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Yet another religion thread: what constitutes weird?

Discussion in 'Dark Tranquillity' started by hyena, Aug 8, 2007.

  1. hyena

    hyena counterclockwise

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    Ok, I have a question directed especially to all the forum members who are atheists or agnostics (I seem to remember from the religion poll that they are the majority). Of course this does not mean that if you are not one you cannot respond. :)

    The question is as follows: while talking to a religious person, have you ever thought that what they were saying was just weird in a nutty, way out there way?

    The reason why I ask is that I am starting to be a little concerned - recently, I have bumped into a number of people who stared at me as if I had mentioned believing that aliens rule the world with the aid of three-headed dogs upon referencing the standard Christian idea that one's major goal in life should be understanding their true calling as planned by God and work toward its fulfillment.

    I am starting to wonder whether this may be just due to a problem of communication and/or shared culture, in the sense that some concepts from what used to be run-of-the-mill religion are starting to be viewed in the public eye in the same way as, say, Scientology's claims.

    So I am really interested in knowing which religious assumptions and points strike the non-religious as crazy, rather than merely wrong.
     
  2. Dark_Silence

    Dark_Silence Member

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    honestly, i thought that most of my religion teachers were crazy "enlightened/illuminated" (i dont really know how to translate that. i want to say that they seemed somehow to be really crazy like they got some special and unic ability or gift to see the way of thinking of jesus) women.

    I dont know many people who are openly christians and go regularly to church, so i cant really tell about them. A lot of young people in Belgium ont go to church at all. If you are in belgium, and say that you go to church and are in high school, people are going to look at you in some weird way because its not so common. But in the USA (at least in Idaho), if you say that you dont believe in god, you get looked at in a weird way.dont believe in god.

    Maybe what doesnt help, is that on a lot of points, catholic church seem to be old fashionned and boring to non believers. Going to a celebration in a catholic church in belgium is just awfull, and all is taken way too seriously.
     
  3. Taliesin

    Taliesin Immaturity Aside

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    Honestly, what I find crazy is the way christians, especially the recent, more fundamentalist streams, will try anything to bend facts and reality in a way that it somehow doesnt conflict with the bible or their beliefs. When science presents dinosaurs, christians will state god put them there to test their faith, when you mention bacteriae and the development of resistances as proof for evolution, or the breeding of animals, they will have none of it. Paleontologists, physicists measuring the earth's age, they're amateurs, they dont know what they're doing because the earth couldnt possibly be older than 10k to 12k years. But they're using cars, trams, trains, airplanes, so engineers know their stuff well enough to lay your life into their hands, but the damned paleontologists, they couldnt possibly be right? Oh the sense this makes..!

    Also, the way in which the bible's stories are either direct proof of god working miracles, or only images and parables, not to be taken literally, depending on what serves their purpose best at that point is quite irritating. Either the bible is God's word, to be taken literally at every point, which poses a few difficulties, or it's just a collection of images, parables and advice, then there's no real relevance.
    Seriously, I dont see how one can be a christian and not lie to himself to make their beliefs fit into our modern world. I respect the desire and need to find answers for a few very deep and unsettling questions, but this needs is producing very bizarre blossoms..
     
  4. Siren

    Siren dead to this world

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    It has happened a few times to me, mainly when people said they believed in something other than me. :p
    Seriously, i recall just once when i had a disagreement with a catholic friend on the basic dogma of our respective belief (son-father-holy spirit). That's what happens when you take something for granted.

    As for Taliesin, the christians you know must be wackos or plain close-minded. Being a science-oriented guy and all, someone might think you'd be better off not putting all christians in the same sack. Generalisation is a bad thing.
    Why on earth should whatever science says conflict with faith to God? I don't bend anything, i believe in science, i don't have a problem with paleontologists/physicists/biologists/you name it and at the same time i believe in God. I'm also not bothered by the fact you might think i'm crazy, inconsistent, bending truths to serve my faith or whatever else. Shows you who's really open-minded and who's not.
     
  5. opacity

    opacity Member

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    i'm glad then to not live in italy :p i'd be concerned too.


    it's crazy that non-religious people are spending so much time on wondering why religious people are that way, religious.
     
