In Inuit mythology, the character of Raven looms large. Considered a “trickster god,” he is credited, along with the goddess Sedna, with creation.
The traditional account of the Inuit people is that the trickster in the form of Raven created the world. When the waters forced the ground up from the deep Raven stabbed it with his beak and fixed it into place. This first land was just big enough for a single house occupied by a single family: a man, his wife and their son, Raven who had fixed the land. The father had a bladder hanging over his bed. After much pleading by Raven the father allowed the boy to play with it. While playing Raven damaged the bladder and light appeared. The father not wanting to have light always shining took the bladder from the boy before he could damage it further. This struggle is the origin of day and night.
There are numerous versions of this same myth, some involving other characters, some very similar, only differing in tiny details. Some are so wildly different that they bear little resemblance to the original.
That is what happens with mythology. It’s an oral tradition, and slightly different versions are told around the campfires (or on Facebook) across the years. Eventually, most oral traditions get written down, and at the point, there is some source material to refer back to and the details become more stable.
And that is a lead-in for this:
This is just bizarre. Camille writes about how Bob Jones University has gone “whoring after other gods” and she is calling the school (it’s a school, mind you, not a church) “back to orthodoxy.”
The basic argument is, of course, similar to the Inuit tales I referenced above. Camille believes one version of the myth, and BJU believes a different version of the same myth. Generally, it’s the same story—just like the trickster god Raven always creates the world—but the details are different.
What is sort of weird, though, is this business of “whoring” and “orthodoxy.”
Bob Jones University has not gone “whoring.” They still hold to the same version of the myth that they always have. And that is the problem.
This is typical of the kind of remark made over on TSG frequently. “They’ll never change.” “It’s still the same.”
Well, the truth is that they are, in fact, changing. The myth is evolving. But like biological evolution, the evolution of mythology happens slowly, often so slowly it’s hard to see it. It helps, I suppose, to be very old. I “celebrate” exactly 51 years this week since the day when I told Bob III “no.”
The Bob Jones University I remember is a more rigid place than the University of today—even far away in Kentucky, I can see it. That doesn’t mean that they have scrapped the main myth—they have not. It remains intact, mostly. What they’ve done, like the Inuit, is change teensy details. A woman closed chapel in prayer. Girls can wear pants and it’s not a crime punishable by death. And I don’t think they have to wear hose anymore. Jesus doesn’t hate all that now. A little change in the myth.
But Camille does a total flip-flop above. Instead of accusing them, as they’ve been doing now for a very long time, of “never changing,” she says they’ve “gone whoring after other gods” and must return to “orthodoxy.”
That word, “orthodoxy,” is an interesting choice. I include the definition, well, because. . . you know why.
I hear it cited a lot. A whole bunch of people who have evolved to embrace a different version of the myth from the Bob Jones version insist that they are now “orthodox” and BJU is somehow “other.”
The usual explanation for this is that their particular version of the myth is older than the version BJU embraces, and therefore more authentic.
Of course, there’s a bit of a problem.
Camille claims “orthodoxy.” Camille is a Calvinist. I know other people who claim “orthodoxy” too. And they are not Calvinists and say that the Calvinist version of the myth is not “orthodox” at all.
So the word means “authorized doctrine.” But the question then becomes “who is the authority”? Who has declared the Calvinist version of the myth the correct one? Who died and left Camille in charge?
And each of them—every single one of them, all the people who embrace the myth—claim that the source material is the Bible.
It would be funny if people didn’t kill other people over which version of the myth they believe.
Camille is claiming that BJU somehow has changed their mythology (from when? from when they started? from when Camille was born? from when Camille first matriculated? when?) in some major way.
This is like somebody coming back to Greenville after an absence of, say, seven years and insisting that the Clock Drive-in used to be on the corner of White Oak Drive and Wade Hampton Boulevard.
We have this—a nice edit.
I burst out laughing when I saw this. Now some unnamed “reader” (male, of course) gets the blame for this little piece of stupidity. The unnamed “reader” obviously sent this little gem via what—PM? And Camille thought it was great enough to put up on the page, without specifying authorship.
You know, we dealt with this shit all summer long when the Manhater pages were multiplying like maggots in cow patties. They would write some godawful stupid thing, and then when we’d object, they would all insist that whoever we accused of writing it didn’t do it. There are multiple admins and we don’t ever, ever, ever tell another admin what they can and cannot say.
The result, of course, is that nobody gets the blame. Nobody takes credit for having written anything at all. So when “they” accused Dave right out, by name, of being a child molester—well, nobody did it.
Let me explain something, Camille. You run that fucking page. YOU. You get the blame. You get it all. I don’t give a shit who you pretend wrote stuff—if you put it up without any clarification—it’s yours. Very, very occasionally, something gets posted that is obviously written by Cathy Harris (and generally signed by her). And the probably fictional Mark writes stuff from time to time, but mostly, it’s you.
[BTW, the original went up two days ago. 29 people have “liked” it. But about three hours after this page went up, it’s suddenly edited.]