Do You Believe in Fairies?

You  may remember that episode in Peter Pan when Tinkerbell is about to perish and all the children in the audience are asked to clap their hands if they believe in fairies. Their clapping makes Tinkerbell come back to life.

Tinkerbell seems to have invaded the mindset of modern man. That is to say, too many people think that if you believe something it makes it so, and if you do not believe something that makes it so. How often have you heard people say, “Well, I don’t believe in Hell.” Then they go on living like the devil–imagining that just not believing in Hell makes Hell go away. (Here is a connected post: Do You Believe in Hell?) Likewise a good number of religious people think that just by believing a particular doctrine makes it so.

This is practical relativism. It is sometimes expressed as “If that belief works for you, then that’s good. It doesn’t work for me.” Thus belief is relegated to a kind of utilitarianism. “Choose a belief you like, and the belief you like is the one that ‘works for you.’” Read more.

  • Anil Wang

    Whenever I hear someone say “I don’t believe in hell” I press them and ask what they mean.

    My own observation is it’s not a matter of “wishing will make it so”, but simply sloppy terminology (which results in sloppy thinking and a sloppy theology).

    What “I don’t believe in hell” really means is “I’m a pantheist” or “Hell doesn’t make sense” or “Hell is incompatible with a loving God” or “God is sovereign and God wants all the be saved, so all will be. It’s just that people like Hitler will be in purgatory a very long time” or “It’s all just speculation, and I choose to speculate otherwise” or “I don’t believe in an afterlife” or “I believe in reincarnation” or “I believe in ghosts that dwell on earth” or “I believe in the Elysian Fields where everyone goes and lives an impoverished ‘life’ that is neither hell nor heaven”.

  • shana

    You were more literally correct than you thought, Father, when you wrote, “Tinkerbell seems to have invaded the mindset of modern man. That is to say, too many people think that if you believe something it makes it so, and if you do not believe something that makes it so.”

    There really are people who believe in fairies, er, faeries, and have created a religion out of it. Most, but not all, will claim to be wiccan. There are different branches of it, and the followrs call themselves Faerie Wiccans or people of the Faery-Faith or Faery Religion. They claim they are following ancient Celts in their beliefs and practices.

    Very peculiar times we live in.

  • http://rujutax.blogspot.in/ RX

    Oh I’ve heard that a lot of times… They just shrug their shoulders and say ‘I don’t believe in so and so…’ and they really feel the thing they don’t believe in will stop existing…

    Wish I could say I don’t believe in idiots…


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