- What do you believe in?
- Does religion have the answer?
- Can modern religion be better than the old ones?
- Is religious extremism real religion?
- Has religion come from an ancient race of advanced beings?If one is to believe all that one researches on the internet regarding religion, terrifying stories of death and destruction are portrayed. We have reached the 21st Century where in many sections of the world humankind still embraces intolerance. Tolerance is over-practiced in most democratic countries to such an extent that an ensuing weakness is exposed. In countries where religion is paramount, tolerance is seen as a weakness. The democratic populations of this world accept that all free thinking individuals have a right to worship as they so desire without discrimination and bias. Some religious rulers see democracy as a threat to their way of life, and such threats are met with violent rhetoric and others with violent actions where the debate is not allowed. This is not just confined to the present day but to the many factions in our religious heritage. History is filled with theological disasters that have plagued humanity through three thousand years. These nightmares of reality have been forgotten in the stealthy progress of time.
This article sets out some of those anomalies of the religions of man.What is a religion? The dictionary definition is:
Belief in, worship of, or obedience to a supernatural power or powers considered to be divine or to have control of human destiny. 2. Any formal or institutionalized expression of such belief. 3. The attitude and feeling of one who believes in a transcendent controlling power or powers.
Taking this to a basic level, you and you alone choose or create your religion. You believe you worship and you are obedient to a supernatural source.
You can personally follow any religion in the world or create your own. Naturally, many world religions are now established institutions created
centuries ago in an unenlightened age. A time when man struggled to find the meaning of life and religions created war to control minds and vast
quantities of land. The people were starved of knowledge and kept in their place by doctrine. In the far distant past man worshipped the sun,
the moon and other Gods. In Greece and later Rome, people believed their Gods were like adult humans. They would argue, have children play
music and party. It was important for them to please their Gods. An unhappy God would bring punishment and death. They even believed that
stones or rock contained spirits especially boundary stones. Another belief was that werewolves roamed and attacked herds at night, returning
to human form at daybreak. The religions affected politics because they were riddled with superstitions. Epileptic fits were deemed grave and serious at meetings of the Senate. In 114BC a vestal virgin was killed by a lightning strike. To allay the anger of the Gods such a bad omen was appeased by burying alive, two couples, one Greek and one Gallic. Roman religion was undermined by Greek philosophy and then came to the suggested idea of a single God.
In relation to historical fact, the gray area of Christianity came into being. The birth date of Jesus, a Jewish leader, historically speaking, was uncertain.
His birth pinpointed to AD 1 is a judgment made 500 years after the event. The stories told of him circulated from person to person through the ages.
Paul of Tarsus famed for his missionary voyages into the empire spread the new religion for non-Jews mainly by word of mouth. The turnabout came in Ad 380 when Christians ruled the empire. The result of the definition of heresy (people who disagreed with official Christianity) was religious suppression and slaughter. In the inquisition, brutal torture became the normal procedure and Christian slaughtered Christian and anyone else who did not follow the hazy official doctrine.
The Pontiffs carried on in line like monarchs, with their armies, administration and territory. OnePontiff had six sons and three daughters by several women.
Another had three daughters whilst a Cardinal and was a fierce warrior who wore silver armour and crushed anyone who defied his authority. One Pope was poisoned and clubbed to death whilst another was imprisoned and strangled. Corruption and the selling of spiritual blessings for money led Martin Luther
to start the reformation in 1517.
The prophet Mohammed lived around 570-632 and came from a family of traders. Mohammed mediated the religion’s book of revelation the Koran, the beliefs of Islam. He completes a succession of prophets, including Abraham, Moses and Jesus. All refined and restated the message of God. Doing research on the internet from the public domain the dark side of Islam reveals certain areas that cause logic and science to shiver with apprehension. It is a religion that has 123 verses in the Qur’an about killing and fighting for Allah. Mohammed the founder of Islam said, “Invitation first,” (an offer to embrace Islam) “If refused, then war”. The sword is the key of heaven and hell. Whosoever falls in battle his sins will be forgiven.” This gives the notion that dying for Jihad for Allah results in direct entry into paradise. The Popes of the Crusade era made the same promise, a promise of spiritual forgiveness of murder and slaughter.
