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#51
When I first read the opening of this thread I thought, "There is no way this is not turning into a religious debate". Given the history of this forum. It took a while though Smile

One only has to look at the good Mother Theresa did to see the positive potential Christianity has. Unfortunately the "only we are right" thinking of missionaries has been an unfortunate aspect of the religion. All religions have the same potential to create better human beings for those who practice sincerely. Dialog is necessary between faiths but it is immoral in my view to try to convert another away from the religion of their culture. If someone of a different faith comes to you and asks for guidance, that is the appropriate time to help that person.

I have been married to two Christians and I tried to encourage both to live to the fullest the ideals of altruism the founder of their religion taught. Buddhism is absolutely not for everyone. It would be very confusing for someone coming from a Bible based faith to enter Buddhism as the views into the nature of reality are so extremely different. When Christians come to our Dharma Center, the lamas give them a little advise and tell them to go back and practice their own faith with greater sincerely.
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#52
igordesu Wrote:Hmmm, well, I've got a few years of college left, and I know that I'm finishing that first. After that, I'm not sure with whom or how I'm going. Maybe with an organization like OMF, Pioneers, SEND, or... who knows? Maybe I won't even go with an organization and I'll just teach English through JET or something and then try (on my own or with the help of one of these organizations) to get involved in the local church. I just don't know right now, but I know that I have to be faithful with my studies (as hard as that is with Christmas season and family members who are rabidly anti-people-who-are-anti-family-in-any-remote-way, lol...)
What about you?
Same position here man, 3 more years of uni to go, many things can happen between now and graduation. I've been really involved with a group called Student Life at my uni though, it's part of Campus Crusade for Christ, just has a different name in Australia (and it's really small here). Anyway, a couple of friends are going in a few months to work full-time for Campus Crusade for a year at a uni in Japan (in Nagoya i think). It's called a STINT (Short Term INTernational), you can read a tiny bit about it here:

http://www.campuscrusadeforchrist.com/st...MinOpp.htm

They had the opportunity to go for short-term mission trip to Nagoya a while back (just for 3 weeks I think) and from that experience decided to go STINT. Maybe you should check out Campus Crusade (if they're at your college) and find out if you could join a short-term mission during summer break or something.

I've had similar thoughts about whether to go as a full-time missionary or just go JET etc and try and join up with local ministry. The latter could be problematic (you don't get to chose where you get placed with JET, and you may end up in an area where you'll have literally zero support - which doesn't mean don't do it, just something to think about). Furthermore, how much "spare time" will you really have? Anyway, I haven't reached any conclusions yet either.

I'm hearing you bout being faithful with studies in the mean time though. One thing I'm grappling with, is if I'm not going to go to Japan for mission, I'm pretty much wasting time learning Japanese. Well, not wasting, but could be using that time for other things, you know what I mean?
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#53
igordesu Wrote:haha. yeah, well, like I said, this an awkward topic to be discussing in this place, and I don't want to get in any debates. Therefore, I won't tell you what to believe. But, if you believe the Bible (as I do), then, due to the Bible's claims about the existence of one, exclusive God, it follows that all other gods are really just false gods. Like I said, that's just what the Bible says, and I'm not here to tell you to believe it or not. But, that's the kind of thinking that follows if you believe the Bible. It's a book with many claims to exclusivity. Anyway, whatever you do with that is your business...
Also, on that note, just a short digression; my personal thinking is, like, logically, not everybody can be right, right? I don't wanna point any fingers, but it seems logically impossible that EVERYBODY is correct. Like, people who believe the bible %100 (as in, earth is only 4000-8000 years old-ish, %100) and people who are complete athiests and people who believe in Wicca or something can't all be right. Right? I don't know. That's just my thinking. Whatev. Sorry for the lengthy post.
Actually the Bible does not claim existence of only one God though there has been a careful attempt to craft that aspect out of it since it's inception in order to hide it's Pagan origins. However even with this "editing" the Bible still clearly reveals in several areas that even the God of the Bible acknowledges the "real" existence of other gods.

If you doubt this go ahead and read through Numbers. Within Numbers it is specifically noted that the God of the Bible cast judgment and punishments on numerous other Gods. You can not punish other God's if they don't exist.

