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Author Topic: Denomination quiz....very accurate!  (Read 18695 times) Average Rating: 0
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88Devin12
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« Reply #135 on: January 02, 2013, 05:54:13 PM »

Eastern Orthodox Church (100%)
Roman Catholic Church (100%)
Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (99%)
Evangelical Lutheran Church (90%)
Episcopal/Anglican Church (86%)
International Church of Christ (81%)
United Pentecostal Church (79%)
Church of Christ (72%)
Methodist/Wesleyan Church (72%)
Assemblies of God (70%)
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Nathanael
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« Reply #136 on: January 02, 2013, 06:12:56 PM »

Quote
People have been "destroyed" in nearly every sect and religion. [...]The biggest problem with New Age is the arrogance and self-indulgence of many of its practitioners.

Indeed! Many of its practitioners, too many! But the biggest problem is that the theoretical background of New Age lead the people to arrogance and self-indulgence(. (There's no theoretical concept which show you clearly the way of humility and spiritual life. There're too many different concepts, which you can individual choose). And even if there would be only one, which shows you the way of life, you couldn't still avoid pride.
With the theoretical background of Orthodoxy it's doesn't happen. And there're so many models and giants of love and humility, who show you that this path can lead you to perfection. Yes, also people in orthodoxy have been "destroyed", but not because of the theoretical concept in orthodoxy, but because of their pride and impatience in struggle with the passions.

Quote
Theosophy is also not "mind-worshiping"
Mind-worshipping because their belief is formed by theoretical thinking and every person has his individual access to it. There're no prophets. Theosophists try to find out the truth by "logical" thinking, but orthodoxy try it by keeping all the commandments of God, especially the perfect love towards God and towards neighboor.
You must first purify your mind and heart to that you can see and realize the truth.
How can a man who is full of passions claim that he  found the truth, that he has the true theory about the truth? With such a impure mind?

Quote
Just out of curiosity, how many Theosophists have you met? Have you met enough to claim that there are no "role models/saints"?
If you talk only about Theosophist and not New Ager (although it's often quite difficult to clearly separate them), so I've met about six Theosophists. And they were ok at first sight.
But I don't especially mean personal encounters, but about lives of more or less famous theosophists. There're no famous theosophist who impressed me with their life. And you really cannot compare their life with the life of orthodox saints. Or can you show me for example one theosophist who cried daily before God because of his sins and who prayed day and night for other people, what also many orthodox people in the world have been doing. Such a heart I want to get, and therefore I see no reason why to be a theosopist. The most people are theosophist because it seems to can explain everthing much more better than other religions. :/
« Last Edit: January 02, 2013, 06:32:50 PM by Nathanael » Logged

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« Reply #137 on: January 02, 2013, 08:41:52 PM »

Indeed! Many of its practitioners, too many! But the biggest problem is that the theoretical background of New Age lead the people to arrogance and self-indulgence(. (There's no theoretical concept which show you clearly the way of humility and spiritual life. There're too many different concepts, which you can individual choose). And even if there would be only one, which shows you the way of life, you couldn't still avoid pride.
Well, New Age is an umbrella term. Most New Agers settle with a certain writer or several whose works form the basis of belief. Some writers are better than others, but it is still no different than choosing amongst other religions. Pride is difficult to avoid, but not impossible. Arrogance and self-indulgence are quite common in every religion regardless of teachers and concepts.

Theosophically speaking, yes, there are "concepts which show you clearly the way of humility and spiritual life". Aside from our usage of other religious texts (Bible and patristics included), Blavatsky's writings are filled with teachings concerning morality. Love for humanity (and thus God) is the chief duty of a Theosophist. When you truly see yourself as one with others, pride and vanity will vanish.

With the theoretical background of Orthodoxy it's doesn't happen. And there're so many models and giants of love and humility, who show you that this path can lead you to perfection. Yes, also people in orthodoxy have been "destroyed", but not because of the theoretical concept in orthodoxy, but because of their pride and impatience in struggle with the passions.
Orthodoxy has many beautiful contributions (both holy men as well as guides to living a moral life), but it is far from being unique in that respect. Love, humility, virtue, etc. can all grow independent of one's dogma (though certain religions are more conducive to certain virtues). This can be seen in the Buddhist, Catholic, Protestant, Hindu, Muslim, etc. worlds. I do not wish to put words in your mouth, but would you argue that true exemplars of love and humility were almost non-extant outside of Eastern Europe/the Middle East until the last two centuries?

Mind-worshipping because their belief is formed by theoretical thinking and every person has his individual access to it. There're no prophets. Theosophists try to find out the truth by "logical" thinking, but orthodoxy try it by keeping all the commandments of God, especially the perfect love towards God and towards neighboor.
You must first purify your mind and heart to that you can see and realize the truth.
How can a man who is full of passions claim that he  found the truth, that he has the true theory about the truth? With such a impure mind?
No, you do not truly understand Theosophy. Theosophy is not a speculation based on historical research, but an ancient truth. That is, while H.P.B. was extremely well read, many of the connections and parallels she made (as well as prophecies) were revealed to her by those who had escaped the cycle of rebirth and decided to remain with humanity to watch over and assist in our spiritual evolution. Teachers and true Theosophists are found throughout the ages, each teaching an aspect appropriate to the time and culture. While you will most certainly disagree with these assertions, it must be understand that we see Truth as something to be "unveiled" not "discovered".

While purity is necessary in following Truth to the fullest degree, your logic is a bit circular. If purity of heart and mind are necessary to see Truth (and thus become Orthodox), what of Orthodoxy's role as the hospital of man. How could an impure man find Truth? Would a man pure enough to find truth need the hospital to being with? This is one of the many reasons I am a Theosophist. By our understanding, each individual is born not only as a consequence of karmic law, but also in a position to overcome wickedness (perhaps an aspect of evilness in particular) and grow spiritually. Rebirth continues until one is truly able to say "not my will, but yours, be done".

Quote
But I don't especially mean personal encounters, but about lives of more or less famous theosophists. There're no famous theosophist who impressed me with their life. And you really cannot compare their life with the life of orthodox saints. Or can you show me for example one theosophist who cried daily before God because of his sins and who prayed day and night for other people, what also many orthodox people in the world have been doing. Such a heart I want to get, and therefore I see no reason why to be a theosopist. The most people are theosophist because it seems to can explain everthing much more better than other religions. :/
Well, a Theosophist wouldn't pray in the way most Orthodox use the term (seeing as we do not believe in a personal God), so daily tears would be unlikely (but not impossible given great remorse). Of course if your standard of holiness is Orthodoxy, then it will logically confirm Orthodoxy.

