Christianity

Discussion in 'Every Day Debating' started by Eàmanë, Aug 9, 2003.

  1. Lord Yuan

    Lord Yuan Death-Thousand+

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    Charity is a very temporary ineffective fix for anything. I'd rather people shoot for higher goals in real life than try to get in God's good book to happy sky world, that way society as a whole will improve and upscale the living conditions for everybody including the poor and disabled.

    I'd donate my own time to charity work if my working goal in life wasn't to end the human condition, technological and scientific advancements take maximum priority over giving a quarter so a man without a house can have a loaf of bread. In the short term it might be cruel but if we can pave the way for a better future and fix the cause of a problem rather than the results of it, then I say it is for the greater good.

    On top of that many archaic ethical standards and preset definitions of the world Christianity has hold back technological, scientific, and social progression. Why would you want anything on Earth to change for the better when none of it matters when we all die and go to heaven kind of mentalities seem too aplenty. Even more so when you consider they are revolving their whole life around something that has zero evidence and by definition is unprovable rather than a concrete tested known.
     
  2. wanderingmagus

    wanderingmagus Constantly Around :D

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    starve the poor of today so that we may build a better future, eh.

    i like how it's the monks that kept the records of scientific knowledge safe during the feudal ages in Europe. Oh, and also how chemistry developed out of alchemy and that out of superstition. I also appreciate how some of the most famous peacemakers like Martin Luther King Jr. and Mother Teresa and Ghandi were religious.

    Or perhaps one wonders why it is that Atheism has only developed into a moderately widespread thing so recently, after thousands upon thousands of years of religious societies building up technology, social progression and scientific knowledge.
     
  3. Lord Yuan

    Lord Yuan Death-Thousand+

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    The past people deserve credit for their own actions, but the people that did the deserve credit, not their God.

    And I prefer to think of it as duty for the future, now. We can build up a ton of things for a single person and make that person happy but as soon as they are dead all that effort was wasted. Instead if the scope is broadened for the future everybody in total will suffer less and have improved living conditions. I care far more about the future and preservation of the human race as a whole than just one small clipping or temporary social group.

    I'm not saying that Christianity should be eradicated, I'm just saying that the idea of one definite truth determined by an old book and a bunch of old men should be eradicated. Or else trying to convert everybody to be saved will continue forever despite people that want to have the free thought they are entitled to. If everybody accepted what was blindly dictated at them the world would be far worse off.

    I'm not a proponent of atheism either, I'm a proponent of doubt. And when something declares itself unquestionable I count that a red flag.
     
  4. ~Elladan~

    ~Elladan~ A Elbereth Gilthoniel

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    Figures for the US for 2011 suggest donations to faith-based charities represented less than 1/3rd of total. It follows that 2/3rds of charitable work must be non-faith funded/run:
    http://www.nps.gov/partnerships/fundraising_individuals_statistics.htm

    I donate a fair amount to charity, mostly health-focused. I'm both atheist and anti-theist. None of the charities I donate to are run by religious institutions.
     
  5. Cascador

    Cascador Who's Anakin?

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    Is this a competition of who is more charitable? Christians or Atheist? Come on, even Christians will donate for charity even if it's not run by a religious group, and vice versa. I've donated to charities run by religious group. In the end I don't care who runs it... I care where the money goes to. And that should be the end of it.
     
  6. ~Elladan~

    ~Elladan~ A Elbereth Gilthoniel

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    Indeed Anakin ~ I was just responding to the suggestion that religious institutions had cornered the charity market ;)
     
  7. Raigon

    Raigon New Member

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    I've had a classmate once said to me something that I didn't know how to counter. He said that "God either doesn't exist or he is powerless because things like war punish both bad and good people alike and there are good people who do good deeds who live horrible lives and die horrible deaths and criminals likes thieves or murderers who get away with what they do and live and die happily. If he exists, why does he let things like that happen? And if he is all powerful, why didn't he create a better world in the first place? And if he doesn't exist or is powerless, then what's the point of Christianity".

    While I am a buddhist, sometimes I do wonder how I could counter that statement, because I do think that the thought of Christianity and the idea of a higher power looking over you does help a lot of people through tough times and while I'm not Christian, I do respect what they do. What do you guys think?
     
  8. Turambar

    Turambar Harebrained Staff Member

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    The thing is that the fact that He(/She/They) seems to be rather lessez-faire about matters proves very little. All it proves is that whatever the case, He is not of the intervening sort. The reason as to why he isn't is rather speculatory. Maybe there's war by His design. Maybe he stands to gain from it. Maybe he's preventing worse by having a war erupt (lesser evil style of thing). Or, indeed, maybe there is none. Or, who knows, preventing war is beyond is ability to prevent. Maybe intervention would be worse than having humans take their course. Maybe He doesn't care. Who knows?

