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PaulS last won the day on September 7 2017

PaulS had the most liked content!

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About PaulS

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    Alternate Administrator & Site Sponsor
  • Birthday 08/20/1968

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    Mandurah Western Australia

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  1. So do you think animals have any idea of this 'more' or are they clueless do you think? What experience do you think animals may have of any such 'more' to this life? What kind of 'beyond' do you see them participating in?
  2. Just wondering of those who think there may be 'more' to this life and/or something 'beyond' our lives, if you think animals share in this? Do you think they have any idea of a 'more' or if they are included in this 'beyond'. If so, how does that speak to you - what experience do you think they may have? What 'beyond' do you think they may participate in?
  3. PaulS

    Religion - Positive or Negative

    This is certainly a topic that could be debated for pages and pages! For me, like Rom alludes to, religion does provide positive benefits I think when one faces a ,more harmful future otherwise. However, for many people, religion (and for even more people - specific religions) are unnecessary and yet those people contribute just as much to the world (or more) than a religious person and live just as good or even better lives (Mark Twain, Carl Sagan, Stephen Hawking, Thomas Edison, to name a sample). There are religions that teach people all will be well one day (after death) so that might be a positive to help them through a crappy world experience. Then there are harmful religions that tell people they are born evil and will burn in hell for all eternal unless they accept that religion's tenets. I see that as harmful. Having just returned from Indonesia, Hinduism & Buddhism is fresh in my mind and I found the Hindu & Buddhist people there to be quite relaxed, gentle, and accepting of their lot in life. That seemed to be a positive for them as they were in a pretty miserable situation compared to western wealth & culture. So they might be dirt poor, but if they're happy because of their religion then I guess that could be a positive. Perhaps in a more violent, less communicative world, religion has played a part in trying to maintain some order in society historically. But with many of those old superstitions being blown away by science and modern thinking, I see less and less place in the world for religion. I expect that it will gradually die out although like we see in Progressive Christianity, that dying out becomes the religion adjusting itself to new ways of thinking. So perhaps more than dying out, religions will just continue to change as they have throughout history.
  4. PaulS


    Probably, but I think 'group thought' might interfere with the individual's free thought.
  5. PaulS

    Shades of Grey

    No argument from an educative point of view. Indeed my own children attend both a Catholic High School and an Anglican Primary School. I am suggesting run far away from the harmful teachings of traditional Christianity such as one not being worthy if they don't 'accept the Lord', that one is destined for eternal harm if they don't 'believe', that a human is born evil, etc etc. I don't think one has to experience that sort of indoctrination to then come out the other side with a more balanced view.
  6. PaulS

    Shades of Grey

    Please know I was only using the word 'pathological' in the sense that Burl introduced it. My later point was simply refuting Burl's interpretation of 'traditional' Christianity as being only the 'friendly' version so to speak. Without a doubt many Christians were exposed to less harmful versions of Christianity (you are an example). And even those that were exposed to a more harmful interpretation of Christianity might not suffer any harm if they remain with the flock and hold the faith. As for what is deemed 'ordinary' Christianity, i would suggest the numbers are on the side of the fundamentalists, the 'burn in hell if you don't believe' flavour, indeed many of those faiths who meet Burl's definition of 'traditional' (i.e. "affrims the Apostle's Creed (modifications allowed), has over 500k members or has existed for over a generation"). But there are clearly thousands of versions of Christianity and each of those probably truly believes they have THE correct understanding of Christianity.
  7. PaulS

    Shades of Grey

    I think the point still stands that what is regarded as 'traditional' Christianity does include the 'pathological' model I experienced, whether some Christians feel offended by that or not. Sure there is less harmful Christianity, but I don't think this has been the majority version throughout history.
  8. PaulS

    No much action

    Sometimes it’s busier, sometimes it’s quieter.
  9. PaulS

    Biblical Sexuality

    I’d be interested in how you see it from an anthropological/historical point of view, so I’ll drop you an email. Cheers Paul
  10. PaulS

    My evolving journey

    Welcome back Apexcone, Having been down that fundy path and it’s abandonment myself, I can relate to how Spong can be very enlightening on a better understanding of christianity. I think, like Rom suggests, Spong’s biggest audience are those who don’t feel comfortable with their traditional understanding of Christianity and God, but whom enjoy the familiarity Spong maintains without severing the connection to their past. I hope you enjoy your refamiliarisation here. Cheers Paul
  11. Yes, Bishop Spong’s books, talks and general profile have really helped many (including me) better understand scripture and Christianity.
  12. PaulS

    Greetings from new member

    Welcome SL, I hope you feel welcome here and find the forum a beneficial place for sharing. Cheers Paul
  13. PaulS

    Tim Keller tweets on evolution

    The majority of the world also used to believe the earth was flat, and that slavery was considered normal. As Leo Tolstoy is quoted - “Wrong does not cease to be wrong because the majority share in it”. Such ‘spirituality’ as you mention Burl has been bending and twisting ever since first thought in an effort to keep up with the world modernising. As for the US military - you have a President who’s chief spiritual advisor is conducting a ‘Mega Miracles’ tour with a preacher who claims to raise people from the dead. Just because somebody is fanatical about spirituality doesn’t give it credibility. Can you even name one single military initiative/development that has resulted from these programs (not including what they learnt about psychology and the real world)? We agree the Christian evolution/young earth/creationists arguments are all silly, but these are examples of the old spirituality trying to hold on in the face of development. I imagine today’s ‘spirituality’ will be viewed the same in another couple of hundred years.
  14. PaulS


    Welcome Miriam, I hope you enjoy the forum and derive some value from it. Questions (and debate) are pretty popular here and we share a broad scale of beliefs and non-beliefs. Many of us here have been associated with fundamental Christianity (not all). Some have returned to the fold so to speak with perhaps a new understanding, others may continue links with Christianity but without the typical beliefs that many say Christians must believe. Either way, (and in many of other ways for that matter) discussions and debate are excellent for learning and there is plenty of information also available in our archives. Enjoy your stay here. Cheers Paul