“Why Do Christians Have to Bash Pop Psychology?”

Dear Mr. Anderson,

I was just browsing the Probe Ministries website and read parts of your article about Pop Psychology Myths.

Honestly, I just don’t get it. Well, I should tell you I come from a strong Christian background, involved in Campus Crusade, youth groups, church ministries etc. But sometime during my senior year of college I just about HAD IT with Christian culture and all their myths.

Why is it wrong to have self-esteem? I hid behind the Bible for years to make me feel good about myself, but I was never convinced. My personal calling isn’t to humble myself to meekness, never thinking for myself, in order to be “godly.” I feel better, accomplish more, and fulfill the talents God has given my when I act in ways to help my self esteem, like taking good care of myself, being assertive in my writing career and not letting people walk all over me, like I used to do, when I was a walking sin-o-meter… Why is it so important to make rules and laws and lists of myths when the whole essence of Christianity is Grace and Love? Doesn’t this fear of the world seem somewhat legalistic?

I really don’t know where I am going with this, I am just so frustrated with Christians who spend all their time worrying about the “world’s ways” when things just AREN’T so black and white. There is wisdom in pop psychology–some of it is just plain nonsense, but there is some wisdom, just as there is some wisdom in Taoism. For goodness sakes, a great deal of it parallels scripture.

Anyway, something to chew on. I very much respect your degrees and figured you may be open to some discussion on the subject.

Thanks for writing. I thought the book by Chris Thurman (Self-Help or Self-Destruction) that was a basis of my week of radio programs was very well written and discerning. Perhaps I should do another week of programs on the other five myths of pop psychology mentioned in the book so that the analysis would be more complete.

I don’t think that my transcript (nor the book) denies that there is any wisdom in pop psychology. But I do think we should be more discerning, and that’s what we were trying to convey in the program. Anyway, thanks for your opinion.

Kerby Anderson
Probe Ministries