Author Topic: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?  (Read 549 times)

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Offline Eamonomae

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Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« on: September 09, 2019, 04:56:55 PM »
I occasionally ponder questions about the legitimacy of Christianity, and I wanted to ask you guys your thoughts on this question:

So, one of the things that legitimized (legitimizes for a large portion of Christianity today) the conversion of Pagans to Christianity in any form - non-Chalcedonian Orthodoxy, Chalcedonian Orthodoxy, Roman Catholicism, Protestantism, etc. - is the conversion away from savage and immoral practices and for an overall better system of religion.

For example, some religions such as the Druids and the Aztecs made systematic human sacrifice the norm. Many Native American tribes used hallucinogenic drugs for their spiritual experiences. The Greek Pagans had idols who were terrible role models to follow, like Mr. Zeus, or as one poster who used to post here so eloquently put it, "Mr. turn into a cow and rape you,"; Hindus were "clouded with grave superstitions" as one Pope put it, and would overemphasize practices like sex, terror, etc. depending on the sect.  The monks of Jains are venerated while standing completely naked. etc. etc.

Yet, when Christianity was put into practice in Western Europe, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Africa, etc., what ended up happening is gross superstition (for example, superstitions about the Jews, which happened in various forms in various places at various times), the execution of heretics by burning or just death, witch trials (burning of witches), extreme clericalism, Crusades (not all of them are justifiable), obscurantism and censorship, etc.

When all of these practices came as a result of Christianity when it was in a position of societal power, is it really correct to say that Christianity was less savage than these other religions, who did things where the results were the same - terrible role models, the burning of human beings, superstitions, etc.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2019, 04:59:18 PM by Eamonomae »
"I haven't any right to criticise books, and I don't do it except when I hate them. I often want to criticise Jane Austen, but her books madden me so that I can't conceal my frenzy from the reader; and therefore I have to stop every time I begin. Everytime I read 'Pride and Prejudice' I want to dig her up and beat her over the skull with her own shin-bone."
- Mark Twain, Letter to Joseph Twichell, 13 September 1898

Offline WPM

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2019, 05:22:30 PM »
I'm exploring Pagan religions right now. (Such as Trees and Nature) . . I know about Christianity and the History of Jesus. (See films,documentaries,and video) . .


Offline RaphaCam

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2019, 09:00:16 PM »
Are you really comparing vague obscurantism to, say, regularly slaying people as a sacrifice for a better harvest? Witch hunts don't make up a good part of the history of Christianity, and they are the only thing serious enough that has anything to do with religion.

Jews were victims of xenophobia/racism, not mere religious intolerance. Their descendants were still persecuted after conversion.
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Offline Eamonomae

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2019, 07:48:05 AM »
Are you really comparing vague obscurantism...

Let’s make it as broad as possible: the suppression of information. This might be as innocuous as ordering all copies of the Talmud burned.
"I haven't any right to criticise books, and I don't do it except when I hate them. I often want to criticise Jane Austen, but her books madden me so that I can't conceal my frenzy from the reader; and therefore I have to stop every time I begin. Everytime I read 'Pride and Prejudice' I want to dig her up and beat her over the skull with her own shin-bone."
- Mark Twain, Letter to Joseph Twichell, 13 September 1898

Offline isxodnik

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #4 on: September 10, 2019, 08:11:57 AM »
People bring their passions and imperfections into the divine-human organism - the Church. And outside Orthodoxy, this phenomenon is systemic in nature, in Orthodoxy - private. In other words, in your question you call Christianity that which cannot be called Christianity - first of all, of course, I mean Catholicism. If you focus only on the history of the Orthodox Churches, I think you will see a different/another picture.
« Last Edit: September 10, 2019, 08:12:27 AM by isxodnik »
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Offline Eamonomae

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2019, 08:51:17 AM »
People bring their passions and imperfections into the divine-human organism - the Church. And outside Orthodoxy, this phenomenon is systemic in nature, in Orthodoxy - private. In other words, in your question you call Christianity that which cannot be called Christianity - first of all, of course, I mean Catholicism. If you focus only on the history of the Orthodox Churches, I think you will see a different/another picture.

