View Poll Results: What is your religion?

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  • Christian (Protestant, Catholic, Orthodox, or other)

    64 42.11%
  • Agnostic

    24 15.79%
  • Atheist

    37 24.34%
  • Muslim (Sunni, Shi'a, Sufi, or other)

    3 1.97%
  • Buddhist

    4 2.63%
  • Hindu

    1 0.66%
  • Jewish

    3 1.97%
  • Eastern Philosophy (Confucian, Taoist, Shinto, etc.)

    1 0.66%
  • Polytheist/Neo-pagan

    2 1.32%
  • Other

    13 8.55%
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Thread: What is your religious denomination?

  1. #161
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    Re: What is your religious denomination?

    Taoist. Been casual about it lately though.
    "Advocates of capitalism are apt to appeal to the sacred principles of liberty, which are embodied in one maxim: the fortunate must not be restrained in the exercise of tyranny over the unfortunate." - Bertrand Russell

  2. #162
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    Re: What is your religious denomination?

    Raised in a Baptist church and followed all of the "rules" and "guidelines." Went to Faith-Based Summer camp every year and thought I was saved at the age of 12.......I was wrong. Converted to an open and argumentative atheist in high school and continued to practice atheism throughout my college years. Even vowed that I'd "never set foot in a church again" nor would I be married in one. Everything began to change in 1990, when I served in Operation Desert Storm. Some things happened that caused me to begin to question my lack of faith........too difficult to talk about right now.

    I still came back an atheist........simply believing that a lot of things that I'd experienced were just coincidence.

    I truly gave my life over to Christ after the birth of my first child. Like X-Factor said........the older I get.......the more mature my walk in Faith and my walk with with Christ......the more I've realized that my God is real and does reveal his will to me in so many ways. The true walk of Christian faith requires, patience, sacrifice, and spiritual/emotional maturity. I now know that God will only reveal his will to those who truly seek it.............. Christ made that connection a possibility. Those who haven't experienced it, have failed to make the connection I believe. I believe that it is not until we're willing to accept this that we can truly experience God's will.

    Bottom line is, I didn't truly become a "born-again" Christian until age 28....and my life has never been the same. So many things have fallen into place for me since, and I am truly blessed. I suppose that I would classify myself as a non-denominational Christian...........but I do know that I try each day to live my life as close to Christ's Doctrines as I humanly can. More often than not, I come up quite short...........but it's still the goal for which I strive.
    "Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence." - Dr. Carl Sagan

  3. #163
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    Re: What is your religious denomination?

    Quote Originally Posted by brothern View Post
    Well, no, the evidence points to the foundation as political in nature. I'm sure you're familiar with the documentary hypothesis? It can be visually demonstrated here.

    The quick Christian summary: Moses wrote the Torah, per divine inspiration, and was included along with other divine revelations from prophets.

    The historical summary: The linguistic dialect of Hebrew, the terminology used in Hebrew, consistency of statements, narrative flow of the writing, references to other books and the political motives, points to four main sources of the Torah; Jahwist, or J (c. 900 BCE), the Elohist, or E (c. 800 BCE), the Deuteronomist, or D, (c. 600 BCE), and the Priestly source, or P (c. 500 BCE).

    Previous to 1750 BCE there is no evidence of monotheistic Judaism, and relatively all religions in Mesopotamia are polytheistic. In Canaan, modern-day Israel and surrounding area, previous to 1200 BCE, the Canaanite religion was practiced, which we reconstructed from clay tablets in Ugarit, and included El Elyon the father of the other deities. It's in 950-850 BCE where J and E begin recording their separate accounts of the history of the people of Israel. El Elyon makes several appearances, like Deuteronomy 32:8, or in Genesis 12 where it says the Abraham worships El Shaddai or when it mention that Jacob made El Elyon his elohim or primary god of worship. (It's how we know that Abraham, Jacob and Isaac were pagans.) Other Canaanite gods like Ba'al and Asherah (Jeremiah 7:18) make appearances.

    Yahweh in Deuteronomy 2 is the son of El Elyon (revisionists tried to smooth the polytheism over), originates in Edom, the region south of Judah. As a brief comment, Yahweh was considered the god of war (comparison Aries), while Ba'al and Asherah were gods of harvest and fertility, which does explain why the Old Testament tries to exemplify God as being so violent. God mauling children with bears, anyone? From there, like with Jacob and El Shaddai, Yahweh cults begin to form as much as we see in Greek mythology where we have different temples and orders.