Of course then there is the problem with the Gospels. The most important books of the Bible in regards to actual Christianity do not even tell the same story and in fact DIRECTLY contradict themselves on numerous occasions regarding facts and events of Jesus' life. Even worse is that a couple of Gospel writers actually completely left out Jesus' virgin birth even when actually speaking of his birth. This is a simply an unimaginable omission. These authors primary purpose was to show the true divine nature of Christ. The idea that a few of them would leave out one of the most important proofs of divinity pretty much seals the deal on the Bible.

And in case you're wondering I'm baptized and saved and was a highly intense Christian for approximately 23 years. However, when I finally went looking for the true glory of God and actually REALLY looked at the Bible to become closer to the Lord and Savior I came face to face with the fact that not only does the Bible fail horribly as a majestic work....it is now in my personal opinion the embodiment of some of the most evil acts imaginable. The Christian God is a truly disgusting and sadistic individual on almost all levels if you actually take the time to read the Bible without blinders on. The day I rejected Jesus Christ and Christianity was literally the best day of my entire life. It was like my mind was finally open to truly experience life as an equal part of this universe and not as some puppet in a sadistic God's experiment.

Sorry for the rant but the last thing I want is such a religion ever trying to press itself upon Japan.
Edited: 2008-12-27, 8:43 am
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#54
activeaero Wrote:
igordesu Wrote:haha. yeah, well, like I said, this an awkward topic to be discussing in this place, and I don't want to get in any debates. Therefore, I won't tell you what to believe. But, if you believe the Bible (as I do), then, due to the Bible's claims about the existence of one, exclusive God, it follows that all other gods are really just false gods. Like I said, that's just what the Bible says, and I'm not here to tell you to believe it or not. But, that's the kind of thinking that follows if you believe the Bible. It's a book with many claims to exclusivity. Anyway, whatever you do with that is your business...
Also, on that note, just a short digression; my personal thinking is, like, logically, not everybody can be right, right? I don't wanna point any fingers, but it seems logically impossible that EVERYBODY is correct. Like, people who believe the bible %100 (as in, earth is only 4000-8000 years old-ish, %100) and people who are complete athiests and people who believe in Wicca or something can't all be right. Right? I don't know. That's just my thinking. Whatev. Sorry for the lengthy post.
Actually the Bible does not claim existence of only one God though there has been a careful attempt to craft that aspect out of it since it's inception in order to hide it's Pagan origins. However even with this "editing" the Bible still clearly reveals in several areas that even the God of the Bible acknowledges the "real" existence of other gods.

If you doubt this go ahead and read through Numbers. Within Numbers it is specifically noted that the God of the Bible cast judgment and punishments on numerous other Gods. You can not punish other God's if they don't exist.

Of course then there is the problem with the Gospels. The most important books of the Bible in regards to actual Christianity do not even tell the same story and in fact DIRECTLY contradict themselves on numerous occasions regarding facts and events of Jesus' life. Even worse is that a couple of Gospel writers actually completely left out Jesus' virgin birth even when actually speaking of his birth. This is a simply an unimaginable omission. These authors primary purpose was to show the true divine nature of Christ. The idea that a few of them would live out of the most important proofs of divinity pretty much seals the deal on the Bible.

And in case you're wondering I'm baptized and saved and was a highly intense Christian for approximately 23 years. However, when I finally went looking for the true glory of God and actually REALLY looked at the Bible to become closer to the Lord and Savior I came face to face with the fact that not only does the Bible fail horribly as a majestic work....it is now in my personal opinion the embodiment of some of the most evil acts imaginable. The Christian God is a truly disgusting and sadistic individual on almost all levels if you actually take the time to read the Bible without blinders on. The day I rejected Jesus Christ and Christianity was literally the best day of my entire life. It was like my mind was finally open to truly experience life as an equal part of this universe and not as some puppet in a sadistic God's experiment.

Sorry for the rant but the last thing I want is such a religion ever trying to press itself upon Japan.
Though I dont want to let myself get dragged into a debate about all this, I just wanted to say I agree with you all the way Smile

One of my favorite aspects of Japan is its lack of christian influence.
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#55
I can't stand evangelists or evangelism and I love discussing and argumenting, but even I won't join this one. If people are ready to defend their views etc, let's make a separate topic for that and not defile this one with religious squable.
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#56
activeaero Wrote:Sorry for the rant but the last thing I want is such a religion ever trying to press itself upon Japan.
I totally agree!
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#57
Tobberoth Wrote:I can't stand evangelists or evangelism and I love discussing and argumenting, but even I won't join this one. If people are ready to defend their views etc, let's make a separate topic for that and not defile this one with religious squable.
I agree and I apologize in that regard. I do want to make it clear though that I am NOT against people who call themselves Christians.....just the basis of the belief system they want to spread.

