mciburton

[email protected] wrote:



>When Kirby was six or so we went to a weekly playgroup >meeting in a park near our house. <snip> I went up and >introduced myself to the moms, The former was met with >"Do you use aBeka or Sonlight?"

>Those were my two choices.

>When I said neither, I got the most literal cold >shoulder I can remember.
>The two ladies who had been nearest me kinda shifted >their weight where they
>were sitting on blankets and there wasn't a hole in the >circle to sit down.
>It was very cold.

>Sandra

I had the same experience when I began homeschooling
here in Northern Virginia. I was new to the area and did home day care
so most of the people I knew were working moms with kids in school. I
found out about a woman who lead a homeschool group and asked to meet
her. We spent a pleasant afternoon together but she shut up like a clam
when I mentioned support groups. I was baffled and found out later that
since I wasn't in her church I was PNG. I almost threw in the towel and
would have if it weren't for AOL's homeschool message boards. I'm so
glad its not like that any more!

I'd like to introduce myself though I know some of you already. I am Cia
Burton. I homeschool 3 kids and have done always in the Va area and
overseas in Belgrade (another time when I almost gave up as NO ONE
homeschools there unless their kids have acute behavior problems. Serb
schools only run for 3 hours a day. They are incredibly overeducated for
how developed the country is. Most every one has a doctorate in
something and drives a cab.)

Cia

[email protected]

In a message dated 12/17/01 10:08:55 AM, [email protected] writes:

<< I was baffled and found out later that
since I wasn't in her church I was PNG. I almost threw in the towel and
would have if it weren't for AOL's homeschool message boards. I'm so
glad its not like that any more!
>>

It's not like that for you, but it is like that for new homeschoolers, I
think.

Sandra

[email protected]

In a message dated 12/17/2001 9:42:06 AM Pacific Standard Time,
[email protected] writes:


> << I was baffled and found out later that
> since I wasn't in her church I was PNG. I almost threw in the towel and
> would have if it weren't for AOL's homeschool message boards. I'm so
> glad its not like that any more!
> >>
>
> It's not like that for you, but it is like that for new homeschoolers, I
> think.

Our group (mostly park day - very occasionally some planned fun activity -
usually initiated by the kids) is a very mixed group -- someone there uses
Calvert and someone is in the public school isp and most of us range from
very relaxed homeschoolers to radical unschoolish types. Some are Christians
- some are other religions - and some are atheists. The atheists tend to be
the more vocal about their beliefs and openly judgemental about religion, in
general. I know that people have come to our group and felt unwelcome because
of their own religious beliefs -- they just don't come back, thinking they
don't fit in if they go to church or believe in any kind of religious
teaching. The problem is, those of us who are religious are very very loathe
to talk about it - the last thing in the world we want is for people to be
able to say WE are pushing our religion - most of us have faced being the
"wrong" religion or wrong type of Christian or whatever, too. So comments by
the atheists are usually unchallenged, we just want the topic to change, we
don't have any interest in debating with them.

--pam


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

[email protected]

>The atheists
> tend to be
> the more vocal about their beliefs and openly judgemental about
> religion, in
> general.

Revenge of the Godless?
I probably tend to express my beliefs more since moving to this small,
conservative Christian town. A quick trip to the post office, drug
store, or dime store is bound to get a slew of "It's a beautiful day,
praise the Lord" or "here's your change and God bless you." But I
don't say " Well, you seem highly evolved today!"

I am sorry when there are folks of any belief making it hard on anyone
else.
Maybe you could tell your atheist members you'll keep praying that
they'll learn some manners.

Deb L

[email protected]

In a message dated 12/17/01 2:11:24 PM, [email protected] writes:

<< Maybe you could tell your atheist members you'll keep praying that
they'll learn some manners. >>

Maybe. But if those manners involved crossing themselves when driving in
front of a church in a totally Catholic town, or saying "Praise Jesus" or
"God willing," that would be past manners to dishonesty.

I don't know what the atheists at Pam's meetings are saying, but I've been to
some of those meetings, knowing the theme of the group was diversity, and
figured there were various religions. I don't remember being there when
religion was discussed. I hope it's as rare for real as it seems to me from
a handful of visits.

