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Old 01-19-2008, 03:47 AM   #106
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Originally posted by Irvine511




you know what else is fucking crazy?

about half the ten commandments.

really, the top 10 rules? and we're going to include no swearing? no being jealous when someone has a better car than you? no false idols? don't do ANY work on Sunday? only ONE god, no more, no less (so you polythestic pederast Greeks who invented democracy can go fuck yourselves)?

that seems pretty crazy to me.
There's nothing crazy about any of this. It all has to do with the condition of your heart.

If you take the Lord's name in vain, it says something about your heart.

If you're jealous about something someone else has, it says something about your heart.

False idols. We all have them. We all have our distractions from the important stuff in life and God. We all have things we worship other than God.

Not doing any work on Sunday is partly about having a period of rest. There's nothing wrong with that, it actually benefits your body. The other part is about remembering the work God has done, and resting in that.

And one God, well, you either believe it or you don't.

I don't see how any of this is "crazy," especially in light of a secretive belief system that believes aliens take over our bodies and you have to pay massive amounts of money to get to "the next level."
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Old 01-19-2008, 04:05 AM   #107
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Personally I have zero interest in reflecting on Scientology and Scientologists, but I have to agree that some of the responses in here sound more than a little forced. So, some among us happen to find Scientology and/or certain Scientologists to be creepy, crazy, ridiculous, outrageous, corrupt, etc. Yawn...par for the course in here when religion (or cults, if you prefer) is the topic, no? So, what's the big deal? Refute those arguments by drawing on Scientology texts, teachings or other relevant data to clarify or correct misperceptions, or shrug it off and leave it alone...like religious folks in here generally do when it's their religion being criticized. Do atheists have some sort of monopoly on being allowed to find particular religions or cults creepy, silly or corrupt? Is that the sort of standard you hold yourself to with anything and everything in your life you permit yourself to find creepy or ridiculous...you sit there with brows furrowed, anxiously and dutifully cross-examining every somehow possibly analogous belief you hold or possibly analogous behavior you engage in, before permitting yourself to entertain such impossibly arrogant thoughts? I really, really doubt it. The "Oh yeah? Well, you believe some whack shit too!" rhetorical counter has its place as a quick-jab,-put-'em-in-their-place maneuver, but it's not much of an "argument," and gets old pretty quickly when it's treated as if it is.
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Old 01-19-2008, 08:38 AM   #108
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Fine, an argument against those iron age axioms can be made. They mandate against freedom of thought and against freedom of speech, say nothing against slavery and place a big burden against aspiration. In terms of "whack shit" the idea that some deity handed this magical advice on from high up is silly, people who hear God these days seem to do crazy things these days are those who did the same in the past expected to be any different. Does the mere passage of time or absence of evidence somehow validate the fantastical elements of the story. One can't disprove it because of the absence of independent lines of evidence, belief can always exist in those gaps, but it doesn't make those beliefs of equal value.

It's not that people are idiots, they show exactly how rational they can be when they gun against other peoples irrationally held beliefs. Saying that they believe in irrational things to is not saying that their criticism is invalid. Guessing as to peoples motivations for holding their beliefs might be condescending but it doesn't make it wrong.

I feel unbelief is being an empty vessel, at least spiritually; my life isn't enriched by atheism, I honestly couldn't give a fuck about a spiritual side (by which I mean some sort of emotional payoff to holding an idea) - it doesn't make one a better person or give superior insight into the human condition but in the absolute absence of evidence for a deity/deities and a God based explanation for the universe being unnecessary there is no tough existential crisis triggered by doubting the inexistence of a God. It's not like imagining a universe where people have eternal life is worse place than one where your brain just rots away (then again, if that bastard was counting incidences of blasphemy just rotting would be preferable to eternal punishment - but such a fucker of a deity would deserve the criticism).

I don't think that unbelief is the mirror of belief, one affirms the existence of something in the absence of, or on the basis of flimsy, evidence and the other doesn't entertain it as a real thing because of the same reasons (in my case; other people may be more anti-theistic - because God is a bad idea that robs humanity of it's greatest achievements).

