Soviet-Empire.com U.S.S.R. and communism historical discussion.
[ Active ]
[ Login ]
Log-in to remove these advertisements.

What are your beliefs about the nature of God?

POST REPLY

What are your beliefs about the nature of God? Please check two!

God is an all-knowing, all-powerful, and all-loving Creator.
8
17%
God is an all-loving Creator who nevertheless does not possess ultimate knowledge and power.
1
2%
God is an all-knowing, all-powerful Creator who is evil.
0
No votes
God is the Creator of the Universe, but He cannot be condemned so absolutely. He possesses elements of both good and bad.
2
4%
"God" is either impersonal or removed from Earth. It cannot be condemned as an active, sentient personal identity.
3
6%
There is no God.
19
40%
Perhaps there is a God, perhaps there isn't, but who cares? (Sorry for not giving apatheists a chance to distinguish themselves as theistic-leaning or atheistic-leaning!)
4
9%
I believe I will spend eternity in Paradise.
3
6%
I believe I will spend eternity in torment.
0
No votes
I do not believe in the existence of an eternal, dualistic afterlife. (Sorry again for lumping so many different strands of thought into one option, but I can only make ten options!)
7
15%
 
Total votes : 47
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 16
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 28 Mar 2015, 03:50
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
New Comrade (Say hi & be nice to me!)
Post 02 May 2015, 06:29
In a poll dated 29 May 2012, 23:53, a full forty-eight per cent of you refrained from professing disbelief in God. I found this a fascinating number for a mostly ostensibly communist crowd! So I wanted to know more about the nature of these trends. Of course, I could just read the comments on the poll, but why bother with all that when I can just create a new one‽
Anyway, please enjoy the poll! (Full disclosure: I am personally a kakotheist [misotheist].)
Soviet cogitations: 1
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 06 May 2015, 05:50
New Comrade (Say hi & be nice to me!)
Post 06 May 2015, 06:05
InTransit wrote:
In a poll dated 29 May 2012, 23:53, a full forty-eight per cent of you refrained from professing disbelief in God. I found this a fascinating number for a mostly ostensibly communist crowd! So I wanted to know more about the nature of these trends. Of course, I could just read the comments on the poll, but why bother with all that when I can just create a new one‽
Anyway, please enjoy the poll! (Full disclosure: I am personally a kakotheist [misotheist].)


The problem for me is that "there is no god" (the poll option) is not the same as "professing disbelief in god" (your wording). If your wording had been used in the poll I would have chosen that option. Instead I had to choose "apatheist" which I never even heard of until now (according to the Wikipedia article I guess it fits me well enough). I consider myself atheist which I take to mean a lack of belief in gods (not the same as "there is no god" and not the same as agnosticism).
Soviet cogitations: 216
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 27 Jul 2013, 05:04
Ideology: Other Leftist
Pioneer
Post 08 May 2015, 10:07
I am a standard Roman Catholic Christian. Probably an extreme rarity on these kinds of boards.
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 208
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 May 2009, 19:37
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
Pioneer
Post 09 May 2015, 16:17
While I voted "There is no God", I actually disagree with it. There is God, and in dialectical materialism, that God is called Matter. Humanity is a part of God, just like the Earth, the Sun, the Milky Way, etc.

When I said "There is no God", it means that there is no God that existed as a separated entity and create everything (the old understanding of God).
"Stalin brought us up — on loyalty to the people, He inspired us to labor and to heroism!" Soviet Anthem 1944.
Let's work hard and do valorous deed!
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 1078
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 21 Sep 2013, 03:08
Ideology: Trotskyism
Party Member
Post 09 May 2015, 19:19
I'm frankly agnostic when you get down to it, the closest I used to come to religion is seeing value in Zen Buddhist ideas on truly living in the moment, free from preconceptions/abstractions. And those are more psychological than they are religious, to the point where Western psychology has adopted them in a modified (some would say bastardized) form.

But, since my first major long-term bipolar episode, I've grown increasingly sympathetic to the idea that there is a God. I don't know, but it's a comforting thought and on some level I do think it's hard to assume the universe came about by chance. I guess the Christian conception of it (more specifically the Methodist/Episcopalian one, which I can go into if anyone's curious) appeals most, given the message of universal compassion, the example of Christ, and the lack of binding to any strict law getting in the way of that fundamental message. So, "I don't know, but sympathetic to all-knowing/all-loving creator."
Last edited by MissStrangelove on 09 May 2015, 19:30, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 2293
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 10 Aug 2010, 14:21
Party Bureaucrat
Post 09 May 2015, 19:30
Quote:
While I voted "There is no God", I actually disagree with it. There is God, and in dialectical materialism, that God is called Matter. Humanity is a part of God, just like the Earth, the Sun, the Milky Way, etc.

Lol, why would you call that "god"? There is two mistakes there:
1. Spinozism.
2. Non-dialectical materialism. For "matter" isn't enough. Energy is a part of life, time too, and both are not matter.

