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View Diary: In Their Eyes, We are the Damned (205 comments)

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  •  In a lifetime as a Christian (0+ / 0-)

    and decades living in Texas, I never heard anyone mention such a doctrine.  While it must exist, I cannot imagine that it is influencing current events as described in the diary.

    •  Did you study Calvanism in high school history? (1+ / 0-)
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      kevin k

      Are you saying that such a doctrine was never preached from the pulpit where you attended church?  I never heard Calvinist principles preached from the pulpit in Virginia, but my mother stopped attending a church in another state because they preached predestination.  Our personal experience doesn't always give us the whole picture.  

      •  No, that's not what I said (0+ / 0-)

        I acknowledged that it the doctrine exists and, surely, some people are aware of it. But, I've seen no evidence that it is widely known or publicly discussed sufficiently to influence on Christian churches and Texas politics.  The diary provides no evidence, either, for making the leap from "this doctrine exists" to "this doctrine is responsible for today's attitudes toward the poor."

        •  I disagree. I attended a performance/fundraiser (1+ / 0-)
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          Tam in CA

          at a church for a woman who lacked health insurance to care for her life-threatening condition.  We were informed that even though she lacked health insurance, it was not because she was an unworthy person--implying that most who lack health insurance are unworthy.  I've heard this attitude expressed again and again in my area of the deep south, by people who profess strong religious convictions.  That is that the poor are poor because they are unworthy and unworthy because they are poor.

          •  I still don't see a connection (0+ / 0-)

            with the specific doctrine you mentioned.  What you keep giving me is speculation, not facts.

            •  They said that this woman, really (0+ / 0-)

              did deserve help even though she didn't have her own health insurance.  I'm not sure how much more factual you can get than that.  "American Grace" by Putnam and Campbell will be more current and  factual, but doesn't directly investigate the influences of Calvinism on American political thought.  You would have to read works by Max Weber, a sociologist and political economist for the effect Calvinism has had on the philosophy of capitalism.  You have to seek out facts--they won't seek you out.

    •  It doesn't go by that name (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Living in Texas, I'm sure you've seen the Faith Warehouse style churches, huge buildings that are dominated by gigantic signs but have remarkably tiny crosses. That or gigantic crosses that can be seen for miles.

      It is in these churches that Calvinism is preached. God wants you to be rich, God wants you to be successful. If you would just make a seed offering to the church, your faith would be returned to you a hundred-fold.

      I know that in Houston we have dozens of these churches, some so large they have helipads and airstrips for the faithful that just have to show up in aircraft.

      I've been to their sermons, and they tend to be pretty innocuous. The fire and brimstone tends to be kept to a minimum, as is the kneeling, standing, and swaying. You wouldn't want anyone spilling their Starbucks on the sanctuary carpet after all. However, at some point mention is made of how God wants only the best for you, and the best is usually equated with material success. At that point, the plate is passed around and you are encouraged to put your faith (and money) in the church that it may make you more successful. The more you put in, the more blessed you will become.

      If you're lucky enough to have a church that doesn't do this then I most certainly see how you've never been exposed. However, this sort of chicanery has been going on in the US since the late 20's when it came crawling out of things like the Brownsville Movement and the Missouri Lutheran synod.

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