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Featured What are religionists being taught about other religions?

Discussion in 'General Religious Debates' started by loverofhumanity, Nov 7, 2019.

  1. loverofhumanity

    loverofhumanity Well-Known Member
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    Once I had some religionists knock on my door and I welcomed them and invited them in my home to say prayers for humanity. They replied that their elders had forbidden them to mingle or become friendly with people from other Faiths because they might catch a ‘spiritual disease ‘.

    I would love to be a fly on the wall to hear what is really being taught to such people to instill prejudice against people of different Faiths and where is their justification for promoting such prejudices.it does not come from the Holy Books.

    Does it make any difference where we pray and meditate whether it be a pagoda, a church, temple, mosque or synagogue? What harm is there in going to each other’s churches and temples to pray, meditate and mingle?

    In our Faith we have no such restrictions. We are encouraged to ‘consort with the followers of all religions with friendship and fellowship’ and again ‘“Consort with all religions with amity and concord, that they may inhale from you the sweet fragrance of God”

    In our Houses of Worship each week all over the world we read from the Holy Books of all Faiths Buddhism, Judaism, Christianity, Hinduism, Zoroastrianism, Islam as well as our own Faith and participate in interfaith.

    Do you think we should try and build bridges between the religions or keep aloof from one another? Isn’t it time the religions of the world came together to eliminate the hatreds that have caused bitter wars between them and find common ground to get along with one another?

    What does your religion teach you about other religions? What if anything is mentioned in your Holy Books regarding other Faiths?
     
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  2. sun rise

    sun rise "Let there be peace and love among all"
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    To me, it's good to mingle and pray together.

    All religions should be "beads on one string".
     
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  3. Amanaki

    Amanaki Living in the moment

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    A wonderful thread :)
    From a Theravada view, we should not reject other religions and we can, of course, have both friends, study partners from a different religious background in our social environment :)
    To have friends with spiritual lifestyle or friends who are dedicated to religious practice is a very good virtue. It's like having brothers or sisters with different background who can nudge you in the right direction when we struggle in our own practice :)
    When it comes to what religious houses we should or should not be able to visit, we can visit anywhere we like, and if it is accepted by the people from the religious path we visit that we example meditates in their house of worship, then we can. But we should not worship their Gods or teachers. (Buddhists do not worship any God or Buddha.) and we should not use other religions' teachings and blend wit Buddha`s teaching. in our own cultivation.
    But discussing religious texts from other religions are no problem :)

    I think it is important that we build bridges between religions, but not blending teachings from everywhere and try to become more enlightened from that. better to stick to one teaching at the time.
    Respect for each other's beliefs is important.
     
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  4. ADigitalArtist

    ADigitalArtist Well-Known Member
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    Sounds like Jehovah's Witness, since Mormons don't use the term 'elder' that I'm aware of.
    My experience at the kingdom halls of JW was exceptionally isolationist and xenophobic. Children with nonbelieving parents were encouraged to emancipate and get away from the parent at earliest opportunity, unless the child felt conversion was possible.
    The only goal for door to door work was conversion, not commiseration or learning about the community or expanding horizons any further beyond the watchtower by-line. If you were a 'pioneer' you logged how many doors you saw and literature you placed, filling a quota depending on your part or full time status. If you didn't think you were going to get a return call or bible study, you left and thought nothing more on it

    This could have changed since then, and my region and congregation could have been worse examples than the norm, but it was a sad state of affairs and I'm not sad to see those days behind me.
     
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  5. ADigitalArtist

    ADigitalArtist Well-Known Member
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    That said, since then I've been to many other churches, synagogues and temples which were much less isolationist or exclusionary. And a few that honestly didn't even have a standard interpretation of philosophy. The goal wasn't to enforce a "truth" but find it yourself and make your community a little better along the way.
     
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  6. stvdv

    stvdv Well-Known Member

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    The "basis" in evangelism is wrong IMO
    (My way is the Highway belief)

    OMG. That is what I meant above.

    One need little imagination to know this.

