Full disclosure: I'm a Bad Religion Fan Girl. Or something. Fan Girl sounds awfully frivolous, but what else do you call it?
I'm a Bad ReligiFull disclosure: I'm a Bad Religion Fan Girl. Or something. Fan Girl sounds awfully frivolous, but what else do you call it?
I'm a Bad Religion fan. And I have been for something like 17 years. Bad Religion was a huge influence on my life and world view as a teenager. You know those years where everyone is figuring things out for themselves and starting to ask the big questions? Those were the years that I listened to and studied Bad Religion albums. And I sang along. I knew every lyric (still do) and found so much to think about. So Yeah. I pretty much grew up with Greg Graffin's philosophic influence. And, not necessarily as a result, but as it happens, I'm an atheist and a monist and I find evolution in everything. I am not a scientist, but I sometimes wish I was. Pretty much I've been so influence by Greg Graffin and I've listened to and read his lyrics for so long that Anarchy Evolution is just common sense to me. I'd like to say that I think like him, but maybe it's more correct to just say that I understand what he's saying. It's what I would say if I were eloquent (OK, I wouldn't write the personal memoir-type stuff, but the philosophy/atheism/evolution stuff).
In short. I'm going to buy my own copy of this book because I want to read it again with a hi-lighter (they frown on that with library copies) and I want to hi-light the crap out it. And I want to shove my neon yellow copy into the hands of the next person who asks me some dumb question about atheism or what I believe and say read the yellow parts.
Then, there's also the fact that it's a punk rock memoir. Awesome.
I don't believe in self-important folks who preach No Bad Religion song can make yourself complete You'll get no direction from me.
I especially was interested in President Carter's discussions about fundamentalism, in religion and in politics. HeI like Jimmy Carter. Even more now.
I especially was interested in President Carter's discussions about fundamentalism, in religion and in politics. He defines fundamentalism in a way I'd not through of it before, but seemed dead on to me. He says that fundamentalism is the idea that we're right, and chosen and everyone else is wrong and therefor un-chosen and therefore disposable. Also that it gives power to leaders instead of to people, which leads to abuses of power. These are exactly the qualities of so many vocal religious groups that make me hostile to religion in general. Sometimes I forget that there are other kinds of religiosity. It's really rare to hear a public figure, especially a Christian public figure, standing up to the idea that some churches and church leaders have taken a selfish and corrupt path. I was preparing myself to really disagree with President Carter for the religious chapters, and I did disagree with him, especially when he talked about missionary work. But I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed what he had to say. He really shows that it is possible to separate religion and politics without being disloyal to your strongly held beliefs.
I was also so refreshed to hear him talk about religion in politics in a way that promotes peace, environmentalism and kindness, things that the most vocal religious political groups condemn. I want to give this book to all my Christian relatives who seem believe that Jesus wants them to starve the poor and bomb the middle east and all that other evilness.
I "read" this as an audio book, and I have to admit that I probably wouldn't have got through the book format. The second half or so got a big dull, but listening I could just tune out a bit without giving up entirely....more