Defining Christianity

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Re: Defining Christianity

Postby theckhd » Sun Oct 10, 2010 6:52 pm

Boyfriend wrote:I just think having agnosticism as a choice in a religion selection, implies that somehow you can't be sceptical without having an opinion.

Yeah, I see your point. Agnosticism really shouldn't qualify as a religion in that sense, it's more of a method. I think the general usage has been usurped to mean "there's probably something out there, I'm just not sure what."
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Re: Defining Christianity

Postby Fivelives » Sun Oct 10, 2010 9:54 pm

I'm of the opinion that there is a deity, but they are either uninterested or hostile. My own pet philosophy is that the earth is a science experiment that finished awhile back (when the "major" miracles stopped happening - e.g. the parting of the red sea. Miracles on that scale), and the researcher boxed up the experiment and put it into storage.

Either that, or we're an antfarm and <deity> is a kid with a magnifying glass and short attention span. One unintentional side-explanation that's boxed up with this theory is that maybe the kid is in a military family, and every time they move, natural disasters occur. Imagine what life must be like for an ant or other bug in a box with stuff during a move - all the jostling, etc.

I did come across an interesting quote, though.

Thich Nhat Phan, "no death, no fear: Comforting Wisdom for Life" wrote:Trapped by a Notion

The Buddha offered an interesting parable concerning idea and notions. A young tradesman came home and saw that his house had been robbed and burned by bandits. Right outside what was left of the house, there was a small, charred body. He thought the body belonged to his little boy. He did not know that his child was still alive. He did not know that after having burned the house, the bandits had taken the little boy away with them. In his state of confusion, the tradesman believed the body he saw was his son. So he cried, he beat his chest and pulled out his hair in grief. Then he began the cremation ceremony.

This man loved his little boy so much. His son was the raison d'etre of his life. He longed for his little boy so much that he could not abandon the little boy's ashes even for one moment. He made a velvet bag and put the ashes inside. He carried the bag with him day and night, and whether he was working or resting, he was never separated from the bag of ashes. One night his son escaped from the robbers. He came to the new house built by his father. He knocked excitedly on the door at two o'clock in the morning. His father called out as he wept, still holding the bag of ashes. "Who is there?"

"It's me, your son!" the boy answered through the door.

"You naughty person, you are not my boy. My child died three months ago. I have his ashes with me right here." The little boy continued to beat on the door and cried and cried. He begged over and over again to come in, but his father continued to refuse him entry. The man held firm to the notion that his little boy was already dead and that this other child was some heartless person who had come to torment him. Finally, the boy left and the father lost his son forever.

The Buddha said that if you get caught in one idea and consider it to be "the truth," then you miss the chance to know the truth. Even if the truth comes in person and knocks at your door, you will refuse to open your mind. So if you are committed to an idea about truth or to an idea about the conditions necessary for your happiness, be careful.

I think this applies equally to all belief systems.
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