History Main / ArtisticLicenseTraditionalChristianity

16th Dec '17 12:23:24 AM Perey
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*** While it is kind of true that Easter has some ''symbolic'' things in common with pagan beliefs, it's more complex than that, and Easter does in fact have much more than "a vague "baptism" of being Jesus' Resurrection." Early Christians used to call the celebration of Christ’s resurrection “Pesach,” the Hebrew word for Passover; today, many languages use a variation of that name: “Pesach” in French, “Pascua” in Spanish, “Pasqua” in Italian, “Pashkë” in Albanian and “Pask” in Swedish. The English word, Easter, comes from a stranger source: a pagan fertility goddess named Eostre (also known as Astarte or Oster). The festival of Eostre always took place around the spring equinox, so early Christian missionaries in Europe (only in Europe mind you) gradually melded the festival’s name, timing, and some of its symbols into the Christian celebration. “The missionaries adapted a tremendous amount of the cultures from where they were doing their work into the faith, in large part to make people feel comfortable,” says Ace Collins, author of ''Stories Behind the Traditions and Songs of Easter''. “Eventually, the Christian celebration took the place of the pagan festival.” So Easter doesn't really have pagan roots seeing as how many cultures don't even call the holiday Easter or celebrate the pagan aspect of it, and even then Easter or Pesach was celebrated by early Christians long before they added in any pagan traditions in to it (Christmas is a similar case).

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*** While it is kind of true that Easter has some ''symbolic'' things in common with pagan beliefs, it's more complex than that, and Easter does in fact have much more than "a vague "baptism" of being Jesus' Resurrection." Early Christians used to call the celebration of Christ’s resurrection “Pesach,” the Hebrew word for Passover; today, many languages use a variation of that name: “Pesach” in French, “Pascua” in Spanish, “Pasqua” in Italian, “Pashkë” in Albanian and “Pask” in Swedish. The English word, Easter, comes from a stranger source: a pagan fertility goddess named Eostre (also known as Astarte or Oster).(or Eastre). The festival of Eostre always took place around the spring equinox, so early Christian missionaries in Europe (only in Europe mind you) gradually melded the festival’s name, timing, and some of its symbols into the Christian celebration. “The missionaries adapted a tremendous amount of the cultures from where they were doing their work into the faith, in large part to make people feel comfortable,” says Ace Collins, author of ''Stories Behind the Traditions and Songs of Easter''. “Eventually, the Christian celebration took the place of the pagan festival.” So Easter doesn't really have pagan roots seeing as how many cultures don't even call the holiday Easter or celebrate the pagan aspect of it, and even then Easter or Pesach was celebrated by early Christians long before they added in any pagan traditions in to it (Christmas is a similar case).
20th Nov '17 12:16:08 PM CaptEquinox
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* Claiming that God declared the human body sinful during the Fall of Man (after Adam and Eve were kicked out of Eden). Actually, after being tempted by Satan to eat the ForbiddenFruit, Adam and Eve's (spiritual) eyes had opened, and they began to see everything as shameful, including their own bodies (they were unaware of their nudity until now). So, they attempted to cover them up by making "aprons" out of fig leaves (some versions of the Bible imply that only their genitals were covered with a single leaf) and hiding from God in the trees, but He calls them out on this. God did give them better clothing than the "aprons" after kicking them out, mainly because He had cursed the Earth with things like thorns as punishment, so their bodies would occasionally need protection from the harsh world outside; never did He say that they must be covered up at all times. Plus, He still loved and cared for them even though they sinned. [[http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Genesis%203:1-24&version=NIV]]

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* Claiming that God declared the human body sinful during the Fall of Man (after Adam and Eve were kicked out of Eden). Actually, after being tempted by Satan to eat the ForbiddenFruit, Adam and Eve's (spiritual) eyes had opened, and they began to see everything as shameful, including their own bodies (they were unaware of their nudity until now). (They already knew about sex; God asked them to 'be fruitful and multiply' while they were still in the garden.) So, they attempted to cover them up by making "aprons" out of fig leaves (some versions of the Bible imply that only their genitals were covered with a single leaf) and hiding from God in the trees, but He calls them out on this. God did give them better clothing than the "aprons" after kicking them out, mainly because He had cursed the Earth with things like thorns as punishment, so their bodies would occasionally need protection from the harsh world outside; never did He say that they must be covered up at all times. Plus, He still loved and cared for them even though they sinned. [[http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Genesis%203:1-24&version=NIV]]
20th Nov '17 12:10:32 PM CaptEquinox
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* Catholicism is often claimed to be quasi-polytheistic by non-Catholics (veneration of saints and the Mother Mary). Catholics don't actually worship the saints, including Mary, any more than they worship icons such as the crucifix. They usually get annoyed when people accuse them of this. In actual fact, when Catholics pray to the saints they ask them to 'intercede' with God on their behalf, basically asking the saint or Mary to speak up for them to God.

