While going to work this morning, I passed by a rather interesting building nearby my house: a holistic pet products shop. As a friend of mine mentioned a few weeks ago that I was lucky enough to live near the most sought-after “doga”-shala in NYC (Doga meaning yoga for dogs - I am not kidding. I wonder how a dog may feel if you ask it to get into frog or cobra pose - although I guess it should master easily downward facing dog) - I thought this was a clear sign I should write again about my animalistic passion. And during the Holy week - I decided to pick one with a name in tune with such a spiritual subject: the Praying Mantis.
At a time when the Catholic Church is becoming the centre of attention for all sorts of sexual revelations, such a name for an animal with a rather arguable sexual behaviour could be taken as an ironic joke (it actually has the same religious type of name in French, ie: mante religieuse). Let alone the females’ habit to eat their partner while having sex (interesting to note that the male can carry on copulating while having been beheaded), this animal is also the best example of a matriarchal system - far from all catholic conceptions where women were considered up until the 19th century as having no soul. Furthermore, as living in a city where the proportion of males and females is clearly unbalanced, eating sexual partners does not only question castration as such but moreover the concept of faithfulness (needless to say that no praying mantis ever has sex twice with the same partner) and the point of getting a partner for life - could it be God himself.
To be fairly honest, I am not trying to open a debate here, take part in the story or be the devil’s advocate (although I am pretty good at it most of the time) - and saying who is right and who is wrong. Even if I have been brought up in a catholic family - with a communist mum and a dad traumatised by attending church every morning for 5 years when he was little, my perception of religion has always been pretty complicated and I am not interested in being judgmental. - those of you who know me already know where I stand. Having said that, I never quite understood why for a dogma dating of the 1000’s (and not earlier when catholicism was founed) catholic priests could not get married and why the pope clearly refuses to even question it nowadays. As even if this keeps men of the cloth (funny expression really) out of the fact that the term “couple” rimes with “trouble” - the scandals we hear about every day clearly shows that celibacy is a problem for most of them - and might even lead them to commit crimes that will surely get them to burn in hell, in other words, makes them loose their sanity (who more than a priest is aware of what will happen to him in hell, and yet, make him commit such a horrible act?).
Sadly enough, I don’t really think sexual abuse is a brand new thing and such horrible stories have been hushed up by the victims sometimes for years, scared to be blamed for making such accusations against the representative of the Holy Spirit itself. The real shame in this all is that in many countries still, the priests are considered as being above suspicion and many children are surely under threat of such crazy individuals. For all these kids, no redemption, forgiveness nor resurrection will ever make it up. And Benedict XVI will just be one more Easter bunny having lost its ears.
“When I do good, I feel good; when I do bad, I feel bad. That’s my religion.” - A. Lincoln