If your Spiritual Orientation is CHRISTIAN….

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Christianity is the most popular religion in the world today, with an estimated two billion followers around the world, and is the predominant religion in the two American continents, Europe, Australia and sub-Saharan Africa. Thus if a person’s spiritual orientation is actually NEUTRAL, then he is most likely to be Christian because there are simply more Christian families in the world than those of any other religion. However, there are people who, even if they are raised in a non-Christian religion, may be unhappy with their family’s faith and may decide that Christianity is a better one for them. This blog entry is for them as well as for others that may be looking for a “true” version of the Christian faith, whatever their original background.

  1. Remember that Jesus, said to be the founder of Christianity, was a JEW, as were his early disciples. Therefore anyone who is a genuine Christian would also love and respect the Jewish religion and people. Anti-Semitism should have absolutely NO place among Christians.
  2. Jesus himself wrote nothing that survives to this day; what you read about him in the Christian Scriptures (commonly called the New Testament) are second-hand accounts of what some people thought he said. Do not take those quotations at face value. Do not believe that the Bible or any part of it is the infallible Word of God. That is actually an insult to any real God that may exist. Remember that one form of idolatry is attributing God’s glory to anything man-made, including books that have references to God himself in them.
  3. The many references in the Christian Scriptures to the coming of the kingdom of God were interpreted by many Christian leaders as referring to the literal coming of Jesus to conquer the world and directly rule it afterwards. This is absurd; if that was the case, it should have happened while the generation that lived in the time of Jesus still was around. They have all been dead for over 1900 years. Those prophecies must already have been fulfilled with the rise of Christianity to take over the formerly Pagan dominated Roman Empire. Writers like Hal Lindsey who claimed otherwise were lying to us.
  4. Remember that the Apostle Paul, who wrote about half of the Christian Scriptures that were later accepted by the early Christian community as valid, was not even an original disciple of Jesus. He led some of the early Christians, including many from non-Jewish backgrounds, in a very different direction from the groups that consisted mostly of Jews. The Jewish groups eventually faded away, leaving the non-Jewish ones. The result was a badly distorted faith. After all these centuries, we simply have no way of knowing if Paul was a legitimate Christian leader or not.
  5. In most cases, you must be a CHRISTIAN and nothing else. Do NOT claim as your primary religious identity any subdivision within Christianity, such as Roman Catholic, Baptist, Methodist, Mormon, or anything else. You would be a Christian who might go to a Baptist or Catholic church, but that’s it. Reject as necessary or justified any division within the Christian community that claims to be the one true religion. It is only CHRISTIANITY itself that ever should have made that claim. Not Mormonism, not the Jehovah’s Witnesses, nor any other such radical “reformist” or “restorationist” group within Christianity. These are simply additional divisions that do more damage to the credibility of Christianity itself.
  6. There is one exception to this: if you are also a member of a religious group that is actually multifaith, like the Unitarian Universalist Association. Then you should distinguish yourself from non-Christian UUs, but also celebrate the UUism you have in common with them. Check out this website:  http://uuchristian.org/
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If Your Spiritual Orientation is HUMANIST…

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Here is some advice to a person who has decided for whatever reason that he cannot believe in a god of any kind. This actually includes myself, so I may be biased here. Such a person may be called an atheist, an agnostic, or a secular humanist. For the sake of simplicity, I will lump all of them together under the Humanist label.

  • Do not assume that because you have rejected theism that most people who accept a theistic religion are stupid. They may indeed have a different spiritual orientation than you. Respect them anyway, just as you would want them to respect you.
  • One of the worst things you can do to damage your credibility is to only care about the rights and dignity of your fellow non-theists and ignore everyone else.  Stand up and defend the rights and dignity of ALL religious people too, including Jews, Muslims, Christians, and others.
  • Just because you are non-theist does not mean that all other non-theists should be embraced. If a famous non-theist is known to be a racist, have committed acts of sexual abuse, or has committed theft or murder, reject him.
  • It is  true that people of various religions have committed atrocities against outsiders. But so have non-theists who followed an extremist ideology, like Communism. It is DOGMA that kills people, not religion.
  • You can find fellowship in the following organizations:  the American Humanist Association (https://americanhumanist.org/), or the UU Humanist Association (http://huumanists.org/).

