The Raving Theist

Dedicated to Jesus Christ, Now and Forever

Banc on Him (Updated)

February 3, 2009 | 64 Comments

UPDATE: Eren responds in the comments.

The blogger at B.A.N.C. of America — A Movement for Independent Thought, Eren, wrote me a couple of days ago to share her “loss of faith.” “B.A.N.C.” stands for “Born Again Non-Christian.” She asked me to share her point of view with my readers if I thought that “their faith was strong enough.” So there it is.

My own thought is that Eren is moving closer to Christ rather than further away. She admits that she “was raised in a good Christian home by good Christian parents.” She concedes that she “has met some Christians that are genuinely nice people, my own family among them” and that if she had “met [Jesus] back in the day I might have had a crush on him.” Although she now condemns the Christian premise as “ridiculous,” finds her former Christian friends “creepy,” and is appalled by their “herdlike” behavior, her chief concern seems to be hypocrisy. She reveals that she felt compelled to start her blog because of the “deep, philosophical, fundamental, un-Christian-like” flaws of a particular pastor. She faults him for not being “a humble servant of God,” for not “following in the footsteps of the very humble Jesus.” She is appalled at the pastor’s greed because “[i]f you claim to live your life as a disciple of Christ, you should probably follow his example and live modestly.” And although she declares that “[m]ost Christians are so desperate to believe in something, because it gives meaning to their lives, that they will follow any leader no matter how misguided or even corrupt that leader may be,” she immediately states that “I am not talking about Jesus of course.”

Her solution, though, seems to be to merely follow a different herd of men rather than the Jesus she once loved. We should focus on letting “Congress handle the legal stuff that affects Americans” and support those constitutional scholars who are devoted to “the principle on which this country was founded,” the “separation of church and state.” And today she suggest that her readers check out The Atheist Missionary, noting “I haven’t quite reached the level of full-blown atheist yet, but I do agree with the author’s desire to encourage people to think rationally.”

This former full-blown atheist hopes that she will think rationally too. Eren, turn back to Christ. The wisdom you seek will not be found in congressmen and law professors. You once knew, and know now, that Jesus is the wisest man who ever lived. He is the Way and the Truth and the Life, now and forever.

Please go visit, and pray, for Eren.

Comments

64 Responses to “Banc on Him (Updated)”

  1. Melissa
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 11:43 am

    Beautiful post RT – and more of the sort I hope to see more of!! God bless you!!

    Eren, you have my prayers. You were trained in the way you should go and I have faith that you will return to the truth (Proverbs 22:6).

  2. Carla
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 12:10 pm

    I appreciate your honesty, Eren. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  3. Jahrta
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 1:00 pm

    ***smacks head repeatedly on table***

  4. Kathy
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 1:51 pm

    I wonder why it is that people who lose their faith cite the shortcomings those of faith but the shortcomings of those without faith is no less disparaging. We all fall short of the perfection we should seek. We’ve had plenty of bad politicians but we don’t cast off the democratic process as a complete failure. There are plenty of bad marriages, but we still get married. If she believes Jesus is good, why not take Him at His word and live according to His standards and not those of men prone to sin. Prove it right using the teachings of Jesus instead of casting it off because of the hipocracy of men. Or better yet, prove it wrong based on the historical positive impact that atheist have had on the world compared to those (imperfect) men/women of faith.

  5. Melissa
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 2:07 pm

    Well said!

  6. Skeptimal
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 3:14 pm

    This is another example of someone going through a significant change of world view who would have been well advised to give herself more time before going “public.”

    I feel for Eren, not just because she’s going through a difficult time, but because she’s probably made it harder on herself by starting a blog. Whether she sticks with freethought or goes back to religion, she may regret later the things she says now.

    I agree with you, Kathy, that Christians are no worse and no better than the rest of us. I only wish more of them knew that.

  7. UnspeakablyViolentJane
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 3:55 pm

    TRT said:You once knew, and know now, that Jesus is the wisest man who ever lived. He is the Way and the Truth and the Life, now and forever.

    Wow Eren, if that isn’t a clear indicator that you’re headed in the right direction, I don’t know what is.

    Kathy said:I wonder why it is that people who lose their faith cite the shortcomings those of faith…

    Do you draw any conclusions about Islam based on the behaviors of it’s followers? How about the teaching of the Unification Church based on the behavior of the Moonies? How about the Church of Scientology?

    Actually I think the behavior of the followers is a very worthwhile measure….that and the logic of their world view.

  8. frustrated(mk)
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 4:15 pm

    VJ,

    While I agree that one can’t help look at the people in any given group, I do not think it is fair to ONLY look at the people. You need, especially with religion, look to the doctrine of the religion itself. Look to what the people are attempting to attain or become.

    I do not dislike Scientology because of Tom Cruise. I’m not fond of Tom Cruise however because of Scientology and what it teaches. I question the sanity of anyone that adheres to a religion that actually forbids treating mental illness or believes that space aliens are messing with our brain waves.

    I do not dislike the Muslim Faith because of terrorists. I dislike terrorist activity, whether it is committed by Muslims or not. The Muslim faith, in spite of the fanatics, is actually a beautiful faith.

    I do not judge the Hindu faith by the few that abuse it in Orissa. Or the Buddhist faith because some of it’s adherents in Sri Lanka have lost it. I realize that the faith itself, preaches peace and passivity.

    I try, tho sometimes I am sure I fail, to judge the faith on one hand, and to take it’s individual followers one at a time.

  9. frustrated(mk)
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 4:18 pm

    Skep,

    This is an honest question, all bantering aside…who are these Christians that you know? I just can’t see it. I know hundreds of Catholics and none of them fit the description that you constantly define them by. I don’t see them as hypocrites, I don’t see them as judgmental, I don’t see them as violent, or hate-filled…I just don’t. Are you sure we are talking about Christians?

  10. James Stephenson
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 5:28 pm

    “The Muslim faith, in spite of the fanatics, is actually a beautiful faith.”

    – Frustrated(mk)

    What is beautiful about Islam? If anyone believes that this demonic religion is beautiful then they do not really understand it.

    ‘Non-muslims are the lowest beasts and the worst of creatures – Ayas 8.22,8.55,95.5 and 98.6′

    ‘Men are the managers of women’s affairs in that God has preferred one over the other.’

    ‘Men are a degree above women.’

    ‘Those wives you fear may be rebellious, admonish, banish to their couches and beat them.’

    ‘Your wives are land to be tilled, so till your land when and how you will.’

