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philthemn
post Oct 06, 2006, 03:40 PM
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To believe what we desire leaves all belief devoid of meaning. Religions throughout the world do just that; they escape logic and science, and embrace the natural desire to live in a death-free and just universe. The truth is that when we allow ourselves to believe in religion, we accept a world-view based thousands of years ago when most of the main religions formed, before the advancement of science. Why believe The Bible when we reject the scientific ideas of this time?

Ok, so we may say that our religious beliefs are based in modern day experience; from paranormal or mystical experiences that must only be explainbable through religion. This, however, is only through a lack of scientific knowledge, as most of the so-called ‘paranormal’ can be explained with current science, i.e. lucid dreams, hallucinations, hypnosis, neuroscience, all these things can explain supernatural experiences that have fooled many into following religion.

In essence, when you accept religion, you must reject many of strongest scientific theories. Evolution entirely contradicts the foundations of Christianity – how can God have created man, as in Genesis, if in fact we have evolved over millions of years from basic sea creatures? Religion also contradicts any archaeological finds before 5000 years ago; a time in which creationism dictates was before the universe even began. Along with these, religion generally reputes the Big Bang theory and most of frontier physics, and neuroscience, claiming we exist as a soul, and not a collection of physical neurons.

One of the most frustrating things about religion is that its members will change the nature of their beliefs to fit with current science. They will argue that Genesis was metaphorical when the evolution argument is thrown at them, and that God didn’t create the world in seven days, that too was a metaphor; God existed to create the Big Bang. This constant avoidance of debunking is an insult to logic – religion must stand to be criticised and stick to its original terms just as a scientific paper does, otherwise it loses any respectability it has.

The most widely held religious fact, throughout its variations, is, in one way or another, the idea of life after death. This argument is hard to knock down because of our inability to experience such events, but I will try. To say that we will exist after death means that you must believe in a soul – some sort of disassociation from our body. This soul must contain our consciousness and personality, to take us as people to the afterlife. To say that these human aspects are within the soul means that they cannot be a part of the physical human brain, as this is subject to decay and entropy, and its cessation to function would mean death in its truest form. So it follows that if personality and consciousness exist in a non-physical, non-chemical form, then chemical substances such as that of alcohol would have no effect on them. Of course, we know to the contrary, alcohol has a definite effect on our physical brain chemistry, which alters our consciousness, perception, and personality. Therefore we must conclude that our existence exists solely in physical form and is subject to the entropy that, as mentioned before, will cause a true death.

I believe that religion has come about for a reason. Survival. As we evolved consciousness, the awareness of our own death, and other scientific questions, unanswerable at the time, caused a strong distraction and had a negative effect on survival and reproduction. As so, those who created ideological systems of a ‘greater being’ survived better, and passed on their genes, and their beliefs. Now, religion has become redundant as a tool to explain, and science has taken its place.
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Lao_Tzu
post Oct 06, 2006, 04:45 PM
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philthemn

I think you should be more careful about attacking "Religion" in general when you use only Christianity as the subject of your argument. Many people make this mistake, and I have to make this small point whenever they do so - Buddhism is an exception to most of the accusations you level at religion here.

I disagree with your conclusion, too. Religion is not a tool that's used for explanation; both religion and science arise from mysticism - the wonder at the phenomenal universe, a wonder that is expressed in the question, "Why is there a universe?" So far science has been unable to answer that deep question, which thrums in all of us, and so has religion. So far neither are redundant, and both endure.
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philthemn
post Oct 06, 2006, 05:01 PM
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Yeah, I guess you're right about my only using Christianity, but that is out of practicality; I can't go through every aspect of every religion, instead I tried to criticise the general ideas shared by most religions, with specific examples of a certain one to back up my point.

As for your second point, aren't mysticism and a need for an explanation not synonymous? The idea of mysticism is that things seem mysterious and unexplainable. We wonder how things happen, and search for answers. This is where religion came in; What happens when we die? How did I get here? Not only does religion try to answer these, but it tries to answer them in the most desirable way. Science is different in this sense. True science comes only from hypothesis followed by observation to prove or disprove it, with this method we cannot get our emotions caught up in our results.

To me, the question "Why is there a universe?" is a question with no answer. There is no reason because there is no conscious intervention as to whether the universe exists or not, so no Why's come into the equation.
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Joesus
post Oct 06, 2006, 05:45 PM
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QUOTE
In essence, when you accept religion, you must reject many of strongest scientific theories.

Oh, not so, oh predisposed one. You are only capable of making this assumption because you cannot expand beyond your current level of thought.
Religion means many things to many people just as ice cream means something to each one of us. To the lactose intlerant ice cream is a poison and to the ice cream addict it is ambrosia, food of the gods, cream from the cow...

QUOTE
Evolution entirely contradicts the foundations of Christianity – how can God have created man, as in Genesis, if in fact we have evolved over millions of years from basic sea creatures?

How could man be created by God indeed when the mind holds God as a superstitious image of being a white bearded man sitting in the sky making ridiculous demands of its creation.
The Good news is that you are not predisposed to think such nonsense. However given the opportunity to make assumptions one can easily believe anything.
Where did the universe which supplied the particles of matter to form and create the primordial ooze in which some are so inclined to believe is the foundation of evolution and intelligence.
Intelligence happens.. Makes a great bumper sticker!

Science continues to break its own barriers and its absolute assumptions, and so like some interpretations of religion, creates a following that without conscious thought accepts as the norm what is real according to popular thought, and really if you think about it, those who accept science without participation are no different than the sheep at church. It's Just a different church.
Those who are willing to study one or the other may, and I repeat may come to a greater understanding, but the obvious reality is that when one ignores one for the other, you can hardley expect to be an expert on something that is an unknown, assumed in belief outside of the social dogmatic rumor mill.
People fail both science and religion because they do not participate and they separate the two because they will accept what they want to without conscious thought or greater awareness.

QUOTE
One of the most frustrating things about religion is that its members will change the nature of their beliefs to fit with current science.

When faith is ignored then capitulation creates more sheep for either.
When scientific fact changes some scientific disciples may briefly look into the unkown spirit of things to expand their minds beyond the fine lines that have drawn in the sand each time the standards change with the new scientific revelations.

QUOTE
To say that we will exist after death means that you must believe in a soul

Belief is not required, but if you must..

QUOTE
some sort of disassociation from our body

Actually even in superstitious circles the belief is that the soul is intimately connected to the body not disconnected. You really should spend some time learning about the soul rather than making assumptions to base an argument or idea on.

