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MasticateTheNecro
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Joined: Thu May 24, 2007 9:29 pm
Posts: 262
Location: United States
PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 8:59 pm 
 

I was wondering earlier today, why after years of being a god-fearing person, many stop believing and move on to, IMO more rational thoughts, such as atheism. For instance, I used to be a christian-actually more of the hypocrite that most 'christians' are, but later had the epiphany that there is no god. A rational way of thinking, I think, but it seems that so many people never stop believing. I want to know why. I'm aware that a majority of MA users are most likely atheists, and I was wondering what it was that changed your minds, that maybe I could find a pattern, which from what I have so-far gathered, is that when a drastic change in one's life occurs, your thuoghts seem to shift to what seems rational at the current time.

For instance, I believe that what it was for me was when I was depressed for a couple of years, I guess what happened was I began to reshape basically all of my thoughts and what I found one day was that I was being so, so irrational back when I believed the things that they said in church. So, in a way the depression was the turning point in my life, I will call it the 'drastic change' that I mentioned earlier. Was your revelation similar, or were you an atheist all along? If you were an atheist all along, what did you think of all the people that believed in god in your early years?

If my writing seems unclear, point out what confuses you (I know I am not always clear with my writing, but I'm working on that ;))
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..but what did the mind actually mean behind the meaning of pointing out the point...

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Woolie_Wool
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 9:05 pm 
 

I have never held any religious faith, not even as a child, but being religious and losing one's faith must be a massive and probably traumatic psychological upheaval. Christians aren't kidding about the whole personal relationship with God, and I've heard a loss of faith compared to going through an extremely bad breakup.

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MasticateTheNecro
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 9:14 pm 
 

Woolie_Wool wrote:
I have never held any religious faith, not even as a child, but being religious and losing one's faith must be a massive and probably traumatic psychological upheaval. Christians aren't kidding about the whole personal relationship with God, and I've heard a loss of faith compared to going through an extremely bad breakup.


That is kind of what inspired me to write this thread, today at my school I was talking to one of my friends who is a christian, and he was at first joking then got serious when his friend started talking about an incident that happened to him. His friend said that he had something happen to him (I forgot what) and it cut his neck open (and I saw where is throat had been slit or torn somehow) and he was in a coma for 3 days or something like that. He described to me his fear of not waking up and going to hell. Needless to say, he is a tr00 christian, no hypocrite, because of that fateful event. I think it is a sense of security for people like him, those who aren't able to fully grasp diferent philosophical ideas once they're used to them for their life, and in his case he needed to believe that some high power protected him. But I guess physical near-death trauma isn't included in the recipe for atheism, but psychological trauma, which he did experience, but if it is without the physical trauma?
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..but what did the mind actually mean behind the meaning of pointing out the point...

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The_Beast_in_Black
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 9:27 pm 
 

My father was raised in an Irish catholic home, my mother in an Anglican one. Neither of them had any real faith, and that was how I was raised. My maternal grandmother, though, had a penchant for God and so insisted that I get baptised.

I grew up somewhat apathetic to divine matters. For a while I was frightened by hell because I had some bastard religious teachers at school, but after I matured enough to not believe everything an adult told me, I became more-or-less agnostic.

I don't exactly remember when I decided that God clearly wasn't real in any organized religion's sense, and so changed over the atheism. Many experiences with religious people have only cememented my dislike of organized religion.

So I guess I just took the logical approach naturally. I'm not sure what would make a staunch Christian change. Honestly, I can't see why people still believe in myths at all.
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woeoftyrants
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 9:41 pm 
 

For me, the breaking point from Christianity and religion came naturally. I grew up in a religious household, but it was never strict; my parents were Christians, but not the crazy kind. They always encouraged me to think for myself and make my own decisions. I had more or less grown up in the church, and started going less and less as the years went on; of course, when you're young, you never really understand any of it anyway, but I just felt totally out of place. I eventually stopped going altogether when I was 10 or 11, but still held some of my old Christian values up until I was 13 or 14; and at that point, I realized, "You know, maybe what I've been taught my entire life isn't really what I think," but I ignored it at first. The more I researched the Christian faith, the less I wanted to be a part of it, because all of the dirt underneath the surface had been revealed, and there's no need to mention what "dirt" I speak of; we all know.

