Theology subforum?

Discussion in 'Feedback' started by Thomas, Sep 8, 2008.

  1. Snoopy

    Snoopy Active Member

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    This seems to me to imply "theology" can be approached in the same way as, say, arithmetic; as if "sticking to the facts" will give us the real and proper objective answer. For better or/and worse, I don't think it's like that is it?
    To illustrate (I hope): from the Sammaditthi Sutta:
    “When, friends, a noble disciple understands suffering, the origin of suffering, the cessation of suffering, and the way leading to the cessation of suffering, in that way he is one of right view…and has arrived at this true Dhamma.”

    ...and then from the Heart Sutra:
    “No suffering, no source, no relief, no path;”

    Is one of these a “fact” and the other one not? What are we to "do" with them?

    I'm not sure what I'll make of this here theology board, maybe depend on the COC. I suspect I'll only be a lurker (hurrah!).

    s.
     
  2. Penguin

    Penguin Member

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    Why should it matter to Atheists about the content of a Theology section?
     
  3. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

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    That's exactly what I had in mind.

    Thomas
     
  4. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

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    Personally, I do smile at comments about 'censorship' ... it seems to me the ones most concerned about protecting freedom of speech, are the ones most vitriolic when someone expresses a view that does not match their own.

    It's a self-evident truth that perhaps the most virulent form of fundamentalism and thought-control operative today is secularism.

    The European Union wants to write a Constitution with absolutely no mention of Europe's Christian or philosophical heritage, as if it never existed, nor had any influence on the development of European culture ... Orwell would be spinning in his grave.

    Thomas
     
  5. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    Ah, the garden walls. Then I'll ask you, if you were asked to and decided you would build a garden by your home, and you filed a permit request before starting the garden (public notice), with the clear intentions that you were going to place a wall around that garden, and the governing body granted you that permit...and while you did everything by the book to create that walled garden, someone kept knocking down your brick work before the mortar set...how would you feel?

    Your argument is with the wrong party. You have to go to the governing administration to voice your opposition, and your reasons why.

    Interfaith is a "cyber town"...perhaps you should seek an audience with the ...Mayor
     
  6. China Cat Sunflower

    China Cat Sunflower Nimrod

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    You do know that it's gonna be you talking to your mittens, don't you? :p

    Chris
     
  7. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    You mean "kit gloves" hiding iron hands?
     
  8. juantoo3

    juantoo3 ʎʇıɹoɥʇnɐ uoıʇsǝnb

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    Sorry, Tao, I can't help but chuckle at the irony... :D
     
  9. taijasi

    taijasi Gnōthi seauton

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    Just for a correction of metaphors, I'd say that to give folks the benefit of the doubt, the good in a `theology' subforum would be the ability to impose a certain order on the way a particular section of the Garden already grows. If the problem seems to be that there are different opinions on how best to cultivate the roses ... then it seems reasonable to set some standards and see how this impacts the Garden, for awhle. After all, it's not as if the entire Garden is being replanted, or all of the flowers' growing methods adjusted. And no one, Q, is knocking down walls.

    If anything, a theology subforum is the setting up of NEW walls within an already-walled, or protected, Garden. But in terms of the metaphor, it's a bit like cordoning off a little portion of the rose garden, and deciding that these roses here will subscribe to such & such "rules of order," if they wish to participate. {For God's sake, please just leave the lilies and lilacs alone! :)}

    Frankly, and personally, I wouldn't be caught dead in the theology subforum. The potential problem is that you're giving the Vatican its own little section in the Garden ... and we don't really have any reason to believe that this is not literally just a move toward take-over, albeit on a very, very small scale.

    Tao is right, and having known Thomas, his personal agendas, and precisely what it is he is seeking (regardless as to what he says, since actions speak louder than words) ... I will say again, YOU WON'T FIND ME posting in there, DEAD. For some folks, that might be just one more piece of incentive to cast a vote to set up this section post haste! lol :) :p

    And that's okay. Thomas has accused me time and again of ad hominem attacks, and when that won't fly, of having my own personal agendas which include pretty much rampant Catholic-bashing, Christian-bashing or simply promotion of the Theosophical teachings as somehow superior to any other presentation of the Wisdom Religion.

    Thomas will one day have to come to terms with how things work. If you put on the collective karma, or even simply the current public face of the Church in Rome as the worldly institution that it is and always has been... and try to justify the corruption, then dare to speak of it as a Pilot Light among men -- then sooner or later YOU may be the last to find out ... the emperor has no clothes.

