Organized religion v. Religious philosophy
Posted: 09 April 2007 04:17 AM   [ Ignore ]  
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For the first topic in this new forum, I propose a dialogue on the usefullness of the religious philosophy without an organized church.

I would say that many Americans call themselves Christian because they have never been exposed to any form or religion that follows their actual personal beliefs more closely. I personally tend to agree with the gnostic version of christianity, except I reserve the possibility that god might not exist at all. It doesn"t make a difference to me, because I use religious principles as my personal philosophy. It does not define me. Organized religion is the devil, not the philosophies.

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Posted: 09 April 2007 04:45 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]  
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Guy who read Tolkien all day vs. Tolkien Fan club

Seriously, disorganized religion is of course preferred, because they have less of a chance to be a powerful lobby. But it still does not remove that faith thing which clouds people’s judgement.

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Posted: 09 April 2007 07:59 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]  
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[quote author=“KFD”]Guy who read Tolkien all day vs. Tolkien Fan club

Seriously, disorganized religion is of course preferred, because they have less of a chance to be a powerful lobby. But it still does not remove that faith thing which clouds people’s judgement.

That faith cannot, and will never be removed.  Unless we are prepared to claim that every person is going to be educated to the point they do not need to rely on others for guidance, there will always be faith of some sort. 

It would be better to refocus faith off of the supernatural, and instead to human nature and our capacity to understand.

Who is Tolkien, by the way?  I have read very very little philosophy.  I prefer my own mind, and my own abilities to use reason.  Many men have said many inspiring things, but I do not see them as anything other than men like you and I.  I’m not familiar with anyone elses theories, however at this point, I gladly conceed that all subjects of philosophy have been explored by previous philosophers.  We need a few new ones to bring philosophy back to the forefront.  I recommend Einstein in his compilation Ideas and Opinions.  His words are as powerful as ANY other philosopher, yet noone knows anything about him.  (I was interested in the theory of relativity after I made a post on this site, and was pleased to find a copy at my local library.  I had no idea he did anything besides science.)

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Posted: 09 April 2007 08:25 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]  
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[quote author=“MDBeach”]
Who is Tolkien, by the way?

Gandalf’s uncle.

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What do I care for a hell for oppressors? What good can hell do, since those children have already been tortured? And what becomes of harmony, if there is hell? I want to forgive. I want to embrace. I don’t want more suffering. And if the sufferings of children go to swell the sum of sufferings which was necessary to pay for truth, then I protest that the truth is not worth such a price.
-Ivan Karamazov

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Posted: 09 April 2007 08:35 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]  
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I didn’t watch those movies, although I did notice he was an aquaintance of C.S. Lewis.  For my ignorance’s sake, what did he have to say about this subject?  I found Wikipedias version uncompelling.

I think this particular section (philosophy) should not include references to outside sources without explanation. 

(Notice I did the same thing with my Einstein reference, wonderful.  I’m such a hypocrit.)

So what kinds of faith should be deemed “appropriate”?  I’m interested in your opinion.  This could start getting interesting.  :D

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Posted: 09 April 2007 11:03 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]  
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[quote author=“MDBeach”]I think this particular section (philosophy) should not include references to outside sources without explanation. 

In lieu of that, we could just assume that you know how to use a search engine. Research! The best way mankind has devised of learning anything!

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INVEST in cynicism!

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Posted: 09 April 2007 11:42 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]  
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[quote author=“MDBeach”]I didn’t watch those movies, although I did notice he was an aquaintance of C.S. Lewis.  For my ignorance’s sake, what did he have to say about this subject?  I found Wikipedias version uncompelling.

Hehe, I think you’ve been buried under too many religious books to follow popular culture the last… 50 years. wink

Tolkien’s relevance here was that he wrote The Lord of The Rings which has been tremendously popular the last years, as well as originally appealing to a lot of nerds. In short, a lot of his fans are almost religious.

That faith cannot, and will never be removed.

It will go. Slowly, perhaps, but it will go.

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Posted: 09 April 2007 11:51 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]  
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[quote author=“MDBeach”]I have read very very little philosophy.  I prefer my own mind, and my own abilities to use reason.  Many men have said many inspiring things, but I do not see them as anything other than men like you and I.  I’m not familiar with anyone elses theories, however at this point, I gladly conceed that all subjects of philosophy have been explored by previous philosophers.

“All philosophy consists of footnotes to Plato.” Whitehead. 

I suggest the book Quantum Philsophy by Roland Omnes.  Very readable and takes a new look at the philosophical project as far as looking at the world is concerned.

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Posted: 09 April 2007 02:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]  
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I have always held the opinion that if religion provides a person with a moral compass/code they wouldn’t otherwise have, it is probably preferable to the alternative.  That said, I personally prefer a world where logic and reason prevail… where knowledge for the sake of knowledge is again the standard for learning, and where we have a firm understanding that faith and morality do not necessarily go hand in hand.  To demonstrate this, I always like to point people to Plato’s Euthyphro .

There are no original philosophical ideas in religion.  Jesus wasn’t the first to voice the golden rule - Confucius said it about 400 years before anyone claimed it was said by Jesus. 

I started reading philosophy after reading Locke .  After that, I would return as I searched to define my own moral code, absent of religious doctrine.  Why is it wrong to steal?  Why is it wrong to lie?  In the guaranteed absence of consequence, why is anything actually wrong?  Moral relativism is a tricky little trap that is very easy to fall into when depending on the law according to a personal god.

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