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JAZZIEGIRL05's Photo JAZZIEGIRL05 Posts: 1,178
10/7/09 3:56 P

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Love the bumper stickers, Jen!

I happened to see Sarah Vowell on Jon Stewart last night and she talked about how she wished more religious fanatics were like Roger Williams. He thought everyone who wasn't a puritan was going to burn in hell, and that is punishment enough, so let's just be nice and all get along on our earthly life.

Perfect!
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Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.
-Samuel Beckett

Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind.
-Dr. Seuss


These are my principles. If you donít like them, Iíve got others.
- Groucho Marx



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BARBARA_BOO's Photo BARBARA_BOO Posts: 9,794
10/7/09 2:28 P

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Great bumper stickers, JEN. If there's a hell, I know I'm going there, too. So, meaning this in the best possible way, I hope to see you all in hell.
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Boo, Barb, BSue, Queen Legarathien of Nargothrond

"YOU'RE NEVER TOO OLD TO PLAY!"

~Team Leader, Separation of Church and Weight
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~Team Leader, The Darker Side of SparkPeople www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
ndividual.asp?gid=89


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GROOVY-FLOR's Photo GROOVY-FLOR Posts: 227
10/7/09 2:13 P

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I love this thread. :)

I think I'm in a different situation than a lot of people on this board. I am technically religious, it's just a type of religion that is rarely recognized by those in the majority as being legitamate. Not that it matters to me. Instead, I live my happy little life and try to live and let live. All I want is for other people to do the same.

Unfortunately that doesn't happen. On another website, I debate religion (it's fun!). Well, I get all sorts of "hate mail" from people who think that I am leading others astray, and I must repent before I burn in hell. I usually respond with "I already know I am going to hell. I've come to terms with it and moved on. I wish you would too." But that seems to piss them off even more.

Oh well, I'll live my life by two of my favorite bumper stickers: "Doing my best to piss off the religious right" and "Proud member of the immoral minority"!

~JEN~
Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.
Thomas Jefferson

Check out my blog at thisvegetarianlife.wordpress.com


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JAZZIEGIRL05's Photo JAZZIEGIRL05 Posts: 1,178
10/6/09 1:45 P

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Hi Fadedone. I've been gone for a bit, but was just catching up on this thread. It's nice to see you here!

More later...(gotta comment about swords & obedience & such!)

Jazzie



Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.
-Samuel Beckett

Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind.
-Dr. Seuss


These are my principles. If you donít like them, Iíve got others.
- Groucho Marx



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DANCINGPENGUIN's Photo DANCINGPENGUIN SparkPoints: (0)
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10/4/09 6:08 P

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Fade, I'm glad you feel comfortable posting here -- TRULY!

The topic at lunch today was this morning's sermon at my grandparents' Southern Baptist church. My mother attended; her sister did not. The preacher (whom my mother is not fond of) said he was going to be talking about marriage and how the Bible says women must submit to the men. And then he pulled out a SWORD to demonstrate his point.

Before I found out about this, my grandmother had already said she didn't care much for the sermon. She's been married 67 years, so she feels like perhaps she knows a thing or two about marriage.

My mother, my aunt, my uncle all mocked this idea. Which I take as more proof that people raised in fundamentalist faiths can still think for themselves. (Mom was Methodist when we were growing up but has returned to Baptist. Her sister is Methodist).


Gotta run and I know this is off topic from my original post. More later.


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FADEDONE's Photo FADEDONE Posts: 188
10/4/09 4:18 P

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OOh, i'm so glad I found this thread. I'm really finding some of these comments intriguing + thought-provoking.

As to the initial discussion re prevalence of religiosity permeating life and culture, I agree with others who have pointed to culture shift. I admit, I haven't seen a huge change but I think this because i'm only 23 and don't have enough to compare with yet. It is true though...it's surprising to see how very HARDCORE religion is getting. And even though the fundamental Christians "yell" the loudest sometimes, i'm noticing it's not just any one belief system. Islam is rapidly gaining converts, people are converting to Judaism or experimenting with Buddhist or pagan faiths, etc. Everyone is looking for answers....I get the feeling everyone is convinced the world is ending soon. o.o Which...I haven't decided how I feel about that. Sometimes I say 'bring it on' and other days I really think people need to stop wishing for annihilation to fix(FIX?) the world's problems. lol. Admittedly though, at times I enjoy this shift towards searching. Religion + faith is definitely something I enjoy studying and learning more about, so if the topic of culture and conversation leans that way, more fun for me! It does get overwhelming at times though when all you want to do is lose weight or trade recipes or whatever, NOT be inundated by the latest recruitment speech of the latest fad religion. :(