QUOTE
This soul must contain our consciousness and personality, to take us as people to the afterlife

Again an interesting assumption however the earlier texts such as the Vedic texts (Upanishads, Brahma Sutras, BhagavadGhita.. which are much older than the bible and are very much alive in the western traditions of spirituality but often unrecognized due to lack of insight and intellectual study) suggests through direct cognition that the manifest including the subtle such as the soul is contained within the absolute Consciousness rather than the other way around.
The after life is a metaphor for life in the evolutionary process of greater awareness as it progresses from its containment by assumption and belief, which creates changing scientific standards often mistaken for absolutes, being absorbed by a greater foundation of awareness which allows for both change in experience of the mind and body as it progresses from fear and frustration (superstition) to see more than ideas.
The ability to embrace reality as possibility changes with the emotional body when it is experiencing unconditional love. It contracts when experiencing fear and finite realities of self evidence built on foundations of ignorance.

QUOTE
To say that these human aspects are within the soul means that they cannot be a part of the physical human brain

No not really, you can say anything, like the earth is flat but that doesn't make it so. You can create a belief that the soul and the brain are not connected but in reality they are always connected. You can't experience or see what you don't believe in because the mind is influenced by programs of belief and acceptance. The mind then affects the mechanical properties of the brain and as such manipulates the body to respond accordingly.

QUOTE
as this is subject to decay and entropy, and its cessation to function would mean death in its truest form.

You mean death to the body, the body being a collection of atoms and molecules which still exist and move regardless of decay and disintegration of the material called brain.

QUOTE
So it follows that if personality and consciousness exist in a non-physical, non-chemical form, then chemical substances such as that of alcohol would have no effect on them.

Awareness is affected by what you put your attention on and conscious awareness may be affected by chemical manipulation when attached to the sensory motor functions. If you believe your brain is the center of you and you slice it and dice it or poison it, it may not work so well for you, but if you are more than just the brain, as Karl Lashley, a scientist in neurophysiology, who trained rats to run in a maze, and then systematically removed their brain tissue, taking out as much as 90% leaving the rats to run the maze, I'd say that we are more than just brains.
If you disconnect the power supply from a computer it fails to run and if you disconnect the hard drive from the mother board it will not perform but it is still a computer and all of the information that is on the hard drive still exists and that which created the hard drive and the computer still exists and still thinks and still creates or has the ability and probability to create more computers. If the computer were to become self aware would it ask the question where did I come from and eventually discover its maker, therefore extend itself into the maker or stay separate as just a device?
You do have that ability whether you believe you do or not to extend your awareness beyond the physical body. If you look no further than current beliefs, your technology and your present experience you negate all other possibilities and that is a choice not a mandate.

There's an interesting story about a man who had his head chopped off and before his body quit altogether it got up and moved about searching for its head and after finding it collapsed into inactivity.


QUOTE
Of course, we know to the contrary, alcohol has a definite effect on our physical brain chemistry, which alters our consciousness, perception, and personality.
it changes our conscious perception but the underlying consciousness is only ignored by the senses inability to be aware at a level deeper than the intoxication being focused on by the addiction of the senses bound by the belief that it is the brain or the extension of the brain and nothing more. But the good news is, that is just a thought.

QUOTE
Therefore we must conclude that our existence exists solely in physical form and is subject to the entropy that, as mentioned before, will cause a true death.

We must?? ohmy.gif I gotta tell ya my genes are screaming no no no!! wink.gif
I have a different experience that allows me to think differently.

QUOTE
I believe that religion has come about for a reason.

I had a belief once, it changed.. then it changed again dry.gif

QUOTE
and science has taken its place.

A recent scientific survey found that the majority of the human population believes in a God of some kind or another
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Lao_Tzu
post Oct 07, 2006, 11:11 AM
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QUOTE(philthemn @ Oct 07, 2006, 12:01 AM) *

We wonder how things happen, and search for answers. This is where religion came in; What happens when we die? How did I get here? Not only does religion try to answer these, but it tries to answer them in the most desirable way.

To the question of "What happens when we die?" not all religions give the most desirable answer (by which I assume you mean eternal life? we can debate whether this would really be desirable at another time... but eternal bliss, perhaps?). Christianity's answer (or, at least, the simple version) to the question of what happens when we die is perhaps not as desirable as we might be inclined to suppose - it is, "either heaven or hell". Heaven sounds great, were it not logically impossible... but hell? Not what I desire.

Buddhism's answer to the question is a bit more complex... but in short, unless you realise the nature of mind at death (in which case you do not undergo rebirth) your consciousness is propelled by karma into another rebirth. And life is characterised by suffering and impermanence, so this would be undesirable. So Buddhism's answer to "What happens when we die?" is perhaps not the most desirable of all answers either.

I don't know what the other religions say about that question.

To the question of "how did I get here?" science has very good answers. Evolution is incredibly, fantastically brilliant as an explanation of why humans came to exist. It's awesome. It starts with matter, mutation, selection, and reproduction, and ends up with humans. Truly awesome. However, explaining how matter, mutation, selection and reproduction came about is outside its scope, and it has no answers. With respect to the really hard problems, about mind-brain (though good progress is being made here) and "why is there a universe?", science is still pretty stumped. So are most religions, of course (except for Buddhism, which has some potential answers that seem to have logical and philosophical integrity, but to expound on them here would be off the topic).

But I actually don't want to get into a Science vs. Religion debate. Except in the case of religions whose cosmologies are logically impossible or empirically invalidated by scientific reason, I don't think the two need be opposed. And, in fact, I don't think that science will ever invalidate religion completely. I think they are complementary.

QUOTE(philthemn @ Oct 07, 2006, 12:01 AM) *

Science is different in this sense. True science comes only from hypothesis followed by observation to prove or disprove it, with this method we cannot get our emotions caught up in our results.

I agree. Science kicks bum.

(To chirp up again for my so-called religion, Buddhism also encourages dispassionate observation to discover things.)

QUOTE

To me, the question "Why is there a universe?" is a question with no answer. There is no reason because there is no conscious intervention as to whether the universe exists or not, so no Why's come into the equation.

I agree with you again. My favourite answer is "There is no why." We shouldn't suppose that our concept of purpose corresponds to anything real in the phenomenal universe, so the very idea of "why" has no valid foundation. But then, what concept does...?

Which is why mysticism endures - "the articulation of experience beyond any symbolization". We know our symbols can never encompass the nature of reality, so for as long as science or religion rely on symbols, neither can they.

It's a problem.

(and so to round off why I think religion and science, both mystical in nature, are complementary) ... I think it's clear that true, unlimited, unconditioned knowledge must be direct knowledge without the intermediation and reduction of symbols and concepts (the experience of a truth, if you like, rather than the comprehension thereof). Knowing a truth intellectually is different from knowing it experientially. Science allows understand the relativity of space and time, for example, at an intellectual level, and so-called religious practice (here I mean meditation) allows us to understand the relativity of space and time at an experiential level. Both ways of understanding are valuable, and neither path can provide the other way of understanding, so the two are complementary.

