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  1. #1
    Astonishing Member Darkspellmaster's Avatar
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    Default All Encompassing Philosophy and Religion Thread: Open to all discussions

    So basics here, as the title suggests this is a thread for discussion on all Philosophy and all Religion. Please keep in mind if you want to talk about the bible there is a thread already designed for that. Here you can debate issues and talk about different sects, beliefs, practices, as well as philosophical views.

    Requests are: Please be civil with one another.
    Limited discussion of politics as there is a thread for that unless it's part of the item at hand.
    Example: Family murder on the steps of a Shinto shrine. Or the Vatican has a visit from a political person.
    If you want to discuss about groups like Scientology please keep in mind the various issues people have with it and other similar religions.
    Respect each others philosophical views.
    Keep in mind that this is a discussion, so if someone disagrees with you on something be ready to defend your point.
    Anyone pulling off being a bigot or acting like a jerk will be reported to a mod.


    So Let's get started.

  2. #2
    Astonishing Member Darkspellmaster's Avatar
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    So recently I've been reading more about the Shinto religion and how it works. The idea is that everything in nature has a spirit, or Kami, and this makes it easy to worship anything from rocks to people possible. What's interesting is that there are five main expressions of Shintoism that are distinguished: Shrine Shinto -local Shrine Worship, Imperial Household Shinto -rites that are preformed on the grounds that are considered imperial and can only be done by the imperial family (Emperor, his wife, his kids, grand kids, etc.), Folk Shinto -which focuses on the folk beliefs and practices in Japan that stretch back hundreds of years. Sect Shinto -which are sects with founders and sacred scriptures, and Koshinto -based on pre-Buddhism Shinto. Each of these seem to play a role in the lives of people in Japan, but a vast majority wouldn't consider their religion Shinto.

    The text that Shintoism models itself on is called Shinten, and for going into folk Shinto there is no rules to become a practitioner so you can worship without having to do something to join. It's really kind of interesting to see that it's Japan's national religion, but most people don't really list religion, but it's frequently worshiped and used for festivals and other events. So much in the media from Japan covers actual things done when visiting Shrines and it's certainly different then the more well known and followed religions that are polytheistic in nature. Something to think about given how most of the west views religion in general.

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    Astonishing Member Soubhagya's Avatar
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    Great thread.

    Spirit being present everywhere is something Vedas would agree. According to Bhagavad Gita 9.4,

    "By Me, in My unmanifested form, this entire universe is pervaded. All beings are in Me, but I am not in them."

    It means God is all pervading. A crude example would be how sunshine is spread all over the solar system. At the same time God maintains a separate independent existence. Just as Sun also maintains its unique identity. This all pervasive form is spiritual in nature and can't be perceived by one's senses.

    ataḥ śrī-kṛṣṇa-nāmādi
    na bhaved grāhyam indriyaiḥ

    "Krsna, or God can't be perceived by one's senses."

    -from Bhakti Rasamrta Sindhu 1.2.234


    This is part of the culture. People in India don't touch anyone by one's foot. If they do so accidentally, they would touch their hand to to their forehead and say Visnu. I was taught so when i was a kid. Its one of those small things people do without really thinking about it. Later, i came to know that one can't enter God's temple silently while reading the scriptures. As soon as you set foot on the temple you utter God's name. 'Hare Krsna'. 'Haribol', etc. When one sets foot at the temple, one shall touch the ground of the temple. And touch the same hand to one's forehead while saying that. That's exactly the same thing when one touches any person by foot. Because every living being's body is also a temple of God. 'Visnu' is one of the names of God. It means 'all pervading'.
    Last edited by Soubhagya; 05-11-2018 at 07:13 AM.

  4. #4

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    Over the last year I've learned a lot about Shinto myself as part of research for the book I'm currently writing. One of the things I came across and am using as a huge element of my story are the Four Affirmations of Shinto: tradition and family, love of nature, ritual purity, and matsuri (worshiping/honoring gods and ancestral spirits). I think that a lot of the elements including these, as well as those you've described Darkspellmaster, have become more of a cultural norm/expectation then religious tenets; as does often happen with a predominant belief system within a culture over long periods of time. It becomes a part of the cultural behavior and identity. The more I've explored some of Japan and Shinto's practices, the more fascinating I find it all. And as much research as I've done over the last year, I know that I've only just barely scratched the surface.

