I’m a member of a closed Facebook group called Black Atheists. It’s an interesting group because the general assumption is that black people in the US tend to be religious. This page helps to break that stereotype. Today I logged onto Facebook, and the first thing I noticed in my feed was the following introductory post in the Black Atheists group:
I’ve concealed the OP’s identity to protect them from stigma in the event that they haven’t “come out” as questioning their long-held religious beliefs. In the event that she’s a full-fledged atheist, this is even more crucial. Anyway, moving on.
OP lists Quentin Tarantino’s 2012 film Django Unchained as the cause for her shifting religious views. When I saw this I was somewhat confused, and so was another user:
Now it makes sense! I was blessed with a relatively religion-less upbringing, and I’ve been a bible critic since dating my first girlfriend, whose mother was a Jehovah’s Witness (ew). I have known for practically my entire life the problems with slavery in the bible. Here is a list of everything the bible says about slavery. Not once is slavery condemned (although to be fair, there are a few verses in the bible about freeing slaves, but even those have caveats). This is not new news to me, and it’s not new news to most people.
But I can imagine what it must be like for black people in the US who go to Christian churches. Especially if they go to a black Christian church, I’m almost certain that the preacher will omit slavery-condoning verses in his sermons. I’m even more certain that he probably won’t discuss how slavery was justified in the US based on those pro-slavery verses.
Why would this revelation threaten to shake someone’s faith? Well, I can’t speak on behalf of the black community, but I can venture a guess. Many people assume that slavery is just a thing of the past, a black eye on America’s historical record. But it’s not. Although we are no longer forcing people of African descent into bondage, the effects of the times when we did are still around. Racism in the US might not be what it was even fifty years ago, but there is no getting around the fact that it’s still here, and so are poverty, unequal distribution of jobs and opportunity, and low representation. And it all started because white Christians picked up the bible and clobbered an entire race of people over the head with it. The link between Christianity and the African American population is exactly the link between Christianity and slavery.
Anyway, the conversation went on for many more posts. Here are a few more:
Here we can see how the link between Christianity and the African American community follows the same path between Christianity and slavery. If slavery were merely “a thing of the past,” this conversation would’ve never taken place.
It took a Hollywood film to break through the illusion that the church taught this woman. She has a long road ahead of her, and, considering that she chose to join a group called Black Atheists, it might end with her leaving behind all belief in god. I wish her luck. Thankfully, it looks like she’s already making progress in her journey.
The question this brings up is how many other people questioned their faith after watching Django Unchained? People aren’t dumb. The film throws some hefty accusations at Christianity, and anyone who sees the film can do a simple google search to confirm that those accusations are true.
A great book is “Noah’s Curse – The Biblical Justification of American Slavery” by Stephen R. Haynes. Fantastic read and about $10 on the kindle store. As a human, I find it ridiculous that any thinking person would be religious, as a black man, i find it outrageous that the religion that was used to keep slavery going and was pushed in the antebellum prewar and postwar south is still in any way associated with slavery’s descendants.
You’re the second person to recommend that book. I think I’ll have to check it out. I just looked and saw it’s available at my library (yes, I still go to the library). Thanks for the comment!
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Many dont ask the question “What was our way of life before Judaism, Christianity, and Islam was forced on us” “What did our ancestors believe in before becoming a prisoner of war and their descendants who were programmed to think a particular way who then were born, raised and even died a slave.”
The nubian race in america needs to ask those question
Key not I won’t use the term african, African-American, Egyptian or black niggas/negroes/niggers because these are terms given to us by europeans not by our people. Nubians have been here way before any other race that’s why they found an nubian what we now through ignorance call an Egyptian tomb in Georgia of Atlanta in America. Look this fact up. Religion is a tool of confusion and destruction for any people of hue. Black atheist have to ask the same questions too not just nubians in america
Key not is supposed to be key note
But the religion i speak of is the one we were given by europeans we had religion before the slav /slave ships took nubian people out of nubia at the hands of arabs (these arabs were of nubian descent) and europeans dealings. Religion thats not ours and be it also ideas, concept, information that we didn’t have can effect nubians if it’s not ours originally.
You’re right to question religion. But GOD is about SPIRITUALITY. Your mind is just as weak and feeble if you through out belief in God because of people’s twisted uses of it, as you are if you believe just because you were taught to. God has no color. He is not human. Humans have their own imperfect interpretations, but God lacks humanity’s flaws. This is why connection between mind and spirit are so important. THE BIBLE WAS WRITTEN BY MAN. MAN IS IMPERFECT. To throw away salvation based on that is unfortunate for nonbelievers.
I find it interesting how someone could loose their faith in Christianity by watching Django somehow coming to this “secret” knowledge that protestants twisted bible verses to suit their pro slavery positions. o.O Not very much a secret if you ask me. However the part of that movie people overlook is the fact the first American Slave Owner Anthony Johnson was a black man, yet when I bring this up to people in debates, they usually say, bah another white devil lie. >_< Really, so part of the movie speaks truth and the other is a lie.
How about this, when looking for just 1 sweet Bible verse, no matter the translation (because NIV and KJV don't translate these verses as Slave- because actually the Bible doesn't support slavery ,as many people claim it does. It supports servitude, which immediately I hear the voices in my head of people saying what is the difference. At least for me, Slaves don't have rights, servants do.
But Exodus says 21:16 And he that stealeth a man, and selleth him, or if he be found in his hand, he shall surely be put to death.- Which clearly thus shows in a single verse the Bibles position against something like the trans-Atlantic slave trade.
Many may disagree with what I say, firmly convinced on their position of what they think the Bible teaches, but as someone who diligently studies the scriptures, I am firmly convinced this is not the case. Instead of me writing a mini book on this topic, I will just link this video I came across on youtube that explains this subject in great detail. Even if you watch and still disagree, at least you may better understand why someone like myself, says the Bible doesn't support slavery.
My bad, linked my playlist, I meant to link this specific video. Sorry bout that Rayan.