Like St. Gennady of Novgorod, who burned Judaizing heretics, or those who were burned and persecuted in the Old Believer's schism?
« Last Edit: September 10, 2019, 08:54:14 AM by Eamonomae »
"I haven't any right to criticise books, and I don't do it except when I hate them. I often want to criticise Jane Austen, but her books madden me so that I can't conceal my frenzy from the reader; and therefore I have to stop every time I begin. Everytime I read 'Pride and Prejudice' I want to dig her up and beat her over the skull with her own shin-bone."
- Mark Twain, Letter to Joseph Twichell, 13 September 1898

Offline isxodnik

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #6 on: September 10, 2019, 09:36:46 AM »
Like St. Gennady of Novgorod, who burned Judaizing heretics, or those who were burned and persecuted in the Old Believer's schism?

I wrote about the introduction/bring of human passions.
Compare the history of Orthodoxy with Catholic history. When you done compare, explain to me what I said wrong.
And - I'm still waiting for the proofs:
your opinion of Communism being completely compatible and symmetrical with Orthodox Christianity,

proof, please.
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Offline WPM

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #7 on: September 10, 2019, 12:34:49 PM »
Does the Church fit with the Wider Scope of the world? . . . What is the Church's relation to the World? . .

Offline sestir

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #8 on: September 10, 2019, 01:19:33 PM »
So, one of the things that legitimized (legitimizes for a large portion of Christianity today) the conversion of Pagans to Christianity in any form - non-Chalcedonian Orthodoxy, Chalcedonian Orthodoxy, Roman Catholicism, Protestantism, etc. - is the conversion away from savage and immoral practices and for an overall better system of religion.

What is your opinion on the "no true Scotsman"-logic? Is it a fallacy, as the heathens say?
If something is good, like a jar with honey, it will attract consumers, like insects. Good people attract bad people, clean towels attract people with dirty hands and a trusted trademark is exactly what a scammer needs.

This means, in my opinion, it would be impossible (pseudo science) to try to compare various philosophies of life with each other, based on the societal development when a large share of the population self-identify as adherents. For example, in the state where I live 30 % self-identify as Christian and many of the bad things that happen in society are blamed on Christians and Christianity. But if we count individuals who are seriously Christian and who have a clue about what it means (e.g. who have read an edition of the bible, who are not openly anti-christian and who have at most one sexual partner per decade), they are clearly fewer than 1 %. Is this 1 % really responsible for half the menace of contemporary society?

But I think it would be more meaningsful, instead of trying to convert people, to produce statistics that reveal how few we Christians really are.
« Last Edit: September 10, 2019, 01:20:12 PM by sestir »

Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #9 on: September 10, 2019, 01:47:18 PM »

Christ and Church teach mercy and forgiveness.

However, people tend to use religion (ANY religion) to meet their personal agendas, to build themselves up, etc.

While the Church taught "against" Jews, it was only meant for the newly formed Christians, who were not yet solid in their faith, and as a precaution to keep them within the Faith and not dissuaded by the Jews towards Judaism.  However, the Church merely taught to avoid, not to harm or kill.

Christ has never taught to harm any peoples or nations in the pursuit of growing the Church.

If you encounter a religious person, cleric, hierarch, etc. that preaches destruction of any life, run and don't look back.  They are the wolves in sheep's clothing of whom Christ warned us.

Be peaceful as doves, but, wise as serpents.
Conquer evil men by your gentle kindness, and make zealous men wonder at your goodness. Put the lover of legality to shame by your compassion. With the afflicted be afflicted in mind. Love all men, but keep distant from all men.
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Offline Tzimis

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #10 on: September 10, 2019, 04:19:32 PM »

Christ and Church teach mercy and forgiveness.

However, people tend to use religion (ANY religion) to meet their personal agendas, to build themselves up, etc.

While the Church taught "against" Jews, it was only meant for the newly formed Christians, who were not yet solid in their faith, and as a precaution to keep them within the Faith and not dissuaded by the Jews towards Judaism.  However, the Church merely taught to avoid, not to harm or kill.

Christ has never taught to harm any peoples or nations in the pursuit of growing the Church.

If you encounter a religious person, cleric, hierarch, etc. that preaches destruction of any life, run and don't look back.  They are the wolves in sheep's clothing of whom Christ warned us.

