How many scientists are Christians? (Does it matter?)

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Statistics of religiousness are a hot topic.

A friend recently initiated a discussion regarding science, religion and the ‘war’ between them. One of the basic elements of the discussion was the number of scientists who are Christians and of course the actual number of christians in the world to-day. The discussion heated up, with many people invoking researches and polls where the number of scientists who are religious or atheists was documented, explained or projected, while taking into accounts multiple criteria and factors.

Yes, the number of religious scientists may be falling.

On the other hand, there could be polls claiming otherwise.

But at the end, does it matter at all?

Should Christianity care about diminishing or increasing numbers of christians?

If we take a good look we will understand that we are looking at the whole topic from the wrong angle. The problem of Christianity to-day is not that it has a dropping number of faithful going to the church. Or an increasing number of people going to the church. The problem is that Christianity (and christians) care about the number of people going to the church…

Nietzsche once said that the first and last Christian died at the cross. Whether this is true or not I do not know, however I do know that I would surely prefer to have Christianity with only one Christian who is a good and humble person, than having billions of followers who argue and debate about whether the numbers of Christians are rising or falling…

And since the discussion is abour religion and science, the same applies to science as well. I would also prefer science with only one proper scientist, open to all possibilities, self-criticizing eveything and with a free spirit, rather than millions of self-proclaimed scientists who are just parroting the same things over and over again because someone else has said them.

In every case, remember: Less is more…

Be aware and be worried when your followers increase too much.

You are doing things suspiciously right…

PS. All the above also apply for atheism and agnosticism as well.

Outside the Church!

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Aid from the Padre, 1962. [source]

We usually forget what is obvious.

This photo won a Pulitzer Prize, depicting a priest holding a soldier who dies in Venezuela (details here).

We tend to go to church to remember that we are Christians. To light a candle, to pray, to feel mentally uplifted. And yet, Christianity is not the buildings. Not even the church canon or its typical rules. These are of course very important elements carrying significant symbolisms and functions (on multiple levels), no one denies that. But if one looks at life and at the world with a clearer eye, he will see that its most Christian moments took place outside the buildings and outside the formal framework of some liturgy – many times not even by Christians.

In moments of despair, death, pain and agony.

Christianity is not us either. Why should it be? Wy have we won the title of “Christian”? Because we do superficial things that even a child could do? Basically, I don’t care much what Christianity is. In moments of despair, death, pain and anguish, who would care anyway? And yet, it is in such moments that we remember again something that was once obvious to us.

The world is full of pain and horror.

The world is dark.

And yet somewhere inside us we remember vaguely…

(But with absolute certainty)

That there is light somewhere…

Do you believe in your Faith?

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We have a lot of discussion today about the “persecution” of Christians. Modern “Christians” feel persecuted because the churches are closed, because they do not open together with the… other businesses, because there are no religious events while other events perhaps are allowed, because they will put a chip in us and the Antichrist will come, etc. All this – at least some – are legitimate questions that need to be addressed. However, there is a fine line between what concerns us as Christians and what is really important. And equally important is the way we express our concerns. A post? Two posts? Crying out loud (online) about upcoming doom? Because anxiety is good to have in moderation if needed, but a lot of anxiety eventually becomes funny.

Christianity will not die because COVID-19 has come. Not even because of the lockdown. Christianity has survived – to be more precise, it had FLOURISHED – in times of great persecution. If today’s concerned “Christians” were living in the times of the great persecutions, they would probably have died on the spot from a stroke before they had time to worry (or they would have changed their minds and denounce Christianity). Because, unfortunately, hypocrisy, like stupidity, seems to have no limits. From the time when some people went to church, we have now reached to a time when online hordes of Christians protest because the churches were closed. Not because they are anxious about Christianity per se. But because they are anxious that they do NOT appear to be Christians. And in today’s era phenomena are not just important, they are all we have left.

Hey you. You, who are protesting …

How many times do you pray at home? How honestly do you believe in God? How much do you need others to know that you believe?

I’m sorry to say it, but the comparison with Muslims is heartbreaking. No, I am not in favor of Islam as you (might) know. I am a Christian. But let’s be honest. While we are anxious and afraid that Christianity may be destroyed by “persecution” on Earth because due to a sudden WORLD VIRUS OUTBREAK and in the middle of GENERAL LOCKDOWN the churches are closed, the Muslims simply continues to believe and pray wherever they can.

No, Christianity is not going to die because of quarantine. It has already died inside you a long time ago…

You would crucify Him.

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Nowadays, all Christians are so … Christians that they don’t even think about the obvious.

That if we lived in a time when Christ appeared, we would crucify Him too.

Think. A dirty beggar without a second cloth to wear, coming to you to tell you to forget all your beliefs and abandon anything holy you hold in respect to follow him.

If you wouldn’t crusify Him with your vote, you would definitely crucify Him with your tolerance. And you would laugh as he ascended Golgotha. That is, if you happened to pass by and you hadn’t gone for coffee. And you would definitely change the channel at night if the news happened to mention the event, because at the same time Masterchef would start or you would have to write a very Christian post on Facebook.

Accept your fall.

It is the first step to rise.

Coronavirus, Christianity, Death, “sissies”…

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There is a lot of discussion about the new coronavirus affecting the world as we speak. Harmonia Philosophica usually does not deal with such news since our focus is philosophy and not everyday matters. Our subject is the eternal, not the ephemeral.

And yet, as we have said many times here, the ephemeral is sometimes more eternal than the eternal. And philosophy needs to take into account everyday life if the latter poses important and interesting questions.

The coronavirus has suddenly made humanity again aware of its fragility. And right when we thought we were “progressing” and ready to conquer the world, Death is suddenly again part of the discussion.

This is, understandably, unsettling to many people. I will not make the arrogant mistake of not including myself with all those people. I am also afraid of death. I am also afraid of suffering. But as we have said again many times, my personal or your personal feelings on the matter at hand mean nothing.

Photo by Spiros Kakos from Pexels

And here is where Christianity comes into play. Despite what most people believe, Christianity does not evangelize that if you are a good Christian you will not suffer; the exact opposite is true! Christianity reminds us of death and suffering. Christianity emphasizes death and suffering and brings them to the spotlight. Jesus and all the saints have died horrible deaths. No one is spared from death or suffering because of being a good Christian. Being a Christian does entail accepting pain and suffering, so that we can acknowledge that death is nothing more than a portal to real life.

The world had rejected Christianity because of those attributes of Christianity. Because the world does not like death and suffering. Because the world believes that it is – or can be – immortal and live for ever. Because we admire matter and we cannot see beyond it. Blinded by our dogmatic materialism, we fail to see the obvious only because we are cowards.

As Johnny Cash has said, “Christianity is not for sissies”.

Don’t be afraid.

Yes, at the end you will die.

Can you not cry?

(Where is your philosophy?)

Related article: How to easily win an atheist in a debate…