But for a Theosophist that lived with love and humility, read H.P.B. The Extraordinary Life & Influence of Helena Blavatsky Founder of the Modern Theosophical Movement by Sylvia Cranston. It is a wonderful book not only for its well researched content, but its refutation of the malicious lies and slander directed towards Blavatsky. People who actually knew her felt that same sense of love and peace Klaus Kenneth felt from Mother Teresa and Elder Sophrony.

Two links pertinent to virtue and morality in Theosophy :

http://www.theosociety.org/pasadena/key/key-4.htm
http://www.theosociety.org/pasadena/key/key-12.htm
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« Reply #138 on: January 02, 2013, 09:38:59 PM »

Well, a Theosophist wouldn't pray in the way most Orthodox use the term (seeing as we do not believe in a personal God)....
By this, do you mean that the impersonal Truth can never take, or incarnate in, human form?
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« Reply #139 on: January 02, 2013, 09:45:18 PM »

Well, a Theosophist wouldn't pray in the way most Orthodox use the term (seeing as we do not believe in a personal God)....
By this, do you mean that the impersonal Truth can never take, or incarnate in, human form?
Theosophy teaches that all that is is an emanation of the formless divine singularity (God). The physical would can be regarded as an incarnation of the Divine (albeit maya), though it is not through the will of the absolute impersonal Truth.
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« Reply #140 on: January 03, 2013, 02:37:07 AM »

100% Orthodox followed very closely by Missouri Synod Lutheran.  Then Evangelical Lutheran, and then Catholic.  I am 0% Unitarian. 

Word.
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« Reply #141 on: January 03, 2013, 03:52:55 PM »

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I wouldn't exactly call myself a New Ager though. I suppose it's the closest thing on the list.

But isn't Helena Blavatsky (on your profil picture) a leading name in the New Age Movement? Helena was rather a patchwork-theosophist. If at the time when Blavatsky lived, would exist such accessible and rich informations about different religious traditions, she would be perhaps also a classical New Ager.

Theosophy is newage.
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« Reply #142 on: January 03, 2013, 03:54:26 PM »

Second Quiz :

New Age (100%)
Scientology (91%)
Mahayana Buddhism (89%)
New Thought (84%)
Unitarian Universalism (79%)
Taosim (77%)
Hinduism (73%)
Jainism (67%)
Theravada Buddhism (66%)

Wow. If only "neo-pagan" replaced Jainism could this be worse. I would sue for defamation.
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« Reply #143 on: January 03, 2013, 03:56:23 PM »

Is anyone surprised?

  • Episcopal/Anglican Church (100%)
  • Evangelical Lutheran Church (100%)
  • Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (89%)
  • Methodist/Wesleyan Church (78%)

EO was 8th at 56%, RC was 11th at the same percentage. I'm happy to see that I got 15% or less on Mormonism, Liberal Quakerism, JWs, UU, and Unity Church.


I don't whether I should be. I know I almost always enjoy your posts, but I have no idea if you are a Christian or, if so, of what stripe. "Conservative" Anglican?
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« Reply #144 on: January 03, 2013, 03:58:42 PM »

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I say this not to disparage the New Age movement (which I believe has a lot to contribute to the world),
Are you kidding me?Sad. I know so many people (and myself) who were destroyed by New Age, especially mentally, but also physically. And so many who converted from New Age/Theosophy to the living Christ and there's hardly a vice versa tendency. New Age and Theosophy are dead philosophies, because among other things you cannot find any models or rather saints there. It's mind-worshipping. You worship your own "glorious" subjective ideas of life and "God"/truth. It's pride. There's no humility. It's a patchwork-truth.
Please forgive me that I write so bold against it. I wouldn't do it, If I weren't a former New Ager.
Do you see any positive qualities to the New Age movements?

ZERO.

It is pure garbage.

It does offer a quick litmus test of who to avoid if they self-describe themselves as such though.

So that is a plus.
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« Reply #145 on: January 04, 2013, 04:51:27 PM »

 
Quote
Theosophically speaking, yes, there are "concepts which show you clearly the way of humility and spiritual life". Aside from our usage of other religious texts (Bible and patristics included), Blavatsky's writings are filled with teachings concerning morality. Love for humanity (and thus God) is the chief duty of a Theosophist. When you truly see yourself as one with others, pride and vanity will vanish.

Love for humanity is the chief duty of almost all religions more or less. But the question is, how succesfull and deep can a person fulfill the divine commandments in his life...It's easy to write and say beautiful commandments and comment them, that can do everbody, but to really realize it not only in his mind and in the way of feelings, but also in every step in his life, that is hard. It needs many models.
The problem is that in New Age and Theosophy and other eastern religions the spiritual person see himself as one with others, but he doesn't go further. That is to say: he doesn't go the way down, he hardly consider himself unworthy, consider himself to be the worst of all people or rather sinners. He "only" see himself as one with others- that's all. Excuse me, but that's not humility. When I can consider a really bad person to be greater than me, to be an angel, then humility starts...

Quote
Love, humility, virtue, etc. can all grow independent of one's dogma (though certain religions are more conducive to certain virtues). This can be seen in the Buddhist, Catholic, Protestant, Hindu, Muslim, etc. worlds. I do not wish to put words in your mouth, but would you argue that true exemplars of love and humility were almost non-extant outside of Eastern Europe/the Middle East until the last two centuries?

Especially love and humility, but also some other virtues- are used by all religions, but they often don't have the same meaning or rather the same deepness, dimension. That's the point. (And I cannot expect that all other persons who are not orthodox that they 're quite immoral and barbarous. If somebody wants to be virtous, he can achieve it on a certain level, because he has a free will.)
When for example a buddhist have compassion then he does it more intellectual, he try to put himself in his shoes, but he's at the same time quite carefull with compassionate fellings, because he want to avoid suffering. He's "just" emotional. His emphaty has a limit. But if I'm an authentic orthodox, then I truly see myself one with the other person, that's mean I take all his pain in my heart or even more, and I suffer because I love; And it will be not a problem to go to the abyss of the suffering love, because Christ give his love, his power for that.  Love makes us also ready to pay for the sins of others.
The same thing we see regarding humility.

