The Forum Site - Join the conversation
Forums:
Politics

History Overreacts -- Some Thoughts...

Reply to Topic
AuthorMessage
Pages: 1 2 3 4 · >>
panetti On February 17, 2005




Little Rock, Arkansas
#1New Post! Apr 09, 2004 @ 03:41:00
I wanted to post something a little off-topic, a little on-topic...Just some personal ponderings, really.

I see a common denominator in the current arguments, which I find rather fascinating. I am going to suggest to you that we live in a society that does not know how to react; we overcorrect ourselves and only perpetuate more trouble.

I'm also going to suggest to you, then, that perhaps the answer lies somewhere inbetween two extremes. I think there are two issues at hand:

1) RELIGION. Big caps, so everybody shivers. This word has taken on an interesting connotation, even to myself. I think people have forgotten what religion really is. First, I'll tell you what it means to me:

Religion is nothing more than a means. A means to something greater. Faith is what that greater concept is. Religion is supposed to be a tool that helps those of us who believe bridge the gap between the physical and spiritual best we can. It is an aid, oftentimes a metaphor; a mirror of something far greater than itself. In my religion, which I believe facilitates what I have found to be truth, everything is an aide. When I break bread at communion, it's to remind me of what my Savior went through -- it's not meant to be a mere ritual. Because I am prone to forgetfullness, it just helps. When the bread breaks, I remember the body breaks, and so I'm forced to reflect. My belief is that God laid us out some guidelines for religious practices in an effort to help us understand Him better.

For instance -- I'm a bit of a scifi writer. I express myself a lot through my characters, and often a particular character will represent an aspect of my personality, isolated and personified. This symbolism I use in my creative writing helps me understand myself better.

So, the symbolism of religion helps me understand God better.

As history progressed though, religion was bastardized. The Catholic church had its inquisition and "heretics" were killed. Countless innocents were brutally murdered in the name of religion.

Later in history, churches all over the world divided and took upon their own traditions and so began the denominations. After creating their own traditions, they imposed them as law in their arrogant self-righteousness. They began judging each other on nothing more than man-made tradition.

Nirvago points out that at one point some churchs vehemently opposed scientific development. Narrow-minded individuals used religion as their own tool to stop the changes they feared embracing.

What I'm getting at, however, is that wasn't religion. These individuals screwed it up. Religion is supposed to help people understand God in their own terms, not drive them away.

So, I draw to my point: History overreacted. Instead of restoring religion, we have tried to go too far the other away and elimate it. Today we can see society paything the price: people are bitter against religion because they've never seen the real thing, only the facade; and who can blame them? How can they know better? Freedom of religion is becoming freedom from religion. If religion is oppressive, it is not religion. It is something else far more sinister and manipulative.

This is something that really saddens me folks, personally. I have a hard time explaining to people who I am because of these preset biases society has created. First came the religious cults, fanatics, and extremists, and now they're being replaced by the God-haters. Either way, we lose. I hate to be called "religous" for this reason, because I am more than religious. My religion only aide my faith, but what I am is defined by my faith, not the religion, that is only a means to that end, an aide for the spiritually disabled such as myself.

The church is a hospital for sinners, where care and love are found to lead to revovery. Oppressive hate-bringers that judge and call themselves "churches" are no religion my friends. At least no religion of mine.

But society overreacts. Instead of correcting the problem and returning to equilibrium, we seek to destroy it. If this happens, we will tip the other way and be just as miserable.

2) TRADITION. I'm not a fan of tradition, generally, but once upon a time this was not a bad word. Traditions are supposed to be things we do repeatedly and uniformily because we think it's a good idea, and healthy for us. Traditions are not supposed to be a refusal to change things simply because things have never been changed before, but that is what it has become all too often.

Society has overreacted, and now we want no tradition at all. In addition the traditions that have become oppressive, we are killing off all traditions, including the ones the aide us. This is another tragedy, I think.

To conclude, I'll sum my thoughts up as such: rebellion is just conformity to the alternative. It's truly an irony, conformity to rebellion. Not until we learn how to think for ourselves and discern beyond generalities will we learn to truly evolve as a people. I'll give you my hypothesis that the true individual neither rebels nor conforms. I think that person is something else entirely, something better.

