Hot-For-Jesus Former Fundie de-Conversion Story… abridged

July 4, 2009 at 1:12 am 49 comments

I’ve been meaning to submit this story for a long time. However, whenever I feel the urge to testify regarding my former life as a born-again evangelical fundamentalist christian, I head to my blog and throw a little piece of my former self onto my Hot-For-Jesus Former Fundie site. After a year and a half of blogging with both a satirical and serious angle about my Jesus days, I realize over and over again that no matter how much I write, I have barely put a dent in my story. However, the testimony/story-telling helps me deprogram as my christian past continually loses its power over me.

Currently empathetic atheist with a appreciation for human wisdom whether pagan, christian, or buddhist (et. al), I grew up in a born-again household. We attended many, many churches, but were most comfortable among the Evangelical Free and Baptists. I’ll never forget the spurt of going up over the Canadian border every Sunday to attend a Mennonite Church. (wonderful ppl, btw)

I went forward and was baptized while in late elementary. I started singing for Jesus about that time and eventually became a camp counselor at a Baptist Bible camp, leading children to Christ. I faced doubts and strengthened my faith while at an Evangelical Lutheran college.

After college, I quickly left behind my english teaching career to pursue music and theatre in the Big Cities. But there was a catch. I filtered every artistic endeavour through my belief system. More than once I turned down artistic opportunites because the message conflicted with my theology. I wrote and performed Jesus music because I truly believed that my talent/curse was meant to be used to praise him. Never one for witnessing to total strangers or even friends, I found my music gave me a way to tell of Christ’s love and salvation without having to interact one on one. I was semi-shy offstage, but loved being onstage. I was determined to use my gifts for the glory of God and thankful that he had given me a platform on which to praise him.

Then about 7 years ago, a veil lifted. I got in a car accident that woke me up to my priorities about Life. I left my faith behind almost immediately. There was no in-between stage for me, and I pity, and am in awe, of christians who spend years and years agonizing over the “should I stay or should I go” question. I got out and have no regrets.

I know how believers respond to my leaving the faith. Who hasn’t heard the “you were tested and failed miserably” or “you were never a true believer to begin with” or “once saved, always saved?” The list goes on and on and on.

I blog about Jesus to help myself deprogram. I also encourage all de-converted to not be afraid to actively seek professional help or find a healthy support system of nonbelievers. I know what it’s like to lose the sense of community that belonging to christianity, a church, a family provides. I know what it’s like to experience vertigo while taking the leap from faith to solid ground.

I went from constantly censoring and double guessing every creative instinct to allowing myself to say pretty much anything I want. The blog also gives me an opportunity to practice imperfect writing. So yes, to some my attention to the sexual attractiveness of Jesus is pure blasphemy. I would like to say that being hot for Jesus is merely a schtick. After all, every good entertainer knows you gotta have a gimmick. But, honestly, though I’m quite familiar with the theology that questions Jesus’ historical hotness, I also want to publicly embrace with humor and honesty the fact that without a sexy god like Jesus, christianity would have been SOL.

I could yack for many more paragraphs about “hottie Jesus eye candy and indepth analysis of life before, during and after JC and company,” but suffice it to say, everyone has a story to tell, and I’m glad to see so many people have the courage to talk about their lack of faith, and what it was like to break up with Jesus. Thank you to the de-conversion site for creating a safe space for some of us to once again tell our story, chin up, loud and Proud.

Here’s to hoping that we not only remember to be compassionate, but to remember to laugh out loud at our former selves.

- Xtine
(www.hotforjesusformerfundie.blogspot.com)

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The death of a pet (and how it relates to religion) Forum Feature: My de-conversion “coming out” letter to my family

49 Comments Add your own

  • 1. The de-Convert  |  July 4, 2009 at 1:52 am

    BTW, this is our 500th post.

    Total views: 1,167,161

    Posts: 500

    Comments: 24,651

  • 2. BigHouse  |  July 4, 2009 at 1:11 pm

    Nice 50:1 comment/post ratio!

    Happy 4th dc.com crowd.

  • 3. the chaplain  |  July 4, 2009 at 10:28 pm

    …remember to laugh out loud at our former selves.

