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Old 2012-06-22, 23:33   Link #3301
antediluvian
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I've walked hand in hand with death since a young age. It isn't anything to fear, and I certainly do not await paradise at the end of my life. I want paradise to be here in our reality(whatever reality is). I'm somewhat pessimistic and I do not believe the Abrahamic religions bring much to the world. It was a tool to oppress centuries ago, and how many conflicts in recent history have been caused because of it? Thinking back on my family's history. The first of my family to come to the USA in the 1700s did so because the conditions were so bad in Ireland for the native people, my family at that time was starving to death. The Irish were killing one another over the different faiths they had(Catholicism and Protestantism). And the British, imposing Catholicism on the pagan population in distant history, and then Protestantism after England adopted it.

And we look at centuries of conflict over religion. I'm sure the innate message in the Abhrahamic religions is a positive one, but I see it as muddled and a wasted endeavor. The message has been lost and we're fighting another crusade in the Middle East because of extremists believing their culture, their religion, to be more righteous than Western society. And I see so many parallels between the conflicts today and the conflicts my ancestors had with their own people and the British, and how can I believe in a God with all of this in mind? I place no faith in books, or supernatural beings. We're a wild species and we're adjusting to the modern world we've all been thrust in. I'm a spiritual person. We live in an age of alternate universes beyond measure and we're dreaming more and more of the stars and long lasting life. With that said, what could I believe in but humanity? I love all my brothers and sisters throughout the world, and although some may seek to use culture as a boundary, it's not something I agree with. Culture is what unites us. It adds a little bit of what makes us who we are to the mixing pot of humanity and we're stronger because of all our differences. I can't waste time dwelling on what comes after life. If you were to ask me, and this thread is asking me what my religion is, I would have to tell you that I believe we're all interconnected throughout the whole of reality. Everything is happening right here and now and though we cannot see it, it will become defined. Perhaps this is God. Perhaps science is our way to understand and come to terms with the beliefs we all have. Science is humanity's pursuit of God and a greater understanding of the reality we exist in(if we exist at all).

Who looks at the sun and doesn't see glory? Who gazes at distant stars and doesn't see wonder? Who can think on the mysteries we seek to solve and understand and not be fufilled? I love being alive. I love my family and I love humanity and we can do anything we put our minds to. We are our own God.
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Old 2012-06-23, 00:08   Link #3302
Urzu 7
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Originally Posted by antediluvian View Post
If you were to ask me, and this thread is asking me what my religion is, I would have to tell you that I believe we're all interconnected throughout the whole of reality. Everything is happening right here and now and though we cannot see it, it will become defined. Perhaps this is God.
You ever read up on Buddhism and Hinduism? Their belief systems say all beings and all reality is interconnected with the whole of reality. All connected with what is called 'Ultimate Reality'. To Buddhists, this is Nirvana. To Hindus, like the last part of your quoted text, Ultimate Reality to them is God (Hinduism believes in one God, it isn't actually polytheistic, that is a popular misconception with westerners, and probably Muslims, too).

The Abrahamic religions...yeah, Christianity has had a lot of problems over the centuries. It has mellowed out a lot in the past 100-200 years and over the last several decades. Early Christianity had some great things about it. When Rome made Christianity its religion, well, it let a lot of negative things seep in. A lot of Christians feel that way. It more or less led to things like the Crusades and using force to convert non-believers. Early Christianity wasn't about spreading by force or waging war with non-believers. A lot of modern Christians feel a bit conflicted about it, because Rome making Christianity its official religion led to a lot of bad things, but it also made Christianity really take off, allowing it to spread and thrive very much. But things could have been different, and maybe the religion would have spread well without Rome. Buddhism has spread almost entirely by peaceful means. It has over 400 million followers today, and then there are millions who aren't followers of the religion but benefit from and take inspiration from the religion.
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Old 2012-06-23, 01:15   Link #3303
antediluvian
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Originally Posted by Urzu 7 View Post
You ever read up on Buddhism and Hinduism? Their belief systems say all beings and all reality is interconnected with the whole of reality. All connected with what is called 'Ultimate Reality'. To Buddhists, this is Nirvana. To Hindus, like the last part of your quoted text, Ultimate Reality to them is God (Hinduism believes in one God, it isn't actually polytheistic, that is a popular misconception with westerners, and probably Muslims, too).

