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Old 02-22-2007, 11:43 PM   #41
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Hello, fellow non-believers
Hola!
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Old 02-23-2007, 12:03 AM   #42
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One of the authors I read that influenced my path was Maria Gimbutas. Reading the discoveries of ancient matriachial/goddess religions made me think about how religion came to be in different cultures. Reading more about archaeology and anthropology (and science fiction!) made me decide that religion is a way for people to feel better about the mysteries of life. Those big brains of ours are made to question and "because that's the way god(s) made it" is an easy answer that reduces anxiety in some.
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Old 02-23-2007, 12:39 AM   #43
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I had to come over here to let my brain cool off~~the angst elsewhere was getting to me!! But, I think I'm in the right place. When I read the name of this thread my brain sees it as "Atheists and Agnostics (and others) Gather Here.....
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Old 02-23-2007, 12:41 AM   #44
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I had to come over here to let my brain cool off~~the angst elsewhere was getting to me!! But, I think I'm in the right place. When I read the name of this thread my brain sees it as "Atheists and Agnostics (and others) Gather Here.....
Hey there, Margaret! Glad to see you.
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Old 02-23-2007, 07:01 AM   #45
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okay, a question from somone who is in a "state of confusion" when it comes ot religion...I was raised Lutheran, but I really don't know WHAT I believe...some people have called me atheist...and I am not really sure. (I actually think I might lean more towards paganism - GASP!) (I say the gasp jokingly)

So what is the difference between Atheists and Agnostics?
colleen
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Old 02-23-2007, 07:07 AM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colleen Schaan
okay, a question from somone who is in a "state of confusion" when it comes ot religion...I was raised Lutheran, but I really don't know WHAT I believe...some people have called me atheist...and I am not really sure. (I actually think I might lean more towards paganism - GASP!) (I say the gasp jokingly)

So what is the difference between Atheists and Agnostics?
colleen
Atheists,like myself, absolutely do not believe there is a higher being in any way, shape or form. Agnostics think there could possibly be a god, but are unsure either way.
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Old 02-23-2007, 07:23 AM   #47
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Also lurking, will apply for permit soon. Great thread!

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Old 02-23-2007, 07:24 AM   #48
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Originally Posted by Alcojo94
Atheists,like myself, absolutely do not believe there is a higher being in any way, shape or form. Agnostics think there could possibly be a god, but are unsure either way.

As an Agnostic I don't believe in organized religion. I am unsure about a higher power as you stated, but I believe if there is one s/he/it isn't randomly handing down vauge and conflicting edicts to chosen profits.

So is there a better term than agnostic for someone like myself?

Now that I write this I guess I am more of an atheist. How confusing, I don't know what not to believe.
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Old 02-23-2007, 07:39 AM   #49
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Originally Posted by scrapmo
As an Agnostic I don't believe in organized religion. I am unsure about a higher power as you stated, but I believe if there is one s/he/it isn't randomly handing down vauge and conflicting edicts to chosen profits.

So is there a better term than agnostic for someone like myself?

Now that I write this I guess I am more of an atheist. How confusing, I don't know what not to believe.
Well, I think if you feel there is the possibility of a higher being in any form then I think the term agnostic still suits you. Here is a little something to read,might help you a bit:

http://atheism.about.com/od/aboutagn.../a/atheism.htm

My husband does believe in god but he doesnt believe in organized religion either.
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Old 02-23-2007, 08:39 AM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlysonRR
One of the authors I read that influenced my path was Maria Gimbutas. Reading the discoveries of ancient matriachial/goddess religions made me think about how religion came to be in different cultures. Reading more about archaeology and anthropology (and science fiction!) made me decide that religion is a way for people to feel better about the mysteries of life. Those big brains of ours are made to question and "because that's the way god(s) made it" is an easy answer that reduces anxiety in some.
Nice to know there are other fans of Marija's out there.

Have you ever read The Chalice and the Blade by Riane Eisler?