"He says that the empirical cosmic being is like a pyramid: at the top sit the powerful of the earth, who exercise dominion over the nations (cf. Matt. 20:25), and at the bottom stand the masses. But the spirit of man, by nature [unfallen nature as given by God], demands equality, justice and freedom of spirit, and therefore is not satisfied with this “pyramid of being.” So, what did the Lord do? He took this pyramid and inverted it, and put Himself at the bottom, becoming its Head. He took upon Himself the weight of sin, the weight of the infirmity of the whole world, and so from that moment on, who can enter into judgment with Him? His justice is above the human mind. So, He revealed His Way to us, and in so doing showed us that no one can be justified but by this way, and so all those who are His must go downwards to be united with Him, the Head of the inverted pyramid, because it is there that the “fragrance” of the Holy Spirit is found; there is the power of divine life. Christ alone holds the pyramid, but His fellows, His Apostles and His saints, come and share this weight with Him. However, even if there were no one else, He could hold the pyramid by Himself, because He is infinitely strong; but He likes to share everything with His fellows. Mindful of this, then, it is essential for man to find the way of going down, the way of humility, which is the Way of the Lord, and to become a fellow of Christ, who is the Author of this path." Archimandrite Zacharias in Enlargement of the heart

Quote
Theosophy is not a speculation based on historical research, but an ancient truth. That is, while H.P.B. was extremely well read, many of the connections and parallels she made (as well as prophecies) were revealed to her by those who had escaped the cycle of rebirth and decided to remain with humanity to watch over and assist in our spiritual evolution. Teachers and true Theosophists are found throughout the ages, each teaching an aspect appropriate to the time and culture. While you will most certainly disagree with these assertions, it must be understand that we see Truth as something to be "unveiled" not "discovered".

An ancient truth? That sounds very dogmatic. That's probably the main dogma of Theosophy, and I thought Theosophy isn't dogmatic. Read Rene Guenon, he wrote a detailed critique of Theosophy titled "Theosophy: history of a pseudo-religion". Excuse me, but you cannot compare the gift of prophesy with channeling in New Age and Theosophy. An adulter can use channeling, everbody can do it. The prophecy of 2012, 21 Dec. that there would be an great change in the world, a new era etc. was also said by many, many New Ager who got this information by canneling with "masters", avatars, etc. A prophecy from the holy spirit cannot not be fulfilled.
New Ager thinks that the impersonal God is also present in "cosmic energies", and then they try to tap this energy and to use it for their own will. That's awful. I could cry. That's a high level of pride. Instead that they're servants, they behave as if they're supergods.

Quote
While purity is necessary in following Truth to the fullest degree, your logic is a bit circular. If purity of heart and mind are necessary to see Truth (and thus become Orthodox), what of Orthodoxy's role as the hospital of man. How could an impure man find Truth? Would a man pure enough to find truth need the hospital to being with? This is one of the many reasons I am a Theosophist. By our understanding, each individual is born not only as a consequence of karmic law, but also in a position to overcome wickedness (perhaps an aspect of evilness in particular) and grow spiritually. Rebirth continues until one is truly able to say "not my will, but yours, be done"
John 8,32: "“If you hold to my teaching/commandments, you are really my disciples. 32 Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”"
The more I repent, the more I've contrition in my heart, the more I cry- the more I see that the orthodoxy is the truth. Repentance, contrition in heart, humility- these are the tools by which I purify my heart and mind. It's the most effective weapon against the EGO: See: http://www.enlightennext.org/magazine/j17/dionysios.asp?page=3 . I follow these persons who purified themselves truly.
The concept of impurity is very weak in Theosophy and New Age. It's like: "I'm impure, so what? I'll get free of that with absorbing spirituality." There're no true consciousness of our state. Therefore it's hard to get humility. Only Christ can release us from our impurity and sin(or in your term: karma).


Quote
But for a Theosophist that lived with love and humility, read H.P.B. The Extraordinary Life & Influence of Helena Blavatsky Founder of the Modern Theosophical Movement by Sylvia Cranston. It is a wonderful book not only for its well researched content, but its refutation of the malicious lies and slander directed towards Blavatsky. People who actually knew her felt that same sense of love and peace Klaus Kenneth felt from Mother Teresa and Elder Sophrony
There's book In Memory of Helena Petrovna Blavatsky  some of her pupils write about her. And cannot really find something so that I could say that she's on the same spiritual level like Mother Theresa or Elder Sophrony. For example Charles Johnston writes: "The first and earliest impression I received from Madame Blavatsky was the feeling of the power and largeness of her individuality" or of another pupil: "she was the practical personification of charity and forgiveness."etc.But this are more descriptions of her charisma than an living deep experience of her spirit. What had they been receiving from her spirit? For example when Klaus(who saw and lived with many buddhist and hindu "masters" in Asia) met Elder Sophrony, he was so humbled by his love that he had cried the next three days at home for hours. In his presence people felt to received a great power to have the will to fight against their passions etc. To be charismatic- that's not hard. An atheist can be that. I can be that. A person for example told me that I'm the most kind person he ever met, but that's so ridiculous, that's bullshit. My spiritual father almost gave me up.
In his book Robert Tod Carroll wrote in his book (2003)wrote that Blavatsky used trickery into deceiving others into thinking she had paranormal powers. that Blavatsky had faked a materialization of a tea cup and saucer as well as written the messages from her masters herself. And that's quite strange to demonstrate your paranormal powers to others. And  many of theirs supernatural gifts seems to be very useless for the benefit of others and for herself. When I was a New Ager, I had for example the "gift" or rather the occult power to control the flame of a candle. But when I think back that's so ridiculous.  
Have you read the life of Elder Porphyrios? You'll never read about a person who had more divine supernatural gifts. The 20 century is so full of beautiful models and saints in orthodoxy; there're really many. Theosophy, New Age can really not keep up with it.