I voted "there is no god" of course. Believing in the existence of God makes as much sense as believing in the existence of witches and vampires.

Image


Quote:
I do think it's hard to assume the universe came about by chance.

Then you should make an effort because if we suppose that the universe is infinite as it is commonly believed, then even the smallest "chance" becomes not only very likely, but also CERTAIN.

Also read this: http://members.shaw.ca/tfrisen/chances_ ... isting.htm
Quote:
it's a comforting thought

Of course it is. But it's even more comforting to believe, as I do, that comrade Stalin didn't die in 1953. He probably escaped Earth in 1953 with some Jewish scientists who made him immortal and established a base on Mars. When the Americans will try to plant their flag on Martian soil, then comrade Stalin will counter-attack and start his plan for the liberation of Earth.


Image
Image

"Fishing is part of agriculture" Gred
"Loz, you are like me" Yami
"I am one of the better read Marxists on this site" Gred
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 14444
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 10 Sep 2006, 22:05
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
Philosophized
Post 09 May 2015, 21:28
Matter is Energy.
Image
[+-]
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 1277
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 29 Sep 2011, 13:51
Party Member
Post 09 May 2015, 22:44
Bagration! Where you been long time?!

I voted I'll be in paradise since it's the best of the multiple choices we have.


In real life I'm an atheist for all practical purposes but I sure as hell would like for God to surprise me at the pearly gates with a big "WHAT DID I TELL YOU?!" if you're catching my drift. It would be nice to walk into the room with all the people who have ever existed. I would have a cigar with Karl Marx then crack a few jokes with Frank Sinatra and then get drunk with Giacomo Casanova.

In seriousness though I do respect peoples beliefs if they find solace in them. I don't believe in bullying other people to become atheists so long as they don't stick their holy books in my face; which unfortunately so many people feel the need to do like Jehovah's Witnesses.

And of course we're not going to get into the inquisition and the Islamic state and all that shit because I don't consider them human let alone religious.

I do unfortunately have a stupid habit of yelling Allahu Akbar when things go terribly wrong (a side effect of hanging out with Arabs more than was necessary), a habit which I'm now trying very hard to lose.

MissStrangelove wrote:
..more specifically the Methodist/Episcopalian one, which I can go into if anyone's curious.


Yeah tell us a bit more. Even though I am atheist I'm fascinated by lots of religions since I know so little about them. And correct me if I'm wrong but America is one of the most religious countries in the world with these different variations of Christianity I have never heard of like that Episcopalian one.

Then there's Scientology which I'd like to know more about which I'm planning to watch a few documentaries on sometime in the future. Then there's this church for the Mormons I think it's called, who even have a church in Kiev I used to walk by. It looks really beautiful from the outside.

I was raised Catholic but then again who gives a shit...satanists ROCK!


EDIT: I just watched this. oh my god Bill O'Reilly is so fragging dumb I can hardly believe it!!!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1KTxgrtWFg4
Image


My laws shall act more pleasure than command,
And with my prick I'll govern all the land.
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 1078
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 21 Sep 2013, 03:08
Ideology: Trotskyism
Party Member
Post 10 May 2015, 00:46
Yeqon wrote:
In seriousness though I do respect peoples beliefs if they find solace in them. I don't believe in bullying other people to become atheists so long as they don't stick their holy books in my face; which unfortunately so many people feel the need to do like Jehovah's Witnesses.

Here we have both sides of the aisle doing that, fundamentalist Christians and militant Dawkins cultists. Watching debates between the two can get kind of funny.

Quote:
Yeah tell us a bit more. Even though I am atheist I'm fascinated by lots of religions since I know so little about them. And correct me if I'm wrong but America is one of the most religious countries in the world with these different variations of Christianity I have never heard of like that Episcopalian one.

Yeah, we have pretty much every variation of Protestantism, plus two varieties of Roman Catholicism (mainstream post-Vatican II and Latin-mass/traditionalist), and on a smaller scale, Greek and Russian Orthodoxy aren't rare. I warn you though, this will be long; religious minutia is always long.


I'd have to reject Catholicism on the grounds that I don't really buy their interpretation of "Peter is the rock on which I'll build my church," since it's only found in one gospel and wasn't interpreted to mean the supremacy of Rome until Pope Gregory. I also have an additional problem believing the bread and wine in communion literally become the body and blood of Christ, and while I do see beauty in them, the lavish cathedrals do detract from Jesus' message of helping the poor and practicing humility.

I'd have to reject Orthodoxy because their interpretation of the trinity is almost polytheistic; instead of the Western understanding of three aspects of God (the Father/God as the singularity beyond all understanding, the Son/God as an example relevant to us as humans, the Holy Spirit/God as within everything) with their underlying oneness being the main concern, their division as separate entities in and of itself is treated as the main thing with a looser sense of underlying unity. I have no idea why anyone would believe in polytheism, even pseudo-, whereas the Western understanding is very reasonable interpretation of monotheism. Plus, Oriental Orthodoxy has the additional problem of being miaphysite (Christ is mysteriously both fully human and fully divine at once, rather than having each as separate but intertwined aspects); while that was always how I understood Christ as explained in Sunday School, and it's really a minor mostly-semantic difference, it can lead to downplaying his human nature and defeating the purpose of him as an example of what God should be to us as humans.