My spiritual outlook is something that has slowly evolved over the past 4 or 5 years. I've comfortably been an atheist for about 2 years now, and I'm happier than I've ever been; another thing is, my outlook is always expanding. There are always new ways to think outside of religious bounds. (For example, I've been doing a lot of research on chaos magick lately, it's always interested me; I'd like to somehow integrate into my system of beliefs.)

On the note of it being a security for certain people, I would definitely agree. So many people stick with Christianity because it's all they know, and they don't know how to approach anything else because it's taboo in the eyes of their religion; or because they may be at a desperate point in their lives, and they simply go the direction that many others have gone because it seems practical. People also cling to it out of fear: fear of going to "hell," fear of not being accepted or being condemned by Christian peers or friends, but most of all, fear of thinking for themselves. I think it's apt to say that one of the hardest things a person can do is leave behind what is "traditional" and strike out on his or her own path, because we've been so instilled with the notion that free thinking is wrong in a spiritual context.

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pseudodraconis
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 9:59 pm 
 

I was raised in a Catholic family. My entire extended family on my dad's side is sort of close, so I grew up around them. Everyone around me was Catholic and believed in this stuff, so naturally I did too. At first, my parents just went by the basic rules(go to Church on Sundays and holy days, go through the Sacraments, that sort of thing). My mom sort of went on to become this super-Catholic, but my dad's always been at about the same level of participation. All of my siblings have gone to Sunday school, which is weekend Bible study, until we got the sacrament of Confirmation(about ninth grade, or fourteen years old).

No one in the extended family ever mentioned the possibility of there not being a God, so it never really occurred to me that there might not be one. I just went through the motions because I didn't want to disappoint my parents, and I didn't want to go to Hell. I never really paid attention to what was going on in mass, and only memorised the things I needed to in school.

Eventually I started spending a lot of time with my cousin Brandon. I was in seventh or eighth grade at the time. He would point out things to me that didn't make sense. From there I started wondering why I just accepted that this God was the right one. I didn't like the idea of the answer being "because I say so." So basically the more I thought about it, the less I believed in it. So by the time I hit high school, I didn't really believe in any of it anymore. Oddly enough, my cousin who started getting me to think about this stuff, now wants to become a priest. Go figure.
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MasticateTheNecro
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 10:10 pm 
 

woeoftyrants wrote:
I eventually stopped going altogether when I was 10 or 11, but still held some of my old Christian values up until I was 13 or 14; and at that point, I realized, "You know, maybe what I've been taught my entire life isn't really what I think,".......................
........................I've comfortably been an atheist for about 2 years now, and I'm happier than I've ever been; another thing is, my outlook is always expanding. There are always new ways to think outside of religious bounds


Damn, I wish I could stop going, god damn parents...... [on to the next quoted part] That is another thing I love about non-religion, you aren't tied to any solipistic ways of thinking, you can always expand your philosophical and intellectual boundaries beyond what 'the tradition' is.

pseudodraconis wrote:
Eventually I started spending a lot of time with my cousin Brandon. I was in seventh or eighth grade at the time. He would point out things to me that didn't make sense. From there I started wondering why I just accepted that this God was the right one. I didn't like the idea of the answer being "because I say so." So basically the more I thought about it, the less I believed in it.


Yeah, that is what I thought. My dramatic change in thought could be compared to your cousin Brandon. I think it takes something like that to jar you into it.
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..but what did the mind actually mean behind the meaning of pointing out the point...

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vondskapens_makt
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 10:17 pm 
 

I have never been religious; thus, I never bothered to take it seriously nor did it ever have any sort of impact on my life. I lived most of my life as a godless individual and always prefered logic and reasoning over blind faith, so there is basically no reason for me to ever become a Christian. Even if I was, I doubt I would've stayed religious for long.

