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Author Topic: Very controversial subject.  (Read 9246 times)

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Online HairyHeretic

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Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #50 on: January 12, 2010, 05:32:59 PM »
There are good people, and there are assholes, within every faith and system of belief.

Offline Lord Drake

Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #51 on: January 12, 2010, 05:43:24 PM »
There are good people, and there are assholes, within every faith and system of belief.

This is true obviously.

But the point is still another. I am a Catholic Roman and i can assure you that the majority of Christians does NOT do door-to-door proselytism. I attend to church and I assure you that the clergy does NOT request us that.

Now for small communities I understand the need of proselytism... but again the majority of Christians do NOT go proselytizing with the Bible in hand trying to demonstrate that it is historically accurate!! Catholic Romans DON'T do that... Lutherans DON'T do that... I could go on.

So why one sees Evangelists and says Christians??

Oh well.... :P

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Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #52 on: January 12, 2010, 05:51:55 PM »
I believe evangelism is more part of some of the protestant sects of Christianity. Then again, there are that many different beliefs, and weight given to assorted doctrines, that it can be easy to reduce it to the simplest denominator .. christian. Because of the culture(s) and countries we live in, the door to door, or streetcorner, evangelicals we're most familiar with are christian.

Offline Trieste

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Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #53 on: January 12, 2010, 05:56:16 PM »
You seem to be honestly advocating respect and deep understanding of a religion which not only treats other religions unfairly (as expressed by the dubious nature of the original bit of writing that started this entire thread), but one that is partly based quite literally on fiction.  I'm not really sure what your point is here.

Respecting a religion like that would be akin to respecting one that's based off a mythological prophet from 2000 years ago, and we can't have that.

Or L. Ron Hubbard.

Offline Lord Drake

Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #54 on: January 12, 2010, 06:14:16 PM »
I believe evangelism is more part of some of the protestant sects of Christianity. Then again, there are that many different beliefs, and weight given to assorted doctrines, that it can be easy to reduce it to the simplest denominator .. christian. Because of the culture(s) and countries we live in, the door to door, or streetcorner, evangelicals we're most familiar with are christian.

Actually this happens mainly in the States (I may be wrong in this assumption but the door-to-door problems of this kind I have heard mainly from people of the USA... in Italy at least this is not what happens) what I am saying is that 'Christian' in this case may be a bit too 'large' a definition.

Respecting a religion like that would be akin to respecting one that's based off a mythological prophet from 2000 years ago, and we can't have that.

Actually He had been probably a historical figure. The mythological part you are referring to should be all the 7-day creation and Eden garden stuff.

Offline kylie

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Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #55 on: January 12, 2010, 06:19:13 PM »
Quote from: Lord Drake
A more charismatic answer could be going further in the story all the way to the Deluge when the people has forgotten God and started sinning and doing bad things (and hey - your average proselytizer would say - this was probably all those Pagan's fault!). So God sends the Deluge and everyone dies save for Noah and his three son's families. And by the way Semitic (as the writer mentions them) comes from 'Sem' (one of Noah's sons). So since he is not Semitic he is probably descendant of one of the other two??

Ok, obviously this is ridiculous.
         I think that's a logical claim more than an effectively charismatic one.  It's still assuming everyone focuses on Ye Olde (horribly abridged and widely misinterpreted) Book.  I don't see it as particularly charming to insist that someone's favored type of people caused (or were effectively wiped out by -- historical doublespeak, but anyway) this massive flood...  Anyhow...  It is an interesting argument. 

         I actually suspect the notion of Biblical tenets being meant for some and not others is more supported the later history goes -- past Moses, possibly into the New Testament, etc.  There are rules aimed at desert tribes, separate rules for the Philistines, particular demands of the closest followers of Jesus -- it's like reading the IRS (or pick your favorite demanding bureaucracy). 

Granted, though...  If you stay around the early chapters, there is that flood business. 