The Abrahamic religions...yeah, Christianity has had a lot of problems over the centuries. It has mellowed out a lot in the past 100-200 years and over the last several decades. Early Christianity had some great things about it. When Rome made Christianity its religion, well, it let a lot of negative things seep in. A lot of Christians feel that way. It more or less led to things like the Crusades and using force to convert non-believers. Early Christianity wasn't about spreading by force or waging war with non-believers. A lot of modern Christians feel a bit conflicted about it, because Rome making Christianity its official religion led to a lot of bad things, but it also made Christianity really take off, allowing it to spread and thrive very much. But things could have been different, and maybe the religion would have spread well without Rome. Buddhism has spread almost entirely by peaceful means. It has over 400 million followers today, and then there are millions who aren't followers of the religion but benefit from and take inspiration from the religion.
A lot of great things? Do you know how many great thinkers were murdered by the Catholic Church or the precursor to it? How many innovations were likely repressed? I can't accept that early Christianity had many great things about it. It oppressed civilization from growing for a time. Early Christianity solidified it's base of power within Rome by purging what it deemed heretical to their beliefs.
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Old 2012-06-23, 01:24   Link #3304
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Originally Posted by antediluvian View Post
A lot of great things? Do you know how many great thinkers were murdered by the Catholic Church or the precursor to it? How many innovations were likely repressed? I can't accept that early Christianity had many great things about it. It oppressed civilization from growing for a time. Early Christianity solidified it's base of power within Rome by purging what it deemed heretical to their beliefs.
Early Christianity almost always refers to the first (maybe second) century.
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Old 2012-06-23, 02:08   Link #3305
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I believe in something greater than myself, however I don't choose to follow any official religion. They have too much baggage and with so many around saying they're right makes me inclined to believe they all got something wrong at some point. What is it I can't say, so I simply choose to believe in that something greater and live by the code that I shouldn't do onto others that I wouldn't want done to myself.
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Old 2012-06-23, 02:47   Link #3306
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I was a Buddhist who went to a Christian church kindergarten.

Because of that I quickly saw the inconsistencies in religion and the amount of absurdity in it, which made me non religious ever since.

Haruhiism is as legit as any religion, they all started out as stories.

Science is the way to go for life.
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Old 2012-06-23, 09:04   Link #3307
Urzu 7
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Originally Posted by antediluvian View Post
A lot of great things? Do you know how many great thinkers were murdered by the Catholic Church or the precursor to it? How many innovations were likely repressed? I can't accept that early Christianity had many great things about it. It oppressed civilization from growing for a time. Early Christianity solidified it's base of power within Rome by purging what it deemed heretical to their beliefs.
As the poster Monster pointed out, early Christianity refers to when the religion first started, before Rome made it its official religion. After Rome made Christianity its religion is when the violence and oppression started.
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Old 2012-06-23, 09:27   Link #3308
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Quote:
Originally Posted by antediluvian View Post
A lot of great things? Do you know how many great thinkers were murdered by the Catholic Church or the precursor to it? How many innovations were likely repressed? I can't accept that early Christianity had many great things about it. It oppressed civilization from growing for a time. Early Christianity solidified it's base of power within Rome by purging what it deemed heretical to their beliefs.
The way you write seemed to me that you are frustrated and confused about many many things.

Might want to practice a little martial arts to clear your mind. There are a number of martial arts like taijiquan, silat and aikido that have their philosophy tied the basic tenets of religion - compassion and ethic of reciprocity. It is the internalised meaning of the art, not the moves one learns that pushes you to understand the essence of religion itself.
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Old 2012-06-23, 17:17   Link #3309
sbg711
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If Confucianism is fit to be considered a "religion" - then that's my religion. Funny as it may sound, but just a week ago I discovered I was an adherent of Confucius's teachings without even knowing it.
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Old 2012-06-23, 21:32   Link #3310
antediluvian
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Originally Posted by Urzu 7 View Post
As the poster Monster pointed out, early Christianity refers to when the religion first started, before Rome made it its official religion. After Rome made Christianity its religion is when the violence and oppression started.
I'm sure every stranger you run into, especially one who wants something from you, will be pleasant at first meeting, especially until it gets what it wants. Then it'll make itself comfortable and do whatever it pleases, yeah. And you can use that for almost all situations you run into in a non-fictional or fictional scenario. Aliens may be pleasant to us to get what they want after first contact. A manager at your job will be pleasant to you if they feel the end result will be one where they benefit. It goes on in on, it's not strictly religion. It's human nature and I suppose you could say I dislike it.

