Catholics teach that the fear of god is a gift from the holy spirit.

Fear = Wisdom? Really?

I used to fear GOD. It was real to me and a constant source of stress. Perhaps when atheists speak of new found freedom, some of it is really the shedding of fear. Did you ever "FEAR the LORD? and if so, how did it feel to ditch that fear?

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For atheists like yourself

I might have said "for some atheists", instead.

For atheists like yourself, there is apparently no alternative cognitive framework which calls into question that unreasoned prejudice against a whole group because of the actions of a few.

Apparently not, since to date you've skulked away from repeated requests for you to present this mysterious "alternative framework" which supports your claims.

We have demonstrated repeatedly using evidence from multiple sources that the sexual abuse, secrecy and cover-ups that allowed the abuse to continue went far beyond "a few". You, in stark contrast, have yet to produce a shred of evidence to back up your extraordinary claims that the entire world is doing the same thing. Your apology for making light of it last time is a mockery, Robert, because here you are, at it again.

We haven't made a baseless unreasonable prejudgement. We've made a reasonable post-judgement based on evidence.

You ignore (and in fact resist) that and attack us falsely for doing what you do yourself: make unreasoned arguments and present little or no supporting evidence. The kicker is that you do it most vehemently to defend child rapists. Now you're actually standing tall, throwing down racial slurs, and whining about how persecuted you are.

Robert, if you're not the most unethical, dishonest, and cowardly debater I've encountered on TA, you're high in the running.

I think the problem in part, @Gallup, is that I'm not here to debate.  I'm just here to occasionally offer a perspective from a different viewpoint.

You are of course free to reject me as unethical, dishonest or any other ad hominem that you like.  I don't mind.  I think most bright people see through that sort of thing.

I would gently suggest that if you really want to make a claim that any group of people, as a community or a class, is more unethical than another, that the burden of proof lies with you to demonstrate conclusively that no other groups have done anything similar, or at least not at the same rates in some statistically measurable manner.

From my perspective, I don't believe you can on this issue.

For public schools, here's a decent article from Slate : http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/explainer/2012/02/i...

Multiple Seattle Times reports on sexual abuse by sports coaches, and how they continued abusing: http://seattletimes.com/news/local/coaches/

One of the many L.A. Times exposes on abuse and cover-ups by the Boy Scouts: http://articles.latimes.com/2012/sep/16/local/la-me-boy-scouts-file...

The Florida Sun-Sentinel on sexual abuse at summer camps: http://articles.sun-sentinel.com/2012-03-10/news/fl--felon-summer-c...

This stuff is just an easy Google away for anyone wanting to build a genuine understanding of this problem.

Being abused seems to have become such a rite of passage that I wonder how I escaped it. I guess I was just not a very sexy child. ;)

I think the problem in part, @Gallup, is that I'm not here to debate.  I'm just here to occasionally offer a perspective from a different viewpoint.

A discussion of opposing viewpoints IS a debate, Robert.

You are of course free to reject me as unethical, dishonest or any other ad hominem that you like.  I don't mind.  I think most bright people see through that sort of thing.

Ad hominem is an argument made personally against an opponent instead of against their argument.

If your argument IS a lie and I point it out, that is not ad hominem.

Remember that Bob, because you've done it again in the paragraph below.

I would gently suggest that if you really want to make a claim that any group of people, as a community or a class, is more unethical than another, that the burden of proof lies with you to demonstrate conclusively that no other groups have done anything similar, or at least not at the same rates in some statistically measurable manner.

From my perspective, I don't believe you can on this issue.

Show me where I have made the claim you attribute to me above. Find it. Quote me. Post it here.

You cannot do it. Because it did not happen. You are lying, Bob. To me. About me. Plain and simple.

{This seems like a good point to mention the catechism of your Catholic Church which states: "a lie is speaking a falsehood with the intention of deceiving" or "to speak or act against the truth in order to lead someone into error" or to "destroy the reputation and honor of one's neighbor". [...] "The Lord denounces lying as the work of the devil: "You are of your father the devil, . . . there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks according to his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies."}

Remember when I mentioned earlier in this thread that you'd make a dishonest attempt to shift the burden of proof onto me? Well, there it was. Right on cue. As tiresome as ever. 