As to some of the comments about "right wing fundamentalist nutjobs" I'm amused. I commiserate to an extent...as I mentioned in my intro thread, I just graduated from a conservative Baptist school. A LARGE percentage of my college friends are right wingers. And there are definitely some borderline nut-jobs among them! ;) We all manage to tolerate/love/put up with each other fairly well, though I do get in my share of facebook scraps every time Obama gets declared some form of anti-American anti-Christ. *grin*

Anyway, I further love this group after reading some comments here. I know my views are somewhat different since i'm still quasi-Christian and quasi-openmindedtoanythingatall. But yes, loving it.

Edited by: FADEDONE at: 10/4/2009 (16:22)
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BARBARA_BOO's Photo BARBARA_BOO Posts: 9,794
10/4/09 12:01 P

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I like both of those words, "free" and "thinker". Feeling pushed around by those who claim to have a supreme being (aka:imaginary friend) validating their position is what I find distasteful.

All religion does not offend me. It's the ones whose followers include a number of "unthinking" kooks, who seem easily led by a pretty face and empty head (a little more schooling wouldn't hurt Sarah Palin, for example. Many who defend her are LOUDLY (with a mean spirit) defending a "symbol" of their "team", as in a competitive sports event, without even thinking about the potential violence.

I AM an enthusiastic "eye-roller" and aggressive listener to the holy-rollers, I'll admit. They are entitled to their opinions, and if their beliefs help them, that's great. When they feel unlistened to by me, I'm afraid they are correct. That's because I feel they want to FORCE me to believe that I am automatically wrong, just because their God sides with them.

Religion that brings people together in mutual respect is more in keeping with the free-thinking that I admire.

Edited by: BARBARA_BOO at: 10/12/2009 (20:54)
Boo, Barb, BSue, Queen Legarathien of Nargothrond

"YOU'RE NEVER TOO OLD TO PLAY!"

~Team Leader, Separation of Church and Weight
www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
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~Team Leader, The Darker Side of SparkPeople www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
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LOEGAIRE's Photo LOEGAIRE Posts: 12,385
9/29/09 9:59 P

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My favorite is "free thinker". Covers a whole lot of ground!

Do not try and think outside the box. Instead, only try to realize the truth. There is no box.
***
Good judgement comes from experience. Experience usually comes from bad judgement.
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Live each day as if it's your last, because one day you'll be right.
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Stop whining and DO something!
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SWIFTSEATURTLE's Photo SWIFTSEATURTLE Posts: 3,328
9/29/09 10:01 A

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"Spiritual atheist" is what I have been calling
"agnostic." Or, "agnostic atheist." I just read enough to know, the words don't have the exact meaning I first had learned, somewhere way back when.



LOEGAIRE's Photo LOEGAIRE Posts: 12,385
9/28/09 7:07 P

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See, if THEY want to hand out tracts, put up billboards, knock on your door at 8:00 in the morning, etc. they're just exercising their religious freedom. If YOU ask questions, say you don't believe in that stuff, or carry on about that silly separation of church and state, you're being intolerant and hateful.

Do not try and think outside the box. Instead, only try to realize the truth. There is no box.
***
Good judgement comes from experience. Experience usually comes from bad judgement.
***
Live each day as if it's your last, because one day you'll be right.
***
Stop whining and DO something!
***
I have no shift key and I must scream.


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JAZZIEGIRL05's Photo JAZZIEGIRL05 Posts: 1,178
9/28/09 7:05 P

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Again, I say: I can be tolerant of everything but intolerance.

That's all you're doing, Lostinpaperwork... and I'm there with you!

(I think I stole that quote from Bill Maher...thanks Bill!)

