Religious thought: it didn’t say “some”

“So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.” – New Living Translation, 2007.

I just wanted to start the week of gloomy weather (a day late and a dollar short?) here with a bit of light reflection on some rather dark thoughts I’ve been having lately about just how rampant (and even approved-of) the hatred of non-normative bodies seems to be.

This religious moment might not be up everyone’s alley but if you can bear with me a moment, I do make a point that I feel transcends my own particular religious views; and it starts with the above quote which feeds into this here thought: We are all creations of God. For good or bad, everyone, ALL of us, are equally created in the image of a divine being.

I read that quoted verse again and again and STILL, no where in there does it say: “Oh no, we’re not ALL in his image. Only SOME of us. Only the thin, white, well-off, heterosexual, able-bodied, males are in “my” image.” It doesn’t say “well, you’re one of God’s creations so long as you don’t get all fat, ugly, stupid or poor.”

No. Instead, what that verse does say is, “God created human beings”*; as in the divine power looked around one day and decided to create humanity and afterward could smile at us and say: “Hey! Every single freakin’ one of you: is my idea!  And I made you all like me!  Isn’t that great?!!”

We are all AS WE ARE, created in the image of God. I’d personally even change “his image” to “hir image” because if male and female are created in the image of God; then God is no gender, and all genders.  The divine being in whom many people believe, often under different names and sometimes under no name at all; is all sizes and none, all bodies and none, all colors, shapes, levels of ability, sexualities, everything…and nothing. All at the same time even.  There IS no human form that is not created in the image of the divine.

So, this is one of the reasons I have such problems with hearing people decry that one form of human being is somehow less than (or, in the case of larger bodies “too much more than”) another.  How can that be? There IS NO DIFFERENCE among us that puts any one of us beyond the scope of the image of “human being”.  We are all, after all, drawn in the image of a higher power.  As such, each and every single one of us is deserving of dignity, respect, love and, at the VERY least, basic understanding and kindness as a fellow human being.

To think anything less just continues to baffle my mind.  It didn’t say “some of us” are in God’s image.  The Word says that all of us are.  Even believing in other Gods or gods or forces or nature or simply scientific processes of biology; human beings are fucking amazing creatures; in all their diversity and yet similarity.  We should all be reveling in just how incredibly amazing we all are; and not vilifying those slight differences which set us apart.

All of us are an amazing product of a divine, and/or fascinating biological power. Isn’t that far more wondrous and deserving of consideration than the minute ways in which our bodies or lives do not conform to a small niche within our own species???  I certainly think so.  And I wish that folks could act like human lives are a fantastically amazing gift more often, and focus far less on the perceived faults those gifts might have when compared against others.

*or, in other translations “man”; used in the generic and frustrating manner that English tends to use “man” as a simple replacement for “human/human beings”; you know, men being the default human and all.

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5 thoughts on “Religious thought: it didn’t say “some”

  1. I never took that to mean we were created in a physical likeness. I always thought it meant we had the power to create and destroy, like God does. And to love and hate and make choices. But it never once occurred to me that we were shaped like God.

    Nonetheless, I always got a laugh out of the t-shirt that says, “I have a body like a god…Buddha”. And in fact it’s western thinking that prizes thinness. Other cultures, particularly African, see a thin woman as a sign of poverty. And in a complete opposite extreme, there are still places in Mauritania that force feed little girls to make them fat because that’s exactly what men want. To them, a fat woman is a guard against famine.

    On that note, this hefty chick posted the pics of her in her dirndl at Oktoberfest, and the compliments have not stopped coming in. A dirndl is something that is best worn filled out properly, something skinny chicks just cannot do. I got more looks this year than ever before, and my hubby couldn’t keep his hands off me. Awesome.

  2. Lovely post.

    As a Christian myself, I’ve always been baffled when supposedly Christian people display hatred and prejudice towards others, because it’s gone right against everything I believe Christianity stands for. I don’t believe it’s right to call oneself a Christian while living with hate in one’s heart. It’s a pretty simple rule to live by, but so many so-called Christians seem to struggle with that concept.

  3. Pingback: My FA suggestions for this Lenten Season « I AM in shape. ROUND is a shape.

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