    It comes from the Holy Books sadly (they claim). Or they are "crazy" or lying or...

    Or there are errors in these Holy Books. Wrong interpreted, translated, added stuff, left out stuff etc. We all know they left out certain parts from the Bible.

    Or just a sick mind can twist anything good into bad.

    Only "pure" souls would do that. Judgmentalist won't.

    Sweet description. I like that.

    That's the way to get rid of judgmentalism

    IMO that's the first step needed to achieve peace

    1) If you speak bad about other's (non) faith you belittle God; so don't do that.
     
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  7. dianaiad

    dianaiad Well-Known Member

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    Oh yes, we do. However, the young men If they were young men and not young women, would be wearing black nametags on their lapels identifying themselves as 'Elder so and so"...insert their last name for 'so and so.' We get made fun of a lot for calling nineteen year old missionaries 'elder.' However, we definitely do not use the term in the way the OP states, and we ABSOLUTELY would not be saying anything like the OP folks did, about getting 'spiritual diseases.' ...and if there is one thing we ARE encouraged to do, it is to become friendly and 'mingle' with people of other faiths. We ARE out to convert the world, after all; how can we do that if we don't TALK to people, learn about them, and be friends?


    I've heard stuff like that...I don't know any of it personally. LDS missionaries will probably mow your lawn.

    Ah, well, as a former JW, you would certainly know more about what they do than I do. I can say this...the purpose of LDS missionaries for going door to door is ALSO 'conversion,' but we figure that before anybody can 'be converted,' they have to know who we are, and we need to know who they are. So...if they aren't really interested in hearing what we have to say, but need help, then that's what we give 'em. Mostly.

    Of course, if the person behind the door has lemonaid and cookies, and wants to have a good argument, we're fine with that. At least, I used to be. ;)

    The point is, if we can't get the folks in the water the first time, then we need to leave them knowing that we aren't horrible people, or strange...so that the next time someone comes calling, they might listen. Or let their kids play with the LDS kids next door, Or come to a Family Home Evening barbeque. You know, just...get to know us.
     
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  8. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    Have you never read the Bible? Nowhere in the Bible is false worship acceptable to God. It is for this reason that the nation of Israel were forbidden to marry outside of their faith and not to adopt the ways of the Gentiles who worshipped false gods.

    What was the first of the Ten Commandments?

    “I am Jehovah your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. 3 You must not have any other gods besides me."

    What did he say about the worship of idols?

    4 You must not make for yourself a carved image or a form like anything that is in the heavens above or on the earth below or in the waters under the earth. 5 You must not bow down to them nor be enticed to serve them, for I, Jehovah your God, am a God who requires exclusive devotion, bringing punishment for the error of fathers upon sons, upon the third generation and upon the fourth generation of those who hate me, 6 but showing loyal love to the thousandth generation of those who love me and keep my commandments." (Exodus 20:1-6)

    Does this leave any room for interfaith? Does breaking those commandments lead to peace with God?...or punishment? You can't turn God into someone he isn't.

    Its not promoting prejudice to shun people of other religions because Jesus never did that....but he did mention that he was sent ONLY to "the lost sheep of the house of Israel". As God's chosen nation...the one through which his Messiah would come....keeping his nation separated genetically and spiritually was obviously important. He constantly warned his people NOT to "mingle" with those who were not worshippers of Jehovah. Doing so on occasion was spiritually disastrous for them. When Israel fell to sacrificing their children in the fire to a false god, it was because of the influence of Baal worshippers with whom they were mingling.

    Right on the brink of entering the Promised Land Israel succumbed to sexual immorality with Moabite women who lured them in to illicit relations with them. Again, consorting with the wrong people.

    You can have 'friendships' with all people, but 'consorting' with them is something else.....