What'cha think?

May you be happy and at peace smile.gif
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lucid_dream
post Oct 07, 2006, 12:31 PM
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science deals only with the phenomena in our consciousness and can say nothing certain about what lies beyond.
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Joesus
post Oct 07, 2006, 01:03 PM
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From the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali Translations and commentaries by MSI (without the Sanskrit)

Pada II. Sutra 27



Unified Consciousness is the limit of the sevenfold
stages of consciousness.


The "sevenfold stages of consciousness" are the Seven States of Consciousness: sleeping, dreaming, waking, Ascendant/absolute, Perpetual Absolute/Ascendant, Exalted Absolute/Ascendant and Perpetual Unified Absolute/Ascendant. "Unified Consciousness is the limit" means that these seven constitute the full range of human development of consciousness. When one has risen to the state of constant awareness of the Absolute/Ascendant One, both within and without, there is no further development available in terms of expansion of consciousness. Of course there is more to be learned, of course further development continues, but this development is not of the container of knowledge, only of its contents.
Rising to full human consciousness is rather like building a beautiful home with seven rooms. The purpose of the Science of Union is to build the house, it is not to fill the rooms with furniture or decorate the walls. That is the domain of philosophy, science, religion and human life experience of the full range of the Universe that is devoted to experience and enjoyment. One could therefore say that Unified Consciousness is more accurately described as the birth of normal human life. Human life was never intended to be restricted to three rooms, one completely dark, one fantastic but intrinsically meaningless, one fraught with danger, hardship and suffering.
There is an ancient echo, coming down to us from virtually every part of the world, written or whispered in almost every tradition, that the human is born to be the Master of Creation, with dominion over everything that is, every plant, every animal, even over the angels in Heaven.
And yet, what is the average human? A disease-ridden, virtually powerless, miserably unhappy worm of seventy winters. This the Master of Creation? It is scarcely the master of its own body, which falls ill, rots and decays almost from its inception. Obviously if the human is born to be the Master of Creation, the Waking State with its constant change is most assuredly not the seat of this mastery. What then is? The unchanging, Infinite stability of Absolute Awareness is the only suitable ground for this dominion.
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Lao_Tzu
post Oct 08, 2006, 03:30 AM
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QUOTE(Joesus @ Oct 07, 2006, 08:03 PM) *

The unchanging, Infinite stability of Absolute Awareness is the only suitable ground for this dominion.

All I want is a warm bed, a kind word, and UNLIMITED POWER.
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philthemn
post Oct 08, 2006, 12:49 PM
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QUOTE

Religion means many things to many people just as ice cream means something to each one of us. To the lactose intlerant ice cream is a poison and to the ice cream addict it is ambrosia, food of the gods, cream from the cow...


When I say accepting religion means rejecting scientific breakthroughs I am speaking generally, and mostly of the major religions. I do not have the time to talk about each religion seperatly, but I object to the ideas that most religions hold. So please bear with me when I generalise for the sake of the argument.

QUOTE
Oh, not so, oh predisposed one. You are only capable of making this assumption because you cannot expand beyond your current level of thought.


You know nothing of my 'level of thought', I am not making an assumption, but a statement based on observation. Even you can't deny that many religions around today do in fact deny some of the most widely accepted scientific views.

QUOTE

How could man be created by God indeed when the mind holds God as a superstitious image of being a white bearded man sitting in the sky making ridiculous demands of its creation.
The Good news is that you are not predisposed to think such nonsense. However given the opportunity to make assumptions one can easily believe anything.


Agreed. People will believe anything. Religion, anyone?

QUOTE

Where did the universe which supplied the particles of matter to form and create the primordial ooze in which some are so inclined to believe is the foundation of evolution and intelligence.


That's not even a question. Read it and you'll see that you never actually get round to asking a question. I guess that's the risk of writing in such a waffly style. Or maybe it's the reason you write in such a way; to avoid actually making a point.

QUOTE

Science continues to break its own barriers and its absolute assumptions, and so like some interpretations of religion, creates a following that without conscious thought accepts as the norm what is real according to popular thought, and really if you think about it, those who accept science without participation are no different than the sheep at church. It's Just a different church.


That is the beauty of science. It stands up to be knocked down for the gain of humanity. Of course we have to accept alot of science that is ultimately to be proven wrong in the end, but it is only realistic to accept what is the most rational and scientific belief at the time. If not, we would find ourselves in the position of true rationalists, believing only what is certain to be true outside of any sense experience.

QUOTE
Those who are willing to study one or the other may, and I repeat may come to a greater understanding, but the obvious reality is that when one ignores one for the other, you can hardley expect to be an expert on something that is an unknown, assumed in belief outside of the social dogmatic rumor mill.
People fail both science and religion because they do not participate and they separate the two because they will accept what they want to without conscious thought or greater awareness.


Religion is exactly the social control and dogma that is not needed in order to gain a greater understanding. Back when the church had all power over science we find that only those who tried to break free from this dogma could gain greater understanding, so don't fool yourself into believing that religion can tell you anything other than, at best, a flimsy but generally quite nice idea of nature (i.e. Justice exists, but not on earth - in the form of devine retribution), and at worst, a hateful and narrow-minded view of the world (i.e. Homosexuals are evil).

QUOTE
When faith is ignored then capitulation creates more sheep for either.
When scientific fact changes some scientific disciples may briefly look into the unkown spirit of things to expand their minds beyond the fine lines that have drawn in the sand each time the standards change with the new scientific revelations.


I agree that science often changes. It evolves into something closer and closer to the truth. The nature of the change is one of great contrast to religion, in general of course. When a piece of scientific evidence is proven wrong, we then search for a better, more truthful piece to take its place. But first, we must scrap the original. If Creationism is proven wrong, we must scrap it, and disregard all that bases itself on it. Then we must find a more truthful view of how we came into existence; namely, evolution.

Religions will avoid scientific scrutiny by repeatedly changing the original meaning of the doctrine they hold, but they never disregard it. Evolution has never caused anyone to say 'Oh shit, creationism really has been proven wrong here. That means The Bible was just written by a bunch of men a few thousand years ago with no input from God, otherwise they would have known that this was false. I guess from that we must conclude that this whole book is brought into disrepute, I'll read the Quran and see if that's any more sound.'
No, they squirm out of trouble by saying 'Oh, it was...erm...a metaphor for how God has created the souls in each and every one of us...yeah, he couldn't have written that literally, it'd be way too obvious'.

