Saturday, June 7, 2008

Political Idolatry

A columnist at the San Francisco Chronicle, Mark Morford, confesses his Obama-worshipping idolatry in the most extravagant outpouring I have yet seen. In a piece titled, "Is Obama an Enlightened Being? Morford's scarily mystical New Age answer is a big YES. I am one of the "miserable, deeply depressed Republicans" he mentions, and his piece is one of the reasons. The following is a representative quote from this paean to the Enlightened One, the still point of karmic, self organizing positive energy:

Many spiritually advanced people I know (not coweringly religious, mind you, but deeply spiritual) identify Obama as a Lightworker, that rare kind of attuned being who has the ability to lead us not merely to new foreign policies or health care plans or whatnot, but who can actually help usher in a new way of being on the planet, of relating and connecting and engaging with this bizarre earthly experiment. These kinds of people actually help us evolve. They are philosophers and peacemakers of a very high order, and they speak not just to reason or emotion, but to the soul.

So, Obama the Soul-Speaker, this being who is not like us, this Lightworker! is a rare cosmic gift being recognized as such by those among us who are "attuned to energies beyond the literal meanings of things." Can anyone reading this explain what this means? I'm too literally minded, or perhaps "coweringly religious", to get it. But I fear this is only the beginning of this sort of thing, as the literal meaning of idolatry comes down from the ironic and off handed pop-culture references like "American Idol", to a concrete expression, albeit a perverted one, of "spiritually advanced"people's in-built desire to worship something greater than themselves.

But all idols, after they have done their damage, are eventually exposed for what they are: pathetic--and malicious--imitations of the One who truly dwells in the light, and unworthy of the extravagant devotion lavished on them.

Although this is not a new thing under the sun, it is one that has not been seen for a while--a political leader worshipped as god. May the real God help us.

The Politico website shows the fever is spreading. Jesse Jackson Jr, on hearing Obama's big speech:
“I cried all night. I’m going to be crying for the next four years,” he said. “What Barack Obama has accomplished is the single most extraordinary event that has occurred in the 232 years of the nation’s political history. ... The event itself is so extraordinary that another chapter could be added to the Bible to chronicle its significance.”


David C. Innes said...

Oh my!

So when conservatives introduce God into politics, we endanger liberty. But when liberals see a politician as a god or mediator with the divine, that's a kind of liberation.

I'm not getting it.

Anonymous said...


My definition of "spiritual" is religion without the work.

David C. Innes said...

Ask yourself, "What would I do if people were saying these things about ME?" Surely you would caution them to sober up and adjust their expectations.

"On the appointed day Herod, wearing his royal robes, sat on his throne and delivered a public address to the people. They shouted, 'This is the voice of a god, not a man.' Immediately, because Herod did not give praise to God, an angel of the Lord struck him down, and he was eaten by worms and died." (Acts 12:21-23)

But Obama has not uttered a word of that sort.

"When the crowd saw what Paul had done, they shouted in the Lycaonian language, 'The gods have come down to us in human form!'...But when the apostles Barnabus and Paul heard of this, they tore their clothes and rushed out into the crowd, shouting: 'Men, why are you doing this? We too are only men, human like you.'" (Acts 14:11-15)

I am curious to see what effect this talk eventually has on him, especially as it is coming even from his wife.