29 August 2009

Crazy Christians.

What Phillip Garrido is alleged to have done is truly horrific. He is currently a registered sex offender, but he kidnapped Jaycee Lee Dugard when she was 11 and kept her as a sex slave for 18 years, a "union" that resulted in two children and untold heartache.

Hemant Mehta writes in The Friendly Atheist that while the story itself is disturbing, of particular interest is how the fellow was caught because he acted suspiciously toward some children while distributing religious literature.

This Garrido guy says that God talks to him from a box? He's obviously not ok in the head. I think a larger question would be whether the Christian religion ITSELF promotes this sort of action.

I can't say that it does, but there are several areas I'm going to admit I don't understand in relation to sex and the Bible. I'll have to post an interesting video on this very thing. I suppose there are wackos out there who interpret the Bible all kinds of interesting ways (liberal, conservative, or just plain weird). But does the Christian religion LEND itself to being twisted in that way? Or do some mentally ill people gravitate toward a "god" explanation for what they do and how they feel?

People like to bring up the Crusades and that sort of thing from way back when in discussing a religious overview. Historically religion, politics and just plain power plays get so mixed up that I can't imagine that any of us can know more truth than the basics. That Jesus, God incarnate, died on a cross. That He was buried. That He rose on the third day. That through Him is the forgiveness of sins.

Ooh, did you see anything about the Republican Party in those last few sentences? Me, neither.

There are a lot of side-issues we like to get all caught up into every now and then. Dresses or not. Homeschooling, or not. Are you Catholic? Whether that means you are a Christian, or not. The translation of our bibles. Whether we speak in tongues, or tithe.

When I read stories like this, I am just awestruck. And not in a good way. I want to look away. I want to help. And I want to pretend that stuff like this doesn't go on right here in our country. But it does. I know of whole groups of people who have had abuse issues in the name of Christ, and to this day are silent. It's over. And it's not over. God willed it. And yet He did not.

Oh, no. I don't have any deep thoughts on the issue. But I do have deep sadness when I read these things. I don't know whether they should be reported. I don't know if those things were truly meant for my eyes or not. I don't want to look at sensational news. But I don't want to look the other way when abuse happens. I think... I just want to acknowledge here that this woman and her whole family have been harmed.

Before I go, I thought I'd post a small but interesting comment from that blog post:

"Mental illness clouds the issues here. Researchers have found, for example, an autistic child who fixated on memorizing the model numbers of thousands of cameras while simultaneously having absolutely no interest in photography. It’s entirely possible that someone could fixate on the god-talk, pass out fliers, go to church, etc., while still not being religious in any meaningful sense of the word."

Wow. Now, I promise-swear I've never kidnapped anyone, etc. etc. ... but those words have stuck with me. Could we get so fixated on the this and that in the Bible or in what we're doing for God or whatever that we TOTALLY MISS IT?

I wonder.

4 comments:

  1. I'm glad you've brought up all these points. These are the same kinds of points which need to be thought about when people are looking at Islam...imagine if Muslims took a man like this to judge Christianity (which is the same as what happens when Christians judge Islam by its extremists).

    You didn't mention what things you were referring to about sex in the Bible; however, without knowing, I'd be willing bet (after living two decades in the Middle East) that those things in the Bible have more to do with "Old-World" thinking and culture than they do with Christianity or Judaism (sp?).

    Eileen
    Dedicated Elementary Teacher Overseas (in the Middle East)
    elementaryteacher.wordpress.com

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  2. My highest praise for this post Mrs. C -- that it is thoughtful! :)

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  3. Thank you for chatting with me about this, Eileen. I think that extreme fundamentalist Islam does in fact lend itself to terrorism. I've read a little about Saudi Arabia and its treatment of Christians, and the sort of Islam that emanates from that place.

    But liberal moderates? I've lived in peace with them for years. One in particular was my husband's very best friend when we lived in Florida. But while he said he was a Muslim, it struck me that plenty of Christians do the same thing. They say they are Christians, but tolerate things that a more fundamentalist person would not.

    Could I mention in passing that moderate Muslims I've become acquainted with have stricter codes of ethics than even the more fundamentalist Christians? As a people group, I'm not so scared that the Muslims have "taken over" yet based on what I see on my TV. LOL :P

    I was thinking (about the sex I mentioned) about Sodom and Gomorrah and the idea that brothers marry the wife after the husband dies. My husband has two brothers... and... I don't think I'd want the honour.

    JJ, I'm very flattered. I do wish I had answers in my post instead of just questions, though.

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  4. "Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof...."

    Certainly people can become fixated on certain religious practices that they completely lose sight of the religion itself.

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Non-troll comments always welcome! :)