One has to wonder about the logistics of carrying this out:
SEOUL, May 4 (UPI) — A South Korean man with a religious obsession crucified himself around Easter, police said.
The body of the 58-year-old taxi driver was discovered Sunday in an abandoned quarry in Mungyeong in North Gyeongsang province, The Korea Herald reported. He was nailed to a wooden cross.
Police said the man went to great lengths to simulate Jesus’ crucifixion. He was wearing only underpants and a headdress resembling a crown of thorrns (sic), had a wound on his right side and had drilled holes in his palms.
Such is the power of religion to drive a person to such lengths.
Luckily for all of us, most people don’t really believe the entire program of Christianity. If they did, they would, en masse, abandon their families, sell all their possessions, as Christ commands in Matt. 19, and go and evangelize “to the ends of the earth.” Of course, that quote in the Bible is made to be taken figuratively, we are told, so as to get believers off the hook for not carrying out its real implications, implications that are far too radical and dangerous for modern Christians to digest. We are told that Christ is not saying to give everything to the poor, but only to submit your whole selves to him spiritually. But in context, this is not what Jesus meant in the passage. If Jesus were talking in spiritual terms, he probably would have said so, and the rich man would not have walked away in sadness, since the man already indicated that he was willing to meet spiritual goals like keeping the commandments. He was not, however, willing to give up his physical possessions, thus walking away in sadness. Jesus, if he actually said those words in the first place, gave no excuses for his radical command nor made any redactions to it.
Of course, this South Korean fellow appears to have taken his beliefs to a new level of radicalism. Not only did he (presumably) die with Christ spiritually, but he did physically and in a like manner. The logistics of physically nailing your own hands and feet to a cross must have been tricky. Also tricky: did this guy believe he was quickening his eternal “walk” with God, or is he now, according to doctrine, in hell for committing murder (of himself)? It’s inconsequential at this point, and to me especially, but you can’t say the guy didn’t appreciate some good old fashioned symbolism.