I suppose that you hadn't been for a long time orthodox, because you couldn't never forget the smell of penitent humility. I suppose also that my weak, bold words will not convince you. So go just your way you started to go- at the beginning it's always bloomy; especially for the mind. If you want to rethink one time New Age then I offer you to read this book:
THE PEARL OF GREAT PRICE- by Veronica Hughes. She was a former New Ager. And I repeat again: There're so many who converted from New Age/Theosophy to the living Christ and there's hardly a vice versa tendency. Please don't make the same, similiar fault like Elder Sophrony: After he was pious orthodox, he left it to practice eastern religions for seven tears- but then returned to orthodoxy and repented his fault in the ocean or rather "hell" of contrition.
Forgive me.
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« Reply #146 on: January 04, 2013, 05:05:58 PM »

Orthonorm, why not post your results?
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« Reply #147 on: January 04, 2013, 05:09:17 PM »

Orthonorm, why not post your results?

Maybe he feels ashamed.  Smiley
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« Reply #148 on: January 04, 2013, 05:12:49 PM »

When for example a buddhist have compassion then he does it more intellectual, he try to put himself in his shoes, but he's at the same time quite carefull with compassionate fellings, because he want to avoid suffering.
A Bodhisattva, in Theravada Buddhism, is someone who chooses eons of suffering (physical, emotional, mental, etc.), for the sake of the awakening of sentient beings.
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« Reply #149 on: January 04, 2013, 05:21:42 PM »

orthonorm isn't online right now, but he shared his results with me in private and gave me permission to post them:

Martin Heidegger (98%)
Niklas Luhmann (98%)
Moses (88%)
Eastern Orthodox Church (42%)
Jesuits (31%)
Achronos (1%)
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« Reply #150 on: January 04, 2013, 05:55:00 PM »

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A Bodhisattva, in Theravada Buddhism, is someone who chooses eons of suffering (physical, emotional, mental, etc.), for the sake of the awakening of sentient beings.
I know, I read a bit about it. But have you ever read about a buddhist monk who is crying his soul out day and night for humankind with the deepest pain? I've searched, but I couldn't find it. It seems to describe similiar things, but the experience could be a quite different one.
Do you have an informative link for me?
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« Reply #151 on: January 04, 2013, 05:55:26 PM »

orthonorm isn't online right now, but he shared his results with me in private and gave me permission to post them:

Martin Heidegger (98%)
Niklas Luhmann (98%)
Moses (88%)
Eastern Orthodox Church (42%)
Jesuits (31%)
Achronos (1%)

 Cheesy
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« Reply #152 on: January 04, 2013, 06:02:40 PM »

Orthonorm, why not post your results?

Why not read the thread?
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« Reply #153 on: January 04, 2013, 06:07:10 PM »

orthonorm isn't online right now, but he shared his results with me in private and gave me permission to post them:

Martin Heidegger (98%)
Niklas Luhmann (98%)
Moses (88%)
Eastern Orthodox Church (42%)
Jesuits (31%)
Achronos (1%)

LOL!

When did I possibly mention Luhmann to you? Weird. In any case, try reading him.
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« Reply #154 on: January 04, 2013, 06:11:17 PM »

Orthonorm, why not post your results?

Why not read the thread?

Lazy.
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« Reply #155 on: January 04, 2013, 06:20:06 PM »

When did I possibly mention Luhmann to you? Weird. In any case, try reading him.

It was in the unofficial chat, before the powers-that-be here tried to distance themselves from it. Anything in particular by Luhmann? Is any translated into English?  I also realised after I made the post that I should have had a separate one for St. Paul...
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« Reply #156 on: January 04, 2013, 06:24:43 PM »

When did I possibly mention Luhmann to you? Weird. In any case, try reading him.

It was in the unofficial chat, before the powers-that-be here tried to distance themselves from it. Anything in particular by Luhmann? Is any translated into English?  I also realised after I made the post that I should have had a separate one for St. Paul...

After I wrote that I nearly added don't ask me what. Will look over what is in English and how accessible those works are.

He is not that important in the Anglo-American world (his reception seems a little better in Latin America).

Frankly, it is difficult and I am not sure how well I understand him.

From the 20th century, there are two people who I would like to understand but probably will never have the time nor ability to do so:

Deleuze
Luhmann
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« Reply #157 on: January 04, 2013, 08:28:05 PM »

Quote
A Bodhisattva, in Theravada Buddhism, is someone who chooses eons of suffering (physical, emotional, mental, etc.), for the sake of the awakening of sentient beings.
I know, I read a bit about it. But have you ever read about a buddhist monk who is crying his soul out day and night for humankind with the deepest pain?
Do you mean crying with tears? Or just a deep emotional feeling?
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« Reply #158 on: January 05, 2013, 06:28:13 AM »

Quote
A Bodhisattva, in Theravada Buddhism, is someone who chooses eons of suffering (physical, emotional, mental, etc.), for the sake of the awakening of sentient beings.
I know, I read a bit about it. But have you ever read about a buddhist monk who is crying his soul out day and night for humankind with the deepest pain? I've searched, but I couldn't find it. It seems to describe similiar things, but the experience could be a quite different one.
Do you have an informative link for me?

And how many Christians - monastics or otherwise - do this?
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« Reply #159 on: January 05, 2013, 05:28:34 PM »

Quote
A Bodhisattva, in Theravada Buddhism, is someone who chooses eons of suffering (physical, emotional, mental, etc.), for the sake of the awakening of sentient beings.
I know, I read a bit about it. But have you ever read about a buddhist monk who is crying his soul out day and night for humankind with the deepest pain? I've searched, but I couldn't find it. It seems to describe similiar things, but the experience could be a quite different one.
Do you have an informative link for me?

And how many Christians - monastics or otherwise - do this?

I cannot charge that, unfortunately. A monastic should follow the principle "the hidden man of the heart"- Christians as well. I just know from a monk, who answered to a friend when he was asked why he's so joyful the whole day: "Because I'm crying the whole night".
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« Reply #160 on: January 05, 2013, 05:57:52 PM »

Quote
A Bodhisattva, in Theravada Buddhism, is someone who chooses eons of suffering (physical, emotional, mental, etc.), for the sake of the awakening of sentient beings.
I know, I read a bit about it. But have you ever read about a buddhist monk who is crying his soul out day and night for humankind with the deepest pain?
Do you mean crying with tears? Or just a deep emotional feeling?