So, that leaves Protestant faiths. I'd reject the Calvinism of my Scots-Irish ancestors right on the face of it. I'm sorry, but the god of Calvinism is a sadistic tyrant. Predestining people to burning for eternity is just... no. Morality is irrelevant if God would create people explicitly for the purpose of suffering. I'm a compatibilist with regard to free will, if any form of causation at all exists; human choice is probably nowhere near absolute. But it seems to me the universe is fundamentally probabilistic rather than deterministic, and it defeats the purpose of Christianity, humans having been freed from the fear of having to suffer eternally and the freedom to choose to make this life better, if God genuinely rigidly determines everything unless he predestined everyone to salvation. Which is, admittedly, an actual belief and one that makes sense for a loving god. But then Calvinism is irrelevant, because how they distinguish themselves applies to everyone.

For largely non-Calvinist Protestant sects: I respect the historical struggle of the Baptists for freedom of conscience, and the black Baptist conventions played a huge role in the civil rights struggle here. But, theologically sola scriptura (using the Bible as a sole measuring stick for theology) makes no sense to me, since which books are in the Bible was determined by various church councils. It seems to me that, while it's obviously the primary guide for Christianity, church tradition and human discernment have to play roles too. Add to that the fact that Baptists today are often mired in interpreting Genesis literally ("Jesus rode dinosaurs!!") instead of as a series of stories, in a way nobody has for centuries and arguably never really did, and I really don't mind ruling that out. I don't mind ecstatic expressions of joy, but Pentecostal churches have everyone doing it at once, which seems a little undignified and I can't shake the hunch that they're just babbling. I admire much in the Jewish tradition (the calls to help the poor and the slaves, the story of Moses), and do think carrying on some of those traditions as a sign of respect is valid, but have to reject Messianic Judaism on the grounds that if Christianity is accepted, then the old Hebrew law has been fulfilled and the "temple" now rests in all human souls. Per Christian doctrine, there's now a new way to reach salvation and a new way to make the world a better place, the older laws having run their course; so all of those traditions become unnecessary, non-binding. If they're still binding, then Christ dying a criminal under the law (crucifixion was the punishment for severe criminals) and preaching a universal message would be irrelevant, and the law would have to have some purpose beyond just being a response to human sin unless literally the whole sacrifice (liberation in the afterlife from that, whether symbolic or actual) is irrelevant. And in that case, Messianic Judaism is a silly belief system because believing that would make one Jewish outright.

So, that leaves Lutheranism or the English tradition, Mainline Protestantism. Here, I have very little reason to pick one over the other. I'd tentatively reject Lutheranism solely because of the doctrine of total depravity. Ironically I'm influenced by a Lutheran theologian on this (Paul Tillich), but it's very much a core thing that distinguishes Lutheranism all the same. I reject it on the grounds that I see "original sin" as meaning humans have all too often chosen short-term selfishness/exploitation over uplifting everyone, with detrimental effects on society and our culture running through the ages because of it. It's not utterly insurmountable, and part of the message of Christ seems to be continually working to overcome it. Our goal as humans is to improve the lot of our fellow man and all creation, to make it more perfect. I think just giving up runs counter to that, and see the English tradition as more in-line with Christ as representing universal compassion and justice.

In the English tradition, I can most firmly reject Quakerism. I have more admiration for it than any other Christian sect. Historically they were at the forefront of slavery abolition and the women's movement, and more than anyone they embody compassion and humility. I mean, their denomination is literally called the Society of Friends. But I feel they set an impossible standard by generally having very strict interpretations of the Sermon on the Mount. Obviously charitable giving and helping other humans is positive, literally giving all you have seems like a recipe for starvation in the present capitalist system. I believe that impossible standard is something for the world to work towards, to a day where it can be possible without egregious self-harm. Not on an individual level, and the Bible elsewhere does caution against that sort of egregious self-sacrifice as unnecessary. Also, their usual lack of practicing any sacraments does remove some of the beauty and appeal from Christianity; baptism and communion do have beautiful symbolism behind them and communicate pretty essential things at the core of Christian doctrine.

So then, that leaves Methodism or its parent, Anglicanism. In Britain the choice would be obvious; Methodists helped found the British labor movement and were a reform movement within the fairly corrupt Anglican Church. However, the US, Anglicanism is represented by the Episcopal Church, a somewhat off-kilter branch of the global Anglican Communion. Episcopalians tend to be the most liberal Christians around, generally very committed to causes like environmentalism (good stewardship of the earth), gay rights ("all are equal under God"), and anti-poverty (which any Christian should be committed to). Here, I slightly lean towards Methodism I guess, though the two churches are very intertwined and there are constant talks of reunification between their American branches. My reason is mostly aesthetic: Episcopalianism has beautiful, inspiring cathedrals, but they seem very out-of-step with Christian humility.