    So beautiful.

  11. StillSearching
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 5:39 pm

    WTF happened to the Raving Atheist?! I heard of him on the awesome documentary “The God Who Wasn’t There,” and now I come here to find that he has joined the side of baseless claims and irrationality! Does anyone know why he did this?

  12. Christina
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 5:51 pm

    I know what it is to have some “believers” crush you. I spent three years in a Dark Night of the Soul after I watched elders I’d loved and trusted murder a beautiful little church. Funny thing is I just got enormously pissed off at God. He was too real for me to disbelieve in.

    An asshole calling himself a Christian doesn’t disprove Christianity any more than an asshole mathematician disproves the Pythagorean Theorem.

  13. frustrated(mk)
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 6:00 pm

    Does anyone know why he did this?

    He sought Truth.

    He found Truth.

    He was not interested in belonging to a club. He wanted to know the truth. He believes he now does.

  14. Lily
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 6:02 pm

    Oh, Christina! That is so true. It is hard for us to accept, sometimes, that church can hurt. It can and it does, as hard as that is to believe, for the many who cannot imagine such a thing. But we don’t help the ones who have been hurt by denying it.

    Does any Christian really doubt that we are sinners in constant need of God’s mercy and help?

  15. frustrated(mk)
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 6:03 pm

    James,

    I could easily go to the Old Testament(non believers frequently do) and pull out all sorts of things out of context, making Christianity sound positively barbaric.

    I do not adhere to the Muslim faith. But they are good, hard working people, with strong morals. They are pro life, pro family, pro God. They believe in the same God that I do. They may have some things wrong, but they have more right than many…

    I know NO Muslims that are violent, evil, mean spirited…I know many that are kind, honest, good parents, good spouses…These are the things the faith teaches.

  16. Skeptimal
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 6:39 pm

    “who are these Christians that you know? I just can’t see it.”

    MK,

    Please don’t misunderstand my true attitude about Christianity and Christians. I haven’t seen any ugly (or beautiful) quality in Christians that is not present in people of every one of the demographic categories we like to classify ourselves by.

    “I know hundreds of Catholics and none of them fit the description that you constantly define them by. I don’t see them as hypocrites, I don’t see them as judgmental, I don’t see them as violent, or hate-filled…I just don’t.”

    I guess I’d say two or three things about that.

    First, there are about a billion ways to be Christian in the world, and probably the majority of Christians are generous and kind in their daily interactions. If you are an inclusive, generous, and kind person, the odds are that you’re going to surround yourself with people who approach their faith in similar ways to your way.

    Second, any group in the supermajority (as Christians are) has little reason to be aware of its weaknesses. It’s comforting to know that most of the country agrees with you (not that I have a lot of experience with that lately). The problem is that the majority is often wrong, and when the majority is wrong, things can get ugly. “Everyone knows” that the things the majority believes are true, so if someone disagrees, then obviously they’re the problem.

    That’s why most white people think that prejudice is a thing of the past while the majority of black people still report having experienced prejudice. That’s nothing new: many in white culture (my parents included) see the 1950’s as a heydey in American culture because there was so little unrest. Never mind that black people had few rights and the Klan was at its peak of power.

    Third, it may well be that you don’t have much experience with the uglier parts of the Christian family. Why would you? As a Christian, to them, you’d be one of the good guys (unless they’re of that group who still believes the Catholic church is the whore of Babylon from the book of Revelations).

    “Are you sure we are talking about Christians?”

    I don’t know what you consider to be a Christian. Many Christians automatically disqualify as unChristian anyone who does something greedy, unkind, liberal, or pro-choice. That’s why, when you bring up things that Christians have done, they respond with something akin to “oh, well, they aren’t *real* Christians.”

    By every definition I’m familiar with, however, I’m dead certain we’re talking about Christians.

  17. Skeptimal
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 6:43 pm

    Stillsearching said: “Does anyone know why he did this?”

    Nope. And he’s not talking. If you try to get him to explain himself, you get platitudes and defensiveness. The only thing we know is that he now has a surprising level of contempt for atheists, a group he belonged to until very recently.

  18. frustrated(mk)
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 6:56 pm

    Skep,

    Okay, I’ll take your word for it. Mostly, I know Catholics. Which is not to say that Non Catholic Christians aren’t wonderful too. But that most of my experience is with Catholics (on an intimate basis).

    I do know, from reading their words or hearing them on blogs, that some Christians can be a little self righteous. But as you say, that is to be expected.

    I think some of this comes from us feeling that even tho Christians are in the majority, practicing Christians are not. Or maybe I should say Catholics. It seems like the secular world has all the power, even tho the majority claims to be Christian. It feels like the minority rules. Things that we find morally reprehensible are the law of the land. You see? So perhaps, some of us get defensive before you’ve even been offensive.

    France claims to be 95% Catholic, but only 5% practice. I mostly know what I would call “faithful” Catholics. Those that are faithful to Rome, weekly if not daily Mass goers, involved in social justice programs, etc. I understand what you mean by “not real” Christians as we think this way about Cafeteria Catholics. In our defense, protestant churches have a much broader definition of what it means to belong to a “church”. I mean look how many non-denominational churches there are. While the Catholic Church has a much narrower definition of what it means to be a Catholic in good standing.

    That said, I don’t judge people based on their religion anymore than I base them on the cars they drive. I base them on their values and morals. I do hang around with Catholics because, as most people do, I am drawn to people that share what is important to me. I am also drawn to people that like dogs…lol, Christian or not.

    So, I’m not disbelieving you. I just haven’t experienced it first hand. Thanks for explaining. It saddens me to think that this is your experience.

    IF a Christian is doing his or her job right, a person should meet them and walk away thinking “If that person represents Christ, I can’t wait to meet the Guy!” Would that we could all live up to that ideal.

  19. frustrated(mk)
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 7:00 pm

    Skep,

    The only thing we know is that he now has a surprising level of contempt for atheists, a group he belonged to until very recently.

    Do you really think it’s contempt? Or do you think that humor is and always has been his way of expressing himself. He’s using it now, just as he once used it on us, and it stings because you are on the receiving end? I don’t know, but I think he would use sarcasm to convince you that pizza was good or that the color blue is the best.

    It just seems like he uses humor to break the ice. I do it too. While in my head (see above comments), I’m feeling lighthearted, I often worry that people can’t see my smile. What I take for good hearted bantering, might be misconstrued as contempt or snarkiness.

