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Old 09-22-2003, 09:29 PM   #1
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God

Is having a belief in a higher power really a good thing? Is it really a bad thing? hard core liberals want a complete seperation of church and state. i believe that's a good thing. but they go too far... declaring the pledge of alliegance unconstitutional because it says the word "God." In California, a judge revoked property from the Boy Scouts, claiming they were a "religous group" because they have the word "God" in their credo. we live in a nation of religous freedom, so there should not be a national religion, but what is wrong with having faith? what is wrong with wearing a cross outside your uniform? or a star of david? what is wrong with living your life to please God? hard core left wing democrats are bordering on atheists... while hard core right wing republicans are bordering on fanatisicm. jerry falwell thought 9/11 occured because of gays and women not being in the kitchen anymore, so God was punishing us. Get a grip man. these people see The Book as THE word... not up for interpretation. and when there's a conflict between two different books in The Bible? it's just ignored. they see The Book as they want to see it. they hijack the religion, and as bono once said, shrink God to their own size. 9/11 happened because of religion. osama bin laden is fueled by religion. he takes the Koran, takes Allah, and sees The Book how he wants to see it. so many conflicts... palestine/israel... 9/11... northern ireland...world war 2... the crusades...all over people viewing God in their own way... be it Jews, Christians or Muslims. But then Communism were supposed to be atheist... and that obviously didn't work out too well either. and for every bin laden, there's a mother theresa, for every hitler there's an oscar schindler. for every gerry adams there's a bono. so what's the answer? where do we go from here? what do we do with religion... something that has brought so much good to our lifes, but has also given us some much pain. what do we do with God?
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Old 09-22-2003, 09:50 PM   #2
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What do we do with God? We worship Him. I'm a political liberal and a committed Catholic Christian. I cringed when Falwell blamed 9/11 on gays. Guys like bin Laden are driven by pure, unmitigated hate, not religion. I'm not going to scream every time God is mentioned in public. But I get suspicious when politicians claim God is on their side in political disputes, generally speaking. After all, isn't that for God to decide and not people?
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Old 09-23-2003, 10:42 AM   #3
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Re: God

Quote:
Originally posted by Headache in a Suitcase
Is having a belief in a higher power really a good thing? Is it really a bad thing? hard core liberals want a complete seperation of church and state. i believe that's a good thing. but they go too far... declaring the pledge of alliegance unconstitutional because it says the word "God."
The original Pledge of Allegiance was written in the 1890s by a socialist. The phrase "under God" was added in the 1950s during the Eisenhower Administration, because they had romantic ideas about religion preventing communism. In my opinion, just reading the story as to how "under God" was added into the Pledge of Allegiance screams unconstitutional. The solution? Return the Pledge of Allegiance to its original form.

Quote:
]In California, a judge revoked property from the Boy Scouts, claiming they were a "religous group" because they have the word "God" in their credo.
They were fine, until they started becoming homophobic, hence turning from a truly non-denominational group into a quasi-Christian group. I was a Boy Scout. You can literally be any religion, except atheist, and I know that not all religions are against homosexuals.

I think that whomever is running the Boy Scouts deserves to be smacked for ruining that organization and turning it into a "religious group," because it certainly wasn't in my day.

Quote:
we live in a nation of religous freedom, so there should not be a national religion, but what is wrong with having faith? what is wrong with wearing a cross outside your uniform? or a star of david? what is wrong with living your life to please God?
There is nothing wrong with having faith, but if you use your religious freedom to discriminate against others' freedom to life, liberty, and happiness, then you should not be able to exercise that right.

That said, a fully secular society doesn't infringe on religious freedoms. The Boy Scouts are still free to do whatever they please. They can just do it without government funds.

Quote:
hard core left wing democrats are bordering on atheists... while hard core right wing republicans are bordering on fanatisicm. jerry falwell thought 9/11 occured because of gays and women not being in the kitchen anymore, so God was punishing us. Get a grip man. these people see The Book as THE word... not up for interpretation. and when there's a conflict between two different books in The Bible? it's just ignored. they see The Book as they want to see it. they hijack the religion, and as bono once said, shrink God to their own size. 9/11 happened because of religion. osama bin laden is fueled by religion. he takes the Koran, takes Allah, and sees The Book how he wants to see it. so many conflicts... palestine/israel... 9/11... northern ireland...world war 2... the crusades...all over people viewing God in their own way... be it Jews, Christians or Muslims. But then Communism were supposed to be atheist... and that obviously didn't work out too well either. and for every bin laden, there's a mother theresa, for every hitler there's an oscar schindler. for every gerry adams there's a bono. so what's the answer? where do we go from here? what do we do with religion... something that has brought so much good to our lifes, but has also given us some much pain. what do we do with God?
Religion is not fixed. Period. Every society has been fixated on certain passages and interpretations of the Bible. As a 21st century society, we've been fixated on sexual purity. To assume that that has always been the case is not true, although, for the last millennium, that can be considered fairly accurate. The early church, for instance, was obsessed with idolatry and eliminating idolatrous practices.

