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Question about living and beliving in a religion from the past.

Discussion in 'Interfaith Discussion' started by Conscious thoughts, Oct 13, 2021 at 11:55 PM.

  1. Conscious thoughts

    Conscious thoughts Veteran Member

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    Many of the religions we follow today were taught 1500-2000 years ago or even older. And to live by the teaching it seems like one should live as if one lived back then. But....

    Are we not in a way living in today's society with the belief that also fits today's world? I mean, we do not need to change the teaching, but change how we live by it?
    For example, a Muslim does not need to fight the outward jihad in today's world, but the inward jihad toward our own heart and how to love all human beings and of course Allah, and to reduce or fully let go of our ego, that is of essence today.

    A Christian or a Jew would live by their teaching, but of today and in today's society.

    We don't need to be stuck in the past :)

    Any thoughts?
     
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  2. Jimmy

    Jimmy Well-Known Member

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    Since a lot of its metaphorical it’s easily applied to today
     
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  3. Lain

    Lain Member

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    I think it is unavoidable that one lives by their teachings in today's society, as we are in that society the religion will naturally be in it as well. Different enemies, worldviews, practices, customs, new applications of ascetic practices, new tools for worship, new knowledge to teach with, etc. Of course one is still justly fulfilling the beliefs but there is definitely change and adaptation to the times to a degree. There will always be fights over how much change or development is too much though and that issue is always dividing religions (perhaps most schisms in Christendom for the last several hundred years have been over that ultimately).
     
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  4. sun rise

    sun rise "This is the Hour of God"
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    I see it that way as well.

    When I was on my search, I was attracted to teachers and groups who were adapting the core to today's world. For example, I wrote about the Zen teacher who knew that Buddhist begging was not appropriate to the West and instead asked his students to pick up litter instead because he judged that served close to the same purpose.
     
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  5. RestlessSoul

    RestlessSoul Well-Known Member

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    The essence of Christianity for me comes down to this simple message - That you love each other, as I have loved you.
    In a restless world where there are few things to hold onto, this is a message which doesn’t change.
     
  6. Aupmanyav

    Aupmanyav Be your own guru

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    RS, it is a utopian idea. What about those (Christians included) who do not subscribe to your grand idea? Would Caliph Ibrahim aka Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi be impressed by your grand idea?
     
  7. ajay0

    ajay0 Well-Known Member

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    I remember reading a saying of Muhammad, ' The greatest Jihad is the Jihad against one's own self.'

    Obviously it is very wise statement meaning that the greatest battle is with the impurities and vices within oneself. I would say that it is only those who had finished the inner Jihad who would be qualified to do any external Jihad.

    These days Jihad is proclaimed for silly reasons of a political nature.

    Sri Ramakrishna, who had studied Sufism, had also stated in a similar vein...

    "Destroy the evil tendencies in man like lust, greed and anger and not the man. These tendencies are the real kafirs and not the man."
     
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  8. RestlessSoul

    RestlessSoul Well-Known Member

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    Yes, it is a utopian idea, a perfect ideal to which we can only aspire. We are human and we always fall short of our ideals, but that is no reason to abandon them.

    I do not know this Al-Baghdadi, but men of God are no strangers to hypocrisy or wickedness, that we know.
    Christians, as you say, are far from exempt, and often lose sight of Christ’s simple message. But the message endures, and can light a candle even in the darkest caverns of men’s hearts.
     
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  9. Conscious thoughts

    Conscious thoughts Veteran Member

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    Agree with what you say:)
     
  10. Debater Slayer

    Debater Slayer Veteran Member
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    It depends: I agree with your view on an individual level and think it is an essential part of religious reform, but some religious institutions definitely live in the past and try to apply outdated beliefs to today's society, often to harmful results.

    I would say an example of the latter would be the Catholic Church's insistence on its anti-abortion stance or the Coptic Church's condemnation of homosexuality even though we now know it is healthy, natural, and immutable. In that case, the only way I see for them to adapt to today's knowledge is to either change the teaching or stop using it as a basis for official Church policy.

