I arrived at a provocative thesis: those who emphasize “the serious / judging side of God” by actively preaching and promoting it do so because it allows them to live out an innate desire for high-energy social interaction, or for taking strong and even agressive positions. This type of beliefs grant a channel for “energetic behavior” that is legal in their own mindset and the official legal framework of their society. They embrace this opportunity because intensive, highly energetic (at times even aggressive) social interaction is banned by taboo and convention from most other areas in civilized Western societies. There are other people who succeed in completely sublimating this “energy” and directing it towards inner processes, resulting in high motivation to reach objective goals and if necessary forcing themselves forward. But not all people can be that introverted …

A confirmation for this thesis is that “only” people who have strong opinions about things (in other words, who are aggressive and determined in other areas) tend to stress the “serious” side of God. In contrast to people who are careful to take strong positions, fearing they might not be true. However, this is supported only by anecdotal reports, and has to be investigated more thoroughly. There just seems to be such an astonshing correlation between personality style and faith style …

Understanding this, there is not much of a problem: listening to a sermon, I have to just filter the message through a personality filter, to arrive at teh true ojective message, independent of the speaker’s personality traits. There is however an extreme and dangerous variant of this, where people think themselves justified (in their religious framework) to insult other people, to call them names, to judge them, to question the  salvation of nearly all others etc..

Leave a reply

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>