First off, I am an atheist, the faster religion is removed from our planet, the better..let us focus on science and spirituality...so knowing that,
lets consider this thread
Let me get some arguments out of the way first so people can focus on the subject:
1) Religion starts wars..death by the millions
2) Religion supresses minorities, women, gays, animals, etc.
3) Religion makes people delusional, morons, etc...
ok, all the rest..yes yes, thats nice...this thread is not about that.
This is about the positive things religion, specifically christianity, has inspired in the world around us.
(long enough disclaimer and troll filtering?)
There is something about the belief in the salvation of christ that inspires great and fascinating artistic ventures. Since this thread is aiming to
focus in on christianity, I won't add several pictures of golden calfs, buddah statues, etc...
I could write a 100 page thread about the creative marvels inspired by the story of christ
the architecture alone is enough to inspire the imagination of a hundred generations by just standing and looking
(I can already hear the trolling about how they should have used the money and resources to feed people...shush, this thread isn't about that)
This subject is far too large to even scratch the surface...however, if you seen one thing most awe inspiring, feel free to post it
No, not talking about crappy christian rock..but real faith songs, such as hallelujah:
(if you watch this video and don't feel something move in you, you are without any joy! )
One of the better examples of a positive christian influence on society was its initial inception
the ancient hebrews and the pagans were a very structured society, god(s) favored some more than others, and positions (handed down by man of course)
a sick person could not enter into the temple as they were unclean. a poor person was regarded as less than favorable than a rich person in the eyes
of the days religion
now, how it turned around is open for debate, but the concept that this guy jesus wandered in and kicked some temple arse in order to show that none
are more or less loved by the deity was certainly a welcomed accomplishment.
The story itself was a game changer...from a whole host of acts and events you had to do in order to be "saved" to suddenly being moved down to a
simple principle of love, community, and self empowerment to seek out the divine within yourself knocked over so many unfair and unfortunate pillars
that were established for many generations. (the christianity today is not really the same as the initial seeds planted..now its churchanity)
One thing todays christians are known for is really attempting to make the world a better place.
the ICCF has good material on just some christian charities going on today around the world...from in western
countries to starving and poor around the world. Now, some of course want to discuss religion while they help out the poor and suffering, some
don't, but the concept of helping those in need from person to person is a trait humans really need to encourage.
Many of you have a relative that was a substance abuser. Quite often, you find that their life went from a deep fall to suddenly productive and
happy. This typically comes from "finding god" in their life. It may be argued that the person wanted to change anyhow, and used christ as the
excuse to do so subconsciously, however, that does not dull the effect that the catalist was indeed the religion.
If it helps a person become happy and stop screwing up their life, then that has to be worth something..and until we as a society learn how to become
strong enough for each other, then the symbol of christianity may indeed be holding us together verses tearing many apart.
This is a small sampling. Some of you whom are faith based may add alot more to this thread than myself. I personally love the art (love cathedrals),
and one of the cons of a ending to religion would be the stopping of these architectural marvels.
So, what do you find good about christianity's influence (if you want to write what is bad about it, pick one of the other millions of threads...or
make one yourself. again, I am atheist and a bit of an anti-theist overall, but I recognise art and good intentions when they show up..to deny it is
just being a cynical jerk imo.
This is a great thread, I love that you're taking a positive approach. I can't think of much to add to what you've already listed, I wish I could -
my first thought was community but you even broke that down better than I could.
I will say however, there's some great Christian Metal bands out there but of course that comes down to a matter of taste.
edit on 13-6-2011 by Forevever because: I dropped an A
Hollywood has been banking on the bible since..the existance of hollywood.
From vampire tales, undead, soulless frankenstein even...
Our best and most wild movies come either straight from the bible, or aspects of horrors or wonders inspired by some biblical passage.
Thank you for a couple thousand years (give or take) of amazing dreams and horrific speculations...
