Missing the Mark
Got your attention, huh?
That is what I call in my work a “power word”. It means that marketing (which is a language killer) has not diluted a word’s significance and weight.
Although a power word, it is also a conversation stopper. It reminds me of this Jim Gaffigan bit. And much more seriously, if you’ve experienced religious trauma, it is also a trigger word. How ever it is being used, it is rarely used in a casual conversation. So I use “sin” in this essay with intentionality and sensitivity.
Although institutional Christianity has made the word to be synonymous with transgression or wickedness, the original term in both Hebrew and Greek means “missing the mark”. Some entomologists believe that the term originally came from archery. Interestingly, Buddhism has no similar term or concept.
So why am I bringing this up?
One of my goals for the Third Way is to examine our binary reactions to certain words with the intent of understanding our biases - and maybe even re-defining a word to its original intent. In that spirit, I have come to consider the original concept of “sin” to mean “not present”.
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