Is the Pope slamming Islam for what the Vatican and Christia

Is there a God? If so, what is She like?

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Immanuel Can
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Re: Is the Pope slamming Islam for what the Vatican and Chri

Post by Immanuel Can »

Christianity is a long list of incompatible beliefs
Arguable, of course. I don't think they are any such thing, any more than Torah scholars think the same could be said of Torah. But absent specifics, I don't think we can solve this accusation. What did you have in mind?
claiming to follow the instructions and wishes of a single god. They cannot ALL be right, and I have no reason to think that ANY of them are right.
This would be true, and true according to the laws of logic, not of any partisanship on your part. If there are incommensurable claims, it is possible one is right, it is possible both are wrong, but it is not possible, so long as they are truly opposite claims, for both to be right. We have no disagreement there.
And why would I?
Well, only on evidence that one was right, I would hope. Why else?

What is more damaging the idea of "god", whatever that is, is that both Judaism and Islam also claim to know the right way to life in god, and that their god is the same god.
This is an Islamic claim, not a Jewish or Christian claim. Christians and Jews do not call Yahweh "Allah," nor do they attribute to God the same characteristics, wishes, prophets and revelations that the Muslims claim. The ethics involved are, of course, very different as a consequence.

Islam claims to be following the Jewish revelation. But they also claim that all manuscripts of Torah and the Second Testament are corrupt, and thus some pre-existing version of "Torah," for which no manuscripts at all exist, and for which we have no textual evidence of corruption -- is the true Torah, the one which Muslims follow. And in this "Torah," they say, Ishmael not Isaac is the Child of the Covenant Promise, Islam is his will, and so forth. Thus, their "Torah" resembles no Torah accepted by Jews and Christians.

So what appears to be a contradiction to you is actually reflective of a completely different religion. Jews and Muslims simply do not believe in the same God at all.
The whole thing is broken.
Why can't you see that?
What is "the whole thing?" Islam? Yes, it's wrong. I can indeed see that. Or do you mean that the fact that Jews and Muslims disagree is somehow "wrong"? I can't see why that would follow. After all, the fact that 2+2=5 is wrong does not make 4 the wrong answer, nor is mathematics so "broken" thereby that it stops functioning.

Can you clarify?
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Greatest I am
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Re: Is the Pope slamming Islam for what the Vatican and Chri

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Lev Muishkin wrote:
ReliStuPhD wrote:
Greatest I am wrote:It had to be a human sacrifice as God cannot die.
Not if God is a Trinity.
Not that your thought is relevant.
But the Trinity is an example of syncretism. It is not part of Judaism nor can it be found anywhere in the Bible.

As the virus of christianity spread through the R. Empire it adopted local beliefs. The trinity is of Celtic/Pagan origin.
You don't have to take my word for it. Just consult the works of Isaac Newton, and many others.

Image
No argument.

I see all of Christianity is a plagiarized belief system and has incorporated many of the older beliefs of those days.

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DL
uwot
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Re: Is the Pope slamming Islam for what the Vatican and Chri

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Greatest I am wrote:I see all of Christianity is a plagiarized belief system and has incorporated many of the older beliefs of those days.
Outside the context of Religious Studies, the opening verses of Genesis are just another creation myth. Most creation myths attempt to answer the fundamental questions that are usually associated with science these days:
Where does the world come from?
What is it made of?
How does it work?
The most influential 'religions' in the region, those of Mesopotamia and Egypt certainly conform to that model. These two civilisations were at opposite ends of the fertile crescent, which the Levant and 'Holy Land' connect. The original monotheist is generally accepted to be Akhenaten, father of Tutenkhamen. Sigmund Freud hypothesised that Moses had been a priest in Akhenaten's court prior to his leading the Exodus, (for which no evidence exists, other than scriptural) but I don't think anyone takes that seriously these days.
Bung in the influence of Greece: Xenophanes had argued that there is only one god, Parmenides had stated that all is one. It was widely accepted that Polytheism was a useful political device, various passages of Plato are particularly cynical (despite the Cynics coming later) and Rome, for which the adoption of Greek Stoicism, with it's emphasis on humility, had helped maintain the loyalty of a huge empire over hundreds of years. Understanding the need to win the hearts and minds of the people's they ruled, it was convenient to adopt a non-Roman cult figure to head their new Catholic, ie All embracing, religion which they could peddle to a wide variety of traditions, not including the Greeks who maintained an autonomous Orthodox Church.
Since it had to not offend the sensibilities of all sorts of pagans, the trinity was abstracted as God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy ghost, thus answering the questions of creation myths without stepping on anyone's toes.
It's not really plagiarism, but rather, as Immanuel Can correctly points out, it's all to do with context.
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Immanuel Can
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Re: Is the Pope slamming Islam for what the Vatican and Chri

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It's not really plagiarism, but rather, as Immanuel Can correctly points out, it's all to do with context.
Well, context is a different issue. Context is about how one interprets text-within-text. You're speaking of comparison between different ideologies, I believe. They are different matters, and I'm certainly not a proponent of the idea that Creation accounts contextualize one another. It seems to me the grounds for believing that would be very slender indeed.