  20. Kurt
    February 3rd, 2009 @ 10:56 pm

    The only thing we know is that he now has a surprising level of contempt for atheists, a group he belonged to until very recently.

    Atheism violates the greatest of all commandments, which is “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind”, thus I would understand why someone would feel contempt, but I think contempt is too strong. Christians are told to “love their enemies”, which means always having their best interest at heart and it is in everyone’s best interest to love God, including Eren. To pray for Eren is to love her.

    The contempt is directed at those who support President Obama’s Final Solution against the unborn.

  21. Disgustipated
    February 4th, 2009 @ 1:01 am

    Jahrta wrote, “***smacks head repeatedly on table***”

    Careful… keep that up, and you might end up being a Christian, too.

    Hey! Maybe that’s it! RavingTheist suffered head trauma. That would explain everything.

    Go ahead and pray for me, Christians. You know I need it.

  22. Disgustipated
    February 4th, 2009 @ 1:03 am

    If Christian Love was cum, RA’s comments would be the ultimate Bukkake.

  23. Eren O'Del
    February 4th, 2009 @ 2:25 am

    Dear Raving Theist,

    Thank you for posting this excerpt of my blog. I respect and appreciate your kind words towards me, but I’m afraid you misinterpreted a great deal of what I was trying to say. As the writer I accept partial responsibility for your misunderstanding (more about that later), and will now attempt to correct the situation with this reply.

    You should know that I am a big fan of irony and say everything with a grain of salt. With that said, here goes:

    “EREN IS MOVING CLOSER TO CHRIST RATHER THAN FURTHER AWAY. SHE ADMITS THAT SHE ‘WAS RAISED IN A GOOD CHRISTIAN HOME BY GOOD CHRISTIAN PARENTS.’” I always thought “Good Christian” was a fairly common phrase. I was using it sarcastically to illustrate that, in spite of my parents’ best efforts, I grew up to become a Non-Christian.

    “SHE CONCEDES THAT SHE ‘HAS MET SOME CHRISTIANS THAT ARE GENUINELY NICE PEOPLE, MY OWN FAMILY AMONG THEM’…” I didn’t want to discredit all Christians, because I think people who use absolute statements are ignorant. I was just trying to say that not all Christians are bad in my eyes. If you look through my blog you will see that I was careful to use phrases like “most Christians” or “many Christians” to avoid extremism.

    It is worth mentioning that I think a person’s niceness comes from their character and not from adhering to a particular faith – I’ve met plenty of genuinely nice atheists too. And I’m not going to say anything negative about my family. Though I don’t agree with what they believe, I still love them.

    “IF SHE HAD ‘MET JESUS BACK IN THE DAY I MIGHT HAVE HAD A CRUSH ON HIM.’” Again, irony. Unlike many other Biblical heroes whose sexual exploits are detailed in the holy book, Jesus seems to have had no romantic affiliations whatsoever. He never married and if he had a girlfriend, the authors of the Bible chose to leave that out. I believe this was an attempt to portray him as a completely divine, pure, and non-sexual deity. Having a crush on him would have been ironic as well as inappropriate. Also, admitting that Jesus was a cool guy is not equivalent to believing he is God. I mean, come on. He fed the poor, inspired people to live honestly and performed magic tricks. What’s not to like?

    “ALTHOUGH SHE NOW…FINDS HER FORMER CHRISTIAN FRIENDS ‘CREEPY’…” You worded this to make it sound like I only recently found Christians to be creepy. I preceded all five examples with “I remember” to indicate that these things were going through my head while I was still attending church. Three of those five things were examples directly from functions I attended – a retreat, a prayer, and a guest attendance at Generation Church – while I was a supposed Christian. Incidents of creepiness were some of the reasons I decided to reconsider what exactly it was that I believed.

    I apologize if my use of the word creepy is offensive. You will probably argue that those people were filled with the Holy Spirit; that does not make it any less creepy to a nonbeliever. The realization that I found those situations to be creepy rather than moving was how I first discovered that I was in fact not a Christian.

    “SHE REVEALS THAT SHE FELT COMPELLED TO START HER BLOG BECAUSE OF THE ‘DEEP, PHILOSOPHICAL, FUNDAMENTAL, UN-CHRISTIAN-LIKE’ FLAWS OF A PARTICULAR PASTOR.” Actually, it wasn’t the pastor as much as the Facebook fan page. I couldn’t stand the fact that this hypocritical pastor had such a devoted following, and that his flock of sheep failed to see how his having a fan page was extremely arrogant and unlike Jesus.

    Towards the end of my “How the sheep do follow” entry there is a paragraph that begins, “In case there was anyone who missed the point of this blog…” I realized that my blog had turned into a rather hateful rant against the pastor, which was not my intention. I only felt it necessary to describe the man’s un-Godly ways to point out that his congregation was mistaken for believing him to be sincere. I had hoped that by seeing his hypocrisy, they would start thinking independently instead of blindly following.

    You are right, my biggest problem with the pastor in question and many of the Christians I have met is hypocrisy. When I decried him for not being humble, not living modestly, and not following in the footsteps of Christ, I was only complaining about his behavior because it contradicted with what he taught. I wouldn’t have been bothered by the guy’s vanity, arrogance or wealth if he didn’t make a living by telling others to live like Jesus, who was humble and famously poor.

    It would bother me immensely if I saw a self-proclaimed environmentalist throw trash out the window while driving in their Hummer. I would be very annoyed if I ever saw a PETA activist wearing a fur coat. Hypocrisy comes in many flavors, and I only focused on the Christian variety because I was talking about, well, Christians. I said, “If you claim to live your life as a disciple of Christ, you should follow his example.” I guess I should have added, “If you do not, you can do whatever you please, because then you wouldn’t be a hypocrite.”

    “AND ALTHOUGH SHE DECLARES THAT ‘MOST CHRISTIANS ARE SO DESPERATE TO BELIEVE IN SOMETHING…THAT THEY WILL FOLLOW ANY LEADER NO MATTER HOW MISGUIDED OR EVEN CORRUPT THAT LEADER MAY BE,’ SHE IMMEDIATELY STATES THAT ‘I AM NOT TALKING ABOUT JESUS OF COURSE.’” Let me ask you this. How could Jesus possibly be a corrupt and misguided leader when it comes to setting an example for Christ-like living? He had no choice. He was the example! There is no one who could possibly lead a more Christ-like life than Christ. So I have no reason to criticize Christians who actually follow in Jesus’ footsteps because they are not hypocrites! It’s the Christians who follow the false teachers that I was trying to reach out to.

