I finished reading a book last week called American Gods by Neil Gaiman [I may have misspelled his last name and I’m too lazy to look it up :-)]. The premise of the book is that when every immigrant came over to America they brought their own faith – their own gods – with them. These gods (aspects of the god that was worshipped in the old country) then took up habitation in this new world. As their followers dwindled, they still stuck around – they could not leave this country.
In current days they’re still around, but have very little power because a new breed of gods has taken over the American conscious. The book revolves around the old gods trying to rally forces to take on the new gods that Americans worship. One of the most powerful new gods that Americans worship is Media. There’s a brief interchange between Odin and Media in the book that I really liked – Odin laments that hardly anyone offers sacrifices to him anymore – hence his loss of power. Media says that people sacrifice to it all the time; when asked what they sacrifice, she quips “Time, mostly.”
I thought it was an insightful commentary. Looking at how much time and money we Americans spend on entertainment (buying and watching TV, buying and going to the movies, buying and listening to music, etc.), we do seem to be worshipping media to a great extent. I’ve noticed it with my family . . . if nothing interrupts my 8 year old son he can happily play Gamecube and watch TV all day long. My wife can sit and read Harry Potter stories on the internet for the same amount of time, and I can read and watch movies as well. If we don’t help police each other, we can literally sacrifice our while day to various forms of media.
Here’s praying that we offer sacrifice where sacrifice is due, and not let any of the new gods (sports, media, the internet . . . I can’t remember any of the other ones off hand) take over the rightful rule of our hearts, minds and souls.
Blessings & Peace,