    Book and book sources.

    The Yahweh cultists gained a lot of political and religious clout in 750-700 BCE when the Neo-Assyrian Empire invaded the Kingdom of Israel, and forcing an Assyrian mass diaspora of Israelites. Three prophets arose before this invasion - Isaiah, Amos and Hosea - who called for complete devotion to Yahweh as a call for protection. Around the same time, the head priest of Josiah, king of Judah (641609 BC) found a scroll in the Temple in Jerusalem which was later revised into Deuteronomy, but I'm told that most scholars believe it to be a forgery created to centralize religious power by demanding complete dedication to Yahweh, and the rejection of other gods. (Previous to Josiah, most kings had worshiped many gods, instead of just worshiping one the many gods while still recognizing many gods.) This is where D steps in a begins revisions of Joshua, Samuel, Kings, Judges and Exodus to create the idea that Yahweh had always been the God of Judah and the Israelites, and that God vitriolically hated the worship of other Gods.

    When Josiah died, it sets in a turn of events, 610-520BCE, that leads to Nebuchadnezzar II of the Neo-Babylonian Empire capturing Jerusalem and bringing the Hebrew people into Babylon. Jeremiah arises as a prophet, claiming the invasion was a result of the continued worship of non-Yahweh gods. Ezekiel follows as a prophet during the captivity of the Hebrew people, as they are beginning to be absolved into Babylonian culture, and it is during this time that another reaction revision begins to take place. The author P appends Isaiah 2 to the first Isaiah, writes Leviticus, and begins revisions in Exodus, Genesis and Numbers to say El Shaddai, El Elyon and Yahweh were the same God, and inserts stories like Genesis 1, a monotheistic revision of the Babylonian creation story. It's in 600 BCE that the Christian God is created.

    tl;dr - Through various political motives, the Old Testament was revised from the polytheistic worship of gods to a monotheistic religion.

    Sources: Wikipedia, Bible, sources, source.

    From there if you go back and read the Bible after a bit more study, it makes a heck of a lot more sense. Even things such as the Ten Commandments. The first four commandments:

    1. You shall have no other gods before me.
    2. You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God ...
    3. You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.
    4. Observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy, as the Lord your God has commanded you.


    ... is revisiting the holy books of the Hebrews to try to combat polytheism in political/cultural/religious attempts to preserve cultural identity, centralize religious power or gain notoriety. "You shall have no other gods," "shall not make for yourself an image," "I am a jealous God," etc. make so much more sense.
    So you think the purpose of religion was political? Interesting perspective.

  4. #164
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    Re: What is your religious denomination?

    I'm personally a non-denominational Christian. I don't really know how I feel about a literal interpretation of the creation story in the Bible, but I do believe the universe and all it contains was created by God.

    I have wavered at times in my certainty that God exists, but recently I have experience some events which have strengthened my faith.

    I'm a Sophomore in college and consider myself to be fairly well educated, and at very least open to other views and opinions.
    I was a biology major before switching to engineering, and as such, I take it as fact that evolution happens around us all the time, I accept that it is an observed and proven phenomenon which explains many things about the nature of life and the creatures we see on Earth. However, I do not accept Evolution as a origin - that's why I'm still a Christian. I believe that life is simply too complex to have formed spontaneously from inert molecules, and that something was there to start the ball in motion. On a similar note, I'm not really sure where I stand on the idea of man evolving from bacteria, even with a intelligent force moving us along (Theistic Evolution). I prefer to believe that we were created in a form quite similar to what we are right now.

    I have struggled with the concept of Hell, and as such I have settled on a non-literal interpretation of Hell - basically, although I do believe that a place called Hell exists, I don't believe that it is a literal lake of fire.

    I never try to force my beliefs or political stances on others, and I would appreciate it if others would give me the same consideration.

    Anyway, that's my beliefs wrapped up in a nut-shell.
    I'm brand new here (I got tired of dealing with people on sites like reddit.com, and so I decided to find a more courteous forum for political debate), so I figured this would make a good first post.

  5. #165
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    Re: What is your religious denomination?

    Quote Originally Posted by Pr0metheus View Post
    I'm personally a non-denominational Christian. I don't really know how I feel about a literal interpretation of the creation story in the Bible, but I do believe the universe and all it contains was created by God.

