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January 19th, 2012
05:27 PM ET

'Hate religion, love Jesus' video goes viral

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

(CNN) - With so many atheists coming out of the closet, it’s not difficult to imagine a video decrying religion racking up millions of hits on YouTube.

But a video along those lines has been viewed 15 million times and liked more than a quarter-million times since it was posted on January 10, featuring an enthusiastic young Christian from Washington state.

[youtube= http://youtu.be/1IAhDGYlpqY]

“What if I told you Jesus came to abolish religion?” 22-year-old Jefferson Bethke says in the video, reciting a spoken word poem he wrote. “What if I told you getting you to vote Republican really wasn’t his mission?”

“I mean if religion is so great, why has it started so many wars?” he says later. “Why does it build huge churches but fail to feed the poor?”

Bethke's video is emerging as a symbol for many young evangelical Christians who are calling themselves “followers of Jesus” rather than overtly identifying with institutional Christianity. Many of the country's fastest-growing churches are nondenominational.

“Religion is man-centered,” Bethke writes in a post accompanying his YouTube video. “Jesus is God-centered.”

In the video, Bethke talks about what he calls his own spiritual rebirth, saying he went from being a self-righteous religious person to an admittedly deeply broken believer.

The video has provoked an avalanche of response, including other YouTube videos, like "Why I hate religion but love Jesus, Muslim Version" and "Why I Dislike Your Poem, But Love God," which includes these lines:

I see where you’re coming from but there’s insanity in your vision
You overlook the fact that Christianity is religion
You’re like the van who claims to hate diets
Or astrophysicists who reject laws of science.

That response video has itself been viewed 390,000 times. Not bad.

Many religious bloggers echoed that video’s criticism on Bethke, alleging he’s trumpeting tenets of Christianity while purporting to blast organized religion. Critics called Bethke’s take on religion overly simplistic and dangerous.

“Anyone who does just a little digging on Bethke's YouTube channel or on Google will quickly learn that this young poet is a conservative Christian and member of the Mars Hill Church led by controversial pastor Mark Driscoll,” writes Patheos blogger Brian Kirk, a Missouri-based pastor. “All this seems to me an odd résumé for one who lambastes organized religion.”

Yet Kirk marvels at the national conversation that Bethke has provoked around deep questions:

Certainly one can agree or disagree with Bethke's take on religion but it's difficult not to admire the way he has stirred up those of us who may have been slumbering comfortably in our own faith without really thinking about why we do what we do. Some times the best way to wake up a sleeping giant is to poke it with a stick and Bethke has done just that.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Christianity

soundoff (3,716 Responses)
  1. HONESTLY

    @ironicus..
    do you think im surprised that you can't grasp a concept thats outside of your own idea.. Im not. In fact thats the type of thinking that makes you Christian, right?

    January 22, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
    • Ironicus

      "Living" is not a word that can be accurately used to describe the universe, sorry.
      As an atheist, I have the rational ground.
      You do not because you're a deist. A Spinozan deist, I would guess.
      Deism / agnostic deism is the last refuge of those who cannot face the logic but retreat into wishfulness.
      I'm sure it makes you feel like you've covered all your bases but you haven't.
      You would argue from the basis of ignorance rather than what is known. Tsk, tsk.

      January 22, 2012 at 5:46 pm |
  2. HONESTLY

    @ann.. with all due respect, I never said I didnt believe in god. I said magic, and your bible, or any book that has been written by man. My god isn’t a guy sitting up soo high I can see him. My god isn’t a guy sitting and watching every move I make, or making sure the team I like wins every game. My god is everything, everywhere, all the time. he’s bigger than the biggest, smaller than the smallest. He is the universe and beyond. He’s life, time, matter, energy, and space itself. The laws my god creates, everyone has to obey, there is no choice in them. For instance gravity will always keep you grounded. Look around you you are not the greatest living thing. The universe is alive. It reproduces stars, that live and die. They require food such as hydrogen, oxygen, and other elements to sustain their life. My god makes all this exist. and he’s not concerned with what garments i use in the kitchen. He could careless about who’s playing football or any sport for that matter. If you would stop thinking that your the only special thing sound maybe you could see the life of a greater existence.

    January 22, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
    • md2205

      To say that G-d is too great to care about the little guy is illogical. G-d is infinite. Infinite is by definition larger than the largest, and therefore, large and small to Him are the same. There is no comparison between large and small when compared to infinity. Therefore, G-d is as concerned with the smallest of the small as with the largest of the large. He created everything and us within it. He created us with the capability to make the world a better place and we have to do just that. He created the laws of nature and knows how the world runs best, better than any human. If He said that a special garment is needed to be worn in your kitchen (He didn't) but if He would have, that would mean that He has a reason for it. If we can't understand that reason, we have to realize that His "Mind", so to speak, is infinitely greater than ours, and we can only understand a small portion of what He wants and the reasons for it. If we comply with His requests even if we don't understand them, it shows Him, and us, that we acknowledge His presence, His superiority, and His overall plan, although we may not know exactly what it is. He gave us Seven Laws to follow: To believe in One G-d, not to blaspheme Him, not to steal (and kidnap), not to murder, not to do adultery, etc., not to eat the limb of a living animal (animal cruelty) and to set up effective courts of justice. It is easy to understand that if people would do these laws, the world would be a better place in which to live. We can take upon ourselves these laws, bit by bit, and as we do, we can be assured that He will appreciate our efforts to help make this world into a place where He will feel comfortable to be, and He will not remain indebted.

      January 22, 2012 at 5:18 pm |
    • Ironicus

      You're both a couple of loons.

      January 22, 2012 at 5:41 pm |
    • jimbo

      Ironicus – Your wisdom on those two is infinite.

      January 22, 2012 at 5:47 pm |
  3. jimbo

    Religion is the most efficient business plan in the history of man. Use a building (the bigger the better) to talk about an invisible omnipotent being, his son and the sons' virgin mother and various miracles throughout history. Pass around a collection plate to gather funds. Tell the congregation they will burn in hell if they step out of line and also tell them they can be forgiven if they just give themselves to the church. Work with the ruling body of the country to make sure religion is pretty much tax free. Also rely on ceremonies such as marriage, confirmations, funerals, holy days.... to keep em coming in for more service.

    As far as I'm concerned religion is a bunch of crap. I try to respect everyone and everything that I encounter in my life. People who are involved enough in religion to blow themselves up aren't religous they are just plain nuts. On the other hand there are a whole bunch of people practicing religion on America who are just as crazy but they are more into luxury and material possessions.

    January 22, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
    • Answer

      It's human nature from evolution to use our smarts to deceive others. Religions all over know that there are plenty of fools out there in the world.

      When a person looks at a building they make distinctions. Firstly at the size. Secondly at the quality. Lastly on the baubles and furnishings. If a person is swayed by those – the more convincing the "show" or "advertising". It's called 'appeal'.