Yes, crying with tears. It's very difficult to know, what sort of feelings they(buddhists) mean, when the use same words like compassion. Me as a former New Ager, had the experience of compassion more in a fictive emotional way. I thought it was emotional but it wasn't. Especially it wasn't out of humility. I don't try to equalize my experience with the of the buddhist, but I just want to show how it's possible that although two religions are talking about the same words and describe it in a quite similiar way, they can have two different experiences, two different deepness of it. Therefore we should be very careful!
I like it when father Sophrony writes about how a priest should pray for the whole world during the liturgy; then he adds that sometimes the compassion becomes so strong that you feel near death in a literal way.
I think it's also important from "where" I feel compassion. From below (humility), on the same level (?) or from above (pride). I think a proud person's heart can also shake and tremble because of compassion, but it's a fake, although it's deep emotional.
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« Reply #161 on: January 05, 2013, 09:31:20 PM »

I just want to show how it's possible that although two religions are talking about the same words and describe it in a quite similiar way, they can have two different experiences, two different deepness of it. Therefore we should be very careful!
I certainly agree.
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« Reply #162 on: January 06, 2013, 12:49:22 AM »

So this is apparently what I got so far:

Eastern Orthodox Church (100%)      
Episcopal/Anglican Church (89%)      
Evangelical Lutheran Church (89%)      
Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (89%)      
Roman Catholic Church (78%)      
Church of Christ (67%)      
Methodist/Wesleyan Church (67%)      
Free Will Baptist (56%)      
International Church of Christ (56%)   

It could be because I said I had no preference on infant baptisms, or female priests. Nor was I too particular about where infallibility is vested whether in the college of Bishops, or in one single man in particular (i.e. the Pope). I also cannot honestly say that one must be a member of a specific church or organization in order to be "saved", as that was the Quiz's wording.  I cannot and will not believe that my Protestant family members are not "saved" merely because they were not Orthodox or Roman Catholics when they were still alive.
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« Reply #163 on: January 06, 2013, 07:20:42 AM »

Love for humanity is the chief duty of almost all religions more or less. But the question is, how succesfull and deep can a person fulfill the divine commandments in his life...It's easy to write and say beautiful commandments and comment them, that can do everbody, but to really realize it not only in his mind and in the way of feelings, but also in every step in his life, that is hard. It needs many models.
The problem is that in New Age and Theosophy and other eastern religions the spiritual person see himself as one with others, but he doesn't go further. That is to say: he doesn't go the way down, he hardly consider himself unworthy, consider himself to be the worst of all people or rather sinners. He "only" see himself as one with others- that's all. Excuse me, but that's not humility. When I can consider a really bad person to be greater than me, to be an angel, then humility starts...
I believe you have a very limited definition of humility. Why do you attempt to categorize and segregate those who focus on lowliness and those who would not exalt themselves? In what ways do they differ on the practical level? While the mindset of the former can be helpful in overcoming pride, it is not an objective assessment. Take one individual who sees himself as the lowest of beings and another who sees himself as part of an organic humanity, no greater than any other individual. How do they differ in action?

Especially love and humility, but also some other virtues- are used by all religions, but they often don't have the same meaning or rather the same deepness, dimension. That's the point. (And I cannot expect that all other persons who are not orthodox that they 're quite immoral and barbarous. If somebody wants to be virtous, he can achieve it on a certain level, because he has a free will.)
When for example a buddhist have compassion then he does it more intellectual, he try to put himself in his shoes, but he's at the same time quite carefull with compassionate fellings, because he want to avoid suffering. He's "just" emotional. His emphaty has a limit. But if I'm an authentic orthodox, then I truly see myself one with the other person, that's mean I take all his pain in my heart or even more, and I suffer because I love; And it will be not a problem to go to the abyss of the suffering love, because Christ give his love, his power for that.  Love makes us also ready to pay for the sins of others.
The same thing we see regarding humility.

"He says that the empirical cosmic being is like a pyramid: at the top sit the powerful of the earth, who exercise dominion over the nations (cf. Matt. 20:25), and at the bottom stand the masses. But the spirit of man, by nature [unfallen nature as given by God], demands equality, justice and freedom of spirit, and therefore is not satisfied with this “pyramid of being.” So, what did the Lord do? He took this pyramid and inverted it, and put Himself at the bottom, becoming its Head. He took upon Himself the weight of sin, the weight of the infirmity of the whole world, and so from that moment on, who can enter into judgment with Him? His justice is above the human mind. So, He revealed His Way to us, and in so doing showed us that no one can be justified but by this way, and so all those who are His must go downwards to be united with Him, the Head of the inverted pyramid, because it is there that the “fragrance” of the Holy Spirit is found; there is the power of divine life. Christ alone holds the pyramid, but His fellows, His Apostles and His saints, come and share this weight with Him. However, even if there were no one else, He could hold the pyramid by Himself, because He is infinitely strong; but He likes to share everything with His fellows. Mindful of this, then, it is essential for man to find the way of going down, the way of humility, which is the Way of the Lord, and to become a fellow of Christ, who is the Author of this path." Archimandrite Zacharias in Enlargement of the heart
The empathy that many Orthodox have for others is quite admirable, but if you took time to examine other traditions, you would see that the Orthodox are not alone in this. From Blavatsky's The Voice of Silence :

"Let thy Soul lend its ear to every cry of pain like as the lotus bares its heart to drink the morning sun.

Let not the fierce Sun dry one tear of pain before thyself hast wiped it from the sufferer's eye.

But let each burning human tear drop on thy heart and there remain, nor ever brush it off, until the pain that caused it is removed.

These tears, O thou of heart most merciful, these are the streams that irrigate the fields of charity immortal. 'Tis on such soil that grows the midnight blossom of Buddha more difficult to find, more rare to view than is the flower of the Vogay tree. It is the seed of freedom from rebirth. It isolates the Arhat both from strife and lust, it leads him through the fields of Being unto the peace and bliss known only in the land of Silence and Non-Being."