Sandra

[email protected]

In a message dated 12/17/01 11:36:47 AM Pacific Standard Time,
[email protected] writes:

<<
Our group (mostly park day - very occasionally some planned fun activity -
usually initiated by the kids) is a very mixed group -- someone there uses
Calvert and someone is in the public school isp and most of us range from
very relaxed homeschoolers to radical unschoolish types. Some are Christians
- some are other religions - and some are atheists. The atheists tend to be
the more vocal about their beliefs and openly judgemental about religion, in
general. I know that people have come to our group and felt unwelcome
because
of their own religious beliefs -- they just don't come back, thinking they
don't fit in if they go to church or believe in any kind of religious
teaching. The problem is, those of us who are religious are very very loathe
to talk about it - the last thing in the world we want is for people to be
able to say WE are pushing our religion - most of us have faced being the
"wrong" religion or wrong type of Christian or whatever, too. >>

Wow Pam for a minute there I thought you were talking about my support
group, except the most vocal are the pagans, as a group anyhow.

Kathy

[email protected]

> Maybe. But if those manners involved crossing themselves when
> driving in
> front of a church in a totally Catholic town, or saying "Praise
> Jesus" or
> "God willing," that would be past manners to dishonesty.

Yes, I agree.

Pam's post said some in her group were "openly judgmental" about
religion. I didn't see how that would be any more helpful in
homeschooling / unschooling group than the constant "praise the Lord"
stuff, that's all.

I love a rousing discussion about religion with my Christian friends,
when everyone is in the mood to discuss and debate. But a nasty stab, if
that's what Pam was talking about, is still nasty.

I'm sure I'm guilty. I can't tell you how tired I am of the church chat
around here.
The assumption that EVERYONE is Christian, and the cold shoulder when
they find out you're not. I've had the questions about hell too, and my
favorites, "don't you want to hear the good news about our Lord?"
(whose Lord?) and " Do you know the Lord?"
Well, not personally, no.

I think it was Barda who told me about a bumper sticker, "Where am I
going and what am I doing in this hand basket?" <g>

Deb L

zenmomma *

>Pam's post said some in her group were "openly judgmental" about
>religion. I didn't see how that would be any more helpful in
>homeschooling / unschooling group than the constant "praise the Lord"
>stuff, that's all.

I'm always amazed at how dogmatic we can become when we're rallying against
others' dogma. I include myself in that statement, BTW. Although I have been
trying to be more mindful of this.


>The assumption that EVERYONE is Christian,

Around here the assumption is that you're Mormon. (Three guesses where I
live, if you don't already know.) My favorite question is, "So what ward are
you in?". Talk about speaking a different language. Once when an older woman
asked me that, I responded that I'm not Mormon. She said, "Oh that's okay."
I smiled and said, "I know." :o)

>"don't you want to hear the good news about our Lord?"
>(whose Lord?) and " Do you know the Lord?"
>Well, not personally, no.

Another confession: I was a born-again teenager. Yup, zenmomma herself. I
actually went door to door with little pamphlets telling people about our
Lord. Don't think I ever told anyone they were going to hell, though. Don't
think I even thought it. I guess I was one of those liberal New York
born-agains.

~Mary

_________________________________________________________________
Get your FREE download of MSN Explorer at http://explorer.msn.com/intl.asp.

Tia Leschke

>
>I'd like to introduce myself though I know some of you already. I am Cia
>Burton. I homeschool 3 kids and have done always in the Va area and
>overseas in Belgrade (another time when I almost gave up as NO ONE
>homeschools there unless their kids have acute behavior problems. Serb
>schools only run for 3 hours a day. They are incredibly overeducated for
>how developed the country is. Most every one has a doctorate in
>something and drives a cab.)

That's pretty interesting. That much higher education and the kids only go
to school for 3 hours a day? And in North America they go for 6. I wonder
which society is better educated in the sense that we would use the word.

Cia

So how is your name pronounced? Mine is just as you'd think, like Tia
Maria. Is the C an s sound, a k sound, or a ch sound?
Tia

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.
Eleanor Roosevelt
*********************************************
Tia Leschke
[email protected]
On Vancouver Island

[email protected]

In a message dated 12/17/2001 1:39:14 PM Pacific Standard Time,
[email protected] writes:


> I don't know what the atheists at Pam's meetings are saying, but I've been
> to
> some of those meetings, knowing the theme of the group was diversity, and
> figured there were various religions. I don't remember being there when
> religion was discussed. I hope it's as rare for real as it seems to me
> from
> a handful of visits.

