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  #201  
Old 12-17-2019, 01:56 PM
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Originally Posted by thorny locust View Post
But you don't need the concept of a god before you can have atheism itself.
And that's the fundamental point of contention. You treat atheism as something that can exist outside the mind, and thus continues to exist even if there is no concept for it. I argue that it exists entirely within the realm of ideas, and thus ceases to exist if the concept does not exist.

You define atheism as a lack of belief in gods. But the concept of lacking something can only exist if that something also exists as a concept. I can't lack oqfkljadfs, because oqfkljadfs is not a concept. To lack a belief in god, the concept "belief in god" must exist. And for the concept "belief in god" to exist, the concept of "god" must exist.

The idea of the community who has never conceived of the concept of a god is instructive here. Yes, we can describe them as atheistic, as we have an idea of theism and therefore god. They, on the other hand, lack such a concept, and thus could never describe themselves as atheists. It isn't merely the word that doesn't exist to them, but the concept itself.

The thing is, our perspective is no more correct than their perspective in this. Unless there is some objective truth involved (like, say, the actual existence of God), we cannot argue that our perspective is objectively correct and their is objectively incorrect. Whether they are atheists or not depends entirely on who is saying it.

The hypothetical here was that the concept of god never arose at all*. No one believes in god. Thus no one has the concept of someone not believing in god. People don't merely lack a word for atheism, but they the concept does not exist. Atheism has as much meaning as oqfkljadfs.

Though I continue to reiterate that this is a pointless philosophical diversion, in that it has no practical application. It isn't special, it doesn't show that theism (or atheism) is correct. It's perfectly possible for someone else to have a different consistent philosophy where atheism does have some sort of objective truth, and it would change nothing about the world.

*And this is why I am able to argue from an atheistic perspective, as it is my belief as a theist that the concept of god arose due to god existing. So, in a universe where the concept of god did not arise, then God doesn't exist in that universe. It's a difficult universe to conceive of, as all our fictional universes have a god--the creator of said fictional universe--but it is possible.

I include this for clarification of those who might thing I'd become an atheist. I have made a decision that this will never happen. Going into it more would necessarily lead to witnessing, and I do not wish to engage in such outside of an audience who actually wants to be witnessed to.
  #202  
Old 12-17-2019, 01:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Dr_Paprika View Post
You can believe what you want. Some choose not to believe in a higher power. It’s understandable, I guess. Many things are unfair and the world is full of hypocrisy. But it does need replacing.

It is very important to believe in something bigger than yourself. There are trends towards relentless self-promotion and endless self aggrandizement. But they won’t make you content or happy. Humility and modesty may not be in fashion, but they remain an important ideal. You are not the universe.
I believe that the universe is bigger than I am. I believe, further, that this is utterly obvious.

For that matter, the planet is bigger than I am. The population of this country is bigger than I am. The population of this town (and it's a small one) is bigger than I am. The population of my household is bigger than I am -- it includes cats, mice, spiders, and undoubtedly masses of bacteria. And quite probably some critters who I don't realize are here.

All of that strikes me as utterly obvious.

Quite a lot of religious beliefs (not all of them) seem to me to go in the other direction, and to try to persuade me that the universe-as-a-whole has some special interest in Me: which to me would imply that I'm a whole lot bigger than I actually am. I don't think religion functions as a defense against over-maximizing oneself (though it may function as a defense against thinking one can do whatever one can in the short term get away with). I think it functions, very often, as a defense against realizing how tiny one is.

-- plus what Czarcasm said; with the addition that a high percentage of those thousand letters also say 'if you accept any of the other letters, you'll go to Hell.' (It would probably be a lower percentage, except that the religions which don't think that way don't send out anywhere near as many letters.)
  #203  
Old 12-17-2019, 02:07 PM
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And that's the fundamental point of contention. You treat atheism as something that can exist outside the mind, and thus continues to exist even if there is no concept for it. I argue that it exists entirely within the realm of ideas, and thus ceases to exist if the concept does not exist.

You define atheism as a lack of belief in gods. But the concept of lacking something can only exist if that something also exists as a concept. I can't lack oqfkljadfs, because oqfkljadfs is not a concept.
I think at this point we're arguing over the definition of the word 'lack'. Of course you can lack oqfkljadfs, even if it doesn't exist in your mindset. If you'd never heard of a tail, you'd still be lacking a tail (presuming that you're shaped like the vast majority of humans.)

