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Old 2011-07-06, 09:09   Link #3241
Endless Soul
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ending View Post

I'd label the entire 7th Day Adventist church under this category, because they (like probably many other churches) actively pursuing a "Garden Wall" strategy. As in: members of the church employ, date, and see only other members. All is in harmony, because everything the members see, are other members.
Mostly true. As I stated earlier I was raised Seventh Day Adventist. Went to their churches. Spent 13 years in a K-12 Seventh Day Adventist school, (kinda sounds like Suicidal Tendencies Institutionalized) so I can certainly see what you're talking about.
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Old 2011-07-06, 11:22   Link #3242
Vexx
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One of the signs you have a "problem sect" is the isolation noted for 7th Day... but also the *shunning* / ostracizing / cut-off-all-contact if one leaves the church or marries outside the faith. Yes, most religions encourage you to stay in the fold... but, for example, when one "Christian faith" pulls this stunt in regard to another "Christian faith" alarm bells should start going off.
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Old 2011-07-09, 08:39   Link #3243
Haikea
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Officially I have been a Christian (Evangelical Lutheran Church) mainly because it has strong position in Finland (currently ~78% of finnish population belongs to it). It probably was some kind of tradition to sign me there too when I was born.

Personally that religion or religions in general means little to me. I like some spiritual stuff but they usually have nothing to do with common religions or at least I'm not aware of it. Usually I just seek comfort from fantasies and try to alter my mood someway. Sometimes the real world feels so "cold" that I'm seeking "warmth" through my imagination.

I have resigned from the church and there is also a little financial benefit because members pay about 1-2% tax for the church. It is pretty invisible tax collection system because our goverment is so tightly connected to this specific church. Many are not even aware of it.
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Old 2011-07-09, 18:51   Link #3244
erneiz_hyde
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There's something I'd like to share, though I'll put it in the spoiler's tab because it might offend some people. However my intention isn't to offend anyone, or discuss this with anyone, so I'm expecting no reply to this post. I just want to share what my mind went through some years ago during my early college days. So here goes:

Spoiler:
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Old 2011-07-10, 00:40   Link #3245
Vexx
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There's an old book called "Flatland" ... google on it and the many essays that talk about it. Your idea reminds of the adage: "Its turtles all the way down."

Really... the idea of more dimensions than we "see" arrives when the data cannot be explained without resorting to extra dimensions in the mathematics. At the moment, we have truckloads of data (both at the quantum and at the galactic scales) that cannot be resolved with only 3 dimensions of space and 1 of time. However, the layering isn't necessarily infinite... you stop adding dimensions when there isn't any data that requires the addition of another.
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Old 2011-07-10, 03:22   Link #3246
erneiz_hyde
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@Vexx: Wow, thanks for introducing me that book! Now I know that I'm not the first or the only one to have thought of this. And the story is rather fitting too, socially speaking.

Btw, to refute your argument a little. True, it isn't necessarily infinite. But Earth also wasn't necessarily flat or the center of the universe. Let me just say that to me: imaginations, possibilities, and uncertainties are what make life interesting. And science is less whole without them.

That's enough for this topic, let's move on.
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Old 2011-07-10, 13:18   Link #3247
Proto
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Quote:
Btw, to refute your argument a little. True, it isn't necessarily infinite. But Earth also wasn't necessarily flat or the center of the universe
Just jumping in a bit but... that isn't really a refutation, but a fallacy of false analogy and an appeal to emotion. *shivers*
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Old 2011-07-10, 18:28   Link #3248
erneiz_hyde
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I suddenly feel like Square who is shunned by the denizens of flatland because trying to speak of the possibility of spaceland

Really, Vexx, thanks for that book.
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Old 2012-06-17, 17:49   Link #3249
Hiroi Sekai
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I really don't want to semi-necro post, but this has been bothering me ever since I watched it.