    Great advice. It’s easy to take ourselves far too seriously. When one is a believer, questions of faith seem deadly serious. Well, they are, from within that point of view: questions of life, death, eternity…. Wow! Heavy stuff.

    When we step outside of that paradigm, though, it’s easier to view religious questions, most of which are utterly ridiculous, if we’re honest about it, from a healthier perspective. So, yeah, sometimes I’m still angry at my former self, sometimes I’m still embarrassed by my former self, but mostly I’m putting that life behind me and getting some good chuckles at the crap I once believed.

  • 4. Quester  |  July 5, 2009 at 2:30 am

    Thanks for sharing, Christine. I’m curious, though, you say that there was no “in-between” stage for you, but then go on to talk about the efforts you take to deprogram yourself. I thought I knew what you meant by “in-between stage” but now I’m not sure. Can you clarify?

    Oh, and to all the d-C crowd, congraulations!

  • 5. Xtine  |  July 5, 2009 at 10:22 am

    Quester: good question to clarify. The “no inbetween stage” was the time for me to go from full of faith to no Need for faith. It happened very quickly. The deprogramming refers to unlearning habits of faith – such as unlearning the mental (& physical) ruts of christianity.
    In yoga you constantly deprogram your body-mind by tapping into the memory of the cells and encouraging a new flexibility or comfort/peace. Writing as deprogramming forces me to shine a light on the remnants of christianity rooted in my mind-body.
    I have and had no doubts about leaving the faith, but I do believe there are cult-like aspects of christianity that require deprogramming. I think for each person who leaves, we all have different areas – cell memories – that need different levels of deprogramming. Though there are common threads – it is still a very case by case process.
    Does that clarify or muddle? (Still on first cup of joe)

    Chaplain: agree – so so easy to take everything waay too seriously… And I think it is important to clarify the difference between making fun of former self versus poking fun at believers. It has been an interesting exercise for me when writing satirical pieces. Religious satire can be a heavy cross to bare. (Sorry) I have a new found admiration for the likes of Al Franken- how do you say what you need to say and make people laugh and yet get people to take you seriously, all while Not taking self too seriously… The 2012 piece was a struggle – end of world stuff – you can probably hear the angst in it between the funny bits. Always on the lookout for the funny bits.

  • 6. Xtine  |  July 5, 2009 at 10:24 am

    Goshdarn blackberry- feel free to erase the first one.

  • 7. Free-at-last  |  July 5, 2009 at 11:20 pm

    Thanks for your post – I agree with your comment about seeking professional help or a healthy support system of nonbelievers, but I’m having a hard time findiing such help. I have NO ONE to discuss my de-conversion with. Anyone I have considered to be a close enough friend to discuss very personal issues like this with have been in my Christian ‘bubble,’ and other friends I have pushed aside over the years (you know, we’re not to yoke with non-believers . . .). So I find myself very alone in this, and while this site and others like it are immensely helpful, nothing can replace real human dialog. Do you have suggestions? Anyone??

  • 8. Ubi Dubium  |  July 6, 2009 at 12:03 am

    I suggest checking to see if there is a local Ethical Society, or humanist or atheist group in your area. Try Google. If there isn’t, I’d suggest looking up the closest Unitarian Church. The membership there often has a high percentage of Atheists. The Unitarians are about social action and celebrating what we have in common, and I’ve never known them to push any sort of dogma on their members at all. Might be a good starting point.

  • 9. Xtine  |  July 6, 2009 at 2:40 am

    Free-at-Last: awesome username btw!… have used it elsewhere online too.
    I agree with UbiDubium in that it wouldn’t hurt looking into the Unitarian Church. My lack of interaction with deconverted was a major reason why I started the blog. I knew NO ONE who had deconverted from fundie. I became like a circus freak among my nonreligious friends, as in they knew no one with the background as mine and kept asking me questions, would want to go to movies like Jesus Camp with me, just to see my reaction.
    One of the original intents of the blog is to find ways to get former fundie deconverts meeting face to face. I have finally met with one deconverted pastor’s kid, and am still working on creating such a group. The face to face time with someone who has been there done that is priceless. To be honest, I’ve not yet been to a Unitarian Church… not ready for that step yet. Getting there, maybe.
    Good luck, and if all else fails, start your own support group… look for online for atheist/humanist/skeptic groups in your area. Check out meetup.com … and if you feel it is relevant, also look into free or sliding-scale therapists in your area, or whatever you can afford.
    Keep asking… keep looking.