  6. Sheckles14

    Sheckles14 Member

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    I just see through what I perceive religion to be. For example, many people, once acquainted with God begin their walk and claim to be much happier and feel content or as they would say have been fulfilled. If you believe you actually have a purpose you are fulfilled, it doesn't need to be God. But whatever you need to be content, it needs to be something you can never complete. There always needs to be something to look forward to or something new to learn. Religion is just one way out of many of fulfilling these needs.

    Organized religion does many things for the greater good, but I just can't accept any of it. It's almost like the saying, "Ignorance is bliss." I just see religion as a way for people to meet needs and not as a means of salvation. So I have trouble devoting myself to it. I don't think that the existence of God can be proven or disproven.
     
  7. Taliesin

    Taliesin Immaturity Aside

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    I dont think you're crazy :err:
    It's just that generally, I believe there are two ways to follow a religion, one would be the half-assed "I take it as general suggestions and good advice"-kind of way, where you pick what you want and dont really bother with the less comfortable sides of your "faith". The other would be the consequent way, where you take the bible literally, as god's word.
    So as a "consequent" christian, arent you supposed to believe that the earth was created by god, that it is no older than 10-12 thousand years, that god created man in his own image, that we do not descend from monkeys, that the collection of skeletons found that demonstrate the successive changeover from monkey to modern man is only "god's play", that there never were dinosaurs, but that god merely put them there to test your faith, that the resemblance between monkey and human dna is a mere coicidence.. you're supposed to believe that Moses split the red sea, that Jesus walked on water and that it is generally possible to work miracles. How is this not in direct opposition with modern science?
    How can you have more faith in your religion than in science without dismissing the scientific method as inaccurate as a whole?

    Either way, Im not saying this out of the blue, completely unrelated to anything else. My opinion was asked for, and Ive given it, as is the principle of this board and this thread specifically, no need act all offended.

    On the debate as such, I dont think it starts with atheists pointing fingers, I believe it starts with christians claiming your god is real. Then we ask "Ok, where is proof? How is your bible and everything around it even relevant?" and so you emphasise faith, we emphasise empirism.. and if they havent all grown tired, we'll still be here arguing in a few thousand years, Im sure..
     
  8. Hiljainen

    Hiljainen why can't we not be sober

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    believing in a superior entity is weird to me, it's something i can't understand, but this doesn't mean i look at religious people like i would look at a lime green armadillo. my closest friend is religious and of course i wouldn't spend so much time with him, nor i would share all my thoughts and views with him if i didn't...trust his judgement, for lack of better words.
    the way i look at a person and his/her beliefs depends a lot on the attitude i guess, for starters i strongly dislike the "i'm right, you're wrong" or "you should/shouldn't do this" way to think that some people have (on both sides of course), so if i get that message when i'm talking to someone i'm gonna think they're nuts.
    i know little about religion and about the bible, since i never read it, but i've always seen religion as a very personal thing, a path that one person chooses to follow, as much as i've always thought about the relationship with a god as something intimate and again, strictly personal, so here's what i find weird (apart for what i said before, that applies also to atheists, and pretty much to everything :p ): because of what i just said meddling figures, such as priests, seems weird to me, pre-written prayers also seem weird: too many people just babble them out and are unable to say anything if you ask them what they mean to say with that, same as rites, i feel they take away...depth? a personal involvment? time spent thinking?

    there is another thing that strikes me as weird, but this applies to some people, and not to religion in general: there are rules in every religion, and if you choose to believe in them you should obey because you think they're right, not because you have to, yet i've known a few people, very religious according to their opinion, who just looked for ways to bypass those rules, an example that shocked me was a couple that, to obey the rule to not use contraceptives without popping out babies every year, used the "natural" methods of contraceptions, such as planning intercourse on basal temperature. this struck me as very stupid.
     
  9. Siren

    Siren dead to this world

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    @Taliesin: To answer to you and to the original post at the same time, this view of yours regarding religion (ie following it has to be either half-assed or consequent) seems just weird to me. ;) I don't deal well with 'black and white' views of the world.

    Second, i never claimed to be a "consequent" christian and whatever you seem to mean by that. Furthermore, i never was or acted offended in this thread, quite the contrary i'd say.

