Philosophy on the Go This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.


   Peoplefeel the need to boast to other motorists through bumper stickers. The mostcommon is "My child is an honor student at Blankety Blank High School."Car stickers also declare allegiances to sports teams, music and even carmanufacturers. Others tell us about the motorist, for instance, their alma mater.Even others state rules like the ubiquitous "Gas, grass or ass: Everyonepays to ride." These stickers are all fine and good, but pale in comparisonto my favorites - religious bumper stickers informing us that "JesusSaves."

Bumper stickers fall into two categories: informative orcomical. In the case of religious ones, their main intention is to inform us ofthe driver's religious affiliation, but whenever I see them, I can't help butchuckle. The whole idea of professing your beliefs is odd to me. Do other peopleneed to know? Religion is a personal topic and of no concern to others, exceptother churchgoers and members of the clergy. Religion is between you and yourGod. Perhaps conversion is the aim. Yes, that's it, one man driving cross countryconverting those who need converting. Heathen motorists tremble at the word ofGod as expressed in bumper-sticker form.

Provided you're a smart-alecklike myself, bumper stickers can be amusing. I recently saw one that read,"Need directions? Ask God." Personally, I wouldn't ask God fordirections. He's got more important things to deal with. And for certaindestinations, asking God for directions would be just wrong. I doubt the LordAlmighty would help you find your way to a strip club. Another thing: they saythe Lord moves in mysterious ways. I don't want to be led any "mysteriousways." I prefer my directions to stay simple, like "Turn left at ElmStreet and stay on it until you reach Water Street." I think I'll just stickto AAA.

Then again, the solution to any dilemma can be found simply byasking "What would Jesus do?" I'm no theologian, but I think Jesuswould do a better job parking. After all, "God is like Hallmark cards: Hecared enough to send the very best." By the way, have you "GotJesus?" I do, he's chilling in my basement right now. These examples arejust the tip of the iceberg. How about "Friends don't let friends go tohell?" I'm not sure about letting them go to hell, but friends usuallyrespect friends' beliefs.

It's not about heaven or hell anyway. It's aboutgifts. I've figured out the secret agenda of Christianity: presents. They evenadmit it: "One birthday isn't enough. Be born again!" Now it makessense, doesn't it? Think about it - two of the biggest holidays, Christmas andEaster, are for gift laundering. And what about confirmation? It has been myexperience that teens who get confirmed are far more concerned about the moneythey receive than their assured eternity in heaven.

You can change this,though. Remember, "One man can make a difference: Jesus did." Butreally, that's not fair. He was the Son of God. How am I supposed to compete withthat? He is half divine. I'm all man. Although thinking about it, Jesus wasn'tall that powerful for a man-god. Sure, he could turn water into wine (a hit atparties) and walk on water, but just compare. All water things aside, Heracles,the son of Zeus and a mortal woman, was much more impressive. He slew greatbeasts. He redirected rivers. He held up the sky (for a brief while), for Zeus'ssake. Now that's my kind of man-god.

I guess it all boils down to onequestion: "'Will the road you're on get you to my place?' - God." Thisquestion confuses me, though. I looked on my road map and couldn't find God'splace anywhere. The road I'm on just leads to Chicago.




This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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