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Offlinechemkid
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History of Religion
    #1145115 - 12/16/02 09:34 AM (14 years, 5 months ago)

I am not intending this thread to be a voice for or against religion.

Instead, I am trying to discover how such an unlikely belief system (insert religion here) not only came to prominence but actually dictated governments.

I definitely believe in the Judaeo-Christian God but It seems unlikely that the any church could have such influence and control over such a vast amount of people. (not that everyone actually believed but they were under it's governmental control none the less)

Look at the Catholic Church, The Crusades, The Muslim religion in the Middle East...etc. etc.

Do you suppose that the believers are generally more charismatic and/or crazy out of their heads to the point where they end up being in leadership positions?

This should spin you history buffs up!!


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An open mind is the greatest journey of all.


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Offline3eyedgod
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Re: History of Religion [Re: chemkid]
    #1145160 - 12/16/02 09:43 AM (14 years, 5 months ago)

Instead, I am trying to discover how such an unlikely belief system (insert religion here) not only came to prominence but actually dictated governments.

I think that when someone comes along, and gives something to the people that they can fill the darkness of the unknown (which alleviates some of their fear of it) with, it makes them want to follow that person/idea. Also by setting a standard by which people should live(morals), it gives people something to work for, and something to judge others by. Something to base their life on, and to determine how their society "should" function.

Do you suppose that the believers are generally more charismatic and/or crazy out of their heads to the point where they end up being in leadership positions?

A little from column A, a little from column B


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Without everything wouldn't nothing be everything and without nothing wouldn't everything be nothing.I am the beginning and the end,the source and the void, the light and the darkness,i am but a small drop of the ocean yet i am an ocean unto myself


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OfflineStrumpling
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Re: History of Religion [Re: chemkid]
    #1145188 - 12/16/02 09:47 AM (14 years, 5 months ago)

History of religion = people afraid to tell their followers/kids "uhh how the fuck am i supposed to know" when they had questions, so now they can simply say "because god made it like that... what are you stupid?!" and things like that.. but of course thats just my opinion.


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Insert an "I think" mentally in front of eveything I say that seems sketchy, because I certainly don't KNOW much. Also; feel free to yell at me.
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Edited by Strumpling (12/16/02 09:48 AM)


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Offlinechemkid
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Re: History of Religion [Re: Strumpling]
    #1145791 - 12/16/02 01:19 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

I don't agree with that. I don't think that being afraid of not knowing what to tell you children could cascade into a tyrranical government like the Taliban, or Roman Catholic Church.

There has to be answer with more meat on it......still pondering..........


--------------------
An open mind is the greatest journey of all.


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OfflineStrumpling
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Re: History of Religion [Re: chemkid]
    #1145907 - 12/16/02 01:56 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

what you mean like "hey lets pretend we're not as ignorant as everybody else to create a business that doesn't look like a business?"

heh I'm just throwing ideas out there - as you can see I'm not a huge fan of organized religion


--------------------
Insert an "I think" mentally in front of eveything I say that seems sketchy, because I certainly don't KNOW much. Also; feel free to yell at me.
In addition: SHPONGLE


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Offlinechemkid
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Re: History of Religion [Re: Strumpling]
    #1146880 - 12/16/02 08:23 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

Actuall, I am an opponent to organized religion as well. I am definitely a Christian in the classical sense but I have been very disheartend by the big money, big business, commercialization of religion. I would rather gather with a few friends with the same beliefs as me and discuss them and fellowship.......so I hear you in that regard.

In spite of that however, I think the oppressive governments based on religion are not out of fear but out of greed.

Religion is a pwerful rally call to the lowly citizens. People in leadership positions know this and use it to their advantage. They may not even hold these beliefs themselves but will profess it to be so if it could get them a house, and a boat and the hot chicks :-)

Just my opinion but I highly doubt that Saddam Hussein is a true Muslim. He gets to rule a whole nation in its name though so why not claim to be so.


--------------------
An open mind is the greatest journey of all.


