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← My Spiritual Journey

irate_atheist's Avatar Jump to comment 1 by irate_atheist

Oh dear. Seems like mama & Papa Obama didn't teach their son enough about critical thinking and avoiding appeals to emotion, tradition etc.

The story of Abraham and Isaac offers a simple but powerful example. According to the Bible, Abraham is ordered by God to offer up his "only son, Isaac, whom you love," as a burnt offering. Without argument, Abraham takes Isaac to the mountaintop, binds him to an altar, and raises his knife, prepared to act as God has commanded.

Of course, we know the happy ending — God sends down an angel to intercede at the very last minute. Abraham has passed God's test of devotion. He becomes a model of fidelity to God, and his great faith is rewarded through future generations. And yet it is fair to say that if any of us saw a 21st century Abraham raising the knife on the roof of his apartment building, we would call the police; we would wrestle him down; even if we saw him lower the knife at the last minute, we would expect the Department of Children and Family Services to take Isaac away and charge Abraham with child abuse. We would do so because God doesn't reveal Himself or His angels to all of us in a single moment. We do not hear what Abraham hears, do not see what Abraham sees, true as those experiences may be. So the best we can do is act in accordance with those things that are possible for all of us to know, understanding that a part of what we know to be true — as individuals or communities of faith — will be true for us alone.

Only a religious wingnut would find a story of such barbaric child cruelty and abuse to be a test of loving devotion. Only religion would make such a story acceptable. If a god told me to kill my child, I'd slit my own throat first.

And someone with such an inability to think properly and inability to be emotionally reliant on themselves, without getting suckered in by a particular bunch of crackpots, gets to be in charge of the world's most powerful nation. What a joke.

Wed, 27 Apr 2011 15:01:06 UTC | #619945