Interesting article addressing not only Rod Dreher’s book The Benedict Option, but our culture of tolerance/intolerance, and the spiritual porn of perpetual outrage and chronic victimhood, feelings of persecution. The right, the left, believers, atheists, makes no difference, it’s all the same plate of pasta.
I really appreciated this article, because I too observe the almost addictive nature of our outrage, our offense, and much like porn, or addiction perhaps, it gives us little bliss hits of satisfaction. I’ve said before, we people can actually become addicted to our own brain chemistry.
Where oh where can I get my fix today, my delicious sense of self-righteous indignation and feelings of persecution? I shall pull out my sword and right this injustice immediately…..
Here is a quote from the article, “But as I kept reading the regret never lasted, because the soul of these books is not love of God; it is bitter loathing of those who do not share it.”
Harsh, but true. I too have noticed that there are many of us who power our faith, our politics, our belief systems, not with the love of God, but with bitter loathing towards those who disagree. The enemy. The wrong thinkers. Them. IB has often gotten on the “wrong” side of something, trust me, the loathing is bitter indeed.
Pastor Wilson, whom I rather admire, recently spoke of needing to have 20 cops protecting him just to share a word in a classroom somewhere. Yes, but the question really is, what word? Who’s word? Our Lord’s word? Sorry to say, but it is not actually his love for Christ that creates such push back within the culture, but rather his views on social politics, slavery, women, rape……well, the list is kind of extensive.
Holy pornographers indeed, pimping the spiritual pornography.
I have no desire to shame anyone, no intent to label offense, outrage, a grave “sin,” as if we are all indulging in something bad, shameful. I simply want us to think about these things, to question ourselves, to avoid over-dosing on such a heady substance that we forget the soul of our lives should be love for God and not hatred for others.
All in good humor here, but I shall now demonstrate how one wallows in a bit of righteous indignation, how one wraps themselves in galling offense, how one rents their garments and laments, why, why must this foolishness persist? Our author, our dear professor of faith and philosophy, who truly does make some good points, is of course a non believer, as if there is nothing totally insane about teaching religion when one refuses to believe at all. It would be a bit like a biology professor teaching biology, but not believing in science. Or perhaps an English teacher who doesn’t speak the language.
Just to punch me in the gut one more time he says, “I recognize the power and depth of their faith and their vision. I want it to exist in the world, yet I don’t want it for me or my family.”
Oh! The blight on my potato! The sheer irrationality of that one sentence. The cognitive dissonance, the personally outrageous emotional trigger! Religion as a very good thing indeed, faith, power, depth, vision…….just don’t get any of that good stuff on my family. It’s good for the culture, good for the community, good for individuals, but as to me and my family, we will NOT be serving the Lord. As if that is not the very epitome of selfishness….
At least IB grew up with atheists proclaiming religion to be a great evil. The idea that it is good, but it is a goodness I plan to deprive my family of, would have really messed with my head.
And so with a giant whoosh sound as logic and reason go flying right over his head, he concludes with a G. K. Chesterton quote, “How much larger your life would be if your self could become smaller in it……..”
You don’t say???