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  1. #16
    World of Venus Member Foxykhat's Avatar
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    Re: Let's Discuss Religion.

    Right now I think it's best if I just move along with regards to this thred.

    Maybe one day I'll stop by and say...

    Ah forget it

    Foxy
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  2. #17
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    Re: Let's Discuss Religion.

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie02123 View Post
    I also don't think religion and science are mutually exclusive. However, there are certain interpretations of the Bible that are mutually exclusive with science. I think it's important for everyone to realize that there are always a bunch of different ways to read a piece of scripture.

    It can't possibly be ALL literal, because no one is literally born-again. There's a passage in the New Testament where the Pharisees are mocking Jesus and asking how someone can climb back into their mother's womb. Jesus basically says that they are missing the point.

    I think it's a great example that focusing too much on literal meanings can take away from the spirit of the message.
    Even Fundamentalist theologians now agree (for the most part) that the Book of Genesis was a fictional piece of literature designed to reflect a fallen culture. That's what I was taught in my Bible 101 class at a very conservative Methodist college in Kentucky my freshman year. It was the first time I had ever heard such a thing. (I came from a "The Bible in the infallable, inerrant Word of God" background. I was shocked.)
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  3. #18
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    Re: Let's Discuss Religion.

    I was born and raised a Roman Catholic although my parents are not particularly religious. My grandfather does not agree with half of what the Roman Catholic church teaches.

    I am familiar with different religions, and I respect the teachings of Islam, Judaism, Buddhism and other religions. I cringe every time something bad is said about Islam, I think that Islam is a wonderful religion with so much in common with the teachings of Christianity.

    I believe that there is something (or someone) out there that somehow set everything in motion. Although that something (or someone) will not help me win the lottery or give world peace. Jesus is a wonderful prophet who taught a wonderful thing, to love one another.

    I also believe that people are not defined by their religion but their actions. I have more respect for someone who does something for he/she believes it is inherently good or moral to do so, than someone who does something because he/she is afraid of going to hell for doing it. I don't think that the Bible should be interpreted literally. It is a collection of works of different authors.


    One thing I don't appreciate about religion is the exclusivity, only members of Religion A will go to heaven the rest will either go to limbo or burn in hell. Considering there are hundreds of religions out there, we may all be going to hell anyway. There are certain core teachings of church I agree with. I applaud those who go to church to reaffirm their faith every week, sometimes everyday. Personally, I go to church, because I WANT to go to church.

  4. #19

    Re: Let's Discuss Religion.

    Quote Originally Posted by dryrunguy View Post
    I think what bothers me is just how PC it has become to diss religion, Christianity in particular. Christianity is unfairly targeted by society as a whole. We never hear about the wonderful things that Christian institutions, such as churches, are doing. We only hear about pro-life rallies, abortion clinic bombings, votes for Prop 8, and ministers who have sex with gay prostitutes. Period. And the level of intolerance of Christianity, in spite of the fact that it's a very diverse faith, seems to be growing by the day. And there seems to be a direct relationship between this intolerance and the intolerance of a fairly small segment of the faith. That segment doesn't represent me, and I just don't believe that the solution to intolerance is more intolerance.
    You make a good point.
    I personally plan on continuing to mock religion as much as possible because I think too many people take it too seriously. If your relationship with God is deeply personal, than it shouldn't bother them too much if I crack a joke at a worldly thing. If I spew sarcasm towards a local "youth group" type club, and a member gets highly upset, it shows me that they may be focused on the worldly, human parts of that organization, which isn't supposed to be the point.

    I probably shouldn't have quoted you Dry, because you weren't talking about jokes. It really has become okay to bash religion in a lot of circles. To actually respond to your point, I also plan to continue bashing religious people and practices while still supporting the idea of spirituality. Churches regularly denounce sin and evil, but it seems like there's a clause to that. Churches will denounce sin... as long as it's taking place outside the church. I believe there should be more arguments in church. If someone is asserting an interpretation of a passage that I feel is wrong, and could actually lead to evil thinking, then I should argue with that person. If I am trying to fight evil wherever it is, then I should fight an evil interpretation of the text that I hold dear. Until Christian's with tolerant interpretations of passages stand up to people with intolerant interpretations of those same passages, I don't know if Christianity deserves my respect.

