(note to my readers: if you followed this blog because of your interest in my recipes, brewing or drink reviews, you may want to back out now. Anything that is titled “Not So Polite Dinner Conversation” is my unvarnished views of politics and/or religion. You’ve been warned 🙂 ).
Here are a few random things about religion. The first is about an opinion piece published in the New York Times by someone who really is afraid of anyone not like him. The second is a brief bit about what a pastor thinks about justice and the bible, and the third is just a few bits of crank mail from my FFRF newspaper and a link to a good blog post about the new bible “club” in the White House. The newspaper also has some very nice essays written by young atheists of color for a scholarship contest.
The NYT ran an opinion piece by Rob Dreher, a conservative Christian, “Trump Can’t Save American Christianity”. Of course, Mr. Dreher is certain that his version of Christianity is the only true one. He’s also one of the fellows who thinks that Christians really need to segregate themselves from anyone who disagrees with them. Of course, that’s rather inconvenient and even he doesn’t follow his own recommendations. Writing for the NYT isn’t exactly conducive to doing what he says.
He’s also jumped from Methodism, to Roman Catholicism, and now is with the Eastern Orthodox church. Funny how the magical and divine “truth” can change, isn’t it?
In the article, Dreher wonders if Trump can do anything to alienate conservative Christians. At this point, it certainly doesn’t seem to be anything, considering the circus that has been going on for more than 6 months. Ah, but Dreher is sure that Trump isnt’ the problem, it’s is an “increasingly faithless people” aka those who don’t agree with Mr. Dreher. He claims that the lack of people who agree with him will lead to a “calamity for civil society in ways secular Americans do not appreciate”. Of course, all we have is this chicken little nonsense about how bad it will be, nothing to show what this would be or anything to support the claim.
One of the claims that Mr. Dreher makes is that Americans are not following “authentic Christianity” and are following something a Notre Dame researcher calls “Moralistic Therapeutic Deism”, something that Mr. Dreher insists is a “pseudoreligion” and it isn’t his version of Christianity. The problem here is what is “authentic Christianity”? We see that Mr. Dreher has gone from one sect to another, which would seem to indicate that Mr. Dreher has no idea what it is either. If he gets disappointed with one, he decides another might have the right answers, and that certainly isn’t an unusual thing for Christians.
Now, Mr. Dreher is sure that all of the nonsense that conservative Christians have done with the Republican Party aren’t enough, and that the GOP isn’t doing what he wants. The slide into the secular abyss is because his religion failed somehow. Ah, but how you may ask? He’s sure that Trump is a symptom of this problem, which at least he may seem to realize that Trump is no kind of Christian, literalist or liberal, a thing that many Christians can’t quite seem to grasp. What he returns to is that Christians (again only those who agree with him) need to separate themselves from the world. They cannot listen to anyone who has a different opinion, they cannot consider that they are wrong.
Conservative Christianity has been its own enemy when it comes to losing believers. The constant adherence to outright lies is rather stupid in this age where information is easily available. People have realized that the myths of the religion are nonsense and that morality does not come from one sect of one religion. As always, this particular form of Christianity depends on fear and ignorance to exist, and Mr. Dreher certainly uses those tactics in his article. “You must run away! You must not listen to anyone else except me!” Everyone else must be cast as an enemy to fear.
As much as Dreher may see Trump as a symptom, Dreher is using the same pathetic attempts at controlling people. He seems to need external validation and keeps poking his head out of his imaginary fortress to get it. Continue reading