posted on Sep, 23 2005 @ 03:02 PM
Can anyone explain to me just what the door-to-door missionaries are really for?
I try to always speak to them, whenever they come. usually it's the Mormons, but Protestants are not uncommon. Originally I always assumed that they
went door to door in order to try and "speread the word of God" so to speak. But after as many as I've spoken to over the years, I'm really
starting to doubt that's why they come. I get the imepssion that few people actually speak to missionaries, so they migth not realize this...but the
overwhelming majority of them really don't have much to say, and loathe every second that they spend at your door.
Let me give you an especially memorable example: the very first time I was ever approached by the Mormons.
It was a number of years ago, and I was thrilled to have them come, because I had heard about the Mormons, didn't really know much about them, but it
had never been important enough to me to go asking about them. So...having a pair show up at my door offering to tell me about themselves seemed
great. So I invited them in.
They were shocked.
In fact...not more than five or ten minutes into the conversation, and long before I had even the vaguest general outline of their belief system, they
"suddenly had to leave." But, before they left, one of the pair asked me a question. I kid you not...this is about what he said:
"Why did you invite us in? I've been doing this for two years and you're the second person ever to speak us."
Umm...excuse me? I assumed the whole purpose of their going door to door was to spread the word about their religion. But after two years they had
only ever spoken to two people, and were shocked that I invited them inside to talk? And had to cut the conevrsation short when I actually expressed
interest in what they had to say?
What's going on here?
In fact...it's even worse than that. I invited them to come back another time, and got their phone number. They never came on the apopinted
day, and when i called to reschedule, they NEVER EVEN RETURNED MY PHONE CALLS!
What is going on?
And it's not like it's just the Mormons. A pair of protestants came to my door just this morning, and as usual, I tried to converse with them.
Listen some. Speak some. Think some. Converse
They couldn't do it.
They started by saying nice things about me. Complimenting me repeatdly about this and that. (In retrospect...buttering me up in an attempt to make
me more receptive to manipulation.) Then they asked a few questions...and listened to my responses. (In retrospect...tried to make me feel like they
cared about what I thought in order to make me more receptive to manipulation.)
Then they started dissertating.
I tried listening, but things they said didn't make sense. They couldn't clarify. I tried asking questions. They just kept right on talking. They
pulled out their Bible and started fingering through passages, trying to get me to look into the book whlie they read. (This has always annoyed me,
and today I figured out why. They're very deliberately attempting to bypass the thinking part of the brain. Something doesn't have to be in the
Bible to make sense, or be worth listening to. On the other hand, just because something is in the Bible, doesn't mean I'm going to simply take it
at face value, out of context. Or, as my Christian friends have been known to say "Even the Devil may quote the Bible to his own ends." But, by
pointing out that something is in the Bible, apparantly they're hope to generate belief. Even though sometimes the passage they're showing doesn't
even relate to what they're talking about!!!!)
So how did this particular encounter end? Well, one of them started yet another tangent of her dissertation, and after a few moments, she stated a
very obvious logical fallacy, and I made motion t o interupt. She kept talking. And talking...and talking. I listened, and waited for a good two
minutes until finally interupting with "May I make a suggestion?" She totally ignored me and went right on talking at me. So I said "Oh. I guess I
can't. Ok. Thank you for your time." Then I went back inside and closed the door. But not before I noticed something.
They were relieved to be done.
They were happy to be done! Not "they were dissappointed to lose a listener" not even "they were sad that they couldn't prosyletize at me
anymore." No...they were grateful that I had given them a socially acceptable opportunity to not have to talk to me anymore.
What exactly is going on here? I've seen this time and time again. Door to door missionaries do NOT want to talk to people. They don't want to talk,
they don't want to listen, they don't want to discuss...I'm starting to wonder if maybe what they really want is for people to slam the door in
their face so they can feel good about being somehow holier than the person at the door. In fact, that might really be what they're looking for, but
I've never done it, so I can't say.
What are these people trying to do?
Spread the word of God? No, obviously not. Even if you simply listen it tends to make them uncomfortable.
Bring in more people to their church, to generate more tithes? No...fully half of the time they don't even tell you what church they're from, and
the little pamphlets and materials often don't have addresses,
Learn to be better debaters by discussing religion with a wide variety of people? Not a chance! Not if they can help it, anyway.
Outright delude, lie, manipulate and brainwash people into joining their faith? Well...ok...but if that's really what they're trying to do, why do
so many of them lose interest when you're actually interested in what they have to say?
Seriously...why are these people going door to door? I'm starting to wonder if they're not from churches at all, if instead their government
agents checking to see who needs to be eliminated first, because these people don'twant to talk about religion if they can do anything to
Are there are ministers reading this? Do you send people out like this? What exactly are they supposed to be doing? Are they just trying to earn
brownie points for God by taking verbal abuse from heathens? That's the only answer I've thought up that I can't dismiss. What's the deal?
I invite anyone to try this. Talk to the next missionary who comes to your door. Watch them. Observe them. Ask them questions. See if actually talking
to you about religion isn't the last thing they seem to want to do.
[edit on 23-9-2005 by LordBucket]