Guilty of Avoidance

Discussion in 'Religion' started by Mopar Dude, Sep 6, 2019.

  1. Mopar Dude

    Mopar Dude Active Member

    So I have purposely avoided this area of the forum. I spent the first half of my life consumed with myself. Even spent an eight year stint as a minor league rock star. And yes with all the indulgences. I began a relationship with my creator in my forties..... My point is that I walked the other side of the fence far longer than this side.

    What I have learned though is that trying to describe a relationship with the creator to someone that chooses to not have that relationship is much like trying to describe “red” to a blind person. Without that relationship, all discussion of the merits of the scriptures are meaningless. By grace, we each are blessed with free will. And I will use my free will to pray for you and our nation.
     
  2. JoeNation
    Angelic

    JoeNation FOX Lies, GOP buys!

    Interesting self-perspective @Mopar Dude. However, not all that uncommon. The story of people that have "hit bottom" or have just had enough of a "decadent life-style" is an all too familiar scenario.

    I am probably your human antithesis. I grew up going to private Catholic schools and had very religious German catholic grandparents. I was an alter boy in the real sense. I went through all of the catholic rituals and attended mass 6 times a week. I walked that side of the fence for most of my formative years.

    What I have learned is that it little matters whether it is Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, or any other faith, they are all just different flavors of the same general mysticism that preys on the gullibility of those willing to suspend rational thought and put their lives in the hands of faith alone.

    Today I would describe myself as pretty much an atheist except that Atheists seem just as sure that there is no God as believers are that there is a God. How could either really know? I'm fine with anyone's beliefs as long as they don't try and inflict them on me or my society.
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2019
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  3. Mopar Dude

    Mopar Dude Active Member

    I had an interesting interaction with my little girl last week. It stuck with me because I have raised three kids to adulthood and this was a first for me.

    I'll give a little history for perspective..... Being a retired minor league rock & roller, I retired all my guitars and such when my son was born. They have been in the attic for many, many years. Four years ago, the youngsters in my church asked me to put together a praise group with them. That has since grown into becoming music director at my church. I say all that because I leave my house at 5am Sundays, far too early for the wife and baby girl who make it to church except maybe every other Sunday. We do pray at the dinner table but I don't have a home that is a fanatically religious home by any stretch. Matter of fact, my wife's favorite weekend shirt says, "I love Jesus but I cuss a little". Whole point being, I am not driving religion in that girls head. It is her choice and she does love her relationship with the creator.

    Back to the present...... Two weeks ago, I picked my baby up from daycare. On the way home we saw a homeless man beside the road with a sign. I suppose I see this often enough that right or wrong, I am somewhat desensitized to it. I heard sniffles coming from the backseat. We got home and she sat down and wrote a note, went in the kitchen and prepared a sandwich, Kool-aid and snacks and asked me to take her back to where the homeless man was. I did so and saw the man cry when she gave him her note and bag meal.

    I didn't drive that into her heart. In fact, I was guilty of avoidance. It was the goodness in her heart that did that. The creator by whatever name you choose to give him is love and my baby girl is slap full of that love. It is just such a palpable thing to me. How can that be irrational?

    Now you are correct, I wouldn't push my views on you, my neighbors, my employees or anyone else unless asked. But here's my rub in recent years. Those of us that call ourselves Christian profess to be tolerant of all. And I try to meet that standard. However what I see happening to Christians is the exact opposite. Those that choose not to participate in organized religion are forcing me to bend to their views. If my girl wants to pray at lunch in school, so be it. If my church wants to display the nativity at Christmas, so be it. Is it truly that offensive to have "In God We Trust" on our cash? It makes about as much sense as watching a Gay Rights parade. I do not want to know what goes on in your bedroom. In other words I am tolerant of you and pass no judgment. Please extend the same courtesy to me. I do truly feel that I am being pushed into a corner and there is little more I am willing to relinquish before I draw my line in the sand. That make any sense?
     
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  4. JoeNation
    Angelic

    JoeNation FOX Lies, GOP buys!

    Good for your little sweetie. She has compassion for the less fortunate and that can't be bad no matter the source. She'll grow up to be a wonderful young woman. That's all you can ask.

    After leaving the Catholic influence, my grandparents died and my parents stopped forcing their parents religion on us, we moved out to the country and found ourselves living next to a family of very religious Christians. Their middle child was my best friend and remained so until his unfortunate early death at 39 of a massive heart attack. The family was the best type of Christians I ever met before and since. They walked the talk but never preached or judged me or my family for not being religious. They were just great people and unfortunately, I have met very few Christians that come close to how wonder these neighbors were. Thanks to them, I know that religious faith is capable of having some pretty wonderful people in their ranks.

