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Re: Official Religion Thread

Postby FranklinsTower » Fri Apr 24, 2015 12:46 pm

Shaka Zulu wrote:Haven't chimed in on this thread in a while but I will be back when I have time



Well that would be nice. Most of the people on this site have left and the guys who just wanted to argue about religion went with them so when there is something to say on this subject it is usually pretty civil.
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Re: Official Religion Thread

Postby bwawm » Mon Apr 27, 2015 3:53 pm

FranklinsTower wrote:
bwawm wrote:
Its all good amigo-we don't all have the same interests to begin with right? I'm really not trying to troll I was trying to start a conversation about the implications of an alternative historical perspective…you were just the only person interested enough to address it and it turned into a different conversation because I dropped a joke that didn't land. Which makes me think maybe this is the conversation you wanted to have?

I forgot I said that but thats a good one too! When you look at how much the slavery aspect has contributed to the identity of the people in successive generations its either funny or a bit sad that their greatest prophet was totally one of the dudes that owned/enslaved them. *Do I still have to say assuming this is true or have we established that*? I think its pretty funny (especially considering the Torah condones slavery) and, almost as ironic as an ethnocentric group of people worshipping a prophet whose not of that ethnicity!

I completely agree with the last post of yours tho! I don't mean to put any value on this stuff (value is an entirely subjective commodity) so when I remark that they're ethnocentric and comment on the irony involved when the aforementioned group worships someone outside of that ethnic group its nothing more. I'm not trying to get caught up in the ethical dilemmas involving endogamy or even start a conversation about it. Just trying to crack a joke.

assuming your still reading I'd like to address a point of curiosity...
Notice how you feel compelled to add "if its even true" all the time (despite the fact that neither of us have argued the topic to be true)? Why do you feel as though religious claims don't need to be prefaced with "assuming this is even true"? You just told me with certainty that their needed to be in place certain conditions in order for the entrance of Jesus to be a possibility (so many holes and so much subjectivity!) that Mary was the perfect embodiment of these dichotomous conditions (zero proof and zero first hand accounts of her life ... and subjective again) and that her giving birth to christ allowed for the "dawn of human consciousness" (again; subjective, unsubstantiated and a blanket statement to boot). Does that not strike you as odd? You drop ridiculous far reaching claims with zero proof and turn into a skeptic on a dime?



Officially lost interest.


responds...deletes response..."lost interest"

I guess one man's "fair" is another's "willifully difficult". :lol:

I'm sorry to offend you bud (or be not interesting or both or whatever)...rest assured it was all in good faith and that was not my intent at all. I was trying to be playful but I guess it came off as insensitive and/or judgemental?

Glad you read till the end though because it is definitely something worth thinking about. You don't want to pick and choose with skepticism; its an incredibly useful tool but when you apply it only to ideas that aren't compatible with ones you've already established it ceases to serve the truth and is rendered useless (and if you don't use skepticism to pursue truth I don't know what good it is). Also, based on our previous interactions, I suppose its neccessary to point out that I'm not saying religion and skepticism are mutually exclusive in any way shape or form.

Good luck with your studies amigo.
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Re: Official Religion Thread

Postby FranklinsTower » Mon Apr 27, 2015 4:07 pm

In light of recent events allegedly involving Jon Jones I have these religious comments to make.

1-- assuming Jons guilt we are beginning to see a pattern. I called this pattern years ago when Jones first hit the scene and was preaching -- "create your own reality" and "prosperity gospel" and falsely claiming it was Christianity. I am deeply aware of the kind of damage that this kind of spirituality often produces in people. When religion is working properly it simultaneously empowers a person AND reduces a persons ego and self centered--ness. Authentic spirituality always has dual teachings on this level-- it is fundamental to a healthy approach. The kind of spirituality that Jones was/is practicing has simply divorced itself from the ego reduction portion of authentic spirituality and so only seeks to empower a person without the need for ego reduction. While this may lead to success in certain dimensions of life-- often especially financially and/or socially, it never leads to a complete person as defined by the worlds great religious traditions.

