A Rogue Demon Hunter’s Guide to All Things Biblical and Truthy
I normally don’t respond to fundamentalist screeches or their accusations, but there comes time when I have to put up a post after reading the same crap against me over and over, that way this post, for example, the next time the subject comes up, I will refer only to this post, and not have to respond in full.
Now, every time I read or hear the words, “objectivity” on paper, on-line, or coming out of someone’s mouth, I immediately think Euro-centrism. That’s the name of the game without admitting context, folks, bottom-line for me. Recently, a blogger passively aggressively mentioned my comments from another blogger’s Google+ status on Truth: [Linked Here].
Here are some of my affirmations:
“Words also change meaning, Words have historical contexts and have human community from which they are brought forth, therefore words can never be purely objective. God is Truth, yes, but what sort of truth, that is the question. Is God true to God’s word, and therefore, God can be True and Faithful, that we know from Scripture.”
All of which is true, yes? So far, so good.
“Jesus represents us Truth, and only through that Truth can we understand and read scripture. How do we know God? Revelation, yes? And who is that revelation? Christ, so Christ the Person is truth, Christ in his concrete, historical existence; therefore, the Christian idea of Truth should be different from abstract, objective propositional truth statements. It should come in the form of story.”
Not anything out of the ordinary; just run-of-the-mill post-modern narrative theory of truth to some extent.
The above mentioned blogged HAD ABSOLUTELY no rebuttal whatsoever except for call upon his precious “laws of logic” which he accused me of violating. See, now I am a criminal, even in philosophy? See how that works. Analytic philosophy has laws, criminals violate them. Handcuff me officer, put me away, throw away the keys! **faints, wipes sweat from forehead**
For some strange reason, all of these quotes put me in the category of being “uncharitable” and “a liberal.” I have figured out something. When a fundamentalist or conservative calls me uncharitable, I take it now as them saying that I don’t give their opinions the light of day, and have the ability to offer rebuttals they just cannot answer, that they have no choice but to resort to personal attacks. Where have I called these fundamentalists names? In fact, even the fact I am using the word fundamentalist is because it is THEIR chosen label, not mine. Furthermore, my posts against fundamentalist epistemologies such as “Presuppositionalism” only state the awkward positions that famous racist presuppositionalists such as R.J. Rushdoony have held: see me on Presuppositionalism and Segregation [linked here]. My purpose is to show the Christian presuppositionalism is really a merri-go-round epistemology, which places epistemology over and against all else, and then places God second or third. Following the “LAWS OF PHALLUS, I MEAN, LOGIC” means following a rather circular logic that leads down the path of uncritical thinking, anti-intellectuallism, and reactionary politics. No siree. No thank you!
This is not the first time, and I am sure it won’t be the last time, that a fundamentalist anti-intellectual has accused me of not following the “law of contradiction.” May I ask a question, if I may? Who set up this law? Who voted you to enforce this law? That’s all I ask. In the spirit of the police officer in Marvel’s The Avengers who asked Captain America, “Why should I take orders from you?,” I ask, WHO ARE YOU? Especially the fundamentalist blog I linked to in this post is a questionable authority on “rationality” and “logic” at best, when he is given to emotional rants against historical criticism and evolutionary science.
The fact of the matter is this; It is this fundamentalist who has forgotten the source of truth. If you find the inventor of the Law of Noncontradiction, you will see it’s not god, but Greek philosophers like Plato and Socrates. Are they god? Nope. Speaking of rationality, I find the term highly problematic, especially in this fundamentalist’s usage of it. For centuries, good Christians have used rationality as THE definition of God’s image in humanity, to separate us from animals. The likes of Thomas Aquinas, among others; my problem is that this definition is very limited, and excludes special needs persons. Plus, this exclusive view of rationality/the divine image in us all has been used to justify oppression; people who have been seen as not rational as Europeans (hint hint hint) were to be subjected to European colonial rule. Exclusivist European Rationality is a very imperialist mode of thinking.
Next, on the verifiability of The Law of Noncontradiction, on whether this law exists or not, there is neither proof nor denial that it exists anyhow, and like all MANmade laws, this “LAW” is a human construct, like language is as I argued above. Language is a social construct, and so are our laws. The exclusive use of logic is a self-defeating one, lending itself towards insanity at best, and oppression at worst. All logic must have a background, a community with language rules and games from which it comes forth. Without it, human beings will see themselves as infinitely powerful to rule over others, ala the reign of European rationality in the Academy. Using ONE! SHORT, and completely and utterly UNRELATED! Bible passage, proof-texting as usual, is not going to convince me of the validity of YOUR law of non-contradiction. I live with paradox everyday, and I am fine with it, because God is all sufficient and that is all I need.
Now, ON TO THE TRUTH!:
In the Gospels, Jesus says that He is the Truth (John 14:6)–the entire physical anatomy of a second-century Jew in all of His being makes that claim, and more importantly, says that “The truth shall set you free (John 8:32).” Truth and freedom are united as one in Christ. The “law” of non-contradiction and Euro-centric rationalities are bound up in oppressions and exclusivisms that fail under Christ Jesus’ standard. The notion that laws of logic are absolute and are not to be questioned is itself an anti-intellectual endeavor. Shutting down debate before there can be a conversation? Oh, wait, I forgot I was talking about Fundamentalists here. Scott Lencke’s comments to the fundamentalist in question [linked here] are telling of the convo we had on Google+; Scott gets it right on the money! THIS!—->:
“But an epistemology – how we know the things we know – that requires objective truth as the only foundation for which we can ultimately know God, at least for me, fails to take in the reality of how God has chosen to communicate to us.”
Yup, fundamentalists deny God’s own freedom of choice, to use particular histories and specific bodies IN time to tell God’s story.
“Nobody has a monopoly on truth, neither the leader nor the militant. The search for truth in local situations is the responsibility of the community.”-Frantz Fanon, Wretched OF the Earth
“Truth liberates by placing beings in communion.” John Zizioulas, Being As Communion
Oh, and hey, I just cited 2 bible passages, that more than the 1 prooftext that the fundamentalist used. See, I can haz Da Byble.