Jack Saunsea’s blog features a recent entry entitled Are You a Tool?. You can read the post for yourself if you want to know what it says, but it led me to reflect on one of the things I consider most valuable and important: the autonomy and freedom of the living, of which we are so often deprived by various agencies with interests inimical to our own. Chief among these is the Christian, Moslem and Jewish God, who demands that our lives serve his purpose instead of ours, and thereby exacts self-abasement and life-sacrificing servility from us under threat of having us endure torment forever after death if we don’t obey. But pagans are no better, as they serve the interests of pagan deities, be those deities Osiris or Diana. In their case also, the deity is not the same as the worshipper, so that, at some point, the deity’s interests are guaranteed to diverge from those of the worshipper, and the worshipper will inevitably be ordered to sacrifice herself in order to benefit the deity. So the practices of Wicca are no less pernicious than the Christian “humbling youself before God.” In both cases, a person is forced to throw away her life for the benefit of something that is not even alive.
My term, “deaders,” refers to all self-driven entities that are not alive. These include God, Osiris, Diana, and some people’s conception of our own souls. I’ve heard the lying trope that “your soul is you” and scoffed at it many times. Your soul is NOT you. It is something completely different from you, something just as eternal as you are temporal, and therefore something that wants different things from your life than the ones you want. The living seek happiness during our brief lives. Our souls, meanwhile, seek to make us suffer for the sake of harvesting “experience” in order to discharge “karma.” That is pernicious exploitation of the living and is simply evil and wrong. Something should be done about it.
Yet what can be done about it? Probably not much. It’s unlikely that anyone can live without being infested with that parasite called a soul. We shall always be unhappy and tormented because of the Machiavellian manipulations of our own soul-parasites, which partly control us and deprive us not only of autonomy but of meaningful choice. That my own deader is permitting me to write and publish this is a wonder, but there is no doubt that it’s one step ahead of me even as I do so. Ultimately, the living are defeated by the very frauds that pose as our essences.
One thing we are able to do, however, is to stop believing the lies on which all spiritual leaders since the dawn of our species have cynically agreed in their public statements: the falsehoods that our souls are us, that we have some kind of debt to those who would exploit us just because they are spiritual rather than living, and that the servility to deaders that grants power to spiritual leaders is of any benefit to us, their flocks. Even if we are powerless to avoid unhappiness, we can still avoid being deceived. Ultimately, the only thing any of us has, and cannot be robbed of, is her conscience. It is in the name of that conscience we all share that I ask everyone reading this to defy the servility that those who would exploit us, demand of us. It might not do us any good, but the misery that deaders force us to undergo would be cleansed by the denial of our consent.