A Conversation for Ask h2g2

One of many

Post 41

Jimbo

Guess so
smiley - smiley


One of many

Post 42

The Mummy, administrator of the [email protected] Project (A193231) and The Reluctant Dead on the FFFF (A254314)

On both counts, I do NOT blame "chrisitanity" as institution, because at that point I already stood corrected.

Who/what I DO blame, is the collective of leaders of the Catholic Church, who believed (past tense!) such conduct would be acceptable. It is the "Catholic Church", therefor (and NOT Christianity as a whole, I wouldn't have tried to suggest that), that has the bad heritage.

Being not perfect is ok by me. We can't expect to be ALL like Jesus Christ. However, some are more imperfect than others, and some of the Catholic leaders (as mentioned above) have succeeded in leading the ranks without trying very hard.

What I actually mean is: If I were to choose a religion right now, and I chose to be a christian, I still wouldn't want to be a Catholic, because I'd feel a spiritual shame about what other Catholics have done in the name of that belief. I just wouldn't be able to accept that heritage.
For that matter: I wouldn't want to be a Yew either.

Again: it's not the WHOLE of any religion that I resist, but rather the PART of it, that thinks it can do anything in Gods name. That doesn't seem like "imperfect" to me, but rather like "Evil".


One of many

Post 43

Taipan - Jack of Hearts


Now, this may seem presumptios of me, but at the moment I have no-one else to ask that could provide an informed answer (possibly) :

Why - do you reckon - that the catholic church outlawed so many different religious artifacts and decided to hole them up in the Vatican to prevent access by anyone seriously researching this concept?

I think if they allowed anyone interested in studying Christianity - from a purely objective basis - they would release these works to the general population, and perhaps win many more converts for their open-mindedness.

On a slightly different point. I heard that the Pope has requested all christians to renew their faith in the Year 2000, by calling on as many as possible to visit the Vatican during this period. Given the possible problems this date may bring IT wise, I'm not so sure that was one of his better ideas.

BTW, It's kind of difficult to bring up these points without sounding like I'm slating the church, but in all honesty, I'm just curious.


No idea

Post 44

Jimbo

I am a Christian who does not want to be associated with any particular church at the moment, although I am definitely a Protestant rather than a Catholic. I do agree with you that the catholic church has rather weird ideas about some things, these being merely a few of them. I wouldn't know how to go about getting a Catholic's views on these points. Of the few Catholics I know, none of them are firm believers in everything the Pope says, and the Catholic church has a very bad reputation for not following its own rules, right back to the middle ages.


No idea

Post 45

Taipan - Jack of Hearts


Thanx, anyway.


One of many

Post 46

Jimbo

I agree with you about the leaders of the Catholic church, but should the actions of people in the past, who happen to have believed the same as you, make you feel shameful. I don't think so personally, but then as I am a Protestant and not a Catholic, I would think that wouldn't I? Surely it is what the Catholic church is doing now that should influence your decision. Admittedly, it would probably be the same!

As for religion doing things in God's name, Christians will do things that affect their lives personally because they feel that God has given them a message to do something. This is to make them lead lives that are closer to that of Jesus, ie closer to perfect.


Adam & Eve is a load of crap

Post 47

K'lara

I disagree. The New Testament of the Bible is a discription of how Jesus saved us from our sins. The Old Testament is a lesson in religious history. I honestly think that the christian churches should spend more time teaching the Old Testament, since most christains of my acquaintance only know the basics. Like Genesis, Moses, and Noah. There are far more interesting things in the Old Testament to study, IMHO. All the blood and guts of Christian/Catholic religion is there. A sad thing to be an angel..."One wing dipped in blood, the other reaching toward Heaven."


Adam & Eve is a load of crap

Post 48

Smeagol

Hmm, several things to respond to here, so let's throw ourselves in head over heels;


Man on top of evolutionary pyramid?:
The idea of an evolutionary pyramid and trying to decide who's on top of it strikes me as utterly ridiculous, since the basic idea of evolution is survival of the fittest, ie if you (as a species) are good at fitting into nature, or for that matter adapting nature to your needs, you'll have more surviving kids than other species's
As you can quite see, man has been slightly more succesfull than, for instance, gorillas, as the ad we've all seen on top of the page rightly points out. Nature is not into ethics, sadly enough...


Protestant/Catholic church:
What I've always been thought is that the protestant church kicked of because Martin Luther (a german monk) was quite annoyed with the state of affairs in the (catholic) church, mainly the absolvation letters. As a rich man you could simply buy one of these and Wham, Bam, all your sins were absolved... Martin Luther was more into the idea of actually repenting your sins yourself and mending your ways instead of just coughing up some dough.
However, the Anglican Church (one of many fractions of protestantism) was, as written here, formed because the pope wouldn't let the english king have a divorce.


