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Christian freedom - an oxymoron?
Posted: 02 May 2007 08:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]  
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Don’t we have to submit and surrender to SOMETHING in order to be free?

 

Actually, Christianity wants us to submit to God. And since God does not exist, they volunteer to take his place.

Christians would instantly abandon their God if he did not give them dominion over the rest of us.

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Posted: 03 May 2007 02:09 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]  
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[quote author=“Joad”]Actually, Christianity wants us to submit to God. And since God does not exist, they volunteer to take his place.

Christians would instantly abandon their God if he did not give them dominion over the rest of us.

Joad, I honestly don’t know where you are coming from on this one. In my own subjective experience of my faith, having dominion over you and other non-Christians has nothing to do with anything. I don’t know what kind of Christians you have had contact with - but if they would instantly abandon their faith unless they established dominion over you, they are not true Christians. There are many Christians in many countries who are minorities, some being persecuted. Dominion is the last thing on their minds.

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Posted: 03 May 2007 02:37 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]  
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[quote author=“Bruce Burleson”]In my own subjective experience of my faith, having dominion over you and other non-Christians has nothing to do with anything. I don’t know what kind of Christians you have had contact with - but if they would instantly abandon their faith unless they established dominion over you, they are not true Christians. There are many Christians in many countries who are minorities, some being persecuted. Dominion is the last thing on their minds.

Let me amend that without permission. They would abandon it if it did not make them feel as if they had dominion over me. “It’s more than a feeling, when I hear that old song play….” Screw the JC Superstar crap.

Your language betrays you. Your verbal skills insist your faith is nothing about dominion. But you let slip over and over again something about your intention when you speak in first person plural. You are not to be trusted (at least, not to be trusted to use language in a straightforward manner.)

Let’s talk about America, Bruce, which is where you live, instead of some unnamed third world hell where Christians are in the minority and get what minorities generally get. Giving the name “persecution” to a lack of permission to proselytize everyone they meet is sometimes what some of your brethren do. I guess you wouldn’t call them True Christians™, then, huh?

Oh, wait. I see. True Christianity™ is hawking your filthy religion in every venue where you are not utterly ignored, but not asserting dominion over anyone. Free speech and all. I get that a lot from True Christians™.

You want an oxymoron? “True Christian™” works for me. I’m free to tune you out, I know, Bruce. I don’t have to put a gag in your mouth or bind your typing fingers. But you are really polluting the discourse here with your verbal dance. It’s a stinking mess and since my speech is not encumbered either, I just thought I’d give you my opinion. I’ve been hoping you would find something else to talk about, but my faith is wavering.

It really is bottom-fishing, Bruce, for a reasonably smart guy like you to go on the internet where you will get lots of attention for your narcissistic little god-fantasy, where you need never acknowledge evidence that anyone has simply tuned you out, and all the negative feedback you get is something for you to battle as a True Christian™. It is bottom fishing. These waters are pretty sterile for what you are fishing for. But the sh!t that is being slung at you and your apparent capacity for enduring it is something you may need to think about a little more. The scatological angle, you know: You do seem to enjoy it in an odd way, else you would move along.

No, you do not actually seem to be arguing that anyone else need share your faith-feeling. But really, given the amount of strenuous objection you are getting here from well-spoken individuals, and the lack of evidence that you can present other than your feelings, God cannot be said to “exist”. I am arguing against this use of the word “exist”, which is a total abomination of logic, semantics, and empiricism.

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Posted: 03 May 2007 03:10 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]  
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[quote author=“Salt Creek”]Let me amend that without permission. They would abandon it if it did not make them feel as if they had dominion over me.

With all due respect, that is a stupid, ignorant, uninformed and ridiculous statement coming from a paranoid mind.  It is not based on any objective evidence from any source, other than your own irrational fears. You know nothing about what goes on in the mind and heart of believers, or what their ultimate desires are. You have completely misunderstood the nature of Christian faith. You have been demonizing believers for so long that they have all become sub-human to you, and you reinforce your own hatred of them by projecting upon them the perverted motives of your own diseased mind. You are the one who wants to dominate, so you project that motive on the little Christian devils that you have created in your own brain, so that you feel justified in hating them even more. You need help. You are dangerous to yourself.

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Posted: 03 May 2007 03:22 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]  
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[quote author=“Bruce Burleson”]You have completely misunderstood the nature of Christian faith. You have been demonizing believers for so long that they have all become sub-human to you, and you reinforce your own hatred of them by projecting upon them the perverted motives of your own diseased mind.

The nature of Christian faith is that it is a subjective personal feeling that makes some of its proponents speak in the first person plural. This is not an unsupported conjecture. I believe, so to speak, that I have struck a nerve.

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Posted: 03 May 2007 03:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 21 ]  
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[quote author=“Bruce Burleson”]You know nothing about what goes on in the mind and heart of believers, or what their ultimate desires are.

Who is it that passes Creationist legislation in Kansas?

Who is it that pushes a bill through the South Dakota legislature for an outright across-the-board ban on abortion?