         I kinda presumed the website originated in the US...  I know the terms are not especially precise, but I've been trying to alternate between JW (where I believe they started) and Christian/evangelism...  It's partly because I don't care to keep spelling out proselytizing -- and partly because I think it does apply to some very vocal Christian sects.  I also think that some of the Christians who are not doing that, are responding to the complaint about it in erroneous and sometimes offensive ways.  Which in turn, tends to make me misread them as being among or sympathetic to the evangelists' position.  Finally: yes, there's plenty of all this in the US -- but it isn't strictly limited to the US.  I had JW coming to my door in Japan.
« Last Edit: January 12, 2010, 06:20:45 PM by kylie »

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Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #56 on: January 12, 2010, 06:22:53 PM »
Actually this happens mainly in the States (I may be wrong in this assumption but the door-to-door problems of this kind I have heard mainly from people of the USA... in Italy at least this is not what happens) what I am saying is that 'Christian' in this case may be a bit too 'large' a definition.

Quite possibly, but if someone comes along, tells you your beliefs are wrong (or at the least misguided) you're not going to be that well inclined towards them, and remembering their exact denomination probably isn't going to be that high on your list of priorities. :)

I think I've had one or two come to my door, and there's at least one or two of the streetcorner variety in the city centre, but when I lived up North the streetcorner ones were more common.

Offline Trieste

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Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #57 on: January 12, 2010, 06:23:55 PM »
Actually He had been probably a historical figure. The mythological part you are referring to should be all the 7-day creation and Eden garden stuff.

There is no basis in fact for the whole raising from the dead and water to wine thing, either, so that would be the mythological part I was referring to.
« Last Edit: January 12, 2010, 06:44:59 PM by Trieste »

Offline Lord Drake

Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #58 on: January 12, 2010, 06:40:04 PM »
Quite possibly, but if someone comes along, tells you your beliefs are wrong (or at the least misguided) you're not going to be that well inclined towards them, and remembering their exact denomination probably isn't going to be that high on your list of priorities. :)

Perfectly understandable in the heat of the moment and a bit later also. :)

Maybe - on hindsight - one day someone will find a way to find a better denomination. And also - unfortunately - it is the lot of religions. EACH religion thinks that the other is misguided/wrong... one should expect it.

:)

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Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #59 on: January 12, 2010, 06:46:06 PM »
EACH religion thinks that the other is misguided/wrong... one should expect it.

:)

I'm not sure I agree with that. My own opinion is that seems more a trait of the monotheistic religions.

I believe that what I believe is right for me. It's not going to be right for lots of others, but what they believe may well be right for them. I don't make judgement calls on what is right for other people .. I have enough trouble figuring out what's right for me ;)

But having someone come along and tell me "Your beliefs are wrong, mine are right, and they're the only ones that are right" ... that's not going to win them any brownie points from me :)

Offline kylie

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Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #60 on: January 12, 2010, 06:47:53 PM »
Quote from: Lord Drake
unfortunately - it is the lot of religions. EACH religion thinks that the other is misguided/wrong... one should expect it.
         Right then...  Nudist torch and drum procession in front of the Southern Baptist headquarters Sunday morning at 10, with chanting and plenty of spirits.  Since it's simple competitive, natural, individualistic capitalism (or something they could recognize as equally to be expected -- anyway) they'll be more than happy to see us.  They did want us all to come around and worship, didn't they... 

Quote from: HairyHeretic
... if someone comes along, tells you your beliefs are wrong ...
     I think, there's something to the manner of this 'coming along' part that is central to the problem.
« Last Edit: January 12, 2010, 06:49:01 PM by kylie »

Offline Lord Drake

Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #61 on: January 12, 2010, 06:56:05 PM »
I believe that what I believe is right for me. It's not going to be right for lots of others, but what they believe may well be right for them. I don't make judgement calls on what is right for other people .. I have enough trouble figuring out what's right for me ;)

But having someone come along and tell me "Your beliefs are wrong, mine are right, and they're the only ones that are right" ... that's not going to win them any brownie points from me :)

Well this is a bit the core of the matter (and Yes obviously this is more easier seen in the monotheistic religions but in my opinion it is present a bit also in the others). Believing in a unique 'greater principle' is to believe in something that affects us all... like gravity attraction? It is not like if you don't like it you can avoid to be affected by it...

NOW one can confutate the single religion as it is... but the fact that a religion may consider itself the ONLY right one stands to reason. Actually I personally consider all religions a bit like that... even the polytheistic ones, although it is more a bit a pet peeve of me probably.

