Your religion = Do what feels good?

by happysunshine 7 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • happysunshine

    So... what is an acceptable reason to join a religion or live by a certain philosophy? Does it essentialy come down to "if it makes you generaly 'feel good', its ok"? By 'feel good' I mean satisfy current needs, physical, cognitive, whatever.

    If I understand correctly, it is impossible to currently have 'ultimate truth'. Even crazy religions grudgingly admit that only God has all 'ultimate truth'. Furthermore, all 'science' is essentially based on that principle- some theories seen as more acceptable and some as less- the dominant scientific community 'feeling good' about a certain theory. Never is a theory seen as 'ultimate truth'.

    In conclusion, can we all feel free in good concience to live as we wish and believe as we wish? Sincethere is no 'ultimate truth' that we can nail down, we should just pick whatever makes us 'feel good'? comments please!

  • Gopher

    We have a brain for a reason: to determine good and bad. We also have a heart and a feelings, so that we will not interfere with the rights of others to pursue life, liberty and happiness.

    As long as we use our brain and our heart, we shouldn't really be adversely judged and we really won't get in the way of others finding their way through life too.

  • Silverleaf

    Hi happysunshine,

    You asked:

    "So... what is an acceptable reason to join a religion or live by a certain philosophy? Does it essentialy come down to "if it makes you generaly 'feel good', its ok"? By 'feel good' I mean satisfy current needs, physical, cognitive, whatever. "

    I'm going to answer your question with a question: Why would you want to join a religion or philosophy that makes you feel bad?

    I've had a lot of religious discussions come down to this question. As a Pagan, a lot of people have asked me how I feel about a religion that is very free, and relies on a lot of self-determination - of course you like being Pagan, you can do whatever you want if for some reason doing whatever you DON'T want to do, or HATE doing somehow makes you more pious or more spiritual.

    For the most part, unless a person is a sociopath, there's nothing wrong with doing what makes you feel good, as long as you can support your family, stay out of jail and not hurt anyone else, pay your taxes, eat your vegetables and be able to look yourself in the eye, why would 'doing what feels good' spiritually be wrong?


  • Ravyn

    humans need to have a spirituality satisfied, but religion(IMO) is merely one response to that need--and (IMO) it is an immature superstitious response. I am not saying religious people are immature or superstitious, I am saying that religion developed as the answer to that need in a time that humans were rather unsophisticated and primitive. I think alot of us who leave organized religion--of whatever flavor-do so out of a sense of outgrowing it. BUT humans still have that need. It is filled by ritual and archetypes and symbolism and all the smells and bells attached to religion. So, if you want religion--go for it! If you can get it satisfied without religion good for you! Me, personally, I need it both ways. I still need religion sometimes, and I will get my fix in a church. But it is not the whole answer to my needs and i get that elsewhere in what is not considered religion per se. I think this is the attraction of the 'new age' stuff. Just like it was the original attraction for religion thousands of yrs ago to us. So I use religion to satisfy my needs. In a way it is to make myself happy. but it is not quite so self-centered as all that, becoz part of that need is the need to give to others and be part of a community.


  • A Paduan
    A Paduan

    In a sense yes. More like what feels good to your soul, but, existing out of our time constraints - it is actually what will bring peace / order / joy / love to your soul - after the doing - which, because of the truth of our human kind, is giving - other lives for a soul do not impart the eternal rest - but uneasiness (or judgement).

    People do and can deny this, but I don't think you completely fool a soul, only enslave - isolating a bond with them. Some mystics understand this as adultery.

    Edited by - a paduan on 12 February 2003 3:21:8

  • peacefulpete

    Happy...Just because noone has a complete understanding of life it does not follow that know one knows more completely and correctly than another. Some approaches to learning are manifestly more efficient and produce more reliable results. If for instance you wish to know what is in a closed box you likely would try to open it rather than wait for a dream in the night to inform you of it's contents. So the choice is really not WHAT to believe as if life was made of disconnected facts arrived at though private revelation, but the question is what method and approach to learning about life do I recognize as efficient and producing the most reliable results. For me I have come to agree with Einstein who said that dispite it's seeming inadaqucy science is the most precious thing we possess. It is not the facts of science that are the most precious thing but rather the scientific METHOD of discovery through testing and observation followed by peer review. If a person shares this conviction choosing what to believe is rarely a question.

  • Introspection

    The simple criteria of feeling good doesn't mean one thing or another, some people might feel good doing what we consider good things, others might feel good doing what we'd call bad things. If you are defining feeling good as satisfying needs, then what's the problem with that? If you can't get your needs (if in fact they are that) satisfied, how can you be in a position to love your neighbor and give anything?

    If you don't know, you don't know - don't pretend you know by coming up with something that says you don't do what feels good, that by itself doesn't really mean anything, other than that you're not doing what feels good. At the same time, just because you can't "pin it down" and put it in a nice conceptual framework or articulate it like a really smart person, it doesn't mean you need to deny what you do know. An attempt to define like this kind of question is basically a moving away from what you know. Someone else may have some interesting ideas, but even if it sounds good, if that's just something you heard then it's not something you know, it's what they know.

  • Elsewhere

    I find it interesting that JW's accuse other religions of "tickling the ears" of their members, when they do the very same thing... only in a very sick manner.

    Many JW's are into denying themselves pleasure... many I would describe as borderline masochists.

    They think that by delaying pleasure they will find paradise at a later date.

    • Don't get a full education... instead pioneer in preparation for the New System (TM)
    • Don't get that well paying job... instead pioneer in preparation for the New System (TM)
    • Don't get that nice car... instead pioneer in preparation for the New System (TM)
    • Don't get that nice house... instead pioneer in preparation for the New System (TM)

    These are people who are "into" self-denial... and they have found a religion that will "tickle their ears" with a message of self-denial.

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