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Signs of False Idols (Thu Jun 15, 2006 8:50 pm)


What do these three have in common?

While the matter in each of these, great or small, seems to involve a critical issue, lurking just below the surface is another reality. Each situation (and many others) involves the defense of some human law about religion. They are all about religious authority. From death, to excommunication, to schism, each seeks to enforce either an individual's or a group's authority to establish THE only acceptable standard of behavior for the rest of humankind.

And the Catholic Church is really good at this. From the translation of "Et cum spiritu tuo" to birth control, or whether to bow, kneel or stand at Mass, it is basically all about "who calls the shots," and not at all about our loving God who only has one rule, "Love one another as I have loved you."

Who will tell you when, how, and why you are to love God is the crux of the matter. It is about control and power, from cover-up, to parish closings, to ordinations, etc. But why this great penchant for absolute moral control? Is it to reinforce God's absolute moral control?

The big problem here is that God rejected the whole idea of control when we were made in the Divine image and likeness, with the same freedom of conscience shared by each of the three Divine Persons.

Control cannot be the model since God chose in favor of giving us a conscience to know and a free will to love or reject. We need to look elsewhere for the primary and perhaps a subconscious reason behind this obsession with control.

Idolatry is a very good possibility! Could it be that there exists in those who seek to exercise this absolute moral authority the desire to create the god that they think that God should be? What kind of true God would let humans exercise a free will, knowing full well what they are inclined to do with it? Their god would always be in control, ever demand obedience and observance, never countenance dissent, and command followers to enforce the rules. Isn't that what a god does?

Other voices

Another Voice

Questions From a Ewe

Challenges Facing Catholicism
(Bishop Geoffrey Robinson in converation with Dr Ingrid Shafer)

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