There were two pillars upon which I was elevated to my current astronomic view of the world: the Anglican Communion in Canada and Freemasonry. Both suffer the reputed contamination of White Anglo Saxon Protestants and North York Toronto generally. Over the years I’ve had the privilege to travel from the local parish and lodge to the General Synod and Grand Lodge of my respective guides. In every instance I was more overwhelmed by the ceremony than the substance. Interestingly these two prongs of propriety are putatively at least based upon a similar prerequisite; namely, a belief in God (in the case of the Christian theory) or the belief in a supreme being (in the case of Freemasonry). Both are equally uncompromising in that particular.
Decades after performing as a warden of both constituencies I have no hesitancy now affirming that I snap my fingers at religion of any description. My primary reason for doing so is not to condemn but rather to confirm. I account no truck whatsoever in finding fault with others. It is more compelling from my vantage that I do not see any change as a result of the abandonment of such prior persuasion. I continue to be as bad or as good as ever I was.
I am not reluctant to contradict the religious thesis. The sine qua non is this; if the whole thing begins without credibility (aka, stinks from the outset) then the rest is a fortiori infected. Nor does Act I, Scene 1 have to be especially complicated for motivating traction – just some bolts from the sky. I’ve read “Who moved the stone?” I’ve experienced the exuberance of an epiphany. I’ve worked for a Christian theatre company. Yet as moving and convincing as they might once have been the greater hurdle in addition to my own cautionary instinct was the writings of Thomas Paine in about 1793. Paine had the same convincing aplomb regarding the dismissal of religion as the advancement of equality.
“In December 1793, he was arrested and was taken to Luxembourg Prison in Paris. While in prison, he continued to work on The Age of Reason (1793–1794). James Monroe, a future President of the United States, used his diplomatic connections to get Paine released in November 1794. Paine became notorious because of his pamphlets. In The Age of Reasonhe advocated deism, promoted reason and free thought and argued against institutionalized religion in general and Christian doctrine in particular. He published the pamphlet Agrarian Justice (1797), discussing the origins of property and introduced the concept of a guaranteed minimum income through a one-time inheritance tax on landowners. In 1802, he returned to the U.S. When he died on June 8, 1809, only six people attended his funeral as he had been ostracized for his ridicule of Christianity.through a one-time inheritance tax on landowners. In 1802, he returned to the U.S. When he died on June 8, 1809, only six people attended his funeral as he had been ostracized for his ridicule of Christianity.”