In Japan, in the year 1281, a great Typhoon destroyed an invading Mongol army and became known as the kamikaze or divine wind. In the Second World
War the dominant Shinto religion of Japan decreed that the Emperor was a descendant of the Gods and a God in his own right. Thus, the kamikaze pilot came into being with a brainwashing technique that they would earn through death in combat, a free trip to heaven. They had small books in their pockets with self-belief text to spur them on. Young men between 16 and 20 were recruited to give their lives. One of the items in the book was: Transcend life and death. When you eliminate all thoughts about life and death, you will be able to totally disregard your earthly life. This will also enable you to concentrate your attention on eradicating the enemy with unwavering determination, meanwhile reinforcing your excellence in flight skills.
The Germans also developed a suicide weapon, Selbstopfer. Flying bombs with a small cockpit on top were being tested. Fortunately, the weapon was not
used in combat possibly because there was no spiritual or religious following to condone it, but the Nazis were brilliant at propaganda and brainwashing
and if the war had continued who knows what would have happened.
Hinduism from the ancient Indians is more spiritually complex. A Hindu may worship more than one God, or just one God, he can be an agnostic or atheist.
Ancient Indian texts contain exact scientific calculations. The speed of light, the age of the universe are all in ancient texts. How can this be so to modern scientific calculations? A text on astronomy thought to be compiled in 1000 BC and believed to be handed down from 3000 BC by recital gives the earth ’s diameter and distance from the moon. As far as we know it is the only religion on earth which gives a fairly accurate time-scale of the earth and universe,
8.4 billion years.
Buddhism has its origins about 2500 years ago. A man, Siddhartha Gotama, known as the Buddha was enlightened at the age of 35. Buddhism is very spiritual and more of a philosophy or way of life. Wisdom should be sought with compassion. It has the answers to problems of a materialistic nature and nurtures a
code of practice. Tolerant of other religions and beliefs and in agreement with the moral teachings of other religions, wars and slaughter of fellow men have never occurred in the name of Buddhism.
Eastern religions express the idea of reincarnation. Formulated in India it spread to and was later adapted into Chinese Taoism about the 3rd century BC.
Platonism states the existence of the soul in a celestial world returning to the human body through sin. In order to return to a state of pure being the soul is purified through reincarnation. The Tibetan book of the dead alleges experiences between two incarnations and mentions a mental body.
From 1517 came various Christian Churches. Historians trace the early Baptist Church to 1609 in Amsterdam and believe John Smyth as the founder. They opposed infant baptism and that baptism should only be performed on believers. He stated that true worship was from the heart and that any reading from a
book in worship was an invention of sinful men. He would not allow the reading of the Bible during worship saying the translations were the work of man.
The Baptist Church formed in 1639 by Roger Williams spread to the North American colonies.
Unitarianism came from Transylvania in 1600 introduced into Britain in 1668 and 1673. It was not fully legal in Britain until 1813.
Jehovah’s Witnesses was founded in the late 19th century as a Bible study group they retranslated the Bible from the teachings of Charles Taze Russell.
Their predictions have been sadly wrong. After Russell’s death, Joseph Franklin Rutherford a trial lawyer and prosecutor took over resulting in a leadership battle where he was accused of autocratic behaviour losing one-seventh of its membership. The end of times has been predicted from 1914.
The Church of Scientology was founded in 1954 by an American science fiction author named L.Ron Hubbard. He was a blood brother of the Blackfoot Indians at the age of six. After studying nearly all religions, he produced complex and profound beliefs in this modern age. After his death, the church has been quoted as a cult society. Scientologists cannot live or associate with non-members even if they are a close family. They recruit young seals –dominating young minds. Fixed donations are required; some have called it a pay as you go religion. The church leaders play mind games with people who oppose them. The church is believed to be based on a secretive issue called Lord Xenu.
Can a terrorist group exist within the framework of religion? Once again religion is: belief in, worship of, or obedience to a supernatural power or powers considered to be divine or to have control of human destiny. Therefore, a terrorist group would be worshipping a God that instructed bloodlust, murder and slaughter. This would be their interpretation of their beliefs and their God.
