1. Joined
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    14 Oct '06 22:37
    This topic came up on the Evolution thread but has nothing to do with Evolution so I've started a new one.

    A bit of the original discussion follows the end of this for context.

    Basically, DJ pointed me at Ravi Zacharias for an objective explanation of why Christianity holds more value than any other religions and why it should be believed more than them. I downloaded one of his lectures (The Uniqueness of Christ, I think it was) and listened to it a couple of days ago.

    In my opinion, on the basis of this lecture, Ravi was not from the same mold as the steriotypical Tellivangelist so I will retract that accusation. However, most of his arguments were anecdotes, emotional reasoning or bible interpretations. Any other established religion has plenty of all of those.

    The only objective point I heard was concerning the impact of Christ. Apparantly, it was about 3 years between his starting to preach and his crucifiction and no-one can deny that 2000 years later Christianity is now one of the most widespread and popular religions (possibly even *the* most)

    However, I would suggest that it is not orders of magnitude more widespread or popular than the other major religions and a posible reason for it's current dominance is simply that it was the main religion in European countries when those countries had the technologies and political drives for the last great expansionist period and the religion expanded on the back of that.

    That it gained dominance in Europe in the first place is impressive but is probably more due to the preachings of the disciples than Jesus himself so his 3-year tenure is not strictly relevant.

    --- Penguin

    ==============================================

    Originally posted by Penguin
    So to elaborate (correct me if I'm wrong, I don't want to be accused of willful misinterpreting):

    DJ2Becker firmly believes that people should be more compelled to believe in his faith system (presumably one of the many forms of christianity) than any other such as Hinduism, buddhism, Islam, Judaism, Animism, Jainism, Paganism, Sikhism, Taoism, Zoroastri ...[text shortened]... Again please explain if I've misunderstood the meaning of the term.

    --- Penguin


    I really don't have the time right now to go into all of that.

    But, I would suggest you look up 'Ravi Zacharias' and read some of his books.


    Here's one for starters:

    "Jesus Among Other Gods"
    http://shop2.gospelcom.net/epages/rzim.storefront/4522082d00c13a34271d45579e7c0602/Product/View/SBK9
  2. Territories Unknown
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    14 Oct '06 22:46
    Orthodox Christianity is not a religion, per se. As a religion is what man concocts to gain the approbation of a god(s), and whereas there is no work to be done in Christianity with regards to salvation, Christianity is eliminated from the category of world religions.
  3. Donationrwingett
    Ming the Merciless
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    15 Oct '06 01:09
    Christianity is successful because it is an evangelical religion. Not because their message has any more validity than any other religion. They seek new converts aggressively and have had 2,000 years to perfect their sales pitch. Judaism, which has been around longer, is not an evangelical religion. Therefore they do not grow like a cancer upon humanity. Islam is also an evangelical religion. Is it any coincidence that they're near the top? No, not at all.

    What's the fastest growing religion in the world (if I'm not mistaken) by percentage? It's the Church of Latter Day Saints (the Mormons). Can you possibly come up with a more stupid religion than that? Hardly. But they're hyper-aggresive evangelists, and they're seeing the results.

    What's the lesson here? The squeaky wheel gets the oil. Either that or 'there's a sucker born every minute.' Or some combination thereof.
  4. Joined
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    15 Oct '06 07:34
    Originally posted by FreakyKBH
    Orthodox Christianity is not a religion, per se. As a religion is what man concocts to gain the approbation of a god(s), and whereas there is no work to be done in Christianity with regards to salvation, Christianity is eliminated from the category of world religions.
    Yaa but problem is every relegion also thinks like that. For me being an atheist i am not into any relegion. Still i prefer relegions which say their relegion is not the only path and recognize other relegions as also valid. Hinduism and Busshism come into mind.

    I also like jainism . If u want to read about jainism here's the wiki link http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jainism. Quoting from it.

    " Compassion for all life, human and non-human, is central to Jainism. Human life is valued as a unique, rare opportunity to reach enlightenment; to kill any person, no matter what crime he may have committed, is considered unimaginably abhorrent. It is the only religion that requires monks and laity, from all its sects and traditions, to be vegetarian. Some Indian regions have been strongly influenced by Jains and often the majority of the local non-Jain population has also become vegetarian. History suggests that various strains of Hinduism became vegetarian due to strong Jain influences. In many towns, Jains run animal shelters. For example, Delhi has a bird hospital run by a Jain derasar, or temple.

    Jainism's stance on nonviolence goes much beyond vegetarianism. Jains refuse food obtained with unnecessary cruelty. Many are vegan due to the violence of modern dairy farms. The orthodox Jain diet excludes most root vegetables, as they believe this destroys entire plants unnecessarily. If you eat apples, you do not destroy whole trees, but for root vegetables, whole plants are uprooted. Garlic and onions are avoided as these are seen as creating passion, meaning anger, hatred, jealousy. Very devout Jains do not eat, drink, or travel after sunset (which is called Chauvihar) and always rise before sunrise. "


    Sounds like a group of unselfish buggers . Atleast their rlegion doesn't ask to go and convert or kill all those infidels.
  5. Standard memberWulebgr
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    15 Oct '06 09:56
    Some of the fastest growing segments of the Christian faith disavow historic Christian doctrines.
  6. Joined
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    15 Oct '06 10:13
    Originally posted by rwingett
    Christianity is successful because it is an evangelical religion. Not because their message has any more validity than any other religion. They seek new converts aggressively and have had 2,000 years to perfect their sales pitch. Judaism, which has been around longer, is not an evangelical religion. Therefore they do not grow like a cancer upon humanity. Is ...[text shortened]... oil. Either that or 'there's a sucker born every minute.' Or some combination thereof.
    This should become a sticky on top of every thread about religions here.