Rainsong
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Old 02-23-2007, 08:44 AM   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scrapmo
As an Agnostic I don't believe in organized religion. I am unsure about a higher power as you stated, but I believe if there is one s/he/it isn't randomly handing down vauge and conflicting edicts to chosen profits.

So is there a better term than agnostic for someone like myself?

Now that I write this I guess I am more of an atheist. How confusing, I don't know what not to believe.
Try this: Beliefnet.com
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Old 02-23-2007, 09:02 AM   #52
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Nice to know there are other fans of Marija's out there.

Have you ever read The Chalice and the Blade by Riane Eisler?

Rainsong
Yes - another favorite!
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Old 02-23-2007, 12:08 PM   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colleen Schaan
okay, a question from somone who is in a "state of confusion" when it comes ot religion...I was raised Lutheran, but I really don't know WHAT I believe...some people have called me atheist...and I am not really sure. (I actually think I might lean more towards paganism - GASP!) (I say the gasp jokingly)

So what is the difference between Atheists and Agnostics?
colleen
An atheist is someone who has, after studying the evidence for and against ANY God's existence, has decided that the God does not exist. There is a spectrum from weak atheism to strong atheism (weak and strong do not denote weakness or strength of position). A weak atheist is someone who says, "I do not believe in God (of the various and sundry Gods)." A strong atheist says, "There's no possible way for God(s) to exist." Atheism is, quite simply, "A lack of belief."
An atheist might also be an agnostic. Agnosticism only speaks to your KNOWLEDGE of God. Agnostics believe that there is no enough evidence for God's existence. A weak agnostic might say, "it's possible God exists, but we can never know for sure." A strong agnostic says "it's not possible God exists because there's no possible way to know if it exists."
An agnostic does not pretend that there are certainties (sometimes Christians call this moral relativism and claim that moral absolutes exist...agnostics say, "hey! Wait a minute. No they don't."). Agnostics do not believe in conclusions that are not demonstratable or recreatable.

Agnosticism speaks to your level of skepticism about a God's existence.
Atheism speaks to your position about a God's existence.

The funny thing is: every Christian is also an atheist. Since they believe that the Christian God is the ONE AND ONLY God, then they are A-THEISTS with regard to their belief in Thor, Zeus, any Greek/Roman Gods, the Great Spirit, Goddesses, Allah, Jehovah, Buddha,...you get the picture. As Christian atheists, most American atheists simply take their disbelief in a God just one God further than the Christian.
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Old 02-23-2007, 03:30 PM   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scrapmo
As an Agnostic I don't believe in organized religion. I am unsure about a higher power as you stated, but I believe if there is one s/he/it isn't randomly handing down vauge and conflicting edicts to chosen profits.

So is there a better term than agnostic for someone like myself?

Now that I write this I guess I am more of an atheist. How confusing, I don't know what not to believe.

I love it...me too!
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Old 02-23-2007, 03:55 PM   #55
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An agnostic does not pretend that there are certainties (sometimes Christians call this moral relativism and claim that moral absolutes exist...agnostics say, "hey! Wait a minute. No they don't."). Agnostics do not believe in conclusions that are not demonstratable or recreatable.
I think this is the area I feel I am in most conflict with believers. I find that many believers see the world only in black and white, good and evil, or other extreme dichotomies. The older I get, the more I see grey areas in every possible situation and very little use for absolutism.
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Old 02-23-2007, 03:56 PM   #56
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I may have to convert, 'cause I'm thinking that if there was a God, surely s/he would not have allowed Scarlett to change her beautiful 'house' avatar to the pig one....
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Old 02-23-2007, 04:25 PM   #57
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I think this is the area I feel I am in most conflict with believers. I find that many believers see the world only in black and white, good and evil, or other extreme dichotomies. The older I get, the more I see grey areas in every possible situation and very little use for absolutism.
The "moral absolutes" are an interesting study. I've been in a discussion with a local pastor, he's our nanny's youth minister, for the last few weeks and he is arguing that moral absolutes exist. I ended up saying,...
"Murder is wrong. That is one of your absolutes. Correct?"
He said, "yes. The bible says it's wrong."
I said, "Ok... so, if my daughter is being raped, does she have the right to kill her attacker? Or, should she just lie there and wait for someone to come arrest her attacker?"
He said, "Murder is wrong. Whether someone deserves it or not, it's still wrong. Your daughter might be justified, but she's wrong."

