Thursday, November 05, 2015

Candidates use the Bible to justify their views: We must respond with reason

The only way to expose the Christian Right is by taking seriously their biblical misconstruals – by engaging critically with their self-serving myths

Gayatri Devi, The Guardian
Last modified on Thursday 5 November 2015 09.37 EST

The interpretation – or misinterpretation, or simplification – of our most entrenched foundation myths – the Bible – are important indicators of what we privilege and value as a society. They are not, however, a reflection on the Bible itself.

The Bible is the only book of Asia to wield singular potency in the western world to have become the most powerful symbol of “western civilization”, though it was compiled and revised in distant lands, thousands of years ago, in languages other than English, speaking of people and places and things that have nothing to do with the United States of America. Such a book can be hard to read and interpret in a different millennium, so Republicans’ enthusiasm for Hollywood movie versions of the Bible is understandable. Movie Bible is simple and uncomplicated.

In the current election cycle, Republican candidates are pasting biblical myths ad hoc onto the present in ways that cast themselves as a predetermined next step in a grand tradition, and as saviors of an influential subset of voters feeling overlooked by a more liberal, secular mainstream.

The Bible says none of this, of course, and the only way in which the Christian Right can be exposed is by taking seriously their biblical misconstruals, by engaging critically with their self-serving myths.

(More here.)

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