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Webb Simpson - does he have a mind of his own?


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Originally Posted by newtogolf

If religion stopped there it would be positive, but it doesn't.  Most religions are non-profit businesses with an emphasis on highly  profitable business.  They maintain revenue by using the threat of hell to force patrons to attend weekly mass and make donations to remain in good standing.  Let's not even discuss the tele-evangelists that have stolen millions of dollars from people in the name of god.

When threatened, religions will resort to any means possible to defend their revenue, including the use of violence against innocents, women and children.  Throughout the world people are convinced to fly airplanes into buildings, bomb cars, buildings, abortion clinics  resulting in the death of thousands all in the name of god.  The violence that has gone on for years in Ireland or further back in time to the crusades - some of the most extreme violence in history - all in the name of god.

If there is a god, I highly doubt that he/she would condone the way that religions (which were supposedly created to worship and live according to gods word) have conducted themselves over time.


Wow, easy.   I was just talking about people "trying to avoid hell" by living a little better.  I don't see the horrible sadness and shame in it.

I know what some religions represent and do.  I don't see what your point is.  Comparing murderers to christians or believers?

And the church I belong to NEVER forces anyone to attend, they don't threaten members, nor have they ever required any donations to remain in good standing.

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Just noticed the Titus 3:3-7 embroidery on Webb Simpson's cap and then had a look at some of his "tweets". Now I'm the first to admit that this guy is a great golfer and has been the find of th

That's the theory. And it is a very noble one. Unfortunately, it doesn't actually work out that way in a lot of places. Look waht happens when Muslims want to build a mosque.

Perhaps you need to read your Stephen Hawking a little more thoroughly. You would know that there is no simple explanation. I hardly think that in the absence of a simple answer to the questio



Originally Posted by Gresh24

Why is is "sad and a shame" that people have a motivation to live a good moral life?  Wouldn't a lifestyle that "avoids hell" be a good one for someone to lead?  Isn't it decent to try to "keep in line"?


A 14 year old gay kid who was bullied his entire life kills himself because his life is miserable.

He then spends eternity in hell for being gay, and killing himself.

How is that not a shame?

You keep in line by being a good person, not by the fear of hell.

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The point was that religion is responsible for much of the senseless violence that has occurred in history so it's not necessarily just preaching to live a little better.

Originally Posted by Gresh24

Wow, easy.   I was just talking about people "trying to avoid hell" by living a little better.  I don't see the horrible sadness and shame in it.

I know what some religions represent and do.  I don't see what your point is.  Comparing murderers to christians or believers?

And the church I belong to NEVER forces anyone to attend, they don't threaten members, nor have they ever required any donations to remain in good standing.



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Quote:

A 14 year old gay kid who was bullied his entire life kills himself because his life is miserable.

He then spends eternity in hell for being gay, and killing himself.

How is that not a shame?

You keep in line by being a good person, not by the fear of hell.


Of course that's a shame, but what does it have to do with a person fearing hell and trying to live better?  What does that have to do with anything?   I completely missed your point.  I miss interpreted your original post I guess.

Again, I don't care WHY anyone has the motivation to be a good person.  ANY reason is good, IMO.  That was my only point.

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Originally Posted by newtogolf

The point was that religion is responsible for much of the senseless violence that has occurred in history so it's not necessarily just preaching to live a little better.



I know that.  I thought it was commonly understood that what we were debating here was being a basic modern day christian vs. a non-believer.

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Originally Posted by Gresh24

Quote:

Of course that's a shame, but what does it have to do with a person fearing hell and trying to live better?  What does that have to do with anything?   I completely missed your point.  I miss interpreted your original post I guess.

Again, I don't care WHY anyone has the motivation to be a good person.  ANY reason is good, IMO.  That was my only point.



My point is, by the Bible - that gay 14 year old kid who committed suicide - will go to hell for nothing he/she did wrong.

You may argue that committing suicide is wrong and a 'sin' - but it isn't in this case - it's a sad result of a society built on biblical morals that rejects people who are gay.

