Discussion in 'Faith and Religion' started by chelloveck, Jun 17, 2011.
Extracted quote from Mark Twain, “Man’s Place in the Animal World,” 1896
the more i see of religion, the gladder i am that i dont follow it
im not saying i dont practice the fundamental core that all of them have in common
but i definitely ignore everything beyond that core, and usually the people that go beyond it as well.....lol
Sam Clemmons was a very smart man! He also never let his education dominate his intelligence.
Religion is fine for many people, but like most things in life, should be taken in moderation. It is my firm belief had mankind in his entirety practiced absolute religious life strictly according to the various 'Books', we as a race would still be huddling in mud brick huts and barely know the smelting of metals.......
But, I am not irreligious - I merely consider my association with God to be a personal thing, requiring no other man to 'interpret the Word' and rule my life........
I have no belief in a transcendent supernatural entity, and require none to determine the meaning of my life, nor to determine my values, ethics or my morality. I view religion as a largely pernicious human cultural institution. That is not to say, that religion as a cultural institution does not have its beneficial and benign aspects, just that, in my view such benefits as there are, are outweighed by the baneful ones, particularly so as religion is an artifact of human creation whose deities are, without exception of human invention.
I have a number of close personal friends who have strong religious convictions, and their fidelity to their religious beliefs, though I do not share them, is an aspect of them that I admire and respect very much. I would no more try and change them by proselytising unbelief, than they would by changing my beliefs by proselytising their own. I have no problem or personal conflict in sharing their observances and joining in their rituals such as they are and such as is appropriate for me to do. We understand where each of us are coming from and where our respective journeys lay before us. That is not to say that talk of faith or religion is a taboo subject, They ask me a lot of questions about my beliefs as a secular person, not with the view of changing them as much as understanding them.
On the other hand, my life has intersected with a number of people of "supposed" religious conviction whose piety was more affected than actual. I tend to avoid such people like the plague, generally finding them to be unreliable and full of humbug.
Although irreligious, I do have a sense of the transcendent when I consider the universe that I am part of and the wonders of life that I experience, and the world that I live in...I feel extremely fortunate in having the priceless opportunity of existence and I savour every moment of it....the pain, the pleasure, the agony and the ecstasy of it, the wonder of it, and the finiteness of it. Some may feel the need for supernatural companionship during their journey through life...I do not.
O/T - IMHO, proselytizing is an unasked for intrusion into my privacy. Now, if I ask for clarification of a point of belief, that's all it is, it's not an invitation to carry on beyond the answer to my question. Those folks get scrubbed off my welcome list posthaste. I've had to scrub a couple of what were very good friends that thought to enlighten me and get me to alter my lifestyle. Not gonna happen, buh-BYE.
Ol' Sam is one of my favorite sources of insight into the human condition. What an eye for the absurd!!
I am with you, on this point, Ghrit.... Although my religion sometimes is pointed out as a Prime Offender, It has always been my belief that being the BEST Example, one can, is far more effective, than any kind of proselytizing. It has also been my longstanding opinion, that what a Man Believes, and what God, if Any, He Prays to, is his own business, and NOT a subject for discussion, or examination, by others, PERIOD. To "Me" a Mans Actions speaks much louder than any spouted religious ministrations. ..... YMMV....
Definitely one of my favorites, and a true American.
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