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firm believer 222 29.92%
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Old 11-11-2022, 01:51 PM   #11176
business_kid
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I keep unscribing from this forum because I detect a great lack of it here in many regular posters. I suppose that's a cue for me to do so now. G'Bye again.
 
Old 11-11-2022, 07:52 PM   #11177
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@business_kid: Your continued participation is both expected and welcomed.
 
Old 11-23-2022, 03:34 PM   #11178
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Quote:
Originally Posted by business_kid View Post
  • There seemed to be less passion for religion and God in Russia and other Byzantine/Ottoman countries ...
  • The Orthodox religions lacked the 'Evil Villian' type figures who tortured and burned people....

Wikipedia has historical lists of translations into various languages which make boring reading. Ezra's idea of "putting meaning" into his reading obviously didn't happen over there. Likewise the (Orthodox) Churches didn't give a monkey's if people read the Bible or not, whereas the Western church went ballistic...
Indeed. Yes. These observations align with what I experienced when visiting Eastern Orthodox churches, though I wouldn't say that about God and Religion there is "less passion," but rather that their passion is of a different form that is less abstract and more physical.

Rublev's icons are colorful: the colors are pure and vivid, almost like the platonic forms for each color, like the perfection of color. Inside these onion domed churches, incense is burned ceremonially, like the perfection of scents. Likewise musicis sung, like the perfection of sound.

Western churches are bent on convincing the mind through abstract arguments, such as these famous five arguments by Thomas Aquinas, whereas Orthodox church convinces the senses, through color, smell, sound, and warmth.

I asked a Russian Orthodox woman if she believed in God, and she replied: "Not Abstractly."
 
Old 11-23-2022, 05:28 PM   #11179
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When the Roman Empire split apart and then fell apart, so did its "Church." And the two went in entirely different directions. Having done so, you could almost fail to realize that they once had common origins ...

Except that, in one real sense, they didn't. The original "Roman Empire" tried very hard to bind "the East" to "the West," but it never really succeeded. When the Empire fell, it broke along fault lines that already existed. Was there ever actually "only one 'Official Church?'" Some historians argue rather persuasively against the idea.

As we contemplate what's right now happening in Ukraine, Russia, Poland, and various other little countries we can't remember and can't pronounce, and compare it to "the Western™ pespective," we realize that this "great divide" is still there. There is far more richness and variety in human culture – and that unfortunately also includes very awful things – than we care to admit. Because it usually doesn't fit into our "grand plans."

Last edited by sundialsvcs; 11-23-2022 at 05:30 PM.
 
Old 11-27-2022, 03:09 PM   #11180
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@slac-in-the-box: I can see much more of Marx's line that "Religion is the opium of the people" in the Eastern approach. I must confess my opinions on Orthodox religions were formed rather quickly and summarily, so I wouldn't defend them. Consider them first impressions.

@sundialsvcs: I saw that a little differently. Emperors had learned not to rule alone because
  1. The Empire was too big and unwieldy.
  2. Nobody could profit by assassinating you if there another enthroned emperor.
So after Constantine the practise became to have an East-West split, with the number*#1 emperor usually in Rome. East-West was the pre-existing fault line, agreed by Geography, not politics. A new emperor was appointed with assigned territory. The East/West split was never revisited, AFAICT. Each of those emperors usually appointed a co-emperor, so succession was assured. They weren't really disunited. In 380 AD the three emperors met and signed the edict of Thessalonica. That was 2 co-emperors and one ruling the other half of the Empire alone.

Anyhow, it matters little what the Church did then, or after. It's a matter of politics, as the true faith was pretty extinct. I don't see 'political history' in the subject title.
 
Old 11-27-2022, 04:15 PM   #11181
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I think it's readily available to see in plain line of sight, past and present, that ALL capital "R" Religions, as in Organized Institutions, are analogous to opium, complete with a sales pitch and "drug dealers/clergy". Both are sold much like Life Insurance where the most effective pitch is "wheeling the coffin into the Living Room". All sales tactics begin with creating the perception of a need and then offering a set of options where only one is actually desirable. The purpose of any sales pitch is control with the wealth and power to implement and maintain it. Organized Religion most definitely fits that description. Even the subjective concept of "true faith" and "the Chosen People" speaks to that similarity - "Are you smoking more now and enjoying it less? Switch to <insert brand name> and taste the difference" and "Virginia Slims for Women aren't like the fat cigarettes Men smoke", etc.

The reason opium (in it's various forms or psychoactive drugs in general) still sells after centuries of horror stories is people still can experience hopelessness and overwhelming pain. The same is true with Religion. It's why both are more common in "commoners". Lords and Ladies more often simply enjoy keeping the commoners placated and docile.

As for Politics, the term needn't be expressly included in the thread title because it is a given with Organized Religion or why organize? No matter what we might think of Ayn Rand in toto she nailed this one perfectly with her characterization of control historically setup and maintained by the co-op of "Attila and the Witch Doctor". Attila controls your present, including the lives of your family, through physical, often military, coercion and the Witch Doctor controls perception of consequences in the so-called AfterLife. There is no escape, ever, in no time nor no place or that's the kicker anyway if you buy the deal.

Last edited by enorbet; 11-27-2022 at 04:18 PM.
 
Old 11-27-2022, 06:14 PM   #11182
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In Texas. One can be ordained online. Great for tax breaks.

No. I aint going to post a link.
 
Old 11-28-2022, 08:58 AM   #11183
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When there was a "Vietnam War" going on, the Universalists quickly picked up a whole lot of "priests."

As for the afterlife, what first got this then religion-besotted young boy thinking for myself was when a friend of mine said: "I don't believe that anyone will spend billions of years in a lake of fire because of at-most seventy years of screw-ups."