Most people who continue to follow it in lieu of all the more rational ways of thinking still do it because they know nothing else, or use it as a crutch of sorts to get by in life.
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NeglectedField
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 10:18 pm 
 

Well, my mother is a Catholic and my father's an atheist. At around 11 I realised to myself that deep down inside I never believed any of it and it's only function in my life was superstition. Plus I see my mother as the emotional one and my father as the more rational being. Part of me associated my atheism with his rationality.

However, I wouldn't call my mother's side that irrational.
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josephus
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 10:24 pm 
 

I was born, Baptised, and Christened as a Church of England Protestant Christian, and went to a C of E primary school from age 4-10. What happened to change me into the Atheist that I am today? Actually reading the damn Bible, that's what. A lot of it is just flat-out ridiculous. All the religious assemblies, lessons, and trips to the Church across the road sure did educate me on Christianity, and well, as an organised Religion, it just sucks.
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MasticateTheNecro
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 10:29 pm 
 

josephus wrote:
I was born, Baptised, and Christened as a Church of England Protestant Christian, and went to a C of E primary school from age 4-10. What happened to change me into the Atheist that I am today? Actually reading the damn Bible, that's what. A lot of it is just flat-out ridiculous. All the religious assemblies, lessons, and trips to the Church across the road sure did educate me on Christianity, and well, as an organised Religion, it just sucks.


You got that right! How pretentious for a group of people to think they are right and force it on everyone, disregarding the fact that they know nnothing about the credibility of the authors. But I don't want this to derail on this topic, however I think that is THE single most irrational and narrow-minded thing about religion.
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livercage wrote:
..but what did the mind actually mean behind the meaning of pointing out the point...

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LindisfarneAnno793
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 10:47 pm 
 

vondskapens_makt wrote:
I have never been religious; thus, I never bothered to take it seriously nor did it ever have any sort of impact on my life. I lived most of my life as a godless individual and always prefered logic and reasoning over blind faith, so there is basically no reason for me to ever become a Christian. Even if I was, I doubt I would've stayed religious for long.

This is the same with me. As far back as I can remember, I have been inclined toward living without any religious beliefs. In fact, I have a funny story about it. When I was in primary school (I was probably about 8 or 9), we used to have a couple of Christian preachers visit our classroom every few weeks to teach us about the Bible and make us sing Christian songs. I have vivid memories of having said to them on several occasions, "excuse me, miss - I'd rather not participate in this, because it is against my beliefs"; she pretty much told me to piss off (in nicer terms) and sing the damned songs. :lol: My statement can probably be more correctly attributed to my being a smart-arse than any profound decision on my part to reject religion, but the words weren't meaningless either.

I have never professed any religious affiliation, and I believe I never will. Interesting, though, is the fact that several people I've known have been genuinely surprised to learn that I am not a Christian (or religious in general). :???: Their comments have always been along the lines of "oh.. I always thought you were a Christian because of your soft spoken respect for others". I guess this goes to further the point that one need not be religious to have desirable personality qualities.
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Lorean
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 12:19 am 
 

If I really think of it I can say that, even after all hard things that I passed in my life none of them gave reasons enough to stop believing in God but... You know when you grow up doubts come to your mind and you start wandering if God is there to help or not or if it even exist...
But I think after all that minding I came up to the anwer called balance.

Between good or evil there always will be a balance that keeps the wold as it is... as ones dies other are born tanking the loss energy of living to reborn in somehow...

As the constant flow of energy (cientifically provend) keeps it's direction transforming from one into another the regulator (not a living thing) it's what you may call god...

For Chistian people God is a way to feel safe, if they make good things they wil get God's reward, it they feel lonely or desperate they pray so they can relax thinking someone will watch over them...

For me God it is just a regulator of energy and balance, and being a force of good he must have an antagonist force of evil, the Devil...