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* Catholicism is often claimed to be quasi-polytheistic by non-Catholics (veneration of saints and the Mother Mary). Catholics don't actually worship the saints, including Mary, any more than they worship icons such as the crucifix.crucifix, or "pray to statues". They usually get annoyed when people accuse them of this. In actual fact, when Catholics pray to the saints they ask them to 'intercede' with God on their behalf, basically asking the saint or Mary to speak up for them to God.
19th Nov '17 7:14:34 PM WaterBlap
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* The GrandpaGod image of God as a white-haired, bearded old man has its origins in Medieval and Rennaisance art, which was in turn heavily based on ClassicalMythology. That being the case, the charge that Christians worship a "bearded man in the sky" is very much mistaken. For the ''vast'' majority of Christians, God's form isn't confined by space or time at all, let alone in a humanoid form.[[note]]A notable exception would be the Mormons, who believe that God has a physical, human-like form, and that he resides on a distant planet.[[/note]] The Biblical depiction of God would be more closer to an EldritchAbomination which [[YouCannotGraspTheTrueForm seeing him would have you disintegrated]]. The earliest Christians took that description so seriously that, for centuries, there was a strict taboo on depicting God in images at all, not unlike the prohibition that exists in Islam.

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* The GrandpaGod image of God as a white-haired, bearded old man has its origins in Medieval and Rennaisance art, which was in turn heavily based on ClassicalMythology.Myth/ClassicalMythology. That being the case, the charge that Christians worship a "bearded man in the sky" is very much mistaken. For the ''vast'' majority of Christians, God's form isn't confined by space or time at all, let alone in a humanoid form.[[note]]A notable exception would be the Mormons, who believe that God has a physical, human-like form, and that he resides on a distant planet.[[/note]] The Biblical depiction of God would be more closer to an EldritchAbomination which [[YouCannotGraspTheTrueForm seeing him would have you disintegrated]]. The earliest Christians took that description so seriously that, for centuries, there was a strict taboo on depicting God in images at all, not unlike the prohibition that exists in Islam.
6th Nov '17 6:29:37 PM SoapheadChurch
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Further, the particular sun-centric date was foreign to either of the two Roman temples of the sun. The one to whom Aurelian's clan belonged celebrated its dedication festival on August 28, but by the second century, both temples had fallen into disuse and neglect by the second century, when the eastern sun cult Mithraism was gaining ground. And none of the above had ceremonies dealing with Equinoxes or Solstices.

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** Further, the particular sun-centric date was foreign to either of the two Roman temples of the sun. The one to whom Aurelian's clan belonged celebrated its dedication festival on August 28, but by the second century, both temples had fallen into disuse and neglect by the second century, when the eastern sun cult Mithraism was gaining ground. And none of the above had ceremonies dealing with Equinoxes or Solstices.



* {{Hell}}. Any time Hell is depicted as "the Devil's domain", typically with {{Satan}} sitting on a throne of skulls, idly twiddling his pitchfork while the damned are marched by in chains. The Bible clearly teaches that Hell (well, the Lake of Fire at least) was always intended as a punishment for Satan, not as a kingdom. The closest analogue to a realm of the dead is Sheol or the grave -- a place where the dead go, but not for punishment or reward. It seems to be a place where absolutely nothing happens.
** This misconception comes from the line in ''Literature/ParadiseLost'': "Better to rule in Hell, than serve in Heaven." However, it is obviously just metaphorical. The text states the non-literal aspect explicitly: "You'll find no realms there."
*** Satan ''does'' have some autonomy in ''Literature/ParadiseLost''; he breaks his chains and founds a city (Pandaemonium). However, it's clear that he's still being tormented (both by the fires and by the absence of God), and that he has no actual power over the damned.
** The traditional view of FireAndBrimstoneHell is due to distinctions LostInTranslation. The word "Hell" is used as a translation for FOUR words used in the initial writing of Literature/TheBible in its original languages: ''Sheol'', ''Hades'', a single mention of ''Tartarus'' (2 Peter 2:4), and ''Gehenna''. ''Sheol'' is a Hebrew word and ''Hades'' is Greek; both mean the same thing, the abode of the dead for all humans, whether good or bad, at least until Armageddon, and used in conjunction with Ecclesiastes 9:5 would refer to CessationOfExistence. ''Gehenna'' is a Greek word that when translated means "Valley of Hinnom", which was a trash dump where garbage filth, corpses of criminals, and the like were burned. Jesus re-purposed this word to refer to the future eventual end and KarmicDeath of the wicked, whether human or demon, and also has the same symbolic meaning as the Lake of Fire in Revelation. Not everyone agrees whether it is a place of eternal torment or [[KilledOffForReal eternal]] [[DeaderThanDead destruction]]. Unfortunately, Bible translators usually translate all four words as "Hell", despite that ''Gehenna'' has a different meaning from the first two, thus causing a lot of confusion. More recent translations such as the New Living tend to put Sheol and Hades as "The Grave" and Tartarus and Gehenna as "Hell" (or leave them untranslated).