    I have wavered at times in my certainty that God exists, but recently I have experience some events which have strengthened my faith.

    I'm a Sophomore in college and consider myself to be fairly well educated, and at very least open to other views and opinions.
    I was a biology major before switching to engineering, and as such, I take it as fact that evolution happens around us all the time, I accept that it is an observed and proven phenomenon which explains many things about the nature of life and the creatures we see on Earth. However, I do not accept Evolution as a origin - that's why I'm still a Christian. I believe that life is simply too complex to have formed spontaneously from inert molecules, and that something was there to start the ball in motion. On a similar note, I'm not really sure where I stand on the idea of man evolving from bacteria, even with a intelligent force moving us along (Theistic Evolution). I prefer to believe that we were created in a form quite similar to what we are right now.

    I have struggled with the concept of Hell, and as such I have settled on a non-literal interpretation of Hell - basically, although I do believe that a place called Hell exists, I don't believe that it is a literal lake of fire.

    I never try to force my beliefs or political stances on others, and I would appreciate it if others would give me the same consideration.

    Anyway, that's my beliefs wrapped up in a nut-shell.
    I'm brand new here (I got tired of dealing with people on sites like reddit.com, and so I decided to find a more courteous forum for political debate), so I figured this would make a good first post.
    Great first post! Welcome!

  6. #166
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    Re: What is your religious denomination?

    Quote Originally Posted by brothern View Post
    You assume that humans were the intending goal or that it was a "planned" process -- that's not how evolution works. Evolution is simply the process by which living organisms respond to the changes in the environment, or put another way, how the environment shapes a population's genetic pool. Think of it like rolling various types of six-sided, eight-sided, twelve-sided, etc. dice. Every time you roll the dice and a number larger than 6 shows up, the dice is cracked in two by the die's natural predator - the hammer - because large numbers are more visible to the hammer. Before long, all the twelve-sided dice go extinct. But on the OTHER side of the world (Australia), a different predator causes all the small rolling dice to die off. You then have two different populations, and hey, maybe one of the populations randomly births a colored die which survives, and the other population is forced by the environment to grow smaller in size. Pretty soon, the big die can't reproduce with the small die **, and once that happens, two different species emerge. There's absolutely no intelligence, design or pre-planning behind it. Just the environment forcing changes in animals.

    ** Like, for example, evolution is why tigers and lions can reproduce to have non-fertile "Ligers" as offspring. Lions and tigers had a common ancestor. But since one lived in India and the other Africa, they were exposed to different environments which cause them to diverge into two different species.
    What Finebead writes makes more sense....intelligent design...IMO.

  7. #167
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    Re: What is your religious denomination?

    Quote Originally Posted by mbig View Post
    False.
    Wrong Premises Galore.
    Theories are Not proven.
    They are confirmed in part or whole and then generally accepted or generally not.
    There is still criticism of some generally accepted theories.

    Evolution has been documented and Confirmed for 150 Years.
    Any number of new sciences or contradictory discoveries Could have rendered it wrong.
    They, of course, haven't, but have only confirmed it.
    ie, Carbon Dating (1949) could have blown it but confirmed it - as does even more recent DNA regression analysis, etc.
    If Any of Millions of fossils were found in the wrong strata could have also blown it, but of course, hasn't.

    People object to the FACT of Evolution, usually because of Religious indoctrination, coupled with [stunningly] poor education which allows it, or is ignored to accommodate the fallacy.
    Most common is to try and exploit/abuse/Misuse the word 'theory'.

    15 Answers to Creationist Nonsense
    Scientific American
    JOHN RENNIE, editor in chief
    June 2002
    Original link expired, can now be found:
    15 Answers
    Shame on America! And 15 Answers to Creationist Nonsense | Yoism
    When it comes to Evolution, Darwinism wins easily over 'Intelligent Design' theory
    I already answered much of your objection in answer to another poster, it is just below.