I am guilty of this myself, and so are you. In fact, to be frank with you, here is a bit of truth about myself to sate anyone's curiosity. I am actively trying not to take advantage of others to get what I want out of life. I am suffering from it. How many parents teach their children that friends are just that until they're not and you need to use them as a step ladder to get where you want to be? I find that sort of thought process extremely disturbing and anti-social. It goes against the very concept of bettering ourselves as a species. And you know what? I am taking the high road with that in mind. I am not going to screw people over. Of course, the response from my peers will likely be to take advantage of me. And what can I do or say about it? Bemoan the absurdity of it all? Deaf ears. Nobody cares. The cycle perpetuates itself.
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Old 2012-06-23, 23:49   Link #3311
Urzu 7
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Originally Posted by antediluvian View Post
I'm sure every stranger you run into, especially one who wants something from you, will be pleasant at first meeting, especially until it gets what it wants. Then it'll make itself comfortable and do whatever it pleases, yeah. And you can use that for almost all situations you run into in a non-fictional or fictional scenario. Aliens may be pleasant to us to get what they want after first contact. A manager at your job will be pleasant to you if they feel the end result will be one where they benefit. It goes on in on, it's not strictly religion. It's human nature and I suppose you could say I dislike it.

I am guilty of this myself, and so are you. In fact, to be frank with you, here is a bit of truth about myself to sate anyone's curiosity. I am actively trying not to take advantage of others to get what I want out of life. I am suffering from it. How many parents teach their children that friends are just that until they're not and you need to use them as a step ladder to get where you want to be? I find that sort of thought process extremely disturbing and anti-social. It goes against the very concept of bettering ourselves as a species. And you know what? I am taking the high road with that in mind. I am not going to screw people over. Of course, the response from my peers will likely be to take advantage of me. And what can I do or say about it? Bemoan the absurdity of it all? Deaf ears. Nobody cares. The cycle perpetuates itself.
About first paragraph: The early Christians weren't a deceptive or manipulative bunch. Generally speaking, they were very good and tried to emulate the living example Jesus displayed to the world. It is just that Rome was very corrupt in those days. When Rome adopted Christianity, it set in motion a lot of corruption to come in the future. If Christianity had grown and developed without Rome, no doubt there'd be corruption eventually, but it could have been a lot less.

Second paragraph: It is very good to try to live very selflessly. Sometimes it might have to be compromised, if even a little. For example, you might come to an opportunity for a job, and you'll have to compete with others for it. I'd say you shouldn't feel guilty with being competitive and nabbing the job that you want. The employer wants the best person for the job, and if you work hard and become the best person for the job, you get the job you want and the employer wins out by getting someone they want. That is just an example. It isn't a perfect world, so things just won't be perfect in our lives, but you can still fulfill grand goals in life, and if those are goals of selflessness and kindness, well, let me tell you, those are good goals to reach for. Take care of yourself in life. What do I mean? I don't mean care only for yourself and be a cutthroat over reaching your goals. I've read this in different books about spirituality. Take good care for yourself (in a manner that is good and fair to many others), because when you are doing good, then you can better act as an agent of good in the world, bestowing goodness to others in the world. When I say take good care of yourself, this doesn't mean material goods and material wealth primarily, but those things are important for your overall well being. Makes things adequate for you, and if you are modest, what will be adequate for you won't be very much. This will all help you to nourish and sustain your mental, emotional, and spiritual well being, which will allow you to then better bring goodness to the lives of others. If you don't take good care of yourself, this will prevent you from bringing much good to the lives of many other people.
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Old 2012-06-24, 01:01   Link #3312
antediluvian
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Competition is almost always a positive influence, people are at the best when they're competing against one another for something. That isn't what I was talking about. Competing against someone is not the same as taking advantage of a less than stellar situation for someone. I have no problem at work. I get what I want my doing my best. I don't have to sink as low as to take advantage of someone to get what I want. I am too familiar with reality as we know it, thanks for the motivational speech though.