QUOTE
Actually even in superstitious circles the belief is that the soul is intimately connected to the body not disconnected. You really should spend some time learning about the soul rather than making assumptions to base an argument or idea on.


Connected maybe, but it must be a seperate entity, or it would simply be nothing more than our brain, which will decay, and as a result end consciousness.

QUOTE
Again an interesting assumption however the earlier texts such as the Vedic texts (Upanishads, Brahma Sutras, BhagavadGhita.. which are much older than the bible and are very much alive in the western traditions of spirituality but often unrecognized due to lack of insight and intellectual study) suggests through direct cognition that the manifest including the subtle such as the soul is contained within the absolute Consciousness rather than the other way around.
The after life is a metaphor for life in the evolutionary process of greater awareness as it progresses from its containment by assumption and belief, which creates changing scientific standards often mistaken for absolutes, being absorbed by a greater foundation of awareness which allows for both change in experience of the mind and body as it progresses from fear and frustration (superstition) to see more than ideas.
The ability to embrace reality as possibility changes with the emotional body when it is experiencing unconditional love. It contracts when experiencing fear and finite realities of self evidence built on foundations of ignorance.


Stop with the bullshit, and please start using commas. All I said to make you spew all this up was that a soul must be, in essence, the personality of its owner, otherwise the soul would be worthless if it continued on; our personality and consciousness (or lack thereof) would still be dead in the ground.

QUOTE
No not really, you can say anything, like the earth is flat but that doesn't make it so. You can create a belief that the soul and the brain are not connected but in reality they are always connected. You can't experience or see what you don't believe in because the mind is influenced by programs of belief and acceptance. The mind then affects the mechanical properties of the brain and as such manipulates the body to respond accordingly.


Again, they may be connected, but the soul must be a seperate entity as I explained above. If not, we gain nothing by having one.

QUOTE
You mean death to the body, the body being a collection of atoms and molecules which still exist and move regardless of decay and disintegration of the material called brain.


I said it was the brain which would decay. Not the atoms that make it up. And yes, I mean death to the body (including the brain). Which, if our soul is not seperate from it, will contain the parts that make up our consciousness - if these decay, then our consciousness ends, and there is no afterlife.

QUOTE

Awareness is affected by what you put your attention on and conscious awareness may be affected by chemical manipulation when attached to the sensory motor functions. If you believe your brain is the center of you and you slice it and dice it or poison it, it may not work so well for you, but if you are more than just the brain, as Karl Lashley, a scientist in neurophysiology, who trained rats to run in a maze, and then systematically removed their brain tissue, taking out as much as 90% leaving the rats to run the maze, I'd say that we are more than just brains.


Because a bunch of rats continued to run around, like headless chicken if you will, when they had a lobotomy? You deserve religion. Beautifully niave.

QUOTE

If you disconnect the power supply from a computer it fails to run and if you disconnect the hard drive from the mother board it will not perform but it is still a computer and all of the information that is on the hard drive still exists and that which created the hard drive and the computer still exists and still thinks and still creates or has the ability and probability to create more computers. If the computer were to become self aware would it ask the question where did I come from and eventually discover its maker, therefore extend itself into the maker or stay separate as just a device?


This is the equivalent to saying that when you remove the speech center of your brain you are still a person, and yes, that is true. But if you smash your whole computer into little pieces, you have just destroyed any computer-like properties it had. Just as if your whole brain dies, you have destroyed any human properties that ever existed.

QUOTE
You do have that ability whether you believe you do or not to extend your awareness beyond the physical body. If you look no further than current beliefs, your technology and your present experience you negate all other possibilities and that is a choice not a mandate.


No. I cannot extend out of the physical body. Consciousness resides within the brain, because consciousness is the sum of its parts. Being able to extend existence outside of your body isn't true just because you say it is.

QUOTE
There's an interesting story about a man who had his head chopped off and before his body quit altogether it got up and moved about searching for its head and after finding it collapsed into inactivity.


Hmmm. Don't believe everything you hear.
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Joesus
post Oct 08, 2006, 03:58 PM
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QUOTE
When I say accepting religion means rejecting scientific breakthroughs I am speaking generally, and mostly of the major religions. I do not have the time to talk about each religion seperatly, but I object to the ideas that most religions hold. So please bear with me when I generalise for the sake of the argument.

Making general statements to make an argument?!!

Ill use the last thing you said as an answer or statement in regard to your first.

Don't believe everything you hear.

QUOTE
You know nothing of my 'level of thought', I am not making an assumption, but a statement based on observation. Even you can't deny that many religions around today do in fact deny some of the most widely accepted scientific views.

I know that you make statements based on your beliefs. By grouping people in to a box according to your limited scope of observation, those you have not met personally into categories based on a few you have or have observed, assume everyone associated with a particular faith are all alike.
This assumption leads you to believe, that they reject the beliefs of your own faith (Science as you perceive it).

QUOTE
That's not even a question. Read it and you'll see that you never actually get round to asking a question. I guess that's the risk of writing in such a waffly style. Or maybe it's the reason you write in such a way; to avoid actually making a point.

I think certain things are self evident and as long as you fail to look any further than you want to see then the universe can be explained within personal terms, with like minded individuals finding a kind of strength and security in the illusions of a majority.
I think you can argue for your ideas all you want but generally the point of creating an argument is to stand on a spot, any spot and say this is where I am and try to convince others this is where they are at. The only one who really cares is the one who wants to be right.
If I say your wrong, what makes you think your right? And do you really care if I care or not?

QUOTE
That is the beauty of science. It stands up to be knocked down for the gain of humanity. Of course we have to accept alot of science that is ultimately to be proven wrong in the end, but it is only realistic to accept what is the most rational and scientific belief at the time. If not, we would find ourselves in the position of true rationalists, believing only what is certain to be true outside of any sense experience.

True religion is based on the freedom to stand in any belief be it temporary or permanent. You sound like you believe!!!! Say Hallelujah cool.gif

The true freedom is not in gaining anything. Science just fills spaces created by the minds wandering in the spaces it can't find peace. Spiritual sciences deal with the foundation of all space and time according to perception of the Self.
There can be fulfillment in the empty space as well as in the temporary fulfillment of the sensory needs of the intellect that can't see further than its past experiences without projecting its best guess about what is coming next.
Those that can't stand stillness have to fill it with something. So science fills it with ideas that collapse and are rebuilt again. You should just get yourself a Lego set.

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Religion is exactly the social control and dogma that is not needed in order to gain a greater understanding. Back when the church had all power over science we find that only those who tried to break free from this dogma could gain greater understanding, so don't fool yourself into believing that religion can tell you anything other than, at best, a flimsy but generally quite nice idea of nature (i.e. Justice exists, but not on earth - in the form of devine retribution), and at worst, a hateful and narrow-minded view of the world (i.e. Homosexuals are evil).

