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 Post subject: Heaven For The Godless?
PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2008 7:05 pm 
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Skull and Bones Flunkie

Joined: Fri Jan 13, 2006 12:06 am
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I found this to be an interesting op-ed piece.

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Heaven for the Godless?
By Charles M. Blow
Dec. 26, 2008
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/27/opinion/27blow.html

In June, the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life published a controversial survey in which 70 percent of Americans said that they believed religions other than theirs could lead to eternal life.

This threw evangelicals into a tizzy. After all, the Bible makes it clear that heaven is a velvet-roped V.I.P. area reserved for Christians. Jesus said so: "I am the way, the truth and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." But the survey suggested that Americans just weren't buying that.

The evangelicals complained that people must not have understood the question. The respondents couldn't actually believe what they were saying, could they?

So in August, Pew asked the question again. (They released the results last week.) Sixty-five percent of respondents said — again — that other religions could lead to eternal life. But this time, to clear up any confusion, Pew asked them to specify which religions. The respondents essentially said all of them.

And they didn't stop there. Nearly half also thought that atheists could go to heaven — dragged there kicking and screaming, no doubt — and most thought that people with no religious faith also could go.

What on earth does this mean?

One very plausible explanation is that Americans just want good things to come to good people, regardless of their faith. As Alan Segal, a professor of religion at Barnard College told me: "We are a multicultural society, and people expect this American life to continue the same way in heaven." He explained that in our society, we meet so many good people of different faiths that it's hard for us to imagine God letting them go to hell. In fact, in the most recent survey, Pew asked people what they thought determined whether a person would achieve eternal life. Nearly as many Christians said you could achieve eternal life by just being a good person as said that you had to believe in Jesus.

Also, many Christians apparently view their didactic text as flexible. According to Pew's August survey, only 39 percent of Christians believe that the Bible is the literal word of God, and 18 percent think that it's just a book written by men and not the word of God at all. In fact, on the question in the Pew survey about what it would take to achieve eternal life, only 1 percent of Christians said living life in accordance with the Bible.

Now, there remains the possibility that some of those polled may not have understood the implications of their answers. As John Green, a senior fellow at the Pew Forum, said, "The capacity of ignorance to influence survey outcomes should never be underestimated." But I don't think that they are ignorant about this most basic tenet of their faith. I think that they are choosing to ignore it ... for goodness sake.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 31, 2008 4:05 am 
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Y2K Profiteer

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prander wrote:
. Jesus said so: "I am the way, the truth and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." But the survey suggested that Americans just weren't buying that.

.

What testimony have we to the authenticity of Jesus' words as contained in the bible? Just this: Eusebius says that Papias said that John the presbyter said that Mark said that Peter said that Jesus said thus and so. THAT IS THE HISTORICAL LINEAGE OF THE AUTHENTICITY OF THE GOSPEL OF MARK. That's why Americans aren't buying it anymore.

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When the mob governs, man is ruled by ignorance; when the church governs, he is ruled by superstition; and when the state governs, he is ruled by fear. http://countdowntoapocalypse.com/


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:21 am 
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Modern Day Nephilim

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Amen, Fazer. The bible is bunk.

I just got back from holiday vacation down south with family I rarely see. Some of the nicest folks you'd ever want to meet.

Unfortunately, they are obsessed with their church. They go to their church 3 times a week, spend the other four days visiting people that also attend the church or talking about upcoming plans for the church.

I believe there's a higher power out there. I just don't believe that higher power wants me wasting so much of my life listening to other flawed men pretend to have all the answers.

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"I didn't need to learn what I learned today." -- Jesse Ventura.
"There is but one special interest that we should be working for, and that would solve just about all of our problems, and that is our liberty. " - Ron Paul.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2010 3:24 pm 
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Hoagland-esque

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I believe that there is ALWAYS a difference between what people are TAUGHT to believe and that which they hold as true in their hearts. I'm sure that the BIG GUY has his own ideas on things and since our Religions are only made by and for US, HMMV (His Mileage May Vary).

I'm sure there are MANY who, while sitting in the pew and being told by a Preacher that their next door neighbor, who doesn't believe as they do, will go straight to Perdition for that, don't believe that for one moment. Their neighbor is a good person, so how could a just and merciful God condemn them for all Eternity. The fault of this belief does NOT lay in God, but in those who claim to speak for Him.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2010 3:48 pm 
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Low Initiate Freemason

Joined: Tue Dec 08, 2009 11:30 pm
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That survey definitely made my day brighter. Thanks for posting the article.

I would love to know which evangelical Xtians are in a tizzy about it. Probably the usual suspects. Grab some pine, meatheads. Surprisingly few people are buying the intolerance that you're trying so hard to sell. I'm actually glad to see asshats like Pat Robertson spewing their garbage in front of a national TV audience. He makes it plain to see why he isn't worth taking seriously on any level.

I'm wondering about your relatives who spend so much time at church. Do they see church as a place where they socialize, hang out, shoot the breeze? I'm not religious at all -- quite the opposite -- but I wouldn't necessarily see people who form a community around a church as a bad thing. Now if the only time they set foot in the place is for religious services, that's a lot more one-dimensional.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 04, 2010 9:41 pm 
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Ugh!Spend 3 or 4 days a week in church and then talk about it the rest of the week. That is some real brainwashing going on down there. Wonder how much they spend every week on the church?

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When the mob governs, man is ruled by ignorance; when the church governs, he is ruled by superstition; and when the state governs, he is ruled by fear. http://countdowntoapocalypse.com/


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2010 2:58 pm 
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Low Initiate Freemason

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Probably less than I used to spend drinking in bars. :D


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2010 3:25 pm 
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Hoagland-esque

Joined: Wed Dec 23, 2009 4:26 pm
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Fazer wrote:
Ugh!Spend 3 or 4 days a week in church and then talk about it the rest of the week. That is some real brainwashing going on down there. Wonder how much they spend every week on the church?


That IS an interesting point. "brainwashing"? Whats wrong with a little brainwashing if the brain needs to be cleaned up a bit in the first place? :mrgreen: I do think the time mentioned is a bit excessive, FOR ME, but just as with much else, .. you mileage may differ.

A LOT of people have church as community. They may not know their neighbor next door but they DO know who they go to church with and who they also see at connected activities. I know the people who are on the Financial committee of my Church but I don't really know the people in the first floor of my apartment building.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 09, 2010 9:37 pm 
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davidg8089 wrote:
Fazer wrote:
Ugh!Spend 3 or 4 days a week in church and then talk about it the rest of the week. That is some real brainwashing going on down there. Wonder how much they spend every week on the church?


That IS an interesting point. "brainwashing"? Whats wrong with a little brainwashing if the brain needs to be cleaned up a bit in the first place? :mrgreen: I do think the time mentioned is a bit excessive, FOR ME, but just as with much else, .. you mileage may differ.

A LOT of people have church as community. They may not know their neighbor next door but they DO know who they go to church with and who they also see at connected activities. I know the people who are on the Financial committee of my Church but I don't really know the people in the first floor of my apartment building.

You may not want to know them. :lol:

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When the mob governs, man is ruled by ignorance; when the church governs, he is ruled by superstition; and when the state governs, he is ruled by fear. http://countdowntoapocalypse.com/


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