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Learning in Freedom

Welcome to Learning in Freedom, a blog all about the learning adventures (and mishaps) of the Allen family. My four children are unschooled, following their interests and passions every day and living the lives of their choosing. The purpose of this blog is to share our every day lives (and my not-so-humble opinons) with anyone interested in stopping by. We hope this will give a glimpse of how natural learning unfolds from day to day......

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Bible rant

I was going to post this at facebook but it was too long for as status update and I really need to vent right now. So here ya go...my vent for today:

Quoted from a convo at facebook: "I know of only ONE bible, the HOLY bible".

Oh, you mean the CHRISTIAN bible? Because if there is only ONE bible then why don't the Jews, the Muslims, the Buddhas, the B'hai, the Hindus etc.... use it? I think some Christians are really christian-centric and can't even imagine that other religions not only have their own bible, but they love and cherish it just as much as the Christians.

There are many colors, religions and beliefs in the world people....all of whom feel just as strongly about their bible as you do (or not) so quit shoving your damn bible in people's faces. It's really old. You don't even know what your own bible says.....then there are those of us who don't need a bible to do the right thing and know it better than most Christians do. sigh.


Anonymous Jenny said...

From Websters: Bible - capitalized (a) : the sacred scriptures of Christians comprising the Old Testament and the New Testament (b) : the sacred scriptures of some other religion (as Judaism)

Clearly if they've not heard of other Bibles, they're a bit under educated, or very Christian-centric.

But you're painting Christians with a pretty broad brush (and non-Christians as well for that matter) when you say "there are those of us who don't need a bible to do the right thing and know it better than most Christians do".

I've not done an exhaustive survey of how well Christians and non-Christians do the right thing, but I can say that the Christians I know do the right thing as often as the non-Christians I know.

12:51 PM  
Blogger Ren said...

Or maybe you could say "Christians do the wrong thing as often as non-christians" because religion has little or nothing to do with morality. I see a lot of immoral behavior by Christians so my personal experience is the non-religious folks do the right thing for their own internal reasons and religious people tend to do it because they think they have to.

Good morals should ideally stem from an internal source, rather than following some set of "rules".

I know a lot of non-christians and they usually know the bible better than my religious friends AND they tend to be more gentle and kind to their children...one of my gauges for how "decent" a human being you are.

1:31 PM  
Anonymous Jenny said...

I'm sorry that you've been so damaged by the Christians you've known.

I'd typed up a great deal more to say and then realized that I think we'd be speaking at cross-purposes, and I'd rather not argue about intolerance with a friend.

Thank you as always for offering another perspective.

5:18 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

I learned this lesson well after I left 'The Church', which in my life was the Mormon church.

I act more Mormon than the vast majority of Mormon family members and friends that I have. Gardening, family history, etc, etc - even scripture study, of a sort. Since my husband and extended family are still Mormon, I've had to learn the LDS scripture and history better than them to better educate my children when they have questions because of what they've been told by others.

My father told me that 'Atheists don't care about family.' WTH? Seriously. WTH???

I have found what you stated here. Most people in organized religions believe that morality comes from religion and they'll tell you that to your face, knowing that you 'don't have religion'. When asked if they would lose their sense of right and wrong if they lost their belief, I've never had one say no. Amazing. They truly believe (or say they do) that they are bad people without an external omnipotent power in their lives.

7:21 PM  
Blogger Ren said...

Let me clarify, because it's not "religious folks" necessarily that are doing things for rule driven reasons but I see more of that with religion and religious types. A few actually connect with the religion for their own reasons but the vast majority have more of an external control locus, rather than internal. That's the big problem imo.

My vent was about Christians using the bible to justify stupid ideas. Or throwing the bible up in people's faces as though it's the one TRUE source when they don't even know their own book that well. I know you're not that type Jen! So the vent was more about that than anything.

I don't feel damaged by Christians personally, even though my parents were in a strict cult-like church...I think Christianity as a whole has done a lot of damage though.

If you figure that Christianity is the main religion of our country and there are more Christians per capita than any other religion, it makes sense that more criminals, more wrong-doing is also being done by Christians. Because I haven't found religion to be a preventative to poor choices. So it might just be a numbers game; more Christians=more opportunities for crimes to be committed by them. In another country, with another main religion there are probably more crimes committed by those in that religion.

Problem is, there have been more wars and violence committed by certain religions than others...so are some inherently worse? I don't really know....my only gripe was with people who are Christian-centric like you said.

10:05 PM  
Blogger Ren said...

And I'm wondering if you thought the "broad brush" was that my vent was aimed at Christians in general. It wasn't. It was aimed at the poster of the original quote I put up and types like her.

10:06 PM  
Blogger Jessica said...

Ghandi said it best when he told a crowd of people, "I am christain, I am hindu, I am muslim, I am .... because I am all of you." He had his own beliefs but was able to see the validity in each person's religion and hold it up as a representation of all the people whose rights he struggled to protect. I don't know why people don't see the good in other people's faith, it blows my mind b/c it comes down to semantics for me. Even if people deny the existence of a supreme being, they still have their core values and beliefs which are often times the expressions of a faith system that they may not even know about. I think it is important to let people be on a journey and maybe for the original poster, this is where she is and time/experience will let her open to the possibilities of valuing other faith perspectives. Maybe not, though...