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And this is why I am able to argue from an atheistic perspective, as it is my belief as a theist that the concept of god arose due to god existing. So, in a universe where the concept of god did not arise, then God doesn't exist in that universe. It's a difficult universe to conceive of
No, you're not arguing from an atheistic perspective. You're arguing from the perspective of someone who not only is a theist, but is having a huge amount of difficulty even conceiving of atheism. Which is probably why you're getting it wrong.
  #204  
Old 12-17-2019, 03:50 PM
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Back to the OP, I think people are just busy in their lives and either dont want to take the time or dont want the burden of something else in their lives. Other than maybe once a year at Christmas.

There is still a strong belief though in God.

However many have followed the path of "the answer lies within yourself" or some similar message.
  #205  
Old 12-17-2019, 04:19 PM
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There is still a strong belief though in God.
Yes, though there are, of course, a variety of ways in which this plays out.

You may find this report from the Pew Center interesting; it's based on a survey they conducted among Americans last year. I think that this is related to the study on religious affiliation which was linked to earlier in this thread. Some of the key numbers:

- 80% of Americans believe in God
--- 56% believe in God as described in the Bible
--- 23% believe in some other higher power or spiritual force

- 19% of Americans say that they do *not* believe in God
--- But, 9% do believe in some higher power or spirtual force
--- 10% do not believe in any higher power or spirtual force

The reason why there are similar "some higher power" in both the "yeses" and the "nos" is that the question was asked in two parts: respondents were first asked a yes/no question: "Do you believe in God?" Then, based on their response to that, they were asked a follow-up question.

So, it essentially means that there's three broad groupings among Americans:
- 56% believe in the Biblical God (which likely includes Jews, and, I'd suspect, Muslims, as well as Christians)
- 32% believe in some higher power or spiritual force, but not in the Biblical God
- 10% don't believe in any higher power or God at all

In addition:

- Among Americans who do not have any religious affiliation, 72% believe in God or some higher power

- 48% believe that God (or some higher power) directly determines what happens in their lives "all the time" or "most of the time"

- 77% believe that God or some higher power has protected them at some point

- 61% believe that God or some higher power will judge all people based on what they've done

- 75% say that they "talk to God" or some higher power (such as through prayer), but only 28% believe that God or some higher power replies to them

Last edited by kenobi 65; 12-17-2019 at 04:22 PM.
  #206  
Old 12-18-2019, 12:19 AM
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But the claim wouldn't even be made if a theist didn't press the point in the first place. The claim is a reaction to a question/demand, and probably wouldn't be made at all without the prior questioning. I would still be an atheist even if the question never came up by default, the same way that I am an abatmanist. If there was a portion of society that believed that Batman was real and I was asked if I believed in Batman, the need to use such a term as "abatmanist" might arise...but the definition of "abatmanist" as "someone who doesn't believe Batman exists" would apply to me even if the subject never came up in the first place. The definition of "atheist" applies to me, but the need to use the word as a descriptor is necessary only if questioned.


But the existence of a fictional character called Batman preceded your use of the term abatmanist.
  #207  
Old 12-18-2019, 05:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Dr_Paprika View Post
You can believe what you want. Some choose not to believe in a higher power. It’s understandable, I guess. Many things are unfair and the world is full of hypocrisy. But it does need replacing.

It is very important to believe in something bigger than yourself. There are trends towards relentless self-promotion and endless self aggrandizement. But they won’t make you content or happy. Humility and modesty may not be in fashion, but they remain an important ideal. You are not the universe.
I've known plenty of self-centered believers, and humble non-believers.

Last edited by F. U. Shakespeare; 12-18-2019 at 05:09 AM.
  #208  
Old 12-18-2019, 05:09 AM
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I think people look at religion like other things like retirement or insurance or politics. They just dont want to be bothered but hope its there when they need it. They have other things they are focused on in their lives. People want to live for the moment and not be bothered by another thing that would influence their lives. Sunday is the time to work on the house or catch up on sleep or watch the game or something. if they ignore something long enough it sort of goes away.

Then things happen like children or deaths in the family or personal tragedy and they are reminded of God.

I'm thinking like my inlaws who knowing our side of the family is religious, expressed interest in getting involved in a church but then when confronted by several issues including their personal lives, decided not to go there.