    Anyway, to answer some of your questions, no, my faith never asked me to believe that the earth is 10,000 years old or that dinosaurs didn't exist. I do believe that the earth and the universe were created by God, but that doesn't mean i don't accept the scientific opinion on this, or that they cancel each other out. Whatever rules exist in this world, the same ones physicists and materialists swear by, in my humble faith were created by God. Same goes for evolution. And to be scientific about this, neither science nor religion claim that humans descend from monkeys. ;)
    I could go on to discuss with you more about my "faith", but i feel this would go beyond the point of this thread. Besides you seem terribly biased and uninformed, which would lead to an argument rather than fruitful discussion ("we'll still be here arguing in a few thousand years" in your own words). I advise you, though, to research a case better when you want to go against it, just so that you form more valid arguments in the future.

    As for claiming our god is real: yes, i do claim my God is real. But i don't try to impose my opinion on you, and i don't care to provide any proof to you. As Hiljainen said (and i agree with most of her points), religion and the relationship to God is a very personal thing.
     
  10. QRV

    QRV historyphobic

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    (I'm not atheist nor agnostic)

    I only find crazy the obviously crazy, obsessive, fanatic kind of religious people. But on the other side, I've always found the christian ideal full of sense (hell, even Nietzsche thought of it that way). The thing I most disagree with is the dualist nature of christian beliefs and the fact that the church is built on a pyramid structure which is way too rigid and absolutist.

    Atheist/agnostics who turn up their noses at religious people like they were filth and generalize them as mere lambs do annoy the fuck out of me. Their position is arrogant, stupid and as narrow-minded as the beliefs of the people they criticise so much. Nobody should ever judge religion based on a reductionist and rationalist stance.
     
  11. ScandinavianMetal

    ScandinavianMetal Exclusive Member

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    There are a lot of Christians out there that, to me, are "weird" so to speak. Religion can be understood by so many different ways it's unbelievable. Such as the new terrorist "stuff" and their religious believes. I'm not criticizing Muslim because of that, because I know the Middle East has not advanced as much as the Western World. And I have know plenty of nice Muslims. Christians, a few hundered years back, did they not do "Holy Wars", yes? Nevertheless, to me, religion is something that makes me produce a good life because I believe there is indeed an ultimate consequence. People who has done harm will get their pay and so forth. I do not think too hard on things I do not understand, because, thinking is not fun :p and there is no point do it. I believe firmly believe in Science as well. Moral is, generalizing Christians is like generalizing a country...cannot be done. A country can indeed have weird people, and so do the Christians

    Sorry for my English!
     
  12. hyena

    hyena counterclockwise

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    @hilj: this has nothing to do with religion, but i just read fare lo gnorry on a message board. when i was done laughing, i immediately thought about your theory on the nickname craxy, and well... i could do nothing but start to laugh again. :p
     
  13. Hiljainen

    Hiljainen why can't we not be sober

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    :lol: :lol: priceless.
    message boards in italian are full of art pieces of that kind
    and...you still remember craxy? :worship:
     
  14. hyena

    hyena counterclockwise

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    well, craxy was an instant classic. or craxxic, i don't know. which could also be the title for a movie featuring a berserk bionic version of the politician.

    i swear this is for real, i found it as-is and didn't photoshop anything:

    [​IMG]

    Now I'll stop hijacking my own thread :p
     
  15. Villain

    Villain Doctor BenQuillity

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    My opinion should not come as a surprise to any regular here, but here I go (very briefly) anyway: I fail to see any significant difference between the claims of the Catholic Church and Scientologists (or any other organized religion for that matter) on any intellectual or moral level - both are equally absurd. The only difference is that the Cult of Jesus is 2000 years older than the Cult of Hubbard and has thus destroyed more innocent lives than the latter.

    Siren: Relationship to god(s of any kind) is a personal thing, but religion is sadly not - religion affects the lives of all of us, whether we like it or not, hurting, humiliating and killing millions of people every year. Religion is the biggest obstacle of science, progress, equality and peace on earth. Faith has nothing to do with it, religion has.

    I'll try to get back for more later.

    -Villain
     
  16. hyena

    hyena counterclockwise

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    Hold on, hold on. I see what you mean, but this statement is inaccurate: the Cult of Jesus, in your words, does not require - as far as I know, and I'm pretty familiar with it - to spend an average 800,000 american dollars to complete your "path to purification". It may be lies, but it's for free, and while you have the right to believe (hah) that it ruins lives anyway, it seldom does in a financial way.
     
