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Thread: In God We Trust

  1. #181
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    "Couldn't the same arguments work any irrational belief that produces some positivity ?"

    I guess thats for each person to decide isnt it? I hope with luck that everything will turn out alright

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  2. #182
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    Quote Originally Posted by Conniekat8 View Post
    Would you lie or twist the truth a little bit to someone in order to get them out of serious danger? ?
    Sure of course it depends on what constitutes "serious danger" but religion does not have "serious danger" in the rational sense. It manufactures punishment if one does not adhere to the lie. The lie is that someone, some man, knows what happens when you die. It is NOT ok to lie to someone in this way to get what "you" want. Telling your kids that if they do not clasp their hands together and talk to the ceiling that Satan is gonna come get them and burn them forever is abusive.

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  4. #183
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    Quote Originally Posted by Velocity Kendall View Post
    But if they were motivated to provide care that would not otherwise have existed by their beliefs, would you prefer they hadnt bothered because their theology didnt jive with yours?
    Dude, don't start the whole "You're just being intolerant" bit. Either argue with me straight up or stop replying. Morality and doing good things exists independently of religion. I'd prefer people to recognize that rather than kiss ass because it's politically correct. Plus, appeal to consequences.

    Adding up the pros and cons isnt a good way of analysing a thing? Why not?
    A thing like history? No. Shall we add up the pro's and con's of Vietnam? How about the Holocaust? WWII? The Spanish Inquisition? The invention of electricity? Or we could, you know, just stick to what happened.

    In your limited characterisation of religion, maybe. Ie believing a bunch of fairytales are literally true and acting like retard as a result. But to people who find comfort and support in their religious community, or in the idea that their loved ones might still exist in some form after death, or wisdom in religious teaching, and therefore their lives are happier as a result, it is quite utilitarian and rational.
    Strawman (making up how I characterize religion and then arguing against that).

    You seem to think everyone should be exactly like you, and that the only truth is that the universe is a giant empty clock.
    How's that?

    I happen to agree with you, albeit the clock is of such fantastic complexity that it is just as miraculous as any water-into-wine stunt, but people who dont share our views deserve tolerance and respect, not contempt and condemnation, a philosophy which is central to many religions.
    I don't think you do agree with me because apparently you have no idea what I'm talking about. And respect? You demand my respect but accuse me of being fascist and cold?

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  6. #184
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    "Shall we add up the pro's and con's of Vietnam? How about the Holocaust? WWII? The Spanish Inquisition? The invention of electricity? Or we could, you know, just stick to what happened. "

    Why not? The Holocaust: cons; millions of innocent people were brutally murdered. Pro: none.

    WWII: Con: Millions of people on all sides died. Pro: the cancer of Nazism was prevented from taking over the world.

    Seems alright to me. Arnt value judgements based on analysing pros and cons a keystone of rational thought?

    Or we could, you know, just stick to what happened.

    what, you know, happened?

    "Strawman (making up how I characterize religion and then arguing against that)."

    Feel free to characterise religion then.

    "I'd prefer people to recognize that rather than kiss ass because it's politically correct. "

    Political correctness has resulted in a legal basis for sexual and racial equality in the workplace. Whats wrong with that? Seems like a step in the right direction?

    "And respect? You demand my respect but accuse me of being fascist and cold? "

    I dont demand your respect, or care, at all. Where did I say you were a fascist? You made that up. Im saying people with views on spirituality that dont align with yours deserve respect not contempt.

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  7. #185
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Ross View Post
    Sure of course it depends on what constitutes "serious danger" but religion does not have "serious danger" in the rational sense.
    Well, if you stopped taking thinks to the extremes, you might even be able to see that some of the religious teachings *can* get people out of serious danger.

    Also, at the risk of some of the believers jumping all over me, I'd like to point out that the 'belief in god or hell etc..' aren't really supposed to be taken literally.

    But let's say you don't believe in god or religion and can't stomach the spiritual or intelectual stuff, and put things in plainer terms.

    Let's go over the 'deadly sins' for example, and secularize them, to explain they aren't really that full of shit.

    Imagine society in the old day, when this stuff was written, things will be more obvious in that context, however, they can still apply today (perhaps a bit less frequently)

    1. Lust.... In the old days, Lusting and acting upon that lust could easily get you killed. In some societies it still is, or was until recently legal to kill a cheating spouse. And even if it's not legal, if someone gets murdered over jealousy, once you;re dead, you're dead. Putting the jealous one that shoots you doesn't being the victim back to life. Why is it a 'deadly sin'... because in hooman society it is one of the things that frequently causes people to meet an early demise. How do you deter thick headed and over confident people the best... by scaring the shit out of them. 'Burning in hell' did a pretty good job at scaring people, especially in the older days when life expectancy was shorter, and a lot of people hung their hopes that there is something after that.

    You kind of have to understand a little bit of society and how it evolved and how people are to understand the benefits of religions.

    2. Gluttony.... we all know in modern world, since the medicine has proven it scientifically, that obesity takes a huge toll on the body, and often leads to early demise.

    3. Greed .... you steal from people and cheat them out of stuff... somone is likely to get ticked off and blow your head off... Compared to envy, greed tends to be on a more grand scale.

    4. Sloth ... You get lazy and don't take care of yourself, or how you'll survive, you'll eventually find yourself in a pickle... get ill, or starve, or become someone else's burden, and then they get fed up with you, and leave you with no resources to take care of yourself.

