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View Diary: Struggle and Faith: How Occupy Has Taught Me To Tolerate Religion (231 comments)

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  •  No? (0+ / 0-)
    And being in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, as [Jesus] sat at meat, there came a woman having an alabaster box of ointment of spikenard very precious; and she brake the box, and poured it on his head.

    And there were some that had indignation within themselves, and said, Why was this waste of the ointment made? For it might have been sold for more than three hundred pence, and have been given to the poor. And they murmured against her.

    And Jesus said, Let her alone; why trouble ye her? she hath wrought a good work on me. For ye have the poor with you always, and whensoever ye will ye may do them good: but me ye have not always.

     - Mark 14:3-7 (italics added)

    So Jesus' economic program, when his own luxuries were at stake (to wit: "me me me me me me me") sounds strikingly similar to the Republican one.

    I'm not sure how that's congruent with "He never associated wealth with something good to be involved with."

    •  Apparently (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      CharlesII, JDsg

      conservative fundementalists are not the only ones willfully misinterpreting the teachings of Jesus.

      His 'economic program' is clearly outlined throughout the New Testament.  (I think Matthew 6:19-34 sums it).  He repeatly preached that that if we make it our goal to accumulate earthly treasure, we will be harmed spiritually and maybe even physically. Earthly riches also ultimately will let us down; if we pursue riches, the amount of money available to us will end up controlling our happiness.

      The story of the woman of Bethany describes the nature of a love to Christ that is free and unhindered.

      Proponents of 'prosperity gospel' bring up this incident in a likeminded attempt equate Jesus' desire to spare a devotee from abuse with an attributed desire to indulge in luxury goods.  Whether justifying a 'vending machine god' or attempting to discredit an entire religious text, it's still grasping at a pretty thin straw.

      An investment in knowledge pays the best interest. -Benjamin Franklin

      by martinjedlicka on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 03:08:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Pfft. (0+ / 0-)
        Apparently conservative fundementalists are not the only ones willfully misinterpreting the teachings of Jesus.
        Pot, kettle, black, pal. The line "ye have the poor with you always ... but me ye have not always" actually means something, regardless of how intent you are on ignoring it.

        The Gospels' Jesus says, in so many words, that it is more important to spend wealth on him than on the poor. You can try to gussy that up all you want, but it's a deeply ugly message.

        His 'economic program' is clearly outlined throughout the New Testament.
        I didn't merely refer to "his economic program." What I said—and you ignored as inconvenient—was "Jesus' economic program, when his own luxuries were at stake." Find me another passage from the Gospels in which he advocates giving to the poor at his own expense.

        Talk is cheap—including Jesus' own talk. It's easy enough to shoot your mouth off about how everyone should give plenty to the poor when those expenditures don't come out of your own box of swanky ointment. Somebody somewhere once claimed that "ye shall know them by their fruits"—and this guy's "fruits," right here, are a sneering paean to selfishness and self-centeredness at the direct expense of the poor.

        Pity the poor disciples who thought this guy actually meant what he'd been saying—and earned a rebuke for their troubles.

        The story of the woman of Bethany describes the nature of a love to Christ that is free and unhindered.
        What a willfully blind, laughable whitewash. "Ye have the poor with you always ... but me ye have not always" does not cease to be in the text just because you can't bring yourself to face it.

        Your excuses are flatly silly: Jesus didn't need to wheel out a shocking level of monomania and selfishness in order "to spare a devotee from abuse." It would have been absurdly easy to grant the disciples' point about the poor while using the episode as a gentle teachable moment for the woman with the ointment. Instead, he directly declared that his claim to the ointment was superior to the poor's claim to the money it costs.

        It would appear you don't have the intellectual honesty to face it, but that is the decision that the Gospels' Jesus makes. And pretending, in the face of that, that "He never associated wealth with something good to be involved with" is simply dishonest.

      •  Thanks for the comment, Martin (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JDsg

        There really is a strong resemblance between the thought patterns of religious fundamentalists and those who hate religion (as opposed to atheists and agnostics, many of whom are good Christians in the sense of doing what Jesus taught).

        Hating on religion is the mirror image of fundamentalism. It's an ideology, an essential political ideology, rather than an open analysis of what is going on. Ironically, many good scientists are respectful of religion, just as many religious people are respectful of science. But haters gonna hate.

        •  Garbage. (0+ / 0-)
          There really is a strong resemblance between the thought patterns of religious fundamentalists and those who hate religion....
          Yeah: the "strong resemblance" is that you hate them both. That's not actually any kind of resemblance, absent your self-centeredness.
          Hating on religion is the mirror image of fundamentalism.
          Bullshit. Critics of religion (attempting to slime people who happen to disagree with you about a particular group of ideas as "haters" doesn't actually get you anywhere), as such, do not rely on blind faith to found their superstitions. We don't take over governments and oppress our opponents. We don't drive despised minorities to kill themselves.

          It's a sign of your inability to deal with skeptical critiques of your beliefs that all you can come up with is "Oooh, you're just as bad and mean as fundamentalists!"

          What critics of (your) religion have in common with fundamentalists is that your belief system doesn't provide you with a good basis to argue that any of us are wrong.


          Religion is not a person. It has no rights. It is not unethical to criticize or oppose it; no one has an ethical obligation to "respect" it. Your pretense to the contrary is based on nothing but your own arrogance and privilege.

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