Show that there is *religiously* motivated violence

Discussion in 'Religion Archives' started by wynn, Dec 3, 2011.

  1. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

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    Your standard of proof is the consensus of a particular community: truth is that which a particular community agrees upon to consider the truth.
    Your notion of consensus is authoritarian and superioristic: the consensus of one community is authoritative over all other communities and individuals.


    Surely you are aware of the different conceptions of "truth" -
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Truth
    Issues of truth are one of the largest subjects of philosophy.


    One of the major implicit themes of this thread are precisely the various theories of truth.


    Theists will necessarily relate issues of truth to God.

    If atheists are to correctly interpret theistic arguments, then the atheists, too, need to reserve a place for God.
     
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  3. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

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    Most atheists don't think it is delusional. "Delusion" generally requires there to be evidence to the contrary, whereas most atheists merely hold that there is zero evidence for God.
    Whether people attribute evidence to "God" or not is something for which we are responsible.

    The idea that religion / religious beliefs are a delusion is thus not an issue, as they are not, at least not in the sense of "delusion" that would warrant diminished responsibility etc.
     
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  5. Jan Ardena OM!!! Valued Senior Member

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    Aqueous Id,



    You can't force someone to BE religious, anymore than you can force someone to love you.
    Through fear I may act as though I'm religious, by doing and saying all the things I'm supposed to say, but would leave if I got the chance.

    That, I believe is a position of alot of modern atheists today.





    Remember, I would not have had a choice, so my motive for responding would be politcal, lawfull (maybe), based in fear, but not religious, even if I convinced myself I was religious.

    To be religious, I would have to BE religious of my own choosing,that is part of becoming religious. If you read the teachings of Jesus, he never once tried to force anyone to have faith in God. The emphasis was always on ones realisation of God. And he did this in numerous ways.



    But this would just be a pretence. My being in this situation is due to force, so everything I percieve would be tarred with fear. Unless I actually new better, I would just be political tool, fighting for my immediate superiors, parotting their mantras. At best, the reality of my partaking would be motivated by pride. I would be whatever the system I fear, want me to be.
    That's not religion.





    You mean it would be the equivelant of today's sending a pretty gal in amongst the troops, to get their peckars up, give them something to think about and look forward to when they get home?
    So their motivation becaomes tail?

    You know the history of the first crusade, was Pope Uban II, s motives really religiously based, or did he see an oppotunity to better himself, by increasing the power of the papacy, by using religion as a rallying point?




    And Rock and Roll wasn't, or isn't used as a political tool?

    Everything you say smacks of intentional ploy, not religion.
    This is why I asked you to define religion, so I could see why you think this way. For you this is religious, because it has been played in the way that you see it. However, religion isn't that one thing. It operates on many levels.
    IMO, we are all religious to different degrees.

    If God is for real, and the ultimate aim of religion is for humans to come to that realisation and understanding, then it stands to reason that it is to be percieved by every single human. But we know that there are as many different types of humans (as a whole), as there are humans. Otherwise what is it's value, if it is only meant for some and not others.



    All for what? Pope Urban's dream of ruling the world?
    That is the motivating factor. All the other stuff is there to support that.
    Remember, we're talking about the ''motive'' not the method.




    I can Imagine a WWII soldier feeling special when Marylyn Munroe looked at him directly in the eye, and blew him a kiss.



    The transition cannot be ''seamless'' as I have been forced into this scenario, my will would have been broken. I would be an empty shell. Imagine being repeatedly raped while having absolutely no control. I would have thought one either passes out, struggle to be met with more pain, or become an empty shell, by retreating to a place in ones mind, where you make believe it's not happening to you. But, to actually be for it with eagerness, and zeal?
    I doubt it.



    And if I refused, all of a sudden my family wouldn't be safe?
    Another reason to pretend. What?



    Jesus was known about, and his teachings only needed to be heard.
    The Bible itself, is not religion. One does not read the bible, say I believe, and voila, one is automatically religious. This is a misconception on your part. And While it may resonate with experiences you may have had, or known people have, it is not the religion, or the essence of the teachings, that you fight with, but the establishments that have rose up and become powerful institutions. You accept these as the embodiment of what religion is.


    It doesn't matter, if you hear something about Jesus, then it is possible to resonate with his character. Some will strike a connection because they themself are of a certain quality of character. Curiosity will grow.
    Just like in communist countries where religion is/was outlawed, there were still groups of people, young people, who still wanted to practice.