It is pretty rare, yes. But my point is that it is much more rare in our
group for it to be the religious people, Christian or otherwise, to be the
ones who are rude.

For example, one thing I remember was someone saying recently: "Religion and
morality are mutually exclusive." Another was someone said, "Religious
people have chosen not to think for themselves."

These kinds of comments leave me at a loss as to how to respond. I'm not a
Christian, I am a Baha'i, but we also have several very much Christian
families in our group. They are there because they PREFER our kind of group -
they are attachment parenting, La Leche League, relaxed homeschooling people.
I don't get easily offended - so I can't say these comments really offended
me and I can ignore them, especially since I know and very much like the
people making the statements. But I cringe when we have new people and these
kinds of blanket statements are made in front of them or even to them. A very
sweet, new-to-our-group mom - thrilled to find unschoolers and a casual
accepting group - was really put on the spot recently when she DID respond to
statements like this by saying that she was a Christian and didn't feel that
she was being fairly represented by the kinds of statements being made. Like
I said, she was new, the rest of us were used to these comments and would
just let them pass us by, changing the subject. But I hate it when it happens
- I usually find I suddenly have to go to the bathroom (to get away).

--pam



[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

[email protected]

<< "Religion and morality are mutually exclusive." >>


I've had people (Christian homeschoolers, online, in the old days) ask me
how, if I didn't teach my kids religion, could I hope to teach them how to
behave. "How will you teach them good from bad?" (Or maybe the question was
right from wrong...)

The idea that people will only be good because of fear of reprisal is lame
and immature and feeds MORE into the idea that religion is a necessity than
not.

So did the person who said the think above intend to say that WITH religion
there could be no morality?

I don't understand the statement. But I'm really curious because of my prior
defense of it being easy to teach kids how to act with other people on the
basis of what is good and bad within human interaction itself.

<<Another was someone said, "Religious people have chosen not to think for
themselves." >>

Most haven't. Some have.

I think I would have just said "You need to learn to qualify your statements
better or they'll all be false."

Some people join the military or go (back) to prison or join a cult to keep
from thinking for themselves. Some people join a strict church in the same
way. It removes from them any further responsibility for their actions. If
they just follow the formula and do what those around them do and approve of,
they will have approval, a social group, and can go to sleep happy that they
are "doing the right thing."

But I see that with non-religious folk too. I was at a conference (Pam was
too) which was totally NOT religious, and there were people who were picking
up and buying, swearing to, adopting, every practice that seemed to them
would make them "one of these people." Like... What do New Age families
eat? What do they do for a winter holiday? What do they do for medicine?
Tea? Clothing? There are magazines and various support groups from which a
person can adopt a lifestyle complete with beliefs, diet and dresscode.
They'll soon know what car's good to drive, and what pets would be best, by
just doing what's around them.

It's just clearer and more obvious in a church that will TELL you to
homeschool, and how. (We had neighbors at our old house who went to the
central homeschooling-hive church in town here. They were homeschooling
because it was a sin not to. Their lives revolved around the church
entirely. Once the mom told me she didn't know what she was serving for
dessert that night, but Jesus would provide. I was just glad the rest of
her church hadn't figured out her kids were mixing with mine a lot! <g>)

They ended up divorced. She took up with a younger Jewish guy with a jacuzzi
in his bedroom. The husband had the kids most of the time, taking them to
church extra much. I'm sorry we lost contact with them, but they moved to
another town.

Sandra



Sandra

[email protected]

In a message dated 12/18/2001 10:20:17 AM Pacific Standard Time,
[email protected] writes:

>>So did the person who said the think above intend to say that WITH religion

there could be no morality?<<

She intended - and repeated it upon questioning - to say that morality could
not coexist with religion; that religion was incompatible with morality.

Yes, it is the opposite of what I've heard some Christians say - "How can
someone be moral without religion to give you absolutes?"

I, personally, don't buy either of those statements.

> I think I would have just said "You need to learn to qualify your statements
>
> better or they'll all be false."

