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  1. #31
    Senior Member wildflower's Avatar
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    for followers of jesus God doesn't really reward or accept our actions if we are not doing things from a place of love for others. note especially verse 3 below. so, if someone is a christian martyr but their actions weren't done out of love (i.e. whatever caused them to be persecuted) God is not impressed. if that isn't a high standard of love i don't know what is. also, the very first of the 10 commandments is basically "love God and love others". it's all about love but it ain't easy. personally, i don't know any followers of jesus who do good things for the rewards they may receive in heaven. they are doing good because they are trying to love God and love others as well as they know how. do lots of people of all faiths screw up? yes, definitely. and...one doesn't need to be a person of faith to screw up.

    1 If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing. 4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8 Love never fails. 1 Corinthians 13:1-8
    eta: i agree that the question is quite flawed. why do you assume people without religion can have unselfish motives? i find that rather specious.

  2. #32
    Senior Member ceecee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beorn View Post
    I'm not sure where people get this notion that holding certain beliefs and having a desire to convert others to those beliefs merely through social interaction equates to forcing your beliefs on other people.
    You seriously don't see where this could be a problem for people?
    I like to rock n' roll all night and *part* of every day. I usually have errands... I can only rock from like 1-3.

  3. #33
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Mole's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wildflower View Post
    why do you assume people without religion can have unselfish motives?
    We all have motives, some selfish and some altruistic. Children and adolescents are largely unaware of how they are driven by their motives, and are even unaware of what their motives are. On the other hand, grown ups learn what their motives are, and learn to choose to follow their motives or not.

    The religious tend to hide their motives, selfish and unselfish, behind a smokescreen of theology, from themselves and each other. In other words, the religious tend to be childlike or like adolescents. And indeed Jesus himself tells us we can't enter the kingdom of heaven unless we become as little children. So religion tends to be infantalising.

  4. #34
    LL P. Stewie Beorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ceecee View Post
    You seriously don't see where this could be a problem for people?
    See it? I can find it annoying myself depending on the circumstances. It's the mischaracterization with which I have an issue. Nobody has ever forced their beliefs on me. I have encountered many people who have had different beliefs and disapproved of my beliefs, but merely expressing those beliefs is hardly forcing your beliefs. It's especially silly when people complain about being condemned to a hell they don't even believe in. I don't care if a Muslim says I'm condemned to jahhanam because I don't believe such a place exists.

    People are having other beliefs forced on them in Mosul and Nigeria.

    Nobody is having other beliefs forced on them when they walk by a nutter with a sign on the street corner.

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beorn View Post
    See it? I can find it annoying myself depending on the circumstances. It's the mischaracterization with which I have an issue. Nobody has ever forced their beliefs on me. I have encountered many people who have had different beliefs and disapproved of my beliefs, but merely expressing those beliefs is hardly forcing your beliefs. It's especially silly when people complain about being condemned to a hell they don't even believe in. I don't care if a Muslim says I'm condemned to jahhanam because I don't believe such a place exists.
    I get into trouble with Catholic proselytisers in the street, when I point out they want me to worship a three headed God in the Trinity, and worship a cracker at Mass.

  6. #36
    LL P. Stewie Beorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mole View Post
    I get into trouble with Catholic proselytisers in the street, when I point out they want me to worship a three headed God in the Trinity, and worship a cracker at Mass.


    You replied before my edit:

    Quote Originally Posted by Beorn View Post

    People are having other beliefs forced on them in Mosul and Nigeria.

    Nobody is having other beliefs forced on them when they walk by a nutter with a sign on the street corner.

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by wildflower View Post
    eta: i agree that the question is quite flawed. why do you assume people without religion can have unselfish motives? i find that rather specious.
    There are situations in which nobody will see or know that I've done a good thing, and even situations in which keeping it to myself is part of the "good deed". In contrast, If you are religious, then as far as you are concerned you don't have situations in which your actions aren't observed (By god) and won't be rewarded (In the form of a better afterlife), you always have someone's approval to gain.


    Quote Originally Posted by EffEmDoubleyou View Post
    I think the OP's question is flawed because it seems to posit that only religious people might have an ulterior motive for kindness. Is it any "worse" to be kind in order to honor your God than it is to be kind in order to curry favor at work or try to impress someone in your personal life? No. Besides, I would say that someone who does the right thing for the wrong reason is still doing more good than someone not doing the right thing at all.

    An atheist can have plenty of ulterior motives for otherwise altruistic behaviors. I don't deem atheists to never have any. The difference is that the ulterior motives are contextual, not universal to every aspect of their lives and all encompassing - they still can have situations in which they wouldn't.

    In contrast: By the very nature of religions with moral dogma's, is it ever possible for a religious person to not have it?

  8. #38
    Senior Member wildflower's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mole View Post
    We all have motives, some selfish and some altruistic. Children and adolescents are largely unaware of how they are driven by their motives, and are even unaware of what their motives are. On the other hand, grown ups learn what their motives are, and learn to choose to follow their motives or not.

    The religious tend to hide their motives, selfish and unselfish, behind a smokescreen of theology, from themselves and each other. In other words, the religious tend to be childlike or like adolescents. And indeed Jesus himself tells us we can't enter the kingdom of heaven unless we become as little children. So religion tends to be infantalising.
    you are confusing childlikeness (a trusting and innocent nature) with childishness (immaturity). jesus teaches us to be childlike–not childish.

    with that i bid you folks in this forum adieu. God bless you all and good luck!

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by wildflower View Post
    you are confusing childlikeness (a trusting and innocent nature) with childishness (immaturity). jesus teaches us to be childlike–not childish.
    Great Caesar's Ghost, Wildflower, a trusting and innocent nature in a world of fear and greed, propaganda and scams, neurosis, abuse and exploitation, is a victim waiting to happen.

    Victimise me please, I have a trusting and innocent nature.

  10. #40
    Away with the fairies Southern Kross's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jarlaxle View Post
    Do religious people - particularly belonging to religions of moral dogma - genuinely care about others well being? Or are they simply acting out of their own (Imagined) self interest (Scoring points for their afterlife game)? How can you know? How can they? Are there any situations in which acting for the benefit of others would not be in their own spiritual interest?

    Disclaimer: I don't mean simply in action, but in terms of intent.
    You need to cut them some slack. You shouldn't make assumptions about someone's morality based on their religiosity (or lack thereof). Unless you have genuine reasons to question someone's motives for acts of kindness, it's only fair to give them the benefit of the doubt.

    It really bugs me when religious people doubt my moral fortitude simply because I'm a non-believer - I find it bigoted, patronising and sanctimonious. Similarly, if I was religious, I imagine I would feel equally insulted if others questioned the purity of my intent simply by virtue of my being religious.

    Unless you think it fair to have your morality questioned based on whether or not you believe in God or go to church regularly, it would be hypocritical to do so to others.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jarlaxle View Post
    Again - anyone can be decent in actions, I am asking about intent. An atheist doesn't necessary have a persistent all-encompassing ulterior motive for being good - a religious person does.
    Um, how about the law?

    How do I know that the real reason you don't go around killing people isn't just that you're afraid you'll go to jail?
    INFP 4w5 so/sp

    I've dreamt in my life dreams that have stayed with me ever after, and changed my ideas;
    they've gone through and through me, like wine through water, and altered the colour of my mind.

    - Emily Bronte

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