Prosperity gospel and creating your own reality are not consistent with the entirety of Jesus or any other great spiritual teachers teachings-- they only emphasize the triumphant portion of the gospel message without fulfilling the requirements Jesus taught to be qualified to wield power--- death of self.

2-- In commenting on Jones in the regular forum I find myself wanting to drill in how the false spirituality that he and many other people are practicing is negatively effecting his and other peoples lives. However at the same time I am confronted with this problem-- I am just like him....

I don't do drugs or drive intoxicated, i don't use steroids, and I don't preach the false gospel that Jones teaches so on the outside it could look like I don't do the things he does. However if you look more closely at principles instead of specific actions there are similarities. I have to ask myself these questions.

Is my reputation as a decent human being always reflective of my private thoughts and actions.

Do I sometimes enjoy a reputation that is undeserved or at least not complete.

Do I myself sometimes misinterpret the teachings of Jesus and possibly mislead others-- the answer to that has to be a resounding Yes for anyone with any humility.

Do I sometimes view myself as above or better than others.

A pattern of similarity emerges.

In light of this I still find myself compelled to point out some of the fundamental fallacies in world view that Jones is practicing but in a way that is not judgmental and that does not overlook the same tendencies in myself. I have to have a certain amount of fear in this respect because I believe the words of Jesus when he said "Judge not lest you be Judged and by the same measure that you measure another so shall it be measured out to you.
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Re: Official Religion Thread

Postby bwawm » Mon Apr 27, 2015 4:13 pm

“If you hate a person, you hate something in him that is part of yourself. What isn't part of ourselves doesn't disturb us.”
-Hesse
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Re: Official Religion Thread

Postby FranklinsTower » Mon Apr 27, 2015 4:20 pm

Bwawm


Its true I did respond and then delete but that because I am tired of working so hard to stay out of an argument with you. You continually misinterpret everything that I say in the worst possible light. It is getting old. This will be the last time I respond because you are having trouble hearing what I am actually saying and its just too much effort explaining it over and over.


The reason I said "even if it is true" was to have a conversation with you in good faith. I can read-- I know you did not say that it was true-- and I didn't either and I did not say you did. I never thought you did say that. I just thought it would be interesting to assume for a moment that it was true and look at possible effects of that just as a way of exploring ideas. That is the reason I said even if it is true-- but you just assumed some other more nefarious purpose....... this is like the third time you have assumed negative motives on my part and I am tired of sidestepping your misunderstandings.

Again I apologize if any of my language in any of our posts was not clear or gave the wrong impression-- this is the second time I have told you that........ How many times do you have to hear that in order to accept it?
Last edited by FranklinsTower on Mon Apr 27, 2015 4:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Official Religion Thread

Postby FranklinsTower » Mon Apr 27, 2015 4:21 pm

bwawm wrote:“If you hate a person, you hate something in him that is part of yourself. What isn't part of ourselves doesn't disturb us.”
-Hesse



Agreed-- which is why I take no pleasure in negative things that happen to people or hate them for it.
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Re: Official Religion Thread

Postby bwawm » Mon Apr 27, 2015 5:00 pm

FranklinsTower wrote:Bwawm


Its true I did respond and then delete but that because I am tired of working so hard to stay out of an argument with you. You continually misinterpret everything that I say in the worst possible light. It is getting old. This will be the last time I respond because you are having trouble hearing what I am actually saying and its just too much effort explaining it over and over.


The reason I said "even if it is true" was to have a conversation with you in good faith. I can read-- I know you did not say that it was true-- and I didn't either and I did not say you did. I never thought you did say that. I just thought it would be interesting to assume for a moment that it was true and look at possible effects of that just as a way of exploring ideas. That is the reason I said even if it is true-- but you just assumed some other more nefarious purpose....... this is like the third time you have assumed negative motives on my part and I am tired of sidestepping your misunderstandings.

