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81
I can only imagine the sh!tstorm, as you put it, that would ensue if a Muslim student wearing his traditional garb was allowed to give the prayers before the football game, loudly singing out "Allahu akbar" and asking for Allah's blessings on everyone present.

Or if a Haitian student was allowed to trance dance out onto on the field, sacrifice a pigeon, and ask that Papa Legba protect all the players during the game.

There might be a rather violent reaction to this expression of religious freedom, that was not bullying or coercive in any way, and not sanctioned by the state at all. Then, suddenly, amazingly, freedom from religion in secular arenas would matter. Suddenly. &)
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Religion & Society / Re: "Atheists Disgust Us"
« Last post by Mrjason on Yesterday at 09:28:25 AM »
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Halloween is coming, so here’s a tip for those of you who have yet to decide on a costume. If you really want to scare people, dress up as Richard Dawkins. Or Sam Harris.

Or just tell them you’re an atheist.

So.... If one were to dress up as an atheist for Halloween would it be required to be a slutty atheist? That seems to have been the trend for quite a while now.


A slutty Richard Dawkins? *shudders* Yeah that would be enough to scare anyone
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Introductions / Re: My Path from Islam to Christianity to Sanity
« Last post by Chronos on Yesterday at 09:08:06 AM »
I was born and raised in a Muslim family in Pakistan. Not one of those rare moderate families you hear about. No, our family was very strict. My father was in fact a teacher of the subject, an Islamic preacher in other words. It doesn't get any more serious than this.

I'm sorry you had to endure all of that for the first 18-20 years. That cannot be easy. The Pakistanis I know in the US are a mixture of observing, moderate and liberal people. The liberal ones celebrate Muslim holidays like liberal Jews celebrate their holidays -- just as a social time.


Islam as a religion is younger than Christianity, and the one striking differences between Christianity and Islam is that Muslims take their book a bit more literally than most Christians do, which is not a good thing. That's a fact though, because there are many things in the Bible that today's christian wouldn't act on, because those rules are either not plausible today or even down-right illegal. That's not the case when it comes to Muslims. They do everything write down to the letter. Even Christians look at Muslims and think they are "religious nuts", which is true, but that doesn't mean either of them is right.

Christians used to be nuts, too: The Crusades, Spanish Inquisition, among the most prominent. Of course, some Christians are nuts even today and read the bible with literal interpretation. They are fewer and sometimes get caught up in their own cherry-picking.


I am glad to have been born with an analytical mind. Despite the severe brainwashing that all Muslim kids go through (which is why it's so difficult to change how they think later in life), I was questioning things as early as when I was 10 years old.

Haha! Had you beat! I was questioning at age 5!  No, seriously, it's all total bullshit.


Stories from Quran would only entertain me as far as fantasy and magic would go ...

Your stories must be more entertaining. The bible is not entertaining. It reads more like an instruction manual with bizarre absurdities. Kind of like the assembly manuals we Americans find in our boxes that were written by people from Japan who have only a moderate ability for English.


5. Why is our religion so sexist ? Why does God constantly show women as less worthy than man ? How could he be a fair God while promoting gender inequality ?
6. What sick purpose does marrying 4 women at a time serve ? To help the world, or to have a legal orgy, that law cannot dispute. Why can't a woman marry 4 men then ?

It certainly takes a woman to ask those questions. Your male counterparts very rarely asked themselves those questions.


I told him about all the questions I had about my religion and my struggles. I told him that I haven't following my religion in many years. Not surprisingly, he tried to convert me to Christianity. As a result I went to the church many times. The people there realizing I was a Muslim, saw me as a Golden Egg that had to be made in to a nice Christian omelet. They all took extra effort to convert me. I initially liked all of the attention. Also I thought of the Church as a party place, especially comparing to a mosque. There was food, wine, socializing, potential partners, and a lot of singing and music. I loved it, but coming from a strict religion like Islam, I thought this was even more crazy. Why would God need us to Sing and clap like lunatics in his praise ? How big is his ego ? Long-story short, I wasn't convinced at all. Majority of my questions from Islam had similar answers in Christianity. I stopped going to church.

Sounds like the average American church.


... I was hearing the same crap over and over again ...

A rose by any other name would smell as sweet


I one day watched the first episode of a show called Ancient Aliens. (No , I didn't start believing in Aliens, because they also have no proof, but) I loved some of the scientific facts shown there that were used to disprove religion, especially all the parts of angels, flying stuff, Gods etc ...

In America, people who aren't religious but like a good old-fashioned religious fervor take up the sport of conspiracy theories. Or so it seems to me. They are equal in passion and equally lacking in skepticism.


Anyways by this time, I was already an Atheist but I didn't even know the meaning of this word.

Same here. While I was growing up my only exposure to atheism was Madalyn Murray O'Hair when she appeared a few times on The Phil Donahue Show.



^ I was too young to watch that show but I cannot find on YouTube the other episodes when she was on The Phil Donahue Show.

Since O'Hair positively stated that there is no god and was vehemently against religion, the definition of atheist was adjusted by Christians (probably not the first time) to mean a person who declares that there are no gods. Logically, I cannot make that declaration, but the lack of evidence for gods makes it appear that O'Hair is correct.

My case however is very complicated. I am now forced to live a life of seclusion.

Another example of how religion is not loving or joyous. Some Christians in America have the same problem, though they have become a progressively smaller group of people.