    Some religious sects or denominations seem to value tradition over adaptation to modern knowledge, however, which, in my opinion, is where a lot of problems arise if this insistence on traditionalism results in persecution or discrimination against specific groups based on something like sexual orientation or gender. I definitely think flexibility and openness to new knowledge is a key factor in ensuring that any given ideology or set of beliefs is as humane and reasonable as possible.
     
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  11. Aupmanyav

    Aupmanyav Be your own guru

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    Not all religions are like that. Hinduism changes with time. My view goes 100% with science and that is the reason for my atheism. I accept nothing other than what has evidence.
    I do not see any candles being lighted, even among the Christians. Humans will remain humans. The idea is pure utopian.
     
    #11 Aupmanyav, Oct 14, 2021 at 3:12 AM
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2021 at 3:19 AM
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  12. RestlessSoul

    RestlessSoul Well-Known Member

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    I don't see the correlation between atheism and science. The Big Bang, the expanding universe, the paradoxical duality that is a defining feature of the quantum world - I see God in all of that. But whatever: we each have our own perspective.

    Meanwhile, every act of kindness, every compassionate gesture, lights a candle somewhere.
     
  13. Aupmanyav

    Aupmanyav Be your own guru

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    Simple, science says do not accept what does not have evidence and that clears up God, soul, heaven, hell, resurrection/reincarnation, end of days, judgment and deliverance.
    Yeah, we have different perspectives. Also I believe candles are old-fashioned, though some consider it romantic, in this age of LEDs and controlled lighting. :D
     
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  14. RestlessSoul

    RestlessSoul Well-Known Member

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    I don’t think science says that; indeed, insofar as science can be said to speak at all, scientists have the job of interpreting what it appears to say. The wisest of them either admit that there is much they do not understand, or that some questions will always be beyond it’s remit.

    I’m an old fashioned guy. The human achievements of enduring value - the best of art, literature, ideas, values, faith - are those things which stand the rest of time.
     
    #14 RestlessSoul, Oct 14, 2021 at 5:20 AM
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2021 at 6:50 AM
  15. ben d

    ben d Being

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    The only thing of importance is how efficacious is our religious practice in bringing us to our universal destiny. I suspect that all religions have something to offer, the ancient and the modern, the eastern and the western.
     
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  16. KenS

    KenS Face to face with my Father
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    I think love God, give mercy, love your neighbor... et al seems to apply no matter what era you live in.

    When an issue is cultural, in the Bible, and not conflicting with above, it adapts and changes.
     
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  17. Mock Turtle

    Mock Turtle Silent Generation - so don't expect much
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    The interpretation of Islam needs changing for some perhaps (the Taliban, for example, and others) - regarding what females should wear - since apparently we males just can't help ourselves (as to thoughts or behaviour) unless all females are covered so as to make them less sexually attractive - as if the physical characteristics were all that attracts us, or even the main thing. Such might have been a thing in the times when Islam was born but we have progressed somewhat since then. How are such societies to ever grow up if they continue in such ways when many other countries seem to have gotten over this issue - if there ever was one.
     
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  18. IndigoChild5559

    IndigoChild5559 Loving God and my neighbor as myself.

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    When I was going through my searching years, not really sure what to believe (if anything at all), I didn't bother to look into new religions (meaning religions that are only several hundred years old). Why?

    Ancient religions have withstood the test of time, which means that they succeed in doing what religions are meant to do--bring one closer to the divine and assist in becoming the best you that you can be. They contain what Dennis Prager refers to as "distilled wisdom." It's because they literally have generations and generations of wise men diving into ethical and theological issues, the next generation being able to stand on the shoulder of the generation that came before, and thus seeing farther.

    New religions basically reinvent the wheel. So why would I bother with them?
     
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