This is a discussion over AOL instant messenger that I had tonight with a friend. He and I have been good friends for many years, and then the other night he decided to, well, come out to me that he wanted to get a creation science masters. Big shock. Did not see him as a fundamentalist. That night he and my boyfriend (who is Christian, but an actual understanding and sane person) got into an argument. This is a continuation between me and my friend around 2 weeks later. Its pretty late at night, so excuse the shitty grammar present throughout most of the messages. My mum started yelling at me about something, so I cut the conversation short.
(12:03:47 AM) E J: yo
(12:03:55 AM) burningeternity2000: hey
(12:04:27 AM) E J: your bf there?
(12:04:34 AM) burningeternity2000: nope
(12:04:48 AM) E J: so do you think im a nut?
(12:04:56 AM) burningeternity2000: hmm
(12:05:18 AM) burningeternity2000: I will give you shit for being a fundamentalist, yeah, but everyone is entitled to their opinion
(12:06:14 AM) E J: why will you give me shit for that?
(12:06:45 AM) burningeternity2000: because you used to be pretty sciency. Never figured you being a fundy
(12:07:09 AM) E J: and now im not sciency? even though im still a natural science major?
(12:07:51 AM) burningeternity2000: I prefer to leave religion and science apart
(12:08:10 AM) E J: to me, thats the problem
(12:08:20 AM) E J: the way science is defined, there can be no God
(12:08:35 AM) E J: which therefore, to seek everything scientifically, is to exclude God
(12:09:09 AM) burningeternity2000: I just see that science is a method of evaluation
(12:09:38 AM) burningeternity2000: but I’d rather not discuss my religious beliefs with you
(12:09:47 AM) burningeternity2000: for the sake of avoiding argument
(12:09:58 AM) E J: y is that
(12:10:01 AM) E J: i want you to know
(12:10:09 AM) E J: im not doing all this because i want to argue
(12:10:20 AM) E J: there are millions of other people out there that can do that for me
(12:10:29 AM) E J: its because i still care about you Chelz
(12:10:36 AM) burningeternity2000: Eli
(12:11:45 AM) E J: thats my name
(12:12:36 AM) E J: ???
(12:12:49 AM) burningeternity2000: this is a big part of my belief- above all else, being a good person matters. If a person exposed once in their life to christ doesn’t convert, because some idiot goes over to their village and spouts what sounds like nonsense to them after years of cultural practice, and then they die not accepting christ as their personal savior, i believe they are just as likely to carry life forward
(12:13:25 AM) burningeternity2000: but I believe in reincarnation anyway
(12:14:38 AM) E J: Christianity believes that everyone will have life after death. Everyone will recieve a body designed to live for eternity. That, unfortunetly is not good if that means you can endure torture without death forever and ever
(12:14:47 AM) E J: well, an existence after death
(12:15:25 AM) burningeternity2000: Ok, I’ll explain my beliefs of the afterlife, which in all honestly to me is less relevant than this one at the moment…
(12:16:09 AM) E J: go for it
(12:19:00 AM) burningeternity2000: The soul, the lifeforce, what gives life into cells and bodies is the divine energy. it is movement, it is breath, it is the song,it is matter, creation. It is everything, everywhere, everyone. It is so far beyond our coprehension that since the dawn of man we have made mythos to explain it. Each religion is not but a facet, a view of the divine. When we die, our soul departs back to the ‘center’ of the divine if you will. We are both individual and a collective. And we shall continue for as long as the song is sung. There is no condemnation. To condemn a soul eternally would be to chop off a limb from your own body
(12:19:51 AM) E J: Unfortunetly this is 100% oil and water to christianity
(12:19:56 AM) burningeternity2000: yep yep
(12:20:13 AM) E J: and i feel bad, becuase i dont know the words to tell you
(12:20:36 AM) E J: to explain how i want to help you, because i know by saying stuff like that, your just going to think of me as a religious nut
(12:21:36 AM) burningeternity2000: Let me guess….something like “Satan is lying to you and is convincing you of these things. The beautiful feelings that you get when you think of this, when you see life and the divine in nature and other human beings and yourself is simply him trying to confuse you and lead you into damnation”. Or something to that effect
(12:22:32 AM) E J: Thats exactly my point, and my struggle. Because I know you’ve heard all this stuff before and have refused it
(12:22:46 AM) E J: and its called idoltry, what you described about
(12:23:42 AM) E J: and i can tell you all the convincing arguements out there, all the science that supports the bible, all the literary techniques that non christians use to decieve people out of christianity
(12:23:46 AM) E J: but i’ll be honest with you
(12:24:10 AM) E J: creation science, the whole presentation, while true, is not the issue
(12:24:24 AM) E J: because its all the same evidence, only a different interpretation
(12:24:37 AM) E J: people are going to interpret it how they want
(12:24:44 AM) E J: its just about trusting God
(12:24:48 AM) E J: bottom line
(12:25:28 AM) burningeternity2000: Eli, its taken me many years to come to my current path, and much soul searching, and I finally have found a place that makes me whole. I need not a priesthood or a God without whom I must fear and then grovel to. I trust the divine, but the divine is not someone to plead to. it is te strength within onesself.
