Is Religion Designed To Hold Us Back?

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posted on Nov, 21 2012 @ 07:11 PM
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reply to post by charles1952
 


Charles I believe we could probably sit grab a pizza and talk for hours as you said but I think after that second pitcher I wouldn’t be able to articulate very well. Lol. I still think it would be great. Maybe I will break away from things down here one day and we can do just that.

I know religion has had its place and done a great many things to guide us in our morality to this point. For many it acts as an anchor so that we do not drift too far away from what has been established as right and wrong. I am just not so sure that we need the promise or threat of a deity to maintain us anymore.

For the record I wasn’t implying the school system should be in the business of teaching morality. I believe its function should soul be distributing information. In the case of critical thinking I believe when taught correctly it could be one of the most important skills a person acquires in life however such a thing is a lifelong endeavor the bad side to it is if a person learns how to use those skills grounded in selfish motives they may become successful with their endeavors but typically they intellectually flawed because they generally become very skilled at manipulation. After typing that for some reason I picture politicians. lol. So I think schools should play a part in teaching these skills so that can at least make clear how it has been used in the past with examples. It really is a subject I could start an entire thread on. I think people learn this with or without school but they do so and their motivations could determine many things in their life. I do believe a person’s morality dependent on many things family, environment, and life experiences to name a few. For many it is based in there religion. For myself religion was not a factor I had good parents that instilled these things early on but of course there has been much in life that has influenced me and has shaped my philosophy in life and it continues to change. If my parents were any less than what they are it is hard to say how I may have turned out.

As for the constitution I agree. I do not feel it is serving the purpose that it was intended to and has been corrupted in many ways but I still have hope and confidence in it. As for me considering a future in 2000 years there are so many variables it makes my head hurt. I am sure you have figured out that I have some firm beliefs about climate change which makes me wonder if there will be anyone around in that age. Our species is remarkable to even be able to create such a document that can withstand the test of time but at the same time we as a whole as a species is so short sighted it become that we will be the reason for our own devise.

As far as cloning I think as a science it will be realized to its full potential one day as for how it could be utilized the possibilities exist for good and bad. Science fiction has often become science fact in recent history.

Many people as individuals use religion for mankind’s betterment but the trend with groups has been to persecute those who differ and I am not sure that will ever change. I think the underlying cause is each religion believes it has been shown favor by a deity which I have heard from others that is what makes them righteous. I don’t think a deity would be so short sighted for it to do this to its creations so it leads me to believe these permissions or privileges that a group in any particular religion believe they have is the works of man. Those who at the pinnacle of the hierarchy in those religions would have no reason for mankind to transcend those falsehoods and it is in their best interest for mankind to stagnate.

Charles I think you and I agree on much on this matter especially about how it will take longer than the two of us having a few beers and a pizza talking it over. Lol. I do have hope that there is a possibility in mankind’s horizon that my hopes may reach fruition. Years ago the conversation would be near impossible not just because of logistical reasons but because with today’s technology a topic of this nature can be discussed at length and with breaks in-between to gather thoughts, Ideas and views can be spread and shared with others in what I feel has been a positive manner.

Thank you for your honesty and willingness to discuss this topic it has helped me understand many aspects of it better. For instance the idea that without source teachings you say there is a possibility for man to devolve morally in society. I think this may be true for some people. It wasn’t something that I gave much thought o because faith is something I have never experienced firsthand. I once tried to go to church at first I found it positive but the more I went I started to see and learn things that I found distasteful. I wonder if there are organizations or churches that still believe in the divine but have abandoned the dogma associated with them where they kept the moral teachings but discarded the controls or even updated the scripture to reflect what is known as fact today. Years ago when I first heard of scientology the name had me picturing such a thing boy was I wrong. With all the books I have read probably the only one that I found to be more in line with how I feel on the subject was called conversations with god. The third book in that series was a little harder to get through for me. There never seems to be enough daylight this time of year so I need to break away and finish some things up outside before it gets too late and the neighbors complain.

