Seperation of Church and State

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  1. again... if it has to be explained... you simply do not understand the basic principles of government.


    but if it will make you happy.



    Government is an entity designed to deal with the absolutes in relation to the social and business interactions of men. How to regulate those interactions and how to deal with the repercussions when those interactions break down. Religion is not an absolute and by its DEFINITION relies upon FAITH. How do you design laws based upon a faith? upon a NON absolute.

    Religion has its own set of punishments to deal with failure... and with the SAME faith that you believe in your religion you MUST be bound to believe that those punishments will be handed out through the diety of that particular religion... if you DO NOT believe that then you arewnt exactly faithful, now are you?

    How do I tell you that your belief in the afterlife is wrong then attempt to write a law to that effect. How do I do that without infinging on someone elses belief ?

    Its a simple fact that no man or group of men could attempt such a task without guaranteed failure, It has ALWAYS failed and ALWAYS will.

    Let Government rule men... let religion rule their afterlife. This way works the best.

    Secular governments will ALWAYS provide the most freedom in terms of religion becuase IDEALLY they do not involve themselevs in such affairs.

    Because government is run by MEN... fallible men... NOT Dieties..

    Do you want MEN telling YOU how to be faithful.. how to practice your beliefs??

    Of course you dont.


  2. Quote Originally Posted by Milo Hobgoblin
    again... if it has to be explained... you simply do not understand the basic principles of government.


    but if it will make you happy.



    Government is an entity designed to deal with the absolutes in relation to the social and business interactions of men. How to regulate those interactions and how to deal with the repercussions when those interactions break down. Religion is not an absolute and by its DEFINITION relies upon FAITH. How do you design laws based upon a faith? upon a NON absolute.

    Religion has its own set of punishments to deal with failure... and with the SAME faith that you believe in your religion you MUST be bound to believe that those punishments will be handed out through the diety of that particular religion... if you DO NOT believe that then you arewnt exactly faithful, now are you?

    How do I tell you that your belief in the afterlife is wrong then attempt to write a law to that effect. How do I do that without infinging on someone elses belief ?

    Its a simple fact that no man or group of men could attempt such a task without guaranteed failure, It has ALWAYS failed and ALWAYS will.

    Let Government rule men... let religion rule their afterlife. This way works the best.

    Secular governments will ALWAYS provide the most freedom in terms of religion becuase IDEALLY they do not involve themselevs in such affairs.

    Because government is run by MEN... fallible men... NOT Dieties..

    Do you want MEN telling YOU how to be faithful.. how to practice your beliefs??

    Of course you dont.
    Unfortunately, it is government that got its absolutes from religion ("You shall not kill, you shall not covet, ,etc.), and you are good at understanding religion from your perspective, your viewpoint; but all you're proving is why there is hatred, animosity, and warring in this world, and it is ignorance to obvious facts. You base your whole thesis on fallacies and misunderstanding, instead of pulling yourself away from your philosophy, and studying the basis of laws, and how they relate to a person's moral and/or philosophical beliefs. Someone's filled your mind with mush, and you have to pull away and think for yourself.

    You are missing the entire point of this thread. Separation of church and state is to keep govornment out of religion, and to prevent any one religion from influencing the government as well. Read this entire thread again, this time pay attention to religion being more than just an archaic belief about things that happen after we are dead. Your own prejudice prevents you from comprehending, and there is nothing that can be said to you to convince you otherwise. You can call names if you want, but why don't you post your IQ, and I'll let you go at it with my girl... she's nice, but someone else's hostility and name-calling brings out the brilliant girl I know all too well.

    I'm sorry you base so much of your thesis on philosophy and your own personal experiences and prejudice -- you seem to think so hard that you're missing the simple points; this is a fantastic example of why we cannot get along in this country; think about people other than yourself.
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  3. Did you read the first article in the thread???


    Not everyoine believes in God. Those people must also be governed by the same government that YOU do?

    Or do they not count? I AM thinking of EVERYONE including myself...

    its you who are failing to see the obvious.

    You cannot rule godless people with a government whom, at its core is baed upon religious principles and morales.

    It MUST be secular to be fair.

  4. Quote Originally Posted by Milo Hobgoblin
    Did you read the first article in the thread???


    Not everyoine believes in God. Those people must also be governed by the same government that YOU do?

    Or do they not count? I AM thinking of EVERYONE including myself...

    its you who are failing to see the obvious.

    You cannot rule godless people with a government whom, at its core is baed upon religious principles and morales.

    It MUST be secular to be fair.
    And all YOU have to do is just read the post you just wrote, and replace "God" with "law", and you just made my point. You're too caught up in yourself and your hatred and discrimination against religion and its advocates to even realize what you are saying... you have got a great number of us grinning from ear to ear.

    I still respect your opinion, but I don't see that you respect others with what has been stated in this thread. Law brings order to the lawless. You are too caught up in proving you are different and therefore better (by implying that you and your kids are the smart ones on this) to see value in religion in making laws (where do you think laws come from?). If all you can see is bad in everything except with people who agree with you, can you see how harmful that thought process is? That's what we're trying to get away from in this country.

  5. you are looking way to far into my post.

    ALL im saying is that religion has NO place in government.


