The young man in my house continues on his journey despite warnings from his peers to stop. They tell him he shouldn’t ask too many questions and that the only book he ever needs to read is the bible. He confessed to me yesterday that when he acquires new knowledge a fear rises within him. I want to find out where this fear came from. Who put this into him? In my culture acquiring knowledge triggers excitement but in Ghana someone has told him that it will lead to disaster. The disaster he fears is that he may lose his faith. And he is right. This is a real danger and it could happen. But equally it may not.
For some travel the journey and lose their faith on the way. For others it becomes strengthened. The problem for him is that the only type of religion he knows is the literalist, fundamentalist version. And this version does not hold up to scrutiny at all well. It is built on shaky ground which is why he is told not to examine it. Deep down he can feel its inconsistencies and knows the danger of exposing them. I hope he can dismantle these ideas and possibly find a better form of Christianity which is deeper, richer and more complex.
We all have choices and decisions to make about our lives and how far we want to go. Knowledge does not necessarily make you happier yet some are driven to acquire more. But others are happier to remain comfortable in cosy fictions and that is fine by me as long as they do not expect to lead or rule the rest of us.