Sometimes it's instructive to look back at the history of one's own religion -- or branch thereof, at least -- to get a sense of what has been left behind and what still matters.
I raise this point because I was reading the other day that it was in May 1924 that so-called liberals in my own denomination, now known as the Presbyterian Church (USA), issued what was called the Auburn Affirmation in response to the 1923 reaffirmation by the church's national governing body of "five fundamentals" of the faith (first adopted in 1910) that people were required to believe.
Essentially those fundamentals were in complete harmony with the nascent fundamentalist movement that had a strict list of what Christians were supposed to believe.
Remember that all of this was happening at the time of a huge national debate over evolution -- a debate fueled by the so-called Scopes Monkey Trial, which the fundamentalists technically won, although in the process they became a national laughingstock.
So by action of the Presbyterian General Assembly, church members were told that the theory of evolution proposed by Charles Darwin was, well, the devil's work. Yes, I know there still are branches of Christianity today that cling to that belief, and I know many Americans are perfectly willing to denigrate evolution as unbiblical.
The Auburn Affirmation would have none of that. Indeed, it declared that the Bible is not inerrant. In other words, it took the Bible seriously, not literally (you can't do both).
Such fights go on in various places today and no doubt most of 100 years from now some faith blogger will be dragging out today's controversies and shaking his or her head over what some people think is worth arguing about. But it won't be me, barring divine intervention.
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THERE'S NOT JUST ONE ISLAM
The author of The Reluctant Fundamentalist, now a film, argues here that although Islam is certainly monotheistic, it's not monolithic. He's got that right. In fact, no major world religion is monolithic but is, rather, full of different approaches and ideas.