Saturday, June 9, 2012

Not a Tame Religion: a guest post from the Byzantine Bandit

"If you're a fan of C.S. Lewis's Narnia books, you've probably seen the movie. At least the first movie. Which was by far the best and most faithful adaptation. But don't argue about that in the combox. The reason I brought it up is this scene in the first movie
in which Lucy and Mr. Tumnus discuss how, while Aslan is good, He is not tame. Now of course, Aslan is/represents Jesus. And not Mohammed, Buddha or any other religious figure ('xcept like, you know, how Jesus is New Adam, but that's kinda in the whole "Aslan is Jesus" thing) I don't care what anyone else says. But again, that should not be the subject of the combox argument.

The reason I'm pulling up Aslan and His not-tameness is because the religion that Jesus founded is NOT, and I repeat NOT, a tame religion. What is a tame religion, you ask? Well, in a tame religion:
  • People make all the rules. Like in New Ageism. The nature-spirity stuff. People make up their deities. I could go for a walk and suddenly decide to worship Farsicus, the god of Gum People Left on the Sidewalk. I'd make all the rules for how people were to worship him, give him characteristics that matched my own, etc. And of course, Farsican morality would totally cater to me. Whatever I wanted would be permitted, whatever I didn't want wouldn't be. And of course Farsicus would be totally cool with me making tons of money off his cheesy merchandise.
  • Fundamental rules are completely changeable. In my religion of Farsicanismology, one day Farsicus could want everyone to drink bull's blood mixed with honey and the next day we could discover that Farsicus is in fact a bull and is extremely offended at us drinking his kin's blood. And B-T-dubs, just 'cuz New Ageism is a fusion of various elements,  Farsicanismology teaches that Farsicus did pretty much everything every other religious tradition's main person did. At the same time (and it did happen in time while simultaneously happening in an alternate parallel universe). While a vulture ate his liver.
  • Actually, the first thing about people making all the rules is probably the whole shebang for when something's a tame religion. Cuz the second point is kinda implied by the first one.
  • This point doesn't seem to have much of a point, does it?
  • This point's purpose is just for the sake of being amusing.

So, yes, tame religion. Yuck. Oh yeah and there's tame Christianity too. But for the sake of brevity and other stuff, we won't go into that. Right now we're going to switch over to how Catholicism is the wildest religion in existence.
  • First off, the Catholic Church wasn't founded by people. It was founded by a the God-Man, our Lord Jesus Christ. In a complete override of everything that had ever happened before and everything that would ever happen after, He took on flesh from a virgin. Yeah. Let's see humans invent that idea.
  • Second, our fundamental rules can't change. The faith and everything that goes along with that are unchangeable. They cannot be "tamed," that is to say, made to go along with what we want (although people do try). Note that disciplinary stuff like when fasts are and such is different and can be changed.
  • Third, our bishops don't do what we tell them. Not only can we not tame the religion itself, we generally can't even tame the leaders of the Church. Of course, every once in a while the "faithful" reign one in, but then the rest of the bishops punish him or something and go on being wild and free of stupidity and heresy and stuff, teaching us to do the same."
Thanks for sharing, Byzantine Bandit! I plan to borrow more material in the future!

1 comment:

  1. I'm so sorry I missed this! I really like this post- so much to ponder. I pray that many read this and gather the fruit!!



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