Tag Archives: intolerance

…to my casual readers on this blog and Facebook

A few days ago I received a rather desperate message claiming my posts were contaminating Facebook and the Internet. Given their perspective, perhaps they were right. I am not able to determine what is right for them, as I am unable to fully declare what is right and truth for me.

 

There is an assumption made that appears to be consistent across the spectrum of thought we have been exposed to on many social media sites. That is, since I don’t believe as many others do I must not be a Christian and I certainly do not believe in God. The thinking that fosters this kind of attitude is sadly out of tune with, not only who I am, but also what I am thinking these days.

 

I make no apologies for what I write as contained within them are the basic questions I am struggling with about my life-long faith. Please note that fb poses a question to all of us each time we open our fb page and that is, “What’s on your mind?” I have taken that question seriously and often post what really is on my mind. These days, my faith is on my mind. I make no apologies for what I write even though to some what I write is troubling. If you are one of those who are worried about my soul I take that concern very seriously. I do not ridicule or ignore it as I take it as a genuine concern for my spiritual welfare and me as person. Your prayers on my behalf are welcome. Yet, I cannot ignore the questions that I ask of God and the questions that propel me to look in many directions for truth.

 

It is interesting to me that, because of what I think and believe, that I am drummed out of existence as if I were some kind of threat to someone’s very soul. Perhaps I do represent an alternative to the usual approach to faith, I can’t answer for you what might be your best approach, but dismissing me, as so many have done, will not change the facts and faith at stake for me.

 

I do appreciate your concern for me, I really do, and I hope to sustain family and friend relationships for many years to come. If being true to myself and my questions poses serious difficulties for you and you find yourself unable to tolerate what I write, then I would move on. My hope is that by clarifying my position that you would stop and consider what it means for you and me by choosing to abandon this relationship. After all, friendships are neither mandatory nor obligatory. If one chooses to sever a relationship I would hope it would be in the best interest of all, including this one. Thanks for taking the time to read and consider my point of view.


Tolerance and Intolerance

After being scolded with the following message (name withheld), “Wish we would have known the Real Ed about 25 years ago. You put on a good show I will give you that.”I responded with these words: “Though you may not like where I am on my personal journey, it is patently unfair to insinuate that what I preached and believed was a fake. That is untrue. During most of my life I was convinced that the Evangelical way of looking at things was correct. I don’t believe that anymore. My views have always leaned to the liberal side. If I had been, as you say, “the Real Ed” (I take that to be as I present my thinking today) then what difference would that have made? Only because one believes the same as you do is/was the criteria for gaining access to family and friends who are Christian? If so, I am offended.” (Some of the above was edited from the original message due to a few minor grammatical and syntax errors.)

Truth is hard to come by. There seem to be those who believe the truth they espouse is the only truth and that attempting to understand one’s faith from a different perspective is somehow worth insulting with little understanding. Though the above is mild by comparison to several others I have received from “friends”, I find it interesting that one would be inclined to distance themselves from my perspective without asking why or attempting to understand. I can only conclude there is little or no interest in exploring faith’s foundations, except as taught within the system. “It must be so because I have been told it was so”, and if one has always been told one thing there cannot be another.


Piety

“The existence of pious feeling, in conjunction with intolerance, cruelty, and selfish policy, has never ceased to surprise and perplex those who have viewed it calmly from a distance.” 

Lydia Maria Child, The Progress of Religious Ideas Through Successive Ages (1855)