  • 10. The de-Convert  |  July 6, 2009 at 8:17 am

    My intent is to one day facilitate such connections by launching some type of small group interactions in different cities. The community site ( http://www.deconversion.org ) is a start in this direction. I believe there are some atheist types group but I’d like to do this from a deconversion (former christian) perspective.

    BTW, my ultimate goal (after I retire which hopefully is within the next 5 years) is to go around doing seminars in cities where we publicize the meeting and hopefully launch groups from the attendees.

    Anyone interested in joining?

  • 11. Xtine  |  July 6, 2009 at 9:39 am

    Very much so. As I work on this in my neck of the woods I definitely will be in contact with you.

  • 12. Free-at-last  |  July 6, 2009 at 11:27 am

    Thanks so much for the suggestions, fellow de-cons. Ubi-Dubium: I will try Google, haven’t done that yet. I appreciate your help. X-tine: I have checked meetup.com, but the only groups I found were in the southern midwest states; I’m in the Chicago area, and that’s a bit too far for me. The de-Convert: A resounding YES! Please keep us informed. In the meantime, I’ll stay posted to this site for support; you’re all my best friends right now.

  • 13. paleale  |  July 6, 2009 at 2:55 pm

    De-Convert

    Yes, yes and yes. I would love to be involved. Let me know if you come through Dallas.

  • 14. Joe  |  July 6, 2009 at 3:22 pm

    X-tine—-

    I checked out your blog and really am amazed that you don’t ask yourself how or why you fallen into that sort of mockery? I understand you have “heard it all before” and most likely will just chuckle at any serious questioning of what you have fallen into.

    You should take a time-out and read Psalm 1—note how the Psalm shows a progression from walking, to standing still, to finally sitting in the seat of scoffers. It’s truly an amazing thing to see. I am always surprised when someone says the “used to be a Christian” and can fall into a state of literally mocking Jesus. How sad.

  • 15. Joe  |  July 6, 2009 at 3:27 pm

    What I’m trying to say above is that I understand someone becoming doubtful, or even finally hitting a place where they don’t believe. I feel sad for them—but I understand. But at least they show or hold respect for the person of Christ–even if they don’t really believe in him any more. They show respect for those who still do believe.

    What I don’t understand is someone who once was a believer being able to come to a place of mockery like your blog. Why? What is the need to mock what you once believed?

    I just don’t get it.

  • 16. The de-Convert  |  July 6, 2009 at 7:14 pm

    Joe,

    It may be “mockery” to you but it’s probably an expression of “wow, I can’t believe I bought into this” attitude from xtine.

    Did you grow up believing in Santa Claus? If so, I’m sure you’ve come to a place of “how could I believe that an overweight man in a red suit flew around the world on Christmas eve delivering presents to ever home from a sleigh pulled by flying reindeers entering each home through the chimney and eating their cookies/drinking milk.” How is that even possible given the magnitude of such an assignment? I sure you would “mock” that belief today if you met an adult who actually still believed that.

    Paul

  • 17. The de-Convert  |  July 6, 2009 at 7:38 pm

    paleale,

    Check out http://www.squidoo.com/FreeThinkersDFW

    Paul

  • 18. Joe  |  July 6, 2009 at 8:06 pm

    De-convert–

    True—I don’t believe in Santa Claus now. But I look back on my childhood belief fondly and feel no need to mock Santa Claus, or post blogs or artwork that insult who that character means to little children. Do you understand what I am saying? I know he doesn’t exist—but I feel no need to degrade the memory or “person” of Santa Claus because I was once fooled into believing in him. I think believing in him gave me great joy for a while when I was a child—and I’ll always treasure that. Even if I was “fooled” I don’t feel I need to mock Santa Claus now due to that.

    If Jesus is just a “character” to Xtine, why mock him, or hold him up to ridicule? If you are “passed” belief in his person, you still have much reason to respect his sayings and what he stands for to many people.