    Religion is inside the person, it's not something that you can get from outside of you. It is about the person. It is the only kind of discipline where one comes face to face with their real self. Art and philosophy bridge the divide (in different ways) allowing exploration and expression of the self.



    That's not how religious people operate, unless they aren't as religious as they think they are. What you are describing is the politics of a person who sees himself as religious, but it firmly entrenched in political, and societal machinary of the world. He's trying to balance the gratification of his senses, with the idea of going to heaven, or having an ideal type of afterlife. IOW, he is thinking he is creating is own destiny. I say ''he'', but I think it is endemic in the majority of us.

    To a properly religiously situated person, this world is but a fleeting illusion, like a carrot dangle infront of an ass. In his attempt to get the satifaction of a carrot, he forever moves forward not realising he will never attain his goal by himself. While all this is happening his master is working him hard, putting load after load on his back, but he is not aware of it because he is attracted to idea of getting the carrot.



    This is all based on your perception of religion.
    But I don't think you've really put yourself into it.
    I think there is a certain amount of bias in your conclusion.


    The thing is, there is no end to putting different spins on religion. Anyone who has the power can affect a perception at will. They can anger us, they can make us wear silly clothes, eat rubbish, drink rubbish, the possibilities are endless to those who control our resourses, economics, education, food source, etc...

    But there can only be one real good, it can't be mimicked, or used as a ploy.
    Good doesn't register on the senses as highly as a tripple-decker big Mac would to a whole host of people in this world.

    Good, is hard to find, these days.

    jan.
     
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  7. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

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    Everyone but you and similarly situated errants.


    Religion is about God in the 3rd person (grammatically). People talk about God all day long without a peep out of the God-person you speak of.

    We can elaborate on religion extensively through the demonstrations of belief, including witnessed religious murders, but also every other feature observed. We can make inferences and test them against the best evidence. And if it can be done honestly (ie without furtherance of a proprietary religious motive) then we assemble all of this knowledge under the field of Theology, and we give accreditation, where due, for such inquiry by opening colleges of Theology in reputable universities. And there, the observation, inferences, testing and retrieval of best evidence goes on unhampered by your supposed barrier.

    No, you introduce an atom of error here. Nature also is causing the phenomenon. Were it not for certain constructs of the brain endowed by nature, we might have all been born incapable of this fallacy. You would never have entertained it, because a heightened awareness of absurdity would prevent you from confusing unreality with reality.

    For all I know you may have a genetic predisposition for this type of fallacy. I doubt that it's that simple, but it's as close as I can get without more information to understand the (potential) biological causes of your fallacy.

    This is mixing apples with oranges. The fact that the Catholic Encyclopedia arises from a church is irrelevant to the source material I gave which proves religiously motivated violence as per my discussion. The notion that religion is man-made is not mine, and if you studied philosophy, as I am gleaning from these conversations, then you already know that Critias understood and explained this.

    Finally, as to excluding God's input, no. Every time I use a particular type of lab instrument, I calibrate it against the cosmic spectral emission, at -273°C. In this apparatus, I am providing an antenna (or microphone) for God's input. All I get is noise at -273°C. It is the Big Bang talking to me, telling me the same thing that you call God. I don't know if they covered that in Philosophy, but I would strongly support such an inclusion into the curricula.

    I think a Catholic might reply: :bugeye:

    There's irony here since Katholicos means "widely-held"

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    . Unfortunately it has this other Papist meaning attached during the Reformation so that leaves a blur on the humor of your statement.

    As I said before, my purpose was to give you source material to prove religious motivation for killing. I went to the Catholic source because they were people previously known as Christians but now differentiated as Catholics who were doing the religion, the motivating and the killing.

    Contrary to your charge, I went into an exploration of their deepest held beliefs, to show the earnestness of their conversations with God, as in the Credo, set to music, even as they put their swords to the sharpening stones. These would then be carried into the church and blessed by the priest in the most solemn of conversations with their God.
     
  8. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

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    By this, you seem to mean that whatever you say is the objective truth, and not your subjective input.

    You can afford to say that you're irrelevant, because you believe that what you say is objective.
     
  9. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

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    And in all this, you overlooked the fact that it is you who went into that exploration, that it is you, with a particular set of beliefs and values who went into that exploration.