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Originally Posted by Kieran123

My point is, by the Bible - that gay 14 year old kid who committed suicide - will go to hell for nothing he/she did wrong.

You may argue that committing suicide is wrong and a 'sin' - but it isn't in this case - it's a sad result of a society built on biblical morals that rejects people who are gay.


I get your point, but not sure how that example relates to the original point you made.

The bible isn't clear on suicide and certainly doesn't state that you go to hell if you kill yourself, especially a child.  So, I personally, don't believe that to be the case.

Of course I think suicide is wrong.  I hope everyone does.  I don't know any biblical morals that reject any other person.

I think you are making some extreme assumptions here.  Many modern Christan religions have evolved.  At least my church/beliefs are not what you are assuming.

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Originally Posted by michaeljames92

I think that people like to think there is a God as it gives them a hope to live for after you die, instead of the nothingness that Atheists believe.

Again, please be careful. It's easy to say "atheism" is the opposite of Christianity, but it's not. Buddhists are atheists too.

Originally Posted by Gresh24

I was just making the point that the end result is a good thing.  I just don't see that as "sad or a shame".

So do the ends justify the means? If you have to get people to behave well by scaring them with tales of fire and brimstone, then what?

And couldn't it also be true that the idea of heaven and hell is also made up, like the non-Fundamentalists might tell you the story of Noah's Ark is, or Adam and Eve and the talking snake, etc.? If hell is made up, why isn't heaven? Doesn't that kinda kill the idea of a rockin' party with God in the clouds?

Originally Posted by newtogolf

If religion stopped there it would be positive, but it doesn't.  Most religions are non-profit businesses with an emphasis on highly  profitable business.  They maintain revenue by using the threat of hell to force patrons to attend weekly mass and make donations to remain in good standing.  Let's not even discuss the tele-evangelists that have stolen millions of dollars from people in the name of god.

One of my biggest problems with the church I attended as a kid was that they'd say things like "donate some money to God." I'd think "God doesn't need money! You want money so you can build a wing on to the church and hire another pastor (or whatever) and janitor. Why can't you just say 'donate money so we can have more worshippers to better serve God?' At least that'd be honest." The subtle almost white lies really disturbed me, and they're fairly prevalent.

But, I will say this in defense of your point, newtogolf: it's unfair to ascribe the actions of people to the institution of "religion" itself. Even though "the church" has been a large offender (particularly in the earlier centuries), that's the "church institution," not the institution of "religion" itself. Wars are fought by people, not "religions." A religious person could easily say "that person was behaving in a way I don't believe my religion supports" and they'd have every right to dismiss them that way.


Originally Posted by newtogolf

When threatened, religions will resort to any means possible to defend their revenue, including the use of violence against innocents, women and children.  Throughout the world people are convinced to fly airplanes into buildings, bomb cars, buildings, abortion clinics  resulting in the death of thousands all in the name of god.  The violence that has gone on for years in Ireland or further back in time to the crusades - some of the most extreme violence in history - all in the name of god.

If there is a god, I highly doubt that he/she would condone the way that religions (which were supposedly created to worship and live according to gods word) have conducted themselves over time.


The counter-argument to that is, I think, that God gave people free will, and again, just because people do things in the name of a religion doesn't mean that religion truly "supports" that act. In the end, people do, even if they're really high up in that particular "religion."

Guns don't kill people, and neither do religions: people do.

Originally Posted by michaeljames92

When wars are started over something as trivial as which religion you believe in, you know something isn't right.

Again, I think that's a reason to hate or dislike "The Church" or certain people, though, not "religion" as a whole.

Originally Posted by Kieran123

A 14 year old gay kid who was bullied his entire life kills himself because his life is miserable. He then spends eternity in hell for being gay, and killing himself. How is that not a shame?

That's a good point, but let's simplify it to this: If being gay is biological, and gay people can't get into heaven, what God would ever create gay people? He'd be making people that have 0% chance of ever getting into heaven.

Originally Posted by newtogolf

The point was that religion is responsible for much of the senseless violence that has occurred in history so it's not necessarily just preaching to live a little better.

