In the discussion thread: The Rise Of The Religious Left: Religious Progressives Will Soon Outnumber Conservatives [View all]
Response to Arugula Latte (Reply #65)
Sat Jul 20, 2013, 09:45 PM
IrishAyes (4,852 posts)
67. Well, even Mark Twain couldn't always be right.
And he did love the catchy quip.
Yet by no means am I saying the Bible is strictly fictional. Even the symbolic parts may bear basic truths presented in a manner understandable by people in that era. That doesn't mean that a modern, educated person with a liberal bent should reject it either. It is worthy of study on a variety of levels. The purpose is elevation of the human soul rather than its debasement. I personally do believe in the Holy Trinity and the saving power of the risen Jesus' love for ALL creation.
But no, I don't believe any ordinary mortal human being on earth knows all the answers, or even all the questions. Or even needs to! People can make a hell of heaven or a heaven of hell if they so choose.
I've been privileged to attend the passing of so many terminal patients that I could write volumes on what I've personally seen and experienced. When they leave, I hold with those who like to open the window in the room, even though I don't think for one second that failure to do so would delay them at all. It's symbolism, sort of like wishing them a swift and easy journey or waving a last goodbye.
One of my favorite Bible stories involves the miracle of loaves and fishes. You can reject it out of hand although people did hold large gatherings back then same as we do now. Or you can - quite erroneously, I think - decide that Jesus literally multiplied the loaves and fishes. I suppose he could have, although the Bible doesn't really say that's how it was done; but that's beside the point. Those people were not exactly stupid, certainly not trusting enough to go hiking way out in the desert without carrying provisions for themselves just in case. But maybe if they could get free food, who doesn't like that? So what would be the greater miracle, physically multiplying a few items into many, or using a young boy's natural generosity to set a good example where people's hearts would be changed at least for a moment and they could see that sharing together is the best way? I vote for the latter.
That's why I see no need for people to get their shorts twisted over what or how much is literal, symbolic, or maybe even both. That's like arguing about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin - it misses the point. The danger lies in this fool's errand of demanding that it must be all one way or the other, especially if a person argues for strict and total literalism of every iota. That's bibliolatry, a kind of idolatry that fundies just don't seem to realize they commit. Worst of all, it's idolatry of self because they worship their own beliefs, not any higher power. I'd wager most of them will tell you what I've heard so many say: that if they ever find out for sure that a single word in the Bible isn't literal and complete truth as they want to understand it, they'll no longer believe in God either. Hubris personified.
So now perhaps you understand better why so many of my Bible Belt neighbors would lynch me if they thought they could get away with it!
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|R Merm||Jul 2013||OP|
|No Vested Interest||Jul 2013||#68|
|R Merm||Jul 2013||#36|
|R Merm||Jul 2013||#39|
|Arugula Latte||Jul 2013||#65|
Well, even Mark Twain couldn't always be right.
|Arugula Latte||Jul 2013||#43|
|Arugula Latte||Jul 2013||#45|
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