Humor: More and More Religion in My House
[ Me, My Wife, Children, and Relatives is a creative serialization of articles that aims at incorporating humor and sarcasm to spread the ideals of reason, science, humanism, Atheism and skepticism.]
Last time, I introduced you to my wife and I hope by now you are familiar with her such that her characters might not scare you. Imagine she has discovered ways to involve me in the religious conflicts in the house. She has decided that when I intend to kiss her and get hers back, I have to honour the name of someone called Christ and agree that this Christ is greater than another character called Mohammed who also happens to be the head of Islam. Oh! Has she involved me in the fight with her own daughter about the greater religion? Moreover, she has insisted that I have to inform her daughter that the Christ who apparently has other names like Jesus, the Son, and many more, was not just a mere person the way her daughter’s religion claim. If I cannot talk to our daughter about her instructions, she will limit some of the privileges she has given me; like being the only man in this planet allowed to touch her attractive geographical features together with other packages she offers me! So, currently, I have not touched her smooth geographical contours and my lips have not come into contact with hers because I have not declared who is greater between these two characters Jesus and Muhammad. But how long will my lips become suspended from tasting her sweet lips? Is that other strategies Christians have adopted to convert men to Christianity?
However, before I tell you more about how the situation has changed between me and my wife, I want to brief you on other developments that have occurred. My cousin John just came unexpectedly in the house. His unanticipated coming is as a result of the strike that has occurred in their university which has been closed indefinitely. He has no relative in Nairobi, the reason why I have to host him until the University administration summons them back. Now, I don’t have a problem accommodating him, but another competing religion has been added in the house and maybe other additional religious conflicts are yet to arise: My cousin is a Hindu! To make matters even badly, John is also in love with a woman called Susan who is also in the same University. They are in love such that they can never survive without one another. So, if he is to stay, then Susan will also stick around! Again, I don’t have a problem with accommodating Susan, but another religion has been added in the house. She claims that Buddhism is the true religion. Just try to picture a Muslim, a Christian, a marijuana smoking Jamaican son, a Buddhist, and Hindu under one roof!
I suppose you now know the kind of hell am undergoing. I have not told you about me and I know you are wondering whether I belong to a religion to also fit in this mix. No, I don’t have a religion. My wife, kids and relatives have given me very many names, which I respond to because I don’t have a problem with the terms. My wife calls me Big mouthed Atheist, my Jamaican son named me a toothless pagan, my daughter addresses me with the title a foolish thinker, and my relatives have other names they call me like the Satan messenger! Well, to get it directly from me, I am an Atheist, Agnostic, A humanist, and whatever definition that might sound bad or sweet when you pronounce.
Now, characters in my house had taken my declaration of Atheism differently. My wife believes that my Atheism is a temporary thing in my head that can be deleted anytime she has the energy to do it. She believes that there are some romantic moves she can make on me that can instantly turn me into a very loyal Christian. I don’t know what moves she can make on me because I am not sure whether she has any romantic moves left since I have been with her for thirty years and her moves have always been predictable. Let me not undermine her, I will continue updating you as her characters continue to change. The Jamaican son responded to my Atheism strangely. He believes that there are two nuts and bolts that are loose in my brain and needs to be fixed. Sometimes when he has taken too much bang or mixes it with those whitish products Pablo Escobar used to sell, he start to search for the two nuts and bolts in the whole house with the intention of fixing them for me to get a religion. He is sure that part of the brain that accommodates religion is loose and needs the bolts and nuts to be fixed. He has a quick medicine to this: I should smoke marijuana to fix it! My daughter believes that Atheism only arise from weak religions like that of her mother. She says true religion like Islam, Atheists do not survive! I have always known what she has meant and asked her if she is a radical Muslim! She always dodges that question anytime I bring it up.
All in all, I am the only person in this family who have no grudge with anybody. Having no religion has made me to be a friend to all because I can accommodate all peoples of all religion. This is because I have no grudge with people believing in what they believe in; — but I become worried when these people use their religions to thwart reasoning, science and freedom of inquiry.
Well, now that you have known me and my family, we will start it here. However, let me not rush you because I have not told you many things about my other cousin called Kurudhialo, he who claims to have powers of the ancestors and can predict when you will die, or can predict a woman a younger kid will marry twenty to thirty years to come. Then you are yet to know Oyundi my younger son who is ten. This child has given me troubles by asking certain kinds of questions that seems dangerous for his age; — questions that should only be asked by people above the ages of eighteen. Again you are about to know my grandmother who insists to Oyundi that children come from the moon but not from the process of science.
George Ongere is the Executive Director Center For Inquiry/ Kenya.
*Views expressed do not represent the official position of CFI*