Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Fun With Contradictions

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church #239.

"[God] is neither man nor woman: he is God."

First, note the contradiction contained in that authoritative sentence. In a rational world, that sort of glaring blind spot would make logical folks question the validity of everything else the utterer of such an absurdity says about god.

Two, although the Catholic Church alleges that god is neither man nor woman, Catechism Paragraph 2 "The Father," which contains the above contradiction, refers to god in the unambiguously male gendered terms as follows: "Father" 96 times, "Son" 72 times, and "he" and "him" countless times.

Exactly once within this paragraph, the Catechism concedes "God's parental tenderness can also be expressed by the image of motherhood." Not as Mother, mind you. But as an abstract "image of motherhood," lest anyone take the idea of god as an actual female being too literally.

In spite of that one concession, that's still a hell of a lot of translating that women, mothers, and daughters have to do to see themselves reflected in god. Relatedly, that's a hell of a lot of reinforcement to men, fathers, and sons that they are synonmyous with god and uniquely closer to "him" than everybody else.

It's time for the holy males of the Catholic Church to confess. Although god is not a man, they have indeed made man god.

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