Sunday, March 31, 2013

Death Evangelism

As you know, I experienced the vision of perfection. There is nothing that is not perfect. I do not believe that. I know it. I have no problem maintaining that view any more than I have trouble posting here. I think I have been angry for about five minutes since that vision. In fact, I have so released old views that I posted this on Facebook this morning:

If the symbolism of Christ's crucifixion taught us nothing else, it should be that he did not sacrifice his spirit. Neither should we. Conform not to the pettiness, anger and fear that is society. Be who you are. Be delightful. Let those who will, see.

Those that have read this space for quite a while know what a change this is for me. While I am not Christian, I have moved past my angst* as I have figured out where it came from. Then someone posted an article on Facebook about Death Evangelism. This is the practice of scanning obituaries for notices of  the deaths of non-Christians and striking ever-lasting fear into the families in hopes of conversion. Using someone's grief like that is appalling.

Here is the question. How I can reconcile that with perfection? Pretty much the same way as every other horrible thing that happens in this world -- one understands the roots of the behavior. This is a lesson I have outlined here before when very long ago, I was able to have compassion for the pain my mother was in when she did what she did. That pain was her motivator.

These people feel they have a truth. As Jason Miller states, the problem in finding a truth is that sometimes we want to enforce it. Truths cannot be enforced and this is the failing of all evangelicals, even those who have their heads screwed on a little better than those referenced in the article above. Yes, it builds churches, fills collections plates and make you feel like your truth is shared but in reality all you have created is a bunch of scared people conforming to assuage their fears...and yours.

Deep down evangelicals know they are not with Christ. Christ is about compassion and love. There is none of that in acts like this. Compassion and love do not create fears in others. Evangelicals can speak of the greater love they are driving people to but the fact that they create fear reveals a deeper truth of their being.  Deep down they are scared out of their minds. So too is anyone that tries to force, trick or persistently push you into their faith or into their truth. These people are usually revealed by their anger.**

Oh yes, those damnable Christians! Who are we kidding? We are they. I could offer examples from the history of this space past and even more recently but that would hide the message. Let us just say that everyone is prone to this. Everyone that finds a little truth and seeks to defend it either by marginalizing the other fellow or trumpeting their belief as the end all be all. Careful there, we are not doing that. We are just teaching people to think for long as it is close enough to how we believe.

News flash, we are all wrong! The human mind cannot grasp the vastness that is G-d and Its creation. We each see our little bit of it. That is totally cool. The problem is that we exclude any bit that we cannot see as false, dangerous and wrong. No one is immune to this. You are not. I am not.

Yes, I think the behavior of death evangelists is wrong-headed but I cannot condemn them for pandering to the fears they do not know they have. I have watched friends, former friends, and myself do the same thing. In each example, we were afraid of a larger truth than we could process. Yet, when we realize this, the shock opens us up to a greater truth and that is why there is perfection in the unfolding. All those behaviors above and those of death evangelists are totally perfect.

In the clip below, Lon sees the perfection as love. He is totally right.

*I am not totally past it yet but I will be.
** Just challenge their beliefs or self-perceptions

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