The bible claims the source of humanity’s evil and suffering is our turning from the worship of god to the worship of nature, which the bible calls idolatry (Romans 1). I suggest the reverse to be the case. A return to nature worship is the key, and our tendencies toward isolation and destruction come from viewing ourselves as godlike, or supernatural (superior to nature). The worship of god is nothing less than the worship of human ego; the worship of ourselves and our own egos. Through their creation of god, humans have worshiped themselves at the expense of nature. The Bible’s view of humanity’s relation to nature is domination. God’s first command to Adam and Eve is to dominate: “God blessed [Adam and Eve] and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule… over every living creature…” (Genesis 1:28). According to the bible, humans are like little gods ruling over an animal-plant kingdom, using it how they see fit to establish their agenda. At the end of the bible (Revelation), God destroys most of the planet (animals, plants, and non-religious humans) through his judgments in order to establish the kingdom of Jesus. Throughout the Bible, God commands to be worshiped through the slaughtering of millions of animals in animal sacrifice, human sacrifice through his son Jesus, and finally living sacrifices in the form of millions of human spiritual slaves commanded to devote every thought and action to his service.
We have turned away from our original nature by isolating ourselves from nature. We have come to view ourselves as separate from nature, better than it, above it–somehow godlike. We get to do whatever we want with nature, just as god gets to do what he wants with his creation. Because of religion we have seen ourselves as separate from the animal kingdom instead of part of it. Because we have isolated ourselves from nature, we began destroying our own species and nature, for we turned against our own nature and nature itself–we are nature. We have become isolated from our core selves; we have forgotten who and what we are. We feel alone to fend for ourselves in a hostile universe because we assumed an orientation of hostility–and that is what we project onto all life. The idea of god is the promotion of the notion of separation, for anything associated with god is not natural; it is above nature or “supernatural.” If I am better than nature, any of my destructive actions can be justified. Anything that is seen in the terms of a god and not-god divide gets categorized into dominator and dominated categories. The not-god things, which include nature and the non-religious, become easy to kill because we have labeled them as less than, sub-divine, not holy, not us. God’s nature is destruction because he sees himself as superior to and separate from nature. He is ego, and ego must have its way at the expense of everything that is not a part of “I” – which is everything else in god’s case. In humanity’s case, it’s everything that’s not our species, and in Western individualism, it’s everything that’s not me, mine, or my people.
The key to healing ourselves and healing our planet is mending our relationship to nature, which is ultimately everything. A return to nature worship is the key, in the sense of worship as awestruck recognition. Even the religious find themselves worshiping nature, standing in awe of a sunset before compulsively attributing it to god. Once we understand that we are connected to everything, because we are nature, the notion that we are better or worse than evaporates. The notion that we are alone evaporates, for aloneness is an illusion that’s only possible when you don’t see your connection to everything else that is alive–and everything else is alive. The ego games of building empires, kingdoms, and religious constituencies becomes comical, because it’s nothing more than an act for attention by a bully who doesn’t know that he’s loved.
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