People are responsible for the senseless violence. They may delude themselves into thinking they're doing it for God, but even as a (currently) non-religious guy, I think that if there was a God he would not want that, and they have in fact deluded themselves.

Originally Posted by Gresh24

Again, I don't care WHY anyone has the motivation to be a good person.  ANY reason is good, IMO.  That was my only point.

So again, the ends justify the means in all cases? Because as a rational person I know you can't possibly believe that.

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Originally Posted by Gresh24

I get your point, but not sure how that example relates to the original point you made.

The bible isn't clear on suicide and certainly doesn't state that you go to hell if you kill yourself, especially a child.  So, I personally, don't believe that to be the case.

Of course I think suicide is wrong.  I hope everyone does.  I don't know any biblical morals that reject any other person.

I think you are making some extreme assumptions here.  Many modern Christan religions have evolved.  At least my church/beliefs are not what you are assuming.


Herein lies another problem.

Christian religions evolving/changing.

How can a person know which one is 'right' ?

Those of another religion go to hell because we should assume yours is the correct one?

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Originally Posted by iacas

So do the ends justify the means? If you have to get people to behave well by scaring them with tales of fire and brimstone, then what?

So again, the ends justify the means in all cases? Because as a rational person I know you can't possibly believe that.



Yes, IN THIS CASE, the ends justify the means.  I never said in all cases.  Come on.

I was just referring to "people being motivated to live a better and more moral life".  No one is forcing or scaring anyone to do anything.  People can make their own decisions for themselves and believe what they want.  I don't care what the motivation is, I just know we will all be better off with all people (religious or not) aspiring to live a good life.

Modern Christianity isn't the brainwashing some of you think.  Geez.

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Originally Posted by Kieran123

Herein lies another problem.

Christian religions evolving/changing.

How can a person know which one is 'right' ?

Those of another religion go to hell because we should assume yours is the correct one?



It's up to each individual to decide what's right for themselves.  I'm not telling you or anyone what is right for you.

I was just pointing out that some of your assumptions about "believers" are not correct and there are many different interpretations of the bible.

Yes, the differences in religions is a whole other topic. It was not my intent to start that.  The good thing is ,there is something out there for everyone, from the extreme to nothing and everything in between.  I don't see evolving faith as a problem.

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He and the most righteous person that ever existed are both heading into the same eternal nothingness.  There’s no accountability, no justice awaiting them—it’s all nothing.  So everything does reduce down to meaningless groups of chemicals.  Atheists may not like hearing that, but there’s no way around it.

There's actually a great scene in an episode of House (FWIW, the episode is called "One Day, One Room," and is about a women who is raped and ends up pregnant and with an STD) about this, and I don't advise anyone to take religious advice from a fictional drug-addicted doctor, but it's an interesting conversation nonetheless and if it ruins the credibility of the rest of my post so be it. If the afterlife is eternal nothingness, then this is all you have to live for. Your 78 (or however many) years on this Earth are the only chance you have to impact the universe. It's precisely the belief that there is no heaven and hell that makes life worthwhile, because this is the only time you have. Living a virtuous (tough to find a word like that without a religious etymology) life is all you can do because if these are the only 78 years you get, you want to live them wisely. If there is no afterlife, you want to make the biggest impact as possible. Living a good life, within in the law, is the best way to not only live the longest, but to live the best. I don't know if I even believe all or even most of that, but it sure is a nice way of looking at the world to me.

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I agree it's the people.  If we raise "religion" to the highest level and then below it have the variations of religion (christianity, muslim, judaism, buddhism, etc) and below that in institution of church then we agree.  The problem sits at a higher level than the church - it's not an individual parish that participated in the crusades it was the catholic religion throughout western Europe and their actions were blessed by the pope.

I fully agree as humans with independent thought we should know right from wrong, but some religions don't teach or endorse independent thought.  The mentality is that the religion / church knows better and that people should act in ways that are in the best interest of the religion or church.  The 9/11 terrorists acted in the name of Allah, just as those during the Crusades killed in the name of Jesus Christ.

