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Old 06-11-2006, 12:42 AM   #106
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Old 06-11-2006, 04:02 AM   #107
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Originally posted by A_Wanderer
A good many believers seem to believe in furthuring their faiths for a good many different resons, they should not be immune from criticism or be excused on the basis of live and let live; I find the concept of this Abrahamic creator abhorent and when people want "his will" carried out no good can come of it. In pointing out the more monstrous results of the faithful does not tell people what to believe.All of your cited examples are those of totalitarian governments, where power is consolidated with a sttae - the absence of religion was not the driving factor in those examples. True theocracies though, with clerical dominance and subjegation of the masses are a direct result of religious belief. The religious authorities are given chance to directly control the population, the fact that most major religions have spawned these systems throughout history should not go unnoticed.

If anyone is going to insist that one has an inherent need for Christ and that one must surrender themselves then they don't have a clue, it is insulting and of course ridicule is the very best response.
I think I see your point. You clearly believe that religious belief is inherently dangerous and harmful, thus the contempt.

Something tells me I'm not going to change your mind, but for the entertainment of Bonosaint (LOL!) and because I find the exchange interesting, let me go ahead and dive right into this anyway.

First off, I would never claim that faith should be "immune from criticism" though I do think if you wander away from "live and let live" well, then you're headed into very dangerous territory. "Live and let live" needs to be first rule of all people regardless of the their faith (or lack thereof).

Secondly, I don't follow how "no good" MUSTcome of trying to carry out God's will. Doesn't that depend on what God's will is? What if God's will is to "feed the hungry, care for the sick" etc? Can "no good" come from people feeling compelled to do so?

I'll grant that my examples of aetheistic governments were all totalitarian in nature and I am also willing to grant your statements about true theocracies. I realize this is shaky ground for me because even my own Scriptural record doesn't provide much support (at least in the Old Testament) for tolerance. I'll grant that I haven't considered secular democratic governments like those in much of Western Europe (though these are secular not specifically aetheistic--there is a difference). Nonetheless, my third point is this--I've been mulling this over for awhile and I'm not sure I'm ready to put my argument out there yet, but what the heck--religion despite it's many pitfalls ALSO provides one of the best rationales for tolerance, love, standing up for the oppressed, minorities etc. Faiths that teach love can be of inestimable value to our world and they've been the wellspring for some great deeds of goodness in this world.

If you judge religion, and especially Christianity by many of it's "so-called" practicioners through the ages, I can see how you could come to such negative conclusions about faith. But when you look at the teachings of Christ, at the way He intended for His faith to be lived, you get a different picture.

Fourthly, my insisting that everyone has an inherent need for Christ and must surrender is not necessarily "insulting." The question is how I go about that "insistence." I have to have an attitude of tolerance and willingness to respect people's choices. I may think they are making the "wrong" decision, but that's between them and God, and it's not for me to judge what the outcome of that decison maybe. You clearly insist that I must NOT believe in a need for Christ, but I'm not offended as long as you treat me with respect and don't start trying to force me into accepting your point of view.

Thinking I'm right is not offensive. Thinking you're wrong is not offensive. As long as we maintain an attitude of respect.
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Old 06-11-2006, 04:08 AM   #108
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Originally posted by Angela Harlem


Contempt perhaps because religion offends?
Perhaps because religion is fundamentally flawed and it pretty much chokes on it's own hypocrisy?
Perhaps there is contempt because it is constantly flouting anyone who is not also a member?
Perhaps because the continual flagellation is seen as ridiculous, if not plain uneccesary and rather negative?

Want more?
I don't see how religion inherently offends.

Religions may or may not be fundamentally flawed (which ones and to what degree--boy is that subject for debate) and people do often choke on their own hypocrisy--but then that's human nature, last I checked.

If all you've observed of religion is constantly flouting anyone who is not a member and continual flagellation, I understand your contempt completely.

