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  • Confusion based on religion

    I'm posting this here because I'm asking about confusion of ideas in general based on religious teaching. I don't have anything against any particular, though I am a recent convert to the Odinic tradition.

    Could it be that in the teachings of some religions, "good vs. evil" and "beneficial vs. detrimental" have been confused? In the fundamentalist segments of monotheistic religions, this confusion seems to part of the curriculum. And it would follow that this confusion would be at the seed of many expressions of intolerance.

    What do others think?

    Doug H.

  • #2
    I'm posting this here because I'm asking about confusion of ideas in general based on religious teaching. I don't have anything against any particular, though I am a recent convert to the Odinic tradition.

    Could it be that in the teachings of some religions, "good vs. evil" and "beneficial vs. detrimental" have been confused? In the fundamentalist segments of monotheistic religions, this confusion seems to part of the curriculum. And it would follow that this confusion would be at the seed of many expressions of intolerance.

    What do others think?

    Doug H.

    Comment


    • #3

      [b]
      Hrmmm...well, how have they been confused? Any examples or specific observations? [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_cool.gif[/img]

      Comment


      • #4
        What do we think about WHAT?

        Comment


        • #5
          quote:
          Originally posted by Doug H:
          [qb]Could it be that in the teachings of some religions, "good vs. evil" and "beneficial vs. detrimental" have been confused?[/qb]
          I think I understand what you are saying, so let me put it in my own words to see if I am correct.

          It sounds like you are referring to the difference between ethics (the secular code aimed at making society nice for everyone) and morality (usually religious concepts detailing what is necessary for salvation, etc.). For example, most people would agree that violent crime is both unethical and immoral. However, other activities, such as fornication or even nudism, are considered immoral by some religious teachings, even though they are ethically neutral.

          Taking this a step further (and sometimes adding in our own poor communications skills), someone might label someone else a "bad person" because of an ethically neutral action. This is often an attempt, if a subconscious one, to guilt or manipulate someone into following your position. People often say "You're a bad person (idiot, jerk, naughty child, etc.) for doing that" while they really mean "I don't like it when you do that, so please don't do it again." The latter statement is much more likely to preserve the recipient's self-esteem.

          The moral codes of conservative religions tend to restrict one's private actions more than do the codes of liberal religions. Therefore, they are more likely to condemn something on moral grounds because, according to their beliefs, so many actions ARE immoral.

          quote:
          Originally posted by Doug H:
          [qb]I am a recent convert to the Odinic tradition[/qb]
          Do you mean Asatru, a.k.a. Norse Heathenism?

          (I think those are the preferred terms, but please forgive me if I am mistaken.)

          Comment


          • #6
            In Christianity (the religion I'm most familiar with because I practice it as well as I can) there is a hierarchy of rules. Our Founder and Savior, Jesus of Nazareth, listed two as the greatest: "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind... And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets." (Matthew 22:37,39,40) In other words, all other laws, commandments and regulations flow from these two principles. If you love the Creator God, you will not worship any lesser god, nor will you take His name in vain, and you will set aside regular times to commune with Him. And if you love your neighbor as yourself, you will honor and respect him. You will not take away his life or his property, seduce his spouse, tell a damaging lie about him, or stew about what he owns that you don't. These are the Ten Commandments.

            Sadly, many Christians seem to think a naked breast is just as evil as a naked knife in the heart. This is not our Founder's teaching, nor His example. Remember the woman caught in adultery (John 8:1-11).

            "Good/evil" vs. "beneficial/detrimental"? I see no difference. The Law of the Bible is good for the body, and the body of humanity, as well as the soul.

            Comment


            • #7
              quote:
              Originally posted by Jochanaan:
              [qb] "Good/evil" vs. "beneficial/detrimental"? I see no difference. The Law of the Bible is good for the body, and the body of humanity, as well as the soul. [/qb]
              The difference I see is basically a matter of degree. Something being beleived to so bad that an authority needs to act to remove that as much as possible from society's everyday happenings, as opposed to something which can be entrusted to each individual to weigh the costs and benefits and make one's own decision to partake.

              The degree to which certain groups minimize the distinction above, and the degree to which they carry their disagreement is the issue.

              I don't think any one spiritual path is superior to any other. I also don't think that a person is superior to another person because they chose one particular path and another person chose a different one. Excepting when genuine harm is done to others or practiced with disrespect for others, if a person feels that their religious values are threatened when other persons of a different faith practice their own, it's that person's problem, not the offending groups.

              Sadly a loud and occasionally heated ongoing legal and legislative battle is happening because certain groups place their values above the Constitution, which states the government shall pass no laws favoring a particular church or faith.

              Doug H.

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