Serious students of the divine mysteries might consider becoming members of The Virtual Church of the Blind Chihuahua.
According to the local elders, this sacred place in cyberspace is named after a little old dog with cataracts, who barked sideways at strangers, because he couldn't see where they were. They suggest that we humans relate to God in the same way, making noise in God's general direction, and expecting a reward for doing so.
The Virtual Church of the Blind Chihuahua has a creed: "We can't be right about everything we believe. Thank God, we don't have to be! In other words, there is more to ethical monotheism than pleasing your imaginary friend."
On the church website, there is an essay by J.A.H.Futterman (1996) entitled: "Canned Theology - Junk Food for the Soul." In this he describes four conservative flavours of theology:
(1) God is just waiting to get you the minute you screw up. This is taken by many practitioners of the Abrahamic religions — Judaism, Christianity, and Islam — as the basis for moral behaviour. Since externally imposed order is repugnant even to those who believe in it, they occasionally rebel against such order, either openly, or by wilfully misinterpreting the commandments, as in: "Thou shalt not kill, except for that heretic over there."
(2) Christ died for your sins, so now you'd really better not screw up. This is the distinctively Christian form of the item above. God in the form of the God-Man, Jesus, allows himself to be murdered by bad people so he can come back from dead and say, "See, I died for you. Now you really owe me bigtime, so you better shape up!" In Games People Play, Eric Berne called this game, "Now I've Got You, You Son-of-a-Bitch!"
(3) You must build the Kingdom of God on earth by making it impossible for anyone else to screw up. When people are full of this one, they try to control the behaviour of people whose beliefs differ from theirs. Used in repressive legislation. Also a prime ingredient in recipes for religious and ethnic conflict. Used as a condiment in some liberal environmental agendas.
(4) You must purify God's Kingdom on earth by killing those who do screw up. This flavour is consumed by those who have no taste for mercy. Typically, when they partake of this one, they screw up bigtime.
The Virtual Church of the Blind Chihuahua can be found online here.
And The Church of The Flying Spaghetti Monster can be visited here.
How silly is salvation?
Repent, the Kingdom of God is at hand!
What is the answer?
The unwisdom of belief
Fundamentalism is a closed room