"laestadian, apostolic, gay, lgbtq, ex-oalc, ex-llc, llc, oalc, bunner" LEARNING TO LIVE FREE: Doing Nothing is Not an Option

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Doing Nothing is Not an Option

Am I bigoted for complaining recently that Biblical literalism is ignorant and irresponsible? Isn't it just a difference of opinion? Not if you consider the consequences. For example, a huge number of Christians are either willfully blind to, or "skeptical" of, the science of global climate change. I urge you to watch this video. We can afford to disagree about global climate change, but not what we do about it.


  1. Call me naive, but I think that literalists don't think there is a way to be a faithful reader of the Bible or a faithful Christian unless you're a literalist. So for me the key to changing people's minds about literalism is show people that there are faithful alternatives.

    Great video, by the way!

  2. Freetobeme said:

    Am I bigoted for complaining recently that Biblical literalism is ignorant and irresponsible?

    The answer is yes, you are bigoted. I consider anyone who cannot tolerate a difference of opinion a bigot.

    Free, you say you are nonreligious. Is that the politically correct name for atheist? Just like the pc name for "Abortion on demand" is "pro-choice?

  3. So, by your definition of bigot, anonymous, does that include you?

  4. Anonymous, you really need to expand your knowledge base. Where did you get the idea that being nonreligious means being an atheist? Just because a person doesn't wish to be connected to a formal church (ie: being "religious"), that doesn't mean that person isn't spiritual or doesn't believe in God. Many "religious" people are very secular in their thinking and actions. You will find a mix on both sides of THAT fence.

  5. To anon 1:35, No I am not a bigot. I don't call people who disagree with me ignorant.
    To Sisu,
    I didn't say she was an atheist, I just asked the question.
    And, religious means belief in religion, not belonging to a church. As for your snide comment about me expanding my knowledge base, perhaps you should look up the term "Elitism"!

    e�lit�ism [ i l t�zzəm, ay l t�zzəm ]



    1. belief in concept of superiority: the belief that some people or things are inherently superior to others and deserve preeminence, preferential treatment, or higher rewards because of their superiority

  6. Arguing for 6-day creation versus evolution is not a "matter of opinion," nor is arguing for a flat versus spherical earth.

    All views are not informed, therefore some are ignorant (not informed), and it is not bigotry to say so. Nor is it bigotry to criticize those who insist on remaining uninformed when given the opportunity, particularly when their actions (or lack of them) have an ill effect on others.

    Answers.com says "Real bigots can be distinguished from mere partisans or zealots by the fact that they refuse to learn alternatives even when the march of time and/or technology is threatening to obsolete the favored tool."

    Hmmmm . . .

  7. Tomte, you are goodhearted and I wish you luck. I am a pessimist lately. I wonder sometimes if people are hard-wired for conservatism / liberality and there is little education or exposure can do. In the NYT Sunday Magazine, a biologist -- educated at Harvard no less (his thesis was on evolution) has decided to advocate for young earth creationism because the Bible must be true. He states that even if science proves him wrong, he will still stand by the Bible.

    Amazing. That fear must be really awful to live with.

  8. Wonderful logic, Free. If, in your opinion a persons view is uninformed, than you have the right to judge that opinion/view as ignorant. You can say that is not bigotry, but the result is the same. That "uninformed" opinion/view is discounted as ignorant and without merit. For you to assume that anyone's opinion is uninformed is the height of elitism. You and the other Secular Progressives are all the same. Agree with you, or be shouted down. Whatever happened to freedom of speech!

  9. That's a doozy. You accuse me of being judgmental while you judge me. The difference? I don't mind.

    Let's be real.

    No one is shouting you down.

    You are exercising freedom of speech right HERE, in the forum I have provided for you.

    I may have used strong language, but who IS this monster you are fighting? The baby-killing- atheist-secular-progressive-elitist-bigot? (Did I miss any perjoratives?)

    It's not me. I think it is smoke obscuring the real topic of contention.

    If you insist on a six-day creation, then dinosaurs existed with man. Why do carbon studies show otherwise? Are the studies flawed? Is God playing tricks?

    Please tell us how you reach your conclusion.

  10. mia from the llc11/27/2007 08:46:00 PM

    I, too, get frustrated by those who could have evidence staring them in the face, and they shout otherwise. Some people are still firmly convinced that global warming is merely a political issue.

    I believe they would be the ones standing on the last ice floe, still insisting that it's merely one of the natural ups and downs in the earth's cycle. Or perhaps it's only done with mirrors and smoke, hmmm?

    Disagreeing and criticizing are not necessarily signs of being judgmental, anon. Sometimes they are signs of wisdom. :) If you can't handle people disagreeing with you without being insulting, perhaps you might need to examine the holes in the position you are so vigorously trying to defend.

  11. Anonymous, we like to discuss lots of ideas here, but being (mostly)Finns we get our dander up when our integrity is called into question. I think everyone, myself included, of course, is judgmental to some degree. That's human nature. We need to be aware of that and evaluate our own comments, ideas, and perspectives accordingly. For many of us, a bigot is a whole different issue. That behavior usually is exhibited as "willful ignorance."

    We are all products of our personal experiences which shape our world view. That's why we are told to love one another in spite of everything. No two people are completely alike, so we need to cut each other some slack. I understand it when someone shouts about a view they disagree with. Been there, done that (well, a little!). It's usually done to drown out thoughts that are trying to creep in the mind and "mess up that nice cozy nest". Very uncomfortable, no?