    5. Envy ... Lot of crime stems from envy... I want this sooo bad... you give in, and steal or lust or do something that will get the other person pised off, and they blow your head off.

    6. Anger... yes, the angry person who may have some other wrongs perpetrated on them also isn't in the right blowing the head off the person who pissed them off.... anyone going around attacking people and having frequent conflicts is likely to shorten their life expectancy.

    7. Pride ... excessive belief in one's own abilities, excessive vanity, is a good way to cross someone (or make promises you can't fulfil) and get your head blown off.


    Sure, you can dismiss all of the 'good stuff' that even without being religious is not a bad guide to follow, just because imperfect people get involved into religion and distort it (and get angry about it and see just the negatives), or you can approach it intelligently, accept the positives, and condemn and fight against the negatives.

    Why do I call it an intelligent approach... because in imperfect world, being surrounded by 7 bilion imperfect hoomans, this is as good as it's going to get. You're blaming people's VERY imperfect execution of good ideas, on the ideas themselves. That's a bit silly.

    Of course, in last couple hundred years since philosophy and social and natural sciences have gotten more developed, we have more options of saying on a straight path and keep ourselves out of trouble.

    However, if I could just say "you'll burn in hell" to someone in order to deter them from doing something stupid, instead of having to go through this long explanation every time, and it works, I'd do it in a second. It's just time management... I can convince more people to stay out of trouble, if I don't have to spend one-on-one hour with each of them... or more time with more stubborn or argumentative ones.

    Having said all that, being a major overanalyzer and into sciences etc myself, religion didn't quite cut it for me to 'stay on straight and narrow'. Scientific, psychological and philosophical approach worked better for me, to accept what in the end was the same thing that religion tries to teach people. This means, I can't completely dismiss it as useless and bad.

    Like I said, as long as imperfect hoomans have their hands in things, nothing will be perfect, or even close to it. Religion, government, psychology, sciences... You'll always have to wade through a piles of BS of various sizes. Whether you focus on the good stuff, or the bad stuff, is ultimately your own personal choice. If you keep dismissing evberything that has some of the bad in it, pretty soon you'll end up with nothing.... Which is another place that excessive pride will lead into.

    What bothers me about your posts in particular is that you are very dismissive of religions, without demonstrating that you understand them much. All I see you do is throw out various pop culture tidbits about how bad religion is that are on the level of an average beauty pageant contestant who wishes for 'whirled peas'.

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  8. #186
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    Velocity: I'll come back when you're done pandering to the minority.

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  9. #187
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    Quote Originally Posted by Velocity Kendall View Post
    "Couldn't the same arguments work any irrational belief that produces some positivity ?"

    I guess thats for each person to decide isnt it? I hope with luck that everything will turn out alright
    Hope with luck is a rational statement. You understand the possible desired outcome is most unlikely. However...I know with certainty that everything will turn out alright because I knelt before a man in a costume, ate a cracker, and said a few phrases in Latin.

    Quote Originally Posted by Conniekat8 View Post
    Also, at the risk of some of the believers jumping all over me, I'd like to point out that the 'belief in god or hell etc..' aren't really supposed to be taken literally.
    Demonstrate how you have the authority to claim this.
    Quote Originally Posted by Conniekat8 View Post
    Let's go over the 'deadly sins' for example, and secularize them, to explain they aren't really that full of shit...
    The only thing full of shit is that these are sins. These are secularized by default. There's no sky daddy that will punish you for these infractions. These are areas of ones life that can be a detriment in the case of over indulgence which is simply HIGH-JACKED by religious dogma.


    Quote Originally Posted by Conniekat8 View Post
    Why do I call it an intelligent approach... because in imperfect world, being surrounded by 7 bilion imperfect hoomans, this is as good as it's going to get. You're blaming people's VERY imperfect execution of good ideas, on the ideas themselves. That's a bit silly.
    No, I'm blaming people's lust for power and control for taking good ideas and then claiming a monopoly on the source of it all. Giving themselves self appointed titles like Pastor, or Reverend and holding a pseudo authoritarian title of respect. All of which are based on scary fairy tales told the children when they are most vulnerable.


    Quote Originally Posted by Conniekat8 View Post
    However, if I could just say "you'll burn in hell" to someone in order to deter them from doing something stupid, instead of having to go through this long explanation every time, and it works, I'd do it in a second.
    Then you're as bad as they are. You don't see the long term damage this creates.


    Quote Originally Posted by Conniekat8 View Post
    What bothers me about your posts in particular is that you are very dismissive of religions, without demonstrating that you understand them much. All I see you do is throw out various pop culture tidbits about how bad religion is that are on the level of an average beauty pageant contestant who wishes for 'whirled peas'.
    I was a fundamentalists Christian for a good 18 years of my life. I understand the long term fear and damage plenty.

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  10. #188
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Ross View Post
    ....I was a fundamentalists Christian for a good 18 years of my life. I understand the long term fear and damage plenty....
    Ah, now that may explain why you are in such an over zealous anti-religion kicking back and lashing out mode now. Well, that's too bad. Maybe some day you'll get over it a bit more and look at things more rationally.

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    So was I, had family that were worse than that Evangelist in the OP's video. Saw something like Rugrats on T.V. and said that it was evil because of how grotesque the characters looked. I did at least get to go around from Church to church, hear different people's views. Then later in life meet people from other religions and see the difference, Muslim friends, Hindu friends, Jewish friends, all sorts.