    How can a godless man feel equal in a courtroom where is is asked to swear on a bible... where the ten comandments are printed in stone on the wall... where "in god we trust" is on every bit of currency?

    How can that man not feel that he will be considered lesser when his basic morale character is questioned by the same men whogovern him because they are "men of god"?

    FREEDOM of RELIGION must ALSO INCLUDE FREEDOM *FROM* RELIGION. Yet you deny people that freedom when god has a place in government.


    this has NOTHING to do with hate and everything to do with equality.

    But if there were true eqaulity the religions like Christianity would lose their power to control men and their thoughts and actions.

    Men would TRULY be free.
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  6. Quote Originally Posted by Milo Hobgoblin
    you are looking way to far into my post.

    ALL im saying is that religion has NO place in government.


    How can a godless man feel equal in a courtroom where is is asked to swear on a bible... where the ten comandments are printed in stone on the wall... where "in god we trust" is on every bit of currency?

    How can that man not feel that he will be considered lesser when his basic morale character is questioned by the same men whogovern him because they are "men of god"?

    FREEDOM of RELIGION must ALSO INCLUDE FREEDOM *FROM* RELIGION. Yet you deny people that freedom when god has a place in government.


    this has NOTHING to do with hate and everything to do with equality.

    But if there were true eqaulity the religions like Christianity would lose their power to control men and their thoughts and actions.

    Men would TRULY be free.
    Sir:

    I think you are mising the forest for the trees. At best, your views of religion as some mind control for society and a way of keeping the man in check is sorely misguided.

  7. Quote Originally Posted by Milo Hobgoblin
    you are looking way to far into my post.

    ALL im saying is that religion has NO place in government.


    How can a godless man feel equal in a courtroom where he is asked to swear on a bible... where the ten comandments are printed in stone on the wall... where "in god we trust" is on every bit of currency?

    How can that man not feel that he will be considered lesser when his basic morale character is questioned by the same men whogovern him because they are "men of god"?

    FREEDOM of RELIGION must ALSO INCLUDE FREEDOM *FROM* RELIGION. Yet you deny people that freedom when god has a place in government.


    this has NOTHING to do with hate and everything to do with equality.

    But if there were true eqaulity the religions like Christianity would lose their power to control men and their thoughts and actions.

    Men would TRULY be free.
    First off, our definitions may be off from one another. If religion is "moral judgments that others must believe before we feel secure with our environment", then I will probably agree with you.

    Secondly, swearing on the Bible is not a requirement, unless you throw it in the judge's face (I do not swear on the Bible, because the Bible commands me not to swear; so it looks like I have the same "dilemma" you do). The ten commandments are on the wall to serve as reminders of ethical structure for society; if you choose not to agree with this or are in some way offended by this, then view it as art. As for the "in God we trust", no one is requiring you to read that out loud if you do not agree with it; just ignore it. The statement was added after much debate and discussion -- it does not mean in any way that we are a religious society; just that we as a nation acknowledge God. You can acknowledge a Diety without believing in God... it's respectful.

    You must take movies like "The Crucible", and "The Scarlet Letter" too seriously, and you are feeling sorry for yourself. There are people like that in this world, that may look down on you, But I know quite a few more than you likely do, and my friends are not like that; you seem to use a movie stereotype to describe so-called Christian people.

    I understand your concerns, but every law dictates someone's morality. You're on a very slippery slope, and the direction you're heading has no answer for how to determine right from wrong. You seem to feel as society evolves, our sense of right and wrong will evolve with it. I can justify all sorts of hideous things with that mindset... pedimony (marriage of children; after all, if they love each other, why can't they marry?); multiple sexual partners, including children and animals; etc. you can never be truly free, because eventually your liberty will infringe on others (I.E. if one chooses to beat someone because they feel like it, etc.). You want recognition and respect of atheism, of your beliefs; that's fine and dandy. But to say religion has no place in government... once again, no law is passed that doesn't have a moral basis; you may need to understand the basis behind religion -- love of your brother, instead of self-worship.

    I dislike established religion, but I was raised to respect people for their good tendencies. I appreciate what you are saying, but we are on different pages. Religion isn't supposed to control the minds of men; God is. People take things out of context; it happens in religion, and it happens in everything. This country is based on many of the absolute, irrefutable laws of the Old and New Testament, among other things, and you can say over and over that it is not possible, or did not happen, but fortunately one can access more than enough evidence to back that up. The founding fathers were prolific writers; read the Federalist papers, and see that not only are laws and religion intertwined, but that religion was instrumental to help these great men write our Constitution.

    Atheism is a recognized religion, Milo, according to the Supreme Court (the belief of yourself as God); while I understand your premise, it does seem to create flaws in your argument
    Last edited by GIJoe; 02-19-2004 at 08:17 PM.

