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View Diary: A Critique of the Evangelical Movement (36 comments)

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  •  A knot, but I still think one with ropes in it (3+ / 0-)
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    CroneWit, terrypinder, Gentle Giant

    I agree that you describe the effect perfectly well.

    I also agree that both are mutations.

    In the short term, both succeed by the power of volume. The noisiest and most threatening get their way when surrounded by the peaceful and rational. Coalitions among the rational are hard. Coalitions among the zealous are easier.

    In effect little coups, little wars, and little secessions allowed for a hybrid beast. (I like to say that it's the GOP's Caliban, whom they love to use and then hate when it demands to marry their daughter and run the island.)

    Taking just one element of the story -- a not at all literal reading of Revelation -- takes us back to the 1970's and the fad for flying saucers and the big bomb. There was a serious mania for world ending and Mysteries of the Unknown in popular culture, and the traveling ministers had an absolutely fantastic set of animated films to show. Like astrology, it was possible to plug in any leader and make it fit, and, like Nostradamus, it was possible to use the metaphors to explain anything unpleasant. It was an ur-code of the sort Umberto Eco is critiquing in The Prague Cemetery: certain narrative structures, when once constructed, are like sticks of indestructible dynamite. They need neither an author nor an audience nor an historical moment, because the figures they encode can call out deeper figures for all readers.

    As for those persons, I simply say that Jesus said that we should live each day as if it were the last day, and then we won't have to worry about signs.

    Everyone's innocent of some crime.

    by The Geogre on Tue Nov 26, 2013 at 02:26:59 PM PST

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