PDA

View Full Version : When a snake smiles



SSanf
October 3rd, 2008, 12:25 PM
rozeboosje talks about some intrinsic problems he sees with Christians wanting to be friendly with Atheists and other non-Christians.

Part 1

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zX03HOD0IpY

Part 2

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5d3DVcd9IA0

Darth Brooks
October 3rd, 2008, 05:53 PM
Comparing the belief that non-Christians are destined to Hell with anti-Semitism is not a valid comparison. This is a logical fallacy. The belief, in and of itself, is not based on any kind of racial or ethnic judgment. And the vast majority of Christians - even those who believe this way - are simply not going to round any of us up and put us into death camps. Most of them have at least a rudimentary understanding that such conduct would be completely immoral and unethical.

The problem here is this fellow is not separating the belief from the believer. Just because a Christian believes you're going to Hell if you don't accept Christ does not mean that person hates you or wants you to suffer. It may seem close-minded and bigoted to us, but the fact of the matter is their belief is every bit as valid (or invalid) as our own, at least until we can prove our own beliefs to be true or prove their beliefs to be false. (And neither one of these possibilities will be taking place anytime soon.)

Now it is certainly true that there are some Christians who believe this way and who use it as an excuse to express hatred toward people of other faiths. But if we allow ourselves to assume that all people who believe this way are hateful toward us, we are guilty of throwing critical thinking out the window ourselves, and we forfeit all right to criticize them for their actions. Obviously, a Christian who believes that non-Christians are destined to hellfire, yet who is willing to be friendly with non-Christians and even be close personal friends with them, is somebody who is at least rational enough to realize that one must separate the believer from the belief (or "the sin" from "the sinner") in inter-personal relationships, and their thoughtfulness deserves to be reciprocated.

As for his criticisms of the Christian God, that is an altogether different subject for a theological debate. But when we are discussing Christians and whether or not they are being good people by being friends with non-Christians, it holds absolutely no weight at all. If anything I think this sort of preaching is irresponsible at best, hate-mongering a worst.

Djiril
October 3rd, 2008, 07:57 PM
I think his theological arguments are sound, but he doesn't do himself any favors comparing Christians to Nazis in the first part. I think a lot of true believers just don't think about the rationalizations of hell that hard.

watersprite
October 3rd, 2008, 08:12 PM
I had a hard time watching him. He made my hackles rise. Like very self important and narcissistic.
So, should I characterize ALL video bloggers that way? Or just take a look and make up my mind from there. Pay close attention to the person. Turn the volume off and just watch it. Then turn the volume and watch it again. You can tell a lot about a person that way.

Lahmi
October 5th, 2008, 08:44 AM
Thanks Darth Brooks,

I appreciate your understanding of the situation.

mark

SSanf
October 5th, 2008, 09:14 AM
Comparing the belief that non-Christians are............Very good comment.

But, how do you separate the belief from the believer? Doesn't your belief become an intrinsic part of who you are?

And, don't they WANT their religion to be right?

SSanf
October 5th, 2008, 09:20 AM
I had a hard time watching him.........I really like rozeboosje a lot. I guess what you see as narcissism I see as self-confidence.

Darth Brooks
October 5th, 2008, 09:57 AM
A person's belief is an important part of who he/she is, but it isn't all of who he/she is, anymore than the clothes he/she likes to wear is all of who he/she is, and sometimes, when it comes down to the nitty gritty, we have to just forgive them for whatever they think that offends us, and try our best to get along with them. It is possible for a person who thinks we're all going to Hell to still be a good person despite all that theological hokey-pokey, and as far as inter-personal relationships go, it's not so much what our friends think or believe that's important; it's what they do, and whether they are there for us when we really need them.

Consider the opposite extreme. There can just as easily be a person who doesn't believe in Hell and who thinks everyone's going to the same place after we die, but who nevertheless treats people disrespectfully and who doesn't practice what they preach. Is this person better or worse than the Christian who believes you're doomed to Hell, but who is respectful to you and goes out of their way to be nice, just for the sake of being nice? I'd like to think that the other person will eventually straighten him/herself out at some point, but chances are I would get along with the Christian more successfully, because I get along better with people who practice goodness than I do with people who just talk about goodness and never demonstrate it.

