- Posted January 21, 2013 by
Recently Published 'I Am Christ' Book
I read a recently published book, by an Australian Author, Michael Sherlock. Funnily enough, as I was reading it, I could hear my mind reading certain words in an Australian accent! I’m not sure if this is his real name, but his name in itself is entertaining! The name of his book is ‘I Am Christ’ and although I did not understand the title at first, like perhaps he was trying to say that he was Christ, but no, that wasn’t it at all. I now understand its meaning. His book is a very well researched attack on Christianity, but not just that, he also goes through some of the cognitive problems that many believers face. I’m a fan of Sherlock’s Facebook page and he recently posted a review of his book written by Professor Emirates, Dr. Rick Herrick (author of 'The Case Against Evangelical Christianity'). Dr. Herrick’s review is below.
For me, it was a great read, an eye opening perspective on the dangers of belief driven cognitive thinking. In this post 2012 cognitive shift, I think this book maybe just what we need to help some of us start to question why we believe, what we do. I think perhaps the contents of the book and the authors somewhat sarcastic commentary on the bible may make it controversial, but definitely challenging for Christians. I hope Christians read it, especially Christian Apologists, because I would be interested to hear their rebuttal!
As an ex-Christian, I found some of Sherlock’s questions a little confronting, as I found myself going in and out of my Christian mind. When I read the cognitive dissonance part in his book, I had such a personal affiliation with how I used to feel when others questioned my faith. Now on the ‘ex-Christian’ side of things, I was both uplifted and reassured in my lack of faith and living life beyond belief. I didn’t feel guilty that I don’t believe as everyone else does and I felt a breath of relief through many parts of the book, where I knew, I can be good without God. I do not need some belief in a deity to be a nice, considerate and compassionate human being. I can be and I am Christ, in the way I treat other people, without needing a God to confirm my morality and what it means to show humanity to others.
Although we are supposed to be in a post 2012 cognitive shift, I think that with the way the world is at the moment and the violence and conflict that results from religion and belief based thinking, reiterates that belief is still the driving force behind a lot of our problems as people. In his book Sherlock says: “Have you ever wondered what it is that compels an otherwise peaceful and intelligent human being to pick up a gun for either his country, or his religion and slaughter a multitude of men, women and children, whilst maintaining the delusion that he is carrying out a righteous calling? Or what it is that induces an equally peaceful person to strap a bomb to themselves in order to decimate thousands of innocent bystanders, not to mention themselves? There is just one word which answers both of these questions. BELIEF! It has the power to control the mind and subsequent actions of an individual, who becomes possessed by an idea which has been dictated to them by external forces, be they political or religious. Once possessed, the victim of the belief is capable of behaving in ways that they would otherwise deplore. Such is the malign and dangerous power exerted over the believer by their beloved and trusted beliefs…So why then is belief still encouraged and in some cases even considered to be a necessary aspect of human consciousness? What has belief achieved over the entire span of human history? Wars, genocide, persecution, dogmatic and willful ignorance, fear, guilt, hatred, arrogance, egotism are all the children of this proverbial wolf in sheep’s clothing...It is time to defrock this deceiver and expose it for the malign and malignant entity that it really is.”
If you get the chance, read this book, it will challenge you, question you, make you laugh at the absurdity of limited belief and ultimately, may be make you realize that you do not need a God to be Christ yourself.
Here is Professor Emirates, Dr. Rick Herrick’s review on Michael Sherlock’s book ‘I Am Christ:’
I am mad at Michael Sherlock. For the last few years I have been planning to write a book entitled “Beyond Belief”, and he has beaten me to the punch. Sherlock’s book, I Am Christ, is a thorough going attack on Christianity as a belief syste...m. The really maddening thing is that he does it so well.
In the book, Sherlock analyzes each of the four gospels, presenting evidence that shows they were not eyewitness accounts, nor credible history. The contradictions both within a particular gospel and between them are many. At the end of the book, he analyzes the evidence for the historical Jesus. From the meager sources we have, it is hard to locate the Jesus of history.
There is an important purpose for his analysis. According to Sherlock, Christianity as a religion has failed to make the world a better place. In fact, the Christian religion has been a major cause of world problems such as global violence and anti-Semitism.
Even more important, Christianity as a belief system has put millions of people to sleep. A major theme in Sherlock’s book is that belief systems of all stripes deafen and blind people. They close people’s minds, which prevents them from learning new information. They provide a subjective road map of reality rather than a map of reality itself. In a nutshell, belief systems prevent people from seeing the truth.
This is an important book. It is well written and argued. My only problem with the book is the title, I Am Christ. The title suggests that each individual is his or her own savior. We save ourselves when we learn to think on our own, free from the prejudices, distortions, and the deadening numbness of belief.
The problem is that the book is not really a how-to manifesto on becoming a free thinker. Yes, some suggestions are made in that direction, but the main thrust of the book is a well researched attack on the foundations of the Christian belief system. I want you to read that attack. It is so well done. Don’t let the title confuse, turn you off, or scare you.
~Dr. Rick Herrick
I hope you find the time to read it, you can also check out Sherlock's Facebook page: