Research on Belief in God

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Feb 23, 2014
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frenchfry said:
For me one advantage of being agnostic/atheist is that I don't feel any need to impose my non-beliefs on others. Maybe the ad is the result of existing in a more fundamentalist environment to counter religious posturing.

Now that I think of it, there is a group in France that has obtained court orders against nativity scenes in public buildings. As someone who doesn't believe in the nativity story I have absolutely no problem with nativity scenes.
You are correct. The ad was made to "encourage" atheist with christian family members not to "cave in" and go to church during the holidays for the sake of tradition.
 
Feb 23, 2014
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Christian said:
I think you are quite right on this one. I have also pointed out before that the religion/atheism debate is infinitely more intense in the US than most European countries. Though, to be fair, Islam is a major controversy in many European countries, from mosques to burqas everything is subject to public debate.

In the US however, there are many, many closeted atheists who are afraid to come out because they are afraid of being ostracized by their family or their community. Richard Dawkins said that out of 535 members of US Congress, there is one open atheist - this is statistically impossible. But it shows the stronghold that religion has on US society.

To counter that, Atheists do these ad campaigns every now and then. But even in my native Luxembourg there was an atheist campaign a few years ago. The reason behind that was this: virtually everyone in Luxembourg is baptized by the Catholic church shortly after their birth. A lot of people grow up to be not in the least religious, and have absolutely nothing to do with that church. The problem is that no one bothers to leave the church, since most feel like they never entered in the first place (they had no say in being baptized). So the Catholic Church still gets to claim that it represents 95% of Luxembourgians, and therefore has the right to claim certain privileges and powers in society. When in reality, that percentage is way lower.
Don't worry ("tongue in cheek"...really I do worry) spiritually our country is wasting away. Our moral standards have shifted dramatically for the worst.
The "christian" face our country has as a whole is simply tradition...atheist will only continue to feel more and more comfortable.
 
Jspear said:
Don't worry ("tongue in cheek"...really I do worry) spiritually our country is wasting away. Our moral standards have shifted dramatically for the worst.
The "christian" face our country has as a whole is simply tradition...atheist will only continue to feel more and more comfortable.
Many paths, same destination. I think many are stepping away from the organized religious backdrop of power, control, money, guilt. No one need be 'religious' to be 'spiritual'. Many paths, same destination.
 
There's no spirituality outside of religion and I find it quite arrogant to define spirituality by yourself, the way it suits us, so to speak. humility is also accepting dogmas even if you don't like it. The main universalist religions persisted through centuries because they work.

Besides, the collocation "organised religion" comes up so often these days. I find it quite silly. Religions are "organised" because they have an inherent logic and consistency.

And finally, the only way to resist money power and consumerism IS religion and the traditional, conservative family values. Christopher Lasch explained it very well in "The True and Only Heaven". Michel Clouscard in France showed that the liberal movement that developed after WWII (Marshall Plan for us in Europe) was a great opportunity for the entertainment business to open some new markets that they could never have dreamed about within the traditional society.

Anti-religious people should really at least that they are anti-social.
 
Mar 13, 2009
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Echoes said:
There's no spirituality outside of religion and I find it quite arrogant to define spirituality by yourself, the way it suits us, so to speak. humility is also accepting dogmas even if you don't like it. The main universalist religions persisted through centuries because they work.

Besides, the collocation "organised religion" comes up so often these days. I find it quite silly. Religions are "organised" because they have an inherent logic and consistency.

And finally, the only way to resist money power and consumerism IS religion and the traditional, conservative family values. Christopher Lasch explained it very well in "The True and Only Heaven". Michel Clouscard in France showed that the liberal movement that developed after WWII (Marshall Plan for us in Europe) was a great opportunity for the entertainment business to open some new markets that they could never have dreamed about within the traditional society.

Anti-religious people should really at least that they are anti-social.
Do you really not realise just how absurd this statement is?
 