Finally one doubt, if any chistian can answer me, Is it the Devil independant from god's decitions? and if it is, Why does he punishes bad people in the suposeddly hell if his work it's to make people against it's God?, acording to chistians beliefs Why god punishes people? if he is suppossed to forgive the "sins" of his "sons" as a holy entiti?

Can't get it all... I am trying to undertands more religions so they can turn respectful to my eyes but I still do not get all this stuff...

Sorry if my questions bother someone :D

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Cjk10000
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 12:21 am 
 

Basically, if you take a university course you will be an atheist. You cannot pass biology thinking "Creationism > Evolution".
Well you can, but you'd really be wasting your time.
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caspian
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 12:41 am 
 

It seems I have the opposite story to most people.

My parents raised me as a a Christian, but by the time I was 13 I was bored with it. I didn't really believe it, just came along to placate the parents etc.

This continued on until I as about 18 or so, and just when I was ready to leave, I had my own epiphany/road to damascus/etc moment. I can't be bothered explaining the details, but suffice to say that that completely restored my faith, and I've been a chrisitan ever since.

It's worth noting that while I am pretty aware that Christianity isn't entirely rational (personally, theism/agnosticism seems to be easily the most logical approach), it doesn't matter too much to me. I had a powerful experience, you know? And it's hard t deny your own experience.

Also: Cjk: I think we can say that purely applies to biological studies. At the very least I know about 3 christians currently doing their PHDs in Phyics.

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deathcorpse
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 12:55 am 
 

I don't know and can only speak for myself. It was never easy for me...I was born a poor black child...

Seriously, My mom is jewish, my dad Prodestant. They were very liberal we went to Unitarian church. I knew what the Judeo/Christian god was and stood for, and read the bible with my dad; mostly REVELATION because I was interested in all that sort of stuff. Anyway, somewhere in my teens I declared myself an absolute atheist. When I was a teen though, I read Huxley's THE DOORS OF PERCEPTION and always had a wonder about what an altered state of conciousness really was like. I know it's perhaps bad to say but it was a fact, the minute I started doing hallucigenics; I felt the presence of SOMETHING. Somewhere along the line, Timothy Leary/Richard Alpert's TIBETAN BOOK OF THE DEAD, Richard Alpert i.e. Ram Dass' BE HERE NOW, and Yogananda's MAN'S ETERNAL QUEST became my interests. I still feel a strong connection to those books.

My definition of god=the omnipresent energy behind all things living.

Back to the atheist thing...perhaps if I never did any psychedelics in my early 20's would I ever be forever changed, but I am. I just don't believe in the whole Judeo/Christian control/guilt factor which I think stifles growth. I believe it's all "the way" and not just "your way" or "my way". There are many gods, gurus, and religions, to each their own for any belief system. I don't know what I would catagorize myself being, perhaps if I had to pick a faith that closely mirrored my beliefs, it would be Buddhist; but I don't 100% agree with the faith.

I definitely am NOT an atheist, but I can relate. I think it had to do with my angst issues and thinking that perhaps something could help lead me out of my angst and since god didn't do that, there wasn't one.


Last edited by deathcorpse on Fri Feb 15, 2008 1:17 am, edited 1 time in total.
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deathcorpse
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 1:07 am 
 

Cjk10000 wrote:
Basically, if you take a university course you will be an atheist. You cannot pass biology thinking "Creationism > Evolution".
Well you can, but you'd really be wasting your time.


I think it depends on what you definite "atheism" as being, and as "believing in god" as being.

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Nahsil
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 1:20 am 
 

deathcorpse wrote:
My definition of god=the omnipresent energy behind all things living.


Why do pantheists never know that they're pantheists?
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deathcorpse
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 1:25 am 
 

Nahsil wrote:
deathcorpse wrote:
My definition of god=the omnipresent energy behind all things living.


Why do pantheists never know that they're pantheists?


Because I don't want to have to put a label on what I believe :wink: I also think that pantheism doesn't totally represent my beliefs.

Again, I stated that I was brought up UNITARIAN, and also mentioned in my posts that I believed I was atheist in my teens. There are many misconceptions about what atheism truly is. Belief in NO god perhaps, but I believe you have to figure out what you define that god to be first before you don't believe in it.

