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What Was Your Biggest Religious Choice?

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posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 03:51 PM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs


...what I call the Christian bubble filter is so common across congregations and communities, raising children under a more separate Benedict Option could potentially mean that all of the [children's] information about the world outside the bubble would be filtered and thus distorted.

This is a problem because when they eventually hear something from someone outside of the bubble...won’t line up with what they’d been told inside the bubble. And frankly, postponing this moment until adulthood spells trouble.



Do you guys see? Do you see how it is?
Are you not alarmed?




posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 03:52 PM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs

No, but every so often the world needs a Sage to remind us that God is Love. It was never so bad as under the Post-Nicene regime but the unoriginal teachings are so because of their universality. Evil as the church gets in our day we have all the information of the ancient teachings that they weren't able to destroy.

And the words of Jesus that they couldn't or didn't but if you start learning esoteric tradition and Wisdom he is just teaching the old Egyptian teachings which were in his day influenced by Buddhist Monks who traveled to Egypt.

And he combined that with his ancestral tradition which was not the pacifist sect we would imagine until him. They were violently opposed to Roman occupation and I think Egypt was at Alexandria, the learning capital of the world for maybe 500 years. Upon his return it seems that the message was to just live and let Rome do it's thing, they are too mighty so be blameless and have no fear, travel preaching the good news and making disciples and disciples.

We all know what happened but the legend is so seductive such a great man who was martyred is the start of a few religions and I will always admire Jesus and the 12 Apostles, James and even Judas. I don't even hate Simon Magus, I am actually fascinated by him.

I love Mary Magdalene. Thecla, Martha, Salome. John the Baptist is a Martyr who has an active successive following in Iraq to this day. I'm rambling.
edit on 20-6-2016 by KingPhilipsiX because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 04:10 PM
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Here's yet another entry in this series:


The biggest religious choice I’ve made is to follow God above all things.

I was born in a Christian, Evangelical home. Before I even knew how to speak my heart believed in God. But it’s not my upbringing that allowed me to maintain in faith, but rather an ongoing set of events that kept proving me again and again that God exits, listens, and acts upon us.

God meets us where logic ends.


This one is titled A Choice Beyond Logic

I understood, at 25 years old, why I believe: not because I was taught to, but because life pushed me to a place where the only answer was God.

He pushed me to a feeling beyond this physical world.
He pushed me to a hope beyond rational understanding.
He pushed me to a state of indescribable peace.
He pushed me to a faith that makes a fool of what makes sense.
He met me where logic ends.

People keep looking for facts that God exists, and these facts are everywhere; most importantly within you. People just don’t know how to look, and sadly, don’t want to learn either.


Hers is a story of finding strength and noticing what seemed to be miraculous occurrences.

I've had moments like those.



posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 04:14 PM
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a reply to: Akragon

It's quite a journey, ain't it?

This is a series The Atlantic magazine is publishing. There are really cool stories from both sides.....
I'm glad to see a Mainstream, Intellectual publication addressing the issue.......
it reminded me of this old ATS thread:

The Varieties of ATS Religious Experience; or, Variations on a Theme



posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 06:07 PM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs

Speaking as someone from alternative spiritual leanings (paganism), I have to say while this HAS happened to millions of people it also has not happened to many millions of others. I've got a great distrust of megachurches where the poor masses have pastors who drive expensive European cars, live in expensive houses etc. But at the same time, the same brand (different attitude) of Christianity can be out helping the poor.

Similarly I've seen occult groups (mostly Ceremonial magic) demand members drop a not tiny amount of money to belong (not to advance, thats Scientology....). It is the people, not the religion at fault.



posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 06:34 PM
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a reply to: Noinden

Totally Agreed.



posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 06:41 PM
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le sigh



posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 06:51 PM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs




It's quite brief. I did post most of it...but to get the full effect of her mindset, one needs to read her entire essay.


Ok. Just read through the full essay.

As I said before, if the author feels/believes that her religious upbringing is the cause of many of the troubles she has an adult, I can't argue against that and I can't tell her she is wrong. It's a personal belief. Just as when people blame their parents for many issues they have as an adult, I can not tell them they are wrong either. I can use an example of that myself.