Be peaceful as doves, but, wise as serpents.
This makes sense, but nobody should be walked on.  Defending ones own home or mainland is certainly excluded. Bravery in the correct context is admirable. Certainly worth of admiration.

Offline WPM

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2019, 10:59:37 AM »
I occasionally ponder questions about the legitimacy of Christianity, and I wanted to ask you guys your thoughts on this question:

So, one of the things that legitimized (legitimizes for a large portion of Christianity today) the conversion of Pagans to Christianity in any form - non-Chalcedonian Orthodoxy, Chalcedonian Orthodoxy, Roman Catholicism, Protestantism, etc. - is the conversion away from savage and immoral practices and for an overall better system of religion.

For example, some religions such as the Druids and the Aztecs made systematic human sacrifice the norm. Many Native American tribes used hallucinogenic drugs for their spiritual experiences. The Greek Pagans had idols who were terrible role models to follow, like Mr. Zeus, or as one poster who used to post here so eloquently put it, "Mr. turn into a cow and rape you,"; Hindus were "clouded with grave superstitions" as one Pope put it, and would overemphasize practices like sex, terror, etc. depending on the sect.  The monks of Jains are venerated while standing completely naked. etc. etc.

Yet, when Christianity was put into practice in Western Europe, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Africa, etc., what ended up happening is gross superstition (for example, superstitions about the Jews, which happened in various forms in various places at various times), the execution of heretics by burning or just death, witch trials (burning of witches), extreme clericalism, Crusades (not all of them are justifiable), obscurantism and censorship, etc.

When all of these practices came as a result of Christianity when it was in a position of societal power, is it really correct to say that Christianity was less savage than these other religions, who did things where the results were the same - terrible role models, the burning of human beings, superstitions, etc.

Is probably something druid or some kind of pagan magic.

Christianity teaches about a suffering god crucified on a cross.

Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #12 on: September 11, 2019, 02:01:31 PM »

No.  Orthodoxy does not teach about a suffering God... but, a victorious God, who voluntarily went to the Cross, in order for us all to have the opportunity to be saved.

We focus on His triumphant Resurrection, not His suffering.
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Offline WPM

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #13 on: September 11, 2019, 02:53:45 PM »

No.  Orthodoxy does not teach about a suffering God... but, a victorious God, who voluntarily went to the Cross, in order for us all to have the opportunity to be saved.

We focus on His triumphant Resurrection, not His suffering.

Agony in the Garden? . .

Offline Lepanto

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #14 on: September 11, 2019, 03:09:42 PM »
Can we not have both? The suffering and the glorious Lord? I mean emphasizing the one more than the other, Easter Sunday over Good Friday is one thing... but both suffering and glory are real and I would contend that one does not go without the other. Is there really a contradiction?
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Offline Eamonomae

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #15 on: September 11, 2019, 03:21:33 PM »
Can we not have both? The suffering and the glorious Lord? I mean emphasizing the one more than the other, Easter Sunday over Good Friday is one thing... but both suffering and glory are real and I would contend that one does not go without the other. Is there really a contradiction?

Exactly. Without sounding like an over zealous keyboard crusader, a statement that God didn’t suffer on the Cross reeks of Nestorianism.
"I haven't any right to criticise books, and I don't do it except when I hate them. I often want to criticise Jane Austen, but her books madden me so that I can't conceal my frenzy from the reader; and therefore I have to stop every time I begin. Everytime I read 'Pride and Prejudice' I want to dig her up and beat her over the skull with her own shin-bone."
- Mark Twain, Letter to Joseph Twichell, 13 September 1898

Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #16 on: September 11, 2019, 04:08:23 PM »
Can we not have both? The suffering and the glorious Lord? I mean emphasizing the one more than the other, Easter Sunday over Good Friday is one thing... but both suffering and glory are real and I would contend that one does not go without the other. Is there really a contradiction?

Exactly. Without sounding like an over zealous keyboard crusader, a statement that God didn’t suffer on the Cross reeks of Nestorianism.

I never said He did not suffer.  Certainly we acknowledge that greatest among sacrifices, however, we focus more on the victory. 

