September 12, 2003
Drawing the lines

It has come to my attention, through the comments below, that I misrepresented David Heddle. Sorry! I think a lot of the problem here is that I'm a newcomer to Christian culture, so I throw around words like "literalist" and "fundamentalist" without fully understanding what they mean to everybody.

Actually, one important point this raises is that, while many outside that camp talk about Biblical literalism and inerrancy as if it were all the Pat Robertson version, it is not that cleanly defined a category. As the old joke goes, a fanatic is someone who takes religion more seriously than you, and by the same token a literalist is someone who takes the Bible more literally than you. But in thinking that way I lumped David in with a lot of people he doesn't properly belong with, and I apologize for that.

Also, per what Jenny said, I know that literalism isn't the only reason to oppose women's ordination. In fact, one group that was completely left out of this discussion was the Catholics; they have their own debates about this, but based on different things. One reason I linked to David's post is that it represents a conservative Protestant viewpoint that doesn't get aired around here a lot -- my readership has become an odd mix of mostly liberal Protestants and mostly conservative Catholics, with a sprinkling of nonbelievers. So I'm glad he came around to clarify things.

Anyway, I'm going to back out of this argument for now, since my thinking about it is still too nebulous. A major reason I started this blog was to learn, and I freely admit my own ignorance. I appreciate everyone's feedback, as it is always educational.

Posted by Camassia at September 12, 2003 01:28 PM | TrackBack


Freely admitting your own ignorance is something most adults aren't able to do, which is too bad, because it's immensely powerful. Props to you--as the old saying goes, zen mind, beginner's mind. (Or, whoever doesn't become like a little child can't enter the kingdom of heaven.)


Posted by: Captain Inertia on September 12, 2003 01:34 PM

No need to apologize, but thank you. If you don't mind I'll stop back (to your blog)-- always interesting and fun to represent a minority view.

Posted by: David Heddle on September 12, 2003 01:45 PM

There's absolutely nothing wrong with thinking out loud as you make your way toward fuller understanding of a topic.
There is a tendency to want to restate the other guy's position, in order to show him that you're engaged and following his argument. You don't need to do that; just express your own understanding of the topic--which will be instructive to others in some way, almost certainly--and learn in turn from their responses.
Please don't drop a topic simply because you don't feel that you have it mastered.
One of the main reasons I have kept returning to your site, once I found it, is that it's comfortable and friendly here; not dominated by a law-giving control freak, an agenda, or an ideology.

Posted by: Rob on September 12, 2003 03:26 PM

Thoughts from a nonbeliever ...

As is beginning to seem usual, I find Rob's idea's to be very close to my own (with the "belief" exception). Which I think is interesting from several angles... one of which, to me, seems to be that, regardless of some differing "beliefs", we can all share the same couch (so to speak).

I keep coming back because I keep learning things such as this.

Thanks for the opportunity!

p.s. It would probably be helpful to know that originally I didn't "get" Rob.

Posted by: David RB on September 13, 2003 12:27 PM

Well, the usual Christian metaphor is that we're all sharing the same table, but I like couch. Now I'm getting an image of us all on a great long sectional, with a big bowl of popcorn ...

By the way, did you get my email with the computer questions? I'm seeing you here but not in my inbox, so I'm wondering if email communications are working.

Posted by: Camassia on September 13, 2003 12:39 PM

Mark sounds great. I'm looking forward to it.

Posted by: Rob on September 13, 2003 02:13 PM

Great site guys... Keep up the good work :)

Posted by: Mitch Bruke on May 12, 2004 08:33 AM
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