  8. Let Government rule men... let religion rule their afterlife
    This country was not founded on the principals of "let government rule men". It was founded on the principles OF LET MEN RULE THE GOVERNMENT.
    But if there were true eqaulity the religions like Christianity would lose their power to control men and their thoughts and actions.Men would TRULY be free.
    I don't and most people don't equate religion with being controlled. If you read what most of the great religious leaders advocated it was self control. Most people also use them as a set of principles to live by. Take love thy neighbor.........loving humanity and the people around you is a good thing.
    Men would TRULY be free
    Free to do what? Freedom from right and wrong? Freedom to hate thy neighbor?That's called anarchy.
    What you seem to be saying is that government is god and if that is what you're saying this country was not founded on that principles. If fact most countries that do have that principle keep their people locked up and keep them in the country with machine guns.
    FREEDOM of RELIGION must ALSO INCLUDE FREEDOM *FROM* RELIGION
    What you are saying here is to have freedom of religion you have to get rid of it (in public any way), but by doing that you are going against what the first amendment says[QUOTE]"Congress shall make no law respecting and establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."[QUOTE] I think what you are advocating is against "the free exercise thereof" You are also volition freedom of speech and freedom of expression. I think you are missing the point that custom made quite well in his post
    What our forefathers did not want was a denomination set up and ran by the government.
    We don't really have that at all. You have the right to believe what you want and follow or not follow any religion you want. This would be including the religion of government called socialism and atheism.

  9. Some how you two think Im attacking spirituality. Im not... I am simply attacing the idea that ANY dogma of organized religion INCLUDING Christianity has NO place in government.

    The reference to a god... simply infringes upon the rights of people who are godless. PERIOD.

    Its seems so simple to you...to simply discount or "ignore" those philosophies.... but that would be like asking some devout Christian to walk into a courtroom with goats heads on the walls and Satanic scripture carved on the floor.

    Gee... do you think he might feel uncomfortable or that he wasnt being given a fair shot??

    Both of you have wrapped yourself up in so much religious rhetoric... that you simply CANNOT see the obvious.

  10. Im in total agreement with Milo. It seems that most people are missing his point. How can you place religion in government without imposing on someone else's rights. If you say the ten commandments must be worshipped and held as law Im sure there would be some Muslims who would disagree along with many other religions.
    I dont believe in the Christian God or Allah or anything else, I do believe in a higher power but since I refuse to commit myself to any religion I am considered an Atheist.
    Also, I dont need a religion or a law to tell me that killing or violating someone else physically or mentally is wrong. I have a set of standards which I hold myself to, a set of standards that were built after years and years of watching many injustices in the world and saying that is wrong I will never do things such as that.
    Furthermore, I thought the Christians would be in support of taking prayer out of school because it means that there are no religions allowed to pray, this means that your children and thier faiths cant be challenged there. For instance if someone brings in the Satanic Bible and starts reading from it they would be asked to put it away as well as someone reading from the Christian Bible or the Koran.

    One more thing, an IQ of 172. I tested at 133 and Im considered in the "gifted category". 172 is phenomenal and studies have shown that most people over 150 cannot relate very well to people who arent in the same range. Also, people with that intelligence level tend to stear away from religion as it cant be supported by science.

    http://members.ams.chello.nl/p.cooij...y/iqrange.html

  11. The Real Murderers: Atheism or Christianity?

    Gregory Koukl

    Is it legitimate to condemn religion for historical atrocities? First we had better examine the facts.


    I got a call from a gentleman from San Francisco who was exercised about Christian missionaries going into foreign lands. Then he started talking about not only the destruction of indigenous beliefs, but also the destruction of missionaries. That's what he wanted to see happen. He also said that Christians and religious groups are responsible for the greatest massacres of history. It turns out he was quite supportive of Wicca and indigenous religions which worship the Mother Earth force, Gaia. This is essentially the basic foundation for witchcraft.

    The assertion is that religion has caused most of the killing and bloodshed in the world. There are people who make accusations and assertions that are empirically false. This is one of them.



    But a couple of the things that he said were a challenge to me. Not only did he assert that historically missionaries have destroyed cultures and indigenous religions at the point of a gun, but also Christians and religion were responsible for most of the bloodshed in the world, or the great majority of it. I've heard this claim before. I wanted to respond with more detail because I'm sure you've heard these things as well.
    I have a tactic that I employ in situations like this that is called "Just the Facts, Ma'am." In other words, there are times when you're faced with objections to Christianity or your point of view that really fail with an accurate assessment of the facts. There are people who make accusations and assertions that are empirically false. This is one of them.

    The assertion is that religion has caused most of the killing and bloodshed in the world. The greatest atrocities committed against man were done in the name of God.

    Before I get to the particular facts, there is more than just a factual problem here. There is a theoretical problem as well and I tried to make the point that we must distinguish between what an individual or group of people do and what the code that they allegedly follow actually asserts. The fact is that there are people who do things consistently that are inconsistent with the code that they allegedly follow. But often times when that happens, especially where religion is concerned, the finger is pointed not at the individual who is choosing to do something barbaric, but at the code he claims to represent. The only time it's legitimate to point to the code as the source of barbarism is if the code is, in fact, the source of barbarism. People object to a religion that used barbaric means to spread the faith. But one can only use that as an objection against the religion if it's the religion itself that asserts that one must do it this way, as opposed to people who try to promote the spread of the religion in a forceful fashion in contradiction to what the religion actually teaches.