Who is it that pushes a ballot measure in Oregon that declares marriage to be a “one man, one woman” privilege?

Sure, you can label them as not being True Christians™. But you are pretty fucked up if you think that lets you off the hook. Go talk to them about it. “None of my business,” says Bruce. You’re in the minority, you can’t trademark it, and that’s why you say it with such self-righteous posturing. It’s why you spend so much time bearding a bunch of atheists about their “misunderstanding” of ‘your’ faith. It’s not ‘yours’.

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Posted: 03 May 2007 04:13 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 22 ]  
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[quote author=“Salt Creek”]The nature of Christian faith is that it is a subjective personal feeling that makes some of its proponents speak in the first person plural. This is not an unsupported conjecture. I believe, so to speak, that I have struck a nerve.

With all due respect, you used the first person singular in your last post - a sure sign of narcissism.  You enjoy posting here because the congregation of your worshipers supports you and gives you the affirmation that you need. Here you feel as though you were God. Yet, you have presented no evidence of your initial diseased and deluded statement that Christians would abandon their faith if they could not feel that they had dominion over you.  Some Christians resort to the political process just as some atheists do, such as Grandmother O’Hair. The courts and the voting booth were open to all citizens, Christian and non-Christian. The word for that is “democracy.” The fact that some Christians introduce legislation that you feel is offensive is no evidence that they would abandon their faith unless they felt that they had dominion over you.  It is a non-sequitur. You should admit that you were wrong in making that statement and further admit that it came from a paranoid mind. Confession is good for the soul. But paranoids aren’t rational enough to engage in that form of self-reflection.  You have struck a nerve - the nerve of concern for your mental health, and the nerve of compassion that now manifests itself in love to try to convince you to get help. You are enslaved to hatred and fear.

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Posted: 03 May 2007 04:23 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 23 ]  
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[quote author=“Bruce Burleson”][quote author=“burt”] Bruce, you clearly have found what you consider to be your spiritual home and I say good for you.  But the way you post, you make it sound as if that is the only one there is.  What is your view on Jews, Moslems, Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, and other religions?  Are they misguided, dead wrong, foolish followers of false faiths?  Or do you acknowledge these other religions as legitimate spiritual paths as well?  And if so, what about the philosophical and metaphysical paths?

Hi Burt - I have profound respect for your insightful posts. I am in no position to judge another person’s religious, metaphysical, spiritual experience or lack thereof. I only know what I have experienced. But if I decide that I am going to follow Jesus, then I’m going to follow him as completely as I can in my limited capacity. That means accepting his teachings. Assuming that the NT gives an accurate record of his teachings (and it is the only record I have), then Jesus himself tells me that he is the only way. So I accept that teaching.  I have had no experience with the gods of the Muslims, Hindus, etc., so I “dance with who brung me.” However, I am not going to condemn anyone else for having a different faith than me, or no faith at all.  The only thing I think I know about God is what I think/believe he has revealed to me, so I have no basis for judging others.  I don’t acknowledge that other religions/philosophies are on the same level as Christianity, but I don’t condemn those who follow other paths, because I only know what I think/believe has been revealed ot me. Everyone has to walk according to the light she/he has.  Ultimately, we are at the mercy of whatever entity is “out there” to reveal him/her/itself to us. So far, the only one who has made any contact with me (in my interpretation of my subjective experience) is Jesus - so he’s the Man.

Glad to hear that you are at least respectful of other spiritual paths, Bruce.  I think you would benefit from placing your obvious study of the bible (in particular NT) in a wider context of what led to the emergence of Christianity as the dominant religion of the Roman world.  Of course, from your point of view, this was part of God’s plan, but you might have interest in the way that that unfolded in a natural way.  Christianity itself was constructed around the story of Jesus by people who built into it many of the themes of the existing religions and philosophical systems.  It emerged as a coherent belief system from the spiritual/intellectual context of its times.  As for the famous comment that nobody comes to the Father but through the Son, that is interpreted one way by most Christians but in the ancient world had a very different and more eccumenical meaning: part of Christian theory identified the Christ, as manifested in the individual person of Jesus, with the universal Logos (the Word).  In Hellenistic/Roman philosophical thought, the Logos was the mediator between the sub-Lunar sphere of change and worldly life, and the Heavenly spheres of perfection.  Or, in another way of looking at it, between the Intelligible Cosmos of the middle Platonists and the material world of imperfect manifeststion.  In any case, it was only through embodiment of the Logos that a person could rise to the heavens.  The Stoic sage, for example, was a person who, through intense meditative and contemplative practice, had become united with the Logos to the point that his every action was correct because it was the Logos acting throug him.  The general point of this ramble is that other religions and spiritual paths do have an equivalent of coming to the father through the son, it’s just clothed in different symbolic language.  For you, Jesus is Da Man, and that works for you because that is the choice you made and followed.  Part of the work for you, then, is dealing with many of your fellow Christians who are, to put it bluntly, hypocrites, and on the other hand, encountering people who will disrespect you for your beliefs.  Comes with the territory.  To quote a fictional character, Castenada’s Don Juan, one must choose a path with heart, and follow it with wonder.
Cheers.