Quote:
there's Scientology which I'd like to know more about which I'm planning to watch a few documentaries on sometime in the future. Then there's this church for the Mormons I think it's called, who even have a church in Kiev I used to walk by. It looks really beautiful from the outside.

A sample of Mormon beliefs: the Garden of Eden was in Missouri, American Indians are lost Jews, God lives on a planet called Kolob, we're all angels and just forgot, black people were declared able to get into Heaven only in the 70s when the IRS threatened to revoke the LDS Church's tax-exempt status. But, they're usually scarily nice people, and their families are very tightly-knit. As in, the church actively encourages at least one night per week where families just spend time together, and it seems to work well. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xlbDHejQFV4

Scientology is, um... well, we know less about that since they sue leakers, but what was leaked is this crazy space opera thing straight out of, well, an L. Ron Hubbard novel.
Combined with some halfbaked Hinduism.

Quote:
I was raised Catholic but then again who gives a shit...satanists ROCK!

Ew. No. Satanists are mostly Randroids who want to feel edgy, so they goth up their beliefs which otherwise are basically the same "lol being a sociopath is good" fare as Objectivism. LaVey legitimately plagiarized Atlas Shrugged by Rand, almost as much as he did Ragnar Redbeard's Might Makes Right.
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 208
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 May 2009, 19:37
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
Pioneer
Post 10 May 2015, 05:50
OP-Bagration wrote:
Lol, why would you call that "god"? There is two mistakes there:
1. Spinozism.
2. Non-dialectical materialism. For "matter" isn't enough. Energy is a part of life, time too, and both are not matter.


Well, I used the word "God" in order to make religious people understand that salvation cannot rely on the belief in God, but must be based on our knowledge of Nature and our own actions in reality. Btw, what do you mean "Non-dialectical materialism", is it Metaphysical Materialism, Dialectical Idealism or Metaphysical Idealism?

No, I am not a Spinozist. Spinoza had many influences on Hegel, who in turn, influenced Engels. Spinoza's understanding of God (the Absolute of Hegel) is static, while Hegel's understanding is dialectical. About my philosophical viewpoints, I have more common points with Heraclitus, Lao Tzu, Hegel and Engels.
"Stalin brought us up — on loyalty to the people, He inspired us to labor and to heroism!" Soviet Anthem 1944.
Let's work hard and do valorous deed!
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 16
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 28 Mar 2015, 03:50
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
New Comrade (Say hi & be nice to me!)
Post 10 May 2015, 13:56
maldekstra wrote:
The problem for me is that "there is no god" (the poll option) is not the same as "professing disbelief in god" (your wording). If your wording had been used in the poll I would have chosen that option. Instead I had to choose "apatheist" which I never even heard of until now (according to the Wikipedia article I guess it fits me well enough). I consider myself atheist which I take to mean a lack of belief in gods (not the same as "there is no god" and not the same as agnosticism).

Fascinating, thank you! Unfortunately, never having been an atheist, I forget that one can believe something or other without having a bee in one's bonnet about imposing this belief on everyone else! So, how would you distinguish yourself from other atheists, other than the less-than-flattering term "apatheist"? Would they be aptly called "evangelical"? :P Mostly it seems they're labeled "militant"! Anyway, thank you for giving me a more nuanced, sensical perspective!
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 16
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 28 Mar 2015, 03:50
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
New Comrade (Say hi & be nice to me!)
Post 10 May 2015, 14:04
Piccolo wrote:
I am a standard Roman Catholic Christian. Probably an extreme rarity on these kinds of boards.

Probably so, but all the same, I consider you to be a Catholic in earnest, perhaps more so than many of your peers! As the Pope puts it, you are simply "obeying the Gospel"! Thank you for your honest lifestyle, and your bravery among your comrades! Honest persons like you ought to be a huge reminder of how important it is that modern communists take a highly nuanced approach to religion, organized religion, and (Attention! Important distinction ahead!) the religious/spiritual! Thank you for your response!
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 16
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 28 Mar 2015, 03:50
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
New Comrade (Say hi & be nice to me!)
Post 10 May 2015, 14:26
Engelsist wrote:
While I voted "There is no God", I actually disagree with it. There is God, and in dialectical materialism, that God is called Matter. Humanity is a part of God, just like the Earth, the Sun, the Milky Way, etc.

When I said "There is no God", it means that there is no God that existed as a separated entity and create everything (the old understanding of God).