I am what you would call a Christian. I believe there is a God that created everyone and everything and watches over us. However, what interests me about Christianity is that it seems to have different levels. There are those who take the word normally, attend church weekly and wear the cross around their neck simply as a symbol. There are others who believe that preaching to draw in more people is the best method so that they can be "saved". Some live their lives normally, whilst grasping their beliefs and simply trying to do good, and then there are the extremes that believe so strongly that their attachment to society is absolutely dead.

I'm not what you can call a by-the-book Christian, and some may even say I'm not one at all. I don't regularly attend church, I don't wear the symbols about, and I don't preach to others about it. I'm not saying that this is the standard, but thanks to the different levels it could be conflicting to some.

What I do is simply try to be good and do good as best I can. I was a youth group leader for a couple years, mixing a weekly get-together with many kids where they have fun together and end with a simple "down-to-earth" life story that can tie in to a piece of scripture or something like that. What I think is important is that people be allowed to make their own decisions, especially on something as strong as religion. We even had a couple of atheists who were interested in what we were talking about, and we welcomed them to sit in and join. Some of my best friends are atheists, and I don't see why other people have seen that as such a big problem. I've also volunteered at the youth group's summer camp, once again combining fun events with lighter teachings. If someone comes and is sleeping when I talk, so be it. It's not something for everyone, and it's important to respect what their beliefs and interests are.

Even my religious relationship with my parents is very interesting. My parents are Roman-Catholic, and growing up we attended Korean churches that pertained to their specific beliefs. When I was old enough to make my own decisions on the matter, I found that I didn't entirely fit in, so I was soon introduced to Christianity. My parents are fine with it, and I'm fine with them. My mother even studies Taoism and Buddism in her free time; why shouldn't we be allowed to be fascinated with other religions? No religion is perfect, and if we can learn from others, then we'd be better people as a result.

Now, what actually kind of frightens me is seeing the extreme side of religion. Be it anything from forced switching of beliefs, brainwashing, monetary gains through religion, and even religious killings, it's all stuff that I find quite frightening.

This is Part 1 of an 8 part documentary on an American family who hate Americans (and the rest of the world) for drifting from the "perfect path" God supposedly laid out for each and every one of us. They treat the reporter (who voices his own personal beliefs often) like absolute shit, stand on the roads calling soldiers "fags" and any sort of patriotism as "worshipping the flag over God". They even go as far as to bring little children into their events and basically brainwashing them into believing what they do. The kids have no idea what the signs they hold even mean, but they utter the terms "fag" and "dyke" like it's nothing. The entire family has been well nurtured to the point where they don't even date, find friends or even partake in anything "fun" (they ridicule the reporter for even mentioning such a thing). It terrifies me to see this happening, and that children from a young age can be trained to think such things. Here is the first part of the video:



Believing or not believing is one thing, but to break some of a respectable society's most sacred rules is another thing. We don't brainwash people. We don't judge people in a derogatory fashion. We interact with one another. We respect everyone's thoughts. We all live on the same Earth as the same creature, so who's to say that your beliefs are wrong?

I'd definitely like to hear anyone's thoughts on anything or everything I've said. Sorry it was so long and thanks for reading it all.
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Old 2012-06-17, 19:01   Link #3250
MUAHAHAHAHAHA
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It's hard to argue with extremists. They take the Bible way too seriously;Thou Shalt Not Go Against the Word of God. Sometimes, I couldn't help but to sympathize with these extremists. I suppose one could also argue they are just being delusional. However, I do understand that they are just trying to be God's obedient children, but the question that they should be asking themselves is this: Where to draw the line, considering that there are many "grey circumstances", in which we must not hold onto our beliefs rigidly. One thing the American family should realize is this: Religion is self-defined, and judgement will never work.