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OfflineStrumpling
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Re: History of Religion [Re: chemkid]
    #1147032 - 12/16/02 09:02 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

ahh ok I see what you mean..

so instead of "lets make a business that doesn't look like a business" you're talking "lets make a government and an army that doesn't look like a government and an army?"

That makes plenty of sense as well :smile:


--------------------
Insert an "I think" mentally in front of eveything I say that seems sketchy, because I certainly don't KNOW much. Also; feel free to yell at me.
In addition: SHPONGLE


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: History of Religion [Re: chemkid]
    #1148118 - 12/17/02 08:33 AM (14 years, 5 months ago)

Organized religion did not start out as a way to control people. I've spoken to people who were convinced that Christianity was started by a secret society looking for a way to assert control over the masses, which is totally ridiculous.

Christianity, and all other major religions, is an ancient collection of superstitions and myths, passed on over generations, and finally picked over, and written down by various men. People who spread the word became powerful, and as the religion spread, it became more systematic. Eventually you got the Catholic church.

Like all religions, it has no basis in fact, and the only real reason to believe is for comfort. The bible promotes intense sexism and homophobia, and glorifies torture, violence and rape, not to mention the countless illogical rules and commands scattered throughout.

Sure, there are a few contradictory statements about not killing or stealing, and being kind to your fellow man, but if you need the promise of eternal bliss in order to be a decent person, then you are the epitome of selfishness.

...and that's my take on Christianity.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


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Anonymous

Re: History of Religion [Re: Phluck]
    #1148127 - 12/17/02 08:36 AM (14 years, 5 months ago)

if you need the promise of eternal bliss in order to be a decent person, then you are the epitome of selfishness.

VERY well said!


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Invisiblesilversoul7
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Re: History of Religion [Re: Phluck]
    #1148157 - 12/17/02 08:44 AM (14 years, 5 months ago)

It seems when people think of organized religion, they always think of the three predominant Western faiths: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. I've been learning a lot about Buddhism, and what's interesting there is that the reward for being good(or rather being enlightened) is an end to life, rather than eternal life. Of course, this is because Buddhism teaches that life is suffering, and you must first recognize this fact before you can attain enlightenment. The one problem I've had with Buddhism is that it teaches that Nirvana, the end of suffering, is attained when you desire nothing. Yet if you try to achieve Nirvana, wouldn't you have to desire it? Seems like a Catch 22 to me.


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"It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong."--Voltaire


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Offlinechemkid
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Re: History of Religion [Re: ]
    #1148934 - 12/17/02 01:42 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

I disagree......why is the motivation for someones actions even important. Its the action itself that should be scrutinized, not the motivation behind it.

(this is religiously speaking) Obviously in a court of law motives are always important.


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An open mind is the greatest journey of all.


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OfflineMurex
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Re: History of Religion [Re: silversoul7]
    #1148959 - 12/17/02 01:49 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

I have noticed over the years that I require less 'stuff'. I have also noticed this corralates with me becoming more 'at peace' with myself and life over the years.

Why work to make money to buy shit you don't have time to enjoy when you gotsta be at work stressing yourself out? Get back to work motherfucker! *whipcrack*

:mad:


--------------------
What if everything around you
Isn't quite as it seems?
What if all the world you think you know,
Is an elaborate dream?
And if you look at your reflection,
Is it all you want it to be?



Edited by Murex (12/17/02 01:50 PM)


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Offlinefalcon
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Re: History of Religion [Re: chemkid]
    #1149292 - 12/17/02 03:23 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

This is a good question that I've thought about often myself. I think part of the problem is that rituals grow beyond celebrating the beliefs that spawned them, and take on a life of thier own. Pretty soon you have rituals that are more important than beliefs. Not that there is anything wrong with ritual per se, but beliefs should come first IMO.
Secondly, when religions get big it takes a lot of effort to keep them together, which pretty much assure that good teachers who are position of authority are going to be spread pretty thin taking care of organizational problems rather than ministering to the faithful.
The third thing i can think of that problem of Least Common Denominator. Trying to appeal to too large an audience.
Oops that didn't answer the question. Sorry to ramble on.
Once you get religion up and running the very first thing you want to do is start a school for the wealthy and those who want to be priests.


