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Has Anybody Charted Sam's Slippery Slope?
Posted: 15 December 2006 09:19 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]  
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[quote author=“mudfoot”]Wesleyans and Quakers and abolition of slavery.  King and civil rights.  Mel White and buggerers’ rights (though Mel White’s struggle is in progress, best of luck to him).

Was the extremist church proslavery and quakers and King spent a lot of time arguing with the church over slavery. I don’t see that as a struggle with religious extremists, even if it was a good struggle. It was a social struggle not a religious one. The church usually just goes along with whatever injustice is occuring at the moment.

It’s nothing compared with what Rev. Ted has been doing. Check out this article about the army of god.

 

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Posted: 15 December 2006 09:58 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]  
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God you’re a dumbass eucaryote.  It was Christians like John Woolman arguing on religious grounds who started the abolition movement.

To abolitionists, it was a religious movement.  Just because you happen to agree with their aims, you dub it retroactively as a social movement and not religious.

Do us all a favor and learn something.

Take the rest of the afternoon/evening and go read a book—
The Journal of John Woolman

Then come back and tell us all that abolition was a secular movement.

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Posted: 15 December 2006 10:46 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]  
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[quote author=“mudfoot”]God you’re a dumbass eucaryote.  It was Christians like John Woolman arguing on religious grounds who started the abolition movement.

To abolitionists, it was a religious movement.  Just because you happen to agree with their aims, you dub it retroactively as a social movement and not religious.

Do us all a favor and learn something.

Take the rest of the afternoon/evening and go read a book—
The Journal of John Woolman

Then come back and tell us all that abolition was a secular movement.

And you’re such a nice fellow, always a good word and an interest in fair discussion. Your severe criticism is greatly appreciated, mudfoot. Fuck you very much! :wink:

It doesn’t sound like Woolman was very effecive in his efforts to stop slavery as he couldn’t stop it within the Quakers.

[quote author=“wikipedia”]In his lifetime, Woolman did not succeed in eradicating slavery even within the Society of Friends in the United States….

Possibly he and the quakers were influential in bringing about emancipation. That’s very different from saying that religions in general focused on eradication of slavery as a moral goal. I didn’t know either that slavery was supported by religious extremists that the quakers were arguing with. I think that possibly religious arguments against slavery were promoted but the real rationale for it was economic, especially in the south.

I imagine that today there are more followers in Ted Haggards megachurch than in all the Quaker meetings in the US combined. That’s how much influence they have. Without a doubt the Quakers are some of the most most liberal and moral of the religions.

It would be nice to see the quakers attack Haggard, Dobson, Falwell etc. and their army of god as the christian extremists that they are. I don’t think that they have done that, instead, they give them a pass just as all christians get a pass, just as Sam says. If they have done that, please inform us.

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Posted: 15 December 2006 10:58 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]  
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Apparently the quakers made up much of the abolition movement but again, they really didn’t represent “the church” or religion in America. Here however, is some evidence that the quakers opposed “religious extremists” in favor of slavery.

[quote author=“wikipedia”]The Catholic Church in America was centered in slaveholding Maryland, and, despite a firm stand for the spiritual equality of blacks, and the resounding condemnation of slavery by Pope Gregory XVI in his bull, In Supremo Apostolatus issued in 1839 continued in deeds,if not in public discourse, to support slaveholding interests. The Bishop of New York denounced O’Connell’s petition as a forgery, and if genuine, unwarranted foreign interference; the Bishop of Charleston declared that, while Catholic tradition opposed slave trading, it had nothing against slavery. No American bishop supported abolition before the Civil War; even while that war went on, they freely communicated with slave-owners. One historian observed that ritualist churches separate themselves from heretics rather than sinners; he observes the same acceptance of slavery among the Episcopalians and the Lutherans. (Indeed, one Episcopal bishop was a Confederate general.)

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Posted: 15 December 2006 12:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]  
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The mind boggles how stupid one can be if one decides they have perfect knowledge and no new information can shatter the foundations of belief.  That’s called “blind faith”, and most of the buddhist atheists on this site have swallowed it hook, line and sinker.

This is all the proof that I need to know that idiocy is not solely a function of belief in some desert god.

What I do cotton to is “conversational intolerance”—if you’re stupid, then I intolerate.  You, eucaryote, are a stupid person and full of faith.

You cannot refute the fact that liberal Christians were instrumental in bringing about the end of slavery in the modern civilized world.  No matter how many Christians supported slavery, that does not change the fact that it was Christians with their own interpretation of their religion which were the primary force behind abolition.

I don’t see a qualitative difference between you and the zombies who follow Ted Haggard—except perhaps the fact that those people don’t pretend to base their beliefs on Reason.  Which makes you worse than them.

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Posted: 15 December 2006 01:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 21 ]  
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Mudfoot wrote

God you’re a dumbass eucaryote. It was Christians like John Woolman arguing on religious grounds who started the abolition movement.

