Unchristian a look at why the modern world avoids the church
Oct 5, 2010
Pros: well written, great research, interesting concepts
Cons: none really.
The Bottom Line: I don't care if you are religious or not, this book really goes into detail as to why younger generations avoid religion.
I must state first and foremost that I am not religious. I do not go to church, I do not believe that there is any higher power of any sort, I do not believe in any sort of afterworld or place that I go that is outside of earth. I simply believe in what IS and WILL be. Those things that I know to be true through scientific evidence or my own personal experiences are the things that I currently and will eventually believe in. However, with this said, I do believe in certain aspects of religious history and have a variety of my own theories for how many things came to be throughout Christian history.
I must say that I haven't always been against religion. I haven't always thought negatively about it. I still do have an interest in it and how people react to it, but I most definitely do not practice it. This book, The Unchristian truly explains why I feel the way that I do about religion in general, but more specifically Christianity.
The Background I was born into a Christian family, mostly Protestant. Throughout the years, I found my own god, and began to go to church on my own. I knew what I believed in and set out to find those teachings. I had a great curiosity and I let god lead me in every aspect of my life. However, as time went on, I began to notice irregularities, improbabilities, and scientific research that turned my religious world upside down. I went from believing in a great chunk of the Bible and religious history to feeling as if I was betrayed and that every aspect of my past religion was a fraud and was simply created as a means of controlling people. Now, looking back at my past, I am embarassed that I was ever so simple minded and accepting of a religion without any evidence or validity. It is because of this, that I will never go back until the day Jesus himself comes from the heavens and convinces me that I am indeed incorrect in my thoughts.
With that said, I am very much interested in religion. I would love for it to be real. The concept sounds wonderful. I want to know that there is some ultimate power that created everything. I want to know that I go somewhere after I die. But at the same time I feel very much betrayed and this book goes into great detail as to why my generation feels this way.
The Concept The book itself is sort of more of a research/documentary of the author's project to find out why those under the age of 30 are straying away from the church in great numbers. Rather than ignoring the reality like many other religous texts have, this books attacks them head on and attempts to better understand them so that churches could change in order to bring about better understanding about what they are about and bring wider acceptance of the church as a whole.
Through the research, the author discovered that there are numerous reasons for straying away from the church, however the majority of those that avoid the church are avoiding it because of what they believe to be true about those that either attend the church or those that are in charge within the church.
The author points out several different key elements that make up the unchristian. They all have different beliefs, but the main reasons for avoiding christianity is because it is hipocritical, antihomosexual, too political, sheltered, and judgemental.
When I read the authors descriptions of the variety of reasons that many in the Unchristian world avoid religion, I was convinced that it isn't just me, but a generational reasoning behind avoiding church in general. I have always believed that the church is simply about hording money from the masses. The only reasoning for having the church is to make those within the church wealthy. While there are numerous small churches that are far from creating major wealth for anyone involved, there are numerous larger ones that bring in a substantial income that is used to pay the increasingly hefty paychecks of those within the organization.
Other reasons that many avoid religion is because of the antihomosexual stance that they have taken. By stating that an entire group of people cannot be part of the church, they are discluding a group that is becoming more and more accepted by the masses. The more you disclude people, the more others begin to second guess their own faith and begin to wonder if a true and just god would think in this manner.
And of course many believe that the church is too hipocritical of others. This of course stems from all of the child pornography, molestation, theft, and other issues that have been connected to the church, especially Catholic churches. With the amount of corruption many have simply strayed away from religion altogether. I guess many assume that they are better off on their own if the church mighty can't even get it right. It says a great deal about how powerful god is if he can't even keep his people in line.
All through the book, you find numerous reasons for religion having issues gaining a foothold with modern generation, but when you start to think about each issue, it is easy to understand why. Those under 30 aren't as likely to just accept something because they were told to or because it is said to be right. We need a little more proof. We have the internet, we do our research, we want to know the details before we jump on any boat. The problem is that relion doesn't have a whole lot of details. There are a lot of stories, but very few of those can even be validated. So with so many of the stories assumed to be complete falacies how is it possible that the Unchristians could possibly believe in anything that they are told by the church, especially since they believe the church to be corrupt in the first place.
Final Thoughts While I am not religous, I did find this book to be incredibly stimulating. It really talks about my generation and the reason why we believe the things that we do. Rather than ignoring our negative thoughts, it is obvious that many within the church are starting to believe that they need to look at their negative image and figure out a means of enhancing it. Afterall, it is important to bring in a new solid base for the Christian faith to continue far into the future.
What I love about this book is that it really addresses the issues that face many Christians today--we're judgmental, too political, anti-homosexual, etc. Each chapter focuses on a single negative point of the Christian persona. It takes Scripture and it applies it directly to this facet and shows how we can change ourselves. Books like these can change the face of Christianity, for the better.