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Discussion Forums » General Discussion
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Hypothetical Question on Religion
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1 Oct 2010, 17:30
Greta Garbage
Bloop Community Organizer
Post Count: 297
I'm agnostic by choice, Jewish by birth. I have a general question for you guys.

Apparently there was a survey given to find out how much we really know about religion and they were saying that Athiests knew more about religion than Christians, Catholics, and Jews. Chris, aka Anonymous Source, posted a YouTube video of this guy who basically thinks that most people who follow religion do so because their families do and they were brought up to believe the way they do.

My question is, if you weren't brought up as a Catholic, Christian, or Jew would you follow your religion anyways or choose to follow something else? Do you feel you're only Catholic, Christian, or Jewish because you were brought up that way or you want to be in that religion?

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1 Oct 2010, 18:40
Poetic Justice
Post Count: 229
I'd answer that if I really had any idea what religion I'd follow, but honestly I don't. And I guess I'm in that boat about not knowing much about any religion, even though my family is religious. I find it interesting, but not interesting enough to read up on, you know?

I will say this, though- From past experience, Atheists (real Atheists, not just trolling little kids trying to be rebellious) do seem to know more about religions than the actual people that follow them do. I would say the reason being a toss up of some of them wanting to know enough about the topic to make an educated decision for themselves, and some of them 'learning the facts' because they know that their beliefs are still not widely accepted, and occasionally religious people will start fights with them about it. Naturally, they want to make sure they defend their beliefs without looking like an idiot.
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1 Oct 2010, 19:06
Lacey
Post Count: 144
I think this sort of goes to the point of when you are taught something growing up it becomes a belief. Thats why all these religions, the people who follow them, fully believe that religion is the one and only TRUE religion and so on and so forth. So I was born and raised a Christian, and so that is what I BELIEVE is true, if I was born into a Muslim family I would believe that was true because thats how I was raised and what I was taught.

At least thats the way that I look at it.

I haven't studied other religions to find which one I think is best for me, I just know that I am Christian because that is what I have grown up to believe.

I dont know if this has much to stand on in the subject but I also am not a 'hard core' Christian, I dont go to church and I dont run around pushing my beliefs on other people, its just what, if asked, I classify myself as. I dont know everything I am sure I should about my religion, and I dont know much but the bare basics of any others. I believe there is one God, his son is Jesus Christ who died on the cross to save our sins and will one day come back to take the believers.

Ignorance is bliss maybe? But the way I look at it is that it matters HOW you were raised and by who, children growing up are impressionable, obviously, and if your taught something your whole life, thats typically what One would believe.
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1 Oct 2010, 19:08
Lacey
Post Count: 144
Oo.. I forgot to post. My fiance's coworker believes in LITTERALLY his own religion, he was never introduced to any church, religion, ANYTHING growing up and went and made up his own explaination for why things are the way they are and how the world works... Crazy way out there beliefs if you ask me, but interesting to see another point of view on it all.
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1 Oct 2010, 21:47
Jessica [Private]
Post Count: 1751
I was baptized Catholic, but for the majority of my life I went to an Assembly of God church - because my two closest friends growing up both went there, and I'd go with them to youth nights and stuff.

I identify with Catholicism because I know the most about it. But I also know the basics of a few other religions through friends and my own research. I'd say Judaism is probably the religion I know best after Catholicism simply because I have several Jewish friends, and I'll ask them about it, the same with Serbian Orthodox and Islam. I've also researched Russian Orthodox a bit.

I really don't think one religion is better than the other. There are things in every religion that I don't believe in.


I think being raised a certain religion sets the basis for what religion you are. But that how you're brought up determines if you stay with that religion of your own choice. If you're raised in a home where God is law, then I'm sure that's how you'll live the rest of your life and how you'll raise your children. Whereas if you're brought up in a home where you go to church and you leave your religion there or you don't go to church at all, I think you're more likely to look into other religions and question your own.

But obviously that doesn't apply to everyone, myself included. My father has said numerous times "We're Roman Catholic. It's not changing." even though he hasn't gone to church a day in his adult life lol.


I'm just sticking to my own religion, I'll call it Jessism. I believe in God, and the Westboro people are insane. Amen ;)
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2 Oct 2010, 09:00
Chris
Post Count: 1938
I mean, everyone in the world already has an inherent, unspoken answer to that question, and it doesn't even really need to be answered. If they have deviated from their religion, then they probably would. If they haven't, then they probably wouldn't.
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2 Oct 2010, 09:33
Giggle
Post Count: 279
‎"Religion is like language or dress. We gravitate towards the practices with which we were raised. In the end, though, we're all proclaiming the same thing. That life has meaning. That we are grateful for the power that created us."