  5. #5

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    Great thread. Question, so what do you think about not only the differences, but the many similarities that seem to be reoccurring, and all-pervasive, in unconnected cultures and belief systems around the world? I've become ever enthralled over the last few years by not only the numerous differences, but the just as frequent similarities found within the worlds many folklore, mythologies, and religions. As different as they are, I think I'm more intrigued by the many reoccurring themes and universal understandings. Excuse me if I'm a little long-winded today, allergies are killing me and I can barely think straight.

  6. #6
    Astonishing Member Darkspellmaster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soubhagya View Post
    Great thread.

    Spirit being present everywhere is something Vedas would agree. According to Bhagavad Gita 9.4,

    "By Me, in My unmanifested form, this entire universe is pervaded. All beings are in Me, but I am not in them."

    It means God is all pervading. A crude example would be how sunshine is spread all over the solar system. At the same time God maintains a separate independent existence. Just as Sun also maintains its unique identity. This all pervasive form is spiritual in nature and can't be perceived by one's senses.

    ataḥ śrī-kṛṣṇa-nāmādi
    na bhaved grāhyam indriyaiḥ

    "Krsna, or God can't be perceived by one's senses."

    -from Bhakti Rasamrta Sindhu 1.2.234


    This is part of the culture. People in India don't touch anyone by one's foot. If they do so accidentally, they would touch their hand to to their forehead and say Visnu. I was taught so when i was a kid. Its one of those small things people do without really thinking about it. Later, i came to know that one can't enter God's temple silently while reading the scriptures. As soon as you set foot on the temple you utter God's name. 'Hare Krsna'. 'Haribol', etc. When one sets foot at the temple, one shall touch the ground of the temple. And touch the same hand to one's forehead while saying that. That's exactly the same thing when one touches any person by foot. Because every living being's body is also a temple of God. 'Visnu' is one of the names of God. It means 'all pervading'.
    Really really interesting there. I've read about the idea of not touching anyone by one's foot, and it's something that I've seen only in documentaries. But it's interesting to get a different view point on this as most don't go into detail as to why that happens. Which brings up the point of other versions of the name of God as well in the Hindi religion. Visnu being only one of them, and one lady I've spoken to about this, has stated that each name has different attributes that make that name just as powerful as other names, or more appropriate at different times to use.

    I like your simple use of the sunshine metaphor connecting to the idea of the spirit. It actually connects to the ancient religion of Egypt with the idea of the sun being Ra and his watchful gaze, warmth and growth. As he was seen in some version of their religion as the creator of the sky, earth and underworld, thus being both the god of life and death. Really interesting there.

    Quote Originally Posted by Orunmila-Oni View Post
    Over the last year I've learned a lot about Shinto myself as part of research for the book I'm currently writing. One of the things I came across and am using as a huge element of my story are the Four Affirmations of Shinto: tradition and family, love of nature, ritual purity, and matsuri (worshiping/honoring gods and ancestral spirits). I think that a lot of the elements including these, as well as those you've described Darkspellmaster, have become more of a cultural norm/expectation then religious tenets; as does often happen with a predominant belief system within a culture over long periods of time. It becomes a part of the cultural behavior and identity. The more I've explored some of Japan and Shinto's practices, the more fascinating I find it all. And as much research as I've done over the last year, I know that I've only just barely scratched the surface.
    Yup there's so much built in there and their history with the idea of kami and how they interact with people and things. Something as simple as an umbrella that's 100 years old can become a spirit, but others can come from the fact that they were blessed or touched by someone who is considered blessed by the gods in various ways. Shinto Funeral rights are also interesting as they've been merged a lot with some Buddhist traditions, and a lot of Japanese people seem to mix and match them as they go. The Matsuri could also be seen as similar to the catholic or Christian idea of having a small picture, or making a shrine where a person passed on. It's also interesting how the Japanese never really look at the dead in a gloomy way, but it's not like where the Irish tend to have a celebration of the dead with their wakes.


