Or like a kid telling their parents they won't get anything from santa
If your God would sentence you to eternal damnation for not wanting to give up your day off to go sit on an uncomfortable pew and deliver lip service to Him, then he's a dickhead God not worth worshipping.
Besides, if God is really that petty we are all going to Hell, anyway.
@I Are Lebo, oh boy.. hope you're ready for the storm, bud.
@Smo Queed, 😈
@I Are Lebo, I'm pretty sure church services were created by the Catholics. Because from what I've read, the Bible tells people that they have a mandatory day off with the only rules being not to buy or sell anything and that no man, woman, or beast is to work (things like doctors and cops would be exempt from that since they are needed)
@Toxia, that comes from the Sabbath, a Jewish tradition borne out of lives of labour.
@I Are Lebo, yeah, but wouldn't that still be relevant to the other religions that came from them?
@Toxia, no, because some of those religious sects, especially Catholicism, were borne as a tool for control and manipulation. The weekly sermon and preaching were invented to impose ideals on the populace, as well as to extort them for donations.
@I Are Lebo, yeah, it's kinda ironic that something that teaches against greed became corrupt by it
@Toxia, considering the sheer number of churches that exist as tax dodges, plus the fact that the priests don't even pay taxes, it honestly disgusts me when I hear them talking about the seven deadly sins.
I'm sure a lot of them are good people, but even the good ones seem to be misled by generations of self serving preaching. The priesthood are hypocrites. They preach virtue but protect those of their number who sexually assault children. They preach generosity but refuse to pay taxes or contribute to society. Also, they're generally the worst tippers. I don't know how waitresses resist the urge to spit in their food after being given a pamphlet for a tip.
@I Are Lebo, well, god is forgiving too
@Archduke Friedrich, yeah, I can tell. What with all of the children being saved from premature deaths because they and their parents pray to save them. Nobody dies in childhood except for the evil children who refuse to accept god, right?
@I Are Lebo, god is forgiving your sins and has a plan for everyone. Some don't follow god's guidance or are unable to. There is also desease that, though made by god, are used by humans. And god lets them do it because he doesn't take away the human's free will, because he is loving and caring for his creations.
@Archduke Friedrich, tell me. What is your opinion of homosexuality and gay marriage?
@Toxia, You have to remember, back in those days there was no online banking - so they had to find an excuse to get everyone together so they could shake them down for cash.
@I Are Lebo, as an active Christian, I have this to say; you are asking the right questions. My answer is this, take it as you will:
In my faith, we believe that you will not go to hell unless you KNOW God (not just believe), comprehend fully His plan of salvation, and choose to reject it. You basically have to choose misery over happiness with a fully sound mind.
@I Are Lebo, I believe that homosexuality isn't a sin, but I also believe, god has made Adam and Eve, a man and a woman, for a reason. I mean, we need a man and a woman to reproduce our species. God gave man and woman their roles they had to follow.
Gay marriage though, is something different. In all of the history of the human civilisations, the marriage was between a man and a woman, the man is the "leader" of that family and earns the money, the woman takes care of the children and the home. God has made that decision, so it must be followed. That family doesn't exist in that way in homosexual families. It just doesn't work, so I believe homosexual people should not be allowed to marry. The marriage is, in most cases, also procedured in church, that most homosexuals don't visit.
That's my opinion as a "very" religious Catholic.
@I Are Lebo, "priests don't contribute to society"
Well, priests are the medium between god an the people, some are even chosen by god.
You can talk to a priest if you have problems or want to ask them questions about things that go wrong in your or others life's and they can help you find solutions.
@I Are Lebo, but Christians don't actually believe that. Church attendance isn't related to salvation at all
@Archduke Friedrich, so according to you, a marriage in which the father is a homemaker and the mother is career driven is an improper marriage. Also you think that a same sex marriage can't have children or raise them in a nurturing environment.
It's a shame that you have bought into religious zealotry as much as you have. People like you are a major source of problems in this world. You're well meaning, but you cling to ignorance and most of you refuse to think for yourselves. It makes me sad.
@TheHaxAreReal, many Christians believe that. Many Christians believe other stupid things, too. Like being born a Jew, Hindu, or Muslim makes one destined for Hell.