      Now for distinguishing people of importance! Lowly people will make distinctions and attribute onto people "of higher rank" than themselves by the following set of criterias:

      1) appearance – clean, shaven, rich or fine clothing
      2) by standing on raised platforms or "soapbox"
      3) by loudness or clarity of words
      4) by medallions or pins – striped uniforms

      and lastly- by groups and numbers in affiliation.

      You know those platforms and uniforms are "that way" in real life because they have been well thought out by better thinkers than you. 🙂 This is why you have been tricked in believing into it. I only have respect for the military dress and code of conduct – never for the religious fanfares and crappy robes!

      January 22, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
    • jimbo

      Booyah!!!! Good to know there is at least one other person out there who can see through the fog of incense and jabber.

      January 22, 2012 at 5:44 pm |
  4. Ann

    When I referred to atheism as requiring faith, maybe that wasn't the correct word to use. The definition of atheism is the rejection of belief in God or a Supreme Being. Martin mentions that he has faith in human nature. So he definitely believes in something! But to make a decision to not believe in God, that is a belief in itself. And what absolute proof do you have that God doesn't exist? You are banking your eternal destiny on your belief that God doesn't exist. If your faith is in humanity, then I am surprised. There is plenty of evidence to show that humans do some horrible things to each other. We are capable of good, but many times our selfishness causes us to hurt one another. That is why my faith is in God. I need a Savior, and I am not ashamed to admit it. I am glad that God loved me and all of mankind enough to send His Son so that we may be redeemed and come into a right relationship with God, our Father. Then we can truly be the loving human beings that God created us to be. John 3:16 " For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life."

    January 22, 2012 at 4:01 pm |
    • HONESTLY

      @ with all do respect, I never said I didnt believe in god. I said magic, and your bible, or any book that has been written by man. My god isn't a guy sitting up soo high I can see him. My god isn't a guy sitting and watching every move I make, or making sure the team I like wins every game. My god is everything, everywhere, all the time. he's bigger than the biggest, smaller than the smallest. He is the universe and beyond. He's life, time, matter, energy, and space itself. The laws my god creates, everyone has to obey, there is no choice in them. For instance gravity will always keep you grounded. Look around you you are not the greatest living thing. The universe is alive. It reproduces stars, that live and die. They require food such as hydrogen, oxygen, and other elements to sustain their life. My god makes all this exist. and he's not concerned with what garments i use in the kitchen. He could careless about who's playing football or any sport for that matter. If you would stop thinking that your the only special thing sound maybe you could see the life of a greater existence.

      January 22, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
    • Ironicus

      Ann, you were indeed incorrect to use "faith" as regards atheism. There is also no "rejection" of your "god" because it does not exist.
      A person cannot reject what doesn't exist, just the assertion that it does exist despite all facts to the contrary. Not the same thing.
      Loving other people does not require a deity. It only requires empathy, sympathy, and the proper brain functions, including minimum amounts of the brain chemical oxytocin. No "god" is needed to love everyone in the world at all.

      As for proof your "god" doesn't exist, could you even face it in view of your clinging to your "faith"? I doubt it. Most believers cannot face the truth of how religions work or the proof against them. It doesn't matter what religion we're talking about.

      January 22, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
    • Ironicus

      Honestly, your assertion that the universe is "alive" is ridiculous.

      January 22, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
    • MartinT

      @Ann, I never said I didnt believe in anything. I believe in my wife, I believe in love, I believe in human nature. I don't reject God, because I simply don't have anything to reject as he doesn't exist. I think it is humerous when Christians make the erroneous contention that Atheists somehow have religious beliefs. Nothing is further from the truth.

      January 22, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
    • HONESTLY

      What's your definition of living?

      January 22, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
    • md2205

      to MartinT: It is erroneous to believe in human nature. Human nature comprises evil as well as good, and that has never been shown to be more obvious than in this century, when 6 million Jews were killed by the most important, modern nation in the world, the most democratic, and the most intellectually and educationally advanced. Intelligence, education, good government, wealth – all these do not guarantee a person's thoughts and acts. He can still become the most vicious of all people, as did the Germans under Hitler, and the Poles, and Ukrainians to follow. The only thing that has any hope of keeping people from acting on their lower desires is to teach that G-d created the world for a reason, and gave us laws to keep to make sure the world runs the way He wants it to run, so that He will feel comfortable in this world.

      January 22, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
    • Ironicus

      I would use the dictionary definitions, none of which can be used to describe the universe as a whole.

      Why? Did you think "living" is just a word you can throw around without thinking? How silly you are!

      January 22, 2012 at 5:38 pm |
  5. Eric G

    Apparently, Jibs realized he was a little out of his weight class.

    Time for Football!!!!!!

    Enjoy the rest of your afternoons!

    January 22, 2012 at 3:56 pm |
    • HONESTLY

      Amen to that. perfectly said! They are not Devine in nature.

      January 22, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
    • Observer

      Sorry to see you go Eric. We might have called it a draw. Don't forfeit so soon.

      January 22, 2012 at 4:07 pm |
    • Ironicus

      Jibs is fred, I think. He is like a poster child for delusional idiots everywhere.

      Eric G, see ya later, bro!

      January 22, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
    • Jibs

      Ironicus. I dont need to post under multiple names, you are being paranoid. However, i have seen people post using my name as a hijack and start insulting others an attempt to be mischevious.. Pretty funny actually

      January 22, 2012 at 5:11 pm |
    • Eric G

      @Jibs: Hello? Jibs? CERN? Switzerland? Particle Accelerator? Verifiable evidence?

      Nobody home?
      No answers to any of my questions?
      Particle physics is your field?

      Warned you about the depth of the water. GlubGlubGlub

      January 22, 2012 at 5:19 pm |
    • Jibs

      Still here. What do you want to know? Why are you naming sites? Whats that mean? Sorry, i dont understand what a glub is..

      January 22, 2012 at 5:22 pm |
    • Eric G

      @Jibs: I asked you why do you believe there is a god? Simple question that does not require you to cross examine.

      January 22, 2012 at 5:48 pm |
    • Jibs

      Oh sorry man. I believe there is a god because i see proof of it in the various aspects of my life. Since proof is always subjective (as ive been trying to explain with the math thing) i cannot transfer that proof to you. What else?

      January 22, 2012 at 6:10 pm |
    • Eric G

      @Jibs: Proof is the result of supporting evidence. What supporting evidence can you present that gives you proof that your god exists?

      January 22, 2012 at 6:47 pm |
    • Jibs

      Sorry man, was out. You want me to present to you proof? I just told you proof is subjective. Yet you ask for objective proof. And the main reason it wouldnt matter anyway is because of this: you would then be depending on me, and you wouldnt believe anything i said so in the end its futile. What could i present to you that would be accepted? Nothing im afraid. You wouldnt accept anything i could provide to you on this forum as proof. So why ask?