Maybe in spring I will be able to break away from things here and visit where you are at and we can have that pizza.


Edit to add

Don’t know why but I was just thinking about how the Catholic church has stored and archived according to reports a huge amount of historical documents and possibly other books that were meant to be included in the bible yet the information is kept from the public. I understand them preserving it but with today’s technology it could be all digitized so anyone could see it. I view that as a crime against humanity withholding information like that. How do you view what they are doing? BTW if you are catholic I do not intend to offend I am just curious how you see that. It really makes me wonder why they are withholding it I tend to think they are hiding
edit on 21-11-2012 by Grimpachi because: add




posted on Nov, 21 2012 @ 07:55 PM
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reply to post by Grimpachi
 

Dear Grimpachi,

I'm going to try to be much briefer. I'm really enjoying this and look forward to each of your posts, but visitors might not take kindly to my mountains of words.

Ok, I'll take a big step, and agree that mankind doesn't need the threat or promise of eternal existence. That rips a huge hole in the New Testament, but let's disregard that for a moment and say that people should only be living the "right way" because it's the right way.

So, if we know the right way, is that passed on to the next generation through schools or other government organizations? I hope not. Do we give the little "skulls full of mush" critical thinking skills and expect them to find the right way on their own? Looking at those currently under, say 25, I think it's safe to say "ain't gonna happen."

Do we then need churches to teach the "right way?" With all the religious conflicts we have now, and strongly held beliefs, we'd probably have to start all over, create a new religion, and make sure it's the only one. That, of course requires removing "Freedom of Religion."

May I suggest a compromise? The schools start teaching an unbiased course in logic and reason, and the religions start re-combining into, say fewer than a hundred, and publicize their teachings so people can intelligently choose. Combining the churches could be done under the banner of unity, and the Church has always been a huge fan of reason.

With respect,
Charles1952



posted on Nov, 21 2012 @ 10:05 PM
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reply to post by charles1952
 


Charles don't worry about your posts I think this is a great exchange of ideas and those who wish to participate are more than welcome. The mountains of text may dissuade those who wish to derail or have a motive to suppress such a conversation. There have already been a few.
I had considered something like what you described but the idea of creating a new religion makes gives me pause. As far as critical thinking being taught in schools I think it is a good idea however I cannot speak for how well it is being taught because it was not part of the curriculum when I was in High School. I took a course in college and found it to be useful and enlightening. While growing up I lived in the Bible belt but I had never stepped into a church until my thirties. It made growing up sometimes difficult when I would be talking about evolution or dinosaurs and many of my peers would take offense and I was chastised quite a bit many children were not allowed to be around me because their parents disapproved. That all changed in high school generally that is when kids start doubting things. Anyway children will be children but I can tell you I had to learn how to fight at a young age because as some kids would say they were going to beat the Holy Spirit into me.
I find it funny nowadays and worth some good stories but when I was a little kid I kept wondering who this Jesus guy was that is giving me so much trouble.

I am in no way for removing ones freedoms or forcing any religion on a person if anything that only creates a stronger opposition to such things. Your idea of school teaching an unbiased course in logic and reason is great but I thought they already did that to some degree. Maybe I was under the misconception that was covered under critical thinking. I need to do some research I guess.

Combining churches I wouldn’t be against it but I feel like that would need to be done under their own guidance. I had thought that some had already done so but maybe that is another misconception I have. Non-denominational Churches I had thought were combined to a degree. For a period of time I went to a nondenominational with someone I was dating it was really important to her that I go I can’t say how traditional or not the church was but the name was surfers church so after the sermon we all grabbed our surfboards went across the street had a BBQ and went surfing. It was pretty fun until the pastor gave a speech one father’s day and said some things to the tune of how it used to be common practice that if your children were disobedient or immoral that it was the peoples responsibility to stone them to death and telling the kids there they are lucky that god is not as wrathful now. Long story short I didn’t like where things were going and his description was almost exactly something I encountered in the Middle East so I took my leave. I don’t know if the guy had been having some problems with his kid or if that was the normal sermon for that time of year but I was better off without it.

