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May the gods be with you

Juan kindly responded to my first post with the phrase “The gods be with you on your journey.” That’s a comforting benediction. I doubt there are many other pantheists out there reading this, and I myself am an atheist, but the request of help from the gods, rather than a single god, seems more in keeping with the nature of the universe.

From a monotheistic perspective, it seems to me that there’s no real purpose to praying for God’s protection. God’s going to do whatever God damn well pleases, and that will be for the best, from God’s perspective, if not ours. You can’t reasonably expect a course correction from the divine plan just so you can be offered a little more protection. If there is a God, and a plan, well, you’re either screwed or blessed, and not a lot you can do to change it. The fix, as they say, is in.

On the other hand, a polytheistic perspective suggests the world is populated by competing forces, some which will favor you and some which won’t. The gods were fickle, selfish creatures, who often destroyed whom they once made proud. This suggests to me a fore more flexible, if not more pleasant, reality. Poseidon may have been out to get Odysseus, but Aphrodite had his back. The gods change sides and the winds of fate blow first one way, then the next.

I prefer this idea. The world is a sea of forces it conflict, crashing against each other. We can, at our best, attempt to navigate the eddies and currents that pull us forward and back. The alternative is to passively let a single, strong current take us inexorably where it will.

And hell, it’s just a damn fitting sentiment on a journey to ancient Greece.

“The gods be with you.”

And maybe so they shall.

  1. Chris
    May 19, 2009 at 9:45 am

    Wait… are you saying God’s *not* a Wolverine fan?!?

    • nycwastrel
      May 19, 2009 at 3:30 pm

      I always took God to be more of a Batman fan. All the undeserved guilt and whatnot.

  2. J
    June 9, 2009 at 11:21 am

    Hmm. I can definitely see the Catholic God being into Batman; G-d/YHWH would probably also dig him, just because if his mother had lived, she could’ve said “All these smarts, you coulda been a doctor! Look at you, up all hours of the night; you could be using that to save lives in an emergency room, like the son of the nice Goys down the street!”

    I think the Hindu gods would be more into Wolverine. Krisha, creator and destroyer, “I am become Death,” and all that.

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