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What is wrong with following Christ’s teachings?

Atelier3

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There are a number of threads in this forum that are clearly anti-Christian. These threads often mix up the Old Testament and the New Testament and confuse the institutional Christian churches and the actions or beliefs of the laity.

My question is, if we focus exclusively on the New Testament, are there problems with what Jesus has asked of us. These might be things he has instructed us to do but also things he neglected to advise us on if we are to build a community of believers to follow him.

For the purposes of conversation let’s allow that many parts of the New Testament are metaphorical and not literal.
 

deficiT

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Jesus was a very cool dude and his teaching was basically just 'The Golden Rule'. Which is obviously still valuable today.

I have noticed the same issue with this forum and yes, I do believe it boils down to one person dominating the conversation and also less activity here than in other forums. I think there's plenty of Christian BLers, they just might not be the loudest in the room.

I consider myself a Christian but am not really one to go to church or preach the Good Word. I believe those that are searching for faith and redemption, will find it sooner or later on their own.
 

Atelier3

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Yes. Unlike Jesus, I was looking for a fight earlier.

However, it’s still an interesting question I think.
 

bongdong

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As an 'insider' myself (was indoctrinated as a child to some degree; living in a country with a Christian history etc.), I had to shred it all to bits, leave it behind, go into buddhist philosophy/practice before I could consider the possibility that what this Jesus dude pointed to has actually some spiritual juice in it. But that doesn't seem to be the question here. It's about following and teachings, so we are talking about a 'mental operating system' again, right?

My question is, if we focus exclusively on the New Testament, are there problems with what Jesus has asked of us. These might be things he has instructed us to do but also things he neglected to advise us on if we are to build a community of believers to follow him.
I think we have enough historical data to know, to what blindly following scriptures leads. Islam is the poster child right now. I'm convinced that no book can live up to the uniqueness of what's happening now, to what this moment requires. I had this view before I came across that, but he phrased it pointed:
Ideology always paves the way towards atrocity. (T. K. McKenna)
I'm not keen on labels, but one could say I'm anti-ideology, which basically makes me anti-Christian because of that. I don't think we would lose anything if we, as a collective, would ditch Christianity as mainstream belief, on the contrary. I think monotheism is certainly among the most infantile, destructive and dangerous thinking system humankind has ever come up with! And there are plenty of other things/ways that facilitate building communities, helping each other out, doing good etc. that are based on common sense, and that are more inclusive.

For the purposes of conversation let’s allow that many parts of the New Testament are metaphorical and not literal.
Well then we are solely discussing ideas, and all the following, believing, teaching and ideological sacredness of this or that book are out the window, aren't they? And that's what egos can't stand, uncertainty, and what closed thinking systems falsely promise. For me, that's the key, and what makes the difference. Since there is, per definition, no discourse possible when people are trapped in ideology, I think mockery is surely not nice but in case of Christianity effective to some degree in this age. I certainly don't want this stuff to get institutionalized again, or more than it still is.

And when the conversation which we so gracefully allowed is over, do we start believing and following again? (Sorry for the cynicism, was more of a rhetoric means here.)

Actually discussing whether the eggs of the Easter bunny are yellow or green seems a bit silly, unless you truely believe of course. That appears to be what this subforum is mainly about, clashing beliefs, and why I stay mostly away from it, even though I'm somewhat drawn to philosophy and stuff. But that's ok, it is what it is.

Greetings 😇
 
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deficiT

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I'm not keen on labels, but one could say I'm anti-ideology, which basically makes me anti-Christian because of that
I love Mckenna, but I disagree with him here. I don't think ideology is inherently dangerous. In fact I think ideology (political, economic, or spiritual) is incredibly useful as means to relate with each other and understand the world. But there is a difference between successfully incorporating an ideology to help better the world, and using ideology as sword to oppress and/or dominate people. I'd argue that most people subscribe to some ideology or another, even unconsciously. Such is the nature of belief systems. When it veers into thoughtless dogma is when it can be used as a justification for atrocity.

I'm what others might call a 'dirty commie' of sorts. But even if I subscribe to certain political philosophy, it doesn't mean I can't be critical of how my beliefs can and have been implemented.

When people stop questioning and testing their own beliefs is when you run into trouble. Christianity (and other religions) has certainly been used to justify terror and violence, but I don't think that it's practice is inherently bad or needs to be tossed out.
 

aemetha

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@Atelier3 let me tell you a story about a couple of evangelists who came to my door to talk to me about it once.

They asked me if I wanted to hear about their god etc. I replied to them, sure, why don't you tell me what you're doing about all the evil acts and discrimination that has been and still is committed in his name? They then proceeded to tell me about how the church of yesterday isn't the church of today and that christian teachings aren't the same. So I said to them, okay, so have you updated your book? They looked at me confused. I said, the bible, have you updated your bible? Have you removed all the evil content and the discriminatory content. They then explained that it was god's book and his word and that it wasn't their place to update the book as I was requesting.

So I asked them to see the book. They took it out and showed it to me, and I opened it and showed them where it says "King Jame's revision". And they looked at me confused. So I explained to them that it's called the King Jame's bible, because he updated the book. So clearly, it is possible and permissible for the book to be updated. But it hasn't been. So they shuffled around in confusion for a bit and mumbled excuses and then left. But they didn't update their book.

And this is the problem I have with Christianity. They want to tell you that they've changed. They want to tell you that they are about doing good. They won't accept that some of their actions are bad and they won't take steps to correct those actions. They won't update their book. It's the old adage. The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to say nothing.
 

