Malaysian Atheist

An avowed atheist living in Malaysia.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Jesus Camp

Last night I watched a horror movie. This one was scarier than all of Wes Craven's movies, all the Friday the 13th, Nightmare on Elm Street or Halloween slasher flicks I've seen before. And the amazing thing is that this movie doesn't have any psychotic killers, ghoulish monsters and no blood and gore. What makes this movie scary is that it is REAL and it's called Jesus Camp.

Somewhere out there in middle America, talibanic Christian fundamentalists are creating an army of children to wage war against secular America. Now I understand why Richard Dawkins is so vocal against the religious indoctrination of children. The movie shows some of these children being homeschooled by their parents because public school teaches evolution. They read Chick tracts and believe everything in it, they join protest groups against abortion, they evangelise to strangers and a whole bunch of them attend a Christian camp to be brainwashed into seeing the world as black and whites.

Jesus did say in the Bible that we must have childlike faith and we must let the children come to him, but these fundies are really taking it too far. The children are essentially trapped in their parents' beliefs. They're not allowed to watch Harry Potter, they're told repeatedly that they are the chosen generation and they're not exposed to any other views other than that taught by the church. This is a recipe for disaster, especially when these children grow up and become future leaders. How will they view the secular world? How will they treat Muslims or anyone whose beliefs are different from their own?

It's easy to relate to this in Malaysia because the Muslims here too, tend to take things too far. From moral policing to inspecting ice-cream biscuits to Sisyphean apostacy cases, we know what it's like with people who see the world as absolutes. We have seen for ourselves how harmful religion can be. Of course, not all religious people are loonies, but it is religion that provides breeding ground such absolutism. Fortunately sensible Malaysians of all races and religions (and non-religions) are starting to question these fundamentalist acts. Again I stress that the answer is a balanced education that exposes people to different world views so that absolutism gets replaced with tolerance.

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3 Comments:

At 8:09 PM, November 27, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just stumbled upon this blog... Surprised i never came across it earlier. Is it new?

Anyway, your posts are very thought provoking and you put forward your arguments in very concise language. Look forward to seeing more of your posts.

 
At 10:50 PM, November 27, 2006, Blogger Meursault said...

Many thanks for your encouraging comment. Yes, this blog is fairly new, just over a month old.

I hope, slowly, more people will drop by and read the stuff I write. I'd really love to hear what everyone has to say.

 
At 9:25 AM, December 06, 2006, Blogger husen said...

You write a good stuff dood!

those people are reall crazy, and i am so so pity for the children who being forced and dictated since their childhood for just following what being written by Human... HUMAN!!

:(

keep it going fella!

 

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