      January 22, 2012 at 7:07 pm |
    • Jibs

      By the way. Your definition of proof is wrong. Example. If i can prove that the color red means "good". Then immediately prove that the color red means "bad", what value would you then assign to the concept of proof? See what i mean, it kind of becomes irrelevant. So why ask for proof about god when its irrelevant?

      January 22, 2012 at 7:10 pm |
    • Eric G

      @Jibs: Sorry, but your claim that proof is subjective is inaccurate. Your example of the colors is dishonest as it has to do with context.

      Please provide any verifiable evidence you have that your god exists. That should be a simple enough request. ANY verifiable evidence please.

      January 22, 2012 at 8:05 pm |
    • Jibs

      Dishonest? I dont think so. And are you being serious with me? You think its possible to prove the existence of god on an internet forum? Have you sunk into a level of insanity? And i dont know how many different ways to try to explain it. Proof is indeed subjective. Its very simple, i dont know why you are trying to twist it. If you prove something that can be "proven to be untrue" then what are we talking about? How could i prove anything if the very nature of proof is subjective? This is going nowhere, you are talking in circles.

      January 22, 2012 at 8:50 pm |
    • Jibs

      Oh, and by the way. Proof is a concept developed by science as a means to an end. The burden of it is on your side, not mine. Proof is not a tool that means anything, as it can be changed to whatever one wants it to mean, that is why its irrelevant. So actually, the burden of proof is on you to prove god doesnt exist. You set up the rules, play by them. I can easily prove 2+2 does not equal 4. So what now?

      January 22, 2012 at 8:53 pm |
    • Eric G

      @Jibs: Just to make sure I understand your position.....

      You make a claim that there is a god, but you do not need to provide any evidence to support your claim.
      When pressed for evidencial support for your claim, you state that proof is subjective.
      When pressed further, you claim that the burden of proof that exists from your claim is not the responsibility of those making the claim, but those who ask for evidencial support.
      You attempt to back these statements up with claimed knowledge of physics that, when asked for references, you decline to present in a condecending tone.

      Your position is based in one of two arguments.

      1. You do not understand the evidence that supports the hypothesis that conflicts with your world view or the methods used to obtain it. This is called an argument from ignorance.

      or....

      2. You do understand the evidence that supports a hypothesis that conflicts with your world view, but deny it's validity because of the conflict. This is called an argument from dishonesty.

      I have enjoyed our conversation, but you have proven that you lack the intellectual ability to continue this dialog. If you would like to continue, you will need to preface your future posts with an explaination of which argument position that you are basing your statement.

      Ignorance or dishonesty?

      January 23, 2012 at 8:04 am |
  6. Realist

    Bottom line, he is a religious guy but he follows his own personal religion. He refuses mainstream religion and shaped a religion of his own to meet his ideals. At this point, he is gaining enough courage to doubt his faith. If he pushes forward with more questions, he may eventually understand the simple truth that will allow him to call himself an atheist. Good luck, guy.

    January 22, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
  7. Rainer Braendlein

    “I mean if religion is so great, why has it started so many wars?” he says later. “Why does it build huge churches but fail to feed the poor?”

    He should study ecclesiastical history a little, before he makes such ridiculous statements.

    The first 300 years after Christ the Christian Church was persecuted by the arch-pagan Roman Empire. By emperor Constantine the Great the Christian Church got promoted and protected finally. This Early Church, for example, established hospitals, alms houses, etc., which the pagan Romans did not know. Just read the fathers of the church like Athanasius and you will see that the Early Church preached the true gospel and here leaders were not greedy for honor, power and riches, but wanted to save souls.

    However, in the 6th century the wicked papacy was established in Italy and in the course of time the Roman Catholic Church (Church of the Holy Roman Empire of German nation, which is the successor of the old pagan Roman Empire) seperated from the Christian Church (Church of the Easter Roman Empire).

    This Roman Catholic Church, which is only a distortion of the true Church, has, of course, committed a lot of crimes. But regard that the RCC is no Christian Church, but a Church, which has gone astray.

    Thus, the mainline churches have very good roots and once enriched the mankind. Today, mainline churches have entered a state of crisis and need a new Reformantion.

    The mainline churches must return to their core task, which is the care of human souls and delivering health of soul and body to the mankind.

    January 22, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
  8. HONESTLY

    @jib youre an idiot! where do you get your information from? And the only place logic doesn’t exist is in your bible. Yes there are things in the universe that we dont fully understand yet. Mostly because we haven’t had tools that allow us to study them. But unlike religion "we dont yet know" is what science will tell you. What science won’t tell you is that the world is flat. Pray all you want the world will still be round, the sun will still burn out, and Andromeda will still collide with the milky way. The difference between science and religion is that science will not make up magical reasons for why things happens. But thats what your religion has done for several thousands of years. And you choose to follow religion.. So what does that so about your religion. Most importantly what does that say about you?

    January 22, 2012 at 3:19 pm |
    • Tom

      Idiot- why are you confusing science with theology?

      January 22, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
    • HONESTLY

      What confused you jib? Maybe I can help. 😀

      January 22, 2012 at 3:27 pm |
    • Swanx

      @honestly: How about if science and religion was viewed as two complimentary things; one explaining the other? This is how I look at it. For example, in the biblical tradition during the time of Moses it was prohibited to eat certain kinds of meat. Later on, science came to prove that actually certain meats are not good to eat unless they are specially prepared. This means that during those ancient days there were no proper means to use in preparing some kinds of meat. The same is with mushrooms. Some biblical traditions didn't allow the eating of mushrooms. Today, because of science we know that there are good edible mushrooms and there are bad poisonous mushrooms. See, science has helped religion, in other words they have worked hand-in-hand with each other. There are many other examples that for now I can't remember, but they show that to understand religion well you have to understand science and to understand science well it may be helpful for you to understand religious principles too.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
    • Itlalian Boss

      Tom that was presumptuous of you to think honestly idiots understand what they are confused about.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
    • Eric G

      @Swanx: When reading your post I noticed something interesting about your example. If you remove the "god" from your claim about what you should or should not eat, it still works. It is still a guide, written by men for other men. There is no need to as-sign divinity to it.

      Now, going further down this path...... Take the comandments and remove "god" from them. The set of values and rules of acceptable social actions are totally secular. They existed prior to the bible. They are not divine in nature or origin.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
    • HONESTLY

      Science and the religion have worked hand in hand? Did you really just say that? Religion has persecuted, attacked, and literally killed scientist. Read a history book once in a while. But thank god (pun intended) that science can be proven. And you must feel like the luckiest person in the world. You just happen to be born in a Christian nation, are apart of the only religion on the "round" planet and though out history has been the only religion that can get you into heaven.
      And @ Italian boss...that wasn't very Christian of you. But then again im sure thats what being a Christian means to you.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:56 pm |
    • Jibs

      Sorry guys.. Im trying to maintain a conversation here but other posters who are angry at me keep deleting my posts and i cant really carry on a conversation with peices missing. Its hard to follow. I understand people are uncomfortable with what i say but deleting stuff doesnt help prove your point.. Yall have a gat rest of the weekend.

