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Sorry, I don't know how to do a link.  (someday will take time to learn how) I just watched an interesting new video that came up on my Google news feed.  A National Geographic production of Morgan Freeman narrating, BEYOND DEATH:THE STORY OF GOD.  A world view of the subject.   I enjoy his witty way of presenting things, and it is somewhat of an overview of some major world religions. 

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7 hours ago, TheRedneckProfessor said:

Is this the one?

 

 

Yes.  Thank you.  I discovered it is one episode of a string of videos regarding world religions.  I watched a couple more and found them very interesting and informative.   And they aren't new, I just hadn't heard of them. 

 

Some interesting tidbits;

 

Australian Aborigines creation myth is more in line with the big bang theory. 

Hindu story has the creation of physical world before the creation of gods.

And I had never made the connection before regarding reincarnation, but Hinduism is more human-being friendly.  Instead of going to heaven or hell at death, you get more chances to "attain perfection" and become "eternal pure energy".  That's more humane and logical than christian heaven. 

And I like the way Morgan summarized the basic message of world religions.  "Sacrifice your selfish desires..."  (and consider the welfare of others) 

 

The series would be a relatively quick way to get an overview of world religious thought.  And I really like Morgan's wit and humor. 

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6 hours ago, Weezer said:

Yes.  Thank you.  I discovered it is one episode of a string of videos regarding world religions.  I watched a couple more and found them very interesting and informative.   And they aren't new, I just hadn't heard of them. 

 

Some interesting tidbits;

 

Australian Aborigines creation myth is more in line with the big bang theory. 

Hindu story has the creation of physical world before the creation of gods.

And I had never made the connection before regarding reincarnation, but Hinduism is more human-being friendly.  Instead of going to heaven or hell at death, you get more chances to "attain perfection" and become "eternal pure energy".  That's more humane and logical than christian heaven. 

And I like the way Morgan summarized the basic message of world religions.  "Sacrifice your selfish desires..."  (and consider the welfare of others) 

 

The series would be a relatively quick way to get an overview of world religious thought.  And I really like Morgan's wit and humor. 

While I doubt that thing about sacrifice you selfish desires is a good summary of the basic message - it seems much more like a projection of his own ideals than anything - it rings true on a social level. What I mean is that any functioning society , even ants, or plants, can only survive if its members give up some satisfaction for others, and in the long run it is better for everyone. So I think that some level of self sacrifice is present in all religions which have survived because, well, they could not have survived otherwise. There probably were small groups advocating complete refusal of food. Needless to say, they died off quite soon and never got to run large societies. :) So, from a strict evolutionary point of view, that self sacrifice message is as valuable to suviving and thriving as our opposable thumb and general hand design - perfect for tools and tool making. 

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I'm not sure I am understanding you.  I dont think he was saying you sacrifice yourself.  The key word is "selfish" desires.  You get rid of selfishness, is the the way I understood it.

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On 1/3/2021 at 2:47 AM, Weezer said:

I'm not sure I am understanding you.  I dont think he was saying you sacrifice yourself.  The key word is "selfish" desires.  You get rid of selfishness, is the the way I understood it.

 

I think he means sacrificing yourself is what sacrificing selfish desires entails. If I read that correctly. 

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6 hours ago, Joshpantera said:

 

I think he means sacrificing yourself is what sacrificing selfish desires entails. If I read that correctly. 

Kind of. Plus , to go to an even greater extent, survival of the group could mean sacrifice as in death of an individual. Example, your tribe is on a hunt, you see a lion coming near , you throw yourself at it as it is the only chance for survival for many. You die, the rest lives. That is why I think I sometimes think blood sacrifice, among other reasons, was such a common ritual. Human and non human. In modern terms, we have armies. A professional organisation which is supposed to die defending others, if need be. 

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@Weezer, I often post the "number of the beast" section of this program. Because the scholarly analysis is pretty darn close to conclusive. The fact that the two different numbers of the beast given (616 the oldest, and 666 on later manuscripts) both point to Nero Caesar in both biblical languages. That really hammers down a simplest explanation. And I'm glad that Freeman decided to broadcast that information around in a mainstream program. 