    IOW, you assume to be objective, to the point that you don't even acknowledge this assumption.

    You speak as if you wouldn't be speaking from a point of view.
     
  10. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

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    IOW, you are a strong atheist and you see no problem with it.

    And you are willing to pathologize and deman others in the name of your atheism.

    And you see no problem with doing so.
     
  11. GeoffP Caput gerat lupinum Valued Senior Member

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    Why? You've presented no evidence for God.

    And are you now saying that God is related to religion? Because when He was smiting people earlier, Jan didn't seem to think so. He's a theist. Surely he understands theistic arguments better than you. How can we make a place at the table for God when God isn't proven anyway? I'll wager you lot couldn't even define Him.
     
  12. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

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    It's called "avoiding the logical fallacy of strawmaning."

    If theists consider God to be central, then, in order to represent the theistic stance correctly, it is necessary to also consider God to be central.
    Anything else is misrepresentation.
     
  13. GeoffP Caput gerat lupinum Valued Senior Member

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    Wrong. I can as easily say that to represent the atheistic stance correctly, it is necessary to accept that God does not exist.

    As it stands, there is no evidence for God, and so your stipulation must be rejected. Why do you want to place special conditions on your hypothesis?
     
  14. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

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    You believe that strawmaning is acceptable?


    Indeed.


    Nothing special, just ordinary critical thinking procedures.
     
  15. Jan Ardena OM!!! Valued Senior Member

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    GeoffP,



    What makes you think you would recognise evidence for God?


    Funny, that's what Bells was harping on about.
    Please show me?

    Why are you so sure?

    He is the Supreme Person, the First Person.
    He is the origin of everything we percieve, and the Master of nature.
    He IS reality, and we are His parts and parcels, who decided we want to teeny timy God's (even to the extent of thinking there is no God).
    He is eternal, full of opulence, omniscient, the resovoir of all pleasures.


    MONEY PLEASE!!!

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    jan.
     
  16. GeoffP Caput gerat lupinum Valued Senior Member

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    LOL. Apparently you do. It was quite clear that my "wrong" applied to stances on theism and atheism:

    Do you ever get tired of misrepresenting yourself, your argument and now others? Does this strike you as perversely logical or protective of something?

    So neither is particularly sacred to the argument, since the one contradicts the other.

    Ordinary critical thinking procedures don't require unnatural conditions.
     
  17. GeoffP Caput gerat lupinum Valued Senior Member

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    22,087
    What makes you think you would? What makes you think you could present it?

    Nah, not going to bother. Neither one of you appear to have been too honest in this debate, so I don't see the need to indulge your specifications now. Evil unto him who thinks evil.

    Just using wynn's working hypothesis. You should probably ask him about it.

    That was largely meaningless: mere allegories. I must conclude that you don't know what God is.

    See how that works? Not nice, is it?

    Money please.

    Geoff
     
  18. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

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    It's funny to bash me for using an acclaimed authority, then go to Wiki for your authority.

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    My field is science. So you can't say anything scientific that I will stridently dispute, and you can't flail science without my dispute. Science is the pursuit of truth. Everywhere I turn I see authority. Is that authoritarian? If I tell you I rely on Newton to explain classical physics, would you call me authoritarian? No, of course not. You're calling me authoritarian because I'm opposing you, nothing more.

    By the way, I take umbrage at being called authoritarian because I have lived under a dictatorship.

    As for the theory of truth, my own world of theory has little use for it. I am bound to a field that requires me to rely on best evidence, proven methods of discovery and analysis, and honest interdisciplinary review. If that makes me an empiricist-materialist, then so be it. It may strike you as lowbrow or clinical but it works, reliably so, and I have no choice but to continue on this road, as any reversal would be insane. I will be drooling in a straight-jacket before that happens.

    I disagree that religiosity arises out of a deep investigation of the philosophical theory of truth. If anything it is merely a reluctance to face the facts of best evidence. It intrigues me that the religious mind is so averse to evidence. It intrigues me that you love philosophy yet you are averse to its most famous application - science.

    Which is why the Doctors of Philosophy in Theology, who I was referencing, are people you should not regard as authoritarian.

    If you love truth, you should love all knowledge. You turned a cold shoulder to the Credo which reveals deep truths about who these people were and how they thought and acted. Which of us is demonstrating more love of truth? Which is more the philosopher?

