Saturday, December 30, 2006
Is the Golden Rule really golden?
I just spent an edifying yet non productive day reading a friends blog comments. I guess I do get credit for filing 3 months of invoices for a company that I work for, but though that could be described as productive I found it rather mind numbing.
The edifying portion was reading the comments on the Christian Blog site. I was amazed that people who claim to follow the teaching of Jesus and who supposedly have a close relationship with God could be so self absorbed and pretentious. Maybe my Sunday school teacher did not do a good job with me, but I thought followers of Jesus are supposed to have humility and embrace humanity.
The Christians on this site were more involved with debating why a human should value another human; coming from the stance that humans should not necessarily value humans, than preaching what I thought was the core of Jesus’ teachings: Brotherly Love.
The topic centered on the Golden Rule of “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”. My friend the atheist seemed more able to comprehend this than the Christian writers who broke the “rule” time and again by bullying the atheist – calling him names and demanding that he defend his beliefs, but never once backing up theirs.
The whole read was a lesson in true religious hypocrisy.
I have contemplated the “Rule” before and wondered about its true measure, because what if how I wanted to be treated was totally opposite to how my neighbor wanted to be treated? To assume the functionality of the Golden Rule we would have to assume that we are all the same and want the same things. I think it is safe to say that as humans we all do not want the same things. Not even intrinsic things such as world peace, love and health.
War mongers may hope the results of their conflicts will result in world peace, but the means to the end is certainly not a result of consensus of thought. Some want to fight wars, some want diplomatic measures employed. Most people want to be loved, but we all certainly do not seek love in the same manner. In fact most peoples approach to love is quite unique. There is the person who falls in love at the drop of a hat and tells the world; heart on their sleeve, while others that cautiously invert all feeling afraid of being hurt. We all want to be healthy; yet one person’s approach may be to exercise while another person might eat only vegetables while another will embrace the Atkins diet.
I guess my point is that the Golden Rule is good in an altruistic approach to life, but in actuality is not something that is achievable as we are all unique.
Hopefully my Saturday Knight will fill me with further enlightenment!