And then look at our lives as we have moved further away from the land. Part of the reason my grandparents were religious is they were farmers and whether they lived or starved depended on if the rains came and the cows gave milk.
  #209  
Old 12-18-2019, 05:26 AM
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What do they say about gays?
They really dont. I've only seen our pastor mention it one time when he discussed sin and he said it was wrong that gays were singled out as some sort of ultimate sin or something when in fact, all sin is the same. Jesus said in John 8:7 to the people who were about to stone the woman caught in adultery "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone" and later in Matthew 7:5 he told people that before they can remove the sliver in the eye of another, they should remove the log in theirs.

Our church tells people to first, accept Jesus Christ as your personal savior. Second, go to the word and pray and ask God what are the sins in your life. God will reveal what you need to change or what you need to deal with.
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Old 12-18-2019, 08:57 AM
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Saying that their "sin" is no greater or lesser than any other "sin" is just another way to hide the fact that your church teaches that homosexuality is sinful, and in a world where records are kept and words never go away the actuality of what is being taught is exposed for all to see.
  #211  
Old 12-18-2019, 09:12 AM
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There are plenty of ways to interpret the bible that don't necessarily condemn homosexuality, and many faithful Christians who adhere to these interpretations. IIRC, Jesus doesn't have a single negative word to say about homosexuality, and the New Testament expressly sweeps away Leviticus laws restricting eating pork or shellfish (and much more), as well as, according to these non-bigoted Christians, restrictions on homosexual behavior. And not even Leviticus has a thing to say about homosexuality among women.

So this is a choice many Christians are making, and I urge them to make a different choice.
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Old 12-18-2019, 09:15 AM
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I think people look at religion like other things like retirement or insurance or politics. They just dont want to be bothered but hope its there when they need it.

Then things happen like children or deaths in the family or personal tragedy and they are reminded of God.
Maybe for some people, but false as a general rule. Like the "no atheists in foxholes" meme, it's just a lack of imagination about what other people's beliefs might be.
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Old 12-18-2019, 09:43 AM
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I think people look at religion like other things like retirement or insurance or politics. They just dont want to be bothered but hope its there when they need it. They have other things they are focused on in their lives. People want to live for the moment and not be bothered by another thing that would influence their lives. Sunday is the time to work on the house or catch up on sleep or watch the game or something. if they ignore something long enough it sort of goes away.



Then things happen like children or deaths in the family or personal tragedy and they are reminded of God.



I'm thinking like my inlaws who knowing our side of the family is religious, expressed interest in getting involved in a church but then when confronted by several issues including their personal lives, decided not to go there.



And then look at our lives as we have moved further away from the land. Part of the reason my grandparents were religious is they were farmers and whether they lived or starved depended on if the rains came and the cows gave milk.


But what does the cows giving milk have to do with religion? Do you mean superstition?
  #214  
Old 12-18-2019, 10:24 AM
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Sounds like his grandparents simply didn't want to take responsibility for their poor planning.
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Old 12-18-2019, 12:08 PM
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I do feel like America is finally losing its religion, it's long overdue, and still well behind Europe, but the rate has been accelerating since the nineties. I think a large part of it is mostly due to the explosion of the internet. I did a thread on this some years back. Josh McDowell thinks the internet is the biggest threat to Christianity.

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Now the question is why would people come to a evangelical church that strictly follows the word and is not afraid to point out sin, and not go to a church where everyone and everything is accepted?
Even among Evangelical churches, what they think the "word" is, varies, along with acceptance and tolerance. So I'm not sure how each can claim to strictly follow it when they are reading from the same source. Some just put more emphasis on one set of scriptures vs another set that can easily say the opposite thing.

Considering what the Bible actually says on certain matters, it's a good thing they don't follow the word as they often claim.
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Old 12-18-2019, 12:11 PM
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the New Testament expressly sweeps away Leviticus laws restricting eating pork or shellfish (and much more), as well as, according to these non-bigoted Christians, restrictions on homosexual behavior.
The New Testament itself has various words against homosexuality. (That, however, might be suited for some other thread, so as to not turn this into some Biblical exegesis thread)
  #217  
Old 12-18-2019, 01:11 PM
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The New Testament itself has various words against homosexuality. (That, however, might be suited for some other thread, so as to not turn this into some Biblical exegesis thread)
But not from Jesus.

