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Which Religion is Right?


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It may be wrong, but the question of why is far more interesting. For example, my philosophy of religion professor would disagree with several of the links you gave, although I personally agree that existence is not a property. (Though I have yet to read my professor's reasons for disagreeing with that, so I may yet change my mind. We'll see.)

 

I think the first link you give, for example, misunderstands the argument. But again, something for a different thread, when I've finished learning about the argument.

I like your perspective, Cap'n. It's more productive and interesting discussing things when the mind's not welded shut.
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I personally don't believe in God but I do understand that religion is important to some because it's the only source of hope they have. So, which religion is right? Any one that doesn't kill people.

You know, I think one of the problems I have with the past few posts is that "Modern Christianity" is an extreme generalization. It seems to me that there's an attempt to explain how "Modern Christian

That's because most of the time they have different trends.   I think we should separate them, is my point.   I don't quite know what you mean by that. First off, Jews never had holy men (prophe

It's more productive and interesting discussing things when the mind's not welded shut.

 

It's rather ignorant of you to conflate a mind which has reviewed the argument and found it non-compelling and fatally flawed with a mind being "welded shut."

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It's rather ignorant of you to conflate a mind which has reviewed the argument and found it non-compelling and fatally flawed with a mind being "welded shut."

 

Please re-read rule #1 of this forum. (Thanks for editing, though.)

 

The interesting part of the ontological argument is that nobody can agree why it's wrong -- only that it is. There are 20th-century philosophers who created reformulations of it. My philosophy of religion professor ranks it one of the cleverest arguments in the history of philosophy.

 

But anyway, back on topic.

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The interesting part of the ontological argument is that nobody can agree why it's wrong -- only that it is. There are 20th-century philosophers who created reformulations of it. My philosophy of religion professor ranks it one of the cleverest arguments in the history of philosophy.
I personally don't wrestle with logical conclusions much when it comes to religion, but, like you, I often find them fascinating. And I think the greater truth is that it would be the height of arrogance for me to put someone else down for wanting to look for their own answers. Cleverness is like a tree; it grows best when you give it sunlight.

 

No I did, but I would like to say that to a new viewer, it may look somewhat ridiculous. I guess it makes the post provoking though.
I knew it was a risk when I did it, but the whole point of these new sections is to attract more open, insult-free discussions and maybe bring back some of the members who've been driven off. And I've always been fascinated when someone claims they follow the "right" religion.

 

The one with the strongest weapons / army.
It's easy to be right when you've got a lot of backup. :D

 

(And no, I haven't read any of your posts).
It breaks the heart. :P

 

And it is good to note, they have the most weapons because God gave 'em to them because they are the ones who are right. :doh:,
Until they get toppled by some godless heathen rabble. Then it's usually because they were too proud of their righteousness.
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though basically i am a Hindu i respect all religions & i believe all must respect all religions & love his own. all religions are right till they interfere with humanity & doesnt go against science. so this is a very stupid topic.

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though basically i am a Hindu i respect all religions & i believe all must respect all religions & love his own. all religions are right till they interfere with humanity & doesnt go against science. so this is a very stupid topic.
I'm sorry you think it's stupid. I find it very interesting that your approach to Hinduism is superseded by science. Many people reverse that order.

 

If it's not too stupid, I'd like to ask you why you think all religions are right. Since they all have varying elements, what is it that could possibly make them *all* right? Is it a specific element they all share or are they all right from an individual's perspective, or is it because of something different?

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Christianity begin in Israel, spread and eventually became the official religion of Rome. Rome, at first was a persecutor of Christianity, killing them by the thousands, for sport. Rather than nip Christianity in the bud, this tactic caused the religion to spread, due to courage in the face of constant adversity. Centuries later, a Roman emperor was impressed by how hard the Christian soldiers fought.

 

The emperor, as a reward for their valor finally legalized their religion, which eventually became the state religion. This merger created a new blend of secular and religion, which the world had never seen. The Holy Roman Empire, helped to transform backwoods barbarians into some of the most influential cultures of the future centuries, such as England, France, Spain, Italy, Russia, Germany, etc. Between these descendants of the Holy Roman Empire, they ruled the world for centuries in Roman tradition.

 

Toward the end of the middle ages, the merger that had been the Holy Roman Empire began to split back into Rome (secular) and Christianity (religion) separating the state more from the church. Rome or the secular, once again began to persecute the Christians, led by the new godless religion that worship electronic idols. History is sort of repeating itself. Eventually there will be another merger.

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Christianity begin in Israel, spread and eventually became the official religion of Rome. Rome, at first was a persecutor of Christianity, killing them by the thousands, for sport. Rather than nip Christianity in the bud, this tactic caused the religion to spread, due to courage in the face of constant adversity. Centuries later, a Roman emperor was impressed by how hard the Christian soldiers fought.

