A Video of Me

So I decided it would be fun to record a video of me and post it to the blog to make it more personal. It looks like a have weird teeth in the video, which I don’t think I do in real life. So now I’m very preoccupied about my teeth and keep staring at them in the mirror. In any case, here is the video:

P.S. Yes, I have an accent. What did you expect?

How Clarissa Found Religion, Part III

And to conclude this series, I wanted to mention that I’m living with a man who is agnostic, of which I’m extremely respectful and which I would never try or want to change.

If we do have a child, I have already prepared the answer to a question about religion. I’d say the following:

“I believe A. Daddy believes B. Grandpa and Grandma believe C. There are some people in Israel who believe D. And some people in Egypt believe E. And some folks in India believe F, G, and H. And also there are people called “atheists” who believe I. The great news is that you get to decide for yourself what you want to believe. Or you can start a completely new system of beliefs. And you can change your mind at any time. Isn’t that neat?”

How Clarissa Found Religion, Part II

On the subject of Christianity’s compatibility with feminism, I can say that this religion is a fantastic vehicle for feminism. Mind you, I’m not suggesting that other religions aren’t. I have no knowledge that would enable me to make that judgment. I also warn you that when I say “religion”, I mean a system of beliefs. The fact that many people choose to do weird things and call that “Christianity” is as relevant to me as the actions of confused folks who call themselves feminists while doing decidedly unfeminist things. So, please, refrain from laying the blame for any horrible things that some churchy people did at my door. Do you think that if some men rape then all men are rapists? No? Then I’m not guilty for anything Rick Santorum has to say.

So why do I say that this is a powerfully feminist religion? Let’s look at a small excerpt from the Sermon on the Mount:

Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn,
for they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek,
for they will inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
for they will be filled.
Blessed are the merciful,
for they will be shown mercy.

And there is more in the same vein. Are you seeing any gender divide here? Any suggestion that rules are different for men and women? Of course, you don’t. Because it’s not about that at all.

Then, there is also the famous,

There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

No male or female, got it? The message couldn’t be clearer. I don’t even know what else could be said on the subject. In the eyes of God, men and women do not exist. Gender is meaningless and immaterial. That’s precisely the extent of my feminism, too, which is why I read these quotes as the perfect feminist manifesto.

How Clarissa Found Religion, Part I

Reader Evelina Anville asks:

At some point, (assuming you are comfortable) I would like to hear more about you reconcile your religious and your feminist world views. (Not that I think that a religious and feminist worldview can’t be reconciled: it’s just that they so frequently exist at odds with one another.)

I don’t have a tendency to persecute people with my religion, as I’m sure everybody has noticed. Even David Bellamy, one of the earliest and most constant readers of my blog who has probably read most of the 3,500+ posts I have published had no idea until very recently that I identify as Christian. Since Evelina Anville, one of my favorite readers, wants to know, I will gladly write about religion and I hope that nobody accuses me of being preachy.

I was raised in an atheist country where people only discussed religion in very negative terms. There were some folks who went to church but these were either very elderly or very weird people. So I was a fully atheist kid and very happy to be one.

Until I had a mystical experience. It was a kind of experience that came completely out of nowhere because it wasn’t like I even knew that mystical experiences could happen. It was completely non-sexual in nature, if you are one of those weird folks who sees sex in all mystical experiences. So after that, I did not have a choice but become a religious person. It was a huge secret from everybody because it would have shocked people too much and they would have ridiculed me.

I’m the kind of a religious person who wasn’t baptized, never goes to church, has only a very vague idea what people do in churches, and is terrified of folks who discuss their religion in public. I’m only sharing my religious beliefs on my blog because I was asked to, but in real life you will not find a person who has heard anything from me on the subject. This is an intimate issue that I do not inflict on anybody.

I also have no use for the debates as to whether Jesus existed. Somebody came up with the words in the New Testament, so the code name for that person or group of people is “Jesus.” Who was born where and to whom is of absolutely no interest to me. As a literary critic, I’m not into the biographical approach to a text. I dig the words but the life circumstances of their author bore me.