Anyway, those are just my humble thoughts. I figured it would be interesting to share for anyone who cares to listen to my ramblings....
jeoin On November 12, 2004




#2New Post! Apr 09, 2004 @ 16:22:10
I read your post and found it interesting. I need to digest it, but don't want the thread to fall off.
cademetz On October 07, 2005

Deleted



#3New Post! Apr 10, 2004 @ 04:20:38
In a way I have become embittered with the term "religion" and yet I am a "born again" Christian. My personal definition of "religion" is: "man's attempt to reach God." Obviously, it is my belief that man cannot reach God... only He can reach us; thus I often explain to people I have no religion.

However, that does not mean I diagree with Panetti. Given his definition and understanding of religion, I wholeheartedly agree with his points. We has a nation, and even as a world, have begun to rebel against religion and see it as the cause of all problems. As Panetti said... true "religion" is not what the average person conceives. This goes for all world religions. While I may have doctrinal issues with Islam... the violent muslims do not speak for all of Islam. In much the same manner as hate-mongers calling themselves Christians don't speak for all Christians. And, flaming sex crazed gays don't speak for all gays. We are a world which too qucikly raises stereotypes as a reason for the discrimination of a group. Eventually, this will only destroy us.

Hope this made sense.
panetti On February 17, 2005




Little Rock, Arkansas
#4New Post! Apr 10, 2004 @ 04:48:14
Crystal clear, well said.
jeoin On November 12, 2004




#5New Post! Apr 10, 2004 @ 18:03:37
christianity has one major problem to me.

It is primarily exclusive in its base premise. It believes and teaches and implies that christianity is the only way to heaven. This is unfair(church boys can be heard laughing). Please don't start witnessing, I am uninterested. I want to stick to the topic.

History is written by man, so man overreacts. Which i believe we have all said. The christian/islamic religions leave no options for the world. The world is becoming more educated and thus aware of the diversity of the world. This diversity has to be accounted for, if is not then there will always be conflict. Each church thinks its the right church. Well, man that is selfish, and to me it is wrong.
Religion is a ameans to what? salvation or just a bunch of fighting. When a man believes he is acting under the authority of god, well he can do anything he wants. just ask a terrorist.


Quote:

If religion is oppressive, it is not religion. It is something else far more sinister and manipulative.

like oppressing a gay person. it is sinister to say that its wrong.

Tradition: is repeating something just because its always been done.
Not very progressive.

Quote:
These individuals screwed it up. Religion is supposed to help people understand God in their own terms, not drive them away.

This is what religion is made to do, FORCE people to adhere to a set of beliefs, with the threat of eternity and the explicit placement of guilt soley on the individual.
I have a big problem with that. If god made me, and knows what I am going to do, he could help. He could save the squirrels that get run over. Sure you have to have faith that he is doing just that, saving us somehow.

Cadementz:
1.what does your name mean? your nickname..
Quote:
We are a world which too qucikly raises stereotypes as a reason for the discrimination of a group

christianity does this to every other religion out there as well as to groups of people. like the flaming gays.

Moi:
Mans fear of the unknown generated god. I believe there is a god, but not like the church folks. Why make something to break it? So we can learn some cosmic lesson and one day sit on the golden streets chanting god is great. No. I refuse that concept. It makes no sense, and only tradition lures people into following it. I say christianity is afraid to change, to accept the other religions, not deny them. I say christianity will fail because it is singular in its path, and everything in the universe says nothing is singular.
6 billion people all made by god, all with different views.
If christian churches would stop buiding big, gaudy, ungodlike dwellings and use those billions of dollars to help the hungry instead of placating the sunday followers this world would listen a little more.
Preachers kids have it made. Cars, houses, and heaven to boot. Sounds like the guys winning is the minister. Like the jaguar driving minister of the super sized penticostal church in NLR.
What kind of car would jesus drive? What a friggin joke.
panetti On February 17, 2005




Little Rock, Arkansas
#6New Post! Apr 10, 2004 @ 18:34:37
You know you contradicted yourself in your own post? I'll point that out in a minute...

Quote:
It believes and teaches and implies that christianity is the only way to heaven. This is unfair


So in other words the only reason you don't believe it is because you don't like it.

Quote:
Which i believe we have all said. The christian/islamic religions leave no options for the world. The world is becoming more educated and thus aware of the diversity of the world. This diversity has to be accounted for, if is not then there will always be conflict.