    It's my understanding that much of Islam has been spread by the edge of the sword. That isn't because Muslim advocates were particularly violent. It's because their religion actually advocates this kind of thing. The difference between that and Christianity is that when Christianity was spread by the edge of the sword it was done so in contradistinction to the actually teachings of Christianity. This is when individual people who claim to be Christians actually did things that were inconsistent with their faith.

    I've had some people that have told me when I've brought this up, "That's not a fair defense. You can't simply say that those people who committed the Crusades or the Inquisition or the witch burnings weren't real Christians. That's illegitimate." My response is, why? We know what a real Christian is. A real Christian is someone who believes particular things and lives a particular kind of lifestyle. John makes it clear that those who consistently live unrighteously are ipso facto by definition not part of the faith. So why is it illegitimate for me to look at people who claim to be Christians, yet live unrighteous lives, and promote genocide to say that these people aren't living consistently with the text, therefore you can't really call them Christians. I think that's legitimate.


    It's not fair or reasonable to fault the Bible when the person who's waving the sword is doing things that are contradictory to what the Bible teaches.



    For example, no one would fault the Hippocratic Oath, which is a very rigid standard of conduct for physicians, just because there are doctors who don't keep it. We wouldn't say there's something wrong with the oath, the code that they allegedly follow. We'd say there was something wrong with the individuals who don't live up to the ideals of that code. That is the case frequently where people waving the Bible in one hand are also waving a bloody sword in the other. The two are inconsistent. So it's not fair or reasonable to fault the Bible when the person who's waving the sword is doing things that are contradictory to what the Bible teaches ought to be done.
    So that's the first important thing to remember when you face an objection like this. Distinguish between what a person does and what the code they claim to follow actually asserts. Christianity is one thing, and if we're going to fault Christianity we must fault its teachings and not fault it because there are people who say they are Christians but then live a life that is totally morally divergent from what Christianity actually teaches.

    As I said earlier, this kind of objection falls when you employ a tactic I call "Just the Facts, Ma'am," and I'd like to give you some of those facts. My assertion as I responded to the gentleman who called last week was simply this: it is true that there are Christians who do evil things. Even take people's lives. This is an indication that these people aren't truly Christians, but it may be true also that people with the right heart, but the wrong head do things that are inappropriate, like I think might have been the case in the Salem Witch Trials.

    My basic case is that religion doesn't promote this kind of thing; it's the exception to the rule. The rule actually is that when we remove God from the equation, when we act and live as if we have no one to answer to but ourselves, and if there is no God, then the rule of law is social Darwinism-- the strong rule the weak. We'll find that, quite to the contrary, it is not Christianity and the belief in the God of the Bible that results in carnage and genocide. But it's when people reject the God of the Bible that we are most vulnerable to those kinds of things that we see in history that are the radical and gross destruction of human lives.

    Now for the facts.

    Let's take the Salem Witchcraft Trials. Apparently, between June and September of 1692 five men and fourteen women were eventually convicted and hanged because English law called for the death penalty for witchcraft (which, incidentally, was the same as the Old Testament). During this time there were over 150 others that were imprisoned. Things finally ended in September 1692 when Governor William Phipps dissolved the court because his wife had been accused. He said enough of this insanity. It was the colony's leading minister, by the way, who finally ended the witch hunt in 1693 and those that remained in prison were released. The judge that was presiding over the trials publicly confessed his guilt in 1697. By the way , it's interesting to note that this particular judge was very concerned about the plight of the American Indian and was opposed to slavery. These are views that don't sit well with the common caricature of the radical Puritans in the witch hunt. In 1711 the colony's legislatures made reparation to the heirs of the victims. They annulled the convictions.

    I guess the point is that there was a witch hunt. It was based on theological reasons, but it wasn't to the extent that is usually claimed. I think last week the caller said it was millions and millions that were burned at the stake as witches. That certainly wasn't the case in this country. It seemed that the witch hunt was a result of theological misapplication and the people who were involved were penitent. The whole witch hunt lasted only a year. Sixteen people were hanged in New England for witchcraft prior to 1692. In the 1692 witch hunt nineteen were executed. So you've got thirty-five people. One hundred fifty imprisoned. This is not at all to diminish or minimize the impact of the American witch hunts which resulted in thirty-five deaths. But thirty-five is not millions. It is not hundreds of thousands. It's not even hundreds. It's thirty-five. This was not genocide.

    Now in Europe it was a little different. Joan of Arc was burned at the stake for practicing witchcraft in 1431. Over a period of 300 years, from 1484 to 1782, the Christian church put to death 300,000 women accused of witchcraft, about 1000 per year. Again, I don't want to minimize the impact of 1000 lives lost a year, but here we're talking about a much, much smaller number over a long period of time than what has been claimed in the past.

    In America we're talking thirty-five people. In Europe over 300 years, we're talking about 300,000. Not millions. The sources here are World Book Encyclopedia and Encyclopedia Americana . You can also read in Newsweek , August 31, 1992. I was accused of being a liar last week. I'm trying to give you the facts from reputable sources that show that the accusations from last week aren't accurate.

    There were two Inquisitions. One of them began right around the end of the first millennium in 1017. It began as an attempt to root out heretics and occurred chiefly in France, Germany, Italy and Spain. The Spanish Inquisition followed in the fourteenth century and was much bloodier. It began as a feudal aristocracy which forced religious values on society. Jews were caught in the middle of this and many of them were killed. About 2000 executions took place. The Inquisition that took place at the turn of the millennium, less than that. So we're talking about thousands of people, not millions.

