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Thread: Most religious groups in USA have lost ground, survey finds

  1. #71
    Educator BulletWounD's Avatar
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    Re: Most religious groups in USA have lost ground, survey finds

    Quote Originally Posted by dclxvinoise View Post
    Well, that's really kind of weak, don't you think? Perhaps that's one of the reasons why fewer people are religious in this country.
    I don't think it's weak. It's perfectly in line with how we create our perception of reality. It's a chain of trust which is linked all the way back to those who either experienced it directly, were completely delusional, or were extremely good liars. There's also probably a lot of myth mixed in. I personally think it's more likely that they were telling the truth rather than lying or delusional as they would never have won the trust of their followers otherwise. The only thing that is inherently lacking is independent verifiability. How could one ever prove that Jesus healed the sick or walked on water 2000 years ago?

    I must confess that as an inherently untrusting individual I would probably not believe in God had it not been for direct experiences I had with him (not that I can prove it to you).

    Now, back to the ethic of reciprocity or the golden rule. What would the world be like if everybody tried their very best to follow that rule?



    It would be Utopia. Quite literally, it would be Heaven on Earth. This is God's Law and it is perfect. Yet we continue to stubbornly perpetuate the myth that the ends justify the means and that greed is a virtue. We continue to believe that we are smarter than God and his prophets. Instead of forgiveness, we demand revenge! What law are we following? Not God's Law, but the Law of Satan!: "Do unto others as they do unto you."
    Last edited by BulletWounD; 03-11-09 at 04:22 PM.

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    Re: Most religious groups in USA have lost ground, survey finds

    Quote Originally Posted by BulletWounD View Post
    I don't think it's weak. It's perfectly in line with how we create our perception of reality. It's a chain of trust which is linked all the way back to those who either experienced it directly, were completely delusional, or were extremely good liars. There's also probably a lot of myth mixed in. I personally think it's more likely that they were telling the truth rather than lying or delusional as they would never have won the trust of their followers otherwise. The only thing that is inherently lacking is independent verifiability. How could one ever prove that Jesus healed the sick or walked on water 2000 years ago?
    I can understand how trust may be enough for some. However, it isn't enough for me. I crave more substance than mere trust.

    I must confess that as an inherently untrusting individual I would probably not believe in God had it not been for direct experiences I had with him (not that I can prove it to you).
    And I wouldn't expect you to. There hasn't been a single person who has been able to undeniably prove their own direct experiences with God and I wouldn't expect it to start happening.

    Now, back to the ethic of reciprocity or the golden rule. What would the world be like if everybody tried their very best to follow that rule?

    It's impossible, but even hypothetically, it sounds too boring to me. Individuality is far too wonderful.

    It would be Utopia. Quite literally, it would be Heaven on Earth. This is God's Law and it is perfect. Yet we continue to stubbornly perpetuate the myth that the ends justify the means and that greed is a virtue. We continue to believe that we are smarter than God and his prophets. Instead of forgiveness, we demand revenge! What law are we following? Not the God's Law, but the Law of Satan!: "Do unto others as they do unto you."
    And what is wrong with that? The idea that one should love everyone is foolish to me. "If a man smite you on one cheek, smash him on the other!" It's interesting that you bring up Laveyan Satanism, because I'm actually a member of the Church of Satan.

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    Re: Most religious groups in USA have lost ground, survey finds

    Quote Originally Posted by dclxvinoise View Post
    I can understand how trust may be enough for some. However, it isn't enough for me. I crave more substance than mere trust.
    Trust is what shapes your reality. First and foremost, you trust your power of observation, though it is subject to folly. Then you trust people you perceive as trustworthy. For instance, you don't need a particle accelerator to believe is sub-atomic particles, though you can never prove it yourself.

    It's impossible, but even hypothetically, it sounds too boring to me. Individuality is far too wonderful.
    Where did I say you would have to sacrifice your individuality? God created us as as individuals and there's no way to sacrifice individuality without biologically turning us into ants. Giving is certainly not inconsistent with individuality.

    And what is wrong with that? The idea that one should love everyone is foolish to me. "If a man smite you on one cheek, smash him on the other!" It's interesting that you bring up Laveyan Satanism, because I'm actually a member of the Church of Satan.
    It perpetuates a cycle of injustice and evil. The only way to break the cycle is to follow the golden rule.

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    Re: Most religious groups in USA have lost ground, survey finds

    Quote Originally Posted by BulletWounD View Post
    Trust is what shapes your reality. First and foremost, you trust your power of observation, though it is subject to folly. Then you trust people you perceive as trustworthy. For instance, you don't need a particle accelerator to believe is sub-atomic particles, though you can never prove it yourself.
    I don't even completely trust my perception. I think it's dangerous to believe anything without any question. One should be willing to question everything.