    Saw simply how not all religions or people in them are as stereotypical as the Bible Belt fundamentalist Christian, even among Christians themselves. That not everyone literally views these "fairytales" or even as the literal word of god in their scripture (if their religion has such a thing). They share all sorts of views. Most though you do find involve something usually focused on the big topic in life...... what happens in death. Which is a topic you can't prove regardless. Prove what happens after death that you disappear into nothing rather than reincarnate, or go to some heaven etc etc. Then you'll probably get rid of general religion. Until that day you can view everyone and all religions as the same or something, but it's not that black and white either way.




    Though as to someone above saying the minority, don't know if that was targetted towards some comment like earlier in the thread that religious people are in the 'minority' but if it was. Not sure about the statistic's accuracy since it's a global scale but what I've seen around 80+% of the world is religious in some form or another. Some go into rational people like all who are religious are irrational or not logical, well a page back Tyson gives a statistic of 40% of Scientists are religious. It's not really that much a minority if any.

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  13. #190
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    Quote Originally Posted by Conniekat8 View Post
    What bothers me about your posts in particular is that you are very dismissive of religions, without demonstrating that you understand them much.
    Quote Originally Posted by Conniekat8 View Post
    Ah, now that may explain why you are in such an over zealous anti-religion kicking back and lashing out mode now. Well, that's too bad. Maybe some day you'll get over it a bit more and look at things more rationally.
    Just like talking to a religious person. Regardless of which answer is given even though they are total opposites (no knowing the religion or knowing much of it) the conclusion is that there must be something wrong with me for my position. Rationality is what de-converted me. No longer am I scared of burning in Hell. No longer is the "white man" the devil. No longer will I pray for god to help improve my art. And no longer do I fear not appeasing this god so he won't miraculously strip my artistic skill away from me. Maybe someday you'll realize that religion is detrimental and uneccessary.

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  15. #191
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    Quote Originally Posted by JFierce View Post
    Saw simply how not all religions or people in them are as stereotypical as the Bible Belt fundamentalist Christian, even among Christians themselves. That not everyone literally views these "fairytales" or even as the literal word of god in their scripture (if their religion has such a thing).
    Well then they are not Christians. Christianity (as well as other dogmatic religions) has core beliefs. As soon as you reject those core beliefs then you are not a Christian. Was Jesus the son of God A.) Yes (Christian) B.) No (Non-Christian), If you deny the existence of the Holy Spirit then irreparable damage has been done and the eternal fire of Hell surely awaits. Sampson being super strong like Hercules until he got a haircut is on par rationally with Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead. No one holds hands at dinner and ponder over the 3 little pigs or Humptey Dumptey. These are the cherry pickers of the bible you talk about. They basically edit the text to suit their own needs which is fitting since Kings and Rulers have been doing that very same thing over the centuries.

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    Yes because through history Christianity has stayed to one specific group of beliefs and not branched off into subgroups at all......
    You can go into endless sects based on their own beliefs for Christianity and if you want to label them all that's fine.

    But once again many Christians realize the origin of the bible was from translated texts compiled ages ago by man and that hell it's often not even construed as true to the original scripture. You can call that Cherry picking just because you don't believe it all is straight from the mouth of god and literal but I don't. Hell if I remember correctly Presbyterians don't believe in the Bible literally, does it mean they aren't Christian, because I've met some of them too and they seem to call themselves "Christian".

    Religion is a set of beliefs, to pretend that you have to have every beliefs just to don a mainstream general title is silly. You could find try to find some denomination that fits your beliefs and use that title, or just call yourself other..... or hell go tell them to form their own as many have through history.


    Then that's just going into your view on Christianity not even about other religions, yet you seem to be grouping all religions in the same boat.

    Though once again pages back went into someones brief explanation of how the jewish faith reads their scripts which is hardly literal, and more personal. Is it cherry picking because they give their own meaning and interpretation to their scriptures? Not in my opinion.


    Not everyone's views has to be the cookie cutter mold this is how it is believe it, it's literal if you don't think so your not *insert religious title here*

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  18. #193
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Medusa View Post
    Ok, at fist I though it was a clever dark joke, but now I'm just incredibly curious as to what religion had done to those kids seeing as elwell edited them away.
    Anyone care to briefly describe what it was? PM if it should be too gory or horrible in written form as well.
    Oh, it's not a big deal. Jason Ross posted an image of a dead kid who was the victim of the war in Iraq. His point was that if you lost your kid, you might become a suicide bomber without necessarily being particularly religious. Then someone else complained about the picture of the dead child. So I posted a few pics of living but maimed kids, victims of the Iraq war.

    It wasn't merely a dark joke - I experience a certain level of irritation at people who want to wage war and discuss war but do not wish to look at any of the actual results of war. Especially when it was their own government that caused the whole mess.

    But apparently the moderator wasn't amused, so you'll have to go Google up your own macabre pictures. :-)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Conniekat8 View Post
    Ah, now that may explain why you are in such an over zealous anti-religion kicking back and lashing out mode now. Well, that's too bad. Maybe some day you'll get over it a bit more and look at things more rationally.
    I have seen this over and over with ex-fundies - when they lose their religion, they become just as zealous in their anti-religious crusade as they were when they still believed. The fundamentalist mindset doesn't go away, it just finds some new thing to be fundamentalist about.

