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View Diary: Why We Fight - Christian Dominionists Are Dead Serious About Overthrowing Democracy (Updated) (273 comments)

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  •  Two things I would like to point out... (24+ / 0-)

    1. There is also a really strong connection here to "The Family" through Bill Bright and his followers. And the whole language about "caring" for world changers and decision makers is right oot of the family operating manual. See Jeff Sharlot's excellent work on the family and C street.

    2. Not all Christians are like this. As a happy agnostic I recognize the difference between those Christians who really care and are guided by altruism and love. Those who are accepting of everyone not matter their race gender class or sexual/gender orientation.

    But we have to meet the bad guys head on. And we need to presuade those Christians who act in a morally positive way to help us confront those christains who are hateful and interested in power and domination. These enemies of democracy, rationality, and humanity are out there and they represent a real danger. But lets acurately indentify them and not alienate good people of faith.

    •  But Christians who can't shake off superstition (7+ / 0-)

      and the mythologies of Christianity are enabling these radical Christianists. As long as you believe in some invisible, supernatural, all-knowing and seeing figure somewhere (in the sky, all around us, etc.), for which there is absolutely ZERO evidence, you are allowing and enabling belief in any nonsense that anyone can dream up, no matter how demented are their dreams.

      The U.S. has simply got to turn the corner on this and have a majority of the population that believes in evidence-based reasoning rather than wishful thinking. This is the only way to stop these people; wake them from their dream by waking oneself first and then promoting the concept of waking up!

      •  Fundamentalist Christianity is a new thing (7+ / 0-)

        and is a response to modernity. But not all Christians are fundamentalist. Many Christians question the more mytholgical aspects of their faith and understand them to be myth - not factually true but containing perhaps a literary "truth". Most christian denominations accept scientific truth as truth and do not reject facts in conflict with the bible or other scripture.

        The fundamentalists are shit are reading their bibles. They look for single passages that confirm their own prejudices. Theologians denounce this as "proof-texting" which is considered vapid and anti-intellectual. And they are trying to turn the world into a theocracy. But denouncing non fundamentalists when what you really want them to do is denounce the fundamentalists cpild be a mistake/

      •  True but religions have thrived and survived for (0+ / 0-)

        thousands of years if not more ....so that will take a long time ....a very very long time.  But it is a worthy goal.

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        by wishingwell on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 01:51:43 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  ChemBob, respectfully disagree. There is sometimes (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JPax, Only Needs a Beat, native

        a connection between an individual and the all-knowing that is real.  Logic and reason are good and useful, but life is that,  plus much more.  

        For rigorous scientific evidence I suggest reading "Brain Wars" by Mario Beauregard, or anything by that great biologist, Rupert Shelldrake.  

        "Superstition", so often in the past, has proven to be correct.

        One example is the old wives' tale of curing headaches with a willow bark tea.  Establishment physicians considered that cure a superstition for many years.  What is the essential ingredient of willow bark tea?  The compound we call aspirin.

        "...it's difficult to imagine what else Republicans can do to drive women away in 2012, unless they decide to bring back witch-hanging. And I wouldn't put it past them." James Wolcott

        by Mayfly on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 02:35:38 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Can't work and here's why. (3+ / 0-)
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      Living in Gin, native, RockyMtnLib

      A fundamentalist Christian believes both of the following two things:
      # 1 - The scriptures of the Christian religion agree with their point of view.
      and
      # 2 - The scriptures of the Christian religion are a trustworthy source of the truth.

      A nice Christian has the goal of not only stopping the fundamentalist, but also whitewashing Christianity in the process and absolving it of all blame for what the fundamentalist got from it.   Therefore whenever this argument comes up they always attack ONLY belief #1 above, while simultaneously supporting belief #2.

      The problem is that the ONE area where fundamentalists aren't full of crap is when they derive a message of one-religion-to-rule-them-all jingoism from the Bible.  It's there.  The nicer  Christians try to pretend it's not, but it is.  So the nicer Christians are attacking the one and only thing the fundamentalists got right, and trying to convince them that is where they made their error.  The fundamentalist comes away with the notion, "this person isn't arguing honestly with me", and ignores them.

      It is only through attacking belief #2 that fundamentalism can be stopped.  I like to say to the liberal Christian, "As long as people keep claiming that the bible is a trustworthy guide to the truth, then there is no way to break the power of people who chose to cherry pick different pieces of it than you cherry pick."

      •  I see your point and so do many biblical scholars. (4+ / 0-)

        Bart Ehrman became an agnostic over the question of "Why does God let man suffer?". I read a book years ago entitled "The Sword of Constantine" about the history of the Roman Catholic churches relationship with Judaism prior to the Holocaust and left the Roman Catholic church because of it. Many mainstream Christian leaders deny in errancy of scripture simply because is not true and in errant. But they live according to the example of Jesus, or try to.

        If your main belief is that scripture is in errant then that dictates everything else you believe. And that causes great hardship and suffering for the innocent victims of the fundamentalists. But not every Christian is a fundamentalist. And sometimes "New Atheists" sound as rigid and as unyielding as fundamentalists. And that causes the unconvinced to close their ears to their arguments.  