But, see, here's the thing I'm having a hard time digesting! Comments like, "It isn't a perfect world" that get people thinking it's okay to hurt others for their own benefit. "Bad luck". It's nonsense. The only thing preventing us from being good to one another without concepts such as charity and good will are the very ideas of these. People that are more bountiful give to the needy, etc. It's hilariously offensive. The issue I'm having is with viewing the world as doggy dog. Compete, do your best, go for it. People will have less and others will have more, but when you take advantage of a situation, let's say the 2008 financial crisis, at the expense of so many, can you see why that would be wrong? The middle class in the US is shrinking and it's becoming more and more apparent for people actually witnessing it from a first person perspective. Lowering taxes on the wealthy for trickle down economics(aka bullshit) is wrong. But we've got so much propaganda down our throats that some people actually believe it works. People with less being taxed more than people with more to give? Let's say I made $500 and I'm taxed $70 out of that paycheck for state, medicare, and federal taxes, could you see where that might be a bit more ludicrous than someone making $1000 a week to be taxed $100?

The issue is that we're being conned into believing that these inequities are okay, that they're a fact of life, and they're not. Life is transitory. I don't put too much importance into what I own, but the one thing I am bothered by is when people act like sock puppets for leaders, both religious & political, that do not have their best interests in mind. And I cannot think of a time when a religious leader has had my interests in mind. There isn't enough honesty. We're spiraling out of control and we're giving idiots with great sound bytes control of the reins. Religion as a political tool sure is neat.
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Old 2012-06-24, 01:07   Link #3313
Urzu 7
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Competition is almost always a positive influence, people are at the best when they're competing against one another for something. That isn't what I was talking about. Competing against someone is not the same as taking advantage of a less than stellar situation for someone. I have no problem at work. I get what I want my doing my best. I don't have to sink as low as to take advantage of someone to get what I want.
I haven't taken advantage of someone for my personal gain in years. I'm sure I've done it before, I just can't think of a time I have done it. Probably done it more than once. Just can't recall any. I've never screwed someone over, or kind of screwed them over, for personal gain.
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Old 2012-06-24, 01:33   Link #3314
antediluvian
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I haven't taken advantage of someone for my personal gain in years. I'm sure I've done it before, I just can't think of a time I have done it. Probably done it more than once. Just can't recall any. I've never screwed someone over, or kind of screwed them over, for personal gain.
Whatever your case may be, it's okay. The point is to try and be better. Don't act like a wolf amongst sheep, it's despicable behavior. If you're in a position of power, be the very best you can be, don't become a sock puppet for a political party, do what is right by the people who elected you to office. Do right by your family and your neighbors and don't do it because you learned it was the right thing to do in a book. I have never read the bible. The times it has been quoted at me have been when someone wanted to use their "faith" to take me down a notch.

Using your faith to deny a group of people the same rights as everybody else is wrong. Using your faith to spread fear is wrong. And I am more often than not seeing people using their faith and the imagery and the power it invokes for all the wrong reasons. And I'm not saying that you are doing this yourself, Urzu 7. I hope you realize that.
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Old 2012-06-24, 01:56   Link #3315
Urzu 7
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Whatever your case may be, it's okay. The point is to try and be better. Don't act like a wolf amongst sheep, it's despicable behavior. If you're in a position of power, be the very best you can be, don't become a sock puppet for a political party, do what is right by the people who elected you to office. Do right by your family and your neighbors and don't do it because you learned it was the right thing to do in a book. I have never read the bible. The times it has been quoted at me have been when someone wanted to use their "faith" to take me down a notch.