    “HER SOLUTION, THOUGH, SEEMS TO BE TO MERELY FOLLOW A DIFFERENT HERD OF MEN…” Actually, I became a Born Again Non-Christian on my own. Read the words under my blog title: The movement for independent thought. I arrived at my current beliefs based on personal observations and careful reflection. When I stopped going to church, many people tried to convince me to go back. I didn’t listen.

    I agree that following a different herd of men would be no better than following the Christian herd. However I don’t see how letting Congress handle legislation is the same as following a herd because we vote for those people based on our perception of their ability to run the government. I support the notion of “separation of church and state” because I don’t want to live under a law code that favors one group’s morality. It just so happens to conveniently be a founding principle of this country, and I think our government should stick with it.

    “AND TODAY SHE SUGGEST THAT HER READERS CHECK OUT THE ATHEIST MISSIONARY, NOTING ‘I HAVEN’T QUITE REACHED THE LEVEL OF FULL-BLOWN ATHEIST YET’…” This is going to be a tricky one to explain. Just because I am not a confirmed atheist does not mean I am a confirmed theist.

    Atheists believe that since God’s existence cannot be proved, that a God does not exist. Theists believe that since God’s existence cannot be disproved, that a God exists. (Well, I guess it’s a little more complicated than that. Theists derive meaning in their lives from the existence of a God, and see it as an explanation for things that we humans cannot figure out for ourselves.) Here’s what I believe: there is not sufficient scientific evidence to prove one way or another whether a God exists.

    The reason I said that I am not yet a full-blown atheist was because I wanted to point out that I have more in common with atheists, whose beliefs are founded on proven, scientific fact, than I do with theists, whose beliefs are founded on a desire to have purpose in life. I couldn’t have possibly said that I haven’t reached the level of full-blown theist because, although it places me somewhere in the middle, it would have a completely different meaning. If I were going to encourage people to think rationally, it would make more sense to lean towards fact than feeling.

    Earlier I accepted partial responsibility for your misunderstanding of my blog. While I concede that poor writing may have accounted for your far-out spin of my message, I also believe that you took from it what you wanted. You noted my knowledge of the Bible and my respect for Jesus, but seemed to have missed the parts where I wrote he was just a man. You said I was unhappy with a pastor’s un-Christ-like behavior but failed to see it was because he not living the life that he was telling others to live. You took sentences that were meant to be ironical as literal. In short, you have actually supported my belief that many Christians will skew the meaning of everything they see, hear and read so that it supports whatever they wish to be true.

    You may disagree with what I say and that’s okay. But I have had other responses to my posts, and no one else has stated that they think I am trying to move closer to Christ. In any case, I intend to copy and paste your version of my blog, along with my response, into my own blog in case there were others who made the same mistake as you did.

    Let’s agree to disagree.

    Respectfully,
    Eren

  24. Kathy
    February 4th, 2009 @ 7:25 am

    Eren,
    If you believe Jesus was a real man (regardless of the Chrisitan belief of Him as God), where does that belief come from? To my knowledge, He is only mentioned in the Bible and nowhere in history. I’m not encouraging you to follow your atheist leanings, I’m just wondering where you place your respect and if it is truly in line with becoming an atheist. Jesus is either Who He says He is, or He is a complete liar. Or He didn’t exist at all. I also think even the word atheist is interesting as God is at the center of the issue-either belief or denial. God doesn’t change, only our understanding, perception and ultimately acceptance or denial of Him. Being a Christian (or trying, at least) does not mean to lose our independent thinking, it just means that we chose to accept God, and that belief gives us hope. If we are good Christians, then that hope compels us to do good for others.
    In case you are interested, you should read C.S. Lewis’ “Mere Christianity”. He was an atheist who used his independent thinking to actually become a Christian. He has some compelling, and very intelligent, ways of looking at God, at religion. It’s a very good read. If you are truly interested in leaving your faith aside, then it should be able to stand up to some serious reading.

  25. Skeptimal
    February 4th, 2009 @ 9:59 am

    Christina said: “An asshole calling himself a Christian doesn’t disprove Christianity any more than an asshole mathematician disproves the Pythagorean Theorem.”

    This is very true. It does, however, prove that there is nothing special about Christians or Christianity. We’re all in humanity together, and I don’t mean that in a warm, fuzzy, new age sort of way.

  26. Skeptimal
    February 4th, 2009 @ 10:03 am

    Kathy said: “you should read C.S. Lewis’ “Mere Christianity”. He was an atheist who used his independent thinking to actually become a Christian.”

    C.S. Lewis was a great writer, but he actually didn’t think his way to Christianity. He had been mulling things over, but he admitted that it happened subconsciously. He says that one day when he left for a ride he was not a Christian, and when he arrived at his destination he was one.

    His writings afterward are excellent prose, if not entirely logical, but they are an attempt to justify or flesh out a position he already held. They don’t reflect his journey.

  27. HBanan
    February 4th, 2009 @ 10:23 am

    I am a Catholic and find lots of forms of worship (and worshipers) creepy, including those in my own church. It’s ok. I really hate the emotionalist garbage some Christians emphasize or give pride of place in the life of faith — and you are not the first, and sadly won’t be the last, person who is made to feel deficient for not being swept up in raptures by whatever songs or prayers are being done. If you are swept up in emotion, that’s nice for you, I guess, but I have a lot of sympathy for the people who aren’t and find the whole dramafest kind of annoying. To people who haven’t left the faith but want to roll their eyes at a lot of it: you are not alone!

  28. Kathy
    February 4th, 2009 @ 10:33 am

    HBanan,
    I’m with you. As a Catholic I also feel a little uncomfortable at some of the emotional outpouring of some people, mainly because I am personally uncomfortable with my own emotional outpouring. I remember a few decades ago when the charismatic move was on the rise in the Church and people at Mass were encouraged to just shout out their praise and I wanted to find a hole and crawl into it! But live and let live, I guess. To each his own, right?
    As for the C.S. Lewis book I was only referring to it for an intellectual argument for Christianity. I wasn’t implying it was his conversion story. From what I have read in some comments from atheists, they lay claim to reason (all those comments about reason and lack thereof) but don’t seem to recognize the intelligence on the other side.

  29. frustrated(mk)
    February 4th, 2009 @ 10:36 am

    I think it was “Surprised by Joy” that tells of his journey. It’s probably the only Lewis book I haven’t read. Yet.