I think what you suggested is probably what is already happening to some degree at least here in the US. I think it is just the natural progression of things. I think I sense a little sarcasm at the end of your statement but I could be wrong. As far as forcing a change I can’t get behind anything like that. I can only hope as a species we move toward spirituality and adopt a solid philosophy that is based on the finer points of religions which will allow us to abandon the destructive dogma that has been instrumental in holding us back or dividing cultures. I have a feeling this will take time and it will probably encounter many setbacks. In my opinion there are some that find dogma as instrumental in keeping power or controlling others. I am not a 2012er but I have heard one theory that some say it could mean there is an age of enlightenment. Maybe the fact that people are even considering this as a possibility should be seen as a good sign.

It’s funny because usually I am a pessimist in these matters but I think there just may be a chance things will turn for the better. I appreciate your openness to discuss such things. I didn’t think this thread would come up with any answers as far as a course of action to take but maybe the fact that people are able to and are having these types of discussions is a good sign. Whatever happens in the future I think as long as people can treat each other with respect and keep open minds about the subject positive things will happen.

That being said IMO the Middle East is going to take something akin to a miracle to get that place to change.

.



posted on Nov, 23 2012 @ 09:23 AM
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reply to post by charles1952
 


Charles "the right way" that you fantasize
you will be creating is nothing more than
secularized Christianity and Christian Morals.



posted on Nov, 23 2012 @ 09:30 AM
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reply to post by Grimpachi
 


Grimpachi your morals and values,
while not taught "to you in a church"
are in fact Christian morals and values.



posted on Nov, 23 2012 @ 10:39 AM
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reply to post by slugger9787
 


Actually, since Christianity as we know it is a compilation of a multitude of religions that had nothing to do with Christianity, but were still slaughtered and absorbed to created the meat and blood of modern Christianity, it's arguable that Christian values and morals are actually more pagan than anything else.

But this is hidden beneath the stigma that seems to distract us from the true gold of Christianity. You know, the whole self-degradation and "You're a worthless sinner, so be glad I don't destroy you where you stand" mentality. The whole slaving away to earn something that was taken away because you came out precisely as you were meant to. Yeah.

I don't think I like the changes that were made. But such is politics. Why do you think the two are such sore topics? They're stuck so far up each others' rectal cavities that if you were to completely untangle the two, the whole ugly truth would be laid bare and everything that's been in development for the last several centuries would be exposed for the world to see.



posted on Nov, 23 2012 @ 03:50 PM
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reply to post by slugger9787
 

Dear slugger,

Forgive me for speaking of obvious things, but I'd like to explain my approach. If you've come to ATS for an intelligent, mannerly, exchange of ideas, you have to be prepared to look pretty hard. Many, if not most, posters have completely made up minds which they defend with vulgarity and hatred, while attacking anyone who dares question them.

Grimpachi is one of the special few who will think, discuss, persuade, and change if reason tells him to. I treasure his work here, and after you've been here a while, I hope you will, too.

Now, in this discussion, Grimpachi and I started from opposite ends. We looked to find areas of agreement, at least on broad principles, and worked to expand those areas. We employed reason and our experiences to aid us. Sometimes we consider hypotheticals: "What if I accept your position of secularization? What comes from that? What do we learn from it?"

In my opinion, Grimpachi's contribution was a work of art. We are in the middle of building on it. It seems to me that you misunderstand the process, but I could be wrong there. This is a work in progress, and I believe it is premature to conclude what either of us want. Be patient.



posted on Nov, 23 2012 @ 11:32 PM
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reply to post by charles1952
 


Charles on this topic I have reached a point where I am short on ideas at the moment. This past week has been very tiring so I apologize for being slow to respond. I wish I knew a way to accomplish what we have been talking about. Ideally if there was a way to combine the teachings from the various religions that unified mankind in a universal manner would be an enormous undertaking. Many of the stories in each religion have underlying messages in them and many are beneficial but when interpreted to be literal or skewed by an organization or an individual they can become tools to support agendas that have had negative consequences in the past. This thread has opened my mind to many things on the subject and I may have more questions now than before however I consider our exchange to be very positive.

