Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Church of the Human Spirit?

Some stray thoughts on the Establishment Clause: What would happen if an organization -- call it the Church of the Human Spirit -- was created to preach the view that humanity is its own maker and supreme unto itself. This organization, as I conceive it, would characterize itself as a Religion such that it would easily qualify for federal tax-exempt status. Any expression of the view that the actions of man are subject to being judged by a standard other than that established by man, that man owes a measure of faithfulness to anything other than himself, that man is created in an image other than his own is blasphemy. Any expression of fealty to a Supreme Being is sacreligious.

Sure, this sounds a bit like The Fountainhead and objectivism, but objectivism is a philospohy, not a religion. What if a proper religion were erected based on these tenets? More pointedly, what of Establishment Clause jurisprudence? In the face of such a religion, every decision prohibiting religious expression of a Christian, Jewish or what-have-you nature would be a de facto establishment of the Church of the Human Spirit, would it not? That such a Church could be founded, and the First Amendment turmoil that would be (or, at least, should be) caused by the existence of such a Church, strike me as pretty good evidence that our contemporary Establishment Clause jurisprudence cannot be right.