    I find inordinate resistance and oppression of truth here. I assure you, the first mark of authoritarianism is the insistence that it possesses truth, while oppressing it.

    In order to relate truth, which requires science, to God, for which there is no science (beyond Theology) you must first admit a paradox.

    The places reserved for God I call churches. I only enter them for weddings or funerals. When I do, I find it very unsettling. I feel I must check my sanity at the door. Other churches I investigated in my age of curiosity were utterly unrelated by culture, history and belief, yet I had the same sick feeling.

    To reserve a psychic place for God is to admit a thing I know to be untrue. So it is insane. There are countless fantasies one could reserve a place for, but most of them are either harmful or delusional. Some--like hoping some good will come from posting here--are harmless, and so I allow for things like that.

    As far as my need to recalibrate to understand theistic arguments, I am approaching this as I would if addressing a non-native speaker. So in that regard I have recalilbrated. I reached out to you in the voice of a person versed in the humanities, believing that you do not speak science. I spoke to you in the voice of a Theologian but you rejected that too.

    The only language left (I suppose) is religiosity, which I do not speak. And besides, I have witnessed too much religiously-motivated violence to engage in a hypothetical that absolves perpetrators of their religion in moment they become violent. Any lover of truth should shrink from horror at the reality of this.
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2012
  19. Bells Staff Member

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    Wait..

    So now you are claiming that God is religious?

    And I am still waiting for you to answer the questions I asked of you earlier.

    As for Wynn, we know she is not a theist because she specifically stated she was not a theist. Unless of course you are now denying what she said as well now? Or has she changed her mind?
     
  20. aaqucnaona This sentence is a lie Valued Senior Member

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    The problem here is that while this is beautifully poetic, it doesnt get us far. The definition must state how, when or why does he interwene or if he interwenes at all. Also it must state or extrapolate our relation to Him and what He expects from us. Is this just the first person from which all comes, the scientist who made the big bang, like in deism? If so, I would have be 50-50 on it.

    The problem becomes complicated because this definition doesn't grant truth to religions or their deities. I am sure that the religious deities [anthromorphised personal gods] dont exist, though the god you describe may exist. But, what is our relation to Him? For example, does he really care for prayer? The god you describe cannot be partisan only to humans, just one species on one planet. If the is the father of all, he must care for all species on all planets with life or be apatheitic to all - there is no special place for us just because we ended up the dominant species on our planet - a totally and systemically ramdom event, which God had no control on. You mention omniscient in the description, so that naturally excludes omnipotentce, right?

    So, if he doesnt care about us or just us and he is the not the God religions describe, why even think of Him at all? Why not be apatheists, rather than atheists or theists. Why not let religion phase into just a form of moral philosophy?

    A few questions about your post - the Master of nature - how? We ruled out omnipotence, right? And interference with nature is also ruled out, no? Do you mean it as origin of nature?

    the resovoir of all pleasures - Do you mean that all pleasure literlly come from god or do you mean the pleasures are the result of the world he once made or set into motion? The former raises the problem of evil but the latter is compatible with current scientific facts about the universe - like the process of the evolution and emergence of our species was completely naturalistic.

    Ps. I would also assert that there are no revelations, only insights caused by our own thought processes.
     
  21. aaqucnaona This sentence is a lie Valued Senior Member

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    What you fail to take into account is that this is not a democratic process. Truth in science is not something on which there is consenses. It is something that is fitting and substantiated by actual, objective, empirical observations. As such, its not to community who agrees to consider something the truth, its the world around us which forces us to accept an observation or a model as true - it truely is superior because the community does make the choice to consider something as true, the natural world does - which IS superior and authoritative above all communities.

    The subjectively or conditionally [if...then..need] correct interpretation can actually be the wrong one. You see, you can interpret things any way you like, but that doesnt change what it actually is, it only changes what you think of it. And pray tell me, why do we need to reserve a place for God? Why do we need God? Please dont tell me you would go for a "God of the Gaps" argument here.

    Most of these gaps are shrunk/filled by modern science. More will be filled in the future. For over half a millennium, science has not only left less things for god to do, but it has also given better and practically useful explainations for things once the domain of god - like evolution, germ theory, vaccination, psychology, physics and motion, describing the heavens [space], etc. In fact, it has specifically shown that God is not needed for most things that were once considered to be his work.
     
