07:05 GMT +319 September 2019
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    Jordan Peterson speaking with attendees at the 2018 Student Action Summit hosted by Turning Point USA at the Palm Beach County Convention Center in West Palm Beach, Florida

    US Pastor Condemns Jordan Peterson as 'Brain Porn' for Christians

    CC BY 2.0 / Gage Skidmore / Jordan Peterson
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    Jordan Peterson, one of the most popular and controversial public thinkers of our time, has come under fire from a Christian pastor, who says the Canadian is the first pastor of the emerging "Church YouTube".

    Peter Burfeind, a pastor from the Holy Cross Lutheran Church, which serves students at the University of Toledo, Ohio, has chastised Peterson for allegedly drawing Christians away from traditional religious institutions, which serve as an intermediary between believers and God.

    Burfeind laments that younger people, instead of church, opt for the "faux" communities provided by social media platforms, and that Peterson, who professes non-institutionalism, is leading them down the wrong path, simply put.

    "Christians hoping Peterson will offer an assist to an ailing Western church are like a married couple looking to porn to reinvigorate their marriage. Peterson is brain porn for Christians disenchanted with the institutional church, when they should be working on their churches instead," Burfeind writes on the conservative online magazine The Federalist.

    "Christians need to make a concerted defence of the institution − yes, the institution − of the Christian church," he argues. "The alternative is to hand the faith over to the 'I believe in Christianity but not Churchianity' neo-gnostics, among whom Peterson nicely lines up."

    READ MORE: Jordan Peterson and Slavoj Zizek Clash in Intellectual 'Duel of Century'

    In questioning religious formalism and dogmatism, Burfeind insists that Peterson heralds a new church without direct involvement in the church community — something the pastor says contradicts what Jesus taught.

    "Jesus places the point of contact with himself and his teaching at the point of the disciple, which grounds the creation of the church," he says. "If there is a crisis among millennial spirituality, it's that in withdrawing from faith they've also withdrawn from their own flesh. Plugged into an electronic world of memes and narratives and images, their reality increasingly becomes something disconnected from other human beings."

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    Christianity, church, religion, Jordan Peterson, Jesus Christ
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