    Before I became a Christian I believed for a time in Hindu gods (Babaji for example). I no longer believe in him—but feel no need to mock Hindu gpds, or put up artwork that says “hot for Krishna” or other such garbage. To me that shows more than just getting “past” something—-it is showing a bit of hatred towards that object. Interestingly enough Hebrews 6 and 10 speak of those who “crucify Christ again” by denying the Lord they once knew, and “holding him up to public ridicule”.

    I’m sorry—-but I just don’t understand why one would want to do that. I respect not believing any more—–but mocking the person of someone who stands for so much that is noble and right just doesn’t make sense to me—no matter how little you still believe in Jesus.

  • 19. Ubi Dubium  |  July 6, 2009 at 9:32 pm

    Free-at-Last –
    Since you are in the Chicago area, be sure you check out FriendlyAtheist.com. Hemant is also in the Chicago area, and sometimes mentions local events he is attending. Plus, it’s one of the better Atheist blogs out there. Being around a big city outside of the bible belt, you will probably be able to find a non-religious group to connect with pretty easily.

  • 20. The de-Convert  |  July 6, 2009 at 9:36 pm

    I think you have to look at the title and tag line of her blog “Hot-For-Jesus Former Fundie – provides hottie jesus eye candy and in-depth analysis of life before, during, and after JC and company”

    Pool to Readers: Is xtine mocking Jesus ( see http://www.hotforjesusformerfundie.blogspot.com/ ) ?

    Paul

  • 21. Xtine  |  July 6, 2009 at 11:35 pm

    Joe,
    If you read carefully, again and again I pay homage to Jesus as a misunderstood wise man/rebel, if he did indeed exist. Real/Imagined lust is mockery? A better word might be blasphemy.

    Our own Rep. Michelle Bachmann was proud to inform her constituents that she is “hot for Jesus.” Sex and religion (and politics) go hand in hand… and I’m as serious and satirical about it as I can be. I’m also aware that there are many many verses that expressly warn against what I’ve done here… and warn against people like me.

    And warn against people like all of us, you included, yes?

    When it comes to comedy/satire/clowning… very little is sacred or can be sacred. I have no problem with that. I’m willing to take the risk. To me, the clown him/herself is sacred.

    Ironically, I do find a need to mock santa claus. I was never allowed to believe in him or any other fictional holiday character.

    http://hotforjesusformerfundie.blogspot.com/2007/12/santas-helper-jesus-lamb-duke-it-out.html

    I have no problem with people mocking santa claus or the easter bunny. I do have a problem with people mocking um… i’m thinking here… my porcelain doll collection… Wellstone? More than anything, I need a constant reminder to laugh at myself.

    Would it be better that no one, former or current believer ever admitted to the way in which Jesus’ sexual attractiveness is used to sell not only their belief but line the pockets of certain believers? I’m female. Jesus was male. He is depicted as a god. Gods have always had a sexual under/overtone to them. I’m willing to look that side of Jesus/christianity square in the eye. There are many genres of Jesus looks/art out there. Women know this. Women are attracted to it. Some women are even honest about it.

    I admire Jesus tremendously, will always love him as a character/historical figure, and will always be honest about the female (and even gay) perspective of what it means to have been his devoted follower.

    I understand if the tone of the blog bothers you. I understand it’s not for everyone. That’s okay by me. Thanks for giving it a whirl.

  • 22. LeoPardus  |  July 7, 2009 at 1:02 pm

    Joe,

    Maybe the “mockery” is a carry-over from the days of being a believer and mocking every other religion, including other christian denominations.

  • 23. Xtine  |  July 7, 2009 at 1:19 pm

    LeoPardus
    I think you’re onto something. It was one of the biggest frustrations of fundamentalist born-again belief system, having to hear about how most other christians weren’t really christian. I never quite agreed, but bought into it… they had ways of driving a mean bargain with that argument. Not a big deal within my family, but as outsiders even within the christian faith, I saw plenty of mocking going on towards fundies/born-againers and going out toward the rest of christians/non believers from within born-again ranks.

  • 24. paleale  |  July 7, 2009 at 2:34 pm

    Joe,

    How did you feel about the Danish cartoonists who satirized Mohammed?

  • 25. paleale  |  July 7, 2009 at 3:15 pm

    xtine

    I have to agree with you and Leo regarding the mockery of other religions within the Christian community. Chick tracts anyone? I was at both ends of the spear at different times. It makes me sad to say it but it seems to be ingrained in human nature to belittle something that you don’t agree with or understand, almost as a sort of defense mechanism perhaps. We’re so slow to empathize or try to see from another’s perspective.

