Should we avoid religious language?

When someone is beset by faith, especially at first, there is such a thing as the zeal of a convert. If that kicks in, he or she wants to tell everyone: the Great Good Thing is real, objective, full of truth the world needs more than anything. Until this is known, there is an emergency in progress that must be addressed, regardless of the usual decorum. The Owl knows this feeling from the inside, and has actually alienated his more conventional friends by succumbing to it.

Wiser heads say it is not to be done. Their reasoning is pragmatic. For the fact is, Christian language repels many. In our current fevered political atmosphere, it brings out some very ugly, sometimes dangerously violent reactions. We need not retail those here, but even in a benign context it is unconvincing, off-putting, and embarrassing. People hearing it will usually not engage with it. It seems they either have some visceral rejecting reflex, or they simply don’t comprehend, or they are polite enough to feign incomprehension.

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