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October 9, 2010

While at Job Corps, I spent a lot of time thinking about the polar nature of good and evil, right and wrong, God and Satan, and even of reality itself. I realized how fragile that morality was, how just by changing one’s mindset everything about life, morality, and even reality itself will flip-flop.

By just polarizing one’s mindset, evil will become good, wrong will become right, Satan will become God, and blasphemy will become piety. With just a little imagination, a criminal’s perversions become beauty, a murderer’s killings become a skill, and a necrophilia’s cravings become an acquired taste. By polarizing the way you look at life, everything changes to the reverse, and everything you once thought was “right” becomes “wrong”.

With so fragile of a moral base, and a faith so easily manipulated, how can people continue holding fast to their beliefs? In seeing how a simple change of mindset can change everything, surely people should realize that they are not in control of their beliefs, that they are merely being conditioned to believe what they do!

The common-sense fundamentalist response is quite predictable: “I can believe what I believe because morality cannot be changed! Those who can be changed in their morality by changing their mindset are crazy! A person in their right mind would know what true morals are, what God’s morals are, and live accordingly!”

Rather than confronting the close-minded fundamentalist, I instead let history speak for me. If you cannot be convinced by Dark Ages, the crusades, and the Salem witch trials, then surely you are so blind to the truth that you will never know. For in these profound historical events, the truth was wrought with corruption, disease, blood, and suffering. If your morals are so right, then why is it that people with the same piety to which you hold have brought so much evil to this world?

Morality is not absolute, but a dynamic phenomenon that changes to adapt to society. The separation of church and state has become as a blurred aberration, with religion and society becoming one. The polarity present in morality is so real that it’s scary; we cannot any longer avoid it, but only accept it. Fundamentalists reject it, and thus are manipulated by it. I seek to know it through and through, that I might be in the world, but not of it.

By just changing my mindset, I can see rape as beauty, and paedophilia as an acquired taste. While I do not believe these statements to be true, the mere possibility of their truth, and the ability to consider them as possibilities makes this human gift (or should I say, “curse”) a frightening one. To consider all possible realities as equally valid can drive a man mad, and to live according to realities that deviate from that of society will make that appear as mad in accordance with societal standards.

With just a “binary switch”, good will become evil, and evil will become good. With such a fragile standard of morality in place, a person’s life can indeed be naught but a temporal existence, living not only on borrowed time, but on the whim of a precocious and ever-dissatisfied society. The fundamentalist is in this respect and idealist, because he wishes for a static morality that simply cannot and will not exist.

Morality is dynamic, just as we are dynamic. If keeping up with society’s moral “trends” is a necessity for social survival, then surely “open-mindedness” is a crucial necessity for any of us who wish to survive. I feel sorry for fundamentalists, who, being close-minded, are doomed to deteriorate back into “the dust from whence they came”, from the evolutionary standpoint they are now nothing but a dying breed.

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