In defense of conversion

Jeez. Why is it when anyone brings up religious conversion, so many people go off the track? Fox News analyst Brit Hume has been taking it on the chin since he suggested last weekend that Tiger Woods
turn to Jesus to deal with his sins.
Indeed, it wasn't the most politic thing to do on a public affairs program. Impolitic, because he should have known that blockheads from around the country would be condemning the PaulConversion.jpg
The conversion of Paul
audacity of his speech. He would have had received much less criticism if he had spoken smut.
Hume created the politically incorrect perfect storm: He's from Fox, he's conservative, he spoke his mind about religion and worst of all, he spoke the C word: conversion.
The word has become verboten because, well I don't know. Proselytizing and preaching have been compared with jihad, crusade and inquisition, the use of force, if necessary, to win "converts" to an organized religion. 
I demure. Conversion suggests "change," something that has been elevated into the secular world's pantheon of highest values. It  suggests a new way of life, a better way of love. If you truly love your fellow person, why wouldn't you recommend, in a respectful and intelligent way, such a thing? Why would you not suggest to a good friend, or to anyone, a path to forgiveness, love, charity, justice and the other components of most organized religions?
Putting a new light on your life is the meat of a billion-dollar industry that comes at us from all corners of the secular world. Shelves of self-help books beckon to us from every bookstore. The boob tube is loaded with advice for improving our lives, reaching our inner self, rising to higher levels of spirituality. No one seems to mind. We can choose whether to look, listen or read. But two innocently spoken, heart-felt sentences from the mouth of Hume? Never!

Comments

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  • Even though Brit Hume is not a talking head on a real network he should nevertheless endeavor to not place one religion above others as he put Christianity above Buddhism. We are all equal in the sight of a Supreme Being.

  • People can believe anything they want, and I don't talk about it, except for one issue--it shouldn't have any effect on what others believe. Conversion comes close to the line. It is fine if it is voluntary, say if someone decides to do it to get married, or really believes in another faith. On the other hand, most proselytizers don't look at it that way. Also, I believe there are some fraudulent ones, such as a Baptist saying he is a Jew for Jesus and there is no difference between the faiths or that being Jewish is just a "nationality" and Jesus was too.

    Also, while you say that most religions are in favor of "forgiveness, love, charity, justice," some pervert that into justifying "forgiving" or "covering up" religious figures molesting little boys (and that has happened in several religions, including the one in which the Frugal Pedophile was associated, and it turns out his cooking advice wasn't any good either, and in giving it, he condescended when he cooked the foods associated with some of them).

    Maybe Tiger should turn Mormon, and set up a compound of wives, like that guy from Texas. The state authorities couldn't prove that that guy molested all the little girls. You would be really howling about that. Staying Buddhist seems a more gentle solution.

  • Hume displayed his utter ignorance about the role of forgiveness in Buddhism. For lots of people whose comments I've heard or read, that was more offensive than his suggestion that Christianity is the perfect religion for adulterous men seeking forgiveness.

  • As a largely non-practicing Christian (and by that I mean, I do not attend services regularly, and I rarely openly speak of my beliefs), I understand the need and the call to witness to others. Hume should have known, however, how his comments and the manner in which he chose to present them would be interpreted by the media and the public. If his intentions were truly sincere, perhaps he should have contacted Tiger Woods privately.

  • In reply to dfrymire:

    From what I've heard, that probably would have been the Christian thing to do. But I suppose it's possible that Hume's intentions were not truly sincere.

  • In reply to dfrymire:

    Dennis, this entry is featured on today's "Hot on ChicagoNow:"
    http://www.chicagonow.com/blogs/hot-on-chicagonow/2010/01/hot-on-chicagonow-january-8-2010.html

  • In reply to dfrymire:

    Proves yet again how Christianity is an egoistic and selfish religion.

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