To the Editor:
Recently I’ve observed several notices for the “Do You Agree With Adam?” campaign. This message disturbs me, but not because I am agnostic. I find inspiration and love in places other than organized religion, but I have a tremendous respect for the idea of faith.
The campaign, which is sponsored by several Christian groups on campus, frames a complex issue with an oversimplified question. “Do You Agree With Adam?” requires a yes or no answer; it requires the respondent to declare whether he or she believes Christian tenets. For me, the richness of religion or anything spiritual lies in its many shades. Life’s great mysteries pose a spectrum of possibilities, not a singular answer. Adam Meredith ’08 identifies a specific belief. That belief is perfectly valid, but it is only a particular interpretation. I would like my individual life philosophy to be deeper and more considered than can be answered with a yes or a no.
Furthermore, I feel that “Do You Agree With Adam?” is unnecessarily divisive. Meredith states that “Jesus is the only way to restore our relationship with God and to know His love. This is the life we were meant to live.” The campaign’s mantra seems to ask, Are you with us or against us? Are you on the good side or the bad side? This attitude is unhealthy for the community. Enlightenment does not come through self-assertion but by contemplating foreign, perhaps disagreeable ideas. Listening and thinking are more illuminating than declaration or mere alignment.
I am not opposed to the general goal of Meredith’s campaign – to stimulate discussion of religion (or perhaps just Christianity). Nevertheless, his organization should operate under the banner of more thoughtful questions: What do people believe, why do they believe it, and do they believe it at all? Most importantly, Meredith should remove his name from the campaign. Spiritually is a beautifully vast and enigmatic realm. One navigator cannot draw a map for us all.
Adrian Coleman ’06
April 4, 2006