Edited by: JAZZIEGIRL05 at: 9/28/2009 (19:07)
Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.
-Samuel Beckett

Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind.
-Dr. Seuss


These are my principles. If you donít like them, Iíve got others.
- Groucho Marx



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LOSTINPAPERWORK's Photo LOSTINPAPERWORK Posts: 202
9/28/09 5:34 P

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And you know what I hate? That I feel like I'M being INtolerant of "them" and I don't want to be at all, but really?? They can be that mean/cruel and ignorant and it's ok cause they're saved?? Hmmm....

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LOEGAIRE's Photo LOEGAIRE Posts: 12,385
9/28/09 5:31 P

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If there's one thing I absolutely HATE, it's intolerance! Get all the intolerant people, along with all the bigots, and ship 'em back where they came from!

Do not try and think outside the box. Instead, only try to realize the truth. There is no box.
***
Good judgement comes from experience. Experience usually comes from bad judgement.
***
Live each day as if it's your last, because one day you'll be right.
***
Stop whining and DO something!
***
I have no shift key and I must scream.


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BARBARA_BOO's Photo BARBARA_BOO Posts: 9,794
9/28/09 4:59 P

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I can't stand right-wing nutjobs! They incite violence, hiding behind their brand of religion.
emoticon
There. I feel better now.

Rock on, I'm heading out the door again.
emoticon

Edited by: BARBARA_BOO at: 10/4/2009 (12:05)
Boo, Barb, BSue, Queen Legarathien of Nargothrond

"YOU'RE NEVER TOO OLD TO PLAY!"

~Team Leader, Separation of Church and Weight
www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
ndividual.asp?gid=2072

~Team Leader, The Darker Side of SparkPeople www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
ndividual.asp?gid=89


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ELECTRALYTE's Photo ELECTRALYTE Posts: 10,207
9/28/09 3:35 P

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This was a fantastic thread to read. Thank you for the "fresh air"

ďit's been up to me to inspire me.Ē
~ Eric Clapton ~

"Atheism is a non-prophet
organization"
~George Carlin~

ďWhen the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace.Ē
~Jimi Hendrix~

"A dream you dream alone is only a dream. A dream you dream together is reality."
~John Lennon~

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DALAI_LALA's Photo DALAI_LALA Posts: 2,716
9/28/09 3:31 P

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@Loegaire: probably both...

"Being defeated is often temporary, giving up makes it permanent." - Marilyn vos Savant

"We expect these things to change by waking up, and suddenly there they are." - Toad


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LOSTINPAPERWORK's Photo LOSTINPAPERWORK Posts: 202
9/28/09 3:30 P

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I love reading about how you are hostile against the right-wing fundamentalists. :-) I feel that way too. Of course, I would never do anything or act on my hostility like they would theirs... It's hard to find people who won't "judge" you if you say, "I really hate right-wing nutjobs!" I love this group! :-)

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SWIFTSEATURTLE's Photo SWIFTSEATURTLE Posts: 3,328
9/28/09 2:23 P

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Thank you, thank you, thank you, all, for the FRESH AIR. I'm breathing much better since coming back and reading this thread.

Loegaire, I just googled something about the numbers but what I read was gobbledygook -- search overload.

I'm hostile against the right-wing fundamentalists, but forgiving of the born-agains who helped elect President Obama. Obama himself claims to be born-again (he didn't use the exact term), though I read somewhere, it might be considered something that was politically necessary. More likely, it was because of Michelle's beliefs. Obama's mother and grandparents were Unitarians.

I joined the Obama Sparkteam, but part of the reason I didn't stay was the uneasy association with the born-agains.

And this team is not political. So excuse my post.
Just letting it all hang out.

At the Unitarian Church near us, there's now a manned police car present at all their gatherings, that I've noticed. I'm wondering if some of these extreme right psychos around here have been making threats.

Now I have edited this post into a blathering blog.
Sorry, again, for blurring religion and politics.
They started it (the right-wing fundamentalists)!




Edited by: SWIFTSEATURTLE at: 9/28/2009 (15:10)
LOEGAIRE's Photo LOEGAIRE Posts: 12,385
9/28/09 2:17 P

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Are there really more fundies than there used to be? Or have they just gotten louder and more impolite?

Do not try and think outside the box. Instead, only try to realize the truth. There is no box.
***
Good judgement comes from experience. Experience usually comes from bad judgement.
***
Live each day as if it's your last, because one day you'll be right.
***
Stop whining and DO something!
***
I have no shift key and I must scream.