    "consort1
    verb
    gerund or present participle: consorting
    /kənˈsɔːt/

    1. habitually associate with (someone), typically with the disapproval of others.
      "you chose to consort with the enemy"
      Similar:
      associate
      keep company
      mix
      mingle
      go around
      spend time
      socialize
      fraternize
      have dealings
      rub shoulders
      rub elbows
      hobnob
      run around
      hang around/round
      hang out
      knock about/around
      pal around
      chum around
      be thick
      hang about
      • ARCHAIC
        agree or be in harmony with.
        "it did not consort with his idea of scientific government"
        (Oxford Dictionary)
    Ever heard of the expression...."show me your friends and I will show you...you."?

    That is the very thing Jehovah told his people NOT to do.....why? Because the originator of all religions that are false is God's adversary in an attempt to steer people away from true worship and into false worship. That has been his aim from the beginning of his rebellion. All worship that does not go to the true God, goes to the devil by default. God tells us how to worship him acceptably....so does Jesus. None of their teachings include interfaith.

    Jesus did not tell us to keep aloof from those people...he told us to preach to them about the true God and the wonderful news about his Kingdom, in the hope of steering right hearted ones towards true worship. (Matthew 10:11-14) We are to treat them as our neighbors, but we are not to adopt their many forms of worship.

    The apostle Paul wrote something that leaves us in no doubt about our position with regard to other forms of worship...
    "Do not become unevenly yoked with unbelievers. For what fellowship do righteousness and lawlessness have? Or what sharing does light have with darkness? 15 Further, what harmony is there between Christ and Beʹli·al? Or what does a believer share in common with an unbeliever? 16 And what agreement does God’s temple have with idols? For we are a temple of a living God; just as God said: “I will reside among them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people.” 17 “‘Therefore, get out from among them, and separate yourselves,’ says Jehovah, ‘and quit touching the unclean thing’”; “‘and I will take you in.’” 18 “‘And I will become a father to you, and you will become sons and daughters to me,’ says Jehovah, the Almighty.”

    There is no room for interfaith here.....in order to become God's "sons and daughters" we must separate ourselves (spiritually) from those whose worship is "unclean" in God's eyes.

    Jesus said in prayer to his Father...."This means everlasting life, their coming to know you, the only true God, and the one whom you sent, Jesus Christ." (John 17:3)

    There is only one "true God" and the only one he "sent" forth to save mankind was Jesus Christ......there are no others.

    As above. We witness to our neighbors of all faiths because we care about them and about their future....but we cannot force anyone to accept our message. Like Jesus, it is offered on a "take it or leave it" basis. But this offer was to be given to people right up to the end of this present system of things, which many are now acknowledging is headed for disaster on so many levels...all because of human greed and abuse of power. (Matthew 24:14)

    God's Kingdom will "come" but not in the way that many expect....and certainly not through any human means. (Daniel 2:44)
     
    #8 Deeje, Nov 7, 2019
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2019
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  9. stvdv

    stvdv Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for sharing about your Buddhist Path. Good and nice to know. Buddha inspired me a lot starting from age 18.

    I enjoy reading about how others feel about their Path and especially how they enjoy their Path. The more enthusiastic they share the better I feel. Of course I see differences and similarities, luckily this does not bother me. Both are fine with me.

    Sai Baba teaches, that we can choose whichever religion feels best for us, and He will help us to become better. Being on RF gives me the opportunity to practise this (not to judge or belittle). What He calls "Unity in Diversity".

    I could not have learned it quicker in real life, because RF dazzles from Diversity. I had to google many "chosen religions" what they meant.

    Sai Baba encourages Satsang. Share your view, listen, observe, learn and introspect (debate easily starts or ends in 'my way is better').

    Sai Baba teaches there is only 1 God. Names are many, God is 1. So we are encouraged to worship all Names in this context (it takes away belittling other's faith). Just before He died He said something like "BUT God does not exist the way you think".

    85 years He talked about God. And ending this way. I loved it. A Great lesson.

    Sai Baba also encourages to stay focused to your chosen path.

    Concentration is of major importance on my Path also. And I believe the Truth is found within, so nothing needed from others, I can find all I need within.