HUH!?!?!?! So, basically, self defense is wrong??
I then asked him how he justified the conservative Christian support of the war in Iraq. If murder (even in self-defense) is absolutely wrong, how can they support the war? His reply was: "The soldiers are wrong but God will forgive them because they will repent."

Again,...HUH!?!?!
To me, that sounds like a bunch of double talk and hogwash. It doesn't stop anyone from committing murder. It just applies a totally useless benchmark- murder is wrong.
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Old 02-23-2007, 04:26 PM   #58
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I may have to convert, 'cause I'm thinking that if there was a God, surely s/he would not have allowed Scarlett to change her beautiful 'house' avatar to the pig one....
Hahahahaha. I have a feeling I'll be changing it back. Hugh is just soooo much more appealing that the piggy.
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Old 02-23-2007, 04:34 PM   #59
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It was brought to my attention that some of the ladies here have been PMed by a member of SCS and "witnessed to". I'm sure this will happen on occasion. If it happens, please report the PM immediately to a moderator.

And,.. hang in there. I hope this trhead will become a place where atheists and agnostics can post without adhearing to the premise that the Bible is "the Word". No one here will be judging you. Post what you feel.
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Old 02-23-2007, 04:40 PM   #60
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I also HOPE that people can feel free to post in here freely and without fear of ANY harrassment.

PLEASE PLEASE report any such happenings to a mod.

I'm not a mod in this forum, but this wasn't "in" the forum anyway. And I'm here with you guys, and hope to keep an eye on such things.

Thanks for saying that, Chris.
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Old 02-23-2007, 06:05 PM   #61
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I was raised Roman Catholic. I had no choice. i was told that when I turned 18 I could choose for myself. Not true. It wasn't until after I was in college a couple years and refused to go to church when I was on break, forcing my mother into tears, that I was allowed to not go. I was confirmed, which is a joke. So I can make choices in the church as an adult. I had no choice in that; I was forced into confirmation.

Even very young, elementary school, I couldn't understand how Adam and Eve could give rise to everyone else. How could brothers and sisters have children? Mom informed me that parts of the Bible were just stories to show a lesson. That worked for a little while.

Then when I learned that the Church, for many years, still claimed that the sun revolved around the Earth, even after science had proved it absolutely did not. I wondered what else the Church was wrong about.

And it really gets me that I wasn't be allowed to use the pill. It doesn't matter the pain was so awful I couldn't stay in school (and I loved school and would never want to miss it), that it would last longer than 2 weeks every time, and that i was always anemic because of how much i lost. Give me a break. I want to be healthy.

So I may have started out against going to church to be spiteful to my mom. I went to a Methodist church a couple times when I first started grad school. I couldn't handle that either. I have a big problem with someone else telling me what to do and how to live my life because they (God) supposedly know better. I know how to be a good person. I also didn't like the idea that I could only talk to God through a priest. I don't like the feel of being in a cult (which they all were at one point) with all the rituals and kneeling etc.

Now? The closest thing I've come across to describe me, is humanism. I don't know if I'm atheist or agnostic or other. Today, I don't think there is a god, tomorrow might be different. But i do believe that religion causes way too many problems on this planet.

Sometimes i try to figure it out, what I believe. But I usually just give up and ignore it. I like Mother Nature. Is that considered a god? Sometimes i think bad things crop up (AIDS, Black Death, Katrina) because there are just too many people on this planet and nature has to fight back however she can. That sounds dumb but I'm going to put it out there anyway. I guess above all I'm an environmentalist/conservationist type person.

