Thursday, August 28, 2008

More Christian - Conservatives or Liberals?

Last time I tried to argue this, I did so on Boundless and was accused of having a distorted view of Conservatism...

I thought that funny, because it came straight from the dictionary. And the guy failed to provide me with a definition. So until he does, I'll stick with the dictionary.

Conservativism - a political or theological orientation advocating the preservation of the best in society and opposing radical changes.

Problem with that definition is the use of "best in society" - who determines what is best? Lets find another one that's less objective.

Conservative - disposed to preserve existing conditions, institutions, etc., or to restore traditional ones, and to limit change.

Now with the next one:
Liberalism - a political or social philosophy advocating the freedom of the individual, parliamentary systems of government, nonviolent modification of political, social, or economic institutions to assure unrestricted development in all spheres of human endeavor, and governmental guarantees of individual rights and civil liberties.

And...
Liberal - favorable to progress or reform, as in political or religious affairs.

You know, traditionally (*giggle*) Christianity and Judaism are Conservative. You do things because they've always been done that way. At some point, tradition is accepted simply because that's the way its always been. Other times, tradition is held to beyond rationalization...to the point that the reason for it is completely lost (Pharisaic Sabbath, anyone? Mark 2:23-3:6).

However, Liberals are guilty of the same exact thing. Yes, I did just say that. Conservatism and Liberalism are far more alike than either would like to credit the other with.

You see, Liberals will debunk tradition and traditional values SIMPLY BECAUSE THEY ARE TRADITIONAL. They automatically assume that there was no good reason for the tradition and throw it out. They are against doing "what has always been done". They will refuse to look into reasons of why that tradition is in place.

You see, contrary to popular belief, we really aren't that much smarter than people were a thousand years ago. Notice how society and knowledge fluctuate through time? I even heard it mentioned we could be in a Dark Age NOW. Though I'd never go so far as saying THAT, per se, I will acknowledge that there were far more brilliant minds in existence a thousand years, two thousand years, even three thousand years before now.

I think that both Liberals and Conservatives need to stop doing things simply because "that's the way its always been". They need to stop and ask themselves - what is the BEST way? Even if occassionally it means holding to tradition or completely debunking tradition.

And Christians, like Christ, need to do the same thing. Of course, we define the BEST way by Biblical standards - and therefore everything needs to be tested by the scriptures (1 John 4:1). Sometimes, Tradition is biblical (like remembering the Sabbath and the Lord's Supper). Sometimes, its not (like praying to Mother Mary and the Saints). Sometimes, we'll be conservative - like Christ. Other times, we'll be liberal - like Christ.

2 comments:

single/certain said...

christianity is conservative, yes. all religions are. but CHRIST, now there was a liberal if i ever saw one.... he brought radical change and freedom. in this case, i guess i have to say i'm a liberal ;-)

Christina said...

SC,

Christ wasn't a TRUE liberal...

Remember he got really angry with the money exchangers in the Temple for desecrating a very SACRED tradition - The Passover...