    There were actually seven different Crusades and tens of thousands died in them. Most of them were a misdirected attempt to free the Holy Land. Some weren't quite like that. There were some positive aspects to them, but they were basically an atrocity over a couple hundred years. The worst was the Children's Crusade. All of the children who went to fight died along the way. Some were shipwrecked and the rest were taken into slavery in Egypt.


    The statistics that are the result of irreligious genocide stagger the imagination.



    A blight on Christianity? Certainty. Something wrong? Dismally wrong. A tragedy? Of course. Millions and millions of people killed? No. The numbers are tragic, but pale in comparison to the statistics of what non-religion criminals have committed.
    My point is not that Christians or religious people aren't vulnerable to committing terrible crimes. Certainly they are. But it is not religion that produces these things; it is the denial of Biblical religion that generally leads to these kinds of things. The statistics that are the result of irreligious genocide stagger the imagination.

    My source is The Guinness Book of World Records . Look up the category "Judicial" and under the subject of "Crimes: Mass Killings," the greatest massacre ever imputed by the government of one sovereign against the government of another is 26.3 million Chinese during the regime of Mao Tse Tung between the years of 1949 and May 1965. The Walker Report published by the U.S. Senate Committee of the Judiciary in July 1971 placed the parameters of the total death toll in China since 1949 between 32 and 61.7 million people. An estimate of 63.7 million was published by Figaro magazine on November 5, 1978.

    In the U.S.S.R. the Nobel Prize winner, Alexander Solzhenitsyn estimates the loss of life from state repression and terrorism from October 1917 to December 1959 under Lenin and Stalin and Khrushchev at 66.7 million.

    Finally, in Cambodia (and this was close to me because I lived in Thailand in 1982 working with the broken pieces of the Cambodian holocaust from 1975 to 1979) "as a percentage of a nation's total population, the worst genocide appears to be that in Cambodia, formerly Kampuchea. According to the Khmer Rouge foreign minister, more than one third of the eight million Khmer were killed between April 17, 1975 and January 1979. One third of the entire country was put to death under the rule of Pol Pot, the founder of the Communist Party of Kampuchea. During that time towns, money and property were abolished. Economic execution by bayonet and club was introduced for such offenses as falling asleep during the day, asking too many questions, playing non-communist music, being old and feeble, being the offspring of an undesirable, or being too well educated. In fact, deaths in the Tuol Sleng interrogation center in Phnom Penh, which is the capitol of Kampuchea, reached 582 in a day."

    Then in Chinese history of the thirteenth to seventeenth centuries there were three periods of wholesale massacre. The numbers of victims attributed to these events are assertions rather than reliable estimates. The figures put on the Mongolian invasion of northern China form 1210 to 1219 and from 1311 to 1340 are both on the order of 35 million people. While the number of victims of bandit leader Chang Hsien-Chung, known as the Yellow Tiger, from 1643 to 1647 in the Szechwan province has been put at 40 million people.

    China under Mao Tse Tung, 26.3 million Chinese. According the Walker Report, 63.7 million over the whole period of time of the Communist revolution in China. Solzhenitsyn says the Soviet Union put to death 66.7 million people. Kampuchea destroyed one third of their entire population of eight million Cambodians. The Chinese at two different times in medieval history, somewhere in the vicinity of 35 million and 40 million people. Ladies and gentlemen, make note that these deaths were the result of organizations or points of view or ideologies that had left God out of the equation. None of these involve religion. And all but the very last actually assert atheism.


    Religion, and Biblical religion in particular, is a mitigator of evil in the world.



    It seems to me that my colleague Dennis Prager's illustration cannot be improved upon to show the self-evident capability of Biblical religion to restrain evil. He asks this in this illustration. If you were walking down a dark street at night in the center of Los Angeles and you saw ten young men walking towards you, would you feel more comfortable if you knew that they had just come from a Bible class? Of course, the answer is certainly you would. That demonstrates that religion, and Biblical religion in particular, is a mitigator of evil in the world.
    It is true that it's possible that religion can produce evil, and generally when we look closer at the detail it produces evil because the individual people are actually living in a rejection of the tenets of Christianity and a rejection of the God that they are supposed to be following. So it can produce it, but the historical fact is that outright rejection of God and institutionalizing of atheism actually does produce evil on incredible levels. We're talking about tens of millions of people as a result of the rejection of God.

  12. Nice read, thanks.

  13. Quote Originally Posted by ironviking
    Im in total agreement with Milo. It seems that most people are missing his point. How can you place religion in government without imposing on someone else's rights. If you say the ten commandments must be worshipped and held as law Im sure there would be some Muslims who would disagree along with many other religions.
    I dont believe in the Christian God or Allah or anything else, I do believe in a higher power but since I refuse to commit myself to any religion I am considered an Atheist.
    Also, I dont need a religion or a law to tell me that killing or violating someone else physically or mentally is wrong. I have a set of standards which I hold myself to, a set of standards that were built after years and years of watching many injustices in the world and saying that is wrong I will never do things such as that.
    Furthermore, I thought the Christians would be in support of taking prayer out of school because it means that there are no religions allowed to pray, this means that your children and thier faiths cant be challenged there. For instance if someone brings in the Satanic Bible and starts reading from it they would be asked to put it away as well as someone reading from the Christian Bible or the Koran.

