Re: MD God and the Republicans, Democrats & Others

From: MarshaV (
Date: Tue Oct 26 2004 - 11:49:49 BST

  • Next message: Platt Holden: "Re: MD On Faith"

    Greetings Sam,

    At 05:48 AM 10/26/2004 +0100, you wrote:
    >Hi Marsha V,
    >To cut a very long story short,

    >(i) the most common understanding of Christian belief in the US
    >derives from the Puritan and Reformed traditions - these are very much on
    >the 'edge' of the historic
    >Christian tradition and, in several respects, can be clearly distinguished
    >from the older strands
    >(eg Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodox, even Lutheranism);

    >(ii) the most common public
    >manifestation of Christian belief in the US, so far as I can tell, serves
    >the media's interest in
    >polarisation, and is therefore the more extreme side.

    On point (ii), I agree with you.

    >I would say, however, that it is wrong to judge a faith system by the
    >worst examples of those who
    >claim to uphold it. I think it only fair to consider good examples as well
    >(like MLK) albeit that it
    >may prove to be not worth following even in that event.

    I don't believe the examples on C-SPAN are "worst examples". The examples
    seem typical of U.S. citizens. The examples are spoken by Republicans,
    Democrats and Others. They define the Christian god as anthropomorphic,
    personal, and often very judgemental. I'm not talking about
    fundamentalist, I'm talking about Christians. I've never heard a hint of
    god as transcendental experience.

    Please make an estimate (% percent) of U.S. citizens who you believe hold a
    correct understanding of the Christian God? 80%, 60%, 33%, 2%?

    >More widely, I think there are grave grounds for concern at trends in the
    >US relating to the link up
    >between the Republican party and the fundamentalists, not least in how it
    >ties in with the
    >ultra-orthodox wing in Israel, whereby the evangelicals want to support
    >Israel's occupation of the
    >East (sic) bank 'to the River Euphrates' as a means of hastening the
    >second coming of Jesus. I think
    >that's barking mad (and very unChristian) and I hope it remains on the
    >fringes of the US polity. But
    >it may not, and I think that's something to be concerned about.

    I agree. The use of Christianity for political gain, is pathetic. But
    there is a very long history of doing just that.

    Sam, are you what they call an e-missionary?


    > > Now, there might be a higher Christian understanding of God, and you might
    > > hold that perspective. But a very large majority of the religious
    > > perspective presented by the public is naive, literal and silly. It seems
    > > to me, if there is a modern understanding of Christianity, the public has
    > > no clue.
    > >
    > > While I appreciate that your points are presented in terms of a
    > > philosophical argument, is your perspective in any way rooted in the
    > > beliefs of the Christian faithful.

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