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MacAllister
02-24-2009, 06:41 AM
This is an experiment. And yes, it's for exactly what the thread-description says it's for. So that those of us weirdos who LIKE a rousing discussion about politics and religion over an otherwise civilized meal have a place where we can talk about fundamental differences, similarities, and oddities...without invading anyone's territory and so inadvertently causing offense.

So welcome to our new room. We're still in the construction process, so if you have something you'd like us to be thinking about as we define this new space on AW, please feel free to chime right in. You can PM me privately, if you're shy. :)

Fenika
02-24-2009, 06:42 AM
First!

Looks nice. I like the stained glass :)

Seaclusion
02-24-2009, 06:44 AM
Oh boy, This is going to be fun to watch:popcorn:

Richard

Calla Lily
02-24-2009, 06:45 AM
Love that new carpet smell...

Where should I set this plate of snickerdoodles?

CACTUSWENDY
02-24-2009, 06:48 AM
This should be interesting......:popcorn:

MacAllister
02-24-2009, 06:49 AM
Callalily61 brought snickerdoodles, which are my favorite kind of cookie, right behind gingersnaps. I might just build her her very own room. :D

AMCrenshaw
02-24-2009, 06:49 AM
Will psychoanalysts come to eat dinner here as well? I mean, we could invite them...


AMC



ETA: OK I brought some more dessert. Rice pudding? I'm a little poor right now. Forgive me.

Seaclusion
02-24-2009, 06:50 AM
I brought Scotch.

Richard

MacAllister
02-24-2009, 06:50 AM
If we build it, AMC, they will come...

Calla Lily
02-24-2009, 06:53 AM
I make a mean Irish coffee, too.

Religion discussions while drunk--shades of college!

MacAllister
02-24-2009, 06:58 AM
I almost made this a subforum in Colorado Guy's Critical Theory room.


Upon further consideration, though, Critical Theory might arguably be better classified as a subforum in the religions area, actually...

Little Red Barn
02-24-2009, 07:01 AM
Callalily61 brought snickerdoodles, which are my favorite kind of cookie, right behind gingersnaps. I might just build her her very own room. :D
But I brought hot-buttered rum, ahem, your favorite. :D

Haggis
02-24-2009, 07:01 AM
*checks out the sacramental wine in the back room*

Seaclusion
02-24-2009, 07:02 AM
Sorry Haggis. it's under lock and key

Richard

Cassiopeia
02-24-2009, 07:04 AM
I've belonged to some religious debate forums over the years so here's my little input.

1. Perhaps explain how to approach a religion without discussing the participating members.
2. One of my pet peeves: I really and I mean really get twitchy when the definition of "cult" and what constitutes a cult or cultist isn't clearly defined. I've seen so many flame wars start from that one word and it ends up dividing the best of friends.

Yep, that's it for me. Do we need a coffee and cookies stand? :)

AMCrenshaw
02-24-2009, 07:05 AM
These links probably point to the same text, the Dialogue Decalogue. I provided two in case there are extrapolations or the like:

http://www.masscouncilofchurches.org/docs/Dialogue%20decalogue.htm

http://astro.temple.edu/~dialogue/Antho/decalog.htm

AMC

Calla Lily
02-24-2009, 07:05 AM
*checks out the sacramental wine in the back room*

*hits the little undead doggie on the nose with a rolled-up copy of a Dead Sea Scroll*



MacAllister, a question: Should there be an intro thread in which we all say where we're coming from and perhaps why?

Medievalist
02-24-2009, 07:06 AM
I've belonged to some religious debate forums over the years so here's my little input.

1. Perhaps explain how to approach a religion without discussing the participating members.
2. One of my pet peeves: I really and I mean really get twitchy when the definition of "cult" and what constitutes a cult or cultist isn't clearly defined. I've seen so many flame wars start from that one word and it ends up dividing the best of friends.

I'd suggest avoiding "you" and "they" in general.

AMCrenshaw
02-24-2009, 07:08 AM
Rather than cult, New Religious Movement (NRM) might be a more politically correct (PC) phrase:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_religious_movement

http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/1007307/New-Religious-Movement

AMC

Cassiopeia
02-24-2009, 07:17 AM
I'd suggest avoiding "you" and "they" in general.*nods vigorously*

MsK
02-24-2009, 07:17 AM
*pulls up a chair off in a far corner of the place*

:popcorn:

escritora
02-24-2009, 07:17 AM
One of my pet peeves: I really and I mean really get twitchy when the definition of "cult" and what constitutes a cult or cultist isn't clearly defined. I've seen so many flame wars start from that one word and it ends up dividing the best of friends.

When my parents go to Church they say, "We are on our way to the cult." Their pastor even describes the Church as a cult. Maybe it's a Spanish thing?

MacAllister
02-24-2009, 07:19 AM
MacAllister, a question: Should there be an intro thread in which we all say where we're coming from and perhaps why?Great idea. I've started and stickied a thread for just that.


*pulls up a chair off in a far corner of the place*

:popcorn:
BOK bok bok BWOK bok B-bwOK

Medievalist
02-24-2009, 07:23 AM
When my parents go to Church they say, "We are on our way to the cult." Their pastor even describes the Church as a cult. Maybe it's a Spanish thing?