Not that this is my reasoning -- to me, the Bible is just another book written by humans, with human reasons and human concerns.
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Old 12-18-2019, 04:25 PM
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I do feel like America is finally losing its religion, it's long overdue, and still well behind Europe, but the rate has been accelerating since the nineties. I think a large part of it is mostly due to the explosion of the internet. I did a thread on this some years back. Josh McDowell thinks the internet is the biggest threat to Christianity.
.
Europe might be turning its back on Christianity but instead of some new age of enlightenment or something, it looks like Islam is replacing it.

Will that be better?
  #219  
Old 12-18-2019, 04:27 PM
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Europe might be turning its back on Christianity but instead of some new age of enlightenment or something, it looks like Islam is replacing it.

Will that be better?
Are you claiming that Christianity is the lesser of two evils?
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Old 12-18-2019, 04:54 PM
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They really dont. I've only seen our pastor mention it one time when he discussed sin and he said it was wrong that gays were singled out as some sort of ultimate sin or something when in fact, all sin is the same. Jesus said in John 8:7 to the people who were about to stone the woman caught in adultery "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone" and later in Matthew 7:5 he told people that before they can remove the sliver in the eye of another, they should remove the log in theirs.
Does your pastor support SSM? Or is he too chicken to have an opinion which might offend much of the congregation?
Since I assume he has no problem with divorced adulterers being married.
  #221  
Old 12-18-2019, 06:12 PM
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Europe might be turning its back on Christianity but instead of some new age of enlightenment or something, it looks like Islam is replacing it.

Will that be better?

There are some countries in Europe experiencing many Muslims migrating to their country, but it's not replacing many of the non-religious minds of citizens that are already there.

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Jesus said in John 8:7 to the people who were about to stone the woman caught in adultery "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone"
Even though Jesus never said it, and it's not in the older surviving manuscripts, it's still a good story, and kind of enjoyed that one. Better than his eternal fiery damnation for those not believing he is the chosen one.
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Old 12-18-2019, 07:09 PM
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What are you saying the U.S military et al. are right about, exactly?
They argue that limits to growth are inevitable due to diminishing returns and environmental damage.

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I’m not following this either. What is the supposed link between limited population growth and a return to religion?
There are details here:

https://www.theguardian.com/commenti...aring-collapse

As the effects of a resource crunch combined with environmental damage take place, then economic growth is curtailed. This, in turn, leads to increasing poverty, and from there higher infant mortality rates negating high birth rates as well as higher death rates due to lack of medicine, medical services, etc. Given that, population growth may become limited, if not reverse.

With that, more people may return to religion, which is what has been taking place in poor countries.

Finally, these crises may be reversed if countries work with each other and people limit resource use, but governments, economies, and people don't work that way. Instead, they operate in terms of competition. Hence, increasing arms production, deployment, and the drive to maximize profits, earnings, ROIs, etc.
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Last edited by ralfy; 12-18-2019 at 07:09 PM.
  #223  
Old 12-18-2019, 07:13 PM
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They argue that limits to growth are inevitable due to diminishing returns and environmental damage.
There are details here:

https://www.theguardian.com/commenti...aring-collapse
Show me the part where religion is mentioned in that article, please.
  #224  
Old 12-18-2019, 07:58 PM
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Now the question is why would people come to a evangelical church that strictly follows the word and is not afraid to point out sin, and not go to a church where everyone and everything is accepted?
I think this is a good question--one that the SDMB actually talked about several years ago.

"Pentecostalism is the last step before no religion": True? If so, why?

My hypothesis: Evangelical churches are great at luring in backsliders and people who feel "meh" about church but feel guilty about it. Politics aside, the worship service at an evangelical church is more exciting and engaging than other Protestant churches. If you are waiving in your faith, you might think a super injection of religion--one that makes you scream, dance, and speak in tongues--is what you need to get "unwaivered". Evangelical churches also put a big emphasis on praise, which can make you feel good even if your faith is shaky. Like, I've been an agnostic for over ten years now, but I still sing along to gospel music because it feels good. It feels good to dance. Evangelical church encourage people to express all those good feelings in a myriad of ways.

But as was discussed in the aforementioned thread, I believe the same aspects that bring people to evangelical churches are the same ones that convince people that religion is for deluded brainless sheeple. If your faith isn't that strong to begin with, it won't take long for the novelty of exuberant praise and worship to wear off and for the more comical and crazy features to become more apparent. And evangelicals aren't great at handling critical questions, IMHO. As much as it would pain my parents to know this, I really do blame the Pentecostal church I was brought up in for my disaffection with religion. I got too many ridiculous answers to my questions in Sunday School for me to view church as anything but a place where you're supposed to leave your brain at the door. I know there are churches where inquiry is encouraged, but it's too late for me. Maybe if I had been brought up in a Methodist or Lutheran church, I wouldn't have such a negative view of Christianity.
  #225  
Old 12-19-2019, 06:33 AM
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I think this is a good question--one that the SDMB actually talked about several years ago.