  • 26. LeoPardus  |  July 7, 2009 at 3:41 pm

    The demonizing of one’s former beliefs or confessions seems to be very common.
    I remember hearing Orthodox converts berating the denominations they came from. I’ve heard ex-Catholics do likewise. Ditto converts to Catholicism.
    And I’ve heard ex-atheists/agnostics belittle the stupidity of those who haven’t seen “the plain truth of the gospel”.
    And of course there are plenty of examples of de-converts demonizing the church they came from.

  • 27. Karen  |  July 7, 2009 at 3:46 pm

    Excellent post. :-)

    Like you, I lost my intellectual/spiritual beliefs fairly quickly (under a year) but took many years to disentangle and deprogram myself from all the social and emotional baggage of 30 years of religious devotion.

    In terms of the mockery – I think different people deal with the aftermath of deconversion in different ways. If finding the humor in many years of bondage, baggage works, go for it!

    By the way, you should read the post from a couple years back where HIS talked about the homoerotic Jesus and how the sexual appeal was so obviously uncomfortable for him as a straight guy. You two would definitely find some common ground. ;-)

    And Paul, congrats on your numbers. They are fantastic. I would love to see something more come of the deconversion project, including local meet ups.

    I sort of stumbled across a fellow deconvert a couple of years ago online, found out she was local and we’ve become good friends. It’s true that talking to someone in person about all this stuff is invaluable.

  • 28. Xtine  |  July 7, 2009 at 3:48 pm

    Very familiar with Chick tracts… maybe too familiar.

    One reason why I started the blog was that nonbelievers constantly peppered me with questions and misconceptions about born-again believers… i found myself often defending the very faith and people I left. True, I may not always hit the sweet spot of balance between satire and serious, but i empathize. We constantly need the reminder to do so.

  • 29. Eve's Apple  |  July 7, 2009 at 7:10 pm

    One of the reasons I refused to go see Mel Gibson’s “Passion” was that I felt that it was a kind of pornography. This shocked a number of my “Christian” friends, and they wanted to know why. I explained that basically it was a snuff movie involving a naked man who is tortured, and like it or not, there are people who are powerfully aroused by such stuff, even if they won’t admit it to themselves or others. But because it is “Jesus” it’s ok to go see something like that and revel in it.

    If you study Catholic mystical tradition you will find numerous examples of disturbing sexual/violent “visions” that were experienced mainly by cloistered nuns. Gibson’s Passion was based on one of them. It is a sort of underground sexuality, not as open as “Hot for Jesus” but there nonetheless. So this is nothing new. In fact, I am not surprised. Seeing that it has been 2,000 years since Jesus has failed to return, with each passing year (and the passing of all that knew him in the flesh), he has become more and more of a fantasy figure. The ultimate imaginary friend. Some of us, however, are no longer capable of expending the energy required to maintain such a friend.

  • 30. Xtine  |  July 8, 2009 at 1:32 am

    Eve’s Apple: Excellent points. yes, “The Passion” was a snuff film… or at the very least s&m disguised as righteousness. One thing my circle of christians had going for it was that we were always very skeptical of any depiction of christ, whether an actor or painting. I think the christian right is becoming more lax about that as they take in born-agains from within the faith… catholics/lutherans etc.

    and yes… if you read any number of nun writings from way back, or even more recent, hildegard etc, you find very very erotic writing. All sexual energy was channelled into and through christ… or they were in complete denial about their own sexual practices.

    But what we see now, nuns are much less suppressed, and much less common. The christian right has taken on the role of extreme sexual repression and denial whether the saving self for marriage clubs, promise keepers, or placing such a high importance on virginity… and the virginity value is still much higher in women than in men. So yes, i think the fundies have created a whole new genre of lust for Jesus among their women that doesn’t exactly make for healthy real world relationships.

    Not just the ultimate imaginary friend… but the ultimate imaginary BOYfriend.

