Why do religious nuts show up in a time of crisis?
I know in difficult times people are always looking for a sense of control. One way people often do this is by ascribing religious meanings to their experience. I keep seeing all these prophecy folks out there talking about this virus ushering in the end times. Let me clear a few things up related to the idea of prophecy. The interpret of prophetic literature is not an exact science. Prophecy literature is a blend of the literal and the metaphorical and whoever feels that they have cornered the market on deciding its meaning is usually selling something. So, here are a few of my thoughts on prophecy. First, Prophecy is not fortune telling. The purpose is not to tell you what horses to get on or what has station to buy your scratch off from. Secondly, prophecy (as presented in the Bible) always has a redeeming function. Either the prophet is warning people that they need to change or they are looking towards a future hope during bleak times. It is a way of God communicating with the people. Thirdly, if you are using prophecy to instill fear in people, you are doing it wrong. This type of thinking is low brow spiritual discussion that borders on magical thinking, which by the way is characteristic of children’s ideas on faith and in adults it is the substance of religious delusion. Prophecy causes people to worry about some amorphous catastrophe that may or may not happen. This worry for the future causes people to miss the present moment which is the only one we truly have. My philosophy of prophecy and the like is this: If you are doing what it is that you are supposed to be doing in the present, then you need not worry about the future. To do so is to rob yourself of your present moment. It is a much healthier expression of faith to use your spiritual and emotional resources coping with your present rather than using them to obsess over a future we have no direct control over. A healthy faith helps us to accept the unknown rather than to try to control it. It is based on peace, love, connection, and empowerment. Seek out these things and you will find that the fear and worry of the world will begin to fade.-