I'm suggesting that what you describe is not the sum total of religious faith.
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Old 06-11-2006, 07:37 AM   #109
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Originally posted by maycocksean

First off, I would never claim that faith should be "immune from criticism" though I do think if you wander away from "live and let live" well, then you're headed into very dangerous territory. "Live and let live" needs to be first rule of all people regardless of the their faith (or lack thereof).
No, that is a mistake; it is dangerous to be silent on the basis of that principle, if we can excuse certain behaviour from comment then where does it end? Disavowing that principle is different from violating another persons freedom of concience as that does not extend to freedom of ignorance, which means freedom to not hear criticsm. The most extreme expressions of religiousity stem from the very same principles, a belief in the afterlife and claim to inherent moral good.
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Secondly, I don't follow how "no good" MUSTcome of trying to carry out God's will. Doesn't that depend on what God's will is? What if God's will is to "feed the hungry, care for the sick" etc? Can "no good" come from people feeling compelled to do so?
Because they invariably seek to spread their ideas around like a memetic virus and expand a sphere of influence; now people following their own crazy philosophies isn't a problem in itself but when it has institutions with goals of furthuring earthly power that expansion may take on as it has many times in the past violent concequences. Islamic fundamentalism today is trying to forge an earthly power that will bring every living human under the sway of their beloved Allah - they are following their faith literally and doing quite a bloody job at wiping out those that deserve to die (e.g. Jews and Hindus) or those that get in the way. They are following Gods will just as much as the charity worker, they have much more negative concequences.
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I'll grant that my examples of aetheistic governments were all totalitarian in nature and I am also willing to grant your statements about true theocracies. I realize this is shaky ground for me because even my own Scriptural record doesn't provide much support (at least in the Old Testament) for tolerance. I'll grant that I haven't considered secular democratic governments like those in much of Western Europe (though these are secular not specifically aetheistic--there is a difference).
Secular governence grants no sanction for or against faith - it doesn't get involved and will oppose any attempted invocation of religious ideas. By virtue of lacking supposition of the supernatural these lead to laws built on logic and atheistic materialism. I believe in the free state, this is completely incompatible with religious governence because at it's core theocracy (even benevolent theocracy) puts treats the citizen not as the individual supreme but as subservient to God and its scripture or intent[quote]Nonetheless, my third point is this--I've been mulling this over for awhile and I'm not sure I'm ready to put my argument out there yet, but what the heck--religion despite it's many pitfalls ALSO provides one of the best rationales for tolerance, love, standing up for the oppressed, minorities etc. Faiths that teach love can be of inestimable value to our world and they've been the wellspring for some great deeds of goodness in this world.
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A best rational strikes me as a dubious claim, the motivation for works as a means of emulating you Christ is not being conducted in and of itself for the deed. A good deed in the absence of any concequence in reward or karma for the sake of it is more defining than one justified by some outside force or faith.
Every act of religion is but a magnifying glass of humanity, in the stakes of crimes and benefits it is neutral at best. Furthurmore almost every positive philisophical principle which is incorporated into religious structures can be derived from purely logical bounds built around the preservation and protection of rights and liberties of individuals without any invocation of the divine.
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If you judge religion, and especially Christianity by many of it's "so-called" practicioners through the ages, I can see how you could come to such negative conclusions about faith. But when you look at the teachings of Christ, at the way He intended for His faith to be lived, you get a different picture.
I would make a judgement on the idea, having a deity for instance is unneccecary; all of the evidence points towards a naturalistic origin of life on Earth and the solar system without any influence of the supernatural - the introduction of a God for the existence of things is unfounded; there is no evidence for God, to reconcile God with the body of knowledge that we do have we must complicate things - the absence of evidence for and the impossibility of the supernatural are strong strikes against a God existing. The next problem is the concept of God itself, having an omniscient and omnipotent being is to me completely undesirable, one doesn't need a omnipotent and omnicent being

