Monday, October 3, 2011

A Good Quote

I recently read through J. Angelo Corlett's The Errors of Atheism. I found the volume mainly unimpressive (my mini-review here), but there were some moving moments. In particular, there was one quote which I found to be pretty powerful. It is in context of the multifarious sins of the church, but I think it can be applied to many leadership and authority figures:

"While the church may preach forgiveness, it surely will never (nor should it) receive it from a truly just authority. For forgiveness requires genuine apology which in turn requires, among other things, compensation. And judging by the orthodox Christian church's behavioral history, no such apology is forthcoming; and we must not presuppose that forgiveness entails mercy. For this reason alone, then, orthodox Christian theists ought--however ironically--to pray that there is no God." (p. 135)

[In other news: After reading this volume's discussion of possible positives for refusing to acculturate into "mainstream" society (as part of a larger discussion of the ethical implications of the author's process-liberationist theology) and thinking about some of your feedback, I've decided to table the question I raised in my last post. I think it deserves more thought and I think there are, at least for now, some good reasons for me to refuse the allure to stop identifying with klal yisrael.]


  1. Baruch,

    I am just a bit confused by parts of your last two postings where you are talking about no longer identifying with Jews. Could you clarify this a bit? Does this mean you no longer will call yourself Jewish when asked or deny that your historical Jewish roots? Or are you saying that you just wont actively affiliate yourself with other Jews, like no longer go to Kosher resteraunts, or to Synagogue services, visit Israel etc.? Or is it something else entirely?

  2. Re the Rebbe shlita:
    It's a good question, but I don't want to get into the details of the practical ramifications of mentally severing myself off from klal yisrael when, after all, I currently have reasons for now for staying in and thinking of myself as part of the Jewish people.

  3. Although for the most part theologically speaking I have severed myself from klal yisroel, I couldn't image doing so community wise at this stage of my life. We shall see how things progress.