To conflate accounts of Creation, as per the discussion preceding this one, actually makes one or more of several fallacies.

One is the Fallacy of Resemblance -- that is, the belief that if two things seem similar in some way they must also be related by identity. They may be related but only superficially, the way a man from Borneo can be said to "resemble" a woman from Warsaw, or coincidentally, the way bats and swallows flying at twilight may "resemble" each other. Just so,it is not necessary to conclude from statements like, "All cultures have creation stories" that "all creation stories are equal in value or truth content." The resemblances need to be specified and examined first.

Another fallacy is the False Dichotomy -- that is the belief that *either* something is framed in language associated with myth, *or* it's true. But it can be both. For example, we couch tales of the Battle of Bunker Hill in mythical, heroic language; but that does not mean there was no Battle of Bunker Hill. It may mean no more than that we have to take thought for how the language is related to the physical events described.

A third fallacy is a form of the Fallacy of Composition, and is often associated with religious views, but is actually just as common for secularists -- that is, the idea that one's opposition must be *totally* wrong in every way, or we will have to admit admitting they are totally right. In this line of thinking, ancient cultures have *no* wisdom, got *nothing* right, and are totally foolish and pre-scientific; and wisdom will live and die with our own generation. Yet this is obviously no more than hubris. There is nothing about being ancient or disagreeing with one that implies one's opponent therefore must be a complete fool. There may be elements of truth in various traditions, some more than others, and perhaps one more right than the rest. What's unlikely is that they are all equal in that regard, though.

Finally, there is an old Historicist canard started in the last century, but now not well-regarded by scholars of religion or culture, once associated with people like Jung, Frazer and Paden, that all religions can be boiled down to some set of universal architypes or common concerns, which we have the wit to decode for the adherents. This, of course, is little more than thinly-veiled contempt for the whole subject, coupled with imperious imposition of secularism as key of knowledge.

I would hope I am not being implicated in any of these errors.
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Re: Is the Pope slamming Islam for what the Vatican and Chri

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uwot wrote:
Greatest I am wrote:I see all of Christianity is a plagiarized belief system and has incorporated many of the older beliefs of those days.
Outside the context of Religious Studies, the opening verses of Genesis are just another creation myth. Most creation myths attempt to answer the fundamental questions that are usually associated with science these days:
Where does the world come from?
What is it made of?
How does it work?
The most influential 'religions' in the region, those of Mesopotamia and Egypt certainly conform to that model. These two civilisations were at opposite ends of the fertile crescent, which the Levant and 'Holy Land' connect. The original monotheist is generally accepted to be Akhenaten, father of Tutenkhamen. Sigmund Freud hypothesised that Moses had been a priest in Akhenaten's court prior to his leading the Exodus, (for which no evidence exists, other than scriptural) but I don't think anyone takes that seriously these days.
Bung in the influence of Greece: Xenophanes had argued that there is only one god, Parmenides had stated that all is one. It was widely accepted that Polytheism was a useful political device, various passages of Plato are particularly cynical (despite the Cynics coming later) and Rome, for which the adoption of Greek Stoicism, with it's emphasis on humility, had helped maintain the loyalty of a huge empire over hundreds of years. Understanding the need to win the hearts and minds of the people's they ruled, it was convenient to adopt a non-Roman cult figure to head their new Catholic, ie All embracing, religion which they could peddle to a wide variety of traditions, not including the Greeks who maintained an autonomous Orthodox Church.
Since it had to not offend the sensibilities of all sorts of pagans, the trinity was abstracted as God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy ghost, thus answering the questions of creation myths without stepping on anyone's toes.
It's not really plagiarism, but rather, as Immanuel Can correctly points out, it's all to do with context.
It all has to do with Rome's desire for order and sameness within it's borders as well as creating hate for the Jews who obstinately refused to bow to Rome and their Gods. That hate is still evident today.

You are right that Rome wanted to win the hearts of the people but they also decided to kill off the ones whose heart did not kowtow to the Rome chosen God.

Regards
DL
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Re: Is the Pope slamming Islam for what the Vatican and Chri

Post by Greatest I am »

Immanuel Can wrote:
Finally, there is an old Historicist canard started in the last century, but now not well-regarded by scholars of religion or culture, once associated with people like Jung, Frazer and Paden, that all religions can be boiled down to some set of universal architypes or common concerns, which we have the wit to decode for the adherents. This, of course, is little more than thinly-veiled contempt for the whole subject, coupled with imperious imposition of secularism as key of knowledge.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vJ1PDxeUynA

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Father_complex

I take it that you do not recognize the Father Complex as being real and our instincts trying to make us all the best of breed. Correct?

