Following the hijack of Shelly's post on science research I thought I would post my thoughts on "religion" as I see it and then wait to see what happens.
I was raised Roman Catholic and have found I don't fit in with the pedophiles and those who protect them. It made me sick to my stomach.
I do believe in a higher power but can't ignore the science behind the making of "us". To me when "let there be light" was supposedly said, I believe that was the moment of the big bang and the universe was here. I say here because that's the science. It happened that fast.
Adam and Eve were nothing but great apes in the garden of eden.
Like it or not we "evolved" we weren't created, you can't ignore that science either. After 20 years in surgery I've seen and studied a lot on the human body and we arent far from the apes. There are too many similarities on the inside.
All the written words have gone through too many hands to be believed anymore. Just like a story that's started around the office, by the time it gets to someone on the other end there has been too much bullshit added or taken away from the truth of the original.
To me it's amazing that people support organized religion given that different beliefs have been the root of wars and land disputes for centuries among supposedly civilized people. They hold on to the beliefs and completely ignore the science that's being proven these days.
#1. "RE: Beliefs......." In response to Mize (Reply # 0) Sun Mar-12-17 03:50 PM by Paul D
I too was raised Catholic. I no longer practice, but I believe my life values are still those I learned from my educators, the Jesuits. The ones who taught me were a remarkable group of men, which fact I only fully appreciated after I left college. Like Mize, I find the actions of the paedophile minority and those in high places in the church who misguidedly protect them abhorrent and that definitely contributed to my leaving active practice, although it was not the major reason (I married a divorcee).
50 years on I am still in constant contact with my old college, and maintain friendships with many old schoolmates even though I now live over a thousand miles away. My teachers are all gone now - the last one died last year, aged 104, but I have come to know many of their successors and have the same respect for them.
The Catholic Church has much to answer for, but it also does a great deal of good in the world. Most of that good is done at the coalface by Joe Average clergy and lay members.
Intelligent Catholics (and that definitely includes the Jesuits) recognise and acknowledge that the Old Testament is fundamentally allegory, not literal fact. Creationism is far more likely to be found in ratbag sects and southern Baptists.
I'm Jewish and somewhat religious. (Not Orthodox, but not quite Conservative either.) I'm a big believer in science, though. Is always like showing the Isaac Asimov short story How It Happened as a way of reconciling how "Let there be light" and Big Bang/Evolution/etc could both be right. Not that I think that's what literally happened, but that God knew two things:
1) Humans at the time weren't ready for a full scientific explanation of how the Universe works. It would have overwhelmed them at the time and they wouldn't have been able to understand it. You might as well teach Quantum Mechanics to a toddler.
2) Humans are great at figuring out scientific laws, but weren't as good at adhering to moral laws. So we needed a little push in the moral department.
My personal view is that the entire Bible is an allegorical tale. For example, I had an old rabbi (Holocaust survivor and the kind of guy who's forgotten more about Judaism than I'll ever know in my entire lifetime) who pointed out that there are actually TWO stories about the creation of the first man. Genesis says that man was created in God's image, but it also says he was made from mud. My rabbi said that one should go through life balancing between "I'm the most important thing in the world" and "I'm nothing more than dirt." You never get too close to either end, but stay right in the middle.
I really don't want to get into it too much, I do believe, but the problem with most organized religion is interpretation of the bible or their respective writings no matter what religion you may or may not subscribe to. I haven't found anything in the bible that says we are God's police but a lot that encourages a personal connection. I do believe that dogmatic followers of a narrow or archaic view of religion can be dangerous so some Christians have a lot in common with radicals in the Mid East. One thing that is a fact and not opinion, there is a lot of hate going around these days that does not help anybody. We are all standing on the same planet.
I completely agree. I try not to be judgmental of another person's religious beliefs. As long as they don't try to force their beliefs onto me, they can do pretty much anything they want to do in my book.
I don't try to get bacon cheeseburgers banned because they aren't kosher. That's for me to avoid since that's my religious belief. Similarly, if someone thinks I'm going to hell because I don't accept Christ, fine. They have a right to their opinion. However, if they start trying to get the government to enshrine their religious beliefs into law then I've got to oppose them.
I don't know about the only sensible position, but I do not believe religion should dominate one's life. If there is a Supreme Being, I would like to believe It (avoiding the gender discussion there) is benevolent enough to overlook most human failings.
I follow no religion but believe very much in the Creator. All of this, the Universe, EVERYTHING, had to come from somewhere. I refuse to believe that the consciousness that looks out thru my eyes, that the thing inside me that craves love and happiness, is a freak accident.
