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    01 Dec '12 21:33
    I do enjoy going into churches and sitting for a while in silence. It first started in S. America in 2008 but wondered into the local Chapel the other day (i'm in Ireland now) and found it quite peaceful...
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    02 Dec '12 00:47
    Originally posted by Trev33
    I do enjoy going into churches and sitting for a while in silence. It first started in S. America in 2008 but wondered into the local Chapel the other day (i'm in Ireland now) and found it quite peaceful...
    Do you mean, when no one else is in there?
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    02 Dec '12 13:04
    Originally posted by divegeester
    Do you mean, when no one else is in there?
    Yes, or just a few people.
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    02 Dec '12 13:17
    Originally posted by Trev33
    Yes, or just a few people.
    do you light any candles?
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    02 Dec '12 17:01
    Originally posted by Trev33
    I do enjoy going into churches and sitting for a while in silence. It first started in S. America in 2008 but wondered into the local Chapel the other day (i'm in Ireland now) and found it quite peaceful...
    Philip Larkin - Church Going

    Once I am sure there's nothing going on
    I step inside, letting the door thud shut.
    Another church: matting, seats, and stone,
    And little books; sprawlings of flowers, cut
    For Sunday, brownish now; some brass and stuff
    Up at the holy end; the small neat organ;
    And a tense, musty, unignorable silence,
    Brewed God knows how long. Hatless, I take off
    My cycle-clips in awkward reverence.

    Move forward, run my hand around the font.
    From where I stand, the roof looks almost new -
    Cleaned, or restored? Someone would know: I don't.
    Mounting the lectern, I peruse a few
    Hectoring large-scale verses, and pronounce
    'Here endeth' much more loudly than I'd meant.
    The echoes snigger briefly. Back at the door
    I sign the book, donate an Irish sixpence,
    Reflect the place was not worth stopping for.

    Yet stop I did: in fact I often do,
    And always end much at a loss like this,
    Wondering what to look for; wondering, too,
    When churches will fall completely out of use
    What we shall turn them into, if we shall keep
    A few cathedrals chronically on show,
    Their parchment, plate and pyx in locked cases,
    And let the rest rent-free to rain and sheep.
    Shall we avoid them as unlucky places?

    Or, after dark, will dubious women come
    To make their children touch a particular stone;
    Pick simples for a cancer; or on some
    Advised night see walking a dead one?
    Power of some sort will go on
    In games, in riddles, seemingly at random;
    But superstition, like belief, must die,
    And what remains when disbelief has gone?
    Grass, weedy pavement, brambles, buttress, sky,

    A shape less recognisable each week,
    A purpose more obscure. I wonder who
    Will be the last, the very last, to seek
    This place for what it was; one of the crew
    That tap and jot and know what rood-lofts were?
    Some ruin-bibber, randy for antique,
    Or Christmas-addict, counting on a whiff
    Of gown-and-bands and organ-pipes and myrrh?
    Or will he be my representative,

    Bored, uninformed, knowing the ghostly silt
    Dispersed, yet tending to this cross of ground
    Through suburb scrub because it held unspilt
    So long and equably what since is found
    Only in separation - marriage, and birth,
    And death, and thoughts of these - for which was built
    This special shell? For, though I've no idea
    What this accoutred frowsty barn is worth,
    It pleases me to stand in silence here;


    A serious house on serious earth it is,
    In whose blent air all our compulsions meet,
    Are recognized, and robed as destinies.
    And that much never can be obsolete,
    Since someone will forever be surprising
    A hunger in himself to be more serious,
    And gravitating with it to this ground,
    Which, he once heard, was proper to grow wise in,
    If only that so many dead lie round.
  6. Standard memberwolfgang59
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    03 Dec '12 04:27
    Originally posted by Trev33
    I do enjoy going into churches and sitting for a while in silence. It first started in S. America in 2008 but wondered into the local Chapel the other day (i'm in Ireland now) and found it quite peaceful...
    From the simplest village church to the mightiest cathedrals
    they are certainly awe-inspiring; exactly as intended!