    The Yoga Vasistha teaches, that, if coincidentally you do get Enlightened by another Teaching, you better accept it, and don't reject it:D

    I also cherish this one:
    Accept whatever comes to you unasked, without you looking for it (Don't go running after it yourself; only accept what feels good of course).

    Yes.

    Sai Baba took it 1 step further "It's easy to respect the other, but you should even encourage them to continue on their path".
     
    #9 stvdv, Nov 7, 2019
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2019
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  10. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    If you talk the talk you have to be willing to walk the walk. I'm very wary of friendship evangelism. That friendly person from another faith might just have a hidden agenda to undermine your faith entirely. It takes awhile to figure it out sometimes.

    Personally, I would rather take faith out of the equation, and look at people as people. Unfortunately, that's not always possible as some folks wear their faiths on their sleeve, and despite one side's attempt to not bring faith into it, (mine) the other side just does. We can't change what other folks do, but we can change what we do.
     
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  11. shmogie

    shmogie Well-Known Member
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    Christ said, ¨ I am the resurrection, and the life, no man comes to the Father, but by me. ¨ He is very clear.

    However, hate doesn´t and shouldn´t figure in to the equation, especially for Christians.

    Christianity is about love, and freedom of Choice.

    If someone chooses to reject it, they are free to do so, and go in peace.
     
  12. shmogie

    shmogie Well-Known Member
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    When quoting the Bible, could you please identify the translation you are using ?

    Thanks
     
  13. spirtual-philosophy

    spirtual-philosophy seeker of truth

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    My former religion (fundamentalist evangelical Christianity) taught that people who didn't believe as we did were unredeemed and that we should try to convert them. It was OK to fellowship with them but this could be dangerous as they might persuade us to deconvert. The Bible seemed to confirm these ideas, especially the New Testament for Christians.

    Worse than this, they wanted to make the culture at large Christian also, or at least friendly to it, allowing all kinds of special privileges. This attitude is very visible in regards to the current president of the United States and all his supporters.

    I find this kind of thinking to be very dangerous to human freedom and rights and dignity.
     
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  14. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    But at least they're right out there in the open about it. It doesn't take long to figure out the agenda as they'll tell you. I find sneaky to be much harder, and perhaps even more sinister.
     
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  15. spirtual-philosophy

    spirtual-philosophy seeker of truth

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    Even thought I am a non-theist, I welcome the kind of religion you describe (as long as there are not other aspects of it that harms people or society).

    Perhaps I would feel comfortable attending services with religions such as yours except that I have no interest in worshiping a God I don't believe exists, nor of reading scriptures about such a God.

    But how can you read the scriptures from Christianity (for example) and not find them offensive? I suppose if you interpret them differently than those who wrote them and those who consider them the word of God, but why would you have any interest in interpreting them differently than the adherents do? It would be like devotionally reading Hitler's "Mein Kampf".
     
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  16. ADigitalArtist

    ADigitalArtist Well-Known Member
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    I'm betting it's the NWT, since it's the standard translation JW use.
     
  17. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    The quoted scriptures are also cited.....so feel free to look them up in any Bible....:)

    Are you referring to the use of Jehovah's name in these quotes perchance? Look the OT scriptures up in the Jewish Tanach....the divine name is there. And when the NT Bible writers quoted OT scripture and the divine name was in the original text...you will find Jehovah's name in the NWT where I quoted from....(as if you didn't know :p)

    Let me demonstrate.....

    Exodus 20:2
    "I am the Lord, your God, Who took you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
    באָֽנֹכִ֨י יְהֹוָ֣ה אֱלֹהֶ֔יךָ אֲשֶׁ֣ר הֽוֹצֵאתִ֩יךָ֩ מֵאֶ֨רֶץ מִצְרַ֜יִם מִבֵּ֣ית עֲבָדִ֗ים:"