      January 22, 2012 at 5:28 pm |
    • Bizarre

      jibs,

      Other posters cannot delete your posts here. I'm not even sure that the "Report Abuse" button is hooked up to anything. There are no live Moderators on this board either. There *is* an automatic word filter - are you aware of the word fragments which cause posts to be flagged (and to never appear)?

      January 22, 2012 at 6:51 pm |
    • Jibs

      Nah. I saw the posts hang out for a while then mysteriously vanish. Not sure whats up.. Probably more than likely a glitch. Sometimes posts end up in weird spots too.

      January 22, 2012 at 8:55 pm |
    • Rationale

      Jibs-It must be their inner demons acting up as soon as it sees a post about truth.
      One thing that stings the demon that it can't bear is to hear the truth about God.

      January 22, 2012 at 9:22 pm |
  9. lily

    jesus was jewish. his 'teachings' were based on jewish laws and the torah. if one wanted to truely follow his teachings, one would have to be jewish, as were the first christians. christianity was a sect of jewdaism, and one had to convert to jewdaism to be a christian. if jesus could come to earth today, he would go to a jewish temple and would think that the christians were crazy blastphemes. christianity, as we know it, has nothing to do with the actual person of jesus, if there was one. no, i'm not jewish, nor am i christian.

    January 22, 2012 at 3:06 pm |
    • trooperchix

      We aren't talking about what team JC played on and which rules are more authentic than another. We are talking about a large group of people who no longer feel connected to organized religion as they have become an arm of politics and no longer a place of worship. It's unfortunate. There was a time open discussion of beliefs in relation to society could be had. Alas, no longer. Why? Folks are so caught up with being part of the "in" group, those who are so wrapped up in the dichotomy of belonging or not belonging. As a result, easy pickings for conservative minded persons to play the dichotomy. Religion was never meant to be representative of a dichotomy, rather it was meant as a tool to expand knowledge and inner contemplation.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:18 pm |
    • Southern Celt

      As any Jew will probably tell you, you have to be born that way. Its a Culture as well as a Faith, intertwined and all very Theological. Jesus came to give Hope to the rest of us that weren't included in His Father's Promise to the the Jews. Thank God :-)!

      January 22, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
    • HONESTLY

      You're right superchixx youre definitely a tool! The last time I checked it was religion taking over politics. Exactly the opposite of your point. And just because there is an organization doesn't mean you should belong to it. The kkk is an organization, and a Christian one at that. See where im going here. Why you feel that people need to join your organization baffles me. Explain the importance of belonging to an your or any organization to me please?

      January 22, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
  10. MartinT

    95 percent of all humans worship the god of their parents, if they worship a god at all. Think about it people. IF you had been born in Iran, you would right now be worshiping Allah, in born in India one of their gods. IF that fact alone does not cause people to pause and THINK, nothing will and all hope for them is LOST.

    January 22, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
    • One one

      I have raised this point with Christians before. Most claim that even if they were born in a Muslim country, of Muslim parents, with Muslim friends and family, attending Muslim churches and raised reading Muslim scripture, they would still be Christian.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
    • trooperchix

      I agree. It's the Nurture part of Nature and Nurture. The concept is so simple. Our belief systems are directly related to our social systems. Those who are very much in a Christian camp would be just as equally entrenched in whatever would be the "norm" dominant religion in their region. Now, trying to convince someone of that is a whole different story. For whatever reason, some folks have a hard time thinking out of the box. This goes for all sides.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:23 pm |
    • Southern Celt

      Then I must be part of the 5% :-). I also have a Muslim friend that was born in Palestine (prior to 1948) but raised in Jordan. The best school in his town was the Roman Catholic school so he understands The Christian Faith but adheres to Islam.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
  11. fred

    Most klines don't even have the intelligence to check the facts to see who this guy really works for. So much ignorance in America, so sad.

    January 22, 2012 at 2:42 pm |
    • Ironicus

      That is incredibly ironic coming from you, fred.

      January 22, 2012 at 2:48 pm |
  12. rwbj

    @HONESTY. I could not agree more with your comments. As I often tell people, I was born and raised a Roman Catholic, but I got over it. Religion is based on fear, suppresion of free minded, rational thinking. To quote HL Mencken...."Faith may be defined briefly as an illogical belief in the occurrence of the improbable." Religion cannot stand up to free, rational, throught. They ask the followers to believe in the infinity of a greater being. Being disabled by our finite brains, we cannot comprehend the infinite, so there is only one answer. Take the blind leap of faith. That's when things start going bad

    Fav

    January 22, 2012 at 2:38 pm |
    • Jibs

      Faith is not blind.. If you are taking a blind leap then you are being reckless. Think about it..

      January 22, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
    • HONESTLY

      I was raised in a super religious home as well. If only the rest of the world would let religion go or allow themselves to think at all. We'd be in great shape.

      January 22, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
    • Southern Celt

      Born and raised Roman Catholic but got over it? Obviously either you didn't listen or were never adequately taught about the Real Presence (Read Gospel of St. John Chapter 6, particularly verses 26-69). This is largely what separates us from the Protestants. For those of us that take Him at His Word, Peter says it best saying "Where else would we go? Lord, You have the words of eternal life". You either believe or you are like those that walked away.

      If you want Rational Thought and Logic, I suggest you read Thomas Aquinas; Summa Theologica.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
    • HONESTLY

      @jib where do you get your information from? And the only place logic doesn't exist is in your bible. Yes there are things in the universe that we dont fully understand yet. Mostly because we haven't had tools that allow us to study them. But unlike religion thats what science will tell you. What science won't tell you is that the world is flat. Pray all you want the world will still be round, the sun will still burn out, and Andromeda will still collide with the milky way. The difference between science and religion is that science will not make up magical reasons for why things happens. But thats what your religion has down for several thousands of years. And you choose to follow religion.. So what does that so about your religion. Most importantly what does that say about you?

      January 22, 2012 at 3:14 pm |
    • Jibs

      Hinest.. What are you rambling about? Are you aware that the scientific community at the time also thought the workd was flat? Yur faith in science is borderline religious. Scientists are explorers at best. I love science, but i dont blindly accept it and make it fact when most of it is still in the air. When i was yound i was told bones need millions of years to fossilize. It was proven. It was fact. Then they found a cowboy boot on a fossilized foot bone and suddenly they were off by a few million years. Its cool, i get it, science is constantly changing. You talk about god and religion? You havent invested any reasonable amount of time on your journey to undstand it, then you mock it? Thats like me dropping out of elementary school and then laughing at astrophysics because it sounds like babble.. Get a grip..