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JAZZIEGIRL05's Photo JAZZIEGIRL05 Posts: 1,178
9/28/09 1:46 P

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Don't confuse me with the facts!

That's why they don't listen... emoticon .

Seriously, when I was in high school, I remember being told not to learn too much of the "world". It is dangerous and might cause me to lose faith.

They were right.

Jazzie

Edited by: JAZZIEGIRL05 at: 9/28/2009 (13:47)
Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.
-Samuel Beckett

Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind.
-Dr. Seuss


These are my principles. If you donít like them, Iíve got others.
- Groucho Marx



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KRISCHICK's Photo KRISCHICK Posts: 8,470
9/28/09 1:29 P

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They have proven that abstinence only doesn't work - why don't people listen? Ugh!

Kris

If you focus on results, you will never change. If you focus on change, you will get results. Jack Dixon

If we all did the things we are capabale of doing we would literally astound ourselves.
Thomas Edison


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ADOPTMOM1 Posts: 8,660
9/28/09 1:16 P

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LOL, I feel the same way about FB. When did all my cool friends in HS become such freaks?

AS for the evangelicals, they're way more strict around here. Many of the churches have those dress codes with the women wearing long denim skirts and uncut hair. Most of the E's I met from around here are more like the family on 18 kids and counting. Also because they've managed to force or school system into teaching abstinence only sex ed, our small country school has a much higher rate of teen pregnancy (as well as abuse of prescription drugs) than most of the Indianapolis Public Schools.

Tami

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COFFEEDIVA's Photo COFFEEDIVA Posts: 745
9/28/09 12:29 P

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Hello Dalai - I don't think you are full of crap at all. I think you hit the nail on the head. The millenium does fuel this type of religious resurgence as people seek the meaning and relevance of their lives. Still, that was ten years ago. . .I'm ready for it to die back to a tolerable level anytime soon. . .

Coffeediva

"Do What You Love; the Money Will Follow." (That's the title of a book I love -- and I'm working on getting the gumption to believe it!)


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BARBARA_BOO's Photo BARBARA_BOO Posts: 9,794
9/28/09 12:08 P

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What a breath of fresh air you all are! Thanks, PENGUIN, for bringing up the subject. This in-your-face angry religious stuff that we are currently NOT enjoying does seem more pervasive than EVER.

I'm so happy that we have this refuge where we don't feel alone and where we can voice our opinions without being attacked. Sometimes it really feels good to let our feelings about it ooze out...

The bumper sticker pretty much says it for me, too. I used to say I'm agnostic. Then, I took an online quiz that told me I'm a spiritual atheist. Since I like the sound of that, it goes on the religious preference line of all forms for me now. Militant atheists can be as annoying as southern fundamentalists (the family of my roots). My children call me "almost an atheist".

The FACEBOOK thing is interesting. In connecting with people I know well from the past, I am ALSO AMAZED and surprised that, as LOSTINPAPERWORK says, "people I have been friends with for YEARS (YEARS!!) are super, super religious and so judgmental- wandering a bit across the line of sanity". I grin to myself as I think of them reading "Spiritual Atheist" on my Facebook Profile.
(I have to get my licks in somehow.)
emoticon emoticon
See you wonderful people later. I'm on my way out the door.

Boo, Barb, BSue, Queen Legarathien of Nargothrond

"YOU'RE NEVER TOO OLD TO PLAY!"

~Team Leader, Separation of Church and Weight
www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
ndividual.asp?gid=2072

~Team Leader, The Darker Side of SparkPeople www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
ndividual.asp?gid=89


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LOSTINPAPERWORK's Photo LOSTINPAPERWORK Posts: 202
9/28/09 11:38 A

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Hi! I haven't read everyone's posts to the initial one in this thread, so I will probably repeat or say something "dumb" :-) but I feel THE EXACT SAME WAY you do, Penguin. I was just asking my hubby that the other day- since WHEN did religion become injected into every single thing?? And I have realized, recently, that facebook stresses me out. I love it- I like being able to keep in contact with several friends, but I have realized that people I have been friends with for YEARS (YEARS!!) are super, super religious and so judgmental- wandering a bit across the line of sanity, and it has really caused me to stop and think... it's a very strange feeling. Anyway, I will continue to read the posts, but I just wanted to say, "I KNOW HOW YOU FEEL!!!" :-)

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KRISCHICK's Photo KRISCHICK Posts: 8,470
9/28/09 11:38 A

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Jazzie - I am a former "fundamentalist" having been raised in the Church of Christ yet in college (20 years ago) I moved away from it. In the last few years my own non-theism has solidified - but the bottom line is that I know an awful lot about the bible and where in the world does someone get that that God wants us to only eat fruits and vegetables? SHEESH!