Thank God for good Christians like John Woolman. Without them, Black people would never have known they were being mistreated.


We can thank MLK for pointing out that making Blacks ride at the back of the bus was Unchristian. Most people thought it was just racism.

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Posted: 15 December 2006 02:49 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 22 ]  
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Gee Foot, you’re so eloquent with your insults. And so clearly a fair minded, and intelligent fellow without any axes to grind of his own. So polite and open to consideration of the opinions of others. Not at all like the rude and crude people that I associate with extremist christians, obviously, you couldn’t be an extremist or true believer of any kind yourself.

[quote author=“mudfoot”]The mind boggles how stupid one can be if one decides they have perfect knowledge and no new information can shatter the foundations of belief.  That’s called “blind faith”, and most of the buddhist atheists on this site have swallowed it hook, line and sinker.

So you got everybody pretty well classified, eh? You wouldn’t be into blind faith would you?

[quote author=“mudfoot”]This is all the proof that I need to know that idiocy is not solely a function of belief in some desert god.

“desert god” eh? Thought you’d get a right wing christian slam in at islam. So are you one of Rev. Ted’s minions? You seem to have the rhetoric down.

[quote author=“mudfoot”]What I do cotton to is “conversational intolerance”—if you’re stupid, then I intolerate.  You, eucaryote, are a stupid person and full of faith.

Yes we are all aware of your overwhelmingly superior intelligence. It’s so clear in the content of your posts. However, faith in any religious sense is not a word that would apply to me. You however, are simply a defensive christian apologist. So it’s easy to see where you are coming from.

[quote author=“mudfoot”]You cannot refute the fact that liberal Christians were instrumental in bringing about the end of slavery in the modern civilized world.

No one ever did refute that. I just don’t think that it’s a function of christianity, or any particular religion. We don’t get our morals from religion. World wide our morals have improved over the centuries, but religion has little to do with it.

[quote author=“mudfoot”]I don’t see a qualitative difference between you and the zombies who follow Ted Haggard—except perhaps the fact that those people don’t pretend to base their beliefs on Reason.  Which makes you worse than them.

I don’t do belief, mudfoot. I don’t see any need for belief all. I’m not defending any beliefs here. As a christian, you are just self concious because you know that your beliefs are not based on reason at all. That’s why you bring out all your nasty defensive vitriol.

I just think that Sam is right, religious moderates give extremists a pass and make excuses for them. Here you are doing that very thing.

After all, you as a christian really don’t have any problems with christian soldiers killing muslims, do you? You know the “idiots with the desert god”. That is Rev. Teds agenda, and he consults with Bush, another christian crazy. Why not just be honest with yourself?
You just have the same agenda.

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Posted: 15 December 2006 03:00 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 23 ]  
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[quote author=“Joad”]Mudfoot wrote:

God you’re a dumbass eucaryote. It was Christians like John Woolman arguing on religious grounds who started the abolition movement.

Thank God for good Christians like John Woolman. Without them, Black people would never have known they were being mistreated.


We can thank MLK for pointing out that making Blacks ride at the back of the bus was Unchristian. Most people thought it was just racism.

Nice clairifying thoughts Joad. Would MLK claim that he needed christianity to know that racism is wrong? I doubt it.

In “The God Delusion”, Dawkins talks about the Zeitgeist, or way of the times. He suggests that our morals are more a function of this than they ever were of religion. The zeitgeist has been shown to be progressive with respect to ethics where religion is not.

I don’t know the bible, but I would suspect that the bible supports slavery. John Woolman probably had to cherry pick the bible to get an anti slavery message out of it.

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Posted: 16 December 2006 07:32 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 24 ]  
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[quote author=“mudfoot”]The mind boggles how stupid one can be if one decides they have perfect knowledge and no new information can shatter the foundations of belief.  That’s called “blind faith”, and most of the buddhist atheists on this site have swallowed it hook, line and sinker.

...You cannot refute the fact that liberal Christians were instrumental in bringing about the end of slavery in the modern civilized world.  No matter how many Christians supported slavery, that does not change the fact that it was Christians with their own interpretation of their religion which were the primary force behind abolition.

Hi.  I’ve been lurking in the background, reading this debate today.  Mudfoot, it strikes me that you’re pretty easy with the name-calling when the other side doesn’t agree with you.  It gets old, quick.

Regarding your second paragraph above: I can easily find verses both in the old and new testaments supporting slavery.  I don’t see any bible verses condemning it.

So my question is, how could a christian honestly interpret their religion to be commanding them to abolish slavery?  That makes no sense whatsoever.  :?

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Posted: 16 December 2006 08:03 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 25 ]  
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[quote author=“martian”]Regarding your second paragraph above: I can easily find verses both in the old and new testaments supporting slavery.  I don’t see any bible verses condemning it.

So my question is, how could a christian honestly interpret their religion to be commanding them to abolish slavery?  That makes no sense whatsoever.  :?

