From the article title, you may surmise that what follows in this post might be offensive or even biased. Which is probably true.
The following essay is the last one which I wrote for my Composition One class during the winter 2016 semester.
The subject is the contradictions and hypocrisy presented by typical Christianity in the United States. I say typical because some denominations are more religious and less hypocritical than others. I also say in the United States, because that’s where I live, so that is where I have observed hypocrisy and contradictions of various sorts among those of the Christian faith. I don’t pretend to know what Christians in other countries or those of other faiths might be like.
Also, just a note, as of March 2017 I am no longer an Agnostic, but a Satanist. I found a need to believe in and have a relationship with an entity, but I did not wish to choose anything which required agreeing with hurting others/killing in the name of the religion or which required a lot of ritualistic worship or heavy reliance on the use of magic. Spiritual Satanism fits my criteria to my satisfaction, so it is now my chosen religion.
Before you start thinking me a little crazy, I must explain that Satanism has been much misconstrued in popular culture, and there are those who have done awful things in the name of it. However, as a modern religion, Satanism is more about having a personal relationship with Satan or another Demon and taking care of oneself, including regarding many things which certain Christian sects see as “sin” as okay. For example, being gay and transgender is perfectly acceptable to a Satanist. Having multiple sexual partners, as long as all parties consent and safety measures are employed, is perfectly fine. However, killing an animal for any reason other than necessary food, killing another human for any reason than self-defense or defense of another, stealing for any reason other than necessity or getting back what was stolen from you, all these things would be considered “sin” in the book of a Satanist.
More on my new religion will be covered in a future article. I am not sure when I will be able to publish said future article, unfortunately.
Okay, so comment if you like. If you have an issue with something I said in the following essay, feel free to speak up about it. Without further ado, I present Religion of Discrepancy:
10 October, 2016
Religion of Discrepancy
Christianity is the most prevalent religion in America, followed by Atheism and Agnosticism, which is not surprising given the fact that our founders were Christian themselves. (Schapiro) A more interesting fact is that Americans, primarily those of the younger generations, are beginning a shift from Christianity to other religions; usually agnosticism, atheism, or no affiliation. I, being one of those younger unfaithful, was a Christian throughout my childhood and have now been a proud agnostic for two years. Why did I leave the faith I was born into, and am still encouraged to follow by my parent, for a more questionable belief system? One of the reasons I did so is because I have seen a large amount of contradiction, hypocrisy, and weak argumentation among those of the Christian faith.
The Christian teachings, especially those in the Christian Bible, can be quite contradictory. The God mentioned in the Bible seems to change Their mind quite a bit, while simultaneously proclaiming to be unchangeable. (Ex. 32:14 – changes mind about killing nation; Num. 23:19 – says does not change mind, even when did earlier, then lies about it while saying does not lie; Holy Bible) At one point God says that They are a loving and merciful God. (Eph. 2:4; Holy Bible) However, earlier in the Bible God killed a whole slew of the Israelite camp because they worshiped an idol, which seems a bit childish given the fact that the people had only just come out of a country where worshipping idols was very common. And then God commends those in the camp who killed said slew of camp members for killing, even though They earlier commanded that Their people must not kill. (Ex. 32:1-29; Holy Bible) These contradictions within Christian teachings can be quite distracting to those prospectively joining the religion.
Besides the hypocrisy of God in the Bible, many Christians do and say hypocritical things. An example of such is the transgression of an influential Christian speaker. This person was prominent among the Christian home-schooling community and had a prosperous business selling home-schooling curricula and teaching recordings on many virtuous subjects. Unfortunately, several years ago, it was discovered that this person had been having an affair with someone in their employ for over ten years, all while preaching fidelity and love for one’s spouse to the public. This person caused all their followers to mistrust them, and by extension, all their teachings and perhaps the Christian faith itself. It is sad to see some Christians ruin the reputation of their religion via gross inconsistency. Sadly, this seems quite common. I have a friend who’s parent abused them regularly, while said parent preached Christian love and nonviolence, and claimed to love their child. This certainly did a great deal of damage to the Christian ideology my friend might have had as an adult, as they freely express their agnostic adherence is related to their Christian parent’s abuse.
American Christians aren’t very good at attracting others to their religion, either. The arguments for becoming a Christian usually rely on one blindly believing that a mysterious being, who no one can see and who never seems to answer prayers or work many miracles, actually cares enough about them, in particular, to keep them from dying in a fantastical torture world, while all the rest of the humans get to meet their fate without intervention. Arguing that God loved all Earthlings enough to let Their child be tortured to death, so therefore we must worship Them with undying devotion all our days, doesn’t make sense if one considers that someone who lets their child be tortured is a cruel person and must not care about other people if they can let their own flesh and blood suffer without intervening. Saying that all “believers” will go to “heaven” seems too good to be true. There is no evidence to prove what happens to humans after death, so no one can ever really know what comes after. Giving people a false sense of hope that they might live in paradise after death seems rather mean, actually. Overall, Christian arguments for following their religion or for following any of their teachings are unconvincing at best.
From what I have seen, read, and experienced, Christians are not always the sweet people one might suppose. Christianity is based on a book filled with contradictions, bigotry, and violence. (Deut. 13:6-9 – if someone’s relation of friend wants to be of another religion, it is that person’s duty to kill said relation or friend; I Tim. 2:12 – a woman cannot teach or be of higher rank than a man; Lev. 20:13 – gay people must be killed; Holy Bible) Platitudes, trite sayings, and emotional appeal may keep a few dancing to the tune of the Christian Way, but those who think for themselves seem much more likely to go for a more open-minded worldview. I feel Christianity is on its way out, to be replaced by a more tolerant and question-everything value system.
Schapiro, Rich, and Erica Pearson. “Americans Less Christian, More Atheist and Agnostic:
Survey.” NY Daily News. Pew Research Center, 12 May 2015. Web. 09 Oct. 2016.
Holy Bible: New International Version. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan, 2011. Print.
Okay, let me know what you think, kids. Thanks
See you next time
Ryan L Maxwell