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post #51 of 88 (permalink) Old 09-27-2004, 07:29 PM
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RE: Papal Hypocrisy?

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kuan1 - 9/27/2004 9:19 PM

No kidding

http://www.atheists-for-jesus.com/


I would say that site covers my personal beliefs about 100%.

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post #52 of 88 (permalink) Old 09-27-2004, 07:32 PM
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RE: Papal Hypocrisy?

Well you all finally lost me. You are simply following the ages-old formula for founding a cult; make it like Christianity, but w/o Christ.
No can do.
I think we've had this discussion before, but for those who weren't involved, for me, Christianity stands or falls on the fact of the physical, bodily resurection of jesus from the tomb. All those NT texts showing Jesus as fulfilling OT prohecy are there to show who is Jesus; He is the saviour promised thru the whole OT, from Genesis 3 thru Malachi.
If there was no resurection; Christianity is false; and it should be removed from all memory. How can you claim Jesus was a great moral teacher when He claimed to be God? He did not give you that choice--He is either a lunatic, or He is Who He claimed to be.

Orthodix Christians accept the writings of Paul as authoritative because Peter grouped them with " the other Scriptures".
I am probably alone on this, but its not a popularity contest; your votes don't affect what I believe.
Let the flames begin....
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post #53 of 88 (permalink) Old 09-27-2004, 07:38 PM
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RE: Papal Hypocrisy?

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jjl - 9/27/2004 9:27 PM

Quote:
kvining - 9/27/2004 9:07 PM

Quote:
kerry edwards - 9/27/2004 8:44 PM



Can't a person have a moral code and yet be atheist or at least agnostic? Seems starightforward - I know you're going to tell me it isn't!

Boiling religion sounds attractive.
Quote:
Kerry Edwards

I was thinking about your comment on the happiness thread and how 'higher' moralities may be just disguised evolutionary mechanisms. If so, all of us here interested in boiling religions just live at a higher level of delusion than the religious masses?

What's the difference between believing that 'being moral is noble and good'' and believing in God and an afterlife'? Shouldn't Z and other atheists just acknowledge the moral life to be a psychological crutch and embrace the moral vacuum instead?


Kvining: We are not really forced to embrace anything, so why not embrace the good? To refer to my earlier quote of Russell, the ultimate conclusion we can reach from the current state of science, is that we are all nothing more than interesting blobs of protoplasm bobbing about in a pointless universe. So in the ned it makes no difference what we choose. But I must ultimately answer to my own particular blob of protoplasm if I want to make the most of my own bob, and that leads me to a central belief - if our time here is meant to be meaningless and short, than the best I can do is say I wish to inflict no suffering on others. From that point, a moral code is built. Even tho I am not a believer in gods, I worship Christ for so succinctly pointing this out. From that point, a religion could be built.
jjl: Perhaps it is precisely because our lives are so short that we should pack them with as much meaning as we can, for ourselves and others. This brings to mind the movie 'Contact' - something that stuck in my mind from this was the (very advanced) alien intelligence telling our heroine that her father REALLY was dead -for good- and that all we have is each other. That's it - all we have is each other. Amen.

Which is why religious people are happier. These concepts we are discussing are terrifying for some people. How can one tell a child they are in a pointless universe of which we are the cosmic equivilant of an amoeba with a comparative lifespan in the cosmic scheme of things? Some people need protection from this horror, for that is what it is. Religion serves that purpose and should be respected for it the way we respect morphine - capable of alleviating great suffering even it does cause living life in a dream. For some the dream state is profound. Others, Falwell et al, are just pushing smack to the junkies. They take a little taste once and a while but for the most part they're in it for the money. Non-religious people have simply kicked the habit, knowing that the price will be living in the real world.


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post #54 of 88 (permalink) Old 09-27-2004, 07:48 PM
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RE: Papal Hypocrisy?

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kvining - 9/27/2004 6:38 PM

Which is why religious people are happier. These concepts we are discussing are terrifying for some people. How can one tell a child they are in a pointless universe of which we are the cosmic equivelenat of an amoeba with a comparative lifespan in the cosmic scheme of things? Some people need protection from this horror, for that is what it is. Religion serves that purpose and should be respected for it the way we respect morphine - capably of alleviating great suffering even it does cause living life in a dream. For some the dream state profound. Others, Falwell et al, are just pushing smack to the junkies. They take a little taste once and a while but for the most part they're in it for the money. Non-religious people have simply kicked the habit, knowing that the price will be living in the real world.
You folks are using the term "religion", but you mean "Christianity". There's a whole other world out there -- a world of Godless (in the Western sense) religions that teach morality and strive for enlightenment. Western religions have always struck me as tribal voodoo compared to their Eastern counterparts, which focus on the here and now, rather than the ever after.

