“The guy upstairs is mad”, said Peter. George said, “What the heck are you talking about? What Guy and I don’t see any stairs. There is a ramp extending down to a dock, where some boats are and I see a lake and some mountains in the background and some low hanging clouds further out on the horizon.” Peter responded, “You are not taking in the whole picture, as what possible explanation would there be for God to be shaking His fist at us, unless He is mad at us.” George said, “Oh, I see it, that cloud which looks like an arm and possibly a fist on the end of it. First off, it is not God, and you are probably suffering from some type of pareidolia. People are always looking for patterns and this is a psychological phenomenon that comes from evolution and it helped our ancient ancestors survive. There is nothing wrong with people who see or make patterns from some random stimulus and those people who are more religious, or believe in the supernatural, are more prone to pareidolia, so they assign human characteristics to objects.” Peter said, “God may be angry at me, as I don’t pray, I don’t read the Bible and I may not be measuring up to all of His expectations.”
George said, “Fair enough and since God gave all of us 10 commandments to follow, let’s just see how you are doing on that. I never see you praying to any other gods instead of your God, so I would say you are good on #1. Moving on, God says that you should not make other images to worship, and since you are not all that artistic, I doubt that you have ever broken that one. The third one is a bit tricky and it should probably be modernized so that instead of saying, “Don’t take the name of the Lord in vain”, it should say, “Don’t use the name of God to take advantage of others and benefit yourself”, and I don’t see you as doing this either.” Peter said, “No, I would never do that.”
George said, “Three down and seven to go. You may be guilty of breaking the fourth commandment as this one deals with keeping the Sabbath holy and you admitted that you don’t regularly attend church services. This commandment also needs to be updated, as I see it you don’t actually have to go to church per say, it just means that you should reserve some time to think about God and you did this by seeing His fist in the cloud. The rest of them are pretty simple, respect your parents, don’t kill people, if you are married, don’t cheat on your wife, don’t take things that are not yours, don’t go around telling lies, don’t sleep with your neighbor’s wife, his servant, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor, so basically you will have to stay out of politics and not become a lawyer.”
Written for Sadje at Keep It Alive What Do You See #84.