Thursday, April 06, 2006

Judas the Martyr

This has been a faith-shattering day for devout and fundamentalist Christians alike if they follow the news. Earlier today, scientists released their discovery of the "missing link" between the sea and the land -- the "Tiktaalik" (pronounced tic-TAH-lick) meaning "large shallow water fish." Hopefully, this goes a long way to destroying the notion that humans somehow miraculously or supernaturally appeared on earth due to Providence.

But better yet, biblical scholars have discovered the long hypothesized "Gospel of Judas" where Iscariot is not the betrayer of Jesus, but the facilitator of freedom and salvation -- which meshes with Kazantzakis/Scorsese's version of Judas in The Last Temptation of Christ. Here Judas does not betray Jesus but follows his orders to give him to the Roman authorities so he may fulfill his destiny.

Historically, what this shows is that the canonical gospels are a product of politico-historical forces that have no connection to the supernatural's so called will over the universe's history, i.e. the truth. The biblical narrative thus becomes a new elite's machinations to control the faith to increase their own power and prestige, although I'm sure many believed their interpretations were correct, nevertheless with no empirical proof to base their judgement on -- never forget thousands upon thousands have died questioning this dogma.

What this goes to show is that something you're taught to believe unquestioningly is something always to be skeptical of and questioned. It's really that simple. The truth is always the truth, no matter how hurtful, disconcerting, or faithless it maybe. It should always be able to withstand questioning, no matter how intense. Those who question received "truth" provide a valuable service, they are gutcheck we all need when we take "the truth" for granted.

Questioning is also an action that intellectually separates the children from the adults. Those that go on believing childish things remain children, while those who face the universe in all its bleakness and perpetual nothingness remain courageous. They are the ones who see the darkness and meaningless and resist, producing a humanity that pushes the boundaries toward spiritual and political liberation because they know one thing -- this is the only chance we have to make a go of it.

I believe Jesus would agree.