      January 22, 2012 at 3:23 pm |
    • trooperchix

      @Jibs Faith is not blind? You do know the definition of faith, right? Faith is a belief in a hypothesis, a question, something that cannot be proven. It is also defined as trust or confidence in something or some person. Again, both words allude to lack of proof. I'm not trying to be a wise-alec, rather suggest different word choice. This may aide you in presenting your side of things. Help us understand.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
    • rwbj

      @Southern Celt. I did read Summa, albeit quite some time ago in college. Even though I attended an Augustinian school, the good monks thought we needed to read it. It is without a doubt a classic of theology and philosophy. I thought, however, that the entire argument presented by Aquinas on the existence of God began with a premise I cannot accept. The first of his 5 points is that there must be a first cause, and that this first cause itself is "uncaused. At that point you must either accept this premise as an "act of faith" or refuse to accept his further logic. At that point in my life I chose the latter. Summa was probably what got me started questioning the whole concept of God and religions built around gods.

      And no, I am not an atheist. I belive that neither the existence or lack of existence a god can be proven.
      I define myself as an agnostic and admit that I'm not smart enough to figure out if a god exists or not. I also admit I don't have, nor do I yearn for, the amount of faith it takes to believe in a god.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
    • trooperchix

      @Jibs I'll agree that the very cutting edge of science can in some sense be viewed as a relgiion. Some discoveries made were wrong, as per the fossilization example you brought up (I am not familiar but I will assume your information is correct). The difference between science and religion is that once something is disproven, it is let go. It is no longer part of the "religion" of science. Religion, on the other hand.. How's that body and blood of christ going for you? How's the concept of a miracle going for you? I'm not trying to be a pill here, rather prove my point.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
    • Jibs

      Trooper, no its cool. Ufortunately if one is looking in a dictionary to define faith, its a lost cause. Faith isnt a word. Faith is a lifelong journey to be exercise daily, hourly. People throw it around like some religious concept. Thats perverse. Faith is a basic foundation of the human experience that has NOTHING to do with religion. It transcends proof. Why people think faith has to do with blindness is strange. If anything faith gives you sight, it gives you light where human ignorance leaves you in darkness. Not everything is textbook. Faith is not the opposite of evidence

      January 22, 2012 at 3:40 pm |
    • Ironicus

      Jibs, you are a religious idiot who clearly cannot reason things out. Why don't you go pray or something?

      January 22, 2012 at 3:51 pm |
    • FYI

      jibs & trooperchix
      "Then they found a cowboy boot on a fossilized foot bone and suddenly they were off by a few million years."

      This (The Limestone Cowboy) has not been scientifically verified.

      http://paleo.cc/paluxy/boot.htm

      January 22, 2012 at 3:56 pm |
    • Jibs

      Ironicus. Is that what you say when you run out of things to say? Kind of disappointing..

      January 22, 2012 at 4:46 pm |
    • Pelosi

      Jibs-That is the hallmark of a conversation with an atheist. They love to use empty fillers, in that they will never cease to disappoint you.

      January 22, 2012 at 5:01 pm |
  13. Eric G

    Why do believers feel threatened when asked to defend their positions and statements? Personally, I am not attempting to offend them with my questions. I really am curious why they think the way that they do. I welcome the dialog, but they seem to retreat when the water gets a little deep.

    January 22, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
    • Jibs

      Ill gladly engage into an intellectual and respectful conversation with you. Ask away. I keep it simple.

      January 22, 2012 at 2:50 pm |
    • Eric G

      Thank you for your response. I hope we can stay on topic.

      Please explain why you believe that a god exists.

      January 22, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
    • Ironicus

      That is the reaction-set of those who have been brainwashed.
      Anything that threatens, however slightly, their indoctrinated belief system, is avoided / feared / hated / rejected / ignored / etc.

      That's why trying to talk sense to them doesn't work.
      They rejected "sense" when being indoctrinated at some point.
      Indoctrination is a process where common sense, logic, sanity, and reason are "bypassed" in favor of the new belief, and this is reinforced at different points along the way in their thinking processes, otherwise it wouldn't be called indoctrination but education.
      Education doesn't do the things indoctrination does.
      The differences can be very enlightening when trying to understand the processes and reaction-sets of indoctrinated people.
      Having been one of "them" I can say that it can be very easy to get sucked in and very hard to escape for many reasons.
      How deep a person has been brainwashed usually determines the "obtuse-ness" or unwillingness to engage in real-world concepts.
      Your attempts to inject real-world concepts are rejected because you do not give a "delusional context" that they can "identify" with.
      Indoctrination and propaganda often boils down to "group-identlty" – one of our most primitive, instinctual, and emotionally powerful perceptual types of cognitive bias. If you do not engage with them using group-identlty concepts they can identify with and understand, you are just wasting your time.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
    • Eric G

      @Ironicus: As always, well said.

      And..... I'm giving you 3 points for "obtuse-ness".

      Be well, my friend.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
    • Ironicus

      Thanks, Eric G. I'd love to pick your brainz on economic theory, but this isn't quite the place for that.
      Stay thirsty, my friend.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:27 pm |
    • Jibs

      Eric g. In my experience (particle physics) i cannot rely on usual factors of proof since the things that happen in this realm transcend our tools of proving certain realities. (particles communicating via telepathy, moving instantaneously across great distances, changing state when observed, taking every available path possible to a destination at the same time, etc) Tools of normal search are actually a detriment and can lead to false conclusions. We have to use other means. I use these same tools to evaluate the existence of god. The approach is the same because the problems are identical. I cannot prove how a particle can exist in two different places at the same time anymore than i can prove god. Yet somehow they do. And somehow the signature of what god is supposed to be is around. People want to see a floating apparition of a man with a white beard and im afraid god is much much much more thant that. It transcends proof , yet it is very very simple.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
    • Eric G

      @Jibs: If you really work in particle physics, I would think that your statement would have been "can't prove it yet". I suggest you do a little reading on what they are doing over at CERN using the LHC.

      As a physicist, I am sure you understand that any discovery made in your field must be tested and verified through the evaluation of evidencial support?

      Please proceed with caution. The water seems to be getting a little too deep for you.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
    • Eric G

      @Ironicus: Economics is not my field, but I might be able to bumble my way through.

      Always thirsty..... And yes, I have won the same lifetime acheivement award.....twice.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
    • Ironicus

      Eric G, I thought you were some kind of Wall Street wallah and assumed economic theory would be one of your strengths.
      My bad.
      And what is this "lifetime achievement award" you got twice? Was it for making money? Making kids? Drinking others under the table? What?

