So Dark the Con of Man
By hilary west
'So dark the con of man', is, of course, an anagram of 'Madonna of the Rocks', a painting by Leonardo da Vinci. It seems that Leonardo was a heretic, because he took everything the established Church had to say at the time with a pinch of salt. And, it would seem this phrase 'so dark the con of man' could be referring to the entire teaching and belief system of the Church. Is it in fact all just a murky, dark con trick? The Church's teaching that Christ was the son of God brought Christianity to the world. Are we not all sons of God, 'God' being the Natural World we find ourselves in? We all have a spirit, and this spirit is our own 'God', but to suggest God is outside of us, a Divine Creator Being, seems absurd. When we pray we are only talking to ourselves, our spirit within. No one has a direct line to God outside of themselves; that is against rational thinking and in the realms of fantasy. The power of our own psyche can maybe help us: this is the power of prayer if it exists at all. It cannot be anything else. To get people to believe in a heaven and hell after death seems pernicious, certainly if it affects your life to the detriment. Immorality won't help anybody, but the Church's teaching does adversely affect some groups of people, notably gay people. The Church suggests this group of people will go to hell and are not welcome in God's kingdom. Isn't this just fear, fear that sodomic practise will run rampant through society? Many societies in the past have recognized homosexuality as no bad thing, notably Roman society where leaders and soldiers took young boys for training and friendship. Sappho in Lesbos had many girlfriends before the time of Christ and was probably moral in her own way. There are many worse things, but it is society's rules that legislate against them, not only God's. Society can form its own governance and order without recourse to some of the fantasies of religion.
Is the Church's teaching just a kind of restraint on a public hungry for sex, banning as it does adultery? Is the Church a necessary social tool to prevent murder and mayhem, whilst not actually propounding absolute truths about who God is and what in fact we are? Victorian stuffiness linked to bible bashing put the kibosh on a lot of sin and debauchery. Well before the time of free love from the 1960's onwards, Christianity was a great contraceptive. Don't do it, said the Church, but this led to a lot of frustration and ultimately unhappiness.
Are not the pagan Gods of pre-Christian times much nearer to the truth, a true reality? If we see Nature as our God are we not in tune with the natural world in a much more realistic way? Pantheism and Christian Science are the only rational answers we have got. God is Nature. From the Big Bang on, Nature was creating us. Evolution took over and developed the world as we know it. All the scientific principles, including survival of the fittest, played their own unique part. Humans developed from fish out of the sea billions of years ago. If this seems too incredible, is this what really stops us from believing in Nature as our God. Is this why Man must create a God in his own image, in order to get an acceptable solution to the creation of this wonderful world? Too often because of Nature's fantastic intricacy, including things like the Golden Ratio, men stop believing in random chance and the power of Nature. Does the incredible beauty of the world demand a perfect creator? But Nature is beautiful and Nature can be perfect. God is Nature.
Man has worshipped the sun and the weather in pre-history. Nature could disappoint man because its principles always feature chance. Praying for rain, it would often remain dry when pre-historic man wanted his crops to grow. Everything depended not on God, but on what Nature dictated. Man then could not see that he could not influence his 'God' by making sacrifices etc. Sometimes Nature would deliver and it would rain, but this was purely down to chance, something man could not at this time quite grasp. It was all purblind chance. But if it did rain as he wished, the 'Gods' were on his side, and to a large extent Nature and Man are in a world where they are in harmony. Nature provides this harmony because Nature is wonderful. It has a harmony and a balance just like the music of the spheres that is incredible. Nature cultivates Man to a large extent by giving him what he needs to exist and prosper. If the conditions were not right for man on earth, he would not exist here, but he would probably exist somewhere else in the universe where conditions were better. Nature and Man go hand in hand because Man is a product of the natural world. Nature's God is Man and Man's God is Nature. If we are in harmony with the natural world it is because we have grown up alongside our Mother Earth and our Nature God. We know Nature is our God, but unlike pre-historic man we know we cannot influence him.
'So dark the con of man' is a haunting phrase, isn't it? Just what has the Church been capable of throughout two millennia. It has always been a great money-making machine for instance. How many has it conned? And also, how many people have lived under the threat of damnation and fire and brimstone, sure they would rot in hell if they did not tow the party line of religion? Isn't this corrupt practise? The Old Testament God is a vengeful God: at least the second attempt at the creation of a 'God', the Christian God, is a better attempt. He is kind and loving and will take you in regardless of colour, minority status, etc. But how much better is the truth. If we are true to ourselves and the God within us won't we prosper and live good lives free from the shackles of a religion that picks and chooses its members? You must come to your own conclusion naturally on the nature of 'God', but it is only you can decide and only you can make yourself happy by listening to that inner voice that says be yourself, do your own thing. If it is all a 'dark con' surely we must get wise to absolute and rational truths. It is a necessity !