  30. frustrated(mk)
    February 4th, 2009 @ 10:41 am

    HBanan and Kathy,

    I think the difference for us and other Christians is that we DO feel the emotions. Deeply. I am moved by songs. I have been moved to tears at the Consecration many times. But it’s private. I feel no need to “share” these emotions in an overt way. Like if I stub my toe, I might express my pain by yelling or throwing something or letting out a few choice words. A mundane pain/A mundane response. But if I lost a child….the pain would be so deep, that an outward dramatization of it would cheapen it. Am I making sense? The emotion I feel is so deep and so profound that holding hands at the Our Father or being “overcome” with the spirit makes it seem cheesy…

    At the same time, as you’ve said, to each his own.

  31. frustrated(mk)
    February 4th, 2009 @ 10:43 am

    Kathy,

    I don’t even like when we’re asked to say our personal intentions out loud! Let alone shouting out praise! I grew up in the 70’s and hated it then, hate it more now.

    I sometimes think all the problems of our present age began with the Coke ad…I’d like to teach the world to sing….*gag*!

  32. Kathy
    February 4th, 2009 @ 11:30 am

    Frustrated,
    I think you nailed it. When people shout out or things like that, it doesn’t seem sincere. It looks put on. At my church, before Mass, the lector gets up and says “we are a warm and welcoming parish….”. Well, if you have to advertise it, then it isn’t completely true. I have also been moved, but again like you, very privately.

  33. Chris Arsenault
    February 4th, 2009 @ 11:43 am

    I believe in doing whatever I please and allowing others to do the same, as long as our personal choices don’t interfere with one another.

    Does Eren decide what is interference? If so, how would Eren stop herself from being hypocritical?

    Apparently, she has no understanding of the mystery beyond self-reference. Isn’t that hubris?

  34. frustrated(mk)
    February 4th, 2009 @ 12:23 pm

    Hey Chris Arsenault…

    How goes Jill’s?

    And you are right. Our personal choices always interfere or at least affect others.

    We get accused of forcing our moral choices down the throats of fellow americans, but when we are forced to pay for abortions or put up with sex ed in public schools or let our 14 year olds get abortions or accept a redefining of marriage, the whole forced morals thing becomes null and void…what’s up with that?

    The point is that what I do affects you and what you do affects me, for better or worse, and it happens on both sides of the aisle.

  35. frustrated(mk)
    February 4th, 2009 @ 12:25 pm

    Kathy,

    Agreed. Reminds of the wringing the hands/sack cloth and ashes/long face for fasting pharisees…On the other hand, if it’s bothering me, I can just go further into Him and offer it up.

  36. Eren O'Del
    February 4th, 2009 @ 1:35 pm

    Chris,

    My definition of interference is causing harm to another or trying to stop others from living as they please. My actions may “affect” you in some way because you disapprove, just as I had a problem with hypocrisy. But as long as those hypocrites refrain from pounding on my door, I’ll let them be. My outcry against them is an exercise in free speech which may offend, but it does not interfere according to my definition. Likewise, the choices I have made in my own life might bother you (maybe even “interfere” depending on how YOU define it), but I have not taken any action to hurt you or prevent you from doing what you want.

    I am pro-choice, but I won’t stop a pro-life pregnant teenager from having her kid. Hence, the term pro-choice. Likewise, I support gay marriage because I think everyone should have the right to marry. I never said that going forward, everyone would have to marry someone of the same sex! If you are against abortion or gay marriage you do not have to participate in either activity, but you shouldn’t stop others from doing as they wish.

    I can see how you would think that giving myself the right to define interference is hubris. However, I am not a Christian, and not a follower of the very humble Jesus, therefore not a hypocrite. I can be arrogant if I want to. Another paper that I once wrote for college was entitled “Egotistically Independent.”

    Besides, what is wrong with holding beliefs and living a life according to my own definitions? What, should I go by someone else’s definitions? That’s not independent thinking.

  37. Eren O'Del
    February 4th, 2009 @ 1:43 pm

    Kathy,

    I believe Jesus was a real person because I have taken history classes that discuss and acknowledge him as a real person. Historians have even dated his birth as sometime between 4 and 6 BC. I believe the religion that takes its name from him was inspired by the man’s life.

  38. Lily
    February 4th, 2009 @ 1:47 pm

    Eren:
    The problem that your view poses is that no man is an island. There simply is no way to live, as if we were a bunch of isolated individuals whose actions never impact anyone else. We live in communities and we rub up against other people all the time. It is impossible not to. Thus we regulate the behaviors that cause problems. To use your examples, abortion (whether I have one or not) and gay marriage (whether I enter into one or not) do impact me. They impact everyone in some way or another. Laws don’t just appear out of thin air because someone had a great idea that it would be fun to pass a law against X. The reflect the collective experience and wisdom (one hopes) of the greater community.

  39. UnspeakablyViolentJane
    February 4th, 2009 @ 2:26 pm

    During the first few days of Obama’s administration – when all he had done was eliminate the gag rule and give the green light to stem cell research – only 11% of the population thought he was doin a bad job.

    It seems that the current pro-choice laws do in fact reflect the collective experience and wisdom of the greater community.

  40. Lily
    February 4th, 2009 @ 2:31 pm

    No. Those laws reflect the imposition by the courts of a very bad law on the nation, in total defiance of the will of the majority. It was a shocking abuse that has caused nothing but trouble for 36 years. Laws that reflect the will of the majority don’t cause such widespread resistance.

  41. UnspeakablyViolentJane
    February 4th, 2009 @ 2:33 pm

    No, only in “defiance” of 10%. The majority was pleased.

  42. Chris Arsenault
    February 4th, 2009 @ 3:20 pm

    Eren – my point wasn’t about “personal freedoms” in terms of choices. The hubris is when you believe such thinking does not impact you but only has to do with effecting others in an immediate-consequential way.

    You can’t escape from the imposed condition of choice: you cannot do “nothing”. You exist. You’re an intrinsically valuable member of the human community. You trade on this, but you don’t believe it.

    Besides, what is wrong with holding beliefs and living a life according to my own definitions? What, should I go by someone else’s definitions? That’s not independent thinking.

    You talk as though law and morality is subject to your personal wishes. It isn’t.

    You live in a country which obeys the rule of law, however, I’m quite sure you’d have a problem with being raped, tortured and being taken as a slave because another holds they are morally permissible. You want others to defend your rights when it’s convenient for you, but you do not want to uphold such rights unless they are to your benefit.

