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  1. #241
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sam Lowry View Post
    I agree with you about the chicken-and-egg problem, but I don't think it's always necessary for revolutionaries to annihilate institutions and beliefs that are associated with old regimes. The American revolutionaries certainly didn't see Christianity as an enemy. In the Russian revolution, I think the difference had a lot to do with the nature of the revolutionary dogma. This is why they were still persecuting Baptists in the 1950s, something that would seem to have little relation to the czars, if not for ideology.
    Well, again, one reason anticlericalism became Bolshevik ideology was their experience that the church in societies like czarist Russia was invariably part and parcel of the regime that their social revolution was aimed at overthrowing, so in their minds no church could ever be really trusted.

    In the American case there was really no social revolution but only a political one. And even in the America of 1776, though there was an established state church of England, there was much, much more religious diversity than in Russia of 1917. The "church" in America was not all on the side of the crown.

  2. #242
    Quote Originally Posted by Sam Lowry View Post
    I may have misunderstood. If so, I guess I don't see the need to single out religion if it's "just another excuse" for bad actions--like atheism or anything else. It also seems that you're ignoring most of the good, which at least in the case of Christianity far outweighs the bad.
    One other thing. When I say just another excuse, I'm saying that without religion most of these things wouldn't happen. What possible reason could there be to be a suicide bomber if there is no afterlife? Why would someone disagree with gays getting married with no religion? What would be the justification to hate someone else be based on? Would there still be abstinence only sex ed classes or a combination? People aren't good because of their religion, likewise they aren't bad because of it either. But if you truly believe that your actions here have no consequences because you can ask for forgiveness, you can rationalize anything. However if you realize that this is your one and only life? Everyday will be more precious than the last.

  3. #243
    Quote Originally Posted by BaylorNINJA View Post
    How bout this get rid of marriage licenses give everyone civil unions and let the church handle marriage this gets rid of government intrusion and the conrtroversy of gay marriage.
    Agree totally. To think that someone who is otherwise straight would just decide one day to choose to be gay and thereby voluntarily "suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune" is ludicrous. Personally believing that God creates you with sexual preference in tow, I can not believe that God then sentences you to hell for something he created, anymore than African-Americans will be punished for being black.

    Although criticized for being simplistic.......the pathway to heaven in my eyes consists of loving and serving your fellow man.

  4. #244
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jellybear View Post
    One other thing. When I say just another excuse, I'm saying that without religion most of these things wouldn't happen. What possible reason could there be to be a suicide bomber if there is no afterlife? Why would someone disagree with gays getting married with no religion? What would be the justification to hate someone else be based on? Would there still be abstinence only sex ed classes or a combination? People aren't good because of their religion, likewise they aren't bad because of it either. But if you truly believe that your actions here have no consequences because you can ask for forgiveness, you can rationalize anything. However if you realize that this is your one and only life? Everyday will be more precious than the last.
    Lennon, is that you?
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  5. #245
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    Quote Originally Posted by bubbadog View Post
    Well, again, one reason anticlericalism became Bolshevik ideology was their experience that the church in societies like czarist Russia was invariably part and parcel of the regime that their social revolution was aimed at overthrowing, so in their minds no church could ever be really trusted.

    In the American case there was really no social revolution but only a political one. And even in the America of 1776, though there was an established state church of England, there was much, much more religious diversity than in Russia of 1917. The "church" in America was not all on the side of the crown.
    It's not just anticlericalism we're talking about, it's anti-religion. Your observation that it was a social revolution is right on the mark. The pursuit of social change through mass violence is exactly what you'd expect from the worst kind of religious fanatics, so we're back to my original point.
    Human beings will be religious one way or another. Either they will be religious about religious things, or they will be religious about political things. Damon Linker

  6. #246
    Quote Originally Posted by lookin4awin View Post
    Agree totally. To think that someone who is otherwise straight would just decide one day to choose to be gay and thereby voluntarily "suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune" is ludicrous. Personally believing that God creates you with sexual preference in tow, I can not believe that God then sentences you to hell for something he created, anymore than African-Americans will be punished for being black.

    Although criticized for being simplistic.......the pathway to heaven in my eyes consists of loving and serving your fellow man.
    Original Sin is a key tenet of Chtistian Theology.

  7. #247
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sam Lowry View Post
    It's not just anticlericalism we're talking about, it's anti-religion. Your observation that it was a social revolution is right on the mark. The pursuit of social change through mass violence is exactly what you'd expect from the worst kind of religious fanatics, so we're back to my original point.
    Well, no, not really, because anti-religion doesn't explain all of the violence that happened in the first 35 years of the USSR's existence. As I said earlier, it explains some of the violence that happens up until the early '20s, when the Bolsheviks were still fighting to gain control over the rest of the country and then consolidate their revolution. The Church not only was inseparably part of the old regime; it fought to maintain that regime.

