Superstitious Christianity

As a kid growing up in one of many neighborhoods in Bridgeport, Connecticut, where drugs were sold and yards were not places to lay your bikes, let's just say my mom and dad didn't make enough for us to live in a suburban neighborhood yet, I met some of the neatest kids.  We played baseball out in the street together and in the Summer we roamed in the evening and played hide and go seek.  Yeah, I don't know what my parents were thinking.  These kids were plucky, some cocky and some were just down right superstitious.

A rabbit's foot worn around the neck, a constant warning, "Don't step on that crack or you'll break yo' mama's back."  A secret handshake had to be done just the right way or the friendship wouldn't last.

Cute, isn't it?

Superstition can be quaint in children, but when you start adding it to Christianity then we have some serious problems I think.  And the ways some Christians are superstitious can really be  endless:

I can't associate with an atheist because, then, well, I'll become an atheist.

I can't eat at that restaurant because they sell liquor.  As if the liquor will jump off the waiter's tray and onto their table and then force its way down their throat and enough to get them cold stone drunk, right?

Don't even say the word demon because now I feel like there is one in this room.  Spiritual warfare is lurking around every corner even though it isn't. 

Don't put the bible at the bottom of a stack of books, it should be on top.  As if God's book wouldn't be just as blessed at the bottom.

Playing with pokemon cards will lead your child's soul to hell.  I heard this recently when I watched this youtube video:

To me, this is just fear mongoring, superstitious nonsense that does more harm than good in an effort to save children from the depths of evil. 

In church, I was always told that the cards and playing with them, collecting them were wrong, but it was never really fully explained why.  And there lies the other huge danger, being told something is bad over and over again with no real proof or the "proof" has holes in it from here to kingdom come, the belief being completely unrational, that, coupled with a lack of freethinking brain use on our part and we're in for a heck of a ride in our Christianity.

I recently had someone explain to me and my children after my kids pulled out their pokemon cards, "Oh, see, those pokemons evolve into other things, maybe they are pushing the thoughts of man evolving into apes on us.  There could be a subtle demonic power here wanting to take hold of you."  Let's just say this lady's comments freaked my kids out and one came home and cried. 

I hadn't really looked into the cards, but I began reading them and I see no harm in them.

I am using my freethinking brain and making a freechoice and I really don't want to let superstition creep into my Chrisitianity.  It's creeped in before and taken a hold on me with a suffocating grip and I'm really not wanting to go there again.

And really and truly, some choices are as simple as choosing between chocolate or vanilla ice cream.  Some choices don't need to be made in anguish or given much thought.  Every. Single. Time.  Some choice or decisions are to be made as easy as if you wanted to bake a pie or some cookies today or if you want to wear your green or red shirt.  Let's not spiritualize everything and therein becoming stupidly superstitious ourselves.    



Tragedy101 said...

When I was eleven, I lost my pants in a card game. And she wouldn't give them back. There maybe something to these evils of card games.

shadowspring said...

Haha, poor kid.

All I have to say about Pokemon is:

Gotta catch 'em all! =D

I heard they were evil too, so I bought a starter pack, learned the rules, saw the TV show and thought it was all very imaginative and fun. Wish I had thought of it first, I could be a rich rich human by now!

Incongruous Circumspection said...

Does that guy remind anyone else of George Bush? The way he bounces his shoulders, breathes out a few words, squints his eyes, and forms his mouth.

The similarities were eerie enough. Maybe The Shrub has evolved.

newenglandsun said...

I think that maybe explaining to this lady that Christianity is not equivalent to anti-evolution would be beneficial in helping her see that Pokemon is actually quite harmless. I actually still play the games even though I am a college aged male. Actually, a lot of people my age still play the games. But anyway, Pokemon is really actually quite harmless. No one even kills any one else. I have known people who want Harry Potter censored.

A good thing to do would be to ask whether Pokemon is glorifying evil things like murder, rape, or anything that absolutely is non-Christian. It really doesn't. It might be argued that it promotes evolution but only a select amount of atheist scientists think that it evolution and Christianity cannot be reconciled. Even Richard Dawkins believes evolution and Christianity can be reconciled though he would imagine this quite difficult. You could look into some books on theistic evolution like Finding Darwin's God by Kenneth Miller.

Sometimes people gamble over card games but this doesn't make the card game bad. What is bad is gambling. Well, what is risky is gambling. You might want to explain to your Pokemon fanatics that when things are gambled, it does not always go well for you. Which is not anti-Pokemon.

Pokemon does not make the power within it really that accessible. Since Pokemon do not exist in real life, there is no way possible to use it for witchcraft like the guy in the video attempted to claim. I believe there is nothing wrong with Pokemon.