Christianity not a religion???


Pegeen here.

Lately I’ve been hearing a lot of christians claim that christianity is “not a religion.”

I don’t know how long this has been going on. When I was a kid and a young adult surrounded by christians, I don’t recall ever hearing such a claim. Everybody acknowledged the obvious — that christianity was, is and will always be a religion.

Of course, the people around me liked to believe that theirs was the only “true” religion. But denying it was a religion would have been laughable.

When I first heard that christians were now making the “not a religion” claim, I wasn’t terribly interested or bothered. I just thought it was another harmless delusion. But not so.

The much scarier reality turned up in in Bill O’Reilly’s scary mouth, when he carried on and ranted at American Atheists president Dave Silverman that christianity is not a religion, but a philosophy. O’Reilly said that anybody who thought the Big C was a religion was irrational — and a bunch of other bad things.

He later partly recanted. But not really.

Maybe I’m slow. But I finally realized “not a religion” isn’t just another self-aggrandizing self delusion on the part of people who want the world to think they’ve got the inside track on god. I got it. And it’s chilling. The sole, entire purpose of the “not a religion” claim is to subvert the Bill of Rights. Because while the first amendment says that the federal government can’t establish a religion, and while Jefferson’s principle of separation of church and state is growing in influence, there’s no law that says the government can’t promote, finance, or enforce a philosophy.

Never mind that it’s a “philosophy” about an all-powerful sky god who demands that you do what preachers and scriptures demand — OR ELSE.

The entire “not a religion” claim is nothing but a tool to promote and permit an American theocracy.

And that’s scary.

2 Responses to “Christianity not a religion???”

  1. justasqpeg Says:

    I heard the whole “Christianity is not a religion” thing while I was growing up- probably beginning during the late 70s. You know, after the “children” of the 60s took over Christianity.

    The “reasoning” was that a religion is people trying to find god, while Christianity is god reaching out to people.

    Funny, but they sure look the same from the outside and sure looked and felt the same from the inside.

    A further explanation I got was that with a Buddhist or Muslim or whatever “what you see is what you get”- the rituals and outward signs are all there is. But with a Christian, the outward stuff is not the reality, since the relationship with god is internal and invisible.

    Sure, I know it’s all nonsense now.

    It just fits really well with my notion that if you want to invent a religion (excuse me, a “relationship with god”), you have to insulate it from reality and criticism by claiming that it is bizarre on purpose, and seeing the holes in the religion just means you are not enlightened enough.

  2. Squarepeggeen Says:

    “The ‘reasoning’ was that a religion is people trying to find god, while Christianity is god reaching out to people.”

    Uh … for an all-knowing, all-powerful, all-merciful, all-wise, ever-present being, he sure does a lousy job of “reaching out,” doesn’t he?

    Thanks for the background. It’s interesting knowing the silly “not a religion” claim has a longer history than I knew. So it began as mere self delusion and is now moving into self-delusional politics.

    Definitely scary.

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