"Pentecostalism is the last step before no religion": True? If so, why?

My hypothesis: Evangelical churches are great at luring in backsliders and people who feel "meh" about church but feel guilty about it. Politics aside, the worship service at an evangelical church is more exciting and engaging than other Protestant churches. If you are waiving in your faith, you might think a super injection of religion--one that makes you scream, dance, and speak in tongues--is what you need to get "unwaivered". Evangelical churches also put a big emphasis on praise, which can make you feel good even if your faith is shaky. Like, I've been an agnostic for over ten years now, but I still sing along to gospel music because it feels good. It feels good to dance. Evangelical church encourage people to express all those good feelings in a myriad of ways.

But as was discussed in the aforementioned thread, I believe the same aspects that bring people to evangelical churches are the same ones that convince people that religion is for deluded brainless sheeple. If your faith isn't that strong to begin with, it won't take long for the novelty of exuberant praise and worship to wear off and for the more comical and crazy features to become more apparent. And evangelicals aren't great at handling critical questions, IMHO. As much as it would pain my parents to know this, I really do blame the Pentecostal church I was brought up in for my disaffection with religion. I got too many ridiculous answers to my questions in Sunday School for me to view church as anything but a place where you're supposed to leave your brain at the door. I know there are churches where inquiry is encouraged, but it's too late for me. Maybe if I had been brought up in a Methodist or Lutheran church, I wouldn't have such a negative view of Christianity.
Wow, that is very good. I will keep that in mind.
  #226  
Old 12-19-2019, 07:03 AM
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evangelicals aren't great at handling critical questions, IMHO.
This, as mentioned, is one of the biggest reasons for young Americans ditching the church. Around 70-80% of the time, I'd say, when someone has a tough and pressing/important question to ask - be it the age-old "why does God allow evil to happen" or some other question - the church often gives a cliche, unsatisfying or deflecting answer.
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Old 12-19-2019, 08:46 AM
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This, as mentioned, is one of the biggest reasons for young Americans ditching the church. Around 70-80% of the time, I'd say, when someone has a tough and pressing/important question to ask - be it the age-old "why does God allow evil to happen" or some other question - the church often gives a cliche, unsatisfying or deflecting answer.
It isn't that god lets evil happen he created evil, Isaiah 45:7. This supposed god of love created evil and you are correct about religion's answer. It is always "god works in mysterious ways" which is code speak for I don't have an answer and I don't want to think about it.

Last edited by rsat3acr; 12-19-2019 at 08:49 AM.
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Old 12-19-2019, 09:43 AM
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This, as mentioned, is one of the biggest reasons for young Americans ditching the church. Around 70-80% of the time, I'd say, when someone has a tough and pressing/important question to ask - be it the age-old "why does God allow evil to happen" or some other question - the church often gives a cliche, unsatisfying or deflecting answer.
Personally, it wasn't just that the answers I got were unsatisfying. I also got the feeling that it was wrong to even ask questions...that having questions meant Satan had gotten to me. For a scientist, this was intolerable.

Like, I would have been OK with an answer like "That is a good question. I just don't know how to answer it." It would have been unsatisfying, but at least it would have been a validating response. Instead what I got was hostility and defensiveness.

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Old 12-19-2019, 11:57 AM
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"god works in mysterious ways" which is code speak for I don't have an answer and I don't want to think about it.
Although God does work in mysterious ways, I agree this is often used as a get-out-of-jail-free card by some Christians to dodge tough questions.
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Old 12-19-2019, 11:58 AM
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Like, I would have been OK with an answer like "That is a good question. I just don't know how to answer it." It would have been unsatisfying, but at least it would have been a validating response. Instead what I got was hostility and defensiveness.
People like to read motives into things. If you question some tenet of Christianity (or anything else about an ideology or religion,) they think you're not just asking about it, you must be trying to undermine it.
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Old 12-19-2019, 09:47 PM
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Show me the part where religion is mentioned in that article, please.
That's my contribution. I think religious activity declines as industrialization increases. That might explain why, for example, Church attendance is lower in richer countries than in poorer ones. The same goes for birth rate.