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* {{Hell}}. Any time Hell is depicted as "the Devil's domain", typically with {{Satan}} sitting on a throne of skulls, idly twiddling his pitchfork while the damned are marched by in chains. The Bible clearly teaches that Hell (well, the Lake of Fire at least) was always intended as a punishment for Satan, not as a kingdom. The closest analogue to a realm of the dead is Sheol or the grave -- a place where the dead go, but not for punishment or reward. It seems to be a place where absolutely nothing happens.
**
happens. This misconception comes from the line in ''Literature/ParadiseLost'': "Better to rule in Hell, than serve in Heaven." However, it when read in the context of the rest of the poem, it's pretty clear that Satan is obviously just metaphorical. The lying to himself (Which the text states the non-literal aspect explicitly: makes explicit: "You'll find no realms there."
***
"). Satan ''does'' have some autonomy in ''Literature/ParadiseLost''; he breaks his chains and founds a city (Pandaemonium). However, it's clear that he's still being tormented (both by the fires and by the absence of God), and that he has no actual power over the damned.
** * Similarly, Satan isn't the one doing the punishing in Hell; that's God's job (or more precisely, that's the job of Hell itself, since simply being there is the punishment). Satan is getting punished alongside everyone else, and his role is to ensure that others share in his misery.
*
The traditional view of FireAndBrimstoneHell is due to distinctions LostInTranslation. The word "Hell" is used as a translation for FOUR words used in the initial writing of Literature/TheBible in its original languages: ''Sheol'', ''Hades'', a single mention of ''Tartarus'' (2 Peter 2:4), and ''Gehenna''. ''Sheol'' is a Hebrew word and ''Hades'' is Greek; both mean the same thing, the abode of the dead for all humans, whether good or bad, at least until Armageddon, and used in conjunction with Ecclesiastes 9:5 would refer to CessationOfExistence. ''Gehenna'' is a Greek word that when translated means "Valley of Hinnom", which was a trash dump where garbage filth, corpses of criminals, and the like were burned. Jesus re-purposed this word to refer to the future eventual end and KarmicDeath of the wicked, whether human or demon, and also has the same symbolic meaning as the Lake of Fire in Revelation. Not everyone agrees whether it is a place of eternal torment or [[KilledOffForReal eternal]] [[DeaderThanDead destruction]]. Unfortunately, Bible translators usually translate all four words as "Hell", despite that ''Gehenna'' has a different meaning from the first two, thus causing a lot of confusion. More recent translations such as the New Living tend to put Sheol and Hades as "The Grave" and Tartarus and Gehenna as "Hell" (or leave them untranslated).



* On that note, any time Satan is depicted as an "opposite but equal" force to God the Father or Jesus. The passage cited as his {{backstory}} (whether it is or not), in Isaiah, depicts him as a fallen angel. God is ''infinite''. Satan is not. The reason Satan even thinks he can oppose God is the same reason rebellious edgy teens tend to think they're going to live forever (since that's basically ''exactly'' what he is).
** [[BlackAndWhiteMorality Dualism]] influenced some sects of early Christian Gnosticism, & some were quite open to the possibility of two equal deities. Then the [[HijackedByJesus Council of Nicaea]] decided to take issue with some [[NoSuchThingAsWizardJesus creative differences]] found in [[TheHeretic Gnostic beliefs]], wrote up a [[GodIsGood Creed]], & [[ChurchMilitant set up shop]].
** Beyond the issue of relative power or lack thereof, Satan is believed to have already been defeated via Jesus' Crucifixion and Resurrection, and is at this point on borrowed time waiting for the other foot to come down.

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* On that note, any time Satan is depicted as an "opposite but equal" force to God the Father or Jesus. The passage cited as his {{backstory}} (whether it is or not), in Isaiah, depicts him as a fallen angel. God is ''infinite''. Satan is not. The reason Satan even thinks he can oppose God is the same reason rebellious edgy teens tend to think they're going to live forever (since that's basically ''exactly'' what he is).
**
is). [[BlackAndWhiteMorality Dualism]] influenced some sects of early Christian Gnosticism, & some were quite open to the possibility of two equal deities. Then the [[HijackedByJesus Council of Nicaea]] decided to take issue with some [[NoSuchThingAsWizardJesus creative differences]] found in [[TheHeretic Gnostic beliefs]], wrote up a [[GodIsGood Creed]], & [[ChurchMilitant set up shop]].
**
shop]]. Beyond the issue of relative power or lack thereof, Satan is believed by most Christians to have already been defeated via Jesus' Crucifixion and Resurrection, and is at this point on borrowed time waiting for the other foot to come down.down. The only exceptions are the grimmest of Evangelical sects, and the Jehovah's Witnesses, who believe that Satan currently rules the world. But even these groups believe that Satan is destined to inevitably lose out to God at some point in the future.