Like you Christianity is the religion I am most familiar with in this world however I do have some understanding of others. One poster brought up Hinduism in this thread and claimed that religion is akin to Buddhism due to its peacefulness. I cannot attest to that claim because I know so little of it but I recently ordered a book on the subject to learn more. I think it will be a fascinating study if his claim holds true the main reason I think this is because I will be directly comparing it to Buddhism.

With Buddhism there is no deity and Buddha wasn’t a profit but a teacher on achieving enlightenment and in contrast Hinduism has many gods/deity’s so it should be interesting. Buddhism has fascinated me for years and I have done some studying on it. I have even considered visiting and staying at one of their monastery’s in the future however I do not think I will care for their meals but I still think the experience would prove to be enlightening. As far as I know it is the only belief system that has not attributed to a major conflict in history. I could be mistaken on this.
Please forgive me if I do not have anything insightful to add to our conversation at this time. This past week has left me exhausted. You raised some interesting points about how such a philosophy/religion could be implemented if a model system were created. As I stated I am against forcing any belief system on people to do that in my eyes would be proof that said system is flawed.

It would be amazing if in our talks we outlined a mode of such a system for this day and age. Maybe we could start a thread as a project to do just that. We could find all the finer points of different religions and blend them into one. I think it would be a lengthy and enlightening project. I think the correct terminology would be creating a philosophy. I would see it as audacious of myself to try to call it a religion because I do not consider myself inspired by the divine. I may be incorrect in my terminology while speaking of this. As I said before I consider myself to be average intelligence.

Just as a side note one of the biggest letdowns I have experienced in context of my experience with religions was when I learned what Scientology entailed. Just the name itself had inspired such optimism when I first learned of it. I was so let down when I learned about them. In my opinion their name is even a lie.

Funny story many years ago when I was in Tampa I was approached by some of their recruiters while I was downtown and I had some time because the group I had traveled there with was busy at the Armory for a few hours (at the time I was active national Guard and that month cycled back from Afghanistan) I figured I had some time to waste and I was curious about the stories I had read so I agreed to take one of their Free courses as they put it and listen to their pitch. To make a long story short at the end their findings were that I needed help and they were certain they could fix me because they had the answers to mankind’s woes. That has been my only experience with what I consider a cult and if I hadn’t previously researched them and already knew better I may have wound up being pulled into it a little further before realizing what they were about. I read an article once written by a man who escaped a cult and he stated that everyone at one point in their life is vulnerable to things like cults mainly because we all need answers at some point and if someone states that they have those answers and if they give you the impression of being truthful it’s in human nature to follow them.

I don’t know why I felt the need to state that just now. Maybe because when doing something like what I have proposed there is always an inherent danger albeit extremely small that we shouldn’t take ourselves too seriously because others may. Sometimes I think I just overthink things too much.

I am curious of what your thoughts are on this experiment I am proposing. I don’t even know what to consider calling such a project.

BTW Thank you so much for the compliment I appreciate it very much but I think you give me too much credit
especially if you check some of my posts in political threads because I some of those I was not even attempting to be intellectual. I admit I can be a jerk sometimes.
edit on 23-11-2012 by Grimpachi because: add



posted on Nov, 24 2012 @ 02:47 AM
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reply to post by Grimpachi
 

Dear Grimpachi,

Just a couple of quick thoughts.

It's possible to get a little absorbed in abstract theory. I do it myself all the time. The mind is a vast, but not limitless, playground which is pretty comfortable most of the time. May I suggest the possibility that we, by running out of ideas, may have hit that limit for now?