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I have no idea how the numbers of the beast figures into the discussion.  And since we have all left christianity, it's no longer important to me.  It's just that I would have sworn he said, "sacrifice your selfish desires".  And that makes sense to me, as I see that as "Jesus" basic message.   

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1 hour ago, Weezer said:

I have no idea how the numbers of the beast figures into the discussion.  And since we have all left christianity, it's no longer important to me.  It's just that I would have sworn he said, "sacrifice your selfish desires".  And that makes sense to me, as I see that as "Jesus" basic message.   

 

It's part of, "The Story of God," with Freeman: 

 

 

 

Selfish desires are basically what satanism is in a nut shell. It's laid out pretty plainly. In contrast to judeo christian values set up to purposely oppose them. In other words, to purposely oppose the message of jesus as it were. 

 

So yes, it would seem that 'sacrificing your selfish desires' is a good summary of the jesus message. But I'll go further, because there's something shadowed behind the christian message.

 

The premise is that you sacrifice selfish desire, like jesus did. He was tempted, turned down temptation. But there's some clear ego centric, and perhaps selfishness still lingering in the message of "salvation." The fact that rewards enter in to it. Materialistic riches and jewels and high honor in a heavenly paradise. These are all materialistic oriented 'desires.' Living for eternity in these materialistic dream conditions visualized as living like a king on earth, only up in a heaven. 

 

There's a lot going on there. 

 

I think that the reason (just like in the example of slavery) is that these were bronze age writers and thinkers who often had very short sided thought processes. They clearly didn't think things through very well. They couldn't see the contradiction of condoning slavery against the rest of the christian message. And they seemed to miss out on the fact that while pushing a message of love, they were spewing an awful lot of hate at anyone and anything contrary or debating to what they believe to be true. The fear and desire, egoic nature of the afterlife vision in christianity, seems to fall in rank with the rest. 

 

Sacrifice your selfish desires, so that you will be rewarded with materialistic riches in a heavenly paradise after you die......

 

I agree that they were attempting to do something good, but didn't think it all the way through to actually making the mythology free and clear of selfish desires, which, are probably the driving force behind the longevity of the religion in actuality. 

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Some may enjoy dissecting and splitting hairs over the meaning of all that stuff, but I just don't see the need to do all that obsessing about something you no longer believe is valid.  It's just not my cup of tea. 

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"Love" is a vague concept. A message of "love" does not need to contradict slavery. We are projecting our understanding in the ancient texts I think.

        For example, my reading and understanding of christianity  ( abrahamic religions in general) is NOT about "love"  but unquestioning obedience to a deity, which means unquestioning fulfilment of its commandments transmitted however he sees fit, through human mediators usually - prophets, apostles, teachers, parents, etc. God says, you do. End of story. "Whoever loves me, obeys my commandments." " Why do you call me Lord and do not do what I say"         So it's not about "sacrificing selfish desires" it is about total self.The definition of biblical and koranic and other religions possibly definition of love IS obedience first, other things fourth . That is why many people who comnent on, say, lgbt issues in Christianity. Like it is not a loving thing to prohibit people who love each other to marry or whatever MISS the essence. What God says, goes. God became man to save you yes, but to save you from DISOBEDIENCE. Sin IS DISOBEDIENCE to God.

      And extreme forms of loyalty and obedience are probably necessary, I think,  for large scale empires. See if you can manage a modern state, the most libertarian democracy even, without a police, army, courts and prisons. What is a myth is that " individualism" could actually form a functional large form society. It cannot even form a relationship with another person. The irony is that many times the most anarchist progressive rebel movements tend to becone highly authoritarian rigid. Take the punk culture. It rapidly evolved a style of clothing, acceptable, unacceotable behaviour, a type of hierarchy of bands or whatever, etc. 

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As I said earlier, I left dissecting all that ancient authoritarian, all or non thinking, and do my best to go with what is respectable,  rational, logical, and evidence based today.  And although our social system today has it's problems, I haven't given up on it. You tend to find what you are looking for, and if you don't believe something is possible, you probably won't find it.  