The practicing of faith towards this idea is putting mankind down, a submission to higher power or perhaps more pathetically the idea of a higher power. It holds us back, until humanity can look into the void of existence without fear we will never be able to reach our full potential, that will not happen by force or coercion but by individuals electing their own philosophies.
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Fourthly, my insisting that everyone has an inherent need for Christ and must surrender is not necessarily "insulting."
It is insulting in that any needs that I have are a matter between me and my mind and possibly another person, quite simply a God shaped hole that has been posited is not an inherent characteristic of human beings, a good many people have lived and died in complete ignorance of Christianity and even monotheism without so much as a yearning for it, if it was really such a universal trait then surely it would have occured more frequently and been embraced with vigour by all the peoples of the world.
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The question is how I go about that "insistence." I have to have an attitude of tolerance and willingness to respect people's choices. I may think they are making the "wrong" decision, but that's between them and God, and it's not for me to judge what the outcome of that decison maybe.
No it seems that your alleged God has all that part figured out.
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You clearly insist that I must NOT believe in a need for Christ, but I'm not offended as long as you treat me with respect and don't start trying to force me into accepting your point of view.
I am not forcing acceptentce I am professing that the idea is completely and utterly wrong, there is no need for God inherent in humanity, the many heathens that lived and died rich full lives in the absence of that is evidence enough - any biological need for belief will have completely natural causes that will be wired into our genes; a neurological trait that is adventageous to survival and social interaction and not from an outside and impossible (as in unprovable source; in death there is no creation or destruction of matter or energy and the mass and energy in the system will remain the same - a soul or fundamental essence if it existed in our universe would be quantifiable).

Freedom of religion does not entail respect, it entails dialogue, criticism, mockery, rejection and possibly acceptence. Staying silent in the name of stability or feelings only allows the centre of debate to be defined by other agendas and that is to the disadvantage of whichever agenda one wants to push.
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Thinking I'm right is not offensive. Thinking you're wrong is not offensive. As long as we maintain an attitude of respect.
There is no prerequisite to apply the idea of respect, the very idea of this omnicient deity is unfounded and undesirable - it is not stooping to ad hominem.
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Old 06-11-2006, 09:49 AM   #110
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I am in no way advocating silence or excusing certain behavior from comment. People should be free to express contempt for or ridicule any faith (or lack therof) that they choose. I'm NOT arguing that people of faith should not have to hear any criticism of their beliefs or that what they believe is "too sacred" for those who don't believe to criticize or mock.

I think we interpret respect differently. When I speak of respect, I speak of civil discourse, of keeping an open mind and a sense of humor, I speak of not "making it personal", I speak of the basic respect that I believe that all human beings by virtue of being human deserve. Viewpoints may not be "respected" but people always should be.

When we lose the kind of respect for each other that I speak of above then we are heading towards real trouble. For if a person is no longer worthy of respect because of their viewpoints, beliefs (or unbeliefs), or for whatever other reason then it becomes very easy to justify taking away that person's rights, doing violence to them, even killing them. After all, if we view a person (or a group of people) as the "dangerous Absolute Evil" then we are able to justify all kinds of atrocities.
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Old 06-11-2006, 10:07 AM   #111
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Originally posted by A_Wanderer
[BThe most extreme expressions of religiousity stem from the very same principles, a belief in the afterlife and claim to inherent moral good.Because they invariably seek to spread their ideas [/B]
Is it inherently wrong to spread your ideas? Isn't that human nature? If I have something I think is wonderful isn't in human nature to want to get other people invovled? Or is HOW those ideas are spread the real issue? I know the crusades, the holy wars, the Inqusition, all that stuff. But because of these obviously wrong things does that mean that people of faith should put a sock in it and keep quiet about what's important to them, or wouldn't it be fairer to talk about the appropriate ways in which to "spread your ideas."

Quote:
Originally posted by A_Wanderer
now people following their own crazy philosophies isn't a problem in itself but when it has institutions with goals of furthuring earthly power that expansion may take on as it has many times in the past violent concequences. [/B]
I agree. Religon and "earthly power" should never, ever mix. Such mixtures have never, ever been a good thing. Religions that demand earthly power are dangerous.