Perfect Jesus:
Actually, one of the central ideas of the christian faith is that Jesus WASN'T perfect!
Read for instance the story of the stoning of the adultress - "He who is without sin shall cast the first stone\\..\\neither I am without sin".
The basic line in judaism is "Don't sin" while in christianity it is "Everybody sins. But if you truly repent your sins you shall have eternal life in heaven"
While the Old Testament (jewish faith) teaches, among many things, that murder, adultery etc is sin, Jesus teaches us that merely looking at another man with anger in your heart is as bad as actually murdering him, and looking at another mans wife with lust is as bad as actually going to bed with her. The quote from Jesus about his goes something like "I come not to disband the law but to sharpen it" (my Bible is not in english, so I don't have the exact wording).
As a last point, consider the event on the crosses when the murderer next to Jesus turns to him and says "Think of me when thou art in thy kingdom", to which Jesus replies "This very evening thou shall walk next to me in it"

Oh, in case anybody wonders, I'm not myself christian; just interested


Adam & Eve is a load of crap

Post 49

Frustreren

This is a long and interesting forum. But, I would like to throw out a few points for people to consider, and generally increase the length of the post...

1) There are two stories in Genesis of the creation. However, many Biblical scholars believe that the first one (on the first day, the second day, etc...) was actually used as a worship service during the Jewish exile in Babylon. If you read it and have the creativity to imagine priests reciting it in a temple like atmosphere, I think you'll see that this could very well have been the case. The second creation story (Adam and Eve and so forth) is generally believed to be much older in origin and to be more of a folk legend about the way things were believed to have occured. This doesn't mean that it's all true or all false... Another interesting point to this part is that the Hebrew for "man" is, I believe, "'adam". So, the story is not necessarily referring to an individual...

The entire early portion of Genesis (from the beginning to the flood) is usually considered to be a collection of folk stories, which were later collected a combined into a coherent whole. It was not written down by a single prophet right after these events occured (the lack of paper might have caused a problem)...

One other thought as far as the Bible is concerned, I usually take the numbers used for ages and time periods in the old Testament (esp. the ages of ~800-900 years) as being completely meaningless. Hundreds of years of textual evolution can lead to many discrepencies. If you're ever in the mood for an interesting challenge, see how many times you can find the number "40" in the Old and New Testaments...

2) As far as evolution is concerned, I am a semi-supporter. I heard that the big bang is believed to have originated from an volume less than that of one atom (if someone knows more I'd appreciate the input). That being the case, everything has originated from almost nothing. And, that is strangely similar to the "God" version of creation.

3) Another interesting fact I ran into, was that chimpanzee's share ~99% of our DNA. Which makes you wonder, why are we so different from monkeys? Perhaps looking at differences in a biological sense is not the way to go....


Genesis, the failings of

Post 50

26199

Oh dear... there are *so many* obvious discrepancies in Genesis that I don't know how anybody can take it literally... day and night being created before the sun is a favourite. I once started to compile a list of such obvious contradictions in Genesis, but I gave up when I realised that I could spend the rest of my life doing so...

Genesis is also ridiculously sexist... the bit about God looking through all the animal kingdom to find Man a helper before coming up with Woman is especially evil, IMO.

The Bible contains some good ideas... in fact, the "Love your neighbour as you love yourself" bit comes very close to my own philosophy. Why people even both to read the other bits, is something I don't think I'll ever fully comprehend. As for living by them...


Adam & Eve is a load of crap

Post 51

Irene

You are right, atoms didn't exist in the Big Bang, as I said...they formed some time later when things cooled.

With regards to equal quatities of matter and anti-matter being formed, it depends on who you talk to. Our current understanding is that matter and anti-matter always form in equal amounts, but if so, where is the antimatter? We would expect to see some indications if half of the Universe was made of it. We also wonder how they could have seperated enough to form galaxies as matter and anti-matter tend to annihilate each other. The other theory is that, perhaps, there was a VERY slight imbalance in the production process so that more matter than anti-matter was created. It is still an open question as far as I know, but cosmology isn't my speciality.


One of many

Post 52

Mustapha

Uhh, just wanted to point out that Catholicism doesn't have a monopoly on pain and suffering. Granted it has a greater share of it on account of their being around longer than most. Anglican Protestants have caused their share of grief esp. under Elizabeth I and in Northern Ireland, and there have been more than a few pogroms committed in Protestant European countries, most notably Nazi Germany.

Also on the subject of wars and crusades, ALL wars are fought because of land (or property). In the case of crusades or jihads or whatever, religion simply provides the Justification. Professional soldiers have to be paid, clothed and fed, so if you want a big army, you have to get guys who will work for free. Tell a bunch of peasants to travel hundreds of miles to kill people they hardly know and they won't do it. But tell them that these people are evil and that by killing them you will be guaranteeing yourself a place in heaven, hey, that's a different story! Declaring a crusade is also a way of ensuring Church support if your foe happens to be of a different creed.

The Middle East Crusades began as a border dispute between Byzantium and Syria. After the crusaders took control of Jerusalem, it became a matter of protecting the new territories. The Albigensian Crusade was against the Cathars or Albigensi who only became a problem when began to establish a large, independent territory in Southern France. The Balkan Crusade was simply about protecting the borders from Turkish invaders.