Again I apologize if any of my language in any of our posts was not clear or gave the wrong impression-- this is the second time I have told you that........ How many times do you have to hear that in order to accept it?



awwww man...I'm not nefarious :-(

I completely understand where you are coming from and feel the exact same way. Seems like I've just been trying to explain why I'm not being insulting for longer than what I actually came on here to talk about. Obviously I'd like to think (especially knowing my intentions) that I'm not so shitty as to intentionally ruin a conversation I was seeking out but I don't rule out the possibility that it could be 100% on me.

I worry about offending people I percieve as devout (I live in Texas) so its entirely possible that I could have superimposed that on your comments (wheres the skepticism when I need it!) and unconsciously instigated unneeded tension but I was really just hoping for a casual conversation that might contribute something to me world view. Honestly was kind of hoping for it to get shredded and all the holes pointed out for me because my frame of reference is almost nonexistant. I also feel like Religion should be talked about in the same way as any other subject (valid reasons imo-don't assume the worst) and I think the lack of reverence is sometimes (not neccissarily in this case just overall) misinterpreted as a lack of respect. These two things may render me oversensitive and/or insensitive so if either is the case I'm sorry to steer the conversation into a nonconstructive direction.

You don't need to apologize to me though amigo...at no point did I assume any malicious intent on your part-you're good!
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Re: Official Religion Thread

Postby FranklinsTower » Mon Apr 27, 2015 5:04 pm

Awesome man.
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Re: Official Religion Thread

Postby FranklinsTower » Mon May 25, 2015 11:20 pm

A couple of weeks ago I was in bed with my wife and daughter and they were asleep. I was just laying there appreciating my family and half dozing off when I had a thought that came with great clarity-- "I am already in Gods love" I have had this thought many times but this time was different, this time I was "knowing" it. My eyes were closed, and taking the place of the darkness that I usually see came a bright white light filling my vision. Instantly I could feel my mind and body filled with light, tears began streaming down my face and I was filled with love and gratitude. The light only lasted a second or so but the love lasted a lot longer.

I have had experiences like this before and each one has had a profound and permanent effect on my state of being. In the last two weeks I have been significantly happier and more Loving. All of my thinking and opinions about people, life, everything has been influenced by it. I am not trying to be different and its not a reaction of happiness because I had a mystical experience. I am just now fundamentally a lot better off in my mind and emotions. I can feel that light in me still- I have access to it and see how I was before it happened as poverty. Its wonderful, it has been especially wonderful to be in that place while with my wife and daughter.....

This kind of experience is the reason I love spirituality and the spiritual path and even religion. I would never argue the existence of God on the internet and honestly if somehow it were proven that there were no God it would not alter all that much for me. Spiritual practice (especially meditation) has produced and continues to produce profound changes in my life that stick over time. I have a level of joy and love that would be impossible otherwise.

I want everyone to have this, and I was thinking how anyone who learned to meditate and walk a spiritual path could have this and more with or without a belief in God. I am absolutely convinced that spiritual experience (for lack of a better term) is open to all people.
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Re: Official Religion Thread

Postby exsanguinator » Fri May 29, 2015 8:29 am

FranklinsTower wrote:A couple of weeks ago I was in bed with my wife and daughter and they were asleep. I was just laying there appreciating my family and half dozing off when I had a thought that came with great clarity-- "I am already in Gods love" I have had this thought many times but this time was different, this time I was "knowing" it. My eyes were closed, and taking the place of the darkness that I usually see came a bright white light filling my vision. Instantly I could feel my mind and body filled with light, tears began streaming down my face and I was filled with love and gratitude. The light only lasted a second or so but the love lasted a lot longer.

I have had experiences like this before and each one has had a profound and permanent effect on my state of being. In the last two weeks I have been significantly happier and more Loving. All of my thinking and opinions about people, life, everything has been influenced by it. I am not trying to be different and its not a reaction of happiness because I had a mystical experience. I am just now fundamentally a lot better off in my mind and emotions. I can feel that light in me still- I have access to it and see how I was before it happened as poverty. Its wonderful, it has been especially wonderful to be in that place while with my wife and daughter.....