Yes, I meant "God" as an individual, but although I am thoroughly uneducated in Marxian theory, I am familiar with the concept of an impersonal "god" in nature. Well, by "familiar," I mean that I've heard of it! Unread as I am, I don't really understand what the point of calling it "God" is! If we are not discussing an entity, then what's the value of calling it "God"? What makes "God" "God," I suppose! What criterion obtains it that definition? Anyway, I'm not paying you to tutor me; I'll find out soon enough! Really I'm just trying to respond to everyone posting here partly to be polite and engaged, and partly because after I submitted this and other questions, only the most relevant one went public soon after, so I assumed the other, stupid ones were censored, and I spent some time thinking about all the reasons that they would be censored, and how inappropriate they were, and now that I see that they were, indeed, approved, I am trying to reply to those posting here largely ought of guilt and in an attempt to redeem these provocative, contentious, gossipy polls! In retrospect, though, I'm sure most people would be just fine without my affected drivel! Thank you for your insight.
Soviet cogitations: 216
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 27 Jul 2013, 05:04
Ideology: Other Leftist
Pioneer
Post 12 May 2015, 02:55
InTransit wrote:
Thank you for your honest lifestyle, and your bravery among your comrades! Honest persons like you ought to be a huge reminder of how important it is that modern communists take a highly nuanced approach to religion, organized religion, and (Attention! Important distinction ahead!) the religious/spiritual! Thank you for your response!


Thank you for the kind response. I often marvel at how so many of my fellow Christians can go to church on Sunday and listen to the words of Christ regarding how we should treat the poor, but then spend the rest of the week talking about how much they despise the poor and support exploitation and violence against working people and peasants all in the name of protecting property rights and corporate profits.

I used to be a typical religious conservative but then the disconnect between right-wing ideology and Christianity became too strong to ignore. At least that is how I see it.
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 1078
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 21 Sep 2013, 03:08
Ideology: Trotskyism
Party Member
Post 12 May 2015, 05:10
Piccolo wrote:
Thank you for the kind response. I often marvel at how so many of my fellow Christians can go to church on Sunday and listen to the words of Christ regarding how we should treat the poor, but then spend the rest of the week talking about how much they despise the poor and support exploitation and violence against working people and peasants all in the name of protecting property rights and corporate profits.

B-b-because, uh, it's easier for a rich man to get into Heaven than for a poor man to stop whining and get back to work, right? Jesus said that, right?

No, seriously, the only justification I've ever seen is taking "thou shalt not steal" so literally that it renders all taxation invalid. In which case, uh, that's anarchism and far from anything conservative anyway. And thus invalidates the whole military-industrial complex and state protection of corporate interests, a.k.a. Mammon. Satan isn't called "god of this world" because he sells metal albums. Real world evil, the most destructive and inhuman stuff, looks a lot more like this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8snbL_kVmXw

As shown by what many early Christians actually did awaiting what they saw as an imminent Second Coming, and many Quakers and Anabaptists still do to this day, the Christian ideal (following the Sermon on the Mount to the letter) is basically utopian socialism. Despite being an atheist Kropotkin was partly inspired by biblical values and communal Christian societies like the Anabaptists, tellingly. And if you believe, like most early (Paul and post-Pauline) church figures, that it's a perfect example to continually work towards rather than fully applicable in every literal detail right now, in our fallen world... congratulations, you're a communist.
[+-]
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 1277
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 29 Sep 2011, 13:51
Party Member
Post 12 May 2015, 19:32
MissStrangelove wrote:
I also have an additional problem believing the bread and wine in communion literally become the body and blood of Christ, and while I do see beauty in them, the lavish cathedrals do detract from Jesus' message of helping the poor and practicing humility.


One of my biggest problems (possibly biggest) with religious scripture is when people take every word literally; even when there are enough religious figures who themselves admit that it wasn't all meant to be taken literally. A lot of it is meant to inspire a sense of awe, a sense of magic and recognise the miracle of existence itself. When genesis explains how light suddenly popped into existence through the words "let there be light", I think of the big bang; and the fact that light exists even though every fibre of my being believes that things shouldn't actually exist. If we were to believe that things do have an explanation and that things have a beginning and an end, then there is no other explanation than to assume that everything did pop into existence; because to say that everything always existed would be to say that there is no explanation for anything.

In this way even an atheist like myself can appreciate works in the bible; and I'll readily admit that the works in the bible are some of the best in human literature. The same I can say about the Quran, and when you take the visual artistry involved in creating some of the best copies of the Quran, then you start to appreciate it a lot more as a masterpiece of the human spirit (by spirit I mean the human drive and not actual floating shades with wings on them).

When I think of Jesus I think of him solely as a son of man who preached virtue and empathy (who also rebelled against privilege, authority, etc.); qualities that are meant to improve life for all. So when he says bread is my body, I think of it as him saying that all that I teach is life that I pass onto you.

Also as a means of remembering him (remembering his teachings), this method was absolutely brilliant; because what other better way to constantly remember and spread the teaches of a man than through bread which inevitably is consumed on a daily basis.

So I don't think most people actually think of bread and wine as his actual physical being, but as a way of remembering and honouring him. It's a ritual like any other.