I am a Christian as well. Well, to be honest, an on/off Christian. I was a Buddhist until I was 14, and during those years, I didn't have a strong belief in Buddhism. When I converted to Christian, and I started going to bible study, I was taught that I shouldn't do this, shouldn't do that. Initially, I did try my best to be a good Christian, but somehow I "lost" myself. Do I live for myself, or do I live for Him? I understand that the Bible says my current life is only temporary. My real home is in heaven, with Heavenly Father. However, at the same time, I was told that being a good Christian means I should resist any temptation that comes my way. For some time, I resisted those temptations (lying, greed,etc,etc), but I did not resist it because I truly wanted to. I was just following what was taught in my bible class. I felt as if I was constantly involving myself in an act of hypocrisy;I was ashamed of myself. So eventually, I began to question myself and slowly lost faith in Him. In the recent years, I have begun to reconnect with God, but I have come to realize something. This is my personal opinion, but I do not think anyone can ever define what it means to be a good Christian. This is the mistake that I made years ago. I did not try to carve my own path as a Christian. My personal belief is this: I am still going to try to be a good Christian, but I am going to stop trying to avoid temptations at all cost. I will try to resist where I can, but if I absolutely can't refuse it, I will seek forgiveness from Him. Also, I am not going to rigidly follow the Bible word for word like I used to. It doesn't mean that by following the teachings in the Bible, we are true Christians. The human heart is sinful by nature, and if we continue to resist, doesn't that mean we are more or less superior with Him, since we commit no sin at all? I will inevitably commit sins, but I will try my best to learn from them, because when I breathe my last breath, I could do so with satisfaction, knowing that I could meet Him and tell him of my mistakes and how I triumph over them.

Just a side note, I find it ironic and funny in a way that those pure American Christians are committing one of the Seven Deadly Sins-Wrath!
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Last edited by MUAHAHAHAHAHA; 2012-06-17 at 19:18.
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Old 2012-06-17, 19:14   Link #3251
Urzu 7
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In response to the religious nuts from Papermario's post: Oh, those people are such great Christians! They get it so right, especially with the part about HATING EVERYONE. Such true followers of Christ.

Really, there are too many bad Christians in America. First, there are all the ones that hate LGBT people. Look, if you disagree with homosexuality due to the Christian religion, fine, that is understandable. But as Christians you should strive to love all people, so that means gays and lesbians, bis and transgender people. That means liberals, Muslims, Hindus, and everyone else, too. If you want to be a Christian, it is proper to believe in a God of love that loves ALL people and you should strive to love all people. If you don't want to believe that or don't want to try for that, stop priding yourself as a Christian, because you aren't a good one. I don't care if you say you are devout, go to church every week and have read the Bible a hundred times, if you hate certain kinds of people and instead of trying your hardest to correct that, you just indulge in your hate, you aren't a good Christian and have nothing to brag about with your spirituality. Unfortunately, there are too many people like this in America, especially in the south and Bible belt of America. It is like the line from the U2 song (with Johnny Cash) called "The Wanderer": 'They want the kingdom, but they don't want God in it'. How true of so many Christians in America today.

I don't know how good of a Christian I am, but I do know this about Christians: You can't be a good Christian if you are a hateful person. Hating some types of people (or many types of people) and reserving your love only for those that share your faith and perhaps those you personally favor are not qualities of good Christians. This is even clearly discussed in the Bible (about how even the tax collectors love their families, and Jesus challenges people to love all people, not just the ones they favor and personally like).
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Last edited by Urzu 7; 2012-06-17 at 19:38.
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Old 2012-06-17, 22:16   Link #3252
Hiroi Sekai
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"Love thy neighbour as thyself." It's something that everyone knows from the Bible, and it's already been broken by them.

Everyone sins as a human. As mentioned, what's important is that we acknowledge these, seek forgiveness and improve ourselves so we don't mindlessly continue to do them.
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Old 2012-06-17, 23:45   Link #3253
MeoTwister5
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In the New Testament, "He who hath not sinned cast the first stone" is probably the single most important lesson I keep in mind when dealing with people.
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Old 2012-06-18, 00:15   Link #3254
Om Nerabdator
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im either catholic or christian........honestly i dont care anymore and why the hell should i?? i still believe in god so what does it matter
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Old 2012-06-18, 00:22   Link #3255
Yuno
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Okay so, I wanted to type in this thread because I think last time I typed in here I talked about a religion that didn't quite pretain to me. So this time I will talk about my beliefs. I've actually become somewhat of a Taoist/Christian. I'm a taoist to the core in that I desire inner peace, and seek the path best for me. I am a bit of a christian because after reading "A Course in Mircales" A three book series that I got for 25$ (Total steal I know). I sort of came to appreciate some of my christian roots. My grandfather was a minister, and he did preach a lot to myself and of course the masses. Though I had a chip on my shoulder towards Christianty because of many of the followers.