If you want to spread goodness in this world it doesn't require a belief in anything except the desire to help your fellow man. Religion, at least the ones that focus around the desire to appease a personalized beings commands, does nothing but hinder the process of actually doing good in the world. If all the time spent preaching was instead spent on actually HELPING people with REAL actions the world would be in a much better place.
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#58
activeaero Wrote:If you want to spread goodness in this world it doesn't require a belief in anything except the desire to help your fellow man.
well said
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#59
activeaero Wrote:
igordesu Wrote:haha. yeah, well, like I said, this an awkward topic to be discussing in this place, and I don't want to get in any debates. Therefore, I won't tell you what to believe. But, if you believe the Bible (as I do), then, due to the Bible's claims about the existence of one, exclusive God, it follows that all other gods are really just false gods. Like I said, that's just what the Bible says, and I'm not here to tell you to believe it or not. But, that's the kind of thinking that follows if you believe the Bible. It's a book with many claims to exclusivity. Anyway, whatever you do with that is your business...
Also, on that note, just a short digression; my personal thinking is, like, logically, not everybody can be right, right? I don't wanna point any fingers, but it seems logically impossible that EVERYBODY is correct. Like, people who believe the bible %100 (as in, earth is only 4000-8000 years old-ish, %100) and people who are complete athiests and people who believe in Wicca or something can't all be right. Right? I don't know. That's just my thinking. Whatev. Sorry for the lengthy post.
Actually the Bible does not claim existence of only one God though there has been a careful attempt to craft that aspect out of it since it's inception in order to hide it's Pagan origins. However even with this "editing" the Bible still clearly reveals in several areas that even the God of the Bible acknowledges the "real" existence of other gods.

If you doubt this go ahead and read through Numbers. Within Numbers it is specifically noted that the God of the Bible cast judgment and punishments on numerous other Gods. You can not punish other God's if they don't exist.

Of course then there is the problem with the Gospels. The most important books of the Bible in regards to actual Christianity do not even tell the same story and in fact DIRECTLY contradict themselves on numerous occasions regarding facts and events of Jesus' life. Even worse is that a couple of Gospel writers actually completely left out Jesus' virgin birth even when actually speaking of his birth. This is a simply an unimaginable omission. These authors primary purpose was to show the true divine nature of Christ. The idea that a few of them would leave out one of the most important proofs of divinity pretty much seals the deal on the Bible.

And in case you're wondering I'm baptized and saved and was a highly intense Christian for approximately 23 years. However, when I finally went looking for the true glory of God and actually REALLY looked at the Bible to become closer to the Lord and Savior I came face to face with the fact that not only does the Bible fail horribly as a majestic work....it is now in my personal opinion the embodiment of some of the most evil acts imaginable. The Christian God is a truly disgusting and sadistic individual on almost all levels if you actually take the time to read the Bible without blinders on. The day I rejected Jesus Christ and Christianity was literally the best day of my entire life. It was like my mind was finally open to truly experience life as an equal part of this universe and not as some puppet in a sadistic God's experiment.

Sorry for the rant but the last thing I want is such a religion ever trying to press itself upon Japan.
I didn't want to get into a debate, but...I didn't want you to give other people the wrong idea about my beliefs with the inaccuracy of what you said. So, here you go:

"Actually the Bible does not claim existence of only one God though there has been a careful attempt to craft that aspect out of it since it's inception in order to hide it's Pagan origins." Could you be more specific about these attempts to "edit" the bible? It would be cool if you could cite some sources because I've done a lot of research and I've never come across anything like that. The only people who have ever edited or changed the bible are the Catholic Church (I am not affiliated with them) and other "religious groups" and cults like the Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses. By the way, I'm not sure what bible you've been reading for the past 23 years. Did you skip over John 14:1? John 14:6: "Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me."" That sounds pretty exclusive to me. Also, the bible says God created the world and everything in it. Then it follows logically that He is the only God. And besides, you don't need to believe me. The Bible says it all. Isaiah 44:6 says, "Thus says the Lord, the King of Israel, And his Redeemer, the Lord of hosts:'I am the First and I am the Last; Besides Me there is no God." and verse 8: "...Is there a God besides Me? Indeed there is no other Rock;I know not one.'" So, no, the bible does not claim there is a God besides God described in it.