Generalized statements about beliefs created from spirituality can seem like a good argument for the darkside of spirituality, but then they can be applied to science too. Science due to its immaturity created thalidomide to treat women for morning sickness but it had a drawback. It created deformed babies.
Ever see some of the ads for prescription drugs on TV these days? Science offers great new hope with the fast talking man who crams 2 minutes of disclaimers into the 1 minute commercial.
It is science that is responsible for creating all of the poisons that are in ground water, the oil that humanity is addicted to.
The people who twist information and control power in the industrial empire are the same people who live on this planet who twist religion. Fear based ignorant people who know nothing of themselves.
People fail religion and people fail science and the health of both mind and spirit.

True spirituality is based on love not control and fear.
If you want to change the world first begin with yourself so you can speak from wisdom, and help those who want to change themselves, rather than live in fear and try to knock down every evil that exists while it perpetuates itself due to useless arguments that change nothing.

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I agree that science often changes. It evolves into something closer and closer to the truth. The nature of the change is one of great contrast to religion, in general of course. When a piece of scientific evidence is proven wrong, we then search for a better, more truthful piece to take its place. But first, we must scrap the original. If Creationism is proven wrong, we must scrap it, and disregard all that bases itself on it. Then we must find a more truthful view of how we came into existence; namely, evolution.

Religions will avoid scientific scrutiny by repeatedly changing the original meaning of the doctrine they hold, but they never disregard it. Evolution has never caused anyone to say 'Oh shit, creationism really has been proven wrong here. That means The Bible was just written by a bunch of men a few thousand years ago with no input from God, otherwise they would have known that this was false. I guess from that we must conclude that this whole book is brought into disrepute, I'll read the Quran and see if that's any more sound.'
No, they squirm out of trouble by saying 'Oh, it was...erm...a metaphor for how God has created the souls in each and every one of us...yeah, he couldn't have written that literally, it'd be way too obvious'.

You are generalizing again. All religions as do all sciences come from spirituall science, the inherent drive of the human to define its experience or to find the answer to the question, "who, or what, am I?"
Those who have found that there is no relative answer that will stand complete know it is only entertainment of the senses to deconsctuct the universe based on the evolution of tools and how to use them to look more closely at the world we perceive through the colored glasses of social dogma and belief, be it linked to a science of any name.

Those who do not have such an experience of Union, have a different kind of experience. Those who have the different kind of experience, the one of fear and separation, are the ones who must establish their belief so that the opposing thought does not destroy their foundations of belief. To them there is no room for any other kind of thought and as such creates the argument and eventually the personal jihad.

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Connected maybe, but it must be a seperate entity, or it would simply be nothing more than our brain, which will decay, and as a result end consciousness.

It is connected at a level much deeper than decay. Consciousness and brain function are intimately connected. The brain ends its usefulness when the soul is finished with it rather than the brain finishing with the soul. The atoms and molecules are simply rearranged in the perception of decay and rebirth.

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Stop with the bullshit, and please start using commas. All I said to make you spew all this up was that a soul must be, in essence, the personality of its owner, otherwise the soul would be worthless if it continued on; our personality and consciousness (or lack thereof) would still be dead in the ground.

You think way too small. Think bigger.

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Again, they may be connected, but the soul must be a seperate entity as I explained above. If not, we gain nothing by having one.

From the position of the soul, you as the identity are a projection or a thought. It (the soul)loses nothing when you go into the ground. It remains and the thought still exists as memory.

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I said it was the brain which would decay. Not the atoms that make it up. And yes, I mean death to the body (including the brain). Which, if our soul is not seperate from it, will contain the parts that make up our consciousness - if these decay, then our consciousness ends, and there is no afterlife.

Point of reference only. If you die and the body goes into the ground the body does not respond to consciousness but consciousness still exists. In a sense there is no after-life because there is only life.
Be it at different levels of awareness.

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This is the equivalent to saying that when you remove the speech center of your brain you are still a person, and yes, that is true. But if you smash your whole computer into little pieces, you have just destroyed any computer-like properties it had. Just as if your whole brain dies, you have destroyed any human properties that ever existed.

There was a guy who had a motorcycle accident. His brain was destroyed due to massive head injuries but they were keeping him alive artificially, because they wanted to harvest his internal organs.
During the harvest, the body was monitored by various scientific devices that monitored blood pressure, heart rate, skin termpurature etc, etc.
Generally they use no anesthesia on brain dead patients because they obviously believe there is no need.
When they cut into him his heart rate went up, respiration went up and skin produced sweat.
Now seeing as how the brain was not functioning the responses were at a cellular level of consciousness rather than that of brain activity. The heart, lungs skin, all working together and experiencing the invasion of the knife without the brain telling it what to do. Consciousness extends itself beyond the brain, and even beyond the cellular level. Human properties are often mistaken as beginning and ending with birth and death of the body. But that, is just a belief.

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No. I cannot extend out of the physical body. Consciousness resides within the brain, because consciousness is the sum of its parts. Being able to extend existence outside of your body isn't true just because you say it is.

Of course it isn't true because I say it is. Its true regardless of whether I say it is or isn't. Or whether you are capable or not. You probably aren't multilingual but that doesn't mean you can't learn another language.

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Hmmm. Don't believe everything you hear.

First intelligent thing you've said. Interesting that it came last.




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philthemn
post Oct 08, 2006, 07:05 PM
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The point of the matter is that we can prove to an extent that most, if not all, religious views have major flaws, and therefore do not have any place in our belief system (e.g. neuroscience; the idea that consciousness is directly related to the brain in its physical form). But no religion can ever give solid evidence to prove itself (not once have I heard a good, solid argument for believing the spiritualistic crap that we humans seem to think we have a right to). It makes no sense to believe something because it could be true, but probably isn't based on realistic, unbiased scientific work.

Why would anyone assume that reincarnation exists? There is no evidence for it, and alot of evidence that makes it seem like fantasy. But I think I know the answer to the question; it's a nice idea. But it's simply not true. We think we deserve something better than merely being biological systems that have evolved consciousness as a means to reproduction; we think that we have the special dignities to continue life outside of our biology.

People become very self-indulgent and allow themselves to believe that they have special dignities over the rest of evolved creatures, and that we are distant from animals and so deserve spirituality. In truth though, we aren't the better creatures of the world. There is no point to existance of life other than that the animals that are better at surviving, stay alive longer and reproduce. Now if we take that idea that survival is the sole reason for survival, then I would argue that the likes of crocodiles and cockroaches are the divine creatures of the earth, not us lowly humans. So then we lose our privileges to the exemption from logic that religion give us.
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Joesus
post Oct 08, 2006, 10:01 PM
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The point of the matter is that we can prove to an extent that most, if not all, religious views have major flaws, and therefore do not have any place in our belief system.

