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Featured Talking to outsiders

Discussion in 'Religious Debates' started by Unveiled Artist, Dec 5, 2018 at 1:05 PM.

  1. Unveiled Artist

    Unveiled Artist My sister LuLu

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    I notice this so far on RF with, Some: Hindus. Christians. Pagans. Probably more.

    What is the reason for talking about spiritual topics of ones faith if not the bias of choosing who you want to speak with for whatever reason?

    I came across this when talking to a Santeria practitioner. She, ans her friend mentioned because of Christian history they don't feel comfortable talking to white people interested in their religion. She was surprised I asked her about it being dark skinned. She said she rather black or Hispanic (majority and of course Africans) ask about it. There was too much bloody history that they associate all whites with colonization of their ancestors. I assume other religions outside christian and Islam who receives the same treatment from both overpowering religions. It makes sense. I'll say that.

    So, I see some justification of not sharing your faith Beyond the basics. In other ways, I understand it is personal preference.

    Is there a more, I guess, inner reason why sharing or talking is not preferred? Language issues? Culture? They don't understand scripture like meism? History?

    Do tell???
     
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  2. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    I don't share much because my experiences in sharing have usually gone nowhere. It's like in a classroom where the kids all know only Spanish, and you start teaching in English. (A former colleague of mine, a vice principal, was covering for a grade 1 teacher in an emergency one day, and had her instructions for them. Trouble is, he forgot the level, and wrote (in cursive) her instructions for him to give to them. The children did nothing for an hour or so, nd since he was a rather big unfriendly looking guy, none of them had the guts to tell him.

    Similarly, I have no clue what a lot of other people are going on about. They might as well not share.
     
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  3. Amanaki

    Amanaki The truth lay within you.

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    I think to share is important, but sometimes when sharing "to much" when talking to followers of an other path it can lead to misunderstanding, and disbelieve from those who listen.
     
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  4. Unveiled Artist

    Unveiled Artist My sister LuLu

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    Ha. You want to hear a flip version of this (I read it)?

    I used to be an ESL/English as a Foreign Language teacher. All adult students spoke Spanish. Little English but not conversational. Others don't know English at all. The policy is we only speak in English so they are always listening to their second language without depending on their native.

    We do this even when starting with ABCs. It's funny that the students appreciate that because they are always around English. While it's hard to teach in only a hour and a half setting, there is no pressure. No judging. No bias.

    One lady only spoke Arabic. I speak conversational basic Spanish just enough to know when someone is cheating behind my back. One day the students spoke Spanish and I saw the other student, Jane, singled out. So, instead of leaving her be, I got everyone's attention.

    I said: we all need to speak English. And I asked Jane if she spoke Spanish. I said she doesn't know. I don't know (point to me). We don't know. We need to speak one language so we ALL understand.

    It depends on the motive and patience and intent but not the language nor culture.

    But I thought of this because some christians feel talking to edit: nonchristisns (auto spell) about scripture is like throwing pearls to swine. Though Hindu, and Pagans aren't direct about it, it's much more thick in those parts than abrahamic.
     
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  5. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    That's really true. If I shared some of the personal stuff that's happened to me, nobody would believe it anyway, and why should they? it wasn't their experience. Some days I used to wonder why relatives or acquaintances didn't ask me more about it. But the fact is most wouldn't get it anyway. The paradigm gap is often one wide gap. It's different when the paradigms are similar.
     
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  6. YmirGF

    YmirGF Bodhisattva
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    As some would expect, I come at this from a different direction. I am more than willing to discuss a wide variety of topics, but part of the problem with more esoteric topics is translating my understanding into what I imagine is the understanding of a given audience. It's very much hit and miss.

    When I first came to RF, over 12 years ago, I was fully aware of the fact that a lot of people would not understand what I was blathering on about. This expectation was an extension of my self-imposed silence on spiritual matters adopted when I was in my 20's. I shut up because virtually no one had the slightest idea what I was raving about, more importantly, at the time I was still unable to adequately express my thinking and that led to even more confusion. To an extent, I am still wrestling with how to put things but am more capable of finding ways to get my point across.

    I think that brings us to the point of the OP. A lot of people are still fleshing out their own thinking, while others are fixated on "scripture" and dogmatically pontificating on topics they don't grasp especially well. By way of example, check out how many poorly worded OP's we have to contend with by native English speakers who don't seem to understand what they are even asking.

    Then, of course, there are those who like to play the moral superiority card. It is difficult to deal with that particular personality type.

    My advice? Treat the forums like a big house party. If you meet people you think are goons, simply smile, withdraw and find something more amenable to ones sensitivities. For those few, especially annoying sots, there is always the friendly Report button in the lower left corner of every person's post.
     
    #6 YmirGF, Dec 5, 2018 at 1:41 PM
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2018 at 3:57 PM
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  7. Quintessence

    Quintessence Tale Weaver
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    I like to keep in mind that one never knows when one's words may inspire. Those changes of inspiration - whether it's someone going "that sounds intriguing" or "that sounds stupid" are worth it to me.

    That said, it's true that I don't share much about the specifics of my practices or traditions. There are various reasons for that, but one of them is certainly the comprehension issue. When you are part of a cultural minority group, aspects of who you are and your way of life are very foreign to the prevailing norms that surround you. It is what it is. I tend to view it as a challenge to overcome or an opportunity for me to learn how to better articulate myself, but there are times it's just not going to happen. It's an uphill battle even with common ground when it comes to discussing complex topics like theology and religion. Add to that people bringing their egos into the picture instead of simply trying to understand other people's stories and it can get rough... especially for cultural minorities who are often undermined and badmouthed.