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Hundingsbane
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 4:20 am 
 

I started attending a private school when I was 4, where I spent 3 years. Of course it is difficult to remember things from when one is so young, but I as I recall it, the education focused rather a lot on Christianity. The existence of God was presented as fact, and they had me convinced (my younger brother also believed them, but misunderstood slightly, once proclaiming to my father that God lives on a cloud directly above our school).

I remember one instance where my class' teacher asked us, who believes in God. All but one of the boys (the school was sex-segregated) raised their hands, and he who didn't was told by the teacher that The Lord doesn't like him. At the time I thought that the boy was strange, but now I admire his courage.

When I quit that school, my faith in God gradually but quite rapidly disappeared, since both my parents are atheists, and I didn't know anyone else who was particularly religious. Since I was about 10 or so I've held absolutely no faith in anything supernatural. God himself could fly down from Heaven, look me straight in the eye and say "I exist", and I still wouldn't believe him.

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Deucalion
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 12:46 pm 
 

A lot of people are Christian just so their souls won't be damned. It's fear.

The Bible has probably been translated so many times into different languages (some languages probably didn't have words for certain things) that when people say "I believe every word in the Bible", I can't help but think that they are pretty much idiots.

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carpforest
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 1:03 pm 
 

Deucalion wrote:
A lot of people are Christian just so their souls won't be damned. It's fear.


What do you fear/believe?
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Deucalion
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 1:21 pm 
 

carpforest wrote:
Deucalion wrote:
A lot of people are Christian just so their souls won't be damned. It's fear.


What do you fear/believe?


I'm not even really sure what I believe in yet.

I think religion is alright if it's something that makes life bearable for you. However, I don't think people should go around shoving their believes down other people's throats. I don't think you should use fear to convert people. Let people make their own decisions.

I had a teacher who would stand up in front of the class and talk about something that wasn't even related to the topic almost every day (two words?). Everything that came out of her mouth was pure religious vomit. I don't agree with that. I don't think people should try to force their religion upon others. I think that teacher had gotten complaints in the past for things she had said. The principals and those higher ups didn't do anything about it. I'm sure if someone was preaching some other religion, they would have.

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swineeyedlamb
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 5:04 pm 
 

deathcorpse wrote:
Nahsil wrote:
deathcorpse wrote:
My definition of god=the omnipresent energy behind all things living.


Why do pantheists never know that they're pantheists?


Because I don't want to have to put a label on what I believe :wink: I also think that pantheism doesn't totally represent my beliefs.


That's an (as-now) irrational belief in something specific - there is no clearcut definition of what is "living", nor is there a common "energy" behind life (ie, the energy invested into life is the same as the energy invested into any other physical process).

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LiViNgDeAdVirUs
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 5:13 pm 
 

Lorean wrote:
Why does he punishes bad people in the suposeddly hell if his work it's to make people against it's God?


You're talking about Satan, right? I don't think that Satan is a punisher; in the book of Revelations (the only part of the Bible of read, and it's been awhile, so maybe I'm wrong), it says that Satan is going to be "cast into the Lake of Fire." The Lake of Fire could be Hell, but others interpret it as a fire that just completely destroys, meaning that even Satan's soul would cease to exist.

But anyway, I think it's a Jewish belief that Satan punishes.

Lorean wrote:
acording to chistians beliefs Why god punishes people? if he is suppossed to forgive the "sins" of his "sons" as a holy entiti?


Well, in my opinion (other Christians might not agree with me on this) God only punishes those who are beyond saving, such as Satan, the Antichrist, and the false prophet. I think that He forgives everyone, as long as they're good people and follow the golden rule: do unto others as you would like them to do unto you (or something like that, I forget).