    Today, I look around at various Christians, Muslims, Jews and think, they only ones you ever hear about aren't the type that my neighbors were, they are usually the religious extremists. I think Evangelicals would be more than happy to institute their brand of Sharia Law over the entire country if given the chance. They are fundamentalist and hateful in my opinion. Unfortunately, they have the GOP by the proverbial nuts at this point and aren't letting go any time soon.

    I have watched the rise of what I call Christian self-Crucifixion in this country for decades. Christians always describe themselves as under attack even as they attack women's reproductive rights, LGBTQ rights, other religious faiths, and pretty much anyone on the Left. Keep in mind that running for public office openly as an Atheist is political Kryptonite in a country that is supposed to have no religious litmus test to hold public office. Who is really intolerant here?
    Nothing says that your child can't pray at school at lunch time. If it is a public school, the school simply can't encourage it or give preferential treatment to any one religious faith. This is a straw-man argument. Churches can display any type of nativity or other religious scene they want to, they just can't use public land to do so. I'm not sure why you think that they couldn't? Furthermore, If someone like me doesn't believe in God or maybe believes in Satan or maybe the Mother Earth God such as Wickens, why should we have to have it referenced on our government sanctioned currency? It's not my faith, nor the faith of roughly 30% of the country, why am I being forced to pay for someone else's beliefs? References to God on our currency as you probably know are fairly recent. Both coins and paper money bear these references to God directly as a result of religious movements in this country, one as recently as 1956 I believe. Also, no one forces you to watch a gay pride parade. You can easily avoid that by going anywhere else.

    Courtesy is a two-way street. I have only seem hatred and intolerance coming from those that claim to follow Jesus' teaching. I believe that people that claim to speak for God are the most arrogant people on earth. I can't imagine trying to tell some one else what God wants them to act like. It is the height of arrogance in my opinion.
     
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  5. JoeNation
    Angelic

    JoeNation FOX Lies, GOP buys!

    I just wanted to add that my wife and I raised three compassionate wonderful young men that have grown into adults that I simply could not be more proud of. We exposed them to many, many types of religious beliefs over the years and we were always open to any questions they had about any theology they were interested in. We didn't force them to believe what we were exposed to growing up. Point being that religion is not a prerequisite to raising moral, caring, compassionate children as many Christians will have you believe. It simply is a matter of modeling the behaviors you want to see in your children on a daily basis.
     
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  6. Mopar Dude

    Mopar Dude Active Member

    I fully agree. Moral character comes from within and is absolutely not a gift given to Christians only.... Do you think having such a stringent religious upbringing closed you up to it as an adult? I ask because my upbringing was devoid of the church. Not because my single mom had that view. She was one that worked three jobs to take care of my sister and I.
     
  7. JoeNation
    Angelic

    JoeNation FOX Lies, GOP buys!

    The short answer is no. I didn't go directly from Catholicism to where I am today. I grew up, read a ton of books and came to where I am today.
     
  8. Mopar Dude

    Mopar Dude Active Member

    This is a very interesting stat to me. I was unaware though had assumed that the majority of Americans did share a belief in a higher power. If I am reading you correctly, I believe I understand that you are saying that 70% of Americans have a belief in a higher power. If I am understanding that correctly, then wouldn’t it make sense then that the majority of Americans may prefer to say a prayer before a ballgame or to see the Ten Commandments in front of a federal building? I admit that my church has never been asked to take down its nativity scene at Christmas. It’s more the current environment lends itself to this kind of thinking. See, I have an old Mopar show car that is often invited to be shown at events. There was a small sticker from my church on the rear deck. Three years ago that sticker was scarred with a key or knife or something that also damaged some expensive paint. I wasn’t angry. I was hurt that I had the old car out for folks to enjoy yet they damaged my property to make a statement. So I have to ask who is making the bigger noise? The 70% or the 30%?
     
  9. JohnHamilton
    Pensive

    JohnHamilton Active Member

    I believe that there is a creator and a higher power. I don’t care for religion because too many of them condemn those who disagree with them. The Ten Commandments are generally good except for the one about only one God. The one about “craven images” has confused me too. That is self serving and counterproductive to the Christian message. If you can’t accept the point of view of religions that don’t accept your god, the rest of your views are inconsistent the rest of your message. There is more than one way to get to a good place.
     
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  10. JoeNation
    Angelic

    JoeNation FOX Lies, GOP buys!

