Monday, November 23, 2015

Church of England ad banned for featuring Lord's Prayer

Mostly I'm surprised they still recite that prayer, since it's sexist and patriarchal.
I should feel sympathetic. I am sympathetic, in fact, but in a larger and more abstract way. It's another sign of what 'multiculturalism' really means in the West, a sign of that 'tolerance' that only tolerates the shittier aspects of what we call human diversity.

But this isn't a fight I see the Church of England meaningfully fighting. They've rolled over when it's come to every major fight with the modern, secular world. Their whole sect was founded on the tenacity of their desire to roll over for a state authority who wanted to change a rule he found inconvenient. I don't think they're going to improve, now that the secular world is demanding their extinction, which they've otherwise resigned themselves to, when they're not outright encouraging it.

They'll complain, and then one of those ugly women they made into a bishop will complain that this sort of row is meaningless in a world where women are underrepresented as CEOs, and the CoE should focus on more important issues that can 'bring us together, not tear us apart.' And that will be that.

Those Christians with spirit should take a closer look at what's happening, and ask at what point they're willing to riot in response to this kind of shit.


B. Prokop said...

You must be one of those "haters" I keep hearing about.

Not long ago, I read over on the Patheos website a "progressive Christian" pastor seriously proposing a re-write of the Lord's Prayer. He wanted the language to be gender neutral ("Our Parent, who art...") and to remove the line "Lead us not into temptation" on the grounds that we shouldn't think of God as tempting us. I can't remember what he wanted to replace it with.

As an infamous Australian we both know would often say, "Sheesh!"

Crude said...

The sad thing is, I'd like to be sympathetic to the CoE. But I really get the impression their only problem here is that they're being asked to give up at a faster pace than they intend to.

The 'secularist' group is, of course, typical. Funny how secular never means 'non-religious' but 'actively religion-hostile'.

Crude said...

No, that's wrong.

'Hostile to all religions but their own.' is apt.

Anonymous said...

The problem is that we've bought into the idea that "religion" is a neutral virtue. I get where the US founders were coming from, with the Catholics and CoE in England using the power of the state to make each other and various minor Protestant groups "worship the right way, or else".

But there's a world of difference between saying the state shouldn't be brought in as a strong arm to solve religious disputes between Christians (and semi-Christians) and saying that religion is generally good (or not good) for society despite its values. We need a moral underpinning and shared belief of society, and if we have any knowledge of the development of history and culture, we want that underpinning to be Christian.

I think it's a generally good thing that the State does not collect taxes on behalf of a particular Church organisation, act as the ultimate judge of doctrine, or imprison people on the basis of their particular religious observance. I also think it's a good thing for the state to lightly condone and encourage particular religious expressions and not encourage others.

The US situation is currently ridiculous, where in the name of not pushing religion the state is actively suppressing it in favour of divisive and selfish secular morality.

The situation in the UK is also currently ridiculous. Historically, under both the Catholic and Protestant systems (regardless of how the Reformation did or didn't "take" in that particular country), it was generally accepted that the State was morally answerable to God, as expressed by the Church. In the UK, we have the ridiculous situation where many think that the Church should be morally answerable to and have its doctrine weighed and dictated by the State. This isn't "freedom of religion" - it's a faithful reaffirmation of the Fall, and if the Church had half a brain, half a spine, and the faith of half a mustard seed it would be responding accordingly.

Crude said...

Well, part of the problem is that so many people - and Christians - have bought into this idea where that so long as there's a 'secular value', it's not able to be the law of the land, but it's actually exempt from it ever being seen of as a religious value. That, I think, was a naive and tragic mistake. Christians bought into the idea that their values were near universal, and that they weren't really protecting much of anything at all, morally.

Didn't all people value life, even if in some extremes they may tolerate - regrettably - abortion? Didn't everyone think divorce was a bad thing, a thing which was itself tragic and which everyone regarded as a thing to avoid? Certainly it was bigoted and hateful to suggest that atheists would ever salivate over the prospect of putting people out of business for not supporting gay marriage. That was paranoid delusional fantasy talk, years ago.

In fact, many self-described Christians cannot - even now - so much as take the stance that Christian refugees from the middle east, the middle fucking east, should be preferred over muslims. Because they nowadays engage in the martyr olympics, where the guy who can sacrifice enough of his Christian principles is the one who's clearly closest to God.

Syllabus said...

Well, <a href=">Welby's taking exception to it</a>. Maybe it's too little too late, but still, it's something.

<i>They've rolled over when it's come to every major fight with the modern, secular world.</i>

This is true of much of the CoE in the developed world. The parishes from Africa and South America and the developing world more generally are much more orthodox and -- from experience -- pretty pissed off with most of the fools and traitors in the leadership. Especially with the frankly patronizing and nasty way they've treated. Spong, in talking about why those sectors are more conservative, said that the conservative bishops (back when there were some) bought them off with "chicken dinners". Which, you know, is a pretty douchey thing to say, but Spong was that kind of guy.

Crude said...

I will admit, when I knock the Anglicans, I'm largely knocking the European ones. I know the others are a different type.

Syllabus said...

And it's not just us who have that problem:

European bishops seem to be terrible in general.

Crude said...

No, you don't have to convince me we have rodenty Catholic cardinals. That I've known for a while. Hell, we don't even have the best Popes at times.

But I am convinced Catholics fight a hell of a lot more on doctrine. The Anglicans gave up from the top. I don't say this as someone who dislikes protestants - I just get a better vibe many days off the Baptists who dislike me than the Anglicans, and certainly the rotten Episcopalians.

Syllabus said...

I just get a better vibe many days off the Baptists who dislike me than the Anglicans, and certainly the rotten Episcopalians.

Ain't that the damned truth.