 

Are you saying we need an authoritarian "king" to save us?

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Also, if Jesus existed, much of what is attributed to him may have been added later by an authoritarian church.  I base my opinions on the teaching of love on what I saw by reading his overall story in the bible and Gnostic Gospels.  He broke from the rigid traditions of the Jews, and as the story goes, it got him killed.  His immediate followers established autonomous congregations and installed their own leaders.  Not very authoritarian in nature.  The later church changed all that, and likely modified the message to fit their wants, which was total control.

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1 hour ago, Weezer said:

As I said earlier, I left dissecting all that ancient authoritarian, all or non thinking, and do my best to go with what is respectable,  rational, logical, and evidence based today.  And although our social system today has it's problems, I haven't given up on it. You tend to find what you are looking for, and if you don't believe something is possible, you probably won't accomplish it.  

 

Are you saying we need an authoritarian "king" to save us?

You can believe something is possible, and still not accomplish it, as well. 

   No, maybe my statement was tad bit extreme :). What I said was I think any functional large society needs a form of obedience to authority. It is not about a king like figure or dictator necesarily.                   Authority and power can be shared between a lot of individuals , but I think it is just physically impossible for each person to do what he thinks wants without any common known basic bond ( for example the Constitution) which is enforced sometimes violently ( that is why I mentioned the army, police, courts, etc) . A soldier cannot disobey his direct commander under high penalty, no matter his own opinion. ( of course under the rules, a soldier can and is actually forced to ignore and oppose an order to rape a child or smth of the sorts) .

   In a modern democratic state there many lebels of authority and many chains of authority ( family, job, city, medical, state, federal, international, etc). We don't need a dictator, but it does seem we need hierarchies and general social obedience for some level of functionality.

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26 minutes ago, Weezer said:

Also, if Jesus existed, much of what is attributed to him may have been added later by an authoritarian church.  I base my opinions on the teaching of love on what I saw by reading his overall story in the bible and Gnostic Gospels.  He broke from the rigid traditions of the Jews, and as the story goes, it got him killed.  His immediate followers established autonomous congregations and installed their own leaders.  Not very authoritarian in nature.  The later church changed all that, and likely modified the message to fit their wants, which was total control.

The story in the Bible is that Jesus chastised the Jews for abandoning the true laws of God. He acts in the same ways as many prophets before him which chastised the israelites for abandoning obedience to God. The traditions he himself was opposed to were extra Torah , the so called "traditions of men".  Also the writings of Paul, considered rhe earliest writings of Christianity, around year 50, are FULL of references to obey secular authority and religious authority, and, most of all, God. The fact that there were small congregations does not mean they were autonoumous. Why did Paul write so many letters to them if they were so autonomous. And tgeir leaders were not "chosen" they were probable named by the apostles. With the approval of the community probably,  but still. 

      You seem to have an extra biblical view of Jesus. That is another subject altogether.  But a Jesus that does not promote obedience to God as the essence of his message is an image of Jesus which would be highly non judaic and contradicts the whole Old Testament from beggining to end. A completely different religion in my opinion. Anyway, Christianity today, as a religion, is mostly not based on that image of Jesus. And I doubt he was the free loving hippie you take him out to be. If I were to guess, he was a person that, as many people of his day, proposed an interpretation of Judaism which emphasized its main elements - obedience to Torah. A kind of Martin Luther of his day. His issue was not that the teaching of some other teachers was too extreme or too fundamentalist, but not fundamentalist enough. He wanted people to dedicate more, not less, to God and his commandments.

     You tale whatever you want from the stories, of course. I was commenting that, for me, taken as a whole, most modern official christian narratives, like Islam,  prize obedience to God and his emisaries as end all and be all. 

         

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I just to emphasize this. This is ny own view, based on my biases and exp. I am in no way an expert or pretending to say tha this THE truth and the only one.

    So far at least :)))

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It seems we came away from our study with different opinions.

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