Do you and I need to take a little time out for personal reflection? We are most familiar with Christianity. I'm not saying that it's necessarily true, but it has had the greatest impact on the modern world by far. It seems that we need to be brave and face up to Christianity's existence. Which means, of course, looking at the Bible.

It seems to be that digging up the truth about God is the most important task we face. Again, I'm not suggesting that the truth is Christianity. I am suggesting that each individual has to do their own exploring and make up their minds. One way to start is to look at the Bible, the best arguments against it, and the best arguments for it. No one should ever pick a religious position which violates either reason or conscience.

Concerning our Universal Philosophy project. It might be stimulating. I have some principles that have been accepted in many eras, by many religions, which might provide a framework. We might end up with something very like Natural Law, but we could try.

I wonder what the trolls and flamers will do to the thread? Insist that gay marriage is a timeless, universal right? Or that all governments must be religious?

If we do this, I'd like to have a lot of the material prepared in advance so that we are able to present the ideas before the objections sidetrack us. I could send whatever you wanted to you by U2U. You could then stitch it together and start the OP, and the immediate follow ups. If we do it right, you could win undying ATS fame.

With respect,
Charles1952



posted on Nov, 24 2012 @ 03:48 AM
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reply to post by charles1952
 


Charles I believe you hit the nail on the head. I am glade seem to be at the same point with this thread. I feel like my mind has hit its limits with this thread and you sensed it as well. I view this thread as a success in the sense that it has been discussed and I think I did a decent job of articulating my thoughts on the matter throughout the thread. You have been instrumental in shaping my opinion on the matter and many of your questions have given me pause and see things in a new light. I have enjoyed this immensely it has been such a refreshing change of pace that I sometimes do not know when to quit or at least when to take a break.

So yes let’s take a break.

BTW I really like that. Universal Philosophy Project it has a great ring to it.
Before embarking on such an endeavor I definitely need to do some research and reread some of my favorite source materials including a sci fi favorite or two.

Yes please do send me a U2U with whatever you feel is relevant. When I get together my sources I will do the same. I would love to do this and if it wins fame then that would be something I am not used to but it sounds fun.

As you mentioned I am sure there will be trolls but that’s more than OK they sometimes make me laugh.

I think this will be a great endeavor and if done right should be well worth the time. I am looking forward to it and I am glad you are interested. I am going to have to buy a good bottle of scotch for this to periodically lubricate my mind. Lol. This last thread cleared out some of the dust and cobwebs.

Take your time my friend I have some thinking and rest to do as well.

Peace& Respect
Grim



posted on Nov, 24 2012 @ 07:49 AM
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reply to post by charles1952
 



reply to post by Grimpachi
 



This compilation you two seem to be considering...if it involves religion, do not assume or expect to receive anything along the lines of unanimous agreement or unbridled glory, considering that if this is what you are looking for, then it is an unworthy investment. We want truth, not a damn good story.

Please keep this in mind. Do it for our gain, not for yours.



posted on Nov, 24 2012 @ 09:51 AM
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reply to post by AfterInfinity
 

Dear AfterInfinity,

I'm so sorry you had a moment of worry on the subject, but really, some of the blame is yours. We were intentionally leaving religion out of it. Grimpachi has a dream of creating a "philosophy" which does not depend on eternal reward or punishment. We'd be looking more along the lines of Natural Law.

It's true that my motives might differ slightly from Grimpachi's, but that's to be expected, we're two different people.

Now, this is not directed at you, but I wonder why it is that I have a responsibility to benefit the general crowd of members in every thread or post I make? Surely, I can do one for my own enjoyment, now and then. And, as you have noticed, there are dozens of posts and a thread nearly every day that don't do any good for anyone.

But all that aside, our starting point is not religious.

