You called it disgusting and distasteful to use an "animal feeding device".
I pointed out that a "horse trough" used as a baptismal font is not, in fact, an animal feeding device at all.
You respond by stating that I am
unwilling or unable to continue in a rational discussion on this subject.
I therefore respond by stating my perplexity that you did not respond to the statement that the object in question is not, in fact, an "animal feeding device", but in fact a big tub that may have been sold with that purpose in mind but has never been used as such, and instead chose to accuse me of not being able to respond rationally to you.
Here's what I'm getting out of all this:
You: "Horse trough baptismal fonts are distasteful because it is unseemly to use an animal feeding device in a church."
Me: "It's not an animal feeding device."
You: "You're incapable of discussing this rationally."
Let's take a somewhat analogous situation (notice the qualifier), shall we? Yes, it exists in the realm of the hypothetical (IME), but bear with me.
Parishes are supposed to use chalices (designed for the purpose of holding and distributing the gifts) to perform Divine Liturgies. In case you haven't checked or noticed, Orthodox chalices are expensive
. Any proper drinking device (glass, wine glass, goblet) could theoretically
be used if a parish were formed and did not have the means (either financial, or for procurement) to receive the gifts. Say a parishioner has a goblet, plainly styled, that they are willing to donate for use; it is unused. Similarly, another parishioner has a very large stein that they are willing to donate; it is also unused. If I were the priest in the parish, I would say that using a stein for communion is distasteful, and I would rather use the smaller goblet. My choice of the goblet would likely mean that, in this parish, people receive only a small amount of the Body and Blood, rather than a more sizable amount that could be afforded in the larger stein.
When speaking to a visitor, they explain to me that in their parish, formed under similar circumstances and experiencing a similar chalice-related problem, they chose a stein because they felt that it better fit their purposes. Their choice of the stein does not make the act (Divine Liturgy) any less holy, reverent, etc. - it's still the Body and Blood of Christ. My personal opinion that a stein isn't an appropriate vessel for the Blood of Christ does not mean that it is impossible to be used, or that it somehow desecrates the sacrament. It's the same Body and Blood, period. Full stop. Same Liturgy, same Christ, same communion, same Church.
So similarly with the Horse Trough. Yes, it is a metal tub, and if it's never used to feed animals, then who cares, right? But it wasn't designed or intended to be a baptismal font, so I guess I'm a bit old fashioned
in wanting to use something designed and intended to be a font - we do have that luxury nowadays. If someone decides to use it, then Glory to God for all things.
It is not an uncommon condition to have a way of thinking that leads to a conclusion that is different from what one is willing to explicitly state.
I am perfectly willing to state my opinion on subjects, even the most uncomfortable ones. I try my best to be clear as to what my intentions are. I have been more than clear in my intentions, but you have decided to interpret my statements in a manner differing from my own explicit instructions on how to interpret them. It is not an uncommon condition to read other people's statements and draw unusual or unreasonable conclusions based on that.
You may resist thinking that some baptisms are holier than others because you do think it's wrong to think such things, but it is quite possible to look at how you have explained your resistance to horse troughs (or if you prefer, "large tubs that happen to be sold with livestock hydration in mind but are no more specific to that purpose than any other large tub that holds liquid") and reach a different conclusion.
You could also look at my hands and hear me explain that I hold things with them, and use them to communicate and form personal bonds through touch, and conclude that I use them to kill because they have the potential to be dangerous. Potential /= (or if you prefer, "does not equal") reality.
I don't doubt your sincerity, but I think there is a discrepancy you're not conscious of, and I think you should work through it instead of casting aspersions upon me.
There is no cognitive (or otherwise) dissonance here, no discrepancy. I have many thousands of personal faults to work through, but your perception of dissonance between my statements and my stated intent on issues of baptismal fonts is not one of them, since it is an issue that exists only in your view, not in reality.
If you choose to continue to think that a horse trough is invariably an animal feeding device and therefore not proper to be used in church. That's fine.
Actually, I don't think all horse troughs are invariably animal feeding devices; I think many are used for animal bathing, long-term storage of liquids, distillation of alcohol, etc. That doesn't change the fact that it was designed to be used for equine hydration... Wait, why should I repeat my argument again, just because you've found a more creative way of misrepresenting my otherwise clear and explicit statements?
In that case, I would like to point out that an animal feeding device was good enough for Baby Jesus to be born in, so I think it's fine for me to be born in, too.
I'm glad you were born from above through Water and the Spirit in the adult font of your parish - your entry into the Body of Christ is a banner day, regardless of the means, location, etc. As for your comment on the Lord's birth: There is nothing filthier for an infinite being than the dirtiness of finite existence; one you get past that point, everything else is gravy. The Lord's being born in a cave and lain in a manger was the least
unusual part of the Incarnation-Life-Passion-Crucifixion-Death cycle. But He represents extreme humility, and I don't, so I will work harder at it.
Aside: Baby Jesus? Are we having a Talladega Nights