Though what I learned from the course of mircales is we can't really hate a belief because of the people. We can dislike it because it doesn't resonate with us. So for me I decided to look into more psuedo-christian pursuits. Before I knew it I found myself being a little more pious than usual. However, as I said before Tao comes first to me. As for me it is a way of interpreting god. As for Jesus, he's a really cool guy. He tried to teach many of the things that are spoken in Tao. Also Mohammad is pretty awesome too. He's definitely a messanger of god. Reading his original messages and things was also very rewarding.

So I guess to boil it down, I am a Tao-Christian in search of a loving God.
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Old 2012-06-18, 00:49   Link #3256
Kirito
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I'm thinking of becoming a Buddhist because the talk and the yearning for inner peace with oneself really speaks out to me.
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Old 2012-06-18, 00:59   Link #3257
Yuno
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kirito View Post
I'm thinking of becoming a Buddhist because the talk and the yearning for inner peace with oneself really speaks out to me.
I've studied Buddhism for a while, and found a lot of reward with it for sure. You're in Ottawa so there are a lot of options there. I can recommend books if you wish~
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Old 2012-06-18, 03:22   Link #3258
TinyRedLeaf
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Originally Posted by Urzu 7 View Post
If you want to be a Christian, it is proper to believe in a God of love that loves ALL people and you should strive to love all people. If you don't want to believe that or don't want to try for that, stop priding yourself as a Christian, because you aren't a good one.
It's nowhere near so simple and, unfortunately, this thread is not the place to discuss such issues. I strongly suggest that you approach a pastor or Christian cell group, and sit in on one of their sessions, to get a better grasp of the complexities and the dilemmas that many sincere Christians grapple with every day.

And if you're not willing to do even that much, then this position:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Urzu 7 View Post
I don't know how good of a Christian I am, but I do know this about Christians: You can't be a good Christian if you are a hateful person.
...is pretty much invalid. I could very well argue that you don't even know what you actually hate, let alone presume to lecture Christians on the finer points of being "good" Christians.

And yes, Christians do doubt. Depending on which church they belong to, this is regarded as normal, a necessary part of keeping faith with Jesus and God. It's just very unfortunate that a vocal minority has hijacked the religion's public image, creating a schism that the mass media is only too happy to play up.

I studied Confucius Analects briefly sometime last year. I found it a fruitful exercise. Shallow though the attempt was, it did give me an insight into what the sage had originally advised. It was a far cry from the stultifying orthodoxy that had since become synonymous with Chinese culture.
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Old 2012-06-18, 04:17   Link #3259
MeoTwister5
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My dabbling with the philosophy of my ancestors was the Tao Te Ching.

When you think about it though, the one thing in common with Buddhism and Christianity is the Golden Rule. It's worded slightly differently but the meaning is essentially the same.

I consider doubt to be an integral part of faith because, if you don't doubt, you won't seek to understand your faith and more importantly, WHY you believe. A lot of people believe blindly, they don't know why they do, and that's almost as dangerous and potentially self-destructive and extremist religiosity.
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Old 2012-06-18, 04:37   Link #3260
Yuno
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MeoTwister5 View Post
I consider doubt to be an integral part of faith because, if you don't doubt, you won't seek to understand your faith and more importantly, WHY you believe. A lot of people believe blindly, they don't know why they do, and that's almost as dangerous and potentially self-destructive and extremist religiosity.
Quoted for truth my goodman~ That is exactly what I feel. Also many religious figures told the people to doubt them, to find out for themselves. Buddha, Jesus, and Mohammad. It is what I like about them. The people, not so much~
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