Hear Ye! Since 1998.
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Feb 00

Dogma (again)

Ok maybe Dogma deserves a longer comment than, “funny shit”. It’s interesting the uproar this film caused with some Christians. I didn’t see the film as being anti-Christian, or offensive, either. For the record, I am Christian myself. One of the primary issues this film raised is how insitutionalised the Church and religion is. The film, after all, is called Dogma, and it does attack dogmatism amongst the religious – the unability to change views and beliefs, and the unwillingness to even re-evaluate things. The film cleverly put up some ideas that would be considered blasphemous (Alanis Morrisette as God? I think everyone would find that offensive :) which I reckon had the deliberate intention to provoke. The effect to some was immediate outcry against it. It provoked people alright – those, who due to belief and faith ingrained over decades of being Christian, condemned the film. These people aren’t necessarily bad people, it’s just the dogma coming through. As a corollary of this, the film attacks the idea of denominations (and not just Catholicism, which probably was singled out due to its long lineage and established traditions). I find the idea of so many splinters amongst a group of people who essentially have the same belief, troubling. The idea of denominations is a big turnoff for those who are thinking of become Christian. As a result of this, my idea is that you don’t have to belong to a denomination to be Christian. Faith is something you discover yourself – your interpretation of the Bible. You don’t have to believe everything your church leader preaches. Try figuring things out for yourself, and when you do, don’t impose those views upon others. I mean, the Protestants are a “faction” that broke away from the “mother church” of Catholicism because they had ideas that differed. That is, the original protestants had re-evaluated their faith instead of blindly prescribing to the Catholic one. They overcame dogma, in that respect. How things have changed.

Today, the idea of the Church ignoring the idea of a universe where Earth wasn’t at the centre is pretty ridiculous. How easy it is to look upon things in hindsight, yet be so blind (or at least inflexible) in looking at things right under our noses.

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