Deconstruction of my faith probably began in a small way in my Junior College literature class in 1990, when I had to read the Bhagavad Gita and the Tao Te Ching. At that time, it wasn't much more than a novelty, but it was the first time I ever considered that there are other people in the world who knew nothing about Christianity and were completely immersed in a different world view.
One of the most comforting things about Judeo-Christian ethics is that in one sense it’s easier. There is an authoritative being who tells you what you should and should not do. There is no urgency to wrestle over the nuanced and difficult ethical issues that every culture faces in this case. Just do “what the Bible says.” But is it really that easy?
No issue has caused me to question my Christian beliefs more than what is often called the problem of evil. Ever since the Greek philosopher Epicurus (342-271 BCE) first questioned the existence of God due to the existence of evil in the world, people have faced this problem and often walked away from the faith of their childhood. The reality of suffering in light of the professed goodness and power of God is the catalyst that is most responsible for the shift in my own theological views.
As a professing Christian, there was always one question that plagued me over the years: Why did the Bible deserve the kind of loyalty and trust I was giving it? My beliefs about that book guided almost every decision I made, and eventually I had to ask myself why I allowed it to do so. Once I stopped viewing the Bible as an authoritative voice never to be questioned, I was able to see the flaws in it and begin to look for more reliable ways to find my way...
My decision to leave the church and all organized religion has been a slow-evolving one and wasn’t prompted by any one particular event. I do not feel any significant personal injury by anyone I’ve known from the churches I’ve been a part of. So why would I leave? ....
If you were neck-deep in Christian subculture in the 70s and 80s, you would have probably been aware of a series of short cartoon tracts that were passed around by evangelicals in their efforts to sway unbelievers to repent of their sins and be saved from eternal damnation. One in particular comes to mind when... Continue Reading →
“Out of love for the truth and the desire to bring it to light, the following propositions will be discussed at Wittenberg, under the presidency of the Reverend Father Martin Luther, Master of Arts and of Sacred Theology…. Wherefore he requests that those who are unable to be present and debate orally with us, may... Continue Reading →
So, in successfully rejecting an insipid “hippie, diaper, halo Christ,” we may unintentionally protect and uphold the white supremacist Jesus, the colonial Jesus, the Eurocentric Jesus, the Republican or Democrat Jesus, the capitalist or communist Jesus, the slave-owning Jesus, the nuclear bomb–dropping America-first Jesus, the organ-music stained-glass nostalgic-sentimental Jesus, the antiscience know-nothing simpleton Jesus, the... Continue Reading →
I recognize that I'm a little late on blogging about Osama Bin Laden's death, but with the pace of life lately I'm happy to have been able to write anything at all. So at the risk of repeating what has already been said about an event from last week (about 3 years in internet time),... Continue Reading →
I promised myself that I would not blog about the Rob Bell controversy, but fortunately I didn't promise that to anyone else so I'm off the hook for this. I've read a few good posts (like here, here, and here) on Bell and his new book, Love Wins, and I watched the live stream of... Continue Reading →