(12:26:06 AM) E J: Christianity isnt about fearing and groveling
(12:26:08 AM) E J: not at all
(12:26:38 AM) burningeternity2000: And if I live my days with this belief being the best person I can, and I die and see pearly gates, I think that a true God, who loves his children would see me as who I am, and as the effort that I’ve given
(12:27:07 AM) E J: so is this about God’s love? you dont think that there can be such a thing as a wrathful God?
(12:27:21 AM) burningeternity2000: Remember, I see Christianity as another facet of the divine
(12:27:27 AM) burningeternity2000: and I think that there is wrath
(12:27:54 AM) E J: how is christianity just another facet?
(12:27:55 AM) burningeternity2000: but I think that an all powerful being has more important things to do than to be pissy at the toys in his sandbox
(12:28:11 AM) E J: well if he loves us wont it matter to him what we do?
(12:28:46 AM) burningeternity2000: yes it would. but if a child disobeys his parent, the parent scolds him, but doesn’t damn him to eternity
(12:28:50 AM) burningeternity2000: Bottom line
(12:29:01 AM) burningeternity2000: When I was christain, I didn’t believe in hell
(12:29:05 AM) E J: and who is to decide that logic?
(12:29:10 AM) burningeternity2000: and thus I realized that I couldn’t be.
(12:29:17 AM) E J: of course, like a child, there is a punishment
(12:29:28 AM) E J: but there is also a salvation from that punishment
(12:29:41 AM) burningeternity2000: you know, in the bible it says not to do alot of things
(12:29:53 AM) burningeternity2000: including sodomy and eating shellfish
(12:30:00 AM) E J: ok and?
(12:30:06 AM) burningeternity2000: why can we judge which to pick and choose
(12:30:22 AM) burningeternity2000: if the bible is correct, shouldn’t you follow all laws within?
(12:30:26 AM) E J: well, the idea is, obey all of them
(12:30:36 AM) E J: well, there is complicated theology involved
(12:30:40 AM) E J: well, not too complicated
(12:30:45 AM) burningeternity2000: and that would mean that as a woman, I would be subservient to me
(12:30:46 AM) E J: but more than i spose you want to hear
(12:30:48 AM) burningeternity2000: *men
(12:31:20 AM) E J: basically the levitical laws were a covering for sin, Jesus fulfilled that law and now is a cleansing of sin, replacing the levitical laws
(12:31:29 AM) E J: as for your reference to shellfish
(12:31:46 AM) E J: but yes, Christians (true christians) strive to follow them all
(12:31:57 AM) E J: not because of fear, but for love of Jesus
(12:32:10 AM) burningeternity2000: so I should marry and bow down to the man that I marry
(12:32:29 AM) burningeternity2000: and I shouldn’t speak in church
(12:32:32 AM) burningeternity2000: etc etc
(12:32:35 AM) burningeternity2000: see my problem?