Offline Serephino

Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #62 on: January 12, 2010, 09:17:57 PM »
NOW one can confutate the single religion as it is... but the fact that a religion may consider itself the ONLY right one stands to reason. Actually I personally consider all religions a bit like that... even the polytheistic ones, although it is more a bit a pet peeve of me probably.

Actually, you would be wrong in that.  I don't feel that my religion is the only right one.  There are only 2 other people on the planet that share my beliefs exactly.  But I do like to keep my mind open to all possibilities. 

Remember my first post in this subject?  I said the only way to prove who is right is to drop dead.  Could I be wrong?  Sure I could.  Could Christians be right?  I suppose so.  I doubt it for many reasons, but my saying it isn't true doesn't make it so.

Just like the term Christian is a blanket term, Pagan is also a blanket term.  There are dozens if not hundreds of different specific traditions.  For the most part, we agree to disagree.  There are of course bad apples in every barrel...  But for the most part, like Hairy said, what works for me is good, but not the only way to do things.



Offline Lord Drake

Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #63 on: January 13, 2010, 12:54:25 AM »
Actually, you would be wrong in that.  I don't feel that my religion is the only right one.  There are only 2 other people on the planet that share my beliefs exactly.  But I do like to keep my mind open to all possibilities.

*smiles*

We are more similar than you think. Again I am sorry if I seem anal-retentive, definition-wise but you are not a 'religion', you are a 'person'... what you are probably (correct me if I am wrong) trying to say is that tou are not a fundamentalist and that you 'as a person' keep an open mind.

A religion is not exactly a person... it is a series of beliefs that defines a part of the world and of your life that you cannot see or have proof of. And it defines in a specific way and, for that religion, this is the right way. Even those religion who allow everyone their own Gods... well they simply state that the universe is in that way so that everyone can have his God... but even that is a statement of how things are... and is as intransigent as the ones that say that there is only one God.

Now the persons can be a bit more open-minded... and about that Hairy says the truth, it is easier for the non-monotheistic ones. But some of us DO try.

For example, I myself, while believing in an unique God.... I also believe that He is somewhat of a good fellow so to say and likes everybody of us the same. And I think that what makes us His children is mainly how much love for each other and for the creation and for the principle of good we do have... believing surely helps, but I do NOT think that a good, caring, loving person who is not a believer will not have a chance at being happy in his life AND afterlife. And I find difficult to think that said chance would depend on conversion by a bible-toting guy who comes to you explaining the Original Sin.

I hope this can be considered open-mindedness... I really don't know.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2010, 03:20:22 AM by Lord Drake »

Offline Jude

Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #64 on: January 13, 2010, 02:39:43 AM »
It's not close-minded to think that other people's beliefs are wrong, it is only close-minded if you come to that conclusion without giving said beliefs a chance.  Open-mindedness is the willingness to consider other ideas, and if you find them to be superior to your own (in the case of truth, more logically sound), be willing to adopt them.

Monotheistic religions are incompatible with more religions than polytheistic religions are because they claim there is only one god at a very high level (it's a simplistic principle), so if you take them at their word all other religions must be wrong unless somehow it can be claimed that the other religions in question refer to the same singular entity as their god (i.e. how Islam views Christianity and Judaism, and how Christianity views Judaism; and even then Islam doesn't say Christians are completely right, just that their basis was correct at one point in time before their views were tainted by history over time, they still believe Islam is the right way).  It's simply easier to draw out the contradictions with monotheistic religions than it is with others, but monotheistic religions are not the only ones that preclude the existence of other religions.

Take Paganism and Christianity for example.  Most Pagan Religions claim that nature is sacred and imbued with "value" similar to how Christianity claims that human life has value; this is in direct opposition to the way that Christians see the world.  In Christianity it's spelled out in Genesis that nature was created by god solely to serve man's needs.  So while a Pagan may object to certain treatment of nature on religious grounds, a Christian would not.

