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The Psychology Of Christianity


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I was just musing about how ingenious Xtian psychology is. Everyone has done something wrong in life, and Xtianity says "we can make it better!". People lap it up, looking for forgiveness. Human nature being what it is, they inevitably screw up again. But their religion says it's not their fault--it was Satan, it was original sin. So you have a system of deeply flawed people who take no responsibility for their flaws. Am I too cynical?

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No you are not cynical, you are right, another thing about Christianity is that they refuse to take responsibility for their own actions,

"The devil made me do it!" "It wasn't me, it was Satan!" "Satan is up to his old tricks again." These phrases are used a lot.

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No you are not cynical, you are right, another thing about Christianity is that they refuse to take responsibility for their own actions,

"The devil made me do it!" "It wasn't me, it was Satan!" "Satan is up to his old tricks again." These phrases are used a lot.

+1000.

 

My dad used to do this all the time.  He was also bipolar, and he was an awful, absentee father, and a selfish drunk.  After he "found Jesus" he used to tell me how the devil made him evil and made him do all this bad stuff, and be a bad father.  BULLSHIT, WHAT A COPOUT!  I told him once, "There is NO DEVIL!  It was all in your mind!"  He had a serious mental illness, which I inherited.  Only I am not a delusional sheep any more, and I am an awesome dad and husband, unlike my delusional Xtain loser of a dad.

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I was just musing about how ingenious Xtian psychology is. Everyone has done something wrong in life, and Xtianity says "we can make it better!". People lap it up, looking for forgiveness. Human nature being what it is, they inevitably screw up again. But their religion says it's not their fault--it was Satan, it was original sin. So you have a system of deeply flawed people who take no responsibility for their flaws. Am I too cynical?

 

Maybe this is the case for a large portion of Christians, but this was not the case at the church I belonged to.

 

They were very big on acceptance of responsibility for one's flaws. A-C-C-O-U-N-T-A-B-I-L-I-T-Y was the word of the day, every day. They were still deeply flawed, but acknowledging your flaws was seen as the first step towards becoming more Christ-like, putting on the new self, *insert other Christ-tard speak here*.

 

You couldn't weasel out of anything by claiming "Satan made me do it!". No, it was the "enemy". The enemy wasn't just Satan; it was everything and anything that quacked like the Satan-duck. If you screwed up, it was YOUR fault. Sure, Christ/God/Spirit could forgive you. He probably would forgive you. BUT the ultimate goal was a complete acceptance and total obedience to the ideal that YOU SHOULD NOT EVER SCREW UP. Forgiveness cost him everything and it costs you nothing. So quit being a greedy, needy forgiveness asshole. Stop sinning and you won't need to ask for forgiveness.

 

That created a culture of fake-ass people who thought they were above reproach and treated new Christians and those who struggled with addictions and illness to think that they were somehow lesser than the ones who were "closer to God" and had surpassed the need to ask for forgiveness on a regular basis.

 

I never did buy into the notion of there being some divine enemy that was just a whisper away threatening my soul. Demons and the devil were always in the mind to me. They are just our desires and impulses. They don't travel through the air and they aren't there to trip you up. They're a natural part of humanity. Of course, that was too much for the good Christ-bots to handle and so I was always accused of being a devil's advocate. Still am, actually. :D

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I was just musing about how ingenious Xtian psychology is. Everyone has done something wrong in life, and Xtianity says "we can make it better!". People lap it up, looking for forgiveness. Human nature being what it is, they inevitably screw up again. But their religion says it's not their fault--it was Satan, it was original sin. So you have a system of deeply flawed people who take no responsibility for their flaws. Am I too cynical?

 

I'm not sure that I accept the concept of being "too cynical".

 

The lack of responsibility is precisely what Christianity is about.  By a sleight of hand, responsibility is taken to mean divesting yourself of all responsibility by saying "god can deal/has dealt with it".

 

It is the root of Christian hypocritical pride in their own worthlessness and humility - "we've admitted we're so useless and as a result only we are acceptable to oury our god".

 

It would come as a dreadful shock to such to actually face up to their own responsibility for their own faults and acts.

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"The lack of responsibility is precisely what Christianity is about.  By a sleight of hand, responsibility is taken to mean divesting yourself of all responsibility by saying "god can deal/has dealt with it".


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Ellinas


 


 


 


I think different churches emphasis responsibility differently.. My impression is that Xtians, far from diverting blame for wrongs, emphasize my responsibility for all of my sins, which (although never precisely defined) are many. Guilt was the glue that held Xtians together. Since you can never quit sinning, they always had you under their control. And that is the whole point. bill


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I think it's both of the things discussed in the thread. There's the scapegoat part where we blame Eve and/or Satan for the fact that we are sinful and do bad things. Then there's the weird loop where God gets the credit for everything good, yet everything bad is somehow our fault/responsibility. What gets emphasized at your particular church will influence whether you focus on the accountability thing or the fact that you're "not perfect, just forgiven".

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"The lack of responsibility is precisely what Christianity is about.  By a sleight of hand, responsibility is taken to mean divesting yourself of all responsibility by saying "god can deal/has dealt with it".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Ellinas

 

 

 

I think different churches emphasis responsibility differently.. My impression is that Xtians, far from diverting blame for wrongs, emphasize my responsibility for all of my sins, which (although never precisely defined) are many. Guilt was the glue that held Xtians together. Since you can never quit sinning, they always had you under their control. And that is the whole point. bill

 

 

In terms of imposing fear on unbelievers, I agree with you - that's the basis of trying to persuade potential converts.  However, it seems to me that the whole "justification by faith", "finished work of Christ" and "confess your sins to be forgiven" package actually absolves the believer from having to take any personal responsibility at all.  However they dress it up in the language of guilt and personal worthlessness, this still boils down to "god no longer sees me as a sinner, regardless of what I've done".

 

Guilt seems to me to be a different matter to responsibility - and has to do with fear of how their peers will judge them within their social network.  The attitude of "I'm alright because I believe" still remains, and, if caught out in any unapproved activity, all they need to do is wring their hands and shed a few tears to show how sorry they are for offending what is assumed to be their deity's sensibilities.  I have difficulty seeing that as a meaningful sense of responsibility - which I take to be a readiness to accept and face the consequences of your own actions without placing that burden on anyone else (deity or otherwise).

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I think better than saying "lack of personal responsibility" is to say "shift of personal responsibility". The personal responsibilities are there, but they have been shifted to these imaginary angels/demons/gods meddling in human affairs. "Oh, I messed up because of sin, which is in the world because of...yadda yadda theological babble."

 

I also think "shift of personal responsibility" better describes what Christians do to other people. Think of a shooting or a sex scandal. If the person did not believe in God, the tragedy happened because of not believing, Satan's influence, etc. It's not that there were people who weren't protecting the victims or that the gun was too accessible. It's that the person was influenced by these other things. If the person DID believe in God, however, you hear the "no TRUE Christian" arguments. 

 

They simply shift the responsibilities of others onto these spiritual entities. And the problems don't get solved. 

 

We see this every day on Facebook, on T-shirts, on Faux News. "Let God back into our schools! God would have protected them if we prayed every day as a class." All that shit.

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