  17. Villain

    Villain Doctor BenQuillity

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    Bullshit. Since the 6th Century, the Catholic church has revolved around money and has ruined the financial lives of billions of people. Catholic church has taxed, collected indulgences and outright robbed innocents for over a thousand years.

    Today, Catholic church is richer than many small nations. It recently paid over 600 000 000 american dollars to cover up priests who had sexually abused children (see http://alligatorreport.wordpress.co...ney-spent-on-covering-up-rather-than-charity/ ) - where do you think that money came from? Yes, from people who had bought their "path to purification".

    The system is exactly the same in both cases - the sums may vary locally and according to the wealth of the individual, but both cults collect vast sums of money from the people they have brainwashed - there's no real difference.

    -Villain
     
  18. Siren

    Siren dead to this world

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    It seriously annoys me when people who want to attack religion identify Christianity with the Catholic church. Generalisations, generalisations, generalisations. As much as you want it, we're not the one and the same [edit: catholics and orthodox]. And the Orthodox church has not taxed, collected or robbed, at least not to my knowledge and not in the recent centuries. It has quite some property, but most of it comes from donations of people before or after their death (wills).

    I don't see how my religion is an obstacle to science, progress, equality or peace on earth. It doesn't usually oppose science and progress (except maybe for a few cases), and it promotes equality and peace (at least in theory). Also it has affected my country in a quite positive way, as it helped preserve our national identity through 4 centuries of slavery, and is partly to blame for us living today free.
     
  19. hyena

    hyena counterclockwise

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    @siren: let's not enter denominational wars now. :D

    @villain: i cannot really agree with your statement until i see proof. i have gone to church since i was a little kid and nobody has ever asked me for money. the only cash i have given to the church has been given voluntarily, and the amounts were really small. i hardly call major robbing the fact that i give about 1 euro each sunday in a collection box. there is also an agreement between the government and the catholic church (and the jewish community, and a couple of protestant communities) which allows me, IF I WANT, to devote 0.8 per cent of my taxes to the church itself. i do check the box each year, but none is the wiser, in the sense that only the tax agency gets to see that. i am absolutely not forced to do so, and of course if i didn't want to give that money to priests/pastors/rabbis i could just check the box that says "State funds for assistance".

    i have never come across anyone - i'm serious, not anyone - who, in my country and in this day and age, has been charged anything to be allowed to worship, confession, communion or any other rite. on the contrary, if you want to attend a scientology meeting, you have to shell out substantial amounts of money.

    now you're going to tell me that if I make a 50 euro donation to my local parish, then it is akin to brainwashing and blackmail, because i believe that it will help save my soul. first, i wouldn't believe that, and nobody in their right mind could. if i give that money, it's because i believe that it's going to be used to assist the local poor. if this is blackmail and brainwashing, then giving money to any charity, religious or otherwise, should be classified as such.

    just give me the proof that anyone, and i'm talking now, not in the 16th century, has been forced to relinquish a part of their income to the catholic church. i doubt you can give me such a proof.
     
  20. QRV

    QRV historyphobic

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    I'd have to agree on this one. I've personally seen orders like the Legionaries of Christ and the Opus Dei in action, and yeah, most of what people have heard about them turns out to be true. There are a lot of frightening psychotic fanatics in there (as in almost sociopathic for Christ), and there's a big mafia going on, which benefits a lot from the high conservative classes in Mexico. And yes, about the brainwashing part: their "spiritual retreats" with rich people are quite scheming and they're not subtle about it.

    Politically, the Catholic Church has recently launched a historical offensive against the secular state in Mexico: they want reforms to the constitution that would allow religious education in public schools. The current conservative administration (which won through a blatant electoral fraud) is quite sympathetic towards this, and no one could be surprised. There's this "secret society" known as El Yunque (The Anvil) working in the very core of the official political party. It is an extreme right-wind organisation which only responds to God and His plan for earthly matters (which they think they've been privileged to grab). Apparently, everything's working together with a certain agenda the Vatican has for Latin America (particularly Mexico) as the last strong bastion for the declining catholicism on Earth. It looks like a conspiracy novel, but it's quite real. And it scares the fuck out of me.


    On the other hand, this has little to do with true religious convictions, and should be taken apart from it. Not everyone in the Church is a mafious bastard. In fact, only a minority is. But that minority is powerful enough.
     

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