Monday, July 02, 2007

Faith is a hunter

Being an outdoors type, I get a lot of sporting equipment catalogs. Perusing one yesterday morning morning over a bagel and coffee, I noticed several kinds of automatic feeding devices hunters use to create feeding stations for deer. One fills it with feed, places it in the woods, letting the deer become accustomed to getting the free lunch. When the time is ripe, one hides up a tree on the platform one buys from the same source along with the camo clothing and lets loose with a rifle or crossbow when the unsuspecting quarry shows up with its guard let down. I'm not a hunter, but I'm not a sentimentalist either. After all, you gotta eat.

This morning I read in the Miami Herald about feeding stations for kids; particularly street kids who spend their days skateboarding and hanging out. These tend not to be young scholars who spend a lot of time at the library studying comparative religion or Church history or physics or cosmology or anything else that might make them less susceptible to the bait; the junk food and junk religion. They're of the same age group, of the same herd mentality street gangs will attempt to recruit. They're kids and kids like to belong; like to have peers -- and of course they like the pizza and the candy bars. They love the ramps, stairs, half-pipes and grind rails; the blaring crap-rock dispensed at places like SK8 4 God in California or Ramp 48+ in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

"This is the perfect place for me,'' said Andrew Wiley, 18, who recently moved to Fort Lauderdale from California. ``I can come to learn about the Bible and use my talents to glorify the Lord.''

Another soul acquired, another mind lost, another trophy for "the Lord." What young Master Riley will learn is a cartoon version: a massively tendentious series of lectures based on a distorted translation and administered in edited little bits so as to create an impression rather different from the whole. He'll never learn about the actual history, the languages, the archaeology, the contemporary and historic sources for the literature. He'll never learn of the contradictions or of the millennia of interpretation thereof. He won't hear a hint of where the canon came from, who selected it, who burned the rest or what political deals were made to accomplish it. He will never learn Greek or Coptic or Syriac or Hebrew. He will never hear of Mithras or Irenaeus or Arius. He won't read Augustine or about Zurvanism. He won't have a clue what Jesus was about. He will be a believer, not a scholar; a worshipper of a paper idol and a Glory seeking Jive Jesus who likes servants and needs little boys on skate boards, just the way the wicked witch of the West needed winged monkeys.


Reign of Reason said...

The decline of western civilization...

Instead of educating our kids, we indoctrinate them with gibberish from the bible and other "holy" texts.

As long as this crap keeps up, the country will continue to elect, and be led by, idiots.

Maybe that's what America deserves.

Where do I get off?

Intellectual Insurgent said...

I hear Costa Rica is beautiful this time of year. :-)

Capt. Fogg said...

There's a little Caribbean Island called the Commonwealth of Dominica. . . .