He did not go to the Cross as a victim, but, voluntarily as a sacrificial lamb.

If you note on the icons of the Crucifixion we see Him "standing", not hanging limply.  He is no victim of His circumstances.  He is Christ triumphant.
 
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Offline Alpha60

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #17 on: September 11, 2019, 04:17:34 PM »
I occasionally ponder questions about the legitimacy of Christianity, and I wanted to ask you guys your thoughts on this question:

So, one of the things that legitimized (legitimizes for a large portion of Christianity today) the conversion of Pagans to Christianity in any form - non-Chalcedonian Orthodoxy, Chalcedonian Orthodoxy, Roman Catholicism, Protestantism, etc. - is the conversion away from savage and immoral practices and for an overall better system of religion.

For example, some religions such as the Druids and the Aztecs made systematic human sacrifice the norm. Many Native American tribes used hallucinogenic drugs for their spiritual experiences. The Greek Pagans had idols who were terrible role models to follow, like Mr. Zeus, or as one poster who used to post here so eloquently put it, "Mr. turn into a cow and rape you,"; Hindus were "clouded with grave superstitions" as one Pope put it, and would overemphasize practices like sex, terror, etc. depending on the sect.  The monks of Jains are venerated while standing completely naked. etc. etc.

Yet, when Christianity was put into practice in Western Europe, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Africa, etc., what ended up happening is gross superstition (for example, superstitions about the Jews, which happened in various forms in various places at various times), the execution of heretics by burning or just death, witch trials (burning of witches), extreme clericalism, Crusades (not all of them are justifiable), obscurantism and censorship, etc.

When all of these practices came as a result of Christianity when it was in a position of societal power, is it really correct to say that Christianity was less savage than these other religions, who did things where the results were the same - terrible role models, the burning of human beings, superstitions, etc.

The Christian faith is the only religion which we can confidently say is on the whole not savage; whenever acts of a brutal nature occurred they were always confined to local churches and not the Church as a whole.

Council of Nicea:
Εθη ἀρχαῖα κρατείτω. 
Mores antiqui obtineant.
The ancient ways shall prevail.

The sentiment of Nicea in Greek and Latin, translated into English.

Offline Alpha60

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #18 on: September 11, 2019, 04:18:49 PM »
Can we not have both? The suffering and the glorious Lord? I mean emphasizing the one more than the other, Easter Sunday over Good Friday is one thing... but both suffering and glory are real and I would contend that one does not go without the other. Is there really a contradiction?

Exactly. Without sounding like an over zealous keyboard crusader, a statement that God didn’t suffer on the Cross reeks of Nestorianism.

I never said He did not suffer.  Certainly we acknowledge that greatest among sacrifices, however, we focus more on the victory. 

He did not go to the Cross as a victim, but, voluntarily as a sacrificial lamb.

If you note on the icons of the Crucifixion we see Him "standing", not hanging limply.  He is no victim of His circumstances.  He is Christ triumphant.

Indeed so.  This is a beautiful post of true Orthodox faith.  Thank you Liza.  :)

Council of Nicea:
Εθη ἀρχαῖα κρατείτω. 
Mores antiqui obtineant.
The ancient ways shall prevail.

The sentiment of Nicea in Greek and Latin, translated into English.

Offline sestir

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #19 on: September 11, 2019, 04:26:06 PM »
What reasons do we have to believe that sacrificial lambs be voluntary?

Offline biro

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #20 on: September 11, 2019, 04:35:37 PM »
Orthodoxy is filled with people. People are sinners.

Slobodan Milosevic. Ivan the Terrible. People like that don't cover the name of the Church in glory.

But there are also good people in the world. I can't compare numbers, I don't think that's correct.

Christ said to pray for our enemies. We have to do that.
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Offline augustin717

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #21 on: September 11, 2019, 06:17:04 PM »
Can we not have both? The suffering and the glorious Lord? I mean emphasizing the one more than the other, Easter Sunday over Good Friday is one thing... but both suffering and glory are real and I would contend that one does not go without the other. Is there really a contradiction?

Exactly. Without sounding like an over zealous keyboard crusader, a statement that God didn’t suffer on the Cross reeks of Nestorianism.