Har! you're absolutely right, no one can deny Johnny
I hesitate to name any bands I like because most people I've met like to judge - its a human thing I think
my tastes in music are extremely eclectic, so I hate to be limited to one genre, but if I had to pick one that is Christian AND Good music, I really
its only mildly amusing that they combine their "faith" messages with an extreme air of suicidal tendencies :X
They're best known to gamers for "I'm So Sick" (Rockband) which is much harder than my personal favorite
(and I'm not christian either)
Here's something i always ask God, "show me people through your eyes, but also show me how you see me." Love never fails friends it really doesnt.
People would love to believe in an all loving all powerful God, They just haven't seen much of it. But times they are a changing as they say. Love
someone today, even someone who doesnt deserve it. Tell someone who doesn't feel pretty they are beautiful.. Forgive always, be harmless unless you're
defending God's children. Who are God's children? They're generally the ones who are poor, without power and defenseless. Stand up for people not
nations or religions. Fear nothing, and use the brain God blessed you with. When it is in your power to help, do it. You usually don't have to look
far. Jesus was and is and always will be, let's start showing the world we really do believe what we say, not with words but with love. Awesome thread
edit on 13-6-2011 by willie9696 because: (no reason given)
I think Christianity is a great influence if people keep the emphasis placed on Jesus. Unfortunately, I think the focal point has been shifted to a
bunch of pointless "rules". Do you really think the obsessive evangelists preaching to the crowds at public events really care about you; or are
they out there thumping the Bible because they think they're answering "God's call" and they're afraid of their own damnation if they don't
follow through? Do you really think God, if he exists, really needs people to do any work that he could have easily done himself? Do you
really think you're a good person just because you go to church every Sunday morning and nod your head in agreement to what another non-divine
human, who is also subject to the instinct to lie and twist the truth for his own benefit, is telling you? I see so many narcissistic, fake people go
on about their lives not caring for anyone but themselves then claim to be "Christian" just because they expect the community to pat them on the
That said, the solution is to focus on the basic charitable traits of Jesus. I'm also an atheist and I get along just fine with non-denominational
Christians. They don't feel obligated to scare people into accepting their beliefs with threats of burning in hell. Most of these types of
Christians put a genuine effort into simply being a good person and helping everyone- regardless of who they are. From what I gather, they
think being "saved" is as simple as announcing your faith in God/Jesus/whatnot and being grateful for it; therefore they don't drive themselves
into a psychosis by obsessing over whether or not their god is happy with them.
So yeah, I think if people would get into Christianity for the right reasons it could be a good influence. But, sadly, most people get into it out of
peer pressure, fear of a dreadful afterlife, or just because they're hypocritical tools.
Also, I'm going to be doing volunteer work at some Christian music festival all next week for the second year in a row... and I'm an atheist
Well positioned and articulated with good examples. I have had this debate with folks over the years (even though I don't consider myself a
Christian). Most churches today have nobel goals and missions. I have a church near me and they raise money for homeless folks, send money to an
Orphanage in Africa, and generally give very upbeat postive sermons to their members. They are very open-minded.
Unfortunately, we live in a society that is anti-Christian and will jump on any story that seems to show hypocrites in the Church. Their will always
be people that go to Church for the wrong reasons, but, their are also people that join other organization's for other reason's also.
I think the downfall of christianity was the carrot and stick philosophy they got used to employing.
the carrot of course being heaven upon death, the stick was the rules and overall life in hell that the preachers use on the people endlessly.
we (the people) got used to the stick over time, and so the beatings became harder...finally we turned around and simply broke the stick...
Now, the only thing left is the carrot that influences movement towards there...whenever they try to use the broken stick, we fight back with our
stickbreaker (science). the "new" message, in order to keep this method alive, has to be fully on the carrot dangling...speak of the goodness and
joy in ourselves and how we should, by our own desires, move there without consequence or force...if it is what we desire, great...if not, well, its
our life, just be happy however we want to live it..
