Theological debates with fundamentalist Christians in the comments section of New Agey spirituality videos on Youtube…

I know, I’m a weirdo. I went down the rabbit hole. But I found gold at the bottom! Look here, I got this whole lovely blog post out of it!

Here’s the video, if you’re interested in the whole conversation. Just scroll down to the comments section (or watch the video if you’re really curious)… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uCMBMQjjD7I

Ok, this is great. I’ve actually written an outline for this to make sure my thoughts all come out making as much sense as possible. Of course, conversations like this do tend to peter off, and I likely won’t have energy for more posts like this.

You seem to assume that the story of Adam and Eve is a recording of some sort of literal truth. That it contains accurate and objective accounting of real events. Whether this is true, or you see is as more of a metaphore, you seem to assume that because it is written this one way in this translation of the bible that you are reading, that the current consensus interpretation of it (presumably well represented by you), represents some inarguable and essential truth of reality.

To me, this assumption seems childish and ignorant. Like the little kid who beleivs in Santa Claus a little bit longer than is rational. The bible is a litteral and accurate account of *nothing*. It is a collection of stories, written down in most cases, hundreds, if not thousands of years later than the “events” they depict actually happened.

http://world.time.com/2014/02/11/the-mystery-of-the-bibles-phantom-camels/ “The biblical authors, composers, writers used their creative imaginations to shape their stories, and they were not interested in what actually happened, they were interested in what you could learn from telling about the past.”
“For us who believe that this is Scripture, Scripture is important as it has formative power, it forms the people, and it transforms,” Seow says. “It is poetic truth rather than literary truth.”

The bible is a cultural software program. It was designed by powerful people, over time. I’m sure some of them knew exactly what they were doing, and did so with every malevolent intention of controlling people and consolidating more and more power. Others I’m sure had very sincre and good intentions, but they were still programmed by the dominant culture, which when unanalyzed, just replicates itself throught the thoughts and asthetic expression of people woh are immersed in it. There are no inherent, fundamental truths contained in the bible. They only seem so because we have been living in a world created by the parameters of is software system, and so we assume that this is all there is. But every single word in the bible was written with poetic lisence. Written by people with no more or less spiritual inspiration than you or I. The “fundamental truths” that you identify are nothing more than core operating principals of the program. But there are other programs. The sofware can be re-written. We re-write it by re-telling the stories. Belief in the stories is far less important than imagination.

And the story that I choose to tell myself is NOT one in which some benevolently transcendant sky daddy sets us up in a garden that ‘he’ himself has created in every detail and says, “Go play, but don’t eat that tasy-looking fruit over there, or you’ll be in trouble.” That is exactly what being set-up to fail looks like. That to me, sounds like bullshit. That to me, sounds like setting us up for unnecessary dichotomy between “good & bad”, “light & dark”, where people are easy to control and manipulate because it’s easy to convince them that they are baaaaad bad sinners, cannot ever trust themselves because at any moment you might slip and fall into ETERNAL DAMNATION, they need to rely on the authority of the church to tell them whether or not they’ve been good enough.

Ick. How melodramatic. The god in your version of the story seems to me like a manipulative sociopath.

And darkenss is NOT evil! Shining light into the safe and dark burrow of an animal is probably a violent, invasive and destructive act. Depending on the circumstances, is could be downright evil. The darkness is only evil when we suppress it, run away from it, pretend it’s not there. That’s when it festers and turns into perversion. Satan is not the embodiment of evil, Satan is the embodyment of disobedience (this may seem like a subtle distinction, but stay with me!). Disobedience is to refuse to obey evil orders. Disobedience is to seek your own inner council rather than look outwards. It is to trust your own inner judgement, inner knowing. It is to seek the divinity inside oneself, rather than assume that it is external. These things are evil perversion only when they are suppressed, oppressed. This is exactly why there is so much perversion, abuse and violence in the membership of the Catholic priesthood. They do not alow themselves to feel their own natural feelings, and instead of seeking understanding and transformation of their darkness, they suppress it, push it down, where it festers and putrifies, and turns into priests who rape children.

Sin is a concept we invented to torture and oppress ourselves. It is part of the lie that is told that we are alone, that we are not connected to God, to source, unless we go out searching for redemption, salvation, or that it is only possible in death. The Truth is that we are now, and always were, directly connceted to source, to every living thing on earth.

I choose to take responsibility for programming myself, and as such, I get to analyze the infinite possibility of ways to interpret the story of the Garden of Eden, and ask myself what sort of cultural behaviors might each version be the program for, and I get to imagine and research and read as many creation myths as I can find, and I get to *feel* all of them, and asky myself which one I want to use as a basis for my operating system. And whatever I choose, I get to play the ongoing feedback game of continuously making sure that the reality around me and the actions I engage in are actually reflecting the truth of my higher self. And if the answer is “no”, then I get to make adjustments to my storyline. For many the idea of this level of freedom in choosing what sort of reality I want to exist in is a truly terrifying level of freedom and moral relativivity.

