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Little help for a new guy

 
 
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Ted
Total Posts:  93
Joined  19-02-2007
 
 
 
19 February 2007 06:05
 

I am a first timer, so please be kind.

Just to let you know, I am secular by upbringing, Anglican by reasoned choice.

I've read "Letter to a Christian Nation".  I agree with Sam on some things, and disagree on others.

More importantly, there are some things I do not understand, and would appreciate clarification.

The tone of the book sounds very fundamental (to my ears) in its own right.  Is the consensus of those who have read it that the views presented in the book are fundamental in nature or pluralistic?

Has there been any discussion into the source of secularism in the West?

Has any society ever existed that was completely free of dogma (religious or otherwise)?  If so, what ultimately happened to it, and why does it not still exist?  Natural selection, perhaps?

Is the basis of all this discussion that uninformed decision-making is bad, or that we should all believe the exact same thing, or that we are trying to proselytize one another?

Again, my questions are sincere.  Please provide sincere replies.  Thanks!

 
 
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Joad
Total Posts:  775
Joined  04-12-2006
 
 
 
19 February 2007 08:23
 

Hi Ted,

Welcome.

Has any society ever existed that was completely free of dogma (religious or otherwise)? If so, what ultimately happened to it, and why does it not still exist? Natural selection, perhaps?

Probably, depending on your definitions. Polynesia, Micronesia, Native Americans etc. We have to allow for some ‘Noble Savage’ mythology.

What happened to them? Most died from Colonialism. Easter Island died from dogma.

 
hampsteadpete
 
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hampsteadpete
Total Posts:  1377
Joined  21-12-2004
 
 
 
19 February 2007 08:32
 

Anglican by reasoned choice.

Welcome to the forum!  Just curious, how do you feel about becoming a catholic?  Did your reasoned choice extend that far?

 

Has there been any discussion into the source of secularism in the West?

I don’t know, but my guess would be reason and intellect.

 
 
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Ted
Total Posts:  93
Joined  19-02-2007
 
 
 
19 February 2007 08:51
 

Just curious, how do you feel about becoming a catholic?  Did your reasoned choice extend that far?

Yes, and I have not found a compelling reason for doing so.

 
 
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Ted
Total Posts:  93
Joined  19-02-2007
 
 
 
19 February 2007 08:56
 

Hampsteadpete,

Sorry, let me clarify.  I am Episcopalian, which is the same thing as Anglican, only in the United States.  So, we are not part of the Church of England.  We are presently doing constructive stuff like fighting over the ordination of homosexual bishops.

 
 
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Ted
Total Posts:  93
Joined  19-02-2007
 
 
 
19 February 2007 08:58
 

[quote author=“Joad”]What happened to them? Most died from Colonialism. Easter Island died from dogma.

What does this mean?

 
 
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Joad
Total Posts:  775
Joined  04-12-2006
 
 
 
19 February 2007 11:06
 

Ted,

Sorry.
I just assumed people were familiar with Easter Island. It was a society that self-exterminated by dogmatically following a religious belief.

They built those huge stone heads to please their gods. They evenutally cut down every tree on the island in order to move stones. Without trees, they could not survive.

The more trees they cut down, the worse their lives. So they cut down even more trees to please the gods, believing it would improve their lives.


As for Polynesia and Micronesia, they were colonized by the British and basically enslaved to pick breadfruit.

 
 
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burt
Total Posts:  2927
Joined  17-12-2006
 
 
 
19 February 2007 13:37
 

Ted, I doubt that any society anywhere has ever been free of dogma.  Every culture has dogmatic aspects because even when a myth or story is presented non-dogmatically and points the way to freedom from dogma, the way that the human mind works insures that some people will immediatly adopt it in a dogmatic way.  All we can do is try to transmit the distrust of dogma from generation to generation.  If you can get hold of it, an excellent book is Doris Lessing, Prisons We Choose to Live Inside.

Cheers

 
Martin Lindhe
 
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Martin Lindhe
Total Posts:  7
Joined  19-04-2007
 
 
 
20 April 2007 12:23
 

[quote author=“burt”]Ted, I doubt that any society anywhere has ever been free of dogma.

True.

But we are finally getting to the point in human evolution where societies are starting to successfully get rid of its old dogma. Sweden (my home country) and other select countries in Europe are examples of societies where religious dogma is dying off – quite literally - with each generation.

 
Lapin Diabolique
 
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Lapin Diabolique
Total Posts:  1814
Joined  10-11-2006
 
 
 
20 April 2007 12:44
 

[quote author=“Ted”]I am a first timer, so please be kind.

If you are a first timer how come your post counter reads 93 ?

 
 
 
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KFD
Total Posts:  221
Joined  24-01-2007
 
 
 
20 April 2007 14:02
 

[quote author=“Sander”][quote author=“Ted”]I am a first timer, so please be kind.