    One more thing, an IQ of 172. I tested at 133 and Im considered in the "gifted category". 172 is phenomenal and studies have shown that most people over 150 cannot relate very well to people who arent in the same range. Also, people with that intelligence level tend to stear away from religion as it cant be supported by science.

    http://members.ams.chello.nl/p.cooij...y/iqrange.html
    I've already addressed most of what you said... read again.

    You are not considered an athiest, by ANY definition... and so what if you were?

    To address your personal morals, and how they seem decent enough, people are often victims of their circumstances (I.E. like father, like son...); you assume that most people separate of God will automatically have a decent moral base. Once again, because you both miss the premise of my previous posts, true religion is based on the Golden rule "love your God with everything you have, and love your neighbor as you do yourself". You are running scared with your misconceptions and stereotypes of religious people; you try to group people into your definition, and then automatically think yourself better than them. There is plenty of info out there if you would like to educate yourself. Religion teaches love of person regardless of their sins, not discriminate against someone because you disagree or are scared of them.

    I am not saying that 133 is low compared to my girl's; Milo brought up IQ (she was tested twice: 1st time 170; professor had her tested again, she scored 172), but you seem to be misinformed about there being no scientific proof supporting religion. On the contrary, there is more evidence in support of religion and related philosophies than what you are believing... you've just been indoctrinated throughout your school days, I learned to think for myself and support religion BASED on the facts. I'll start out with one website for you: www.drdino.com offers a $250,000.00 reward for any empirical evidence supporting non-religious "science" so people like yourself will actually try to study and understand the basis behind religion, and realize you've been duped all your life, or just chose to believe what you do based on your own philisophy. This guy will take your call if you want to talk to him, and will debate anyone at your college or university that you think has a good grasp of your philosophical values. He has never lost a debate, and he has debated some of the country's foremost authorities specializing in areas you show concern over. I think YOU will be surprised about how LITTLE science you have backing your belief system.

    I do not feel that you are wrong, I just think you are missing ALOT of info; I'm just not sure you are open-minded enough to change your mind if the facts dictate otherwise.

  14. Some how you two think Im attacking spirituality. Im not... I am simply attacing the idea that ANY dogma of organized religion INCLUDING Christianity has NO place in government.
    When God is used in government it is used as a generic term. If they used Jesus that you would have an argument. They are not telling you what to believe. Most religions believe in God.With the exception of Satanism and atheists. I don't see how atheist can get up set because to them it's like Santa clause or the Easter bunny. Satanism is just scary but they have the right to believe what they want but they don't have the right to sacrifice people.
    You were attacking spirituality when you said
    But if there were true equality the religions like Christianity would lose their power to control men and their thoughts and actions.Men would TRULY be free.

  15. GIJOE where did I say that I think I am better than anyone. I never stated that nor implied it.
    I am an athiest in the respect that I claim no God.
    Also where did I state that people who seperate themselves from God will automatically have a decent moral base? My point was that even people with no God can have a decent moral base.
    How am I running scared with my misconceptions and stereo types of religious people? I really don't know where you got that idea, I know many religious people and I like quite a few of them. Plus I don't believe in stereotypes.
    The seperation of state and government is to protect the rights of all religions not just christianity, isnt that one of the reasons the pilgrims sailed out here. It was to be able to practice whatever religion they wanted without persecution.
    How am I not opened minded, it is usually the christians that judge people for being homosexual or different. I dont care what you are, as long as you are not hurting other people with the way you live, rock on.
    And 133 is by no means low, I was just stating that your girl's IQ is EXTREMELY HIGH and that most people in that range tend to seperate themselves from religion.

    It is you that keeps missing the point about these posts.

    It is the seperation of church and state that protects religions, not just one religion but all of them. I am not here to challenge religion or God I am stating my reasons in believing why that seperation of church and state is necessary.

    And why do you think I am not educated? I have studied many religions and many different cultures, there is no scientific proof that God exists. All data on the subject has been disputed and neither side, religion(any religion) or science, has declared defeat or victory. But AGAIN that isnt what this thread is about.

  16. How am I not opened minded, it is usually the christians that judge people for being homosexual or different. I dont care what you are, as long as you are not hurting other people with the way you live, rock on.

    By your statement I'm assuming that you think it is WRONG to judge others
    therefore your premise commits suicide because you are now judging others
    (Christians) for judging. Also why do you think it's wrong to hurt others,
    don't force your morals down my throat. <----Malthusian school of ethics

  17. Quote Originally Posted by ironviking
    GIJOE where did I say that I think I am better than anyone. I never stated that nor implied it.
    I am an athiest in the respect that I claim no God.
    Also where did I state that people who seperate themselves from God will automatically have a decent moral base? My point was that even people with no God can have a decent moral base.
    How am I running scared with my misconceptions and stereo types of religious people? I really don't know where you got that idea, I know many religious people and I like quite a few of them. Plus I don't believe in stereotypes.
    The seperation of state and government is to protect the rights of all religions not just christianity, isnt that one of the reasons the pilgrims sailed out here. It was to be able to practice whatever religion they wanted without persecution.
    How am I not opened minded, it is usually the christians that judge people for being homosexual or different. I dont care what you are, as long as you are not hurting other people with the way you live, rock on.
    And 133 is by no means low, I was just stating that your girl's IQ is EXTREMELY HIGH and that most people in that range tend to seperate themselves from religion.

