Unsettled Christianity

Gloria Dei homo vivens – St Irenaeus
May 7th, 2014 by Joel Watts

but women are nothing more than their bodies!

Lust

Lust (Photo credit: Project-128)

Since I opened the Facebook page, I’ve tried to cut down on posting random, not mine, items. However, I wanted to share this because I think it drives home so many points.

Sometimes, we use headlines to drive home points.

Sometimes, we use headlines to score views.

Sometimes, our headlines reveal a lot about what society is focused on.

Often times, we use women as marketing ploys because they are nothing more than the thigh gap and the arm they are attached too.

Wait.

Seriously, look at this. It is awesome. The public waits in anticipation to see a beautiful woman ugly, a happy woman sad, and a clothed woman embarrassingly naked. We are allowed to become focused only on the female as an object of lust. How dare they look natural and normal and experience life as a normal person!!

We have defined normal and perfect and beauty not based on realistic people, but upon what we are told they are by people who then feed off of us regurgitating it back to them. It is a dehumanizing cycle.

Imagine if we treated women and others exploited as a person, complete with personhood, rather that marketable objects of desire.

Sex sells because we buy it.

 

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Joel Watts
Watts holds a MA in Theological Studies from United Theological Seminary. He is currently a Ph.D. student at the University of the Free State, analyzing Paul’s model of atonement in Galatians, as well as seeking an MA in Clinical Mental Health at Adams State University. He is the author of Mimetic Criticism of the Gospel of Mark: Introduction and Commentary (Wipf and Stock, 2013), a co-editor and contributor to From Fear to Faith: Stories of Hitting Spiritual Walls (Energion, 2013), and Praying in God's Theater, Meditations on the Book of Revelation (Wipf and Stock, 2014).

Comments

13 Responses to “but women are nothing more than their bodies!”
  1. Know More Than I Should says

    One of the purposes, perhaps the primary purpose, of organized patriarchal monotheistic religion is to keep women in subjection for purposes of breeding and sex. This is most certainly one thing that both fundamentalist Christianity and it’s Islamic cousin have in common.

    • right? Exactly. And yet it bleeds over into the secular as well.

      • Scott Fritzsche says

        I think it wise to understand that these are sincerely held beliefs for, at the very least, the common people and a lot of the local clergy of fundamentalist Christianity and Islam as well as some other faiths. I don’t hold them, but we need to be cognizant and respectful that there are those who do. There are women in fundamentalist faiths and Islamic faiths that live happy and fulfilling lives. It is not the life I would choose for them, but it is not my choice after all. Right now I would say that the largest issue going on over female objectification is the “war on women” both sides claim that the other is perpetuating. To me, it seems that it is nothing more than a polite and modern barbarism where instead of dragging off women by their hair, we are dragging them off by their politics.

      • Know More Than I Should says

        Whether one approaches this topic from a secular or religious point of view makes little difference. The outcome is much the same.

        Since the ethically questionable research of Stanley Milgram, Phillip Zimbardo, and others, the issue of informed consent has become more germane. Informed consent takes into account factors such as age of consentee, whether any agreement/contract is the result of fear or peer/social pressure, any cognitive failure to understand implications of the arrangement, and so forth.

        Jesus pointed out the linkage between knowledge and freedom. While some women are totally content to be under the thumb of their husbands, others have second thoughts. Collectively some of these second thoughts gave rise to feminism.

        Lockstep religious inculcation can be particularly insidious. Church history reveals that philosophical differences all too quickly become labeled as damnable heresies. All too often, diversity is perceived as a threat to faith. That really is the story of women, or lack thereof, in the pulpit.

        If Christianity cannot be separated from the world by its honesty, then it will relegated to cast-aside salt that has lost its savor. That, too, Jesus pointed out.

        • Scott Fritzsche says

          I am not so ready to just boldly state that Christianity is only anything. I am just fine with fundamentalists being Christian as I am with Progressives being Christian so long as we agree on the identity of Jesus. To much is made of condemning and insulting a flavor of Christianity that is different than ours. In doing so, we become fundamentalists…just with different fundamentals than the originals.

          • Know More Than I Should says

            Are those not agreeing with you “on the identity of Jesus” less human and less deserving of protections than those comporting to your beliefs?

          • Scott Fritzsche says

            No they are not less human nor have I said so. Christianity does however require a belief in the identity of Christ, hence the clever name. None of that has anything to do with being more or less human, just with being a Christian.

          • Know More Than I Should says

            The world is bigger than what the church thinks of itself.

  2. The current worse example are the kidnappings of school children in Nigeria.
    But even fundamentalists have to admit that it is very OT. Benjamin kidnapping of wives. Midianite’s being exterminated, except their young virgin girls (for wives). Two things stand out, 1. Done with God’s blessings, and in some cases with God’s commands 2. Clearly the victims had no choice in the matter. Ok, extreme cases. But I would hope that even fundamentalists would not want to justify any of these episodes. Except I know better. The alternative is to simply admit the bible in not inerrant. You can still believe it is inspired, but inspired with human spin.

    • Scott Fritzsche says

      No fundamentalist layman or pastor that I know, and I do regularly associate with several, would ever endorse the kidnapping and sale of young women.

      • I think I was referring to some fundamentalists saying what was done to the Medianites or the kidnapped girls by the tribe of Benjamin was ok because…
        Usually see answers like sin, God’s will, ??? Whatever. Once heard a fundamentalist say Adam and Eve’s children intermarrying was ok because their DNA was pure in those days. These people jump through hoops to explain what cannot be considered rational.

  3. Know More Than I Should says

    Fear-based religion would be fun to watch if it didn’t cause so much suffering.

  4. Know More Than I Should says

    The news item linked below offers an interesting insight on the theme “women are nothing more than their bodies!” It reveal how a meat-auction-mentality in both church and state institutions are ill-equipped to deal with the complexities of young women’s experiences and points of view in society.

    http://www.wyff4.com/news/students-art-rejected-from-school-show-for-being-inappropriate/25907700

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