Quote:
Originally posted by A_Wanderer Secular governence grants no sanction for or against faith - it doesn't get involved and will oppose any attempted invocation of religious ideas. By virtue of lacking supposition of the supernatural these lead to laws built on logic and atheistic materialism. I believe in the free state, this is completely incompatible with religious governence because at it's core theocracy (even benevolent theocracy) puts treats the citizen not as the individual supreme but as subservient to God and its scripture or intent [/B]
I agree with you 100% on this point as well.

I'm not going to get into why I believe that there is a God. You've made it very clear why you believe that God is an impossiblity. I disagree with several of your conclusions but I don't see any point in getting into that discussion unless it interests you, and I'm guessing that it may not.

But I do want to ask you this question, just out of curiosity.

What is your view on why religion and spirituality (which, at least historically, has been near universal. Monothesism may not be innate but it would seem some sense of the supernatural may be) evolved? What is it's purpose, from an evolutionary point of view? The rest of the animal kingdom seems to have done very nicely without it. Why couldn't humans have done so as well?
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Old 06-11-2006, 03:53 PM   #112
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Originally posted by maycocksean
What is your view on why religion and spirituality (which, at least historically, has been near universal... What is it's purpose, from an evolutionary point of view?
Religion and spirituality provide answers to...

How did we get here?
Why are we here?
What happens when we die?

It evolved to be used as behaviour control to establish societal order and heirarchies of power by providing moral and behavioural frameworks of right and wrong. As societies grew, those frameworks became the cultural foundation for law and political systems.
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Old 06-12-2006, 09:08 AM   #113
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Originally posted by maycocksean


I don't see how religion inherently offends.

Religions may or may not be fundamentally flawed (which ones and to what degree--boy is that subject for debate) and people do often choke on their own hypocrisy--but then that's human nature, last I checked.

If all you've observed of religion is constantly flouting anyone who is not a member and continual flagellation, I understand your contempt completely.

I'm suggesting that what you describe is not the sum total of religious faith.
You dont think religion offends at all? You dont think Christianity is flawed, and rather severely, at that?


I do hope the meek inherit the earth. That'd be funny.
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Old 06-12-2006, 11:33 AM   #114
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Originally posted by Angela Harlem


You dont think religion offends at all? You dont think Christianity is flawed, and rather severely, at that?


I do hope the meek inherit the earth. That'd be funny.
I didn't say I don't think religion offends at all. I just questioned whether ALL religion is INHERENTLY offensive. I'd be willing to concede that Christianity could be offensive, especially in today's cultural climate where claiming a monopoly on truth is unacceptable. (But then again, it seems that a staunch athesist also claims a monopoly on truth in a sense too. "There is no God. That's the truth. Anyone who believes otherwise is wrong." How is that different from a Christian saying, "Jesus is Lord. That's the truth. Anyone who believes otherwise is wrong" ?)

As to whether or not I feel that Christianity is severely flawed, I think the answer is obvious. Why would I be a Christian if believed that? I believe that Christians are flawed. I believe that Christian institutions are definitely flawed, many severely so, and some are just downright dangerous. But then again, that's true of pretty much everyone. All people are flawed. All human institutions are flawed. Part of Christian theology acknowledges that fundamentally flawed human condition and properly understood, Christian theology does NOT teach that "everyone else if flawed except for Christians." Finally, I'll take it one step further and say that my understanding of Christianity and of God may be flawed as well. While, I do believe in God as the repository of all truth, I'm not God, and so of course while "God is always right", I could be wrong.

But, obviously the basic teachings of Christianity don't seem flawed to me, otherwise I wouldn't embrace them. People subscribe to a faith because it "works for them." It may appear ludicrous to those who don't share that faith, but it doesn't appear ludicrous to the believer.