And what's this business with the book of numbers? Are you referring to when God brought judgment upon inhabitants of the land of Canaan by using the Israelites, who would soon inhabit the land? God was not bringing judgment upon the gods that the Canaanites were worshiping. He was bringing judgment on the people for worshiping those false gods/idols instead of the real God. If that's what you're referring to, Numbers 33:51-52 say: "Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: 'When you have crossed the Jordan into the land of Canaan, then you shall drive out all the inhabitants of the land from before you, destroy all their *engraved stones*, destroy all their *molded images*, and demolish all their high places."


"Of course then there is the problem with the Gospels. The most important books of the Bible in regards to actual Christianity do not even tell the same story and in fact DIRECTLY contradict themselves on numerous occasions regarding facts and events of Jesus' life. Even worse is that a couple of Gospel writers actually completely left out Jesus' virgin birth even when actually speaking of his birth. This is a simply an unimaginable omission. These authors primary purpose was to show the true divine nature of Christ. The idea that a few of them would leave out one of the most important proofs of divinity pretty much seals the deal on the Bible."
I love how you make all of these crazy claims without backing them up. That's just pure nonsense. I've read them several times, and there are no blatant contradictions. There are a few minor differences, but it is actually a good thing that they are there. They do not present any major problems, and they are simply evidence of the fact that, when we read the gospels, we are reading the same stories from 4 different historical perspectives. If these minor differences weren't there and the gospels were perfectly in sync with each other, people would suspect that they were the result of a conspiracy or fabrication. Ummm, and I honestly have no idea with what you're talking about with Jesus' birth from the virgin, Mary. Two of the gospels (Mark and John) do not talk about Jesus' virgin birth. But guess what? They don't talk about his birth at all! They are an account of Jesus' life and ministry, not his birth. And other two (Matthew and Luke) do have verses in the beginning referring to his virgin birth. Go check them out. And it is simply not true that these authors' primary purpose was to show the true divine nature of Christ. First of all, you and I have never spoken with the authors, so we can never know their true, exact purpose. The only thing we can do is read what they've written and figure it out. And if you study the gospels, you'll find that their purpose was probably something more like giving a written account of Jesus' life and ministry. In fact, Mark really emphasizes the humanity of Jesus, which is just as important. And anyways, his virgin birth is only one of the proofs of his divinity. If you read the gospels, there are many other fulfillments of old testament prophecies that show his divinity.

Yeah, I apologize for this really long post. Like I said, I don't expect you to believe anything actually written in the Bible. I'm not trying to get you to believe it. What you believe is your business, and, if you want to debate this, I'd gladly do so over email or something. However, please don't spread blatant lies about the Bible (and other people's beliefs in general) without at least respecting the readers of this thread enough by backing up what you say by citing sources and specific examples. I realize that this is out of place here, but I simply couldn't let such lies be spread. It's not fair to the people who read this.
Edited: 2008-12-27, 3:17 pm
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#60
Lame.
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#61
Jasta Wrote:I agree that nobody is right 100%, so my stance is to let everybody just be/believe what they want if they don't do harm to others. But if you go out and preach you are 100% certain about your cause otherwise you wouldn't try to convince people.

So then my remark remains: if people are happy with no god or false gods and they don't do any harm, then why would you try and change that? And how would you do that? Would you claim they don't realize they could be much happier if they only knew about this one god? Just curious about this.

And let's say one organisation/belief/system is so good at preaching they convince a lot of people. In my worst nightmare people in Japan would be all eating macdonalds instead of udon and going to these ugly mordern Christian Churches instead of the beautiful temples (from an architectorial point of view I do like the medieval churches btw).
So I don't mind a bit of Christian influence here and a bit of Shinto there, a bit of French cuisine here and a bit of Chinese there, but if one culture/religion/political belief goes and tries to actively convince the rest of the world, I tend to get a bit nervous.
Well, the Biblical reason for trying to get other people who believe in “false gods” is simple. Since the Bible claims that the God of the Bible is the only true God and to not put your trust in Him means (again, according to the Bible) an eternity in hell (which is depicted specifically as being NOT a pleasant place; “weeping and gnashing of teeth,” that sort of thing…), it follows logically that the “right” thing to do for a person (if they believed the Bible) would be to get other people to put their trust in this one God of the Bible because you care for these other people and you don’t want them to spend an eternity in hell. So, if you believe the bible, your reason for doing things like “evangelizing” is because you care for other people.

