Proselytism

Are you Trying to Convert Me?

Proselytism has been criticized, lately, as if its repugnancy is no longer under debate. Those who are accused of proselytism sometimes respond by denying that it had even crossed their minds. I have never seen a reason why this should be so. There is nothing shameful, per se, about spreading one’s views on the truth.

If you have an idea, and if this idea is not universally accepted, you may suggest it as an alternative to the competition. Furthermore, having accepted your current position, you are convinced that it is the best one. If you make no effort to convince others of the validity of this position, or even so much as discuss it, you likely consider it either invalid or unimportant. I would draw special attention to the latter. If a truth has no implications for other people, there may be value in keeping it to oneself. But what of the truths that are said to be of the utmost importance? How could excessive propriety trump anything of the sort?

It does not take religion to recognize this.

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3 Responses to “Proselytism”

  1. wabasso Says:

    I agree for the most part. I can’t shut up about my environmental values. But a lot of people respond better when one leads by example rather than verbalizes directly.

  2. That’s true, and it reminds me that I was not even talking so much about verbal exposition, but the mere desire to propagate these values (through whatever means).

  3. Everyone propogates their beliefs and values.

    Anyone who tries to shame you or hate on you for proselytizing is trying to spread their religious beliefs to you.

    Here is what I mean:
    You and I believe that people NEED Jesus. That is, under the weight of sin all people will be puinished in Hell for eternity, unless they are saved by Jesus. Jesus saves through faith, faith comes from hearing, and hearing comes from the word of Christ, and the word of Christ is only heard when it is communicated. As a result we have the priviledge and obligation to proselytize.

    Now if someone doesn’t believe all the stuff about Hell, then they would consider proselytism to be annoying, perhaps judgemental, or backwards.

    Yet based on our beliefs, the stakes are too high to let this influence us. However, this will not stop people from pressuring you and trying to make you feel bad about proselytism. That’s because they are themselves trying to proselytize you. They want to change your beliefs, so that you will stop proselytizing. That makes the argument against proselytizing self defeating because the second you start to argue, you are asserting your belief in hopes that others will conform to it.

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