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Thrasher86
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 5:46 pm 
 

Well I was born right when Yugoslavia was at the brink of self destruction, and since the country was run by a Socialist government for 50 years one can understand that there was a lot of atheist since religion was not encouraged. Well both of my grandparents from my moms side who practically raised me are atheist and my dad is as well, but then again since Croatia was trying to distance itself as far away from Serbia and Muslims in Bosnia Christianity became sort of semi-enforced while I was growing up. I know that I had a mandatory Catholic theology class in school and I was pretty much being forced into this way of thinking, but as I got older I realized that almost nobody in my family was religious and that kind of made it easier for me to see different points of view early on until I got to High School when I generally stopped believing in a God all together.

But I have noticed that most people just don't want to accept that there is a different type of thought their own and I think they just find it easier to conform and follow age old traditions without questioning them. They don't have to be stupid or anything like that, they just feel more secure and safer if they follow religion.
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deathcorpse
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 5:56 pm 
 

swineeyedlamb wrote:
deathcorpse wrote:
Nahsil wrote:
deathcorpse wrote:
My definition of god=the omnipresent energy behind all things living.


Why do pantheists never know that they're pantheists?


Because I don't want to have to put a label on what I believe :wink: I also think that pantheism doesn't totally represent my beliefs.


That's an (as-now) irrational belief in something specific - there is no clearcut definition of what is "living", nor is there a common "energy" behind life (ie, the energy invested into life is the same as the energy invested into any other physical process).


It's just as much of a general statement as anything. It's a sum. I can elaborate but I could be here for days speaking about that and everything else that makes up what I believe.

I'm not a one to put labels on what I believe. I know what I believe. It's sort of like, liking music. I like all different types of music, but because I wear black and listen to metal; should I call myself a metalhead? I listen to rockabilly, classic rock, jazz, funk and lots of other things. Is there a general label for that; i.e. music lover? It's not a specific label though. How specific do you go trying to pinpoint labeling?

If I take from here, from there, from somewhere else, just because someone else wants to say, hey that's what you are; or why is it that pantheists don't even know they are pantheists is putting a label on my beliefs. How can someone do that to someone else just because they quoted 1 sentence out of my whole quote? I think once you label it, it's like; well you can go around and get hi-fives from everyone that calls themselves the same thing. To me it eventually becomes a social acceptance thing once it gets to that. I don't need anyone's approval nor am I looking for anyone else to hi-five :lol:

I don't believe in that whole catagorization thing really all across the board. It's just a way to organize this and that so other people go, OH I SEE. But see, I don't care about that.

Ok, I digress. The most kinship I feel to any sort of an organized religion or belief system is THE SELF REALIZATION FELLOWSHIP of Yogananda. I was a member in my early 20's but am no longer a member. I don't 100% agree with it. MANS ETERNAL QUEST and RAM DASS' BE HERE NOW books I like a lot. I'm into the acceptance of the higher and lower self and believe in balance. I believe in soul generation and karma. I could go on. I'm sure there is a label for all of this but so what.

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Cruciphage
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 8:10 pm 
 

Religion is a farce simply because sincere human attempts to comprehend God always result in the projection of our own standards, beliefs, and subjective experiences onto God. To illustrate this, I wear a T-shirt with YHWH written in black marker on it to costume parties. Christianity in general is not a sincere attempt at understanding God since it developed as a system of mind control rather than as a means to understand reality. It's noteworthy that the ancient Greeks treated their deities as psychological manifestations and not as actual beings.

I was raised in an extremely liberal Protestant environment*, but was always surrounded by the beliefs of ancient cultures, primarily Greek "mythology." I doubt I ever accepted the distinction between mythology and religion, since in elementary school I told a friend of mine that I believed there was a "heaven for every religion." My mother also turned me on to the idea of reincarnation, which in a generic Christian belief-structure is absurd. The omnipresence of other ideas made it difficult for me to fully care about my religion.

As I got older, going to church didn't interest me any more. God was cool and all, but nothing about the experience inspired me. I didn't feel any passion for the Christian worldview and preferred to spend my Sundays sleeping in and goofing off. Religion is a nice baby-step for spiritual growth, but spirituality is ultimately a personal endeavor and the social nature of "church-going" is antagonistic toward it.