  22. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

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    Do you believe Medieval Christians did not love God?
    Possibly so, and I would add that the older atheists received lethal doses of Cold War indoctrination, which aggravated the phobia. On the other hand, I have friends who were indoctrinated as children, grew up as well-centered people and never developed this aversion. They never stopped loving God despite like many of their peers did. I don’t know how rare that is.
    Only if you believe they did not love God, which I do believe.
    I am assuming they had few Bibles and probably didn’t read Latin. I can’t say for sure how they regarded the words of Jesus, but certainly they revered the Church and probably regarded its words as if they were coming from Jesus himself. I think it’s a modern idea that you get to choose to be religious. Their world view was quite different. I think by this time they were doing infant baptisms, which means you were put under contract while comatose. I agree that on the surface Jesus doesn’t impose religion and seems gentle. But there is a very daunting threat from Him about a fiery punishment and he has this dual persona, though muted, that also further the cause of indoctrination.
    For you, as a modern person, sure. I don’t think they lived in that kind of fear, though. Their art and music emotes extraordinary beauty, as if in a state of bliss. Also, in those days you see the rise of fealty, chivalry, and early incarnations of romanticism and enlightenment. I’m not saying it was Disneyland. They had overlords – the church, the ruling class, and by default, the man ruled over his family. Remember also, revered men had been elevated to sainthood for their purity, obedience and asceticism. Take any of the monks who went out to the hinterlands and lived on berries. So they revered discipline which is quite different than living in fear. I’m not disagreeing with you, I just think that their context was so different that it creates the perfect storm for what was about to happen to them.
    For me the ultimate debauchery of today’s soldiers was the torture at Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo, and the secret rendition facilities. It’s one thing to have your genitals aroused, and quite another to have them mutilated. I think I’m maybe not as skeptical as you about the reasons their arts grew he way they did. You may see it as purely political. I see an honest pride in their work. The Guild Halls in Bruges are an example. The Guilds competed with each other, each hall becoming more extravagant than the other, showing an honest sense of pride that had nothing to do with the Church. But then they applied these skills to build these beautiful shrines to their God. So I think there’s an innocence and honesty there that is lost to us unless we look at their cultural artifacts.
    The papacy was in shambles, Italy itself was carved up, troops were on the march all around him, and he had to have a military escort to safely get back to Rome after his speech in France that launched the First Crusade. A fake pope even tried to take his throne once or twice. He was getting ready to alienate the French king by excommunicating him. If he was a political animal, it seems he would want the Frankish Knights to overthrow their king in a coup d’etat, and install a new king loyal to the Pope. But instead, he encouraged them to go far way into this foreign war. His reasons seem to me to be strictly religious. He didn’t have the kind of secular empire that other popes had. I think his main source of power was from his position as the religious authority. He seems to have been focused on resolving pressing ethical and religious questions of the day, not carving up land or counting his moneybags. The sad part of the story is that he may have been one of the good guys of that era.
    You don’t like to jam? This is probably the most cynical way to think of that era. We could probably try to break down how it was used, but you can’t avoid that the record labels promoted whatever sold. It was crazy, hip, and an alternative to the jitterbug. We went from Little Brown Jug to Hendrix torching his axe. I wouldn’t lump all of that complexity into the idea of a political tool. Besides some of the most political were the beatniks with that cool coffee house groove, and the hipster folk groove that grew on that. But when you say “tool” you lose the genuineness of voice of the artists themselves. To me they still speak from the heart. For example, try your analysis on Leonard Cohen’s Suzanne or Joan Baez’s There But For Fortune, which carry religious themes into a new context. These may not suit your taste, but they are interesting examples of the human aspect you may be overlooking.
    Only maybe if you feel some kind of indignation that makes you suspicious or cynical about what makes people tick.
    No I don’t think you see me at all. I think you misjudge me to some degree and I think you don’t want the Old World to be validated, but I’m not sure. It seems that way.
    Yes and in the 10th century there was little room for individuality for this reason, that there must one God, one true religion, thus individuality is counter-productive to God, it goes against God’s will.
    No, the pope had nothing to do with it. Chant originated in the monasteries as I recall. All of the liturgy that I can think of came from the grass roots. Think of the Troubadors. They were the Bob Dylans of their age. I think you underrate the faithful of that era. I think that this was where individualism had its expression. Also I don’t think the Pope had a chance of ruling over anything except the religious matters of a highly fractionalized western Europe.
    Interesting. Do you mean you reject the idea that Old World Christians felt reverence toward God, that they must serve Him with all their heart, all their mind, and all their soul?
    I suppose I could just as easily compare the most enlightened form of modern religion In the same context. Your notions of force may be a little limited. Suppose I were to suggest that a theist is forced into an unrealistic world view that rapes her logical mind?