@I Are Lebo, I do think for myself. My parents are social democrats and didn't raise me religious. While I was very interested in history, the bible also caught my attention. Before I accepted god into my life, my view on Religion was nearly the same as yours, but you can always change. As I accepted the history of my country, I accepted also accepted god. My fathers died for "god and the fatherland" for a reason. But I don't wanna turn this political...
@I Are Lebo, hey bud, is everything okay? You sound agitated, and I want to make sure you're doing alright
@Archduke Friedrich, that's fair. I know I sound very rabidly anti religion, but in truth I do accept that there is some good that can be done. My problem comes from people taking the mindset of simply accepting what they're told, no matter how illogical it is.
The sentiment that the world is as it is because all is part of God's plan enrages me. The world is full of some very evil things, and if everything is as planned, then God (or whatever deific figure in charge) is literally the source of all evil. It makes much more sense, and fits the evidence more, that the world is run by chaos, and things happen as the result of actions too complicated for the human mind to calculate.
I understand the comfort that religion brings. It's much nicer to hope for a grand purpose and a deserving afterlife than it is to think that shït just happens and then you die.
But that comforting lie is responsible for SO much evil in this world. I know not all Christians are scumbags like Joel Osteen or
Kim Davis, but in addition to these scumbags, you have a lot of people protecting them.
Christianity is more of a threat right now to the free world than Islam is. When you have people in Tennessee voting on whether or not to make it legal to fire women for using birth control, that's a much larger and more immediate threat to the constitution than Sharia Law.
A lot of people, but especially Christians, clearly do not understand what freedom is. Freedom isn't everyone being allowed to do stuff that YOU agree with.
Every Christian that uses "it's against my beliefs" as an excuse to attempt to strip civil liberties from other people, even from people who are not Christians, make me look down on Christianity as a whole. You tell Muslims to stand up against their radical members but refuse to do the same with your own.
Not all Christians are child rapists. Not all Christians are bigots. But as long as you stay silent and let these radical members of your faith spew hatred disguised as
gospel, you are enabling that hatred.
Then there's the morons who genuinely think that Satan is a real individual who tempts people into evil and is responsible for all of mankind's woes. People that stupid are beneath discussing, because they have chosen to cling to ignorance, and there's nothing anyone can say or do to shake their beliefs that they cling to with white knuckles because to acknowledge the potential for evil in all men means acknowledging their own flaws. They'd rather blame all of their problems on someone, anyone else, because it's easier to lie to yourself than it is to improve yourself.
But that's it for my ranting. I'm done now.
@I Are Lebo, Exactly, these people worship a sociopath.
@Archduke Friedrich, You desperately need Alan watts' lectures on religion and our relation to the world. Because the way you currently view it is completely backwards. Lebo is right, you do NOT think for yourself. You discovered the bible gave some convenient answers that make you feel a little bit in control of the world because it gives you the illusion of understanding. You understand nothing. Alan Watts. Look him up. Listen to him. Every one of you needs it.
@I Are Lebo, In specific regards to churches dodging taxes, I wouldn't be surprised if some do, but if you are referencing all churches or at least a significant part, you are mistaken sir. Churches fit in under the 501c3 (I believe) tax law that lists them as a non-profit and therefore are exempt from certain taxes. If you say they "dodge taxes" it would be the exact same as saying every other non-profit dodges and every person who pays taxes, really, considering we all have some claims to deductions( even if we don't "dodge" all). This is in the US.
@Trump Repellant, Are you not doing the same thing with this comment. "Think for yourself, now listen to me and go believe this guy, he is right and you are wrong." This is the basis of what you just said even if you didn't say it word for word.
@August Wthr, Except this guy is totally honest and works to bring peace to people's minds. Unlike preachers who want you to be constantly anxious about hell. He encourages people to think for themselves. He even says not to take him too seriously as an authoritative figure, as he is like a friend, not a preacher. He cared about freeing people from the mental prison of western religions. He himself was raised by very religious parents. And the whole fictional idea that the universe is something that is made, rather than something that occurs of itself. And the poisonous idea that humans are not part of nature and so we have the whole "conquest of nature". And the idea that you will be punished forever in hell for living in and enjoying the world which grew you. Priests say that kind of crap to scare you, he's not interested in indoctrinating you at all. He analyses these kinds of social conventions that cause nothing but harm in great detail, and you realize exactly why they are wrong.