Maybe it's just jetlag from my Christian childhood, but the existence of God makes sense to me. My understanding of this being is close to H. P. Lovecraft's creation Azathoth: blind chaos incarnate roiling at the center of existence.

EDIT: *I should also point out that my father has never gone to church as long as I've been alive and has never shown much interest in religion or spirituality. I think I subconsciously realized there was something important in the fact that God didn't send lightning his way on a daily basis.


Last edited by Cruciphage on Fri Feb 15, 2008 8:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Erdrickgr
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 8:25 pm 
 

I became an unbeliever after 8 long years of trying very hard to remain a Christian. In the end, it was all the studying I did while trying to be a good Christian that did me in. For one example, the more I looked into the Bible canon, the more I realised that Christianity doesn't even agree on it's most foundational information source (e.g. the Ethiopians, Protestants, Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholics, etc. all have disagreements about which books should be in the Bible).
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Osmium
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 8:41 pm 
 

LiViNgDeAdVirUs wrote:
You're talking about Satan, right? I don't think that Satan is a punisher; in the book of Revelations (the only part of the Bible of read, and it's been awhile, so maybe I'm wrong), it says that Satan is going to be "cast into the Lake of Fire." The Lake of Fire could be Hell, but others interpret it as a fire that just completely destroys, meaning that even Satan's soul would cease to exist.

But anyway, I think it's a Jewish belief that Satan punishes.

Well, in my opinion (other Christians might not agree with me on this) God only punishes those who are beyond saving, such as Satan, the Antichrist, and the false prophet. I think that He forgives everyone, as long as they're good people and follow the golden rule: do unto others as you would like them to do unto you (or something like that, I forget).


Do you have actual scriptural support for this model?

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Cruciphage
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 9:01 pm 
 

LiViNgDeAdVirUs wrote:
You're talking about Satan, right? I don't think that Satan is a punisher; in the book of Revelations (the only part of the Bible of read, and it's been awhile, so maybe I'm wrong), it says that Satan is going to be "cast into the Lake of Fire." The Lake of Fire could be Hell, but others interpret it as a fire that just completely destroys, meaning that even Satan's soul would cease to exist.

But anyway, I think it's a Jewish belief that Satan punishes.

You need to remember that much of what's in the New Testament is crappy misinterpretations of Jewish religion. For example, the bit about Abel taking his offering to God "in faith" as an explanation of why he was favored over Cain is total bullshit and lacks any true insight into the meaning of that story.

Satan wasn't originally a proper name. It means "adversary," as many of us already know, and was basically a being sent by God to test you. This is what the book of Job is all about. (The fact that the first character, "shin," can mean "the breath of God" has much to do with understanding the various satans in the Bible.) Satan, therefore, never punished anyone. God is the punisher.

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LiViNgDeAdVirUs
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Joined: Sat Sep 08, 2007 10:21 pm
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 9:33 pm 
 

Osmium wrote:
LiViNgDeAdVirUs wrote:
You're talking about Satan, right? I don't think that Satan is a punisher; in the book of Revelations (the only part of the Bible of read, and it's been awhile, so maybe I'm wrong), it says that Satan is going to be "cast into the Lake of Fire." The Lake of Fire could be Hell, but others interpret it as a fire that just completely destroys, meaning that even Satan's soul would cease to exist.

But anyway, I think it's a Jewish belief that Satan punishes.

Well, in my opinion (other Christians might not agree with me on this) God only punishes those who are beyond saving, such as Satan, the Antichrist, and the false prophet. I think that He forgives everyone, as long as they're good people and follow the golden rule: do unto others as you would like them to do unto you (or something like that, I forget).


Do you have actual scriptural support for this model?


(These come from the King James Version. Also, I can post the exactly what it says if you want me to.)

The false prophet and the beast being thrown into the lake of fire: Revelation 19:20

The Devil being cast into the lake of fire: Revelation 20:10

Also, Revelation 20:14 calls the lake of fire the "second death," which can be interpreted as complete destruction.