With respect,
Charles1952



posted on Nov, 24 2012 @ 10:04 AM
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Religion has caused more harm than good. It has created a seperation between peoples. And no matter what we call the Creator, its still the same omnipresent force. And all religions basically stem from the same source: Shamanisim. We have traded actual contact with the spirit world, for dogma and false beliefs.



posted on Nov, 24 2012 @ 10:09 AM
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reply to post by charles1952
 



Dear AfterInfinity,

I'm so sorry you had a moment of worry on the subject, but really, some of the blame is yours. We were intentionally leaving religion out of it. Grimpachi has a dream of creating a "philosophy" which does not depend on eternal reward or punishment. We'd be looking more along the lines of Natural Law.


A stimulating concept.



Now, this is not directed at you, but I wonder why it is that I have a responsibility to benefit the general crowd of members in every thread or post I make? Surely, I can do one for my own enjoyment, now and then. And, as you have noticed, there are dozens of posts and a thread nearly every day that don't do any good for anyone.


I was under the impression that the purpose of ATS is to educate and promote understanding of various topics, rather than a free-for-all market for garnering followers and acolytes in a study of your choice. My comment was intended to draw attention to this danger. If it offends, I apologize and reiterate my good intentions for this branch of discussion.



posted on Nov, 24 2012 @ 10:09 AM
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reply to post by Oannes
 

I'm curious, do you believe this force has a will and intellect of it's own, or do you see it as something like electricity, which we can channel and use as needed?



posted on Nov, 24 2012 @ 10:18 AM
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reply to post by Oannes
 


reply to post by charles1952
 


Does water have a will and intellect of its own? Source is a divine principle that imbues energy. The energy, as Oannes stated, can be utilized for our benefit, but it follows certain laws that, for our own good, we must also obey. Quite literally, everything is a mirror of everything else, because everything was designed using the same basic blocks.

I think I'll leave it to Oannes to explain, because I always have a difficult time explaining the nature of it, especially when I get the feeling that no one cares. Again, all we want is a good story. People disgust me.



posted on Nov, 24 2012 @ 10:27 AM
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reply to post by AfterInfinity
 

Dear AfterInfinity,

Thank you for your kind words, we'll do our best to live up to them. As for:

I was under the impression that the purpose of ATS is to educate and promote understanding of various topics, rather than a free-for-all market for garnering followers and acolytes in a study of your choice.
That may be the goal, but I've just waded through the Republican-Democrat threads, and those concerning Gaza. Somebody din't get the message to those guys.

But, we'll try to be good.

With respect,
Charles1952



posted on Nov, 24 2012 @ 10:34 AM
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Actually religion propelled us forward.

Evolutionary origin of religions
en.wikipedia.org...

Now what mankind did with the advent of organized religion is a different story.


en.wikipedia.org...
edit on 103030p://bSaturday2012 by Stormdancer777 because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 24 2012 @ 08:13 PM
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reply to post by AfterInfinity
 


Don’t worry AfterInfinity I am not looking for glory, fame, and though I would love to reach unanimous agreement it is just a hope.
To be honest I don’t even know if I am up to the challenge I don’t know if I have the intellect to do this but I think it’s worth trying.
I just want to be clear I do not want to start a religion just a philosophy to live by in this day and age that is not dependent on reward or retribution in an afterlife.

I am still contemplating much about this project but I would like it to be inclusive to all mankind. I don’t want to put someone in a moral dilemma to feel the need to choose between their religion and this. This is a philosophy that I plan to live by when I finish otherwise it would just be a work of fiction. It is still in a very early stage and though I have a firm concept of what I wish to accomplish that is about all I have at this point.

Monday I plan on going to the library and picking up a few books that will hopefully help in getting me started on this.


Our talk about ATS fame was just us merely joking with each other.



posted on Nov, 24 2012 @ 08:32 PM
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All are intended as "ladders", but most consider them as a dwelling. Very rare indeed to meet another that is brave enough to turn away from the ladder forever, once the Goal is achieved. Only if the True Goal is achieved is it even possible to consider doing so.
edit on 24-11-2012 by tkwasny because: Typo fix
edit on 24-11-2012 by tkwasny because: (no reason given)





 
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