I agree - seperation of church and state is important, no matter what religion the church is of. I think it tempts Christianity to forget the main precepts (love, forgiveness, service etc) and start to impose beliefs on people.
At youth group last night, my pastor's son gave his testimony. His dad has had a great attitude towards his children's belief, I think; he never forced them to go to church and actively encouraged them to explore all possible avenues and arrive at the conclusion they thought was right. After drifting away and rejecting Christianity, the son made up his own mind and decided to become a Christian anyway.
The one thing that I found pretty offensive here in my family.... 1. the pastor who spoke to my sister in law a lot, the one she actually liked and got to know before she passed away, happened to be Lutheran. So what? Right? Well my nana was SO livid at the thought of Denise's funeral being in a Lutheran church.
But I was there... it's exactly the same as going to a funeral in a catholic church. same lines. same bible! same songs, same set up... no difference!!
But anyways, my nana and grandpa are living here now. sitting down for supper, they said their grace, and then grandpa looks over at nana and scoffs "maybe we should let the LUTHERAN say his grace." as if it were a bad thing, and seriously made my brother feel rejected from our own family -.-
I honestly don't know why some religions look down on others. In the end does it matter? If someone is willing to go to 'hell' for their beliefs, why should anyone else care? Surely you wouldn't want non-believers up in heaven with you? You should believe in something because you want to, not because you were coerced or bullied into it.
Ostracizing someone like that doesn't sit well with me, particularly when it's your own family. Honestly, there are worse things in this world deserving of condemnation than belief in something no one has even proven exists.
I agree. I don't care that my friends are atheist. Or agnostic. Or Jehovah. Or Catholic. Or Satanic. Or Wiccan. Or Muslim.
Picture attached, is called "argument". Can you understand it? I have gotten compliments, and bashing for it. And I don't care it's what I believe.
It's "all the same" to me. Sure, different names, different events, different stories... But it's all the same. Belief in a higher power, and they all attack each other to gain "dominance" over the world's belief system - which won't ever work because each and every one of us are individuals, and we all believe different things and interpret things differently.
I'm an agnostic atheist. I don't care whether other people are religious or not, I just can't stand religious fundamentalists (ie Westboro Baptist Church, al Qaeda, etc).
I didn't read this thread, but in my philosophy class we just read "Existentialism is a Humanism" by Jean Paul Sartre, and it argues that existentialism (basically the idea that humans weren't created for a purpose- they create their own purpose after coming into existence) is actually optimistic because it allows humans to have complete freedom over their lives and make their own choices and moral codes. They create who they are, they don't have to worry about abiding to a God. So if you are worried about the non existence of a God, there are benefits to it as well, so don't worry too much.
for me it's just remains a "if he exist then okay" or "if he doesn't exist...well what was there to lose, believing in a fake being?" although, i hated that santa guy it still makes me feel as if my parents lied to me -.- even though he was actually an average joe toy maker in the first place, redone to be some immortal guy with reindeer o.o
I might have grown up hearing to hate everyone because they weren't catholic, but I sure am not like that :3 I learned for myself about the silly myths being fake, and the truth behind the myths - so I became more myself than another catho-holic in my family (yes, I did just use that >.>)
Yeah, my thoughts are sometimes similar about believing in a God. I don't think that there's anything wrong with believing in something as long as people don't enforce their beliefs upon others, as some are prone to do.
I love discussing these things with open minds. Here's my story:
I was raised in a nondenominational church that had no set doctrine or teachings, a "Jesus is all you need" sort of church. I'm now away from home, attending university and majoring in philosophy. I'm in an intensive, holistic program that challenges you to think long and hard about many different things.
What I've learned here has completely transformed me. I was more skeptical in high school. Learning about traditional, orthodox Christianity has solved many of the so called "problems" of Christianity and religion. I had to unlearn a lot of things I was taught (like the point of accepting Jesus is to not go to Hell. That's not biblical or traditionally sound). I graduated from what I term "Sunday School Christianity" into a more fully formed adult understanding. Many Christians nowadays either don't know the truths of orthodoxy, or reject them out of laziness. That's not what the Bible calls a Christian to do, so in that sense they are lacking in their beliefs.
I feel that many atheists are born from a rejection of Sunday School Christianity, and if I hadn't read any writings of the ancients (especially Aquinas), I may have gone the same route. Let's face it, Sunday School Christianity is stupid. It's simple. It's childish. But that's no matter for me because I don't believe it. I encourage atheists and agnostics to research the historical positions of Christianity over time, not to convert you, but so that you may better understand the position that you do not hold. Many atheists are taught "Christianity" by other atheists or Sunday School Christians. Learn about what real Christianity is, and maybe you'll understand.
In other subjects I am 100% an evolutionist. It happened. It's obvious. I believe in God. This is not a position you see often, but I sincerely hope more people try to understand that science and religion do not and never had conflicted. This "conflict thesis" is actually a myth that began in the 19th century to promote naturalism (the belief that nature was the only source of truth).