I never said He did not suffer.  Certainly we acknowledge that greatest among sacrifices, however, we focus more on the victory. 

He did not go to the Cross as a victim, but, voluntarily as a sacrificial lamb.

If you note on the icons of the Crucifixion we see Him "standing", not hanging limply.  He is no victim of His circumstances.  He is Christ triumphant.
these pop orthoapologetics sound docetistic. If Jesus was a flesh and blood  crucified, and not just some image for a higher truth, in an elaborate allegory, then his real death must have been a mess,  no matter what Dyonisius of Fourna thought.
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Offline jah777

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #22 on: September 12, 2019, 12:59:16 PM »
In Orthodoxy, what matters is how Christ and the saints conducted themselves.  The lives of the saints are what we should read if we want to understand the influence of the Faith on the individual life when the Faith is followed absolutely.  Even where countries formally adopted the Orthodox Faith as the Faith of the country, it has always been rare for people to actually follow it.  "Orthodox countries" do not necessarily follow the Orthodox faith.  No religion can transform people unless individual people desire to be transformed, just like I cannot blame my doctor for not healing me if I go to him regularly for help but never follow his advice and refuse to take my medicines. 

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #23 on: September 13, 2019, 09:01:26 AM »
Can we not have both? The suffering and the glorious Lord? I mean emphasizing the one more than the other, Easter Sunday over Good Friday is one thing... but both suffering and glory are real and I would contend that one does not go without the other. Is there really a contradiction?

Exactly. Without sounding like an over zealous keyboard crusader, a statement that God didn’t suffer on the Cross reeks of Nestorianism.

I never said He did not suffer.  Certainly we acknowledge that greatest among sacrifices, however, we focus more on the victory. 

He did not go to the Cross as a victim, but, voluntarily as a sacrificial lamb.

If you note on the icons of the Crucifixion we see Him "standing", not hanging limply.  He is no victim of His circumstances.  He is Christ triumphant.
these pop orthoapologetics sound docetistic. If Jesus was a flesh and blood  crucified, and not just some image for a higher truth, in an elaborate allegory, then his real death must have been a mess,  no matter what Dyonisius of Fourna thought.

I see no hint of docetism therein.  St. John suggests a blast of divine strength at the end when he said “It is finished,” and then expired, and in that moment, animated by the hypostatic union, he could well have risen up on the cross.

Now, just a caution, in small type, I am going to go into technical details of Roman crucifixion as it applies to the Passion of our Lord which Augustin is ignoring, which squeamish readers should skip past:



Also remember the cross did have a footrest, to prolong the agony.  The Romans weren’t trying to kill them Persian style, from asphyxiation from inability to exhale; rather they wanted them to die from shock from the scourging combined with exposure and dehydration.  Scourging it should be noted was often said by the Romans to leave people “half dead” and a fair number of people scourged never recovered.

This is also why the Roman soldiers broke the legs of the other two condemned, because they weren’t dead yet.  This all indicates that our Lord would not have been hanging limply on the cross.  Roman crucifixion was about restraining people until they died from flogging injuries or in some especially cruel cases, purely from exposure and dehydration.  It was not, like the Persian form, a more brutal alternative to short drop hanging (which if memory serves the Persians also invented; if you wanted to kill someone in an unpleasant manner, the Persians of antiquity and indeed even under the Shah were the people you wanted to talk to - I won’t tell you what my Persian Armenian friend Aras said they did to a paedophile).

If you want to see a fairly realistic depiction of a Roman crucifixion in all its horror, take a look at the ending of Spartacus by Stanley Kubrick, in which the eponymous leader of the Slave Rebellion, played by Kirk Douglas, is after much time is still alive on the cross to which he was tightly bound, and not hanging down.  The case of our Lord would have been like that; I reckon he perished before the other criminals both due to divine will, and also owing to the unusual step of nailing his hands and feet to the beams rather than binding them tightly.

So no, Liza was not Docetic. 
« Last Edit: September 13, 2019, 09:06:46 AM by Alpha60 »

Council of Nicea:
Εθη ἀρχαῖα κρατείτω. 
Mores antiqui obtineant.
The ancient ways shall prevail.

The sentiment of Nicea in Greek and Latin, translated into English.