@August Wthr, it's not non profit when you manipulate people into giving you money on a regular basis and live off the proceeds.
@Trump Repellant, it's far less important what people think than it is that they know how to think. Everyone needs to be able to think about who is giving them the information, and consider why this person is giving them information. I have to assume an awful lot of parents have raised their children telling them that things are the way they are because that's the way they are. Bad parents are a lot like the church in that they don't encourage questioning things.
You have to question EVERYTHING, ALL THE TIME. The alternative is to find yourself performing acts that go against your own philosophy, or that are even unethical, all because you never really stopped to think about what you were doing and saying.
I go back to this a lot because it really is the core of my issues with Christianity. Homosexuality is a naturally occurring phenomenon preset in all mammals. It's no more evil or unnatural than heterosexual sex (which is also demonized by Christianity, but that's another topic).
@I Are Lebo, @Trump Repellant, it makes me very sad that this is the image of Christianity that you both have been exposed to. It says a lot about the widespread perversion of God's word. I am a Christian, and most of the issues you have with religion I share with you. There is a vocal radical Christianity, but I hope someday you get to see a real Christian at work.
@Lysander99, the inherent problem is that the radical Christians think that they are real Christians, and pass themselves off to the world as such. I've known a few Christians who seem like good, kind, reasonable people, right up until the moment that their bigotry gets exposed.
It's a complete crapshoot as to what that prejudice is, too. There's a lot of Christians against homosexuals, but there's also a lot of Christians who get a bug up their ass about other things. Jews, Muslims, refugees, drugs, sex, whatever.
There's a LOT of Christians who look on "turn the other cheek" as weakness. They pick and choose what parts of the bible matter and apply and which don't.
From an outside perspective, there is literally no visible difference between all these groups. It's impossible to prove a negative, which means the 'good' Christians are incapable of proving themselves as such.
@I Are Lebo, Bro, the point I'm trying to make is that most churches aren't doing anything illegal by "tax dodging" as you put it. Also, how do you think not for profit organization run? How do they pay wages and salaries? They mostly accept donations. Some of the organizations take advantage of this law (I'm sure some churches do too) but most are lawful and good. By your definition of "accepting donations and living off of it" it your last reply, every non profit that had employees is greedy and for profit. That is just wrong to believe.
@August Wthr, what the church does is legal because members of the church specifically put loopholes in tax law to allow it.
When I'm talking about priests dodging taxes, I'm not referring to the building not paying taxes on their operations, I'm talking about priests not having to pay taxes on purchases or income. I'm talking about personal tax exemption. Deciding to join the priesthood should not come with the 'perk' of no longer having to contribute to society as a whole. Helping thy neighbour is an admirable course of action, not a tax deductible.
@Trump Repellant, It is true some people can use religion into extreme cases, but UT would be unfair to assume that those people represent all western religion, or the pinnacle of it. I have a friend that has ridiculously religious parents and they can go overboard at times and I do not agree with some things they say, however, western religion is not a mental prison. The picture you paint of western religion being a mental prison, poisonous, and etc is not a good representation. I have seen the extreme side which you mention, and I have seen a kind and well developed side of western religion. I will look up this guy you mentioned out of interest, because I have never heard of him before, but please do not generalize all of anyone group. If that is the case, I could just as easily find some crazy and extreme atheists that are assholes and make no sense and say that they represent all of the "non-believers". I am not trying to qualify either side, just don't generalize or be a hypocrite
@I Are Lebo, Churches applied to be under tax advantages of 501c3 and after a while , it became common law, they didn't "Put loopholes in" because it's bot a loophole. There are also many tax deductions a person can take under different schedules, to list all of them would take weeks or months probably. If a priest follows the tax law and utilizes his deductions, he is not corrupt. Tax law just isn't made at any whim, it has a purpose for being their, priesthood doesn't lobby tax incentives like that, and if they did, it wouldn't go super covert. Also, I have never heard of an instance in which a priest ILLEGALLY did not pay taxes and was not arrested. If there are some, they should be put on trial. If you argue that these deductions shouldn't be in the law to "unfairly benefit priests and religion" I could argue the same about anything else. For example, "Why do blind people get a deduction under schedule A? They don't benefit society?" But those arguments are silly and biased.
