the obscene practice of sucking up to authority

"Authority" cartoon by nakedpastor David Hayward

“Authority” cartoon by nakedpastor David Hayward

Buy a print of this cartoon! Use coupon “iwant” for 20% off all my art HERE!

I do remember the days when I bowed down to authority like the poor people in this cartoon are doing. I did it because it I was told it was required of me. Gradually, I began to see that this was a way to keep me submissive, a tool for the leader’s benefit.

This happens all the time, and I’ve seen a lot of it. Then one day I saw it happen in such a graphic way. The followers were all over him, so needy and begging for his love and attention and grace. He was taking it all in, bathing in his own glory.

Many leaders, including Christian ones, assume that you should adore them and assume that you know this and assume that you will display this adoration without question. I think most of them aren’t aware of this dynamic. It’s one of the silent privileges of power that is just taken for granted and many people abide by. Not me. No longer. I intend to write more about this.

As for that day, many years ago… that was the day I knew my unquestioning respect for and admiration of authority was done.

It was finished.

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11 Responses

  1. Jarred H says:

    “I think most of them aren’t aware of this dynamic. ”

    And in some cases, I think some leaders are all too aware of this dynamic and do their best to cultivate it to their advantage. It’s been shown time and again that other abusers often groom their victims. I see no reason to doubt that spiritual abusers are prone to do the same thing.

  2. I agree Jarred. There are some who are intentional. Most though don’t realize that the abuse they’re inflicting is actually abuse. They sincerely think they’re doing good when they’re inflicting damage.

  3. Julie says:

    @Jared “abusers often groom their victims.” Yes!

  4. Bill Kinnon says:

    You are consistently knocking these cartoon-insights out of the park, David. Well done.

  5. Lydia says:

    You know, I was raised in a Christian environment that was big on the Holy Priesthood and God is no respecter of persons. The pastor was an employee in that world and would not dare get too big for his britches if take my meaning. We were also taught to question everything, politely of course.

    I have literally seen this change over the last 20-30 years not only at church but everywhere. I could never really buy into it at church but this thinking just took on a momentum I saw through Christian niche marketing from publishing, mega churches, music, etc. Now the stage persona became the authority.

    What ever happened to the idea we could govern ourselves, question everything and mature?

  6. Thanks! Ya… it’s almost like it comes with the territory now!

  7. LilyFields says:

    Hi David, am new to your website and love it, thank you! For over a decade I was deeply involved in a Fundementalist authoritarian sect. As a naturally free spirited, independent and rather bohemian young female (at the time) the spiritual, psychological, emotional abuse was akin to being in an abusive marriage. I am fully convinced I was called to the spiritual Christian walk – what hijacked this very real and loving relationship with my Saviour Christ, was the HUMAN element of patriarchal privilege, EGO and said idol worship (very craftily ‘jacked’ by a spiritual bait n switch) by the narcissistically driven Church hierarchy. A veritable ‘Cult of Personality’ of the so called ‘Pastor General’ and his crew of worshipping incorporated ‘flying monkeys’. Only now after many years of recovery am I beginning to fully understand the dynamics at work – the processes that establish control and abuse patterns within both interpersonal relationships and that of extrapolated larger communities. The dynamics are one and the same – CULT LIKE perversions and manipulation which enslave many to serve the Few. So very damaging, destructive and evil. Narcissistic Abuse under the guise of religion. Churches – run by mere human beings and therefore fallible by default – take upon themselves, or attempt to, glory and obedience AND relationship due only to God Himself. Inflated and pathological personality disorders within Ministry and Church corporations are rife. One day, soon, I am going to write a post (or three

  8. LilyFields says:

    Part 2. …. a post or three

  9. LilyFields says:

    Can’t seem to post?

  10. Thanks for sharing your story Lily. I’ll check why you’re not able to post more. Please try again.

  11. BTW I love your Oz reference.