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mountainman
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« on: November 11, 2009, 07:40:36 AM »

what are peoples thoughts on Christian scientists?  To me they appear as a sort of gnostic arianism, with some new age spice thrown in.  Can anyone clarify?
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Tallitot
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« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2009, 11:12:13 AM »

"Christian Science" is niether.
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mountainman
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« Reply #2 on: November 11, 2009, 11:22:57 PM »

care to elaborate?
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Justin Kissel
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« Reply #3 on: November 11, 2009, 11:35:42 PM »

I'm afraid I don't know much about Christian science, and am only familiar with it because James Hetfield grew up in a Christian Science household. He felt alienated by it, for example having to explain to fellow classmates while he needed to be pulled from health classes and not getting physicals. I believe his mother also died of cancer, and this might be partially attributed to them not utilizing orthodox medical treatments available at the time. It seems to me that it'd be a terrible belief system to be a part of, but again I don't have a lot of information on it. It's too bad they don't take Sirach 38 seriously, though I guess they probably don't include that in their Bible.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2009, 11:36:46 PM by Asteriktos » Logged
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« Reply #4 on: November 11, 2009, 11:40:13 PM »

What Tallitot means is that the "Church of Scientology" or "Christian Science" is not Christian because they hold heretical beliefs Christ and is not "Science" but "science fiction".
Scientology was founded by a science fiction writer and believes that "Xenu", the leader of the "Galactic Confederacy" sent a whole bunch of aliens to Earth 75 million years ago, stood them around volcanoes and killed them with hydrogen bombs, and the "essences" of these dead aliens are still around and cause spiritual harm.
I'd hardly call that "Christian" or "Science".
« Last Edit: November 11, 2009, 11:41:31 PM by ozgeorge » Logged

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« Reply #5 on: November 11, 2009, 11:43:56 PM »

I think that Christian Science is a different belief system than Scientology. You seem to be speaking of the latter, but I was under the impression that the OP was asking about the former.
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« Reply #6 on: November 12, 2009, 12:03:18 AM »

Whoops! My mistake!
Carry on.
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« Reply #7 on: November 12, 2009, 12:29:23 AM »

I think that Christian Science is a different belief system than Scientology. You seem to be speaking of the latter, but I was under the impression that the OP was asking about the former.

Maybe I misunderstood the OP. I assumed the question was about the sect started by Mary Baker Eddy, known as "Christian Science": http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_Science
I maintain that they are niether.

This is not the same as the Church of Scientology: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientology_beliefs_and_practices

If the OP was asking if a scientist can be a proffesing Christian, I've read articles by scientists who were Christian, Jewsih Islamic or a general diest/theist without any specific affiliation.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2009, 12:48:33 AM by Tallitot » Logged

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Justin Kissel
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« Reply #8 on: November 12, 2009, 12:49:32 AM »

I think that Christian Science is a different belief system than Scientology. You seem to be speaking of the latter, but I was under the impression that the OP was asking about the former.

Maybe I misunderstood the OP. I assumed the question was about the sect started by Mary Baker Eddy, known as "Christian Science":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_Science
I maintain that they are niether.

This is not the same as the Church of Scientology: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientology_beliefs_and_practices

If the OP was asking if a scientist can be a proffesing Christian, I've read articles by scientists who were Christian, Jewsih Islamic or a general diest/theist without any specific affiliation.

Wait, now I'm confused as well. Smiley I think you had it right. I think it was about the belief system called "Christian science". I guess there are just too many ways to understand that phrase... christian scientists, scientologists, scientists who are christian, etc.
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mountainman
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« Reply #9 on: November 12, 2009, 08:07:05 AM »

my question was about christian scientists, the sect founded by mary baker eddy.
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« Reply #10 on: November 12, 2009, 01:01:23 PM »

Oh, so I guess we don't get to dicuss the South Park episode about scientology then.  Sad
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« Reply #11 on: November 12, 2009, 03:48:35 PM »

Christian Science is not 'gnostic Arianism', though it may appear that way. It's not 'gnostic' since, well, no one has yet defined what 'gnosticism' actually is, so until someone does, I'm standing by my statement that CS is not 'gnostic'. It is not Arian, either, since Arians believe that matter exists.

CS teaches that matter does not *really* exist, because Spirit, or God, is the only Reality. Sure, you *think* matter exists, but that's because your perception is clouded by the delusion that matter *really* exists. Jesus was the primary Teacher of this "All-reality-is-God" idea, and the second coming of Jesus Christ is actually the re-discovery (by Mary Baker Eddy) of Jesus' True Teaching.