"If spending money you don't have is the height of stupidity, borrowing money to give it away is the height of insanity." -- anon
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post #55 of 88 (permalink) Old 09-27-2004, 07:55 PM
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RE: Papal Hypocrisy?

I really get offended by this patronizing attitude that some peole just can't accept the real world....
Christianity is either true, or it is not; it stands or falls on its own merits. Your "need" or lack thereof does not have the least affect on it.
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post #56 of 88 (permalink) Old 09-27-2004, 08:04 PM
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RE: Papal Hypocrisy?

Yes, it is those other non-theistic religions that make me think that religion can function quite well without God and with a minimum of superstitious beliefs, as long as it has a strong moral component. Confucianism is a good example.
But if you look at Buddhism it seems to have an equally incredible view of the moral structure of the universe. The idea of karma implies a cosmic justice which isn't verified at all in our everyday experiences. It seems as though societies have a really hard time functioning without a cosmic sanction for their moral systems.

I have read that religious people are happier. Also that pre-modern non-capitalist peoples are happier. I'm not sure that being happier confers any evolutionary advantage. It might count against it.

I do tend to think that all is vanity and morality is a process of making our social existence more pleasant in the overall meaningless scheme. I don't think this is any less selfish than believing in morality in order to avoid the fire and brimstone.

MS:
Most of the disciples of Jesus, apart from Paul, were attracted to Jesus for reasons other than the resurrection myth since they seem to have been followers way before any possibility of his death was evident. For them, son of god, son of man could easily have meant something different than the dying/rising god of Paul. It sounds to me as though you'd only be a post-death and resurrection disciple? Is that so?
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post #57 of 88 (permalink) Old 09-27-2004, 08:09 PM
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RE: Papal Hypocrisy?

Quote:
MS Fowler - 9/27/2004 9:32 PM

Well you all finally lost me. You are simply following the ages-old formula for founding a cult; make it like Christianity, but w/o Christ.
No can do.
I think we've had this discussion before, but for those who weren't involved, for me, Christianity stands or falls on the fact of the physical, bodily resurection of jesus from the tomb. All those NT texts showing Jesus as fulfilling OT prohecy are there to show who is Jesus; He is the saviour promised thru the whole OT, from Genesis 3 thru Malachi.
If there was no resurection; Christianity is false; and it should be removed from all memory. How can you claim Jesus was a great moral teacher when He claimed to be God? He did not give you that choice--He is either a lunatic, or He is Who He claimed to be.

Orthodix Christians accept the writings of Paul as authoritative because Peter grouped them with " the other Scriptures".
I am probably alone on this, but its not a popularity contest; your votes don't affect what I believe.
Let the flames begin....
I have no desire to attack your religious beliefs, however that is a risk one takes if they venture on to open threads, so in order to defend my own beliefs I must do so. First and foremost, I consider myself a scientist above all else, not in some ego-enhancing sense of the word, but in the original meaning of the word, a person who desires to spend one's life in the acquiring of knowledge. Biology, geology, paleontology, and especially astrophysics lead anyone who wishes to simply admit the truth as it is, to the conclusion that much of the Bible is impossible myth.

Further studies in the areas of history, psychology, ancient languages and literature give evidence that much of the descriptive language of the Bible, with its raising of the dead and ascensions to heaven, were common components of literature of that age used by all of the hundred of competing sects within the Jewish and Roman worlds for the purpose of establishing divinity for their cult figure.

Myself, I found if you took a more analytic approach to the New Testament, and simply rejected the mythology as you read it, that one could find a truer message by simply taking Christ at his word. For example, when he said "The Kingdom of God is at hand" we take it to mean it’s around the corner, yet the original Greek translates more to the sense that the Kingdom of God is within your grasp. As you go thru the rest of his writings, he is proposing a world where if each and every person practiced his philosophy of neighborly love, paradise would reign, right here, right now. In fact, he proposes non-atheistic Communism. Nobody really talks about Christ's politics, but every Sunday the church regales us with the same BS they have been throwing for 2,000 years as he turns water into wine and defies physics by walking on water, etc.

