that all men require circumcision in order to “trim up for heaven” might benefit from an addendum.

My feeling is that great ideas are not afraid of revision when that interpretation brings forth an even more stupendous transformation.

I believe the Bible because I believe in faith, hope and love. But I’m not afraid to allow science, wisdom, technology, archeology, geography, and just my own experience to enhance the pages … with greater and greater magnification.