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Thread: What is most responsible for Christianity's failure in the West?

  1. #131
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    Re: What is most responsible for Christianity's failure in the West?

    What is most responsible for Christianity's failure in the West?-105-problem-some-christians-jpg

    This certainly doesn't help.
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    Re: What is most responsible for Christianity's failure in the West?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paschendale View Post
    What is most responsible for Christianity's failure in the West?-105-problem-some-christians-jpg

    This certainly doesn't help.
    This is like every privileged group ever. Hahaha.

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    Re: What is most responsible for Christianity's failure in the West?

    The progressive view largely, although the self defeating nature of some of its wars in the social arena shoulder some of the responsibility as well.

  4. #134
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    Re: What is most responsible for Christianity's failure in the West?

    Quote Originally Posted by Einzige View Post
    Where by "failure" I mean its gradual displacement from the center of the moral and intellectual life of they civilization.

    To define these options bit:

    Poll option one is the conservative answer. It holds that Christian belief would be as predominant today in the West as it was in 1913 if it were not for the conscious, deliberate machinations of a small group of secularizing elites promoting atheism and amorality.

    My thoughts: This is the least tenable of the four options I've provided, in part because 'the elite' in the West has never been anti-Christian. To be sure, they are opposed to fundamentalism, but only because it is at odds with liberal-capitalist notions of 'progress'. The invocation of the defense of Occidental Christianity during the Cold War is proof-positive that Western elites want generally to employ Christianity to their own ends.

    Poll option two is the liberal answer, the "secularization thesis". According to this theory, Christianity is doomed to deplacement, as are all religions eventually, by the gradual and wholly unconscious forces of mental and mechanical progress.

    My thoughts: This is almost as problematic a solution to the question posed as the first answer. It assumes a great deal of the structure of Christian ideology - progress towards a "new Heaven and a new Earth", an eventual end to history, and so on - while draining it of its metaphysical content.

    Option three is what I call the Nietzscheite option: Christianity has failed because it is inherently flawed. It can exist only among theoppressed, and as soon as a people become strong enough to shirk ofc a collective sense of inferiority it will abolish the correspondent notimon of individual existential guilt that informs Christianity.

    My opinion: This is the view I hold closest to. Christianity, in a very real sense, requires weakness to thrive (it is little wonder that Christianity is ascendant today only in the impoverished Third World nations of sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America, and the American South). A strong people wants a religion of strength and severity.

    Option four: The Marxist solution. Christianity belongs at the historical latest to the age of feudalism; the rising capitalists of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries sought initially to do away with it altogether, as a reminder of the hated age of the nobility, and retain it only as a matter of practicalg politica expedience.

    My opinion: This is superficially similar to the liberal answer, relying on notions of deterministic 'progress', but avoids some of its problems by acknowledging the fact of necessity and human action in historical processes, rather than ascribing all history to forces largely independent of men.
    None of the above really although the "secularization thesis" is probably the closest to my opinion.

    In short, Christianity has begun to outlive its usefulness in certain respects. The Christian Church used to be one of the main, if not the only, sources of education. People (men) who wanted learn studied in the Church. However, as books/newspapers/et al. started to become more "democratized", the Church started losing its monopoly on knowledge and education and so it outlived its usefulness in that respect.

    The promise of salvation offered by Christianity has also begun to outlive its usefulness in the West as people now have more opportunities to get work and live a comfortable live. When the West was a hellhole and the "masses" were living like crap and plagues were all over the place and working standards didn't exist and so on, those "masses" found solace in the promise of a better life after they died - the promise that those who were discarded on Earth would be rewarded in Heaven. Now, it's a lot easier to get rewards on Earth so Christianity has again begun outliving its usefulness as a means of dealing with reality.

    There's also the issue of people becoming meaningfully aware of different religions. In the past, populations were primarily confined to themselves. There wasn't the amount of cross-cultural interaction that we have today and, as a result, there wasn't much room for critical thought or reason to engage in it as everybody just believed the same thing anyway. Now, many people look around all the competing religious theories and see that as evidence that Christianity isn't as necessarily reliable as they might have thought.