    I have taken several classes to St Pauls in London and each
    time been gob-smacked. Lying down on the floor (you can do
    this when you are with kids!) and looking up at the ceiling is
    quite moving.
  7. SubscriberFMF
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    03 Dec '12 04:45
    Originally posted by Trev33
    I do enjoy going into churches and sitting for a while in silence. It first started in S. America in 2008 but wondered into the local Chapel the other day (i'm in Ireland now) and found it quite peaceful...
    I went cycling around parts of western Europe numerous times in the 1970s, and exploring chapels, churches, cathedrals, and climbing steeples, was something I did every single day.
  8. SubscriberSuzianne
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    03 Dec '12 10:44
    Originally posted by wolfgang59
    From the simplest village church to the mightiest cathedrals
    they are certainly awe-inspiring; exactly as intended!

    I have taken several classes to St Pauls in London and each
    time been gob-smacked. Lying down on the floor (you can do
    this when you are with kids!) and looking up at the ceiling is
    quite moving.
    "Moving" and "awe-inspiring"...

    can you explain why an atheist might find this so?

    Is it the "architectural magnificence" or that man is capable of building beautifully?

    Certainly an atheist would not attribute these feelings to a sense of being in the presence of God, so what would explain it?
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    03 Dec '12 12:48
    Originally posted by Suzianne
    "Moving" and "awe-inspiring"...

    can you explain why an atheist might find this so?

    Is it the "architectural magnificence" or that man is capable of building beautifully?

    Certainly an atheist would not attribute these feelings to a sense of being in the presence of God, so what would explain it?
    I like the architecture.

    These buildings (well proper old stone churches, as opposed to the modern cheapskate ones)
    were designed to be beautiful and awe inspiring by people for other people.

    The use of the golden ratio and proper proportions make them generally aesthetically pleasing.

    And also it's nice on occasions to go somewhere quiet and peaceful...

    None of this requires or implies the existence of anything supernatural.
  10. SubscriberFMF
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    03 Dec '12 13:52
    Originally posted by Suzianne
    "Moving" and "awe-inspiring"...

    can you explain why an atheist might find this so?

    Is it the "architectural magnificence" or that man is capable of building beautifully?

    Certainly an atheist would not attribute these feelings to a sense of being in the presence of God, so what would explain it?
    I think buildings like St Paul's Cathedral are stunning monuments to the human spirit and to the power of religiosity rather than to anything supernatural.
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    03 Dec '12 14:24
    Originally posted by FMF
    I went cycling around parts of western Europe numerous times in the 1970s, and exploring chapels, churches, cathedrals, and climbing steeples, was something I did every single day.
    Church hopper, eh?

    Just couldn't find the perfect church so you gave up on your faith altogether.

    I've heard it all before. 😠
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    03 Dec '12 14:24
    Originally posted by FMF
    I think buildings like St Paul's Cathedral are stunning monuments to the human spirit and to the power of religiosity rather than to anything supernatural.
    I'm thinking God is not impressed, all he cares about in your inner temple.

    So what does yours look like?
  13. SubscriberFMF
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    03 Dec '12 14:38
    Originally posted by whodey
    I'm thinking God is not impressed, all he cares about in your inner temple.

    So what does yours look like?
    Sticking to the OP, when it comes to buildings like St Paul's Cathedral, I think they are monuments to the human spirit and to the power of religiosity - that led to their construction - rather than to anything supernatural. Do you have any comment on either this or the OP?
  14. SubscriberFMF
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    03 Dec '12 14:40
    Originally posted by whodey
    Church hopper, eh?

    Just couldn't find the perfect church so you gave up on your faith altogether.

    I've heard it all before. 😠
    I liked visiting churches, yes. I was a Christian back in those days. Looking back, I wonder if I was impressed by such buildings for the same reason I am impressed by them now, as opposed to some kind of religiosity factor.
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    06 Dec '12 16:42
    Originally posted by robbie carrobie
    do you light any candles?
    No.
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