    Besides, there was plenary indulgence, and the Church was adopting your family.
    No, they were volunteers as I recall. You were only given the plenary indulgence if you were sincere and acting out of personal conscience. God would judge you on that element before forgiving your sins. Your family was safe whether you stayed or went, that was the offer. The price your family paid, if you left them, was poverty and servitude in a convent or abbey.

    You asked how the teachings of Jesus came into play. Don't forget that the Bible was not widely disseminated in the 10th century, and I suspect most commoners couldn't read Latin, if they could read at all. This put an enormous burden on the fledgling diocese to preach the Bible message at Mass. That was one of the embellishments I was referring to. It was right about the 10th C. when they decided to bring the Credo into the Mass after the Readings and Homily. So you are read Jesus' message, it is explained to you what it means you must do, then you have the Credo, which expresses your pledge, and, toward the end, your pledge to the Church
    If they did not possess a Bible, could not read Latin, then their only source of information about what Jesus said came entirely from the Church. Remember that in those days the Church was their school and they were its students. No other information was available.
    For you maybe, with the benefits of easy access to information. But I have been highlighting the differences between your world view and theirs. As far as they knew, God spoke through his priests. Remember their logic: if this man is my priest, then God willed it so, so I must listen and obey the word of God. If God did not wish this man to be my priest, he would have sent another. So I will trust in God,, listen, and obey.
    You have made references to communism, and wynn referred to authoritarianism above. I am illustrating their sense of divine authority, justified by God’s omnipotence. No doubt communism was cruel. Religious intolerance was but one of a multitude of their abuses.
    Maybe to you, but not to them or to other religions who revere their shrines and in some cases their gurus or popes. You seem to revere scripture. That much at least is external to you.
    I think there are many ways people get inside their own heads. One is through psychoanalysis and therapy. All of the atheists I can think of seem well centered despite having no such perspective through religion.
    Good point. Imagine a room full of paintings, or a concert hall with a venue lined up – could anyone tell which artists were theists and which were atheists? (assuming they did not use explicit revelation, such as the body of Christ covered with flies)

    That's why I object to the idea that the motive was anything but religious. There was little left in the secular world for these people, except forbidden fruit. Remember, their religion held that sovereign powers were all created by God, and though some kings and popes had fallen to the devil, unless their own leader were known to them as corrupt, then they would have regarded them as God's right hand men, by default.
    Again you are imposing a modern world view on an Old World culture. You apparently do not believe that they expressed reverence for their pastors (shepherds). I would suggest you should consider the source of your view: where does a rejection of that sort originate? Do you feel the cynicism that I am observing? What might be the cause of such a cynical view?
    Again I read cynicism and maybe fatalism as well. Yet they were preparing for their eternal reward. They had hope of joining God in Heaven. Their religion was (is) based on optimism.
    I thought that since I went to a religious authority I removed my bias. And I still feel that I am giving them more credit than you are because I see them showing inordinate reverence and hope. You see them in a much bleaker world. That to me seems unfairly biased, insofar as your personal-religion thesis is concerned.
    You mean like a conspiracy? It’s hard to find evidence of this kind of mentality in the 10th century I think. Maybe in some other papacy, but even then when shouldn’t assume that the local bishops and priests and all the congregations suddenly flipped into their respective roles under the conspiracy. It’s too complicated. The reality of their world was remarkably different than this.

    As far as putting as spin on religion, there are religions today that consider individualism to be a spin.

    You are a cynic indeed. I tend to set it differently. To the extent that people go bad, I think it starts with a loss of hope. Some of the most despairing also seem to be the most cynical, which is why I was wondering about you own views. Do you feel despair? And does your religion elevate you from that?
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2012
  23. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

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    I think I've given you at least a dozen credible sources. Many of them are original material from that era. Truth derives from fact, fact from evidence. I am irrelevant because I am the delivery truck, not the payload.
     

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