Saturday, February 20, 2021

A Prayer To Moloch?

Thinking specifically of the "We give You all the children who study here." Including the atheists, Buddhists, Sikhs, Jains, Jews, Muslims, etc.? This line actually reminds me of one common in my childhood among the more earnest Protestants whose salvation depended on securing might (it's a soteriological issue): "Have you accepted Jesus into your heart?" When I told them I wasn't sure which ventricle Jesus would fit into, they would be perplexed, and then think I was being sarcastic. I was quite serious, since nobody ever asked if you'd accepted the person you loved (Mom, Dad, significant other) "into your heart." It was a meaningless phrase reserved for some special relationship with Jesus I literally couldn't fathom.

I grew up in a Christian household, never considered myself other than Christian, but this was a bizarre and silly catch-phrase, to me.

Giving "You" all the children seems downright sacrificial, and not in a metaphorical sense.  I mean, honestly, that line would freak little children out, I should think.  Especially the ones unfamiliar with evangelical religious metaphors.

Of course, then they make the prayer a request for blessings (another religious word usually very ill-defined.  What are these "blessings"?  Material comfort?  Spiritual calm?  Self-satisfaction? (more commonly the latter) "in the name of Jesus Christ."  Which makes this Supreme Court bait and nothing more.  Following on Hobby Lobby and the recent bizarre and, IMHLO, ungrounded in 1st Amendment jurisprudence, rulings of the Supreme Court, they clearly think they'll overturn Engel v. Vitale (the prayer in schools case).  I don't think even this Court wants to go so far as to approve a prayer offering children to a deity like they were sacrifices or one so explicitly upholding one religion against so many others.  The cases where the Court has bent the 1st Amendment to privilege certain religious groups are of a different fundamental nature than one where a state privileges a particular belief system (and frankly, one version of Christianity among many other versions).

Besides that “We give You all the children” line is just creepy.

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