Suicide warriors are a dark part of history, brainwashed by other religious people into believing that life is cheap and that they will reap a spiritual reward.
It is also strange to realize that always the young are ensnared into this bizarre thinking. Do the leaders or the older members of their organizations strap on bombs and kill as many people as they can? No, otherwise there would be no leaders to brainwash and create the atrocities.
In regard to Lord Xenu, I am sure that Ron Hubbard would have done research on Atlantis at some time in his career. I have an open mind as to Atlantis,
nothing can be proved or disproved that a race of advanced humans commanded by a warlord existed. In fact, it does answer some of the problems we are having today and where the technological advancement of society has come from. In the story of Plato, the warlord’s actions cause dissension and many breaks away from his rule.
In religious teachings, there are no physical warriors for God and if there are such leaningsFeature Articles, they are from man.
So be careful in what you believe.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
This article is from science fiction author Robin G Howard. The new (4th in the series) Jim long space agent book –Divine Fanaticism is released as a paperback edition on Nov.1st. Order from a bookstore or http://www.allinterestbooks.co.uk or the author site at http://www.authorsite-jl.com/
By Ron Kyker Here is the great question most Christians have today; how do we fix our broken world? The answer is not so simple or we would have already done it. It is not so clear because we are trying to do it in worldly ways. The answer is a biblical one. It is a spiritual one. The answer is simple and it is clear, but not to a people ignorant of how it is done. I am ignorant of many things, and how to fix our broken world, seems to have been beyond my understanding. It is for most Christians as well. We have this wrong idea of how to fix any problem. We think it starts from the top down. We think we need a strong leader, a government with morals, or a man like Martin Luther King Jr. to mobilize the masses. While great leaders and governments get much of the credit for major advancements in any society, the truth is that any true lasting change starts from the bottom; not the top. We keep looking for that one person or that one great event that will fix things. We hope, and long for, that one great movement or revival that will put America back on track. Something that is broken doesn't get fixed this way. It is fixed one piece at a time with painstaking obedience changing one heart at a time. Transforming a broken world happens by lives being transformed one at a time. We wrongly view salvation the same way believing one real salvation experience changes everything. It is only the beginning of a lifetime of changing as God's Spirit transforms the heart of a man into the likeness of His Son Jesus Christ. Changing a broken heart works the same way as changing a broken world. ---Luke 22:42 42 Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done. ---Hebrews 5:8 8 Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; Submitting to the will of God and obedience is a subject most Christians don't like to meditate upon. Obedience is learned. It is learned through our suffering. No man will be obedient to God unless he first suffers. Salvation is only to those who are obedient to Him and who have learned to be obedient. Even the Son of God was not spared from learning this lesson. We must hear the Word of God and obey it. Through Christ's suffering, a full pardon from our sins was purchased for us. We will learn obedience to God the same way Christ did. Our learning it, through our suffering, starts when we first experience Christ and His holiness. When our utter sinfulness is confronted with Christ's holiness, we suffer the truth as all our dark parts are illuminated by His Holy Light. Christ has been raised to this lofty status to rule over us and our lives. Our total submission to Him is required just as He was obedient to His Father's will. Through our suffering for Christ's sake, others will learn obedience as well. It is not enough to have only an understanding of the gospel; it must be obeyed. Many have a great understanding. Many have much knowledge of gospel truths. Few will obey it unto salvation through Jesus Christ. Few will learn obedience willing to suffer to learn it ask Christ did. Christ was made perfect in His obedience. We will be made perfect in His image as we learn to be obedient. To those who will deny themselves, crucify self on a cross daily for Christ's sake, and obey this gospel; to Him will Christ be the author of their faith. To them that devote themselves to a lifetime of obedience; to them, He will become the finisher of it. To them, He will call "the sons of God." ---John 15:1-2 1 I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. 