I grew up poor and the word "eviction" was constantly thrown around, as was the phrase "out on the street." I'm fairly certain that's why, as an adult, even when things are going well and everything is essentially secure, I always have a whisper in the back of my mind that the other shoe is going to drop. That being said though, I think we all (hopefully) come to a point where we have to come to terms that things in our past might have affected us in a deep way and it is up to us to understand it, own it and work through it and not use it as an excuse or as a crutch. In that regard (and based on the fact that the only thing I know about this person is what was written in one brief essay) it seems that she is using her upbringing as an excuse and a crutch.

She initially presents the situation where her parents wouldn't support her, yet she states (maybe admits) that she ultimately did get support from her parents, if not an absolution that they 100% supported her. Again, I don't know the author but it sort of "feels like" anything that happens in her life, any struggles, any mistakes are simply chalked off as "it's religion's fault."

Leaving the things we already talked about out of it, there are two things in her essay that rub me the wrong way (for lack of a better phrase):

1) She states, as a matter of fact,


This church was, to borrow a tired metaphor, nothing more than a social club.

I find that to be, if nothing else, most likely an ignorant or intentionally dishonest statement. When you go to a church and look around at all the people in the pews, yes, I'm sure there are some people there simple to "hang out" and see what their friends are up to and to socialize. But her statement absolutely ignores all of the people that do have a strong sense of faith and come to give thanks, pray for guidance and ask for forgiveness (amongst other things) in a very sincere manner.

Unless she was raised in that (alleged) Church that shows up to protest the funerals of soldiers killed in battle, most (if not almost all) Churches do a wide range of things to help the local and global community. She didn't like the budget for "benevolence," but ignores that it was there at all. I'm also not sure if the 17 year old version of the author actually knew the full list of services (monetarily and otherwise) that the Church provided to the community. Listen, it's possible she belonged to one of the worst Churches ever... but I'm not convinced of that.


2) She states, as a matter of (almost) fact,



I came to acknowledge was that religion is not innocuous—indeed it’s often, if not always, the exact opposite.
(emphasis mine)

Because she had a real or perceived negative experience, religion is almost ALWAYS harmful? I think there are hundreds of millions, if not billions, of PEACEFUL, people that would disagree with her. People that will go out of their way to help a stranger in need. People that donate as much of their time, money and effort as they possibly can.

This statement leads me to further believe she has become a bit too addicted to using "it's religion's fault" as an excuse and a crutch.

Just my thoughts and again, to be fair to the author, I know nothing about her except for the short essay I read.



posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 07:01 PM
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a reply to: eluryh22


But her statement absolutely ignores all of the people that do have a strong sense of faith and come to give thanks, pray for guidance and ask for forgiveness (amongst other things) in a very sincere manner.


You think so?
I was most able to relate to her reflection that she felt like a worm......
and that when she realized what the budget provided for actually helping other people, it was nothing compared to salaries and upkeep of the lawn.


Unless she was raised in that (alleged) Church that shows up to protest the funerals of soldiers killed in battle


That's the Westboro Baptist Church, based out of Topeka, Kansas.


most (if not almost all) Churches do a wide range of things to help the local and global community.


But compared to how much they spend on salaries and fancy landscaping...how much is it?


She didn't like the budget for "benevolence," but ignores that it was there at all.

I don't buy that. The first priority of the church - of any "Christian" church --- is supposed to be about taking care of others. About not judging, and sharing whatever resources one has available to see to the well-being of their fellow citizens.


I'm also not sure if the 17 year old version of the author actually knew the full list of services (monetarily and otherwise) that the Church provided to the community.

She was at the meeting, and read the line-itemed list of how to use the mega-church's healthy income.


Listen, it's possible she belonged to one of the worst Churches ever...

That is true - it is entirely possible.....


but I'm not convinced of that.


Okay. So - what do you make of the story? And btw, thanks for coming back and reading it!!


edit on 6/20/2016 by BuzzyWigs because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 07:43 PM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs




You think so?
I was most able to relate to her reflection that she felt like a worm......
and that when she realized what the budget provided for actually helping other people, it was nothing compared to salaries and upkeep of the lawn.