 

The emperor, as a reward for their valor finally legalized their religion, which eventually became the state religion. This merger created a new blend of secular and religion, which the world had never seen. The Holy Roman Empire, helped to transform backwoods barbarians into some of the most influential cultures of the future centuries, such as England, France, Spain, Italy, Russia, Germany, etc. Between these descendants of the Holy Roman Empire, they ruled the world for centuries in Roman tradition.

 

Toward the end of the middle ages, the merger that had been the Holy Roman Empire began to split back into Rome (secular) and Christianity (religion) separating the state more from the church. Rome or the secular, once again began to persecute the Christians, led by the new godless religion that worship electronic idols. History is sort of repeating itself. Eventually there will be another merger.

To say that this is an oversimplification of the history of christianity would be an oversimplification of the statement.

 

The history of Christianity is much more political than that, involves Constantine giving the religion much more political power than he probably intended to, and weakening the other religions through that process, etc etc etc.

 

Making a conclusion (that history repeats itself) based on simplified view of history without taking into account some of the *MAJOR* influences and politics that went on in there will only yield faulty conclusion.

 

Confirmation bias is very comfortable, but it's not logic. Nitpicking through history isn't logic either. I recommed you get into the REAL history of the Christian church, it's relationship with Rome (good and bad) and its influence on the murders and killings of thousands of non-Christians in the Crusades.

 

The christian church didn't "help transform" so-called "backward" barbarians, it FORCED the religion on these cultures. Quite frankly, I wouldn't judge who the 'backward barbarian' is too quickly, in that period of time, considering what was done.

 

~moo

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. . .the secular, once again began to persecute the Christians, led by the new godless religion that worship electronic idols. History is sort of repeating itself. Eventually there will be another merger.

 

 

Soooo. . .pioneer,

 

You're saying that the Godless Religion Of Electronic Idol Worship is the RIGHT religion, and that you'll fight this upcoming merger between Christianity and the secular to your last breath?

 

I agree with the last part, but not so sure about the first. I'll have to attend a few GROEIW services, maybe learn a little about their dogma.

 

Bill Wolfe

Edited by StrontiDog
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Christianity merged with Rome ,and not the other way around. Rome was probably the most advanced culture of the ancient world. Roman technology was way ahead of everyone else. They were smart and tough. They were also old school, when conquest was part of natural selection. What the merge meant, was the most advanced culture of the ancient world merged with the best religion they could find.

 

When the merge occurred, the result was a hybrid blend of these two entities. Christianity started to become more Roman and Rome became more Christian. The history that follows is about this Roman-Christian hybrid. We call this hybrid Christianity, even though the Roman spirit was part of the blend.

 

The Rome spirit was loosely analogous to playing for a top notch sports team with a long winning tradition that goes back generations. Once you merge with that team, that entire tradition of excellence is in your blood, and you are an extension of all that came before. The spirit of Rome lived, even after the physical empire was gone. The Vatican in Rome represents a continuity with this pivotal culture of the ancient world. The hybrid church ruled with the authority of Rome.

 

The hybrid began to split at about 1500AD. Modern Christianity does not have the same tough Roman spirit. It is softer, more accommodating and easy for bullies to push around. It is more pre-merge, with the impact of the Rome aspect more connected to secular interests.

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So what you're saying, really, is that the Gauls are barbarians without culture, weak and stupid (they're the opposite of Rome, who's smart, strong and cultured) and same goes with the rest of the huge and diverse cultures -- many of them quite old and intriguing -- that were eventually crushed by the violence of Christian Rome?

 

More than being quite an annoying misrepresentation of history with a vast simplification, it is also quite snobbish and pretentious. The fact Christianity *won*, doesn't make it better. It just makes it the winner.

 

If your concept is that 'might makes right', that's fine, but if that's the case, I challenge your view of morality.

 

~moo

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What I was trying to say, after the merge between Christianity and Rome, Christianity became a blend of the two. For example, Christ teaches blessed are the poor. One can not go to the New Testament to find out how to make money. One could however, makes use of the secular skills of Rome. Render onto Caesar makes this a legitimate path. This may involve investing in a mercenary army to sack a village for a net gain. This action would be called Christian, but from a mind set that is 95% Roman.

 

This goes the other way too. That Roman who needed to raise an army, may like to beat his slaves. If we add Christianity, the teachings don't condone this, but say love thy enemy. He may have to give a gesture to the religion, and may not beat his slaves on Fridays. This is a little better, but would still be called a Christian even with 85/15.

 

Let me give a modern example. Gay is not in the bible as a moral behavior. Through the influence of the secular, gay has been added to cultural acceptability and is now a part of some aspects of Christianity. If this had occurred 1000 years ago, we would say the church became more gay, even if atheists had influenced the addendum via secular pressures.