(12:32:58 AM) E J: well, i really want to talk to you about all this, and ill do the best i can
(12:33:18 AM) E J: first i want to tell you that after actually reading the bible, its a very different book
(12:33:47 AM) burningeternity2000: oh, and here’s a snafu- I am a pagan, and also what people would call a ‘witch’. The bible specifially says “thou shalt not let a witch to live’
(12:33:55 AM) E J: the bible says a wife should submit to the husband, but also the second part that people forget is that the husbabd is to love and care for the wife as if himself
(12:34:00 AM) burningeternity2000: so does this give you license to end my life
(12:34:08 AM) E J: hold on, lemme finish friend
(12:34:50 AM) E J: so that about the wives submitting is establishing gender roles, and recognizing that God created them differently for more than just reproduciton
(12:35:05 AM) E J: and no that does not give me or anyone a license to end my life
(12:35:15 AM) E J: it is a sin, but so is SO many of the things i’ve done
(12:35:21 AM) E J: and so sin one sin, is to sin them all
(12:35:31 AM) E J: we are all sinners
(12:35:39 AM) burningeternity2000: so why is it so bad for someone to be homosexual then?
(12:36:15 AM) E J: because the bible says that it is detestable to God, and a perversion
(12:36:24 AM) E J: its a perversion of why he created seperate gender
(12:36:25 AM) E J: s
(12:36:30 AM) burningeternity2000: lets see…
(12:36:33 AM) E J: its not what he designed sex for
(12:36:42 AM) burningeternity2000: I am a feminist. I don’t believe in established gender roles
(12:36:50 AM) burningeternity2000: so that is a perversion as well
(12:37:37 AM) E J: in a way. to believe there are no gender roles is to think that God did not create us differnetly for a reason
(12:38:20 AM) burningeternity2000: oh, and here is another. Ive been raised by verbally abusive parents. but a woman is expected to submit to the will of her parents until she is married. So should I just sit and take it till I get a ring, go fuck and have minimes?
(12:39:55 AM) E J: well thats tough, because of sin. verbal abuse is not part of gods perfect plan. waiting till you are married is levitical law, and please dont say that word, i understand you are a little fired up but please. the purpose of life, even christian life is not to leave home, elope, and reproduce
(12:40:30 AM) burningeternity2000: Eli, here is where I am at-
(12:42:38 AM) burningeternity2000: I have my belief. you find mine to be in direct violation of yours. I find yours to be just another one of many that I can look from and draw influence from, but I am not christain, and I won’t be. No matter the amount of convincing you try to do, it won’t work, because I know the love of the Gods. Thats right- the divine is both feminine and masculine to me. I feel the love of the divine mother and the divine father, and it is genuine, and no person shall convince me that that love is wrong and sin
(12:44:31 AM) burningeternity2000: the loving Mother wraps her arms around me, and the loving Father raises me. I draw my religion, my spirituality, from sources older than yours, and while you have the right to spout your opinion and, as you feel, tell me I am wrong, I have the right to continue to uphold my beliefs
(12:45:24 AM) burningeternity2000: after 20 years of wondering what was the truth, I found it, and its going to take more than fundimentalist lines to convince me this love is false.
(12:46:26 AM) E J: So then, what is the purpose of you life?
(12:46:54 AM) E J: What is the bases for these gods? Do they have authority over you
(12:46:55 AM) E J: ?
(12:47:22 AM) burningeternity2000: to live, to love, to learn. To celebrate the divine in the mundane. To enjoy the sunrise, to dance in the flowers, to find pleasure and triumph over what obstacles lie before me
(12:48:39 AM) burningeternity2000: and the divine does not have ‘authority’ over me. it has no need. I am from it. I am part of it automatically. The body does not have ‘authority’ over the hand, the had is a part of it
(12:49:10 AM) E J: but i do indeed have authority over my hand
(12:49:25 AM) E J: is there accountability? sin?
(12:49:32 AM) burningeternity2000: there is morality
(12:49:41 AM) burningeternity2000: what you do harms yourself.
(12:49:46 AM) burningeternity2000: the negative rebounds
(12:49:55 AM) burningeternity2000: to cut the hand is to hurt yourself
(12:50:07 AM) burningeternity2000: it is balance. not domination
(12:50:18 AM) burningeternity2000: life, nature, is balance.
(12:50:21 AM) E J: “if your hand causes you to sin, cut it off, because it is better to enter the kingdom of God maimed”
(12:50:42 AM) burningeternity2000: and that is where our views differ
(12:50:42 AM) E J: is there a penaltry for violating morailty?