Originally Posted by iacas

One of my biggest problems with the church I attended as a kid was that they'd say things like "donate some money to God." I'd think "God doesn't need money! You want money so you can build a wing on to the church and hire another pastor (or whatever) and janitor. Why can't you just say 'donate money so we can have more worshippers to better serve God?' At least that'd be honest." The subtle almost white lies really disturbed me, and they're fairly prevalent.

But, I will say this in defense of your point, newtogolf: it's unfair to ascribe the actions of people to the institution of "religion" itself. Even though "the church" has been a large offender (particularly in the earlier centuries), that's the "church institution," not the institution of "religion" itself. Wars are fought by people, not "religions." A religious person could easily say "that person was behaving in a way I don't believe my religion supports" and they'd have every right to dismiss them that way.

The counter-argument to that is, I think, that God gave people free will, and again, just because people do things in the name of a religion doesn't mean that religion truly "supports" that act. In the end, people do, even if they're really high up in that particular "religion."

Guns don't kill people, and neither do religions: people do.

Again, I think that's a reason to hate or dislike "The Church" or certain people, though, not "religion" as a whole.

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Originally Posted by Gresh24

Yes, IN THIS CASE, the ends justify the means.  I never said in all cases.  Come on.

Okay, in this case: little kids having nightmares about hell, or the devil, or living in fire is justified because they'll be "better" kids? Oh, but you'll say that's just bad parenting, or that you believe in "hell" but not in teaching it that way.

And that's fine, but you keep adding more and more conditionals that simply define how YOU as an individual see the problem space, not how the problem space exists as a whole.

Simply put, I can understand why someone might see using the concept of "hell" to scare people straight as somewhat disgusting. Particularly if hell doesn't "actually" exist. In which case, again, heaven likely doesn't.


Originally Posted by Gresh24

I was just referring to "people being motivated to live a better and more moral life".  No one is forcing or scaring anyone to do anything.  People can make their own decisions for themselves and believe what they want.  I don't care what the motivation is, I just know we will all be better off with all people (religious or not) aspiring to live a good life.

Why do we need an external thing like "hell" to be so motivated? I don't (currently) believe in a heaven or hell, and I think my humanity is motivation enough. You're changing your tune a bit. And that's fine, it's a discussion, it's organic. But this line of talk started because you suggested that it was silly that someone found the concept of hell to be disgusting. Clearly you disagree and we now know that you disagree because anything that motivates people to be good people is justified. Suffice to say... I disagree with that.


Originally Posted by Gresh24

Modern Christianity isn't the brainwashing some of you think.  Geez.

And yet, sometimes it is. I doubt you speak for all Christianity and, beyond that, all religion, so please stop taking things personally. The conversation's very meta, not super specific. And if you're 100% content with your religion and don't want to discuss it at a meta level, then perhaps you don't have much to say.

Originally Posted by Gresh24

Yes, the differences in religions is a whole other topic. It was not my intent to start that.  The good thing is ,there is something out there for everone, from the extreme to nothing and everything in between. I don't see evolving faith as a problem.


Does it bother you that if you chose the wrong religion you aren't getting into heaven? How close does a religion have to be to "count"? And if you just miss, that's a "good" thing?

Cuz from where I'm sittin' I'd rather be miserable for 80 years on earth if there's some great eternity waiting for me later. I don't want to find "something out there for me" if I'm gonna be sitting amongst the charcoal briquettes in perpetuity...

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Originally Posted by jamo

If the afterlife is eternal nothingness, then this is all you have to live for. Your 78 (or however many) years on this Earth are the only chance you have to impact the universe. It's precisely the belief that there is no heaven and hell that makes life worthwhile, because this is the only time you have. Living a virtuous (tough to find a word like that without a religious etymology) life is all you can do because if these are the only 78 years you get, you want to live them wisely. If there is no afterlife, you want to make the biggest impact as possible. Living a good life, within in the law, is the best way to not only live the longest, but to live the best.

I liked that when I saw it in House and I'm glad you reminded me of it.

How's that for pressure? You get a speck of time, so make the most of it.