A very frequent argument made is that unbelief is a type of belief and so it must be what exactly? Equally false? Prone to the same type of fallacy as asserting that magic exists and everything was made by a omnipotent and omniscient God (could an omnipotent God perform an act that an omniscient God could not foresee?)? That because religious belief has no basis and unbelief has no basis that they must be equal is a really piss weak attack, it undermines a believers credentials when they make it, and for agnostics it shows their own indecisiveness. Better to be an equal opportunity offender against affirmations in the absence of evidence than to conduct a bold exercise in doublethink and attack other peoples belief using the very logic that simultaneously undermines your own sacred cow.

Now could somebody please send me the piece that undermines a material universe with biological evolution giving rise to a sentient primate that can invent belief systems. A view that is getting affirmed rather than getting contradicted by ever accumulating evidence (geology, palaeontology, genetics, neuroscience, archaeology, textual criticism of religious texts etc.). It seems to reach a point where the only sort of God that can be reconciled in the real world is essentially Spinoza's God, and what point is there for supposing such a God when there is no need for it, when it isn't needed to explain anything.
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Old 01-19-2008, 08:45 AM   #109
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Originally posted by MrBrau1


They believe DC10's with jet engines existed 75,000,000 years ago.

That's fucking crazy.
They only learn that stuff when they are very deep inside the organisation, when they have a circle of like minded friends and family and would loose everything when they walk away. People in that position can embrace strange things and it doesn't make them insane.
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Old 01-19-2008, 08:57 AM   #110
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Touche. Even in the midst of my own indecisive agnotism, I love a well-crafted argument.
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Old 01-19-2008, 09:18 AM   #111
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The scientologists have a smart PR team, they will attack their opponents as atheists and join with other religious groups to get protection against criticism. They have gotten critics locked up and use tactics more in line with the mob to intimidate them. The church is a protected racket, and it uses it's influence to get that protection.

Examples
Quote:
On April 26, 2001, Keith Henson was convicted of interfering with a religion — a misdemeanor under California law — for picketing outside Scientology’s heavily armed, razor wire-enforced base, outside Hemet California. He split for Canada, becoming the world’s first “Scientology fugitive,” and he’s back in the U.S. dealing with a variety of court cases related to Scientology.

Henson was just thrown back in jail. As best as I can make out from the limited information currently available, Henson and his lawyers were scheduled for a hearing at 1:30 pm on Tuesday, May 8th. They were apparently unaware that warrants had recently been signed by the Governors of California and Arizona, and after the hearing, Henson was handed over to the Yavapai County Sheriff Department for incarceration until a hearing on Wednesday May 9th at 9 a.m. (A note received this afternoon — May 9th — from Henson’s wife, Arel Lucas, says that he will remain in the lockup at least until Monday, May 13th. She invites people to write to him at: Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office, Howard Keith Henson, 255 E. Gurley St. Prescott, AZ 86301. She also reminds you that the prison authorities read the letters before passing them on.)
http://www.10zenmonkeys.com/2007/05/09/keith-henson-back-in-jail-space-elevator-will-have-to-wait/
Quote:
Angry Scientologists are trying to get a BBC documentary about their faith scrapped amid claims of "gross bias" by presenter John Sweeney.

The Panorama programme, to be shown tonight, investigates whether the Church of Scientology has moved away from its past as a brainwashing cult.

But furious church members - including actor John Travolta - say the programme should be ditched because Mr Sweeney showed he was biased by losing his temper and shouting at a top scientologist.

After the man accused him of giving "an easy interview" to a critic of the religion, Mr Sweeney screamed: "You were not there at the beginning of the interview.

"You were not there. You did not hear or record all the interview."

Scientologists have sent 100,000 copies of film of the incident to MPs, civil servants and

business leaders, as well as posting it on the YouTube website.

Travolta has also written to BBC executives, accusing Mr Sweeney of "personal prejudices, bigotry and animosity".