The Romans, who referred to various religious sects of their own that were completely socially acceptable as cults, referred to Judaism and Christianity as cults.

Within non-Christian realms, the ancient Celts absolutely had cults, most notably the cult of the severed head.

In modern terms there are a number of lists that have items that relate to potential socio-political definitions of cults in religious contexts. I note that "cult" is one of the most popular ways to dismiss "the other" in contemporary religious contexts, so yes, it's a potential problem.

Cassiopeia
02-24-2009, 07:28 AM
Cult in of itself isn't a bad word. It's the usage of it that causes the problem. We often used it in our studies at the University of Cape Town along with referring to religious beliefs as myths. Unfortunately not everyone understands this frame of reference.

dirtsider
02-25-2009, 12:15 AM
Cult in of itself isn't a bad word. It's the usage of it that causes the problem. We often used it in our studies at the University of Cape Town along with referring to religious beliefs as myths. Unfortunately not everyone understands this frame of reference.

lol - I was just thinking of Joseph Campbell when I was reading this thread. I believe he was the one who mentioned this. "If I believe it, it's a religion. If you believe it, it's a myth." So yeah, it's definitely all about references and usages.

Saint Fool
02-26-2009, 04:02 AM
Snickerdoodles? and whiskey? And discussion of comparative religious philosophy? Wny thank you, yes, I'll take a seat.

(Should this be a stickey also?)

ColoradoGuy
02-26-2009, 11:23 PM
I almost made this a subforum in Colorado Guy's Critical Theory room.


Upon further consideration, though, Critical Theory might arguably be better classified as a subforum in the religions area, actually...

Yes, I can see that. Since I'm not a card-carrying Critical Theorist, though, my hands are clean.

MissKris
02-28-2009, 12:47 AM
*pulls up next to MsK* Mind if I join you?

benbradley
02-28-2009, 06:36 AM
I almost made this a subforum in Colorado Guy's Critical Theory room.


Upon further consideration, though, Critical Theory might arguably be better classified as a subforum in the religions area, actually...
I can see it now, infinitely recursive subforums. "You're in a maze of twisty subforums, all alike."

Cult in of itself isn't a bad word. It's the usage of it that causes the problem. We often used it in our studies at the University of Cape Town along with referring to religious beliefs as myths. Unfortunately not everyone understands this frame of reference.
Cult once had no negative connotations, and meant (and still does for many academics) a subdivision/group of religious believers similar the word sect (there's differences between these two words in their original use/meanings, but I forget what it is). Some of the first uses as a negative term were in the first half of the 20th Century (there's an article at the link below that talks about how and when this happened, and give a reference to such use), but it appears the use of cult as a pejorative exploded in the '60's and '70's as some groups began recruiting on and getting large numbers of new members from college campuses. Hmm, am I approaching an area that's too specific and too touchy? (okay, I won't name names)

As one might presume, I have (what I consider to be) some experience in this area, and have done a lot of research since that experience. I just counted, I have about ten books with the word cult in the title (there are a few more I read from libraries I don't have copies of), and many more on the same general topic, as well as "source material" published by several of the groups in question (again, not naming names, but if you've seen some of my other posts over the last couple of years...).

Here's a resource I found about eight years ago and have gone back to quite often - it has descriptions of just about every religion, denomination, "sect" and "cult" I've ever heard of, but doesn't classify any as to whether it's a "cult" or not:
http://etext.lib.virginia.edu/nrms/
Go to the link at archive.org to read the thing - pages there can take a while to load, but it's quite interesting - you can read up on your childhood denomination(s) as well as your current one(s), and decide how accurate you think it is. It even covers what I think of as "secular" things, specifically multilevel marketing organizations (it calls them direct sales organizations). I've found it to be quite an impressive resource.

lol - I was just thinking of Joseph Campbell when I was reading this thread. I believe he was the one who mentioned this. "If I believe it, it's a religion. If you believe it, it's a myth." So yeah, it's definitely all about references and usages.
I've seen the video "The Power of Myth" where Campbell was interviewed by/discussed things with Bill Moyers, and I saw the word myth used innumerable times with no negative connotations that I could tell. He appeared to be celebrating the diversity of human beliefs. Maybe he said that in that video, but I don't remember it. I suspect he was "just saying" what many people say about others' beliefs. It's a several-hours-long video and he covered a lot of ground.

I wonder that I've just said as much as I reasonably can in this forum, but fortunately I brought lots of popcorn, so I'll just sit back and watch the show...
:popcorn:

Higgins
03-10-2009, 08:17 PM
Yes, I can see that. Since I'm not a card-carrying Critical Theorist, though, my hands are clean.

Perhaps I should have introduced myself. As a card-carrying critical theorist (in the sense that I think Martin Rudwick and Peter Galison are revealing new things about how to figure out how people figure things out)...I think religion is something about which an vast heap of unexamined assumptions are cirulating these days. This is true of most things (ie a vast heap of unexamined assumptions circulating these days), but it seems especially odd in the realm of religion where a lot of people have a lot of day-today experiences of a religious nature.

I'm off to introduce myself.