Often, while in the heat of a debate, Christians will say some really stupid shit. Here is one example from the Facebook Christian Debate courtesy of Ignorant Christian Mike.
Mike: I would encourage you to read the New Testament with your heart, not your head.
What the fuck does that mean? Let’s find out together. When someone “speaks from the heart” what they actually mean is that the words being spoken are sincere. But I do not think it is what Mike means here. Let’s define the word sincere:
- Free from pretense or deceit; proceeding from genuine feelings.
- (of a person) Saying what they genuinely feel or believe; not dishonest or hypocritical.
To read the bible honestly, free from pretense or deceit would put you on the path to atheism. This is exactly how atheists I know approach the bible. A person’s natural tendency when they read, unless it is for entertainment value, is to take what they are reading and determine whether it is bullshit or not. Think about the controversial Obama birther issue. I don’t care what side of the issue you are on, that’s not what this blog is about. But when investigating both sides you review the evidence and make a decision on where you stand. Nobody comes to you and asks you to re-read their side “from the heart.” In fact, the only thing you might hear is “use your head” or “look at it logically.” That doesn’t work when reading supernatural bible claims. It doesn’t work when so many bible stories conflict. It doesn’t work when the reader knows the history of how the bible was manipulated. A person who is sincere in reading the bible would get the genuine feeling that it is full of shit.
Which is why me must focus not on the “read from the heart” request in Mike’s statement but the “not your head” comment. This is key. What Mike is telling readers of the bible to do is to “not think.” It brings to mind that infamous quote from Martin Luther.
“Reason is the greatest enemy that faith has; it never comes to the aid of spiritual things, but – more frequently than not – struggles against the divine Word, treating with contempt all that emanates from God”
Reading from your heart is basically telling you to not think and only find those bible verses that make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside. Christians are quick to jump on the “Love thy neighbor” / Golden Rule passage as if (1) Christianity invented it (Confucius was all over that shit in ancient China, way before that smelly hippie, Jesus got his sandals dirty on the shores of the River Jordan) and (2) it dismisses all the terrible things stated throughout the entirety of the bible. Notice how Mike said read the New Testament from your heart–not the Old Testament. Because that shit is just too fucked up for your heart. It’s like junk food for the heart, high in metaphysical cholesterol.
I can read Winnie the Pooh and feel warm and fuzzy but I’m not going to worship Christopher Robbins’ imaginary bear friend or preach The Gospel according to Piglet–assuming the other animals are apostles. Besides, even Pooh encourages people to “think, think think!”
Reason is the enemy, the devil’s whore. Why do I have to read from the heart when an all powerful God should be able to just speak to me. It all seems just silly. But a stern warning comes to us from the Christians. According to bibleplan.org, under their “Why read the Bible?” link, they explain that God can speak to you but how do you know if it is God or THE ENEMY? You must read the bible to know (I assume with my heart).
“Although God can also speak directly to your heart, you need to know His written Word so you can judge whether God is speaking to you, or the enemy is trying to deceive you.” – bibleplan.org
Despite my levity presented in this blog, the actual repercussion from this kind of thinking (or should I say non-thinking) is quite dangerous. If reason is against god than it follows that science is also. If reason and science are the enemy –if thinking is the enemy, what does that mean? Who is this enemy who sleeps with reason and can deceive us? Theists are referring to the devil–Satan. It is he who is the enemy. This frightens me. If reason is fought against and loses, the world would be cast back into the dark ages and I would be burned at the stake.
Liberal believers blame the extremists, say they are perverting the religion. They say the extremists are evil. Of course, as an atheist, I would agree that their actions are immoral. But the extremist is reading the same book the liberals read–reading it “with their hearts” and following orders. If liberals truly believed in what is in the bible. . . Let’s face it, those liberal believers can’t really believe or else they might have to agree with the extremist. But either liberal or extreme one thing they will agree on is that reason is the enemy of faith. Therefore people who use reason will be seen as soldiers of Satan. Science becomes the devil’s work. Humanity and civilization are destroyed.
If a liberal believer wants to argue that when they read the bible from their heart, they come to only good conclusions, I suggest they throw away the bible and be good without god. They don’t need it. It isn’t the bible or the reading from the heart or divine intervention making good people do good things. It is REASON! Liberal believers know that what the bible says about slavery and executing a man for picking up sticks is wrong. It is not because God used to think that way but now he has grown up and informs them of his past mistakes. It is because they are more moral than the God they worship. They are better than God. They have used reason to figure out that the undesirable passages in the bible are immoral. Throw away your bibles and join the growing moral secular crowd. If the majority live happy, fulfilling lives without god (and the statistics show this to be true), the minority will fade, hate and murder in the name of god will diminish and the human race can finally see everyone as equal. I know I am being a bit utopian in my vision but it beats waiting for some super Jesus to come down from outer space to fight wars about religion just so we can live peacefully in some improbable afterlife. I say trash the bogus belief and live peacefully today.
So, please, no more reading from the heart. The heart is great for pumping blood but it doesn’t play well with the written word. Our brain is so much more equipped for reading.
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