Some of the core values of christianity I accept as my own...love yourself, love your neighbor..as far as love god..well, to me, a god is
everything..it is my neighbor, or a blade of grass, or a distant galaxy...its all things, and basically that is part of life (the fire that heats food
and burns a house down). love life, even when it can suck...so ya, check there also.
And if, when I die, I am met by St. Pete and some pearly gates, I can say with honesty that I lived life according to the rules of god to the best of
my ability...not because I feared a cosmic spanking, but because its the universe I personally wanted to exist in.
however, the rules...the stick...I have total contempt for that
Originally posted by SaturnFX
One thing todays christians are known for is really attempting to make the world a better place.
Thought I would just mention a few Christians who have influenced society in a positive way, partly because of their strongly held religious beliefs.
I have added some Youtube clips, just so people can get a better feel of each individual.
William Wilberforce, who was an evangilical Christian, whos moral fortitued had a huge impact in the campaign of the abolition of slavery in 1833.
Mother Teresa who won the Nobel peace prize, for her services in caring for the sick.
Christianity strongly influenced Martin Luther King, who’s strong religious convictions gave him strength in the face of adversity during his
struggle for freedom.
And lastly, John Wesley who did much work on prison reforms and brought about a greater understanding and refinement of many Christian thelogical
I can honestly say that all those above, although they may not have been perfect, have all had a positive impact on the world we live in today.
I must say, though those are good things provided by Christianity they are far from the exclusive domain of that religion or any other. All of the
above can be provided for non-theistic reasons.
Well, I, being non-theistic, provided it.. so erm...correct? heh
I quite like the "culture" that christianity provided...not the social culture, but some of the creative culture (architecture, -some- classical
music/etherial achievements, and the like).
I used to travel the world alot...and would always make it a point to visit cemetarys and cathedrals whenever possible. nations have a fixation on the
two to make them as unique and interesting as possible...
There is a cathedral in Milan I went to...it was just amazing when you walked in. pillars reaching up into the darkness, made me feel I entered some
dwarven mine. each pillar, every seeming inch of the place had unique carvings on it. very overpowering sensation.
Someone told me it was "gods power" that was breathtaking...I of course chuckle at that...naa, it was actually the creative power of mankind with a
focus that created such a work..really stimulates the god part of your brain when pulled off properly.
Its the one redeeming value of religion...their art. Imagine a world where there was never any religion or superstitious beliefs...a world of atheism
since the dawn.
I doubt we would have anything like that, Sure, we would have monuments and statues...however, meditation chambers to the scale of huge cathedrals
simply wouldn't exist (in my opinion) as there is no...profit in it.
As far as other religions now...
Well, what compares to roman catholicism in what is being discussed here. Islam? Yes, there are some impressive mosques around the world...but from
what I have noted (perhaps its the cultural differences), the mosques interiors lacks the...mesmerizing qualities..the baroque period influences, the
gothic influences, etc...it always felt a bit like a gymnasium inside large mosques (due to them using mats verses pews)...
And islamic music...well, lets be honest here...the call to prayer sounds like a dying goat.
(perhaps just a bitter experience being woken up with this nonsense at 3am in egypt day after day, week after week as it piped through the whole damn
city of cairo.)
But ok Madness...you suggest there are comparable alternatives using either a different religion, or no religion. I challenge you to make a thread
It must include:
Historical buildings (at least say...500 years old) of architectural wonder
a focused point (no, showing a ancient shopping mall in rome = not a non-theistic achievement...thats just commerce)
Other attached cultural achievements, such as music that inspires many, or the like
Ongoing "good" works...such as charity organizations affiliated with either the religion you are discussing, or the focus point otherwise.
I may be off topic here, but what you just said is what I think is wrong with this new theory being promoted, called monotheism, a word not used
untill into the sixteen hundreds. It is made to sound old, by taking elements from Greek words to form it. I believe it is a plot by the Jews to
create this idea among Christians, that the God they believe in, must be that same one spoken of in the Jewish scriptures.
edit on 17-6-2011 by
jmdewey60 because: (no reason given)
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