In the case of lavish cathedrals I agree. A lot of the times I look at people that go to some of the churches here in expensive cars with the women wearing diamond ear rings and the like; and I just think that Jesus would most probably have raised hell were he here right now.

On the other hand there is a positive side to it, and that's the many tourists such places attract; which can indeed be used to the benefit of the proletariat. There are places who's tourist economies literally rely solely on these grand places of worship.

Quote:
I have no idea why anyone would believe in polytheism...


Well I personally find Greek/Roman religions attractive because in a way I think of existence to be too beautiful and complex for it all being united under one entity. I find it rather appealing to think that sex, wine, music, etc. were all placed under the responsibility of a single god that you can pray to one night and then switch on another. It's kinda cool. I see it also as an expression of the self in a way.

Quote:
Christ is mysteriously both fully human and fully divine at once, rather than having each as separate but intertwined aspects.


I don't find it difficult to think of ourselves as both divine and human at the same time. We're human in our organic physical being, and divine in our ability to recognise the fact that we exist. Consciousness is as much a miracle to me as existence itself, the fact that physical matter was able to organise itself into a form whereby existence would develop the ability to recognise itself; which is quite unique as far as we know, and to me divine in more ways than one.

MissStrangelove wrote:
A sample of Mormon beliefs: the Garden of Eden was in Missouri, American Indians are lost Jews, God lives on a planet called Kolob, we're all angels and just forgot, black people were declared able to get into Heaven only in the 70s when the IRS threatened to revoke the LDS Church's tax-exempt status. But, they're usually scarily nice people, and their families are very tightly-knit. As in, the church actively encourages at least one night per week where families just spend time together, and it seems to work well. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xlbDHejQFV4


You Americans are quite a colourful people aren't you? Serious question though, where do Mormons get the money to build a multimillion dollar temple in Kiev of all places which literally is attended only by a handful of members?

Quote:
Ew. No. Satanists are mostly Randroids who want to feel edgy, so they goth up their beliefs which otherwise are basically the same "lol being a sociopath is good" fare as Objectivism. LaVey legitimately plagiarized Atlas Shrugged by Rand, almost as much as he did Ragnar Redbeard's Might Makes Right.


I've only skimmed through the satanic bible a long time ago, but as I understand it, it preaches individualism and giving in to your earthly urges instead of abstaining. They basically consider these very urges to be what they consider human. Am I wrong?

Also, admit it, their aesthetic can be rather sexy sometimes. Amirite?! huh?! Amirite?!


Thanks for sharing everything else.
Image


My laws shall act more pleasure than command,
And with my prick I'll govern all the land.
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 1078
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 21 Sep 2013, 03:08
Ideology: Trotskyism
Party Member
Post 24 May 2015, 00:15
Yeqon wrote:
If we were to believe that things do have an explanation and that things have a beginning and an end, then there is no other explanation than to assume that everything did pop into existence; because to say that everything always existed would be to say that there is no explanation for anything.

Although in a certain view, if you're God (or the singularity before the big bang or whatever else you want to fill in here) and not in spacetime, everything already did exist. And does exist. And it's all happening at once. Or in some way we can't even comprehend.

Quote:
In this way even an atheist like myself can appreciate works in the bible; and I'll readily admit that the works in the bible are some of the best in human literature.

...you only say that because non-Jews skip most of the Prophets books, which aside from Isaiah and Daniel are honestly pretty boring. Also the dreary discussions on how many bushels of wheat are to be set aside on Sabbath in Leviticus. All intended to keep Hebrew society organized well, and it did a good job, but nobody likes reading it.

What's exciting are Genesis/Exodus/Isaiah and, aside from that, the New over the Old. Especially Luke and the Pauline epistles, I find, but every Mainline Protestant drools over Luke. Also Revelations because, awesome fire and brimstone Neronian allegory.

Quote:
The same I can say about the Quran, and when you take the visual artistry involved in creating some of the best copies of the Quran, then you start to appreciate it a lot more as a masterpiece of the human spirit (by spirit I mean the human drive and not actual floating shades with wings on them).

I honestly found the Qur'an pretty dull when I read it, but I definitely agree with the artistry. I think it's fascinating how there have been so many gorgeous, uplifting works of art based just on verses there. Made solely of words, put together to literally paint a picture. It's amazing stuff.

If you want beauty in religious works though, Johnny Cash's music. Hands down some of the most gorgeous, moving, intense stuff ever. And despite troubled personal battles with numerous drugs, I think he grasped the essence of Christianity far better than most. First recommendation: his personal themesong, Man in Black.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dY8_vZXo8oY

Quote:
Also as a means of remembering him (remembering his teachings), this method was absolutely brilliant; because what other better way to constantly remember and spread the teaches of a man than through bread which inevitably is consumed on a daily basis.

