Sunday, October 08, 2006

Faith and Religion Part I: Gently Kicking Your Child Down the God Staircase

Recently, in an effort to interest more young people in Christianity, passages from the Bible were posted on messageboards across the internet. What follows is one of the exchanges that took place:

The Bible:
Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.

Canadian_Cutie:
Shut up. Seriously.

Bev:
I’m assuming this Jesus guy is Mexican, yes? Or at least of Hispanic lineage? I was a Hispanic Studies major in college and spent a year in Mexico City. A surfeit of petulant retorts leapt to my tongue whilst perusing the verbiage to which you have subjected us. Perhaps you are merely dabbling in a bit of schadenfreude, and if you are, I doff my chapeau to you in humble submission to your razor wit. However, if you are so deluded as to believe that a Mexican could be promoted to the status of “King of the Jews” despite not even being Jewish, then perhaps you should reconsider posting on a public messageboard until you’ve reached a level of intelligence beyond that of a vacuous troglodyte.

Legolas:
Dude I totally agree this person is soooooooooooooo STOOPID!!!

PuddinTame:
Come to worship him??? ROTFLMAO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Canadian_Cutie:
I just googled this Jesus and found like NO mention of King Herod whoever the hell that is… this guys an idiot

Foxy_Wolf:
WE are come to worship him, even. That’s priceless!

McLuhan:
Okay, most people know me as the voice of reason on this board. First of all, it is possible to name a star via the International Star Registry, so he may very well have a star in the East.

Canadian_Cutie:
He may very well be a dumbass to.

Legolas:
Did you guys watch fear factor last nite?

Anonymous:
Don’t fuck wit da Jesus…

Karma_Deemun:
Fear Factor is retarded. “Hey, let’s watch people eat a donkeys rectum!” And Joe Rogan is so not funny.

Foxy_Wolf:
Lebowski rules!!!

The use of the Web as a teaching tool was strictly condemned by the late Pope John Paul II, who described messageboards as “playgrounds for assholes.” But one needn’t be Catholic to know that explaining religion to your child requires one-on-one interaction.

It’s not easy to talk to kids about religion. Most major religions were designed as a way of making boredom more complicated, and children are bored enough without confounding the situation with deep spiritual thinking. The key to explaining your family’s religious beliefs to your child is to make them understand they will never be able to comprehend what you cannot explain to them.

A decidedly atavistic stance most parents take when explaining religion is to threaten their child with a fiery eternity in Hell when they begin to question their faith. If one’s family is not of the Judeo-Christian persuasion, the same end can be achieved by threatening to baptize the child as Methodist so they would then be considered “Hell worthy” in the eyes of God. This doesn’t really explain anything and only serves to confuse Hindu children, so a softer approach is more suitable.

It is important to explain to your child why your family believes what they believe, and more importantly, to be proud of their religious heritage. Explain to them that as they go through life they will be encountered by naysayers who will try to lead them astray using logic and empirical evidence, neither of which are substitutes for pure, blind faith. In order to drive this point home, be as illogical as possible when explaining religion to your child. Pause every few minutes to punch your child in the chest and then dive behind the couch screaming and sobbing. It also helps to periodically apologize for inventions you had nothing to do with, and for which no apology is really necessary, such as Wiffle Balls. This will confuse your child initially, but you will have proved that if God was so hung up on logic he sure as hell wouldn’t have created a babbling ass such as yourself.

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