Now of course I'm not trying to dichotomize between Christians and non-Christians here, in fact that would be the precise opposite of my point. My point is, who cares what a person believes so long as they are respectful to others and do good deeds? That is all I ask from Christians. I don't ask that they stop believing in Hell or believing that I'm going to go there. They can believe whatever they want just like I can believe whatever I want. But so long as they're willing to reciprocate my good will toward them, and practice the bit about "Loving thy neighbor," that's what really matters.

EponaCapaill
December 27th, 2008, 11:44 PM
Very good comment.

But, how do you separate the belief from the believer? Doesn't your belief become an intrinsic part of who you are?

And, don't they WANT their religion to be right?

I don't know how you would seperated the belief from the believer, because yes, your belief, if it is what you truly believe, is an intrinsic part of you. I suppose that you would have to get to know the person to know whether they truly believe what they say they do. There are those that would say they believe one thing and then change to try to get you to see it their way. Not everyone is like that though.

There are those Christians (myself being one) that don't believe that Pagans (or believers of any other belief system for that matter) are going to hell just because they don't believe the same way I do. I believe that all Gods and Goddesses are emanations of one all encompassing Divine source.

I follow the Christian God, however I believe that other Gods and Goddesses exist and I don't believe following them damns anyone to hell.

I'm sorry that people find it difficult to believe that there are people that can and do truly accept them for who they are and what they believe.

Just my 2 cents

Forgive me if this seems like rambling, I am apparently more tired than I thought and I'm not sure if I am making sense. http://bestsmileys.com/signs1/25.gif

evergreen
December 27th, 2008, 11:53 PM
He looks exactly like an art teacher I had in 8th grade who got fired for doing drugs. :eek:

Ok, now I'm going to try and watch it for reals.

zombi
December 28th, 2008, 12:57 AM
It is not a simple matter to try and lump multiple people within one religion as the same -- particularly a religion as widely varied as christianity is in the west these days. Also I'm not sure if the word want really applies; the belief would more probably be that the teachings of the religion ARE true, not that the follower WANTS them to be true.

Also I think it's important to remind ourselves not to classify those with different religious beliefs as an "other" in our language.

Cunae
December 28th, 2008, 02:55 AM
Are all of the Christians on MW here to save anyone? No, at least not this one. I am here to watch and learn... to develop my own beliefs, and to share them in threads were I won't get smacked down for it when responding to a comment about a God I share with someone else. [Christians have to be very careful where we put those kind of comments here.]

I am definitely not here to convert or "save" anyone. If I see someone I care for heading toward the edge of a spiritual cliff, will I let them go? Yes, because what is a cliff to me might be a diving board into another realm for them.

As for the guy in the videos, I think he's got too much time on his hands.

LostSheep
December 28th, 2008, 04:31 AM
Indeed so, to both the above comments. The Inquisition was abolished a while ago; and so, even if members of one particular branch of Christianity are expected to follow the same set of rules and beliefs, not everyone who wants to be Christian (and yes, amazingly, I have come across some who've chosen to be), has to follow those particular branches any more. There's a lot that don't insist on everything thinking the same way, that do, in fact, encourage dissent from the traditional thinkings. Consequently, I think, classifying "Christians" as one homogenous mass is an outdated way of thinking.

Carri
December 28th, 2008, 06:40 AM
Indeed so, to both the above comments. The Inquisition was abolished a while ago; and so, even if members of one particular branch of Christianity are expected to follow the same set of rules and beliefs, not everyone who wants to be Christian (and yes, amazingly, I have come across some who've chosen to be), has to follow those particular branches any more. There's a lot that don't insist on everything thinking the same way, that do, in fact, encourage dissent from the traditional thinkings. Consequently, I think, classifying "Christians" as one homogenous mass is an outdated way of thinking.
Thank you for the support.

