What is one to do?

Religion stinks. Always something to argue about. Church stinks. Always the building the centre of so much time and money. The bible stinks. If you say it is fiction people expect you not believe in God. If you say it is true people tell you why the way you read it is not correct. Life stinks. Always having to do stuff I don’t want. Being nice to people I don’t like. Money stinks. If I have too much people expect me to give it away, if I don’t have enough no one wants to give me any. Love stinks. Always someone taking from some giving. A timebomb waiting to happen. You stink. You always expect me to be more like you. I stink. I am surrounded by stuff I hate. If only everyone would leave me alone to be me!

One holiday later.

Yeah religion has its bad points and bad people – but that is true of everything. Church is an institution, but it is there for people in real pain, it is perfect for those who have lost a loved one and need comfort. The bible may be fiction, but it is full of love and hate – I just leave the hate alone and focus on the love. Life is okay. That’s what holidays are for – to get back in touch with what’s important. Money is good! We spent way too much and had a great time! Love … sorry, that’s personal! All I will say is we found love again in a really lovely way! And you’re okay. No really – you are okay. I like you. And me? Well give me two weeks in the sun and I am pretty good as well!

Fact based proper-evidence v Faith based belief non-evidence.

The clue is in the “v”. To some it means “versus”, to others it mean “two fingers”. But always it will have a winner and loser. I have just found it only has losers.

My confusion is this.

At what point does the “v” stop being “the versus of conversation”, and become “the V of outrage”?

Why must I – by admitting the bible is a fiction – no longer believe anything that comes out of it?  Why must I now move to the side of those intent on destroying it?  Why is that rational?  How is that freedom?  And how is that loving?

Because when being right means that humanity and kindness are wrong – that (for me) is when evidence is irrelevant.  Because that is when evidence offers not humanity but conformity.   And I was told that is the way forwards.

Because the Bad Idea – of believing the bible – is the object, and getting rid of the Bad Idea is the only thing that matters.  Which means that the (real) feelings of those with the “Bad Idea” do not matter.

My hypocrisy (it seems) is in disagreeing with those who thought I was agreeing not just with the “bible fiction bit” – but with all that (they say) comes after that.  I experienced that in religion” – when “being saved” meant doing a whole load of “stuff”.  And church also tells me that is not true as well.  Seems only the statement of “I believe’s” is different.  And the “evidence” which both sides say they have.  So it all seems a bit pointless really.  Both sides need me to “be saved” and do all the stuff that follows.  Which is conforming. And not very “freeing” at all.

What is one to do?

Thankfully it leaves me free to carry on loving as unconditionally as I can.

Which suits me and GSHJ perfectly.

Anyone for a holiday?  🙂

4 thoughts on “What is one to do?

  1. No one wants to destroy the bible.
    Well,not me, at any rate.
    We just need to dispense with the notion that it is in anyway divinely inspired and it’s characters must be revered, thus getting rid of the disgusting belief that humans are born sinners and will perish in Hell if they do not beleive.

    Once you open Pandora’s Box allow all the Crazies to feast at the buffet.
    Can you not grasp this concept?

    If you feel so strongly about this then why not worship Harry Potter? He is just as fictional as GSHJ and there must be a fair amount of decent ethics and morals contained within the pages of these novels, Paul.


    • And one more released. How’s that for love? 🙂

      Ark – you cannot find it in yourself to NOT put me in a box of your creation (based upon a box created by religion – of a god created by man – that you call fiction).


      Why that word? When Have I used that word on my relationship with GSHJ? And if I do not “worship” as the tick boxes define – why do you hate my fictional character from a fictional book with such real hatred? Based upon “evidence” that takes precedence over humanity? You “dispense with the notion” not through evidence but through “non-evidence based belief” – because that is what the notion is. Like other “notions” we all live with and carry through our lives. Notions that initiate “feelings”. That are nothing to do with “god”.

      BTW – please email me if you want a conversation.


  2. I’m always up for a holiday! I’ve only dipped into recent bit of your blog, but (as so often with what you write, Paul) a host of things come flying into my mind. Random thoughts:
    From the old sciency point of view (I can’t give up the old day job!) it has to be said that facts are overrated. It’s a bit of a myth that science is about facts and, in the western world we are so obsessed with “the facts”. A scientific fact is only acceptable until some new bit of evidence contradicts it or can’t be explained by it. So facts are transient and dependent on the “environment” (or society, or culture, or time ??).
    Thought No. 2 The opposite of fiction is not “fact”, but “non-fiction”. Fact and non-fiction are not the same thing methinks.
    Thought No.3 If we are trying to see on which shelf in the library (fiction or non-fiction) the bible should sit, though I am the last person on earth to understand poetry, I would want to ask where poetry sits. “Tiger, tiger, burning bright” – is that a barbecue, or is there deeper meaning? “I wandered lonely as a cloud” – I’m not too sure of my likeness in any way to a cloud! So poetry is not fact, but it’s got a lot more meaning than fiction. (Some would even say it has deeper meaning than “fact”). Isn’t that the same for the bible. It’s not a history book (though there are bits of history dotted in it); it’s not a scientific handbook about creation or anything else. There’s a fair bit of poetry in it (no, however lovely she is, Pat is not a gazelle!) Perhaps we can understand the bible in that way – of value, immense value, but (shame) open to interpretation by each of us in whatever way God leads us – for my life and your life, with my particular needs and your particular needs. I think I wouldn’t want to use the word “fiction” for something that valuable.

    Not so much the end of random thoughts, but I’ve got to go out! Nice chatting with you, my friend.


    • Hi Keith, and thank you. When you add your thoughts it is always lovely.

      What I think has crystalised for me is the “fact of not” debate. And the “Christian tradition” we now have today that makes no mention of choice. Not really. When one is taught the actual words said, they way in which they were said , the place in which they were said, the customs and geography of the time and place, the other bible chapters that support or don’t – there isn’t a lot of time in that study/teaching to move into “is this actual fact or not”. From childhood that has been my experience and still is.

      So this “fact or fiction” is a jolt. Certainly it was for me. And maybe because it adds value to any conversation. Or else all “Christians” would see the exact same things in the bible – and they don’t (not unless taught what to believe and how to believe – as used to be the case).

      But what would happen if the bible as believed was taken away?

      No more arguments. No more academic theology divisions. No more denominations using the bible as cause for those differences. No more “them and us”. No more worship. No more duty. Just love. Which is the bible without all the “decorations and duty” so embedded love is now never enough.

      Fiction – in this part of my journey – is shorthand for saying: I do not believe the bible to be accurate and historically reliable account or evidence of God. I do not believe the bible proves there is a God. I am not convinced by the need to be saved – only to be expected to fall into line with a ton of stuff of church.

      I am not sure “love” as I see “god” requires that. But the the choices are not quite as available as when falling into line with church (or atheism).

      So if see God in the bible but do not need the bible as “curated” by church – and if I don’t believe the bible as fact or evidence of God as “curated” by atheists … It seems to make both uncomfortable.

      And that is a curious – and unforeseen – consequence! 🙂


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