        •  It is impossible to live your life following (0+ / 0-)

          a person if you've just admitted that your only source about that person's life is a set of scriptures that you just admitted are not telling the truth.  How does anybody know they're following Jesus if he never wrote his own words down and the only place he's quoted by others is a source authored by known bullshit artists who obviously were not above making things up in order to get them to align with prophecies?

          You don't have a source to even go on at all for following the example of Jesus.  There is no reliable record of the guy and the only non-biblical evidence that he existed is a few paragraphs from Josephus that don't say much more than what is barely required to identify it as the same person.  That doesn't help tell you anything about his life.

          There is nothing wrong with taking the stance that the bible's authors actually meant for the reader to believe what they wrote at face value.  It's the most likely explanation.  The problem is when fundamentalists don't allow for "But that doesn't mean the authors were being honest."

          A fiction piece is a work where the author isn't trying to be dishonest at all because the author intended the audience to understand that it's not a literally true story, and sometimes even puts in a title page explicitly saying so.  When you read a fable with a moral at the end, the author didn't intend you to believe it and it's pretty obvious you don't have to believe it really happened to get a moral message out of it.  The story about the tortoise and the hare wasn't written with the intent that you believe there really was a race between a talking rabbit and a talking turtle.  This is NOT the way the Bible is presented.  It's pretty clear the authors wanted you to believe there really was  a god who really said those words, and who really did father a demigod son who really did have to be scapegoated for all of humanity's sake, and so on.  They mean for you to believe all that really did happen.

          I don't consider J.K Rowling for example to be an outright liar because her books and all of that sort of fictional writing is meant to be understood as not a true story.  She would be horrified if she found out about any people who were delusional enough to start looking for Hogwarts thinking it's really there, and throwing themselves at brick walls in railway stations trying to get there.  Contrast this with the Biblical authors, who clearly DID mean to make the audience believe it was real.

      •  The problem there is that all Christians, both (0+ / 0-)

        liberal and conservative ones do have one thing in common, they do believe in some of the teachings of the Bible or some of the teachings or Jesus or follow some principles and scriptures.

        It would mean Christians abandoning the Bible altogether and I am not sure any Christian church would do that, would they ?  

        As would liberal Christians still be Christians and based on what ? What would that mean ? There has to be some basis on which one calls themself a Christian..ie based on the life and teachings of Christ for most liberal Christians is my guess.

        Follow PA Keystone Liberals on Twitter: @KeystoneLibs

        by wishingwell on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 01:56:02 PM PDT

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        •  Why is retaining the label a laudible goal? (0+ / 0-)

          What I am describing is basically getting liberal Christians to stop being so damned PROUD of the label Christian.  They don't need to be calling themselves that.  Remember that a religion is just a set of beliefs.  If you don't believe those beliefs, it's inaccurate to call yourself a member of that religion.

      •  Interpretation is as interpretation does. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        native

        Why do the nutter the favor of agreeing that they know what they're talking about.

        Also, you're probably familiar with the common Christian argument that people need faith or else they would have nothing to keep them from committing evil when they talk with atheists. Have you considered that from there point of view it might be true? So, while some people can be rational, other people may not be so disposed to rationality. So, if you kill Christianity, how do you know it will be replaced with secular humanism or whatever it is you want it to be replaced with. And how do you know those people won't do the same thing they did with Christianity, and pervert a new doctrine to their own ends?

        -We need Healthcare Reform... but i'm selfish, I Need Healthcare reform-

        by JPax on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 09:41:21 PM PDT

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        •  Because they are already not getting (0+ / 0-)

          their morality form religion, today.  They're picking what they pretend their religion says based on what they think is moral.  When they read a bit for which a simple straightforward reading would lead to a moral message they consider horrific, they react by trying to save the reputation of the religion by finding whatever loopholes they can think of to make it seem like it doesn't say what it clearly does say.  But when they come to a bit they agree with and like, then they read it straightforward at face value and they don't do that re-interpretation of it.

          Thus they cherry-pick to  build up in their imaginations the religion they wish Christianity was instead of the contradictory mess that Christianity actually is.

          And what this means is that whatever they're getting their morality from, it's NOT where they claim they're getting it from.  You can't circularly judge and cherry pick which parts of Christianity are true based on reading the writings of  Christianity itself.  If someone has to decide not to follow some parts of the bible, then  they using something else to make that decision.  Whatever that something else happens to be, that is the TRUE source of their moral views because it's what's shaping the mental filter they used to get Christianity to conform to their moral views.

          And whatever that source may happen to be, it's the same source with or without the unnecessary obfuscating step of pretending it came from Christianity.

    •  Exactly , the best way is to get the liberal (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      native

      and rational and non dominiionists Christians to meet them head on and challenge them regularly as that will have the most impact.  

      Follow PA Keystone Liberals on Twitter: @KeystoneLibs

      by wishingwell on Sat Jun 02, 2012 at 01:50:31 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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