  5. #20

    Re: Let's Discuss Religion.

    Quote Originally Posted by dryrunguy View Post
    Re: the point about religion and science, I don't see the two as mutually exclusive. I've never understood why the two can't mutually coexist. Religion can't explain everything, and neither can science.
    I've never believed they're mutually exclusive, either.

    I think what bothers me is just how PC it has become to diss religion, Christianity in particular. Christianity is unfairly targeted by society as a whole. We never hear about the wonderful things that Christian institutions, such as churches, are doing. We only hear about pro-life rallies, abortion clinic bombings, votes for Prop 8, and ministers who have sex with gay prostitutes. Period. And the level of intolerance of Christianity, in spite of the fact that it's a very diverse faith, seems to be growing by the day. And there seems to be a direct relationship between this intolerance and the intolerance of a fairly small segment of the faith. That segment doesn't represent me, and I just don't believe that the solution to intolerance is more intolerance.
    Well, speaking personally, my own disdain is for that small segment. I don't have any problem with what I'm sure is a strong 80+% of the Christian community, although I don't really like calling it "Christian", because there are too many denominational differences. To me, calling yourself "Christian" is doctrinally meaningless, although of course there are core beliefs that hold the entire Christian community (Catholic, Orthodox, Protestant, Coptic, etc.) together. But my gut reaction to this is always a bemusement that the majority segment of the population feels somehow persecuted by the minority. After all, in public opinion polls it's always the hypothetical agnostic or atheist candidate who would have the hardest time getting elected President-- lower even than a Muslim or homosexual candidate (to name two segments of the population who face open, legalistic discrimination in the United States). To me that doesn't point in any way, shape or form to a national intolerance of the Christian community.

    I do think it's unfortunate that the fundamentalist radicals have had the loudest voices on the national stage of late. I don't see it as good for the country or for the faith. But to me, when I think disparaging things about the religious right, I'm not thinking of the liberal/mainline Episcopalian or Methodist or UU church down the street. I think reasonable people are aware that Christians are a diverse group, and most people probably don't conflate abortion clinic bombers with "all of Christianity".

    And unfortunately, the "all bad news all the time" thing doesn't apply only to news about the religious communities in the U.S. I mean, the news is almost all bad news all the time. Somehow, the good news isn't worth reporting, but that's not a phenomenon exclusive to religious action, so I don't really see that as a valid complaint of intolerance. I do, however, see it as a valid complaint of a media obsessed with scurrilousness. Yeah, the good works of religious organizations (of any creed) should get more attention. So should the good works of secular NGOs and community groups all over the world. They don't. C'est la vie, but I don't think it's because the world hates community groups, NGOs, or religion, I think it's just because people love a train wreck.

    (I really wanted to say more, but my train of thought seems to have arrived at its last station. )
    Last edited by pamchenko; 11-12-2008 at 01:47 PM.
    B*tch, please

  6. #21

    Re: Let's Discuss Religion.

    Quote Originally Posted by Foxykhat View Post
    Right now I think it's best if I just move along with regards to this thred.

    Maybe one day I'll stop by and say...

    Ah forget it

    Foxy
    Join the party! I can't promise you that I'll respect your opinion, but I promise that I will listen. If I have to hear an opinion vastly different than mine, I would much rather hear it from you, someone I respect, than anyone else.

  7. #22
    Grand Slam Champion jjnow's Avatar
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    Re: Let's Discuss Religion.

    My mother's family is composed mostly of very conservative Protestants of varying denominations. They interpret the Bible literally. My grandfather was named after the dude who lived inside of a whale's small intestine.

    My dad's family was half-nothing/half-Jewish.

    The Judaic philosophies always resonated more with me, and I certainly never bought into the bizarre Christian eschatology.

    But I'm not a religious person. I believe, I'm just not sure in what. The concept of no higher power is more inconceivable to me than all the stories of any Bible.
    Blue Steel

  8. #23
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    Re: Let's Discuss Religion.

    I went to (Presbyterian) church with my folks this past weekend. I REALLY like their Pastor, and should I meet the man I want to marry, I'll ask him to perform the ceremony, just like he did for my sister, when she met her husband.

