Thank you Photini – The best I could do is be authentic as I am, as I see myself at present, and provide stories that may be comparable in some fashion to perhaps help, or if nothing else, act as a “case study” as “a guy I know went through it and this is what he tried”.
It “seems right” to behave this way and I don’t know why nor do I try to guess at this point. I have a hope that God works in synonymous forms so as to benefit even those who may have received broken educations and I try to find those “points in common” and call them out when I see them. I speak freely about my five years deeply involved with great fondness and seem to have found myself surrounded online with many atheists with some _tremendously broken_ views of human history and religion in general and Christianity in particular.
So, I try to help them. I bring up my positive experiences. I fill in some of their gaps in historical knowledge. I declare the word “agnostic” to them which appeases them while also explaining that perhaps the thing they refer to as Christianity isn’t Christianity at all, but a splinter of a splinter of a splinter, far removed from the real thing, which is Orthodoxy.
[i also like to tease by pointing out their Atheism is a product of Protestantism and trace the movement THEY’RE a part of back for them. It frustrates me that their views of history are _so limited_ that they can’t see what they’re a part of and that the broad brush they paint with just might be a little TOO broad.]
None of this really speaks to faith. I don’t know if I can help people in that way. But the drive to broaden people’s horizons is HUGE in me, for once I was exposed to Orthodoxy I saw human history in a whole new light, in particular Western Civilization.. not as a series of distinct events on a timeline, but as a continuity of peoples and concepts, traveling across time, putting me next to Plato when I speak from his concepts, next to St John Climacus when I speak with his.
Somehow I feel that if I can help bring people to a broader view of Time… their relationship to be embraced by a “beyond comprehension” grows more possible…
What comes of it? I don’t know. It’s a compulsion from a force I can’t name. I just let my fingers start typing until they stop.