    Quote Originally Posted by Orunmila-Oni View Post
    Great thread. Question, so what do you think about not only the differences, but the many similarities that seem to be reoccurring, and all-pervasive, in unconnected cultures and belief systems around the world? I've become ever enthralled over the last few years by not only the numerous differences, but the just as frequent similarities found within the worlds many folklore, mythologies, and religions. As different as they are, I think I'm more intrigued by the many reoccurring themes and universal understandings. Excuse me if I'm a little long-winded today, allergies are killing me and I can barely think straight.
    I think there's a ton of them! Honestly if you look back you can see that there's connections all over the place. From the Egyptian Monotheistic idea of the sun being a creator of all things, to the Shinto idea of performing rites in a way that seem to have ties to some very old Chinese customs. For me, at least, I've always thought that religions were connected to each other, just different people wound up writing different books about it and, again for me at least, I tend to buy into the idea that God might be a mix (or like a group) that works together to watch over things. I know it sounds weird but there are aspects of Western, Eastern, Southern and Northern Religions that seem to intersect at points. The most common one I can think of at the moment is the whole idea of plagues and the flood. The flood is all over the place in so many religions and they all speak about it in different ways.

    No that's fine, I love reading long winded ideas of connections between religions and myths. I actually think learning about other religions and view points helps people understand cultures more and by doing that you can grow to form a peaceful relationship because you can see both differences and similarities in your beliefs.
    Last edited by Darkspellmaster; 05-11-2018 at 02:32 PM.

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    Some Protestant denominations consider Mormons and Unification Church as cults of Heretics. Ironically the Protestants were branded as heretics by the Catholics centuries ago.

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    Astonishing Member Darkspellmaster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zetsubou View Post
    Some Protestant denominations consider Mormons and Unification Church as cults of Heretics. Ironically the Protestants were branded as heretics by the Catholics centuries ago.
    Yup and that was due to the fact that the Protestants really disliked the fact that the Catholic church at the time was practically selling getting into Heaven via absolving sins for a price. You pay and you're free and clear of your sins rather than working through them. Not to mention the various popes at the time that bought the seat through having a strong political and wealthy family in the region. It's interesting that for every new church that rises someone is branded by the older establishment as a heretic. It's actually kind of fascinating seeing the whole thing from a historical lens.

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    Islam is not the only religion that forbids the eating of pork. Torah also declares the pig unclean.

    The Bible also speaks against the eating of pork. Try finding and reading the biblical verses Deuteronomy 14:8 and Leviticus 11:7 in any different version of the Bible.

    And the pig, because it has a split hoof, but does not chew the cud; it is unclean for you. You shall neither eat of their flesh nor touch their carcass.
    — Deuteronomy 14:8

    And the pig, because it has a cloven hoof that is completely split, but will not regurgitate its cud; it is unclean for you. You shall not eat of their flesh, and you shall not touch their carcasses; they are unclean for you.
    — Leviticus 11:7 and 11:8

    http://biblehub.com/deuteronomy/14-8.htm

    http://biblehub.com/leviticus/11-7.htm

    The so-called Christians claim to read and follow every word of God in their bibles and yet do not attempt to outlaw pork.



    https://www.naturalnews.com/043184_t...lean_meat.html

    The Bible warns the readers that pigs are unclean. Pigs are dirty animals that ruthlessly eat anything they come into contact with on the farm. Not only are they known to consume food scraps, insects and their own feces, but they are also cannibalistic and eat the pig carcasses. They have been known to kill and eat their young at times as well.

    Due to their scavenger lifestyle, they harbor enormous amounts of viruses and parasites. Pigs are known to be primary carriers of the following pathogenic organisms, which can create very serious health problems:
    1. Taenia solium tapeworm
    2. PRRS (Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome)
    3. Nipah virus
    4. Menangle virus
    5. Hepatitis E virus (HEV)

    A Consumer Reports investigation found that 69% of all raw pork samples tested were contaminated with high amounts of volatile microorganisms such as Yersinia enterocolitica. This bacteria causes fever and gastrointestinal stress and could potentially cause a fatal infection.

