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View Poll Results: Do you believe in God?
Yes, I believe in Johnny Hoogerland. 39 14.94%
Yes, I believe in a supernatural, personal being. 38 14.56%
I believe in a life force or spirit, but not in a personal being. 26 9.96%
I don't know. I'm an agnostic. 30 11.49%
No, I'm an atheist in that, while I can't assure there is no God, I believe there is none. 59 22.61%
No, I'm an atheist in that I assure there is no God. 69 26.44%
Voters: 261. You may not vote on this poll

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  #291  
Old 11-05-11, 19:15
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Tank Engine Tank Engine is offline
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In my way of seeing things: tolerance means that my liberty stops, where my neighbor's begins (and, of course, vice versa).
Seems to fit in well with my understanding (maybe the flip side of the coin as I said tolerance should end when others' freedom is limited). I'll think and read more about the current issues you raised.

Last edited by Tank Engine; 11-05-11 at 19:33.
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  #292  
Old 11-05-11, 21:24
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I did read the first Dan Brown book. It was an entertaining read, but by the time I got half way through it, the whole premise seemed very sensationalist. I won't be reading him again.

Certainly, one should distinguish between the institution and the individuals. I have a lot of respect for many religious people (I guess mostly Christian as that is the culture I grew up in, e.g. Mother Teresa, Dietrich Bonhoeffer). It seems one thing that does link those people was that they did doubt.

Having said that, I live in a country (Ireland) where the institutional church is still very powerful (though that power is weakening). They way in which certain matters of economic and sexual exploitation within religious have been swept under the carpet by the religious hierarchy and the government has been frightening. Over 90% of the schools here are Catholic (I'm not saying that such schools shouldn't exist, but there is virtually no choice and as the Jesuits said "Give me a child until they're seven ....").

I don't think that Rhubroma (or I) think that we are special in being atheists. Maybe it's his academic style, since he is a specialist in the history of culture. I would probably sound patronising if I started talking about my academic speciality (well more than I do normally anyway ). It's a choice that we've made out of the options available to us, just like many others have chosen a particular religion. That choice doesn't free us from making moral choices and is (from our point of view) more honest than struggling to believe something that we just can't.
No, no, no you did not understand me, which is not hard
I did not say that infidels are somehow special, I said that doubt, constant questioning, suspicious are not so special and everyone had it.

I am not a man who will say: 'Do not give dogs what is holy; and do not throw your pearls in front of pigs, or they may trample them and then turn on you and tear you to pieces...

As for comrade rhubroma, he has Inner Battle issue to not belive and finding all sort of arguments to keep himself out of trouble

All wrong-doing arises because of mind. If mind is transformed can wrong-doing remain?

P.S. In my country Catholic priest, doctor and teacher are still three key figures in some small villages, so I am aware of Ireland
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  #293  
Old 11-06-11, 10:07
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No, no, no you did not understand me, which is not hard
I did not say that infidels are somehow special, I said that doubt, constant questioning, suspicious are not so special and everyone had it.
Aaah.. I see. I don't see myself as a doubter, so probably that was where the misunderstanding came from. That doesn't mean that I am sure of everything, I know there are boundaries to my knowledge and understanding, but I've made a choice that I feel comfortable with.

Edit: The word infidel has very negative connotations, e.g. dehumanising so that you can justify a crusade against them, just so you know.


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P.S. In my country Catholic priest, doctor and teacher are still three key figures in some small villages, so I am aware of Ireland
I believe I lived in that country for quite a while (but in a city), although I had some experience of rural life there

Last edited by Tank Engine; 11-06-11 at 12:25.
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  #294  
Old 11-06-11, 11:01
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...

As for comrade rhubroma, he has Inner Battle issue to not belive and finding all sort of arguments to keep himself out of trouble
That's because I was never an affection seeker, unlike my bother, who always sought the love and approval of my parents. I hope I won't have to explain what I mean by the term. At mealtimes my brother was always silent and never dared to ask a question; I constantly asked questions and was repremanded by my parents for asking the most impossible questions. My mother would beat me with a raw hide which she always kept in readiness, and my father would box my ears, especially when he was on a drinking binge. I had many whippings, but I cannot remember my brother being whipped or having his ears boxed. I was interested in anything that was different, but my bother was not. I wanted to know everything - no question must remain unanswered.

It was at this time that I developed my distaste for ignorance and intolerance and set upon the pursuit of consciousness through a careful study and examination of the written sources and travel. We have to get out of our native environment, I thought, if we are to make ourselves useful in this brief life. My parents thus didn't bring me up, they dragged me up, until the age of eight or nine and Uncle Michael, who had moved to the south of France to, in his own words, leave the barbarians behind, had to step in and gradually undo the almost total havoc they had wrought. He went to immense pains to turn my totally chaotic mind into one that was acceptable and receptive. My parents believed that they were bringing me up, but they actually destroyed me, just as they destroyed my brother, who became just like them. Instead of talking about bringing me up, they should have talked about bringing me down with their Catholic and republican methods. Thanks to their upbringing, which was purely and simply a process of destruction, as I have said, everything in my mind was mutilated beyond recognition, to borrow a phrase that is usually used in a different context. In their brutal conservative Catholic and republican way they had stirred things around in my young mind and created total confusion, so that it took Uncle Michael just as long to raise order out of my mental chaos. Instead of educating us, our parents actually mutilated our minds. Being Catholics of Irish and Italian descent first and foremost and then secondly conservative republicans, they ruined our minds with their appalling Catholic and republican methods. Until Uncle Michael came in to rescue me.