Feb 23, 2014
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Bustedknuckle said:
Many paths, same destination. I think many are stepping away from the organized religious backdrop of power, control, money, guilt. No one need be 'religious' to be 'spiritual'. Many paths, same destination.
I respectfully disagree. There are not many paths to heaven. There is one and it is found through faith in Jesus Christ. To be truly "spiritual" means to have the Holy Spirit living in you which is the essence of true "religion." Of course there are many people who claim religiosity without it really impacting their everyday lives. You could categorize that as religiosity without spirituality. These are the people who use religion for their own gain and power. Yes there are many abuses that have taken place in the name of God through the years, but true Christianity denounces that behavior. In true Christianity there is no groping for power or money, there is no laying on of guilt. There is the proclamation of the gospel, the Word of God, which actually frees people.


frenchfry said:
Do you really not realise just how absurd this statement is?
No how? Please explain. :)
 
Jul 16, 2011
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My faith and spirituality (or a lack of both) are not a question of defining what suits me, it's a question of what I believe in. I don't reject dogmas because they make me feel bad, I reject them because they don't make any sense to me/I don't believe them.

Although I'm not anyway like in the league of Rhubroma in my knowledge of the history of religion and the place of myths, I am not unmoved by myths and they have a place in my understanding of humanity.

For example, the story of Adam eating the forbidden fruit from the tree of life (see also Pandora's box). As humans we are very aware of our mortality and the various ways in which we communicate mean that we can reason and possess a frightening ability to change our environment. These stories highlight the human condition, but exist because of our reaction to the conciousness of our mortality and powers of reasoning and not because they explain our mortality and reason.

I believe that we are imperfect since we are the result of the stochastic optimisation procedure that is natural selection. I believe that everyone is worthy of respect, since they came into existence in the same way as I did (I do have problems with how I should treat animals, I eat some meat). I do not agree with the statement that "if there is no god, then anything goes", but don't believe in objective morality in the sense that I don't believe it's ALWAYS wrong to kill. Deitrich Boenhoffer, a very influential German Lutheran priest from Breslau (now Wrocław), decided after a lot of heart searching to join the assassination plot against Hitler, although he earlier had been very much a supporter of non-violent resistance.

I obviously would not call myself religious, but I do read quite a lot of books which clearly come from a religious view point and find that I share many values with them, just as I share many values with those who come from a clearly non-religious view point or disagree with writers coming from both view points. I am not anti-religious, the right to a religious faith (or lack of it) should go as far as any freedom (i.e. you are free to the limit that you don't impact on others' freedom).

The Socretean call to "know yourself" has a resonance with me. I see it to be a call to know what we believe in and be ourselves in the world, rather than purely adapt to the world around us (although as somewhat of a Stoic, I should accept the consequences of my actions).

I "believe" in the Odysseus-Calypso myth. Odysseus rejects Calypo's offer of eternal youth as long as he stays with her, rather than returning home. That is not his place, just as I believe that humans are essentially mortal. It's not what suits me, it's what I believe.
 
Mar 13, 2009
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Jspear said:
No how? Please explain. :)
That would be like trying to explain how the "religious" don't have a monopoly on arrogance and self-righteousness. I am sure it can be done, but is it worth the effort.
 
Jspear said:
I respectfully disagree. There are not many paths to heaven. There is one and it is found through faith in Jesus Christ. To be truly "spiritual" means to have the Holy Spirit living in you which is the essence of true "religion." Of course there are many people who claim religiosity without it really impacting their everyday lives. You could categorize that as religiosity without spirituality. These are the people who use religion for their own gain and power. Yes there are many abuses that have taken place in the name of God through the years, but true Christianity denounces that behavior. In true Christianity there is no groping for power or money, there is no laying on of guilt. There is the proclamation of the gospel, the Word of God, which actually frees people.




No how? Please explain. :)
So I guess the Roman catholic church based in the vatican isn't christian then.

Many paths, same destination. Remember that your 'faith' is just that, as mine is. No proof, just faith. Believe what ya want, and I will too. You are not wrong, nor am I.

"Wisdom: Right View and Right Intention are the wisdom path. Right View is not about believing in doctrine, but in perceiving the true nature of ourselves and the world around us. Right Intention refers to the energy and commitment one needs to be fully engaged.