    What you're advocating for here is known as the tyranny of the majority. Or sometimes called mob rule. The Founders were determined to forestall the inherent dangers of what James Madison called “the tyranny of the majority." A lot has been written about the dangers associated with the tyranny of the majority which often comes to the conclusion that the only basis for true democracy will never be found in the mercurial loyalties of public opinion. You might as well have a society based on polling because you'll never have one based on any principles.
    I think too many people confuse this country with a Democracy. We are not a Democracy, we are a Republic and always have been. A Democracy, as they say, is two wolves and a sheep deciding what's for dinner. A Republic is based on enshrined principles that apply to even the least in society.
    Anyone damaging someone else's property to make some dumb ass point only makes the point that they are just a bunch of pathetic losers. I would seriously doubt that the motives you seem to be ascribing to whoever did this to your property were based in anyone practicing Atheism. It's entirely possible but it wouldn't be the first conclusion I would jump to. I guess you'll never really know. These types of vandalism are usually carried out by brazen teenagers that have no thought processes behind their actions because, well, they are teenagers after all.
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2019
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  11. JohnHamilton
    Pensive

    JohnHamilton Active Member

    It is interesting that you want to do away with the Electoral College which was responsible for electing Trump. You would replace it with a nation-wide popular vote that would let California, New York and Illinois elect the president. One of the reasons for the Electoral College is that it gave the small states a say in choosing the president who is the one office that represents the whole country. That prevents “the tyranny of the majority” that you claim to oppose.
     
  12. Mopar Dude

    Mopar Dude Active Member

    I think if you view this from a real world perspective that all this is telling you is to keep your priorities in order. Don’t be counting your money unless you are counting your blessings as well. That kind of thing. I absolutely love playing around with my old car and have caught myself doing it at the expense of something my family wanted to do. In that case, my graven image was my old car.... There is some good common sense real world application in those words when you think about it.
     
  13. JoeNation
    Angelic

    JoeNation FOX Lies, GOP buys!

    It's also interesting that I never mentioned one word about the Electoral College and yet you assumed my opinion of it anyway.
     
  14. Mopar Dude

    Mopar Dude Active Member

    Even though we see our world through different glasses, I enjoy your posts. I sacrificed my opportunity to educate myself as a young man and learn a lot reading and re-reading many of your posts.

    I have been an active voting citizen since I became politically aware during my stint in the Army. I do involve myself with the issues I feel are important before I cast my vote and have never cast a vote for any person or issue that I didn’t feel I had gleaned the proper information to cast a meaningful vote for.

    Having said that, I cannot remember ever being aware of a candidates religious affiliations prior to my casting a vote. Though I do believe your comment does have merit. Sadly, I am of a mind that this may be more of a sign of the times. With so many looking for flaws and drama in a candidates life, everything they have ever done is up for public consumption. I saw a news piece in passing last week where the Canadian Prime Minister had a photo come up from his teenage years wearing dark makeup from a high school party or something. Who on earth didn’t do regrettable stuff as a teenager? It’s unrealistic really. In my mind only one perfect person walked this earth.... And he was crucified for being perfect some 2000 years ago.
     
  15. JohnHamilton
    Pensive

    JohnHamilton Active Member

    But it's obvious what your opinion is concerning the results of the 2016 presidential election.

    What about the law in Colorado where the state will cast its electoral votes based on the national popular vote, not the way its citizens may have voted on the state level. Are you cool with that method of bypassing the Electoral College?
     
  16. JoeNation
    Angelic

    JoeNation FOX Lies, GOP buys!

    Thank you but don't sell yourself short. Life seems to have been a great teacher in your case. Some of the smartest people I have ever met were farmers. They never went past high school but knew the world backwards and forwards. Today, many of them do not have the sense their parents had. We have a
    country were their only access to information is a cable news show, and I mean "show" not shows. Fox poisons their minds until their own kids don't recognize them. It's sad to see what Trump is doing to farmers with the farmers supporting him all the way. Oh well.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2019
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  17. JohnHamilton
    Pensive

    JohnHamilton Active Member

    Yea, and everythign that CNN and MSNBC report is the truth, on the the money. Ditto for ABC, CBS and NBC. Why is their credibility so low in the polls?

    Why does your side insist on 100% control of the news media? Could it be that you are that afraid of others points of view?
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2019
  18. CoinBlazer

    CoinBlazer Ready for War!

    There is only one God because you cannot truly "serve two masters."
     
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  19. JohnHamilton
    Pensive

    JohnHamilton Active Member

    The Hindus, for example, have their god; you can have yours. No one is “serving two masters” If you believe that everyone must serve your god, then you are no better than the fascist leftists who believe in no gods and expect others to do the same.

    Like I said, there is more than one way to get to a good place.
     
  20. JoeNation
    Angelic

    JoeNation FOX Lies, GOP buys!

    The Hindus have roughly 1 million Gods.
     

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