I don't know what specific church she belonged to or what the denomination is actually "about." This is something of a disclaimer but I live in a suburb of a large US city and perhaps because real estate is relatively scarce, the churches here typically do NOT have a lot of real estate. It's typically just the sidewalk and a lawn that is maybe 100' x 100' - ish. I'm sure down south (or at least what I am picturing) a church might have acres and acres and I'm sure it does cost a pretty penny to keep everything up. I don't have enough information to make an informed decision but the author highlighting that as a way her church is "bad" I can't agree with. I'm also not sure what the property was used for.

Again, in my neck of the woods Churches don't have a lot of real estate. Even the churches that have Catholic Schools associated with them don't have much real estate. In my part of the country almost all public schools have a large playground and a field that can accommodate a soccer game, a football game or a baseball/softball game. The Catholic schools are lucky if they have a small playground (and forget about the ball field). I'm not saying that the author's assertions about landscaping are valid or invalid... but does the property of the Church down there also act as essentially a public park with a large area that the community uses for soccer matches and baseball games? Based on the limited information I just don't know.




That's the Blank___blank Church, based out of blank, blank.

I knew the name.... I just refuse to give them any exposure. I lack the words to express how I despise what they do in general and how they claim to represent Christians.

They are awful. Just awful.




But compared to how much they spend on salaries and fancy landscaping...how much is it?


I don't know about salaries because I don't know about that denomination. I can tell you that Catholic Priests, Deacons and Nuns in my area do NOT make a killing. They live above the rectory (or convent) and drive old cars (as an example). For the landscaping, I don't have enough information to form an opinion (as I explained earlier in this post).




I don't buy that. The first priority of the church - of any "Christian" church --- is supposed to be about taking care of others. About not judging, and sharing whatever resources one has available to see to the well-being of their fellow citizens.

Again, I can only speak about my own experiences but that is essentially what many (maybe most) Churches do. It's not all about money. At my Church, beyond monetary help and beyond the food bank, there are a wide variety of programs to help people (many of which I have volunteered for). There are free classes to help people speak/write/read English. There are workshops to help people put together resumes so they can get jobs and improve their situation. There are people that volunteer to drive new mothers home from the hospital (because in this area hospitals are legally obligated to witness a newborn being placed in an approved car seat before they let them leave the hospital campus).

Here's one for ya that hits home. A few years ago my wife befriended a young mother at "Mommy and Me." After a while she started showing up with strange bruises. Eventually it became apparent that her husband was abusing her in some of the worst ways so when my wife approached her (away from the other moms) this woman explained what was going on. Although it took a little convincing, my wife brought her to our Parish Outreach and without any questions being asked, they housed her and her son and provided for them until the mom was able to secure stable work and they were able to find a place to live. Side note, she was scared to move in with relatives because her husband would find her. And no, she was not Catholic and nobody tried to convert her.

The Church just wanted to help. Things like this do not show up on budget reports. (Although, again, I don't know anything about the church where the author was raised).




thanks for coming back and reading it!!


I post sporadically and haven't been on here for very long (a bit less than a year). I don't know many members although admittedly there are a few I tend to agree with and a few I tend to avoid..... and I have to be honest I don't really know you but I recognized your name as someone that I'm pretty sure I've conversed with before and whether or not we agree on any particular issue.... I believe you to be sincere. I appreciate that. So don't thank me... I thank you for being a decent human being on these boards.

Edit to add: I never answered the question in your subject line.... Will do when I can.




edit on 20-6-2016 by eluryh22 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 08:17 PM
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I have no love for religion, but what happened at her church. may have been different from how she perceived it, and she can only speak from her own personal experiences, with her church.

My mother and brother attend a First Baptist church that is a fairly good size, but it is not massive. Almost all the work done in and around the church is done by church members. My mother works in hospitality, I have donated a good amount in snacks and drinks, which they provide before, between, and after, the worship sessions. Many businesses and members of the community, donate a large number of items and services to the church.

The tithing goes for the the maintenance and salaries I am sure, but a lot is spent in donated time, and services in giving back to the community, and to he members of the church.

I don't speak for what happens in other churches and I by no way am saying that her church is run perfectly. I have no way of knowing. I just know that the members in her church are extremely active and generous with their time and skills.

Though they all know that I am not pro religion, they treat me very graciously, and no one has tried to push religion on me, or tried to get me to join the church.