    So, relax, join us in discussion, and share your thoughts. I will try not to read more into your words that you intended. I hope you will do the same.

    God Bless.

  12. Someone recently gave me a handout called "The Art of Understanding".. I'm not sure who wrote it.

    Active listening, or showing others that you understand them, is the most important step in the
    dance of communication. Generally, during an emotional moment, two people are desperately
    trying to get their points across to each other and neither is actually listening. Or one person is
    going on and the other is tuning him or her out. The way out of this dilemma is the listening
    When you most want someone to hear you, it helps to listen first!

    True listening is a form of meditation in which you clear your mind of your own thoughts and
    put your attention entirely on another person. The following steps help build the concentration
    necessary for active listening:
    • Make eye contact, nods of understanding, and listening noises: “Uh huh. . . . hmm. . . .” When you appear disinterested, people talk on and on, desperately trying to gain your attention.
    Focusing on the speaker shortens monologues by helping the speaker realize you are listening
    • Rephrase: “Are you saying . . . ?” It is better to restate in other words what has been said than to simply repeat. This helps clarify the other person’s point. Ask questions if you don’t fully understand what has been said: “What do you mean by . . . ?” Your paraphrases don’t have to be 100% correct as long as you ask, “What percent of that did I understand?” Keep rephrasing
    until the other person feels completely understood. This is often signified by a nod.
    • Label feelings: “Do you feel . . . ? You seem to feel. . . .” Until emotions are recognized, people
    tend to hang on to them. Once feelings are identified, people can let them go. Highly accurate
    responses can draw out tears. Releasing such emotions deepens the connection between two
    people and takes communication to an intimate level (especially when accompanied by a touch,
    pat, or hug). When people are mad, identify any hurt their anger may be masking. It is
    generally better to overstate distress than to minimize it.
    • Validate feelings: “It makes sense that you feel . . . because. . . .” Validating the factors that
    contribute to a feeling requires curiosity. The more irrational an emotion seems, the more
    fascinating it is to discover the cause. When you understand the “emotional logic” behind a
    feeling, it starts to make sense: “I can see why you are disappointed in me, since you don’t
    approve of women wearing short skirts.” Feelings are not right or wrong, but are the result of
    helpful or harmful beliefs. Validating shows that you are not making judgments and helps
    others be less defensive or attacking. It is far easier to make judgments and sneak in your own viewpoint than to listen.

  13. Something hopeful about global warming that I heard on public radio driving home tonight... the policy guy they had on said that when Al Gore and George Bush met recently to discuss global warming, there was substantial agreement between them on the issue. They both agree that the science is at a place where "urgent action is justified."

    To hear the commentator tell it, it sounded like the main disagreement surrounded whether or not nuclear power should be part of the plan to lower carbon emissions.

    Anecdotally I can also confirm that many folks I know (Laestadians and ex-Laestadians even) who used to think global warming was just a liberal bogeyman now admit that it's a concern.

    When my father-in-law admits that there "may be something to this global warming business" you know that a seismic shift has occurred. ;-)

  14. I just llstened to this YouTube video. Actually, doing nothing is an option, and it is more or less the option we as a civilization will choose, and we will pay the price (or our descendants will) just as the Trojans paid for ignoring Cassandra. The "psychology of previous investment" is so huge in this culture, with its worship of "the economy," that any other path is totally untenable. Or at least mostly untenable. So while what we really need to do is to take at least half of the cars off the road (for instance), what we will do instead is push for more hybrid vehicles. Then we will say, "Well, at least that is a step in the right direction." Too late for steps. We need miles, or light-years. And that is not going to happen. So that is why I say, for all practical purposes, the option we choose will be to do nothing. Then the chips will fall where they may. Much suffering, huge suffering, is almost certain to ensue. That will be a time for the compassion workers, people who know how to guide folks through suffering, fear, mayhem, and death. If this sounds bleak, that is the future as I see it. Not want it, but see it. Time for prayers all around, prayers and strength to act against vested interests, including our own.
    Many blessings to all (we need them). MTH

  15. I am not the anonymous above, but I am an anon who doesn't agree with free. Yes, dinosaurs did exist with man and there IS scientific evidence out there to support this and to support the scientists who understand (not ignorant) that the earth is as young as a literal interpretation of the Biblical 6 day creation makes it. I don't read the anon above from 11/27 6:04 as getting his dander up or calling names. Oh and yes I think the global warming theory is also a political issue (the govt is our savior). Do I think those who do not agree with me are ignorant, of course not, but Free calls those who disagree with her ignorant. Weird.

  16. I'm not an expert in biology, paleontology, etc, so I have to rely on peer reviewed scientific findings in order to be informed about those issues.

    Anon who thinks that there is scientific evidence for dinos and humans co-existed, please cite your sources.

  17. Many Trails Home12/02/2007 12:39:00 PM

    Anon, I would also ask you to provide the "scientific evidence" that supports the IGNORANT scientists who "understand . . . that the earth is as young as a literal interpretation of the Biblical 6 day creation makes it."
    You must also believe in magic. Nothing wrong in believing in magic, but don't confuse it with scientific evidence. MTH

  18. www.accuweather.com is a good place to research both sides of this issue.

  19. Just to make things a little more interesting. If someone can show me peer reviewed scientific findings supporting a young earth / people and dinos living together, I'm prepared to change my position on the issue.