    Your own thinking reflects the idea that might makes right, but you would be unwilling to live by your own worldview. You’re pre-supposing you have human rights, but are okay with denying the right to life via abortion, shows a harmful discrimination against your very own human nature.

    If I were to buy your argument, why then should I consider you an intrinsically valuable human being?

  43. frustrated(mk)
    February 4th, 2009 @ 4:01 pm

    Vj,

    Where do you get 10%? I read a poll that said 58% were NOT pleased with his decision to reinstate the Mexico City Policy…58% is a far cry fro 10%.

    Further, Obama’s decision to reverse the prohibition on funding for overseas family-planning providers may be the least popular thing he has done so far. This was an executive order that forbade federal government money from going to overseas family-planning groups that provide abortions or offer abortion counseling. Fifty-eight percent of Americans disapprove of Obama’s decision to lift this ban, while only 35% approve of it. The ban on federal funds to these groups was put in place by Ronald Reagan, but lifted by Bill Clinton. George W. Bush re-instituted the ban after taking office in 2001, but Obama has once again lifted it.

    http://www.gallup.com/poll/114091/Americans-Approve-Obama-Actions-Date.aspx

  44. Kathy
    February 4th, 2009 @ 4:15 pm

    Eren,
    Wow, I didn’t know that historians believe Him to be a real person, factually speaking I mean. Interesting. I would love to know what they used as sources, do you still remember that info? Seriously, I’m not trying to give a hard time or change your mind, I really want to know what is taught in a history class that accepts Jesus as a historical figure…..do they even mention the Bible? I have heard somewhere that some people accept the Bible as a historical document, but I wasn’t sure how that could be verified.

  45. Kathy
    February 4th, 2009 @ 4:18 pm

    Frustrated,
    I love converstion stories (well- the ones toward Christianity, I guess, to be completely honest!) I’m glad you mentioned Surprised by Joy because I haven’t read that one either. I just started reading some of his books but I’ve only gotten through The Screwtape Letters and The Great Divorce and I’m currently reading Mere Christianity. I do love his style!

  46. Kathy
    February 4th, 2009 @ 4:34 pm

    Actually, I want to clarify the conversion story thing I’d said. I think I would read the Christian to atheist conversion, if it could be called that. I am actually interested in the actual motives of why people accept or deny something after belonging for some time. I find joy in seeing someone come into their faith and be excited by it (because they always are excited). I feel kind of sad for those who cast off their faith, kind of like watching a marriage fail. The people involved may feel liberate from their spouse, but it is a sad thing to watch. Maybe it’s very similar to a marriage that goes cold, because if there is no commitment, it won’t last. It takes work to be a Christian, just like it takes work to be married. Every Christian I know has times of doubt and are even disturbed by what they see from fellow Christians, but we muddle through and the joy returns eventually.
    I am sincerely interested in why people choose not to believe anymore. I guess maybe it could help me understand how to be a better Christian and perhaps avoid behavior that sends people running….

  47. frustrated(mk)
    February 4th, 2009 @ 4:43 pm

    Kathy,

    Lewis is awesome. Tho I like Chesterton a little bit better. I have “Quotable Lewis” which is HUGE and has thousands of quotes by him on tons of topics.

    Screwtape was great. And obviously Narnia. Can’t say I loved the Perelandra series, but then again I don’t care for science fiction. But by far my favorite is The Abolition of Man.

    I just went to his website, and I take it back. I have a lot more to go. Some of the titles are rather obscure. Who knew???

  48. Eren O'Del
    February 4th, 2009 @ 4:52 pm

    Chris,

    Obviously I’d have a problem with anyone (not just myself) being tortured or raped even if another person thinks it morally permissible. Their belief and actions brought harm to someone (my definition of interference). I do not see how this is inconsistent with my thinking.

    My own worldview is not that it is okay for me to harm others while others cannot harm me. However, I also don’t believe that life begins at conception. Since we disagree on whether or not an abortion is in fact causing harm to another human being, we will never agree on whether I am living according to my own beliefs.

    I am okay with that. As I said, I can agree to disagree. I don’t wish to stop you from holding certain beliefs; I just don’t share them.

    Kathy,

    I don’t quite remember. It was awhile ago. However I do remember that by all accounts (historical and biblical) that Jesus lived what appeared to be an honorable life.

    To anyone that might still have something to say to me,

    I have stated twice on my own blog, in comment responses to Lily, that all this writing and responding is taking away from my studies, something I hadn’t planned on. (Call me stupid, but this is my first blog.) Therefore I will refrain from continuing to do this until I have taken care of more important priorities. I feel the need to mention this because I do love a good debate and don’t want to appear to have “wimped out” on defending my beliefs.

    Cheers!

  49. Skeptimal
    February 4th, 2009 @ 4:53 pm

    Kathy,

    You may also enjoy the writing by the third member of the inklings, Charles Williams, although he was primarily a novelist.

  50. Kathy
    February 4th, 2009 @ 5:42 pm

    I forgot completely about the Narnia series…loved those, especially when I was much younger. I know Lewis has a lot written and I have read not even the tip of the iceberg, but having 4 chilfren does tend to limit my reading time…..

    And I will have to check out Charles Williams..thanks for the suggestion…

    Eren,
    I wish you the best in your studies and on your faith journey….

  51. Faith
    February 5th, 2009 @ 2:30 am

    Eren, I hope you will read my little story.

    I used to have very similar beliefs (or lack of) to yours. My parents were former hippies who became born-again Christians, then went on to pastor a “Jesus-freak” style church. There was lots of speaking in tongues and shouts of “Hallelujah!” I hated it from as early as I can remember. I was so shy and uncomfortable in this church where even as a child I felt guilty for not speaking in tongues and waving my arms in the air. As soon as I left home at 18, I left Christianity too, with no regrets.

    I loved my parents, but I could never make sense of all this Jesus-God-Bible stuff that they believed. I, too, decided that Christians were hypocrites. I proudly believed that there was no sin, and that any behavior was fine as long as it didn’t hurt anyone else.

    Then I had kids. And I couldn’t figure out a way to teach them that “any behavior was fine as long as it didn’t hurt anyone else.” I wanted to teach my children that sexuality was a beautiful gift for a husband and wife to share, but that didn’t line up with my belief that “any behavior was fine…” (And I knew ALL TOO WELL that sexuality as we learn about it these days is free, easy, fun — and often leads to STDs, abortion, broken hearts, etc. etc.)

