If you look to your right, you'll see two people having a civilized, well versed discussion on the interpretation and understanding of religion and belief. Beside them are a bunch of people just throwing dislikes around because of screw using "words" and "ideas" to communicate when you can simply dislike things
@Cabbage Salesman, you're forgetting about us naruto fans that the picture is geared towards
@Cabbage Salesman, wow you really hit the nail on the head there
There's a school of thought that thinks Christ may have studied eastern philosophies after his childhood but before his ministry.
@lockke, there's another school of thought that thinks that the Bible is a collection of fairy tales
@I Are Lebo, Oh I think thats irrelevant. Ive often wondered how reliable the bible is as a historical document. Places like babylon and people like Herod were most certainly verifiable from multiple sources, the only question in my mind is how much of it is real (and I concede a lot cant be proven). Having said that, its the stories that matter. Christ taught through parables, so if Christ was a parable made up by Paul (which is another popular belief) all that matters is what good you can learn from it. The rest of the bible can be taken many ways, but I think Christ (the man or the myth) was a pretty righteous dude.
Having said all that I approach all books I read with a, what can Iearn from this, mentality. If someone wanted to form a religion around Harry Potter, well theres a lot of good philosophy in there.
@lockke, I was just being a smartass, but you make a very valid point. If it was just about imparting morals, I'd have no issues with Christianity.
But I have read, heard, and witnessed WAY too many incidents of people using Christianity as a weapon to be comfortable with it. Everything from screaming at gay people minding their own business to being personally told that I'm going to hell because I'm Jewish.
Added to that fact that while there was a man that Jesus was based on, there was never a man named Jesus Christ. Jesus is not a Jewish nor a middle eastern name, and Christ is a title.
I've got to be honest here. I have yet to see anything that differentiates Christianity from a cult. For every genuinely good thing that Christians do in this world there are a dozen bigots making the lives of everyone around them harder. The levels of ignorance, especially in the Bible Belt of the USA, just make it impossible for me to take Christianity at face value.
@lockke, also, I'm extremely uncomfortable with the fact that the primary symbol of Christianity is the cross. The cross is and was an execution/torture device. That's creepy as hell. What would you guys be doing if Christ was hung? Worship a noose?!
@I Are Lebo, Thats why my wife and I dont go to church. Maybe its arrogant of me, but I agree, a LOT of people miss the point. I think most religons could be considered a cult, depending on who you ask. Judaism was a minority religion for thousands of years. Ive know (self described) buddhists who were totally materialistic, and mormons (who many call a cult) are some of the most GENUINLEY) kind people ive ever met.
I do always enjoy reading your comments though and I appreciate your perspective.
@I Are Lebo, and as a Christian reading about what other Christians do and say hurts on a level I can't really describe.
That being said people will look for anything to back up their violent tendencies like you said. Islam also comes to mind with that.
Back to the cult thing though, I feel that those people are more fanatics than saints. We're meant to show love and compassion despite what those people do or say, not slander and damn when we ourselves are just as imperfect as they are.
Though we are called to share Christ with all we are not to force it on people. Loving God should be a choice not a demand.
@I Are Lebo, Haha, yeah. The cross is about sacrifice. The story goes, he died for our sins (everyone not just Christians). Were also supposed to be like Christ. I like to think (and god help me if this starts an argument) that I would lay my life down for any another person. Dont ask me to quote scripture, I used to be able to, but dying so someone else can live is the greatest thing someone can do.
@lockke, I appreciate your appreciation. 😁
Continuing though, my big problem with Christians nowadays are the ones who complain that "not all of us are like that", and then with the same breath talk about how all Muslims are terrorists. It's a level of ignorance combined with obliviousness that I find extremely exasperating.
I've also known a couple of Mormons, and a family friend growing up was a Jehovah's Witness.
The problem with cults isn't them being inherently bad. The problem is that cults teach you to not think for yourself. This is ESPECIALLY true of Christianity. I've had so many arguments with people about homosexuality, and not one single counter argument ever amounted to more than "the bible says it's wrong". This is not a valid argument.