Psycho_Logic

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Points ranging from -10 to +10 (20 points value span)

Jesus teachings-> +10 points

Regular Christian believers-> subjective, but for me it is 0 points due to not following the teaching

Churches -> -10 points, they are wealthiest organisations on Earth and yet...

Jehowah witnesses-> -5 points due to inconsistencies and harassing nature

People that follow the teaching, knowingly or unknowingly, be they Christians, Muslims, Jews or atheists -> +10 points



My verdict -> Teachings that are written in gospels are perfect way to live. If one is following them we have one better person acting in the world, and thus statistically we have a +1 better world. Don't do to other what you don't want to experience is same as the law of physics saying that the force applied in one direction will yield same counter force. And if you want a world where everybody is at least a decent force you will have nothing against the teachings of the gospels. As I said churches, various sects and organisations are something entirely different.

Peace.
 
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alasdairm

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But there is a difference between successfully incorporating an ideology to help better the world, and using ideology as sword to oppress and/or dominate people.

amen :)

gandhi said: “I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.

i see examples of that everywhere. e.g.



alasdair
 

Psycho_Logic

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And this is the problem I have with Christianity. They want to tell you that they've changed. They want to tell you that they are about doing good. They won't accept that some of their actions are bad and they won't take steps to correct those actions. They won't update their book. It's the old adage.
Old testament is the book, or set of books, stolen from Jewish corpus (and even earlier stories) and is so contradictory that it is amazing how people can see it as book written by perfect creature. When combined with New testament (which is also contradictory and I would only use gospels as Teaching of Jesus) the mess is even bigger. It is clear that "The Bible" is combined as a result of a power games and should be almost discarded. I would discard almost everything except the gospels, in which I neither believe or don't believe but that if followed make for a good human being.
 

JessFR

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amen :)

gandhi said: “I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.

i see examples of that everywhere. e.g.



alasdair

To be fair, it's very popular to call Westboro Baptist Church representatives of Christianity, but they like any other religious group. They have parts of the Bible they adhere to more closely than others.

Most Christians are not like Westboro. And Westboro has absolutely no time for most Christians either.
 

Zephyn

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I mean the millions of people murdered to further "his" religion where the teaching echo that of all benevolent parts of ANY spirituality doesn't get yo you?
 

deficiT

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Old testament is the book, or set of books, stolen from Jewish corpus (and even earlier stories) and is so contradictory that it is amazing how people can see it as book written by perfect creature. When combined with New testament (which is also contradictory and I would only use gospels as Teaching of Jesus) the mess is even bigger. It is clear that "The Bible" is combined as a result of a power games and should be almost discarded. I would discard almost everything except the gospels, in which I neither believe or don't believe but that if followed make for a good human being.
There is still value found in the scriptures I think. If someone reads them simply as they are, stories, with an open mind, it could be spiritually beneficial. There is a lot of brutality and you could make the argument that the religion itself is contradictory. But I still think those that are interested in theology or spirituality can get something out of them.
 

Gormur

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I think monotheism is certainly among the most infantile, destructive and dangerous thinking system humankind has ever come up with! And there are plenty of other things/ways that facilitate building communities, helping each other out, doing good etc. that are based on common sense, and that are more inclusive.
I think the problem is when Christians call Christianity monotheistic because that's misleading. Sure, not every sect believes in the Trinity but the majority do. The Trinity is polytheistic, by the way (dualism) or I could be PC about it and call it my opinion, I guess
There are a number of threads in this forum that are clearly anti-Christian. These threads often mix up the Old Testament and the New Testament and confuse the institutional Christian churches and the actions or beliefs of the laity.

My question is, if we focus exclusively on the New Testament, are there problems with what Jesus has asked of us. These might be things he has instructed us to do but also things he neglected to advise us on if we are to build a community of believers to follow him.

For the purposes of conversation let’s allow that many parts of the New Testament are metaphorical and not literal.
Once again, I think the problem is defining this anti-Christianity. I've heard about it (a lot) yet I still don't know what it's supposed to mean exactly. Is it somebody doing something against Christians? That would be persecution but wouldn't be something I'd call anti-[insert religion]. Personally I think most arguments start because people don't know what they're arguing about
 

Xorkoth

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The teachings of Jesus the man from the New Testament speak of radical love, nonviolence, and keeping money out of the church, and helping and feeding the poor, sheltering refugees, and treating every man as your brother. The guy had the right idea. How his message got twisted into one of fear, intolerance, hatred, turning away refugees, and illegalizing homelessness, is beyond me.

It's unquestionable that the Christian religion (Catholic specifically) in the times since Jesus' death has been responsible for horrible atrocities (rape and conquest to "save" "heathen" people in the name of imperialism, the Crusades, the Inquisition, etc). But those events are very far from the teachings of Jesus as outlined in the New Testament. They're a sick perversion of a beautiful man's teachings.
 

JackARoe

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Jesus was a very cool dude and his teaching was basically just 'The Golden Rule'. Which is obviously still valuable today.
The Golden Rule alone will take you home. And in those writtings (scriptures) Jesus was asked to narrow it down. It became Love the Lord God with all your heart and soul and love your neighbor as yourself. I mean that is even logical for a harmonious Earth. If trouble is with the word God sustitute Nature. Love the animals, trees, each other because that is our real birthright. And as you see when people don't feel that they point their finger outside of themselves to come up with a Big explanation. (it is this or that is why I am miserable)

I can pluck wisdom from anything and the New Testimen has all we need for harmon and life. Love builds. It is all we follow. Everywhere. No other beliefs are needed.
 
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