Are you in trouble for being intelligent and independent?

"Intelligent and Independent" cartoon by nakedpastor David Hayward

“Intelligent and Independent” cartoon by nakedpastor David Hayward

Think intelligently? Trouble!

Be independent? Trouble!

Actually, I think this cartoon applies to our schools in many ways too. Our children are taught, mostly, to follow the party line thinking and also to tow the line period.

But this has been my experience in the church, without a doubt! Oh, I would agree that for many, including myself, thinking and being independent is tolerated up to a point. But somewhere I crossed a line where it was not only inappropriate, but offensive, illegal, and prohibited.

I believe, largely, that the church has failed in allowing people to grow in wisdom and intelligence, and providing the space for us to grow into our own spiritual independence… which I claim in necessary.

Even now, “outside” the church walls, I constantly feel like I’m being called to task for thinking what I think and not being under any authority.

Do you feel like you’re constantly having to explain yourself? That’s because you don’t fit within the parameters set for you.

My advice? Keep going!


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4 Responses

  1. grant says:

    Call me cynical, but I’ve come to believe that a large percentage of folk don’t actually want to think for themselves. They prefer the supposed comforts of group-thinking and conformity above all else. Some famous quote I barely recall says: “Make people think they are thinking and they will love you. Make them actually think and they will hate you.” Jesus named us well when he calls us sheep!

  2. Caryn LeMur says:

    I lean towards what Grant wrote. People realize that the group brings comfort, and so, they conform their thinking to the group.

    However, encouraging others can also be comforting to the encourager. The same with giving. The same with listening.

    So, I have come to believe that comfort can also come outside of conformity to the group.

  3. purvez says:

    Caryn, ‘giving and listening’ I’d agree with. My experience of encouraging people to step out of their comfort zone and strive for better has brought me a ton of pain and not much advancement for those being encouraged.

    I think you almost have to have someone ‘ask’ for your help to change before you offer ANY advice.

    In the main grant’s ‘quote’ is largely right.

  4. Caryn LeMur says:

    Purvez: you are right. Thank you for that statement, ‘Someone needs to ask for help before the advice is given’.