The Complete Edition
By Jeff Swenson
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"JUGS, BEAVERS and EXPLODING BALLS"
by Jeff Swenson
First Cynic Comic Strip
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|DOES JESUS FILL THE VOID?
|Freethunk Cartoon for Jan 28, 2007
|One of the constant arguments I heard, and even used myself when I was a Christian, is that Jesus fills the void in my life. Nothing could be further from the truth. Humans need a void in their life otherwise what is the point in living? The void is there so you work to fill it up--and you will never fill it completely otherwise human progress and day-to-day living would cease to exist. Desire is necessary to drive individuals in their careers, in love and in abstract thought. Those who can't handle the void simply give up and never go anywhere, including those who turn it over to fantasy. The void does not mean you have to be unhappy but it will mean you will find yourself unsatisfied in certain ways and that you will strive to be satisfied if possible. For those who let the void consume them they need mental help.
But the great irony about filling the void with Jesus is that when ambititious individuals try to do it, it never works. All that happens is that their inner drive is aimed now at religion where previously it may have been aimed at a career focus. So they start Bible groups, prayer groups, charity drives, publishing ventures, find the perfect Christian spouse, play in Gospel rock bands, write books, start tax-exempt religious organizations that make more money than some corporates, and on and on.
If they were truly satisfied and if they had truly filled that void in their life they would need nothing except to sit with their Bible and talk to Jesus. But that never satisfies. Becoming born again simply moves your void in a different direction so you try to fill it up with religious activities and the perfect Christian life. The void cannot be filled otherwise you would not be human.
Really, the void is a red herring, a distraction from the real question: what do you want to do with your life? Those individuals that know how to manage their lives--including work, finances and family--are relatively happy whether they believe in God or not. And even curmudgeons who like to live alone but socialize with others have a zest for living. God is not necessary, though the activities of God may make you happier as humans have a need "to do stuff and be with others." When atheists say they're happy and basically content, you should believe them because they're doing the same thing as you Christians--filling the void with living. The void cannot be filled and it's for the best.
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