An ancient truth? That sounds very dogmatic. That's probably the main dogma of Theosophy, and I thought Theosophy isn't dogmatic. Read Rene Guenon, he wrote a detailed critique of Theosophy titled "Theosophy: history of a pseudo-religion". Excuse me, but you cannot compare the gift of prophesy with channeling in New Age and Theosophy. An adulter can use channeling, everbody can do it. The prophecy of 2012, 21 Dec. that there would be an great change in the world, a new era etc. was also said by many, many New Ager who got this information by canneling with "masters", avatars, etc. A prophecy from the holy spirit cannot not be fulfilled.
New Ager thinks that the impersonal God is also present in "cosmic energies", and then they try to tap this energy and to use it for their own will. That's awful. I could cry. That's a high level of pride. Instead that they're servants, they behave as if they're supergods.
What in particular have you found in Guenon's critique to be of value? I'll admit I am actually quite surprised that you referenced his work (given his many agreements with H.P.B.). His critiques (or at least the ones I am familiar with) are more or less directed at Blavatsky's conclusions regarding of occult phenomena, as well as her understanding of Eastern religion (Guenon's insistence, for instance, that reincarnation, as is taught today, could not be found in any ancient text). Browsing the work you referenced, I see he spends a good deal of time attacking Besant's Neo-Theosophy as well as Steiner's Anthroposophy - two individuals/philosophies that differ severely from the Theosophy advocated by H.P.B. I find it difficult to believe that you would assent to Guenon's understanding of the occult. Also, how do you define "channeling"?

The occult, in of itself, is a morally neutral affair. It is only human intent that makes it either good or evil. Selfish people can use it to their own ends. It can also be used incorrectly, leading to confusion. The mere fact that it can be misused and employed by the impure should not be a point of contention. At least anymore than we should condemn eating and speaking because some are gluttons and liars.

On the issue of prophecies made by various New Agers, I really have nothing to say. I am not New Ager, and nor was Blavatsky. But even if that was the case, I know not why we should be held accountable for their failed predictions. It is the equivalent of expecting all followers of Abrahamic religions to defend the Fatima prophecies.

John 8,32: "“If you hold to my teaching/commandments, you are really my disciples. 32 Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”"
The more I repent, the more I've contrition in my heart, the more I cry- the more I see that the orthodoxy is the truth. Repentance, contrition in heart, humility- these are the tools by which I purify my heart and mind. It's the most effective weapon against the EGO: See: http://www.enlightennext.org/magazine/j17/dionysios.asp?page=3 . I follow these persons who purified themselves truly.
The concept of impurity is very weak in Theosophy and New Age. It's like: "I'm impure, so what? I'll get free of that with absorbing spirituality." There're no true consciousness of our state. Therefore it's hard to get humility. Only Christ can release us from our impurity and sin(or in your term: karma).
But you state that only a pure heart can discern truth. How can an impure heart find Orthodoxy in the first place so as to be confirmed of its truth (and consequently be purified)? This really is a tangent, but I am legitimately curious because it seems that people are simply born into certain traditions and raised with mindsets that adhere to those traditions. On another tangent, is Orthodoxy only for a select few because only certain individuals ever have the opportunity of encountering it?

If, however, you think that impurity is a trivial matter in Theosophy, then you know nothing of what we believe. Once again, from The Voice of Silence :

"Before that path is entered, thou must destroy thy lunar body, cleanse thy mind-body and make clean thy heart.

Eternal life's pure waters, clear and crystal, with the monsoon tempest's muddy torrents cannot mingle.

Heaven's dew-drop glittering in the morn's first sun-beam within the bosom of the lotus, when dropped on earth becomes a piece of clay; behold, the pearl is now a speck of mire.

Strive with thy thoughts unclean before they overpower thee. Use them as they will thee, for if thou sparest them and they take root and grow, know well, these thoughts will overpower and kill thee. Beware, Disciple, suffer not, e'en though it be their shadow, to approach. For it will grow, increase in size and power, and then this thing of darkness will absorb thy being before thou hast well realized the black foul monster's presence.

Before the "mystic Power" can make of thee a god, Lanoo, thou must have gained the faculty to slay thy lunar form at will."


There's book In Memory of Helena Petrovna Blavatsky  some of her pupils write about her. And cannot really find something so that I could say that she's on the same spiritual level like Mother Theresa or Elder Sophrony. For example Charles Johnston writes: "The first and earliest impression I received from Madame Blavatsky was the feeling of the power and largeness of her individuality" or of another pupil: "she was the practical personification of charity and forgiveness."etc.But this are more descriptions of her charisma than an living deep experience of her spirit. What had they been receiving from her spirit? For example when Klaus(who saw and lived with many buddhist and hindu "masters" in Asia) met Elder Sophrony, he was so humbled by his love that he had cried the next three days at home for hours. In his presence people felt to received a great power to have the will to fight against their passions etc. To be charismatic- that's not hard. An atheist can be that. I can be that. A person for example told me that I'm the most kind person he ever met, but that's so ridiculous, that's bullshit. My spiritual father almost gave me up.
I have never heard of anyone weeping after meeting Blavatsky, but I sincerely doubt that doing so after meeting Elder Sophrony was a common occurrence. But even so, people, being inherently different, have a diversity of experiences and are effected differently by certain individuals. Call it mere charisma if you wish, it is just an convenient device to dismiss those with whom you disagree. I have seen people argue against Orthodox elders on the same grounds.

In his book Robert Tod Carroll wrote in his book (2003)wrote that Blavatsky used trickery into deceiving others into thinking she had paranormal powers. that Blavatsky had faked a materialization of a tea cup and saucer as well as written the messages from her masters herself. And that's quite strange to demonstrate your paranormal powers to others. And  many of theirs supernatural gifts seems to be very useless for the benefit of others and for herself. When I was a New Ager, I had for example the "gift" or rather the occult power to control the flame of a candle. But when I think back that's so ridiculous.  
Have you read the life of Elder Porphyrios? You'll never read about a person who had more divine supernatural gifts. The 20 century is so full of beautiful models and saints in orthodoxy; there're really many. Theosophy, New Age can really not keep up with it.
I am familiar with Carroll's Skeptic's Dictionary (another odd source for an Orthodox to consult) which uses Randi's poorly researched work as a source. What particular evidence does he provide in his accusation that the materialization was fake?

Much of the phenomena surrounding Blavatsky was to demonstrate the existence of occult forces and refute scientific materialism. It was for the benefit of her students. Orthodoxy indeed has many beautiful models, but so do other faiths. Have you heard of the Catholic saint, John Vianney and the thousands of people cured by him? Or perhaps of Newton, a late 19th century American mesmeric healer? Dogma plays no role in what you call the supernatural.