    Exodus 20:5
    "You shall neither prostrate yourself before them nor worship them, for I, the Lord, your God, am a zealous God, Who visits the iniquity of the fathers upon the sons, upon the third and the fourth generation of those who hate Me,
    הלֹֽא־תִשְׁתַּֽחֲוֶ֣ה לָהֶם֘ וְלֹ֣א תָֽעָבְדֵם֒ כִּ֣י אָֽנֹכִ֞י יְהֹוָ֤ה אֱלֹהֶ֨יךָ֙ אֵ֣ל קַנָּ֔א פֹּ֠קֵ֠ד עֲוֹ֨ן אָב֧וֹת עַל־בָּנִ֛ים עַל־שִׁלֵּשִׁ֥ים וְעַל־רִבֵּעִ֖ים לְשֽׂנְאָ֑י: "


    The divine name is not translated in English...but it is clearly there in the Hebrew....יְהֹוָ֤ה ("YHWH" "Yahweh" or "Jehovah" in English)

    Now what about the quote from 2 Corinthians 6:14-18?

    Paul was quoting from the OT....

    "Turn away, turn away, get out of there, touch no unclean one; get out of its midst, purify yourselves, you who bear the Lord's vessels.
    יאס֚וּרוּ ס֙וּרוּ֙ צְא֣וּ מִשָּׁ֔ם טָמֵ֖א אַל־תִּגָּ֑עוּ צְא֣וּ מִתּוֹכָ֔הּ הִבָּ֕רוּ נֹֽשְׂאֵ֖י כְּלֵ֥י יְהֹוָֽה:"


    So, I hope that wasn't your point because God's name was to be sanctified by the followers of Jesus. (Matthew 6: 9; John 17:25-26) You can hardly hold God's name in high esteem if you never use it. Quibbling over pronunciation to the God who invented language is pretty silly. You think God's name is only translated into English? God knows his name in any language. Why wouldn't he?

    Here is a list of the laguages that translate the divine name.....

    Awabakal - Yehóa

    Bugotu - Jihova

    Cantonese - Yehwowah

    Danish - Jehova

    Dutch - Jehovah

    Efik - Jehovah

    English - Jehovah

    Fijian - Jiova

    Finnish - Jehova

    French - Jéhovah

    Futuna - Ihova

    German - Jehova

    Hungarian - Jehova

    Igbo - Jehova

    Italian - Geova

    Japanese - Ehoba

    Maori - Ihowa

    Motu - Iehova

    Mwala-Malu - Jihova

    Narrinyeri - Jehovah

    Nembe - Jihova

    Petats - Jihouva

    Polish - Jehowa

    Portuguese - Jeová

    Romanian - Iehova

    Samoan - Ieova

    Sotho - Jehova

    Spanish - Jehová

    Swahili - Yehova

    Swedish - Jehova

    Tahitian - Iehova

    Tagalog - Jehova

    Tongan - Jihova

    Venda - Yehova

    Xhosa - uYehova

    Yoruba - Jehofah

    Zulu - uJehova

    Should they all be altered because some people trip over the pronunciation? Seriously?
    Would you like to change every Bible name starting with "J", seeing as how there is no "J" in Hebrew?

    Was that your point? :shrug:
     
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  18. spirtual-philosophy

    spirtual-philosophy seeker of truth

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    Maybe so. But these open ideas are dangerous nevertheless, and should be opposed.
     
  19. dianaiad

    dianaiad Well-Known Member

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    "friendship evangelism' implies that one is friendly only as long as there is a possibility that the one being befriended will join the faith. That's just stupid. The idea, one hopes, is to just be friends. Period. IF the befriended finds something valuable in what one believes, that's wonderful. For us, that's the golden prize...but making friends is the OTHER golden prize. If one abandons a friend because s/he doesn't immediately convert, well....that's not being a friend now, is it?

    Indeed. Just remember: for many people, their faith is a huge part of who they are. If you aren't willing to accept that, you aren't accepting them. By the same token, YOUR lack of religious belief might be a large part of who YOU are. Accepting that is also important.

    But nothing stops either of you from attempting to change the other's mind Doing so is good for the theist AND good for you, if you can keep the 'nasty' out of it. Not everybody can.
     
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  20. dianaiad

    dianaiad Well-Known Member

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    Only if they are wrong.
     
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