* The theory of Limbo is commonly misunderstood, and sometimes confused with purgatory. Limbo is supposedly a place for those who cannot enter heaven, but do not deserve Hell, and is actually a term for two realms: the Limbo of the Infants, where infants who die before being baptized end up, and the Limbo of the Fathers, where folks like Moses and Samuel ended up before Jesus allowed them to enter heaven. It is therefore distinct from purgatory as being a permanent residence (or semi-permanent in the case of the Fathers) rather than a temporary place of purification. Also, while purgatory is a place of punishment, if only temporary, Limbo is essentially heaven-lite: a place of "natural" (as opposed to divine) happiness. The most important difference between the two, however, is that, while Limbo has been postulated by several important church figures (like St. Augustine), it has ''never'' been adopted as an official church doctrine. The Church officially takes no position on the matter, except to essentially say "GodIsGood, so He will make sure everyone gets what they deserve". A plurality of opinions exist on the subject, which the Church maintains are all equally valid. For example, Pope Benedict XVI, when he was still a Cardinal, went on record to say that he believes that he believes unbaptized infants would enter heaven, to absolutely no controversy.



* One of the most prevailing myths about Catholic Missionaries is that they are there to force something on people. There may be other [[ChurchMilitant Christian groups]] that do do this, but the RCC is not one of them. The main point of a mission is humanitarian aid, missionaries become missionaries for the same reason people volunteer for other charities - they want to help people! The first buildings established by a mission tend to be rudimentary medical facilities, then moving on to schools. It is generally the people themselves who ask for them to build a church. Missionary work is some of the hardest and most dangerous on the planet, the fact that missionaries protect the communities they join and are often ''celebrated'' by them, and the fact that the mission brings things like sustainable water, food, [[http://theologicalscribbles.blogspot.co.uk/2011/07/catholic-church-and-healthcare-in.html health care (including medicines for people with AIDS)]], education, good moral teachings, and hope to ''billions'' is entirely lost on most people. When a missionary priest approaches a tribe ''they can ask him to leave'', and he has to go! The priest is there only as long as the people want him, he is NOT allowed to force Christianity on them - THEY have to come to him! That's right! During the mission the priest (and often volunteers) will go and build pumps, [[http://theologicalscribbles.blogspot.com/2011/07/catholic-church-and-healthcare-in.html a hospital]], a school, and ''start teaching people to read''. The actual teaching of Christianity happens when the priest asks people if they would like to learn about the faith, the people then come to the priest to find out about Christianity and it is often ''them'' who ask for the priest to build a church. Oh yes, and the priest is not there to force another culture on the people or tell them that their current beliefs are wrong - often a missionary will be the only person making sure the local children know their own damn history and culture. The Vatican has numerous letters on file ''thanking'' them for the word of God, including one from a tribe of native Americans, which is written on tree bark.
** Unfortunately, for most of Christian history, spreading the cross was not such a rosy act. At that point, the religious authority was inseparable from political authority, having large populations of non-Christians in your domain is seen as a failure in asserting dominance. Missionaries of the old ilk generally ''do not'' leave when asked, and can usually call on the local colonial power to help. Witness the Bloody Verdict of Verden, where Charlemagne executed 4500 Saxons for refusing to convert. The inquisition of Goa, India (like their Spanish counterpart), while they did not directly punish pagans, still allowed the enactment of extremely anti-Muslim/Jewish/Hindu laws as "encouragement", and punishment for recidivism is generally not pleasant. Furthermore, successful missionary work could entail the replacement of the former local culture and religions, which can be considered a crime in of itself. And things really heat up when Christians try to convert ''each other'' (e.g. the Albigensian Crusade against the Cathars or the UsefulNotes/ThirtyYearsWar against the Protestants). It's really only in the modern world and with the recognition that correcting someone's religious affiliation is not the most important goal that a much more in-depth and humanitarian missionary work can flourish.

