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Old 05-16-2003   #21
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Actually, the love of money is the root of all evil.

My newest idea is that Man created the idea of God to explain what he could not explain. But I also believe that there is agreater being, but he did not expect us to be aware of him, or worship him, and he created 'us' for fun. When he became aware that we became 'aware' he stayed to find out what was going on... Something along those lines, I can't word it very well.
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Old 05-16-2003   #22
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There are a lot of interesting opinions in this thread. Being brought up in a "christian" household was tough - I thought I was going to hell when I was 5 years old.

Now (23 years later) I believe that everyone has to find out for themselves what they want to "believe in" if there is anything. I think for a lot of people God is all they have and we shouldn't discredit them and also alot of people feel that God doesn't exist but want to believe that there is a "higher" power so that their life is easier.

Personally I don't believe that anyone has the right to make that decision for you. Only you can decide what you want out of your faith or lack thereof. Just my personal opinion.

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Old 05-16-2003   #23
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pesonally im an agnostic.. but thats me.. 1 out of 6 billion people
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Old 05-30-2003   #24
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i am religion-less.. but considering becoming christian though.. hmm..

how do you live without money? I mean, its impossible to live or survive without money,..
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Old 06-04-2003   #25
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I've been raised as a Roman Catholic all my life, and as of now, still am. I've never really considered myself a true Catholic because unlike the "believe without questioning" attitude shared by many of the leading members of my church, I've always found myself questioning my church's view on exactly how everything came into existence.

I believe that everything written in the Catholic Bible (or any holy text for that matter) should be open to anyone's interpretation. I think that these books were written to guide us to be better people, not to nessessarily follow or believe them word for word.

Just within the last few years, I've been introduced to the ideas of atheism and agnostism (not sure if that's the proper term). I'm very interested in hearing other's opinions on these types of subjects, and this thread has had some of the most interesting arguments I've ever heard.

I think whatever concept you decide to believe in is fine, be it religious or scientific, as long as you continue to search for what you personally feel is right.

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Old 06-04-2003   #26
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An atheist is someone that lacks belief in gods and supernatural beings.
An agnostic is someone who claims that we, as human beings, cannot have the knowledge of whether gods exist or not. Agnostics claim that they can have no knowledge as to whether god or gods exist or not.

I am definitely not an agnostic.




A man's ethical behavior should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and social ties and needs; no religious basis is necessary. Man would indeed be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death.
* Albert Einstein
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Old 06-04-2003   #27
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Quote:
Originally posted by poppyat1
A man's ethical behavior should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and social ties and needs; no religious basis is necessary. Man would indeed be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death.
* Albert Einstein


very good point
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Old 06-06-2003   #28
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I was brought up Church of England, not very strictly but we went to church most Sundays. I went thru a period of not believing in God but recently I have kinda refound my belief in God. You wouldn't know it by my lifestyle tho!!

I think non-religious people who practice "humanity" and are decent to other people of any background, and who respect people's beliefs and differences etc, are often a lot nicer people than really pious "bible-bashing" Christians/followers of other religions.

I don't really think any of the religions i know of, including some of the minor ones, really define what "God" is to me. A commonly asked question is "how can God let wars/violence/murder/rape happen if he's omnipotent" I would say, we have to learn by experience. Having temptation whisked away from under our noses at every turn will not help us grow or learn from our mistakes. Mankind just keeps fucking around with the world, which has got some beautiful and amazing things in it...and tho it hurts God, i figure we have2learn...just like it hurts our parents when we do stuff thats gonna end in tears...but they let us learn and don't hold the reins too tight.

Feel free to disagree, thats just my P.O.V.
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Old 06-20-2003   #29
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Quote:
Originally posted by poppyat1
A man's ethical behavior should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and social ties and needs; no religious basis is necessary. Man would indeed be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death.
* Albert Einstein
Unfortunately, that fear of punishment is a necessity to keep the masses in line. However, for those of us with minds of our own, there is much else to be had from religious teachings.
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Old 01-27-2004   #30
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Re: for all the agnostics and atheists..

ha-ha!
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Old 01-27-2004   #31
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Re: for all the agnostics and atheists..

Quote:
Originally Said by fuzzyhead7
hey peepz.. i just wanted to bounce a couple things offa you guys. i've read the forums for about 6 months now and signed up recently to post because i found that there's a lot of mature people capable of good conversation.. which is a rarity on message boards lately. so whether you read/reply/flame, thanks for looking anyway.

i've always considered agnostic to mean that you believe in the existance of some higher power, or God, but don't know the true religion. atheists simply don't believe in God whatsoever. is this correct, or am i off base?