I hereby shift the burden back to you. YOU made this claim so it falls to you to back it up with evidence: "The scale of abuse cases [in the Catholic Church sexual abuse scandal] was on the order of those that occur in the general population worldwide, among coaches and teachers and others." - Professor Robert

See this thread for examples of just how high the Catholic Church has set the bar.

For public schools, here's a decent article from Slate : http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/explainer/2012/02/i...

The article says it does not provide a statistically accurate sample of even ONE country, let alone the general population worldwide. So the article coverage is short by 192 countries and at least three occupations: "These statistics are uncertain, however, because no one has ever designed a nationwide study for the expressed purpose of measuring the prevalence of sexual abuse by educators."

Multiple Seattle Times reports on sexual abuse by sports coaches, and how they continued abusing: http://seattletimes.com/news/local/coaches/

The article states: "[In the Seattle area] 159 coaches have been reprimanded or fired for sexual misconduct in the past decade. And 98 continued to coach or teach — as schools, the state and even some parents looked the other way."

That's one metropolitan area, Bob. The article says the majority of the abusers faced consequences for what they did. Compare that with the findings of the Ryan Reports, which covered an entire country: not ONE clergy member was ever investigated, reprimanded, or fired. That is not comparable.

One of the many L.A. Times exposes on abuse and cover-ups by the Boy Scouts: http://articles.latimes.com/2012/sep/16/local/la-me-boy-scouts-file...

Are you really citing this article to back up your position, Bob? I'm touched.

"Upon Father Micarelli's recommendation, the parents were not notified [of the sexual abuse]," a report states. Micarelli's reasoning was not explained. But in 1990, he also wound up on the blacklist after a man told a Scouting official that the priest had raped him and his younger brother as boys. In 2002, the Diocese of Providence paid $13.5 million to 36 victims who sued Micarelli and 10 other priests, alleging sex abuse dating to at least 1975.

The Florida Sun-Sentinel on sexual abuse at summer camps: http://articles.sun-sentinel.com/2012-03-10/news/fl--felon-summer-c...

*Laughing* Did you even read these articles or just skim the headlines? 

"When the convicted child molester volunteered at this Palm City church summer camp, nobody stood in his way. Not the church. It welcomed the tall, rangy 34-year-old as its newest youth chaperone without screening his background."

This stuff is just an easy Google away for anyone wanting to build a genuine understanding of this problem.

Which you still haven't done by a long shot.

Surely, you don't expect ME to Google up all the rest of the supporting research for you. You don't think I'm going rush out and find the data to back YOUR claim, which would require supporting scientific research and surveys on sexual abuse nationwide in 193 countries among Catholic clergy, teachers, coaches, and "others".

(Ascertaining the level of abuse by the Catholic Church in countries besides Ireland and the US would be a daunting challenge indeed, considering these are the only two that have done such surveys at national levels.)

The takeaway from this is that you HAD NOT done this supporting research BEFORE you made the claim. You didn't have a detailed report, all prepared and ready to go, ready to whip out at a moment's notice to back yourself up. All this despite having asserted this astonishing claim to be the honest truth. 

For all your blustering about ad hominem: you made it up. Pants on fire. Pinocchio. Forked tongue. Didn't you, Robert?

"The scale of abuse cases [in the Catholic Church sexual abuse scandal] was on the order of those that occur in the general population worldwide, among coaches and teachers and others." - Professor Robert

I'll just keep providing evidence.

What evidence is that, Robert?

Your imaginary God created hell and the devil. Your imaginary God sends people to hell unless they believe he exists (I can barely type that part without laughing) and unless they obey him*, to be tortured and burned forever in the eternal fire.

*Exception: He lets you off the hook because human sacrifice and cannibalism appease him for some reason. (I'm laughing again.)

Your imaginary God ignores the pleas of those who cry out for his help as millions (of mostly children) die in misery due to starvation and disease. Your imaginary God is a moral monster.

Who wouldn't be afraid of a sick, twisted, despotic fuck like that ruling the universe with magical powers? I'm glad that gods exist only in the imagination, but especially relieved that your God-- a cosmic-powered Charles Manson-- exists only in yours.

