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How many people here are religious?

Discussion in 'Real Life Discussion' started by normalguycap, Jul 26, 2016.

  1. turtlepearlove

    turtlepearlove Squib

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    Am an atheist in a very religious family. So despite claiming to be an atheist I still practice my religion.
     
  2. Pure Infinity

    Pure Infinity High Inquisitor

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    Huh. I didn't know this was a thing. One would think you would stop counting as a member of the Catholic Church once you stopped believing in God, but I guess God's really big on paperwork.

    "Uh, God, that one's an atheist."

    "No, no, send him up. If he wants to go to Hell, he has to go through the proper channels. There's a process to these sorts of things."
     
  3. ScottPress

    ScottPress The Horny Sovereign Prestige

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    I'd keep the baptism in place for marriage, if nothing else. Getting married in a church is pretty much standard practice in Poland (Polish Catholicism rides high percentages in surveys) and if I ever meet The One, odds are she'll want a church ceremony. You need to be baptised for that and I'd have no problem lying in church, lol. Imo, this entire procedure of "officially" leaving the church is kind of standoffish. Like, what do I care if I'm listed somewhere as belonging to the church? But that's just my take on it, I'm not trying to ridicule you.
     
  4. momsasysimspecial

    momsasysimspecial Squib

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    No offense taken.
    And you are right, if I ever meet The One I might find myself in trouble...
     
  5. Chengar Qordath

    Chengar Qordath The Final Pony Prestige

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    To break out a metaphor, it's kind of like a marriage. A married couple is still married even if they no longer love each other and aren't living together, and they're still married right up until they get divorced. Until the divorce happens, the married couple is just having problems.

    Same thing with the church. If anyone who experienced a few doubts about their faith got booted out, the Catholic Church would be much smaller. Until you get de-baptised, in the eyes of the church you're just a Catholic who's been having troubles.
     
  6. Erandil

    Erandil Headmaster

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    Here in Germany you get automatically excommunicated if you decide to stop paying your Church taxes (which our state is nice enough to levy for our churches...) which as you have probably guessed does not only require paperwork but actually costs also a small amount of money^^.
     
  7. Eilyfe

    Eilyfe Headmaster

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    That was an interesting read. Regardless of whether I believe religion to be nonsensical, I admit that I’m relieved about the most respected scholar interpreting it in such a way. The troublesome aspect as I see it then is the following: there must be (and please correct me on this) something greatly ambivalent about the Quran. Otherwise it would not need experts to explain it to laypeople. I cannot fathom that so many religious extremist groups would spring up with the Quran in mind if there weren’t possibilities to use it this way. (In that case that’s more an indictment against god for not providing a better text.)

    I also seriously question the worth of those Hadiths if they directly contradict the Quran in so many ways. It is, in any case, strange that taking the Quran as the absolute authority in the apostasy matter isn’t a universal rule (or are there passages that do support it in the Quran?), as there seem to be whole countries that criminalize apostasy (and blasphemy) in some shape or form. That either doesn’t jive with your explanation, or it means that quite a few of people got it wrong, which leads to the question of why did they get it wrong?
     
  8. Wildfeather

    Wildfeather Seventh Year Prestige

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    Does it surprise you (a skeptic) that a person would be able to use a religion in a way to personally empower themselves or their agenda? Islam is not greater or lesser than any other religion in its ability to avoid usage by private parties for personal gain. In fact, given the nature of the religion (and being a personal believer) I'd say that Islam (which calls for the submission of man before God and his teachings) is probably the easiest to use for illicit purposes. At least among contemporary religions.


    This is one of the reasons arguing with religious skeptics is a waste of time. From the context of someone who believes God is real, and has spread religion to humanity with a purpose, these kinds of false equivocations are frustrating to butt into. When you equivocate a human being (and the things that come from man, and make sense to man like logic) with God, you have left a place to argue with. God is not a man, nor does he have to act like one, or do things that make sense to one. When you place yourself on (or above) his level to judge his actions, you've surpassed the circumstances under which a dialogue can be had.

    The slightly more pithy response i've heard from those with actual faith is "When you've reduced God to a man, you aren't talking about God anymore".
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2016
  9. Zel

    Zel Professor

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    Of course of course, but how does God supposedly communicates with us? That's right, through other human beings, his chosen if you will. I'm not reducing him to a man, he reduces himself to our level in theory.