I love them, but I could never hurt them, so I keep myself quiet.

Your actions show far more concern, care and love for them than what they can show for you. You are very mature.


I am so glad I found this community. Thank God.. (oops.... We need to find a replacement for that second word)..

Some say "Thank Cthulhu!" but most Christians have never heard of it.


Thank you for sharing your story. You seem to speak English fairly well (you did have some errors but nothing big). A book that you might consider reading is God Is Not Great by Christopher Hitchens. The subtitle of the book is How Religion Poisons Everything, and Hitchens discusses all sorts of ways that religion has only made our lives worse. I sometimes refer to myself as a born-again atheist because even before his book was published I had begun to realize how religion infected everything in minute ways that we no longer see as problems or issues, much less religious issues. However, I must warn you that reading that book may be challenging for you. Hitchens writes in a very literary style in which he makes use of just about every word in the dictionary. Even native speakers of English can find it challenging as we have to lookup the various words he uses. He writes in the traditional erudite way of British scholars. Nevertheless, I think you would find some kinship with the problems he addresses in the book.


~~~~~

I had numerous links in this post to sources that you may want to read as I assume you would not be aware of the references. However, the insufferable bunghole of software that runs this forum repeatedly trashed my posts on just about every link.

84
Jst, when you say that Isaac was not sacrificed, are you saying that Abraham never intended to obey god and sacrifice his son? That Abe was faking god out, just playacting for god's benefit? Or do you mean that, because he did not go all the way through with it, even though he might have had a knife at his kid's throat, he did not draw blood, so it's all good? No harm no foul?

What I frequently hear from xians is that yhwh and Abe were doing Fatih Theater.  yhwh never intended for Abe to kill his son and Abe knew that (or had faith that was so).  So Abe did this thing with a wink and a nod, having no intention of killing Isaac, knowing full well an angel was going to "stop" him, just to play along with yhwh.  I do not recall any of them saying whether Isaac was in on the joke.

I find this to be a sad apologetic and an acknowledgment by xians that yhwh is indeed evil if this story is taken at face value.



You forgot at least one more weasel-out possibility. There was no genocide, because all the killings in the OT ordered by god were actually symbolic, like the parables. The stories of horrible torture, rape and massacre were only put in to make everyone know how much god hates sin.

I think our Aussie Christian friend magicmiles used that one.

Not to speak for miles, but having had discussions with him about some of the horrible things in the OT (like the she bears killing the 42 kids who made fun of Elisha), I would say his take on it would be,"it sounds bad, but I have faith it was ultimately good, though I have no clue how that is possible."
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Religion & Society / Re: "Atheists Disgust Us"
« Last post by screwtape on Yesterday at 08:34:55 AM »
Well, Luthor didn't actually kill 6 million Jews as Hitler did. But his words inspired it.

Clearly he would have, had he the means.  And I imagine quite a few jews were killed in his time because of his influence.
86
The Emergency Room / Re: Lukvance
« Last post by G-Roll on Yesterday at 08:15:54 AM »
G-Roll why are you treating the Old testament of the Bible as if it was some kind of book depicting factual things?

Do you feel as a Christian that the Old Test does not depict actual factual things? Do you feel the book of Genesis is not an actual factual thing? The creation, fall of man, and introduction of sin are all not actual factual things? If Genesis never happened why crucify Jesus?

Or

Do you think that the Old Test is a mix of fairy tales and actual factual events?

Not to be rude but I usually avoid talking to you because you often don’t answer questions and move goal posts around almost like pieces on a chess board. I feel that makes it hard to have a honest conversation with you. I guess I am not the only one seeming you found yourself in this room.
Should you choose to answer the questions be sure to answer them before you ask questions of your own.
87
Okay, lets make the question personal. How do you know what is, or is not, the will of god? If it's "the agreement with Jehovah's spirit, which is the spirit reflected by Christ", then how exactly do you determine that? If that is impossible to determine, then how do you know anyone is a true believer? How do you know you're a true believer?

His will is stated in the scriptures. 


This was your answer to 'how do you know that you are doing God's will?'
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His will is stated in the scriptures.
But how do you know that your magic decoder ring is the genuine article?

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Love him with all your being
If you look at the many different meanings of the word 'love' like loveWiki how do you know that you are using the right kind of loving?

And how do you love 'with all your being'? I can't control my subconscious enough to ensure that my right thumbnail was 'loving' any god enough?
Can you control all parts of your body to that extent?

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and love your neighbor as yourself.  Anything that doesn't fall within that is not his will.

Could you really do that if your neighbor was an atheist or a paedophile, rapist, racist, murderer ...... etc?

Or was that just a metaphor?

Do you, jwb, really know your god?

Edit -- For grammar
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Chatter / Re: Rate the Last Film You Saw
« Last post by Mrjason on Yesterday at 08:07:54 AM »
Death Proof 2007 4/10

Not one of quentin's best. Was expecting more. However hot girls, dodges and references to Pulp fiction make it tolerable. Kurt Russell's charachter was a real let down.
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Science / Re: Ghosts
« Last post by larkasaur on Yesterday at 07:37:37 AM »
The video originally posted didn't look particularly like a person to me.
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Introductions / Re: My Path from Islam to Christianity to Sanity
« Last post by SamK on Yesterday at 07:16:23 AM »
danke DunkleSeele.  :)
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