More Stupid Myths

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I have a lot of respect for Christians. I was brought up in a Christian family. Most Christians that I know share values of hard work and reward. They know the virtuous benefits of applying the “Golden Rule” and understand that honesty and integrity is one of the highest, if not the highest, values to live a life by. I haven’t always had a lot of honesty or integrity in my life, but I’ve learned my lessons.

Where most Christians and I disagree is on the law of Cause and Effect. Too often, Christians blame some mysterious entity named ‘Satan’ for the evil in this world. Not only this world, but in their own lives. And it seems to me, it is this fallacy, that some devil is responsible for our evil thoughts or evil deeds, that really differentiates Christian values from libertarian values. The Christian has someone one else to blame. Satan. The libertarian says, “You’re to blame, and you’re responsible.” Common Christianity never quite gets to the personal responsibility part. Well, sometimes it does.. but more of a discussion regarding what entity the individual allows to rule their lives.

I use to think I understood this philosophy, but in the end, it really was illogical. Either you believe in an omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent God, or you don’t. Believing in such a God means there can be no such thing as ‘free will.’ It’s utterly impossible.

And this is where the illogic of blaming Satan for the source of your troubles is really silly and idiotic. But, it seems this philosophy is welcome and of course, provides an excuse for those who do evil.

Rob’s Blog provides another example of this. Apparently, a grieving mother of a murdered child is blaming some game for the murder of her son.

I have four sons that I love with all my heart. Sometimes, I’m over protective of them. Other times, I’m not sure what I should do or react when they want to engage in activities that I know could be risky. I want the best for all my sons. I have, at times, imagined someone doing any one of my sons, harm. And it’s a fallacious imagining, as no harm has ever come to my sons.

But I suppose I could understand a mom blaming a game for the ultimate harm of her son. But, even though I could understand the blame, I also realize that this would be misplaced. Ultimately, the individual responsible for harming any of my sons is responsible for whatever they would do, regardless of what they claimed motivated them. Motivation and responsibility are different.

Censorship has never saved anyone’s life. Even with censorship of games, expression, art, literature, and thoughts, bad things happen. Evil happens. The evil would not have been prevented by censorship. All that does is remove personal responsibility.

And I had more to say on this, but on this night, I seem to have lost my train of thought. More another time. But in the meantime, visit Rob’s Blog.

4 thoughts on “More Stupid Myths”

  1. I was also raised in Christian household. I’m not sure I agree with you on the theology. It seems to me a lot of Christians believe strongly that an individual has the choice to follow good or evil. It’s just that they embody these two concepts. Free will is the gift that the omniscient God has granted to his creations. This is why many Christians are also quite comfortable believing in eternal damnation, because it is a result of the choice of the damned. I agree with you generally on personal responsibility though. It’s just that I think, if anything, most Christians would be your allies on this issue. Kathy Shaidle – want to jump in on this one?

  2. I didn’t totally think through this when I wrote it, and , of course you’re right – not all Christians believe Satan is the cause of evil, and they do take personal responsibility. On the other hand, there are those who ascribe to Satan being the cause of all evil. We could probably get into a very very long discourse on theology here to show this, but I’m not up to that right now 🙂

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