Yes - but if I say anything at all, then I inevitably end up with that person
making further strong statesments about why they think that religious belief
is just awful for various reasons and I am simply not interested in defending
my religious beliefs against someone who really thinks that to have religious
beliefs at all is to give up your own ability to think. That's the problem -
they are happy to debate these issues and I'm not. I sit quietly and say
nothing and the topic changes and that's that.

--pam


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

[email protected]

In a message dated 12/18/01 8:01:47 PM Mountain Standard Time,
[email protected] writes:


> Yes - but if I say anything at all, then I inevitably end up with that
> person
> making further strong statesments about why they think that religious
> belief
> is just awful for various reasons and I am simply not interested in
> defending
> my religious beliefs against someone who really thinks that to have
> religious
> beliefs at all is to give up your own ability to think. That's the problem
> -
> they are happy to debate these issues and I'm not. I sit quietly and say
> nothing and the topic changes and that's that.
>

I'll be out there in April. Stir it up and I'll take her down.
And I'll be gone by the next week so she can gossip about me all she wants
without hurting my feelings!

Sandra


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

meghan anderson

<<<<" Do you know the Lord?"
Well, not personally, no.

Deb L>>>>

ROTFL!!! I had some people come to my door and ask me
that very same question. I was holding a large crystal
in my hand (it was a present I was about to wrap) and
I had incense burning (my dog was having a 'windy'
day). I said the same exact thing to them and they
couldn't get away fast enough, they didn't even leave
me anything to read! I think they thought I was the
devil incarnate <bwg>.

Meghan :-)

__________________________________________________
Do You Yahoo!?
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Fetteroll

on 12/18/01 9:59 PM, [email protected] at [email protected] wrote:

> She intended - and repeated it upon questioning - to say that morality could
> not coexist with religion; that religion was incompatible with morality.

Maybe she means by morality the ability to make moral decisions for new
situations. If morality is based on doing what God/the gods want(s) then how
can someone make a moral decision for a situation that is outside the
environment the rules were written for? Using Christianity as a specific
example, when God said Thou shalt not kill, apparently (based on the God
sanctioned and encouraged actions in a goodly portion of the Old Testament)
he didn't mean don't kill animals or your enemies. So how does someone apply
that morality to a being from another planet? Can we kill them?

(I'm not saying I believe that to be *the* religious mode of thinking, only
how it could be viewed.)

> That's the problem -
> they are happy to debate these issues and I'm not.

Get 'em on line. I'd love to debate them ;-) (Though I, too, would avoid the
confrontation face to face since I can't gather my words fast enough to have
an in-real-time debate ;-)

Joyce


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

[email protected]

In a message dated 12/19/01 6:13:50 AM, [email protected] writes:

<< Get 'em on line. I'd love to debate them ;-) (Though I, too, would avoid
the
confrontation face to face since I can't gather my words fast enough to have
an in-real-time debate ;-) >>

Me! Put me in!
April, California, Word Wrestling Federation.

But on a technicality I'd yield.
There are definitions and aspects of morality which just about require
religion. Catholics used to teach kids in my town in the 1960's that short
skirts and sleeveless dresses were immoral. A hundred years before that,
mid-calf skirts and short sleeves would have been immoral.

But I think if your atheist-agitator had said ethics, instead of morality,
I'd concede.

Sandra

kayb85

"Kill" isn't the best translation of that commandment. The best
translation is "murder". I agree that that "Thous shall not murder"
means "Don't murder another human being maliciously". There were laws
which allowed the Israelites to kill in self defense and there were
commands to sacrifice animals.

Aliens from another planet? I don't think that idea is consistent
with the teachings of creation in Genesis. For example, it
specifically says that God made the stars to give light to the earth.
There has yet to be any scientific inaccuracies in the Bible, so I
think we can count on this one too.