There actually aren't a lot of religions in existence (none I can think of in fact outside of the basic 3 prominent monotheistic religions) that don't have conflicting principles.   I realize that out of a desire to be kind and respect other people's opinions, the religious often like to pretend that what everyone believes can be true.  And I've had this argument before with religious people that reject this but I still don't understand on what grounds they do.  If you view religion as an expression of truth, then it's simply not possible to believe everyone can be right.  And if you don't view religion as an expression of truth, then what do religious statements mean?

When you're dealing with facts, if 2 conflicting statements are given, at least one of them must be false, that's basic logic.  Simply because religion is based on faith does not invalidate this either, in putting faith in something you're essentially making a bet that whatever you've put your faith in is true.

I don't understand why religious claims should be taken any different than scientific ones.  Christians say Jesus existed and was the literal son of god.  Islam says that Jesus existed and was a human prophet.  There's a clear contradiction there.  Jesus can't be the literal son of god and simply a human prophet; granted he could've been a human that was of no real importance, not a prophet, or even a particularly moral man (i.e. both claims could be false), but someone has to be right and someone has to be wrong.

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Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #65 on: January 13, 2010, 08:38:17 AM »
Who's right and who's wrong doesn't matter to me.  Noone believes the same things I do and I honestly don't care.  One of my best friends is a christian (the real kind) and we respect eachothers beliefs.  When she says she'll pray for me (me, not my eternal soul) I take it as the gift it is.  And when I say I'll pray for her and light candles she takes it as the gift it is.  Someone wants to convert me I tell them no thanks.  They tell me I'm wrong.  I tell them I don't care.  My religion works for MY life and makes ME happy.  If itks not absolute fact, I really don't care.  *shrug*

Offline Serephino

Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #66 on: January 13, 2010, 09:43:04 PM »
*smiles*

We are more similar than you think. Again I am sorry if I seem anal-retentive, definition-wise but you are not a 'religion', you are a 'person'... what you are probably (correct me if I am wrong) trying to say is that tou are not a fundamentalist and that you 'as a person' keep an open mind.

A religion is not exactly a person... it is a series of beliefs that defines a part of the world and of your life that you cannot see or have proof of. And it defines in a specific way and, for that religion, this is the right way. Even those religion who allow everyone their own Gods... well they simply state that the universe is in that way so that everyone can have his God... but even that is a statement of how things are... and is as intransigent as the ones that say that there is only one God.

Now the persons can be a bit more open-minded... and about that Hairy says the truth, it is easier for the non-monotheistic ones. But some of us DO try.

For example, I myself, while believing in an unique God.... I also believe that He is somewhat of a good fellow so to say and likes everybody of us the same. And I think that what makes us His children is mainly how much love for each other and for the creation and for the principle of good we do have... believing surely helps, but I do NOT think that a good, caring, loving person who is not a believer will not have a chance at being happy in his life AND afterlife. And I find difficult to think that said chance would depend on conversion by a bible-toting guy who comes to you explaining the Original Sin.

I hope this can be considered open-mindedness... I really don't know.

I suppose you have a point.  As I said, there are bad apples in every barrel.  There are some very closed minded Pagans, and those that, like the author of that article, have a grudge against Christianity.  Polytheistic religious people do tend to be more open minded though.

And, as strange as it sounds, you and I have similar views about God.  I don't think he cares what religious practice you prescribe to because we are all his creations.  And if we all followed the same religion life would be pretty boring wouldn't it?

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Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #67 on: January 13, 2010, 11:10:12 PM »
Setting aside the part about Biblical details...

And even leaving alone the moral implications of a belief in original sin, which I think could say much about the difference between these spiritual tracks... 

         I feel like the OP point about bigger name religions pressing their agenda door-to-door has partially gotten lost.  I would imagine, since they don't own the property, it's just another Avon case, where anybody has the right to sell whatever they want on Sunday morning anywhere?  Do Avon or insurance people, or telemarketers for that matter expect to have their brand names represented with solemn respect?  Why the implicit demands by some people here that those who so aggressively (and often presumptuously) advertise should be represented by others with solemn dignity in every commentary? 