How do you prove they have no place in any belief system.
Isn't that more of an opinion than a point of necessity when defined by a system that is constantly evolving?

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But no religion can ever give solid evidence to prove itself (not once have I heard a good, solid argument for believing the spiritualistic crap that we humans seem to think we have a right to).

The fact that we as a species, have since the beginning of our time, contemplated the heavens, our feelings and our initimate connection to each other, and that it continues despite the desire to take away and or judge that ability to the point of committing genocide, is evidence that there is something much more enduring in living faith than in any absolute statement about reality at any level of belief.
That inspiration is what ensures religion and science a place in the minds of humanity as long as humanity does not become without a soul and a mind to experience themselves and others.

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It makes no sense to believe something because it could be true, but probably isn't based on realistic, unbiased scientific work.

Could be but probably isn't.... based on the limits of knowledge and experience of the mind that stands firm in its beliefs.
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Why would anyone assume that reincarnation exists? There is no evidence for it, and alot of evidence that makes it seem like fantasy.

Why would you believe something you have no experience with? No one is expecting you to. But to just stand still in the beliefs of what you have experienced, and to only accept what someone else defines as real, shows no intelligence. But like an animal it does show you can recognize words and be trained to accept or respond to what you are told. The part that would seem to set you apart from an animal is the fear that others might not agree with you. In this way the animal is more intelligent than you because it is not as easily threatened.
The good news is you have the capability to rise above this level of automatic response without the need to be paranoid and to try and convince others that they are wrong. You just have to grow up a bit.

How much time have you spent studying the beliefs of religion? How many countries have you travelled and how many cultures have you visited to understand where the hearts of individuals lie in their beliefs of themselves?
Have you ever lived in a community of religious people and gotten to know them? How exactly are you so sure that any believe has no place in your belief system or as you put it OUR belief system and why would you make that determination?
Have you read any of Joseph Campbells works?

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We think we deserve something better than merely being biological systems that have evolved consciousness as a means to reproduction; we think that we have the special dignities to continue life outside of our biology.

We, (well maybe not you!) intuit that we are more than meat bags destined for death. I tend to agree with the greater perspective.

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People become very self-indulgent and allow themselves to believe that they have special dignities over the rest of evolved creatures, and that we are distant from animals and so deserve spirituality.

Humanity recognizes in itself that it has the ability to live in a greater capacity than to become conditioned to response and no more, to believe it is no greater than an animal here simply to survive. I agree.
There have been great strides in humanity to open the mind to more rather than limit itself to less.
The ego often twists reality through fear and greed but that is something that is a byproduct of societies priorities in propogating and defending the process of competiton at a level that destroys self esteem. In the determination that those who are more talented in other areas than the ones that are most popular have no place in our system of society we judge, and condemn what we do not like wthout compassion or intelligence. In that sense animals are better than humans at that level of awareness.
But animals cannot come to the awareness of what they are doing. We have a choice, we can evolve by simply changing the way we think.

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In truth though, we aren't the better creatures of the world. There is no point to existance of life other than that the animals that are better at surviving, stay alive longer and reproduce. Now if we take that idea that survival is the sole reason for survival, then I would argue that the likes of crocodiles and cockroaches are the divine creatures of the earth, not us lowly humans. So then we lose our privileges to the exemption from logic that religion give us.

I think you haven't reached the capacity to intelligently perceive reality, let alone understand the basis for religion, or religious experience.
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philthemn
post Oct 09, 2006, 10:24 AM
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There's no lack of intellegence in basing an argument on rational thought, and not emotion. When you say that I accept wholly what i'm told in society you are dead wrong. I'm afraid it is you who is accepting without judgement. There is strong positive correlation between religiosity and religious upbringing. In other words, religion breeds by people being taught to accept it without education of other views at an age where you naturally accept your parents guidance (in terms of evolution, this makes alot of sense). Over time you may become exposed to other ideas, but psychologically speaking, because you were taught what to believe at such a young age, you stick with the belief in god independent of proof you have come to afterwards, because you were conditioned to believe.
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Joesus
post Oct 09, 2006, 01:03 PM
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QUOTE

There's no lack of intellegence in basing an argument on rational thought, and not emotion.

Depends on your level of experience. If your rationality is founded on ignorance then I would tend to allow for the inevitable growth of experience, to change the probabilites of thought feeling and action. Given that we are more intelligent ( if given the chance) than to remain permanently tarnished by illusion and without hope, I would say there are not absolutes in what serves us and doesn't serve us in our growth.
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I'm afraid it is you who is accepting without judgement.
If you mean without prejudice and in greater experience than prejudice, then I'll agree with you.

By the way have you attacked the Easter Bunny or Santa Clause yet? Ya know there is a big following of these traditions. Adults that raise these icons without believing in them yet allowing, sometimes encouraging their children to fantasize about them, could be an indication that Humanity wants to believe in something greater than the meat bag theory. I think the spirit of the self or consciousness, inherently inspires us to dream rather than take any one idea as the absolute authority in any religion or science, leaving us without the ability to experience on our own the possibilities.

Unfortunately rational thought is defined in our educational systems in the telling our children what to think and what not to think, in what to believe and what not to believe according to collective beliefs in censorship of worship and spiritual values.This kind of suppression leads to extremes on both sides where the intuitive side of the brain is suppressed. It often peeks out of the societal dogma, and because there is little competent guidance is condemned and feared by the programs of the majority.
When there is no balance taught in religion and science then the natural tendency of human spirit is exemplified in division and separation, segregation, fear and ignorance.
Humanity often repeats itself again and again and the obvious ignored.

You might just be the one who in your own time exemplifies the opposite to spiritual freedom and begins the scientific inquisition. wink.gif
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philthemn
post Oct 09, 2006, 01:54 PM
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Of course I won't attack santa claus or the easter bunny, because they are in no way harmful to humanity; its just fun. Religion is quite different. In general, at least in organized religion, it is narrow minded and promotes hatefulness, not to mention how it fools so many into believing they can't, won't, mustn't lose their grip on consciouness and die.

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Humanity wants to believe in something greater than the meat bag theory. I think the spirit of the self or consciousness, inherently inspires us to dream rather than take any one idea as the absolute authority in any religion or science, leaving us without the ability to experience on our own the possibilities


You're right there. Humanity hates the 'meat bag theory', but it doesn't make it any less true. Worst of all, throughout humanity people pray on this desire to dream, our longing to be more than just Homo Sapien, and exploit it. We have psychics and faith healers doing this - that I can handle - but when its governments using religion as a tool for control; sinking us into further draconianism; leading us to war; preaching racism, it just isn't acceptable.