    It is one reason why mainstream churches are often so opposed to fundamentalism: it is ultimately bad for religion, because it drives people away from it. (Interestingly, every time the fundies get dragged into court because they tried to force creationism into science classes, the main plaintiffs are not atheists but mainstream churches.)

    The problem isn't with religion so much as with fundamentalism.

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    Quote Originally Posted by blogmatix View Post
    I have seen this over and over with ex-fundies - when they lose their religion, they become just as zealous in their anti-religious crusade as they were when they still believed. The fundamentalist mindset doesn't go away, it just finds some new thing to be fundamentalist about.

    It is one reason why mainstream churches are often so opposed to fundamentalism: it is ultimately bad for religion, because it drives people away from it. (Interestingly, every time the fundies get dragged into court because they tried to force creationism into science classes, the main plaintiffs are not atheists but mainstream churches.)

    The problem isn't with religion so much as with fundamentalism.
    Yea, I'm not super familiar with fundamentalism, other then knowing that it's pretty extreme.... I've never known extremes to be a good thing.

    I can relate a little bit, I've been trapped growing up in a communist country, with all of it's extremes, and to this day, I've been known to react a bit on the strong side when that subject comes up. Not quite as strongly and illogically as Jason does with religion, but... while I tend to push myself to look at positives first in most things, and don't have a lot of trouble with looking for the good side of things, I do tend to lead with the negative when communism comes up.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Ross View Post
    Just like talking to a religious person. Regardless of which answer is given even though they are total opposites (no knowing the religion or knowing much of it) the conclusion is that there must be something wrong with me for my position. Rationality is what de-converted me. No longer am I scared of burning in Hell. No longer is the "white man" the devil. No longer will I pray for god to help improve my art. And no longer do I fear not appeasing this god so he won't miraculously strip my artistic skill away from me. Maybe someday you'll realize that religion is detrimental and uneccessary.
    You're talking about extremes again.

    My statements are not inconsistent with each other at all. You still don't exhibit a lot of knowledge about religion. You've been exposed to one, from what I hear about it pretty extreme type, and have decided all religion is a bad thing, because of one.

    Knowing that you went through one extreme setting, explains your extremism. Generally, when people start the healing and recovery process, they go from one extreme to another (overcompensate), and even back and forth a bit before things stabilize and they find a more realistic middle ground.

    You said yourself that you went through some bad and scary stuff. It would be abnormal for a person to not react to it. If you think that means 'something is wrong with you' that's your own judgement (hopefully you are not trying to play a martyr, I'm giving it benefit if doubt?). The fact that you are reacting to what you went through only indicates that you are going through a rather normal emotional process.

    When it gets to be abnormal is if get stuck in just one stage of healing forever, and never progress, but I gather that you are pretty young, and healing from stuff like you mentioned can take years.

    I can't say 'something is wrong with you' because I don't know you, and even then I may not be able to tell. What I *can* tell you is wrong is that the logic in your posts about religion doesn't add up.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JFierce View Post
    Religion is a set of beliefs, to pretend that you have to have every beliefs just to don a mainstream general title is silly.
    Of course it's silly. It's silly to think that "oh this part of the religion I feel is wrong so I'll just disregard that...but this part I like so I'll believe it." It's all silly and it is cherry picking. Dump one part then dump them all and think for yourself.

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    Quote Originally Posted by blogmatix View Post
    Oh, it's not a big deal. Jason Ross posted an image of a dead kid who was the victim of the war in Iraq. His point was that if you lost your kid, you might become a suicide bomber without necessarily being particularly religious. Then someone else complained about the picture of the dead child. So I posted a few pics of living but maimed kids, victims of the Iraq war.

    It wasn't merely a dark joke - I experience a certain level of irritation at people who want to wage war and discuss war but do not wish to look at any of the actual results of war. Especially when it was their own government that caused the whole mess.

    But apparently the moderator wasn't amused, so you'll have to go Google up your own macabre pictures. :-)
    Those of us with vivid imaginations don't need graphic images to prove points to their fullest. Jason Ross made his point perfectly well without the picture.

    Just because I don't want or choose(when given the choice) to look at pictures of dead children doesn't mean that I want to pretend that dead children don't exist. It means I don't want to desensitize myself to things that I find, and want to always find, abominable. I would never use images of someone else's kid that was ripped away from them to prove some petty point over the internet. I would not want images of my child, harmed or otherwise, used for the sake of propaganda either.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Conniekat8 View Post
    You still don't exhibit a lot of knowledge about religion. You've been exposed to one, from what I hear about it pretty extreme type, and have decided all religion is a bad thing, because of one.
    ...I was raised Christian, Read the Koran, went to a Theological College, and married a Buddhists. I've been exposed to more than you think you can tell by my posts.


    Quote Originally Posted by Conniekat8 View Post
    Knowing that you went through one extreme setting, explains your extremism. Generally, when people start the healing and recovery process, they go from one extreme to another (overcompensate), and even back and forth a bit before things stabilize and they find a more realistic middle ground.
    middle ground...hmm I can't think of much middle ground between peddling superstition as truth and rationality.