According to this logic, then no one is ever wrong about anything. We can't leave anyone out, so every answer to every question is correct. Once again we come full circle as to a main issue I have with liberalism: Everyone is included in everything all of the time.

And since no one is wrong about anything, your argument just caved in on istself, since you're implying my view's wrong. You're excluding my "exclusive" viewpoint. So actually diversity is only including the people who's views you like?

Liberals believe they are correct at the exclusion of conservatives. This is unfair.

Quote:
Each church thinks its the right church. Well, man that is selfish, and to me it is wrong.


Which is why I'm opposed to denominationalism, and claim loyalty to nothing but the church, with no proper adjective added to it. You're right, it's very selfish, and I'll add arrogant to that.

And you generalized. My church does not think every other church is wrong.

Quote:
Religion is a ameans to what? salvation or just a bunch of fighting


Neither. Religion is (should be) a means to understanding. Faith saves, not religion.

Quote:
When a man believes he is acting under the authority of god, well he can do anything he wants.


What that man believes is wrong. Heh heh, that's gonna stir up some arguments. Uh-oh! I'm subjecting my viewpoints on the terrorist! How unfair!

Quote:
like oppressing a gay person


We also "oppress" adulterers. Man, we should lighten up and just let everybody have sex with everybody.

Quote:
Tradition: is repeating something just because its always been done. Not very progressive.


You've contradicted yourself again. You say don't generalize, and you just generalized. Some tradition is like that, some isn't. Or should we stop celebrating the 4th of July? All it is is a tradition.

Quote:
This is what religion is made to do, FORCE people to adhere to a set of beliefs, with the threat of eternity and the explicit placement of guilt soley on the individual.


Then why does my religion teach me not to force my views on anyone? That seems a bit opposed to its purpose. Why haven't I forced my views on you yet? I must be really bad at this religious stuff.

Quote:
christianity does this to every other religion out there as well as to groups of people. like the flaming gays.


You cotradicted yourself again. All Christians generalize huh? There went my individuality...

Quote:
Mans fear of the unknown generated god.


Or did God generate man's "fear" of the unknown? Hmm....

Quote:
Why make something to break it?


God wasn't the one who broke it.

Quote:
I say christianity is afraid to change, to accept the other religions, not deny them.


Another generalization. I thought we weren't supposed to do that? I accept all sorts of change. Oh, oops, there went my individuality again...

Quote:
I say christianity will fail because it is singular in its path, and everything in the universe says nothing is singular.


You know everything in the universe? Please, do share!

Quote:
6 billion people all made by god, all with different views


That can't possibly be true. It would be too artisticly beautiful.

Quote:
If christian churches would stop buiding big, gaudy, ungodlike dwellings and use those billions of dollars to help the hungry instead of placating the sunday followers this world would listen a little more.


Generalization...

Quote:
Preachers kids have it made. Cars, houses, and heaven to boot. Sounds like the guys winning is the minister. Like the jaguar driving minister of the super sized penticostal church in NLR.


Generalization...

I hate big gaudy churches and I refuse to listen to money-loving ministers. And oh crap, I just lost my individuality again!

I hope I'm not coming off as too aggressive, I'm only playing defense here. Nothin' but love and respect here. But this argument just doesn't hold up.

Let's see, I have somewhat of an expensive car, but I almost had it repoed recently because I can barely meet car payments. I go to a large church, granted, because of its large number of people, but it's against flashing money around and uses the money for ministries and missions. I go to a church that is against adhereing to traditions simply because of a fear of change and speaks out against unhealthy unprogressive traditions. I go to a church that thinks churches of various denominations will make it to heaven. I believe it is wrong to force your views on anyone. I believe you state your disagreements, then let the other person do as they wish with them and leave them alone in peace if they don't change their mind. I believe God created diversity in people as a work of art. I disagree with homosexuals and don't want to legalize their views that are being subjected onto me, but I respect who they are, I hold no hatred for them, and I'd happily befriend any of them and not constantly nag them about their lifestyle. I have a muslim friend who I very much admire and have not once told she's "going to hell".