I found your last statement about the meek inheriting the earth intriguing. In what way would it be funny? Are you saying that if the meek inherited the earth, they'd screw it up for sure (course the world's already pretty screwed up with the "non-meek" running it. I'm not sure how the meek could make it worse.) Or are you saying that the meek inheriting the earth, while a charming thought, is ridiculous and it will never happen. Or were you saying something else?
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Old 06-12-2006, 11:41 AM   #115
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It would seem the atheist and the Christian alike eschew the popular idea that "what's true is what is true for you. My truth may be different from your truth."

Atheism's Absolute Truth seems to be tolerated by our culture far more than Christianity's though.

Have I been misspelling athesim for all these many paragraphs?

**sigh**

I'm sure THAT'S helped my case.

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Old 06-13-2006, 02:06 AM   #116
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Originally posted by maycocksean


I didn't say I don't think religion offends at all. I just questioned whether ALL religion is INHERENTLY offensive. I'd be willing to concede that Christianity could be offensive, especially in today's cultural climate where claiming a monopoly on truth is unacceptable. (But then again, it seems that a staunch athesist also claims a monopoly on truth in a sense too. "There is no God. That's the truth. Anyone who believes otherwise is wrong." How is that different from a Christian saying, "Jesus is Lord. That's the truth. Anyone who believes otherwise is wrong" ?)
The religions I am aware of share many aspects with Christianity regarding their so-called handle on the truth. I think athiesm is no different. I agree.

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Originally posted by maycocksean

As to whether or not I feel that Christianity is severely flawed, I think the answer is obvious. Why would I be a Christian if believed that? I believe that Christians are flawed. I believe that Christian institutions are definitely flawed, many severely so, and some are just downright dangerous. But then again, that's true of pretty much everyone. All people are flawed. All human institutions are flawed. Part of Christian theology acknowledges that fundamentally flawed human condition and properly understood, Christian theology does NOT teach that "everyone else if flawed except for Christians." Finally, I'll take it one step further and say that my understanding of Christianity and of God may be flawed as well. While, I do believe in God as the repository of all truth, I'm not God, and so of course while "God is always right", I could be wrong.
I'm not trying to nitpick, but you can agree that Christian institutions are/can be flawed, that Christians are flawed, yet not that Christianity is flawed? I think I know what you're meaning here, but I dont want to assume. You've mentioned one of my pet gripes though. The belief that all humans are sinners (or flawed). Really, I dont need or want to hear from some Joe that that is what they think of me. Judge not, etc. It's so easy to brush everyone off as sinners. 'We all are. It's a matter of fact.' It grates on my last nerve hearing this calmly and matter of factly stated from someone who believes in something I dont who gives the impression that it is beyond reproach and that I, or my soul, is actually going some place horrid. You know the scenario. I dont want to hear it. Not factually, and not as an absolute truth when truly, it's rude.
As for how Christianity truly gets up my nose (to explain what you said you dont see yourself as a believer) it is beyond my understanding that it's tenets are about acceptance. Yet woman are not treated equally, nor gays. Their rights are negligible. As for equality, just how sincere do you reckon the church is? I dont think it is terribly. Infact, I do believe that equality is a novel idea, or certainly worthy of many aspiring to, but in reality it is very seldom taken into account. Religion is no different to many other aspects in society where it simply takes a back seat. How many Christians support the death penalty? Life is a gift from God, Christ died so we could live, yada yada. Meanwhile, not judging, we encourage the end of a fellow man in the belief that his actions affect life itself so much so that his life is then not worthy. Aren't lives all equal? Didn't Jesus love everyone absolutely equally? The man on death row's life should be (according to this belief) as worthy as yours or mine. Yet, what he did in his life, his actions, rendered him a lost cause in the eyes of these loving god-fearing Christians who do not judge and do as Jesus did and love all. Not. Hypocrisy and turning a blind eye to true equality among men. How on earth can a mere man determine who's gift of life is taken away? It astounds and disturbs me.

