Monday, February 28, 2011

Touchy Feely Christianity

In one of my classes last week we had to work in groups, and somehow during the course of the group work, the topic of 17th century witch burnings came up. The girl who was in our group said how she thought seemed antithetical and hypocritical for Christians to burn people who they thought were witches, and it seemed apparent from the way she said it that she is a Christian herself. I couldn't help myself but interject, and explained how they weren't really being hypocrites in doing that, they were taking a passage from Exodus that says if you find a witch you are not supposed let them live. I could tell this made her slightly uncomfortable, and even though I pointed out that the witch hunters had biblical justification for what they did, she still thought it seemed hypocritical.

This brief exchange highlighted a couple of things to me. One- unsurprisingly, Christians don't know their own Bible. I've known this for a while, but this is more evidence to that fact. Two- Christians, even though they claim to get their morality from the Bible, they actually judge things to be right and wrong for themselves. I think 99% of people actually do this, but then claim they get it from their religion of choice, which I would imagine in this case, she would think it was hypocritical because Jesus said to love your neighbor, which isn't the whole story if you claim to believe the Bible. I think the what we should take away from this, is why don't we take the nice things about life/philosophy, it doesn't matter where they come from, and then get rid of the atrocious things along with the supernatural things that we have no proper justification to believe, and just get along with each other. Maybe it's just me but that seems like a better option.

Follow me on Twitter here! I tweet frequently.


  1. i think you mean; MOST Christians don't know their own Bible and MOST Christians, even though they claim to get their morality from the Bible.


  2. That's why I said 99% of people. The exception to the rule is in that one percent.

  3. I agree with Free Street. You are a prick. I didn't even read your post yet, but he speaks with such conviction. Is there any possible way not to agree with that charismatic fellow?

  4. Elaborate on what's nice in life/philosophy? Not causing delibrite harm to others? What about that case of the fat man and the dynamite? It's easy to say that the holocaust or that police brutality shouldn't happen. If a good man has a gun and another good man has a gun, but each of them believe the other to be a face of evil, where is the time to reason? I think we have to be a little bit more sympathetic to Christians, and others. It's easier said than done. Even though I don't believe in the supernatural, I don't think people believe in the supernatural because of any logical justification. Getting rid is sort of a strong statement, and it sounds intolerant. Honestly, I don't believe in existing collective consciousness or world spirit, but the concept exists. I think people's definition of exist needs to be adjusted. Imagination can be a wonderful thing, but something that is imaginary doesn't come to exist unless it is created.

    This post wasn't meant to be as confrontational as it probably sounded. I preach patience.

  5. When I said "get rid" I didn't mean abolish, if that's what it sounded like, and if that's what you meant by intolerant. (Though it depends on what you mean by intolerance.) I meant, we should kind of go through an Ockham's Razor-like process, where we get rid of all of the unnecessary stuff, because there seems to be no justification for belief in it, though I know people think, at least when it comes to ghosts, a good chunk of people think there is good evidence.

    When I said what's nice in life/philosophy, mostly I'm talking about the large chunk of philosophies, including religious ones, that say stuff about not causing deliberate harm to others (even if some of them do contradict themselves in saying it). I think this should at least be a starting point. I understand, like in the case of the fat man and the dynamite, things that are considered nice and the things that are considered harmful get more intricate and fuzzy, and those things we definitely need to parse out, but, personally, I think the majority of people agree, at least in a simplistic sense, about what is considered a good thing and what is not (morality-wise), and they wouldn't need a big sky daddy to tell them it either.

    I totally realize doing this is not as simple as just "getting rid" of supernatural beliefs, it's far more personal than that to most people. I'm pretty much just speaking from a "why isn't it more obvious to people that they can do it by themselves" point of view. That's what I thought after talking to that girl about all of this.

    Hope that clarified things.