          The original context has sometimes been neglected by those rushing to bash the OP article merely for being a tad sarcastic.  As if no movement with a little sarcasm ever produced anything reasonable or useful.  I also feel those posts implicitly demanding more pro-Christian seriousness do not offer much "respect" for fear of insulting those who do live with Pagan and other arrangements in their house and who do take some offense at being visited with inflexible messages of "idolatry" or "hell" etc.  The various altars, snakes, libraries, nudity, and various ritual items are not listed in the writing simply for entertainment value.  They have real meaning for real people, but they have hardly been mentioned in the rush to argue "One of these faiths must be more right!" or "Oh, this [expletive ommitted] is too pompous or snide."  The ritual/lifestyle items are also mentioned to reinforce the point.  Namely, that not every group and space appreciates (never mind takes seriously!) what the JW and some vocal evangelicals have taken to be their right and duty. 

         Some very vocal American movements overlapping with the Biblical sales group have backed up that "duty" by positioning themselves so that they may go on "missions" to knock on others' doors, while employing wealth, legislation, mockery (can you imagine that?), character assassination, and even intimidation/violence to help their standing against trespass or protest for their own bases.  These faiths have enamored themselves better historically with the state apparatus.  If even a small handful of persons created a nude torch and drum event near more conservative churches, I would imagine that attempts at conversion, so-called "counterprotest" and mockery might not be the end of it.  Some calls for the police and threats or acts of violence by ultra-right wing factions would be sad...  But not entirely surprising.  In such a discriminatory and unbalanced social context, I don't think a little mockery of JW/Christian approaches is really surprising.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2010, 11:19:09 PM by kylie »

Offline Lord Drake

Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #68 on: January 14, 2010, 03:37:44 AM »
Setting aside the part about Biblical details...

And even leaving alone the moral implications of a belief in original sin, which I think could say much about the difference between these spiritual tracks...
 

Actually the part about the 'original sin' is a part of a greater construction that makes Christian faith much more 'light' and 'positively oriented' than some detractors think. Again, I'm talking about 'Christians' in the larger sense and NOT about the 'door to door Bible salesmen' as you call them. But let's cast this aside as - I agree with you - this is not the point.



I feel like the OP point about bigger name religions pressing their agenda door-to-door has partially gotten lost.  I would imagine, since they don't own the property, it's just another Avon case, where anybody has the right to sell whatever they want on Sunday morning anywhere?  Do Avon or insurance people, or telemarketers for that matter expect to have their brand names represented with solemn respect?  Why the implicit demands by some people here that those who so aggressively (and often presumptuously) advertise should be represented by others with solemn dignity in every commentary? 

Actually the 'original point' of the FORUM THREAD (not the article) was to debate if the article was well-thought and well-written in its content... at least I have desumed that from the first three posts of it. Have I missed something? I answered to that... as a 'confutation' is badly thought. If it is to be considered a mere exercise in words and sarcasm... well I personally (having read iits conclusion) do not think that.

The original context has sometimes been neglected by those rushing to bash the OP article merely for being a tad sarcastic.  As if no movement with a little sarcasm ever produced anything reasonable or useful.


One thing I have learned in life is that it is EXTREMELY DIFFICULT to make intelligent sarcasm about a religion without being very knowledgeable about it. Usually when you try that you look like a fool more than a blasphemer, to those belonging to that religion. Also, to be extremely clear here I think that the other religions must have the SAME respect and not only Christianity obviously.

Some very vocal American movements overlapping with the Biblical sales group have backed up that "duty" by positioning themselves so that they may go on "missions" to knock on others' doors, while employing wealth, legislation, mockery (can you imagine that?), character assassination, and even intimidation/violence to help their standing against trespass or protest for their own bases.  These faiths have enamored themselves better historically with the state apparatus.  If even a small handful of persons created a nude torch and drum event near more conservative churches, I would imagine that attempts at conversion, so-called "counterprotest" and mockery might not be the end of it.  Some calls for the police and threats or acts of violence by ultra-right wing factions would be sad...  But not entirely surprising.  In such a discriminatory and unbalanced social context, I don't think a little mockery of JW/Christian approaches is really surprising.

Actually we must do a little distinction there.

I agree with you that in front of exasperation this kind of reaction is perfectly understandable. Now the auctor of this particular article strikes me as mainly a flamer and not a very good one... but this is only a personal feeling and anyways there are many other much better ones around who say similar things.