Sheila

> Maybe she means by morality the ability to make moral decisions for
new
> situations. If morality is based on doing what God/the gods want(s)
then how
> can someone make a moral decision for a situation that is outside
the
> environment the rules were written for? Using Christianity as a
specific
> example, when God said Thou shalt not kill, apparently (based on the
God
> sanctioned and encouraged actions in a goodly portion of the Old
Testament)
> he didn't mean don't kill animals or your enemies. So how does
someone apply
> that morality to a being from another planet? Can we kill them?
>
> (I'm not saying I believe that to be *the* religious mode of
thinking, only
> how it could be viewed.)
>
> > That's the problem -
> > they are happy to debate these issues and I'm not.
>
> Get 'em on line. I'd love to debate them ;-) (Though I, too, would
avoid the
> confrontation face to face since I can't gather my words fast enough
to have
> an in-real-time debate ;-)
>
> Joyce
>
>
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

[email protected]

<< For example, it
specifically says that God made the stars to give light to the earth. There
has yet to be any scientific inaccuracies in the Bible, so I think we can
count on this one too. >>

Sheila, have you actually, yourself, read the entire Bible thoughtfully, or
are you just believing and repeating what someone else told you about it?

Believing and repeating aren't good models for unschooling.
They work with regular school, and with a curriculum, but consider these
questions:



The stars don't light the earth.
And what lit the earth before God created stars (which don't either)?

Where did that water come from to cover the face of the entire earth?

What did the animals eat after Noah's ark landed? How long do you think it
would have taken for the land to dry out? What plants would have lived? And
did the carnivores eat each other?

Do you think God has stopped the sun in the sky (more than once)?

Will you answer all hard questions with "Don't ask"?

Is the ultimate answer to everything "It's a miracle"?

Sandra

[email protected]

Sheila said:
Aliens from another planet? I don't think that idea is consistent
with the teachings of creation in Genesis.
For example, it
specifically says that God made the stars to give light to the earth.
There has yet to be any scientific inaccuracies in the Bible, so I
think we can count on this one too.

Unless of course, one doesn't believe in the Judeo-Christian bible/
differing interpretaions/literal translations.
Elissa

Tia Leschke

>
> There has yet to be any scientific inaccuracies in the Bible, so I
>think we can count on this one too.

If you say so.
Tia

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.
Eleanor Roosevelt
*********************************************
Tia Leschke
[email protected]
On Vancouver Island

kayb85

Elissa,
I realize that some don't believe in the Bible. I was answering
someone who said that the Bible doesn't say whether or not we can kill
aliens.
Sheila

--- In [email protected], <[email protected]> wrote:
> Sheila said:
> Aliens from another planet? I don't think that idea is consistent
> with the teachings of creation in Genesis.
> For example, it
> specifically says that God made the stars to give light to the
earth.
> There has yet to be any scientific inaccuracies in the Bible, so I
> think we can count on this one too.
>
> Unless of course, one doesn't believe in the Judeo-Christian bible/
> differing interpretaions/literal translations.
> Elissa

meghan anderson

<<<<There has yet to be any scientific inaccuracies in
the Bible, so I think we can count on this one
too.>>>>

What?!!! (said in a disbelieving tone)

Meghan

__________________________________________________
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Check out Yahoo! Shopping and Yahoo! Auctions for all of
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Fetteroll

on 12/19/01 11:17 AM, kayb85 at [email protected] wrote:

> Aliens from another planet? I don't think that idea is consistent
> with the teachings of creation in Genesis.

Well it was meant as a "for instance" example but it would work better with
something we have right now.

The Bible doesn't specifically mention cloning, does it? God didn't say Thou
shalt not clone. To figure out what God wants man to do about cloning don't
you need to extrapolate from God's wishes on other things?

What about pollution, destruction of habitats, smoking? (I'd need some help
here from someone who knows the Bible better! ;-) Undoubtedly there are
lists of things that exist today that aren't specifically spelled out in
other "do what God wants" religions like Judaism and Islam.

If morality is based on what God wants rather than what is right, then when
faced with a situation that isn't specifically spelled out, then man is in
the position of interpetting the mind of God rather than figuring out what
is right.

(And I'm not saying I believe they're mutually exclusive. Only that's what
Religion and morality are mutually exclusive seems to be saying.)

The Golden Rule is a pretty universal moral arrived at independently in many
places and many times. You don't need a God to tell you it's true. It's just
a reasonable idea among creatures that are naturally social, perhaps an
inherent part of being social. So is Do as much good and as little harm as
possible.

But when morality is ethics mixed in with requirements from God, then
doesn't it become almost impossible to know what God wants man to do in
situations that aren't specifically spelled out? The Golden Rule is
derivable from living. "You shall have no other gods besides Me," and "You
shall not make for yourself an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven
above or on earth beneath or in the water under the earth," or "You shall
not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not leave
him unpunished who takes His name in vain," or "Remember the sabbath day, to
keep it holy," all need specifically spelled out for someone to recognize
them as morals.

