No Problems With Your Philosophy Until…

…It crosses an ethical treatment line.

You see I really have no problem with Athiests, Mormons, Catholics, Hindus, Muslims, etc…until one’s faith pushes ideas that border on the ethical mis-treatment of humanity (or even animals).

And this is really really really key. Because most debates I have with people of other faiths or no-faiths is about ‘treatment of the other’ and using one’s philosophy to justify abuses. Honestly, I don’t care if someone wants to be Scientologist – no sweat off my back; just don’t use that stance as a means to hurt someone else…if this is the case…I full heartedly have to stand against such reasoning.

We live in the West, we have secularism here for some 100+ years in debates already…to not allow secularity in this society is absurd. So what if someone wants to be an atheist – let them. Someone wants to become a Baptist – let them. Religion and lack of religion is not the problem anyways. The human mind is the problem and it’s need for ‘justification’ of one’s own actions. Some will use religion, some will use profiteering, some will use politics, some will use traditions, etc.

The problem can be boiled down to each individual and their ‘problems’, not some system of thought as the ‘problem’. How can I be sure of this? Test it out. Hang out with people from each group you want to see this in (ie: Christians, Catholics, Biddhists, Atheists, etc) and you will find they each use their philosophy on life for ‘back-up’ of their thoughts – no matter the philosophy. Nothing wrong with that – but it can reveal that it’s not the philosophy at fault. In fact, I have met great people from each group aforementioned.

There isn’t a philosophy I would blame as ‘the problem with world’ – again unless they cross the ethical treatment of humans line.

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Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World (Society Vs critique)

(A) Loved the movie

(B) Why?

(1) It was done very artistically…like a video game…and that really spoke to my sensibilities (and my generation). I have seen some comic book type movies that I love – but a video game one – now that’s a new twist on the art form of film.

(2) It was about something quite relevant in this society – dating and dealing with the ‘others’ past. I can quite relate to this. After 2009 anyways.

It’s a movie about learning to accept someone in the same depth as when you first met them – and not putting more on them after you know some of their more colorful past. It’s about being able to put one’s own thoughts and perceptions on trial before they decide they want to hurt ‘the other’. It’s about overcoming and being truimphant concerning one’s own short-comings and movements to judge.

*Sorry I don’t post much – it’s me vs. the world right now – with Master’s, music, and marriage – I have lost time.

The Christian Sensitivity

Just read an article in a local newspaper about why Christians feel offended when their faith is questioned. The person quoted Dawkins and said something about how delusional religion is. But some of his critiques on faith were pretty fair – historical issues, repression of ideas, pedophile priests hidden and vouched for, etc.

However I do believe Christianity should be more open to critique, if it is going to survive in any meaningful and transparent way. I have been writing this blog for about 5 years now and my whole thing is about asking those questions and seeking some tough answers; Christianity isn’t easy and it shouldn’t have to be to be ‘useful’.

Christians need to start getting used to their faith being criticized, namely when it comes to the academics of it. Christianity is rooted in history so by that it is something that enters scrutiny automatically; plus it seems to be quite political for years in Europe and now in America. We cannot be sensitive when our stuff comes under fire, because maybe it needs to be challenged (to be refined). Maybe the Christianity we inherired from years of torment in Europe and the early America’s is not (a) the same intent as to what the gospels were meaning to capture or (b) needs to change since it is lacking meaning or even truthfulness.

I get why we are sensitive, our experiences with Christianity are nothing like that which it is vilified for. However if we sit by and think this has nothing to with us then we are part of the problem, not the solution. The Catholic institution hid pedophiles and then even let them re-enter population with nothing more than some ‘counselling’ – this cannot be tolerated. Many Evangelical institutions are pro life but at the same time ‘anti-abortionists’ resulting in some discourse that lends itself to violence…we need to speak out against this attitude. Christianty finding itself attached to issues of pedophilia, violence against another, or even greed needs to be addressed and not forgotten…because it wasn’t us. I am starting to believe it is us – saying nothing is just as culpable.

I think we should be sensitive when insulted obviously – but not when something we believe or support makes no sense…then we should open our ears and enter the conversation more fully.

Worrying is Not The Way To Happiness

Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’ “For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.”But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” (Matt 6:31-33)

I always loved this teaching – it’s part of my paradigm for living.

The juxtaposition happening here is the idea of (1) seeking the kingdom of God and how this will (2) enable you to take care of your basic needs – like food/drink and clothing – which would also entail ‘shelter’. What is the connection though?

The point is God knows what you need, obviously He is not oblivious to our plight on this planet and some of the basic human needs we have or don’t have met. What you really don’t need to solve those basic needs is to worry about them, this solves nothing. You need a plan of action – a solution for the problems in front of you…and this takes some serious soul searching (ie: getting to know yourself and your abilities). Seeking the kingdom of God means you will address many of these facets of your own character and what under-pins it. The most basic needs can be solved by the most basic solution, an account of your life and what you have done to this point.

Food, water, and clothing are all important pieces to life, but they are pale in comparison to a person’s paradigm (foundation) for living. Without the foundation the house will continue to collapse when the storms hit. The key piece to a sustainable life is having a sustainable set of values to get you there. Hard work would be a great example. Discipline is another one. Integrity is worth cherishing. Get some of your core ideas worked out and the rest can easily fall into place.

I have found it does work. When I started into this faith I knew nothing about making it in on this planet. I was under-educated, unhealthy, poor, dysfunctional, and hurt. I wasn’t sure what life would become for me by the age of 17. What happened for me was a serious debate with myself about where I was going and what I was doing. I had no answers and no direction for solving any of these problems I faced. I found the bible (namely the gospels) did offer me a paradigm that I could build from for guidance. So that’s what I did.

18 years later of trying these ideas – I am married, own a home, own a new vehicle, have 2 degree’s (working on a Master’s now), and have great full time work. I got there from finding a direction, I found that direction in what Jesus taught. Happiness takes time, but it was time I could afford to give to growing as a person.