Wednesday, June 28, 2017

The Christian Doctrine Of Damnation... And The Destruction Of Christ's Spirit

"There is no fear in love. 
But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. 
The one who fears is not made perfect in love."
1 John 4:18

"Any Religion That Needs Fear To Thrive Is Bad Religion"

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Alan: The presumption that a human being can be "eternally damned" is a fundamental propellant of Christian cruelty.

When we believe that God has devised reality in such a way that human beings can be afflicted with eternal torment without possibility of reformation -- or when we believe that a loving God could create a Universe in which a human being's pain (or any other being's pain) can be endless in magnitude and everlasting in duration -- we represent God as a sadist and a terrorist and understandably suffer a deity that is not worthy of respect, much less adoration. 

Any human whose psyche and spirit have not been mangled by the harshness of life will always "put down" a suffering animal, whatever the animal's "responsibility" for evoking its own suffering.

The argument that human existence is a "proving ground" wherein we can win the "summum bonum" of "spiritual freedom" -- and the inter-related belief that only the threat of eternal torment is capable of "raising the stakes" so that "the game" (with its rewards-and-punishments) are absolutely real, mistakenly (and arrogantly) presumes that we can find our way to divinely-ordained freedom independent of mercy, kindness, forgiveness and, most especially, the love that does not prevent (or cancel) wrong-doing, but instead "covers a multitude of sins."

Make no mistake: the "sin" -- the wrongness -- is always there in the lives of everyone. 

In the end, human belief in eternal torment brutalizes us - as surely as the torments perpetrated by ISIS brutalize "infidels" - and that the matrix of this brutalization ensures that the threat of everlasting terror is always present. 

Whenever our Gods are brutal, we tend to be re-made in their image.

I understand many people's anguished need for "salvation assurance." 

Unadorned, Reality is a harsh, daunting place. 

And as T.S. Eliot observed, we humans "cannot bear much reality."

However, to secure "salvation assurance" by presuming that "the mind" of God is, in a fundamental way, indistinguishable from the mind of a sadist or a terrorist recalls Trump's continual contextualization of falsehood and misrepresentation, claiming that "people say"... or "knowledgeable people have told me," or simply "believe me."

All references to "presumed Truth"  are Oz-talk. 

Instead of cowed obeisance to The Wizard, it's time to pull back the curtain.

This Old Testament Exhortation Is Egregiously Immoral

Worst Bible Passages

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"The terrible thing about our time is precisely the ease with which theories can be put into practice.  The more perfect, the more idealistic the theories, the more dreadful is their realization.  We are at last beginning to rediscover what perhaps men knew better in very ancient times, in primitive times before utopias were thought of: that liberty is bound up with imperfection, and that limitations, imperfections, errors are not only unavoidable but also salutary. The best is not the ideal.  Where what is theoretically best is imposed on everyone as the norm, then there is no longer any room even to be good.  The best, imposed as a norm, becomes evil.”  
"Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander,” by Trappist monk, Father Thomas Merton

More Merton Quotes

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"You can safely assume you’ve created God in your own image 
when it turns out God hates all the same people you do."
Fr. Tom Weston S. J.

Dorothy Day: “I really only love God as much as I love the person I love the least.”

"Charity is the soul of faith, it gives it life; without love, faith dies."
St. Anthony of Padua

"Love and do what you will."
St. Augustine

G.K. Chesterton On Charity, Hope And Universal Salvation

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