(And I'm not sure I'm still getting it clear and perhaps they meant
something entirely different so there isn't a real reason for discussing it.
;-)

Joyce

[email protected]

In a message dated 12/20/01 5:23:56 AM, [email protected] writes:

<< To figure out what God wants man to do about cloning don't
you need to extrapolate from God's wishes on other things? >>

It certainly is multiplying! But it's an unnatural act.

Smoking is handled under the "your body is a temple" clause.

<<What about pollution, destruction of habitats, smoking? (I'd need some help
here from someone who knows the Bible better! ;-)>>

One way of looking at pollution and desctruction of habitats and extinction
of species is that we should concern ourselves with the souls of men and the
worship of God, and have faith that Jesus is coming back any minute. So to
treat the earth as though it's a long-range situation instead of the 6,000
year old temporary living space of God's people would be blasphemous.

Sandra

[email protected]

In a message dated 12/20/2001 4:23:47 AM Pacific Standard Time,
[email protected] writes:


> If morality is based on what God wants rather than what is right, then when
> faced with a situation that isn't specifically spelled out, then man is in
> the position of interpetting the mind of God rather than figuring out what
> is right.



So - your interpretation of the "religion and morality are mutually
exclusive" is that religion necessarily means trying to follow God's will,
which isn't necessarily moral/right?

Unless your religion's basic premise is that God wants us to do right, which
is, of course, what a religious person believes. Then figuring out what is
right is the same as figuring out what God wants us to do.

I took it to mean she thought you really just couldn't be religious and moral
(do the right thing) at the same time - that one contradicted the other
automatically. I thought she meant that BEING religious made you
automatically immoral and being moral made you automatically NOT religious.

--pam


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

sherry lassiter

<So to treat the earth as though it's a long-range situation instead of
the 6,000 year old temporary living space of God's people would be
blasphemous.>


Eh???? So how do you explain the admonition to be good stewards??? The
way I see it is this... we are to take into consideration the whole
picture, the needs of man AND the needs of the earth and all of it's
inhabitants; something I'm afraid no one group has done too well at.
Christian or not. As for blasphemous, that's just plain laughable.
Sherry

--
"Behind every successful woman, is a substantial amount of coffee."

-- Stephanie Piro



[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

[email protected]

In a message dated 12/20/01 2:20:27 PM, [email protected] writes:

<< As for blasphemous, that's just plain laughable. >>

Well don't bother laughing at me.
If you act like Jesus is NOT coming tomorrow (say my Baptist teachers and a
million others like them) it's a lack of faith. God didn't make man to
defend the rain forest. God's eye is on the sparrow, and it's not our place
to mess with God's will, but Jesus is coming (they say) and we need to be
ready. One species or another doesn't matter when the world will be
destroyed by fire.

They're not laughing at all.

<<we are to take into consideration the whole
picture, the needs of man AND the needs of the earth and all of it's
inhabitants; something I'm afraid no one group has done too well at.
Christian or not. >>

And no one group CAN do, because there are so many factors no one group will
ever get it right and provide for the needs for all. But people keep on
trying. And Christians believe that God's already done it the right way long
ago and our job is just to trust Jesus and wait and watch to the horrible
imminent end.

Whatever people want to think or think would be right, that's the way a WHOLE
lot of people, and a disproportionate (on world averages) number of them are
homeschooling families.

Sandra

meghan anderson

<<<<One way of looking at pollution and desctruction
of habitats and extinction of species is that we
should concern ourselves with the souls of men and the
worship of God, and have faith that Jesus is coming
back any minute.
So to treat the earth as though it's a long-range
situation instead of the 6,000 year old temporary
living space of God's people would be blasphemous.

Sandra>>>>

And that, right there, is why I have a problem with a
lot of religions.

Meghan

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Fetteroll

on 12/20/01 11:21 AM, [email protected] at [email protected] wrote:

> It certainly is multiplying! But it's an unnatural act.

So the Bible says Thou shalt not commit any unnatural acts? It isn't natural
to ride on the back of another creature. Though burrs do it purely for
transportation reasons -- as opposed to parasites that use a body as a home
or breeding ground -- so perhaps that's okay.