    The agnostic in me says we actually know very little about God(s) (if any). The fact that we don't know, doesn't prove anything, when it comes down to it. You can only make a statement about this sort of thing when you make religion specific. If you do say that God(s) will intervene when the situation calls for it, and he fails to show up, then you can be sure that there's something fishy about the specific religion.

    I don't think however that any of the major religions predict this style of intervention, though. There seems to be a lot of after-life consequences going on, though (with the notable exception of Judaism, or so I am given to understand). The nice thing about those is that there isn't much feedback ;)
     
  9. wanderingmagus

    wanderingmagus Constantly Around :D

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    and, of course, many religions (particularly polytheistic ones) have gods that don't actually care about humanity aside from getting sacrifices and such in return for good crops/etc. Take Shinto, for one. Do you really think the gods actually care about you puny, puny mortals on a speck of dust?
     
  10. Raigon

    Raigon New Member

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    I'm thinking that Gods to us are like us to other species animals. We normally ignore them, but at times we have humanitarian groups or animal rights groups/vets who occasionally stumble upon a poor animal and save their lives. Maybe they think of us as gods.

    Maybe Gods are like that, too. Maybe they're just a more advanced species than us and view us as nothing more than a speck of dust like wanderingmagus says, like we view other animals as insignificant for the most parts. But on occasions, there are a few gods who take interest, like those who major in our species in their college or institute for gods, some humanitarian/human rights activists, or nice gods, and help us out on occasions out of goodness of heart or for their own interest. And like some people are evil or just idiots and hunt animals or flood an anthill with a hose and kill them off for fun. I'm guessing there are Gods like that, too.
     
  11. Lord Yuan

    Lord Yuan Death-Thousand+

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    If that is the case I'd argue polytheism is more likely than monotheism and it would justify more of the natural world as it is.
     
  12. Crouton

    Crouton New Member

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    I would like to see some statistics to prove this. Where I live most charities have nothing at all to do with religion. They are sponsored by people who are religious, who aren't religious, people from all walks of life. If anything I'd think religions would take more money then they would give it to charity. What happened to all that controversy about the Catholic Church stealing millions? And then there's other religions like scientology who's only goal seem to be to take money from their brainwashed members.
     
  13. Sparrow

    Sparrow Well-Known Member

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    Actually it's neither religious charities or nonreligious charities that do the most for people in need... it's democratic governments that by far have the lion's share of the responsibility. Remember also, it's the government that helps fund many of these so called charities, both faith-based and secular.
     
  14. Crouton

    Crouton New Member

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    You mean there's a Government somewhere that does something good? Instead of just sucking the lives out of everyone? Where is it! I want to see this good Government.
     
  15. Beldaran

    Beldaran Guest

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    governments aren't that bad.. i think people should think about what would happen if there were no governments at all(think of the revolutions). As was stated in the federalist papers...

    “If men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary. In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself. A dependence on the people is, no doubt, the primary control on the government; but experience has taught mankind the necessity of auxiliary precautions.”

    it's the nature of men to be selfish.. i think we should look more at the things that the government does well, which actually is a lot if you think about it. That does not mean we cannot look at the faults, otherwise we couldn't solve problems. governments are in general corrupt in a more or lesser way and do a lot of awful and stupid things, but they also do good. A lot of people say they are not free to do as they please and whine about all the rules, but isn't there something of truth in what hobbes said about to be able to be free and fulfil your desires, is to give up your rights, so every person can get equal rights :).
     
  16. Lord Yuan

    Lord Yuan Death-Thousand+

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    Selfishness is a natural barrier to ensure survival. Our technology and society has made it mostly obsolete, but people will still cling onto frivolities when they can't help it and because it is still promoted in society. Governments can help, but no government is perfect. The lack of organization and coherence in a anarchist society wouldn't make progression more easy.

    Also remember that a government isn't just a thing, it is made of people with positions that mostly decide what happens. Some of them may still be wired to service themselves before others or pass unnecessary judgement. People aren't perfect and we are clashing with our built in natural faults, but we've come a long way.
     
  17. Beldaran

    Beldaran Guest

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    saying exactly the same :p, so totally agree with you!
     
  18. Sparrow

    Sparrow Well-Known Member

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    In any democratic system the people get the representation they deserve.

    How involved in government are you, do you even take the time to vote, or write your representatives an email to let them know how you feel... or like most everybody else do you simply complain about it?
     
  19. Turambar

    Turambar Harebrained Staff Member

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    I see my place here has been taken.

    Unless we want to go into theocracy, though, I don't quite see how this has got much to do with Christianity. Feel free to start a new thread - about whether governments are, generally, good or bad. But I don't think this is the place. :)
     
  20. Beldaran

    Beldaran Guest

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    Sorry!! Perhaps I'll start a new thread :).

    What do you mean by "I see my place here has been taken"?