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Is Christianity a "close minded" religion?

 
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TheHoodedMan
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2007 7:21 pm    Post subject: Is Christianity a "close minded" religion? Reply with quote

I have often heard that Christians are "closed" or narrow minded.

I submit that is not exactly correct.

A Christian would say they are not. An observer would think that due to their thinking and rationalizing they are.

Christians are conditioned to do a number of things:

1. Read the Bible, (there are many versions);

2. Accept Jesus as their personal savior under the guidelines given to them;

3. Apply what they are conditioned to to everyday life;

4. To reject anything that would refute their beliefs;

5. To proselytize their religion to everyone and bring as many converts to help strengthen and fortify their religion;

6. To classify anything that they read, say, do, etc under the Dualistic parameters that they accept as being their religion;

7. To infiltrate, impose via word, deed etc, their way of thinking into as much of society as they can accomplish;

8. To judge and condemn whatever they can't control to prevent fellow Christians from venturing into areas that will affect the conditioning;

9. To change everything to Christian description and/or force others to accept their way as correct and discourage anyone from acting in a way forbidden to them;

10. To misdirect attention from their efforts and to cause everyone to look in another direction until they have gained control of the Media in all forms so that censorship of anything judged against their conditioning is prevented from be spread;

11. To engage in creating non tangible examples of fantasy such as "Spiritual Warfare", so that they have a justification to continue in their efforts to control thoughts, art, deeds, etc;

12. To eradicate all possible avenues of expression not in keeping with their agenda;

13. And finally redefine whatever they find to enable them to classify and thereby stop any future possibilities of discovery from exposing their methods.

Of course this is simplifying what is taking place and just because it will be annoying I used 13 examples, which will no doubt be argued and the entire substance of this post will be misdirected so that the "conditioning" will not be challenged by a Christian who will view it as a Stop sign and turn away to prevent them from having to think.

So, is Christianity a close minded religion? Not in my opinion, it is a religion which has a limited scope and built in safeguards that prevent anyone from escaping it's hold if practiced according to plan.

TFR
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Fresca
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Joined: 25 Mar 2007
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2007 9:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

THM:

I've been noticing a pattern here, and my concern is that you are falling into a common trap in regards to Christianity. It is a trap I myself fell into for a long period of time.

Just a touch of history on myself: I grew up Russian Orthodox, went to Catholic High School. Spent many years disavoing and avoiding Christianity of any flavor. Several years later I found myself engaged to a Born again christian (what was i thinking ?!?!), needless to say it didnt work. Once i cleared myself of the mental duress of being told i was going to hell for thinking or believing a certain way. I decided to re-examine Christianity, which I did and continue to do (I'm also a big fan of Buddhism... in general comparative religion is a big item for me).

The trap that I fell into was confusing the control/political structure with the religion. Once i looked at it with an open mind, threw out anything having to do w/ a televangelist, organized group, control factor, the whole philosophy changed 180 degrees it was no longer about "conformity, slavery, mindlessness". Problem is most people cant discern between what it says and what they are told it says.

Your biggest beefs seem to reflect frustration with the "Evangelical" or "Fundamentalist" movements in the US. At this point in history the mainstream Catholic has moved out of the very ugly phase.

As for your 13 points... lets see where this takes me

1) Read the Bible:
Christians are encouraged to read the bible, as Jews are encouraged to read the Torah and Muslims are encouraged to read the Koran

2) Accept Jesus as personal saviour:
This depends on the sect IMO. Growing up Eastern Orthodox, I dont remember ever hearing that topic discussed like i hear it from the more Baptist based sects. Yes Jesus is the messiah to a Christian, Yes Christians look to him for the "remission of sin" he is also seen as the intersessor to God (most pray to Jesus and not God). A personal relationship with Jesus seemed a matter of curiosity for me for some tme, I'm still not sure if i really _get_ it. Likewise i have always felt people who say "I know I am going to Heaven" as being incredibly arrogant, but then it is a cultural difference for me. To the Orthodox such a statement is ridiculous as "no human can truly claim to know the mind or will of God"

3) Apply conditions to everyday life:
Well... yes. For example to paraphrase many sects: "Be a truthful person". It doesnt mean "Be truthful only on Sunday between 9am and 12 noon". It means be a truthful person in your daily life. Lets try "Do onto others as you would have others do unto you"... to me, thats not a bad plan.

4) Reject anything that would refute their beliefs:
Hmmm, this statement is a little loaded. This is a topic I'd like to explore over time. I do think this is going to a topic that is sect specific. I cant help but think you've been wasting alot of your time with "Christians" who have given over their minds and souls to the likes of Benny Hinn.

5) Prosteletyzing
Not all sects are Evangelical in nature... however those that are... tend to be unnecessarily loud about it. (BTW: for purposes of this discussion, do Mormons and Jehova's Witnesses count as Christian?)