  5. #135
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    Re: What is most responsible for Christianity's failure in the West?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cephus View Post
    Apparently, according to theists, God gets to rape 13-year old girls. Go figure.
    That's certainly a possibility. But remember, everybody on this site...is very likely to be 100% human. We do know that much. Well, according to the label that we gave ourselves. As far as a supernatural entity possessing our bodies. Personally, I don't buy it. Never have. And not even a little bit.

    It's odd to me that people here think that they were born religious...or of some denomination. That must be true...because natives in the Amazon apparently believe that too. Their Sun god is as real to them as Jesus is to some here. The Sun god picked them. And Jesus picked other folks...go figure?

  6. #136
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    Re: What is most responsible for Christianity's failure in the West?

    Quote Originally Posted by Removable Mind View Post
    That's certainly a possibility. But remember, everybody on this site...is very likely to be 100% human. We do know that much. Well, according to the label that we gave ourselves. As far as a supernatural entity possessing our bodies. Personally, I don't buy it. Never have. And not even a little bit.

    It's odd to me that people here think that they were born religious...or of some denomination. That must be true...because natives in the Amazon apparently believe that too. Their Sun god is as real to them as Jesus is to some here. The Sun god picked them. And Jesus picked other folks...go figure?
    No, nobody is born religious, nobody pops out of the womb believing in any gods. They have to be indoctrinated into that belief when they are young and gullible. It doesn't matter where that kind of indoctrination is done, here or in the Amazon, it's still forcing a belief for which there isn't a shred of objective evidence on a child who doesn't know any better and isn't able to refuse.

    That's child abuse as far as I'm concerned.
    There is nothing demonstrably true that religion can provide the world that cannot be achieved more rationally through entirely secular means.

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    Re: What is most responsible for Christianity's failure in the West?

    I think a major reason that religion is failing or declining is because being a Christian is hard to define and put into daily practice. I think one reason for that is wrong use of the Bible. I believe that the Bible contains cultural elements and what we are seeing as we read the Bible is how people believed and acted in their culture and their understanding of God. They defined Christianity based in large measure on Jewish teachings and on Jesus's "you have heard but I say" updates. The greatest difference I see was the emphasis that Jesus placed om love.

    I think that we are called on to redefine for action Christianity today. We should first look to see how others reacted to God's input in their lives and the love they felt He has for humanity. We should then seek answers for today based on our current state of knowledge. Two of many possible examples. We should take responsibility for our impact on the climate and possible global warming
    based on the best scientific evidence and not assume that God will protect us from ourselves. In thinking about homosexuality we should make every effort to determine if it is a choice and not just assume it is sinful. Whaever the evidence shows or how it is interpreted IMO we should not judge homosexuality but leave that to God.

    My main point is that I think we should ask God to guide us in our thinking and actions and not let others who came along several centuries ago do our thinking for us.

  8. #138
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    Re: What is most responsible for Christianity's failure in the West?

    Quote Originally Posted by Einzige View Post
    Where by "failure" I mean its gradual displacement from the center of the moral and intellectual life of they civilization.

    To define these options bit:

    Poll option one is the conservative answer. It holds that Christian belief would be as predominant today in the West as it was in 1913 if it were not for the conscious, deliberate machinations of a small group of secularizing elites promoting atheism and amorality.

    My thoughts: This is the least tenable of the four options I've provided, in part because 'the elite' in the West has never been anti-Christian. To be sure, they are opposed to fundamentalism, but only because it is at odds with liberal-capitalist notions of 'progress'. The invocation of the defense of Occidental Christianity during the Cold War is proof-positive that Western elites want generally to employ Christianity to their own ends.

    Poll option two is the liberal answer, the "secularization thesis". According to this theory, Christianity is doomed to deplacement, as are all religions eventually, by the gradual and wholly unconscious forces of mental and mechanical progress.

    My thoughts: This is almost as problematic a solution to the question posed as the first answer. It assumes a great deal of the structure of Christian ideology - progress towards a "new Heaven and a new Earth", an eventual end to history, and so on - while draining it of its metaphysical content.

