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Meaningless Labels

Discussion in 'Creative Writing' started by shnarkle, Aug 27, 2019.

  1. shnarkle

    shnarkle Well-Known Member

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    United States
    2000 years ago, in the eyes of the religious; the Samaritan was the douche bag. Today it ranges from the atheist to another religious denomination, but the atheist can usually be counted on as the go-to scapegoat among the religious.

    Therefore this is precisely who Jesus would have picked to tell his story. Why? Because those who think they're better than everyone else need to get a clue.
    This parable is it's based in documented fact (Citation provided below).

    The Good Atheist.

    A man is slumped on the ground in the fetal position groaning and coughing when a seminarian on his way to preach the gospel walks by. He's late, and in a rush. He is serious about his vocation to become a pastor and lead others to Christ. He has his vision of a large congregation eager to hear the gospel message as well as spread it into the community.

    Along comes a "believer". He too see's the man slumped on the ground, but believes that the man is just a drunk working off his hangover from a binge the previous night.

    Lastly, along comes an atheist, or perhaps he's a Muslim, or a cross dressing transgendered homosexual with a wanton disregard for the rudimentary rules of applying gaudy dey-glo facial make up. He can see this man is in some need of assistance, and is also aware that he has been blessed with the good fortune of being the first one to spy this opportunity to help another fellow human being.

    Labels can be changed. So a tree is only truly known by the fruit it produces.

    Two Princeton University Psychologists met with a group of seminarians who were then asked to prepare a sermon based upon some biblical theme, among them the parable of the Good Samaritan. Then they were told to walk to a nearby building to present it.

    Along the way they each met a man slumped on the ground, eyes closed, coughing, and groaning. The question was who would stop and what would be the factors most likely to cause them to stop.

    The relevant factors were these: Of those who were told that they were late, only 10% stopped to help, while those who were told that they had time, but to head over anyways, 63% helped.

    The reasons why they were studying theology varied from looking for meaning in one's life to spiritual or personal fulfillment. These factors were irrelevant to the outcome.

    What they concluded was that the convictions of your heart and the content of your thoughts aren't as important as the immediate context of your behavior.

    We'd all like to think that we'd be in that 10% who would stop, but the fact is that the vast majority of us, regardless of whether we are religious or atheists; are frauds, and these labels we choose to identify with, whether it be Christian, Atheist, or Star-bellied Sneech; are pointless.

    John Darley and Daniel Batson, "From Jerusalem to Jericho. A study of situational and dispositional variables in helping behavior," Journal of Personality and Social Psychology (1973), vol.27, pp. 100-119.
    Willie T likes this.
  2. Willie T

    Willie T Heaven Sent Staff Member

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    Excellently told!