(12:50:53 AM) burningeternity2000: yes and no
(12:51:00 AM) E J: do explain
(12:51:15 AM) burningeternity2000: its called karma
(12:51:30 AM) burningeternity2000: I think you understand the principle
(12:52:19 AM) E J: so the only penalty for immorality is an equal dose of negativity towards yourself?
(12:52:50 AM) burningeternity2000: You realize that I don’t conceive of immortality in the same way you do, right?
(12:53:21 AM) E J: well explain it to me, because you said morality exists
(12:53:21 AM) burningeternity2000: you are asking me to compare how the skin of the apple covers the orange. doesn’t fint
(12:53:39 AM) E J: thats a literary technique to deflect my inquiry
(12:53:43 AM) burningeternity2000: I believe in reincarnation.
(12:53:44 AM) burningeternity2000: so
(12:53:59 AM) burningeternity2000: I don’t believe in immortality the same way you do
(12:54:04 AM) E J: so if you are immoral in this life then you are reincarnated into a pile of horse shit?
(12:54:31 AM) burningeternity2000: I don’t know.
(12:54:32 AM) burningeternity2000: see
(12:54:37 AM) burningeternity2000: that is the beauty
(12:54:43 AM) burningeternity2000: and the terror.
(12:54:53 AM) E J: so the thrill of the unkown?
(12:54:55 AM) burningeternity2000: and it is the balance
(12:55:02 AM) burningeternity2000: in a way, yes
(12:55:08 AM) E J: basically, thrill of gambling
(12:55:14 AM) E J: and who controls this balance?
(12:55:27 AM) burningeternity2000: the divine controls itself
(12:55:43 AM) burningeternity2000: think of it as energy
(12:55:52 AM) E J: and how does it do that?
(12:56:06 AM) E J: entropy? equilibrium systems?
(12:56:13 AM) burningeternity2000: thermodynamics
(12:56:24 AM) burningeternity2000: energy is neither created nor destroyed
(12:56:25 AM) burningeternity2000: also
(12:56:33 AM) burningeternity2000: I don’t have all the answeres
(12:56:39 AM) burningeternity2000: I am 20. Not 200
(12:56:48 AM) burningeternity2000: I enjoy learning
(12:56:58 AM) burningeternity2000: and I’ll find out as I go along
(12:57:00 AM) E J: well it seems to me if you are going to wager your soul, you’d better know the answers
(12:57:32 AM) burningeternity2000: I don’t see it as a wager though
(12:57:43 AM) E J: but it is, no matter how much we agree
(12:58:00 AM) E J: we are both placing what is at risk, our souls, on our beliefs
(12:58:06 AM) burningeternity2000: umm
(12:58:08 AM) burningeternity2000: firstly
(12:58:17 AM) burningeternity2000: how is your soul at risk with my system?
(12:58:24 AM) E J: and it seems my belief has many more answers, and better ones in my opinion
(12:58:33 AM) E J: its not, gladly
(12:58:38 AM) E J: yours is
(12:58:41 AM) E J: and mine is at mine
(12:59:02 AM) burningeternity2000: do you think there is only one way to interpret the bible?
(12:59:27 AM) burningeternity2000: and that that is the only way to interpret God?
(1:00:03 AM) burningeternity2000: Because I see that as long as I live my life morally and happily that the divine, God, whatever you call it, will accept me no matter what
(1:00:06 AM) E J: well, anyone who reads the bible knows that the bible says there is only one way to interpret the bible, and to interpret it any other way is to make it a lying book
(1:00:21 AM) E J: and i agree with you
(1:00:26 AM) E J: you are right
(1:00:39 AM) E J: except that none of us can live morally according to God
(1:00:56 AM) burningeternity2000: I should have been specific
(1:01:07 AM) burningeternity2000: *to the best of my ability
(1:01:30 AM) E J: except that there is nothing that we can do that is worth anything to God, everything we have comes from Him
(1:01:52 AM) E J: so whatever we offer him is not enough to purchase our souls, because it was never ours to begin with
(1:02:10 AM) burningeternity2000: and I agree with you in that we are all from the divine
(1:02:48 AM) E J: we are not from the divine, so do not agree, what we have is a gift from God, but we were created by God not from God
(1:03:46 AM) burningeternity2000: but I don’t see the divine as wanting to met out punishment. If my parent told me that I had to become a nurse, and then I instead became a philosopher and opened up a metaphysical shop and cafe, but I was happy and successful and made the best choices possible, I think I’ve done pretty damn well
(1:04:42 AM) burningeternity2000: see, the problem with arguing with a fundy is that they think theirs is the only right way. I don’t want to convert you, I just want to be left in peace and happy.