    Option three is what I call the Nietzscheite option: Christianity has failed because it is inherently flawed. It can exist only among theoppressed, and as soon as a people become strong enough to shirk ofc a collective sense of inferiority it will abolish the correspondent notimon of individual existential guilt that informs Christianity.

    My opinion: This is the view I hold closest to. Christianity, in a very real sense, requires weakness to thrive (it is little wonder that Christianity is ascendant today only in the impoverished Third World nations of sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America, and the American South). A strong people wants a religion of strength and severity.

    Option four: The Marxist solution. Christianity belongs at the historical latest to the age of feudalism; the rising capitalists of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries sought initially to do away with it altogether, as a reminder of the hated age of the nobility, and retain it only as a matter of practicalg politica expedience.

    My opinion: This is superficially similar to the liberal answer, relying on notions of deterministic 'progress', but avoids some of its problems by acknowledging the fact of necessity and human action in historical processes, rather than ascribing all history to forces largely independent of men.
    I actually think Option Two is very persuasive as a good explanation, or at least a slightly modified version of that option. The explosion of knowledge and scientific progress that began in the 19th Century does not just coincidentally line up with the appearance of the wave of rationalist and secular thinkers of the Enlightenment. Both the sudden possibility that science could offer explanations to things which were previously the realm of the spiritual and the tantalizing prospect that technology could build a new Jerusalem on Earth were powerful motivators in hewing at the foundations of Christianities popularity. It created a plausible alternative to the worldview offered by Christianity and very slowly (or rapidly depending on your perspective) has created an alternative to most religions in general. Both the increasing knowledge that we have gained about biology, cosmology, physics, etc and the incredible power of our technology has made the basis of religion far less compelling. As our knowledge increases and our technological reach grows I suspect that religion will continue to retreat.

  9. #139
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    Re: What is most responsible for Christianity's failure in the West?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rainman05 View Post
    I made a long and extremely thorough post on the prophecies. the jest of it is:
    there are a lot of conflicting prophecies about jesus and you can put them in 3 categories.

    1. The detailed ones that told us about where he was going to be born and how he would be identified (of the line of David and born in Bethleem, etc).
    2. The peace-loving ones where they told us how he would heal the world and bring peace..
    3. The ones that aren't peace-loving that told us that he would strike down the enemies of Israel and establish Israel as the greatest nation, enslaving others etc.

    So #2 and #3 don't really mix and it does seem to be written by bipolar jews who wanted either a hippy or a mass murderer. Maybe depending on how they were feeling about the Egyptians, Baylonians or what other nation they hated at each particular time in their history.

    Needless to say, Jesus didn't bother much with #3, partially fulfilled #2 and was right on #1. The closest he got to #3 was when he said mean words at the rabbi order "den of vipers" because they were as such.

    So yeah.

    Again. Simple cause-and-effect relationship.

    You can't have a Christian God until you have Christ. If you don't have Christ in ancient Egypt, Sodoma and gomorra, the flood... so yeah. etc. You do have a Jewish God.
    Again, I still don't understand what you think I got wrong. The God who unleashed the plagues in the Old Testament is the same God that Jesus claimed to be. If you're saying it's not the same God, then that means you don't believe in the story of creation, adam and eve, and all the rest of it. Or is it only the plagues that was a "different" God, but all the stuff you happen to like was your God?

    Sorry dude, your line of reason is not only nonsensical from a non-religious perspective, but it's not even consistent with Christian beliefs. Jews and Christians believe in the same "base" God, it's whether Jesus was actually his son that they disagree on (and therefore whether we should care what Jesus said).
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  10. #140
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    Re: What is most responsible for Christianity's failure in the West?

    Quote Originally Posted by apdst View Post
    Actually, the symbol of Christianity is a crucifix.

    No, al Qaeda is definitely a Muslim terrorist group. Religious violence is their agenda. Where as with the Klowns, racial violence is their agenda.

    There's a difference, believe it, or not.
    The ku klux klan is definitley is a christian organization. Only christians can join so its a christian organization.
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