Ethical Conduct: Right Speech, Right Action and Right Livelihood are the ethical conduct path. This calls us to take care in our speech, our actions, and our daily lives to do no harm to others and to cultivate wholesomeness in ourselves. This part of the path ties into the Precepts.

Mental Discipline: Through Right Effort, Right Mindfulness, and Right Concentration we develop the mental discipline to cut through delusion."
 
For the 5653rd time, the Catholic Church is not based in the Vatican anymore, It's Christian and there's no groping for power and money in it.

Besides your stance is very much freemasonic. You have your truth, I have mine. That's nominalism.
 
Echoes said:
For the 5653rd time, the Catholic Church is not based in the Vatican anymore, It's Christian and there's no groping for power and money in it.

Besides your stance is very much freemasonic. You have your truth, I have mine. That's nominalism.
I thought it was the 5638th time? I didn't know the Pope moved.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catholic_Church

Nothing to do with FreeMasons. Live and let live, what ever gets you thru the day, many paths, same destination.
 
Echoes said:
The Pope didn't move. There's no Pope at this moment. The last one died in 1958. Since then they are anti-Popes.

A true Catholic has to be sedevacantist.
Ok then. Pius XII then? Yikes..don't have to be a catholic to see that his 'reign' was controversial.

"sedevacantist".."Sedevacantists believe that there is at present a vacancy of the Holy See that began with John XXIII (1958–63) or at latest with Paul VI (1963–78), who, they say, espoused the heresy of Modernism and otherwise denied solemnly defined Catholic dogmas and so became heretics."

Wow, burn them at the stake time I guess.
 
Feb 23, 2014
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Bustedknuckle said:
So I guess the Roman catholic church based in the vatican isn't christian then.

Many paths, same destination. Remember that your 'faith' is just that, as mine is. No proof, just faith. Believe what ya want, and I will too. You are not wrong, nor am I.

"Wisdom: Right View and Right Intention are the wisdom path. Right View is not about believing in doctrine, but in perceiving the true nature of ourselves and the world around us. Right Intention refers to the energy and commitment one needs to be fully engaged.

Ethical Conduct: Right Speech, Right Action and Right Livelihood are the ethical conduct path. This calls us to take care in our speech, our actions, and our daily lives to do no harm to others and to cultivate wholesomeness in ourselves. This part of the path ties into the Precepts.

Mental Discipline: Through Right Effort, Right Mindfulness, and Right Concentration we develop the mental discipline to cut through delusion."
No it is not Christian.
 
Feb 23, 2014
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frenchfry said:
That would be like trying to explain how the "religious" don't have a monopoly on arrogance and self-righteousness. I am sure it can be done, but is it worth the effort.
It can be worth the effort. Christians don't have a monopoly on arrogance and self righteousness. If Christians are following the Bible then they will walk in humility and love. So if anyone calls themselves a Christian and IS acting arrogant or self righteous, then they would be in the wrong and would have to repent. Remember that there is a great divide between people who say they are believers and those who actually follow the bible and live like they are Christians. True Christians still sin, the difference is they can change if they are letting the bible and what it says work in their lives.
 
Mar 13, 2009
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Jspear said:
No it is not Christian.
So if I understand correctly, not only is it necessary to be "religious" but also "christian", but only a certain affiliation of christian will do. Far too complicated for a consumption-loving, money-grabbing, bereft of morals or ethics, heathen like myself to understand.
 
Feb 23, 2014
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frenchfry said:
So if I understand correctly, not only is it necessary to be "religious" but also "christian", but only a certain affiliation of christian will do. Far too complicated for a consumption-loving, money-grabbing, bereft of morals or ethics, heathen like myself to understand.
By Christian, I mean someone who adheres to all that the Bible teaches. The Roman Catholic church teaches things that are not in line with the Scriptures.
 
