IANS...I know that you don't understand where I stand on religion...I approach it differently...maybe we are searching for two different outcomes.<quoted text>
But why credit faith for the things that you see and like? If faith made people better, it would make them all at least a little better, and none worse. Trifecta has enough faith for an army. It just makes him worse.
Some Christians are good people. I simply don't believe that their faith in Christian dogma makes them better people. We know that disposition is in large part inherited. We see that in the different types of animals. And we know that disposition is in large part related to how a person is treated.
*** shortened for space...sorry!
I heard the same sermons preached from "the church" that all of these people did...I read the same Bible...said the same prayers. In the end it was my choice what I took away from that and how I used it.
Let's take for example the word "pervert" that some Christians use to describe homosexuals. They use that word because they choose to...they don't have to. Epi...Senecus...OYE...Al Garcia...heard the same messages preached by "the church"...they choose to not use those words.
They all heard the message that we "unbelievers" will burn in hell...some brandish that phrase around as often as they use "God Bless"...yet many would never dream of wearing that t-shirt.
I heard those messages over and over...I never bought in to that...maybe I didn't make a very good Christian because I didn't...I don't know.
Do I think that "the church" plays a role in all of this...yes...but only for those that would condemn another with or without religion...IMO...they use "faith" to justify their assholiness.
I could list many factors that came in to play in my decision to leave the church but the main one is...I could not look at my fellow man and see him in the terms that "the church" wanted me to see him as. I could not believe in a God that would want me to.
Even while I was a practicing Christian...I never saw God in the words printed in a book...the god that it spoke of was alien to me. I did however experience God as I walked through open fields...wandered down paths through the woods...cool breezes on my face...the kindness of a stranger...and even water droplets hitting the surface of a mud puddle...this was the God that I knew...not some monster that would torture someone because they happened to think differently. Like I said...not sure that I made a good Christian.
I won't say that the Bible (in part) wasn't a guide in my life...it was...even now I refer back to some of those verses...maybe paraphrased a bit now...but the meaning stays the same.
I came to this thread to hopefully share what we have in common and to better understand our differences...it hasn't worked out real well to be honest with you. I keep hoping...I think I need to re-assess my thinking.
What I don't get is why they don't understand...at one time...they were all "unbelievers"...they heard the hateful words...they felt the sting of those words...yet here some of them are...using those same ugly words on others...I wonder...did they forget...or are they convinced those hate filled messages are what frightened them in to becoming "believers".
So IMO...Christianity doesn't have to die...it just needs to become a little kinder...more compassionate...show more empathy...most of all realize that what they have chosen is not what I chose...and with my choice that does not make me any less worthy and any less valuable as a human being.