Monday, January 23, 2006

Future talking points

I grew up in a protestant fundamentalist home. The thing about protestant fundamentalism is that followers are told they have the answer for everything right directly from the bible. From my observations, each individual protestant fundamentalist group tends to take a core set of scriptures and ideas and build their beliefs around those; then they go through the bible picking and choosing other scriptures to support their conclusions. Normally they are able to form some grand harmonious scheme that convinces the group’s followers that they are the only ones on the right track in figuring out the bible, the universe and everything.

There are plenty of protestant fundamentalist groups in existence. Each one has convinced itself they are the only true path to fulfilling God’s will. Of course, the question comes up, if God was so interested in saving lives in this manner, why would he give his word to so few at such a later period in time?

Anyways, as I was growing up, I was taught that the bible says all modern supernatural phenomena are the work of the Devil or his demons who are trying their damnedest to pull people away from the word of God. Of course, this belief did nothing but reinforce the notion that Satan was succeeding because so many did not accept our version of God’s Word. I was taught that ghosts were demons pretending to be the deceased, psychic powers came from conjuring demon influence, and other supernatural events were the efforts to turn people away from God or at least distract us from doing his will. So, much of my life, I had both a fear of the supernatural and an unnatural arrogance about having the ability to know what it is and how to eliminate it.

This led me to completely misinterpret what was really going on around me. This led me to not understand my place in this world. I treated events around me too matter of factly (natural, human, and supernatural), almost with arrogance because I so strongly believed myself to be immune to them. Looking back now, I can say I was pretty ignorant, but that my heart was in the right place.

I'm now far more skeptic, but I'm also skeptical of skepticism. 

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