Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Maybe we are that bad

It's an article of faith among the religious right that the US is a godless society where they are regularly persecuted by the likes of me and my friends not saying Merry Christmas. We usually laugh at their claims, but now comes some evidence that the US might really be a godless land--or at least a goddessless land.

Until last week, ten year old Sajani Shakya was the living goddess of Bhaktapur, a village in Nepal.
A Kumari is chosen between the ages of two and four, always from the same Buddhist clan. Tradition holds that she must hold 32 attributes, including thighs like those of a deer and a neck like a conch shell.

She lives a confined life, only coming out of her palace three or four times a year until she reaches puberty when another Kumari must be found.

This main outing coincides with a festival of thanks to the local rain god and as always, her feet must never touch the ground unless there is a red carpet beneath them.

Being a goddess means she is a local celebrity. And being a celebrity can only mean one thing these days. That's right, she had to come to the US on a tour promoting her movie. The local elders did not like her visiting our godless land and decided that being exposed to us had so tainted her that she was no longer a goddess. If you think your two to four year old daughter is the most divine thing ever, there is a village in Nepal with a job opening for a goddess.

So there you have it, just being in the same country as PZ Myers is enough to destroy the divinity of a goddess. We're bad.

(Oddly, the BBC, who carried this story, don't mention the name of her movie.)

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