symbols of redeemed sin

Trent and I have talked about whether we should get Nugget baptized. So far he's still in danger of eternity in limbo. Or whatever the current catechism is. I think it would be easier if my parents insisted that we get him baptized, then at least we could do it without feeling like we were buying into anything ourselves. But they don't seem too bothered about it. And I simply cannot stomach it on my own steam. First and foremost is the why: I cannot, will not believe in a god that would condemn a child. I do not accept original sin, with every fiber of my being I do not accept it. That makes baptism pretty superfluous. When we first discussed it, Trent did not know what the point of baptism was. When I explained the original sin doctrine to him, his reaction was: are you f---ing kidding me?!!!! Which, well, exactly. It is hard for me to have that reaction to it because I've lived with an understanding of it all my life, but when you step back, yeah, that about sums it up. Strangely, after living with that understanding for a little while, Trent has backslid on it and now wonders whether we should do it just in case. He doesn't want to be responsible for Nugget going to hell, or something. That's just the kind of guy he is I guess, however baffling this particular manifestation is to me. He's cautious. He's the one badgering our condo association about the fire extinguishers needing an inspection, for example. Which brings me to the second stumbling block, which tends to silence Trent when he wonders if maybe we should do it just in case: we would have to stand up and swear to all sorts of ridiculous things on Nugget's behalf. (Basically, the parents take the vows because the kid's too young, and then the kid has to "confirm" those vows when he comes of age.) Funny thing is, I think what bothers me most -- at least insofar as I dimly recollect the baptismal vows (they are repeated at Mass every year around Easter but I haven't exactly been to church much lately) -- the thing that bothers me most is the part where you renounce Satan and all his works. I mean, don't get me wrong, I'm not embracing Satan and all his works, but I find the idea of renouncing him ludicrous. I've really never bought into the whole Satan thing, I think even when I was a kid. Let's get intellectual about it, although my disbelief here is more deeply rooted than reason. First, an embodiment of all things evil is just way too simple. You can avoid all sorts of heart-rending moral dilemmas with this pat notion, and I think that's unforgivably lazy and cowardly. Not to mention likely to lead to ignorant intolerance for other people's perspective on those moral dilemmas. Second, to the extent I am able to believe in any god at all, I cannot and will not believe in a god that would relegate part of Creation to live outside His Love. ("His" and all capitalization used here for familiarity of reference.) Seriously, this is one thing I do not understand about religion: if you are just going on faith anyway, why the hell (no pun intended) don't you shape your faith to suit your needs? What is the point of sweating balls to hold onto someone else's ideas about how things should be? Anyway, so Nugget's not baptized, and sometimes we worry about it. Trent more than me, even though I was the one who spent ten years in Catholic school and had my forehead painted with oil by a priest when they thought I was dying once, and whatnot. Go figure.

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