I believe that EXACTLY because this is made out of exasperation it could be a bit dangerous... things that one does while pissed off tend to go out of target at times. I know this is hard to mantain one's cool in these cases but unfortunately an exaggerate reaction could lower them to their level and also bring them to retaliate on unguilty people.

The 'Christian' word encompasses a much bigger reality than the JW and Evangelical American. There are MANY MANY more of them around the world and much different... on my part, for example, I can say that the Roman Catholic do NOT do that kind of proselytism door-to-door and do NOT ring the doorbells of people to warn them that they will go to Hell.

Unfortunately, we share with the evangelical and the JW the sacred texts (ok... they share them with us we usually say) and the definition 'Christians'. And we are starting to see quite often around the net our name and sacred texts put into such articles... and with us, some of the Lutheran, the Ortodoxs and so on... Now obviously it is not like we DON'T say that our point of view is the right one... as I said before, basically every religion do that. But again, we are NOT as aggressive as them. At least I and those I know are not... :P

Now, Hairy is right when he says that "if someone comes along, tells you your beliefs are wrong (or at the least misguided) you're not going to be that well inclined towards them, and remembering their exact denomination probably isn't going to be that high on your list of priorities". I agree on that. But again, this is the dangerous part... since if it is done 'in the heat of the moment' it can be understood... but on the long run, a person with a MINIMUM of culture should know that some denominations encompass a bigger reality.

I'm hyperbolic, I know... *laughs*. I will try to condense my point this way: it is understandable and fully expectable that since they have been attacked, they want to respond in tone. As long as they do that TO THE PERSONS THAT THEY HAVE SLIGHTED THEM I'm perfectly fine. As long as they do their nude torch and drum events under THEIR church I can be ok.

If they put that on the INTERNET they are doing that to ME and under MY Church although (not so) probably unwittingly. And so this makes ME respond. It stands to reason... ^^

Think like that... if a particular sect of Pagans started doing silly things that you disagree with in a country... and they being the only Pagans there (or the most vocal) people starts a counter offence against 'Paganism' in general WITHOUT distinction... what would you think will happen when that hits the Internet?
« Last Edit: January 14, 2010, 03:42:48 AM by Lord Drake »

Offline WhiteyChan

Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #69 on: January 14, 2010, 06:14:55 AM »
I'm gonna stay out of any real religious debates here (woo Atheism) - but I will mention the film Dogma (Smith, 1999). It picks apart bits of the Bible, in a hilarious way; obviously, the 'points' it makes are complete rubbish, but at least it recognises that fact and even ridicules itself at points.

I highly recommend it to everyone in this thread. ;D

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Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #70 on: January 14, 2010, 02:33:17 PM »
Think like that... if a particular sect of Pagans started doing silly things that you disagree with in a country... and they being the only Pagans there (or the most vocal) people starts a counter offence against 'Paganism' in general WITHOUT distinction... what would you think will happen when that hits the Internet?

Would you care to examine Christian PR towards any and all pagans for last couple of thousand years? ;)

Pagans, because of lack of a central authority, or a great deal of common doctrine (for lack of a better word) are a lot harder to put into anything other than very broad catagories.

Offline Lord Drake

Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #71 on: January 14, 2010, 03:16:11 PM »
Would you care to examine Christian PR towards any and all pagans for last couple of thousand years? ;)

*smiles*

Actually I am not against PR if it is made through less aggressive channels. It is not like I am not convinced of my faith and I am against proselytizing. AND the channels have changed through the years... obviously middle ages ways were different from modern ones. Anyway which kind of PR from catholic Romans comes to your mind?

Anyway... I will try my best to remain to the point. What I am saying is... I am not stating than Christianity in general and possibly even Roman Catholic has not had issues with others beliefs. All the contrary. But those who go door-to-door bible-toting are NOT us. And this was the theme of this particular thread.

So if one wants to retaliate for their behaviour... he should retaliate to THEM. If he also retaliates to ME, I will respond. Unfortunately the Bible is a sacred book for them AND for me.