This is something I came across recently in a book I was reading and I believe in it %100. Most of the time when you're born and raised to believe a certain religion is the correct path for you that's what you're naturally gonna follow. Most people are just looking for spirituality and a connection to the higher power that created us so as long as they're provided with that connection in the form of whatever religion they were born into they're gonna stick with it because that saves them the trouble of having to ask questions for themselves and finding the answers.
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2 Oct 2010, 22:43
*~Loving You~*
Post Count: 507
hmm, well i was baptized as luteurn (sp), and when my mom took me in, she raised me catholic, when i was 16 i had a choice to confirm myself to catholicism (committing myself to be a catholic for life) and i choose to stay catholic and promised not to look at other options. i have seen and visited other churchs and had other christian friends (diff relg.) so i am pretty happy with my choice.
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3 Oct 2010, 17:07
Acid Fairy
Post Count: 1849
I was christened Church of England and went to a C of E school. I was taught about heaven and the birth of Jesus etc, but I can't remember if I ever really believed in it or just thought it was a nice story. I know I never ever believed in the story of creation.

When I got older and started to really think about it, I rejected it as a load of horse shit. My parents are agnostic but I am very much an atheist. It took me a while to get from tentative atheist to absolutely positive, 100% atheist, but I got there, and all my own!
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3 Oct 2010, 17:14
Acid Fairy
Post Count: 1849
And regarding the study, I think atheists score well because they research lots of religions and therefore have a broader knowledge base than say a Christian or Hindu does. I personally have done quite a bit of research into the Christian and Muslim faiths, as they are the most often talked about, so I like to think I have a good grounding in them but I would not profess to know a lot about them, just that I reject their beliefs.

The Guardian linked to a briefer version of that test and I scored pretty well but fell down on the questions that were America-specific. Even so, I still scored something like 76% which was higher than average for my age and gender.
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7 Oct 2010, 14:13
Lovin'MyLittles
Post Count: 322
I was raised "non denominational" christian. My Grandparents attended churches and I went with them but there were many different "flavors" so to speak.
Initially I liked going but only because I felt better about myself after I went to church... I realized as I got older that you aren't supposed to feel better about yourself simply because you went to church on Sunday. It doesn't mean you're a better person, or a worse person for NOT going. I realized that, as I got older and started to form my own opinions on things... that there are very few churches that I actually feel comfortable in. I've also realized that I disagree with a good 50-75% of what most Churches teach, so what's the point in going?
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8 Oct 2010, 14:43
DivaAshley
Post Count: 242
I wasn't brought up as anything. My mom and dad never could agree, so we just didn't go to church. My mom and dad NEVER talked to me about God or religion. I came to my own conclusions, and I'm a Christian.
I went to church with friends in High School, but at that point it was more for fun with friends, rather than worshiping and growing in Christ. I think the clincher for me was when I took a World Literature class and it turned into my professor doing everything he could to show us that there is no God, and that NONE of the religions are right, and every religious person is an idiot. There were some heated debates, I learned a LOT.
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1 Oct 2010, 18:52
Meghans Follie
Post Count: 433
I was raised Seventh-day Adventist. If asked what denomination of Protestant I am I will tell people that I am a very liberal SDA. I still believe in 95% of what the church teaches, I just don't go as regularly as I did growing up, and have parted ways in some of the beliefs re: daily living.
However the reason that I do not attend church every week anymore has nothing to do with my becoming an adult and living on my own and more with my dislike of the local church.
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1 Oct 2010, 19:13
kein mitleid
Post Count: 592
I wouldn't go so far to say that atheists know more about religion than theists, as it seems rather a large generalization. (Although there are some rather comical statistics regarding knowledge/education vs. religion.)

However, most atheists start off being raised under one particular religion, then reach the ability to choose, test the waters, so to speak, and decide for themselves. I was raised Catholic, switched to evangelical Christian in my teen years (Assemblies of God), and then went atheist once I reached adulthood.

My mother is Catholic, she was brought up that way. Her mother is Catholic. And so on it goes -- it seems usually people "inherit" their parents religion, for the most part.
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2 Oct 2010, 05:53
~Aiure
Post Count: 118
I was raised Christian. Strangely enough, my parents rarely went to church, and instead relied on our next door neighbours (who were close enough to be family) to take my sister and I with them. I was very active in the local Salvation Army til I moved when I was 10. I was given one of the Army's Bibles when I left, and though I never went to church after that, I'd read the Bible clear through by the time I was 12. Trouble was, I didn't believe much of it. I was much more fascinated by the tales in a book my parents had on the paranormal than I was about the stories of the Bible, and that led me to do some research and find my own path.