I am writing down all of your book suggestions. Once i finish the Wheel of Time I'll give them a go.
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Old 02-23-2007, 06:06 PM   #62
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Oh wow, look how long that is! I do apologize. i really am not a long-winded person.
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Old 02-23-2007, 06:42 PM   #63
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Oh wow, look how long that is! I do apologize. i really am not a long-winded person.
No worries. Be as long winded as you need to be. Religion was, for some of us, like a yoke that kept us trapped. I got over the yoked part, a few years ago. But, it's something that is uniquely individual. I know people who were able to walk away from a church, no problem. I know other people for whom that first step was, quite literally, like leaving their family behind. I think the stories of how one reaches the peace of non-belief are as varied as the stories of how one reaches the peace OF belief.

I, too, was raised in the Catholic Church. I spent most of my formative years being told to "be quiet" while actually IN Church... the priests of my Church were not the priests I remember with favor. I did have the odd happenstance to be raised next door to an order of Jesuit monks. Alot of people don't realize that there are sects within Catholicism. The monks were always way more tolerant, and often encouraging, of my questions than the Church priests were. I think the Catholic Church priests were over-worked and dealing with us kids like a little Catholic factory. Line em' up: baptize, catechize, confess, communize, and confirm em'. Go back to the end of the line and start all over. What ultimately unwound all of religion, for me, was a very close, cover-to-cover reading of the Bible. When that didn't suffice to answer my questions, I started looking at how the Bible was culled and written. Then, my education led me to question matter and existence. There was just one day when I started laughing... and then I cried, because of all of that wasted time and energy on something that was- to my eyes- pointless. Since then, I've walked the line...day-to-day. Just collecting more information and refining my position and trying to figure out the psychology of belief. The psychology of evolution. The science of it all.
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Old 02-23-2007, 06:58 PM   #64
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I also was raised Catholic..but left it..as in don go to church, confession, communion etc. But when asked say as in the hospital on form..yes i do put Roman Catholic.but ask that i do not receive any visits from priests, minister, etc. in my words only..please no offence to any one..i grew to find the Catholics..hypocrites..we sinned if we attened a non catholic church, we sinned if we admired ourselves, we sinned if we swore..and on n on n on.. Man i was in the confessional 24- 27..lol. Eating meat on friday was a bad sin..yet..years later it wasn't a sin no more..The last straw was when they failed my younger dd in Catechism..i took her out..she was always told if she ever wanted to be confirmed..was her choice at whatever age..she never did..she is 37..so that's my story..n i stickin to it..lol..loves ya..Gail
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Old 02-23-2007, 07:24 PM   #65
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Quote:
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It was brought to my attention that some of the ladies here have been PMed by a member of SCS and "witnessed to". I'm sure this will happen on occasion. If it happens, please report the PM immediately to a moderator.

And,.. hang in there. I hope this trhead will become a place where atheists and agnostics can post without adhearing to the premise that the Bible is "the Word". No one here will be judging you. Post what you feel.
Ugh! I *am* a Mod in this forum, and I want to reaffirm what Wrose said - if you get any unwanted PM's please notify a mod. I will try to keep tabs here too, but definitely report any yucky posts - I want you to have a place to discuss w/out having to debate or put up with unwanted "witnessing".

