Christianity promotes a helpless victim mentality...

by logansrun 151 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • seven006

    <<<Unless my eye's have somehow missed it, why has noone addressed Brummie's excellent points?>>>

    Litte Toe,

    I'll take a crack at it. I don't have an argument with what Brummie says. In essence we are all the victims of circumstance in life. That's simply life. Whether you choose to react in a victim mentality to life's circumstances or not seems to be influenced a lot to ones belief system. I think what Logansrun was getting at with this thread is how some Christians buy into the fact that you have to accept that you are noting without Christ or Christianity. That you are born broken and the only way to be fixed is to adopt the Christian belief system. The Christian bible explains how we all became broken and why. It then goes on to explain who came down to earth unbroken and fixed us by taking a little vacation from the sprit realm, dying in the flesh, and then turning back into the sprit he was in the first place. Christians see that as the ultimate sacrifice. Non-christins see that as a mythical game used to control the minds of those who buy into the bibles story and become "Believers"..

    Belief is a mental exercise not an absolute exercise in kinetic energy. Unless belief can be turned into something kinetic simply by itself it is in reality only a stored electric brain wave.
    Belief is not a tangible reality but a mind set that can motivate a person to act on elements of that belief. Whether it be a simple prayer giving thanks before eating dinner or crashing a jumbo jet into a building of innocent people. True Christian, fundamental Christian, back sliders, it's all various levels of belief that simply identify a person with their religion and what level of seriousness they apply it to their life. From there you can dissect out what each Christian believes to be literal and what believe is symbolic in the way of guiding elements for their life. Even at that point most Christians I have known live somewhat of a double life in regard to what they "say" they believe.

    Whether you believe in the Christian, Muslim, Hindu or Buddhist concept of the so called after life is irrelevant. No one has come back from it and has positively proven what concept is absolute or a reality if any. All that leaves you with is a cloudy hope for something after what we all see as our present reality. If that hope makes someone a better person in the present, than it's a good thing. If that hope drives you to ride horses across Europe and crucify people who do not accept or share that hope like you do than it is a bad thing.

    Not believing a religious concept of what is in store after we die does not change what will happen in the slightest. Neither does believing in it. The only reality in it is how we conduct ourselves here and now based on what we choose to believe or not believe. After that we have absolutely no control over what may or may not happen. If you want to take the bet that the christians are right then do that. if you don't than do that. Either way everyone is simply betting. Saying you have a stored brain wave that says you believe is no guarantee of anything. If there is a god then I think he would care more about who you are or were than what you say you believed or didn't believe. There are too many levels of each religion to try and subscribe to for one to say "I'm safer than someone who does not believe." That has never been proven no matter what either side says.

    It's a psychological game we all play with ourselves so we can sleep a little better at night. Each group seems to need others who claim the same label we have so that we can feel validated in our thoughts and actions as a result of that belief. This in reality will only help us in that feeling of safety and make us snuggle up to that pillow a little better at night. In all my years of studying the various aspects of god, religion, and human nature I haven't seen anything to prove any difference.

    Than again, that's just my opinion or belief. Since this whole topic is speculative and subjective there and not one single Christian can absolutely prove me or anyone else wrong.


  • JCanon

    All of the above might be somewhat relevant up until 1992. But since then some new "extra-terrestial" things have been occurring for some of us and so it adds a bit more to "religion" simply being a belief; it's more like a practicing interaction with God and Holy Spirit on a daily basis.

    Of course, not seeing has always been a reason for not believing. In Noah's day, nobody had any scientific reason to believe water would fall from the sky, much less enough to flood the whole planet which I presume the angels who were there at the time had told some of the folks the planet was round (hmmm, maybe they didn't...but anyway...). Point being, by the time the flood was over, EVERYBODY was a believer.

    That doesn't mean everyone didn't get converted, of course. After all, 1/3 of the angels couldn't hang, right?


  • Utopian Reformist
    Utopian Reformist

    In the final analysis of it all, once can actually trim the "fat" in the discussion and settle upon the real impetus for all of this inquiry, the question and fear of death.

    We will all face it and how we handle or ignore this fact depends on our need to search for answers or acceptance of limitations.

    If you are not afraid of death, then it is not an issue. If you are as most of us are, you may find yourself having to "manage" the reality of death and lack of further information of what lies beyond, if anything at all. Life is already difficult to manage without this additional issue.

    Therefore, the propensity to rely and depend on religion is probably equal or greater to the propensity to fear death and the unknown.

    What you believe depends a lot on your personal management of death in your future.

  • czarofmischief

    I agree completely. You've articulated many of the frustrations and personal feelings that I've had regarding our Christian cultural heritage.

    Yeru has the benefit of being a Catholic, an institution that has traditionally fostered a great deal of theological thought and debate (robust and bloody at times, and eventually calcified, but nevertheless, a great contribution). For those of us who endured the horrible dub-saga, the sense of powerlessness in the face of world events is almost palpable. We're afraid to do ANYTHING, we're taught that God will solve all our problems, which is patently nonsense.

    Catholicism is the result of intelligent people realizing that Christ wasn't coming back, at least right away, and the Roman empire was falling apart and the independent kingdoms needed SOMETHING to hold Europe together - remember the Muslims were pushing in from the South and the Germanic tribes from the North and East, and the Byzantines were concerned with their own problems.