I know there’s this popular theory these days that your reason for becoming a Christian should be because you’ll be “happier.” Sometimes people say you become a Christian by being a “better person.” Yeah…about that. The bible doesn’t really support that. I mean, in the long run (eternally), you would be. But the real reason for becoming a Christian (according to the Bible) should be because to not do so would be fatal (eternally). You know? Like, the Bible says that the reason we need God is because we’re imperfect and in need of salvation from the future of an eternity in hell and not because we’ll be happier. And as far as being better or a good person, yeah that’s not really how the Bible explains to be a Christian. It does talk about doing good works for other people, etc., etc., but these are really just a result of you already becoming a Christian. At least, that’s what the Bible says. If you want verses I’ll give ‘em, but…lol, I didn’t want this to turn into a Bible-verse-throwing-fest, so I just laid out the basics.
Edited: 2008-12-27, 4:04 pm
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#62
SammyB Wrote:
igordesu Wrote:Hmmm, well, I've got a few years of college left, and I know that I'm finishing that first. After that, I'm not sure with whom or how I'm going. Maybe with an organization like OMF, Pioneers, SEND, or... who knows? Maybe I won't even go with an organization and I'll just teach English through JET or something and then try (on my own or with the help of one of these organizations) to get involved in the local church. I just don't know right now, but I know that I have to be faithful with my studies (as hard as that is with Christmas season and family members who are rabidly anti-people-who-are-anti-family-in-any-remote-way, lol...)
What about you?
Same position here man, 3 more years of uni to go, many things can happen between now and graduation. I've been really involved with a group called Student Life at my uni though, it's part of Campus Crusade for Christ, just has a different name in Australia (and it's really small here). Anyway, a couple of friends are going in a few months to work full-time for Campus Crusade for a year at a uni in Japan (in Nagoya i think). It's called a STINT (Short Term INTernational), you can read a tiny bit about it here:

http://www.campuscrusadeforchrist.com/st...MinOpp.htm

They had the opportunity to go for short-term mission trip to Nagoya a while back (just for 3 weeks I think) and from that experience decided to go STINT. Maybe you should check out Campus Crusade (if they're at your college) and find out if you could join a short-term mission during summer break or something.

I've had similar thoughts about whether to go as a full-time missionary or just go JET etc and try and join up with local ministry. The latter could be problematic (you don't get to chose where you get placed with JET, and you may end up in an area where you'll have literally zero support - which doesn't mean don't do it, just something to think about). Furthermore, how much "spare time" will you really have? Anyway, I haven't reached any conclusions yet either.

I'm hearing you bout being faithful with studies in the mean time though. One thing I'm grappling with, is if I'm not going to go to Japan for mission, I'm pretty much wasting time learning Japanese. Well, not wasting, but could be using that time for other things, you know what I mean?
I know what you mean, I have the same doubts. Like, what if all these thousands of hours I'm spending on Japanese aren't what I should be using my time for? I don't know sometimes. That's why I just kinda took a step of faith and said I'm doin this thang. I personally could spend the rest of my life debating about whether to do something like this, so that's why I had just put my foot down and be like, BAM, I'm learning Japanese. Plus, it's not a totally worthless skill if you aren't gonna do missionary work. Like, you could always do internet evangelism and stuff. And if you don't even use Japanese for that, it'd be useful to get a good job so you could support missionaries. But whatever. I at least don't have troubles with college in the meantime. I mean it's still stressful and all, but I've got the power of Anki/SRS, so that makes stuff easier (check out Khatz' articles on time management and SRS use for people who are in school over at AJATT--very helpful).

