I love the bible more than before – 5

The Perfect Patient Experience Is Possible: The Virginia Institute, Seattle
Zero-Defect Health Care … designing mistake-proofed processes … achieved 100% compliance … intensive care patients … 25 consecutive months. The Transformation of Health Care Through the Perfect Patient Experience.

I bumped into this website when looking for some stuff on the Iraq War, Tony Blair and cognitive dissonance.

‘Cognitive dissonance’ was a term introduced by Festinger to describe the feelings an individual is subject to when their beliefs are challenged by evidence, and they feel subsequently at risk of their status being threatened or their reputation and ego being damaged. Instead of acknowledging their failure or mistake, the individual remains in denial, manipulates their position, and ignores the error. This behavioural trait is frequently condoned when overseeing regulatory institutions or governance bodies do not act.”
Cognitive dissonance, blame culture and the ‘second victim’. The Bulletin, Royal College of Surgeons

Cognitive dissonance is used in conversations about God stuff.  Faith based belief doesn’t stand up to observable evidence belief.  Which makes “belief” a fork in the road before any conversation even begins.  “Are we talking about my proper belief or your not-even-a-real-belief belief?” It was a distinction given to me by a non-believer of belief in what I believe. I think it needs to be the starting point of any discussion about God stuff.

Are we discussing beliefs that can be universally observed in the natural world, or are we talking beliefs that cannot?

Which begs the question: can the bible be universally observed as being correct as we understand the definition of correct?

Am I (as a “believer” of the bible) stuck in my comfortable cognitive dissonance or not? Are you as a “non-believer” stuck in your comfortable cognitive dissonance?

I wonder if the God Soft Hands Jesus I know ever intended this application of a “zero-defect perfect–experience” believer bible. Are we “Christians” pursuing “100% compliance” to what the bible says? Are we designing “mistake-proofed processes” of theological study?  And is the church, as an institution, caught up in this same pursuit of faith based belief as perfection of belief?  And does the very word “institution” lead to this:

“I have certainly witnessed circumstances in which genuine human error, despite honest recognition and Datix reporting, resulted in a ‘witch hunt’ that led to the member of staff being removed from clinical duties, subject to a flawed investigative process that knowingly misrepresented documented policy, refused her rights to call witnesses and a disciplinary sanction imposed on her. The employee’s representative was summoned by the executive hierarchy and bullied for upsetting a member of HR for insisting that policy was not followed and deliberately misrepresented. It was a classic example of an executive body wanting a culture of clinical openness (‘open loop’), intent on apportioning blame but working in a severely closed loop of their own – despite having visited The Virginia Mason Institute in Seattle on two occasions at the taxpayers’ expense.”

Because the institution still teaches that because the “the bible says” the bible is fact and is its own evidence.  And whilst there is leniency in “6 days of 24 hours” – the “Garden” and “tree” and “the Fall” are all facts. And that makes us sinners. Fact. Which means unless Jesus died on the cross we could never be saved. Fact. And that means you have to be saved. Fact.  So there is a reward for being saved.  Fact.

And when a “non-believer” suggests there is a flaw in the logic as presented … the usual response is that if the non-believer believed, then the non-believer would see the bible is true.

It is one of the reasons I now view the bible not as fact.

Which means I can stop having to defend cognitive dissonance and really find my God Soft Hands Jesus within. Just as I find GSHJ in other books (some mentioned in blog posts here). Just as I find him in people living with all sorts of different belief mechanisms. Just as I keep finding him in my own observable evidence (some mentioned in blog posts here).

As we approach Easter this year – the UK government criticised a confectionery company for promoting an “Egg Hunt” without the word “Easter”. The company’s defence (it felt the need to defend itself) was …  I have no idea what the “church” commented (or not).

But when the UK government criticises a “chocolate producer” for not endorsing the bible (as fact?) … then I think the institution (of church) has many questions to answer.

And no question should be off-limits.


10 thoughts on “I love the bible more than before – 5

  1. It is one of the reasons I now view the bible not as fact.

    Have you at last come to the realization the the biblical character, Jesus of Nazareth is simply a narrative construct?


    • I have been interested in the post on your blog. I am not sure whether yours prompted anything here.

      As to your closed question – always the closed question! I think the lazy option is to seek a yes/no answer. It is the simple option. There is no learning for me in that.

      Because I sense something. So to rule out one avenue of “sensing exploration” makes no sense to me. How to explain this …

      Like your pictures of sunsets. Why so many? Why the same thing but not the same thing? Having photographed one sunset, why not put that “option” to bed and never photograph a sunset from your garden again?


      • Because the sky changes every night.
        The bible is essentially the same text – aside from the occasional update into more ”mod” English.

        For example: Moses doesn’t say, ”Aw, to hell with it, let Yahweh come down and meet me, I’m eighty years old for Christ sake I can’t go climbing bloody mountains at my age!”

        Jesus doesn’t decide not to resurrect on the third day and came back to life in the Tuesday because he fancied a lie-in.
        Of course not, otherwise that would bugger up the whole story and then where would we be?

        To quote you again ….

        It is one of the reasons I now view the bible not as fact.

        Opposite Word of fact:


        So, once again …

        Have you at last come to the realization the the biblical character, Jesus of Nazareth is simply a narrative construct?


  2. Another problem I run into with the bible is where Christians equate ‘the word’ as being the bible. I could swear that the bible said that Christ was the Word. In other words, somewhere the ‘church’ has morphed and turned the written word into a God. I don’t believe this was the intent of the scriptures even if we were to call the New Testament ‘scriptures’ at all. At any rate, given the belief system many propose, you couldn’t really even ask God a question in prayer and expect an answer for if the Bible is complete, then why expect God to answer outside of the Bible? This if foolish. God spoken then and speaks now. In fact, I could argue since we have direct access to the Father through Christ that our Father speaks even more today than back then.


    • Hi again TF – and thank you again.

      “In fact, I could argue since we have direct access to the Father through Christ that our Father speaks even more today than back then.”

      I have had a number of conversations where my use of the word “relationship” to describe my God Soft Hands Jesus was received with derision. This was with those who are called “non-believers” (which I find odd as the belief may be opposite – but “non-belief” remains a belief). Yet unless the bible is dead – there can only be “relationship” with a living God when immersed in “biblical conversation” – conversation requires relationship. And yet i find this topic to also be one unpopular with Christians. Maybe because it requires an investment of more than just ritual.

      Liked by 1 person

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