{Sun 11 March 2007}   Faith, the rich excuse for anything you like
Oh, Sunday morning! Day of hope and resurrection! Why am I more surprised by the balmy sky that greets me through my London window today than by this account of yet more hypocrisy by two significant Christians beloved by many:


There is a lesson here for the eager-to-influence.

This calls to mind my poem:

Ecclesiastical Elasticity

Clout ecclesiastical
achieved through
Eloquence gymnastical
leading to
Steps of faith fantastical
Opinions elastical.

Bloggernista is a great site, by the way… classy, with teeth. Now there’s something to cheer one up on a Sunday morn!

I’ve always loved dear Jerry Falwell about as much as you seem to :)

Tia says:

Hi James, and thanks for stopping by. I realised after your remark that I didn’t know all that much about Falwell, so I went to Wikipedia to brush up:
I don’t like him any more now!

Falwell was quite instrumental, as I recall, in getting voters to queue up for Ronald Reagan with his “Moral Majority” (which might actually deserve to be called the “Immoral Minority”). If I put things together correctly, it was the likes of Falwell that paved the way for the right-wing religious tendency that has given massive support to America’s Republican party and has given them this unparalleled self-righteous attitude.

Tia says:

Hmm. Well, this article by Falwell himself confirms his fondness for Reagan:
And this one suggests that he’s very much still in play:
From my own early and extensive experience in born-again Christianity I know that there are many people of conscience involved in these movements and want to try not to throw out the baby with the bathwater, but in today’s polarised politics that is always difficult. My own credo now is closer to this expressed in one of my favourite quotes:
“Responsible, thinking people do not lead a yes-or-no existence. Responsible, thinking people do not have to reduce complicated subjects down to ‘for’ or ‘against’. … having a spiritual life is not about making up your mind once and for all. True spirituality is present, it’s alive and observant. Doubt is not paralysis. Certainty is.”
John Patrick Shanley, in “Meanwhile: I am, therefore I doubt”, Boston Globe, reprinted in International Herald Tribune

“True spirituality is present, it’s alive and observant. Doubt is not paralysis. Certainty is.”

A quote I can subscribe to anytime.

Thanks, Tia.

Tia says:

I’m thinking this morning about how any assertion I make or read that is not preceded by “In my opinion” or couched as a question that begs for consideration amongst other possibilities makes me uncomfortable now. I can see that this could be unwieldy for regular interaction and also that one could likely assume that the speaker knows that his view is one of several, but not including that qualifying preface often gives a text the sense of a paternalistic, authoritarian declaration of incontrovertible truth. To preface each statement like this would be boring and make for irritating reading, but perhaps one should try somewhere in each passage to let the reader know that one is aware that what one is presenting is only a stab at truth?

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