(There was also "homosexuals can't reproduce", which is simply factually incorrect, but that's a different issue)
@Angelic Wisdom, yes! Thank you! My counter argument has always been "if God has a problem with something that I'm doing, it's between Him and me. Butt out."
But for the record, saying to a gay or trans person anything along the lines of "your life is sinful but I forgive you" is every bit as insulting as "you're going to burn in hell you heathen". It's condescending. Gay people do not need forgiveness because being gay is not wrong.
I wish more Christians were like you.
@I Are Lebo, I hate going into this on a forum because I could go on for hours. Regardless, I hear you brother, and yes, ALL faiths should teach people to seek objective truths. Whether or not God is real, I feel like goodness and badness are real (not man made constructs) and religon should teach people to find those truths. Some day we should have a cuppa coffee and really dig in.
@lockke, I'd love that.
The problem with debating religion (or politics) on an online forum is that it seems to only ever go one of two ways. Either you're preaching to the choir, or you have a yelling match that lasts until one of you completely loses their temper and stops responding.
In either event, nothing gets accomplished. The people who need to listen the most never do.
@I Are Lebo, i grew up in the church and would say im an atheist now, that being said the church has a lot of good to offer structurally and morally. Anything can be twisted to malicious means, i dont believe Islam to be inherently malicious but people construe it as such. If you've ever thumbed through the bible, which i highly recommend, theres a lot about rape, slavery, and stonings. That being said, and despite my lack of belief in a god, my moral compass is better for the church having influenced me, if only because of the community that surrounds it.
@lockke, I've heard about that....I think it's called like "Weird School for the Dumb" or something like that
@Hoban Washburne, my moral compass is really simple.
1. Mind your own business
2. Don't do something to someone else that would upset you if someone did it to you
3. Try to not be a total dïck, but if you do, take responsibility for it
@I Are Lebo, fun fact. a cult is when some dude makes up a story and gathers followers, knowing his story is bullshjt, but using it to spread a message.
in a religion, that guys dead.
@Dan S Krieger, yup. That's why Scientology is considered a religion. It's cuz L Ron Hubbard died.
Just as an addition, the focus of a cult or religion doesn't necessarily have to be in on it. The leader and the founder can be different people.
@I Are Lebo, An empty cross. The point is that we aren't scared of it. If Christ really rose, then death means nothing for humans anymore. It's not that the symbol isn't horrific, it's meant to be, so that we remember what he did. Many christians probably don't see it that way anymore, but the intention is still there if you were curious
@I Are Lebo, Definitely not trying to bust your balls here, i just read that whole conversation and i really appreciate the fact that no one got mad at someone else so I'll try not to sound like a douchebag. I'm just trying to spread a fact, Jesus's Hebrew name was Yeshua. There was historically a Yeshua of Nazareth (who is the Bible's Jesus). So while people can argue about whether or not he was the son of God, he did exist and it is in historical record. Once again, I know I sound like a douchebag right now, I'm just trying to let you know.
@Captain Magma, no don't worry, I know the man existed. You don't sound like a douchebag. I doubt every single record of what his life was like, and I'm also aware that Christianity didn't begin until a couple hundred years after his death, but I know he was real.
Just so you know, though, Yeshua translated correctly, becomes Joshua. A Jewish name. Not Jesus. The impression that I am under is that that is the result of a mistranslation made a very long time ago.
I'm unsure of where the Christ part came from, though. Jews did not have surnames until the times of Napoleon.
@I Are Lebo, thank you guys for making this a great read! I wish more people would follow your moral compass!
@lockke, from evil alien mom?
As if controlling chakra is so easy
I have a foreign friend named Chakra, so I got that going for me
@Steven guy, my brother grew up with a guy named Scrotum (last name).
@I Are Lebo, please tell me his first name was Richard.
@CynicalSir, unfortunately not. Adam. We used to joke that he had a sister named Anita, and that his dad was Harry.
I think I understand this reference
Too his credit he's much farther out of the water than he ought to be.