    If your agenda is to try and protect the good name and unspoilable reputation of your favorite baby daughter ... despite the fact that every chap in her graduating class has known her -- well, in the `Biblical' sense -- then sooner or later someone needs to help you understand that it ain't quite like you thought it was, right down to the gradually rising bulge in her belly.

    Yes, let's dwell upon the positive; I'm all for that. But isn't it funny how every time someone tries to bring up something that doesn't agree with the `official' version, as stamped and sealed in 14 karat Vatican-issue GOLD ... without providing 8x10 color glossy photos with circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back o' each one explaining what each one is ... they are accused of having their own agendas,and of being "unscholarly."

    Yes, on a recent thread, I dared to suggest that the Intuition could be grounds enough for believing certain things, and Thomas here took me to task for it. Chris, you're all too happy to chime in, since my statements apparently seem to you unfounded ... though Thomas, as we know, will argue ANYTHING, with ANYONE, if it dares dispute some obscure Church pronouncement somewhere.

    And as I further pointed out, the irony is that the demand for PROOF and "substantiation" comes from someone who can hardly keep from boasting of his own FAITH in every other post. Apparently this Faith is capable of inventing & sustaining all sorts of "good reason" for belief in a whole slew of absurdities -- even resolving matters which no schoolchild of even mediocre intellect would accept as satisfactorily. Yet the grounds for making such a whimsical appeal always conveniently point in circular fashion (logic-wise) right back to "on the authority of the Church in Rome."

    Yes, I would like to see how the new forum becomes anything other than a soapbox for "the official teachings of the official version of Roman Catho --- I mean, Christianity (ah yes, let us cast our net wide)" ... but then, as I say, it will have to come to me by a little bird, because I already know which ego (and set of those thusly feathered) will prevail. once the wheels start turning.

    You might think in being so outspoken that I oppose the notion, or think it's a poor idea. I don't. I agree that such a subforum has promise; maybe it's even necessary. I just hope it doesn't become what some want it to be -- whether they admit it or not.

    Exploring history, and heady philosophies is one thing. Trying to pull a walter cronkite is another. He got away with it because he was an anchorman, though he also spent plenty of time in the field.

    What is this field which makes one an authority on early Christianity, on the Trinity, on the subtleties or the inner workings of mind, Spirit -- much less the Heart (or essence) of God!

    Christ seemed to feel it was Service. Somewhere, somehow, that got confused with having all the trappings, saying all the right things with just the right accent ... and perhaps penning something so absolutely brilliant & stunning that keen minds and bright intellects 15 centuries later would still be marveling over it, none the wiser for the gloss it always has been on -- Reality.

    Like I said, Christ was convinced He was here to Serve.

    Thomas, I wish you the best in moderating the new sub-forum. There's a tremendous amount of Good that can come from it, and I'm glad you're up to the task ... despite a busy workload.

    In a sanctuary with a thousand beautiful stained-glass windows, you only have to break a little glass sometimes in order to let in the Light. Make your rubbings while they last.

    One Earth, One Church, One People -- someday ... :)
     
  10. iBrian

    iBrian Peace, Love and Unity Admin

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    Funny how I never make any point to impose my own religious/spiritual beliefs on anybody here, yet somehow somebody always want to read their own political agenda into my decisions. :)

    Funny also how those whose interests I've actively tried to protect on the forums should then complain loudly when I try to allow other people's interests some consideration and respect. :)

    I like the idea of trying to encourage thoughtful religious study on the forums.

    No one cried foul when Dauer ran the Parsha section to explore Judaism, yet now when we want to encourage intelligent discussion on Christianity, suddenly that's not acceptable?

    Perhaps some people are getting just a little too carried away with their concerns. :)
     
  11. Tao_Equus

    Tao_Equus Interfaith Forums

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    I have already stated several times I have no objection to such a section, and that I would not be seen on it. My opinion is that Thomas is increasingly less interested in real debate than in promoting the Catholic Church and I believe that is borne out by a look at the evolution of his posting recently. I see him promoting Catholic propaganda with impunity and without answering questions on the Catholic Church that paint it in a very different light. But I am subject to censorship or "infractions" for daring bring this to attention. I admit I may have been a little over colourful in my rendering of my point but the point is in my opinion very valid.

    tao
     
  12. iBrian

    iBrian Peace, Love and Unity Admin

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    As Thomas is a Catholic then I'd expect him to argue a Catholic position.

