A gay man, I’ve had a love-hate relationship with Christianity all of my life. I’ve long argued that contemporary Christianity focuses far too much on the sacrifice of Jesus to the extent that the belief system provides a “Get Out of Guilt-Jail Free” card to its adherents who don’t want to take personal responsibility for failed interpersonal relationships. However, inasmuch as I construct the meanings in my life through my own spiritual practices, I must extend this right to others (because Kant). How I derive purpose in life and how others find their own roles may vary in form, but we’re all striving for a sense of connectedness to something larger than ourselves.
Recently I was in New Orleans visiting a woman I’ve known my entire adult life. She is a Mambo (an initiated Vodou priestess) and was my first initiator into the mysteries. I learned much from her and am still learning from her. Most of all, she taught me that it’s fine to seek for meaning when you come to a spiritual dead end, that doubling down on failed systems and failed communities isn’t acceptable, but letting them go is the smart thing to do.
It seems that others derive meaning from Christianity. Who am I to deny them this?