conversions... not just for chemistry anymore.

So, I think we're all pretty savvy on comprehending the word, but just in case, you should go to en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conversion.  It has a lot of different meanings.

One of the most inconvenient conversion types, in my opinion, is religious conversion.  Frankly, I'm not a big religious person anyway, but it still angers me when I see people trying to convert me or others.  I feel like it conveys several negative things: firstly, the converter can't respect the other person's beliefs, secondly, the converter is trying to bring someone into their sect through persuasion instead of divine calling, and, finally, if the person does convert, it shows a lack of faith in the first place which will probably be carried over to the new religion.

Is it possible that frequent conversion dilutes religion?  I think it's quite possible.  I'm not saying that all people who convert are weak-faithed, and I'm not saying that all converters have malicious intent, but I think that it's a poor practice in theory and in actuality.

I have a friend who recently got really upset about a man who tried to convert him.  I'm okay with that, but I was not okay with his generalization that Christians are either avid converters or are supporters of fanatics who practice converting others.  This was my response:

If you don't want to insult all christians, you probably shouldn't start your note off with:

"Dear Christians, This is going to piss you off as much as you anger me."

Not really a friendly note. And as for your comparison of other religions trying to convert you... it's hardly an argument. According to Wikipedia, the largest religious but non-Christian sect in the US is Judaism at... 1.7% of US residents. Compare this to 78.5% of people who are Christian... so there are a little more than 46 times as many Christians as Jews. The numbers for other religions are ridiculously small. So does it surprise you that of this isolate incident where you met a religious radical, he was Christian? This doesn't mean that Christianity is more radical or more conversion-hungry than other religions (although I don't want to imply that the others are), but it does mean that if you were to meet a radical conversionist, or any person for that matter, chances are that they're Christian.

Perhaps your anger stems from your own religious indecisiveness, eh?

So yeah.  That's about how I feel.  From a neutral standpoint, I think it is pretty easy to understand that for even the most fervent and convinced believer in any given faith, another faith will have a supporter so equally confident in his god(s) that believing any one person is a worthless exercise in naivety; faith should be an solo exploration of your own mind and soul. 

Anyway, comments and discussion are appreciated.

1 comment:

  1. I love the title of this post, btw. Um, I agree. I really do like being Catholic, but I find it hypocritical to convert people. After all, if they tried to convert you, you'd probably not want to, so why would you do the same? That came out all convoluted, but I think you get the gist. Ugh. Religious fanatics... irritating.