Sunday, June 12, 2011

God Needs a Patent

From the works of Saint Anselm to those of Thomas Aquinas religious scholars have expended a great deal of effort over the centuries trying to produce a convincing proof of the existence of God. At the same time, those of us who pursue gnostic forms of spirituality seek our own sort of proof, in the form of direct experience of the divine. Up until now, though, nobody has done so through the US Patent Office. That's what makes Chris Roller so special. You see, Chris Roller is God. Not only that, he is seeking a patent establishing his identity in a legal context, and wants the right to prevent others from making money through the use of "godly powers."

Mr Roller argues he should be the only person on the planet entitled to make money from his omnipotence – but the authorities think he is a very naughty boy rather than the Messiah.

‘Chris Roller wants exclusive rights to the ethical use and financial gain in the use of godly powers on planet Earth,’ wrote the 43-year-old former US Navy nuclear engineer in his application.

‘The commission I require could range from 0-100 per cent of product price, depending on the product’s value and use.’

Since God is supposed to be the King of Kings, I suppose this claim gives the concept of "royalties" whole new meaning.

As should go without saying, the US Patent Office was not impressed and rejected Roller's application. Lawsuits he has filed along the same lines have been similarly thrown out, because let's face it, the whole idea is just plain silly.

He claimed others with his powers have been making money unethically and said he is a ‘godly entity’ in his application to the US patent office. It was rejected.

The father of five also tried to sue illusionist David Copperfield for using ‘godly powers’ for financial gain but the district court in Minnesota was not impressed.

It said his claim was ‘beyond the jurisdiction of this court or any court of this Earth’.

Mr Roller, from Kansas, said he noticed his supernatural gift in 1999 when ‘millions of spirits started entering me’ and he could ‘hold heaven’. The following year he could ‘hold hell’.

‘Some may think of me as Jesus but others may consider me Buddha, Mohammed, God, Messiah, Savior, etc,’ he says on his website.

Well, at least that's good to know. It begs the question, though, that if God is omnipotent why can't he just strike down anyone "unethically" profiting by claiming to use his powers? The ranks of televangelists would be massively thinned, and those of us magicians who invoke the divine as part of casting spells would be in a lot of trouble as well. In the otherwise disappointing fifth installment of the Star Trek movie franchise Captain Kirk asks a being who is impersonating God a simple question - what use does God have for a starship? In like manner, I hereby propose that the question we should all be asking Roller is what use does God have for patent lawyers?

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