    Spot on.
  7. DonationPawnokeyhole
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    15 Oct '06 10:16
    Originally posted by FreakyKBH
    Orthodox Christianity is not a religion, per se. As a religion is what man concocts to gain the approbation of a god(s), and whereas there is no work to be done in Christianity with regards to salvation, Christianity is eliminated from the category of world religions.
    Isn't your stipulative definition of religion just a tad parochial?
  8. Donationkirksey957
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    15 Oct '06 11:531 edit
    Originally posted by rwingett
    Christianity is successful because it is an evangelical religion. Not because their message has any more validity than any other religion. They seek new converts aggressively and have had 2,000 years to perfect their sales pitch. Judaism, which has been around longer, is not an evangelical religion. Therefore they do not grow like a cancer upon humanity. Is oil. Either that or 'there's a sucker born every minute.' Or some combination thereof.
    I will tell you a story and let this be the Sunday sermon for all. Clarence Jordon, a brilliant Greek scholar and Baptist preacher , could have had any prestigious teaching position anywhere. Instead, he started a farming community in south Georgia called Koinania Farms. It was started in the time of intense racism in this country. He opened this experiment to all peoples, black and white. He was threatened. The KKK tried to shut him down. They burned his homes. In one of his books he recounts such an experience where the Klan showed upone night and torched their buildings. The next day he was outplowing and a reporter showed up to interview him (who also happened to be one of the klansmen from the night before). He snidely said, "Well, Mr Jordon, looks like you don't have much left here." Jordon pointedly said, "Sir, what you fail to understand is that we are not about success. We are about faithfulness. Good day, sir."

    One side note. This is where Habitat for Humanity got started.
  9. Joined
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    15 Oct '06 13:351 edit
    To me the best religion would have the following characteristics:

    1. Does not proselytize.

    2. Does not have a priesthood.

    3. Does not require money to participate.

    4. Can be practiced at home with close family and friends.

    5. Promotes simple, common sense virtues such as honesty, loyalty, hospitality, self-reliance, etc.

    6. Does not rely on fear and guilt to keep its followers in line.

    7. Recognizes that all beings humans and gods alike are subject to the forces of nature and the universe.

    8. Is able to reconcile the past and tradition with modern times and technology.

    9. Respects and honors ones ancestors and ancestry without being racist.

    10. Allows and even encourages the use of alcoholic beverages during its celebrations.

    11. Allows and even encourages one to laugh at themselves and the gods. In other words, its okay to have a sense of humour.


    Too bad there is not a religion like that.
  10. Donationrwingett
    Ming the Merciless
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    15 Oct '06 14:08
    Originally posted by kirksey957
    I will tell you a story and let this be the Sunday sermon for all. Clarence Jordon, a brilliant Greek scholar and Baptist preacher , could have had any prestigious teaching position anywhere. Instead, he started a farming community in south Georgia called Koinania Farms. It was started in the time of intense racism in this country. He opened this expe ...[text shortened]... ulness. Good day, sir."

    One side note. This is where Habitat for Humanity got started.
    Are you familiar with the Hutterites? I've taken a keen interest in them lately. They're Anabaptists, similar to the Amish, but they live a communal lifestyle.
  11. Joined
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    15 Oct '06 14:091 edit
    Ullr, do you know that you are a budhist?

    Another direction you should look at is the work of person like Timothy Leary who worked on accessing different levels of conscienceness by modifying our perceptions. He did it through LSD, but it has been practice since ages by Hindus, Mayas,...
  12. Donationkirksey957
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    15 Oct '06 17:06
    Originally posted by rwingett
    Are you familiar with the Hutterites? I've taken a keen interest in them lately. They're Anabaptists, similar to the Amish, but they live a communal lifestyle.
    I'm not familiar with them. Are they Tiger fans?
  13. Territories Unknown
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    15 Oct '06 19:06
    Originally posted by Pawnokeyhole
    Isn't your stipulative definition of religion just a tad parochial?
    I stand by the definition. Anyone can make and/or follow a religion. Not many can live by the faith demanded in Christianity.
  14. Donationrwingett
    Ming the Merciless
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    15 Oct '06 20:31
    Originally posted by kirksey957
    I'm not familiar with them. Are they Tiger fans?
    They are not. Playing sports would make them too prideful, or some such nonsense.

    You should read up on them. You may find them to be of interest. Or not...

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hutterites
  15. Joined
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    16 Oct '06 00:531 edit
    I've often wondered why people always question what the "best" religion is. As FreakyKBH pointed out, anyone can make their own religion. Does that make it true? I can say I am an omnipotent and good at chess, but that doesn't mean it's true.

    Religion isn't some vague philosophy about how to live your life; it's an ideal that governs your entire existence. There are no "better" religions or "worse" religions. There is a true religion and there are false religions.

    Why, then, am I a Christian? I am a Christian because I have studied the evidence and decided that Christianity isn't some made-up ritual, it is the real thing. I follow it because I believe it is true, not because I like the concept of the religion (although I do and think that many people blast them when they don't deserve it, but that's a topic for another thread).
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