@Gallup, your stuff is too funny!

What you are writing is your imaginary view of what you think my "imaginary" God or religion actually says.  I agree with you, your imaginary vision of religion or God is preposterous.  Nobody should believe that!  In fact, almost nobody does.

I suppose the equivalent would be if some creationist started commenting on my belief in prehistoric dinosaurs by talking about Barney.  Your imaginary dinosaur is purple and fluffy!  Your imaginary dinosaur says you have to sing songs and teach children trite sayings!   Your imaginary dinosaur is a mind numbing fable, and that means dinosaurs never existed.

It's amusing, but it's not an argument.  It's just an absurd statement of personal prejudice.

@Gallup, your stuff is too funny!

What you are writing is your imaginary view of what you think my "imaginary" God or religion actually says.

Oh, I agree it's hilarious. But it's not "my stuff" at all, Bob. It's what YOUR religion actually says your imaginary God says.

But don't take my word for it. Click the link I posted. It leads to the Vatican website and the official catechism of the Catholic Church.

Let's look at what it says, directly quoted:

"1034 Jesus often speaks of "Gehenna" of "the unquenchable fire" reserved for those who to the end of their lives refuse to believe and be converted, where both soul and body can be lost. Jesus solemnly proclaims that he "will send his angels, and they will gather . . . all evil doers, and throw them into the furnace of fire," and that he will pronounce the condemnation: "Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire!"

I had paraphrased this as "Your imaginary God created hell and the devil. Your imaginary God sends people to hell unless they believe he exists."

Continuing, the same catechism states that Jesus, God in human form, was:

"...the Paschal sacrifice that accomplishes the definitive redemption of men, through "the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world", and the sacrifice of the New Covenant, which restores man to communion with God by reconciling him to God through the "blood of the covenant, which was poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins."

...and goes on to mention the transubstantiation, whereby bread and wine are actually transformed into the flesh and blood of Jesus (which are then eaten)...

"The Council of Trent summarizes the Catholic faith by declaring: "Because Christ our Redeemer said that it was truly his body that he was offering under the species of bread, it has always been the conviction of the Church of God, and this holy Council now declares again, that by the consecration of the bread and wine there takes place a change of the whole substance of the bread into the substance of the body of Christ our Lord and of the whole substance of the wine into the substance of his blood. This change the holy Catholic Church has fittingly and properly called transubstantiation."

I had paraphrased these last two parts as:

"He lets you off the hook because human sacrifice and cannibalism appease him for some reason."

Really, Bob. Jebus did not curse non-believers and solemnly proclaim for them the eternal fire? Jebus was not God who took human form to become a blood sacrifice for our sins? Jebus is not changing bread and wine into his body and blood with his magical powers so you can chow down on his holy goodness at every mass?

How can you say the Church does not say these things when the official catechism of the church actually says them for all to see?

I agree with you, your imaginary vision of religion or God is preposterous. Nobody should believe that! In fact, almost nobody does.

Yeah, it's preposterous all right. But my vision of your religion is not imaginary. That is exactly the feeble and childish nonsense your church truly believes in.

It's amusing, but it's not an argument. It's just an absurd statement of personal prejudice.

Agreed on the absurdity: Catholicism is nearly as absurd as it gets. But prejudice? That's just your delusion of persecution shining through. 

I grew up Catholic, in a Catholic elementary school taught by nuns in full habits.

I was never afraid.  I was never taught about "the fires of hell" or any such drivel.  Nor were any friends of mine, nor anyone I know.

Does it happen?  I'm sure.  In some dysfunctional families where parents have an inappropriate need to exercise "control" over their children, all sorts of nonsense or even abuse can happen. 

Just out of curiosity I googled "Fear of the Lord Catholic meaning" and the first thing that came up was this blog from the Archdiocese of Washington:

http://blog.adw.org/2010/02/what-does-it-mean-to-fear-the-lord/

It sounds sort of like that Dr. Bob fellow. ;-)

How can you suffer from a depredation of something you've lived without all your life?  And I'm happy without a god.  Is this one supposed to make me feel unhappy where I'm normally happy?

How many times does one have to whitewash crap, before it stops being crap?