AGNOSTICS AREN'T SURE EITHER WAY. SOME JUST DON'T CARE. I DON'T KNOW WHAT THE TERM IS FOR A THEIST WITHOUT A RELIGION

i've noticed that a great majority of agnostics/atheists come from families that had forced their own religious beliefs upon them. my parents didn't do this, so i was wondering what the though process was.. because i've noticed it happening a lot, and with increasing frequency in younger people.

MY FAMILY NEVER FORCED RELIGION ON ME. MY FATHER IS SEMI AGNOSTIC SEMI WEAK THEIST. MY MOTHER'S CATHOLIC. RELIGION WAS ONLY FORCE ON ME AFTER I WENT ATHEIST (AT AGE SIX OR SO). I WAS GOING TO A CATHOLIC SCHOOL, AND WAS TREATED AS EVIL. THE TEACHERS THOUGHT ESSENTIALLY "HE'S JUST GOING THROUGH A PHASE, JUST REBELLING. HE'LL CONFORM SOONER OR LATER. OR ELSE."

the other thing i've noticed.. people who are around my age (20) that are religiously affiliated because their parents raised them that way.. seem to have little to no incentive to actually follow the teachings of their religion. i'm pretty sure the bible condemns drunkeness and pre-marital sex,

AS DO OTHER RELIGIOUS BOOKS/LAWS

as well as supports the superiority of men over women.

THE BIBLE DOES THAT A TINY BIT, CERTAINLY MORE THAT THE QURAN FOR EXAMPLE, BUT NOT MUCH AT ALL

(if i'm wrong, sorry!) most of these 'dedicated' religious people i talk to just shrug it off and change the subject, as if they don't know how they can preach how their religion is so good yet they go against the teachings of it. hypocrisy? why even bother to tout your religion when don't really follow your faith?

THAT'S WHAT YOU CALL WEAK THEISM. THEY BELEIVE IN NAME ONLY, HEY NEVER REALLY THINK ABOUT IT.

last.. ever checked out deism? i think it came into play around the time of the enlightenment before the American Revolution.. and it's the belief that there is a God, but you don't rely on any religious authority. basically, God created the possibility of everything and then sat back to see what would happen. we're just that great big experiment for his science fair =P.

THAT STTILL GOES ON THE ILLOGICAL ASSUMPTION THAT THERE IS A GOD.
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Old 01-27-2004   #32
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Re: for all the agnostics and atheists..

Originally Posted by fuzzyhead7
i'm pretty sure the bible condemns drunkeness and pre-marital sex, as well as supports the superiority of men over women. (if i'm wrong, sorry!) most of these 'dedicated' religious people i talk to just shrug it off and change the subject, as if they don't know how they can preach how their religion is so good yet they go against the teachings of it. hypocrisy? why even bother to tout your religion when don't really follow your faith?

It's tough to follow a religion without being a hypocrite, I suppose. Yes, the Bible condemns pre-marital sex (if you take a girl's virginity, you're supposed to pay her father for his loss, according to one passage) and supports male superiority (quite a bit, actually).
But it also condemns sorcery, too. And we kind of ignore that because...we don't want to go after Psychic Hotline people and James Van Praagh and stone them to death...
And it advises that a woman should sit outside the home when menstruating, and the clothes she wears and any furniture she sits upon during that period should be thrown out (maybe even burned--can't recall).
But we truly don't listen to all those things because there are so many passages that contradict each other. So many proclamations by "God" are contradicted in other parts of the Bible. So many of the parables and orders make no sense in the modern world. So, we pick the ones that matter to us and that's how we get so many different denominations.

And agnostics claim that we cannot know whether there is a god.
I suppose people who believe in a supreme being, but have no specific religious ties would simply be theists.

By the way, I like the way you make statements in a laidback, non-confrontational way.
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Old 01-27-2004   #33
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Re: for all the agnostics and atheists..

I am the same way as fadingroses. Religion was not forced on me. It's just that I have always questioned things, and asked why, and the more I questioned religion and the existance of god, the more outrageous it seemed. I am atheist. I do not believe in any type of religion or god. I do not believe that there is a heaven or hell, in spirits or souls, or anything like that. I don't believe in miracles or faith, and I don't believe things happen for a reason. We are who we are because the things in our life shape and mold us into that.

