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4 minutes ago, VincentRJ said:

All mammals and most other creatures defend their territories, and when they expand into other territories, they tend to fight against any resistance they encounter. Religion helps Homo Sapiens to gather in larger and more unified tribes, all singing the same tune, like a herd of cattle.

 

It's the 'unification' that's the practical purpose of religion, rather than the fundamental truth of the teachings, which is usually secondary to the instinct for survival which tends to dominate whenever there's  a heresy expressed which might undermine such unity.

 

However, Buddhism as a philosophy is not in that category.
 

Strange but when i was talking about the "unification" purpose of religion, you were having none of it, so apparently now you know better.

As for Buddhism, calling it a philosophy is rather restrictive imho.

Given the great amount of people who identify themselves as Buddhist, i'll still call it a religion, as we have never had, in world history, a similar amount of people following a philosophy.

Of course you are free to call it a philosophy, if you think it's appropriate.

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12 hours ago, thaibeachlovers said:

Yes indeed. Evolution that just happened to include horses that people could ride, wolves that could be domesticated into dogs to hunt food for humans, oxen that could be used to haul things for humans, plants that could be used to farm, etc.

Well, with over 7 million species of animals its no surprise that a few of them are useful for us humans.

Life is a big food chain and we are part of it. If you walked into a pride of lions territory, then the lions would kill you and eat you.  

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6 hours ago, CMNightRider said:

.  On the bright side, you have until you draw your last breath to accept Jesus Christ as your savior and repent of your sins.  The Bible is very clear about what will happen to those who deny Jesus.

3 continents? Really? As far I know, Jesus visited America. Sorry Usa!

 

He is blond and have blue eyes!

 

I will take my chances and live right here right now, so could you guys still know the feeling of guilt for me! Good luck in Paradise, hope it is worth the struggling when you first arrive, and it is not just one test of another?»! You never know with a god like you think you have, treathing his members with all kind of dissises and tests to be good enough! Even Hells Angels seems like a paradise club compare to gods club! 

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18 hours ago, Tagged said:

Do you think we will last as long as Dionsours? 

 

Are we at an end, or just started? What is gods plan with us? 

 

 

I don't know if a meteorite is going to kill us all.

 

I know it's a lot of pages to read, but somewhere among them I did say that I don't believe "God" takes any interest in us. Maybe as much as we would of individual ants in an ant farm.

 

IMO "God" created life the universe and everything and then left it to carry on ( on the 7th day he rested ).

The universe is rather large- untold billions of galaxies, stars, planets. 

WE, are just an insignificant species on an insignificant planet in an insignificant solar system in an insignificant galaxy somewhere in the universe.

 

 

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Galaxy Song
Whenever life gets you down, Mrs. Brown,
And things seem hard or tough,
And people are stupid, obnoxious or daft,
And you feel that you've had quite eno-o-o-o-o-ough,
Just remember that you're standing on a planet that's evolving
And revolving at 900 miles an hour.
It's orbiting at 19 miles a second, so it's reckoned,
The sun that is the source of all our power.
Now the sun, and you and me, and all the stars that we can see,
Are moving at a million miles a day,
In the outer spiral arm, at 40, 000 miles an hour,
Of a galaxy we call the Milky Way.
Our galaxy itself contains a hundred billion stars;
It's a hundred thousand light-years side to side;
It bulges in the middle sixteen thousand light-years thick,
But out by us it's just three thousand light-years wide.
We're thirty thousand light-years from Galactic Central Point,
We go 'round every two hundred million years;
And our galaxy itself is one of millions of billions
In this amazing and expanding universe.
Our universe itself keeps on expanding and expanding,
In all of the directions it can whiz;
As fast as it can go, at the speed of light, you know,
Twelve million miles a minute and that's the fastest speed there is.
So remember, when you're feeling very small and insecure,
How amazingly unlikely is your birth;
And pray that there's intelligent life somewhere out in space,
'Cause there's <deleted> all down here on Earth!
Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: John Du Prez / Eric Idle
Galaxy Song lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group
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11 hours ago, mauGR1 said:

Strange but when i was talking about the "unification" purpose of religion, you were having none of it, so apparently now you know better.