Since then, I reconsidered the merits of living forever in a place where everyone gets "a mansion" and gold is so cheap that it is used for paving stones. And, where the only thing there is to do is to "sing the praises" of the universe's greatest Narcissist, forever.

I started thinking about the last verse of Amazing Grace. "I've just spent the last ten thousand years 'singing to this bright-shining guy,' and the next ten thousand years aren't gonna be any different?" How do I get off this bus?

Last edited by sundialsvcs; 11-28-2022 at 09:07 AM.
 
Old 11-28-2022, 09:14 AM   #11184
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@enorbet: I've really started you off, haven't I?

I actually don't disagree with 90% of what you have said. But I disagree about being so extreme about ALL religions, because there is truth to be found. You're welcome to most of your views, but the import of what you say is that we're not welcome to ours.

Now I can dismiss you as a skeptic. But if you succed in making one agnostic into an atheist you have done him a disservice.
 
Old 11-28-2022, 11:43 AM   #11185
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Quote:
Originally Posted by business_kid View Post
@enorbet: I've really started you off, haven't I?
Only if by "started" you mean reminding me of a point of reference I realized as a teenager more than 50 years ago.

Quote:
Originally Posted by business_kid View Post
I actually don't disagree with 90% of what you have said. But I disagree about being so extreme about ALL religions, because there is truth to be found. You're welcome to most of your views, but the import of what you say is that we're not welcome to ours.
I've not only never said that, I've stated the opposite. My concern is not with personal belief systems. My concern is with institutions of belief systems, tribalism that seeks political power to govern others' thoughts, speech, and actions, enforcing that belief system on others. I have no problem in concluding that you are being honest that you don't disagree even if I think you are understating the percentage. I say that because both as an individual posting ideas here and as an avowed Jehovah's Witness you reject thousands of religions in general and many hundreds of Christian beliefs as false, wrong and untrue being one who considers your own brand as "the one true Faith". So I wager you agree that some 99+% resort to such sales tactics... just not your favored tribe. It really doesn't matter to me if you subscribe to Zoroastrianism or the cult of Lilith or Kali. Most of my friends and family, indeed most people I know and get along with, including religious sect proselytizers at my door are religious.

In fact, even within your own brand, if I understand correctly, less than 200 of your own will be so accurate as to be worthy of Rapture and all else will suffer being assigned to "bone detail" to clean up the horrific mess when your version of God once again murders many millions of Humanity. Also in fact, I have no problem with your believing that. To be clear I do consider that illogical but then from my POV all Faith is Blind Faith, or perhaps more accurately "has blinders on", selective blinders instantly affirming what you believe and denying what you don't.

Quote:
Originally Posted by business_kid View Post
Now I can dismiss you as a skeptic. But if you succed in making one agnostic into an atheist you have done him a disservice.
To succeed one must have a goal in mind. I have zero interest in convincing an agnostic to my way of thinking since there is no consortium of agnostics any more than there is of atheists. Again, I am only threatened by religious institutions considering the long and bloody track record of mob violence. Individually, most people, regardless of religious belief, I find relatively moral, affable and friendly. My ego nor my conclusions do not require affirmation. My only requirement for serious consideration is adherence to objective evidence-based Logic. That does not even imply that I dislike or seek to disallow the illogical who choose to believe in a Divine Creator, or Astrology, or Flat Earth. Do I think less of them? In all honesty, of course!... just as I conclude that anyone believing 1 + 1 = 3 or in demonology is making a serious mistake, but then ALL humans are flawed, including me... again, of course.

Last edited by enorbet; 11-28-2022 at 11:48 AM.
 
Old 11-28-2022, 01:09 PM   #11186
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Once a Brahmin priest asked Cakya Mouni (THE Buddha) "Does God exist ?".

Answer "NO" to that question is equivalent to North Korea dropping an atomic bomb in NYC.

The smart one closed his eyes for a while then answered "If you practice what I preach, you will reach Enlightened state, by then you will find the answer yourself".
 
Old 11-28-2022, 01:50 PM   #11187
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Originally Posted by BW-userx View Post
We are created in the likeness and Image of God.
Guys, stop feeding the loony.
The sheer arrogance in that single statement tells you to walk the other way... You just cannot talk reason to crazy.

As a non-atheist this is one of my old preferred jokes:

An atheist dies and goes to hell.
The devil welcomes him and says:"Let me show you around a little bit."
They walk through a nice park with green trees and the devil shows him a huge palace. "This is your house now, here are your keys."
The man is happy and thanks the devil. The devil says:"No need to say thank you, everyone gets a nice place to live in when they come down here!"

They continue walking through the nice park, flowers everywhere, and the devil shows the atheist a garage full of beautiful cars. "These are your cars now!" and hands the man all the car keys.
Again, the atheist tries to thank the devil, but he only says "Everyone down here gets some cool cars! How would you drive around without having cars?".

They walk on and the area gets even nicer. There are birds chirping, squirrels running around, kittens everywhere.
They arrive at a fountain, where the most beautiful woman the atheist has ever seen sits on a bench.
She looks at him and they instantly fall in love with each other. The man couldnīt be any happier.
The devil says "Everyone gets to have their soulmate down here, we donīt want anyone to be lonely!"

As they walk on, the atheist notices a high fence. He peeks to the other side and is totally shocked.
There are people in pools of lava, screaming in pain, while little devils run around and stab them with their tridents. Other devils are skinning people alive, heads are spiked, and many more terrible things are happening. A stench of sulfur is in the air.

Terrified, the man stumbles backwards, and asks the devil "What is going on there?"
The devil just shrugs and says: "Those are the christians, I donīt know why, but they prefer it that way"...
 
  


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