So. Yes, an aggressive try at proselytizing can understandably cause an equally aggressive response. And no, this does not make of that particular attempt at sarcasm much less of a laughingstock since the author is trying to debate the historical value of something that has SYMBOLIC value.

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Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #72 on: January 14, 2010, 04:02:57 PM »
Christianity seemed to have a habit, historically speaking, of demonising any worship that wasn't theirs. Where people weren't willing to convert, if christianity was in a stronger position, it literally became convert or die. Have a read up on the assorted conflicts that went on when it spread through the nordic countries, and finally in Iceland.

I'm not saying it was entirely violent .. obviously it wasn't, but there's enough of it that the aggressive proselytizing, the "We're right, you're wrong" attitude can turn people against them very quickly, especially if they are familiar with those bits of history. It's an emotional response, and I think generally speaking if you put emotion against logic, emotion is going to come out on top more often than not. That's human nature for you.

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Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #73 on: January 14, 2010, 04:12:56 PM »
Quote from: Lord Drake
But those who go door-to-door bible-toting are NOT us. And this was the theme of this particular thread.
So if one wants to retaliate for their behaviour... he should retaliate to THEM. If he also retaliates to ME, I will respond. Unfortunately the Bible is a sacred book for them AND for me.
          You mentioned the intent of the OP at some juncture...  Well, how about like this?
I am not a bible scholar in the slightest, but this was a very reasonable seeming response by a Pagan household to the Jehovah's Witnesses who came to their door one day. 
          If you look at the article, it almost never speaks directly to Christians per se.  It mentions "Christendom" once, only to indicate that the Biblical story still has broader cultural weight.  Some of our responses here have pointed out that there are parallels with the JW involving evangelical Christians (it's very convenient to say just "Christians" for short sometimes) -- I think you're being overbroad in trying to shout those down in defensive terms of, Would you please stop saying anything to do with Christian about that.  No one has described your individual practices or said that is what they mean by Christian here -- at least, as far as I know.  Now, if you want to make an argument that the evangelicals are not Christians by your definition, that might be more relevant and do more for your defense of the term... 

Quote from: Lord Drake
a person with a MINIMUM of culture should know that some denominations encompass a bigger reality.
            Yes, they do -- but not always an entirely separate reality.  Part of the threat/insult you may be sensing has to do with another fact.  If you are affiliated with or in support of large Christian churches, then the institutions you favor are actually concerned with this issue because they (actively or passively) use the evangelists' agenda to further their own wealth and power.  The legal and institutional structures door-to-door operatives take advantage of, are also part of a range of politics that gives tangible benefits to most Christian churches, including many that are not particularly radical or evangelical.  In that context, a moderate Christian simply saying "Well, I don't do that so I'm not implicated at all," is rather like an average middle class White person focusing on anything except the systemic benefits they gain from racial discrimination.  I just sense a lot of focus in the writing upon distancing oneself from an implied minority of "hotheads," in order to insist "but I'm part of the good bunch" rather than looking at all the empirical connections.   

Quote
I believe that EXACTLY because this is made out of exasperation it could be a bit dangerous... things that one does while pissed off tend to go out of target at times. I know this is hard to mantain one's cool in these cases but unfortunately an exaggerate reaction could lower them to their level and also bring them to retaliate on unguilty people.
          Well, it is door to door and perhaps it's a little restrictive to say that people shouldn't be allowed any hyperbole or exasperation even when the discussion is brought to them on a random morning.  I suppose there's a possible argument that we'd be better off with a society based on the more reserved from among the Vulcans.  I think the article's loose style could be more problematic when it becomes a vindictive discourse that circulates through other forums.  However, the people I more often see using both door to door and public (physical) space to proclaim vindictive messages today are more often members of conservative Biblical-oriented organizations.  You're worrying that a few radical Pagans somehow might do something which they generally haven't been.  And they haven't been, despite the fact that the Biblical side has been tossing the muck openly and with greater institutional support.  Where is the proof of this danger you speak of being likely to manifest itself?
« Last Edit: January 14, 2010, 04:43:20 PM by kylie »

Offline Kotah

Re: Very controversial subject.
« Reply #74 on: January 14, 2010, 04:14:22 PM »