If you are a first timer how come your post counter reads 93 ?

This might be the reason:

Joined: 19 Feb 2007
Posts: 93

Posted: Mon Feb 19, 2007 11:05 am   Post subject: Little help for a new guy  

wink

 
Lapin Diabolique
 
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Lapin Diabolique
Total Posts:  1814
Joined  10-11-2006
 
 
 
20 April 2007 14:12
 

[quote author=“KFD”][quote author=“Sander”][quote author=“Ted”]I am a first timer, so please be kind.

If you are a first timer how come your post counter reads 93 ?

This might be the reason:

Joined: 19 Feb 2007
Posts: 93

Posted: Mon Feb 19, 2007 11:05 am   Post subject: Little help for a new guy  

wink


Sometimes I feel like a retard.
This is one of those times.

Cheers KFD.

Once you can see past my abrasive personality I am really an OK guy.

:D

 
 
 
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burt
Total Posts:  2927
Joined  17-12-2006
 
 
 
21 April 2007 03:32
 

[quote author=“Joad”]Ted,

Sorry.
I just assumed people were familiar with Easter Island. It was a society that self-exterminated by dogmatically following a religious belief.

They built those huge stone heads to please their gods. They evenutally cut down every tree on the island in order to move stones. Without trees, they could not survive.

The more trees they cut down, the worse their lives. So they cut down even more trees to please the gods, believing it would improve their lives.


As for Polynesia and Micronesia, they were colonized by the British and basically enslaved to pick breadfruit.

It is an assumption that the Easter Island Moa were constructed to “please the gods.”  The general theories I’ve come across is that they were a result of inter-clan competition. 

I know that you Joad define religion in a very narrow way as involving established churches, priesthoods, and so on, but anthropologically the peoples of Micronesia and Polynesia did have religion of the shamanistic and magical sort.

 
 
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Traces Elk
Total Posts:  5404
Joined  27-09-2006
 
 
 
21 April 2007 05:51
 

[quote author=“burt”]It is an assumption that the Easter Island Moa were constructed to “please the gods.”  The general theories I’ve come across is that they were a result of inter-clan competition. 

I know that you Joad define religion in a very narrow way as involving established churches, priesthoods, and so on, but anthropologically the peoples of Micronesia and Polynesia did have religion of the shamanistic and magical sort.

Fan-fuçking-tastic, burt. You gasbag. Once again, you’re operating far outside your real areas of competence in hopes that you can snow the ignorant masses that come online simply to read your precious words.

First of all, you have provided no definition of the word “religion” that would be adequate outside of any culture that could relate to the Indo-European roots of the word (of which, I might add, you have seemed to be aware at some point in the past). The Polynesians certainly cannot relate to your preconceptions, on a purely linguistic basis.

Whoever you are reading on the subject has no idea about the values of Polynesian cultures. Polynesians have no kinship system that is consistent with “clan” behavior. Polynesian culture adopted standards of “double descent” which are inconsistent with clan practices.

You are not interested in learning anything new. It is long since clear that you have bought into a spiritual ideology that requires you to repeat and believe certain articles of faith, while remaining conveniently unaware almost completely of any other inconvenient and conflicting facts. You are nothing but a gasbag spiritualist in Sufi garb.

[ Edited: 21 April 2007 06:46 by ]
 
 
Lapin Diabolique
 
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Lapin Diabolique
Total Posts:  1814
Joined  10-11-2006
 
 
 
21 April 2007 06:45
 

[quote author=“Salt Creek”]
Fan-fuçking-tastic, burt. You gasbag. Once again, you’re operating far outside your real areas of competence in hopes that you can snow the ignorant masses that come online simply to read your precious words.

You are nothing but a gasbag spiritualist in Sufi garb.

Jesus Salt Creek !

What is up with you ?

I’d suggest drinking chamomile tea and perhaps you should get laid more often.

 
 
 
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Traces Elk
Total Posts:  5404
Joined  27-09-2006
 
 
 
21 April 2007 06:48
 

[quote author=“Sander”][quote author=“Salt Creek”]
Fan-fuçking-tastic, burt. You gasbag. Once again, you’re operating far outside your real areas of competence in hopes that you can snow the ignorant masses that come online simply to read your precious words.

You are nothing but a gasbag spiritualist in Sufi garb.

Jesus Salt Creek !

What is up with you ?

I’d suggest drinking chamomile tea and perhaps you should get laid more often.

I’ve had my fill of both, Mr. Holier-Than-Thou-Grouchy-Poster.

Burt is a poseur, and if you did not have some spiritual commitment, you might realize that. It’s his intellectual dishonesty that I’m objecting to, not the content that this dishonesty produces.

I’ve presented a couple of clear factual errors of which burt is guilty. Why don’t you address those? I’ll tell you why. You don’t have the chops.

 
 
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