I suppose that you hadn't been for a long time orthodox, because you couldn't never forget the smell of penitent humility. I suppose also that my weak, bold words will not convince you. So go just your way you started to go- at the beginning it's always bloomy; especially for the mind. If you want to rethink one time New Age then I offer you to read this book:
THE PEARL OF GREAT PRICE- by Veronica Hughes. She was a former New Ager. And I repeat again: There're so many who converted from New Age/Theosophy to the living Christ and there's hardly a vice versa tendency. Please don't make the same, similiar fault like Elder Sophrony: After he was pious orthodox, he left it to practice eastern religions for seven tears- but then returned to orthodoxy and repented his fault in the ocean or rather "hell" of contrition.
Forgive me.
No, you have not convinced me and I doubt you would ever convince someone of any other religion. Your understanding of Theosophy is very shallow, even more so than your understanding of New Age. Clearly, some New Agers are consumed by pride and some trends within the movement are the result of a very superficial spirituality. This cannot be denied. Attempting to paint the entire movement as such, however, is absurd.

The more I read of polemics, the more I see the necessity of creating caricatures of the opponent. It is a necessity if one is to maintain a consistent worldview of religious exclusivity. Were one to actually address what other religions teach (as opposed to a strawman), the greatest fear of the fundamentalist may be realized - that Truth runs deeper than any label or group.
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« Reply #164 on: January 06, 2013, 07:32:27 AM »

Ioannis,

So do you follow strictly Theosophy? There have been many offshoots of Blavatsky, you don't follow them as well do you? i.e. Alice Bailey, Nicholas Roerich, Guy and Edna Ballard, Geraldine Innocente "Thomas Printz", Elizabeth Clare Prophet, etc..
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« Reply #165 on: January 06, 2013, 07:37:32 AM »

No, I do not put much stock in any of the individuals you mentioned. You can also add Besant and Leadbeater (and other Neo-Theosophists) to that list.

I am strictly a Theosophist.
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« Reply #166 on: February 27, 2014, 07:07:20 PM »

Eastern Orthodox Church (100%)            
Roman Catholic Church (88%)            
Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (80%)            
Evangelical Lutheran Church (77%)            
Episcopal/Anglican Church (73%)  

Now:
Eastern Orthodox Church (100%)             
Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (95%)             
Evangelical Lutheran Church (93%)             
Roman Catholic Church (89%)             
Episcopal/Anglican Church (85%)   

Now now:

Eastern Orthodox Church (100%)         
Episcopal/Anglican Church (94%)         
Evangelical Lutheran Church (92%)         
Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (92%)         
Roman Catholic Church (80%)

In the war for my soul it looks like the Catholics are losing ground and the Anglicans are making double-digit progress each time I take this quiz.
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« Reply #167 on: February 27, 2014, 07:39:16 PM »

SelectSmart:
Eastern Orthodox Church (100%)         
Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (97%)         
Evangelical Lutheran Church (92%)         
Roman Catholic Church (92%)         
Episcopal/Anglican Church (83%)         
Methodist/Wesleyan Church (75%)

Beliefnet:
Roman Catholicism (100%)
Eastern Orthodox Christianity (99%)
Seventh-day Adventists (83%)
Conservative Christian Protestant (83%)
Orthodox Quakerism (72%)
Orthodox Judaism (58%)
Hinduism (55%)
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (53%)

(1st) Selectsmart Quiz:
Eastern Orthodox Church (100%)      
Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (97%)      
Roman Catholic Church (93%)      
Evangelical Lutheran Church (87%)      
Episcopal/Anglican Church (79%)      
International Church of Christ (70%)      


(2nd) Beliefnet Quiz:
Roman Catholicism (100%)
Eastern Orthodox (97%)
Seventh-day Adventist (87%)
Conservative Christian/Protestant (85%)
Orthodox Quaker (76%)
Hinduism (58%)

From a few months ago:

Eastern Orthodox Church (100%)      
Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (88%)      
Roman Catholic Church (86%)      
Evangelical Lutheran Church (79%)      
Episcopal/Anglican Church (71%)      

This is also an interesting religious quiz that is much more indepth:
http://www.beliefnet.com/Entertainment/Quizzes/BeliefOMatic.aspx

And my scores for the one I just linked...
Eastern Orthodox (100%)
Roman Catholic (100%)
Mainline to Conservative Christian/Protestant (89%)
Orthodox Quaker (85%)
Seventh Day Adventist (85%)
Mainline to Liberal Christian Protestants (61%)
Orthodox Judaism (56%)
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormons) (54%)
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« Reply #168 on: February 27, 2014, 07:40:47 PM »

In the war for my soul it looks like the Catholics are losing ground and the Anglicans are making double-digit progress each time I take this quiz.

Looks like Catholics gained ground and kept it for me.
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« Reply #169 on: February 27, 2014, 07:43:02 PM »

Beliefnet:
Roman Catholicism (100%)
Eastern Orthodox Christianity (99%)

LOL! How many people are wringing their hands over this 1% who are shopping for a religion?
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« Reply #170 on: February 27, 2014, 11:55:38 PM »

1. Eastern Orthodox Church (100%)
2. Roman Catholic Church (94%)
3. Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (80%)
4. Evangelical Lutheran Church (73%)
5. Mormonism (66%)  Huh Huh
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« Reply #171 on: February 27, 2014, 11:59:10 PM »

Beliefnet:
Roman Catholicism (100%)
Eastern Orthodox Christianity (99%)

LOL! How many people are wringing their hands over this 1% who are shopping for a religion?

Well, they did promise they knew my religion even if I didn't, so I'm sure that 1% difference is there for a reason.
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« Reply #172 on: February 28, 2014, 12:25:03 AM »

Well, they did promise they knew my religion even if I didn't, so I'm sure that 1% difference is there for a reason.

RC priests face away from the people. "It is only a matter of an inch; but an inch is everything when you are balancing."

Clearly you are not meant to be Orthodox.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2014, 12:25:27 AM by Asteriktos » Logged

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« Reply #173 on: February 28, 2014, 12:25:46 AM »

   Eastern Orthodox Church (100%)          
      Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (100%)          
         Roman Catholic Church (97%)          
         Evangelical Lutheran Church (95%)          
         Episcopal/Anglican Church (80%)  

I used the quiz mentioned in the OP.  