Okay - back to it then...
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Old 02-23-2007, 08:06 PM   #66
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I also was raised Catholic..but left it..as in don go to church, confession, communion etc. But when asked say as in the hospital on form..yes i do put Roman Catholic.but ask that i do not receive any visits from priests, minister, etc. in my words only..please no offence to any one..i grew to find the Catholics..hypocrites..we sinned if we attened a non catholic church, we sinned if we admired ourselves, we sinned if we swore..and on n on n on.. Man i was in the confessional 24- 27..lol. Eating meat on friday was a bad sin..yet..years later it wasn't a sin no more..The last straw was when they failed my younger dd in Catechism..i took her out..she was always told if she ever wanted to be confirmed..was her choice at whatever age..she never did..she is 37..so that's my story..n i stickin to it..lol..loves ya..Gail
My favorite Catholic hypocrisy was the great alter "server" debate. When I was little, I wanted to be an alter boy. I was so filled with Chirst-love that I wanted to handle the host. But...ohhhhh noooooooo *boooo and hissssss*. Girls DO. NOT. HANDLE. Christ's body. That was the mantra. Girls were not fit to handle the host. I can remember the nun's lectures and analogies: "Now you wouldn't want little girls to carry a naked man's body. Wouldn't that be inappropriate?" I actually responded with: "well, it would be more fun than doing nothing!" That got me a ruler smack. But, yae unto thee, the alter boys thinned out... the population of children forced to serve at mass thinned and the cardinals, in great desperation said...."eh'.... maybe it's okay for the little girls to serve alter."

*fume* It was all about numbers?!?!? Or, is it suddenly okay now for the little girls to handle Christ?

And,... also, the fish on Friday bugged me. We belonged to one parish, in my toddlerhood/preschool years, where the rule was no meat (PERIOD!) during lent. When we started attending the "more liberal parish" (Boy! Was THAT term relative!), we could suddenly eat fish on Fridays and not be offending the Pope or the Baby Jesus? AND, you could eat meat on other days? WOW!
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Old 02-23-2007, 08:07 PM   #67
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Ugh! I *am* a Mod in this forum, and I want to reaffirm what Wrose said - if you get any unwanted PM's please notify a mod. I will try to keep tabs here too, but definitely report any yucky posts - I want you to have a place to discuss w/out having to debate or put up with unwanted "witnessing".

Okay - back to it then...
Thanks, Ang. Now we know who to pass them along to.

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Old 02-23-2007, 09:26 PM   #68
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So what is witnessing?

Chris, I just read through the CE thread, all 21 pages. ok, the last couple pages my eyes kind of glossed over. Anyway, I think it's amazing you guys have created that many pages in less than 3 days!

And I'm jealous of all of you that can say what is on your mind concisely. Even if I want to put my POV in, I usually don't. I just can't organize my thoughts quickly enough. I am in awe
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Old 02-23-2007, 09:43 PM   #69
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Well, I have finished my 10 holiday cards for February and since DH is out f town, I am off to curl up in bed with The God Delusion. I really do love it!!! Hope to post some thoughts on it tomorrow...

Just a note - I am glad this thread has been so well received. For many people even admitting a struggle is a difficult step, and no one should have to feel frustration or embarrassment over that here. So kudos for the welcoming environment!!!!!
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Old 02-23-2007, 10:01 PM   #70
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stagccva
Well, I have finished my 10 holiday cards for February and since DH is out f town, I am off to curl up in bed with The God Delusion. I really do love it!!! Hope to post some thoughts on it tomorrow...

Just a note - I am glad this thread has been so well received. For many people even admitting a struggle is a difficult step, and no one should have to feel frustration or embarrassment over that here. So kudos for the welcoming environment!!!!!
I reserved that book at the library today, but there are a bunch of people ahead of me. They have a lot of copies but ....
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Old 02-24-2007, 05:06 AM   #71
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I'm going to have to get this book if for no other reason than to enhance my vocabluary.

"arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction. Jealous and proud of it, a petty, unjust, unforgiving control freak, a vindictive bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser, a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidical, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully."

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Old 02-24-2007, 05:12 AM   #72
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaisyDude
So what is witnessing?
I assume you mean by Christian standards? If so, I'll try to answer it. (Sorry, but I'm about to quote scripture!)

"(19) Go ye therefore and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost: (20) Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and lo, I am with you always, even unto the ends of the earth." Matthew 28:19 KJV

This verse is what most Christians view as the "command" from Christ to witness to as many people as possible. It is their commandment to spread his word.