They make it very easy for me to separate the religion from the people. It is the religion I reject, not the people.



posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 09:15 PM
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a reply to: eluryh22

oh my - what a powerful post.
Thank you so much for taking the time and contributing it....


as was said above that "maybe it was just how she interpreted it"....well, that is the whole thing.
The adults who take the littles to church may have a view of the entire thing that the children have no way of knowing. Many children take things literally when they are young.....they watch what the adults in church are doing, and emulate it.....
but don't necessarily understand what the adults really think.

Had an interesting conversation with my mom a week ago - about how she viewed the church's teachings....and how I did, as a little kid.
She asked me why I never mentioned my reactions and confusion and misgivings....why I didn't ask her.....
I said, "Who was I to ask? The message was very clear."

So, I submit that it is precisely because "church" offers a very subjective view - and doesn't always take into consideration the ability (or lack thereof) of congregants to comprehend, to feel brave enough to question, etc.


Bottom line for me: Religion is for adults.
edit on 6/20/2016 by BuzzyWigs because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 09:58 PM
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Again Buzzy
I could link so many articles about non religious people in nearly the same situation
When are you going to realise its a people thing, you just want to cause division and fire blame at people.

Its people who are broken, perverted christianity justifies the problem

Read what 1 Corinthians speaks of love and argue that.


1 Corinthians 13:4-8English Standard Version Anglicised (ESVUK)

4 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant 5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful;[a] 6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. 7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

8 Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away.



posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 10:29 PM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs

sounded more like the 501c was a business and not a true ministry.

This has been my biggest gripe with organized Christian religion. Too and I mean too many have churches as a means of making money, as a career and not as something God has called them to do.

This is what the seminaries and schools of religion do is educate men to a business mentality about Christianity.

I knew God called me to the foreign mission field. As I went through all the so called mission boards there was something similar in all. 1) I had to have a Doctorate in Divinity ( my doctorate in Theology would not suffice). 2) I had to raise $40k a year support (the mission board got 10%). 3) The mission board would secure me a 401k, Intl health and medical insurance. 4) I had to show positive numbers of salvation, bible schools and church plants. 5) I had to pass their psychology exam (I failed of course).

I decided to go by faith. I went with a $20 a month promise from a man. I never knew if he ever gave or not. I trusted God for everything. When we needed money to hold a church camp I trust ed the Lord. If we ran out of food I trusted the Lord for our next meal. He always came through.

Just two weeks ago I trusted the Lord to supply for a home here in the States. I made an offer on a house with no money in my hand or bank. On the day it was cleared for acceptance I got a $6000 check and storm windows for the house. The day I signed the contract I was loaned $45,400 at 3% and give 7 years to pay it off. This week I am waiting and am ready to go into the house and repair it and move my family in.

Because I trust the Lord to pay the bills and take care of me.

These men today in organized religion know nothing of living by faith. But they better learn fast or they like the woman in the story will turn from the Lord and back to the world. which will show they were never saved and only in it for the money (their belly as Paul said).

I believe the Lord will use us further here in the States and I am seeing him supply and lead right here at home. No need for a 401k

I despise organized religion and call many out of it for it is the bane of the true church, the men and women who are saved, the body of Christ.


edit on 20-6-2016 by ChesterJohn because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 10:31 PM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs

My single greatest religious decision?


To ignore the sillyness that is modern day organized religion.

This has led me on to the philosophical vector of Buddhism.... Which is a philosophy...and not a religion.



posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 10:47 PM
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a reply to: Raggedyman

I agree but understand the real meaning of Charity and why love is not used int he preserved word of God in the verses you quoted.

Yes human condition is the problem. It has stained the true church and organized religion has taken hold of men as a means of financial gain.

As a "live by faith" missionary I wrote to a 3 billion dollar a year ministry in Texas, the Pastor is on TV all the time. I explained that I did not have any money to buy a DVD (that cost them a $1 to produce) and asked if they would give it to me so I could use it at one of our film showings. I got a reply from someone telling me that a Christian shouldn't be poor (apparently hadn't read about Paul being naked, imperil of the deep, hungry, and in danger of his own kin). He further stated that they would not give me the DVD and that they would pray for me to be wealthier.