    I decided to teach my kids Christian morality. I didn’t want to teach them Christianity, mind you. Just the morals. So I started going to mass with my cradle-Catholic husband. For nearly 20 years I couldn’t stand to even enter a church. But I started going to mass. I liked it. No one tried to get me SAVED, or anything like that. We continued going to mass as a family because it felt good to go to church together. After 10 years with my husband, we had never been to church. But this felt good, so we kept it up.

    Eventually I would find myself weeping during mass as I watched people humbly going up to receive the Body of Christ during the Eucharist. I started making sure to tuck a few kleenex in my purse before mass. Sometimes I wept so much I thought people must have thought I was a real mess. But it was 20 years of pride beginning to melt away.

    I’m a Catholic now, of course. I love the quiet worship of Catholicism. Of course I love SO MUCH MORE about the Catholic Church than that. Once you start researching it, it blows you away. Yes, there are hypocrites out there. But look at two Old Testament greats. King David and King Solomon. Both were amazing men of God. Both screwed up BIG TIME. We screw up. God forgives us. It doesn’t make us hypocrites. It just makes us human.

    Eren, if you ever get a tiny urge to go to a church, try the Catholic Church. You can go in, sit at the back. No one will bother you. I hope someday, maybe years from now, you’ll go into a Catholic Church just to watch. (Try to pick a pretty one. There are some horribly ugly ones out there these days!)

    All the best.

  52. Eren O'Del
    February 5th, 2009 @ 1:49 pm

    Taking a study break. Been up all night!

    Dear Lily, Kathy and Faith,

    Many thanks to the three of you for your responses. I haven’t been converted, but I do appreciate the calm manner in which you three ladies approached me (as opposed to others who came at me with a tone of scorn, which is difficult not to do I admit. I’m guilty of it too). If all Catholics are like you, then I think Catholic is my favorite kind of Christian, if only for their greater tolerance and understanding. Funny because when I was going to church with my family, we were taught that the beliefs upheld by the Catholic Church were false ;) but as you know, everyone thinks their version is right.

    Lily,

    I was very happy to read your comment on my blog. It relieved me immensely to learn that, unlike what I previously thought, a good number of believers do not take everything the Bible says as fact “(a literal 7 days of creation, a young earth, a literal Adam and Eve, men and dinosaurs inhabiting the earth at the same time—yikes!)”. There is hope for the general IQ of mankind, after all. I was also somewhat humbled by your response as I was a little snippy towards you at first, while you maintained poise and class. You are exactly the type of person that I could have an intelligent conversation with. We’d have opposing views but not rip each others’ heads off!

    Kathy,

    I remembered a little more about what I learned about Jesus in my history classes. The first time was in 10th grade world history. Our textbook acknowledged him as the founder of Christianity but I don’t remember the name of the text. When I was a senior in high school, I took an introductory Humanities class. The first day of class the teacher said something like, “This is a college prep course that gives a summary of everything that happened from the beginning of time all the way up to…yesterday. We will discuss history, people, literature and art. Since we only have a semester to cover all that, I am only going to go over the KEY things that happened in human history.” Jesus and the Bible were both mentioned in the class, as an important person and piece of literature, respectively. Finally, when I entered college I had to take a lower division history class, and again we talked about Jesus and his teachings. In that class the instructor mentioned Jesus during a lecture or two. I appreciate your question, because it forced me to remember where my current idea of who Jesus is came from.

    Faith,

    Thank you, thank you, thank you. You are the first person of faith to actually “get” what I wrote, because you experienced it yourself. Every other Christian keeps telling me, “Eren, you once knew the truth, you once loved Jesus, look into your heart, you know you want to go back to him, yada yada yada…” and it infuriates me. People keep forgetting that I only went to Church because my family went! I even say in my blog that I never felt what I knew what I was supposed to feel, and that I thought the Christian premise (virgin, sacrifice, raised from the dead) was ridiculous. Everyone seems to think that the ONLY reason I stopped going to church was because I didn’t like the way certain Christians behaved contrary to their beliefs, but they seem to miss the point I was trying to make: I never believed. So, thank you. As for your story, I’m glad you found something to believe that makes you happy, and works for you. I’ve found it too! I don’t think I will ever step into a church again, but if I should ever feel so inclined I will take your advice and try a pretty Catholic Church.

    I will now resume studying :)

  53. Lily
    February 5th, 2009 @ 2:39 pm

    Glad you checked in, Eren. Now, get back to work! :)

    Seriously, take a study break with us anytime!

    Faith: I really appreciated reading your story. One part resonated with me very much– even though I did convert as an adult (i.e. came to believe/was “born again”) and so had a choice in the matter. I was never comfortable with some of the cultural distinctives of evangelical Christianity. When I wandered into a Catholic Church, some years later, I thought I had died and gone to heaven. No one paid the slightest attention to me, at all!

    When visiting a new church of the denomination I was a part of (or a similar body), I had been accustomed to people mobbing me, dragging me around to introduce me to everyone, and, most horrifying of all, being asked for my “testimony” which never contained enough shame, degradation, drug and/or alcohol abuse and crime to mark me out as special. Eventually, I got to the place where I wished Catholics would, occasionally, greet newcomers but we just don’t normally do that.

    Then I moved to Alabama a few years ago. What a difference the culture makes! I remember not too long after I joined my current parish that our priest mentioned in conversation one day that in Alabama, even Catholics are Baptists. He meant, of course, that so pervasive is that particular cultural influence that it touches everyone and everything. Especially given that Catholics in Alabama are a mere 4% of the population, I guess that cannot be a surprise.

    So, I think I have the best of both worlds now– Catholicism and southern hospitality. We have lots of opportunities to socialize, lots of small group studies, and an amazing number of ministries that allow one to contribute meaningfully and get to know people. It was very different from what I had experienced when I lived in New England or in the midwest.

    So yes, for anyone who wants to give it a shot, without being noticed– at least not in an obnoxious fashion, a nice Catholic Church is an excellent choice.

  54. Faith
    February 5th, 2009 @ 8:38 pm

    Eren,

    Not to keep you from your studying or anything, but one last word.

    If you ever feel like it, years from now perhaps :) feel free to contact me at islatex@mac.com

  55. Eren O'Del
    February 6th, 2009 @ 3:46 am

    Oh my god…I just realized something. I know why I thought all Christians held the same fundamentalist beliefs.