I think religion stems from ignorance, and people afraid to think for themselves. I actually think it's quite funny sometimes, and I get very angry when people try to justify or condemn actions with the Bible or their religious quotes. I don't respect people who use it as justification for homophobia, then watch lesbian pornos while sleeping with their wife's best friend. There are so many instances similar to that. I do not either, like church people. For the most part, the ones I have met have been rude, and the churches I went to before I completely abandoned these "stories," contained only rude people that made me feel uncomfortable and unwelcomed. These were Baptist, Church of God, Lutheran, lots of Christian faiths.

And I hate feeling so strongly against religions and not being able to even stand up for myself without being "attacked." I feel like I can have the freedom of any religion, as long as I have one, but the freedom to be free of them all, my parents see as evil. They think atheists as evil, and so on, and it really sucks. I can't object when people preach their stupid Bible, because it gets back to my mom. My mom would really probably kick me out if she knew I was atheist. And who knows what my dad would do.

Religion gives stupid people justification for their stupid actions.
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Old 01-28-2004   #34
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Re: for all the agnostics and atheists..

(sorry if this has already been said, i didn't read every post)

I think a lot of athiests don't necessarily come from homes where religion was forced. I think science plays a huge part and whether one is a scientest or believes in science (referring to evolution and what not) can also make someone become an athiest.
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Old 01-28-2004   #35
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Re: for all the agnostics and atheists..

Quote:
Originally Said by noseboy
(sorry if this has already been said, i didn't read every post)

I think a lot of athiests don't necessarily come from homes where religion was forced. I think science plays a huge part and whether one is a scientest or believes in science (referring to evolution and what not) can also make someone become an athiest.
it diddn't even take that much for me. it just seemed so blindingly stupid to beleive in a god. i thought everybody else was absolutely brainless. it was as though everybody was telling me the grass was purple. i couldn't beleive it.
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Old 01-28-2004   #36
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Re: for all the agnostics and atheists..

I pretty much feel the way you guys do about the Christian religion. I've attened a Catholic school for 11 years now, and while the Theology classes can be fun, they mean nothing to me. I'm not sure if it's because I was overexposed to religion or what, but it all stopped making sense when I was in 7th grade. I went through this stage where I wanted to become a nun, I think I was in 8th grade. We went to all these teen retreats and stuff... and it was fun, and I thought that I really believed all the stuff they said. It was a powerful experience, I'll tell you that. But all of a sudden, questions started coming up, like if God is so loving, why did he flood the earth? Why are people who are not baptized not able to go to heaven? Stuff like that. I believe that no one will truly know what it out there until we die. Until then, party hardy! Just kidding... But seriously... if God truly is the loving being people say he/she/it is, he will accept you into heaven, like the prodigal son story. After all, all religions aside from atheism believe in a higher power, and that gives them hope. Hope is sometimes all that people need.
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Old 01-28-2004   #37
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Re: for all the agnostics and atheists..

Argentmoon, atheism is not a religion.
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Old 01-28-2004   #38
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Re: for all the agnostics and atheists..

Quote:
Originally Said by noseboy
I think a lot of athiests don't necessarily come from homes where religion was forced. I think science plays a huge part and whether one is a scientest or believes in science (referring to evolution and what not) can also make someone become an athiest.
I think you're right, to an extent. It's also not just science, though. Generally speaking, those with more education are less likely to believe in a higher power. This doesn't mean that smart people don't believe in God--plenty do.

Some people on this thread have simplified the matter by pointing to religion as a resource for "the stupid." And, yes, I've known plenty of unthinking people who use religion in uncritical and hypocritical ways. But there are plenty of smart people who also get deeply involved in alien abduction/visitation theories, JFK conspiracy theories, Shakespeare conspiracy theories...all things that have flimsy evidence and take a lot of faith to buy into. Arthur Conan Doyle, author of Sherlock Holmes stories, was completely fooled by the photographic trickery of two adolescent girls who had photographic proof of tiny fairies in their garden.

Cultural history also has an influence. The United States is one of the few advanced countries to have such a high percentage of people with strong faith. If you were born in Great Britain, you would be less likely to have religious beliefs.

For anyone seriously interested in this subject, check out a book by Michael Shermer called Why We Believe. Shermer is a skeptic who doesn't believe in God, but gives a fair and respectful examination of the reasons behind people's religious beliefs.
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Old 01-29-2004   #39
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Re: for all the agnostics and atheists..

i just noticed something odd. most people who are theist and beleive in life after death want to live forever, and are afraid of death. i'm atheist,and don't beleive in any heaven, but i would prefer to die painlessly than get old.
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Old 01-29-2004   #40
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Re: for all the agnostics and atheists..

Quote:
Originally Said by 4degrees
Argentmoon, atheism is not a religion.
Heh, sorry, that was clumsy of me.
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