Religion is generally a touchy subject. It can also be an interesting topic. Well, at least I think so. That’s why I’m a religion minor.
Well, that and I should have graduated a semester ago. I decided having a minor was a good excuse to stay in college longer than necessary. College is supposed to be four years, and as previous posts illuminate, I have no desire to cut it short.
So, here I am. An advertising major and a religion minor. Two subjects that have nearly nothing in common except that I find both interesting.
I don’t plan on doing anything with my religion minor. Which is why there isn’t really a theme to the classes I’ve taken in that department. I’ve taken everything from Hinduism to Gender in Medieval Christian Mysticism. The common denomiator is just that I needed to fill my schedule and classes that began with RN happened to draw my attention.
In fact, most of the religion classes I’ve taken have been doubled listed in either History or Classics. I’m more interested in religion’s cultural role in a time or place I guess.
This leads to my current predicament. I’m currently enrolled in a 100-level religion course. No, I’m not trying to slack off senior year. I need it to graduate. Since I didn’t plan on minoring in this subject I didn’t follow the path correctly so I’m back tracking. (But I’m not exactly complaining about it being meant for freshman either. Senioritis has set in after all.)
What is the problem you ask? The problem is that I intern MWF, and there is only one 100-level religion course offered TR. It is called Death and Immortality.
The topic being morbid is not the problem. I mean, I would not have chosen it if given other options but, whatever. The problem is that this is the first course that I’ve taken that seems to be asking me to question my own faith.
I was leaving the second class this week and I heard other students talk about how fast that 90 minutes flew for them. How they were really enjoying this class. I felt like I needed to clean my ears. Seriously? Every minute in that giant lecture hall was a struggle for me. I must have checked the clock hundreds of times.
That’s when I realized something. I might be the first religion major in history who is simply not interested in questioning my own theology. I really don’t want to think about me. I love hearing about how Christians in Medieval Europe thought that illness was brought on by elves and consequently worked the mention of them in to the Lord’s Prayer. Come on, elves! Who wouldn’t want to learn about that.
However, asking me which five models of Death and Immortality my beliefs fit in to is just not what I call a good time. I don’t really care which model I fit. I honestly don’t think I fit a model. Either way I don’t want to think about it.
But now the fact that I’ve realized that I don’t want to think about it is bothering me. I already spend so much time obsessing over my more immediate future is it really so bad that I don’t want to waste more time on my more distant one?
That doesn’t sound like a question a true religion minor would ask. I’m sure if some of my peers read this they’d ask me why I’m even bothering. But I hope some of them would understand. I like religion because it is something that pretty much all of humanity shares. Very few people through out history have gone through life without religion impacting them. Even atheists are not exempt. Puritanism has shaped America’s history and whether you believe or not the society at large is influenced and so are you.
It is a cultural phenomenon that cannot be escaped and it’s interesting. What about the human condition makes religion so important to us? Is it so bad that I think that is a better question than What happens when we die?