A Mind on Fire

Over the past year I’ve been reading a weblog by a guy named John over at mindonfire.com. Although I come from a different background, mine being a moderate evangelical Christian and him from a Morman background, I greatly appreciate his thoughts on spiritual matters. Recently it appears he has made a transition to an atheist /agnostic stance due to some bad fallout with his religious community, the details of which I know nothing about.

A couple of years this ago a similar thing happened to me. I was terribly burned by a Baptist church I attended and have since been trying to pick up the pieces of an ideal that I once thought so beautiful – the evangelical Christian church. I do not mention this lightly – for this caused me the most sadness, the most tears, and the greatest anger I have ever experienced in my life. One day I imagine I will be able to walk into a church again and not cringe, or talk to a pastor again without thinking of him/her as the lowest form of life on the planet. I look forward to that day. In the meantime, both my wife and I will have a hard time when Sunday morning rolls around; when we once again wake up, get dressed, and drive to church wondering what will happen.

What I appreciate about John is his love of people and right causes and his drive to find truth about the spiritual life even with the dragging weight of a religious tradition that turned against him. He has devoted himself to the study of religion and the spiritual life to the best of his ability and to find truth wherever he can find it at great cost to his personal time and energy. I have only the most profound respect for such a man. I wish to God there were more such men like this. If there were a God (and I know there is,) He would be greatly pleased and rooting for John with all His heart. A God that would feel any different I would have nothing to do with.

The title of his weblog reminds me of the prophet Jeremiah, who commented on what God had told him. It burned like fire within him, and he had no choice but to tell others. I feel that in this day and age, the spiritual climate of our country was probably similar to his. Men like John hunger for spiritual truth in a world where it is capitalized by corrupt man-made religious institutions. Not deterred, he looks wherever he can to find it, think it over, reason with it, work it out with the mind he was given — at any cost. It is a desire that burns like fire and cannot be consumed. Maybe I’m just thinking of myself and that he is like me, but I don’t know that for sure. I hope all the best for John in his journey for truth. I believe with all certainty that a search like his will inevitably end in the truth being found. I would encourage others that are his brothers and sisters in this quest to root for him too. We will learn much from him, for the Author of truth is a companion of such great people.

    2 Responses to “A Mind on Fire”

    1. John

      Jonathan, thank you. I’ll try to live up to your generous portrayal.

      One of my primary motivations for maintaining MoF is to encounter people of integrity like you, to compare experiences and to support one another. I’m glad you started this blog (I can relate to the web design and time concerns) and look forward to reading about your spiritual journey!

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    2. Jonathan
      Author Comment

      Thank you!

      This is very intimidating becuase its now public. Everything I say is a work-in-progress and I might be quite wrong about things, but I’m trying my best. Yea — I’ve got a lot more work to go on the visual quality of the site. I just read an article saying you should put your picture on the front page so what they are reading becomes more personal. There are a lot of other ways to advertise the site that I’m trying to think about, but I’m trying to be careful about who I associate with — I’m trying very hard to keep myself distanced from the political Christian “religious right” because I don’t think I have much in common with them. What I’m really trying to find more sites like yours, but I can’t seem to find many. In your searching, have you found any good ones?

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