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[+] "dogmatism as irony"
Posted: Tue Jan 18, 2005 9:30 am
scribebytrade
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so things seem to be a bit slow around here. and i'm bored in class at the moment, so i figured i'd do something productive (if that's even what you want to call this). anyway, this was a topic originally posted in the belmont myspace community by a guy who goes to the school, pertaining to his perception of christianity. i just found it interesting because there was some amount of it with which i definitely agreed, as well as some i felt was an unfair assessment. anyways, it's something to mull over a bit. thoughts, anyone?

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this one's about christianity. when i first came to this school, i was scared that chrisitans here would try to preach to me, invite me to their bible studies, refuge, etc. but that only happened a few times. i was pleased. but now, i almost wish that happened. it seems that most christians i meet here wanna run from me as soon as they find out the carnal nature of my existence (heaven forbid the frightening word -nihilism-). its not just me, this happens to all the non-christians i know. when i lived in pembroke, i even had a guy threaten to hit me because my criticisms of his religion frustrated him so much. thats just part of the problem. i have very few christian friends. why? cause i drink, i (used to) smoke cigarettes, and i'm cynical towards imprisoning and self destructive dogmatic systems (religions). i don't get it. i know my way around the bible (and i have learned at this campus, i know it better than most christians), and ummm, a lot of the christians here seem to be missing something. hmm, maybe its a broader problem, i'm not sure. but anyway, why do the jesus freaks around these parts seem to be elitists, when their "savior" was one of the first westerners to preech so heavily about egalitarianism and the spreading of his ideas through love. did i miss something in the gospels?? was there a part when jesus said "turn a cold shoulder to those who do not know of me, snicker and talk about them behind their backs, diassociate from them if they drink, and most of all, don't EVER try to defend your beliefs to someone who has well founded arguments against them. now go forth my children, but DO not preach anything to the sinners whom you do not love". hmm, maybe that was in one of the over 50 gospels that didn't make it into the bible. i doubt it though. can anyone answer this?? i know that most of the people in this group are probably christians. i'm not tying to pick a fight. its just that the fallacy that is innate in this behavior puzzles me to no end. i can't seem to make any sense of it, and the christians i ask about it seem unwilling to adress it. after all, i'm just a silly heretic. anyways, anyone who can help, or is willing to help answer will receive my open respect (for whatever thats worth) and i will respectfully adress their reply.

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Posted: Tue Jan 18, 2005 9:55 am
Indie
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I'm wondering what you felt was an "unfair assessment". Sounds pretty accurate to me.

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Posted: Tue Jan 18, 2005 10:23 am
scribebytrade
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Location: belmont U




basically, the unfair assessment part comes from the generalities. yeah, i think a good part of the christian community is exactly as described. but at belmont, i've found more than a few who can't really be lumped into that category.

[edit: because i can't spell]

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Posted: Thu Jan 20, 2005 7:24 pm
jody
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wow, powerful stuff. it reminds me of the small Christian school i went to in many ways. you are probably right in that this person is speaking in "generalities", but thats probably just based on the people he/she has interacted with.

to answer the question they are asking in a VERY short answer....i think behaviors like this are based on fear. fear of the "other side", fear of the unknown, fear of not knowing all the answers, fear that maybe you don't fully understand God.....fear.

would you agree?

i really like this topic since i dealt with the same thing for four years of college.

there are 2 other people from my college at mosaic and they might say that our school was not like that. (maybe they would, i don't know....linne, amy?) but again, i think it goes back to who you happen to interact with the most.

just some thoughts......

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Posted: Fri Jan 21, 2005 3:10 am
scribebytrade
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Location: belmont U




yeah, the guy who posted that and i are going to discuss it further over coffee in the next few days, at his request. it should be a really interesting experience, considering the most interaction i've ever had with him is passing him every few weeks on campus... i'm always up for an interesting conversation, though. what's intriguing about this guy is that he seems to care more about believing in something real than most christians do. honestly, he probably knows the teachings of Christ better than most of us do as well. now there's an interesting thing to chew on....

yeah, jody, i agree that much of it is based on fear. i've just recently started seeing how much about God i can't understand, and how the "solid" answers with which i've been raised are attempting to explain the unexplainable, and therefore aren't quite as certain as i thought them to be. but i think there's freedom in that... in realizing that God isn't something that anyone can completely explain with any kind of absolute certainty. it sort of makes you realize just how great of a force he really is. i think the tendency is to try to explain God so much that he becomes entirely conceivable. but i don't think that God is conceivable at all. we can't wrap our minds around him; he's too big. and that's not a bad thing, either. does that make sense?

so... yeah. it's late. haha.

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Posted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 6:30 pm
jody
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yes scribebytrade, i get what you are saying. i'm very glad that i can't explain everything about God, i don't think i would want to believe in a God whom i completly understood.

i am glad you are getting to talk with this person. it sounds like he is very passionate. i hope you can shed some light on what Christ is truly all about and maybe apologize to him for how some who represent Christ have treated him. have you read Blue Like Jazz? there is a great chapter in that book about talking to people who have been mistreated by Christ followers.

on another note, i used to be very angry with Christians who didn't live what they believed, Christians who judged others, condemned others, and made non-belivers feel like crap. however, i have now come to realize that by being angry with them and judging them, i have turned out to be just as bad as they are. crazy huh? now i TRY to avoid this mindset...but i fail at it A LOT!

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Posted: Tue Jan 25, 2005 9:32 am
scribebytrade
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yes, jody, i'm actually in the middle of blue like jazz right now. great book... i can't believe i completely missed his lecture.

so i had a conversation with the guy who posted that, which lasted almost three hours. i really think i can probably mark that down as one of the most interesting conversations i've had in my entire life, but it was also a good one. it's amazing how many people asked me if i "made and progress," referring of course to sharing the message of christ. but i think the progress i actually made was more beneficial to my own understanding of people like him.

see, it's difficult to share the message of christ, conventionally, with someone who knows more about your faith than you yourself do... someone who's grown up immersed in christianity, yet has arrived at the conclusion that all comes to naught. i think we both learned quite a bit through the conversation, as he admitted to having no real christian friends because both he and they were mutually repulsed by one another, typically.

so. we're starting out by swapping books sometime this week... neitzsche for schaeffer. should be interesting.

i definitely suggest (at least every once in a while) spending some time with someone who doesn't agree with you on pretty much everything. it'll be good for you; i promise.

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Posted: Wed Jan 26, 2005 5:10 pm
yasheluah
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amen, Christy. that is awesome.

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Posted: Sat Jan 29, 2005 3:44 pm
jody
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Location: nashville




i hear what you are saying and have had some similar experiences! glad it was enjoyable!

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