    It is you that keeps missing the point about these posts.

    It is the seperation of church and state that protects religions, not just one religion but all of them. I am not here to challenge religion or God I am stating my reasons in believing why that seperation of church and state is necessary.

    And why do you think I am not educated? I have studied many religions and many different cultures, there is no scientific proof that God exists. All data on the subject has been disputed and neither side, religion(any religion) or science, has declared defeat or victory. But AGAIN that isnt what this thread is about.
    I apologise if you feel I was accusing you of being uneducated or ignorant; I had a similar view to yours before I believe what I do now, and sometimes get overanxious when trying to make a point. Again I am sorry.

    If you have what you call Christians that judge you, then they are doing such against their religion. Like I said several times before, and you keep missing, it is ignorant to blame this behavior on religion, as anyone that believes anything tend because of self-importance, to look down on everyone else, but especially people that do not agree with them. This is a sign of pride, power-mongering, and self-importance, NOT a sign that someone must be a religious zealot.

    I cannot continue to hi-jack this thread, as my conversation could go on indefinitely, but we are both definitely on different pages. The only way we can relate is for us to have the same education, and have an open-minded discussion based on facts. I'm missing your point, obviously, and you're blowing right past the relevant portions of this thread to make your points.

    We will continue to disagree, but like I said, we are actually not even in the same book. I appreciate your viewpoint, but religion was intregal in founding this country (read the Federalist papers) -- you can dispute it, but history has recorded it and it has yet to be competely re-written out. In the meantime, try to earn that $250,000.00 reward; it's been around for 12 years, and it will likely remain for a while at least.

  18. Godlike, what the hell are you talking about?

    GIJOE questioned if I was opened minded, my statement shows how I am opened minded enough to accept others no matter what they are.
    How did I try to force my morals down your throat?

    Your post seems to have no stance, it just seems to be there to try and be irritating. Excuse me if Im mistaken on my last comment.

  19. GIJoe, I just wanted to let you know how insightful and thought out your responses are, and I have really enjoyed reading them. This topic has opened up quite nicely as I hoped it would.

    I also whole heartedly agree with you that people who base their beliefs on a "lack of evidence" in religion really have no evidence in supporting their views; just the opposite of what they argue. Maybe we could throw together some information on the basis that religion (Christianity) can be validated historically, scientificly, and supported by archeloogy. although I do assume that would be a powder keg waiting to erupt, but would be very interesting and educational for all involved if we kept it at a mature level.

  20. GIJOE just because there is no scientific basis that there is no God doesnt mean there is a scientific basis that there is one either. I disagree with you but I respect your opinions. Also I didnt blame anything, good or bad, on religion. It is the extremists that do the horrid acts in the name of religion.

    I agreed with you that religion was integral in founding this country and that is why there should be seperation from church and state. The seperation is to protect ALL religions not just christianity. What if they made it a law that you had to go to church on Sunday, you would offend and go against the beliefs of the Seventh Day Evangelists.

    I haven't ruled out any God, I guess that makes me Agnostic instead of Atheist.

    There has been many points in this thread that show what can happen when religion is forcefully removed from society and its government. How about one where it is forcefully placed INTO its society and government: Nigeria. Way too much to list here check it out on the internet.

    Custom, your right it has stayed civilized here, very good thread. Remember though all religions can somehow be validated historically, scientifically, and supported by archeology just as they can be disputed.
  21. Foundational Principles & Character, not Philosophies or Doctrine, to run our Country


    Iron, appreciate the respect, and I respect your views also.

    Let me assure you that the United States as a country being controlled by one christian religion is an IMPOSSIBILITY; maybe not statistically, but I have never seen so much fighting and division as when different religions get together to establish a consistant philosophy. As a hypothetical, one religion rules the country, all kaos breaks loose in a country that has established freedom from any one religion. Trust me, multiple religions have not worked together in the past, nor will they in the future, at least in our lifetimes

    On the contrary, it is not a religion or any one religious philosophy that I see a need for in government, but the basic principles behind these religions that are invaluable, even indispensible. Character is the one thing most lacking in this country. I can trust very few people anymore; I have to do everything it seems myself, because few people do the work or job they are supposed to do. Where is the emphasis on helping others anymore? It seems that we solve this problems with a social program, instead of spending time looking out for others less fortunate than us. The Ten Commandments may not be mandatory to follow literally, but the principles behind the laws are invaluable (do not kill, steal, covet has to do with respect of others; children obey your parents , that your days may be long, deals with bitterness among other things and the deliterious effects in has on the human body; etc.). Where is discernment and wise decisionmaking taught anymore -- certainly not in schools now, but it used to be. So yes, I'll support no religion in govornment with you, as long as you support the emphasis on character with me without discriminating against religion when emphasis is placed on Bible verses to illustrate an example of good behavior or character. The Proverbs are replete with prose and poetry emphasizing character and discernment; we are quick to emphasize Dante, Plato, Aristotle, etc., and reference them as classics, but turn quickly against ANY reference even to the Biblical prose for art, educational benefit, or historical significance. These are the true inconsistant, close-minded individuals that are dangerous to society.