But since this is a thread about religion, not politics, I will only relate what Uncle Michael said about how the Catholic Church can do unimaginable harm to a child's mind if the parents are Catholic and adhere more or less automatically to the Catholic religion, but I have found this to be the case with religion in general. To say that we had a Catholic upbringing, so spoke Uncle Michael, amounts to saying that we were utterly destroyed. Catholicism is the supreme annihilator of the child's soul, he said, the supreme inspirer of terror, the supreme destroyer of character. That's the truth, he said. Untold millions owe it to the Catholic Church that they have been destroyed, that their lives have been ruined, their nature denaturized, he said. The Catholic Church has the destruction of the human personality on its conscience - that's the truth, he said. For the Catholic Church won't tolerate any human being other than the Catholic human being. As children we always delighted in Catholic ritual, which at first seemed like a fairy tale, undoubtedly the most beautiful one we knew. And for the grown-ups it was a life-long spectacle, the only one they knew. But the fairy tail and the spectacle have between them perverted and destroyed all that's natural in human beings, so said Uncle Michael. Using the fairy tale for children and the spectacle for adults, the Catholic Church pursues a single aim, the total seduction of all who fall into its clutches. It uses the fairy tale and the spectacle, which is what we call its culture, to bend them to its will, to extinguish them as human beings, to turn them into unthinking Catholics who have no will of their own and whom insolently call themselves the faithful.

Naturally Uncle Michael was exaggerating, but it was just his manner of going to extremes in ways that vivify our sense of human possibilities, however destructive, that began to liberate me from the chaos and foolery. Finally, and this was his most bald way of explaining things, Uncle Michael thought that the Catholic faith, like all faiths, was a perversion of nature, a sickness to which millions succumb quite deliberately because it's their only salvation, the salvation of the weak, who are quite incapable of independent thought and, having no minds of their own, need a higher mind to do their thinking for them. And the Catholic mind, he thought, like all religious mindsets, has a terrible way of thinking, wholely self-serving and inimical to human nature, conducive to its own ends and its own glory.

It is a supreme stroke of iony, then, that these days I'm presently engaged in doing a massive research project at, above all places, the Biblioteca Vaticana, to attempt to explain how the visual imagery changed between XIV and XVI century Rome to build a new identity and ideology of the papal aristocracy and the consequences that this had for transforming Rome and Europe at the time, when one thinks of the protestant reform.

In Italy there is a very real problem of how the Catholic Church has entered in to the Italian political scene. Nothing has been changed by the various political turnarounds since the Lateran Pact of 1929, and of recent years: in Italy the Catholic mind does all the thinking and, because it can harness a significant voter support, even the socialists allow the Catholic mind to do their thinking for them, as they haven't developed a socialist mind. Basically the Catholic Church in this country can do whatever it wants and isn't even taxed by the state for the billions and billions it earns, just in Italy alone, anually. Everywhere we're confronted by the Catholic spirit, which admittedly has given us hundreds of thousands of Catholic works of art but destroyed the spirit of freedom and independence, the only natural spirit. What use are all these works of art, these Catholic churches and palaces, when for centuries we've had no minds of our own? Once my Italian friend Marco, who has a most distincitive intellect, and for whom I have thus always harbored the highest regard and admiration, patently stated that our nation suffers from chronic mental debility, he told me, which the Church has exploited more than any other European country, even more than in Ireland, where a degree of intellectual freedom and self-sufficiency still survives. In our country, Marco said, the Catholic Church has never had any difficulty in bringing the necessary pressure to bear and forcing the Italian people, and hence the Italian state, into total submission. Only in recent decades, with things like the divorce and abortion referendums, have there been hints of emancipation from Catholic dominion, from the monstrous pressure of the Church, from the age-old stranglehold of Catholicism, Marco told me. Only recently, he said, has it become possible to discern, here and there, the tentative emergence of a kind of thinking and philosopizing that owes nothing to Catholicism. Only in recent decades have a few Italian minds begun to think independently, to use their Italian heads, not just their Catholic heads. Catholicism is to blame that for so many centuries Italy had no philosophers, no philosophical thought, no philosophy, Marco told me. It's fair to say, he said, that since the Ancient Roman Empire for the last thousand years and five hundred more all thought has been ruthlessly suppressed by the Catholic Church. And the nation has made life easy for itself under the aegis of the Catholic mind, said Marco, which has always done its thinking for it, on a proxy basis and in its own way. In the last thousand years Catholicism, the signorie and, lastly, the fascists, have had a devestating effect, a lethal effect, on the nation's spirit, as all the evidence shows, he said. In the last thousand years, on can say, Catholicism extirpated thought and ushered in an efflorescence of art. The mind having been suppressed for centuries, Italy became a land of art. Having become a thoroughly mindless people during the centuries of Catholicism, Marco told me, we have allowed art to flourish. True, this has given us Masaccio, Donatello, Brunelleschi, Piero della Francesca, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael, Bramante, Parmigianino, Giorgione, Titian, Caravaggio and Bernini, yet Marco could not applaud the fact that we have, he said, a Leonardo but have lost our minds, that we have Michelangelo but have forgotten how to think and given up trying, that we have Bernini but have become more or less brainless. No other country, Marco told me, has allowed the Catholic Church to rob it so unscrupulously of the faculty of thought, no other country allowed itself to be decapitated, as it were, by Catholicism. We have no Montaigne, no Descartes, no Voltaire, he said, only monkish and aristocatic poetasters like Aquinas and Petrarch with their Catholic inanites. In recent years, Marco told me, we've seen the beginnings of change, but it will take centuries, not just decades, to repair the intellectual depredations of Catholicism. If they can be repaired, he said. Our nation has allowed itself to be exploited, Marco said, more than any other by the Catholic Church. For over a thousand years!