Exactly....Need a lot of paint for all this.....

55 references to hell in the KJV

Matthew 13:42: "And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth."

Matt 25:41: "Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels." This passage relates to Jesus' judgment of all the world.

Mark 9:43-48: And if thy hand offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter into life maimed, than having two hands to go into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched." The reference to fire is repeated three more times in the passage for emphasis.

Luke 16:24: "And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame." This is a plea described as coming from an inhabitant of Hell.

Revelation 20:13-15: "...hell delivered up the dead which were in them...And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire."

Revelation 21:8: "But the fearful, and unbelieving ... shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone." Brimstone is sulphur. In order for sulphur to form a lake, it must be molten. Thus, its temperature must be at or below 444.6 °C or 832 °F.

Hell is a place of instability. It is described as a lake of fire. Hell is a place where every moment is lived in uncertainty (Matthew 5:21-23; Revelation 20:15)

Hell is a pit of darkness; totally devoid of light. It is pitch black in hell; there's nothing to distract people from their suffering, sorrow, fears, insecurities, and instability. (2 Peter 3-5)

Hell is a place of dissatisfaction. Yeshua described it as a fire; a fiery furnace. It may be a literal fire that creates a physical sensation of burning or just an overwhelming yearning for God, for love, for joy, for peace, for life that will never be. (Matthew 5:22; Matt 13:42 and 50; Matt 18:8-9; Matt 25:41; Mark 9:43, 47-48)

Hell is a place of eternal separation from God. Each person who goes to hell will be separated forever from the source of life, the heart of love, the very One for Whom they were created. Hell is a place where your soul will be destroyed (Matthew 7:23 and 10:27-29).

Where is Hell?

The truth is, no one can really say. Most likely it is in another dimension (as is heaven), but the Bible seems to indicate it is in the bowels of our own Earth. Here is what the Bible tells us about hell:

Matthew 11:23 - "Hades" - Strong's Concordance #86

(NIV) - "you will go down to [the depths]"
(KJV) - "shalt be brought down to [Hell]"
(NLT) - "you will be brought down to [the place of the dead]"
Luke 16:23 - "Hades" - Strong's Concordance #86

(NIV) - "In [Hell], where he was in torment, he looked up..."
(KJV) - "And in [Hell] he lift up his eyes, being in torments,"
(NLT) - "And his soul went to [the place of the dead],"
II Peter 2:4 - "Tartaros" - Strong's Concordance #5020

(NIV) - "but sent them to [Hell], putting them in gloomy dungeons to be held for judgment;"
(KJV) - "but cast them down into [Hell],"
(NLT) - "He threw them into [Hell], in gloomy caves and darkness until judgment day"
Amos 9:2 - "Sheol" - Strong's Concordance #7585

(NIV) - "Though they dig down to the depths of [the grave],"
(KJV) - "Though they dig into [Hell],"
(NLT) - "Even if they dig down to [the place of the dead], I will reach down and pull them up."
Numbers 16:31-33 - "Sheol" - Strong's Concordance #7585

(NIV) - "the ground under them split apart and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed them, ...They went down alive into [the grave],"

(KJV) - "the ground clave asunder that was under them. And the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed them up, ...They, ...went down alive into the [pit],"

(NLT) - "the ground suddenly split open beneath them. The earth opened up and swallowed the men, ...So they went down alive into [the grave],"

Source(s):

Why would you think you've lived without God all your life, @Strega?

Just because someone doesn't believe in dinosaurs just because they think all dinosaurs mean Barney doesn't mean that dinosaurs weren't real.  Just because they don't believe in climate change doesn't mean they aren't experiencing the effects of drought.

Just because you don't believe in God does not mean that God isn't present in your life, in your community, in your friendships, in the world.

Now, if you willingly, with malice of intent and no mitigating mental health issues choose to kidnap 3 women and chain them in your basement as sex slaves for ten years, then perhaps you will have deprived yourself of any relationship with God.  If as a man of the cloth you used your position to molest children, then perhaps you have destroyed any relationship with God within your self.  I'd think so, anyways.

That doesn't sound like you.  So probably no worries about flames and pitchforks. ;-)  It's just fine to be happy.

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