Carri
December 28th, 2008, 06:41 AM
Are all of the Christians on MW here to save anyone? No, at least not this one. I am here to watch and learn... to develop my own beliefs, and to share them in threads were I won't get smacked down for it when responding to a comment
I concur

Carri
December 28th, 2008, 07:06 AM
I rethought my post, it was more bold than I am comfortable being.

Cassie
December 28th, 2008, 07:10 AM
Comparing the belief that non-Christians are destined to Hell with anti-Semitism is not a valid comparison. This is a logical fallacy. The belief, in and of itself, is not based on any kind of racial or ethnic judgment. And the vast majority of Christians - even those who believe this way - are simply not going to round any of us up and put us into death camps. Most of them have at least a rudimentary understanding that such conduct would be completely immoral and unethical.

The problem here is this fellow is not separating the belief from the believer. Just because a Christian believes you're going to Hell if you don't accept Christ does not mean that person hates you or wants you to suffer. It may seem close-minded and bigoted to us, but the fact of the matter is their belief is every bit as valid (or invalid) as our own, at least until we can prove our own beliefs to be true or prove their beliefs to be false. (And neither one of these possibilities will be taking place anytime soon.)

Now it is certainly true that there are some Christians who believe this way and who use it as an excuse to express hatred toward people of other faiths. But if we allow ourselves to assume that all people who believe this way are hateful toward us, we are guilty of throwing critical thinking out the window ourselves, and we forfeit all right to criticize them for their actions. Obviously, a Christian who believes that non-Christians are destined to hellfire, yet who is willing to be friendly with non-Christians and even be close personal friends with them, is somebody who is at least rational enough to realize that one must separate the believer from the belief (or "the sin" from "the sinner") in inter-personal relationships, and their thoughtfulness deserves to be reciprocated.

As for his criticisms of the Christian God, that is an altogether different subject for a theological debate. But when we are discussing Christians and whether or not they are being good people by being friends with non-Christians, it holds absolutely no weight at all. If anything I think this sort of preaching is irresponsible at best, hate-mongering a worst.


A person's belief is an important part of who he/she is, but it isn't all of who he/she is, anymore than the clothes he/she likes to wear is all of who he/she is, and sometimes, when it comes down to the nitty gritty, we have to just forgive them for whatever they think that offends us, and try our best to get along with them. It is possible for a person who thinks we're all going to Hell to still be a good person despite all that theological hokey-pokey, and as far as inter-personal relationships go, it's not so much what our friends think or believe that's important; it's what they do, and whether they are there for us when we really need them.

Consider the opposite extreme. There can just as easily be a person who doesn't believe in Hell and who thinks everyone's going to the same place after we die, but who nevertheless treats people disrespectfully and who doesn't practice what they preach. Is this person better or worse than the Christian who believes you're doomed to Hell, but who is respectful to you and goes out of their way to be nice, just for the sake of being nice? I'd like to think that the other person will eventually straighten him/herself out at some point, but chances are I would get along with the Christian more successfully, because I get along better with people who practice goodness than I do with people who just talk about goodness and never demonstrate it.

Now of course I'm not trying to dichotomize between Christians and non-Christians here, in fact that would be the precise opposite of my point. My point is, who cares what a person believes so long as they are respectful to others and do good deeds? That is all I ask from Christians. I don't ask that they stop believing in Hell or believing that I'm going to go there. They can believe whatever they want just like I can believe whatever I want. But so long as they're willing to reciprocate my good will toward them, and practice the bit about "Loving thy neighbor," that's what really matters.
Great posts, I couldn't agree more.


Consequently, I think, classifying "Christians" as one homogenous mass is an outdated way of thinking.
Very true.
Moreover it is not possible to have meaningfull discussion or debate with Christians of any denomination (or members of any other religious group) if everything you say is steeped in obvious prejudice and ignorence.

