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TheLegendaryBirdMonster wrote (edited )

Im atheist but know how the protestant church in france works. The ideas I got from there have helped me flesh out my own ideology that later pushed me to anarchism.

At its core (european) protestantism is kinda radical and liberating. you should read about martin luther, and the whole reform mouvement that happened in germany in 15xx, it changed how europe worked and marked the end of the middle aged. Protestantism is best defined on the solae:

  • sola scriptura: they base theire faith on the bible alone, the priest is not an interpret of the bible, and there is no official god-antenna" such as the pope. Religious people are only doing specialized job similar to a shoe maker. Litteraly no hiearchies between people before god. No "better" interpretation of gods word.

  • sola fide: this one is really revolutionnary and doenst exist in other monotheist religions: protestants get a free highway to paradise by just believing in god. They do not need to do any "good actions" or donate money to the church or anything. It's like cheating the system lol. protestants do "good actions" by love of gods creation and not because they are threatened of going to hell if they're bad.

  • sola gratia: protestans believe that believing in god is a gift from god himself and that we by definition can not convert people to protestantism but only make them "fertile" to the sacred voice or whatever. So they shouldn't force you to follow their beliefs.

there are other ones rejecting other dogmas of catholic church but are less interesting form an anarchist perspective.

Also here protestant churches are run by a council, and regional/national councils are organised regularly to organise its stance.

Everything is not good about it, "my" church only started marrying gay people last year, some other protestant branches (evangelical) take the bible literally and don't believe in dinosaurs, and councils-based decision making have their own problems, but I can totally see how some people can reconcile anarchism and religion.


nijntje wrote

I like "protestants do "good actions" by love of gods creation and not because they are threatened of going to hell if they're bad.", although I think the bit before that is different when you ask different people. It's not that they don't need good actions, it's that if you've got faith, if you truly believe, then you'll act accordingly. And if you're not acting accordingly, then your beliefs might be off.

For a consumerist example: I would like to buy things that are eco/fairtrade/all that jazz, including clothes, but in practice it's… well, I was gonna say it's too hard, or impossible, or whatever, but in the moment I realise I want/need new clothes and it's "too hard" or "too expensive" to do the right thing, and I buy cheaper/'worse' clothes, I know that my acts are influenced by other beliefs than the ones I claim to have. Apparently there's a belief that my comfort/ease of buying things in that moment is worth more than my moral beliefs that I should buy more eco/fairtrade/whatever clothes.

So I can either start punishing myself over doing the wrong thing, or just see it as a symptom that apparently my beliefs need to be readjusted, i.e. I need to take a good look at my values and steer those more towards a state where it's easier for me to do the right thing next time.


TheLegendaryBirdMonster wrote

yeah I get it: If you're a "true believer", you'll do good actions for the love of gods creation, earning your place to paradise passively without even trying.

Compared to: If you're a "true believer", you automatically earn your place to paradise, but do good actions anyways.

I find my interpretation stronger, but I cant really have a sincere opinion since as an atheist so I'm talking about something I don't really understand/feel. Do you know which one is most prominent, or even if any believer shares my interpretation?


nijntje wrote

I think mostly people tend to see them as very intertwined. And about 'earning' or not, people debate a lot but afaik… well… consider it like a chicken/egg problem, it's interesting to debate and talk about, but the fact is that if you've got a chicken now, or an egg now, you'll have the other either right with it or at least following up very soon. So it's better to make sure chickens & eggs keep happening, and thinking about which leads to what is secondary. It'd be like debating the physics of how parachutes work while you've just jumped off a plane—sure it's interesting, but you know that if you pull the cord stuff will happen, and you want that to happen.

that being said I come from a christian background, but fairly diverse in terms of denominations/thoughts so maybe that's just the way i've seen it, seeing a lot of different opinions.