It has happened to me lately, that people who profess to profess Nothing, have written off anyone who believes Something, as "divisive", "stupid", and "full of phobias".
When they have said this to me, directly, to the face, as a confessing Christian/Lutheran, even though I have tried to treat them with consideration and care, have fed them, given them free lessons, helped their children--even though they profess to believe Nothing--I don't think they really have thought about what they are doing to the interpersonal relationship in the community we actually live in.
As Jesus said: "Father forgive them, they don't know what they are doing." He said this while they were nailing him to the cross. I don't think they have really thought about it.
We must note, however, that they have made it very easy for themselves. They don't know what you believe, don't want to know what you believe, don't want to know the reasons why, don't want to know how these beliefs contrast with others, they only know one thing: they are better because the confess Nothing.
It is really quite a magic trick. By a slight of hand you can accuse others of everything and anything, and absolve yourself of everything and anything, even "without" "religion".
I mean, even the famous Dalai Lama, sits and smiles and wishes everyone the best, but condemns monotheistic religions and anyone who has a God with "attributes."
Or the other day, Pope Francis, in the name of global citizenship, critiques all conservative American Protestants and their Roman Catholic supporters. Somehow, he expects American Roman Catholics to have no political views, all the while he meddles in American affairs by commenting.
Of course, nobody professes Nothing. The Dalai Lama advocates acquiescence but campaigns for Tibet. The Pope has his own political ideas, just not in line with a number of conservatives in the world or his curia. The friendly atheist is about as fervent as anyone can come in his non-ideology. And indeed, he is rarely friendly, by the way, but I don't think he sees it.
It is one thing to accuse someone of some real faults, and there we all should have our ears opened. We all have major issues. And as Paul and Jesus point out to us all, there is not one righteous. (Read the Sermon on the Mount, and also the Letter to the Romans.) (Not a single one. Not you. And not me.) Fine. I certainly confess exactly that, that I am not righteous, but only that my Lord is righteous. But when someone is accused of stupidity, just because he believes Something, we have someone acting as an accuser who would like to be righteous on his own terms.
It does not work, though. It never has.
Don Richardson floats on The Stream
3 hours ago