    Because fundamentalist evangelical Christians are the most in-your-face about their beliefs! Those guys are the ones that send missions to other countries and have TV shows. Faith says she loves the “quiet worship” of Catholicism, and Kathy said “As a Catholic I also feel a little uncomfortable at some of the emotional outpouring of some people.” I get it now!

    I also think that the in-your-face approach of fundamentalists is done on purpose to make other Christians believe that it is the correct way to be a Christian.

    I love epiphanies.

  56. frustrated(mk)
    February 6th, 2009 @ 6:35 am

    At the risk of offending fundamentalist Christians…you hit the nail on the head, Eren.

    Might I suggest something? You say you never “felt” like you believed, but that is a very egocentric view. And part of what we (the Catholics here) are talking about. Feelings, while nice, are just extras. They have nothing whatsoever to do with our Faith.

    Believing is an act of the will, not an emotion. If you have been led to believe that you must have these great waves of deep emotion in order to know that you believe then you have been mislead.

    Instead of focusing on you, and your “feelings” you should try to focus on Him. Faith is about a relationship. And like any relationship, some days you like the person and some days you just make the phone call cuz you’re supposed to.

    You should read Theology of the Body for Beginners by Christopher West. Talk about epiphanies.

    Even in our Catholic Church you get people who say they are bored at Mass or they don’t like the music, or they church hop…or the ever popular Cafeteria Catholics. Again, they are focusing on themselves.

    The other beautiful thing about our Faith is the endless depth…no matter how far you go, no matter how many questions you ask, no matter how much you think you know, there is always “higher up and further in” (to quote Lewis).

    The relationship grows and grows…heck, I have an epiphany once a week, sometimes once a day. The saints, the Eucharist, the endless books, scripture, the history of the church, the whys of her rules, Our Lady, the rosary, the apparitions, the sacraments, the geniuses,the Catechism, the Mass, the rituals, the sacramentals, the pope, his encyclicals, the feast days…

    It’s deep. It’s not surface. It’s infinite.

    Basically, She is just beautiful.

    The whole in your face thing, I think, is because the evangelical faith itself is kind of shallow. It’s based on “me, me, me”. I believe. I’m saved. God loves me.

    The Catholic faith is based on “us”. Relationships. With God, with each other.

    It’s not that Evangelicals don’t love God, but it’s the way a toddler loves Him. Not the way an adult loves Him.
    The Catholic faith based on reason, and not emotion.

    You know how a 5 year old sing songs “I love you Daddy”? Then think of the way you love your “lover”. The love in both scenarios is real. But the second love, if it is real, is much more mature. Much deeper.

    The Eucharist alone exemplifies this. Deep. Very Deep.

  57. frustrated(mk)
    February 6th, 2009 @ 6:39 am

    BTW,

    Erin…I certainly don’t mean to imply that Evangelicals are not Christian or that they aren’t heaven bound. I’m just pointing out that if you felt there was something lacking in your old church, it’s because there was. You might just be ready for “more”…you chose “less” because you weren’t getting what you need…you assumed you didn’t need any,…but you were really craving “meat”.

  58. frustrated(mk)
    February 6th, 2009 @ 6:39 am

    Sorry I spelled your name wrong, Eren.

  59. Eren O'Del
    February 8th, 2009 @ 2:10 am

    I have read your post and can’t help but feel that no one is getting my point. Feelings and emotions aside, I still don’t believe in any of the basic precepts of Christianity. The things I am required to accept as truth make absolutely no sense to me and conflict with everything that I have learned about science. Catholics say they don’t take the Old Testament literally. But the New Testament has some questionable science written in its pages as well, including the single most important thing that all Christians must accept in order to call themselves such: sacrifice and resurrection.

    I appreciate your thoughts (all of you) but I am getting a little tired of having to repeat myself over and over again. What is the point of having a discussion with someone that doesn’t get what you’re trying to say?

    Because of this particular post by Raving Theist, I have gone back to my own blog and re-written some of my older entries so as to avoid confusion. I haven’t altered the original intended meaning, mind you. I’ve just made it more clear where I stand.

    The only thing that will change my mind is physical, logical, conclusive, scientific evidence that proves once and for all that the resurrection happened. We will never find such evidence so I will never change my mind.

    Faith-based evidence is not good enough. Prayers that have been “answered” are not good enough. The Shroud of Turin is without a doubt fake. And so on, and so on.

    If you have time, please stop by and read some of the newer entries I have posted on BANC. Rather than questioning what I believe, maybe you should try questioning what you believe.

  60. Eren O'Del
    February 8th, 2009 @ 2:17 am

    Oh, forgot to mention. One of the alterations I made to my blog was removing any part that showed sympathy towards Christians, such as acknowledgement of Jesus as an actual historical figure or saying that Christians are genuinely nice people. I only put those things in there to demonstrate tolerance of other people’s beliefs. Since my saying those things created ambiguity, I removed them. You can thank yourselves for that.

  61. Brian
    February 8th, 2009 @ 2:54 pm

    Unfortunately, the reason that Eren and the rest of those who are dialoguing with her are not finding common ground is because they are speaking from two different astral planes. That Eren is looking for scientific evidence for the resurrection reveals that she has accepted that only what can be empirically proved through science is real. It reminds me of something Chesterton wrote, “To accept everything is an exercise, to understand everything a strain. The poet only desires exaltation and expansion, a world to stretch himself in. The poet only asks to get his head into the heavens. It is the logician who seeks to get the heavens into his head. And it is his head that splits.” In reality, Eren, for someone who claims to be a free thinker, you have limited yourself. The real free thinkers are poets, not logicians.

  62. frustrated(mk)
    February 8th, 2009 @ 5:38 pm

    Eren,

    You mentioned epiphanies. I was just expounding. Not trying to convince you of anything. Just giving you a different perspective. Carry on.

  63. Eren O'Del
    February 8th, 2009 @ 11:08 pm

    Sorry. I got snippy on my own blog with someone else too. Sigh. I think the stress of midterms just got to me.

  64. Eren O'Del
    February 8th, 2009 @ 11:13 pm

    Brian,

    Point taken. At least you understood what I was trying to say. As I said on my own blog to Lily, I accept that there are things that I may not know, due to my refusal to accept any kind of truth other than that which can be scientifically proven. However, I don’t believe that free thinking means accepting a supernatural theory to explain what we don’t understand. Also, I am happy in the fact that what I do know, based on scientific evidence, I have no doubts about.

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