 

The way I look at it, one should read the New Testament, to see what it says and teaches. Then you look at the history of the church and see where things depart from those teachings as well as how the secular changes. Next, look at the many secular influences to see if this had an impact on that departure. One will see Rome, as well as the secular influences of the colonies, with even atheism playing a role in the blend.

 

I did not mean to insult the barbarians. Just when a first world culture takes over a third world culture, the normal path is to upgrade the natives, since that is better for the empire. To get them up to steam, you don't repeat the mistakes of your own past. The pagan nature worship was old school Roman. Christianity was new school and more cutting edge.

 

If we went into a third world country and tried to modernize their industrial base, and they were using horse and buggy, would we keep everything horse and buggy, so they can slowly follow our historic learning curve. We would start them off with newer technology to avoid all the pollution and pitfalls during our own learning curve. The Roman-Christian Church allowed some horse and buggy, but for the most part upgraded using the state of the art. In the ends, as history shows, the seven divine kingdoms of barbarians did very well, with all being part of the first world. Many followed in the path of Rome and tried to rule the world. That is not taught in the New Testament, but is part of the secular glory of Rome 1.0.

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This goes the other way too. That Roman who needed to raise an army, may like to beat his slaves. If we add Christianity, the teachings don't condone this, but say love thy enemy.

You need to re-read your own bible.

 

Let me give a modern example. Gay is not in the bible as a moral behavior. Through the influence of the secular, gay has been added to cultural acceptability and is now a part of some aspects of Christianity.

How is it now a part of some aspects of Christianity, when the majority of Christians (and if we're talking about Rome, let's talk about Catholics -- who are included in this statement) are VEHEMENTLY opposing anything and everything even remotely related to homosexuality?

 

 

If this had occurred 1000 years ago, we would say the church became more gay, even if atheists had influenced the addendum via secular pressures.

You need to go over history, your own bible, and the cultural background of the Roman people, the Greeks, and those who lived next to them. The Roman had absolutely NO PROBLEMS with homosexuality, they were a very openly-sexual people, and they took that from the greek.

 

This *DID* happen 1000 years ago, and yet the church did not "become more gay".

 

It seems your knowledge of history is flawed, which makes it unsurprising that your conclusions of how things would look are unsupported.

 

The way I look at it, one should read the New Testament, to see what it says and teaches. Then you look at the history of the church and see where things depart from those teachings as well as how the secular changes.

pioneer, your depiction of the history of the church and of Rome is blatantly simplified, false and lacking. You're preaching that people should read the New Testament and look at history when you are CLEARLY not doing either.

 

This is ridiculous. It's like arguing with someone that the bricks in the wall are liquid.

 

Get your facts straight, pioneer.

 

~moo

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When the merge occurred, the result was a hybrid blend of these two entities. Christianity started to become more Roman and Rome became more Christian. The history that follows is about this Roman-Christian hybrid. We call this hybrid Christianity, even though the Roman spirit was part of the blend.

 

I think this is super interesting. Modern Christianity is based of the Bible, albeit loosely. I'm obviously way biased, with my background, but mainstream Christianity is so steeped in western culture (I guess you could call it Roman long ago, or some derivative of Greek, either way today in the States and Europe we have some descendant of that culture some sort of rationalistic Anglo-culture -- I don't know what to call it -- which is not a bad culture by the way).

 

It's interesting that this is exactly what happened to the Jews following the Old Testament, the "Hellenization" (or "Greekifying" if you prefer) of the Jews. They went from being led by the Prophets of the OT with the Priesthood of the Temple to some weird form of scholar/clergy rabbinical system (hear of scribes, Pharisees, or Sadducees -- whom Jesus was not fond of?) in between the OT and the NT. The main language that all Jew's shared became Greek! (recall the Septuagint)

 

It's actually really strange when you think about it. After the "End of the Prophets" as it says in the KJV, everything went to Hell (Hellenization that is, of course not exclusively though :P), creating some apostate system that eventually killed the Judaism's very God, Jehovah/Jesus (according to the NT of course).

 

Then Christianity supplanted Judaism (or rather fulfilled according to Jesus) and then Greek/Roman/Western culture seeped into it and created a weird scholar/clergy system similar to the scribes and Pharisees (which was not present in the NT), and a very similar thing has happened (As the Hebrew Bible became Greek, the Christian Bible has now become English as it were). You could say western culture has killed Biblical religion twice, the Jews then the Christians.

 

Of course modern Christianity isn't necessarily bad for being similar to apostate Judaism, or for wandering from NT Christianity, but it is interesting.

 

There are a lot of things based on the Bible, but there's hardly enough in there to make a complete religion, too many unanswered questions. That's why Christianity is so diverse, and there are so many denominations.