    Quote Originally Posted by Conniekat8 View Post
    You said yourself that you went through some bad and scary stuff. It would be abnormal for a person to not react to it. If you think that means 'something is wrong with you' that's your own judgement (hopefully you are not trying to play a martyr, I'm giving it benefit if doubt?). The fact that you are reacting to what you went through only indicates that you are going through a rather normal emotional process.
    This isn't a reaction to anything I went through. This is just the way I see religion once I was able to purge my mind of the superstition and self righteousness.

    Quote Originally Posted by Conniekat8 View Post
    When it gets to be abnormal is if get stuck in just one stage of healing forever, and never progress, but I gather that you are pretty young, and healing from stuff like you mentioned can take years.
    I'm almost 40 years old. I'm well over the non sense of flying people and zombies.

    Quote Originally Posted by Conniekat8 View Post
    I can't say 'something is wrong with you' because I don't know you, and even then I may not be able to tell. What I *can* tell you is wrong is that the logic in your posts about religion doesn't add up.
    The logic? Not sure what logic you are referring to. Religion is made up by people who really don't know what they are talking about. The moment someone tells you that they know what happens after you die is when you look them in the eye and say, "You're full of shit."

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    Just realized you live in Missouri, used to live there when I was younger for a bit, no wonder your so turned off especially if your 40 and grew up there. Yerp, went to Christian school there myself wasn't fun, large amount of people who are the epitome of the fundamental Christian.


    But claiming to be an expert with Theological college or for reading the Quran doesn't mean much.
    Since .... you know Aramaic to read the Quran right?
    It's like saying your an expert on the Tanahk without knowing Hebrew.

    To the Buddhism there's multiple schools of that as well but she's your wife so I'm not going to claim she's in one of the modern day schools that warp the teachings or her knowledge on the religion as I don't know. I'm going to assume that she does have a bit of knowledge on the matter.



    But anyways to the cherry picking above, Once again thousand+ year old texts, multiple authors, different compilations and translations and your acting like you either pick it all or not at all, or that you have to view it literally. I'm sorry but makes no sense not even looking from a religious view.

    That's like reading anything, especially something with different writers in a compilation. Your reading a book and one of the authors makes some notion you find ridiculous so yes you of course logically say: "No, ya know what I'm going to believe everything in here and not leave anything to my own judgment about the times, culture, history etc". Because that's just cherry picking not just using your own discretion or viewpoints on a matter.

    Hell on the same notion once again the example of Jewish faith which the Bible for the most part pretty much originated from. Their reading of scripture interpretations works (in summary) on first the literal level where they examine the cultural setting, history, context and what's written, examine the metaphorical or deeper setting, examine the allegorical, typological, then the hidden meaning which requires a lot of knowledge on actual Hebrew all left up to general interpretation.

    The irony is you keep saying oh religion religion all of them say if you don't believe this behave like this your punished your going to hell. The irony is once again Judaism after hearing a friend go on and on about it doesn't focus much on the afterlife. The views are quite varying and up to personal interpretation. Some believe in something like a soul, others believe in reincarnation, but there isn't much writing on it and the focus is on how you live not the consequence of death, and your misdeeds. I've heard some friends say there isn't even a hell. Up to the individual without threats of punishment. Unlike the fundamentalist Christian who thinks 'this happened, this is literal, believe this or your not part of this faith and your burning in hellfire'.



    But once again to you it's all bullshit either way so other people's interpretations of another cultures thousand year old scripts doesn't matter because it's still illogical zombies and flying people that you burn in hell if you do bad things.

    So it's just going to be a back and forth never ending discussion.
    Though the irony is I'm not a part any of these religions, undefined as in fuck if I know how the universe works. I just pop in because people categorize religions and the people in them that they're all nutcases or unintelligent illogical thinkers like the Bible belt Christian, when most probably don't even know much about the religions overall. Those who look down on others in such a way are just as condescending as the religious nuts who do the same.


    It's like stereotyping another culture like the middle east as all terrorists who want to kill infidels and get into holy wars. Without ever even stepping foot in the middle east. But you've been to Arizona and a Muslim man mugged you so close enough.

    (Ridiculous comparison but I found it a funny image)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stacybean View Post
    Those of us with vivid imaginations don't need graphic images to prove points to their fullest. Jason Ross made his point perfectly well without the picture.

    Just because I don't want or choose(when given the choice) to look at pictures of dead children doesn't mean that I want to pretend that dead children don't exist. It means I don't want to desensitize myself to things that I find, and want to always find, abominable. I would never use images of someone else's kid that was ripped away from them to prove some petty point over the internet. I would not want images of my child, harmed or otherwise, used for the sake of propaganda either.
    Fair enough - the offensive images have in any event now been moderated out of existence.

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    Jason, no real use in replying anymore. It's more about the social aspect (accepting people with different beliefs regardless of the belief, hold all beliefs equally, cultures have beliefs and when you attack a belief you attack a culture and that's wrong because we learned in school that all cultures are equal so all cultural beliefs must also be equal) than the actual merits of religion. Any experience you bring up will be reduced to slothful induction. And pretty much any criticism will be wrote off as you being angry and bitter.

    Smile or die.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JFierce View Post
    Just realized [...] close enough.
    Your post is insipid and vacuous. But it is also comical, so I'll extend the courtesy of a response for having made me laugh at you.

    Tell me: Would you advocate, to someone, the belief in a lie? Would you lie to someone about how they should live their lives? Do you think it is better or worse for people to base their lives on fairy tales, however wonderful and fantastical such tales might be? Do you think it is respectable for someone to keep lying even when they're presented with the facts? How okay are we with believing religious texts purely because they regurgitate intuitive and instinctive pinnacles of human morality?

