Saturday, October 08, 2005

Rescuing Jesus

Now don't be shy, say what you really think. | Rescuing Jesus: "The American Christian right has hijacked Jesus Christ. It has made him into a brand, a logo, a bumper sticker. It celebrates his suffering on the cross, but largely neglects what he had to say. It prefers an Old Testament God, a 'Jealous God, visiting the sins of the fathers upon the children.' It elevates success to proof of God's favor, and washes its hands of responsibility for the poor. It combines a self-righteous vision of Americans as the chosen people with shrill intimations of imminent apocalypse, to justify indifference to the rest of the world and to the planet itself. It sticks to the letter of the Bible with arbitrary selectiveness, so that it can endorse creationism and condemn homosexuality while acknowledging that (contrary to Old Testament wisdom) the earth is in fact round, and slavery is not OK.

It's a twisted, schizophrenic form of religion that mirrors the most reactionary form of Islam. (Not by chance, both the Christian right and conservative Muslims are at odds with women's rights, and fiercely homophobic.) "
Great article with some excellent points. I believe in God, but I don't believe in organized religion. Too hypocritical. Most people don't live the teachings, they espouse the judgemental aspects thereby reducing compassion for their neighbor and relieving themselves of responsiblity for anyone but themselves.

One of my favorite sayings has always been that the USA was founded by religious fanatics and criminals. Almost 400 years later and not much has changed. This country was founded on the prinicple of religious freedom. What most people don't remember from their history classes was that the Pilgrims came here to escape persecution because their religion was too restrictive and they didn't want their children contaminated with frivolity. Actually the criminals back then were indentured servants, usually people who were too broke to pay their bills in England and it was a way out of debtors prison or they had been convicted of petty crimes.

Wow, history really does work in cycles.

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