You must have misinterpreted whatever I'd written, because I've been of the opinion for many years that religion is about 'power and control' of the community by those who claim to have some sort of mystical communication with a far greater power than any human could have, such as an imagined 'Creator of the entire Universe', which would surely be the most powerful entity that anyone could think of.

 

Such control must unite the people in a specific community, otherwise it would not be control.

 

As for Buddhism, calling it a philosophy is rather restrictive imho.

 

On the contrary. Interpreting Buddhism as a practical philosophy with practical guidelines that can help one change one's views, habits and lifestyle, and reduce suffering, can be very liberating. It's the religious aspect of Buddhism with its rituals, magical spirits and inflexible rules, which is restrictive.

 

Given the great amount of people who identify themselves as Buddhist, i'll still call it a religion, as we have never had, in world history, a similar amount of people following a philosophy.

 

Of course. The religion of Buddhism is for the run-of-the-mill, ignorant masses. However, the fundamental teachings which show how to gain complete control over oneself, one's thoughts and desires, require no religious belief. 

 

The Kalama Sutta from the Pali Canon, explains this very well. The Kalamas were a clan of people who had been exposed to many different religious views from different gurus wandering through their village. They didn't know who to believe.

 

The Buddha explained to them that they should not unquestioningly accept something as true just because it was written in the scriptures, or because some teacher or authority claimed it is true. Instead, they should try to think for themselves in order to determine what is likely to lead to benefits and happiness.

 

Check out the following comprehensive wikipedia article.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kalama_Sutta

 

Also, check out the admiration that many Western philosophers in the past have expressed towards Buddhism, such as Schopenhauer and Nietzsche.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buddhism_and_Western_philosophy
 

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12 minutes ago, VincentRJ said:

You must have misinterpreted whatever I'd written, because I've been of the opinion for many years that religion is about 'power and control' of the community by those who claim to have some sort of mystical communication with a far greater power than any human could have, such as an imagined 'Creator of the entire Universe', which would surely be the most powerful entity that anyone could think of.

 

Such control must unite the people in a specific community, otherwise it would not be control.

 

 

 

 

On the contrary. Interpreting Buddhism as a practical philosophy with practical guidelines that can help one change one's views, habits and lifestyle, and reduce suffering, can be very liberating. It's the religious aspect of Buddhism with its rituals, magical spirits and inflexible rules, which is restrictive.

 

 

 

 

Of course. The religion of Buddhism is for the run-of-the-mill, ignorant masses. However, the fundamental teachings which show how to gain complete control over oneself, one's thoughts and desires, require no religious belief. 

 

The Kalama Sutta from the Pali Canon, explains this very well. The Kalamas were a clan of people who had been exposed to many different religious views from different gurus wandering through their village. They didn't know who to believe.

 

The Buddha explained to them that they should not unquestioningly accept something as true just because it was written in the scriptures, or because some teacher or authority claimed it is true. Instead, they should try to think for themselves in order to determine what is likely to lead to benefits and happiness
 

Well, this time i agree on every single word you say.

Again, there is a world of difference between the spiritual path explained by Buddha or Jesus, and the rather sad show of the circuses of organised religions.

As for Buddhism, in the last years i chose to follow the teachings of Rudolph Steiner, whose matrix is Christian, but i can assure you , the similarities with Buddha's teachings are striking.

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7 hours ago, Tagged said:

3 continents? Really? As far I know, Jesus visited America. Sorry Usa!

 

He is blond and have blue eyes!

 

I will take my chances and live right here right now, so could you guys still know the feeling of guilt for me! Good luck in Paradise, hope it is worth the struggling when you first arrive, and it is not just one test of another?»! You never know with a god like you think you have, treathing his members with all kind of dissises and tests to be good enough! Even Hells Angels seems like a paradise club compare to gods club! 