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Unfortunately rational thought is defined in our educational systems in the telling our children what to think and what not to think, in what to believe and what not to believe according to collective beliefs in censorship of worship and spiritual values.


Rational thought has nothing to do with the education system (especially when we probably don't even share the same education system).

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This kind of suppression leads to extremes on both sides where the intuitive side of the brain is suppressed. It often peeks out of the societal dogma, and because there is little competent guidance is condemned and feared by the programs of the majority.
When there is no balance taught in religion and science then the natural tendency of human spirit is exemplified in division and separation, segregation, fear and ignorance.
Humanity often repeats itself again and again and the obvious ignored.


Oh the irony. Religion causes more segregation, fear and ignorance than all the government and societal policies that are in place right now. You speak of social dogma, but don't forget that this is exactly what I resent in society, and it is largely caused by religion.

I have been open-minded about religion - do you think I enjoy the idea of death? - but I'm afraid I see through it. They say something we like and we follow, like lambs to the slaughter. Belief pods on belief, generation unto generation, and at the end of the day, we just can't shake off that warm safety blanket.
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Lao_Tzu
post Oct 09, 2006, 03:12 PM
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In the words of Kyle: Holy shit, dude.

Philthemn, you are obviously extremely passionate in your atheism and in your disdain for religion. Without meaning to put you in a box, I suspect that what you disdain first and foremost is false philosophy, false belief, a turning away from truth toward comfortable falsehoods. You see all these things in religious faiths, so you disdain religion.

I think that is awesome. And, if you can believe this from a 'spiritual' person, I am the same way. (I was once what I like to describe as a rabid atheist, at a time when Nietzsche was the best thing I knew.)

I don't want to disagree with you, because I think a lot of what you say is quite right. But if you can stand it, I'd like to suggest a few positive values of some religions.

The first and most important value of religions is compassion. If we disregard the insanity and perversion that passes these days for political Christianity and political Islam, and pay attention to the spirit of the teachings, we find attitudes that encourage peace and compassion above all. Sure, you can find some militant quotes in the Qur'an and some idiocy in the Bible, and you can attack them, and you will be absolutely correct, but those quotes are just a testament to the errors of their human authors. The core of both teachings remains both peaceful and compassionate.

I believe compassion is very important, and sadly lacking in our everyday environments. Regardless of the differences in metaphysical worldviews between two individuals - as between philthemn and Joesus, say - they are both alive, they both suffer, and they will both die. They have this existential situation in common, and they can understand each other's suffering because it happens to them both. Metaphysical beliefs are pie in the sky - the suffering of humans is real.

By focussing only on the philosophical differences between two individuals, we ignore our fundamental commonality, and alienation and more suffering results.

But if we pause for a moment, recognise that metaphysics is unverifiable pie in the sky, and let that be for moment, we can acknowledge our common situation - one of confusion and unsatisfactoriness, hope and desperation, the sadness and joy of being human. When we are feeling joyful, we can recognise someone else's sadness as the same thing we felt only a day before. Compassion results, and that can reduce the suffering of both parties.

Commensurate with compassion is peace. At the core (NB) of most religions it is acknowledged that there is, to put it bluntly, no point fighting. It is better to be at peace.

Where religion does wrong, it is because its followers have lost sight of these most fundamental values and become concerned with pie in the sky - a metaphysical ground to which to lay claim and defend, and from which to presume to moralise to others. Atheists attack the metaphysic because they resent the moralising. The metaphysic is often of dubious logical standing, but its proponents have put the cart so wholly before the horse that they forget that it doesn't really matter - and so both parties become embroiled in emotional battle. And both parties suffer more.

Which is not to suggest that you should let up, philthemn, in searching for truth and exposing falsity - or even perhaps in suggesting that the evil of false religious beliefs outweighs the good of compassion and other positive religious values (which can be secular as well) - but, without wishing to offend Joesus, your opponent in this debate is not known for concise and down-to-earth explanations. So please don't work yourself up into a froth of rage.

May you both be happy and at peace.
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Joesus
post Oct 09, 2006, 03:25 PM
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QUOTE
Of course I won't attack santa claus or the easter bunny, because they are in no way harmful to humanity; its just fun. Religion is quite different. In general, at least in organized religion, it is narrow minded and promotes hatefulness, not to mention how it fools so many into believing they can't, won't, mustn't lose their grip on consciouness and die.

Promotes hatefulness? You mean like political perspectives based on democracy and the fear of terrorism hatefulness, where organized media feeds us facts based on what we need to hear? That kind of hatefulness?
People believe what they want to believe and at their level of understanding and thru choice congregate where they will. This you can try to prevent but due to certain freedoms such as the freedom to think in a direction, people respond to what society believes is reality because they don't choose to see any further.

You join the service and you are told to kill the enemy and there is no thought about the family of the person you are attacking or their beliefs, there is only following the lead of authority. In a society that sets its values on freedoms and the protection of those freedoms and at the same time promotes segregation of abilities in the promotion of competition at the cost of mental stress and self worth. Freedom is relative to how we feel about ourselves and the need to find comfort in belief, and the support of the majority.
Most churches I have visited preach love, but they know not of unconditional love. That is not taught in church or in schools or in the home. You can't blame the church for prejudice when it begins in the home and has been passed down generation to generation regardless of beliefs in spirituality.
You can try to blame it on one thing and attack that one thing but that is not rationality. It's just paranoid delusion. That type of rationality is not a mature rationality, it is incomplete.
I'm sure if you look into the social systems of any political of non political system, any religious or non religious system you will find predudice, hatred, ignorance. Even sciences have their prejudices against the non conformists and non believers.

These are symptoms, and like most sciences we study the symtoms and try to discover the causes but medical sciences are still struggling to understand the human nervous system and they will have you sign a disclaimer before performing surgery to cover their own ass rather than guarantee they have the cure.
Spiritual sciences that are in the same struggle will attack symptoms just as you do without really knowing the cause. There have been millions before you useing the same argument and even more. There have been those who have tried to destroy religion by destroying its leaders and their followers. The futility of it always results in the symptoms appearing somewhere else in another time and in similar conditions.

When the essence of expression is stifled or suppressed by an authority that says you are a meat bag and your only purpose is unkown to you but known to us, we as the greater authority will tell you how you should feel and live your life. There is no attraction to that base of knowledge, but there is to love and expansion of conscious awareness in the form of true spirituality.

You can't prevent evil as long as you accept it as a force in reality and fear it. By doing so you enhance and support it. It naturally falls away and atrophies when you focus on love and potential.