There are many different views on how this should/could be accomplished. Some people say that they choose to live their lives as a witness to Christ while others choose approach people in different situations to tell them about their experience with Christ & what He has done for them. Those "different situations" vary: preaching on a street corner; knocking on doors; inviting an acquaintance to a church function; going into a foreign country as a missionary...the list goes on.

I hope that answers your question!
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Old 02-24-2007, 08:25 AM   #73
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OK - so last night I was having a conversation with my DD, we are very close and she can have amazing insight sometimes for a 20 YO...
Anyway, I started telling her about this thread and right out told her I have been questioning my beliefs for some time now and looking for away to find the path that I belong on. I told her I was serioulsy trying to make the choice to embrace what I believe borders on paganism.

She was heart broken ... I was stunned! Because although I know she has deep belief in Christ, she does not attend church on a regular basis.
She's known for a long time that I have a different view of the religion I married into (I say that becaase I refused to attend church until I started dating my husband) and that I believe everyone has the right to believe in "something". Whether I agree with it or not.

Anyway, after we talked awhile she finally told me she that she understood, still loved me and respected me. In fact she says she wants to read the books I was talking about.

I've always heard that the first step in a recovery program is to admit your mistakes and make amend. So while this is just a "baby step" I feel much better about talking with her about it.

Oh - while I'm thinking about it ... One of my biggest struggles with Christianity is the need to stuff people (after they've been turned into a chemical nightmare) into boxes and in turn stuff those boxes into plots of earth better suited for other things.
I believe we came from the earth and we need to return to the earth to replace what we "borrowed" for our lifetime. No offense to anyone - but this is my belief.
The word in my house is cremation!
So why to I bring this up! Because my mom - who is NOT Catholic and NOT raised Catholic told me that I would noe be by redeemed by God at the end of the world becuae I had no body ---- Apparently she read some where that the Pope said so!

ARGH!!!!!!!
Go figure ....
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Old 02-24-2007, 09:12 AM   #74
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Cara,

As I grew up Catholic, I was also told that cremation was not allowed for whatever religious reasons.

Then I found out that Catholics ARE allowed to be cremated in SOME countries.

Which led me to ask - so it's not for the religious-body reason?

Which of course led me to ask even more questions................
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Old 02-24-2007, 09:13 AM   #75
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rainsong
I'm going to have to get this book if for no other reason than to enhance my vocabluary.

"arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction. Jealous and proud of it, a petty, unjust, unforgiving control freak, a vindictive bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser, a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidical, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully."

Rainsong
Surely there are no new words there! Or are you just charmed by the fact that he got so many in one sentence?
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Old 02-24-2007, 09:34 AM   #76
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cara Denise
OK - so last night I was having a conversation with my DD, we are very close and she can have amazing insight sometimes for a 20 YO...
Anyway, I started telling her about this thread and right out told her I have been questioning my beliefs for some time now and looking for away to find the path that I belong on. I told her I was serioulsy trying to make the choice to embrace what I believe borders on paganism.

She was heart broken ... I was stunned! Because although I know she has deep belief in Christ, she does not attend church on a regular basis.
She's known for a long time that I have a different view of the religion I married into (I say that becaase I refused to attend church until I started dating my husband) and that I believe everyone has the right to believe in "something". Whether I agree with it or not.

Anyway, after we talked awhile she finally told me she that she understood, still loved me and respected me. In fact she says she wants to read the books I was talking about.

I've always heard that the first step in a recovery program is to admit your mistakes and make amend. So while this is just a "baby step" I feel much better about talking with her about it.

Oh - while I'm thinking about it ... One of my biggest struggles with Christianity is the need to stuff people (after they've been turned into a chemical nightmare) into boxes and in turn stuff those boxes into plots of earth better suited for other things.
I believe we came from the earth and we need to return to the earth to replace what we "borrowed" for our lifetime. No offense to anyone - but this is my belief.
The word in my house is cremation!
So why to I bring this up! Because my mom - who is NOT Catholic and NOT raised Catholic told me that I would noe be by redeemed by God at the end of the world becuae I had no body ---- Apparently she read some where that the Pope said so!

