Re: virus: Religion

Eric Boyd (
Sat, 24 May 1997 22:12:03 -0500

J. Houston Williams wrote:
> >Some people (although unless I miss my mark, not to many
> >here) will answer that we are here to serve/worship God, and that we
> >should do whatever His authority tells us. (accepting God's ends as
> >True regardless.
> As a Christian, I might be expected to answer in this fashion, but I'm not
> going to. I *would*, if God would go to the trouble of stopping by some
> crowded location with CNN present and explain exactly what It wanted.
> But It is not likely to, and thus any "authority" must of neseccity be
> suspect: did God actually say that, or was it the Reverend?

That's not how any Christian I've ever met has answered... you're really
on my side of the issue, if I'm intrepreting correctly. You seem to
believe that the Bible is mearly a guiding force and can be used simply
as a source of material to guide ones life.

> I don't know if you've read the Bible to any extent or not -- and even if

I've read all of the New Testament (caps?) but only a small part of the
Old. The farther I read, the more it seemed to me that the Old
Testimate wasn't really affecting the Christians much anyway... don't
see too many people sacrificing their sheep to God on the alter anymore.

> you have, the popular notion of that Tome as "unchanging truth" puts
> blinders on people -- but the Bible serves quite well as a history of
> people's maturing (?) beliefs about the world and the world we live in.

Yes, I've heard this view to... something about the Bible being a
"progressive revelation." Your theory is more "real life." And it
makes a lot more sense. A quick question here: when abouts was the Old
Testament written?

> Remember that Christ chucked a good deal of Jewish tradition -- said it was
> more or less pointless, as a matter of fact. I believe that part of the
> Real Message of Christ(tm) was that we have the authority to say, "hey,
> this isn't working here, we need to chuck it and build another."[1]

So the way I see it then, we are in vast need of the second Christ so
that we can chuck some more! But really, I do see what you mean. If
only everyone else saw this too! Because I know that quite a bit of the
Bible actually contains "ends" (morals, ethics, whatever) that are quite
useful and which I do use to guide my life... it's just that there are
so many other parts I can't agree with that I cannot accept it whole.

> >I've decided that "to travel is
> >better than to arrive" and this places me firmly against God and his
> >cohorts. Of course, it also makes me realize that my journey has just
> >begun and can never really end.
> If I had to formulate the God-humanity relationship equation, I'd have to
> say that this is the primary purpose. I personally formulate God as a sort
> of oversoul -- that is, we are all part of God.

The super-organism? That's a nifty idea. I like the idea of a
super-organism quite a bit... it brings things together and makes it
impossible not to realize that all things are connected. Makes "love
thy neighbour as thyself" a self obvious necessity. And it fits right
in with Scientific Pantheism. But actually equating the super-organism
with God? Where does that lead?

> While you're discarding "God and his cohorts," btw, please keep in mind
> that most of his cohorts are NOT Fallwellian. :-)

OK, I admit my ignorance... but assuming that the reference is similar
to "fundamentalist" I guess I can agree... supposedly, well over half of
the population is "Christian" and yet few people I run into are

> Perhaps this is an appropriate place to bring up the PromiseKeepers?

"Ignorance is Bliss" -- but I abandoned bliss a long time ago. It's
just that ignorance is so huge, and my knowledge base is soooo small.
What, praytell, are PromiseKeepers?

> --John
> ---
> [1] I'm planing on starting a church myself: "First Church of Christ
> Humanist." Anyone up for that?

I'll join!

And while I'm writting, here, I'm going to strenghten my meme's again:

>2) Knowledge -- especially created knowledge like Art, Literature, and
>Philosophy -- does not occur in a vacuum. One can not be creative if one
>has no contact with anyone else. "If a novelist writes a book in a forest
>and there's no one there to read it, will he recieve any royalties?" Or,
>perhaps more accurately, has he actually used language? Has he "written?"

Since I view the actual act of writting it as more important than the
final written material, I'd say that he /has/ written. The fact that
there is no audience involved does not mean that memes have not been
active inside the authors head. (and on the paper)


..And this I believe: that the free, exploring mind of the individual
human is the most valuable thing in the world. And this I would fight
for: the freedom of the mind to take any direction it wishes,
undirected. And this I must fight against: any idea, religion or
government which limits or destroys the individual.
John Steinbeck in "East of Eden"