Everything I said about the golden rule was my opinion, which I stated, so you can completely disregard it if you want.

Cruciphage wrote:
You need to remember that much of what's in the New Testament is crappy misinterpretations of Jewish religion. For example, the bit about Abel taking his offering to God "in faith" as an explanation of why he was favored over Cain is total bullshit and lacks any true insight into the meaning of that story.

Satan wasn't originally a proper name. It means "adversary," as many of us already know, and was basically a being sent by God to test you. This is what the book of Job is all about. (The fact that the first character, "shin," can mean "the breath of God" has much to do with understanding the various satans in the Bible.) Satan, therefore, never punished anyone. God is the punisher.


All I really have to say is I agree that God is the punisher. I don't really have much of a say in anything else, at least until I read the book of Job.

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Xerthre
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 9:47 pm 
 

I was Baptised as most Irish people are.What got me to turn from Christianity was probably when I thought about how the religion is forced on people as young babies without a chance to have their say,as they are too young.Another thing of course,was being in Religion class in school,and hearing all the bible stories.They are really ridiculous when thought is put into it.We had it 4 times a week,and I actually have to go to another classroom for each Religion class now for "mocking the teachers beliefs",when I mearly stated that I think it is totally unfair how people are forced in as a child,the teacher told me to shut up and keep my nasty opinions to myself,so I stormed at her with all of my knowledge (not much really) and she just looked quite dumbfounded and sent me to the principal's office.

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blackmage
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Joined: Wed Sep 05, 2007 9:12 pm
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 9:56 pm 
 

LiViNgDeAdVirUs wrote:
Osmium wrote:
LiViNgDeAdVirUs wrote:
Cruciphage wrote:
You need to remember that much of what's in the New Testament is crappy misinterpretations of Jewish religion. For example, the bit about Abel taking his offering to God "in faith" as an explanation of why he was favored over Cain is total bullshit and lacks any true insight into the meaning of that story.

Satan wasn't originally a proper name. It means "adversary," as many of us already know, and was basically a being sent by God to test you. This is what the book of Job is all about. (The fact that the first character, "shin," can mean "the breath of God" has much to do with understanding the various satans in the Bible.) Satan, therefore, never punished anyone. God is the punisher.


All I really have to say is I agree that God is the punisher. I don't really have much of a say in anything else, at least until I read the book of Job.

This is all true. Modern Christianity has tried to turn god into some loving, sentimental moron who never harms his "children" in any way. The early Jews knew better and knew that everything can from their god including punishment and hardship.
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A friend of mine said that the book claimed that Varg believed the Aryan race had been created by aliens.

That sounds plausible.

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MasticateTheNecro
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Joined: Thu May 24, 2007 9:29 pm
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 10:03 pm 
 

Xerthre wrote:
What got me to turn from Christianity was probably when I thought about how the religion is forced on people as young babies without a chance to have their say,as they are too young.


I agree. What I was getting at in my first couple of posts was that either

a) you are born religious and stay forever

b) you never are religious

c) you are 'born non-religious' decide at some point in your life that religion is for you

d) You start out religious but later turn because something jars you out of that state of mind once you are able to objectively think about it. Growing up in a religious home is brainwashing, and it took me over 15 years before I realized that. Plus another thing which keeps people in that state of mind is that they are socially discouraged to think for themselves, as non-religious people are persecuted much more than religious people, and until you're experienced enough to realize that it doesn't matter how others interpret you, you care too much to think for yourself. This is why I kept quiet around my friends for a while about my non-belief. Along with halting your intellectual/philosophical development, that can also make you question yourself and believe that what everybody says is true, which is a very bad thing.

So it seems that most people see that the bible/biblical stories/miracles and whatever else are too far-fetched and then realization sets in.
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Cruciphage
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 10:20 pm 
 

MasticateTheNecro wrote:
So it seems that most people see that the bible/biblical stories/miracles and whatever else are too far-fetched and then realization sets in.

I think it's more that we realized Christianity is a fake, bullshit religion.

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