The trouble with religion is that it has chosen the path of fanaticism, rather than reason. They could have taken a cue from St. Thomas Aquinas, who believed that God manifested Himself in science. Now with that, Aquinas' views on science are grossly inaccurate, when stacked up with what we know now, but I don't think it changes the spirit of the belief: God manifests himself in His creation. In essence, science, for the most part, should not be in conflict with faith.

What to do with God? Live Him, don't use Him. Make your life an example of God. Don't use God to berate your enemies and exult yourself, whether it be overtly or through false humility. I am very critical of religion, if only because I think that it has all but forgotten about God, preferring, rather, to exult the Bible as a cult. So much for ending idolatry, eh?

Melon
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Old 09-23-2003, 11:29 AM   #4
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Re: Re: God

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Originally posted by melon
There is nothing wrong with having faith, but if you use your religious freedom to discriminate against others' freedom to life, liberty, and happiness, then you should not be able to exercise that right.
This is a very complicated issue as it can lead to a path where religious belief can be labeled de facto discriminatory and result in no freedom of religion.
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Old 09-23-2003, 12:26 PM   #5
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Re: Re: Re: God

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Originally posted by nbcrusader


This is a very complicated issue as it can lead to a path where religious belief can be labeled de facto discriminatory and result in no freedom of religion.
Explain.
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Old 09-23-2003, 12:50 PM   #6
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Nice reply melon. I grew up in a VERY religous household and for the most part I am glad that I had something bigger than me, something more important than me in my life that kept me grounded. I think I am the good person I am today partly because of that. So many kids (and adults) today think it's all about them and that's a scary thing.

Unfortunately a major problem I see with Christian religion in this country is that they also don't think about anybody elses beliefs but their own. Most think that "freedom of religion" means the freedom to practice Christianity. This country is great because of the freedoms we have to practice the religion of our choice.

What to do with God?

Here's my rule. I think anyone can go to church and talk about religion and God etc... all they want, same goes for in their home, but when it comes to day to day out in the world, you take the lessons and teachings of your religion and you live them and do good to other people and you are great person by example, not by spouting off about sinning and being saved. I don't want other people pushing their small view of God on me, so I don't expect that people are really interested in hearing my view of it. To me my belief in something bigger is a personal one, and one that works in my life. I don't expect it to be the answer for everyone, so I don't push it on to them.

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Old 09-23-2003, 01:05 PM   #7
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but what if your religious beliefs see something, say homosexuality, as moraly wrong? should you not be allowed to practice it? should you be forced to admit gays into the church, and give them the same rights? wouldn't this then be encroaching on your own religious beliefs?

... one nation, under canada, above mexico...

secularism can not be the answer. if you preach religious freedom, how can you then say that a person in government is not allowed to base his decisions on his faith? is that not religious persecution by disallowing a person to follow his faith? on things like the budget, etc. someone of faith can make decisions without bringing religion into it. but when it comes down to those hot topics... abortion, same-sex marrige, etc.... a person of faith can't just set their beliefs aside, may he/she be a catholic, a jew, a muslim, or any other religion. should a person have to step down because he can't make a decision without leaning on his faith? and if so, wouldn't that be religious persecution?

i really don't know the answer to all this. america is a nation of conflicting interests, all pulling in opposite directions. it's a land where all men are created equal... but it is also a nation of religious freedom, and to be perfectly frank, all people are not created equal in the eyes of the various religions, not to mention the various sects and branches of religions.
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Old 09-23-2003, 01:28 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by womanfish
I don't want other people pushing their small view of God on me, so I don't expect that people are really interested in hearing my view of it.
Why make the assumption that people are not intersted in hearing your view of God?

Do we not grow from the exchange of ideas? Do we not change when our ideas are challenged and we find gaps in our own beliefs?

We hold many beliefs, political, spiritual, economic, etc. No one is forcing their views on you and you actively take part in sharing your views. Is a discussion of religion that much different?

Believe me, I know there are some faiths that believe they are rewarded by converting others or the methods of sharing can be overbearing.
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Old 09-23-2003, 01:46 PM   #9
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but what if your religious beliefs see something, say homosexuality, as moraly wrong? should you not be allowed to practice it? should you be forced to admit gays into the church, and give them the same rights? wouldn't this then be encroaching on your own religious beliefs?
But this isn't separation of Church and state. If one church doesn't agree with something that you do, go to another church, one of the beauties of America.