CS has some similarity to the Hindu school of Advaita (or "Non-Dual") Vedanta, which has similar views of the "reality" of matter, but Mary Baker Eddy most likely was not influenced by Advaita. Her primary influences may have been (1) her reading of the New Testament; and (2) the idealism of Western philosophical traditions (like the Transcendentalism of Emerson).

However, one could call CS a sort of Christian Theo-monism, monism being the belief that reality is actually one "thing", in this case, reality is actually Spirit, or God.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2009, 03:50:16 PM by Jetavan » Logged

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« Reply #12 on: November 12, 2009, 04:20:32 PM »

Quote
It's not 'gnostic' since, well, no one has yet defined what 'gnosticism' actually is, so until someone does, I'm standing by my statement that CS is not 'gnostic'.

Well, what would it take for you to accept a description of gnosticism (I don't claim to be able to give a definition)? I think people could come up with a list of beliefs that probably upwards of 80% of gnostics throughout history have believed. But would that work for you? There have been groups labeled gnostic from 1st century BCE to 21st century CE. Does it count if the descriptive net that a person casts catches only the great majority (and not the totality) of the gnostic groups? For example, the Carpocratians seemed to place a higher importance than other gnostics on worldly experience as part of the salvation process. Does this then derail a description of gnosticism which excludes worldly experience as a significant factor, just because one minor group of gnostics considered it important?
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« Reply #13 on: November 12, 2009, 04:37:02 PM »

Quote
It's not 'gnostic' since, well, no one has yet defined what 'gnosticism' actually is, so until someone does, I'm standing by my statement that CS is not 'gnostic'.

Well, what would it take for you to accept a description of gnosticism (I don't claim to be able to give a definition)?
I'm open to hear about any definition anyone has in mind.
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If you will, you can become all flame.
Extra caritatem nulla salus.
In order to become whole, take the "I" out of "holiness".
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"Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is." -- Mohandas Gandhi
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« Reply #14 on: November 12, 2009, 05:05:48 PM »

CS must also be understood in terms of the 19th-century reaction against Calvinist ideas of predestination and a "wrathful" God. Part of Eddy's attraction existed due to her strong rejection to Calvinist ideas: "That God's wrath should be vented upon His beloved Son, is divinely unnatural. Such a theory is man-made." [Science and Health, 23]
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If you will, you can become all flame.
Extra caritatem nulla salus.
In order to become whole, take the "I" out of "holiness".
सर्वभूतहित
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"Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is." -- Mohandas Gandhi
Y dduw bo'r diolch.
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« Reply #15 on: November 12, 2009, 05:11:02 PM »

One more thing, before I head off into the night: CS denies that matter is really real. Therefore, matter was never really created (except in your perception, which is incorrect). Therefore, God is not "Creator" of matter. CS denies that God is Creator, a heretical statement from an Orthodox perspective.
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If you will, you can become all flame.
Extra caritatem nulla salus.
In order to become whole, take the "I" out of "holiness".
सर्वभूतहित
Ἄνω σχῶμεν τὰς καρδίας
"Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is." -- Mohandas Gandhi
Y dduw bo'r diolch.
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« Reply #16 on: November 12, 2009, 07:31:50 PM »

Thanks for the comments.  i was prompted to describe christian science as a combo of gnostic beliefs and arian beliefs only in the sense that gnosticism opposes the spirit to the body in a definite duality, not exactly like the christian scientists but perhaps along the same lines, and Arians believe Jesus to be first and highest of created beings, as do Christian scientists.
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« Reply #17 on: November 13, 2009, 05:42:53 PM »

Thanks for the comments.  i was prompted to describe christian science as a combo of gnostic beliefs and arian beliefs only in the sense that gnosticism opposes the spirit to the body in a definite duality, not exactly like the christian scientists but perhaps along the same lines, and Arians believe Jesus to be first and highest of created beings, as do Christian scientists.
CS may seem dualistic, since they talk about Spirit, on the one hand, and the unreality of matter, on the other. But CS is actually monistic, since matter is not a separate "other" from Spirit. Matter *is* Spirit, though incorrectly perceived. And since "Creation" is not actually a reality, one can't speak of Jesus as a first Creation.
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If you will, you can become all flame.
Extra caritatem nulla salus.
In order to become whole, take the "I" out of "holiness".
सर्वभूतहित
Ἄνω σχῶμεν τὰς καρδίας
"Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is." -- Mohandas Gandhi
Y dduw bo'r diolch.
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