    Yes, I'm rationalizing, I'm human, we do that. Honestly, it baffles me that people are willing to believe blindly and wholeheartedly in something they can't even begin to comprehend to, which is naturally superior and owner of a thought process that we could never fathom - an invisible and all powerful hand working behind the scenes.

    I choose not to believe. I prefer to think that my actions and my thoughts are my own, while also denying what I think is illogical and incompatible with reality as I see it, trying to avoid clinging to my own beliefs if sensible evidence against them is given.

    By no means constructive arguing is a waste of time. You can leave with your faith in crumbles or stronger than ever if you feel your points are valid. Discussing is always necessary if you want to progress further, and I hope I don't need to explain why to you.
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2016
  10. Eilyfe

    Eilyfe Headmaster

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    But if you push god out of the discussion about religion because he’s untouchable then you disqualified yourself just as much. It is Christianity that says god made us in his image, which seems to me a rather faulty blueprint at times (or he’s an incompetent designer). Furthermore, I can only judge with the common sense at my disposal, and if god should exist, then my common sense tells me that his ineffable plan isn’t worth much when it takes so much slaughter to reach it despite him being omnipotent. If there is indeed a supernatural agent behind everything, I cannot understand how one could look at any horrific event (which is by definition part of god’s plan, then) and shrug one’s shoulders instead of calling it a cruel way to reach a nebulous goal. In that case he is a miserable entity by any observable standard—standards I’m definitely unwilling to compromise because to my mind they make me human.

    Anyhow, I much prefer the world to be inherently meaningless, and for the meaning I give my life to be derived from myself and my own actions. It not just makes me self-determined and gives me full agency, it also eliminates the hassle of a hypothesis which isn’t falsifiable and a ‘phenomenon’ which cannot even be observed by proxy because the tools aren’t godly and therefore not viable.

    To your pithy response I would say that god reduces himself to a man by his actions. Emotions like jealousy, as they appear for example in the commandments, are all too human after all.
     
  11. Wildfeather

    Wildfeather Seventh Year Prestige

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    I'm not Christian, and Christians are wrong about many things in the nature of God, so what they say doesn't apply to me, or to God in general since they've been wrong in the past (that Jesus is the physical incarnation of God, for instance...). If you judge all religions based on what Christianity does, then you really don't have any place in arguing about religion at all (which was touched earlier in this thread). If you're using the doctrine of a religion that is wrong (from my context) to justify God being anything less than what he is, you've shown why skeptics can't participate in a discussion about religion to people with faith (again). Lumping all people of faith together is intellectually disingenuous.

    As a human, you can look at an event and think it is cruel (presumably because of the human suffering happening?), but in the long run, that's one single event (and any repercussions thereof) against the span of a lifetime. If we are judged solely on our actions, the fact that you died because some genocidal idiot raised an army of child soldiers who gunned you down is irrelevant, because there is more after death. If you cannot understand how the physical lives we lead here are are transient, and eventually irrelevant, then you can't make a judgement about what things ultimately matter.

    That doesn't mean our lives (our actions) don't matter, but that how it ends, or any suffering you endure as the result of the actions of other men or God is 'part' of the test. If God did not want you to suffer, he would make it so, but sometimes suffering is good for people (see: exercising, growing pains, etc.). If you find that allowing humans to suffer makes God cruel, than you are right to think it, but it is your opinion, not a fact. Forcing children to go to school or to do their homework can be cruel also, but they are still things we accept socially.
     
  12. chaosattractor

    chaosattractor Groundskeeper

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    Personally I'm sick of people who claim to have the one true faith. If there is any spirituality in this world it's probably something each human has to work out for themself.
     
  13. Zel

    Zel Professor

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    And you're right. Interesting.

    Besides, I'd rather live this one life I have in the best way I can instead of deeming it a mere step on the way. If you want to reduce the importance of your existence, do so, but don't advertise that as 'the truth'. I for one want this kind of belief as far away from me as possible.

    What gives God the right to test me? What parameters does he use to measure my 'success' in his great plan? Do I get to argue, or I'll just have to submit to his obviously transcedent intellect, incomprehensible to me, the vanilla mortal?
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2016
  14. Wildfeather

    Wildfeather Seventh Year Prestige

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    The two ideas aren't mutually exclusive. The existence of an afterlife does not mean who do not have to live righteously in this one. In fact it means what you do in this life matters even more, because there are repercussions in this life and beyond.

