Saturday, December 6, 2008
What do you think about Jesus?
Recently a study was conducted by a group from Yale University. In the study, members of the group would approach random strangers on the street and ask them to fill out a questionnaire. The questionnaire would give six descriptive character traits of a fictional person named Joe. Then the people would be asked what they thought about Joe based on those characteristics and whether they liked him or disliked him. Just seconds before the survey would begin, the person conducting the questions would casually ask the subjects if they could please hold their coffee for them. Some subjects would be handed a hot cup of coffee while others would be handed a cold cup of coffee. What the group discovered was amazing, if the cup was hot or warm the subjects said they liked Joe. The subjects that were handed the cold coffee, however, would say that they did not like Joe. The study group ran these these experiments several times with the same results over and over. The explanation for the results was that the part of our brains which produces trust, comfort, and likability towards others is closely linked to the part of us that is sensitive to warmth and or temperatures.
So what do we think about Jesus? Is He worthy of praise only when we feel His warmth and touch in our lives? Where will our opinion of Him be when we can't feel Him and times become cold? As people, I think we all feel deeply bothered by the realities of pain and suffering. Yet it is difficult to read the accounts of any Biblical figure and find that they lived pain free lives. For some, the anguishes were internal while for others the pains were very lucid and external, as in the case of Jesus. Man's perception of religion becomes contorted when it is
viewed as a vehicle to escape the inevitable turmoils of creation. The realities of religion can only become vivid when we realize that it is the vehicle God has given us to move through trouble and not just escape it.
"What man actually needs is not a tensionless state but rather the striving and struggling for some goal worthy of him. What he needs is not the discharge of tension at any cost, but the call of a potential meaning waiting to be fulfilled by him."
Posted by A. Prado