    You know what religions have in common? At their cores, they are all based on lies. But of course, according to you there are so many flavours of these lies that it would be wrong to argue against them: how could you when you haven't even tasted all of the lies out there?

    Maybe I'll find a certain lie that I like and then suddenly religion will make sense and it will be a good thing?

    When a religion asks you to place your life in the hands of something that doesn't exist, how can you be okay with believing some of what it says but not everything?

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    Sketch:

    "And no, [adding up the pros and cons] it's not a good way of analyzing history."
    "It's more about the social aspect ...than the actual merits of religion."


    D'oh!
    So analysing the pros and cons of religion is bad, but youre annoyed because we're not talking about the "actual merits" (pros and cons) of religion. You blew it.

    "Velocity: I'll come back when you're done pandering to the minority. "

    haha yeah ok storm off without actually answering any of my questions. Which questions? Well, the one where I asked you if political correctness being responsible for legally enforce workplace equality wasnt a good thing for one. Or the one where you said I was strawmanning your idea of religion and I asked you to clarify your own conception of it for starters.
    Hey speaking of strawmanning, whats with this shameful example? ("accepting people with different beliefs regardless of the belief, hold all beliefs equally, cultures have beliefs and when you attack a belief you attack a culture and that's wrong because we learned in school that all cultures are equal so all cultural beliefs must also be equal)"
    I never said that. Did anyone here say that? At all? Your also implying an implicit value judgement of cultures is possible and lacking, presumably ones made using your favourite, the cost benefit analysis of merits and cons.... youre so muddle-minded its like your arguing against yourself.
    Ho ho and remember that time you outright lied and said I called you a fascist? That was terrible Muriel!

    Brendan

    "You know what religions have in common? At their cores, they are all based on lies."

    Dangerous ground. Is the principle of loving thy neighbour a lie? What about the Buddhist principle respect for the natural world? They are 'pinnacles of morality' but theyre not instinctive. instinct would have you fuck over everyone except your immediate genetic or social group for that group's advantage.
    The Genesis stuff isnt a lie, its an out-dated truth. Thats how ancient people in the Levantine thought the world formed. Our current ideas of genesis are the Big Bang and the proto-stellar accretion disc, but they too are incomplete models and will eventually be fine-tuned or discarded.

    Now, Im not suggesting religious dogma and science are in some way equivalent. Science is best at busting dogma and applying rationality to anecdote.
    I think its important to seperate the spirituality and science in a way that was impossible when many ancient religions were first formed.
    OBVIOUSLY the world was not created in 7 days. But a more powerful and rational approach is to say that the evidence does not in any way support the idea that the world was created in 7 days.
    However, religion helps people answer questions outside of science's remit too, and should be accorded respect, at least to exist without persecution so long as it itself is not advocating such.
    Nutters who think women dont have souls? Well, theyre obviously wrong and stupid and should be demolished.

    Dont get me wrong, I am sympathetic to your views; I decided religion was bullshit when I was 10. (Although that was more to do with wanting a lie-in on Sundays than any philosophically rigorous reasoning. It just seemed silly, and boring, and irrelevant.)
    And obviously I think people who insist the Bible stories are literally true, or that the whole world needs Sharia law are ridiculous, and possibly harmful, and definitely fucking infuriating, but theyre a minority. I spent my childhood in a moderate muslim country and it seemed to function ok.
    I know, I know, a lot of extreme, headline-grabbing religious stuff from Afghanistan is horrible, but characterising usefully simplified moral models, or empathically sensitive foma as LIES is misleading.

    "Tell me: Would you advocate, to someone, the belief in a lie?"

    Would you use Newtonian physics to do a ballistics calculation, knowing that the true reality is both more subtle and complex? Any engineer would.
    Would you say your wife's strange new hairstyle looked great? Youd better
    Would you tell someone in a crushed car they were going to be alright if you thought it might comfort them?


    Blogmatix
    "The problem isn't with religion so much as with fundamentalism."

    Its a sad irony that the perversion and corruption of the frankly highminded fundamentals behind most religions; mutual respect, compassion, a close personal relationship with reality/god/the universe, thinking for oneself, is itself called fundamentalism.
    There is nothing fundamental about corrupt versions of Islam that advocate the oppression of women, or of Christianity that promote dangerous xenophobia. Those have been tacked on by second rate self-serving dickheads long after the original visionaries have died.

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    Ad-hominems fuckin' everywhere, we need a debate class thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by blogmatix View Post
    I have seen this over and over with ex-fundies - when they lose their religion, they become just as zealous in their anti-religious crusade as they were when they still believed. The fundamentalist mindset doesn't go away, it just finds some new thing to be fundamentalist about.
    What are the fundamentals of atheism? How can one be fundamentalist with regard to atheism? Do you know the difference between fundamentalism and intensity/passion?

    I'm not making the argument that atheists can't be stupid or irrational (watch the video I posted a few pages back) but it's kind of hard to be fundamentalist about a lack of belief, or a single belief that has no dogma.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Velocity Kendall View Post
    Brendan

    "You know what religions have in common? At their cores, they are all based on lies."