    The first point is a silly thing to ask. God, being all-power and all-knowing, who created you and everything you know, has the right to test you before he allows you into paradise. The parameters for you success are laid out in whichever holy book you believe is the product/predecessor to the "One True Religion", so your 'defense' is living a righteous life. If he knows literally everything you do, think, and feel, and he judges you damned... Well how exactly were you going to defend yourself?
     
  15. Zel

    Zel Professor

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    So many ifs. If you believe there's an afterlife, if you believe that there's some guidebook that has rules equivalent to a 'Saving Yourself from Damnation for Dummies', which no one can truly be sure of their validity, if this, if that.

    God has allegedly given me freedom of will. For example, imagine that there's something about me that pisses him off. Let's say I'll live 80 years, and for whatever reason, he judges me 'evil'. I'm sentenced to hell.

    Again, who gave me life in the first place? That's right, 'Him'. I got to live 80 years of a relatively peaceful life, then the rest of existence in utter torment. Because of something I didn't ask for in the first place - being born. He decided that, didn't he?

    Yeah, not buying that man. Being judge, jury and executioner is kind of a dick move.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2016
  16. Wildfeather

    Wildfeather Seventh Year Prestige

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    If you want certainty based on rational discourse, follow science. If you want certainty based on your feelings, follow the faith of your choice. There's nothing wrong with either decision, but if one gets you sent to hell after you die... Well I (and God, etc.) did tell you so. I sincerely hope that those who do not follow my faith but are otherwise good people are not damned to hell for all eternity. I hope God, in his compassion and wisdom, overlooks their lack of submission and faith in Him and look at all the good they did and lets them into Heaven in some degree, or at least does not force them to suffer for all eternity. But it's not my decision to make, nor is it any of my business.
     
  17. Xiph0

    Xiph0 Administrator Admin

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    Cool Wild, but this isn't Sermon thread.
     
  18. He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named

    He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named Squib

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    I am an atheist myself.
     
  19. Imariel

    Imariel Order Member DLP Supporter

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    I really try to stay out of these threads. I really do. But I can't.

    This is one of the reasons arguing with religious believers is a waste of time. You've personally found the one true faith™ whose definition, character and virtues is the one truth™. The second you place an idea as impossible, or impreferable to discuss and value on its own merits the discussion dies.

    Quite true, the existence of a god is a separate one from whatever doctrine the person you're arguing with holds as true. Adherence to 'doctrine' is as varied as the amount of believers - the debate of ideas is preferable in my opinion. That being said doctrine does illuminate the poor amount of truth and ambivalence in theistic religions.


    It's okay that you were raped and abused by your parents, it's Gods will™. Just believe and you'll eventually end up in my imaginary fairy land so it's all good.

    This is the part I find truly horrendous and despicable. It's the same logic (see: Divine Command Theory) that William Lane Craig uses to defend genocide.

    Scratch the point above about the problems with arguing with religious people. At the point where feelings equate facts is where the discussion dies.

    That being said I'm glad you don't want me to be tortured for eternity, I hope you actually find enjoyment in your faith despite how ridiculous and condescending I find it, and I'll dedicate my weekly church time manscaping session to whatever deity(s) you hold dear.
     
  20. Wildfeather

    Wildfeather Seventh Year Prestige

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    If I didn't enjoy my faith, I wouldn't follow it. Religion should ALWAYS be a personal choice, no matter what your faith is or how strongly you believe it. And not a choice one makes under duress and social pressure (although I understand strongly why people try to 'save' their friends/family and bring them into their One True Religion). I just prefer not to lie and tell people 'you can believe whatever you want, it'll probably turn out fine' when I don't believe that.

    I'm more than happy to have a discussion on the particulars of religion. Any religion i'm familiar with, even those I don't personally hold to the highest standard of righteousness. God's message has been heard around the world in many different forms, after all, and it's not like the wisdom of men (pass down through their religion or folk stories) is rarely worth not knowing. However, there cannot be a discussion when the terms aren't compatible (that is, if you want to discuss 'Does God exist'? there's basically no point since skeptics will never be convinced by the personal, faith affirming events in my life or those of people I know, since you can also attribute those things to other factors such as coincidence or personal agency of other parties). Also that a religious discussion is basically in its nature incompatible with regular, scientific discussion because there isn't hard evidence for it.

    I don't know many religions that absolve the evils that affect a person because the victim may eventually go to Heaven. We should still seek justice through the laws of men, since divine justice is beyond our capabilities to compel. I personally disagree with the notion that religion should be used to dictate political/governmental procedure/actions. An act can be immoral and legal, and trying to litigate immoral actions out of society is tyrannical in the extreme.
     
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