    Just as Protestant Christians will argue their Protestant opinion; Muslims will argue their Islamic opinion; a Baha'i will argue their Baha'i opinion; a Jew will argue their Jewish opinion, etc.

    What Thomas is trying to bring to the table is an involved discussion on doctrinal matters which can rise above simple "I say so!". I mean, when was the last time anyone referenced any of the Church Fathers in discussions on the Christian board?

    Whatever anyone's opinion on modern Catholicism, the Catholic Church represented Christendom unchallenged for at least 1,200 years, and within that time frame represents a huge amount of discourse, philosophy, and history.

    Personally, I would love to see that more engaged here. After all, wouldn't it be a tragedy if the rich history of any religion could not be discussed on these forums in an intellectual manner?

    Of course, there's no reason why a Theology board need to be focused solely on Catholicism - I know there have been repeated attempts to engage in high-brow discussions of specific texts, doctrines, and thinking.

    I'm happy to encourage that, and provide a special area where these can be more properly referenced - not because any single view should be promoted, but because the process of dialogue can be enriching.
     
  13. path_of_one

    path_of_one Embracing the Mystery

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    That's more or less my reasoning on why I'm for a theology subforum too, Brian.

    Why should we care whether Thomas (as an individual member) wants to use the forum to discuss only Catholic theology, or other religions, or whatever? Are each of us expected to use the forum in the same way?

    Scripture and tradition in old religions (be it Buddhism, Christianity, or whatever) has a huge history, intellectual body of literature and thought (both from within and outside the religion), and nuances in doctrine that are worth exploring if you're a semi-serious student of religion.

    I figure it's worth separating these types of conversations, which require a fair amount of time investment, effort, and willingness to put yourself in someone else's shoes, from the general conversations where we all talk about our personal opinions and whatnot. It's a sort of scholarly approach that some may find dry or confining, but others (like me, yeah, I'm a geek and so what?) find stimulating and useful.

    My selfish reasoning is that I miss taking comparative religion courses that encouraged deep study, wrestling with definitions, reading of various thinkers, and understanding historical context. Much as I love spewing forth my ideas and opinions, and occasionally debate, I would really welcome more challenge in scholarly attention to religion. We all know I ain't Catholic, but Thomas is a useful sounding board for Catholic doctrine and tradition. I'd think the same of any other person in any other faith with a fairly extensive background of study. If I don't agree with someone, I like to know what I'm not agreeing with, you know? I like to hammer out the details.

    I don't think Thomas is at all advocating for a Catholic promoting section. That's why the theology subforum would be a place for serious study of doctrine, text, and tradition from ALL religions. Maybe in some forums that already works just fine in the conversation, but this does not seem to be the case in Christianity and I would appreciate the capacity to separate out the two types of conversations so I can streamline my interaction based on my interests of the day. I see the Theology subforum as basically an organizational tool to distinguish between general conversations and more academic study, and between anything-goes and get-inside-the-box.
     
  14. Tao_Equus

    Tao_Equus Interfaith Forums

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    I said I had no objection to a Theology thread but I do if it is the whole belief and spirituality section. Perhaps the new section has not yet been created but it seems to me that people are using that section to that purpose. That would exclude me from the only section where I can discuss the basis of belief and spirituality and comment on faiths in general. It would not be the creation of something new so much as the censorship of those who wish to challenge the many lies and hypocrisies put forward as religious truths. Perhaps I am wrong and the new thread is not yet in place so I request clarification please.

    tao
     
  15. brucegdc

    brucegdc Moderator

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    Yep, it's not yet in place, unless Brian created it overnight - it would be another subsection or section, not replacing B&S.
     
  16. seattlegal

    seattlegal Mercuræn Buddhist

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    I would have to agree with you there. There have been times where even posting of bible scriptures has been shouted down in the Christianity forum.
    I would have to agree. It would be a way to demonstrate that those who employ scripture, doctrine, and traditions in their belief system can and do actually think for themselves. :cool:
     
  17. Tao_Equus

    Tao_Equus Interfaith Forums

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    Good. Thank You :)
     
  18. Tao_Equus

    Tao_Equus Interfaith Forums

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    Indeed......... ;)
     
  19. Snoopy

    Snoopy Active Member

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    WARNING message 608: Snoopy programme has reached limit of use. Please delete some posts.
     

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