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uwot
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Re: Is the Pope slamming Islam for what the Vatican and Chri

Post by uwot »

Immanuel Can wrote:Well, context is a different issue. Context is about how one interprets text-within-text. You're speaking of comparison between different ideologies, I believe.
Not really. I don't think it is necessary for anyone to compare their point of view, narrative, storyline, weltanshauung, context or indeed ideology with any other in order that they have one.
The point I was making is that the Romans developed a brand of monotheism that had as wide appeal as possible and that they could control. Greatest I am and I might disagree about the motives, but our shared context is that it was quite clearly political. I'm sure you are familiar with this quote from Xenophanes:

But mortals suppose gods are born,
Wear their own clothes and have a voice and body.
The Ethiopians say that their gods are flat-nosed and black,
While Thracians say that theirs have blue eyes and red hair.
Yet if cattle or horses or lions had hands and could draw,
And could sculpt like men, then the horses would draw their gods
Like horses, and cattle like cattle; and each would shape
Bodies of gods in the likeness, each of their own kind.

That is the context the Romans were working in, and it is only by liberating god from physical appearances that you can hope to achieve a catholic religion. You will know better than me, but I believe it is the first two commandments that set that agenda. There are though more graven images of Jesus than you can shake a stick at, and what Xenophanes said about gods could equally be said about people's images of Jesus.

I'm not sure why you listed those fallacies. I'm not suggesting that you are prey to them, I'm certainly not.
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There are though more graven images of Jesus than you can shake a stick at, and what Xenophanes said about gods could equally be said about people's images of Jesus.
Oh, quite so. Well said.

I think of the contemporaneous furor over the Pre-Raphaelites depictions as being "too Jewish." Ridiculous. How could Messiah be "too Jewish?"

However, you are right; we all try to make God in our own image, as if we were the prototype and He the product. All religions may disagree about how this works out, but I think maybe one thing that all sensible religious traditions might be induced to agree upon is that IF God exists, then He has His own nature, and must be known as He is, not as we would like to remake Him.
I'm not sure why you listed those fallacies.
Just for the sake of those who made earlier remarks that partake of some of those errors potentially...not for you, apparently.
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Immanuel Can wrote:
There are though more graven images of Jesus than you can shake a stick at, and what Xenophanes said about gods could equally be said about people's images of Jesus.
Oh, quite so. Well said.

I think of the contemporaneous furor over the Pre-Raphaelites depictions as being "too Jewish." Ridiculous. How could Messiah be "too Jewish?"

However, you are right; we all try to make God in our own image, as if we were the prototype and He the product. All religions may disagree about how this works out, but I think maybe one thing that all sensible religious traditions might be induced to agree upon is that IF God exists, then He has His own nature, and must be known as He is, not as we would like to remake Him.
I have often said that from the outside, any Christian worship could be construed as Idolatry, but the worship of what the image represents is not the same as worshiping the image itself.
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Immanuel Can
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I have often said that from the outside, any Christian worship could be construed as Idolatry, but the worship of what the image represents is not the same as worshiping the image itself.
Well, that misperception might be a danger in the "High Church" or "Orthodox" traditions, I suppose; but in the majority of Christian groups it's not a problem at all. Most have no images at all.
uwot
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Immanuel Can wrote:
I'm not sure why you listed those fallacies.
Just for the sake of those who made earlier remarks that partake of some of those errors potentially...not for you, apparently.
If you think any of my arguments are fallacious, you would be doing me a favour by pointing them out: either I will learn something or I will be in a position to tighten my logic. It's win, win.
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Was I less than clear? Sorry.

I said, "...not you, apparently." Therefore, I was not referring to you.
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Immanuel Can wrote:
I have often said that from the outside, any Christian worship could be construed as Idolatry, but the worship of what the image represents is not the same as worshiping the image itself.
Well, that misperception might be a danger in the "High Church" or "Orthodox" traditions, I suppose; but in the majority of Christian groups it's not a problem at all. Most have no images at all.

Then we must be familiar with different churches, most christian churches that I have seen at least have a cross, most have some kind of prayer book, most have a special building for the purpose. Even the most mundane thing can be misconstrued as an Idol to be worshiped, even if that worship is unconscious it's just as dangerous to the religion. Buddhism is not immune to this problem.