I believe that when God created us, He used a pure and perfect piece of Himself to do it, each of us a spark of pure Light and joy. But this simplicity and purity gets covered up by layer after layer of Ego as we grow and develop. With all good intentions, well, SOME of them with good intentions, society, our parents, our schools, our countries, our social class (friends), and especially our religions, try to fill us with THEIR belief systems, convinced that they are all knowing on all subjects, that they can lead us straight. (Their Egos telling them that they could not possibly be wrong about anything, especially not about religion).
Throughout history, some men have been able to get back to that simple purity, to "go back home". These men, inspired by what they saw inside of themselves, their true nature, tried to teach others how to do the same. After these men left, many of them violently since ignorant man cannot cope with hearing the truth or infuriated that their belief systems were not upheld, the followers of these great men believed that they must try to perpetuate the teaching of the Master, hence, the formations of the religions.
Each religion, or at least the vast majority, believe that theirs is "the only way", that only their scripture is the true Word of God, and their man is the only true Lord; almost all religions are identical this way. If your press them for proof you are told to read their scripture and don't question it; "you have to have faith, you have to believe". Each religion can produce people who have had "visions" while on an emotion high. For me, that is not proof; I am not the one who had the vision, and I do not trust emotional highs which probably are produced by the Ego anyway. And who knows what the original words of these Masters really were, Jesus, Mohamed, Buddha, Krishna, Rama, etc., never spoke a word of English. Also, I do not trust the "inspired" men who translated these scriptures, many of them leaving out entire parts, or adding as they desired (again, THEIR Egos knew what was best for the rest of us, well at least the best for them). The God that I believe in will not send one of His own children to eternal damnation for believing in the wrong thing for 50-60 years.
I believe that it is folly to believe that you are going to go to Heaven when you die if you are not ALREADY experiencing Heaven within. If you take a mean, miserable, person who has lead a "pious" life, dies, and who suddenly finds themselves surrounded by Paradise, they will still be unhappy; your consciousness, the real you, will still be there (unless going to Heaven includes a major personality change). I believe that it is possible to be "in Heaven" while you are alive, and I believe that this is what all the great Masters throughout history tried to teach to people of their time: the Kingdom of Heaven is within; you do not have to wait till you die to get there.
#9. "RE: Beliefs......." In response to Acadia (Reply # 6) Mon Mar-13-17 07:35 PM by Shelly
My religious views were shaped long ago in in the writings of Baruch Spinoza (1632-1677).
He believed that God existed in only a philosophical sense and did not control or interact in any way with human destiny. Born Jewish, he was excommunicated for his views over four centuries ago.
He once said that if a table were sentient, it would maintain that God was a great table.
Spinoza is considered one of the great philosophers of all time. Though mainly scholars are aware of his writings today.
I do not believe in an afterlife. We are limited to the mark we make during our lives and the memory s we leave, there is no heaven nor hell. We create our own in how we live our lives. What you are born does not matter, how you die does not matter what you do between those events matters.
That sums up how I feel about things but I will stand up for someone for their beliefs if they are being attacked but only if they aren't trying to tell someone theirs is the only way.I don't want to hear about those beliefs if I didn't ask while I try to do the same.I also feel the same way as Jason the moment they try to put into law some of those beliefs that affect my life then I will push back.Preaching irritates the hell out of me.
QUOTE: That sums up how I feel about things but I will stand up for someone for their beliefs if they are being attacked but only if they aren't trying to tell someone theirs is the only way.I don't want to hear about those beliefs if I didn't ask while I try to do the same.I also feel the same way as Jason the moment they try to put into law some of those beliefs that affect my life then I will push back.Preaching irritates the hell out of me.
Jason, in his reply, cited Isaac Asimov as a philosophical influence. Here, the great Asimov, in his thoughts on Humanism vs Spiritualism summarizes my beliefs in a much more eloquent manner than I could ever hope to achieve:
I have never, not for one moment, been tempted toward religion of any kind. The fact is that I feel no spiritual void. I have my philosophy of life, which does not include any aspect of the supernatural and which I find totally satisfying. I am, in short, a rationalist and believe only that which reason tells me is so.
I’ve never been particularly careful about what label I placed on my beliefs. I believe in the scientific method and the rule of reason as a way of understanding the natural Universe. I don’t believe in the existence of entities that cannot be reached by such a method and such a rule and that are therefore “supernatural.” I certainly don’t believe in the mythologies of our society, in Heaven and Hell, in God and angels, in Satan and demons. I’ve thought of myself as an “atheist,” but that simply described what I didn’t believe in, not what I did.