      January 22, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
    • Answer

      @Eric G

      ==quote
      Why do believers feel threatened when asked to defend their positions and statements? Personally, I am not attempting to offend them with my questions. I really am curious why they think the way that they do. I welcome the dialog, but they seem to retreat when the water gets a little deep."
      ==end

      Mankind in general are very fearful creatures. To protect oneself from harm the human brain will place barriers in itself to guard our well being. Religious people have more barriers – they need more – to deal with their delusions. That is a fact.

      Not being able to deal with reality and facing hard facts about death people will do anything they can to drown out their fears. Being threatened by facts distorts – the religious' security of their belief system – so it is only natural to run or hide and cower away. Of course there is the other alternative also – to fight back with an arrogance and just pile on more claims to counterattack the assault. It's readily easier to lie to oneself than to accept truth when you have adopted an ingrain indoctrination by your upbringing.

      You could almost -always- find the most fearful of religious people amongst those who post most fervently and how they keep on making up bs to defend themselves.

      January 22, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
    • Ironicus

      What is sad is the large number of people who cannot cope with real life.
      Real life includes horrible things.
      Fantasy can shut that aspect of reality away behind a wall of fallacious rationalizations.
      I wish I could help these people and stop whatever trauma got them this way.
      Protecting children and people in general would theoretically end a large number of traumatic events to each individual's psyche. Emotional stress is a necessary step for any indoctrination or brainwashing.
      Our human emotion-based cognitive tendencies are toward the irrational because the irrational can be used to induce other emotional reactions, leading to emotional feedback.
      Our cognitive weaknesses will probably be the death of us all.
      Things like education, scientific knowledge, and scientific examination of the way humans act and react are needed to forestall any future "nightmare" of "biblical" proportions as regards survival of the human species.
      Such things should lead our species forward, yet there remains a large number of people who do not interact or relate very well to the real world. For their safety and ours, their plight should be addressed by all people including themselves as far as can be done intelligently and caringly.
      There will be exceptions where nothing can be done. Such a lack of solutions will evoke an emotional response according to the individual, yet the possibility of a sociopathic response should be forestalled and minimized because sociopathic behavior is almost always a danger to others, so we need things like human rights, civil rights, freedoms of many sorts that are supportive of individual rights balanced against the need for protection of those rights against other people's expression and retention of their rights and so on...
      In short, mental illness needs to be addressed, including the need for children's rights, and education and socialization should be supported with every last dollar or a dystopian future is guaranteed for much, if not all, of the human species.
      /soapbox

      January 22, 2012 at 5:17 pm |
    • Jibs

      One more thing eric.. Your post saying "As a physicist, I am sure you understand that any discovery made in your field must be tested and verified through the evaluation of evidencial support?" isnt actually correct. There are many many things in particle physics, and in science as well that we use, assume as true, etc. that we cannot prove with evidence or can be tested. Sorry man, but thats the truth. I cant paste 400 pages of research on a forum, youll have to do the work yourself.

      January 22, 2012 at 5:37 pm |
  14. gayle wen.

    could'nt of said it better..kudos! Jesus destroyed the corrupted temple...unfortunatley Ignorance raised its right hand to blind its sheep again,puppets on strings.

    January 22, 2012 at 2:28 pm |
    • trooperchix

      I agree. Well stated. I may not be a believer of anything christian-based, but I will respect a person to believe. I am saddened by how a religion of what I is made up of good minded people be used as a bully pulpit to drive social issues that by rights should not. Our country was based on inclusion and non judgemental stance. Where did that thread of our social fabric go? Why the heck did no one see it happening?

      January 22, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
  15. Ann

    In regards to the proof of God's existence, one of the tenets of the Christian faith is this: "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." Hebrews 11:1. Belief in Jesus requires faith. Belief in evolution also requires faith, as does atheism.. I believe there is plenty of evidence that God exists. God's creation speaks for itself. I am a believer but I believe that God wants us to have faith in Him. He will not answer all of our questions, nor is He required to do so. If you truly want to know whether or not God exists, the answer will never be found in a black box. I believe if a person is open to the possibility of the existence of God, then go to the Source. Tell God you truly want to know if He exists, and if you are sincere in wanting to know this, God will answer you. I am confident of this. He did the same for me and He does not desire any to perish. 2 Peter 3:9

    January 22, 2012 at 2:23 pm |
    • Paddy

      Ann, I asked Leprechauns if they exist... and they said, "Yes".

      January 22, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
    • mccgeno

      next time you talk to god, tell him he owes me $20. He knows why.

      January 22, 2012 at 2:42 pm |
    • MartinT

      @Ann, I disagree with EVERTHING you have said, but I take exception most with your statement that atheism takes "faith" because no, it does not. I do not have to have faith to be an atheist, I simply don't have to have anything at all. Your god no more exists to me than does Santa or Zeus or any number of other fanciful creations of mankind. The only thing I have FAITH in is human nature, in science, and in my love for my wife, who happens to be named Ann. Peace.

      January 22, 2012 at 2:50 pm |
    • Eric G

      What if the god you believe in told you to hijack some planes and fly them into buildings? What if you were sincere in this belief? Does your sincerity make you less dillusional? Does it make you less of a threat to the rest of us?

      January 22, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
    • MartinT

      Also @ Ann, you state that you think there is plenty of evidence of the existence of God. Would you care to provide this evidence, and will it stand up in a court of law, in a laboratory? I am amazed at the rhetoric that comes from Christians, simply amazed.

      January 22, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
    • Jibs

      Martin. What would you do if something was proven in a court of law, and evidence, and scientific scrutiny.. But then at nighttime, that proof turned out to be completely wrong. But only at night.. Would you still hold it as true? If its only true in the daytime? Curious..

      January 22, 2012 at 3:12 pm |
    • Southern Celt

      If they doubt God's existence they probably would not accept the Bible until you proved His existence.
      Start with the 5 Proofs of Thomas Aquinas. Once you have logically proved God's existence they will likely be more receptive to His Word.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
    • Joe

      Ann-Well said!

      January 22, 2012 at 3:23 pm |
    • MartinT

      @Jibs, I'm sorry but your attempt at logic escapes me. Scientific proofs don't just "change" because the earth rotates on it's axis, so your question kind of fails the logic test. If you could explain it a bit more, perhaps I could follow. Thanks.

      January 22, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
    • MartinT

      @Southern, reading Thomas Aquinas isn't enough. Trying reading many authors on both sides of the equation. I've done so, but MOST of my understanding comes from within ME.. I don't need others to "explain" the unexplainable to me. I've done the work, I've used my own logic, I've searched for this god of yours, and to be honest, NOTHING points me in the direction of belief.

