Christianity\’s orthopraxis reality

At a young age, I was already on the right path, so said the adults. Yes, I was on the path to becoming a good Christian. Even before the ‘approved’ age, I had memorized the endless litany of prayers. I had learnt them from listening to the older children chanting them ad nauseum. It was only a matter of time before I could partake in the catechism. I couldn’t wait.

Unfortunately all the Church can do is teach rituals, the outward signs of belief, i.e., what is ultimately of import. But it cannot teach faith, i.e., what is purported to be the essence of Christianity. Faith is beyond her control. You either have it or you do not. Of course, there is that murky state of doubt.

Christianity is an orthodoxy-centred religion; at least it is supposed to be. The other two Abrahamic religions are orthopraxis-centred; they are more honest. But, as I have said, faith cannot be taught. To-day’s Christianity is orthopraxis-oriented, though it retains the simulacrum of faith.

Because of this shift, which probably took place upon the ascent of the Church into power, Christianity was able to become a truly global religion – truly catholic. The extinction of the true Christians, faith-driven and humanists, shortly followed. It must be signaled out that although we in the West are under the impression that Church and State cannot be truly separated, this is not so; we are told that it is not possible so as to not effect a complete separation. Initially, Church and State were two separate entities; in fact, the State persecuted the Church. So, there is a precedent for a separation of Church and State; besides these two entities are in competition for power over man.

Oddly enough, it is proposed in the West that the solution to the ailments of Islam is to bring about a separation of Church and State. But then again, there was no such division to begin with in the Muslim world. The Church and State were one in the same; they were not in competition. Thus, I am not so sure that to say that Islam is going through its equivalent of the Middle Ages is proper. Yes, Islam does seem backwards and anti-modernist, but so are Christianity and Judaism; their anti-modernist tendencies are restrained by the fourth Abrahamic religion: Secularism. Yet, Secularism requires the continuation of the three religions it has superseded, in order to allow her to keep her essence, to keep her honest and self-critical.

Yes, this may all seem like a divagation but I have been waiting to express these thoughts for four months; I simply did not know how. To-day I was inspired, I found a way to express my ruminations.

As I said, you either have faith or you don’t. I never had it, what I had was a desire to belong, hence my eagerness to learn the rituals. And I will never have faith. Alas, I will remain Catholic ethnically. No matter, how much I may attempt to distance myself from Christianity, I am forever trapped. I don’t believe in God, but I do believe in the effects the cult around Him, i.e., the religious sytem, has had on me.