  • 31. Brian  |  July 8, 2009 at 10:06 am

    I’m reminded of the “Jesus Dance” from “Drop Dead Gorgeous”

  • 32. Donny  |  July 8, 2009 at 5:08 pm

    That is a great story. Yes it does take a while to do away with the left over’s of faith. I just read a good book that may help in this regard. “Virus of the Mind, the New Science of the Meme” by Richard Brodie. Here is a blurb on it.

    Summary

    Virus of the Mind is the first popular book devoted to the science of memetics, a controversial new field that transcends psychology, biology, anthropology, and cognitive science. Memetics is the science of memes, the invisible but very real DNA of human society.

    In Virus of the Mind, Richard Brodie carefully builds on the work of scientists Richard Dawkins, Douglas Hofstadter, Daniel Dennett, and others who have become fascinated with memes and their potential impact on our lives. But Brodie goes beyond science and dives into the meat of the issue: is the emergence of this new science going to have an impact on our lives like the emergence of atomic physics did in the Cold War?

    Brodie would say the impact will be at least as great. While atomic bombs affect everybody’s life, viruses of the mind touch lives in a more personal and more pernicious way.

    Mind viruses have already infected governments, educational systems, and inner cities, leading to some of the most pervasive and troublesome problems of society today: youth gangs, the welfare cycle, the deterioration of the public schools, and ever-growing government bureaucracy.

    Viruses of the mind are not a future worry: they are here with us now and are evolving to become better and better at their job of infecting us. The recent explosion of mass media and the information superhighway has made the earth a prime breeding ground for viruses of the mind.

    Will there be a mental plague? Will only some of us survive with our free will intact? Brodie weaves together science, ethics, and current events as he raises these and other very disturbing questions about memes.

    This book has helped me understand how we are programmed. I hope that it may help you in your journey.

  • 33. Xtine  |  July 9, 2009 at 10:21 pm

    Brian. Thanks for sharing! I’ve not yet watched that movie. It looks like a real gem. And yes, that scene pretty much sums it up. Hilarious.

    Donny: thanks for the book recommendation. I will do my best to hunt it down. It looks relevant to any level of indoctrination. Interesting approach to say the least.

    Karen… or any longterm dc member who knows there way around this site… can you direct me to that story you mentioned about the discomfort of straight male worship of Jesus? I’ve heard many, straight and gay, men talk about the homo-erotic undertones. Would like to read this story. (HIS?)

  • 34. Xtine  |  July 9, 2009 at 10:31 pm

    Trying to catch up on the misplaced thread:
    265. Joe | July 8, 2009 at 3:34 pm
    paleale–

    Maybe my words are being limited. So–no I don’t think it’s right to make fun of Mohammed, Jesus or any other revered person. One can make fun of the followers—–many Christians are wackos lol—but making fun of Jesus (in an insulting manner to clarify) is wrong—-so would it be for Mohammed.

    266. Joe | July 8, 2009 at 3:37 pm
    Imagine if Xtine’s site portrayed Martin Luther King Jr. in the same light——I think you would see a massive outcry—at least from those who visited her site. That is because he is a revered person. So is Jesus to millions. And too, Mohammed. What makes it OK to portray Jesus in a sexual manner, when you know there would be no way one would do the same to Martin Luther King or other revered persons???

    267. SnugglyBuffalo | July 9, 2009 at 8:27 am
    *whispers to Joe* I think you posted this in the wrong thread…

    But to respond, I think you’re being overly sensitive. I don’t mind satirical depictions of the figures I revere. I rather embrace such humor, usually. But then, revered or not, I hold nothing as sacred.

    Would know one do the same for Martin Luther King Jr.? Frankly, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if you could find similar imagery for him if you dug deep enough. And I would have no problem with that. I honestly think that this idea that some persons are above satire and mockery to be a little dangerous.

    268. Joe | July 9, 2009 at 11:20 am
    You’re right—-I did post in the wrong thread. LOL

    Thanks for the comments–I guess everyone has their own level of tolerance for mocking of what they would consider sacred.

    269. paleale | July 9, 2009 at 1:59 pm
    I’m glad to see that at least you are consistent, Joe. There’s hope for you yet!