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #24 on: September 13, 2019, 02:06:22 PM »
Quote
- I won’t tell you what my Persian Armenian friend Aras said they did to a paedophile).

I want to know.
Happy shall he be, that shall take and dash thy little ones against the rock. Alleluia.

Once Christ has filled the Cross, it can never be empty again.

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Offline Tzimis

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #25 on: September 13, 2019, 02:52:38 PM »
Quote
- I won’t tell you what my Persian Armenian friend Aras said they did to a paedophile).

I want to know.
They sent him to a RC seminary?
« Last Edit: September 13, 2019, 02:53:41 PM by Tzimis »

Offline Eamonomae

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #26 on: September 13, 2019, 03:44:26 PM »
Can we not have both? The suffering and the glorious Lord? I mean emphasizing the one more than the other, Easter Sunday over Good Friday is one thing... but both suffering and glory are real and I would contend that one does not go without the other. Is there really a contradiction?

Exactly. Without sounding like an over zealous keyboard crusader, a statement that God didn’t suffer on the Cross reeks of Nestorianism.

I never said He did not suffer.  Certainly we acknowledge that greatest among sacrifices, however, we focus more on the victory. 

He did not go to the Cross as a victim, but, voluntarily as a sacrificial lamb.

If you note on the icons of the Crucifixion we see Him "standing", not hanging limply.  He is no victim of His circumstances.  He is Christ triumphant.

Again, why is it so incompatible? Could not Christ be a victim and triumphant? Could He not be both a prisoner and a King? Could He not have given Himself on His own volition, but also obey the sentencing of the Roman Government?


Isaiah 53:7, whose text is read in the context of the Liturgy when the Priest cuts the Prosphoron and is read by the Eunuch in the Book of Acts, says

"He was oppressed and He was afflicted, Yet He opened not His mouth; He was led as a lamb to the slaughter, And as a sheep before its shearers is silent, So He opened not His mouth."
"I haven't any right to criticise books, and I don't do it except when I hate them. I often want to criticise Jane Austen, but her books madden me so that I can't conceal my frenzy from the reader; and therefore I have to stop every time I begin. Everytime I read 'Pride and Prejudice' I want to dig her up and beat her over the skull with her own shin-bone."
- Mark Twain, Letter to Joseph Twichell, 13 September 1898

Offline Tzimis

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #27 on: September 13, 2019, 03:51:02 PM »
Its called martyrdom!  And why a martyr is first among the saints. Foreknowledge of ones impending doom counts for something.

Offline Eamonomae

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #28 on: September 13, 2019, 04:20:25 PM »
Its called martyrdom!  And why a martyr is first among the saints. Foreknowledge of ones impending doom counts for something.

Are martyrs incapable of being both a victim and a victor?
"I haven't any right to criticise books, and I don't do it except when I hate them. I often want to criticise Jane Austen, but her books madden me so that I can't conceal my frenzy from the reader; and therefore I have to stop every time I begin. Everytime I read 'Pride and Prejudice' I want to dig her up and beat her over the skull with her own shin-bone."
- Mark Twain, Letter to Joseph Twichell, 13 September 1898

Offline Tzimis

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #29 on: September 13, 2019, 04:35:59 PM »
Its called martyrdom!  And why a martyr is first among the saints. Foreknowledge of ones impending doom counts for something.

Are martyrs incapable of being both a victim and a victor?
Depends on the statue of the individual.

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #30 on: September 13, 2019, 05:50:40 PM »
Quote
- I won’t tell you what my Persian Armenian friend Aras said they did to a paedophile).

I want to know.
They sent him to a RC seminary?

Nah, promoted him to Archimandrite.

Offline hecma925

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #31 on: September 13, 2019, 06:00:49 PM »
Quote
- I won’t tell you what my Persian Armenian friend Aras said they did to a paedophile).

I want to know.
They sent him to a RC seminary?

Nah, promoted him to Archimandrite.

Get that Master's in Cake-sitting, non-thesis track.
Happy shall he be, that shall take and dash thy little ones against the rock. Alleluia.

Once Christ has filled the Cross, it can never be empty again.

"But God doesn't need your cookies!  Arrive on time!"