As for the rise in Evangelicism (is that the word) - these charismatic, evangelical churches are FUN! You get to wear jeans, you have rock music and singing and dancing - who doesn't want to go and party like that! I think that's why they are are growing and the more sedate churches - Methodist (altho they have singing and dancing and rock bands now too), Presbyterians, etc. are seeing diminishing numbers.

I have friends (IRL & on Spark) that are Christian and they know my own beliefs and we are friends. If we can't remain friends because of religion well then they weren't that great of a friend were they?

I try to ignore as much of the religious stuff as possible but I do think it is more in your face now than before.

I have that bumper sticker by they way - but it's not currently on my car... I do have my COEXIST and Obama stickers proudly displayed! I also belong to and participate in a Humanist group here in Columbus, so I don't feel quite so alone in my non-theism!

Kris

If you focus on results, you will never change. If you focus on change, you will get results. Jack Dixon

If we all did the things we are capabale of doing we would literally astound ourselves.
Thomas Edison


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DALAI_LALA's Photo DALAI_LALA Posts: 2,716
9/28/09 11:34 A

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I think that the world goes through cycles, with certain "fads" rising and falling in popularity. The millennium rollover might have caused an upspike in general anxiety - not an "end of the world" anxiety as much as a general looking both back and forward, realizing how fast the world has changed, how small the world has gotten, the rise of women's rights and gay rights and civil rights... While some of us take pleasure in progress, many people are so fearful of change that they instead turn back to a comforting, all powerful god who will protect them from these scary things.

There ya go, Lala's pop psych 101! (I am SO full of crap...)

:)

- Lala

"Being defeated is often temporary, giving up makes it permanent." - Marilyn vos Savant

"We expect these things to change by waking up, and suddenly there they are." - Toad


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ADOPTMOM1 Posts: 8,660
9/28/09 11:23 A

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I keep hearing on all these groups here and there that the fundamentalists are taking over the country but honestly, I don't think they are. I think that they are LOUDER now because they're losing control and feel the need to make a bigger noise.

As for the Mormon church... I have studied that one in great depth as a folklorist. I can understand how they were able to get that load of hooey past a bunch of uneducated pioneers but how in the world do people in this day and age, who are educated and have access to instant information buy that story?

Tami

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JAZZIEGIRL05's Photo JAZZIEGIRL05 Posts: 1,178
9/28/09 11:06 A

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Great topic Penguin. I have wondered if it was ME who changed, or if it really is a different world. Probably a combination of both.

I feel like a former 3 pack a day smoker who has given it up and now finds it abhorrent to be around.

What is different now is that some issues, gay rights is a great example, are really making progress and I think that's bringing out the religion in many. I try to tolerate anything but intolerance, and mostly what I see from RR is intolerance. And it's in-my-face intolerance. The Mormon church spending millions to defeat the right of same sex marriages in California...etc. etc.

I consider myself an atheist; however, "I don't know, and you don't either" is me, too...maybe I'm agnostic? But I have no desire to convince anyone else of that. But I DO want to convince people that atheists can be kind, caring, intelligent people who might live next door to you. Do not be afraid. If they ask me to pray for them (which happens occasionally), I respond "I will be thinking of you...is there anything else I can do?"

I ventured into another SparkTeam on whole foods (I mentioned this in another post...sorry for the repetition) where someone said "God wants us to eat only fruits & vegetables, so why are Omega 3s in animals?" (I'm paraphrasing...but that was the jest of it). I came running back to share my frustration/amusement.

I spose it's a combination of the last political reign (Shrub years...ha ha Turtle, very cute)vs a new more tolerant president AND our culture moving forward in some areas. But I dunno. Interesting to discuss though...