So, according to you, I'm not religious.
ualrlaw On June 18, 2004




#7New Post! Apr 10, 2004 @ 18:57:05
Well stated Panetti. I also attend a large church. And that large church has a lot of wealthy members. And those wealthy members tithe millions of dollars that go to missions around this country and around the world. The church feeds and clothes the needy. They build houses and schools and other churches all over the world.

Jeoin, I am growing weary of your anti-Christian rants on this forum. No one is forcing any of their views on you. In fact, you seem to be the one who wants to repress the views and activites of Christians. You have the choice to believe or to not believe, leave it at that.
jeoin On November 12, 2004




#8New Post! Apr 10, 2004 @ 19:20:45
Ualrlaw-

Man I so sorry your tired of my anti-christian rants. I never said I hate christians. I said I don't like the things they do. Thats not personal in anyway.
I went to that big penticostal church. Here is what the minister said to me, when I came seeking counsel on my divorce. He looked at me"probably much the same as you do", and said "Jeoin sometimes when you marry up this happens" What should i feel there. So I married a hot little preachers daughter, I married up and should just be glad that god can forgive."

How many missions have you been on Law? How many homeless people have you helped? oh yeah you tithe. Let the money talk. Thats exactly what jesus did. Go ahead and ask me what I have done, i will gladly tell you.

In short I am not making an attack on christianity or conservatives. I am expressing my feelings. You don't like them, so they make you tired. I will stop talking about it to you. Just as you have your beliefs I have mine. You however are here to express yours and have everyone say amen, where as I am saying mine knowing that people like you will group up and say things like "thats what i don't like about liberals".

Quote:
you seem to be the one who wants to repress the views and activites of Christians

this is a forum for discussion, that is what I am doing.
ualrlaw On June 18, 2004




#9New Post! Apr 10, 2004 @ 19:37:33
And that's what I don't like about liberals.
panetti On February 17, 2005




Little Rock, Arkansas
#11New Post! Apr 10, 2004 @ 20:14:21
Well, I have to stand up for Jeion a little here. He may come off anti-Christian, but he doesn't hold any hatred for us. He's only discussing what he's observed and openly sharing what he thinks. He may come off as aggressive at times, but he's only airing his thoughts. The same applies for me; I can come off equally as aggressive because I feel strongly for what I stand for. He does respect our viewpoints; he is only questioning.

And Jeion, in LAW's defense, it's hard for us to see those like yourself in your true light. We have become so accustomed to being fired upon time and time again by those who hate us that it's become what we expect out of people. Just as the bad apples of the church have hardened you to religion, the bad apples of agnosticism/atheism have made us a bit bitter because of their relentless and biased attacks. I do acknowledge that you, however, are not one such apple.

In reality, to an extent we're very much the same.
jeoin On November 12, 2004




#12New Post! Apr 10, 2004 @ 20:24:38
Now how the hell can I argue with that?

I really believe there is room for us all. So i have to make room for Law.

I would like to continue this discussion. is there anyway to refine it so that i can stop quoting...
jeoin On November 12, 2004




#13New Post! Apr 10, 2004 @ 20:27:00
Quote:
Just as the bad apples of the church have hardened you to religion, the bad apples of agnosticism/atheism have made us a bit bitter because of their relentless and biased attacks


perhaps we can discuss from this mutual perspective..
panetti On February 17, 2005




Little Rock, Arkansas
#14New Post! Apr 10, 2004 @ 21:14:03
Quote:
I would love some clarification on this. To you christianty will never be wrong, to me it is.


Sure. Clarification: "Christianity is wrong because it believess it is the only one right." But, such is the nature of truth. The sky is blue. You can believe it's plaid, you can want it to be plaid, you can start an entire diverse group of people that belive it's plaid. But the truth is it's blue, and that's the only truth (unless you're on the side of extreme relativism, but then you're not even sure you exist, so it's kinda hard to argue).

Like I said in the other thread, something cannot both be true and untrue at the same time. Either one is right or it is wrong. It cannot be both for the sake of "diversity". I am convinced a lot of people don't believe this simply because they don't want to believe it. It's "unfair", so they can't possibly consider it. That fairness concept is an interesting issue too...

Also, Christianity without man-made alterations is never wrong. Christians, on the other hand, are often wrong about many, many things. Depends on whether you're talking about "it" or "us".

Quote:
No man doesn't do bad things in the name of religion anymore.