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You know, I think one of the problems I have with the past few posts is that "Modern Christianity" is an extreme generalization. It seems to me that there's an attempt to explain how "Modern Christianity" relates to various subjects and its history, when "Modern Christianity" is divided into various streams that have, a lot of times, mutually exclusive beliefs and, most of the time, totally different history.

 

Which "Modern Christianity" are we talking about?

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You know, I think one of the problems I have with the past few posts is that "Modern Christianity" is an extreme generalization. It seems to me that there's an attempt to explain how "Modern Christianity" relates to various subjects and its history, when "Modern Christianity" is divided into various streams that have, a lot of times, mutually exclusive beliefs and, most of the time, totally different history.

 

Which "Modern Christianity" are we talking about?

 

Maybe I'd rather meant mainstream Christianity, although that might be just as ambiguous. Denominations loosely based off of the NT from the last two hundred years who have paid clergy and believe in the Trinity? It's hard to talk about absolute terms and groups when you're talking about trends.

 

But the trend is, and has been as exemplified by Judaism, a move towards a replacement of Holy men (prophets, apostles, etc.) with a scholarly class, an abstraction of God (such as the Jews whose own scripture portrayed a very anthropomorphic God that openly appeared to people, but by NT times, dominated by Jewish scribes, their idea of God had changed a God very much not involved in their lives), and other trends are also interesting.

 

But it's not just the Judeo-Christian ideals that are affected. If you go to Latin America in many places where the culture is different Catholicism is much more extreme, Deity is more real. Those of other faiths who are very much involved in American or European culture are much more subdued in their religious beliefs. Hindus, Muslims, or Christians aren't necessarily less Hindu, Muslim, or Christian, just have different ideas because of their cultural notions.

 

Our culture is just very secular is all, I'm not saying it's necessarily bad, but it nonetheless has an enormous affect on everything we do, and one of those things happens to be religion.

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Maybe I'd rather meant mainstream Christianity, although that might be just as ambiguous. Denominations loosely based off of the NT from the last two hundred years who have paid clergy and believe in the Trinity? It's hard to talk about absolute terms and groups when you're talking about trends.

That's because most of the time they have different trends.

 

I think we should separate them, is my point.

 

But the trend is, and has been as exemplified by Judaism, a move towards a replacement of Holy men (prophets, apostles, etc.) with a scholarly class, an abstraction of God (such as the Jews whose own scripture portrayed a very anthropomorphic God that openly appeared to people, but by NT times, dominated by Jewish scribes, their idea of God had changed a God very much not involved in their lives), and other trends are also interesting.

I don't quite know what you mean by that. First off, Jews never had holy men (prophets are not holy, they're righteous, there's a huge huge difference in faith about that).

 

Second, Catholicism didn't move from the holy men, did it? It still holds the position that the pope is the messenger of god and the hierarchy of the church. So even if it's a trend, it's not a trend of catholicism.

 

Evangelicals don't quite fit into that analysis either, and I am not sure I see how Mormons do.

 

In short -- if you want a serious discussion about the trends of religions to show why and where they were right, I suggest you try to be a bit more to the point. Christianity is not a single religion, and the trends that its different denominations are taking differ.

 

Combining it all under one definition is nonsensical, and just serves to emphasize the confirmation bias that seems to shine here in this historical analysis.

 

Less generalization, less confirmation bias, perhaps finally a bit more potential for debate.

 

But it's not just the Judeo-Christian ideals that are affected. If you go to Latin America in many places where the culture is different Catholicism is much more extreme, Deity is more real. Those of other faiths who are very much involved in American or European culture are much more subdued in their religious beliefs. Hindus, Muslims, or Christians aren't necessarily less Hindu, Muslim, or Christian, just have different ideas because of their cultural notions.

Much can be said about the influence (ahem, forceful influence) of Christianity in most of those places, including south America. If that's the reason, then no wonder they are subdued -- christian missionaries, with soldiers and guns, subdued them.

 

Our culture is just very secular is all, I'm not saying it's necessarily bad, but it nonetheless has an enormous affect on everything we do, and one of those things happens to be religion.

But that's true for the USA, while not so much to many parts of Europe. Is that still a trend? Also, how does that answer the "Which relgion is right" question?

 

I'm a bit lost with regards to your point.

 

~moo

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What I'm looking for is more along the lines of how you judge which religion has the right answer for your spiritual questions. Do you just believe the religion you were raised in is the right one?

 

I think my theistic beliefs were certainly heavily influence by where I grew up. Granted, I haven't studied other religions as in-depth as I have Christianity, but it still seems to be the best fit for me. Why, I can't say. I even disagree with one of the basic tenants of unbelievers-going-to-hell, but I think it has more to do with the message in general and that Christianity is more "believable" than the other religions, in my opinion at least. I guess that is what they call "confirmation bias". :D

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