Infinite Grey
December 28th, 2008, 08:27 AM
I had a hard time watching him. He made my hackles rise. Like very self important and narcissistic.
So, should I characterize ALL video bloggers that way? Or just take a look and make up my mind from there. Pay close attention to the person. Turn the volume off and just watch it. Then turn the volume and watch it again. You can tell a lot about a person that way.

mmmm I guess you could say that, but that would the first time I've heard rozeboosje described that way... I know him on an internet style personal way, and he really is a humble guy... I guess it's the language barrier thing.

And at least for the first 1:30 minutes I agree with what he says - Christians, even moderate ones do tend to try and save you, and have at least some bigoted views. Naturally there are exceptions to the rule, there always are - and he validates that fact at the beginning of the video. Of cause I can only comment on the first bit of the first video as while I consider myself a friend of his... I rarely watch atheist videos anymore - it's shame they have to repeat themselves so many times.

LostSheep
December 28th, 2008, 09:01 AM
And at least for the first 1:30 minutes I agree with what he says - Christians, even moderate ones do tend to try and save you, and have at least some bigoted views. Naturally there are exceptions to the rule, there always are - and he validates that fact at the beginning of the video. Of cause I can only comment on the first bit of the first video as while I consider myself a friend of his... I rarely watch atheist videos anymore - it's shame they have to repeat themselves so many times.

But yet the broad brush approach, painting everyone with the same sweeping generalisations, is still popular, as we can see here. Oh well.

Cunae
December 28th, 2008, 06:00 PM
Our spiritual mandate is to share the gospel so others might know Christ and be saved... or so I take it from the Bible. That makes it kind of hard to interact with an atheist or pagan without thinking "this person could spend eternity in hell and I am not saying anything to prevent it!" Maybe it's just a guilt trip set into motion since our Sunday school days.

Where do we draw the line between staying p.c. and sharing Christ? I know why I am here, which is not to evangelize, so I follow the rules and I stay focused on what I can learn from everyone else. Or I try to. Sometimes I mess up and I get slapped for it. Pretty hard lately, as a matter of fact.

zombi
December 29th, 2008, 02:13 AM
not everyone who wants to be Christian (and yes, amazingly, I have come across some who've chosen to be)

It's really not that amazing, people choose their religion all the time as we see many people do on here. I don't know why you chose to include that bit in the parenthesis? Choosing Christianity is not different from choosing any other religion.

I do agree that a lot of times the Christian faith steps on toes because of the specific mandate in the Bible about "going in to all the world and teaching" -- I think because of the tendency to export culture and society along with religious teachings, a lot of people think that Christians run roughshod over everyone else. But it's important to remember that that is not always the case, and one bad apple does not a bad tree make.

Carri
December 29th, 2008, 02:34 AM
mmmm I guess you could say that, but that would the first time I've heard rozeboosje described that way... I know him on an internet style personal way, and he really is a humble guy... I guess it's the language barrier thing.

And at least for the first 1:30 minutes I agree with what he says - Christians, even moderate ones do tend to try and save you, and have at least some bigoted views. Naturally there are exceptions to the rule, there always are - and he validates that fact at the beginning of the video. Of cause I can only comment on the first bit of the first video as while I consider myself a friend of his... I rarely watch atheist videos anymore - it's shame they have to repeat themselves so many times.

I think the Christians you will find here are the exceptions. If you hear what Mystic Christian and I say we are more comfortable here where we are allowed to think for ourselves. And I know there are others here too that have not replied in this thread so I won't mention their names. I am not out to save anyone, actually the Christians would probably be out to save me. I think Jesus may find me to be a Christian, maybe not IDK, but I fit here. It saddens me to think that anyone would warn people here to be on guard around me just because I believe in Jesus. Even if I have never tried to save anyone, never taken issue with posts about Christians, even participated in the complaints. I think most people can decide for themselves if I am to be feared.

LostSheep
December 29th, 2008, 04:24 AM
It's really not that amazing, people choose their religion all the time as we see many people do on here. I don't know why you chose to include that bit in the parenthesis? Choosing Christianity is not different from choosing any other religion.


Oh, I know that, don't worry, but it does seem sometimes from some parts of what you might call the "pagan community" that there's some that don't believe it is possible, so i included it as a little ironic reminder.