In short, don’t be like Madalyn Murray O’Hair, the founder of American Atheists. Or Ayn Rand, the founder of Objectivism. Those two arrogant, bigoted extremists brought disgrace to atheism in America that is still a problem to this day. I wish neither of them had ever existed.

Treachery of Baha’is @ reddit

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Ever since I joined reddit, I have found it a useful way to connect with others and put out information about certain topics as well as read information from others. Unfortunately, there have been attempts by some to suppress such information.

Take a look at this:

https://www.reddit.com/r/OnThisDateInBahai

This community has been banned

This subreddit was banned due to being used for spam. If you’d like to take it over please make a post in /r/redditrequest

Uh, I was a subscriber to that community and am prepared to testify under oath that any claim that its users were spamming is a LIE. All it did was post information about Baha’i history, including some criticism of it.

It was created by https://www.reddit.com/user/A35821361

This account has been suspended

So both the community and the user that made it were banned from reddit! But I have known that guy for months and he is NOT a spammer.

What really happened was that someone, most likely a Baha’i, REPORTED A35821361 for spamming merely because he sent that person a message, probably with one or more links to information on his community. That is NOT spamming!

This sort of treachery is why I have absolutely NO respect anymore for the Baha’i Faith, because it seems to make its followers engage in backstabbing like this!

And when we ex-Baha’is try to get that community back under our control:

dragfyre 1 point  

I am the top mod of r/bahaihistory, and would love to mod this subreddit to allow us to split off our existing “On This Day…” content into its own subreddit. Our subreddit has existed for a while, and is currently supported by the Today in History project on Bahaikipedia.

aGreenTeaLatte 2 points

That would be an excellent idea! I second this. r/bahaihistory does need a complementary subreddit to cater to its daily posts, leaving r/bahaihistory for more in-depth discussions of Baha’i history. I think connecting it with the Bahaikipedia project also extends its potential for a subreddit that draws on multiple redditors collaborating.

Also, having a mod with demonstrated experience running and expanding subreddits, collaborating and developing the capacity of others to start modding too, will prevent spam by one individual seeking to make a subreddit his/her own personal message board in future, as was the unfortunate case with r/OnThisDateInBahai.

dragfyre and aGreenTeaLatte are certainly people I will be wary of in the future. Who is to say that in a few more months they won’t try to suppress the original ex-Baha’i community in reddit as well?

The banned user has now created a new blog of Baha’i history:
http://onthisdateinbahaihistory.blogspot.com/?m=0

Let the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, never be suppressed!

 

A Critical Analysis of the Will and Testament of Abdu’l-Baha, Part 3

This is the final part of my detailed criticism of one of the foundational documents of the Baha’i Faith. The first part is here and the second is here.

As before, the actual text from that Will and Testament is in green bold and my responses will be mainly in orange italics.  My source for the document is:

http://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/abdul-baha/will-testament-abdul-baha/#r=wta_en-title

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A Critical Analysis of the Will and Testament of Abdu’l-Baha, Part 2

This is the second part of my detailed criticism of one of the foundational documents of the Baha’i Faith. The first part is here.

As before, the actual text from that Will and Testament is in green bold and my responses will be mainly in orange italics.  My source for the document is:

http://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/abdul-baha/will-testament-abdul-baha/#r=wta_en-title

Continue reading

A Critical Analysis of the Will and Testament of Abdu’l-Baha, Part 1

Just as I wrote a detailed criticism of the Kitab-i-Aqdas last year, so now I will proceed to deal with another issue of Baha’i history and dogma. Since the original document I am analyzing was written in three parts, so will this criticism. The original document will be in green bold and my responses will be mostly orange italics.  My source for the document is:

http://www.bahai.org/library/authoritative-texts/abdul-baha/will-testament-abdul-baha/#r=wta_en-title

Continue reading