There isn't much natural about flying in a jet. Though some animals use jet
propulsion so maybe that's okay too.

But is it okay to use a machine to assist when animals use only their own
God provided bodies? So would we be allowed to alter our own bodies to be
like other naturally occuring bodies or only like other naturally occuring
human bodies? If we can only do what is natural to humans then we shouldn't
be imitating burrs and riding on animals. If it is natural for us to use
machines to help us because our brains are God designed to do that, then
isn't cloning just another use of machines?

Or is it Thou shalt not commit any unnatural reproductive acts? So fertility
drugs would be immoral? Unless fertility drugs are merely extras of
naturally occuring chemicals in the body. So is it natural to bring
someone's low body chemistry up to the average? (Like insulin for
diabetics?) How about up to well above average if it's a level that occurs
naturally so someone becomes super fertile (to fill up that quiver really
fast)? So wouldn't that mean breast implants are morally acceptable because
some women do naturally have very large breasts? Though perhaps only if the
implants are made of fat.

Joyce


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Fetteroll

on 12/20/01 12:35 PM, [email protected] at [email protected] wrote:

> So - your interpretation of the "religion and morality are mutually
> exclusive" is that religion necessarily means trying to follow God's will,
> which isn't necessarily moral/right?

Yes. Though not necessarily immoral/wrong either. From outside the religion
some of the religion's moral requirements can look neutral.

But the problem is that what God/gods want seems -- from outside a religion
-- to occasionally override what seems to be a more universal morality.

Hmm, I think what's confusing is what morality is keeps slipping back and
forth between a universal morality and what an individual defines as
morality. *If* moral is doing what God wants then *only* religious people
can be moral since no one outside the religion could independently arrive at
the non-universal morals like keeping the Sabbath holy or how to keep it
holy or even that a Sabbath existed or what a Sabbath was or what that
particular God meant by holy.

Since the statement was made outside of religion, they apparently accept
that there's a universal morality. (For example be kind, be compassionate.)

> Unless your religion's basic premise is that God wants us to do right, which
> is, of course, what a religious person believes. Then figuring out what is
> right is the same as figuring out what God wants us to do.

If God's morality and a universal morality are one and the same, then doing
(universally) right, being (universally) moral and doing God's will are all
one and the same.

*If* God has additional requirements in order to be considered moral by
God's standards, especially requirements relating to our relationship with
God, then those extra requirements aren't derivable from living life from
the point of view of a universal morality, like being kind to each other.
They can only be gotten from reading a particular God's words.

*If* what God wants includes overriding universal morals based on what God
wants -- not necessarily what makes sense from a universal moral point of
view -- then that person is moral if they do what God says but not moral by
universal standards.

In the Old Testament God wanted the Jews to crush the people living in
Israel because God promised that land to the Jews. So apparently for God it
being moral to treat some humans as lesser than other humans.

In the Bhagavadgita the god/aspect of god, Krishna, spends the book
convincing the prince, who is siding with the morals of the priestly caste
that killing is wrong, that it is the prince's moral duty to go to war
because he's of the princely caste. And that birth, karma, requires him to
do what his position requires of him.

If a universal morality can be overridden by what God wants, then how can a
moral person judge what is moral when sometimes universal morality gets
overriden? When faced with a situation that is similar to a previous
override, is it okay to override for this time? (There were undoubtedly
Biblical justifications for slavery, for instance.)

So viewing the supposed moral requirements from the point of view of a
universal morality, those religions are requiring the followers to be
Immoral (by universal standards) in order to be moral within that religion.

::: whew! ::: I need to go rest my brain ;-)

> I took it to mean she thought you really just couldn't be religious and moral
> (do the right thing) at the same time - that one contradicted the other
> automatically. I thought she meant that BEING religious made you
> automatically immoral and being moral made you automatically NOT religious.

That's the way I took it too. But it doesn't make any logical sense. Though
there is certainly data to support it, there's far more contradictory data.
It only makes sense as a statement of anger against something they've been
hurt by, sort of like calling all men pigs after a bad ending to a
relationship. Which is not uncommon with people who've become atheists
because of a bad experience with religion. But it gives the rest of us
atheists a bad name ;-)

Joyce


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