Their Frenzies and Crusades

One area of secular blindness (one of many) is their inability to see how religious they are being. Having defined religion quite narrowly as church buildings and altars, they are utterly incapable of seeing the all-pervasive and quite religious nature of their frenzies and crusades. The problem with invisible religions like this is that one cannot watch them to see if they are going bad. And so they don’t.

They do not see Tetzel in carbon offsets. They do not see shuning in the treatment the neighborhood gives the guy who doesn’t sort his garbage according to the dictates of the regulatory bishops. They don’t see a fierce imposition of morality in their crusades for the sake of saving us all from climate change. They do not see blasphemy laws in thought crimes legislation. They do not see their religion in everthing they do, and this is because idolaters are blind.

There is less excuse for Christians — who are not blind in this way — for going along with any of it. If you have ever wondered how an ancient Israelite, who had been fed by manna from the sky, could possibly have been attracted to one of the Canaanite groves and high places, just look at the pressure you feel to flush the toilet less, to take shorter showers, to get a smaller car, and to go through any number of other gyrations to reduce your carbon footprint. This is what syncretism always feels like. The gravitational pull is always this strong. And this is not being said in order to make you empathize with that ancient Israelite who was going native. This is being said to stir you up enough to make a name for yourself the way Phineas did.

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