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  1. Re: What would it take for you to change your stance on religion?

    Considering how tightly integrated religion was with society and government, I wouldn't call it a "thin" veneer. It's a thorough emulsion.
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    Re: Do knowledgeable ex-atheists exist?

    In addition to Akar's point, this line here is a huge falsehood on several levels.

    For one, we don't really have any myths from Proto-Indo-European peoples. We have certain myth-themes that show...
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    Re: The ethics of reporting a racist friend..?

    That's nonsense. Society exists between the state and the individual, and can produce its own kinds of sanction.


    It should definitely be shamed and a reason for social ostracism.
  4. Re: What would it take for you to change your stance on religion?

    Well, yeah, for about a thousand years Catholicism (and Orthodoxy, which were unified until the 1050s) was the predominant, if not sole, form of Christianity in the West. It has the juciest material...
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    Re: Do knowledgeable ex-atheists exist?

    I see the gods as having emerged with the universe, inextricably linked to it, but not before it. I might make some accommodation for the Hermetic notion of a panentheistic unity of all the gods and...
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    Re: Do knowledgeable ex-atheists exist?

    [sigh] Much as I hate to admit it, Stario kinda has a point.
    Just to be clear, I do not believe the gods are "creators" so much as they are "influencers" of the universe. Sustainers, perhaps. I see...
  7. Re: What would it take for you to change your stance on religion?

    Religion, for me, is pretty fluid. I practice what I feel is best for me and my spiritual needs, and my religious framework has shifted over the past decade and a half, from a broad neopaganism to...
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    Re: Do knowledgeable ex-atheists exist?

    I was raised as an atheist, in an atheistic household; I was not even raised around Christianity really, and was unaware that people seriously believed in god until late in elementary school. Though...
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    Re: Is the internet killing religion?

    It developed, as did Platonism, Aristotelianism, Epicureanism, and other ancient philosophies, out of the polytheistic religious landscape of the Classical Greek world. Religion was inseparable from...
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    Re: Is the internet killing religion?

    1. Wicca is probably the largest single religion in the Pagan umbrella, yes. There are other Pagan religions, i.e. Neodruidry, Hellenismos, Asatru and Heathenry, various kinds of reconstructionist...
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    Re: Is the internet killing religion?

    Neopaganism is small, but I don't think we can describe it as marginal; that ship sailed years ago. It's grown steadily since the last major boom in the early aughts. There's more Pagans than...
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    Re: How true is the Bible?

    So...you think genocide is a reasonable or acceptable response to differences in belief and practice? That's insane.
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    Re: Is the internet killing religion?

    Christianity is in decline, religion is not. The proportion of atheists and agnostics has somewhat plateaued in the past few years. What's happened is more that religion has diversified.
    The "why"...
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    Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    The meaning of those stories and the intent behind the creation of those stories matters.

    As has been said by sumskilz and conon, my usage is consistent with how mythology is defined in the social...
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    Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Mythology and fiction are entirely different things. The key is in the intention. Fiction is intended to be un-true or un-real from the outset. Myth is not.
    And yes, being the foundation of a...
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    Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    The map is not the territory. Religion is not the myths, that's a literalist misinterpretation (which Christianity is prone to, so we are unfortunately familiar with it).

    Myths are not "stories...
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    Re: How true is the Bible?

    Cultural inertia.
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    Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Fun fact: Yule had pretty much zip to do with the Winter Solstice directly, and was celebrated on the first full moon following the solstice. It's mostly a coincidence that we think of it as a...
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    Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Certainly not. While there are religious elements to the traditional celebration of Christmas, the overall festive period surrounding it has many secular elements that can be enjoyed without regard...
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    Re: The ethics of reporting a racist friend..?

    No one said anything about government control until you brought it up. We're talking about people being held accountable for what they've done and said.

    And racism isn't just "a different...
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    Re: The ethics of reporting a racist friend..?

    If he's racist, he's an a-hole. I would be wary at considering such a person to be a friend to start with.
  22. Re: Is Monarchy inherently a part of British \ English identity?