    Anyhow, this past week, he took on a rather controversial series called "That's A Good Question". The foundation comes from this :

    Believers should acknowledge and wrestle with doubts – not only their own but their friends and neighbors’. It is no longer sufficient to hold beliefs just because you inherited them. Only if you struggle long and hard with objections to your faith will you be able to provide grounds for your beliefs to skeptics, including yourself, that are plausible rather than ridiculous or offensive. -- Timothy Keller from “The Reason for God”
    Sunday's sermon was titled "Why Are We Here?", and addressed the question of whether God created the universe and everything in it in 7 days, or is evolution what happened?
    The (grossly oversimplified) argument he made is that the Bible is a document that addresses more the Why than the How of creation.

    So, just because it's been proven (to many people's satisfaction) that the earth and the creatures on it came about over a period much longer than 7 days, that doesn't mean that Love God and Love Your Neighbor As Yourself aren't still important and guiding principles.

    This really spoke to me.
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  9. #24

    Re: Let's Discuss Religion.

    Quote Originally Posted by Scotty View Post
    So, just because it's been proven (to many people's satisfaction) that the earth and the creatures on it came about over a period much longer than 7 days, that doesn't mean that Love God and Love Your Neighbor As Yourself aren't still important and guiding principles.
    I think the reason I personally have so much difficulty with finding a religious community that suits is me is because I've read so many different religious texts, and they really all do boil down to the same thing. Love your neighbour. Honour your family. Do unto others. Give of yourself. Love [whichever higher power you believe in]. For me, seeing so much commonality in world religion has made going to church-- where there is an exclusive body of belief surrounding those principles-- really hard because I don't see the importance of the detail. Like Jessie, I believe in God, I'm just not sure where my details are, or if I have details. I find beauty in the philosophy of religion, but the exclusivity of particular beliefs (any particular beliefs, this is not Christianity-exclusive) makes me uncomfortable.
    Last edited by pamchenko; 11-12-2008 at 02:06 PM.
    B*tch, please

  10. #25

    Re: Let's Discuss Religion.

    Quote Originally Posted by pamchenko View Post
    I think the reason I personally have so much difficulty with finding a religious community that suits is me is because I've read so many different religious texts, and they really all do boil down to the same thing. Love your neighbour. Honour your family. Do unto others. Give of yourself. Love [whichever higher power you believe in]. For me, seeing so much commonality in world religion has made going to church-- where there is an exclusive body of belief surrounding those principles-- is really hard because I don't see the importance of the detail. Like Jessie, I believe in God, I'm just not sure where my details are, or if I have details. I find beauty in the philosophy of religion, but the exclusivity of particular beliefs (any particular beliefs, this is not Christianity-exclusive) makes me uncomfortable.
    Nicely said. I took a class called Living Faiths where we studied 7 different religions and eventually discussed the similarites between all of them. My final essay was about "The Golden Rule." It's found in almost every religion.

  11. #26

    Re: Let's Discuss Religion.

    Bible: Spiritual/ethical guidebook. Not to be taken literally.

    Jesus: Great spiritual leader. I waffle between whether he is literally the son of
    God or merely the embodiment of Christrian spirituality

    Afterlife: Yes, probably exists in another dimension.

    Church: Occasional attendee, but my skin crawls if there is heavy judgment of others that don't "fit."

  12. #27
    Grand Slam Champion missinandre's Avatar
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    Re: Let's Discuss Religion.

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie02123 View Post
    Join the party! I can't promise you that I'll respect your opinion, but I promise that I will listen. If I have to hear an opinion vastly different than mine, I would much rather hear it from you, someone I respect, than anyone else.
    Ha. Charlie, I CAN promise to "respect" your opinion, but I can't promise I'll agree with it!
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  13. #28
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    Re: Let's Discuss Religion.