Tons of idiots do bad things in the name of religion. People look at them and ignore us. The bad stands out so much better than the good in this world.

Quote:
Everyone should always be included. Period. We are all here, and have to get along.


But this is exaggerated. If so, then no one can ever be separated to any extent anywhere. I can't have a chess club because I'm excluding checker players. I can't have christianity because I'm excluding satanists. We can't have a democracy because we're excluding anarchists. I can't go to a boys school because I'm excluding girls.

Racism, agism, all forms of hate-driven separation are the exclusions we must eliminate. Some others, however, simply group us together and hurt no one. Our own singles group excludes married people.

So everyone should always be included?

Quote:
is this the contradiction


It's one of them. The other is you implied we shouldn't generalize, in saying that Chrisitanity generalizes gays as flaming (which mine doesn't), as one example. Then you generalized christians.

Quote:
and vice versa


Not exactly. Conservatives aren't arguing against exluding anyone (at least in this sense), so we're not contradicing ourselves. Liberals are arguing against exluding anyone from anything (relating thusly to above argument) and are thus contradicting themselves by excluding conservatives, theoretically.

Though, on the other hand, neither should be entirely excluded from the other. Only to the extent of the lines upon which they disagree.

Quote:
Does your church think i am going to heaven or hell? I know they don't make a judgement, but what do they think my fate is. Please don't say they don't think about it. They are there for a reason. So where do i stand?


Well, the interesting thing about the church of Christ is that even members within the same church will have different views, so I suppose it depends on who you ask. Here is my answer: I don't know. Generally speaking, those who do not accept Christ cannot enter heaven, and this is logical. Can't invite someone to live with you who doesn't accept you. However, I don't know if it's that cut and dry, because of these factors:

1) Chrisitans may not judge. There's a reason for that. There's some things we don't know in order to do so.

2) God is a just judge.

3) There is a verse, and I need to get around to finding it again, that says people are judged in accordance to what they know. Does your lack of acceptance stem from a lack of such knowledge? I have no idea, but that could come into play. I remember that scripture goes further to explain that people who lack knowledge are judged in accordance to how they lived their lives without that knowledge. It's an interesting concept I want to learn more about myself.

I'm gonna pause on (3) here for a moment. I learned about this verse because I had this question: What happens to someone who never heard of Jesus? Granted, it's rare nowadays, but go somewhere like the backwoods of Kuzwakistan and you'll find undeveloped communities where no one has ever seen the outside world or even heard of christianity. So are they going to hell for being ignorant? That would seem to violate (2). So I finally happened upon that verse, which answers that. They still can make it, just depends on what they did with what they did know.

So, my answer to your question to your fate is: I have no clue. I would much rather have you over here where I know your fate's taken care of, but beyond that I can't say. I'm not the judge. It worries me though, and I want to do all I can to help avoid such a tragic end.

Yes, we talk about that often at church.

4) Christ suffered and died to offer the free gift of salvation. If you don't take the free gift, it's kinda hard to do anything further. The only "price" you have to pay is living for God best you can, which is hardly unpleasant.

Quote:
No just let the people that want to have sex with each other make their own choice.


We do let them. All we do (or are supposed to do) is 1) voice our views and 2) oppose laws that subject their views upon ours. As long as the majority of people vote against it, any law made for it is oppressive. Now if the majority of the American people were to shift and vote for such laws, then that would change the playing field altogether.

A step beyond that, we voice our opposition because we love people. We can't just "let them be" because doing so would be selfish. "It's not my problem." What kind of love is that? If I see you stabbing yourself, I'm not going to say "Well he has a right to stab himself. I'll leave him alone." Because I care about people, I'll step up to intervene.

But there's a line. We oppose but do not oppress, and we have to be careful not to cross that line, else the judgement turns on us. Jesus is the perfect example of this. He told people when what they were doing was wrong, wether it was "his problem" or not, but if they refused to listen, then he didn't shove it down their throats; he let them go their own way.

Quote:
What can i do to make sure I have a happy place to go to.


You begin by questioning, like you are now. Question reality. Question tradition. Question religion. Question society. Question yourself. Then, you investigate. You look past biases. You research. You read from the source. You study with others. You set yourself to rise above all biases and seek only the truth in its purest form. You ask God. You open your mind, and you open your heart. Then, things just start happening.

