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(21,902 posts)
17. Early childhood teachings are hard to break away from.
Sat Oct 14, 2023, 12:34 PM
Oct 2023

For a short time my family went to a church that belonged to the Missouri Synod branch of Lutheranism. They are literalists and somewhat fundamentalist, although they were also the ones who taught us not to take Revelation seriously for modern times.

We only went there because that congregation was founded by German immigrants and my German-born great aunt lived with us after her husband died. She had old friends at that church. After she went to a nursing home, my parents joined the "mainstream" Lutheran church that my cousins belonged to. It was theologically and socially liberal.

But, even the more literalist Missouri Synod church adhered to Luther's teachings about grace, faith, and forgiveness. As a child, I did not buy into the idea that non Christians were condemned. I was spiritually oriented even then. Maybe I was just born that way. I did not have the words or exposure to philosophy to put my views into words at such a young age, but literal heaven and hell were not real to me. I did not know the word "metaphor" then, but that was how I took those teachings. Kind of like fables with a spiritual message on how to live. So I Iooked at religions as various spiritual paths that people could take in life.

In grade school, a teacher read us the story of the blind men and the elephant. Each one feels a different part of the elephant and describes what an elephant is according to the limited part that he touches. I figured that's what religions were - limited understandings of spirituality. St. Paul said basically the same thing at the end of First Corinthians, chapter 13. "We know in part, and we prophesy in part."

I know how you feel, BlueKota. arkielib Oct 2023 #1
It's hard to walk away from something that was a part of your life BlueKota Oct 2023 #2
Same with the Baptists and other evangelicals. They have lost all credibility. arkielib Oct 2023 #3
In some ways, that kind of teaching in Catholicism wnylib Oct 2023 #15
I always had the feeling that what they taught in the school BlueKota Oct 2023 #16
Early childhood teachings are hard to break away from. wnylib Oct 2023 #17
Joseph Campbell with whom Bill Moyers held a series of discussions on The Power of Myth, summer_in_TX Nov 2023 #23
An Orthodox ☦️ priest reminded me a long time ago that after we are afforded the sprinkleeninow Oct 2023 #4
Thank you! BlueKota Oct 2023 #20
Well, in the Lutheran church that I grew up in, wnylib Oct 2023 #5
Thank you so much. BlueKota Oct 2023 #12
Have you read Armageddon by Bart Ehrman? tanyev Oct 2023 #6
This sounds fascinating. ShazzieB Oct 2023 #7
He's written quite a few books in a similar vein. tanyev Oct 2023 #8
I recommend looking up Bart Ehrman on You Tube. There are wnylib Oct 2023 #11
Bart Ehrman does a great job of explaining Revelation. wnylib Oct 2023 #9
I have not read it yet BlueKota Oct 2023 #13
It's true that mankind's ability to destroy has far outpaced the ability tanyev Oct 2023 #19
Many years ago -- more years than I care to admit -- I read a theory that Revelations was actually shrike3 Oct 2023 #18
Does God change His mind? WDLAL Oct 2023 #10
Thank you! BlueKota Oct 2023 #14
Some very different thoughts on Armageddon: progressive, sensible, Biblical, anti-war hvn_nbr_2 Nov 2023 #21
Fascinating - and different from any interpretation I've heard before. summer_in_TX Nov 2023 #22
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