KEEPING WARM
Danxia Tianran (739-824), a famous disciple of 8th-century Chan masters Mazu and Shitou, was spending a night at a ruined temple with a few traveling companions. It was fiercely cold and no firewood was to be found. Danxia went to the Buddha-shrine hall, took down the sacred wooden image of the Buddha, and set it ablaze to warm himself. Reproached by his friends for this act of sacrilege, he said: “I was only looking for the sharira (sacred relic) of the Buddha.” “How can you expect to find sharira in a piece of wood?” asked his fellow travelers. Replied Danxia, “Ah, well then, I am only burning a piece of wood after all. Shall we burn a few more?”

How many Christians would burn a wooden cross to keep warm?
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Most have no images at all.
The problem is the word "Christian," really. Not everybody agrees about what a real one is. Is it enough to say the words, "I am a Christian," or to be born in what others call "A Christian country"? What about having been sprinkled as an infant or having been married or buried in something called a "church"? How about going to a religious service on Easter and Christmas? Does one have to have read one's Bible, or to have given to charity, or...

What does one have to know, believe or do in order to authentically be a Christian? A definition too broad catches too many people -- maybe every person born in the modern West, as in "a Christian country." That seems unfair to the many Atheists, Agnostics and other religionists in these countries. Yet narrowing the definition too much would perhaps unfairly exclude those whose agreements are large, and whose disagreements are essentially superficial, like saying Southern Baptists are, but Northern Methodists are not...

Either way, though, the word we're debating, "most" will only be interpretable in light of some particular definition of what is means to be authentically Christian.

As an aside, the problem's hardly unique to the word "Christian." Much debate exists today over what it means to be authentically Buddhist, authentically Islamic or authentically an Atheist. Can a person strap a bomb to himself and be an authentic Muslim? Can a wiccan also be Jewish? Does a Buddhist have to worship ancestors, or is it really more of a general philosophy? No one agrees about these things, and yet the answers are quite important in deciding what generalities we can justify about those religions, right?

This will be controversial, I know: but I'm not much worried about that. On the basis of both Torah and the Second Testament, I would maintain that actual worship of icons and idols is hallmark of "not-Christian," as it is by definition a rejection of both the explicit commandments of God in the Ten Commandments of the First Testament and a rejection of the Christian gospel as specified in the New Testament. Thus I would say anything claiming to be "Christian" under those conditions would not be authentically entitled to that name, and should not be included in any counting of the expression "most Christians do X or Y."

Thus, "most Christians do not have images" would be a correct statement.
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Re: Is the Pope slamming Islam for what the Vatican and Chri

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Immanuel Can wrote:
Most have no images at all.
The problem is the word "Christian," really. Not everybody agrees about what a real one is. Is it enough to say the words, "I am a Christian," or to be born in what others call "A Christian country"? What about having been sprinkled as an infant or having been married or buried in something called a "church"? How about going to a religious service on Easter and Christmas? Does one have to have read one's Bible, or to have given to charity, or...

What does one have to know, believe or do in order to authentically be a Christian? A definition too broad catches too many people -- maybe every person born in the modern West, as in "a Christian country." That seems unfair to the many Atheists, Agnostics and other religionists in these countries. Yet narrowing the definition too much would perhaps unfairly exclude those whose agreements are large, and whose disagreements are essentially superficial, like saying Southern Baptists are, but Northern Methodists are not...

Either way, though, the word we're debating, "most" will only be interpretable in light of some particular definition of what is means to be authentically Christian.

As an aside, the problem's hardly unique to the word "Christian." Much debate exists today over what it means to be authentically Buddhist, authentically Islamic or authentically an Atheist. Can a person strap a bomb to himself and be an authentic Muslim? Can a wiccan also be Jewish? Does a Buddhist have to worship ancestors, or is it really more of a general philosophy? No one agrees about these things, and yet the answers are quite important in deciding what generalities we can justify about those religions, right?

This will be controversial, I know: but I'm not much worried about that. On the basis of both Torah and the Second Testament, I would maintain that actual worship of icons and idols is hallmark of "not-Christian," as it is by definition a rejection of both the explicit commandments of God in the Ten Commandments of the First Testament and a rejection of the Christian gospel as specified in the New Testament. Thus I would say anything claiming to be "Christian" under those conditions would not be authentically entitled to that name, and should not be included in any counting of the expression "most Christians do X or Y."

Thus, "most Christians do not have images" would be a correct statement.
I mostly agree with what you have posted but I will make one correction, just to be clear, and I will accept that I may be splitting hairs. I think it should read "Christians do not worship images" because most Christians I know do have images in their possession, they just understand that the image is not what is worshiped. You are correct in the fine tuning of the definition of a Christian and many who call themselves Christian, fail in some way. In fact this is one of the main tenets of the church I attend, that we, as Christians, do not fulfill all that we should, but only do as well as we are able, but we still call ourselves Christians.

FYI, given my understanding of what I have read, I would call myself a Zen Buddhist Lutheran. It is my understanding that Zen Buddhism is less a religion than a philosophy, and can be piggybacked onto another religion without problems.
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