Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thinking for myself, for that I am thankful.

"And I will place within them as a guide
My umpire conscience, whom if they will hear,
Light after light well-used they shall attain,
And to the end persisting, safe arrive."

John Milton, Paradise Lost, Book III. Lines 194-197

While Thanksgiving has never been a religious holiday, some are using it to push "following God's law" and not "economic experimentation with socialism" this year. Crazy, I know. Can't we just be thankful we are still here? Like, a year ago, that wasn't a done deal. A year ago things were looking really bad. With headlines like "Is the U.S. Headed Towards the Second Great Depression?" it is easy to see we really have had a good year and have much to be grateful for.

Personally, with all the talk of following God's laws, I am brought back to that quote from Milton. "And I will place within them as a guide/My umpire conscience..." To me it says almost everything. God gave us the ability to think for our self, and gave us a voice inside our head to do the right thing. And that voice is the spirit of God, whatever you want to call him.

So, telling me I have to follow a set of rules men wrote down in a book thousands of years ago even when the "umpire conscience" in my head thinks they are wrong is crazy. I don't like having other people do my thinking for me.

I may not be religious, but I do believe God gave me the ability to think for myself, as well as pointing me in the right direction. So please, don't tell me your beliefs are more right than mine, because in America we have the freedom to believe whatever we choose to believe.

And that is what Thanksgiving is about. Being free to make our own decisions. And for that I am thankful.

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