Episode 5: Faith vs Fandom

Mother Rachel and Leeman discuss the wee tension that sometimes forms between the world of the religious and the world of the geek and ultimately prove beyond a shadow of any doubt how these two facets of our lives not only coexist but thrive together.

Topics Discussed and/or Spoiled

Our childhoods

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11 Responses to Episode 5: Faith vs Fandom

  1. Rachel Kolar says:

    While I was raised Southern Baptist, I also had an incredibly geeky dad. (At one point when I was in high school, our computer died. I asked my dad exactly how dead it was, and he replied, “You know when you have a character die, and you take him to the temple to get resurrected, and the resurrection spell backfires and he crumbles to dust? About that dead.”) This means I’ve never had much of an issue with being both Christian and geeky, which is nice in most ways but also meant that I was in for a bit of a shock the first time I ran into people who were. Apparently, I could talk about my cleric of Isis in front of my dad, but not in front of my Nana . . .

    • I was pretty lucky, too. The only time I think I ever was shut down from participating in geekiness due to strong Christian sentiment was while playing Magic with a cousin of mine, his dad walked in, saw the card “Unholy Strength” which had a man standing cruciform in front of a pentagram and he went, “Nuh uh.” That was about it, though.

      I did have a Quake-playing music minister once take me aside and try to warn me before going to college that there are sins and there are abominations and I was to know the difference. That might be another conversation though…


  2. Rachel Kolar says:

    Also, now that I have a kid I understand the whole “being leery of fiction in general” thing a bit better. I’m not sure if it stems so much from the idea that we shouldn’t fill kids’ heads with useless nonsense so much as a fear that if we “lie” to our children by telling them untrue stories, they’ll put less stock in the true ones. I usually tell Billy a fairy tale while he’s eating or before bed, and the other day I started telling him Noah’s Ark instead, since he doesn’t know a lot of his Bible stories. It was a little weird telling him Bible stories in the same way that I tell him “Jack and the Beanstalk,” just like it’s a little weird that “The Easter Story” is on the same bookshelf as “Biscuit Visits the Pumpkin Patch.” Of course, the way to get around this is to be clear to your kids that some stories are true and other stories aren’t, but trying to figure out how to make it clear that Noah is in a different category than Goldilocks gave me a new sympathy for Puritanical parents.

    • I can’t say I’ve ever felt much sympathy for the argument that fantasy makes kids doubt Jesus but that might be just my lack of having kids of my own. It probably doesn’t help that the first person I heard to posit this theory was Mr. Chick who I rarely call upon for parental guidance. Have their been other big changes you’ve seen that clashed with your pre-natal notions of how you were going to raise your kids? -leeman

      • Rachel Kolar says:

        Yeah, and I think a lot of it on my part is that baseless parental paranoia that somehow, I’m going to completely screw up my kid. I think with some parents it might just kick into overdrive–I can pretty easily dismiss this particular fear by remembering that I grew up switching back and forth between a comic-book Bible and books about vampires without any problems, but for parents who weren’t raised with fantasy, they don’t have that personal experience to draw on.

        I have definitely had a rude awakening on the whole “gosh darn it, childhood trauma movies made us stronger!” thing, although that’ll probably change when Billy isn’t two years old anymore and has a bit of a stronger grip on the difference between fantasy and reality. Still, the first time he had a full-bore Disney-movie-induced nightmare made me less cavalier about “Secret of NIMH.” Don’t get me wrong, he’s watching “Secret of NIMH,” and “Dark Crystal,” and all those other glorious childhood trauma movies of the ’80s; I’m just less flippant about it. (If you’re wondering, the nightmare in question was post-“Beauty and the Beast.” After requesting it every day for a week, he woke up from his nap sobbing hysterically about how he was never going to see Daddy again. Apparently the part where Belle and Maurice get separated really made an impression)

  3. I’ve enjoyed catching up on your show! Good stuff!

    A cool, free gizmo you might find useful is the Levelator. (http://www.conversationsnetwork.org/levelator) Just drop your podcast file into it and it comes out at an almost completely consistent volume from beginning to end, which is really handy for people listening while driving or working in the kitchen while listening.

    Look forward to hearing more!

    Take care,


  4. Errol Elumir says:

    I think it’s still weird hearing that song.

    Fortunately, I haven’t had a problem with it growing up either. But then again, I usually keep my geek hobbies, and my crazy personality, separate. *laugh*

    Of course, my current pastor is pretty geeky himself.

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