Wednesday, June 02, 2004

"Islamophobia is becoming institutionalised", apparently, but I wonder if there isn't a larger split - between a new, consumerist, "individualist" (in the pitiful sense of the word), anti-belief culture, and the old organised religion culture(s).

True, there aren't large-scale attacks on, say, Christians, but at the same time, there's an almost unspoken, paranoid caution directed towards churches, and the idea that people should modify their behaviour purely for some ideological value (as opposed to, say, being paid for it).

In other words, God is dead, but those who have stopped worshipping haven't yet managed to fill the societal-rather-than-theological gaps that religion (quite usefully) filled. (e.g. much as I am not a Christian, there is something to the adage "Treat your neighbour as yourself".)

Perhaps, deep down, people know this. Maybe they unconsciously realise that, while they may be apparently richer than any othe rmiddle class that has gone before them, they are desperately uncomfortable with their lot, but as this is at odds with what they have set themselves up to achieve through their chosen means (i.e. they set out to buy happiness), they try not to admit it. Established religion is a real threat to disproving their hypothesis that money == happy, and so there is a fear of it, a fear of being proved wrong.

So, word of the day: Credophobia (n): Fear of belief sytems that offer creible alternatives to the current ideology.

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