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1. "{Wells discussing his experiences with Christianity}I realised as if for the first time, the menace of these queer shaven men in lace and petticoats who had been intoning, responding, and going through ritual gestures at me. I realised something dreadful about them. They were thrusting an incredible and ugly lie upon the world and the world was making no such resistance as I was disposed to make to this enthronement of cruelty. Either I had to come into this immense luminous coop and submit, or I had to declare the Catholic Church, the core and substance of Christendom with all its divines, sages, saints, and martyrs, with successive thousands of believers, age after age, wrong....I found my doubt of his essential integrity, and the shadow of contempt it cast, spreading out from him to the whole Church and religion of which he with his wild spoutings about the agonies of Hell, had become the symbol. I felt ashamed to be sitting there in such a bath of credulity."
Author: H.G. Wells
2. "At the tattoo parlor, my friend worked with needle and ink applying a design to the skin on his client's back, as the three of us sat discussing our spiritual desires and ambivalence about religion. In the midst of our conversation, the man under the needle turned and said, 'Jesus is cool, it's just that they have f***ed with Jesus. I mean, Christianity was at its best when it was secret and hidden and you could die for it.' This profound, if crass, statement recognizes that the power of the gospel lay in its ability to be a counter-cultural and revolutionary force - not only a story to believe, but a distinctive way of life. The man's comment prompted me to consider the questions: Am I in some measure complicit in the domestication of Jesus?"
Author: Mark Scandrette

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Many [Tudor-era religious radicals] believed then, exactly as Christian fundamentalists do today, that they lived in the 'last days' before Armageddon and, again just as now, saw signs all around in the world that they took as certain proof that the Apocalypse was imminent. Again like fundamentalists today, they looked on the prospect of the violent destruction of mankind without turning a hair. The remarkable similarity between the first Tudor Puritans and the fanatics among today's Christian fundamentalists extends to their selective reading of the Bible, their emphasis on the Book of Revelation, their certainty of their rightness, even to their phraseology. Where the Book of Revelation is concerned, I share the view of Guy, that the early church fathers released something very dangerous on the world when, after much deliberation, they decided to include it in the Christian canon."[From the author's concluding Historical Note]"
Author: C.J. Sansom

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