Sunday, April 20, 2014

Resurrect the Church: Space Christians!

Today is Easter Sunday. As I sat in the pews of the Methodist church, listening to the male half of our married co-pastors (how progressive, huh?) deliver his sermon, I decided that I won't be coming back to this church. I love the feeling of community, the music, singing hymns and the beautiful building, but I've come to the realization that our church is toothless and blind.

The sermon grated on me in minor ways, from the pro-feminist quip about the 'subservient role of women in that culture', and his multicultural hope for the end of all racial strife, to our tithes serving not just our community but the entire globe, to the various charity outreach programs including food drives and of course the obligatory mission to Africa. Why? Well, I believe that patriarchy is a central building block of civilization. I believe that diversity leads to strife and should probably be avoided, and definitely not be violently enforced. I believe that America's poor have an obesity problem and I think that denying blacks agency and indulging in the 'White Savior' complex is what real racism looks like.

The pastor spoke of having performed multiple second marriages for divorcees on Easter and made a poorly aligned allusion to the resurrection, considering the second marriages were not between the same individuals. The good Christian minister wouldn't dare second guess or decry a divorce, he'll even reward divorcees on one of the Church's holiest days. The church is dying of old age and needs new life.

I have a proposal to resurrect the Church: Space Christians. Yeah, it sounds a little Heaven's-Gate-Hale-Bopp, but let me make my case. I propose a space race between the major religions. Here's why.

The Heavens are Eternal

Saving and investing is future-think. Having a lofty future goal, such as planting the first cross on Mars would be a huge investment. It would require planning, saving, keeping the members focused on a far off goal. This is the very lowering of time preference which has made the Church essential to Western flourishing in the past. We live in a world of increasing time preference. America's leaders have not only used up their available resources, they have spent far into the future, displaying a disgusting disdain for saving and investing. They encourage rampant materialistic consumerism, creating junk that's used briefly and stuffed into landfills, to leak toxins for thousands of years. The American government has basically shelved its space program, and in so doing it has shelved its place in the future. Modernity is about the present moment, the Church should be focused on the eternal.

Religion Leads to Life

The tenets of a religion must lead to life, otherwise they are nihilistic and lead to death. Ideas which lead to death are self-selected out of the underlying ideology and removed from the religion. Life and more than life...human flourishing is the real goal. What better way to lead to life than to colonize space? Perhaps a Benedictine monastery on Mars might hold the seeds to repopulate the Earth after some catastrophe. To protect and ensure the survival of the human species.

Christianity is Unscientific

We've all heard that charge. I can just imagine the Pope blessing a mission to Mars, manned by the smartest and bravest Christians of the era, using technologies improved upon in Vatican laboratories. What if Christian tithes, rather than being used to supplement the populations of low IQ savages, were instead used to pay for the smartest Christians to acquire advances STEM degrees. The Church should stop wasting money encouraging profligacy, but instead could actually fund a surge in number of scientific minds. The Church could provide financial support and incentives to high-IQ, high-producing members to breed far beyond their self-funded capacity, providing us with an ever growing pool of Christian geniuses. It wouldn't be the first time the Church has encourage eugenic population growth. Why not do some good for the planet by actually improving its scientific capacity?

Space is Cool

Africa is backwards and boring, but I'm pretty sure they have the internet there. Let them get some 3-D printers and download free tractor plans from Open Source Ecology. They will pull themselves into the future as they good and ready, and don't need the White Savior to come do it for them. I would actually be excited to sit in the pews and hear about the latest scientific advancements in the Christian Space Race. I would be proud to know that my donations were funding a space industry manned and led by high-IQ, high-moral, high-ethic, high-virtue humans... the best that the world has to offer. I could happily spend my whole life supporting that endeavor.

So, that is my proposal to resurrect the Church. Give the Church a worthy goal: Space Christians! The future belongs to those who will colonize it.

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