BTW, thank you for the link. I'll definitely look into that. It sounds very interesting.
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#63
All religious books are books of literature, symbolism and myth; not historical fact. They tell a story in a way so it can be remembered and repeated over many generations. This includes the Bible, the Dharma, and every other religious source. I can not defend a belief by quoting, "the Dharma says...". It will never be taken seriously. A point must be argued using reason from a first person point of view.
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#64
bodhisamaya Wrote:All religious books are books of literature, symbolism and myth; not historical fact. They tell a story in a way so it can be remembered and repeated over many generations. This includes the Bible, the Dharma, and every other religious source. I can not defend a belief by quoting, "the Dharma says...". It will never be taken seriously. A point must be argued using reason from a first person point of view.
I disagree. I'm sure you're aware of the huge number of books and works of literature around the world that have been or are considered religious in nature, so I'm not sure I understand how you can make such a blanket statement like "they tell a story in a way so it can be remembered and repeated over many generations." How can you be so sure that this was the original intent of all of those authors? That seems a bit unrealistic.

And I know I can vouch for the Bible as not being one of those works of literature. Christians base their entire belief system off of the Bible because they believe it to be the living, breathing Word of God. Therefore, doesn't it make sense that they go back to the Bible in defense of their beliefs? That's where they originated. The basic message of the bible is so simple, it comes basically comes to whether you believe it as the truth or not. Basic message: God created everything, including us. We sinned and disobeyed our perfect and loving creator, separating us from him. If we don't repent of our sin and put our trust in him, we're doomed. The end. If you want to believe it and defend that, it's not a matter of arguing it using "reason from a first person point of view." (though I'm not sure what you mean mean by that, so you might want to clarify it) I don't know why people think it's some mysterious thing that you have to discover on your own. It's not. It's already laid out.

"Not historical fact." It's true that not everything in the bible can be verified by outside sources. However, I'll spare you the rambling, but there are many people, places, and events in the Bible that have been verified by archeology. I can cite them if you wish.
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#65
nest0r Wrote:Lame.
The Jesus lovers or the Jesus haters?
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#66
playadom Wrote:
nest0r Wrote:Lame.
The Jesus lovers or the Jesus haters?
I was ah, typing out something about MP3s and forgot to finish the rest of the comment, my bad. It was the wrong thread anyway, I meant to post in the Anki/sound thread. Yep.
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#67
nest0r Wrote:
playadom Wrote:
nest0r Wrote:Lame.
The Jesus lovers or the Jesus haters?
I was ah, typing out something about MP3s and forgot to finish the rest of the comment, my bad. It was the wrong thread anyway, I meant to post in the Anki/sound thread. Yep.
That's quite an ogg mistake to make...
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#68
First person point of view is, "I believe this to be true base on my own analysis".

There are many flaws in the going to heaven or hell thing based on belief. What belief is itself is difficult to define. I can not imagine a heaven where my mother or child would be burning in hell for all eternity simply because a belief was not accepted. Would I become numb to their suffering? Would I be filled with blissful ignorance?

It is illogical to me for an all-knowing God to not know before I was even born weather or not I would reject him/her. Why allow me to be born at all with this premonition? I would have been born for the sole purpose of dying and going to hell.

I have been told all babies go to heaven because they had not reached an age where they could make a choice. It would certainly be a compassionate act to support abortion as all those fetuses will go to heaven. It would be compassionate as well to kill all babies before they reach the age where they risk making the wrong choice and go to hell for all eternity. If the Christian view is correct and I by not believing in a creator God will spend all eternity in hell, I would of course have preferred to have been killed at birth.

A person's religion is mostly based on where they are born. If you happen to be born in America, congratulations! There is about a 90% chance you will be a Christian and go to heaven. If you are so unlucky as to be born in the Middle East or Asia, too bad for you. There is about a 90% chance you will not be a Christian and will spend all eternity in hell. About 98% of those amazingly kind Japanese will burn in hell as well. It's a lottery at birth. So it seems.

At what point in history did the requirement to believe in Jesus to avoid hell begin? Immediately after his death when no one in the world was aware of it.? 200 years later? Did everyone born before Jesus go to hell? Moses? Abraham?

It just goes on and on with questions like this. "God works in mysterious ways" was the only answer given to me at age 16 when I left my Baptist church.

Ironically, my user name, Bodhisamaya, means "the vow not to go to heaven". It is my belief there are alternatives to those two extreme forms of re-birth.
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#69
playadom Wrote:The Jesus lovers or the Jesus haters?
Does anyone here hate Jesus? He was a great teacher. In many ways his teachings mirror the Buddhas from 500 years earlier. Hmmm...Where were those missing years anyways Big Grin
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#70
@igordesu: thanks for answering my question. I forgot about heaven and hell.
I am also not going to discuss any further, I made my point. The time we would spend explaining our positions in detail would mean time not spend on Japanese.