It is a sad commentary of so called ministry that is supposed to be of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Flesh is the motive in organized Christianity.

This is why I have a Home Assembly. And soon it may be an underground assembly like places in the ME and China.



posted on Jun, 21 2016 @ 12:14 AM
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originally posted by: ChesterJohn
a reply to: Raggedyman

I agree but understand the real meaning of Charity and why love is not used int he preserved word of God in the verses you quoted.

Yes human condition is the problem. It has stained the true church and organized religion has taken hold of men as a means of financial gain.

As a "live by faith" missionary I wrote to a 3 billion dollar a year ministry in Texas, the Pastor is on TV all the time. I explained that I did not have any money to buy a DVD (that cost them a $1 to produce) and asked if they would give it to me so I could use it at one of our film showings. I got a reply from someone telling me that a Christian shouldn't be poor (apparently hadn't read about Paul being naked, imperil of the deep, hungry, and in danger of his own kin). He further stated that they would not give me the DVD and that they would pray for me to be wealthier.

It is a sad commentary of so called ministry that is supposed to be of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Flesh is the motive in organized Christianity.

This is why I have a Home Assembly. And soon it may be an underground assembly like places in the ME and China.


I can beat that
Last sunday we had a guest minister who preached on Mathew 9 27 about the blind men being healed and he turned it into a political speech attacking homosexuality and the governments that support them
How he tied them together I am at a complete loss
No Jesus, no love or compassion at all.

I dont think this minister has ever read the sermon on the mount, ever.

Time to find another church after having a serious chat to the elders.

I understand peoples hate of christianity, I have it as well.



posted on Jun, 21 2016 @ 07:31 AM
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a reply to: ChesterJohn


I wrote to a 3 billion dollar a year ministry in Texas, the Pastor is on TV all the time. I explained that I did not have any money to buy a DVD (that cost them a $1 to produce) and asked if they would give it to me so I could use it at one of our film showings. I got a reply from someone telling me that a Christian shouldn't be poor (apparently hadn't read about Paul being naked, imperil of the deep, hungry, and in danger of his own kin). He further stated that they would not give me the DVD and that they would pray for me to be wealthier.



They said, "no"?
Pathetic.



Our Lady of Perpetual Exemption - the brainchild of John Oliver - made quite a stir.

It was dissolved less than a month after he created it.





edit on 6/21/2016 by BuzzyWigs because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 21 2016 @ 09:06 AM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs

They said, "no"? Pathetic.

I agree with you 100% and I think that their response was very telling.

Many churches have become places to worship money, power, and materialism.

I understand why they shut down John Oliver's funny creation, Our Lady of Perpetual Exemption. However, he still has his life and a show. If he had made an equal creation about Islam, or Mohammad, neither of those things would likely be true.

Don't misunderstand. I think he has the right to make these kinds of skits, and I find much of what he says humorous. For some, it is not just funny, it is gospel. It is political humor, but only if it is about Christianity.

I think we need to stop with the pretense. Either "all" religion is bogus or "all" have merit. Either "all" are protected or none are.

Personally I think that the way to hell is paved with religion. So I find it more than disingenuous for it to be taboo, and a means for an all out assault, if you so much as say the word Muslim, but all are free to assault and attack Christianity and are encouraged, and supported in their attacks.

We need to start asking the right questions.



posted on Jun, 21 2016 @ 09:27 AM
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a reply to: Raggedyman


you just want to cause division and fire blame at people.

Again Raggedy -
stop deciding and telling me what I 'want to do'.

There is blame to be fired - and it is on unscrupulous users who manipulate people.

If you think I am not familiar with Corinthians' most famous verses, you have not been paying attention. That verse is used by millions and millions of couples as they get married, and it is true.

I am pointing out very valid and scurrilous behavior - yes, it is people. "Religion" by itself is nothing but a constructed thing. It is not capable of "action" on its own. The deplorable actions committed by people in the name of religion are the problem. Yes, I want to cause division - I want people who are genuinely interested in Corinthians 13:4-8 to step up and shut down these manipulative mega-church monsters.

I want those people to be blamed for what they do, and held accountable. I don't "just" want that - it isn't about "just wanting to" be bitchy. It's about pointing out that the dog is rabid.



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