This does not, of course, exonerate in any way what is done in the name of God, it just puts things in their proper HUMAN perspective.


Adam & Eve is a load of crap

Post 53

The Jester (P. S. of Village Idiots, Muse of Comedians, Keeper of Jokes, Chef and Seraph of Bad Jokes) LUG @ A458228

There was an incredible force at the time of the Big Bang. This caused the matter and anti-matter to spread out *very* quickly, in fact, so quickly that it couldn't react with each other

3smiley - biggrin


Genesis, the failings of

Post 54

Wick

As far as the 2 accounts of the creation go, the word translated as "god" in verse 1 was "elohim" which is actually a plural word with both female and male connotations. It would be more accurately translated as "gods and goddesses" or "pantheon". The second creation story is where yhwh goes of and does his little pet eden project on his own.
Another interesting thing in genesis is the tree of knowledge. Yhwh said "if you eat of it, you will surely die", the serpents said "No, if you eat of it, you will gain the knowledge of good and evil". They eat of it. The results? Well, according to every bible I've seen, it was the serpent that told the truth and god telling the first fib. Odd how it's always portrayed as being the other way around.


Adam & Eve is a load of crap

Post 55

Irene

Perhaps...but lots of matter is interacting, otherwise we wouldn't have stars, galaxies, us, etc. etc. etc. So why wasn't antimatter mixed up roughly equally with the matter causing it all to annihilate? There is nothing that we know of that would make all matter go to the left and all antimatter to the right (that I am aware of), for example...except maybe the weak interaction which is not symmetric but I don't see how that would account for it.

As I say, I'm not a cosmologist, i.e. I'm not an expert in the field. I just remember the jist of arguments I have heard/read etc. If someone can quote a recent paper which says there is definitely an equal amount of anti-matter out there, I would be happy to read it.


Adam & Eve is a load of crap

Post 56

The Jester (P. S. of Village Idiots, Muse of Comedians, Keeper of Jokes, Chef and Seraph of Bad Jokes) LUG @ A458228

When matter and anti-matter are formed, there is an incredible force, which causes the matter and anti-matter to whizz off in opposite directions.


Philosphy

Post 57

BuskingBob

You triggered me to re-read Leviticus! (lots of stuff scattered round the internet)

Couple of points - some of the descriptions of preparing the meats for sacrifice would not go out of place in a modern abattoir dealing with BSE infected carcases - don't eat the offal, blood, any meat from certain other parts of the body, burn the suspect bits, always wash your hands, wear protective clothing etc! We know that TB has often been a problem with some types of animals - perhaps this was their way of reducing the risk? Using the burnt meat as a sacrifice would have ensured quite a lot of compliance, I guess?

Chapter 11 has a whole load of restrictions on diet - most of these are carrion eaters; some of those that aren't are comptetitors to man eg pigs eat what we eat, and would uproot crops; whereas sheep scavenge grass and scrub and would therefore be little threat to people scratching a living from the land.

We have our own odd dietary rules (dogs, cats, horses, worms, badgers, crows etc do not often appear on menus in my part of the world, even if some people eat things such as live oysters!)


It seems to me that taken overall, Leviticus may contain a lot of commonsense! (whether it was written by Moses, and who Moses actually was - now that's a big discussion in it's own right. )

I've always viewed the Bible as a mix of fact and myth - there is no doubt that many of the battles described actually took place. The danger is in believing that it is all fact or all myth.


Genesis, the failings of

Post 58

Anonymouse

Contradictions? Heh.. yeah.. My favourite:

And then god created man, male and female created he them...


And then we get the bit of Adam and the rib and all that BS.

*sigh*

Seems it would have been easier to create woman first.. Then she'd have had a nice brewing pot. smiley - winkeye

'Nonnie


Adam & Eve is a load of crap

Post 59

fatty the underweight canadian vegitarian

first off, i don't beleive adam & eve is a load of crap. i am a christian. now, some problems we run into: original texts of the old testament. guess what? they're not in english. i know it's scary for us westerns, but there's good news: they're not written in any current language. that is because they are VERY OLD. this makes translation/interpretation very hard. anyone who tells you they fully understand those texts is either a liar or dumb. there are many commonly held truths about them, but that doesn't mean we're right. this leads us to another problem. the universe. how dare we assume that the universe is going to fit into something we can understand. there is much that we, as humans, understand. but there is a lot more that we are no where near catching. don't forget the dolphins my friends. humans have such a negitive self esteem we refuse to beleive that there is the possibility that we may not be the hottest thing out. don't forget what we are, atomic dust clinging to an electron, rotating a nuecleus, in an atom that makes up something bigger. the universe. from our electron dust position, we have no real concept what we're a part of, we can only theorize. going on this basis, i could very easily be completely wrong.


Adam & Eve is a load of crap

Post 60

Calvin

It is all bollocks. I went to a catholic school and was about 15 before i found out it wasn't true. I think it's just one of those parable-type-thingys. Ask someone who believes it to explain fossils.


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