@I Are Lebo, you act like death is a bad thing. For Christians, it's paradise. The children would go to heaven. Literally infinite paradise seems better than a life of sickness?
@I Are Lebo, also, I say that as an orthodox Christian. I personally don't agree with Catholicism and don't trust it. Judaism I don't agree with fully, but it's not bad. Morman and Jehova witness, no.
@Trump Repellant, quit watching whatever Hollywood propaganda that's making you think Christianity and preachers are brainwashing children for profit. Unless you own a megachurch (many don't) preachers live very humble lives because they want to help people. 99% are completely innocent with good intentions.
@August Wthr, when priests walk into stores, buy things, and then not pay tax on them because they're exempt, that is an example of a broken system. When Christians walk into a restaurant, eat, and then leave no tip, that's another example of a broken system that does not teach its followers what it means to be a good person.
@Fun Facts 101, I follow very little of my own religion, but most of its tenants make logical sense. The original reason for not eating pork is because it's fatty and bad for you. Separating meat and dairy will help reduce the chances of salmonella poisoning, especially during the era before the refrigerator.
Rules for proper living I can get behind. Dictating what other people can and cannot do I will not accept. Especially when it comes to the same sex marriage issue. Christianity did not invent marriage, they have no authority to deny that to others, regardless of the reasons.
@I Are Lebo, that's a morality issue, but not a government one. Church and state separate. I don't think it should be called marriage and don't like it, but it is not my place to say they can't.
@Fun Facts 101, even if that figure were true (I HIGHLY doubt it), then you have hundreds of priests who are out to take advantage, and the clergy refuses to let them get taken to task for it. Many priests accused of child molestation face no consequence. They are simply sent to a different neighbourhood, without anyone there being alerted to their deviant habits, least of all those in their new congregation.
The clergy as a whole turns a blind eye, and it makes them all accomplices after the fact.
@I Are Lebo, that's where I said I don't like Catholicism. They don't allow you to marry if you are a priest. Please don't let them muddle your view of religious people
@I Are Lebo, You are right in the instance that Christian should leave a fair tip at tables instead of pamphlets or whatever, but that is not an example of a broken tax or church system. I have been to and heard of many churches that NEVER encourage anything close to that, and I'm sure the ones that do are rare. As for priests walking in stores and bot paying (I assume you are talking about sales tax) taxes, where are you getting that information? I've NEVER heard of or experienced that and google is having a rough time as well finding anything on that. Even so, I wouldn't call that broken because it is 1. Legal 2. Moral and 3. Benefits the community in the long run. Besides, if priests were truly greedy and only looking for monetary gain, they could find professions that make more money. Asides from what I can only assume is isolated instances that you have experienced and your own bias, I don't know where you are getting some of your information and how you deduce what you do from it
@August Wthr, the tip thing I'm getting from testimonials from waitresses, both ones that I've known personally and from stories on notalwaysright.com. Both support the theory that religious Christians, especially in the Bible Belt, are notorious for not only being cheap tippers, but they're very obnoxious about it.
The stories of priests being tax exempt outside of their duties as priests is also based off of stories from that website.
@I Are Lebo, Thank you for the resource. Ihave personally received tips from religious extremist that was not monetary but something else that wasn't particularly helpful. I have received pamphlets (and such) from people of all faith, Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, and more, when I worked for tips, but I wouldn't call any system broken because of it. As far as Priests go, I can't help but notice the website is mostly stories by people who we have no reason to trust in about the validity of their story. It could be fiction. In addition this is the only source I could find. If I ever experienced a Priest wrongfully evading taxes, he should have experience consequences. Due to the fact that this information is more than lacking and the trustworthiness of the posters in the website you gave is even less, it is hard for me to see anything wrong. I have a long next few days and will leave it at that. I am sure you and I both don't want to drag this out longer. 1-0
@August Wthr, hey I enjoyed the debate either way
@Archduke Friedrich, I missed something before and I want to touch on it. You mentioned Adam and Eve. Do you recognize the fact that Adam and Eve are mythical characters? The story is not a historical event, there is literally no evidence to suggest that they ever existed, and lots of evidence to the contrary.
@Nigel Powers, I'm okay, thanks. I'm just opinionated.
But i dont believe in God
But He believes in you
BOOM WHADDUP EDMOND YOU BEEN SERVED