      January 22, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
    • Jibs

      Martin. Sure no problem. Example. 2+2=4 right? It always works because math. You could say its true, and you can prove it by doing the math. It always gives the same answer. However, in other parts of our universe math itself doesnt apply, or exist. So if 2+2 does NOT equal 4 in those places, that means that proof doesn not equal truth. Unfortunately, many people confuse the two to be the same thing. Just because something can be proved does not make it true.

      January 22, 2012 at 5:41 pm |
  16. Jimmy Jack

    He says "religion is man searching for god, Christianity is god searching for man." ?? Is Christianity not a religion now?

    January 22, 2012 at 2:18 pm |
    • D$

      Christianity is a belief that Christ is the savior. Lutheranism, Protestantism, Mormanism, et al, are religions that try to teach HOW to follow Christ. Christianity is a belief and religion is a method of the belief. I think the point being made is that religion teaches you when to kneel, bow, pray etc . So, you can look like you believe without really having to believe. Does praying in church make it okay to hurl insults? Can you kill in the name of Christ? Some have. Religion can quickly become the purpose without the intention. Make sense? Don't worship Jesus, follow him.

      January 22, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
    • Ironicus

      D$, how can anyone follow a dead fairy-tale character? All the NT was written decades after his death by unknown people with personal agendas.
      You are advocating following someone else's personal agenda that is not based in reality but fantasy.
      And following a fantasy like Jesus requires a knowledge of the actual man, if he even existed, so you are at a loss before you even begin, for the man is long dead, the mystical clap-trap written about him is useless, and there is no "god" to help clarify any particular "path" for any individual.
      You can make mystical pronouncements all you like, but in the end you can be shown to have no clue about what you say.

      January 22, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
  17. HONESTLY

    Science tells us that 2 2=4
    Religion tells us that 2 2 isn't four, but could be 7, or 9, or purple!

    January 22, 2012 at 2:18 pm |
    • Jibs

      Actually.. Science tells us that in most of the universe, 2+2 never equals 4. In fact, in most of the universe, logic and time cease to exist. Such a shame that people like you think that what happenes on earth applies to the rest of the universe. See, even on this small thing you are wrong. Makes you wonder what else you got wrong huh?

      January 22, 2012 at 2:39 pm |
    • Eric G

      @Jibbs: Sorry, you will need to provide references when making random claims of knowledge to support your hypothesis.

      January 22, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
    • Jibs

      No problem. Scientists freely acknowledge the existance of millions of black holes. In a black hole time,space, and logic as we know it here on earth do not apply. This is public knowledge and you can do the research for yourself. Anything else?

      January 22, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
    • Eric G

      @Jibs: Actually, science does not know what the state of space/time is inside a black hole. Your statement made a claim that they know what happens inside of a black hole. Not knowing is different. Your position is called an argument from as-sumption.

      What does that have to do with your belief that a god exists?

      January 22, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
    • Jibs

      Im sorry, but you are wrong. If black holes do exist, which they are pretty sure they do, then their gravitational signature dictates these "rules". It has to do with god because most people want "proof" of god, as they equate proof with truth. And it is not, if the "proof" you would aquire would not be universally "true", 2+2=4 can be proven, but if its not true in other parts of the universe is it true? If i proved god existed without a doubt, but on the moon, lets say, that proof is "proven fals" what good is it?

      January 22, 2012 at 3:06 pm |
    • Eric G

      @Jibs: So, if your "gravitational signature" of a black hole is constant, (which it is not, due to it's mass fluctuation) would your god even exist there?

      I will ask you again to please provide references when making claims of knowledge. Best to be able to support your claims when you are going to state that others are wrong.

      Or, you can just provide evidence that your god exists. Evidence that would be recognizable and verifiable on this planet, in our current position of space/time.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:17 pm |
    • Ironicus

      Jibs, if you posit a non-universal characteristic to what is usually labeled a "universal" being, then you are only contradicting yourself in a bid to introduce uncertainty where none exists.
      Either your "god" is universal and "unchanging" or your Bible is wrong about that.
      Are you saying your Bible is wrong? Because that's where you're headed.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:19 pm |
    • Jibs

      Well first off, i havnt read the bible in a while, so cant help you there. Secondly, im not talking about god being universal, im simply adressing the fallacy of proof. Humans are arrogant in thinking what applies in earth is a universal truth. So im confused as to why the final resolve is always "prove god exists, and ill believe it" when in fact, the very concept of this proof is that it falls apart, and doesnt make it true. Do people want the truth, or proof? Because they are two very different things.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:32 pm |
    • Ironicus

      Jibs, you should get a dictionary and look up those words. And maybe you should read whatever Bible you have, too.
      If I were your priest, I'd give you a thundering condemnation for your ignorance and foolishness and put the fear of "god" in you and the fear of "hellfire and damnation" in you as well.
      You argue from an admittedly ignorant position. Only total idiots do that.
      I guess you qualify.
      Congratulations.

      January 22, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
    • MartinT

      @Ironicus – WELL SAID!

      January 22, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
    • Jibs

      Ironicus. Your last post here didnt make any sense, or contribute anything. In fact i dont understand it. Its more like junk food in a "conversation meal". All you did was hurl insults with no value. What do you want? Its pretty obvious you are running out of steam. I guess points for effort. If you want to discuss anything else in a reasonable fashion you should abstain from insults and come up with something a litte more firm to chew on.. Or just keep calling me an idiot if it makes you feel superior.

      January 22, 2012 at 4:50 pm |
    • Ironicus

      Jibs, you admitted to ignorance yet continue to argue about things you have admitted you are ignorant about.

      You admitted you are a fool saying things you have no knowledge of.
      If you think that doesn't qualify you as an idiot, then you are stupid as well and should be ignored.
      I guess I'll do that from now on. Your comments are worthless and unintelligent.
      It is not my fault your comments are idiotic. I'm just pointing it out.

      January 22, 2012 at 5:30 pm |
    • Jibs

      Ironicus. Now you are just making things up. I admitted i was ignorant? When did i do that? You are acting really bizarre. And did you read how many times you used the same insults over and over calling me an idiot? Sorry man, cant continue the conversation. You are turning into a raving lunatic with nothing left to offer but the same insults over and over. Its trite. Go watch football and relax.

      January 22, 2012 at 5:45 pm |
  18. HONESTLY

    No matter how you look at it. Religion is the mother of all hate, and the father of the bloodiest wars. Those like bonnie, who are too afraid to think for themselves, but all to ready to tell others how they should think or live. Bonnie, you and your kind are the most dangerous people on the planet (and the planet is round incase you haven't caught up with that idea either). Believe what you want but when you teach (brainwash) children into thinking irrationally, then eventually they become adults that think irrationally. My guess is that you are the victim of your own words. If this B.S. Hadn't been pushed on you as a child, you wouldn't be so AFRAID to seek truth. Religion is based on fairy tales and lives by imparting FEAR into weak minded people. It was created by men, who were more concerned about property, money, and borders. It was created by men for men.