MOTD: I’m with those who say that arguing against apologetics using the text of scriptures only serves to legitimate it.

See my signature for more of this philosophy.

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Posted: 16 December 2006 08:28 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 26 ]  
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Salt Creek wrote

MOTD I’m with those who say that arguing against apologetics using the text of scriptures only serves to legitimate it.

Make that a new topic. Arguing scripture makes you an apologist, whether you like it or not.

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Posted: 16 December 2006 08:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 27 ]  
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If slavery is bad, is it better to do away with it because it is bad, or because the FSM/Pink Unicorn/Jesus told us it was bad?

Harris’ point regarding the social changes brought about by/amongst liberal Christians is that they managed to reform in spite of what was written in their books.

I will say this:  Most Quakers that I have met are far more interested in doing right by their fellow man than most other people, regardless of creed.  Newsflash: Passionate people get sh!t done.

Is anybody saying that a coalition of non-believers cannot push for good social reform?  If so, I’d like to see the proof of it.

-Matt

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Posted: 16 December 2006 01:11 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 28 ]  
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[quote author=“psiconoclast”]
I will say this:  Most Quakers that I have met are far more interested in doing right by their fellow man than most other people, regardless of creed.  Newsflash: Passionate people get sh!t done.
-Matt

There’s no question about it. Mudfoot has educated me some with respect to the role that some quakers had in abolition.
Still, I really don’t think that they were as motivated by religion, especially christianity, which is silent or worse on the subject of slavery. I think that we have slowly become more ethical over the centuries for reasons that have little to do with religion. If their is anything that spoils the quakers for me it’s the christianity.

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Posted: 06 January 2007 07:29 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 29 ]  
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I just registered here today, and was reading through a few threads,  and I noticed no one has posted what was, to me, one of the most obvious   answers to Mudfoot’s general point (which I read as this:  “Religious moderates should not be branded simply as enablers or abetters of religious extremists, because they have held admirable moral positions -e.g. abolitionism- before those postitions were generally accepted, and that they did so on religious grounds.)  The question I would ask in return is, “Do the good deeds of religious moderates excuse religion for the bloodshed it has caused, and was religion an indispensible prerequisite for those good deeds?”

One of Sam Harris’s principle ideas in TEoF is that we do not, or at least should not, need religious faith to endorse moral propositions like “slavery is wrong,” while religious faith or some other sort of irrational, stubbornly held belief, is the only reason someone would carry out a suicide bombing or attempt genocide.  It is acknowledged that religious faith has inspired humans to great heights of compassion and ethical wisdom, but we need to find it within ourselves to be civil, ethical, and compasstionate without placing any sort of irrational beliefs or ideas beyond criticism.  By the same token, I’m sure there are religious moderates who speak out against religious extremism, but not all of them do, and the condemnation of any ideology is invariably weakened by granting its basic premise.  Some religious moderates do, then, aid and abet religious extremism, and if we can have the good of moderate religion, or any other kind, without the pain and strife that it causes, whether tacitly or actively, then who needs it?  It’s not about saying that moderates, extremists, or anyone else should “go take a pill and die” as someone on this forum said, it’s about demanding rational discourse in every sphere of thought, rather than offering religion a free pass as most of us do now. 

Yes, Quakers helped end slavery, and it was a wonderful and courageous thing.  I just don’t believe that those same men and women wouldn’t have been able to do the same if they had simply been a group of atheists who recognized that a heinous crime was being committed by and against their fellow humans.

I intended for this to be shorter, but I keep anticipating possible responses to what I’m saying.  One might say that while it may have been possible for atheists, as a group, to do for the cause of abolitionism or civil rights what liberal christianity did, they DIDN’T, and there must be a reason for that.  My only response to this is that there were too few openly atheist people at that point in time for them to have done much of anything as a group.  There surely was no dedicatedly atheist, rationalist organization, however, that endorsed slavery, as branches of christianity did, whether tacitly or openly. 

I’m not attacking the good deeds that have been done by any sort of religious people, I’m just saying that in the future, there’s no reason we can’t have a more ethical and functional society than we have now, without making any concessions to baseless beliefs about the nature of the universe, beliefs that have the potential to cause immeasurable violence and pain, whether or not they do in 100% of cases.  As Richard Dawkins said in the opening pages of “The God Delusion,” atheists need to organize!

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Posted: 06 January 2007 09:09 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 30 ]  
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oksamuel,

Welcome.

“Do the good deeds of religious moderates excuse religion for the bloodshed it has caused, and was religion an indispensible prerequisite for those good deeds?”

I do no give credit to religious people for good deeds because they deny it. Who am I to argue with them?

If all their deeds are religious, then they are neither good nor bad.

If they helped end slavery so they could get into heaven, then they were not really ended slavery. They were buying a ticket.

Religion is never a prerequisite for good deeds. It is away to take aaway credit for our good deeds and give it to God.

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