Monday, 13 February 2012

A thorny point

The burning bush

From where the crackly Voice doth speak

I am who I am

detail: from Anselm Kiefer's Ich bin der Ich bin
now showing at Essl Museum, Vienna, Austria

In Salzburg in 2003 Anselm Kiefer said: Science cannot tell us where we come from. Nor can theology, which purports to be a science. This is why stories exist and mythology which tries to explain something in a non-scientific way, knowing that there is no ultimate explanation or meaning.

The point here is that we are, or at least I am, 4,000 years after the burning bush event, dependent upon the veracity of a few words written in a much manipulated book called the Holy Bible; words pertaining to the identity, or the name, of a mysterious speaker claiming to be the LORD and also therefore my God.

I'm sorry but I fear the evidence is sadly lacking and I cannot accept the tale as anything other than an allegory, that is to say a symbolic and ancient narrative.

I am, if truth be told, being asked to accept one man's story, which may be pure fiction, as an actual event. Call it lack of faith if you like, but I cannot go down a path which asks me to believe that God, the supposed Creator of the universe, was hiding inside a burning bush, or was speaking through a hidden pipe from a nearby cave.

I prefer to see a God who has no need to resort to conjuring tricks, hallucinatory drugs, threats, fear mongering, and tall stories in order to recruit some followers. My God of the billion billion galaxies is not hiding in a thorn bush in the Middle East spinning mysterious riddles . . . that's what spiders are for.


  1. Hi Pat, It's just my take on what we the proles are asked to believe - no not even asked - bamboozled, threatened, cajoled, bullied and brainwashed as small children. One only has to read a few pages Young Austerlitz by W G Sebald - the section where the boy was adopted by the Calvinist in Bala. My father had to go to Welsh chapel 3 times every Sunday when he was a boy. A lot of good it did him . I don't think.


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