But the broadcaster insisted last night that the programme would go ahead.
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/showbiz/showbiznews.html?in_article_id=454430&in_page_id=1773

They sound like a bunch of bloody Muslims complaining about Islamophobia when somebody draws a cartoon of Mohammed. It is no coincidence, there are believers of different stripes that not only want freedom to practice their religion, they want protection from criticism, and I feel strongly that is unwarranted and dangerous.
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Old 01-19-2008, 09:25 AM   #112
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Oh and check out Tom Cruise on Scientology, scientologists are now authorities on the mind, can rehabilitate criminals and cure drug addictions - absurd you say - how many other religions offer faith based programs for those very things (and all with equally dismal success rates).

I feel a little bad about the criticism that Tom Cruise is getting over it, since it is unfair, when a Scientologist is evangelical it's a bad thing but when a Christian does it's acceptable.
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Old 01-19-2008, 09:28 AM   #113
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Originally posted by A_Wanderer
Oh and check out Tom Cruise on Scientology, scientologists are now authorities on the mind, can rehabilitate criminals and cure drug addictions - absurd you say - how many other religions offer faith based programs for those very things (and all with equally dismal success rates).
I don't care either way, but I do find it a little bit funny that Scientologists claim psychiatry is a "pseudo-science." To say that with a straight face....
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Old 01-19-2008, 09:34 AM   #114
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I don't care either way, but I do find it a little bit funny that Scientologists claim psychiatry is a "pseudo-science." To say that with a straight face....
Psychiatry is Nazism!

http://www.freedommag.org/english/vol27i5/page03.htm
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Old 01-19-2008, 10:57 AM   #115
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Originally posted by coemgen


There's nothing crazy about any of this. It all has to do with the condition of your heart.


i think it's crazy that those make the top 10 whereas rape, incest, genocide, war, torture, etc., do not.

and, yes, i'm sorry but the whole, "well you believe some wack shit too" is perfectly valid. it might get tiresome, but so does the constant harping on, say, Mormons as illegitimate Christians, or Scientologists themselves as all being crazy. it has nothing to do with the hatred of Christianity. i don' t hate Christianity. but there's some wack shit in it. and if we are to take a look at exactly what the Baptists try to do to gay teenagers, you'd be hard pressed to find worse abusive practices within Scientology.

i wrote earlier about the lack of humility that leads to "craziness" in all religions. i see much of that in the more chauvinistic expressions of fundamentalist Protestantism, and more than a little condescention in here as well, dressed up in paternalistic, wiser-than-thou contentions about what Jesus "really thought" and that if something is weird, then it's the fault of the people involved who are obviously "not Biblical." as if the source text is never wrong, the source text is, of course, inerrant.

i'm not equating Scientology with Christianity. i just find the criticisms of one in regards to the other more than a little bit irritating when one's got a lot of stuff to deal with in one's own garage, and especially when there are people in here who know and like Scientologists and they don't seem the least bit crazy to them.

and, yes, as someone who's a part of a traditionally despised minority, there is a bit of a knee-jerk reaction whenever it looks like the odd kid in the classroom is being ganged up on. maybe is making pipe bombs in the basement, but until we know better, why don't we just be nice to him and remind ourselves that we're not all so different.
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Old 01-19-2008, 10:57 AM   #116
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I just saw this last night on tv for the first time. Personally, I think he is wacked. Not for his beliefs, I fully respect it. But he truly thinks he is superior over everyone else. He thinks who the hell he is.
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Old 01-19-2008, 12:16 PM   #117
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Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511


and, yes, i'm sorry but the whole, "well you believe some wack shit too" is perfectly valid.
I agree. In my opinion it is simply not clear and rational thinking to point fingers at other religions' "crazy" beliefs while not acknowledging that your own religion might seem crazy to others, too, but is somehow more legitimate because it's been handed down for generations. I'm still waiting for any Christian here, and none in particular, to simply say, "Okay, I can see where what I believe might seem crazy to others, too." Why is that so difficult?
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Old 01-19-2008, 06:25 PM   #118
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Originally posted by Irvine511


i think it's crazy that those make the top 10 whereas rape, incest, genocide, war, torture, etc., do not.
But see, you're missing the whole point. "Thou shalt not kill" covers genocide and war, and "Thou shalt not committ adultery" and "covet your neighbor's wife" covers rape and pretty much incest, etc. It's all matters of the heart. This is how Christ explained the 10 commandments. It's not enough to say "I've never cheated on my wife," when at the same time, you're looking at porn or lusting after a co-worker or your neighbor.

Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511

and, yes, i'm sorry but the whole, "well you believe some wack shit too" is perfectly valid. it might get tiresome, but so does the constant harping on, say, Mormons as illegitimate Christians, or Scientologists themselves as all being crazy. it has nothing to do with the hatred of Christianity. i don' t hate Christianity. but there's some wack shit in it. and if we are to take a look at exactly what the Baptists try to do to gay teenagers, you'd be hard pressed to find worse abusive practices within Scientology.
I'm perfectly fine with you bringing up what Baptists do to gay teenagers. That's fine. It's not Biblical though. Scientology itself as a belief system calls for some pretty harsh tactics to be used to gain ground in life. It's a part of their belief system, all the way down to their founder. Christ never called for gay teens to have done to them what you're saying some Baptist churches may do. So, you're kind of comparing apples to oranges here.

And no, Mormon's aren't legitimate Christians. Anyone, regardless of their faith background or lack thereof, can see this when comparing the two from an objective point of view.


Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511

i wrote earlier about the lack of humility that leads to "craziness" in all religions. i see much of that in the more chauvinistic expressions of fundamentalist Protestantism, and more than a little condescention in here as well, dressed up in paternalistic, wiser-than-thou contentions about what Jesus "really thought" and that if something is weird, then it's the fault of the people involved who are obviously "not Biblical." as if the source text is never wrong, the source text is, of course, inerrant.
Look, there's a right way to read the Bible, and there are many wrong ways. I'm not saying I'm always right, but that's why I constantly study it and continue to arrive at what it's really saying. We're talking about an ancient text written in various forms of writing from many authors to numerous cultures. It's not a text book or a typical novel. People have to be careful with it, including me. I don't see why that's so hard for some people to understand.

Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511

i'm not equating Scientology with Christianity. i just find the criticisms of one in regards to the other more than a little bit irritating when one's got a lot of stuff to deal with in one's own garage, and especially when there are people in here who know and like Scientologists and they don't seem the least bit crazy to them.
I didn't say all Scientologists were crazy people, but yes, I believe their belief system is. Look, we can all believe whatever we want. We have that freedom. But, at the same time, there's truths and there's falsehoods out there.


Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511

and, yes, as someone who's a part of a traditionally despised minority, there is a bit of a knee-jerk reaction whenever it looks like the odd kid in the classroom is being ganged up on. maybe is making pipe bombs in the basement, but until we know better, why don't we just be nice to him and remind ourselves that we're not all so different.
You're right. We should all be nice to each other and live in peace. I compeltely agree with that. At the same time though, it shouldn't keep us from discussing and debating spiritual truths. Especially if we're talking about something that's deemed by many to be a dangerous cult. Again, read articles like the Rolling Stone one and you'll see. And to use your line of thinking, if the odd kid in the classroom is making pipe bombs in the basement, we don't just "be nice to him" and let him keep making pipe bombs, do we?
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Old 01-19-2008, 06:26 PM   #119
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Originally posted by joyfulgirl


I agree. In my opinion it is simply not clear and rational thinking to point fingers at other religions' "crazy" beliefs while not acknowledging that your own religion might seem crazy to others, too, but is somehow more legitimate because it's been handed down for generations. I'm still waiting for any Christian here, and none in particular, to simply say, "Okay, I can see where what I believe might seem crazy to others, too." Why is that so difficult?
OK, I can see where what I believe might seem crazy to others, too.
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Old 01-19-2008, 06:33 PM   #120
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It's not enough to say "I've never cheated on my wife," when at the same time, you're looking at porn or lusting after a co-worker or your neighbor.
Thoughtcrime.
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