But, the christian walk isn't about just having a happy place to go to. If you follow Jesus only to go to heaven, you missed the whole point. The point is for us to be with our Creator, to experience ultimate love, and ultimate unison with Him and each other. If you focus on just "not going to hell" then you never really understand what's going on. It's about humanity reaching it's ultimate potential and surpassing it. It's about seeing that God isn't some old guy zapping people with lightning bolts from a cloud, but rather He is a kind, loving, but firm Father who is desperate to bring His children home and retrieve them back from Satan's grasp. Satan is the hell-bringer; the one seeking judgement on all; the source of death, pain, sorrow, dispair, and evil. When you hurt, when you're betrayed, when you're broken, it's because of Satan, not God.

So, how do you assure you're going to a happy place? My ultimate answer is that you're asking the wrong question. It's not just about being happy; it's about fulfilling purpose, meaning -- achieving fullness and perfect goodness free of evil and sadness. As a child embracing a mother, we embrace our Father.

Man, I wish I had a shorter way of answering that...That was a loaded question!

Quote:
Your church actually sounds cool, very modern.


Thanks. I think it is. One of our goals is to throw off all impeding man-made traditions so that we can embrace Jesus without any of the extra bells and whistles the denominations have added over the centuries. You might say we're modern and ancient at the same time; perhaps a sort of balance of both. Not perfect, mind you, but that's what we're going after.

Quote:
Your being cutely mean here, but it is in fun. I am sharing. Your the one that knows what it takes to get to heaven. I am only talking about the places i have been. ( hey i read the hitchhikers guide ). There is not one view or else we would agree, that was my point.


Well, the point I was making is that you can't say you know everything in the universe is singular because you don't know everything in the universe. Earth and our immediate galaxy are a far cry from the universe. Right, I'm the one saying I know how to "get to heaven" for lack of better words, but I don't have to know the entire universe to come to that conclusion, thankfully!

If I wasn't cutely mean, you'd get bored.

I need to pick up the Hitchhiker's Guide too...I've never read it (hides face in shame).

Quote:
Baker, Binny Hinn, just bad bad examples of what I am saying. I am sure all the other ministers in the world are perfect creations, but the ones i have seen/met tend to really use their tithe money for helping the homeless.


Oh man, I CRINGE at the mention of Benny Hinn. Ugh, I can't stand those guys...No minister is a perfect creatio -- which leads me to an interesting point. To each their own, but my church doesn't elevate a minister above anyone else -- he's just the guy who teaches, who has done the studying and knows how to teach and speak, and meets the biblical standards laid out in one of the two Timothy books (I forget which, I think the first one). He's a leader. We don't call him anything special. Well, I call my preacher Chuck. They're just normal dudes and are the first to tell you they are.

Quote:
I hope their faith carries them through. Do you think you will be hanging out with your friend in heaven?


Same answer as above. I don't know, but I would sure like to show her what's over here so I can make sure. If you grew up Islam, raised Islam, knew nothing but Islam, then does the "in accordance to what you know" concept apply? I really don't know.

You will never catch me telling anyone they're going to hell. You will catch me trying to show people what I can, though, in hopes of preventing it.

It's really comforting getting to have this discussion without the attackers too. Doesn't happen often. I appreciate your trying to understand. It admittedly isn't the easiest thing in the world.
panetti On February 17, 2005




Little Rock, Arkansas
#15New Post! Apr 10, 2004 @ 21:28:17
You're posting while I'm still writing! Yeah, sounds like a good idea, discussing from the mutual ground we share.
Reply to Topic<< Previous Topic | Next Topic >>
Pages: 1 2 3 4 · >>

1 browsing (0 members - 1 guest)

Quick Reply
Politics Forum - Some Rudeness Allowed

      
Subscribe to topic prefs

Similar Topics
    Forum Topic Last Post Replies Views
New posts   Religion
Sat Sep 25, 2010 @ 14:03
1 1054
New posts   Religion & Philosophy
Fri Mar 20, 2009 @ 17:21
5 676
New posts   Religion & Philosophy
Wed Jun 25, 2008 @ 06:06
43 2721
New posts   Religion & Philosophy
Tue Jan 08, 2008 @ 00:19
97 2909
New posts   Politics
Thu Feb 09, 2006 @ 13:26
3 456