Paris

This week has seen the side of humanity that is psychopathic and insane. Listening to reports of how gunmen brutally murdered innocent journalists and descriptions of their barbarity towards those who exercise their right to free speech and democracy.

When something like this takes place closer to our shores it makes us take a fresh look at our lives and beliefs. Most would condemn such violence knowing it’s beyond their comprehension. How on earth could you ever live with knowing you had murdered so many people in such a cold and calculating way?

In these times of grief and pain though we see a side of humanity. The true side. The one that cares and loves. Those who have shown solidarity with the loved ones left behind by a tragedy.

Living a godless life and maintaining a humanist standpoint I don’t look to a god to blame but those who have radicalised and brainwashed those men who carried out the attacks. Those who have taken a religion a perverted it for their own means.

My thoughts are with the victims families and friends.

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Sin

Christians believe that sin was brought into the world by Adam and Eve’s disobedience in the garden of Eden. Man is now separated from God and therefore cannot have a relationship with him. The ultimate punishment is eternity without God. God gave his son so as a sacrifice for the bad things that people have done. A pardon or someone to take the blame.

I struggle with the concept of sin. Not that I don’t understand it but the fact that some Christian’s seem to regard some sins worse than others. As a humanist do believe that actions do have a consequence. Those actions that Christians believe are the most sinful seem to be to have the least consequence. The fact that two men or two women living together will have some sort of consequence on society. To fundamental / evangelical christians they believe that society will break down and the traditional view of marriage is destroyed.

In the UK we have had Civil Partnerships for nearly a decade. It was at the early part of 2014 that marriage equality was given legal assent. But some parts the church still continue to focus their energies on fighting gay rights. I think now it has become an unhealthy obsession to some.

Some of the most damaging of “sins” seem to be over-looked; Domestic abuse, theft, drug trafficking, fraud and sexual crimes. These all have long-lasting consequences for the victim of these acts. Yet the perception is that church isn’t interested in talking about an condemning these in the way that it condemns those people who cannot help who they fall in love with.

“Currently, regular church attendance in the United Kingdom stands at 6% of the population with the average age of the attendee being 51. This shows a decline in church attendance since 1980, when regular attendance stood at 11% with an average age of 37. It is predicted that by 2020, attendance will be around 4% with an average age of 56. This decline in church attendance has forced many churches to close down across the United Kingdom, with the Church of England alone being forced to close 1,500 churches between 1969 and 2002. Their fates include dereliction, demolition and residential conversion.” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion_in_the_United_Kingdom)

We are a post-christian nation. More people recognising that they have no religion. The concept of sin is an outdated one soon to become a historical notion or philosophical stance.

the barefoot tree

Still grumpy

Gari Wellingham

UK-based musical theatre geek previously living with a brain tumour!