So I consider myself to be a pretty reasonable person. I try my best to be respectful to people of all faiths (or non-faiths) and I try to play by their rules when I'm on their turf. It's frustrating, though, when they don't even play by their own rules, and then get upset when I ask them to. It's especially upsetting when I feel duped, when I've been told I'm welcome as an equal and actually believed it, only to be scoffed at.
On a recent thread on the ex-CoC board entitled "The Pagan Roots of Christianity" I, against my better judgement, attempted to light-heartedly point out that, since the skeptics' rules are that nothing should be accepted without hard proof, perhaps it would be prudent not to start with the assumption that Christianity DOES have its roots in pagan beliefs. I wouldn't have had a problem with a thread merely discussing the similarities between pagan beliefs and Christianity, and entitled as such. There's just that old post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy thing, after all, that's easy to make, that I thought skeptics, being skeptics, and constantly claiming to hold up reason and logic as the highest goal, would appreciate the sentiment. But apparently, I wasn't aware of the rule that one need not be skeptical or logical if the claim is something attempting to discredit Christianity. Now I know better.
I find it interesting and rather telling that asking the skeptics to play by their own supposed rules of logic simply got more long diatribes about how Christians aren't logical or rational, and so they just don't get it. Out comes the usual comments about Christians relying on "faith" (which I imagine being said with a tinge of contempt, or at least pity), while skeptics (cue the spotlight and triumphant music) rely purely on reason and logic.
Just don't try to point it out when they don't.
I decided to add the ex-CoC board to my list of Lenten sacrifices. It wasn't this incident that prompted me to do so, it was a combination of recent ugliness in general. I normally go there in order to lend and receive support, and to stretch my brain a bit, consider other viewpoints, practice my reasoning skills, etc. All these things are good for me when a basic level of mutual respect exists, but when that isn't there, it becomes harmful and toxic. Recently I've felt the mutual respect wane, and especially at this time of year, I don't want to risk being disrespectul back. So I felt it was best to remove myself from the atmosphere for a bit, and focus on renewing my faith and life in Christ. After all, that's what Lent is all about!