    January 22, 2012 at 2:09 pm |
    • Jibs

      You sound like a scared and angry person, you have all the telltale psychological traits. And by the way, both religious and scientific leaders thought the earth was flat. When isaac newton wasnt giving theories of science he was looking for clues in alchemy. He was a wizard. You dont know as much as you think you do.. I wish people would slow down..

      January 22, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
    • Swanx

      Honestly,

      I see your point and it is a valid one. You are right that people become who they are because of how they were molded as children. By "molded" I mean being shaped by virtue of the environment and society in which someone is brought up. This is why the concept of independent search after truth is a crucial one if anyone is serious. To me it doesn't matter whether it is religion, atheism, or any set of foundational background in which one is brought up. What is important is forsaking the blind belief or faith because your parents or your forefathers believed in them. You have to know why and how you believe and practice anything you do. Be it religion, science, Confucianism, atheism etc. Just because your parents before you didn't find meaning in religion doesn't mean that you got to completely shun it. Or just because your parents were religious doesn’t mean that you have to be a staunch believer in that same religion, especially when you are doing it blindly for the sake of obedient to tradition. Knowledge is power. In order to have a good understanding about the world and its myriad traditions and cultures, one has to be open, flexible, and tolerating. The world is where it is now because of humanity's stubbornness in refusing to tolerate others, to be open to others, and above all failing to understand the one simple and powerful concept of this day: the oneness of mankind. No matter what we do, we have to understand first and foremost that all humanity is one family, coming in different colors and creeds (just like plants with different hues) but essentially the same. To achieve this understanding that we (as humans) are all one, is not easy.

      This is why my approach to this video and its reactions wouldn’t be to flatly say religion is irrelevant because it has caused wars and chaos in the history of the world. When I study different religions I actually notice something different and unique: that all of them have core principles, known in many literatures as golden rules. I notice that they are progressive, so that not one of them was introduced to oppose the other; instead the recent amplified the core principles of the past. But as it is clear, followers of those religions are the ones, because of their personal ambitions and egos, who manipulate those teachings to achieve their personal ends. One has to dig deeper and be detached from personal beliefs to get to this understanding.

      Honestly, I really like your post!

      January 22, 2012 at 3:03 pm |
    • MartinT

      @Jibs, I think perhaps you are just a young kid who hasn't lived much of life yet, and you enjoy thinking you are far more intellectually superior than you really are. Insulting folks as a means to an end seldom reaches anyone, and even IF your points are valid, introducing them with arrogance and disdain, only causes those you wish to reach to shut down or to search for ways to disprove what you are saying. Try arguing from the position of humility, you might actually reach through.

      January 22, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
    • Jibs

      Martin. How exactly did i insult anybody? By stating what i perceived to be someones state of mind? I dont see any insults in anything ive said.. At all..

      January 22, 2012 at 5:08 pm |
  19. Lamar

    This guy is stupid

    “I mean if religion is so great, why has it started so many wars?”
    Relgion doesn't start wars, people do. Especially people who don't understand what Christianity teaches.

    “Why does it build huge churches but fail to feed the poor?”
    Christians, esp the Catholic Church is the largest Charity organisation on the planet because of the teaching of Religion. Plain Fact. And the huge churches he's referring to were built over hundreds of years, using cents and pennies to house the Holy Eucharist, whose teachings make Christianity the largest Charity on earth. This guy is dumb,

    January 22, 2012 at 2:03 pm |
    • Your Cousin

      So you're obviously a Catholic and will scream like a little kid that your religion is the best, right? You are dumb yourself.

      January 22, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
  20. mr. Magoooooooooo

    Religion is similar to racism in that you need to indoctrinate someone while they are young (for the most part) so they will conform to your set of beliefs.

    January 22, 2012 at 1:53 pm |
    • Jibs

      Not really. Athiests for example indoctrinate older people all the time into their religious practices.

      January 22, 2012 at 2:05 pm |
    • Ironicus

      Jibs is so foolish. Isn't it sad when they let people drop out of school?
      Education in this country is being constantly rejected by religious people because they just don't understand reality.
      Their delusions are all that they want.
      Everything else can go to hell as far as most of them are concerned – and we see proof of this from the way they act.
      Like Jibs.

      January 22, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
    • Jibs

      Huh? First of all, i went through school. All the way. And by the way, education does not equal wisdom. Someone calling me "noneducated" because i think athiesm is a religion like the rest shows you may actually lack both education and wisdom. So very telling

      January 22, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
    • Jibs

      Oh, and one more thing. Your "reality" is the basis of your truth, and it is false. All your faith in "proof" is laughable, because it doesnt exist, proof i mean. Sure, its all consistent here on earth, but falls apart in other parts of the universe. So how can you value or use your concept of "proof" when it has nothing in common with truth? So very very strange.

      January 22, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
    • Ironicus

      Jibs, I was addressing your apparent lack of knowledge about the definition of "atheism", your lack of physics knowledge, and your lack of reasoning and logic skills.
      Just because you got a diploma doesn't mean you automatically know what you're talking about if you insist on talking about things you are ignorant about. It just shows you to be a fool who speaks without knowledge.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
    • Jibs

      Ironicus. You are leaning on sarcasm and blind insult to construct your answers and its not working. The behavior of athiests in general fit the textbook definition of religion. Im sorry if that offends you but its true. If a large group of people meet in a building, talk about deities, organize in a function, use member money to sponser an event to spread their word in order to disuade another religious group and prove their god doesnt exist... Well, im sorry bub, but thats about as religious as it gets.

      January 22, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
    • Ironicus

      My insults are not blind. I have actual proof to back them up, unlike your "faith" in your non-existent deity, useless religion, and individual ignorance.
      Atheism is simply the lack of a belief in any god or gods. That's it. Nothing more can be drawn from that well. It is empty.

      If some people want to try reasoning with others, that is not a religion. There is no "our religion is best" behind trying to make people understand the real world.
      It is an anti-insanity position, not a religious one. You cannot make a religion out of a person's lack of religion. You are an idiot.

      January 22, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
    • Jibs

      Ironicus. Have to go. But once again, your insult that i am an idiot sort of seals your disposition, and i feel sorry for you. Im also sorry your grasp on concepts and blind acceptance of them as truth has apparently led you down a confusing path. I can see it angers you that i called athiesm a religion, which leads me to believe you are an athiest. I think you are confusing athiesm with agnostics. Athiests have a very defined religious function, which they have created themselves. You need to understand there is more than one definition assigned to athiesm in respects to religion. Unlike you i will not resort to name calling, since i dont know you. But im not surprised you have drawn a conclusion about me and assigned an intellect based on my values.. Thats a very religious thing to do. God bless you and relax. Life is short

      January 22, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.