    My history: raised catholic through confirmation and basically forced to go to church until I moved out from "under their roof". Rarely went after that and now I never go unless I have to. My brother was an alter boy who was part of the church settlement against James Porter and he has since spent all of his litigation earnings and we taxpayers all pay for his medications and housing as he is a destitute alcoholic deadbeat dad. I am not saying the church or religion caused this because he may as well been the same man without the child rape but who knows what it did to him? He has caused enough harm of his own so I have lost my ability to sympathize/empathize with him. My parents remained loyal to the church as eucharistic ministers and partcipants until my dad's illness and death this April. Their parish priest left a bad taste in my mouth even at the funeral mass. He kept calling my dad "Robert" and he was "Bob" to the entire community and member of the church for 50 plus yrs. Part of his eulogy was about forgiveness and the priest told this bizarre tale of a neighbor forgiving andother neighbor who had molested his son and daughter. It was SERIOUSLY weird and many friends of mine told me how inappropriate they thought the service was at the post celebration and later that week. These tales along with my partner's mother being "born again" and how psychotic she has been vs. us for the past 13 yrs had made religion not very popular with me. So, after digresssing with these personal stories I would say.....

    Religion is not for me AT ALL but I respect anyone's right to believe and practice whatever they choose. I took a course in college on Eastern religions and Taoism was probably the closest to what I could relate to with Buddhism a close second. I do not believe in an afterlife, as much as I would like to with my dad and sister dying within 6 weeks of one another this yr. I cannot envision them dancing with the stars together but I know lots of my family does and if they are doing waltzes above then rock on man.

    I do agree with Dry that religion bashing is popular but not so sure it is just mostly catholic bashing. I also think that atheism bashing is very popular and a casual conversation in the workplace and/or the last election clearly shows that people will look down on you if you don't believe in God.

  14. #29
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    Re: Let's Discuss Religion.

    My history: When I was about 4, my mother joined some freaky country church and got swept away by the spirit of Jesus. From that age to the time I was 17, we went to church for 2+ hours a stretch every Sunday morning, Sunday night, Wednesday night, and Thursday night. Once I turned 10, this was expanded to 3 weeks of church camp every August, and several weekend "youth retreats" during the course of the year. Once at camp, I counted, and we prayed approximately 27 times a day.

    When I was 15, I started to ask questions about stuff they would teach, and was branded with an "attitude problem," so eventually I just decided to develop one. I had a camp counselor slap me one time when I sarcastically said I was going to leave camp if they broke out the snakes during a particularly fervent sermon (they got fired for that, though). I haven't darkened the door of a church since I moved out of the house; I figure if I haven't logged enough hours there to save my immortal soul then they can have it.

    Bible: Zzzzzzzzzz
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  15. #30
    Grand Slam Champion missinandre's Avatar
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    Re: Let's Discuss Religion.

    Quote Originally Posted by tennisbrp View Post
    My history: raised catholic through confirmation and basically forced to go to church until I moved out from "under their roof". Rarely went after that and now I never go unless I have to. My brother was an alter boy who was part of the church settlement against James Porter and he has since spent all of his litigation earnings and we taxpayers all pay for his medications and housing as he is a destitute alcoholic deadbeat dad. I am not saying the church or religion caused this because he may as well been the same man without the child rape but who knows what it did to him? He has caused enough harm of his own so I have lost my ability to sympathize/empathize with him. My parents remained loyal to the church as eucharistic ministers and partcipants until my dad's illness and death this April. Their parish priest left a bad taste in my mouth even at the funeral mass. He kept calling my dad "Robert" and he was "Bob" to the entire community and member of the church for 50 plus yrs. Part of his eulogy was about forgiveness and the priest told this bizarre tale of a neighbor forgiving andother neighbor who had molested his son and daughter. It was SERIOUSLY weird and many friends of mine told me how inappropriate they thought the service was at the post celebration and later that week. These tales along with my partner's mother being "born again" and how psychotic she has been vs. us for the past 13 yrs had made religion not very popular with me. So, after digresssing with these personal stories I would say.....

    Religion is not for me AT ALL but I respect anyone's right to believe and practice whatever they choose. I took a course in college on Eastern religions and Taoism was probably the closest to what I could relate to with Buddhism a close second. I do not believe in an afterlife, as much as I would like to with my dad and sister dying within 6 weeks of one another this yr. I cannot envision them dancing with the stars together but I know lots of my family does and if they are doing waltzes above then rock on man.

    I do agree with Dry that religion bashing is popular but not so sure it is just mostly catholic bashing. I also think that atheism bashing is very popular and a casual conversation in the workplace and/or the last election clearly shows that people will look down on you if you don't believe in God.
    tennisbrp....SO sorry to hear about your brother
    ROGER / RAFA FINAL 2010 US OPEN!!!!!

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