Yeah, that's the gist of how communion is interpreted by Protestants. It's seen as symbolic; it's usually said the "Holy Spirit is present and there's a symbolic presence of Christ," basically what that would mean is it's an uplifting ceremony that reinforces commitment to living Christian-ly, and also calls attention to the sacrifice on the cross by reenacting his final moments before being lashed through the streets as a criminal.

Quote:
So I don't think most people actually think of bread and wine as his actual physical being, but as a way of remembering and honouring him. It's a ritual like any other.

Sure, most people don't. But, the official doctrine of the Roman Catholic Church is that it literally becomes Jesus' body and blood. Which... yeah. I really see no reason to believe that.

Quote:
In the case of lavish cathedrals I agree. A lot of the times I look at people that go to some of the churches here in expensive cars with the women wearing diamond ear rings and the like; and I just think that Jesus would most probably have raised hell were he here right now.

"Jesus was a left-wing radical Jew, murdered by people like you." A quote from honestly a really lame generic 90s rock band, Everclear. But so true. (I can't say the same for the rest of the song it's from.)

Seriously though, the towering palace-like buildings made on the backs of borderline-slave-labor and the gaudy yuppie churches are the absolute worst perversions of Christianity. Wait, not true. Prosperity-gospel churches are the worst. It's promising you'll be a millionaire by being a Christian, which means giving all your money (and bear in mind the people attracted to this are usually poor and suffering) to some con artist megachurch pastor. Someone needs to kick these fragging Pharisees out of the temple.

Quote:
On the other hand there is a positive side to it, and that's the many tourists such places attract; which can indeed be used to the benefit of the proletariat. There are places who's tourist economies literally rely solely on these grand places of worship.

Yeah, I definitely wouldn't recommend tearing down the Notre Dames and St. Patrick's of the world. At this point, they're not symbols of the Church's power, somewhat uplifting and beautiful but also totally at odds with the faith's simplicity. At this point, they're also symbols of a cultural legacy, giant pieces of history, mostly with their original purpose long since put on the backburner.

Let's not be ISIS.

Quote:
Well I personally find Greek/Roman religions attractive because in a way I think of existence to be too beautiful and complex for it all being united under one entity.

But that's the thing. God would be existence, and beyond it. All that complexity is united into one supreme-ness. Personifying it, limiting it to human standards by dividing it up into different spheres of influence, just doesn't seem worthy of worship.

Quote:
I find it rather appealing to think that sex, wine, music, etc. were all placed under the responsibility of a single god that you can pray to one night and then switch on another. It's kinda cool. I see it also as an expression of the self in a way.

Some Christian denominations have Saints for that, but in Western Christianity (which tends to be more focused on God's oneness than Eastern; I don't know how the latter handles this) at least always in the context of having them pray on behalf of you to God.

I don't personally abide by that, because it seems to me to be making a hierarchy of believers, which I see as damaging to the church (of believers) and arguably a little un-Christian. Everyone should be called to sainthood, through faith and living that out. And prayer isn't something I really fully understand if you're asking for intercession, since God would hear your thoughts anyway, right? I do it, but I'm not always sure why. At best, it's making a commitment to solving whatever issue you're given, and a loving god would presumably then lay that path out in some way. In Christianity, while intercession is obviously the most commonly used type of prayer, contemplative stuff about the nature of God/the Gospels/etc. is generally the most encouraged. It's almost like setting aside an internal dialogue, for some mild meditation.

Quote:
I don't find it difficult to think of ourselves as both divine and human at the same time. We're human in our organic physical being, and divine in our ability to recognise the fact that we exist. Consciousness is as much a miracle to me as existence itself, the fact that physical matter was able to organise itself into a form whereby existence would develop the ability to recognise itself; which is quite unique as far as we know, and to me divine in more ways than one.

See, these are the kinds of questions that lead people to wonder about and sympathize with religion. Sometimes I will wake up and go "...what am I doing here? Why am I here? Why am I me? What is all this and how can I see it? Am I the only one who actually sees it? Are y'all actually out there? Am I actually even here?" Note: no drugs were ingested before having these thoughts.

But to a Christian our ability to have thoughts like that and make choices would mean "we're made in God's image," an ability to choose between the probabilistic options presented to us, and an uncanny amount of self-awareness. It's part of what's meant by the Holy Spirit, but far from the entirety of it. It's not quite what's referred to when talking about the divinity of Christ, which is that he's the image of God in human form/example as relevant to us humans in coming to know a totally unknowable supreme-ness beyond all comprehension. And then the humanity of Christ is, Christ is the Last Adam; humanity is reborn in his image (rather than Adam's fallen one) with the sacrifice, being able to be closer to God now, able to move towards the selfless choices we should have made but didn't.