    But as I said, anti-religion had nothing to do with Stalin's mass starvation policy in the Ukraine in the early 1930s, or his purges of the military. And you'll really have to strain to tie anti-religion to the elimination of so many of Stalin's fellow anti-religionists (and their families) when he killed or exiled most of the old Bolsheviks in the later 1930s.

  8. #248
    Quote Originally Posted by Reinhold Niebear View Post
    Original Sin is a key tenet of Chtistian Theology.
    Is your point that as long as the homosexual remains inactive, then they haven't sinned?

  9. #249
    Quote Originally Posted by quash View Post
    Lennon, is that you?
    Not every aspect of Communism is bad, the U.S.S.R. during its time increased literacy rates above the rest of the world and had tons of people pursuing higher education at universities, however without capitalism (free markets) there were no incentives for people to become innovative, they built technology (Sputnik) but there were no entrepreneurs to spur any economic growth, you will find that most countries are pretty middle of the road between capitalism and communism, you might be surprised that Uganda has a system very much like ours.

  10. #250
    Quote Originally Posted by Reinhold Niebear View Post
    Original Sin is a key tenet of Chtistian Theology.
    Original Sin = Apple
    Genesis = Allegory
    So the Original Sin never occurred, thereby eliminating any need for a Savior.

  11. #251
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jellybear View Post
    One other thing. When I say just another excuse, I'm saying that without religion most of these things wouldn't happen. What possible reason could there be to be a suicide bomber if there is no afterlife? Why would someone disagree with gays getting married with no religion? What would be the justification to hate someone else be based on? Would there still be abstinence only sex ed classes or a combination? People aren't good because of their religion, likewise they aren't bad because of it either. But if you truly believe that your actions here have no consequences because you can ask for forgiveness, you can rationalize anything. However if you realize that this is your one and only life? Everyday will be more precious than the last.
    You should ask the Tamil Tigers.

  12. #252
    Quote Originally Posted by ATL Bear View Post
    You should ask the Tamil Tigers.
    So the possible reason is to win a Civil War? I do not know enough about Sri Lanka to comment very much on their situation.

  13. #253
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jellybear View Post
    Not every aspect of Communism is bad, the U.S.S.R. during its time increased literacy rates above the rest of the world and had tons of people pursuing higher education at universities, however without capitalism (free markets) there were no incentives for people to become innovative, they built technology (Sputnik) but there were no entrepreneurs to spur any economic growth, you will find that most countries are pretty middle of the road between capitalism and communism, you might be surprised that Uganda has a system very much like ours.
    Uh, John Lennon...
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  14. #254
    Quote Originally Posted by quash View Post
    Uh, John Lennon...
    If you can't recognize a few positives from Communism then you either don't know much about it or refuse to look into it, either way I couldn't care less

  15. #255
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jellybear View Post
    If you can't recognize a few positives from Communism then you either don't know much about it or refuse to look into it, either way I couldn't care less
    Wtf are you talking about? Your post in #242 sounded like you were riffing on the John Lennon song "Imagine". So I said "Lennon, is that you?". Lennon the Beatle.
    #ResetTheNet

  16. #256
    Quote Originally Posted by quash View Post
    Wtf are you talking about? Your post in #242 sounded like you were riffing on the John Lennon song "Imagine". So I said "Lennon, is that you?". Lennon the Beatle.
    Well then I misunderstood, people usually like to call Lennon a communist and so I thought u were calling me a communist, my apologies. And now I will lose all credibility by saying I don't like the Beatles :P

  17. #257
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jellybear View Post
    Original Sin = Apple
    Genesis = Allegory
    So the Original Sin never occurred, thereby eliminating any need for a Savior.
    Your logic went off the rails there, ya know.

    First off, the concept of Original Sin is not biblical. The Adam/Eve story is about how all humans sin, it never claimed that people today go to hell because Adam and Eve liked the wrong fruit eons ago.

    Second, it's a pretty blind person who could pretend they were perfect, free form mistakes and guilty of no wrong-doing. We all lie, we all hate, we all say and do thing we know to be wrong. What's worse, even when we try our best not to do wrong, we still do it. That's mentioned in Paul's writings and is a common theme throughout the Bible; even when we want to do right, too often we do not do it, and even though we try not to do wrong, all too often we still do it. That's what is meant by having a 'sinful nature'. It's not God being out to get us, it's God telling us plainly that we need help, and can't get out of this mess on our own.

    A lot of people don't much like the idea that they can't do everything on their own, but if you think about it, we all need help, from other people and yes from God as well. We accept the fact that we need police and fire fighters and doctors, teachers and mechanics and all the other kinds of people who jump in when things fall apart, but some folks can't accept that we have the same needs in our spiritual lives as well.

