“OTAGOsh” made himself known to me a few years ago in the blogging world but only since finally getting serious with an rss reader this week have I discovered the extent of his brilliant and humorous posts. The name behind the blog is Gavin Rumney and he looks like a kindred spirit with respect to our religious background (we were both members of the Worldwide Church of God) and current views (even politically green ones!) I know I can come across here as far more serious and dogmatic than I am in reality so I like Otagosh’s line forewarning his readers:
I hope you enjoy your time here. If it’s any consolation, in real life I’m much less opinionated!
Otagosh/Gavin’s posts are a real tonic. He knows how to write. And he knows exactly how to handle Robert M. Price, for example:
What does Bob Price have in common with Martin Luther?
They both got more crotchety as they aged. . . . . . .
As you might already suspect, I’m I big fan of Bob (Dr. Robert M. Price). Not of his politics, I hasten to add, but of his honesty, directness and humour in his chosen field of biblical studies. Again, not that I agree with him on everything, but his ‘take’ on the Bible and religion is always worth considering. He’s not called “the Bible Geek” for nothing.
My favourite line in I Slam Islam is his description of Martin E. Marty as “the very poster-boy for namby-pamby, “standing for nothing, offending no one” liberal Protestantism”.
And there’s much more polemic where that comes from.
Bob is of course a thorough conservative when it comes to politics, somewhere to the right of Attila the Hun, which bizarrely puts him at the other end of the spectrum to most of his admirers in the world of atheistic biblical study.
I could read Otagosh for hours. He brings back memories of my old cult days in a way that leaves me with a grin on my face. Some favourites:
The Grinch puts his case — ah yes, what it was like to be standing up for Jesus Christ against the onslaught of the pagan Christmas!
Feast of Tabernacles 2014 — and our Christmas substitute, those annual feasts where we splurged a full tenth of our gross annual income, much on alcohol, as compensation for enduring hours of sermons for a solid eight days.
Understanding Fundamentalism — “If you just want a spleen-venting ‘feel good’ tirade, Ruthven isn’t your man. In this slim volume he pushes us well up the learning curve. At the end you might not feel any more kindly toward the phenomena – I know I didn’t – but you will have a deeper grasp of what motivates otherwise rational people to embrace these dire views.”
A Bible for all Seasons and Reasons — no clues for this one, go to the site to read it.
As if that isn’t enough happy relaxing and uplifting reading for a fellow-exWCGer Gavin has started another blog, Gully Heights, for a “wider, non-religious focus”. Another great resource when you feel the need to take 5 in the middle of a hectic day. Or just to unwind after hours.
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