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Ellinas last won the day on March 12 2017

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About Ellinas

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    Greek language; archaeology; books; musing about life, the universe and everything.
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    Former Christian, now (for want of a better description) Hellenic pagan; married into a fundamentalist Christian family, and increasingly fed up with being told what to believe.

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  • Still have any Gods? If so, who or what?
    Greek pantheon

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  1. You beat me to it. I was going to say: "They don't. They square reality with their belief of what the Bible states".
  2. Ellinas

    The universe may be conscious.

    Regarding my expectation of not getting beyond speculation, I rest my case. Until the confirmation bias can be excluded, and there is some agreement of what we're looking for, the only people anyone will convince, one way or the other, are themselves.
  3. Ellinas

    The universe may be conscious.

    I've been saying that consciousness goes beyond our brains for years. But I would be amazed if anyone manages to produce anything beyond speculative thought on the matter.
  4. From where I'm standing, and looking back, I conclude: However long it takes, it's seeing past the bullshit that counts; I am what I am because I was what I was; It is pointless regretting my past beliefs because that would make me a different person then and now; Either way, I have no idea what sort of person I will be tomorrow - I only know that today will be the stepping stone that gets me there. So, accept you made mistakes by all means, but move on and don't agonise over it. We've all done a lot of stupid things in hindsight - as long as we learn from that, so what?
  5. Ellinas

    Magic Key

    Not entirely sure I follow it - perhaps because I've not sat down and thought about it - but I suppose it would tend to confirm the nonsense of bible code type claims. Patterns can be found anywhere...
  6. Ellinas

    Inappropriate Funeral Sermon

    Older, there is nothing that I can say that can help that situation, nor anything that can express how contemptible is the misuse of a child's death as a vehicle for evangelism and doctrine. I'm very sorry to hear of this.
  7. Ellinas

    Inappropriate Funeral Sermon

    It's standard practice among fundies round here. In fact, the last funeral I went to was of one of their own number who had specifically requested the funeral take that form. They seem to think that telling the grieving that they are going to hell will somehow make them well disposed to the sovereign god they think brought the life of the deceased to its' end. I'm usually torn between anger at the effrontery and pity at the stupidity.
  8. To be honest, I've had various views of morality over the years, but fundy Christianity dictated the idea of a morality that was determined purely by what god defined as good (not that he ever provided me with a dictionary). Now I doubt the very concept of morality. Rather, I consider that the only question is one of responsibility. You face up to the consequences of your own actions and accept that you, and only you, carry the can for them, whatever they may be.
  9. Ellinas

    Contemplating the cosmos

    Well well, I disappear for a while (life can be busy sometimes) and come back to find lots of people just getting on with their deconverted lives as normal. Good. Anyhow, DarkBishop, it's good to know you have managed to get passed the stress of contact with Christianity. I find I'm utterly indifferent to the ideas but still can get angered by some of the prejudiced crap that they spout. But then, I'm not sure that isn't a good thing, at least for me. As to spirituality, do what you like, believe or don't believe as it makes sense to you to do so and remember your views tomorrow may be very different to those of today. Above all, be at peace with yourself and don't worry about finding all the answers. As I tend to say, certainty is over-rated. Or, as it was said, I think in the original series of "The Prisoner" decades ago, "Questions are a burden for others, answers a prison for oneself".
  10. Ellinas

    Spiritually Dead Ex-Christians?

    Strikes me that we each go with the thought process that is most comfortable for, and makes most sense to, us when leaving Christianity. There is no rule that it should or should not be atheist either in commencement or ultimate destination. Ex Christian theists are not - or at least not necessarily - feeling their way to atheism any more than ex Christian atheists are feeling their way to spirituality. Equally, what I believe today may be very different to the pattern of my brainwaves tomorrow. I rather suspect, consequently, that every newcomer needs to be welcomed and treated according to their individual characteristics. As do established Ex C's...
  11. Ellinas


    When words are insufficient, silence is all I can contribute.
  12. Ellinas

    Slowly, hopeful signs can emerge...

    Indeed. A softly-softly approach can pay dividends over time.
  13. So, in some ways it's been a usual Sunday. As normal, I accompanied Mrs E to the church and sat in silence through the proceedings. As normal, keeping up appearances for the sake of marital harmony and her sense of security. But then, over lunch she started to talk - about the way others there are so sure that they are right and never question anything. How, historically, anyone who did not follow the same version of Christianity was beyond acceptance and would be cut off as if they did not exist. How tradition is enforced (e.g. women should not wear trousers and should have long hair - rules she regularly breaks as to the first and interprets as she sees fit as to the second) and us by attempting pressurise people using terms like "loyalty" and "back to basics". I was probably as scathing of the whole sorry bunch in my comments as she expected, and more so than I would have ventured not that many years ago. Now, I judge that she's still a long way from being prepared to turn her back. But this was somewhat unexpected and left me with something to ponder...
  14. "The Lord's ways" is just another version of "the Lord's will" - a phrase used in three ways: To justify anything in the bible regardless of how stupid, cruel, contradictory, immoral etc...; To justify anything the person using the phrase wants to do; To justify anything the person using the phrase wants someone else to do. The moment such terminology is used, logic is crucified and the "believer" loses the argument - unless he's talking to someone equally indoctrinated.
  15. Ellinas


    Even speaking as someone of pagan tendency, I wish that religion was removed from funerals altogether. I went to the dispatch of an elderly Christian fundie last Friday morning, It seems the deceased had stipulated that his funeral should be used for preaching rather than for saying anything about himself. There were none of the usual trappings - no flowers etc, though, of itself, that is an irrelevance. The hall was set up as if for a Sunday evening preaching session, and we were harangued for 40 minutes or so as to the need be converted to Christianity, the only thing identifying it as a funeral being the presence of the coffin and the occasional reference to the faith of the deceased. What was most telling was that, of two children, only the one who follows the deceased's religious viewpoint was present. His beliefs, historically, lead to the estrangement of his oldest child, who did not even feel able, or possibly even inclined, to attend her father's funeral. Nor had she been to her mother's some years ago, though I understand her issues are more with her father. That says a lot about the poison that religion can become when humans start to become convinced exclusively of their own version of the "truth", whatever that might be. Ironically, I'm convinced a number of those present actually attended only because they knew there would be free food - but perish the thought that anything so carnal would enter what passes for their minds...! Personally, stick me in sack, say sod all about any beliefs, put me in an oven (which itself will upset my Christian acquaintances, as they believe that only burial is acceptable) and scatter the remnants to the wind. I hope to be sitting, invisible, on my coffin, blowing inaudible raspberries at any arsehole who is only there in the hope that death will cause someone to become a Christian.