AAACK! After reading my blog post from yesterday, I realized that I entirely missed my original intent, and most of what I wrote didn’t seem to really connect specifically with my heading! So here we go again. . .
This belief system was hard wired into my head from the time I was a child. I recall my father telling me (referring to himself and Mom) that ‘we will never lie to you.’ This started the foundation for my my belief, for after all how much cognitive abilities does a dependent 4 or 5 year old little boy possess? I took that to the bank as absolute truth. Furthermore, it never occurred to me that my folks might be biased, limited as to their experiences and knowledge. To me, they were all wisdom, and everything they said was unquestionably true.
In fact, my belief in them was reinforced because we could talk about anything, my Dad was a Baptist Pastor, and therefore must be wise and knowing. It didn’t matter what my public school teachers taught me about facts of science, I absolutely KNEW that my folks had never lied to me, they taught me TRUTH and they were following the Bible, which of course was the absolute truth, directly from God to us!
I have a story along these lines that I hope will show how hard wired I was. To me, fundamentalism, was not merely a belief system, it was entwined within my core family relationships, my core identity, and it framed my world view. Anyone not raised inside this system cannot understand how deeply entrenched this is, and how unbelievably difficult it is to walk away!
Here’s my story which is an excerpt from the book I am writing . . .
“When my children were very small, it occurred to me that their concept of colors originated with us, their parents. I could tell them that a certain color was anything I told them it was. If I told them that red was blue, they would grow up believing this ‘fact’ until they started attending school.
But even then, I could reinforce their belief in my statement by adding additional lies that would build emotional connections giving them strong reasons to believe my false hood despite being confronted with the truth.
Here how this would play out;
- I tell my child that I never have, nor ever will lie to them. This is foundational to their entire belief system. Once they accept this, believe it, then I will be their Guru of Truth anytime they have questions. They will approach me with the understanding that anything I tell them will be based upon factual truth. This core believe will overcome their own observations, internal doubts, and even peer rejection because they don’t merely believe in me, they KNOW that I always tell them truths.
- They will then accept and believe that our family has special knowledge that those living outside our family, do not have. This special knowledge was written, and carefully preserved word-for-word in the BOOK.
- And our BOOK teaches that only people who accept and believe the truth that red is blue will enjoy eternal bliss; those that don’t accept this truth will be burned alive forever for their unbelief.
- Our family has been specially chosen by our CREATOR who has gifted us with this secret knowledge and given each of us a special mission. Everything we do and say must be directed to telling everyone about this truth – in order to save humanity. Since people are watching us, we have to ensure that our public performance in all places is impeccable. It could be that someone might hear us cursing, or see us throw a temper. It is unacceptable to lower ourselves to act like the rest of the world; we have to set and keep a standard for everyone to look up to. It may be possible that we might be the reason someone doesn’t believe that ‘blue is red’ if we are seen or heard acting imperfectly. So, our appearance and performance outside of our home is first priority in order to be an effective witness and testimony as this is will please our CREATOR.
- Sadly though, almost everyone they meet and tell the truth that red is blue, will laugh at them, and say they are both wrong and crazy for believing this. Their grades may even suffer at the hands of unbelieving teachers who are blind to ‘The Truth.’ But all their suffering won’t mean anything long term, because they will be rewarded even more in eternity for their deeds while their friends will be tortured forever.
- I will tell them to especially be wary of what their science teachers may say. And to be on guard when reading the content in those nasty science textbooks written by a group of unbelievers who insist on undermining the truth by mere human logic and observed factual evidence. After all, who should they believe – The Authority of THE BOOK, or mere factual evidence taught to them by outsiders and unbelievers?
- So while it is okay to doubt and question the truth that red is blue, they will solve their internal struggles by studying and accepting the authority of THE BOOK for internal confirmation of this truth. THE BOOK contains answers and wisdom for every situation that may occur in life. THE BOOK is their love letter from their CREATOR to them.
- However, if they fall away from their belief, if they elevate logical thinking and observed facts above the authority of THE BOOK, and start to think worldly thoughts, they are questioning their Creator. This will mean that they will lose their special status and go to the place of eternal torment. They will be rejected, tortured, and cast out of their place of eternal bliss in front of their family and friends. It is extremely important to believe what your family believes in order to be acceptable, approved, and loved.
- They should live ‘in the world’, enjoy what they can enjoy, but remember that they are not a ‘part of the world’ and their real life mission is to tell as many people as possible about the special message that Red is Blue.
How jacked up would these children end up? Well, I think I can answer that. About as jacked up as I am after a lifetime of essentially being told the same thing in Baptist Fundamentalism about almost everything (it seems) in reality.
Boy do I have a lot to write about!