There are many other areas where I am alarmed about the effects of Christianity’s biased and constricted intellectualism, not just on Christians but on everyone. For example, when Christian individuals and organizations resist grappling honestly with scientific findings about sexual identity, they end up doing harm to LGBTQ individuals, and straight people too. When they promote shame-based sexual understandings through “purity culture,” or when they uphold gender roles rooted in antiquity (but not biology or psychology), they harm everyone with a gender and libido. When they resist learning from the best child psychologists, they teach misguided parenting techniques. The more they focus their shame-heavy pseudo-psychology on the family, the more harm they do to both present and future generations.
When Christians resist learning about social psychology, they tolerate or even celebrate toxic masculinity and narcissism in congregational and political leaders. When Christians resist learning from doctors and social workers about the processes of dying, they prepare themselves for the afterlife but not for the long dying process that so often precedes it in contemporary culture. When they resist learning about neurobiology and mental illness, Christians engage in harmful or ineffective therapy, counseling, and teaching. When they don’t fearlessly confront the king of historical whitewashing that we surveyed in previous chapters, Christians allow the racial, ecological, and economic injustices practiced and defended by their forefathers to be repeated by current and future generations.
But however many chapters of however many books are written, they can be ignored, and they will be ignored by Christians who hide within their great wall of bias.
That’s true of this book as well.
From “Do I Stay Christian: A Guide for the Doubters, the Disappointed, and the Disillusioned” by Brian McLaren