    Quote Originally Posted by finebead View Post
    You have not read the thread. The question is not "did living organisms change from very simple ones to more complex ones", the question is WHY did that series of changes occur? Was it just a series of accidents, or was an intellect guiding the process. In the physical world, I have never seen "nature" (or an accident if you will) create a little red wagon, or a model T, or a 787; intellect and a plan is required for these inanimate objects to be built. Why would it be different in the world of animate world? We can't explain how life is created from inanimate objects, but we believe life could progress and accidentally build a human being which is infinitely more complex than a 787, without a plan and without an intellect? That is what does not make sense to me. That leaves open the possibility of god, which the atheist seeks to deny.
    Now, on the origin of life, science says this:
    Highly energetic chemistry is thought to have produced a self-replicating molecule around 4 billion years ago
    Evolution - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Simple and profound, it's highly energetic chemistry. We don't know how life began, but we think we know why it progressed from simple to more complex forms without any plan at all. Why is it that with our phenomenal laboratories we can't produce life the way it presumably happened in a muddy hole, with our brain, body of knowledge, and the control we can exert in the lab? Was Natural Selection what caused the progress from simple life forms to more complex, or was the process guided by some plan? Why is it that when we see simple machines we assume an intellect created them? And why should I believe that the most complex entity we know of, the miracle of a human brain, is just the result of a long progression of accidents, building immense complexity without a plan?

    There may not be a god, but I cannot rule it out. If you think you can, have a go, I have not seen it done.

  8. #168
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    Re: What is your religious denomination?

    No. I wasn't answered, I pointed to Your fallacies and answered Them
    Simply stating the opposite is showing an incredible lack of understanding, or more likely, disingenuity
    Let's look AGAIN even closer/more simply contrasted.

    1.
    Quote Originally Posted by finebead
    you lump Darwin with Einstein, and they are not the same. Einstein wrote down the rules of physics, the special and general theories of relativity, and he PROVED them beyond a shadow of a doubt.
    Quote Originally Posted by Scientific American
    ...but the massing evidence from paleontology, genetics, zoology, molecular biology and other fields gradually established evolution's truth beyond reasonable doubt.
    I had even underlined the passages for emphasis/refutation.

    2.
    Quote Originally Posted by finebead
    Newton wrote down his attempt at the rules of physics and they worked for everything that was provable when he wrote them. Einstein went much farther and his extensions were definitively PROVEN
    Quote Originally Posted by Scientific American
    ...No amount of validation changes a Theory into a Law, which is a descriptive generalization about nature. So when scientists talk about the theory of evolution -- or the atomic theory or the theory of relativity, for that matter -- they are NOT expressing reservations about its truth.

    In addition to the theory of evolution, meaning the idea of descent with modification, one may also speak of the FACT of evolution."..."
    3. Everyone except you understands abiogenesis/life's creation/onset is Separate topic.
    3b. (and your main fallacy). Because we don't know YET how that happened is No [good] reason to Fabricate a god, any more that it was when we created, the Lightning, Fire, Sun, Rain, or 10,000 other 'gods as explanations'.
    Last edited by mbig; 02-03-13 at 02:27 PM.
    I'm personally sick of not being able to dunk a basketball because of racism.
    anon

  9. #169
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    Re: What is your religious denomination?

    I have never understood why it is that one if religious must prove all other religions wrong except his own. Or one with no religion has a vendetta to prove all religions wrongs. What harm is done if regardless of what a person’s religion is if he helps other through his religion? A person who believes in creationism isn’t harming anyone else by that belief. What matters is how we go about making this world a better place, how we help our fellow man, not in so much of what religion or none religion we believe in.

    What matters is the peace from within one achieves either by religion or by other means. A man at peace with himself is less likely to attack others, to do harm to other and work to help his fellow human being out, thus making this world a safer and better place.
    This Reform Party member thinks it is high past time that we start electing Americans to congress and the presidency who put America first and their political party further down the line. But for way too long we have been electing Republicans and Democrats who happen to be Americans instead of Americans who happen to be Republicans and Democrats.

  10. #170
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    Re: What is your religious denomination?

    It is interesting that "atheist" and "agnostic" are given as two different options, when "no religion" would be more logical, along with the listed denomonations.

    Personally, I dislike the word "agnostic" - it carries a bunch of vague meanings, including the conviction that God is unknowable (and how, pray tell, can anyone know that?)

    I call myself atheist, because I see no evidence that God or gods do exist. A-theos, no god, until and unless He bothers to present Himself in a verifiable manner.

    Now, I realize that some people who also call themselves atheists - the Soviet-style atheists, for example - do believe fervently that God does not exist, even before giving "god" any kind of definition or attributes. Well, that is not really atheism - that is a mental illness. (And comes usually along with believing in a whole lot of other nonsense - the same Commies a case in point).

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