Originally Posted by newtogolf

I agree it's the people.  If we raise "religion" to the highest level and then below it have the variations of religion (christianity, muslim, judaism, buddhism, etc) and below that in institution of church then we agree.  The problem sits at a higher level than the church - it's not an individual parish that participated in the crusades it was the catholic religion throughout western Europe and their actions were blessed by the pope.

I fully agree as humans with independent thought we should know right from wrong, but some religions don't teach or endorse independent thought.  The mentality is that the religion / church knows better and that people should act in ways that are in the best interest of the religion or church.  The 9/11 terrorists acted in the name of Allah, just as those during the Crusades killed in the name of Jesus Christ.


Yes, done in the name of... by people.

Good point about the teachings of some religions, but if there was a God and you could ask him/her/it, I have to think they'd say "no, those people misunderstood my teachings." In the end, it's still people, even if we're talking about "The Church."

It's really difficult to think of "religion" in the abstract, though.

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Originally Posted by iacas

Why do we need an external thing like "hell" to be so motivated? I don't (currently) believe in a heaven or hell, and I think my humanity is motivation enough. You're changing your tune a bit. And that's fine, it's a discussion, it's organic. But this line of talk started because you suggested that it was silly that someone found the concept of hell to be disgusting. Clearly you disagree and we now know that you disagree because anything that motivates people to be good people is justified. Suffice to say... I disagree with that.

OK, here's the problem.  I did not suggest that it was silly that someone found the concept of hell to be disgusting.  I said it was not sad that people had modivation to live better.  I think there is the problem.

I never suggested using hell as a scare tactic or motivator.  Hell is what it is, and christains will believe in it and deal with that.  To say kids are having nightmares about it is a bit much.

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This is where you're missing the point.  In most religions, including christianity you aren't free to make your own decision or believe what you want without going against the sanctity of the religion which is considered a "sin" in christianity which you must be absolved from if you are to go to heaven.

I was raised catholic, went to catholic school and a catholic college.  During my days as a catholic I remember it was a sin to miss church on Sunday, it was a sin to eat meat on fridays during lent, it was a sin to use condoms, it was a sin to cuss, it was a sin to have lewd thoughts about a person that was not your spouse, it was a sin to masterbate, it was a sin for a woman to have an abortion.  Basically anything you did that was not condoned by the catholic church and pope was a sin.  Some were mortal sins, some weren't but the fact was you couldn't take communion and were told you'd live an eternity in hell until you confessed your sins to a priest and performed the assigned penance.  Does that sound like the promotion of independent thought to you?

Originally Posted by Gresh24

Yes, IN THIS CASE, the ends justify the means.  I never said in all cases.  Come on.

I was just referring to "people being motivated to live a better and more moral life".  No one is forcing or scaring anyone to do anything.  People can make their own decisions for themselves and believe what they want.  I don't care what the motivation is, I just know we will all be better off with all people (religious or not) aspiring to live a good life.

Modern Christianity isn't the brainwashing some of you think.  Geez.



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Originally Posted by iacas

I doubt you speak for all Christianity and, beyond that, all religion, so please stop taking things personally. The conversation's very meta, not super specific. And if you're 100% content with your religion and don't want to discuss it at a meta level, then perhaps you don't have much to say.

Does it bother you that if you chose the wrong religion you aren't getting into heaven? How close does a religion have to be to "count"? And if you just miss, that's a "good" thing?

Cuz from where I'm sittin' I'd rather be miserable for 80 years on earth if there's some great eternity waiting for me later. I don't want to find "something out there for me" if I'm gonna be sitting amongst the charcoal briquettes in perpetuity...



No, I don't speak for all Christianity and I said as much.  The only reason I added a few 'personal beliefs' was because of the incorrect assuptions made about Christains by a few people here.  I don't take it personally.

But as soon as someone with 'faith' responds, all the questions start flying on how I can believe what I beleive and if it's "right" and if mine "counts", and so on.  If you don't believe in heaven or hell, why do you care how I chose to try to get to heaven?

I am content with what I believe and will discuss anything you want me to.

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