This kind of experience is the reason I love spirituality and the spiritual path and even religion. I would never argue the existence of God on the internet and honestly if somehow it were proven that there were no God it would not alter all that much for me. Spiritual practice (especially meditation) has produced and continues to produce profound changes in my life that stick over time. I have a level of joy and love that would be impossible otherwise.

I want everyone to have this, and I was thinking how anyone who learned to meditate and walk a spiritual path could have this and more with or without a belief in God. I am absolutely convinced that spiritual experience (for lack of a better term) is open to all people.


THIS. This all day long. You don't need a name or a face on something that you hang out with on Sundays and give all your money to to feel a divine presence in your daily life. This is exactly the reason I could never get behind the whole worship and praise thing. Now some might attribute this to God or God's will or whatever but the truth is that the path to everlasting life and love is what you said you just experienced. God didn't do that, you did. You did and the people around you did.

Love, faith, divinity... they're all around you. You just have to know where to look.
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Re: Official Religion Thread

Postby FranklinsTower » Fri May 29, 2015 2:29 pm

Agreed but where in the secular world outside of religion can you find the reliable techniques, maps, and approaches on how to maximize this kind of experience, avoid the dangers of them, and dead ends that can take years to discover otherwise? Where else can you find reliable teachings on how to eventually enter into permanent states of union with the light I am talking about? Where else outside of religion is even AWARE of the high end of this type of experience? This is where religion in its various forms is so helpful and even essential IF a person is interested in attaining the highest degrees and most permanent access possible to whatever this phenomenon is.

I am still not talking about making any claims that the labels and levels discussed in the various world religions are actually the names of these states or even the only way to parse out the different levels but no where else can you find any reliable instruction at all on this subject.
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Re: Official Religion Thread

Postby philphan » Fri Jul 03, 2015 9:54 pm

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Re: Official Religion Thread

Postby JonB » Fri Jul 03, 2015 11:36 pm

FranklinsTower wrote:A couple of weeks ago I was in bed with my wife and daughter and they were asleep. I was just laying there appreciating my family and half dozing off when I had a thought that came with great clarity-- "I am already in Gods love" I have had this thought many times but this time was different, this time I was "knowing" it. My eyes were closed, and taking the place of the darkness that I usually see came a bright white light filling my vision. Instantly I could feel my mind and body filled with light, tears began streaming down my face and I was filled with love and gratitude. The light only lasted a second or so but the love lasted a lot longer.

I have had experiences like this before and each one has had a profound and permanent effect on my state of being. In the last two weeks I have been significantly happier and more Loving. All of my thinking and opinions about people, life, everything has been influenced by it. I am not trying to be different and its not a reaction of happiness because I had a mystical experience. I am just now fundamentally a lot better off in my mind and emotions. I can feel that light in me still- I have access to it and see how I was before it happened as poverty. Its wonderful, it has been especially wonderful to be in that place while with my wife and daughter.....

This kind of experience is the reason I love spirituality and the spiritual path and even religion. I would never argue the existence of God on the internet and honestly if somehow it were proven that there were no God it would not alter all that much for me. Spiritual practice (especially meditation) has produced and continues to produce profound changes in my life that stick over time. I have a level of joy and love that would be impossible otherwise.

I want everyone to have this, and I was thinking how anyone who learned to meditate and walk a spiritual path could have this and more with or without a belief in God. I am absolutely convinced that spiritual experience (for lack of a better term) is open to all people.