    Yes and no. The movement for independence, though driven by landowners and educated lawyers, was a popular one. But that's besides the point, which is that the British people have chosen to retain...
  23. Re: Is Monarchy inherently a part of British \ English identity?

    A monarchical institution, and the person that embodies it, is the most prominent and obvious egregore of a land and its people. It's part of their identity because it is, thus far, the institution...
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    Re: Do you believe the Christmas story?

    You'd be surprised how complex it is. Early Christians calculated Jesus' birthdate as being in late December based on some peculiarities with Jewish messianic beliefs. The date coinciding with the...
  25. Re: What was the relationship between the Nazis and religion?

    I do not see how it's any different than creating just another sect of Christianity. One that is heavily tied into a particular set of politics, but that's nothing new.
  26. Re: What was the relationship between the Nazis and religion?

    Nazism's religion was Nazism. Anything else was just a means to an end, a way to get into the hearts and minds of the German people. The Nazis co-opted Protestantism to appeal to Protestant Germans...
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    Re: Do you believe the Christmas story?

    Yes, we do. We have extensive textual evidence about how ancient Romans and Greeks believed and practiced. There's a lot that's lost, but there's more than enough there to reconstruct from. And...
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    Re: Do you believe the Christmas story?

    Everything's a subculture. I don't know what this question is meant to imply. Something about the community's size? There are about as many Modern Pagans in the US as there are Jews, and it has been...
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    Re: Do you believe the Christmas story?

    "Local" inasmuch as they were entirely municipal, yes they were local. Only the inhabitants of the city of Rome really did the voting for the various magistrates and priests, via the assemblies. And...
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    Re: Do you believe the Christmas story?

    Ignoring the white nationalism inherent to such Eurocentrism...you realize that not everyone of European heritage is Christian, or wants to celebrate Christian things, right? Even if one is...
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    Re: Do you believe the Christmas story?

    I mean, it is an observable astronomical phenomenon. It'd be hard not to. But for my part, I do believe in various bits of folklore about the Winter Solstice, and believe it is a ritually- and...
  32. Re: Did the Greeks have a positive view of Achilles?

    Homer was writing eight hundred years after the historical events that inspired the Trojan War story. He was not writing a history, and it's likely impossible for anyone to have. History passes into...
  33. Re: A Pagan take on traditionalism and politicised science.

    This is probably the only occasion where I might defend basics. Personal experiences hold a certain truth for oneself. It doesn't matter whether or not I think his experiences reflect some kind of...
  34. Re: A Pagan take on traditionalism and politicised science.

    Less, really. Socrates is at least attested by Aristophanes, who depicting him in his comedic plays, during Socrates' lifetime.
    Jesus? Not even his disciples, but their secretaries probably, a...
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    Re: Why is murder wrong?

    Depends on your perspective. From a worldview that enshrines human life as something with inherent value, like modern human rights law and preceding philosophical underpinnings, the taking of a human...
  36. Re: Life after Death : are we going to dance among ghosts and have a toast to our legacy?

    Now that's not entirely accurate. Hesiod does have reference to Deucalion in Catalogue of Women, but it's in fragments doesn't even mention a flood. The story of Deucalion as told by Hesiod begins...
  37. Re: Life after Death : are we going to dance among ghosts and have a toast to our legacy?

    But it's not all. The primary stories all seem to come from the Near East, specifically Mesopotamia. And then was imported to cultures colonized or influenced by the various Near Eastern empires,...
  38. Re: A Pagan take on traditionalism and politicised science.

    At the era he's talking about, the height of the Classical Period between end of the Persian Wars and the start of Peloponnesian Wars, "Greece" as a concept or identity was only starting to emerge....
  39. Re: A Pagan take on traditionalism and politicised science.

    If you think European culture is threatened by an even and equal playing field, then you must think European culture is pretty weak. Not to mention that our current mainstream ideas of egalitarianism...
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    Poll: Re: Evolution vs Y.E.C

    Of course the theory of evolution is true. It's scientific fact. There's no getting around it.
    If your religion contradicts the scientific facts, change your religion. I believe in a multitude of...
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