The problem is that continued industrialization on a global scale requires more energy and resources, and there are limits to such, not to mention consequences such as environmental damage.

Given such, if the U.S. military, multinational banks and insurers, and other groups are right, then at some point those limits will become more pronounced, leading to shortages in goods and services, which in turn will strongly affect prosperity, and unintentionally reverse the decline in religion.
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  #232  
Old 12-20-2019, 08:59 AM
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It could be as simple as Americans, particularly the yute, not finding religion very interesting any more. And they're able to separate their values and their treatment of their fellow man from anything as tenuous as spirituality.
  #233  
Old 12-21-2019, 01:34 AM
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Do a Google image search for terms like "rise of nones" (religious unaffiliated). There appears to be a huge surge correlating with online services (like AOL) and the internet starting in the 1990's.

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  #234  
Old 12-24-2019, 09:56 PM
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Late to the thread, but I wanted to address this sub-thread:

Quote:
Originally Posted by kenobi 65 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Max S. View Post
I think the traditional stance on male-male homosexual intercourse is the most clear-cut example of this.
Leviticus is also pretty clear about a lot of other things being forbidden, including, but not limited to:
- Eating pork
- Eating seafood without skin or scales (such as shellfish)
- Having sex with a woman during her period
- Wearing clothing of mixed fabrics
- Trimming your beard
- Getting a tattoo
- Working on the Sabbath

I suspect that the vast majority of conservative Christians who point to that verse in Leviticus about homosexuality are regularly in violation of one or more of the above.

When a faith points to one line in the Bible, and makes it a moral imperative, but chooses to not place the same imperatives on other, similar lines in the same book, because they aren't convenient...this is a reason why younger people are turning away from Christian churches.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Odesio View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matthew 15:15-20
16 So Jesus said, “Are you also still without understanding?
17 Do you not yet understand that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and is eliminated? 18 But those things which proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and they defile a man.
19 For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies.
20 These are the things which defile a man, but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile a man.”
Most Christians consider this passage to lift the restrictions Leviticus placed on diet. I can't explain the beard thing though.
Actually, most Christian theologians who set the doctrine of their denominations (the rank and file planting their asses in the pews on Sundays may not (and almost always don't) know this) point to the Council of Jerusalem, described in Acts 15, specifically, verse 20 (or 28-29, which restates the same thing because it's the wording of letter they actually sent):
Quote:
Originally Posted by Acts 15:28-29
28 For it has seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things: 29 that you abstain from what has been sacrificed to idols and from blood and from what is strangled* and from unchastity. If you keep yourselves from these, you will do well. Farewell.”

[ed: *There is some doubt about this underlined bit being in the original, but I take no position on that argument.]
... to justify why most of the stuff in Leviticus does not apply to Gentile (ie Non-Jew) Christians. It's not a new thing. It goes back to only a few years after the sonovabitch got himself crucified. And the decision was that Gentiles don't have to follow the Mosaic law (all of the 'Old Testament'). They pretty much just have to abstain from the kinds of sex that people, then, found icky. No male=male sex, but that's about it. You people have NOT found a 'Gotcha'.


Quote:
Originally Posted by rsat3acr View Post
Many read it that way because they don't want restrictions on themselves as long as they can condemn gays for their lifestyle. Of course they often quote the 10 commandments "thou shalt not kill" as reason for opposing abortion, never mind that many right wing Christians support the death penalty. And one can easily "remember the sabbath and keep it holy" while watching the NFL. As I said they want to pick and choose, hypocrisy.
[responding to the post I started this reply to...]
Sorry, but you missed your attempt at a 'gotcha', there. See above.
  #235  
Old 12-29-2019, 11:06 AM
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I grew up in a religious family, although I am not religious, but I have been fascinated by it and studied it from a psychological aspect.


