Sunday, July 25, 2004

In Man's Image

It has always worried me that many zealous Christians usually refer to human superiority by quoting a certain passage in the Bible: “God created man in his image…” To me, that statement, while possibly containing several theological truths, only proves the humanity (in both a positive and negative way) of the writer. Because such a philosophy is far from unique. Or rather, it’s a juxtaposition of our innate wishes.

What I mean by our “innate wishes” is that within each and every person is a sense of pride. And along with that pride contains to one degree or another a certain narcissism. To put it in another way, the closer something resembles us, the more appealing we find it to be. In the case of Christianity, our God appears to be like us. The only difference between Christianity’s God and the Greek’s gods is that we resemble the latter not through the power of the deities but rather plainly assumes it to be so. Of course there is a big development from the latter to the former. Greek gods, after all, are pretty much like super-powered humans, with all the flaws and weaknesses that go along with humanity. That’s not present with Christianity’s God, although following along those lines, it really shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that in order for us to be saved, God took on a human form. Jesus could be understood as a reconciliation between what we wanted our God to be and our innate form. God did not create man in his image but rather we created God in the image we wanted to fashion.

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