"The Wasting of the Evangelical Mind"

cncmin

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Great article, complete with historical overview, of the subversion of logic and intellect to conspiratorial thinking and misinformation by a bulk of the Evangelical community. Obviously, not all Evangelicals are this way, and there are numerous American Evangelical intellects. However, there is no doubt that the predisposition to gullibility of the Evangelical community poses one of the greatest problems related to the present and future success of this country under our Constitution. Are Evangelicals really "wasting" their minds?

Notably, there are some distinct traits discussed in this article that are direct analogs to persons on this board. This article helps to explain why some people you just can't reach.


Most striking in this article are the statistics:
" A recent survey, conducted by the American Enterprise Institute, found that more than a quarter of white evangelicals believe that Donald Trump has been secretly battling “a group of child sex traffickers that include prominent Democrats and Hollywood elites,” a core tenet of the QAnon conspiracy theory. The data suggest a faith-based reality divide emerging within the Republican Party: nearly three-quarters of white evangelical Republicans believe widespread voter fraud took place in the 2020 election, compared with fifty-four per cent of non-evangelical Republicans; sixty per cent of white evangelical Republicans believe that Antifa, the antifascist group, was mostly responsible for the violence in the Capitol riot, compared with forty-two per cent of non-evangelical Republicans. Other surveys have found that white evangelicals are much more skeptical of the covid-19 vaccine and are less likely than other Americans to get it, potentially jeopardizing the country’s recovery from the pandemic. "
 

Wally

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Its obvious, the more religious you are the more likely you would be to believe in conspiracy theories. And probably the more susceptible you are to brainwashing.
 

MennoSota

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Its obvious, the more religious you are the more likely you would be to believe in conspiracy theories. And probably the more susceptible you are to brainwashing.
Clearly you didn't read the article. Your ignorant bias is showing. Intellectual atheists must cringe when you enter the room.
 

MennoSota

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Great article, complete with historical overview, of the subversion of logic and intellect to conspiratorial thinking and misinformation by a bulk of the Evangelical community. Obviously, not all Evangelicals are this way, and there are numerous American Evangelical intellects. However, there is no doubt that the predisposition to gullibility of the Evangelical community poses one of the greatest problems related to the present and future success of this country under our Constitution. Are Evangelicals really "wasting" their minds?

Notably, there are some distinct traits discussed in this article that are direct analogs to persons on this board. This article helps to explain why some people you just can't reach.


Most striking in this article are the statistics:
" A recent survey, conducted by the American Enterprise Institute, found that more than a quarter of white evangelicals believe that Donald Trump has been secretly battling “a group of child sex traffickers that include prominent Democrats and Hollywood elites,” a core tenet of the QAnon conspiracy theory. The data suggest a faith-based reality divide emerging within the Republican Party: nearly three-quarters of white evangelical Republicans believe widespread voter fraud took place in the 2020 election, compared with fifty-four per cent of non-evangelical Republicans; sixty per cent of white evangelical Republicans believe that Antifa, the antifascist group, was mostly responsible for the violence in the Capitol riot, compared with forty-two per cent of non-evangelical Republicans. Other surveys have found that white evangelicals are much more skeptical of the covid-19 vaccine and are less likely than other Americans to get it, potentially jeopardizing the country’s recovery from the pandemic. "
This is a fairly well written article. The broad brush that Luo paints with creates some generalizations that are less accurate than Luo makes it seem. As a person who respects the strong emphasis on reason provided by faith traditions in Aquinas, Luther, Calvin and Edwards, I cringe at the traditions built on emotional experience over reason. Persons I would place in that category are prosperity gospel preachers like Joel Osteen as well as progressive Christianity in which person's such as Al Sharpton reside. These traditions rely upon people acting out of emotion rather than reason.

As I contended in another thread, theism and reason are juxtaposed so that one feeds the other. In that light, the author provided a generally accurate though overly broad picture of evangelicalism.
 