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Posted: 03 May 2007 04:36 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 24 ]  
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To quote a fictional character, Castenada’s Don Juan, one must choose a path with heart, and follow it with wonder.

Whoo-eee. As they say in Texas. There is no more deeply-experienced pleasure than when a gasbag finds an airhead to inflate.

Masters and slaves. Made for each other.

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Posted: 03 May 2007 04:45 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 25 ]  
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Women have no DUTY to perform an abortion, Bruce.
Therefore, Christian women are perfectly free not to do so.
To say that secularists are pushing their values upon Christians is simply WRONG, it is the other way around.

Neither have you a duty to fellate another man. You are not obliged to perform any homosexual act. Again, values from secularists are not pushed onto you, and again, it is Christians who are trying to dominate others.

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Posted: 03 May 2007 04:58 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 26 ]  
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[quote author=“arildno”]Women have no DUTY to perform an abortion, Bruce.
Therefore, Christian women are perfectly free not to do so.
To say that secularists are pushing their values upon Christians is simply WRONG, it is the other way around.

Neither have you a duty to fellate another man. You are not obliged to perform any homosexual act. Again, values from secularists are not pushed onto you, and again, it is Christians who are trying to dominate others.

You are wrong to say that secularists are not pushing their values. You may not know about Madalyn Murray O’Hair in Norway, but she spent years pushing her values on believers. She did not simply assert the right of an atheist not to pray or read the Bible in school, she and her ilk demanded that NO child be involved in such.  While the courts here have now made it clear that individual students can engage in prayer in school as long as it is not school-sponsored, for years schools were so afraid of getting sued by the ACLU that they did not allow religious expression at all in schools, violating the civil rights of believers. This is an example of secularists pushing their values on believers. This issue is not as big a deal as it once was, as students have become more informed about their rights. But for years one atheist scared the public into submission.

So it goes both ways.  If you say that neither side should push values on the other by legal or political means, you will get no objection from this individual.

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Posted: 03 May 2007 05:10 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 27 ]  
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[quote author=“Bruce Burleson”][quote author=“arildno”]Women have no DUTY to perform an abortion, Bruce.
Therefore, Christian women are perfectly free not to do so.
To say that secularists are pushing their values upon Christians is simply WRONG, it is the other way around.

Neither have you a duty to fellate another man. You are not obliged to perform any homosexual act. Again, values from secularists are not pushed onto you, and again, it is Christians who are trying to dominate others.

You are wrong to say that secularists are not pushing their values. You may not know about Madalyn Murray O’Hair in Norway, but she spent years pushing her values on believers. She did not simply assert the right of an atheist not to pray or read the Bible in school, she and her ilk demanded that NO child be involved in such. While the courts here have now made it clear that individual students can engage in prayer in school as long as it is not school-sponsored, for years schools were so afraid of getting sued by the ACLU that they did not allow religious expression at all in schools, violating the civil rights of believers.

It doesn’t violate the civil rights of believers. There isn’t the slightest reason why a public school cannot forbid particularist expressions UPON THEIR DOMAIN.
They might choose to allow it, but that’s their decision.

There exists no rational need to pray in an education situation, nor is it any rational need to wear niqab at school, so no one can be said to be harmed by measures of forbidding these practices.

Anyone who disagrees with that have full freedom to send their child to a private school with its own vision.


Furthermore, to even make the comparison between such a trivial issue and issues concerning life&love; and death is just shockingly improper of you to do.
So no, it DOESN’t go both ways at all. It is practically uni-directional.

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Posted: 03 May 2007 05:27 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 28 ]  
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[quote author=“arildno”]It doesn’t violate the civil rights of believers. There isn’t the slightest reason why a public school cannot forbid particularist expressions UPON THEIR DOMAIN.
They might choose to allow it, but that’s their decision.

There exists no rational need to pray in an education situation, nor is it any rational need to wear niqab at school, so no one can be said to be harmed by measures of forbidding these practices.

There is obviously a difference between the constitutional system in Norway and in the U. S.  The courts here have now clarified that, in fact, an individual student does have certain rights of religious expression.  This is a constitutional issue over here. It is not up to you, the school or the state to determine what is rational with respect to individual religious expression in public schools, as long as it is not disruptive to the classroom setting or the educational process.

But to the extent that you object to having Christian values forced upon you legally, politically, socially, or any other way - agreed - that is wrong.

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Posted: 03 May 2007 05:33 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 29 ]  
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Just a note:
Just because I happen to mean it constitutes no breach on the civil rights for believers to desist from acts caused by their religious predilections AT schools, my view is NOT the legal view in present day Norway.

Norway has the same in-built legal protection of believers’ “rights” as the US.

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Posted: 03 May 2007 05:41 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 30 ]  
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[quote author=“arildno”]Just a note:
Just because I happen to mean it constitutes no breach on the civil rights for believers to desist from acts caused by their religious predilections AT schools, my view is NOT the legal view in present day Norway.

Norway has the same in-built legal protection of believers’ “rights” as the US.

Thank you for the clarification.

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