I don't think I'll ever be sure if my parents' indifferent attitude toward Christianity sowed the seed of doubt, or if I myself was entirely responsible. But I do firmly believe that you have the right to question anything taught to you. You shouldn't feel obligated to blindly follow it simply for tradition's sake.
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2 Oct 2010, 14:39
~RedFraggle~
Post Count: 2651
Of course how you're raised is usually responsible for what you believe. I was raised Christian, and it feels right to me so I stuck with it. I disagree that athiests know more about the religions than the people following them. I'd say athiests often just think they know more! An athiest friend of mine recently told me I wasn't a Christian because I don't believe all athiests go to hell. She said that was the definition of Christianity and was quite adamant that she knows more about Christianity than I do.

That said I think in the UK religious education is taught well in schools so kids learn about all the different major religions. It concerns me that this isn't the case everywhere. If a child is only taught about Christianity we can't then be surprised when as adults they show a lack of respect towards other religions. And this is one thing which concerns me about Christian schools or homeschooling.
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2 Oct 2010, 15:51
Chris
Post Count: 1938
I mean the study doesn't say that atheists think they know more about religion than the religious do. I can safely say that I personally know more about religion (in terms of history and facts, rather than the philosophy) than most of the religious I know. If you really think about it, it explains a lot.
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2 Oct 2010, 16:24
~RedFraggle~
Post Count: 2651
I wonder if that is maybe more correct in the US than in the UK. I get the impression that American Christians for example are bigger on the idea of hiding their kids from other religions. Some sort of fear that if they learn of other religions they may be tempted by them I guess. I think this is part of the reason why Christian schools and homeschooling is so much mote common over there, and would certainly explain some of the lack of knowledge. In the UK however most Christians believe that is important for their children to learn about other religions (and this is taught in schools from an early age) so that they can understand and respect others.
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2 Oct 2010, 16:26
Chris
Post Count: 1938
Of coooooooourse, it has everything to do with the fact that these are American-religious we're talking about. It didn't occur to me until I realized that I'm pretty sure we had this exact same discussion before. :P
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3 Oct 2010, 16:01
Fiat
Post Count: 288
I was raised Catholic but hated, hated, hated it. I almost tore my family apart with my despise for any form of religion whatsoever. My family left the Catholic Church and began attending an Assemblies of God church (with me kicking and screaming the entire way). Out of nowhere I suddenly came to faith in Christ, a phenomenon that was unexplained, unplanned, and actually a tad bit unwanted at the time. That was it though. I became a Christian and have actually become more enthusiastic about my faith than the adults who raised me to be this way. At this time I'm exploring my Catholic roots again and finding much truth there. This will outrage my parents no doubt, as they've since denounced Catholicism (and carry a bit of bitterness towards the Church as well).

So to answer your questions, yes I was raised Catholic, but I came to faith in Christ on my own. Now I'm considering going back full circle to where I started, prompted only by my own desire to learn and grow. When considering how I "got here," so to speak, I really don't place much emphasis on my upbringing.
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3 Oct 2010, 16:36
jessi bear(:
Post Count: 300
Do you feel that you would be considering Catholicism again if you didn't have a basis in it from your childhood?
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3 Oct 2010, 16:45
Fiat
Post Count: 288
I would have to say yes, given the fact that my only experiences as a young Catholic were very negative. In fact, when I recently started studying Catholicism I did so a bit reluctantly. Even though I knew it was making theological sense to me, it was tough to get past my negative experiences (all of which were from people, not the faith itself). So yes, I think I would still be considering Catholicism regardless of my upbringing because I'm doing so despite my childhood, not because of it. I hope this makes sense, lol.
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3 Oct 2010, 22:59
jessi bear(:
Post Count: 300
@MadeToShine

Yes, it made sense.(: I'm glad you didn't take my question negatively!
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7 Oct 2010, 20:20
Jessica [Private]
Post Count: 1751
You know, I find that very interesting.
I went to a Catholic church when I was very young (but only for holidays) and started going to an Assembly of God church when I was in middle school. From what I remember about my Catholic church, I didn't really notice a difference between the two (minus kneeling ;))
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3 Oct 2010, 18:17
American
Post Count: 221
I believe I would believe the same as I do because I believe in truth.
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