    Yes, I agree with you that religion has no place in government in this way: there are philosophies, religions if you will, that are ironically anti-religious. Humanism, socialism, etc. are defined as religions, but their tenets are very anti-religious, to the point of eliminating religion altogether, or at least discriminating heavily against and demeaning it. This is a big part of the Hollywood establishment (not everyone, of course), among other people, and if you don't believe me, watch video footage of how most Hollywood elites react to anything christian: it is a reaction of pure malice, hatred, and yes, often a violent one. These are the religious zealots that are dangerous to the country. They corrupt we citizens with entertainment which has subtle anti-christian undertones, demean character and people which emphasize thinking of others and their plights, constantly emphasize movie decisions based on emotional situations, instead of facts; make us believe we can solve anything in under two hours; desensitize audiences with sex, violence, and ridiculous language, when it has already been proven that more tickets could be sold and more money made if these things were toned down (respect of others).

    These philosophies are not mainstream by any means, and yet they permeate this country, teach discrimination, engender strife, and cause problems in society. Humanism, socialism, atheism, communism, agnosticism, etc. are classified as religions according to the Supreme Court, along with christianity, mormonism, buddhism, etc. The truly scary thing is, the first five religions are completely intolerant of religion that involves a God; they are violently opposed, for the most part, to anything relating to God, and these philosophies permeate colleges and universities, often in the form of professors who have nothing better to do in life than wreck young impressionable students with their superior knowledge base.

    I too am not in favor of religions taking over our government, but it is happening; these anti-religions are grabbing a foothold, slowly de-emphasizing character and ethics, and putting the country's moral base at risk by emphasizing pleasure and self-gratification as superior to all else. This country has to have a minimum ethical standard by which to judge things by; creating a country which operates based on moral ambiguity, and judges a situation based on the general feelings of the people at the time, has been tried many times in history, and has a strong history of failure (by that I mean the countries were eventually destroyed by employing these philosophies -- Rome, Greece, Babylon, etc.)

    I think we can both agree that teaching character is very important (maybe not to judge and condemn others, but definitely to improve ourselves), and the most consistant standard for character values is undeniably the foundational principles found in most godly religions' basic tenets. Every law written in this country, and anywhere else for that matter, legislates someone's morality; so keep philosophy out, allow principles in. Otherwise I fear as proven so many other times in history, our country without structure, will lead to our demise.

  22. Well said Joe. Well said.

  23. Quote Originally Posted by goldylight
    Our Founding Fathers set this great nation of ours upon the twin towers of religion and morality. Our first president, George Washington, said that anyone who would attack these twin towers could not possibly consider themselves to be a loyal American. Not only did they set us up as a nation under God, but a nation founded upon the Judaic-Christian principles summarized in the words, "The laws of nature and the laws of nature’s God," words that we find in the Declaration of Independence.
    The Separation of Church and State was established to protect the twin towers of religion and morality; George Washington never said anything this being a nation under God; and one of laws of nature’s God is not to mix religion and government.

    Fred

  24. Quote Originally Posted by goldylight
    The First Amendment never intended to separate Christian principles from government. yet today we so often heart the First Amendment couples with the phrase "separation of church and state." The First Amendment simply states:


    "Congress shall make no law respecting and establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."


    Obviously, the words "separation," "church," or "state" are not found in the First Amendment; furthermore, that phrase appears in no founding document.


    While most recognize the phrase "separation of church and state," few know its source; but it is important to understand the origins of that phrase. What is the history of the First Amendment?


    The process of drafting the First Amendment made the intent of the Founders abundantly clear; for before they approved the final wording, the First Amendment went through nearly a dozen different iterations and extensive discussions.


    Those discussions—recorded in the Congressional Records from June 7 through September 25 of 1789—make clear their intent for the First Amendment. By it, the Founders were saying: "We do not want in America what we had in Great Britain: we don’t want one denomination running the nation. We will not all be Catholics, or Anglicans, or any other single denomination. We do want God’s principles, but we don’t want one denomination running the nation."
    The Congressional Records you referenced don't even mention Great Britain, Catholics, Anglicans, God’s principles or denominations.

    Fred

  25. Quote Originally Posted by goldylight
    This intent was well understood, as evidenced by court rulings after the First Amendment. For example, a 1799 court declared: "By our form of government, the Christian religion is the established religion; and all sects and denominations of Christians are placed on the same equal footing."
    The Court was a Maryland Court; it was not a ruling; and it pertained to the government of Maryland. The Maryland establishment of religion was on paper only (carried over from the Colonial Charter when war broke out in 1776) and was never ratified by the people of Maryland. The authority to establish the Christian religion was never exercised and eventually removed from the Maryland Constitution. Anyone that had attempted to legally establish religon in Maryland after 1776 would have probably wound up in a pine box.

    Fred
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