    270. Joe | July 9, 2009 at 7:44 pm
    I remember when Phil Hartman portrayed Jesus on SNL. It was satirical, but never demeaning or insulting. I remember the episode where Sally Field portrayed a Christian woman in the kitchen praying to Jesus she wouldn’t burn the rice. Jesus appears (Phil Hartman) and tells her she doesn’t need to pray about the rice. LOL. But Sally Field goes on about how she “has” to pray about everything, and starts to cry. Jesus says “OK, OK, pray for the rice all you want”. It was very funny, but actually kind of touching too—-like Jesus didn’t want to hurt Sally Field’s feelings. I like that kind of satirization.

    Another time Jesus (Phil Hartman) visits an entertainment agency, and David Spade is the receptionist with phone headset. Jesus (in sandles, robe, long hair and beard) asks to speak with one of the big wigs right away. Spade says “And you are…?” “I’m Jesus” he says. Spade replies “Is he expecting you?” Jesus says “Well no, but..”
    Spade says “Then have a seat please.”

    Very funny (guess you had to see it)—but it was satirization without insult, or demeaning Christ’s character—-I see nothing wrong with that—–what I do not appeciate is a “mocking” manner when satirizing—-I really think that crosses the line.

    http://de-conversion.com/2008/05/25/why-d-c-1-answer-the-damn-question-mr-priest/#comment-35001

  • 35. Xtine  |  July 9, 2009 at 11:01 pm

    Joe: Sexy Jesus has been around forever. The Jesus skits you mentioned reminded me of the Jesus satire my thespian JC posse would do… they were/are very much within the faith and very willing to poke fun at Jesus/Christians/themselves in a very PG way. Quite tame, and lame, though funny. I’m perhaps somewhere between the PG-13 and R rating. I know for a fact that there is X and XXX Jesus satire/mocking. If my blog was X-rated, which it isn’t, we wouldn’t be having this discussion because no one would be reading it to begin with… or should I say… no one would ADMIT to reading an X-rated blog about Jesus.

    I think the problem still centers around the best word to use in describing the tone… mocking vs blasphemy vs sacrilegious … and what is comedy vs satire vs parody. All different things. As far as I can tell, “satirization without insult” is a matter of semantics.

    As far as comedy goes, if I were to create a sacrilegious blog about Martin Luther King Jr, it wouldn’t fly for so many reasons. But if an African American son/daughter of a preacher-politician created a satirical blog about MLK, it just might fly, and fly quite well. Again, nothing, or very little, can be sacred within satire, but the best laughs comes from people who have been on the inside.

    Also… MLK was a guaranteed real person… not a person who has become more mythical than human over 2000 years of evolving faith/doubt in him. People we know touched him, prayed with him, slept with him. He is solid fact. Totally different scenario.

    I’m not Phil Hartman. I don’t aspire to be him.

    The hotness of Jesus is just one aspect of the blog…. would hate for readers to not see the forest for the trees… but i understand that some people will not be able to see past that gimmick. That’s okay. I do my best to not force it down Anyone’s throat.

  • 36. The de-Convert  |  July 9, 2009 at 11:08 pm

    Xtine,

    Here you go: http://de-conversion.com/2007/07/12/my-homoerotic-relationship-with-jesus/

    Paul

  • 37. Xtine  |  July 9, 2009 at 11:12 pm

    aha! thanks.

  • 38. Joe  |  July 10, 2009 at 8:16 pm

    >>And on a more practical level, I don’t think Jesus wants a relationship with any of us anyway. As a Christian, I talked to Jesus for years, but never heard a word back from him. That is in no way a relationship, despite all the effort I put into it.<< —from article in #36.

    Never heard back from him? I find that to be very hard to believe actually. The very reason most of us come to Christ is because we "hear" a voice calling to us (not verbally, but in a very real way spiritually). The only reason you sought him out is because he was seeking you out—-the Bible makes that very clear. "We love him because he first loved us".

  • 39. paleale  |  July 10, 2009 at 10:41 pm

    Joe, I think you need to travel abroad. Or maybe you should listen to Art Bell. Maybe that will give you a bit of perspective on people and voices.

  • 40. The de-Convert  |  July 11, 2009 at 12:54 pm

    … or watch “A Beautiful Mind”…. I’m convinced that many sincere preachers who claim to have seen Jesus fall into this category. Of course, you have many who just make it up :)

    Joe,

    I have been amazed that the whole psychic world seem to have clearer insights than Christians who claim to hear Jesus. Go visit a psychic and you’ll be amazed as to what they’ll tell you about yourself. Wherever they’re getting their info. from seems to be more real than Jesus.