Using your faith to deny a group of people the same rights as everybody else is wrong. Using your faith to spread fear is wrong. And I am more often than not seeing people using their faith and the imagery and the power it invokes for all the wrong reasons. And I'm not saying that you are doing this yourself, Urzu 7. I hope you realize that.

I understand you aren't saying I do those things.

I got on a rant a couple or few pages back, but my rant was about many Christians not striving for love; to love all people, like they should be striving for. This is what my Mom and Dad taught me. This is what my grandmother taught my Dad and his siblings, and most of his siblings believe in this, too.

But I feel my rant was justified. There are things in the Bible which back that idea up. There are many instances in the New Testament where this kind of love is spoken of and how people should try to love all people. The church I go to is a Catholic church. Catholicism is not perfect, but with this church I've been going to since 2008 with its priest, many times I've seen this priest preach a message of love for all people. Many times I've seen him preach about a God who loves all people and how we should try to love all people. Either he made it the center of a sermon, or he brought it up in sermons centered on other things but reaffirmed it. He is preaching stuff from the Vatican. Yeah, Catholicism is not perfect, but if they so strongly believe in love like that, it can't be all that bad. Yeah, yeah, a lot of Catholic officials aren't going to be fair minded of many people, from people of certain faiths to atheists to LGBT people to pro-choice people and more, but what I've seen is that ultimately, they believe in love. So do many Protestant branches. But many other Protestant branches don't believe in love so much like this, either. Some branches will preach hate. That is not supported by several or many passages in the Bible. Again, a key thing with Christianity is the concept "Hate the sin but love the sinner".
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Old 2012-06-30, 23:30   Link #3316
tkdtiger
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You ever read up on Buddhism and Hinduism? Their belief systems say all beings and all reality is interconnected with the whole of reality. All connected with what is called 'Ultimate Reality'. To Buddhists, this is Nirvana. To Hindus, like the last part of your quoted text, Ultimate Reality to them is God (Hinduism believes in one God, it isn't actually polytheistic, that is a popular misconception with westerners, and probably Muslims, too).

The Abrahamic religions...yeah, Christianity has had a lot of problems over the centuries. It has mellowed out a lot in the past 100-200 years and over the last several decades. Early Christianity had some great things about it. When Rome made Christianity its religion, well, it let a lot of negative things seep in. A lot of Christians feel that way. It more or less led to things like the Crusades and using force to convert non-believers. Early Christianity wasn't about spreading by force or waging war with non-believers. A lot of modern Christians feel a bit conflicted about it, because Rome making Christianity its official religion led to a lot of bad things, but it also made Christianity really take off, allowing it to spread and thrive very much. But things could have been different, and maybe the religion would have spread well without Rome. Buddhism has spread almost entirely by peaceful means. It has over 400 million followers today, and then there are millions who aren't followers of the religion but benefit from and take inspiration from the religion.
It should be noted though that Christianity is not the only religion to have this problem. As organizations (even non-religious organizations) grow there is a higher chance of abuse. It also should be noted that Buddhism and Hinduism has also had periods of violence. In fact there was a recent clash between Buddhists and Muslims maybe a couple weeks ago from what I read... I think all religions in some form warns about this, but as humans maybe it is a part of our nature that we have to fight with everyday. It should be noted though that most wars in modern times have been wars on ideology not religion. In fact the 1900s is considred the most violent century.

I'm a Christian, but I enjoy studying all religions.
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Old 2012-06-30, 23:36   Link #3317
Sir Maddy
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I used to be a Christian but I turned Atheist sometime around last year.
Mostly because I questioned most of Christianity's big events.
And I realised it was all bullshit.
So now I don't wanna pick another religion.
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Old 2012-07-05, 01:37   Link #3318
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I used to think of myself an Atheist. But then I found out I was an Agnostic person. I don't regret it~
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Old 2012-07-05, 16:01   Link #3319
Akka
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A poll would have been nice

Strongly atheist here. Unlikely to ever change (unless some actual proof about supernatural entities are actually uncovered, of course, but I think it's quite a bit unlikely).
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Old 2012-07-11, 12:09   Link #3320
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Agnostic mostly because I'm too lazy to defend myself as a true athiest. Not a big fan of most organized religions.
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