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Originally posted by maycocksean

But, obviously the basic teachings of Christianity don't seem flawed to me, otherwise I wouldn't embrace them. People subscribe to a faith because it "works for them." It may appear ludicrous to those who don't share that faith, but it doesn't appear ludicrous to the believer.

I found your last statement about the meek inheriting the earth intriguing. In what way would it be funny? Are you saying that if the meek inherited the earth, they'd screw it up for sure (course the world's already pretty screwed up with the "non-meek" running it. I'm not sure how the meek could make it worse.) Or are you saying that the meek inheriting the earth, while a charming thought, is ridiculous and it will never happen. Or were you saying something else?
Re: the meek. I've got a description for those who particularly make me want to stab things. I call them aggressive Christians. They're the ones who believe (whether they are aware or not) that gays cant mary, that seperation of church and state is a futile fight (and a stupid idea anyway), that their truth is absolute, that life is something which can be weighed and scaled according to a comfortable interpretation of the bible or whatever, that their beliefs cannot be questioned validly, that those who do are simply wrong and on a fast track to the big fire. They dont question or assess because they erronously think they do not need to. They've come to their conclusions and it fits, cause gosh doesn't it feel nice to be on top. They're not the meek. If this God and Jesus caper is all true, then they will not be inheriting the earth. It will be the meek.
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Old 06-13-2006, 04:56 AM   #117
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Finally, we agree! Now that I understand what you view Christianity to be I can see why it bugs you so much. The fact is I feel exactly the same way about the type of Christianity you describe. The thing is Christianity is a lot more diverse than the horrible, political version of Christianity that gets all the attention.

A couple of key points:

I'm a Christian and I believe women and gays should be treated equally.

I'm a Christian and I do not support the death penalty. You did an excellent job of summarizing why, as a Christian, I have opposed the death penalty.

I'm a Christian and I am STRONGLY in support of STRICT seperation of church and state. (And this isn't me alone, my entire denomination has traditionally opposed any mixing of church and state. We even have a whole department in our church whose job it is to keep an eye on legislation that would bring religion into government and oppose it). I don't believe in this nonsense about America as "Christian nation", I don't support prayer in public schools, or the 10 commandments on the walls of public buildings. It ismy firm belief that governments should be secular.

I'm a Christian but I do not believe that interpretation of scripture is easy or comfortable, nor do I believe that I've got the Bible or Truth "all figured out."

I'm a Christian, but I do not believe in the "big fire" or going to some "horrid place" when you die. I don't believe that a loving God would send people to roast in torment forever. It's sick!(Again this is my whole denomination, not just me).

And most of all I agree 100% with this final quote of yours.

Quote:
Originally posted by Angela Harlem
They're not the meek. If this God and Jesus caper is all true, then they will not be inheriting the earth. It will be the meek.
Well said. So I guess based on your definition I'm not a Christian. At least I sure hope not.

And now for my one area of "disagreement" or at least questioning. Do you believe that all humans are not flawed? Are only some humans flawed (i.e. Hitler, Stalin and the like) and the rest perfect? I think we'd agree that "nobody's perfect" and that's really all I mean when as a Christian, I talk about our "flawed condition" or "sin" or whatever you want to call it. Now as to what the other crazies mean when they get going about how "you're all sinners" and all that, I don't know. But I could see how that type of Christian would piss you off. But to simply state that nobody's perfect. . .I'm not sure how that's rude. When I say that I'm not making any "judgements" about you or where you are "going" or the state of your soul. How would I know the state of your soul? It'd be awful arrogant of me to claim to know. But a general statement about the human condition shouldn't be a problem, no?
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Old 06-13-2006, 07:07 AM   #118
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You're not one of these agressive Christians, by the sounds of it What denomination are you, may I ask?