    Paul

  • 41. Gry Dla Dzieci  |  July 13, 2009 at 6:27 am

    I belive that teaching kids about religion from the youngest years is a form of brainwashing. if we let everyone choose their fate once they’re grown up there’d be a lot less “religion battles” and a lot more atheists in general. We shouldn’t brainwash our kids!

  • 42. Joe  |  July 20, 2009 at 3:28 pm

    paleale–

    #39 Art Bell—LOL.

  • 43. johnwarren  |  July 27, 2009 at 10:20 pm

    You never really explain how you can go from being a Christian one day and not the next.

  • 44. Xtine  |  July 28, 2009 at 1:21 am

    johnwarren: on here or on the blog? There is a lot more that I could say about it, and numerous posts touch on it, but the post that says the most about the deconversion moment/day is :http://hotforjesusformerfundie.blogspot.com/2008/11/meditation-vs-prayer-first-round-in.html

    Maybe this isn’t what you mean… as in do you want to know exactly what happened when i snapped from one side to the other? Basically it was the moment when I realized that faith/god was no longer a necessity… how Can one go so quickly between the two? it was a lot faster change than most, but it there was some build-up… how do you describe deal breakers in life? It is something I continue to work on describing for the sake of understanding the human self, but at the same time I feel no need to defend my loss of faith.

    The moment of turning off the faith switch is best described in the post linked above…. will probably continue to write about the events, thoughts surrounding that moment.

  • 45. johnwarren  |  July 28, 2009 at 10:37 pm

    I read the post that you suggested that I read. It is an interesting point of view on prayer. However prayer is a part on an individual it consumes an individual. Prayer is about a conversation both with your mind and your mouth toward God. It is not a ritual that one does because they are now a Christian. Christianity is not a set of rules that one must follow. Christianity is living a complete life that worships an all knowing and powerful God.

    After reading the post. It seems that you went from worshiping God to worshiping yourself. And that you no longer care what happens to you when you die. As if you have no fear for complete separation from God. Or do you not know what that maybe like.

  • 46. Joshua  |  July 28, 2009 at 11:34 pm

    “Christianity is not a set of rules that one must follow. Christianity is living a complete life that worships an all knowing and powerful God.”

    Wait, so the only rule of Christianity is that you are not supposed to talk about the rule in Christianity?

    The only rule in Christianity, of course, is that you are supposed to worship an all knowing and all powerful God for your complete life…

  • 47. Ubi Dubium  |  July 28, 2009 at 11:41 pm

    You know, most deconverts I have talked to, including myself, didn’t go from worshipping god to worshipping anybody else instead. They realized that worship of anything was totally unnecessary. They just stopped worshipping. “Or do you not know what that may be like.”

    And how can you possibly worry about “complete separation from god” when there is no way to tell if a god even exists? Or an afterlife?

    Johnwarren, I suggest that you go find the big red exclamation point on the right side of the screen, and go read the posts linked to there, before telling us all about ourselves.

  • 48. LeoPardus  |  July 29, 2009 at 10:34 am

    Another thing that might help johnwarren is simply repeating this mantra when he’s trying to understand what’s being said on this site, “There is no all-powerful, all-knowing God”. With that lodged in your mind, you may be able to understand what is going on here.
    We aren’t worshipping ourselves, we aren’t mad at non-existent deities,
    Anyway, read the red exclamation point articles.

  • 49. Manuel  |  December 23, 2012 at 7:34 am

    Traci, I really have enyjeod looking at the photos on your site and wish you lived on the west coast! (Our family needs you!!) Nathan is truly a blessing and we wish he and his family still lived over on the west coast as well!Blessings to Nathan and the entire family on his special day!

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Attention Christian Readers

Just in case you were wondering who we are and why we de-converted.

de-conversion wager

Whether or not you believe in God, you should live your life with love, kindness, compassion, mercy and tolerance while trying to make the world a better place. If there is no God, you have lost nothing and will have made a positive impact on those around you. If there is a benevolent God reviewing your life, you will be judged on your actions and not just on your ability to blindly believe in creeds- when there is a significant lack of evidence on how to define God or if he/she even exists.

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