And then you get into a debate about whether he's mysteriously both all-God and all-Man and these two are really one in him (monophysitism), or if they're separate but intertwined aspects of one being where it's God experiencing as a Man and all, with all the physical mortality that entails. I don't think the former makes sense per the Gospels, since you have Jesus expressing doubt and talking to God which says he can't be fully God in the exact same sense as he's fully Man. I also think it calls too much emphasis to the divine side, instead of calling attention to the more important "God was/is one of us" part. Basically, Gnosticism was rightfully branded an anti-Christian and fundamentally anti-human heresy, and now only weirdo pseudo-Gnostic Copts remain.

Quote:
:lol: You Americans are quite a colourful people aren't you?

If you think that's bad, look up Kent Hovind sometime. At least Mormons are sort of quiet about their wacko Scientology-type Space Opera With Jesus beliefs. Hovind built a "theme park" (a jungle gym and a few statues) set out to prove that Jesus met dinosaurs.

Quote:
Serious question though, where do Mormons get the money to build a multimillion dollar temple in Kiev of all places which literally is attended only by a handful of members?

Fun fact: Mormons and Orthodox Jews are the only growing churches whose average members are above-average economically. And the latter has a high turnover rate due to most Jews secularizing as they grow up and Jewish females being really uncomfortable with the creepy sexism of Orthodox Jewish culture, where the emphasis on strong family life of Mormonism brings in a lot of converts.

Marriott? A Mormon family. Romney? Wall Street Mormons. Huntsman? Mormon business dynasty. And they're all related, they intermarry like European nobility.


Mormons are very competitive and success-driven usually, their dirty little secret is Utah has an obscenely high suicide rate from all the pressure put on kids there. But it's "nice, gentle" pressure; Mormons who are raised in that culture are also usually extremely likeable in an aw-shucks Leave it to Beaver sort of way. Also all the men know a foreign language from spending two years abroad. It's kind of like a eugenics experiment in super-successful Stepford people.

Quote:
I've only skimmed through the satanic bible a long time ago, but as I understand it, it preaches individualism and giving in to your earthly urges instead of abstaining. They basically consider these very urges to be what they consider human. Am I wrong?

Sure, but it has about the depth of an angsty middle schooler's blog post after reading maybe a sentence or two of Nietzsche and garbling half the interpretation. And the specific way they interpret that... it's basically immature "frag everyone else, go me" life-is-zero-sum bullshit ego-stroking. It preaches selfishness, lack of self-control, basically being douchey for no good reason.

Look up the interviews Zeena Schreck (Anton LaVey's now-estranged Buddhist daughter) and Nicholas Schreck (her Jewish ex-Neo-Nazi husband) did with Bob Larson in the early 90s, when they were Church of Satan spokespeople. Larson comes across as kind of an idiot, with a really simplistic (and probably half-feigned; he's a televangelist, usually con artists) fundamentalist-Christianity-is-the-only-way view, who never questioned anything he learned growing up. But I took his side at least 90 percent of the time.

Nicholas came across as an even bigger idiot, just one who thinks he's some kind of shocking intellectual titan shaking up the status quo, when what he's saying is basically just genocidal ravings that never make any semblance of sense. Kind of like his idol, Charles Manson. I mean, the Unabomber made more sense than him, in all his wackiness. Zeena actually does seem very smart, but her beliefs are (were) sadistic social darwinism and she seemed to totally lack empathy. Also, totally looks like taylor swift.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xuh2PByqDbo

Quote:
Also, admit it, their aesthetic can be rather sexy sometimes. Amirite?! huh?! Amirite?!

Sure, absolutely, it looks great when done well. And that's basically the only reason half their members join. But even then, it really doesn't work when they think they're actually threatening in what's basically Addams Family kitsch. Real goths have more fun.

Quote:
Thanks for sharing everything else.

You're welcome!
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 33
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 17 Nov 2015, 22:40
Ideology: Maoist
Pioneer
Post 17 Nov 2015, 23:07
I have a strange view of God(s) (being a Pagan and also a Materialist). I view God as being simply a natural force we do not yet know and what we do know (for me) would constitute a God. God is not supernatural but natural and not yet explained, this concept is compatible with dialectics.
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 33
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 17 Nov 2015, 22:40
Ideology: Maoist
Pioneer
Post 27 Nov 2015, 12:06
For me the idea of a being is real. I believe this being is a naturalistic God and doesn't contradict dialectics.
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 14444
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 10 Sep 2006, 22:05
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
Philosophized
Post 28 Nov 2015, 00:43
Or you could simply say that God created a material universe, which is guided by immutable laws. Gravity cannot be "turned off" for a second. So if God is to intervene She must use material processes to achieve it.

Every Abrahamic text draws a clear line between the Material realm (Creation) and the Spiritual realm (Eternity). That means we are fully in the material realm, we are fully outside the Spiritual realm. Ergo we must abide by the realm in which we reside. It is absolutely absurd to ignore Creation when God has so clearly placed us here, and not in the Heavens.

Clerics disrupt the obviousness of this in service to the existing state of things.
Image
Alternative Display:
Mobile view
More Forums: The History Forum. The UK Politics Forum.
© 2000- Soviet-Empire.com. Privacy.