9:58 AM  
Blogger Ren said...

Gotta love Ghandi. Beautiful.

The original poster was justifying the beating of children. She was quoting the bible to justify her bad ideas and when I made a comment about the "Christian bible" she was offended and made the comment about the "one true bible". Blah, blah, blah.

Stupid people shouldn't quote the bible. :)
She was saying "spare the rod, spoil the child" and I had asked for someone to please reference the verse because that exact quote is not in the bible. You can imagine how it went from there.

Another side note; King Solomon wrote the verses in Proverbs about beating children and discipline. He also raised a tyrant who was so cruel his own people tried to assassinate him (Rehoboam). Maybe that story is supposed to be a good example of how NOT to parent!! :)

Anyhoo...now you know the history behind my rant. People who are so sure their bible is the one true source of all spiritual knowledge and don't even know their own book that well really annoy me. It kinda throws them when an agnostic knows more than they do about it.:)

11:11 AM  
Blogger Sandra Dodd said...

WHICH Christian Bible? There are umpty hundred translations and versions.

But that "spare the rod" thing isn't in any of them. Joyce Fetteroll searched and commented on where it actually comes from, and I saved it here:

Years back when all the online homeschooling discussion was jumbled into one, I was asked in all seriousness how, if I didn't teach my children there was a hell, would they learn morality? The questioner was dead serious. She believed that she and her children only did good things and avoided harmful things out of the fear of, and nothing else.

When I was a kid I loved church, but I was in a town that was heavily Catholic, Hispanic and Pueblo Indian (most of them Catholic) and there were only 15% Anglo. I was at the Southern Baptist church, where most people were what is called in other parts of the country "white." My dad once suggested I should maybe date a boy from church, instead of the boyfriends I had (two Hispanic and one Indian, over the course of my teen dating years). What he didn't know is that many of the boys at the Baptist church were the drinkingest, nastiest, most prejudice and pig-ignorant boys in town. He didn't go to church. I did.

I actually did read the Bible, all of it, as a teen, and asked questions. Mostly people blinked at the questions. They only knew the Baptist-Good-Parts version of the Bible, the verses that backed up their favorite beliefs.

This is not what "broad brush" means:

-=-But you're painting Christians with a pretty broad brush (and non-Christians as well for that matter) when you say "there are those of us who don't need a bible to do the right thing and know it better than most Christians do". -=-

Ren said (truly and rightly) that there are some people who can do the right thing without being Christian, and who know the Bible better than most Christians do. How many does "those of us" need to be? There's Ren. There's me. There are dozens of others I know personally, and likely thousands to millions I'll never meet or hear of. No broad brush was involved.

There are some three-legged dogs that can get around better than some four-legged dogs. That's a true statement, and no broad-brush involved.

1:49 PM  
Blogger Ren said...

For curious minds...the original "spare the rod, spoil the child" was first used in a poem by William Butler in 1665.

10:10 PM  
Blogger Snavleys said...

And the rod was never used to beat the sheep. It might have been used to beat the wolves that tried to get them. It was probably used to guide them to areas where there was luscious grass and such and away from danger:) Can you imagine what sheep would do if you beat them?

I totally agree with you on the morality/religion correlation. I see none. I've seen a lot of ugliness and hatred in the name of religion though.

I myself know the Bible better now than when I was a Christian. I've had to learn it better to "argue" some of the far out beliefs that so many Christians have and to be able to defend my position and why I DON'T believe what they do.

7:38 AM  
Blogger ~Katherine said...

Lemme tell ya Rehoboam not only was cruel and promoted violence to children, he sacrificed children too.

Totally not holy if you ask me.

11:51 PM  
Blogger ~Katherine said...

Oh amen, Heidi. Now that I don't consider myself a Christian and never fit the religion (not sure who really does but I'll let others judge for themselves), I am learning all sorts of vastly interesting things about not only my core beliefs and why I hold them (rather lightly as it were in many cases) but the traditional conventional things that I was supposed to believe and why maybe they're not such big heresy as I was led to think for years.

I have a blog about some of the spiritual things I'm into that I like. It's so cool to see my freedom from a whole hell of a lot of baggage, especially to do with hell and punishment and good/evil and divinity/humanity. Oh the list is rather long. It's great.

12:03 AM  
Blogger C.C. said...

..."There are many colors, religions and beliefs in the world people....all of whom feel just as strongly about their bible as you do (or not) so quit shoving your damn bible in people's faces. It's really old. You don't even know what your own bible says.....then there are those of us who don't need a bible to do the right thing and know it better than most Christians do. sigh".


10:28 PM  
Blogger nina said...

I'm from Indonesia and don't speak English very well. But I love your blog and other unschoolers blog. And as a muslim I'm so agree with you. Sometime people use their holy books to justify their bad action. That's not acceptable.
Again, love this blog :)

7:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I have blogged much the same sentiment at my blog.


It's great to be free!

Jay Vincent Shore

11:31 AM  

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