The greatest tragedy of mankind has been the nether-worldly death cult that grew up around this man. A friend of mine, a Presbyterian minister who retired recently, told me how glad he was to be thru with the pastorage because he had grown sick of talking about blood every Sunday, and that when one is forced to repeat it over and over again, one realizes what a blood cult Christianity is. You’re saved by the blood of Jesus, the blood of the Lamb, you eat his flesh and blood, he stares down from the cross, a bloody freaking mess. All of this needs to be rejected so a new religion that makes sense in a post-Darwinian world can arise. Those who see his blood sacrifice as his centrality miss what his centrality truly was - a man who delivered the most radical belief system ever proposed, that still, 2000 years later no one practices - they are great at practicing the rituals and believing the myths, yet the central message has been lost.
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post #58 of 88 (permalink) Old 09-27-2004, 08:24 PM
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RE: Papal Hypocrisy?

Quote:
kerry edwards - 9/27/2004 7:04 PM

Yes, it is those other non-theistic religions that make me think that religion can function quite well without God and with a minimum of superstitious beliefs, as long as it has a strong moral component. Confucianism is a good example.
But if you look at Buddhism it seems to have an equally incredible view of the moral structure of the universe. The idea of karma implies a cosmic justice which isn't verified at all in our everyday experiences. It seems as though societies have a really hard time functioning without a cosmic sanction for their moral systems.
Two small points -- there is an almost logical, yet mystical component to Eastern religion that equates the Universe to God. You can interpret that to mean whatever you like, but it is a comforting thought. No matter how lost in the vastness of numbers and time, we are a part of God. Consider the lessons of humility and respect that accompany that concept. Much the same could be said of karma -- I believe there is a modicum of truth in karma, but only on a level roughly equivalent with intuition. Beyond that, it's utter nonsense, yet the same lessons of humility and respect are there again. No harm, no foul, just live your life as best you can here and now. It's a very positive reinforcement whether it's true or not.

"If spending money you don't have is the height of stupidity, borrowing money to give it away is the height of insanity." -- anon
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post #59 of 88 (permalink) Old 09-27-2004, 08:34 PM
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RE: Papal Hypocrisy?

Quote:
GermanStar - 9/27/2004 9:48 PM

Quote:
kvining - 9/27/2004 6:38 PM

Which is why religious people are happier. These concepts we are discussing are terrifying for some people. How can one tell a child they are in a pointless universe of which we are the cosmic equivelenat of an amoeba with a comparative lifespan in the cosmic scheme of things? Some people need protection from this horror, for that is what it is. Religion serves that purpose and should be respected for it the way we respect morphine - capably of alleviating great suffering even it does cause living life in a dream. For some the dream state profound. Others, Falwell et al, are just pushing smack to the junkies. They take a little taste once and a while but for the most part they're in it for the money. Non-religious people have simply kicked the habit, knowing that the price will be living in the real world.
You folks are using the term "religion", but you mean "Christianity". There's a whole other world out there -- a world of Godless (in the Western sense) religions that teach morality and strive for enlightenment. Western religions have always struck me as tribal voodoo compared to their Eastern counterparts, which focus on the here and now, rather than the ever after.
yeah, but I was just trying to stick to the theme of the thread. Christianity, as exemplified by the moral collapse of the Catholic Church and the cartonnishness of TV fundamentalism, has become a great machine of hypocrisy. I guess the point I am making is that if you distill Christ's message, it can become reconciled with Western science once again. Otherwise, for thinking people it has become simply unbelievable. Eastern religions are an area I have little knowledge of. I suspect they are as riddled with superstition and myth as Christianity is, so I have no use for them either.





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post #60 of 88 (permalink) Old 09-27-2004, 08:34 PM
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RE: Papal Hypocrisy?

Well, a "moral code" does rely to a certain degree upon faith in others to 'play nice' and all that, so maybe I do belong to a loosely affiliated church of the golden rule or some such. To be clear though, I'm an agnostic, not an atheist. I simply don't think humans are capable of revealing mystical truths with any amount of verifiable accuracy, though I do reserve judgement on whether god(s) actually exist--I don't know, and neither do any of you.
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