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Friday, March 11, 2005

Christianity is the Right Religion for Me

It's true. It's even official. See, I answered all the questions to one of those QuizFarm thingers, this one created by 'callalily19' and called "Which Religion is Right For You?" and it told me so. "You scored as Christianity," the results informed me. "Your views are most similar to those of Christianity. Do more research on Christianity and possibly consider being baptized and accepting Jesus, if you aren't already Christian."

My views are "most similar to" those of Christianity, she said. Heh, right. Of course, I'm wondering why my views are not "exactly" those of Christianity, and simultaneously wondering how anyone can trust the theological judgments of someone named 'callalily' who is probably not much more than a high school kid with accounts at six different online journal services. "Do more research on Christianity," she says. Heheh. For those of you that know me personally, you can certainly appreciate the humour of that one. Now, I know these tests are generic at best, just some good tongue-in-cheek fun for those who take life a little less seriously, so understand that I am being entirely facetious here, having my own bit of fun.

But I do have a little concern about this test. I mean, have you seen some of the questions she asks in that quizlette? Amazing. Probably the most blatant example, and certainly my favourite, is Question 34: "Because I haven't made up my mind, I never rule out the possibility of God's existence." Now I am supposed to consider this question and answer either (1) Strongly Disagree, (2) Disagree, (3) Undecided, (4) Agree, or (5) Strongly Agree.


How do I answer that? Every single optional answer is wrong. "Strongly disagree," meaning I emphatically rule out the possibility of God's existence. Wrong. Okay, and obviously "Disagree" is likewise wrong. "Undecided"? No, I'm quite decided. All right, so then do I "Agree" or "Strongly Agree" that, because I haven't made up my mind, I never rule out the possibility of God's existence? Neither, because I have, in fact, made up my mind. So you tell me, dear reader, how do I answer this question? And maybe it's because of questions like this that the results show my views as being only "most similar to" those of Christianity. I chose "Undecided" because to move in any direction towards agreeing or disagreeing is even more inaccurate; therefore, because "I haven't made up my mind" about God's existence, my views don't quite align with Christianity.

Question 22 was interesting: "'Evil' as many religions see it does not exist; 'evil' is just imbalance and human mistakes." Well we have a problem here, don't we, if "evil" as a religion sees it is precisely imbalance and human mistakes. Like Christianity, for example. How do I answer this one? Man is said to be "fallen," there is an intrinsic imbalance not only in the human experience but also in man's relationship with God—we are alienated from God, which is why reconciliation is needed, a relational breach which lends to our concuspience that inescapably results in manifest human mistakes. There is "imbalance and human mistakes," certainly, but Christianity answers the question of why there is. And why it's evil. Question 29 states, "I have a strong belief and trust in myself over anything or one else." Yes, autonomy, or self-law. It was the first sin man committed, the whole reason we're in this mess, and it remains man's favourite sin that he still commits routinely to this very day.

"People are not inherently evil; they are just weak and have free will." What is meant here by "evil"? And it was a curious statement to make, ripe for exploration: "I'm not evil, I just have free will."

What about Question 11? "I am certain that no being higher than humans exists." What does "higher" mean here? What about, say, dolphins? What if someone felt that dolphins were a higher order of being than humans? I know what she meant, I think: this was an anti-supernatural statement, the rejection of the idea of beings that transcend the physical, spatio-temporal sphere of existence, from the idea that "if it has no extension or form in space then it does not really exist."

"God has chosen a race to follow him." Chosen. Interesting choice of words. I could have some theological fun with this one, by presenting an argument which attempted to show that the regenerated elect were a distinct race from the unregenerated non-elect—the latter being born of the flesh while the former being born of the Spirit. However, I had to Strongly Disagree because I think this question had in mind such groups as the Ku Klux Klan.

"Jesus died for our sins." Who is meant by "our" here? And what does "died for" mean, what did that accomplish?

Ah my. It was fun, at any rate.