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Quote:

OrgoneConclusion said:
I have done it before and it never has an effect on the true believer so what is the point?




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InvisibleSwami
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Re: History of Religion [Re: falcon]
    #1149436 - 12/17/02 04:15 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

Most great spiritual teachers have attempted to point the way to knowing God. As that task can be way too difficult, it became much easier to worship the teacher than to transcend the self.

Later teachers, who also have not transcended the self, but merely recall the teachings, become set up as priests and ministers. Then when they feel the power-rush bestowed upon them by hungry hearts, they pretend that they are intermediaries between you and God and an institution of power grows around these "teachers".

In the end, there is no real desire to transform the flock, but to keep them weak and paying for the "wisdom" of the priest. It is only a small leap then to step into secular affairs and politics as the Vatican has done for a millenium.

Instead of freedom, oppression becomes the name of the game to protect those in power.


--------------------



The proof is in the pudding.


Edited by Swami (12/17/02 04:34 PM)


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Offline3eyedgod
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Re: History of Religion [Re: Swami]
    #1149467 - 12/17/02 04:27 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

I like Swami's explanation


--------------------
Without everything wouldn't nothing be everything and without nothing wouldn't everything be nothing.I am the beginning and the end,the source and the void, the light and the darkness,i am but a small drop of the ocean yet i am an ocean unto myself


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: History of Religion [Re: chemkid]
    #1149528 - 12/17/02 04:50 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

"why is the motivation for someones actions even important?"

Well, whether it's really that important or not, it's still a selfish act.

In the complete absence of religion, I still feel obligated to try not to harm others, and to treat them well.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


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Anonymous

Re: History of Religion [Re: chemkid]
    #1149584 - 12/17/02 05:13 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

Unfortunately, I go to a catholic school, I think that the reasons the church has been around so long are that its leaders are as you guys said greedy, but the average catholic pion only believes because their scared. Everyother thing they say is "You can't do blah-blah, you're going to hell!." I dont think any of them really "love god" as they say they do, but in reality they just dont wanna go to hell. If you were to take out the whole concept of "hell" from the bible, how long do you think catholicism would have lasted??? Another thing is that they don't think for themselves. Everything their told they accept without question.


My god, if I believed in one, would not allow someone to burn eternally in a firey pit, just because you refused to belive and love them. How egotistical is that??? What kind of god could allow that to happen, I couldn't even do that, and im not "all merciful and loving"

Sorry, this was a little rushed


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Offlinefalcon
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Re: History of Religion [Re: Swami]
    #1149609 - 12/17/02 05:22 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

It's interesting that Jews have no priests, that the Pharisees are no more and Rabbi which means teacher is an inherited title. Don't know why I threw that in, it seems relavent, but I don't know enough about Judasim to embelish.


--------------------
Quote:

OrgoneConclusion said:
I have done it before and it never has an effect on the true believer so what is the point?




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Anonymous

Re: History of Religion [Re: chemkid]
    #1149679 - 12/17/02 05:50 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

I think that sadly, the history of many religions, and most of the western traditions, is that religion has had very little to do with spirituality. It has indeed more often than not been a vehicle for controlling people. Just look at the catholic church. It's a disgrace. But this doesn't mean that religion is bad or that people are bad. It's just an unfortunate situation. There is alot of old wisdom out there that hasn't been bastardized if you're willing to find it. As a sidenote, I know a few christians who are very spiritual people and seem to really understand what jesus was talkin' 'bout... now what if every "christian" were like that?


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Anonymous

Re: History of Religion [Re: chemkid]
    #1150404 - 12/18/02 12:42 AM (14 years, 5 months ago)

Jesus taught that motivation was everything. As a Christian I thought you would know that.

If heaven if just a reward for your own selfishness and if your selfless deeds were done for selfish reasons then they weren't selfless to begin with, were they?


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