Comments on the post a few days ago have exceeded my expectations; how about this for an off topic turn:
I have a very interesting friend out here who has his own version of current events. I've read a LOT of far-out things since I began studying communitarianism, but this theory is just so horrible and unbelievable I usually bust out laughing when he gets really into explaining it (I'm one of those jerks who laugh when they're astonished). It goes something like this:
He insists there are more than one species living on the planet. He says all the different "stages" of man's evolution were designed to keep us from learning the "truth" about the difference between us. He uses a lot of Biblical history to back up his theory (as do Marrs, Ike et. al.) He says the difference between the two main species is hu-mans are a DNA experiment who have an alien conscience, and that the way to tell the difference is how they react to being "caught" doing something immoral. He says the human will feel guilt and shame but the man will only worry about being caught. His theory is that "man" does not have the capability to feel remorse and ultimately is nothing more than food for the carnivorous hidden alien rulers. He says I am "obviously" human and that my job is to keep the cattle happy and calm before the slaughter, and he can't see why I want to "stir them up when it won't do a bit of good anyway."
I have to admit the first time I heard him explain his theory to me I went back to my tent and thought about it all night. I really do try to be fair to anyone who wants to tell me what they think is going on. But there's one thing these Wiccan/freemason religions seem to have in common, and that is they have NOTHING to hope for. They are the most depressing and defeatist beliefs I've ever been exposed to. Either we all have to die to save overpopulated Mother Earth, or we all have to die because the gods are hungy.
These beliefs do not incur a sense of obligation to "help" their fellow individual man next door. Had I been a Wiccan I would certainly never have undertaken ACL work. Ironically, the first placed I camped after I decided to go "homeless" in 2001 was a private park that had been used for Wiccan ceremonies for decades. Their little icons were everywhere, so the first night I went outside and announced to the manevolent spirits that I would tolerate their presence and avoid their alters only if they stayed out of my tent space. I stood there in the mist and lightly falling snow and I had no fear, because I knew in my heart that my weak, wavering and often non-existent belief in Jesus is more powerful than any petty "god" that needs sexual orgies to survive. So while I can't join in any discussion about what the Bible says or doesn't say, I can attest to the living presence in my heart of a power so overwhelming that I was compelled to drop everything in my life and work day and night for seven years to study the Plan. I have lost hope hundreds of times and I've shed a thousand tears, but then something wonderful always happens to change the way I feel. For bookworms like me it's easy to know exactly what I think. But it's difficult for me to examine my feelings, and I've never been able to explain them.
I know that one primary goal of the planners is to cause us to lose hope and give up.
John Milton defined Hell as something like, "hope never comes that comes to all."