    They are? Is the principle of loving thy neighbour a lie? What about the Buddhist respect for the natural world? They are 'pinnacles of morality' but theyre not instinctive. instinct would have you fuck over everyone except your immediate genetic or social group for your groups advantage.
    The Genesis stuff isnt a lie, its an out-dated truth. Thats how ancient people in the Levantine thought the world formed. Our current ideas of genesis are the Big Bang and the proto-stellar accretion disc, but they too are incomplete models and will eventually be fine-tuned or discarded.

    Dont get me wrong, I am sympathetic to your views; I decided religion was bullshit when I was 10. (Although that was more to do with wanting a lie-in on Sundays than any philosophically rigorous reasoning. It just seemed silly, and boring, and irrelevant.
    And obviously I think people who insist the Bible stories are literally true, or that the whole world needs Sharia law are ridiculous, and possibly harmful, and definitely fucking infuriating, but theyre a minority. I spent my childhood in a moderate muslim country and it seemed to function ok.
    That's being misleading and you know it. All religions mandate belief in a supernatural being, otherwise we wouldn't call them religions. The fact that they throw in "love thy neighbour" is, as I explained before, entirely trivial.

    "Tell me: Would you advocate, to someone, the belief in a lie?"

    Would you use Newtonian physics to do a ballistics calculation, knowing that the true reality is both more subtle and complex? Any engineer would.
    Would you tell someone in a crushed car they were going to be alright if you thought it might comfort them?
    Those are both really bad analogies. We don't even get perfect scores in Quantum Mechanics. But Newtonian physics mostly lives up to its predictions, is tried and tested. I daresay engineers of every creed and culture use it. Can those engineers agree upon a religion as they do on physics?

    We dispense with Newtonian physics when it starts falling apart, we don't stick with it regardless of the circumstance. We don't use it to calculate the mass of quarks or the velocity of an electron.

    Let's say the person in the car dies. Would you dare tell the loved ones that it doesn't matter, that they'd one day see him/her again for a fact? Or can you tell them that person is currently in hell, suffering as they had never suffered before and condemned to suffer so forever?

    "If it ain't broke, don't fix it," is a terrible adage by which to progress.

    And I don't base my life decisions on my hypothetical wife's hairstyle, which I think she might change if I said I liked the other one better.

    EDIT: Oh, I forgot to mention: I quite enjoy you playing a sort of devil's advocate here; I like, from time to time, to ferociously engage people on topics in which they're not too invested. It takes longer for them to get frustrated and hate me

    Last edited by Brendan N; January 18th, 2012 at 09:56 AM.
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    "We dispense with Newtonian physics when it starts falling apart, we don't stick with it regardless of the circumstance. We don't use it to calculate the mass of quarks or the velocity of an electron. "

    Yeah, that is the key problem with religion. It is inflexible. Thats what gets it into so many scrapes. I cant disagree with you there.

    "All religions mandate belief in a supernatural being, otherwise we wouldn't call them religions"

    Yeah, we do love to see faces in the clouds. I dont hold that against ancient people; they found success in empathising with eachother in tribes, and with their prey and predators, so why not with the rain and the sun. We now know they are not supernatural agencies but powerful natural forces, but th doesnt stop us characterising the weather as 'treacherous' when its icy or 'kind' when its nice for a wedding or windy for a boat race..

    "Let's say the person in the car dies. Would you dare tell the loved ones that it doesn't matter, that they'd one day see him/her again for a fact? Or can you tell them that person is currently in hell, suffering as they had never suffered before and condemned to suffer so forever? "

    Personally, no, I think those would be incredibly cruel and sociopathically insensitive things to do. I doubt many religious people would say those things either though, and if they did they deserve to be fired from their jobs as carers.

    "And I don't base my life decisions on my hypothetical wife's hairstyle, which I think she might change if I said I liked the other one better."

    Ooo, daaangerous, your hypothetical wife might give you a slap if youre not careful.
    Foma is a crucial social lubricant, and not one wisely discarded casually...

    "Oh, I forgot to mention: I quite enjoy you playing a sort of devil's advocate here"

    hehe quite literally in this case. I always liked the devil, he thought for himself, stuck two fingers up at God/his dad/authority... he was the original freelancer! When I was a kid I liked to imagine God was secretly proud of him, way more than his kiss-ass angel assistants like Mike and Gabriel, those sycophants could never be worthy to run the family business.
    As a completely non-religious person who is addicted to the flood of new knowledge from todays science, I can entirely understand why people would reject religion.
    But I also think a world without spirituality, and that for me at least includes art, music, fun, love, and a sense of wonder at the majesty of the universe, is an empty room.
    And to attack all religion, including moderates, with what can only be called a religious fervour is breeding more of the same evil intolerance that religious extremism is so guilty of. If people are comforted by religion, leave them alone.

    Hail Satan!

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    Quote Originally Posted by JFierce View Post
    Just realized you live in Missouri, used to live there when I was younger for a bit, no wonder your so turned off especially if your 40 and grew up there. Yerp, went to Christian school there myself wasn't fun, large amount of people who are the epitome of the fundamental Christian.
    False deductions will get you nowhere. I moved here back in 2001.


    Quote Originally Posted by JFierce View Post
    But claiming to be an expert with Theological college or for reading the Quran doesn't mean much.
    Since .... you know Aramaic to read the Quran right?
    It's like saying your an expert on the Tanahk without knowing Hebrew.
    False inductions will get you nowhere. I never claimed to be an expert. How do you get that from my post? Maybe you have to read the posts that I'm replying to in order to understand my words. I was accused of not knowing much about religion because my posts don't coincide with how someone would respond if they did. I have had more exposure than most yet nothing changes.