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* One of the most prevailing myths about Catholic Missionaries is that they are there to force something on people. There may be other [[ChurchMilitant Christian groups]] that do do this, but the RCC Roman Catholic Church is not one of them. The main point of a mission is humanitarian aid, missionaries become missionaries for the same reason people volunteer for other charities - they want to help people! The first buildings established by a mission tend to be rudimentary medical facilities, then moving on to schools. It is generally the people themselves who ask for them to build a church. Missionary work is some of the hardest and most dangerous on the planet, the fact that missionaries protect the communities they join and are often ''celebrated'' by them, and the fact that the mission brings things like sustainable water, food, [[http://theologicalscribbles.blogspot.co.uk/2011/07/catholic-church-and-healthcare-in.html health care (including medicines for people with AIDS)]], education, good moral teachings, and hope to ''billions'' is entirely lost on most people. When a missionary priest approaches a tribe ''they can ask him to leave'', and he has to go! The priest is there only as long as the people want him, he is NOT allowed to force Christianity on them - THEY have to come to him! That's right! During the mission the priest (and often volunteers) will go and build pumps, [[http://theologicalscribbles.blogspot.com/2011/07/catholic-church-and-healthcare-in.html a hospital]], a school, and ''start teaching people to read''. The actual teaching of Christianity happens when the priest asks people if they would like to learn about the faith, the people then come to the priest to find out about Christianity and it is often ''them'' who ask for the priest to build a church. Oh yes, and the priest is not there to force another culture on the people or tell them that their current beliefs are wrong - often a missionary will be the only person making sure the local children know their own damn history and culture. The Vatican has numerous letters on file ''thanking'' them for the word of God, including one from a tribe of native Americans, which is written on tree bark.
** * Unfortunately, for most of Christian history, spreading the cross was not such a rosy act. At that point, the religious authority was inseparable from political authority, having large populations of non-Christians in your domain is seen as a failure in asserting dominance. Missionaries of the old ilk generally ''do not'' leave when asked, and can usually call on the local colonial power to help. Witness the Bloody Verdict of Verden, where Charlemagne executed 4500 Saxons for refusing to convert. The inquisition of Goa, India (like their Spanish counterpart), while they did not directly punish pagans, still allowed the enactment of extremely anti-Muslim/Jewish/Hindu laws as "encouragement", and punishment for recidivism is generally not pleasant. Furthermore, successful missionary work could entail the replacement of the former local culture and religions, which can be considered a crime in of itself. And things really heat up when Christians try to convert ''each other'' (e.g. the Albigensian Crusade against the Cathars or the UsefulNotes/ThirtyYearsWar against the Protestants). It's really only in the modern world and with the recognition that correcting someone's religious affiliation is not the most important goal that a much more in-depth and humanitarian missionary work can flourish.
6th Nov '17 11:00:33 AM SoapheadChurch
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* That faith and works are mutually exclusive, or that the doctrine of works is unbiblical. [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sola_fide#Sola_fide_and_Scripture There's whole sections both supporting and rejecting Luther's doctrine of Sola Fide]]. And at least one passage that says both are necessary. TakeThat [[ComicBook/ChickTracts Jack Chick]]!
** Really, the issue here is more one of cause and effect, as no one on either side of the argument really disagrees that anyone who has faith will demonstrate that faith through their works; the question is whether good works ''in and of themselves'' can provide "saving grace" to the believer independently of that believer's faith in God. The heart of the matter is the questions: "Can a 'good person' go to Heaven based on their good works even if he or she doesn't believe that Jesus Christ's sacrifice was necessary to save mankind from their sins?" and "Are works required ''as well as'' true faith, or are works simply ''the natural demonstrated result'' of true faith?"

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* That faith and works are mutually exclusive, or that the doctrine of works is unbiblical. [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sola_fide#Sola_fide_and_Scripture There's whole sections both supporting and rejecting Luther's doctrine of Sola Fide]]. And at least one passage that says both are necessary. TakeThat [[ComicBook/ChickTracts Jack Chick]]!
** Really,
That said, the issue here is more one of cause and effect, as no one on either side has never been faith or works being necessary for salvation ''to the exclusion'' of the argument really disagrees other, but rather the relationship between the two. Traditional Christianity held that anyone who has faith will demonstrate that faith through their works; the question is whether good works ''in and could make a person worthy of themselves'' can provide "saving grace" to the believer independently of heaven, but that believer's those works could only be rendered perfect by faith in God.God. The Protestant reformers took issue with this, believing that only faith was sufficient for salvation, and that good works were demonstrative of true faith. The heart of the matter is the questions: "Can a 'good person' go to Heaven based on their good works even if he or she doesn't believe that Jesus Christ's sacrifice was necessary to save mankind from their sins?" and "Are works required ''as well as'' true faith, or are works simply ''the natural demonstrated result'' of true faith?"
6th Nov '17 10:36:50 AM SoapheadChurch
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* Not only does Catholicism accept the notion of the Big Bang, but it was actually Msgr. Georges Lemaître, a Catholic priest, who originally theorized it. In point of fact, the term "Big Bang" was [[AppropriatedAppellation originally supposed to be disparaging]], and the person who coined it, Fred Hoyle, backed a "Steady State" theory that held that the Universe has always been more or less the same. Why? Because he was an agnostic, and thought that the universe having a definable origin in time was ''too much like Biblical creation''.
However, when the Pope wanted to refer to the Big Bang as the moment of creation, Fr. Lemaitre explicitly advised him against it. Lemaitre was enough of both a scientist and a theologian to realize that mixing science and religion was not a good idea. He acknowledged that it didn't necessarily prove God, as a materialist interpretation was also possible.