6) Classifying everything under Dualistic parameters
Can you give an example of this or explain this more

7) Infiltrate... etc
Yes. This can be good and it can be bad. Governments and businesses also try to do this

Cool Judge and Condemn what they cant control
Heh... Have you watched Fox news ever ? This has more to do with the development and management of a social system than a religion IMO

With the exception of #11 ("Spiritual Warfare") I'm seeing the rest as falling under the Social control / propaganda development category.

For starters I'll refer you to a handout i found when i was working w/ my stepdaughter on the book "Animal Farm" The question of propaganda came up and how to recognize it for what it is and whether we have it here and today or was it just an outdated Soviet creation.

http://www.esrnational.org/whatispropaganda.htm

There is no doubt that there is alot wrong with what is going on. There are some movements in Christianity which I consider dangerous. Not the least of which is something called "Dominionism" which in a nutshell is the encouraging and spurring on of Armageddon in order to speed and provoke the return of Christ. There is alot of social control and engineering going on. Alot of people are not showing discernment.

Finally #11 - Spiritual Warfare
Not something I recall even being mentioned in Catholic or Orthodox circles. Something I've only really seen mentioned by Evangelical types. I dont really see any of these groups as having any real basis or knowledge in this arena. My perception of the Evangelicals is not one of any real level of adeptness on any of the higher planes. It is a subject of curiosity for me. I cant say at all if theirs any merit to it or if it's just a crock and a fake control mechanism. I don't know, but I think it is worth exploring.
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TheHoodedMan
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Joined: 23 Feb 2007
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2007 9:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fresca wrote:
THM:

I've been noticing a pattern here, and my concern is that you are falling into a common trap in regards to Christianity. It is a trap I myself fell into for a long period of time.

Just a touch of history on myself: I grew up Russian Orthodox, went to Catholic High School. Spent many years disavoing and avoiding Christianity of any flavor. Several years later I found myself engaged to a Born again christian (what was i thinking ?!?!), needless to say it didnt work. Once i cleared myself of the mental duress of being told i was going to hell for thinking or believing a certain way. I decided to re-examine Christianity, which I did and continue to do (I'm also a big fan of Buddhism... in general comparative religion is a big item for me).

The trap that I fell into was confusing the control/political structure with the religion. Once i looked at it with an open mind, threw out anything having to do w/ a televangelist, organized group, control factor, the whole philosophy changed 180 degrees it was no longer about "conformity, slavery, mindlessness". Problem is most people cant discern between what it says and what they are told it says.

Your biggest beefs seem to reflect frustration with the "Evangelical" or "Fundamentalist" movements in the US. At this point in history the mainstream Catholic has moved out of the very ugly phase.

As for your 13 points... lets see where this takes me

1) Read the Bible:
Christians are encouraged to read the bible, as Jews are encouraged to read the Torah and Muslims are encouraged to read the Koran

2) Accept Jesus as personal saviour:
This depends on the sect IMO. Growing up Eastern Orthodox, I dont remember ever hearing that topic discussed like i hear it from the more Baptist based sects. Yes Jesus is the messiah to a Christian, Yes Christians look to him for the "remission of sin" he is also seen as the intersessor to God (most pray to Jesus and not God). A personal relationship with Jesus seemed a matter of curiosity for me for some tme, I'm still not sure if i really _get_ it. Likewise i have always felt people who say "I know I am going to Heaven" as being incredibly arrogant, but then it is a cultural difference for me. To the Orthodox such a statement is ridiculous as "no human can truly claim to know the mind or will of God"

3) Apply conditions to everyday life:
Well... yes. For example to paraphrase many sects: "Be a truthful person". It doesnt mean "Be truthful only on Sunday between 9am and 12 noon". It means be a truthful person in your daily life. Lets try "Do onto others as you would have others do unto you"... to me, thats not a bad plan.

4) Reject anything that would refute their beliefs:
Hmmm, this statement is a little loaded. This is a topic I'd like to explore over time. I do think this is going to a topic that is sect specific. I cant help but think you've been wasting alot of your time with "Christians" who have given over their minds and souls to the likes of Benny Hinn.

5) Prosteletyzing
Not all sects are Evangelical in nature... however those that are... tend to be unnecessarily loud about it. (BTW: for purposes of this discussion, do Mormons and Jehova's Witnesses count as Christian?)

6) Classifying everything under Dualistic parameters
Can you give an example of this or explain this more

7) Infiltrate... etc
Yes. This can be good and it can be bad. Governments and businesses also try to do this

Cool Judge and Condemn what they cant control
Heh... Have you watched Fox news ever ? This has more to do with the development and management of a social system than a religion IMO

With the exception of #11 ("Spiritual Warfare") I'm seeing the rest as falling under the Social control / propaganda development category.

For starters I'll refer you to a handout i found when i was working w/ my stepdaughter on the book "Animal Farm" The question of propaganda came up and how to recognize it for what it is and whether we have it here and today or was it just an outdated Soviet creation.

http://www.esrnational.org/whatispropaganda.htm

There is no doubt that there is alot wrong with what is going on. There are some movements in Christianity which I consider dangerous. Not the least of which is something called "Dominionism" which in a nutshell is the encouraging and spurring on of Armageddon in order to speed and provoke the return of Christ. There is alot of social control and engineering going on. Alot of people are not showing discernment.