Jazzie



Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.
-Samuel Beckett

Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind.
-Dr. Seuss


These are my principles. If you donít like them, Iíve got others.
- Groucho Marx



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ADOPTMOM1 Posts: 8,660
9/28/09 10:56 A

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I do think that the ferver has picked up since 9/11. It seems impossible to me but some people are willing to overlook all the lies and crap the last administration sold to us and the condition of the economy because he allowed the right wing fundies to walk all over him. They would rather watch the country fall into complete collapse than make a more centerist change and do something about it.

Tami

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SWIFTSEATURTLE's Photo SWIFTSEATURTLE Posts: 3,328
9/28/09 10:41 A

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About other teams: there are some that I joined and then unjoined, and others that I found and have been able to ignore the in-your-face God part.

I have religious Sparkfriends who must've read what teams I'm on and it hasn't ruined the connection.

It's just not the same connection I feel with members of this team. emoticon

Penguin, I haven't looked it up, but I think the numbers of evangelical/fundamentalist Christians have grown, while the numbers of the more reserved denominations has shrunk. I'm guessing that's how you were brought up--maybe Episcopal or Christian Church(?) or something else well-mannered!



Edited by: SWIFTSEATURTLE at: 9/28/2009 (14:13)
SWIFTSEATURTLE's Photo SWIFTSEATURTLE Posts: 3,328
9/28/09 10:13 A

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My opinion -- largely, it's a cultural shift.

Though, the slant in my childhood religion was that you should "live" your religion, not just leave it in church on Sunday morning. The spewing that goes on now is not what was meant by living it -- I feel sure.

I'm agnostic. On one of the other teams, I read that there's a bumper sticker that says "I don't know and you don't either." That's me.

Tami, don't you think it was really prominent since 2001, or just before, and all through the Shrub years? But since they lost the last election, the tone has changed?

For us, it's so parallel to Red State/Blue State. Well, not so much, anymore.

Having been an evangelical, I know if they're sincere, they want you to be SAVED. If I never hear it, then I think, don't they care about me?

emoticon HAPPY HEATHEN

Edited by: SWIFTSEATURTLE at: 9/28/2009 (10:33)
ADOPTMOM1 Posts: 8,660
9/28/09 10:11 A

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I think this election has really brought it all to the forefront. The right wing conservatives already had their knickers in a twist that their puppet boy and poster girl didn't win. Then Obama had the audacity to mention persons of all faith or lack of, in his inauguration speech.

I don't know that it's new though. From what I understand there was big drama from many people when they elected Kennedy who was a poster child for huge catholic families.

Tami

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9/28/09 9:53 A

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I just adore this team, and Boo is a great leader. But I just don't understand something. When did the evolution (ha) of religious talk get to where it was so in my face all the time that I have to seek out a special team that deliberately stays apart from it? I don't remember it ever being like this before.

When I was a kid, we just didn't talk about religion except at church. During the week it's not something that came up. It would have been impolite to talk about it with visitors. My parents never invoked God's name. My grandparents thought displays of religion were sacreligious.

Later, in college, it seemed to be a topic that was "brought up" as opposed to just being peppered throughout conversation. I WAS, however, in college the first time I heard someone casually say, "Pray for me!" (about a test she was taking). And also the first time I ever heard of anyone not believing in evolution. Understand that I came from a religious family in the South, and it had NEVER in my childhood been posited to me that one couldn't believe in both evolution and an almighty God! I was led to believe that the bible spoke metaphorically, not literally. I was stunned when the across-the-hall student my first year of college said she didn't believe in evolution.

Meanwhile, with Facebook I've reconnected with several people from college. Two of them have apparently gone off the deep end on religion. Both seem to think that their God is intervening in their lives based on the amount of prayer they do, and yet both have had horrific tragedies related to children (a devastating disease and a stillbirth). I don't understand anything about this, but I have no idea how to ask them, and I was raised that you don't do that. Neither of them was constantly spewing god talk 22 years ago. Yet I feel subjected to frequent "god is great" posts that seem to me completely inappropriate for more reasons than one.

I don't walk around seeing myself as all that different from other people. I tend to assume that others believe in divine powers more than I do, but I know a hekkuva lot of atheists, too. In my daily life, there are any number of things that I identify with more than religious issues, but here at SparkPeople it feels like I have to go running to this corner to get away from it. WHY IS THAT?

Do others of you see this as a cultural shift that has happened, or for you has it always been this way? More critically, how can I make it stop???

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