Last edited by rhubroma; 11-07-11 at 03:04.
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  #295  
Old 11-06-11, 23:45
oldborn oldborn is offline
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Dude are you trying to kill me or what, I mean 1629 words for non native english speaker and on the 1/3 of the text I forgot what I was trying to say or why I am here at first place

Beside that joke, thanks for it I got your point comrade! I got the point.
Cheers!



P.S. Tank Engine, infidel i use as literally "one without faith", no other thoughts. Sorry if inappropriate.
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  #296  
Old 11-07-11, 00:02
Rouetheday Rouetheday is offline
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Dude are you trying to kill me or what, I mean 1629 words for non native english speaker and on the 1/3 of the text I forgot what I was trying to say or why I am here at first place

Beside that joke, thanks for it I got your point comrade! I got the point.
Cheers!



P.S. Tank Engine, infidel i use as literally "one without faith", no other thoughts. Sorry if inappropriate.
Yeah, and when you use the word 'comrade' you just mean 'friend', right?
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  #297  
Old 11-07-11, 00:11
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Yeah, and when you use the word 'comrade' you just mean 'friend', right?
No I mean left-wing oriented friend.
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  #298  
Old 11-07-11, 00:21
Rouetheday Rouetheday is offline
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No I mean left-wing oriented friend.
Well I guess that shuts me up!

By the way, isn't your avatar Donald Sutherland in the final scene of 'Invasion of the Body Snatchers' (1978 version)? A great, creepy film!!
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  #299  
Old 11-07-11, 00:41
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Well I guess that shuts me up!

By the way, isn't your avatar Donald Sutherland in the final scene of 'Invasion of the Body Snatchers' (1978 version)? A great, creepy film!!
Thanks for that info, I just checked it is Never watch it anyway.
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  #300  
Old 11-07-11, 03:00
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El Pistolero El Pistolero is offline
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The problem is, at least in the world I live in, we cannot argue with a Muslim that their religion influences people like Bin Laden. All they have to do is deny it. And we get mocked for claiming that we know more about Islam than the Muslim. Typical atheist arrogance. To think that we can argue with someone about their own religion.

The Muslim, so human logic goes, will always know more than a non Muslim about his religion. Same for all other religions.
The funny thing is if Bin Laden did the things he did now, but 1400 years ago he'd be worshiped today by millions of people as a prophet. Ignorant hypocrites, that's what they are. And South Park, Family Guy or American dad would have to live on without making Bin Laden jokes(because if you make jokes about the prophet Mohammed some crazy dudes will blow up some people ). Can you imagine? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3LHDvHjC7Yc

It's something that annoys me actually. It's bad to worship Hitler for example, but there's tons of people worshiping Gaius Iulius Caesar. I don't know the % of Jews killed by Hitler, but Caesar killed off 25% of the population in Gaul(and decimated his own armies if they committed mutiny).

Though I don't agree with your last sentence. There was this Jew(forgot his name) that said that only people who experienced the Holocaust should be able to write about it(like him). But he got heavily criticized for this by pretty much every influential historian. Don't see why it would be any different than with Islam. Sure, there's some idiots out there, but not everyone.
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horrible. boonen just the same guy as years before and this course is too hard for him. that's why he rode like a coward there were at least 3 guys stronger than boonen today and none of them won: sagan, ballan, pozzato
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Goss will woop boonens candy ass in a sprint he cares about, any day of the week

Last edited by El Pistolero; 11-07-11 at 03:08.
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