@bodhisamaya
"When I first read the opening of this thread I thought, "There is no way this is not turning into a religious debate". Given the history of this forum. It took a while though"

well I tried to refrain myself, but in the end I couldn't because I was surprised nobody made a remark. But a remark was enough for me, no intend in turning it into a debate.

Btw I also came to Japan because of my wife. Before I met her I had no real affinity with Japan or Japanese.
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#71
igordesu Wrote:Yeah, I apologize for this really long post. Like I said, I don't expect you to believe anything actually written in the Bible. I'm not trying to get you to believe it. What you believe is your business, and, if you want to debate this, I'd gladly do so over email or something. However, please don't spread blatant lies about the Bible (and other people's beliefs in general) without at least respecting the readers of this thread enough by backing up what you say by citing sources and specific examples. I realize that this is out of place here, but I simply couldn't let such lies be spread. It's not fair to the people who read this.
You apparently didn't read my post that well. I never said there weren't any instances were the Bible claims God as being absolute. Of course there are. I stated that there were places that say otherwise. My point was that evidence is now showing that the Bible's origins were not based on pure monotheism and instead were likely an editing of sorts of the other religions of the times. I didn't mean that the current Bible was edited in modern times to correct this.....I'm meaning as the Bible was developed the ideas were altered along to make it a more "passable" religion not as easily associated with it's pagan origins.

And for reference from the King James Bible.
"Numbers 33:4 - For the Egyptians buried all their firstborn, which the LORD had smitten among them: upon their gods also the LORD executed judgments." Nearly every currently know translation states this the exact same way. A clear distinction is made that the other God's were punished separate from the human punishments. You can not judge (or punish as it is stated in some translations) Gods that do not exist. I'm sure you can twist this to make it mean whatever you want but please do not state that I am "spreading lies" about the Bible.

As some sort of counter evidence you then post later Bible passages which is exactly my original point was....that as the Bible progressed such talks of other pagan God's was tamed down and the religion became much more monotheistic in nature.

Of course the biggest proof of all is the 10 commandments. The first commandment is to have no other God's before the God of the Bible. If no other God's existed then why does this commandment exist. Oh and yes I already know the counter argument for this. The common response is "Well it doesn't really mean other God's, when it says "Gods" it is just referring to anything that you place above the Bible God".

Well guess what? The Ten Commandments destroys this argument for me with the very next commandment: "You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath"

The Ten Commandments go out of there way to make a SPECIFIC note that there is a difference between worshiping idols and worshiping other God's. If the first commandment was just simply talking about "false idols" when it speaks of God's then there would be no reason for the second command to exist.

It is quite clear that the God of the Bible is aware of other real God's. And yes I'm aware this is completely contradicted in other parts of the Bible which is precisely the point. The Bible can't even keep it's own story straight.

In terms of the Gospels contradictions it's quite hilarious to me that you are actually defending the Gospels inaccuracies as being some sort of good thing. Maybe you forgot the part about the Bible being the divine work of God himself that is supposed to be perfect in nature? It's absurd that one would have to make up excuses as to why a book created by a "perfect being" would have glaring inaccuracies scattered throughout some of it's most important books.

And yes there ARE direct contradictions within the Gospels. We are talking cold hard fact numerical and place name contradictions, not ones that can be argued over via semantics. Family generations, locations of events, etc are contradicted throughout the Gospels. They authors can't even agree on where Jesus ascended into heaven from nor where he gave the famous sermon on the mount......those are pretty important events to be getting confused on lol.

And in finally in regards to the New Testament fulfilling old Testament prophecies.....no crap lol. It's pretty easy to say a prophecy was fulfilled when you are writing it AFTER YOU ALREADY KNOW WHAT THE PROPHECY SAYS lol.


So in summary please don't state that I am "spreading lies" about the Bible.....the Bible does good enough with that on it's own.
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#72
Christianity is popular because of the fear of going to hell.

That's it.

That's all Christianity is.
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#73
bodhismaya Wrote:A point must be argued using reason from a first person point of view.
If that worked there wouldn't be many religions.
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#74
Religion doesn't belong in politics.
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#75
Well it seems obvious people know more about Japanese than religion, so we should just stick to that.
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