    Where did I say you would have to sacrifice your individuality? God created us as as individuals and there's no way to sacrifice individuality without biologically turning us into ants. Giving is certainly not inconsistent with individuality.
    I realize you didn't say it. I just think that there would be a certain amount of individuality lost if everyone followed the golden rule.

    It perpetuates a cycle of injustice and evil. The only way to break the cycle is to follow the golden rule.
    Perhaps, if you believe in the concept of absolute evil. I personally don't. Evil is a subjective term. And how exactly does it perpetuate a cycle of injustice and evil?

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    Re: Most religious groups in USA have lost ground, survey finds

    Quote Originally Posted by dclxvinoise View Post
    I don't even completely trust my perception. I think it's dangerous to believe anything without any question. One should be willing to question everything.
    Agreed.


    I realize you didn't say it. I just think that there would be a certain amount of individuality lost if everyone followed the golden rule.
    How so?

    Perhaps, if you believe in the concept of absolute evil. I personally don't. Evil is a subjective term. And how exactly does it perpetuate a cycle of injustice and evil?
    Evil is only subjective in the context of people not following the golden rule to begin with. For instance, there would be no need for a justice system if everybody tried their best to follow the golden rule. What ever minor transgressions they make would be between them and God.

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    Re: Most religious groups in USA have lost ground, survey finds

    Quote Originally Posted by BulletWounD View Post
    How so?
    Because it implies conformity and a lot of the time conformity leaves little room for individuality in my opinion.

    Evil is only subjective in the context of people not following the golden rule to begin with. For instance, there would be no need for a justice system if everybody tried their best to follow the golden rule. What ever minor transgressions they make would be between them and God.
    Every single person has their own personal definition of what is or isn't evil. For me personally, I think evil is too broad and simplistic a term to describe anything. In order for absolute evil to exist, everyone would have to agree. As far as the golden rule, you are assuming that Christianity is the correct religion. And as you said earlier, this is based on trust. I just think trust is a little too flimsy.

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    Re: Most religious groups in USA have lost ground, survey finds

    Quote Originally Posted by BulletWounD View Post
    The only way to break the cycle is to follow the golden rule.
    The Golden Rule is an impossible standard for humans to achieve. It would require omnipotence and castration from emotion and desire to be achieved in the utopian manner you propose. You must consider that humans are limited. We are irrational, inconsistant, fallible beings due to our emotions, passions instincts, mortality, and slow learning capabilities.
    If you believe in the Supernatural then you can become a millionaire!

    Questioning or criticizing another's core beliefs is inadvertently perceived as offensive and rude.

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    Re: Most religious groups in USA have lost ground, survey finds

    Quote Originally Posted by dclxvinoise View Post
    Because it implies conformity and a lot of the time conformity leaves little room for individuality in my opinion.
    Again, how so?

    Every single person has their own personal definition of what is or isn't evil. For me personally, I think evil is too broad and simplistic a term to describe anything. In order for absolute evil to exist, everyone would have to agree. As far as the golden rule, you are assuming that Christianity is the correct religion. And as you said earlier, this is based on trust. I just think trust is a little too flimsy.
    Everything is based on trust and Christianity is not the only religion which teaches us to follow the golden rule. Are you telling me you can't distinguish right from wrong? Wouldn't you agree that walking up to someone and smashing them in the face is wrong?
    Last edited by BulletWounD; 03-11-09 at 05:02 PM.

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    Re: Most religious groups in USA have lost ground, survey finds

    Quote Originally Posted by scourge99 View Post
    The Golden Rule is an impossible standard for humans to achieve. It would require omnipotence and castration from emotion and desire to be achieved in the utopian manner you propose. You must consider that humans are limited. We are irrational, inconsistant, fallible beings due to our emotions, passions instincts, mortality, and slow learning capabilities.
    No. The only thing it requires is self-control. We must use our higher mind (that which distinguishes us from animals) to control our behavior.

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    Re: Most religious groups in USA have lost ground, survey finds

    Quote Originally Posted by BulletWounD View Post
    Again, how so?
    Are you serious? How can you not see how that would take away a certain amount of individuality from a person?

    Everything is based on trust and Christianity is not the only religion which teaches us to follow the golden rule. Are you telling me you can't distinguish right from wrong? Wouldn't you agree that walking up to someone and smashing them in the face is wrong?
    Yes, I believe morality is subjective too.

    No, I wouldn't agree with that. It's neither wrong or right. The only thing one can say with a fair amount of certainty is that there are consequences for ones actions. If I were to hit someone and it were completely unwarranted I should certainly expect to be hit back or at least face some kind of consequences for my actions.

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