PeoplesFront

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Great article, complete with historical overview, of the subversion of logic and intellect to conspiratorial thinking and misinformation by a bulk of the Evangelical community. Obviously, not all Evangelicals are this way, and there are numerous American Evangelical intellects. However, there is no doubt that the predisposition to gullibility of the Evangelical community poses one of the greatest problems related to the present and future success of this country under our Constitution. Are Evangelicals really "wasting" their minds?

Notably, there are some distinct traits discussed in this article that are direct analogs to persons on this board. This article helps to explain why some people you just can't reach.


Most striking in this article are the statistics:
" A recent survey, conducted by the American Enterprise Institute, found that more than a quarter of white evangelicals believe that Donald Trump has been secretly battling “a group of child sex traffickers that include prominent Democrats and Hollywood elites,” a core tenet of the QAnon conspiracy theory. The data suggest a faith-based reality divide emerging within the Republican Party: nearly three-quarters of white evangelical Republicans believe widespread voter fraud took place in the 2020 election, compared with fifty-four per cent of non-evangelical Republicans; sixty per cent of white evangelical Republicans believe that Antifa, the antifascist group, was mostly responsible for the violence in the Capitol riot, compared with forty-two per cent of non-evangelical Republicans. Other surveys have found that white evangelicals are much more skeptical of the covid-19 vaccine and are less likely than other Americans to get it, potentially jeopardizing the country’s recovery from the pandemic. "
You linked an article about the subversion of logic and intellect. You of all people want to belittle others as being gullible?
 

Nokomis

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As a politically liberal Christian, I've often wondered these things myself. I think the direction of evangelicals mirrors the broader trends in our county -- individualism, winner take all, us vs. them, need for a villain, instant gratification, social media vanity, entertainment hungry, and need for an unnuanced culture. Not a whole lot of humility, modesty, or empathy in this country right now.

I've similarly thought about the rise of evangelical free churches in America. On the one hand, I think it's great that these grassroots churches spring up. On the other, they aren't tied to any sort of Christian tradition. The article calls them "unmoored". I think that's a good description. Why do they exist; why void are they filling? I have a real hard time understanding a church like Eagle Brook and their expansion model. Are they missionaries filling a void, or a franchise expanding their market?
 

Nokomis

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Its obvious, the more religious you are the more likely you would be to believe in conspiracy theories. And probably the more susceptible you are to brainwashing.
Ah...not that obvious. Post like this is just the other side of the same coin.
 

howeda7

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Ah...not that obvious. Post like this is just the other side of the same coin.
It's definitely not true of the majority. I do think there's a bit of a "hear no evil, see no evil" about ignoring it in their fellow congregants though.
 

Nokomis

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This is a fairly well written article. The broad brush that Luo paints with creates some generalizations that are less accurate than Luo makes it seem. As a person who respects the strong emphasis on reason provided by faith traditions in Aquinas, Luther, Calvin and Edwards, I cringe at the traditions built on emotional experience over reason. Persons I would place in that category are prosperity gospel preachers like Joel Osteen as well as progressive Christianity in which person's such as Al Sharpton reside. These traditions rely upon people acting out of emotion rather than reason.

As I contended in another thread, theism and reason are juxtaposed so that one feeds the other. In that light, the author provided a generally accurate though overly broad picture of evangelicalism.
I think I agree with 3/4 of this. Second paragraph is spot on. Though I think we disagree on "reason". The nuances of our society are lost on most people, theists and atheists alike.
 

MplsGopher

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Its obvious, the more religious you are the more likely you would be to believe in conspiracy theories. And probably the more susceptible you are to brainwashing.
They require faith without proof.

Precisely ...
 

MplsGopher

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As a politically liberal Christian, I've often wondered these things myself. I think the direction of evangelicals mirrors the broader trends in our county -- individualism, winner take all, us vs. them, need for a villain, instant gratification, social media vanity, entertainment hungry, and need for an unnuanced culture. Not a whole lot of humility, modesty, or empathy in this country right now.