The last part of where we remain perhaps to disagree is interesting. I do think all life is equal. I dont think any one person is every more worthwhile of anything than another. You get hypothetical scenarios where it's "women and children first" and that as an example has always got me thinking. I used to believe it was made up by men in an era where gentlemanly behaviour was the order of the day. To be honest, I'm not really sure why it came to be. I suspect a combination of many things - children and women being the weaker, noble or gentlemanly reasonings, a Darwinist philosophy of preserving life and therefore those crucial to ensuring it's existance, perhaps none of those? Am I sidetracking again? Sorry, lol. I have a migraine-ish kind of headache and I can only apologise if this makes very little sense...So yeah, we're all equal. I try to believe always that every person put on this earth deserves as much as the next person regardless of colour and race and so on. I try to extend that to the things which really seperate us too; things like intelligence, natural skills or abilities. If you took a group of people and put them on a sinking raft, how would you organise a heirarchy? And then if the people on the raft were a teenage girl with an intellectual disability, a middle aged alcoholic man with a propensity to violence, a supremely racist Egyptian man, a lesbian who wanted children, a 30 year old very attractive female lawyer who didn't want children, a fit and healthy 25 year old man who wanted children but was sterile? Then lets say you can only save 4 of them. I reckon we've all done hypotheticals like this. We all get told when we participate that there is no right and wrong answer. I dont know whether to love or hate these. They are life. We ignore equality which any kind hearted soul will strive for in their lives and we begin to weigh up each person's benefits and disadvantages. We forget that the alcoholic is as worthy as the young girl with an intellectual disability and we treat them as different people because of what occurs in their life. I think what makes humans different is what we do and what we can do, but it never undoes or voids someone's worth. Myself and a violent burgular in jail are equal still. He just chose to live his life as he did. Or society dictated. Whichever (that debate is for another thread, lol). Lets make this man a violent burgular who likes to shoot his victims, and suddenly half the population would happily see him put on death row. Half the population who ordinarily cry 'Equality! Yes! Love that equality'. Um, no you dont, dudes. You want equality when it doesn't stand out too far from your own definition of comfort and when someone else's freedom of choice leads them to do things which are harmful and dangerous. Or when it is an apparent threat to one's sense of identity (like gay marriage) or when someone's colour or race might dirty up someone's Aryan Wonderland, and so on. It just goes on. Anyway, my point....lol. Yeah, I don't know if I necessarily call it flawed. Maybe I do, I'm not sure. I do think that some people make flawed choices. Some people live flawed lives. Some people live lives which dont have as much advantage as another. We're born equal but we allow our actions and decisions to seperate us. We think it does seperate us. I question very much whether it does.

I really dont know if I've even got near what you were talking about, lol. But you have a holiday to go on. We need BonosSaint in here. She'll sort this one out!
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Old 06-13-2006, 10:06 AM   #119
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Quote:
Originally posted by maycocksean
A couple of key points:

I'm a Christian and I believe women and gays should be treated equally.

I'm a Christian and I do not support the death penalty. You did an excellent job of summarizing why, as a Christian, I have opposed the death penalty.

I'm a Christian and I am STRONGLY in support of STRICT seperation of church and state. (And this isn't me alone, my entire denomination has traditionally opposed any mixing of church and state. We even have a whole department in our church whose job it is to keep an eye on legislation that would bring religion into government and oppose it). I don't believe in this nonsense about America as "Christian nation", I don't support prayer in public schools, or the 10 commandments on the walls of public buildings. It ismy firm belief that governments should be secular.

I'm a Christian but I do not believe that interpretation of scripture is easy or comfortable, nor do I believe that I've got the Bible or Truth "all figured out."

I'm a Christian, but I do not believe in the "big fire" or going to some "horrid place" when you die. I don't believe that a loving God would send people to roast in torment forever. It's sick!(Again this is my whole denomination, not just me).



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Old 06-13-2006, 10:37 AM   #120
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Thank you, maycocksean, that was refreshing!

I AM CHRISTIAN

hehe reminds me of Molson's I AM CANADIAN beer commericals.
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