I rather like Taylor Swift’s version of “Last Christmas,” though the rest of her Christmas album is less good, particularly “Christmas Must Be Something More,” which is very Christian in a way I find kind of unappealing. This isn’t just because of my general bias in favor of a secular Christmas; there’s something unpalatable about Swift’s attempt to advance a Christian theme in a modern idiom that lacks any kind of theological weight, and so is forced to rely on mere earnestness. This is actually an instance of a more general problem I have with Christianity, which is, as historically fascinating as I find it to be, on some level, I just don’t believe in it. I don’t mean that I don’t accept the religious tenets of Christianity (although I don’t); rather, I doubt Christianity’s empirical existence: I find it much easier to imagine that all those people who today say they are Christians are just somehow confused, than to imagine that they really believe what they say they do.
Of course, this limitation of my imagination has little bearing on the actual state of the world, but I was reminded of my emphasis on the historicity of Christianity by a post condemning Reverend Tim Jones’s recent sermon justifying shoplifting in cases of extreme necessity (via).