posted on Dec, 26 2010 @ 02:39 PM
It varies with the person, of course, but I would say that the more evangelical a person is, regardless of what they are evangelical in favour of, the
more arrogant that they will tend to be, because they are constantly having the door slammed in their face, so they need a pretty thick skin, and that
skin often comes from an exaggerated sense of confidence in their being right and the opposition being wrong.
That said, I consider myself to be a reasonably humble person, but I know that I come off as arrogant here and there, which bugs me, so I've thought
it through. In general, in a conversation that you and I might have about baseball or computer languages or some other mundane topic, I might argue
that Objective-C is superior to C++ or that Bill "Spaceman" Lee was an underrated pitcher, but I'm not all that passionate about it, so I can see
your point of view on such matters and acknowledge that your appreciation of C++ is as valid as my dislike of it and you might even convince me that
Lee had his due, and there are far more underrated pitchers in the game, so you are right and I am wrong.
So, though I am a theist, I can say that I'm not inherently arrogant. I don't believe that my opinion holds any great sway, simply because it is
However, when we move into the realm of faith, a different "me" emerges, and that's where I struggle. I've thought about the Jewish "chosen
people" thing in the past, and how that certainly comes off as elitist and arrogant, but I come back to the nature of faith, and the nature of
reality -- there can only be one truth. Either the Jews are the chosen people of the creator God, or they are not. If they are, then it isn't
elitist or arrogant for a Jew to call himself "chosen", it's simply stating a fact.
But the fact of the matter is that, for a person who is a strict adherent to that belief system, it IS a fact. It IS right. If it wasn't right,
they wouldn't be a strict adherent of it. This doesn't change reality, whether there is or isn't a God and whether he has or hasn't chosen a
certain people, but it moulds this person's reality, and how they see themselves in the world.
As I've said before, I am a Christian because I believe that Christianity is right. If something came round that convinced me that I was mistaken,
and Christianity is wrong, I would no longer be a Christian. But it has not, and enough things have come round to convince me that it is right, so
that's where I stand. That seems so simple, and yet it's a fact lost on people who try to sway others to their faiths. The reason that I don't
try and convert a non Christian, such as yourself, is that I recognize that you believe that your views are right, that's why you hold them, and
trying to convince you that you are wrong is simply disrespectful of you.
However, that "I'm right, you must be wrong" perspective that results from this conclusion of faith all too often comes off as arrogance, when it
is likely closer to a (possibly inflated as a defence mechanism) sense of self confidence that we have made the right decision and that our belief is
the right belief.
Combined with the fact that a theist views faith as of paramount importance, not a mundanity like sport or computers, I think that you'll find almost
anyone who is passionate on the matter will seem arrogant. The question for Christian theists, then, becomes whether they are arrogant in themselves
(which is decried in the Bible) or arrogant in their faith (which is not.)
Hope that helps.