Finally #11 - Spiritual Warfare
Not something I recall even being mentioned in Catholic or Orthodox circles. Something I've only really seen mentioned by Evangelical types. I dont really see any of these groups as having any real basis or knowledge in this arena. My perception of the Evangelicals is not one of any real level of adeptness on any of the higher planes. It is a subject of curiosity for me. I cant say at all if theirs any merit to it or if it's just a crock and a fake control mechanism. I don't know, but I think it is worth exploring.


Thank you for taking the time to answer this so thoroughly.

I also post on what I am told is a Christian Forum and been told to take it elsewhere.

The example applying certain portions of the list, may better fit specific sects of denominations of Christians than an overall view.

TFR
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train



Joined: 03 Apr 2007
Posts: 22

PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2007 3:54 pm    Post subject: Re: Is Christianity a "close minded" religion? Reply with quote

TheHoodedMan wrote:
An observer would think that due to their thinking and rationalizing they are.

Of course this is simplifying what is taking place and just because it will be annoying I used 13 examples, which will no doubt be argued and the entire substance of this post will be misdirected so that the "conditioning" will not be challenged by a Christian who will view it as a Stop sign and turn away to prevent them from having to think.

TFR


IMO, understanding someone else's worldview requires a certain amount of respect. It's clear from these comments and others you've made that you have no respect for orthodox Christians. You refuse to acknowledge the posibiltiy that their actions/beliefs are well-considered and thought out. Therefore I don't think you really understand.

Fresca, don't some Orthodox services involve standing the entire time? LOL That would be reason enough to want to find a different church!
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jim



Joined: 02 Apr 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2007 4:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fresca, you're one smart cookie. Of course I say that because I agree with most if not all of what you said above. lol
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Fresca
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Joined: 25 Mar 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2007 4:34 pm    Post subject: Re: Is Christianity a "close minded" religion? Reply with quote

train wrote:
Fresca, don't some Orthodox services involve standing the entire time? LOL That would be reason enough to want to find a different church!


Orthodox churches don't have pews. The exception is if the church building was originally belonging to a religios group that used pews (like catholic or protestant for example)... and they havent ripped out the pews. But yes in general it's alls tanding all the time... it's not bad.. and there's always a chair available for the elderly or infirm.

Besides watching someone jump into a lake or river or sea on January 19th to go looking for a cross some priest tossed in there makes it all worth while.

... and the food is awesome !
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Fresca
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Joined: 25 Mar 2007
Posts: 197

PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2007 4:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

just an add...

If anyone is looking for a fun thing to do (it can only be done once a year).

I seriously recomend you go to an orthodox church for midnight easter mass. It's acctually really cool. After mass is usually a massive party... unbelievable food (as they are all breaking lent), booze (especially the Russians and the greeks), singing dancing till sunup

It's lots o' fun. The mass is usually in an old version of the host language (Old Church Slavonic or Ancient Greek usually)... So dont even worry about trying to understand whats going on.

This year Easter is April 8th which is the same as the western church, next year it's April 27th.

Anyways I mean this as an idea for a fun, experience another culture have a good time thing and not as a "come to my church" thing.
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TheHoodedMan
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Joined: 23 Feb 2007
Posts: 231

PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2007 1:18 am    Post subject: Re: Is Christianity a "close minded" religion? Reply with quote

train wrote:
TheHoodedMan wrote:
An observer would think that due to their thinking and rationalizing they are.

Of course this is simplifying what is taking place and just because it will be annoying I used 13 examples, which will no doubt be argued and the entire substance of this post will be misdirected so that the "conditioning" will not be challenged by a Christian who will view it as a Stop sign and turn away to prevent them from having to think.

TFR


IMO, understanding someone else's worldview requires a certain amount of respect. It's clear from these comments and others you've made that you have no respect for orthodox Christians. You refuse to acknowledge the posibiltiy that their actions/beliefs are well-considered and thought out. Therefore I don't think you really understand.

Fresca, don't some Orthodox services involve standing the entire time? LOL That would be reason enough to want to find a different church!


I don't refuse to acknowledge anyone's beliefs, what I don't like is having a person force their beliefs down another persons throat and condemning a person based upon a belief without examining the others first.

If you spend the time to compare objectively you will find that people can differ and respect each other instead of taking the "I am right because God says so"

I see this predominately used by Fundamentalist and Evangelical sects of Christians. While I support their right to practice a religion, I do take offense when I continually hear judgmental radio, TV and Podcasts where the hosts and guests refuse to respect others. It is always their way or nothing.

This conduct only perpetuates hate and goes against the very same Bible they use to base their beliefs upon. If your going to practice a religion then practice it and don't pick and choose what applies and what doesn't.


TFR
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