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* Not only does Catholicism accept the notion of the Big Bang, but it was actually Msgr. Georges Lemaître, a Catholic priest, who originally theorized it. In point of fact, the term "Big Bang" was [[AppropriatedAppellation originally supposed to be disparaging]], and the person who coined it, Fred Hoyle, backed a "Steady State" theory that held that the Universe has always been more or less the same. Why? Because he was an agnostic, and thought that the universe having a definable origin in time was ''too much like Biblical creation''.
creation''. However, when the Pope wanted to refer to the Big Bang as the moment of creation, Fr. Lemaitre explicitly advised him against it. Lemaitre was enough of both a scientist and a theologian to realize that mixing science and religion was not a good idea. He acknowledged that it didn't necessarily prove God, as a materialist interpretation was also possible.
6th Nov '17 10:35:32 AM SoapheadChurch
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* People who claim that Christianity is based on earlier religions are, unless they mean Judaism, very ''sorely'' mistaken. There is no actual historic proof that this is the case. Indeed, there is nothing in what we know of the original Pagan beliefs that we can even draw a respectable parallel with. This, however, has not prevented bunkum, such as Christianity supposedly being based on the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mithras_in_comparison_with_other_belief_systems#Mithraism_and_Christian_Theology Mithraic Mystery Cult]], appearing from the mouths of respected and intelligent people, such as the ones who run the ''[[Series/{{QI}} QI panel game]]''. Quite apart from the fact that we know almost nothing about the Mithraic Mystery Cult, ''everything we do know'' contradicts all of the claims made. This is merely the very tip, ''[[UpToEleven of the very tip]]'', of the colossal iceberg of earlier beliefs that people regularly claim Christianity is based on. One of the more amusing being the supposed 'virgin birth' of Horus. Long story short: Isis gathered the various parts of Osiris and rebuilt him, she then brought him back from the dead for a single day so that she could, er, ''conceive'' with him. Yes, creepy undead whatnots are still whatnots. The ancient Egyptians also didn't have a single, dedicated word in their language that easily translates to "virgin", as it wasn't considered a terribly important thing.
** This is a classic double bind. Any feature of a given religion either will or will not resemble things in other religions. Now the Christian-baiters argue that if it does, that "proves" it was "stolen", but if it does not, that "proves" how "unnatural" Christianity is. As Creator/CSLewis remarks, the only way one could NOT expect to find resemblances between Christianity and other religions would be by assuming that all other religions are COMPLETELY false.
*** Interestingly enough, placing Christianity in the context of comparative religion shows that it might very well have chosen to resolve the double bind by [[TakeAThirdOption Taking A Third Option.]] Rather than plagiarize from any specific myth or ritual, it appropriates the tropes of as many of them as possible into a DeconReconSwitch that lays bare the dynamic from which they arose, fatally depreciating that dynamic before offering a better solution. It's neither "stolen" nor "unnatural" -- instead, it's simultaneously familiar and unique (...and maybe more than a millennium ahead of its time). Sound outlandish? Consider this: the cyclical sacrifice and/or symbolic consumption of reincarnating gods/spirits in the form of kings, kings' sons, mock kings (who were sometimes criminals), priests, outsiders, enemies, human beings in general, animals, food products (generally grain or grape products), or some combination of the above as a means by which to avert disaster can be seen in the rituals of a broad cross-section of primitive and ancient societies worldwide, and shadows of such traditions remained within folk traditions into the 20th century. Other relevant rituals and myths include sacrifices for sin, sacrifices on trees, and mythic deaths upon which civilizations are founded. (Sir James Frazer's [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Golden_Bough The Golden Bough]] collects many such traditions in exhaustive detail.) Jesus' various appellations allow him to embody ''all'' of these traditions simultaneously. And, as argued by [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rene_Girard Rene Girard]], Jesus' submission in those roles to a brutal and undeserved judicial (i.e. non-cultic) execution exposes the true nature of all such traditions as reenactments of the same glorified murder through which human societies have universally discharged the violence that would otherwise tear them apart, simultaneously robbing that dynamic of its power and forcing humanity to choose between accepting his challenge to avoid defining ourselves over against others and complete societal annihilation. If Girard is right, denying resemblances doesn't just imply that all other religions are completely false -- it strips Christianity itself of its true brilliance.