(1:04:43 AM) E J: except that it wasnt his original design to have any punishment
(1:05:20 AM) E J: except you know i cannot do that. we are to be like Christ, and he says, he did not come to bring peace, but the sword
(1:05:31 AM) E J: his original plan is much like you believe
(1:05:34 AM) E J: all love and happiness
(1:05:43 AM) E J: it was us who changed the agreement
(1:05:44 AM) burningeternity2000: so you will try to hack me down because you do not agree with me
(1:05:57 AM) E J: of course not why would you think that
(1:06:42 AM) burningeternity2000: if Christ brings the sword, he cuts down what is not righteous, and as I am not in your beliefs, you don’t think I am
(1:06:55 AM) burningeternity2000: so I must fend against your judgement to have my existance
(1:07:01 AM) E J: no one is righteuos
(1:07:39 AM) E J: and he is yet to return, and when he makes his final appearance, in a way your right, a sword will come out of his mouth and defeat all who are not cleansed by his salvation
(1:07:57 AM) burningeternity2000: but I don’t believe that
(1:09:06 AM) E J: and for that i am very sorrowful
(1:09:42 AM) burningeternity2000: /shrug, I am not
(1:10:01 AM) E J: do you not care that i care?
(1:10:05 AM) burningeternity2000: I do
(1:10:26 AM) burningeternity2000: but that doesn’t mean that you are right nor wrong
(1:11:07 AM) burningeternity2000: and if I were to ‘convert’ I wouldn’t be believing in it to have the love of God and Christ, it would be a false love.
(1:11:57 AM) E J: then you wouldnt really be converted would you?
(1:12:19 AM) burningeternity2000: nope
(1:12:57 AM) E J: so lemme ask you this? what is it about Christianity that you do not want to believe. Because obviously your faith requires more supernatural and more mecahnics that cannot be proved, even by logic
(1:14:28 AM) burningeternity2000: logic is only relevant to logos, not pathos or ethos.
(1:14:35 AM) burningeternity2000: the world is more than just logic
(1:14:55 AM) burningeternity2000: and its not what “I don’t want to believe about Christanity”
(1:15:36 AM) burningeternity2000: to state things as such is to say that all religious separate religious beliefs stem from defying Christanity
(1:15:53 AM) burningeternity2000: my beliefs are rooted in prechristan ideas.
(1:17:13 AM) E J: see that is almost paradoxical, because to believe in christianty means that it was in the beginning, so you are right and wrong in your last statement
(1:17:25 AM) E J: but that still leaves my question unanswered
(1:18:05 AM) burningeternity2000: my beliefs are not based about “what isn’t right” about christanity
(1:18:15 AM) burningeternity2000: so I can’t answer your question in that way
(1:19:38 AM) E J: so then let me ask you a different way. Why is what you believe so much more convincing? Is it because there is no accounatbility? No authoirty to answer to?
(1:20:34 AM) burningeternity2000: its not that there is no accoutabilty
(1:20:44 AM) burningeternity2000: its that the accoutability lies within yourself
(1:21:01 AM) burningeternity2000: you are responisble for your own destiny, your own mistakes
(1:21:26 AM) E J: so then, there is no accounability outside of oneself, making accountability impossible in someone that is inherintly selfish?
(1:22:15 AM) burningeternity2000: hmm
(1:22:25 AM) burningeternity2000: you view everything in such a negative way
(1:22:32 AM) burningeternity2000: its sad
(1:23:29 AM) E J: there is not need to belittle me, am i right. a selfish person would have trouble with self accounability?
(1:23:45 AM) E J: *am i right?
(1:26:02 AM) E J: ???
(1:29:53 AM) burningeternity2000: k, mum is being a bitch so I have to wrap this up
(1:30:06 AM) E J: yes, i ahve work tomorrow
(1:30:16 AM) E J: well, id love to keep this convo going
(1:30:18 AM) E J: until next time
To each his own, but apparently I am not allowed that…