The bottom eight:

          Mormonism (59%)          
         Presbyterian Church USA (59%)          
         Orthodox Quakerism (55%)          
         Reformed Baptist (55%)          
         Jehovah's Witness (33%)          
         Liberal Quakerism (10%)          
         Unitarian Universalism (0%)          
         Unity Church (0%)   
« Last Edit: February 28, 2014, 12:27:52 AM by Maria » Logged

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« Reply #174 on: February 28, 2014, 12:42:20 AM »

Well, they did promise they knew my religion even if I didn't, so I'm sure that 1% difference is there for a reason.

RC priests face away from the people. "It is only a matter of an inch; but an inch is everything when you are balancing."

Clearly you are not meant to be Orthodox.

Sad

Looks like Lent's going to be especially busy with RCIA, then...
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« Reply #175 on: February 28, 2014, 12:43:05 AM »

A year and a half ago:


Eastern Orthodox Church (100%)      


         Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (96%)      


         Roman Catholic Church (96%)      


         Evangelical Lutheran Church (86%)      


         International Church of Christ (80%)      


         Episcopal/Anglican Church (75%)      


         United Pentecostal Church (75%)      


         Assemblies of God (73%)      


         Church of Christ (73%)      


         Mennonite Brethren (73%)      


         Methodist/Wesleyan Church (69%)      


         Free Will Baptist (67%)      


         Orthodox Quakerism (67%)      


         Seventh-Day Adventist (63%)      


         Southern Baptist (61%)      


         Mormonism (59%)      


         Presbyterian Church in America/Orthodox Presbyterian Church (59%)      


         Reformed Churches (59%)      


         Reformed Baptist (53%)      


         Presbyterian Church USA (48%)      


         Jehovah's Witness (30%)      


         Liberal Quakerism (19%)      


         Unitarian Universalism (7%)      


         Unity Church (0%)   

Now:


         Eastern Orthodox Church (100%)          
         Roman Catholic Church (92%)          
         Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (85%)          
         Evangelical Lutheran Church (76%)          
         Episcopal/Anglican Church (68%)          
         Church of Christ (66%)          
         International Church of Christ (66%)          
         Assemblies of God (63%)          
         United Pentecostal Church (63%)          
         Mormonism (61%)          
         Methodist/Wesleyan Church (59%)          
         Free Will Baptist (57%)          
         Mennonite Brethren (57%)          
         Seventh-Day Adventist (56%)          
         Orthodox Quakerism (49%)          
         Southern Baptist (49%)          
         Presbyterian Church in America/Orthodox Presbyterian Church (45%)          
         Reformed Churches (45%)          
         Reformed Baptist (40%)          
         Jehovah's Witness (38%)          
         Presbyterian Church USA (37%)          
         Liberal Quakerism (13%)          
         Unitarian Universalism (6%)          
         Unity Church (0%)    

So, while the Roman Catholics and LCMS lost some ground this time, the Romans have managed to break the tie for second place. Pretty much all the denominations in the 80 percents last time around have dropped down to the 70s. Somehow the Methodists lost ground to the Mormons. The Southern Baptists (my denomination of upbringing) have managed to slip right out of the top 50.
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« Reply #176 on: February 28, 2014, 01:01:19 AM »

   Eastern Orthodox Church (100%)          
      Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (100%)          
         Roman Catholic Church (97%)          
         Evangelical Lutheran Church (95%)          
         Episcopal/Anglican Church (80%)  

I used the quiz mentioned in the OP.  

The bottom eight:

          Mormonism (59%)          
         Presbyterian Church USA (59%)          
         Orthodox Quakerism (55%)          
         Reformed Baptist (55%)          
         Jehovah's Witness (33%)          
         Liberal Quakerism (10%)          
         Unitarian Universalism (0%)          
         Unity Church (0%)   

Not that you are necessarily interested, but I liked you idea of putting in the bottom scores. On the top end I thought I would be tied with Roman Catholicism (with the exception of papal infallibility) because I understand and like Roman Catholics, but this is what I got for the top end:

Eastern Orthodox Church (100%)          
Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (95%)          
Evangelical Lutheran Church (88%)          
Episcopal/Anglican Church (83%)          
Roman Catholic Church (80%)          
Mennonite Brethren (68%)          
Methodist/Wesleyan Church (68%)          
         
I know almost nothing about these other religions and I have only been to Missouri once as far as I know

Bottom end:

Liberal Quakerism (35%)          
Mormonism (35%)          
United Pentecostal Church (35%)          
Presbyterian Church USA (30%)          
Reformed Baptist (30%)          
Unitarian Universalism (15%)          
Unity Church (13%)          
Jehovah's Witness (0%)   

I am surprised by this one as well, since I have spent hours in pleasant conversation with Jehovah's Witnesses and I have had major arguments with Mormons.

The other thing that I am curious about is whether this is the typical result for ultra-left liberals. Maybe that is where the Lutheran's kick into the equation and that Unitarians are a bunch of Capitalists that don't want to feel guilt.
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« Reply #177 on: February 28, 2014, 02:54:17 AM »

I got 100% Roman Catholic 97% Orthodox

LORD HAVE MERCY ON ME!  Grin

maybe it was by putting i believe in literal heaven and hell... but i felt that if i didnt say that, it would think i am some person who thinks heaven is symbolic!
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« Reply #178 on: February 28, 2014, 03:47:26 AM »

My Top 5:

1. Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (100%)          
2. Eastern Orthodox Church (98%)          
3. Evangelical Lutheran Church (93%)          
4. Episcopal/Anglican Church (86%)          
5. Roman Catholic Church (83%)   

My Bottom 5:

5. Reformed Baptist (40%)          
4. Liberal Quakerism (20%)          
3. Jehovah's Witness (18%)          
2. Unity Church (3%)          
1. Unitarian Universalism (0%)   
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« Reply #179 on: February 28, 2014, 06:19:36 AM »

How well does belief.net or I understand Buddhism?

Top Five:

Sikhism(92%)
Jainism(91%)
Theravada Buddhism(85%)
Mahayana Buddhism(80%)
Unitarian Universalism(73%)

Bottom Five:

Reformed Judaism(34%)
New Thought(31%)
Secular Humanism(29%)
Church of Christ, Scientist(24%)
Atheism(20%)

Glad to see New Thought highly differentiated from Buddhism. I am not sure belief.net is up on their Buddhism, nor that I am.
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