Archive for May 24th, 2006

Where my church is

As you already know, I am an agnostic. But having been raised in Greece — a frantically-fanatically Christian nation — I have inherited some affection towards Christianity. But I make no mistake in my quest to satisfy the part of my DNA that seeks God: I don’t follow the churches and their dogmatic establishments. I try to find “God” in Christ’s teachings and not in the skies. Christ fundamentally taught two things: Love and Forgiveness. Anything else is blah-blah and made-up crap by people who grabbed the opportunity to create a new slave order that lasted almost 2,000 years.

Exactly because I practice Christianity in its core as taught by Christ, I can visit mass on any Christian Church (if I feel like it to). When I was in UK there were no Orthodox Churches near me, so when I had the need to go to a church, I was simply picking one between Agglican, Catholic or Protestant churches. Any would do. And any did do.

You see, when I go to a mass (very rarely), I don’t go to pray or praise that supreme being called God. I go so I can love and be loved. When people are part of a church that they deeply believe in, they tend to shine goodness. They all have a smile, they all feel part of a righteous community and are as helpful as they can to each other. People show their Good Self. Maybe because of fear of God in His House, maybe because that’s how they feel at the time, it doesn’t matter. What matters is that when you want to feel loved, you can, in ANY kind of Christian Church. Christians should not let stupid technicalities be in their way to practice the core: love (e.g. is Virgin Mary a near-Goddess? Is God-Son-Spirit one and three at the same time?).

I feel the same about Jews, Muslims or Budhists. I would be thrilled to enter their temples and feel the believers’ Good Selves too. The fact that these are different religions altogether does not make me deviate on my quest for love. Love is love, and if it comes by singing a Christian song or by reading the Coran, it ain’t matter as long as it’s pure.

Dimoulogy: I could not have said it any better

Today I celebrate my birthday: I am 33 years old. I made myself one of the nicest birthday presents I could ever have: I spent 5+ hours reading the whole blog of the Greek writer/poet/journalist/photographer/etc Nikos Dimou.

With Mr Dimou I had quickly corresponded in 1999 via email when he used to have a column at the “RAM” computer magazine. I argued against something he had written about the BeOS and Mr Dimou was very kind to actually print my reply on the next “RAM” issue. But I think that our arguments stop just right there.

Reading his blog gave me such hope. There are Greeks who are open minded, what a relief for me who can’t stand the ethnicism of Neo-Greece (or any country’s for that matter). He is such a wealth of information and logical thinking: Orthodoxy, chauvinism & nationalism, Christ, racism, Greek history, anti-americanism, globalization, education, are all issues scrutinized by him. He is a man without predefined borders, he is a free spirit, he sees the big picture by taking a big bold step back. When I was reading his opinion pieces it was like I was reading about my own opinions — but his are so much better phrased and organized. Also like him, in the past I was deemed “anti-Greek” by my readers, which is so far of the truth. Mr Dimou wrote an editorial that also represents me and explains why I say the things I say about Greece and Greeks.

With great sadness I read that he won’t update anymore this thought provoking blog, but instead has moved to another, one that will only serve as a personal journal. It seems that just as the Linux and Apple fanatical stupidity drove me out of, many old-fashioned Greek people who have replied on his original blog have left him a scar too and eventually drove him out of his critical blog. It’s sad, but I guess, when you are going against the mainstream, you are bound to get hurt. Nevertheless, his blog will hopefully remain there for every Greek to read and re-read. Even if these opinions will make some of the readers angry for having the rug pulled below their feet (”what do you mean that nothing happened on the 25th of March 1821?”).