    So concepts like a "just war" and "papal infallibility" were developed in response to the terrible threat of anarchy and foreign invasion. If we hadn't become extreme, even "un-christian" at times, we'd have been overrun... Christianity is like an opiate when taken in its purest form, but Europe needed spiritual amphetamines.

    As far as truth, nope, sorry, nobody has it, and any apocalyptic cult inculcates helpless neutrality.


  • KGB

    I have a question. Has anyone ever thought about the fact that religion is separate and different than christianity ? It is you know. Yes I go to a church to worship the one I have faith in but that does not make me a religious member. Religion in itself is legalistic and controling thing in order to control those who are members. Christianity is a freedom brought on by the Lamb of God shed through his blood on the cross. Saying religion is the same as christianity is like saying if you dont support the president you dont support your country. Its purely just a bunch of bull..............

  • talesin

    thanks Tink - I know it wasn't mao

    and for clarification btw 'religion is the OPIATE of the masses'

    not opium the drug, but opiate ie. a TYPE of drug that dulls the senses

    panda, wish you would have (1) read my quote properly and (2) done a little research before being so critical. This is a debate, no need to get all 'het up'. BTW, Mark Twain rules - good quote.


    (who rarely disses anyone, let alone the Chinese people)

  • AlanF

    Hi Brummie,

    : AlanF, good post. Christians do not view a substitutionary role as being a bad thing and neither does anyone else.

    That depends on the exact circumstances. But I think you missed the point of my analogies.

    : For instance, if someone is drowning and you dive in and save their life and consequently lose your own life in the process you will be loved by many. You have become a substitute and there is no greater love than that of one who would lay his life down for someone else.

    Quite so, but this analogy gives a false view of the ransom sacrifice notion. In it, God is doing the drowning of the victim. But if God stops drowning the victim, there is no need for a substitution. Moreover, such a simplistic analogy ignores the fact that for some thousands of years, God has supposedly been punishing all mankind for something they had nothing to do with. This would be like God throwing a child he knows cannot swim into deep water and saying, "Ha! You can't swim! You can't save yourself without my letting my own child drown in your place. (Or if you're a trinitarian, 'without letting my Jesus-self drown in your place'.) Aren't I special?"

    : In the Christian worldview "sin" is a seperation from God,

    Only according to some Christians. In my experience, it's the ones who understand that the ransom sacrifice doctrine is nonsensical, unless bolstered by this bit of mumbo-jumbo. I say "mumbo-jumbo" because it all boils down to non-rational, or even irrational, after-the-fact justifications to keep faith the in Bible. And of course, such faith exists for reasons other than strict rationality, such as being raised as a Christian.

    : without God man is drowning, Jesus came as a saviour and became a substitute for the drowning ones (he restored their relationship with God), consequently he lost his life, he knew this would be the outcome but it didnt prevent him from coming and laying down his life.

    All mumbo-jumbo unless one can deal with the issues that I and others have raised. God could easily "restore" whatever he pleases without an irrational act like demanding someone's death who had nothing to do with the problem.

    : While I am no Christian scholar and neither am I religious, I think this thread, from the very outset, failed to draw a distinction between Christianity and churchianity.

    I suppose one can argue that there is a distinction in principle, but in practice such a distinction exists only for a tiny number of very independent Christians. It's an argument like Rutherford's, that JWs were not a religion, but worship -- it doesn't fly. It's like JWs arguing today for a distinction between Christianity and Christendom, which they do only by ignoring the actual word definitions. It results in having to argue whether some who claim to be Christians really are, just as JWs argue that only they are Christians.


  • logansrun


    Your analysis of the ransom doctrine is one of crystal clarity. The arguments you make place the believer in the ransom into a corner that they simply cannot get out of. Brilliant.


  • seven006


    Christianity is to religion as vodka is to alcohol. Religion is an encompassing term used to describe a persons affiliation to a spiritual or supernatural belief. Christianity is just on of many religions. Christianity is the label you use to identify your particular religion. They are not exactly the same but they go hand in hand.

    I hate to break it to you but if you consider yourself a Christian and you believe and worship Christ and the god of the bible you are religious or a part of a religion. Describe it any way you wish but what is, is.

    Here is what Merriam says as far as the definitions go.

    Main Entry: re·li·gion
    Pronunciation: ri-'li-j&n
    Function: noun
    Etymology: Middle English religioun, from Latin religion-, religio supernatural constraint, sanction, religious practice, perhaps from religare to restrain, tie back —more at RELY
    Date: 13th century
    1 a : the state of a religious <a nun in her 20th year of religion> b (1) : the service and worship of God or the supernatural (2) : commitment or devotion to religious faith or observance
    2 : a personal set or institutionalized system of religious attitudes, beliefs, and practices
    3 : archaic : scrupulous conformity : CONSCIENTIOUSNESS
    4 : a cause, principle, or system of beliefs held to with ardor and faith
    - re·li·gion·less adjective

    Main Entry: Chris·tian·i·ty
    Pronunciation: "kris-chE-'a-n&-tE, "krish-, -'cha-n&-, "kris-tE-'a-
    Function: noun
    Date: 14th century
    1 : the religion derived from Jesus Christ, based on the Bible as sacred scripture, and professed by Eastern, Roman Catholic, and Protestant bodies
    2 : conformity to the Christian religion

  • logansrun


    Ah, but how do you define the word, definition?



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