QUOTE
You're right there. Humanity hates the 'meat bag theory', but it doesn't make it any less true.
The desire to rise above is inherent in the fact that we are not limited by our perceptions.
Truth is relative. You are allowed your meat bag theory but in good conscience you could allow others their views relative to a greater perception than yours.
QUOTE
Worst of all, throughout humanity people pray on this desire to dream,
Prayer is relative to belief, faith, and intutive connections to the bigger part of ourselves we have not experienced but know exist. Dreams are not an abhorration, they are a natural part of the nervous system and desire a natural function of consciousness.
QUOTE
our longing to be more than just Homo Sapien, and exploit it. We have psychics and faith healers doing this - that I can handle - but when its governments using religion as a tool for control; sinking us into further draconianism; leading us to war; preaching racism, it just isn't acceptable.

What government is not corrupt? We as individuals can condemn religion as being responsible, but it we as humans allow the condition to persist by whining about what is wrong rather than rising above it ourselves.
Leaders are not made out of people who force others to do something, that is not what attracts people. What does is expansion of love and conscious awareness, expansion of hope into expression and freedom from fear.
The delusions of fear being created from external manifestations is just plain ignorance. When one learns that it is beleif in lack of freedom and potentilal that binds thought into finite beingness, and the attachment to identity created by the ego that is the foundation for fear, then it easily gives up the meat bag theory to remain open to more. That leaves the intellect free to explore possibility rather than inevitablity without the need to cling to a support system that is illusion.

No one, is a victim. We as individual expressions of consciousness are not inherently bound to believe one thing only. In that respect we have the freedom to follow anything without thought or to give away our own divinity for an authority that claims you have no choice, you are a meat bag and you do not know anything so let me tell you what you are and what you must do in accord with what you are.
Spirituality is based on discovery and those who are discovering more than the reality that they are sheep subject to any authority without the freedom of self discovery are spiritual in their choices to believe whatever they will believe and to expand belief into something greater than belief.

You make generalized statements of religion based on worse case scenarios. There is no rationality in that. You do seem to have a lot in common with the KKK, White supremists or Nazi's and certain socialist ideals that people must not be allowed to think for themselves.
Your type of thinking is as old as any religion and it is born out of fear and the focusing of attention on the bad things in the world.
There is more to living in the world than being a fear based meat bag.

QUOTE
Rational thought has nothing to do with the education system (especially when we probably don't even share the same education system).

Every educational system is affected by belief and the collective mindset. Rationality is based on levels of conscious awareness, maturity of spiritual insight or the connection to reality. The educational system of any society is a reflection of capitulation, to define reality in terms relative to popular theory.

QUOTE
Oh the irony. Religion causes more segregation, fear and ignorance than all the government and societal policies that are in place right now. You speak of social dogma, but don't forget that this is exactly what I resent in society, and it is largely caused by religion.

And the moon is made of cheese. dry.gif

QUOTE
I have been open-minded about religion - do you think I enjoy the idea of death? - but I'm afraid I see through it. They say something we like and we follow, like lambs to the slaughter. Belief pods on belief, generation unto generation, and at the end of the day, we just can't shake off that warm safety blanket.

Can't? You seem to believe you have. What pray tell is it that is in you that is not in others?
Being open minded would be to allow a child to grow up without condemning the learning process and destroy the child due to the process of development. You make generalized statements and group all spiritual realities in with your best projection of reality which is the worst case scenario.

You don't show me that you have the capacity to open your mind. How could you when you believe it has not the capacity to be more than a meat bag destined to expire?
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philthemn
post Oct 09, 2006, 03:35 PM
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The first and most important value of religions is compassion. If we disregard the insanity and perversion that passes these days for political Christianity and political Islam, and pay attention to the spirit of the teachings, we find attitudes that encourage peace and compassion above all. Sure, you can find some militant quotes in the Qur'an and some idiocy in the Bible, and you can attack them, and you will be absolutely correct, but those quotes are just a testament to the errors of their human authors. The core of both teachings remains both peaceful and compassionate.


I agree that alot of religion is based on compassion, and this is fair enough. But why must we turn to religion to find compassion? Compassion is a human emotion, not a divine one. It is less moral for a religious person to act in a compassionate way as to please an all-powerful God, than for an athiest to act equally for reasons of genuine empathy and humanity.

QUOTE
but, without wishing to offend Joesus, your opponent in this debate is not known for concise and down-to-earth explanations. So please don't work yourself up into a froth of rage.


I'm so glad it isn't just me thinking that Joesus' arguments are a little...evasive.

To Joesus: I won't continue to discuss matters in this way; your arguments do not hold enough weight, and I don't have the energy to repeatedly answer to them, only for you to throw up some truely illogical response.
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Lao_Tzu
post Oct 09, 2006, 03:45 PM
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I completely agree. The theist in this case acts compassionately out of selfishness, whereas the atheist does so out of altruism.

There is no need to turn to religion to find compassion - at least, not to any established religion - because, as you rightly say, compassion is a human emotion and not a divine one. (If anything, it is more necessary for established religions to turn back to these ideas once again, and remember their roots.)

However, if you make (for example) compassion an ideal that you strive to exemplify as purely as possible, then that becomes your personal religion. And a damn fine religion it would be too, if it went no further than that.
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Joesus
post Oct 09, 2006, 05:50 PM
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QUOTE
However, if you make (for example) compassion an ideal that you strive to exemplify as purely as possible, then that becomes your personal religion. And a damn fine religion it would be too, if it went no further than that.

The essence of True spirituality and union is to live in perfect compassion (wisdom combined with unconditional Love)
I find it more of a reality in freedom than a personal religion. One that includes rather than divides or projects the personal experience onto another personal experience.

QUOTE
To Joesus: I won't continue to discuss matters in this way; your arguments do not hold enough weight, and I don't have the energy to repeatedly answer to them, only for you to throw up some truely illogical response.

You have nothing to lose other than your personal opinion, and nothing to gain that you didn't already have.
It takes a great deal of energy to maintain a personal truth amidst greater possibilities.
Generally speaking, it is the reason the meat bag theory perpetuates itself in aging and death.
It simply wears you out.
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Lao_Tzu
post Oct 10, 2006, 02:47 AM
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QUOTE(Joesus @ Oct 10, 2006, 12:50 AM) *

QUOTE
However, if you make (for example) compassion an ideal that you strive to exemplify as purely as possible, then that becomes your personal religion. And a damn fine religion it would be too, if it went no further than that.

The essence of True spirituality and union is to live in perfect compassion (wisdom combined with unconditional Love)
I find it more of a reality in freedom than a personal religion. One that includes rather than divides or projects the personal experience onto another personal experience.

I can dig that.
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