    Animals that "chew the cud" as it says in the Bible are called ruminants. These animals hardly chew their food when it is first swallowed. But they have four stomachs that digest and regurgitate food through a special process that allows complete digestion. The major ruminants are cows, sheep and goats.

    The digestive system of a pig is unique in that it metabolizes food very quickly through one stomach in a process that takes about four hours. A cow takes 24 hours to digest what's eaten, and it is able to get rid of excess toxins during the digestive process. The pig's digestive system doesn't allow for this, and the toxins are carried into the fat cells and organs of the pig itself.

    Pigs also do not have sweat glands. Perspiration is a key method that the body uses for detoxification, and the pig is not designed to perspire. When we consume pig meat, we get all of these pathogenic microorganisms and environmental toxins into our system.

    Pasture-fed pork products are much safer, but still, the animal is just not designed to eliminate toxins effectively. Many of these toxins are not neutralized even with high-heat cooking methods. High-heat cooking methods produce heterocyclic amine in the meat and damages much of the essential fats, which makes the pork, ham or bacon highly carcinogenic.

  10. #10
    formerly edhopper Kirby101's Avatar
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    The Biblical rule for not eating pork made sense in the Middle east 2500 years ago, but not so much today. Raw meats in general are contaminated. 90% of chicken is and about 25% of beef. The answer is to cook it through, not abstain because God is a dietician.

    As far as why Christians don't keep kosher. From what I have been told, Jesus brought a new covenant for his followers. Many of the old Torah rules no longer applied. But this is put in practice very selectively, with some laws still in place and others not. There is big discrepancies across different Christian sects. And even among Jewish people, the adherence to the Torah is widely varied. From Ultra-Orthidox to Reform.
    There came a time when the Old Gods died! The Brave died with the Cunning! The Noble perished locked in battle with unleashed Evil! It was the last day for them! An ancient era was passing in fiery holocaust!

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    Incredible Member Kees_L's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zetsubou View Post
    Some Protestant denominations consider Mormons and Unification Church as cults of Heretics. Ironically the Protestants were branded as heretics by the Catholics centuries ago.
    For good measure, Wikipedia notes the arising of the Protestant church versus the Catholic church out of the (Western or West-European) Christian church as amounting to a "schism":

    Wikipedia: A schism (pronounced /ˈsɪzəm/ SIZ-əm, /ˈskɪzəm/ SKIZ-əm or, less commonly, /ˈʃɪzəm/ SHIZ-əm[1]) is a division between people, usually belonging to an organization, movement, or religious denomination. The word is most frequently applied to a split in what had previously been a single religious body, such as the East–West Schism or the Great Western Schism.
    plus this:

    Wikipedia: In religion, the charge of schism is distinguished from that of heresy, since the offence of schism concerns not differences of belief or doctrine but promotion of, or the state of, division.[2] However, schisms frequently involve mutual accusations of heresy. In Roman Catholic teaching, every heresy is a schism, while there may be some schisms free of the added guilt of heresy.[3] Liberal Protestantism, however, has often preferred heresy over schism. Presbyterian scholar James I. McCord (quoted with approval by the Episcopalian bishop of Virginia Peter Lee) drew a distinction between them, teaching: "If you must make a choice between heresy and schism, always choose heresy. As a schismatic, you have torn and divided the body of Christ. Choose heresy every time."
    Religious arguments also reign rampant throughout the New Testament such as in Jesus' rants against for instance Zealots, Pharisees and (other) Judaic temple priests.

    Where I live there exists what is called "the Bible-belt" full of villages where what used to be outside the municipal borders beyond water- or gas mains there'd be wooden housing for the likes of Catholics or non-Protestants. A situation occurring since the 1950s no longer, if only because housing without proper accommodation was made illegal.

    And I would consider it true that specifically among (Protestant) churchgoers in my country such groups as Mennonites, Anabaptists, Adventists, Latter Day Saints as well as Jehova's Witnesses are not normally regarded as actual churches or only as the most distinct split-offs (leaving out Episcopal / Anglican / Presbytarian church denominations since overhere they'd hardly be known at all).
    Similarly I feel to have never met a Dutch churchgoer or schoolmaster accepting for example the book of Mormon as actual (holy) scripture.