    A good way to get conversations started is to help the other person understand that you are asking questions in good faith. You aren't asking to try and get fuel to proselytize or convert. Nor are you asking to try and tear holes in their way of life. You are asking because you are genuinely curious and want to understand other ways and cultures. No judging, just exploring... like we all used to do constantly as children but many, unfortunately, forget how to. And study techniques for active listening, for Learning's sake! I rather like this little flow chart:

    [​IMG]
     
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  8. Father Heathen

    Father Heathen Veteran Member

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    That's as stupid as a present day Christian hating present day Italians because ancient Romans fed ancient Christians to lions, and that sort of attitude signifies that Santeria isn't worth anyone's time anyway.
     
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  9. Unveiled Artist

    Unveiled Artist My sister LuLu

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    Its probably similar as with Jews and God's name. One lady, I dont know if it was the same in my OP, said she doesnt give out basic information for fear of misuse. I found a ritual prayer outline online that wasnt supposed to be. The traditional prayer is not to be explained by outsiders only those initiated into the belief. The lady said I wasnt supposed to read that.
     
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  10. Nakosis

    Nakosis crystal soldier
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    Perhaps skepticism?

    I'm thinking from a non-believer POV but certainly from a Christian or Muslim they are likely to face strong criticism.

    Though I'm not sure of this idea of the bloody history of Christians or Whites. Human history has been pretty bloody from from all races towards all races for both religious and non-religious alike. There is nothing good about the violence in our past but I don't think we can identify the violence of man to any one religion or race.

    Violence still is always a possibility. It only takes one stupid, ignorant person to go on a shooting rampage. Still a person making an open honest inquiry into someone's belief, I don't see much threat in.
     
  11. Amanaki

    Amanaki The truth lay within you.

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    A few lamas in Tibetan Buddhism has similar to what you explain here. They have some knowledge that they only teach to one or two students, but others does not know about this teaching. Maybe it is for trying to keep the teaching as pure as possible?
     
  12. Axe Elf

    Axe Elf Prophet

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    Sometimes I get tired of being the sole missionary to the Stupid tribe.
     
  13. adrian009

    adrian009 Well-Known Member
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    I'm interested in the diversity of beliefs and meeting with people of different faiths and cultures. If they are up for a friendly discussion then all good. If not, then that's fine. Communication is a two way street.
     
  14. sun rise

    sun rise "Love pours forth from the heart of the universe."
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    I've found that most, the vast majority, are not interested in my viewpoint but want to tell me theirs. A few are really interested in exploring something and I try to frame my answer to be responsive to their question.
     
  15. LuisDantas

    LuisDantas Aura of atheification
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    Sometimes one simply does not have the proper environment to truly share some content.

    Shared experiences, a common vocabulary, enough time, an adequate mental and emotional state.

    All or any of those may be requirements for effective sharing.

    If those requirements are known or believed to be absent, it is only natural to fear potentially harmful misunderstandings and attempt to avoid them.
     
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  16. Unveiled Artist

    Unveiled Artist My sister LuLu

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    I can see your point. The religion isnt defined by its practitoners prejudice. (Like Catholicism isnt defined by its politics) But Santeria is syncretic not the actual religion. However, I dont know about the foundational religion. Very discreet.
     
  17. Unveiled Artist

    Unveiled Artist My sister LuLu

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    Not surprinsingly, the only people who took the time with me was JW. I didnt know a thing about their religion but they werent forceful or anything. Regardless of intent, it takes patience and willingness to share.

    I read a book with different native americans interviewed about this topic. One man said he doesnt need to copyright his words. Its not his words, but the words are owned by god.
     
  18. Unveiled Artist

    Unveiled Artist My sister LuLu

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    Yeah. A lot of it is keeping the teachings in the culture so they wont be diluted. Many minority religions and sub-cultures are like that.
     
  19. LuisDantas

    LuisDantas Aura of atheification
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    I am not sure I follow the logic, though. Cultures have no clear boundaries.
     
  20. Unveiled Artist

    Unveiled Artist My sister LuLu

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    If you're addressing me, could you quote or tag?

    Its hard to explain without going off topic. For example, each country has its own flag. Each flag has its colors and its history. They are important to those sets of native inhabitants of that country for whatever reason. It represents who they are.

    Of course, the flag (or cultural foundation) isnt fixed to one area. Colors and material and meanings arent alien to other countries. Yet, we do have different things we share. A lot of cultures want to keep their flag within their own country because of what it stands for and how they and no one else outside their history has personal ties to that said flag. In other words, (idiom-like phrase) the flag is not theirs. Not own as in possess but own as in who shares what and why as a group.

    When a group doesnt want to share the story of their flag to others, they want to keep their tradition and history within their own country. Mostly because of, sorry to say, christian and muslim influence; so, its not possession as in its-mine-mine-mine. Its a symbol of survival. So, thats why people dont share their views because of that.

    I was wondering if thats it or is there a deeper reason why spiritual topics are kept within one group but things like, whats your passion, can be discussed with anyone who shares interest or has interest in speaking of it.
     
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