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  • Thursday, October 28, 2004


    Good and Evil of the Imperial God

    God On Their Side examines the effect of Evangelical Christianity on the election of 2004. I have conflicting impulses about the evangelical movement. On one hand, I believe spirituality can and should inform one's political actions. On the other hand, I find an unmistakable parallel between fascism and some politically active religious groups. These politically active Evangelicals have the certainty of the "true believer." Their system seems to have little or no tolerance of ambiguity and of differing religious beliefs. Great for them, not so great for those who aren't part of their movement. When everyone can be divided into groups of good and evil, godly and satanic, the value of those in the "other" group declines precipitously.

    Fundamentalist religions of any sort, if they are active in the wider world of society, often attempt to suppress other views and eliminate them. The strange thing I find about Evangelicals is, while their basis comes from the individual spiritual experience of being "born again", their collective action is often authoritarian in nature. They have very strict ideas about how everyone should live their lives. Politically, this means supporting and enacting laws dictating these views.

    The Bible, as a blueprint of an ideal society, is very scary. I'm not a Bible student. I know some of the new testament. I couldn't go into detail about much in the old testament beyond the book of Genesis. But I do know something about the contradictions in the Bible. And I do know something about some of the penalties in the Bible for transgressing against the "law of God" set out in the Bible. And a large society based strictly on these laws and penalties would be horrific I think.

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