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #32 on: September 13, 2019, 06:47:35 PM »
Quote
- I won’t tell you what my Persian Armenian friend Aras said they did to a paedophile).

I want to know.

Probably something involving boats. Or rawhide.
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Offline Tzimis

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #33 on: September 13, 2019, 07:01:01 PM »
Quote
- I won’t tell you what my Persian Armenian friend Aras said they did to a paedophile).

I want to know.
They sent him to a RC seminary?

Nah, promoted him to Archimandrite.

Get that Master's in Cake-sitting, non-thesis track.
That was an admirable way of falling. I mean who doesn't enjoy a good show once in a while.

Offline hecma925

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #34 on: September 13, 2019, 10:17:52 PM »
Quote
- I won’t tell you what my Persian Armenian friend Aras said they did to a paedophile).

I want to know.
They sent him to a RC seminary?

Nah, promoted him to Archimandrite.

Get that Master's in Cake-sitting, non-thesis track.
That was an admirable way of falling. I mean who doesn't enjoy a good show once in a while.

At least he wasn't a homo.
Happy shall he be, that shall take and dash thy little ones against the rock. Alleluia.

Once Christ has filled the Cross, it can never be empty again.

"But God doesn't need your cookies!  Arrive on time!"

Offline platypus

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Re: Is Christianity any less savage than other Pagan religions?
« Reply #35 on: September 14, 2019, 06:11:39 PM »
I occasionally ponder questions about the legitimacy of Christianity, and I wanted to ask you guys your thoughts on this question:

So, one of the things that legitimized (legitimizes for a large portion of Christianity today) the conversion of Pagans to Christianity in any form - non-Chalcedonian Orthodoxy, Chalcedonian Orthodoxy, Roman Catholicism, Protestantism, etc. - is the conversion away from savage and immoral practices and for an overall better system of religion.

If we try to prove that Christianity is somehow better in a secular sense, then we've allowed the world to define what's good and bad, which would suggest that the whole religion is pointless in the first place.

Christianity is better than paganism because our God is the only one worthy of worship. We define good and bad on our God's terms. So our conversion of the heathen was legitimate, whether or not anybody likes our system of morality.

For example, some religions such as the Druids and the Aztecs made systematic human sacrifice the norm. Many Native American tribes used hallucinogenic drugs for their spiritual experiences. The Greek Pagans had idols who were terrible role models to follow, like Mr. Zeus, or as one poster who used to post here so eloquently put it, "Mr. turn into a cow and rape you,"; Hindus were "clouded with grave superstitions" as one Pope put it, and would overemphasize practices like sex, terror, etc. depending on the sect.  The monks of Jains are venerated while standing completely naked. etc. etc.

If our God didn't exist, then there would be nothing wrong with following the pagan gods. Our morality comes from our God.

In the Old Testament Church, God required us to mutilate our genitals and sacrifice animals. These are both practices some people find very distasteful now, but they were right because God told us to do them.

Yet, when Christianity was put into practice in Western Europe, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Africa, etc., what ended up happening is gross superstition (for example, superstitions about the Jews, which happened in various forms in various places at various times), the execution of heretics by burning or just death, witch trials (burning of witches), extreme clericalism, Crusades (not all of them are justifiable), obscurantism and censorship, etc.

Rather than immediately condemn the Christians of previous generations, it may be wise to reflect on why they felt the way they did about:
- the government's role in protecting the souls of the faithful
- Jews
- clericalism
- witchcraft
- the idea war being holy

I don't have all the answers. I wish I did. But I'm in no rush to condemn the way our predecessors thought and acted, any more than I'm going to quit fasting just because "science" says that eating six times a day is "good for us." I suspect we're a lot less enlightened about everything than we assume we are.

When all of these practices came as a result of Christianity when it was in a position of societal power, is it really correct to say that Christianity was less savage than these other religions, who did things where the results were the same - terrible role models, the burning of human beings, superstitions, etc.

In terms of who Christian role models should be - this is what canonization is for. We look to the saints as examples of how Christian life ought to be lived. There are, and have been, many Christians like myself who would make pretty awful role models. And nobody paints icons of us, for obvious reasons.

There are some ways you might say Christianity is less savage than paganism, but I don't know why one would do so.
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