John on April 13, 2007 at 9:29 am
Michelle highlights a new “video art” project being shown in Los Angeles which takes Christian bashing to a whole new level. “Christ Killa” is basically a Doom mod in which all the monsters have been replaced with the image of Jesus. For the next month, people are invited to visit Niche video gallery in LA to play the game, where they roam the virtual world shooting Jesus while heavy metal plays in the background.
I’ll save you the trouble of driving to LA to see it, just be warned it’s calculated to push all your buttons:
Pretty obnoxious, but nothing I haven’t heard or read on atheist websites before. What’s funny about this is the explanation the artist offers. Here’s his full statement from the gallery’s website:
Politics and religion affect the same cultural and social territories such as community, culture, economics, and ethics. Politics in particular is generally understood to be specifically concerned with managing strategies of (state) power.
Religion, historically associated with spiritual and ethical growth, has recently begun to incorporate the methods of political systems. This new form of religion is praised as leaner, more efficient, more streamlined, but what function does it provide? What happens when you remove the code of ethics, messages of love and community, and compassion from religion in order to implement a political agenda? This new hybrid takes the form of a dazzling distraction, a marketing strategy, aggressive competition, a worldview that divides everything into friend and enemy â€“ all characteristics of modern video games.
We all perceive the influence of political power in the fluctuations of culture, economics, and technology. The ebb and flow of religion can now be felt on the video game screen.
Remember how the old Mad magazine used to have an advertisement and then right beside it a translation of what the ad was really saying? Here’s my translation of what the artist is really saying:
Mega-churches are way too commercial. And, hey! I made this doom mod where we can all kill Jesus.
If you’re thinking that’s a class A non-sequitur, you’re right. In reality, this isn’t about making a coherent point, at least not the one he’s claiming. This is about creating a reaction from Christians that will justify his feelings about them.
Think about all the hours Eric Medine put into this effort, all the while thinking “This is really going to piss them off.” You see, he’s the one with the Us vs. Them mentality. That’s the source of this game, his anger. And that means every angry e-mail he receives in response is a tiny justification of his effort, a little victory for his point of view. So here’s my subversive idea…are you ready?
I don’t mean the video game. I mean, don’t play the game in which someone pushes hot buttons and you respond in kind. If Eric Medine can provoke Christians to firing back, you prove his point. And after watching that video, wouldn’t you really like to prove him wrong? I would. Here’s how to do that:
Count yourselves blessed every time people put you down or throw you out or speak lies about you to discredit me. What it means is that the truth is too close for comfort and they are uncomfortable. – Matthew 5:11
Rather than getting angry, let’s thank Eric Medine for giving us an opportunity to show people a) not all religions are the same and b) Jesus makes a difference. Opportunities like that don’t happen every day.
Maybe I’ll send him a bouquet of flowers to say thanks.
Update Sun. 7:30PM: I found Eric Medine’s e-mail address and sent him a link to this post with an invitation to correct any errors or mistaken impressions. I ended my note “PS – These are for you…”