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20 May 2010 @ 03:01 pm
The Dragon's Eye View: Just Not Letting This One Go  
A comment over at toob's journal prompted me to finally put down in words something that I've mulled over for a very long time.

Over the decades, I've seen a great deal of evidence to support the hypothesis that, no matter what faith they might nominally adhere to, Fundamentalists of any creed have more in common with each other than they do with more moderate adherents of their own creed.

From my observations, the common keystone in the Fundamentalist worldview is this:

We and we alone know the One True and Proper Path, and those who disagree with us are not merely in error, they are evil, they are our enemies, and any abuse we can deliver unto them is not only justified, but for their own good.

All too often, this becomes the Fundamentalist's primary tenet -- the specific details of his or her faith all become a distant second to the pure, blind assertion that I am right and you are not.

This is their true religion.

Proportionally, I've seen just as many Fundamentalists who think they're Atheists as I have Fundamentalists who think they're Anything Else, and their reaction to Thoughtcrime is just as zealous.

Did that last sentence piss you off?

Might want to run some diagnostics.

Paka: pied crowpaka on May 21st, 2010 10:19 am (UTC)
The flip side of which is that every religion has its mystics and dreamers. It is very easy to be filled with spiritual awe at the immensity, complexity and beauty of the universe without having to necessarily believe in any gods or spirits. I'd argue that's atheism done right - a willingness to perceive this random and godless universe as having some real upsides, even more miraculous because you can theoretically figure out how it all got there, and without needing to be desperately scared of things.

It's very easy to get mired in how shitty the world is, and I think that too plays into both atheistic and theistic views of the world. Fundamentalism - of any sort as you've said - is I think partly rooted in the idea of survival at an emotional or physical level. One feels like one has to be right and all the time, too, otherwise things might go south very quickly indeed. I think that's why fundamentalists have such a thing going on with trying to take control of secular governments, at some level they don't feel it's safe to cede any control.

I also think this becomes a vicious loop. The fundamentalist needs to push for more and more control because he feels his worldview and his family or friends are under attack. That alienates people and prompts crankiness about the fundies in question, which means that they feel very much under attack.