Monday, June 08, 2009

Haunted by Heresy -- the Irish Catholic Church/Monotheistic Dilemma: James Carroll's editorial in The Boston Globe June 8, 2009 "Haunted by Irish rosary beads" (link below) about the extensive and endemic child abuse of specific institutions within the Irish Catholic Church astounds me. His article overcomes me with incredulity how a specifically religious institution devoted to comfort brings not comfort but unspeakable cruelty to the members it serves. I, however, do not sit in smug judgment of other religious institutions. In reality, in my opinion, abuse and the staggering hypocrisy which is its offspring surely has not been the domain of one church.

Violent abuses have existed for years among the powerful religious hierarchies. I believe the blame lies not within one faith but within all faiths and is particularly evident in the most orthodox of the monotheistic traditions. The abuse we have seen, may have experienced and about which we have read walks hand in hand with a belief system which is based on the severe repression of, most especially, man's sexual appetite and that which is biologically frozen in his DNA. It begs for expression. When it cannot be expressed or when men (and women too) are condemned for even thinking their sexual thoughts, it will, by any means necessary, gain expression sometimes in the most abhorrent and unacceptable ways. Fundamentalist Christianity, Orthodox Judaism, Islamic extremism and other ultra religious sects are not among the innocents here. Sex abuse is not only within the domain of the Catholic Church but exists wherever the rigidity of a faith asks its adherents to do that which they cannot possibly do. There is nothing healthy, God-like or good in the suppression of that which cannot possibly be suppressed.