2 Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit. A broken world will only be fixed by the obedience of God's people, those He has called according to His purpose, in bearing fruit. A vine is planted for only one purpose; to bear fruit. Bearing fruit as a child of God is advancing the Kingdom of heaven. The purpose of planting the seed of faith in us is to see that seed grow and bear much fruit; to give life to a lost and dying world. For a vine to grow and bear fruit, it must be pruned cutting the useless parts in us away that are doing nothing for this purpose. The vine must be cultivated; fed with the life-giving sap that is Jesus Christ. We are to be alive in Christ and living for this one purpose. We make many vague descriptions of this salvation process that should result in our obedience in bearing fruit. We describe it as: accepting Christ, receiving Him, or asking Him into our hearts. These are all misleading and do not describe the true experience well. Christ gave Himself as a sacrifice for our sins so that we might be partakers in His holiness. Through Christ's obedience, we are made right with God. We don't merely accept, receive, or ask Him for anything. It is His redeeming power that gives it to us. Through our faith to believe in Him, that power is imparted to us. That seed of faith is sown by Christ. He puts it in our hearts. Through Christ's act of obedience, it is given. Through our act of obedience, it is received. Our obedience is the only thing we can give Him. Christ was obedient even unto death. We also must follow Him. We too must be obedient even unto our death. Death to self; what it wants, what it wills, and what it desires. There was power in Christ's obedience; the power to save a man's soul. That redeeming power is given to us in the person of God's Son. As we are obedient to God's will and purpose to save mankind, the redeeming power of Christ's Spirit is made alive in us. Many a professed child of God do a work for God, but is it a "good work?" What is his motive for doing it? Does it result in "fruit?" Any work done for God will be known by the fruit that it bears. Is God blessing the work that is being done? Are we just doing a work or is this work truly a "good work" of God driven by the redeeming power of Christ's Spirit? We need to understand the difference. Martin Luther King Jr. was the face of the Civil Rights movement. I in no way want to diminish the "good work" that he did in helping to achieve equality among the races. But it was the work of the many on the bottom that changed the hearts of Americans. People like Rosa Parks, the freedom riders, and school children stood in non-violent protest of racial inequality. The movement started from the bottom and raised a leader in King who became the voice of a righteous movement and a people who believed a change was possible. One by one they changed the hearts and minds of Americans to support their cause for freedom. It will take that kind of "good work" powered by the Spirit of Christ to fix our broken world. As God's people submit themselves to suffering for the cause of Christ, obedience will be learned and shared with others. As we walk with Christ living a life of obedience sharing the gospel that has the power to give life to those that are dead, we will see our world change. It will then raise up leaders that will lead righteously; unlike the ones we presently have who seek their own gain at the expense of those on the bottom. As God's people become more obedient in bearing good fruit, the good fruit will then bear even more good fruit. This is how the early Church grew and began to thrive as God's people heard the Word of the Lord and obeyed it. What is broken world needs is, obedient soldiers of the cross. That obedience will only come through much suffering as it is learned and we are perfected in Christ. As long as we deny suffering is necessary, there will be little obedience. With little obedience, you end up where we are in America; broken! We must learn obedience again and the need to suffer to learn it. Without this obedience learned through suffering; our world will not be fixed. I Am Just Me If I were a tree you would come and save me If I were a while you would do anything to set me free If I were a stray you would shed a tear for me times three But I am not I am just me I'm not a pit bull A rooster or a horse being made into glue I resemble my creator look something just like you If I were gay you would march in a parade If I were an atheistI could sue you some day If I were a MuslimYou would have to convert or be slain But I am not I am just me Someone who is lost and needs to be found When I'm laid in the ground Hell will be where I'm bound Will you sacrifice all to save just me Will you suffer much so I can be set free Will you mourn and weep to God will you make a passionate plea just for me But you are not Is it just me Is my life not worth even more than these Will you not give up your comfort your life of ease Didn't Christ for you make such a passionate plea Didn't He take all of God's wrath for you and me Oh how I wish that I were one of these Why are you notDoesn't your Christ hold the keys If I were almost extinct like a Pandaa leopard or a frog To raise a lot of money many a mile wouldn't you jog But I am not I am just me Were not your eyes opened to see Is your faith not really real Were you a thief who came in the sheep pen just to steal I am just me Someone Christ loved enough to die on that tree I am a layperson with 35 years of teaching, studying, and sharing the love of Christ. I am a thirty year Social Worker. I have preached, led bible studies, taught Sunday School, sang, and acted in dramas to the furtherance of the gospel. My website vasquezsavage.com features my poetry and writings. Article Source: http://www.faithwriters.com