ARGH!!!!!!!
Go figure ....
Hey I am a Christian and I will be cremated...cant afford all that other stuff...all due respect to your Mom and the Pope....if God can form us out of dust he can do it again.....
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Old 02-24-2007, 10:08 AM   #77
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I have to say I did tell my mom if she didn't want to be cremated, she better make her plans ahead of schedule - cause if left up to me ... well ... dust in the wind baby - dust in the wind!

Stampin Wrose ... Wishy Washy is what comes to mind when I think of religion in general terms and for the very reason you just stated. One minute it's not ok - the next it is - know wonder so many people are confused and questioning their beliefs these days.

Anyway - Stamp Groover I know a number of Christians that are opting for cremation ... for the exact same reason you are ... the cost of a burial - most said if they had the money they'd opt for burial, most cited religious beliefs - but could not really give me a definitive answer other than that --- (huh?)
So my question to you, is would you consider burial IF you could afford it?

Also ... another thing is I absolutely LOVE Christmas - it's my favorite time year ... I love the colors and the lights and all the decorations. I love the good will and smiles on most peoples faces. I love the gifts and the family get togethers.
Does this make me a hypocrite because I derive such great joy for a time that celebrates the birth of Chirst?

ARGH - I'm still confused ... Now I wanna cry
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Old 02-24-2007, 10:18 AM   #78
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LOL Cara, I know Jewish families that "celebrate" Christmas.

There is a very secular part of Christmas that can be completely separated from the "Christ's birth" part.

There are also the pagan rituals that some participate in.

Some Christians want to purify Christmas and make it JUST about Christ's birth, and if that's what makes them happy, that's how they should celebrate it.

But I believe Christmas was placed at a time that coincided with earlier rituals - and I'm thinking Rainsong for sure could enlighten us more about that!!
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Old 02-24-2007, 10:31 AM   #79
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Realistically - I know that ... but "letting go" of some of those old beliefs that one is raised with is hard to shake off ... I'm working on though! I appreciate being able to get that out though! I'm betting I'm not the only that feels the same way here.

I'm sure Rainsong can most assuredly fill us in the exchange but I've read that the Christian Calendar was actually created to off set quite a few pagan rituals ... something about the church was having problems with the people giving up certain traditions ... by taking them over and making them Christian they were able to slowly convert the heathens to their way of thinking.

I also read some where, for example, that the eggs of Easter are part of an old fertility rite .... tee hee - go figure!

I have a question for Scarlett and the other athiest ...
Do any of you celebrate Christmas in any form?
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Old 02-24-2007, 10:41 AM   #80
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Default Cremation and Christmas

I think for a long time there was a "stigma" attached to cremation. Even when my dear dad passed away (On Christmas Day, 2005 no less), even though his wishes were to be cremated, my mom was unsure about it. And so was I. Lots of hugs, and assurances that we would not cremate HER body unless it was her wishes, and a long chat with our pastor, and we did go ahead with it. In the end, it was what dad wanted, and we all wanted to respect that. We had a committal service and did bury the ashes, and a portion of them have been scattered at his beloved hunting land. Again his wishes, and I think it's nice, to think of him becoming part of the land. He was a great conservationist and loved the land. (sniff - got carried away there, sorry...)

As for Christmas - or just the Holiday Season in general, if you enjoy it, then why not participate? I think in this day and age, it's actually quite easy to leave Christ out of it and just stick with the parts that you do enjoy, such as gathering with family and friends, exchanging gifts, and thinking of the renewal of the new year ahead. I'm glad someone brought this up - I was wondering last night how Agnostics and Athiests handle the Christmas season. I imagine it's difficult to ignore!
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