Gradually, though, I became aware that there was a movement called “humanism,” which used that name because, to put it most simply, Humanists believe that human beings produced the progressive advance of human society and also the ills that plague it. They believe that if the ills are to be alleviated, it is humanity that will have to do the job. They disbelieve in the influence of the supernatural on either the good or the bad of society, on either its ills or the alleviation of those ills.
Have I told you that I prefer “rationalism” to “atheism”? The word “atheist,” meaning “no God,” is negative and defeatist. It says what you don’t believe and puts you in an eternal position of defense. “Rationalism” on the other hand states what you DO believe; that, that which can be understood in the light of reason. The question of God and other mystical objects-of-faith are outside reason and therefore play no part in rationalism and you don’t have to waste your time in either attacking or defending that which you rule out of your philosophy altogether.
There is nothing frightening about an eternal dreamless sleep. Surely it is better than eternal torment in Hell and eternal boredom in Heaven. And what if I’m mistaken? The question was asked of Bertrand Russell, the famous mathematician, philosopher, and outspoken atheist. “What if you died,” he was asked, “and found yourself face to face with God? What then?”And the doughty old champion said, “I would say, ‘Lord, you should have given us more evidence.'”
#12. "RE: Beliefs......." In response to Mize (Reply # 0) Tue Mar-14-17 02:58 AM by HoosierPapa
Mize, I appreciate you starting this thread. There are a lot of good and heartfelt responses in it, even though I disagree with most all.
I love a very good life now because of Christ. Even if I'm wrong, which I'm not, I have a great life and eternity ahead. What if you all are wrong"
I have nothing but praise for the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. They have changed my life completely.
Just so you know I didn't Hijack any thread. I simply added my input. It was only labeled a hijack because you disagree with it. Ive learned in life that only a real enemy solicits a strong defensive move. Perhaps you should check up on things instead of taking the natural liberal response in name calling and smear tactics of a person with a view different than yours.
I bey George Carlin agrees with this now...Luke 16:28-31 For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment. Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them. And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent. And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.
I just found this since God has perfect timing... Listen and reply
QUOTE: I know that comment wasn't directed at me, but I am the first to admit I'm narrow minded, but it isn't slammed shut tight like most on here.
According to you because we don't see it your way?What exactly should I be open minded about? Just from experience people that profess being pious are usually the most slammed shut close minded people I've met. I'm open minded about most things as long as it doesn't step on my toes too much. Like I said preaching, quoting the bible when making a point all I hear is waw waw waw Charlie Brown's teacher.
I don't recall anyone here questioning your faith or your right to indulge yourself in it. Seems to me what we do object to is the gratuitous proselytizing. Christ advocated that we pray in private, he might have tossed in that we should believe that way, too.
QUOTE: I don't recall anyone here questioning your faith or your right to indulge yourself in it. Seems to me what we do object to is the gratuitous proselytizing. Christ advocated that we pray in private, he might have tossed in that we should believe that way, too.
You say that you don't mind that I follow Christ, but all here object to me following Christ in his commands. These are commands and not suggestions:
Luke 14:23 And the lord said unto the servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.
Mark 16:15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
Before someone goes off on the command thing, there is this...
1 John 5:3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
Well the thing is, all religions use fear to control the masses, believe what I believe "or else", after all it is a command. Also, and I cannot prove this, it takes a leap of intuition, it basically depends where you were born what you end up believing. If you take a personality like yours, put you born in Arabia, you would still be saying the exact thing except now Mohammad is the lord and the Koran is the only true word of God. Same thing in reverse, those believing so strongly in the Muslim religion, if born here, would now be strongly trying to force Christ and the Bible down our throats.
Where you were born is usually the deciding factor for what you KNOW is the truth. It all depends upon how you were brainwas..., er, I mean indoctrinated.
I did believe completely different at first. Then I met Christ and changed my beliefs, life, my everything. I don't do religion anymore. Religion is man made. It's about redemption and relationship with God that comes through Christ.
I didn't say that I don't mind if you follow Christ. I'm indifferent to what you do, except when you invade my private space -- then look out! And I don't give a tinker's damn whose orders you're following.
QUOTE: I didn't say that I don't mind if you follow Christ. I'm indifferent to what you do, except when you invade my private space -- then look out! And I don't give a tinker's damn who's orders you're following.