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secularism can not be the answer. if you preach religious freedom, how can you then say that a person in government is not allowed to base his decisions on his faith? is that not religious persecution by disallowing a person to follow his faith? on things like the budget, etc. someone of faith can make decisions without bringing religion into it. but when it comes down to those hot topics... abortion, same-sex marrige, etc.... a person of faith can't just set their beliefs aside, may he/she be a catholic, a jew, a muslim, or any other religion. should a person have to step down because he can't make a decision without leaning on his faith? and if so, wouldn't that be religious persecution?
Religion has no place in government, but it does have a place in individual's hearts. The governments job is to govern our liberties, economy, overall welfare, etc. but not to enforce morals. Now certain issues ride the fence like abortion there's a moral and a question of overall well being of the nation there and often politicians will vote based on their personal beliefs, and I think that's fine, these issues will always be hot issues. Economy? I can't remember the last time someone made budget decisions based on their religious beliefs. But gay marriage is not an issue that puts anyone in harm, it's just someone trying to state their beliefs are more right than another. This has no place in America. We lean on faith or lack of, that's human nature. But don't enforce your faith on others, that's not the governments job.

This is why we have a checks and balances built into our system, so that when one tries to cross that line they will eventually get stopped. It's not a perfect system.
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Old 09-23-2003, 01:50 PM   #10
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Re: Re: Re: Re: God

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Originally posted by BonoVoxSupastar
Explain.
I'll try briefly:

The problem is sin. I believe we are all sinners and all sin is equal in God's eye (a Holy God cannot have sin in His presence).

No one likes to be labeled a sinner or likes to hear that something is sin.

If I say, "X is sin", a secular word hears "you hate X". Thus starts the labeling of intolerance or discrimination based on a religious belief.
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Old 09-23-2003, 01:59 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader

Believe me, I know there are some faiths that believe they are rewarded by converting others or the methods of sharing can be overbearing.
This is more of where I'm coming from. I don't like the idea of Mormon missionaries for example - JUST USING THIS AS AN EXAMPLE-
They go all over the world trying to convince people that their way is the only way and the right way. How can we be so small-minded to think that other religions in other countries aren't just as valid and vital and intrinsicly important in those people's lives as our religion and beliefs are to us. It is so pompous and arrogant it sickens me. If there is any reason to go on a "mission" IMO, it would be to go and learn about other people, not to change them.

Overall, I'm not saying don't talk about your beliefs, just saying don't state your beliefs as better or more right than someone elses because it is a very personal, spiritual thing for everyone. I believe the best way to share your beliefs is to live them and be an example of a good person that does good things. It makes a difference in people's lives and it comes off a whole lot better than handing them pamphlets and questioning what it is that they believe.

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Old 09-23-2003, 01:59 PM   #12
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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: God

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Originally posted by nbcrusader


I'll try briefly:

The problem is sin. I believe we are all sinners and all sin is equal in God's eye (a Holy God cannot have sin in His presence).

No one likes to be labeled a sinner or likes to hear that something is sin.

If I say, "X is sin", a secular word hears "you hate X". Thus starts the labeling of intolerance or discrimination based on a religious belief.
I can see what you are saying. But it depends on how you go about it. I recall a story about "he who's free of sin cast the first stone" so is the right or the need for people who believe "X is a sin" to go and call all people who "X" sinners?
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Old 09-23-2003, 02:55 PM   #13
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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: God

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Originally posted by BonoVoxSupastar
I can see what you are saying. But it depends on how you go about it. I recall a story about "he who's free of sin cast the first stone" so is the right or the need for people who believe "X is a sin" to go and call all people who "X" sinners?
Absolutely. Yelling at someone "you lousy adulterer" is not effective. Coming along side someone and saying "This adultery is not healthy, stop this and focus on your spouse" is probably more effective.
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Old 09-23-2003, 04:01 PM   #14
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Re: Re: Re: God

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Originally posted by nbcrusader
This is a very complicated issue as it can lead to a path where religious belief can be labeled de facto discriminatory and result in no freedom of religion.
Bullshit. You have every right to believe anything under the sun, including that blacks are degenerate, women are nothing but baby ovens, and that leprechauns created the Earth. That doesn't mean that you can formulate laws that infringe on blacks' rights to freedom, women's rights to get jobs, and others' rights to believe that there are no such thing as leprechauns.

That still doesn't mean that you don't have a right to believe any of that, however.

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Old 09-23-2003, 04:07 PM   #15
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Re: Re: Re: Re: God

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Bullshit. You have every right to believe anything under the sun, including that blacks are degenerate, women are nothing but baby ovens, and that leprechauns created the Earth. That doesn't mean that you can formulate laws that infringe on blacks' rights to freedom, women's rights to get jobs, and others' rights to believe that there are no such thing as leprechauns.

That still doesn't mean that you don't have a right to believe any of that, however.

Melon
Yeah that's pretty much what I was trying to get at.
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