    Quote Originally Posted by JFierce View Post
    But anyways to the cherry picking above, Once again thousand+ year old texts, multiple authors, different compilations and translations and your acting like you either pick it all or not at all, or that you have to view it literally. I'm sorry but makes no sense not even looking from a religious view.
    Ok so let me just get this out of the way. The bible is full of supernatural claims from river parting as to allow a walking path to jewish zombies walking the streets....Picking which supernatural claim is fact or fiction is cherry picking.

    Quote Originally Posted by JFierce View Post
    That's like reading anything, especially something with different writers in a compilation. Your reading a book and one of the authors makes some notion you find ridiculous so yes you of course logically say: "No, ya know what I'm going to believe everything in here and not leave anything to my own judgment about the times, culture, history etc". Because that's just cherry picking not just using your own discretion or viewpoints on a matter.
    Your analogy is flawed in representing my position. Let me edit it to see if you understand.

    "That's like reading anything, especially something with different writers in a compilation. Your reading a book and most of the authors make notions you find ridiculous so yes you of course logically say: "No, ya know what I'm going to believe everything in this ridiculous part here but in this part i will use my own judgment about the times, culture, history etc". Because that is cherry picking not just using your own discretion or viewpoints on a matter.

    A man living inside of a fish for 3 days is just as ridiculous as Jewish zombies roaming the streets of Jerusalem when Jesus died.


    Quote Originally Posted by JFierce View Post
    The irony is you keep saying oh religion religion all of them say if you don't believe this behave like this your punished your going to hell. The irony is once again Judaism after hearing a friend go on and on about it doesn't focus much on the afterlife. The views are quite varying and up to personal interpretation. Some believe in something like a soul, others believe in reincarnation, but there isn't much writing on it and the focus is on how you live not the consequence of death, and your misdeeds. I've heard some friends say there isn't even a hell. Up to the individual without threats of punishment. Unlike the fundamentalist Christian who thinks 'this happened, this is literal, believe this or your not part of this faith and your burning in hellfire'.
    I focus on one because I don't have to time to go over all of them. Jews focus on the Old testament and Christians focus on the New Testament. They are both fictitious. Call it whatever you want metaphor, allegorical, parable, blah blah blah...sophisticated synonyms for fairy tales or bed time stories. There's only one of 2 possibilities to a claim. Fact or Fiction. I like this fiction better than this fiction is a waste of thinking and to consider it "critical thinking" is absurd. No where in the bible does is state this part is allegorical and this part is fact. Who are you to state otherwise?



    Quote Originally Posted by JFierce View Post
    But once again to you it's all bullshit either way so other people's interpretations of another cultures thousand year old scripts doesn't matter because it's still illogical zombies and flying people that you burn in hell if you do bad things.
    Now your getting it. The creator of the universe talks to me and told me what happens when you die. Here's a book he helped me write to tell you how to live your life. I'll see you on Sunday and oh btw I'll need 10% of what you earn. Tax free Cash or Check will do just fine.

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    Jason Ross:

    "So how could one handle say an 18 year old who still believes in Santa Claus?...I was a fundamentalists Christian for a good 18 years of my life."

    Connie nailed you:
    Quote Originally Posted by Conniekat8 View Post
    Ah, now that may explain why you are in such an over zealous anti-religion kicking back and lashing out mode now. Well, that's too bad. Maybe some day you'll get over it a bit more and look at things more rationally.
    "A man living inside of a fish for 3 days is just as ridiculous as Jewish zombies roaming the streets."

    No shit really??

    "It's all silly and it is cherry picking. Dump one part then dump them all and think for yourself."

    Cherry picking is thinking for yourself. Fortunately most religious people are not the simpletons you paint them to be and are able to sift out the useful wisdom from the far-fetched mythology, and dont dump the baby out with the bathwater as you clearly did when you were 18 and found out Santa wasnt coming.

    Jason Rainville

    "What are the fundamentals of atheism? How can one be fundamentalist with regard to atheism? Do you know the difference between fundamentalism and intensity/passion?"

    Fervent atheists and fervent evangelicals have a lot in common, particularly the absence of doubt. They are both absolutely certain they are right.

    “It’s odd…how sharing a sense of doubt can bring men together perhaps even more than sharing a faith. The believer will fight another believer over a shade of difference: the doubter fights only with himself.” from Monsignor Quixote by Graham Greene, author, cynic, serial philanderer, catholic convert.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Rainville View Post
    Ad-hominems fuckin' everywhere, we need a debate class thread.

    What are the fundamentals of atheism? How can one be fundamentalist with regard to atheism? Do you know the difference between fundamentalism and intensity/passion?

    I'm not making the argument that atheists can't be stupid or irrational (watch the video I posted a few pages back) but it's kind of hard to be fundamentalist about a lack of belief, or a single belief that has no dogma.
    I used the word as being roughly synonymous with "undue fanaticism." With some of the atheists I have met online, it is like that: not only do you have to agree with them that all religion is utterly evil, you have to agree with it in terms as passionate as the ones they use, or otherwise you are one of the enemy. And they won't stop badgering you about it until you either agree or you go away.

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