Wednesday, November 16, 2005
It is due no doubt to my Pietist heritage that I take seriously and respect the religious world view. It is no doubt also due to Pietism (in Finnish "herännäisyys") that I don't mean organized religion, its petty or viscious powerstructures, its obscure, irrelevant theologies and muddy and intolerant thinking. But I do think that regardless of any possible supernatural reality (whose existence I tend to doubt) there is a deep inexplicable mysticism in our being in the world, and often it is the religious experience that captures some of the essence of this. In the way that the relatively materialist and rationalist Enlightenment (not to speak of the postmodern inanities) does not. Of course the organized religion is not concerned about this mystical being in the world: it is concerned about earthly power and control. Even our mild Finnish Lutheran Church of the latter-day social democrats cynically compromices between radical, open vistas of the true essence of Christianity and the influential conservative perversions of it that reluctantly and tortuously have retreated from actually murdering non-orthodox minorities to just actively discriminating against them. Of course it is debatable whether this mystical essence is worth the other worldly, ignorant and intolerant 99%, but I don't think that this utter corruption of all honest seeking is peculiarly characteristical of religious organizations but of all human organizations.