Jspear said:
It can be worth the effort. Christians don't have a monopoly on arrogance and self righteousness. If Christians are following the Bible then they will walk in humility and love. So if anyone calls themselves a Christian and IS acting arrogant or self righteous, then they would be in the wrong and would have to repent. Remember that there is a great divide between people who say they are believers and those who actually follow the bible and live like they are Christians. True Christians still sin, the difference is they can change if they are letting the bible and what it says work in their lives.
Are you a 'Sedevacantist' then?

'Observe the Sabbath, because it is holy to you. Anyone who desecrates it is to be put to death; those who do any work on that day must be cut off from their people."
 
Jspear said:
No it is not Christian.
As a biblical fundamentalist I realise you have difficulty with all the historical bagage, however, your statement evidences how the Evangelical strain is a "Christianity" devoid of any culture and, as such, historical grounding. In any case the RCC being "not Christian" only regards your definition of the religion. Their orthodoxy has been based on a tradition of scriptual exegesis that goes back to the Patristic authors, which with the demise of the Classical World, gave the West its intellectual and religious heritage for a 1000 years to come.

Mine is not an apology for the RCC, mind you, but lets be serious shall we. At any rate your idea about Christianity is anti-historical, as it has nothing to do with the sect at the beginning in antiquity, nor the actual development of a religion from that time into the Middle Ages. To say the Catholic Church is not Christian thus establishes the former, with its roots in the Roman Empire, as an independent tradition from the latter taken as a biblical fundamentalist tradition; which would mean that "Christians" only emerged in America with the Biblical Student Group in 1870. But this is a stupidity bordering on psychosis.
 
Feb 23, 2014
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Bustedknuckle said:
Are you a 'Sedevacantist' then?

'Observe the Sabbath, because it is holy to you. Anyone who desecrates it is to be put to death; those who do any work on that day must be cut off from their people."
No I'm not. In following the bible you must also interpret the Old Testament in light of the New Testament. Jesus fulfilled the obligations of the Law. If we are in Christ then the curse of the law does not apply to us any longer. Jesus is my Sabbath or Rest. I "keep" the sabbath everyday by living in Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit.
 
Feb 23, 2014
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rhubroma said:
As a biblical fundamentalist, I realise you have difficulty with all the historical bagage, however, your statement evidences how the Evangelical strain is a "Christianity" devoid of culture and, such, historical grounding.

Mine is not an apology for the RCC, mind you, but lets be serious shall we.
There have been plenty of "biblical fundamentalist" throughout history. No they weren't/aren't the norm....they never have been - people who believe such things are not some new phenomena.
 
Jspear said:
There have been plenty of "biblical fundamentalist" throughout history. No they weren't/aren't the norm....they never have been - people who believe such things are not some new phenomena.
There were no biblical fundamentalists at the beginning of Christianity, simply because there was no "one" bible, but many different bibles. Secondly there were many versions of theology and doctrine, until the Church of Rome was able to bring the necessary pressure to bear and eliminate all the competition (heterodoxy) to its hegemonic orthodoxy.

Luther's controversy caused the Protestant Reform putting an end to Rome's religious monopoly in the West, however, the early modern protestants in Europe still maintained much of the orthodoxy of Rome. Only with the Puritans in England of the XVII century is their anything recognizably biblisist in the fundamentalist sense of today.

I'm always amused consequently by the late XIX century American evangelical sects believing that they have suddenly put the faith on the right track. More than the arrogance that comes with such ingeniousness, what's tedious is the total lack of historical perspective and cultural grounding that permits fools to consecrate themselves as the neo-elect.
 
Mar 13, 2009
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Jspear said:
By Christian, I mean someone who adheres to all that the Bible teaches. The Roman Catholic church teaches things that are not in line with the Scriptures.
That clears things up :eek:
 
Jspear said:
No I'm not. In following the bible you must also interpret the Old Testament in light of the New Testament. Jesus fulfilled the obligations of the Law. If we are in Christ then the curse of the law does not apply to us any longer. Jesus is my Sabbath or Rest. I "keep" the sabbath everyday by living in Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit.
How convenient for you.

http://www.reddit.com/r/TrueAtheism/comments/1dr8m3/are_there_any_ruleslaws_laid_out_in_the_new

Must be quite the burden. You must not be a woman either.
 

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