Sunday, 18 November 2007
Our New Religion...
Clutch your petition - or application form - close to your chest with your hands respectfully clasped. Keep your eyes down. Wait in line.
Did you know that this beautiful building was designed by the same man who designed St Patrick's Cathedral? Note the gentle arches of the ceilings and the windows. Is it just me or can you smell frankincense?
Shuffle forward. Tread gently on the marble floors. Don't raise your voice. This is the Cathedral's little brother - he might tell.
People stand in gilded booths to hear your sins, accept your sacrifices and grant your prayers. You can recognise them by their ceremonial dress. People move aside when they walk the floors. Only they can intervene on your behalf with those above, those who judge, bless and condemn.
If you look up, examine the curve of of the ceiling, the pillars that hold the roof at its correct height - look only to offer your awe, don't get cheeky. The line moves, follow it.
Belief is not the loving arms of the Father. It's fear of being smote from above. Real belief shakes you to the core and keeps you awake at night. Real fear brings you back time and time again, grateful for anything you can get. Real fear is this loan application. Are you afraid? Sensible of you.
It's your turn, offer up your supplication. Mumble your way through the liturgy.
"I have a steady income and will have no problem with repayments. As you can see I've listed my car as collateral...?"
Your intermediary listens with half an ear to the familiar words and either nods their head "Amen", shakes it ruefully, or begs a moment to pray to The Manager for advice.
You have been heard, you have been judged, they have your signature, now if you would just check your soul at the door we'll be done and you can go.
The Gothic ANZ Bank on Collins Street was designed by the Architect William Wilkinson Wardell.