How do we talk about God? My parents and friends never bothered. One of my early memories is watching a scene in a movie where a witness in court swears to tell “The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help me God”. I remember thinking to myself, well that’s not going to bind him to anything. He can lie his ass off and have no real consequences if God is all that is holding him accountable.
The culture in which I grew up was extremely sheltered in many ways. At a macro level, times were good. The 1990’s saw the ‘end of History’ declared as the Soviet Union lost its marbles. Capitalism and technology was sorting the Western World out, and there was to be an inevitable march with Democracy across the globe. The good news was bound to spread fast. Democracy, Capitalism and Science had won. God was dead and we killed him.
Closer to home, my family never needed to run, to fight, to fear, or to search for much meaning. We had all that we needed right in front of us. Our schools were good. We thrived at academia and sport. We had money, friends and community. The general idea for success was to just keep doing what we did. The only real danger was corruption in developing nations, the ozone layer, conservation or climate change. Humans were sorted in the most important parts of the world, it seemed, so let’s educate the rest and look out for the environment.
That old equation seems a little naive and simplistic. Life is heavier than I thought. Yes, I was young in the 90’s and 00’s so I clearly missed some of the complexity going on around me. But now we are all connected to the internet and we’re not all following the same script. Instead we’re hiding behind touch screens. It feels like a time when belief in a higher power would be helpful. But what do I know? I’m just a chimp with cans.