On starting your own religion
Over the last few weeks, I've been watching the BBC's Around the World in 80 Faiths programme, in which a member of the clergy - who looks uncannily like the internet's Neil Gaiman - travels the planet exploring the world's religions.
Last week, the anti-Gaiman was in India, where I was intrigued by the system of Gurus, where the Hindu faith can be re-interpreted and re-packaged by Holy Men based on their own teachings. If a Guru says nirvana can only be attained through fire-walking, you’d better go out and collect kindling, wearing the regulation twenty pounds of cow crap on your head.
Some bearded chap might hop into a village after spending far too much time out in the sun and convince the locals of his new-found method of achieving one-ness with God: “Hey chaps - boing - I’ve been - boing - thinking about thing and - boing - the only way we’re - boing - going to attain - boing- nirvana - boing boing - is if we all - boing - stand on one leg.”
Pretty soon shoe sales plummet by exactly 50% and society schisms into left-hopper and right-hopper cults, resulting in the deaths of thousands. Tragic, and organised religion’s totally effective solution to the world over-population crisis.
If it’s good enough for them, I propose that the entire world follow my little scheme, based on our new religion, which is, naturally, Stuff I’ve Seen On The Telly.
For did not the Prophet Indiana Jones tell us that ’the penitent man kneels before God’ unless he wants his head cut off with a bloody great rotating blade?
This (ie painful death) is as good a place as any to start any religion, and the Holy DVD Collection of Guru S. Duck points to the example of Our Lord Inspector Clouseau*, who was shuffling about on his knees in his Holy Toulouse Lautrec disguise, clutching the Holy Beumb of Human Frailty long before Prophet Indy revealed The True Path to Righteousness.
And if it appears that the Holy Grail is in [DA VINCI CODE SPOILER ALERT], it is therefore completely logical that all church business is conducted in outrrrrrageous French accents as a result. For it is written.
So: The Prophets have spoken. On your knees. Now. Or face certain smiting as a BLASPHEMER.
Also - and here is the number one advantage of The Church of Lautrecism - if we’re all on our knees, it’ll save a lot of unnecessary slaying when General Zod turns up and has us kneeling before him anyway.
The number two advantage is that leggy blondes are exempted from the kneeling business, and must instead wear skimpy nurses’ outfits according to the writings of His Holiness Archbishop Benny Hill.
And it being my religion: No ugly birds.
Now, if you’ve finished signing all your worldly goods over to me, let us pray:
Who art in heaven
Clouseau be thy name
Do you ‘ave a licence for this minkey?
And as we sing the first hymn 'All Things Short and Beautiful', church bretheren will be shuffling amongst you with the collection plate. Large notes only please, those bipedal BLASPHEMERS at the Vatican have a bit of a head start on us cash-wise, and we've got some catching up to do.
* Poor, martyred Peter Sellers Clouseau, and not poor, still alive Steve Martin Clouseau, who shall be slain as a BLASPHEMER