The Bible is a collection of 66 books written by about 40 authors, in three different languages, on three different continents, over approximately 1600 years.  The Bible claims to be inspired and inerrant.  This means that came from God and that it is without error in everything it addresses (2 Tim. 3:16).

 

Because the Bible is inspired from God, it is automatically authoritative. This means that it is the final authority in everything. It addresses and is the rule of conduct and worship for Christians.  Those who would reject the final authority of the Bible position, often are led into false religious beliefs such as Mormonism, job is what this is, and certain false doctrines found in Roman Catholicism.

 

By rejecting God and denying the fact Jesus died on the cross for our sins, will make your eternal life more messerable than any of us can imagine.  I think most people who reject Jesus Christ, would rather not give up living in sin.  Our life on earth is such a small amount of time.  Eternity is forever.  It seems like a simple choice to me.  I'm surprised so many find it so hard.    

 

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It doesn't matter what you believe in because it's all speculation, concepts, ideas. Several Eastern philosophies match the latest scientific hypothesis that nothing exists as a 'reality' let alone God.

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5 minutes ago, soalbundy said:

It doesn't matter what you believe in because it's all speculation, concepts, ideas. Several Eastern philosophies match the latest scientific hypothesis that nothing exists as a 'reality' let alone God.

Reality exists by definition, although one could say that realities perceived by humans can be , and often are, illusory.

If you talk about absolute, undeniable, single reality, perhaps "existence" is the only one who comes to mind.

If you want to try to deny "existence", you can try, but it seems quite a hard job to me.

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16 minutes ago, CMNightRider said:

The Bible is a collection of 66 books written by about 40 authors, in three different languages, on three different continents, over approximately 1600 years.  The Bible claims to be inspired and inerrant.  This means that came from God and that it is without error in everything it addresses (2 Tim. 3:16).

 

Because the Bible is inspired from God, it is automatically authoritative. This means that it is the final authority in everything. It addresses and is the rule of conduct and worship for Christians.  Those who would reject the final authority of the Bible position, often are led into false religious beliefs such as Mormonism, job is what this is, and certain false doctrines found in Roman Catholicism.

 

By rejecting God and denying the fact Jesus died on the cross for our sins, will make your eternal life more messerable than any of us can imagine.  I think most people who reject Jesus Christ, would rather not give up living in sin.  Our life on earth is such a small amount of time.  Eternity is forever.  It seems like a simple choice to me.  I'm surprised so many find it so hard.    

 

I really do not know how to respond to fanatism anymore. Non of us is going to change our view on this matter anyway, and best way to do it, is wishing us both good luck on the next level. 

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40 minutes ago, mauGR1 said:

Well, this time i agree on every single word you say.

Wow! Amazing! 😀

 

As for Buddhism, in the last years i chose to follow the teachings of Rudolph Steiner, whose matrix is Christian, but i can assure you , the similarities with Buddha's teachings are striking.

 

I know little about Rudolph Steiner, but after a brief check on the internet I find his views interesting and will read more when I have the time. Thanks for the reference.

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1 minute ago, VincentRJ said:

Wow! Amazing! 😀

 

 

 

 

I know little about Rudolph Steiner, but after a brief check on the internet I find his views interesting and will read more when I have the time. Thanks for the reference.

Well, for me, having spent decades examinating religions and philosophies, talking with lots of people and reading countless books, i finally realised that choosing a path, whatever path, was better than standing at the intersection, so to speak.

Also, the Dalai Lama, whose word i hold in high regard, suggested that changing many religions and philosophies may be confusing and hardly beneficial.

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Interesting thread. I regret not following it earlier, but this thing blew up at a time when I was really busy. I always make an effort to read a thread before commenting, but in this case I haven't got that kind of time.

I did however jump in about 20 pages back to get the current gist.

Some open minds on here, and some with their heels firmly dug in. And there are the mockers who contribute nothing.

A good thought experiment for this thread would be to state what would be the minimum requirements for an entity to be God? And for this my hope would be that we restrict ourselves to the concept of a single creator God (because this is mostly what is being discussed in this thread) to avoid getting bogged down in polytheism which is of course is a much larger bunny trail.

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