** Isis couldn't find Osiris' whatnot. Instead, she carved him a new whatnot out of wood. [[spoiler:[[WesternAnimation/BeavisAndButthead Uhuhuhuhuhuhuhuh, "wood".]]]]
** Osiris himself is still a pre-Christian use of the dead-and-resurrected god-figure. As are Baal and Dionysus. The latter in particular has a backstory so similar to Christ's that some fundamentalists think he was inspired by Jesus... in spite of having been worshipped long before he was born. Though admittedly, his actual personality was [[TheHedonist the polar opposite.]]
*** It is true that stories of Osiris, Baal and Dionysus, are all pre-Christian and deals with the dead-and-resurrected god-figure like many mythologies. However the way these characters die, how they originated, and how they we're "resurrected" are drastically different from each other and from the story of Jesus. In fact those stories don't have too much in common at all. For example some "experts" claim that the story of Jesus is based on the stories of Dionysus. Now there are several versions of the story of Dionysus, some of which even deny him ever having a human mother. But anyway to make a long story short: Zeus came down from mount Olympus, has "whatnots" with a human woman named Semele, she becomes pregnant, Hera gets jealous and tricks Zeus into killing Semele. Zeus out of remorse takes the fetus that was in her womb and sews it on his thigh[[note]]Or maybe scrotum; "thigh" was a common euphemism for "scrotum" in ancient Mediterranean cultures. It's definitely used in the Bible and some Roman sources, so it's likely the Greeks used it too. And let's be honest: the scrotum makes a lot more sense for that kind of thing than the thigh.[[/note]] until that baby aka Dionysus was born. So similar to the backstory to Jesus? Not really. Based off each other? A bit of a stretch. It would be like saying that ''Anime/DragonBallZ'' is based on the story of Jesus simply because they used the BackFromTheDead trope on their protagonist as well.
*** Dionysus' religion is often framed as being reminiscent of early Christianity, however, Dionysus was worshiped as a death and rebirth deity, dying annually and resurrecting annually in accordance with the seasons. The cults of Dionysus may have valued wine and bread very highly... but they valued it because they were hedonists. The bread and wine in Christianity is a re-enactment of the last supper and are symbolic of Christ's body (bread) and blood (wine). While some of the various Dionysus cults do have some very vague reassembles to Christianity, in that they are both religions, this doesn't mean they based off each other. The Dionysus dying annually and rebirth annually dates as well as his birth are not on the same dates as Jesus - of course the whole Dionysus dying and coming back (once again) thing entirely depends on which version of the story you read. And who worshiped him - some Greeks didn't see him as the god of death and rebirth. Seems like those guys couldn't really keep their story straight at all. Many versions claim he dies in the WINTER and was reborn (technically not resurrected ) in the SPRING. No matter how you look at it, their deaths are not even close to the same dates, seeing as Christ supposedly died in SPRING and was resurrected in the SPRING. If you are wondering why Christ dies AND is resurrected in the Spring specifically, you need look no further than the Jewish Passover, which takes place in Spring and was celebrated by Jesus and the apostles at the Last Supper, just before he died. Also Dionysus death and rebirth by Zeus all happen ''before he was ever actually born''. This version where he was alive and reborn was a completely different version. This version claims that Demeter( the goddess of harvest) was the mother of Dionysus, though others say Persephone (goddess of the underworld wife of Hades). Only thing they could really agree on was that he was the son of Zeus.
*** It should also be pointed out that the symbolism of the deaths and resurrection of Dionysus and Christ are in fact different. According to most theologians Dionysus' death was meant to symbolize the dying and regrowth of the Greeks harvest, which died off in winter seasons and grew back in spring, differing greatly from that of Christ. To understand symbolism in Christ’s death one would have to look at the story of the first Passover (many historians believe the fact that Christ’s death and resurrection centers around Passover isn’t a coincidence). During the first Passover the Israelites had to sacrifice a lamb (a sacrificial lamb) and used it blood cover the tops of their doors to protect their first born from the angel of death that god down on Egypt. How does it this have any connect with Christ? Well Christ has been called “the lamb of god” in several of the canonical Gospels, implying his death was sacrificial. So many assume that Christ's death was in some ways meant to symbolize the lambs that were sacrificed during Passover, who’s blood was then used to protect the Israelites from God's final plague, and whose bodies were used in the Passover feast. So their symbolism when it came to their deaths and resurrection isn't so similar at all.