I have a book about a mindfulness practice where the author mentions spiritual teachers from many religions. When the Christian minister is mentioned, he says "Mindfulness is finding god in everything." That sort of intersection is what opened my perspective on religion vs spirituality. Religion is the doctrine. Spirituality is the philosophy of knowing there is something bigger than us, and searching for it. And there's not really any rules about what that may be. Shaolin Monks training their minds and bodies to the limit are spiritual. Philanthropists who dedicate themselves to helping others may fall under the same title as well.
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Re: Official Religion Thread

Postby DeceptaCon » Sat Jul 04, 2015 1:54 am

I haven't had a drink in 15 days and I want to rip off some necks and shit down some throats, maybe beat the shit down some legs too. When I'm sober it's hard for me to believe in anything but when I'm high or drunk I can see the big picture, maybe some people just naturally feel this way and their thoughts change and shape their lives or maybe this is all just a big flesh test to free your soul. We are all just big rotting flesh shit containers. Some people can hold more shit than others.
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Re: Official Religion Thread

Postby FranklinsTower » Sat Jul 04, 2015 2:17 am

JonB wrote:
FranklinsTower wrote:A couple of weeks ago I was in bed with my wife and daughter and they were asleep. I was just laying there appreciating my family and half dozing off when I had a thought that came with great clarity-- "I am already in Gods love" I have had this thought many times but this time was different, this time I was "knowing" it. My eyes were closed, and taking the place of the darkness that I usually see came a bright white light filling my vision. Instantly I could feel my mind and body filled with light, tears began streaming down my face and I was filled with love and gratitude. The light only lasted a second or so but the love lasted a lot longer.

I have had experiences like this before and each one has had a profound and permanent effect on my state of being. In the last two weeks I have been significantly happier and more Loving. All of my thinking and opinions about people, life, everything has been influenced by it. I am not trying to be different and its not a reaction of happiness because I had a mystical experience. I am just now fundamentally a lot better off in my mind and emotions. I can feel that light in me still- I have access to it and see how I was before it happened as poverty. Its wonderful, it has been especially wonderful to be in that place while with my wife and daughter.....

This kind of experience is the reason I love spirituality and the spiritual path and even religion. I would never argue the existence of God on the internet and honestly if somehow it were proven that there were no God it would not alter all that much for me. Spiritual practice (especially meditation) has produced and continues to produce profound changes in my life that stick over time. I have a level of joy and love that would be impossible otherwise.

I want everyone to have this, and I was thinking how anyone who learned to meditate and walk a spiritual path could have this and more with or without a belief in God. I am absolutely convinced that spiritual experience (for lack of a better term) is open to all people.




I have a book about a mindfulness practice where the author mentions spiritual teachers from many religions. When the Christian minister is mentioned, he says "Mindfulness is finding god in everything." That sort of intersection is what opened my perspective on religion vs spirituality. Religion is the doctrine. Spirituality is the philosophy of knowing there is something bigger than us, and searching for it. And there's not really any rules about what that may be. Shaolin Monks training their minds and bodies to the limit are spiritual. Philanthropists who dedicate themselves to helping others may fall under the same title as well.



Agreed. There is so much intersection that it is astounding but it is important not to exaggerate those similarities also. One of the myths that I was brought up with is that all spiritual paths lead to the same place or state of being. My experience on the path and being in deep, long term connection with many serious practitioners from many paths has shown me that nothing could be further from the truth. There are really significant differences in the kinds of mystical experience and states of being that the great world religions offer. There are a vast diversity of types of enlightenment and these differences are created and formed by the different systems. Each system seems to have a particular penetration into the reality of God and particular methods for producing these encounters. The differences are especially apparent when comparing the descriptions and experiences of enlightenment from various world religions. The differences are not just a matter of language-- they are qualitatively different experiences.

Religion, when it is doing its job, offers reliable methods for gaining intimacy with God (or insert word). This is why within Christianity I have such difficulty with much of the tradition which seems to have cut itself off from ALL of the methods and teachings on this subject that go back all the way to the first century. Catholicism and the Orthodox Church and some others have maintained the contemplative tradition and its the best of Christianity-- and no one knows about it. Only the contemplative traditions within Christianity offer multiple radical spiritual awakenings over a lifetime that can culminate in union with God. Most of Christianity, at best, can offer only one radical awakening that is then expanded upon for a lifetime. I think it is very sad that people don't know there is more available or else are so indoctrinated into religion that they wont listen even if they are told.
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