On the other hand, I view it as infinitely more dangerous to assume that the reality “published” by the political institution that is the Christian Church is any kind of “ideal baseline”. As an institution the Christian Church has engaged in the greatest reighn of domination, genocide, slavery, and torute the world may have ever seen. What I see as the ultimate danger or evil is not moral relativity, but any act of trying to dictate another person’s experience of spirit to them. And as such, the Christian Church may be the greatest perveyor of evil in the world. This program is flawed, and if we don’t very soon figure out how to re-program ourselves, we’re going to destroy the environment (I.E. ourselves) before we get the chance to evolve out of this “LESSON”. I am pretty sure that it is mostly inevitable that we will indeed learn this lesson, and I’m not actually worried about convincing you of anything, because I feel like my assertions are backed by a preponderance of evidence, and that yours and my personal belief in one thing or another is completely irrelevant to anything but our own personal peace. But that’s just the trick! That’s exaclty how we get to evolve, all together: simply by focusing on our own inner peace, by healing ourselves, by healing our relationships with our family and our communities. In the end, it doesn’t really matter what you believe, it only matters what you can imagine. So imagine things that make you feel good – I mean really good in the safe and happy and snuggly, puppies and kittens and unicorns sort of way. But do your shadow work! Be a living, breathing, eating, shitting, dying member of the ecosystem! Suffer, experince hardship and lack, but also know abundance and ease, and know that all things happen in cycles, and it was never a battle between light an dark, one trying to defeat the other… it was always two sides of a whole, making love to each other.

Oh dear oh my, this did get long. Yes, thank you for the stimulating conversation! I have gained great benefit from this. Not that I expect we have convinced each other of anything, but I’m sure we both understand our own thoughts more clearly.

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3 thoughts on “Theological debates with fundamentalist Christians in the comments section of New Agey spirituality videos on Youtube…

  1. you know, chicken, i am a curious little wren! i went to this site and watched most of the video (it’s been a while since i listened to people who posit themselves as spiritual teachers primarily through a medium such as youtube- find it a bit disconcerting actually to have someone else’s views so fresh in my head for me to sift). it seems to me like you’re sparring, like all growing warriors testing yourself against different theories, viewpoints, etc. i’m not sure any of it is cut and dry. i have a knack for seeing many sides of things and growing up in a conservative fundamentalist evangelical school-system, i also have many things to say in response to the religio-spiritual brainwashing i’ve come up against. perhaps one day i’ll have a chance to speak with some of the leaders who deeply hold the beliefs i was handed from a young age. for now, i’m in so much of a creation-phase (already done a lot of destroying into chaos here, time for rebuilding in various ways, although i’m sure the death/rebirth cycle will be lifelong, as it is), i don’t see myself getting into it with these people. you seem to have more of a fixed way of looking at things than i do. i’m curious about this. where do you think your drive, as a historically grounded spiritual relativist as far as i can see, to so concretely take a stand comes from? in another way, i’m asking the question : what is your bone to pick and what does the end of your philosophy materialize as? as in, what do you wish to see? cheers matey ~~ ❤ wren

  2. Oooh, what a juicy question. For one, I enjoy the youtube videos that she (why can’t i remember her name at the moment) makes, even though they are painfully cheeze and awkward at many times… I love seeing someone (anyone) teaching as a spiritual teaching the tools for following one’s own intuition – and encouraging everyone to use it, especially when their intuition causes them to disagree with her!
    Because here’s the concrete nugget that I’m knawing on right now:
    “Because the one thing that is truely evil in the world, the ONE THING (besides beaurocracy), is to dictate to another person what their experiece of reality is.” And in general, I find little sparring matches like that one deeply valuable, because I learn so much! Not that I learn a lot about what the other person believes, but I learn tons and tons about what I believe. I’m taking notes… working out the cosmology for a novel which is a science/fiction fantasy novel, but that all of the science and magic in it are actually direct reflections of our immediate reality, just nudging people into looking at the world from a slightly different perspective…

    To put it another way… I’m sparring because I want to learn how to translate my thoughts and beliefs (both spiritually and with gender & environmental politics) into language that would be accessible to someone looking at the world from that kind of perspective.

    1. right on! that makes sense. i think whenever we can point out the things we are doing subconsciously it makes us more en-lightened, to use the word literally. like shining big ol flashlights! the more apt the pointing out the better!! as i read through your sparring with the people, i also couldn’t help but think (from my point of view)- what stake does chicken have in it? i’ve been around many people with set belief systems and usually it’s just – as you say- people further solidifying their own point of view. not that that’s a bad thing (unless their view is harmful to self and others). we all have energy for different things at different times. tonight ini & i played tennis and verbally sparred one another – okay, What now, bitch!? – may have come out of my mouth … it’s fun & brings out my 16 year old bitch self i never strengthened. it’s good to have a partner we can go to the depths of love with and also fight like assholes.. when it gets down to religio-spiritual close-mindedness, that shit runs deep! i should know, i used to be brainwashed toward fundamentalist thinking. it runs deep! and has allllll sorts of shaming, guild-riding emotions attached to it as one steps out. takes confidence and, i believe, plant medicines to get clean over time. we need wiser voices from our earth-family to break out of this long-standing patriarchal, christian programming. i couldn’t believe when that one guy on the youtube was trying to make it sound like women were to fully be subservient forever! woah! hahaha! and the other person had a sweet peace about them, but certainly hooked on bible speak. anyway, criticisms aside, i’m glad you’re sparring and collecting data – i can clearly see it as a part of your life-path and the furtherance of your soul work. yay for sparring toward our greater growth!

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