I've similarly thought about the rise of evangelical free churches in America. On the one hand, I think it's great that these grassroots churches spring up. On the other, they aren't tied to any sort of Christian tradition. The article calls them "unmoored". I think that's a good description. Why do they exist; why void are they filling? I have a real hard time understanding a church like Eagle Brook and their expansion model. Are they missionaries filling a void, or a franchise expanding their market?
Personally profiting off Jesus. Who was barefoot poor and gave away his preaching for free to anyone who would listen.
 

GoodasGold

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A characteristic of evangelicals is they tend to believe what most likely didn’t happen while disbelieving what actually did.
 

golf

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Nothing more important than sharing the gospel so there is that. Evangelical churches also excel at channeling the resources provided by their large congregations for humanitarian purposes locally and abroad.
 

cncmin

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You linked an article about the subversion of logic and intellect. You of all people want to belittle others as being gullible?
Yes, and I'm almost certain that relative to you, I have the credentials to do so.
 

cncmin

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Nothing more important than sharing the gospel so there is that. Evangelical churches also excel at channeling the resources provided by their large congregations for humanitarian purposes locally and abroad.
All of that sounds nice. Believing truths and facts and reality instead of being highly susceptible to nonsense would be even better and improve us all as a society.
 

MennoSota

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All of that sounds nice. Believing truths and facts and reality instead of being highly susceptible to nonsense would be even better and improve us all as a society.
Which is more nonsensical...the odds that the two numbers, one that is astronomically high and one that is extremely low would connect to create life is purely coincidental or those numbers exist because a highly intelligent being created?

Since the odds on this world coming into existence by no design is so incomprehensible, I contend that it is the atheist who is being nonsensical. It is, on the other hand, the theist who is using reason and scientific method to observe what the creator has done. Nature testifies to a creator, not to a series of incomprehensibly low odds that life came from nothing.

This being said, humans tend to make decisions on emotion rather than reason. We have an entire progressive movement that teaches relativism and post-modernism where the only truth is what you feel. "If I feel something is true, it's true for me." That seems to be the mantra of the progressive movement, which points to the fact that the progressive movement is unreasonable.
 

cncmin

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Which is more nonsensical...the odds that the two numbers, one that is astronomically high and one that is extremely low would connect to create life is purely coincidental or those numbers exist because a highly intelligent being created?

Since the odds on this world coming into existence by no design is so incomprehensible, I contend that it is the atheist who is being nonsensical. It is, on the other hand, the theist who is using reason and scientific method to observe what the creator has done. Nature testifies to a creator, not to a series of incomprehensibly low odds that life came from nothing.

This being said, humans tend to make decisions on emotion rather than reason. We have an entire progressive movement that teaches relativism and post-modernism where the only truth is what you feel. "If I feel something is true, it's true for me." That seems to be the mantra of the progressive movement, which points to the fact that the progressive movement is unreasonable.
I'm not worried about your faith, you believe what you want when it comes to the supernatural, and I have zero desire to change your faith in whatever god(s) you choose to follow. The main difference between you and I is not based on whether or not we accept the supernatural, but whether or not we accept the facts and reality provided daily to us right in front of our eyes. While you allow faith to distort your reality, I let reality contribute to my faith.
 

MennoSota

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Nothing more important than sharing the gospel so there is that. Evangelical churches also excel at channeling the resources provided by their large congregations for humanitarian purposes locally and abroad.
The term "gospel" means good news. For traditional Christianity that relates to the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus as means of redemption for people who are naturally in rebellion against the creator.
Many Protestant, Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches channel resources to NGOs doing tremendous humanitarian work. On the flipside, you have Prosperity Now Gospel preachers like Joel Osteen and many Pentacostal preachers (Al Sharpton) who are fleecing congregations while purchasing jet airplanes and flying around the world.