    Also it appears normal for most (Protestant) churches where I live to require reverends / ministers to have a University doctoral degree in Theology for the possibility of becoming ordained or 'called' into office.

    Which is all the same to me. Since if I consider my religious status I'm as church-less as Jesus, although I feel more rather a Heathen than an Atheist in that I hail Gods purely in order to be angry at them. Plus I find ancestors important who will have lived as Pagans moreso than as Christians for the longest time. Simply a matter of respect.
    Last edited by Kees_L; 05-13-2018 at 09:49 AM.
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    Astonishing Member Soubhagya's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Orunmila-Oni View Post
    Great thread. Question, so what do you think about not only the differences, but the many similarities that seem to be reoccurring, and all-pervasive, in unconnected cultures and belief systems around the world? I've become ever enthralled over the last few years by not only the numerous differences, but the just as frequent similarities found within the worlds many folklore, mythologies, and religions. As different as they are, I think I'm more intrigued by the many reoccurring themes and universal understandings. Excuse me if I'm a little long-winded today, allergies are killing me and I can barely think straight.
    Sure there are differences. As well as similarities. There's only one God. Sun is called 'surya' in Sanskrit. You may call it sun, i may call it surya. But in the end we are indicating the same thing.

    Differences in religions is mostly due to this. God's messengers, servants, prophets have appeared all over the world. And they have revealed the message according to their audience's ability to receive.

    The teacher maybe a PhD in mathematics. But she teaches according to the level of the student. For an elementary student, 2-5 can't be done. But in high school does more complicated calculations. In college level the student studies stuff like calculus. All of this is mathematics. Whether subtracting two numbers, algebra or calculus. But the teacher teaches according to the capacity of the student to learn.

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    formerly edhopper Kirby101's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soubhagya View Post
    Sure there are differences. As well as similarities. There's only one God. Sun is called 'surya' in Sanskrit. You may call it sun, i may call it surya. But in the end we are indicating the same thing.

    Differences in religions is mostly due to this. God's messengers, servants, prophets have appeared all over the world. And they have revealed the message according to their audience's ability to receive.

    The teacher maybe a PhD in mathematics. But she teaches according to the level of the student. For an elementary student, 2-5 can't be done. But in high school does more complicated calculations. In college level the student studies stuff like calculus. All of this is mathematics. Whether subtracting two numbers, algebra or calculus. But the teacher teaches according to the capacity of the student to learn.
    And yet people kill each other over these different teachings. And many if not most of these teachings contradict each other.
    There came a time when the Old Gods died! The Brave died with the Cunning! The Noble perished locked in battle with unleashed Evil! It was the last day for them! An ancient era was passing in fiery holocaust!

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    Astonishing Member Soubhagya's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kirby101 View Post
    And yet people kill each other over these different teachings. And many if not most of these teachings contradict each other.
    If teachings are not followed what can be done about that? Love thy neighbor was taught by Jesus Christ. And see how Christians have followed that throughout history. So, many wars have been fought in the name of religion. Christians aren't the only ones guilty.

    And i said there are similarities as well as differences. It appears that by your post you have only supported my statement.

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    Incredible Member Kees_L's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soubhagya View Post
    Sure there are differences. As well as similarities. There's only one God. Sun is called 'surya' in Sanskrit. You may call it sun, i may call it surya. But in the end we are indicating the same thing.

    Differences in religions is mostly due to this. God's messengers, servants, prophets have appeared all over the world. And they have revealed the message according to their audience's ability to receive.
    Quote Originally Posted by Kirby101 View Post
    And yet people kill each other over these different teachings. And many if not most of these teachings contradict each other.
    I would believe that the spread and doctrine to the marriage of Romans with Christianity throughout Europe next to the Ottoman Empire has more to do with imperialism than with any Godly message.

    Obviously Christianity isn't native to the Western world in origin, although in Biblical Jerusalem I'm told a scholarly foreign majority would've been speaking / reading Greek if at all.

    But aside from that religion seems used as giving reason for mainly the bloodiest warwaging, exploitation, colonisation and engaging whatever stances of supremacy moreso than anything else.
    Last edited by Kees_L; 05-13-2018 at 11:18 AM.
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