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Reinterpretation Of Texts


JadedAtheist

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One thing that has resonated with me for a while now is the forced harmonization of the biblical texts. What has happened is you have many different authors with sometimes vastly different theologies being forced into a small box. Everything is then harmonized and if unable to be harmonized, abrogated appropriately (think of the excuse why Christians don't follow the law). This has been happening for so long that people no longer see the obviousness of the forced harmonization, even when it sticks out like a sore thumb. People's minds have been trained to view the texts in a certain lens that when a proper lens is given to them, they reject it as the faulty one. I could get into examples of this but I couldn't be bothered to be honest. A comparison of the gospels would suffice enough as it is, let alone a cross examination and comparison of the theology taught in the various epistles. Anyways, some may find it hard to believe that they've been taught to view things in a false light because things seem to fit so well as it is. With that in mind, I want to give everyone an example of how someone can affect our understanding of information despite the author's original intent.

 

When one watches the Star Wars series, one can see the story of Anakin Skywalker (aka Darth Vader) arise from humble beginnings to then fall tragically and then finally end in his redemption. We all are aware (if we've seen the movies) that Anakin Skywalker became Darth Vader. It's interesting to note that Darth Vader and Anakin were not always the same person. Though George Lucas denies it now, early drafts of the films (as well as the dialog in the first film) clearly show us that they were separate people. When the movie became successful and thus warranted sequels, he had to rewrite some story elements in order to get the story to span several films. He also believed that a vital plot twist of Darth Vader being Anakin's father would be a real cool idea. He was right.

 

Now, when you watch the first film you will hear the dialog and you will not interpret it literally but metaphorically. When you hear Kenobi tell Luke that Vader betrayed Anakin you hear it as the dark side taking over Anakin despite his better judgement. In reality though, when Lucas first wrote this story, it was a literal phrase. There were two people, one named Anakin and the other, Vader. Vader literally betrayed Anakin. Because our mind has been trained to view the information in a certain way, we will reinterpret things until they fit our predefined conclusion. This has happened with Star Wars and has and is happening with Christian theology.

 

I hope this gives some people food for thought.

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