There is a documentary called "The American Gospel" which shows the actions of people whom the Luo, the writer of the article, is referring to. These people think that God is a means to gaining prosperity and power right now. They represent the persons who were invoking God while storming the Capitol. They are unreasonable people, in my opinion.
 

Wally

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I've similarly thought about the rise of evangelical free churches in America. On the one hand, I think it's great that these grassroots churches spring up.

My Grandpa always said, start a church, thats where the money's at...
 

Wally

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Ah...not that obvious. Post like this is just the other side of the same coin.

If I start a religion and worship the sun, is it any less valid than christianity? And by what measure.

Christianity is basically an early form of government passed down thru stories. Its teachings have value in exploring the human condition. And I believe a guide to a fullfilling life. Anything beyond that is, to me, rediculous.

Scientific and experiential reasoning is not the other side of the same coin.
 

golf

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If I start a religion and worship the sun, is it any less valid than christianity? And by what measure.

Christianity is basically an early form of government passed down thru stories. Its teachings have value in exploring the human condition. And I believe a guide to a fullfilling life. Anything beyond that is, to me, rediculous.

Scientific and experiential reasoning is not the other side of the same coin.

Atheism requires more faith than Christianity. There was a lot of discussion regardlng this on the national council of churches thread.
 

MplsGopher

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Atheism requires more faith than Christianity.
By definition this is false. There is zero evidence about if the universe was "created" and zero evidence about what happens after you die.

Therefore, both beliefs require equal amounts of faith. IE, total.
 

golf

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By definition this is false. There is zero evidence about if the universe was "created" and zero evidence about what happens after you die.

Therefore, both beliefs require equal amounts of faith. IE, total.

I suppose everyone decides for themselves regarding the evidence.
 

MplsGopher

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I suppose everyone decides for themselves regarding the evidence.
The entire point of religion is that you need to choose to believe it is true without any evidence. That's what faith is. That's the test.

If there was proof, then everyone would do it.
 

golf

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The entire point of religion is that you need to choose to believe it is true without any evidence. That's what faith is. That's the test.

If there was proof, then everyone would do it.


Disagree. But i dont want to rewrite my posts from the national council of churches thread and im guessing u dont want to go back and read my posts so not much else to say.
 

MplsGopher

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Disagree.
If there was proof that God existed and you'd go to Heaven if you accepted Jesus as your savior, there would be no such thing as faith.

There can't be disagreement. It's a simple truth by definition, like 1+1=2.
 

Wally

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Atheism requires more faith than Christianity. There was a lot of discussion regardlng this on the national council of churches thread.

Yes, I am not an Atheist, it to me is almost as rediculous as believing in God, it isn't close to believing in God and knowing you believe in the "correct God" that is second level rediculous.

Why would I profess any belief that is completely devoid of evidence.
 

MennoSota

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If I start a religion and worship the sun, is it any less valid than christianity? And by what measure.

Christianity is basically an early form of government passed down thru stories. Its teachings have value in exploring the human condition. And I believe a guide to a fullfilling life. Anything beyond that is, to me, rediculous.

Scientific and experiential reasoning is not the other side of the same coin.
Your ignorance shows in this post. Please share your documentation for your assertion.
 

MennoSota

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Atheism requires more faith than Christianity. There was a lot of discussion regardlng this on the national council of churches thread.
This is correct.
An atheist must make assumptions, the first being that something can come from nothing. The second is that humanity is the highest level of being and there is no other being in existence that could create the universe. The third is that only the material world exists.
The numbers reveal that the odds on life ever happening is so infinitely small that what we observe should not exist. Yet, the atheist insists there is no, and cannot ever have been an intelligent designer who created.
The agnostic is simply one who chooses to have no reason and thus ride the fence.
The theist uses reason and determines there must be an intelligent designer who created.
The most reasonable explanation is an intelligent designer.
 
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