People are "abandoning" religion, because they see it for what it really is, a criminal organization. There's more than enough hate, lies, deceit, murder, apathy, racism, torture, and crime in the world to worry about, than to have to submit to the hypocrisy and deceptions of it practiced by the religious sects of this planet who preach one thing and live the exact opposite.
  #236  
Old 12-29-2019, 11:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deltree View Post
...Gentiles don't have to follow the Mosaic law (all of the 'Old Testament'). They pretty much just have to abstain from the kinds of sex that people, then, found icky. No male=male sex, but that's about it. You people have NOT found a 'Gotcha'.
That's it? Christians can have open (het) relationships? Adultery is OK? Along with everything else in the Ten Commandments Suggestions?
  #237  
Old 12-30-2019, 03:09 PM
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That's it? Christians can have open (het) relationships? Adultery is OK? Along with everything else in the Ten Commandments Suggestions?
Basically, yeah. Non-Jews have to follow the Seven Laws of Noah, and that's it. Everything else is optional, which is why you get such a wide range in doctrine from one denomination to the next. Other than the Noachide Laws, they can pick and choose what they want to follow and what they don't, and only their own denomination's doctrine on who has the authority to say so determines whether or not something is allowed. Note, most denominations reserve to some authority the right to say whether something is allowed or not, but there's nothing stopping anyone from shopping for a denomination with rules they like, or even starting their own if they can't find a good one. There's plenty of room for self-serving interpretation in there, and in case you haven't noticed, many Christians take full advantage of that fact.
  #238  
Old 12-30-2019, 03:43 PM
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I'm a Gen X, and no one my age, family or friends, are religious. No one attends, and no one ever talks about it. If anything, there's a lot of anti-religion talk around here, but I don't even bother. Just the same way I wouldn't go on and on about the existence of Santa Claus.
  #239  
Old 12-31-2019, 01:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deltree View Post
Basically, yeah. Non-Jews have to follow the Seven Laws of Noah, and that's it.
Though, that Wikipedia link you share says that Law #5 is:
"Not to commit adultery, bestiality, or sexual immorality"

So, in answer to F.U. Shakespeare, it's actually "basically, no."

Last edited by kenobi 65; 12-31-2019 at 01:25 AM.
  #240  
Old 12-31-2019, 10:59 AM
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An assortment of recently-developed Great Causes (Climate Change; Ecology; Super Good Health; Dissuading Republicans...) have supplanted religion as a Great Cause.
These newer sorts of Great Causes have the added benefit of not requiring defense or "interpretation" of, or adherence to, outdated manuscripts.

They are just as fun as traditional religious Great Causes; produce just as much sense of belonging to a Special tribe; and are just as satisfying to whatever it is in the wiring of Sapiens that releases endorphins when we pursue Great Causes.
  #241  
Old 12-31-2019, 07:36 PM
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Religion is only cost-effective if you're poor, or a religious bureaucrat/leech. Note that Xian "rightists" oppose anti-poverty relief and universal health care. They want a sicker, poorer America more in need of religious fantasies.
  #242  
Old 01-04-2020, 05:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deltree View Post
Basically, yeah. Non-Jews have to follow the Seven Laws of Noah, and that's it. Everything else is optional, which is why you get such a wide range in doctrine from one denomination to the next. Other than the Noachide Laws, they can pick and choose what they want to follow and what they don't, and only their own denomination's doctrine on who has the authority to say so determines whether or not something is allowed. Note, most denominations reserve to some authority the right to say whether something is allowed or not, but there's nothing stopping anyone from shopping for a denomination with rules they like, or even starting their own if they can't find a good one. There's plenty of room for self-serving interpretation in there, and in case you haven't noticed, many Christians take full advantage of that fact.
My understanding is that the Noachide Laws are part of Jewish theology (what non-Jews should do to be good with יהוה), not of Christian theology.
  #243  
Old 01-04-2020, 05:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Voyager View Post
Does your pastor support SSM? Or is he too chicken to have an opinion which might offend much of the congregation?
Since I assume he has no problem with divorced adulterers being married.
I know my pastor supports SSM because he's in one.

Some scholars actually believe that the Levitical statement about male homosexuality is actually about pedophilia.
  #244  
Old 01-04-2020, 06:53 PM
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My understanding is that the Noachide Laws are part of Jewish theology (what non-Jews should do to be good with יהוה), not of Christian theology.
Christian theology is all over the place. I’ll grant it does seem to be at least a superficially sound way for Christians to pretend like the OT (with large swathes of "thou shalt nots") does not apply to them. Covenantism and dispensationalism are the other two (either god makes new covenants all the time, and most recently for Christians with Jesus and some of the more flowery, less judgy things he said, or god dispenses new knowledge that "clarifies" what is really moral, all that stuff he said before notwithstanding).

Because of course you can find a justification for just about anything in scripture if you read it right, including mass murder and rape.

Last edited by ASL v2.0; 01-04-2020 at 06:54 PM.
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