Excerpts from some of my writing: God and Institutions of Power

Religion, to some extent, is an acknowledgement of power.  It is an affirmation that rules and situations exist, that are out of our realm of influence, and that another more powerful entity has control over them.  Because of religion’s association with power, it is natural that our conception of God would be merged with other associations with power in our world.  Although God is all powerful, all power does not derive from God.  This merging or confusion of power is why we very often see the fusion of nationalism with religion, capitalism with religion, social hierarchies (caste) with religion, and more pertinent to this discussion, sexism.  The infusion of the “isms” seeps into our religious thought, and especially when the authors of the religious texts are of a particular group, even if divinely inspired, the text will have some confusion of God with these powerful institutions.  This does not make religion bad.  It just means that discernment must be practiced, and the weight given to particular claims about sources, rights, and manifestations of power deriving from God needs to be carefully considered.  While God can use these institutions, God can also act outside of them.  God, having created both man and woman, does not require that woman be subject to man, in order to work.  .God is bigger than that, capable of miracles that transcend our institutions.  Women, not having authored the texts that have shaped our history and influenced our development, have to be smarter when we read them.  I could cite the more offensive words, but they are so distasteful to most women, that we would be tempted to never pick the sacred texts up again.  And, in spite of their “isms”, if one accepts that there is a higher power, then the sacred texts do provide a history of man’s trying to grapple with understanding and having a relationship with this power.  They are valuable, and I believe divinely inspired, although not every word in them is God’s literal word. I will discuss this point more carefully later.[l1] 


 [l1]Discussion page

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