  18. #258
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jellybear View Post
    See that is the issue I struggle with religion, is it a net good or a net bad? And I just haven't seen enough good to give it that, I feel it is a net bad. I certainly can't create such an extensive list on the positives of religion. Although if we are talking about quiet religion? I'm certainly for that and most should be since it is something that was valued in the Bible. Religion is a private matter.
    Quote Originally Posted by Jellybear View Post
    Also I would certainly challenge you to find just a couple examples of atheism causing some acts such as these. I highly doubt you will. The only "atrocities" are by dictators, and that is a cop out.
    Quote Originally Posted by Jellybear View Post
    One other thing. When I say just another excuse, I'm saying that without religion most of these things wouldn't happen. What possible reason could there be to be a suicide bomber if there is no afterlife? Why would someone disagree with gays getting married with no religion? What would be the justification to hate someone else be based on? Would there still be abstinence only sex ed classes or a combination? People aren't good because of their religion, likewise they aren't bad because of it either. But if you truly believe that your actions here have no consequences because you can ask for forgiveness, you can rationalize anything. However if you realize that this is your one and only life? Everyday will be more precious than the last.
    Most of the examples on your list of irrational and immoral actions are based on what I would call heresy. The same goes for the idea that actions have no consequences because we can ask for forgiveness. A couple of them I don't consider irrational or immoral (concern about moral issues as social issues, opposition to birth control). Still, your question is a fair one--does atheism in whatever form inspire immorality or irrationality? On a societal level, I think it does. We've all been influenced by post-modernism, a philosophy that Marxists developed after realizing that their political revolution was not especially popular among the proletariat whom they were promising to liberate. Part of the agenda was to encourage anything that undermined bourgeois values such as chastity, thrift, temperance, etc. You can see this reflected in various grotesque and irrational ways, most obviously the enshrinement of sexual freedom as a social value overriding all others, including the welfare of children and even the environment. On an individual level, there is evidence that atheism contributes to hopelessness, isolation, aggression, and suicide. No doubt many atheists feel as you do, that life is beautiful and precious. But generally speaking, religious beliefs act as a hedge against despair in a way that atheism doesn't. Atheists also tend to have problematic attitudes about the value of life near its beginning and end. In my experience, the "each day more precious than the last" mentality quickly gives way as the quality of life decreases, resulting in a rather narrow view of which lives are worth living.
    Human beings will be religious one way or another. Either they will be religious about religious things, or they will be religious about political things. Damon Linker

  19. #259
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    Quote Originally Posted by bubbadog View Post
    Well, no, not really, because anti-religion doesn't explain all of the violence that happened in the first 35 years of the USSR's existence. As I said earlier, it explains some of the violence that happens up until the early '20s, when the Bolsheviks were still fighting to gain control over the rest of the country and then consolidate their revolution. The Church not only was inseparably part of the old regime; it fought to maintain that regime.

    But as I said, anti-religion had nothing to do with Stalin's mass starvation policy in the Ukraine in the early 1930s, or his purges of the military. And you'll really have to strain to tie anti-religion to the elimination of so many of Stalin's fellow anti-religionists (and their families) when he killed or exiled most of the old Bolsheviks in the later 1930s.
    Anti-religious purges most certainly did not end in the early 1920s. They continued until WWII, reaching their peak in 1937-38 with the deaths of 100,000 believers and the persecution of 100,000 more.

    The fact that Stalin killed other victims for other reasons is beside the point. No one is arguing that atheism directly motivated every crime he ever committed (although it's really no stretch at all to imagine that some of his fellow anti-religionists were purged for showing signs of sympathy to religion).
    Human beings will be religious one way or another. Either they will be religious about religious things, or they will be religious about political things. Damon Linker

  20. #260
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jellybear View Post
    Well then I misunderstood, people usually like to call Lennon a communist and so I thought u were calling me a communist, my apologies. And now I will lose all credibility by saying I don't like the Beatles :P
    Ugh! Just when I thought it couldn't get any worse...!

    Just kidding. Here's an interesting article about Lennon, BTW:

    The man who famously called for imagining a world with “No religion” also jettisoned his anti-theism. “People got the image I was anti-Christ or antireligion,” he said. “I’m not at all. I’m a most religious fellow. I’m religious in the sense of admitting there is more to it than meets the eye. I’m certainly not an atheist.”

    http://www.theamericanconservative.c...top-imagining/
    Last edited by Sam Lowry; 05-07-12 at 10:05 AM.
    Human beings will be religious one way or another. Either they will be religious about religious things, or they will be religious about political things. Damon Linker

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