to:

* People who claim that Christianity is based on earlier religions are, unless they mean Judaism, very ''sorely'' mistaken. There is no actual historic proof that this is the case. Indeed, there is nothing in what we know of the original Pagan beliefs that we can even draw a respectable parallel with. This, however, has not prevented bunkum, such as Christianity supposedly being based on the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mithras_in_comparison_with_other_belief_systems#Mithraism_and_Christian_Theology Mithraic Mystery Cult]], appearing from the mouths of respected and intelligent people, such as the ones who run the ''[[Series/{{QI}} QI panel game]]''. Quite apart from the fact that we know almost nothing about the Mithraic Mystery Cult, ''everything we do know'' contradicts all of the claims made. This is merely the very tip, ''[[UpToEleven of the very tip]]'', of the colossal iceberg of earlier beliefs that people regularly claim Christianity is based on. One of the more amusing being the supposed 'virgin birth' of Horus. Long story short: Isis gathered the various parts of Osiris and rebuilt him, she then brought him back from the dead for a single day so that she could, er, ''conceive'' with him. Yes, creepy undead whatnots are still whatnots. The ancient Egyptians also didn't have a single, dedicated word in their language that easily translates to "virgin", as it wasn't considered a terribly important thing.
**
thing. This is a classic double bind. Any feature of a given religion either will or will not resemble things in other religions. Now the Christian-baiters argue that if it does, that "proves" it was "stolen", but if it does not, that "proves" how "unnatural" Christianity is. As Creator/CSLewis remarks, the only way one could NOT expect to find resemblances between Christianity and other religions would be by assuming that all other religions are COMPLETELY false.
*** Interestingly enough, placing Christianity in the context of comparative religion shows that it might very well have chosen to resolve the double bind by [[TakeAThirdOption Taking A Third Option.]] Rather than plagiarize from any specific myth or ritual, it appropriates the tropes of as many of them as possible into a DeconReconSwitch that lays bare the dynamic from which they arose, fatally depreciating that dynamic before offering a better solution. It's neither "stolen" nor "unnatural" -- instead, it's simultaneously familiar and unique (...and maybe more than a millennium ahead of its time). Sound outlandish? Consider this: the cyclical sacrifice and/or symbolic consumption of reincarnating gods/spirits in the form of kings, kings' sons, mock kings (who were sometimes criminals), priests, outsiders, enemies, human beings in general, animals, food products (generally grain or grape products), or some combination of the above as a means by which to avert disaster can be seen in the rituals of a broad cross-section of primitive and ancient societies worldwide, and shadows of such traditions remained within folk traditions into the 20th century. Other relevant rituals and myths include sacrifices for sin, sacrifices on trees, and mythic deaths upon which civilizations are founded. (Sir James Frazer's [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Golden_Bough The Golden Bough]] collects many such traditions in exhaustive detail.) Jesus' various appellations allow him to embody ''all'' of these traditions simultaneously. And, as argued by [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rene_Girard Rene Girard]], Jesus' submission in those roles to a brutal and undeserved judicial (i.e. non-cultic) execution exposes the true nature of all such traditions as reenactments of the same glorified murder through which human societies have universally discharged the violence that would otherwise tear them apart, simultaneously robbing that dynamic of its power and forcing humanity to choose between accepting his challenge to avoid defining ourselves over against others and complete societal annihilation. If Girard is right, denying resemblances doesn't just imply that all other religions are completely false -- it strips Christianity itself of its true brilliance.
** Isis couldn't find Osiris' whatnot. Instead, she carved him a new whatnot out of wood. [[spoiler:[[WesternAnimation/BeavisAndButthead Uhuhuhuhuhuhuhuh, "wood".]]]]
** Osiris himself is still a pre-Christian use of the dead-and-resurrected god-figure. As are Baal and Dionysus. The latter in particular has a backstory so similar to Christ's that some fundamentalists think he was inspired by Jesus... in spite of having been worshipped long before he was born. Though admittedly, his actual personality was [[TheHedonist the polar opposite.]]
*** It is true that stories of Osiris, Baal and Dionysus, are all pre-Christian and deals with the dead-and-resurrected god-figure like many mythologies. However the way these characters die, how they originated, and how they we're "resurrected" are drastically different from each other and from the story of Jesus. In fact those stories don't have too much in common at all. For example some "experts" claim that the story of Jesus is based on the stories of Dionysus. Now there are several versions of the story of Dionysus, some of which even deny him ever having a human mother. But anyway to make a long story short: Zeus came down from mount Olympus, has "whatnots" with a human woman named Semele, she becomes pregnant, Hera gets jealous and tricks Zeus into killing Semele. Zeus out of remorse takes the fetus that was in her womb and sews it on his thigh[[note]]Or maybe scrotum; "thigh" was a common euphemism for "scrotum" in ancient Mediterranean cultures. It's definitely used in the Bible and some Roman sources, so it's likely the Greeks used it too. And let's be honest: the scrotum makes a lot more sense for that kind of thing than the thigh.[[/note]] until that baby aka Dionysus was born. So similar to the backstory to Jesus? Not really. Based off each other? A bit of a stretch. It would be like saying that ''Anime/DragonBallZ'' is based on the story of Jesus simply because they used the BackFromTheDead trope on their protagonist as well.
***
Dionysus' religion is often framed as being reminiscent of early Christianity, however, Dionysus was worshiped as a death and rebirth deity, dying annually and resurrecting annually in accordance with the seasons. The cults of Dionysus may have valued wine and bread very highly... but they valued it because they were hedonists. The bread and wine in Christianity is a re-enactment of the last supper and are symbolic of Christ's body (bread) and blood (wine). While some of the various Dionysus cults do have some very vague reassembles to Christianity, in that they are both religions, this doesn't mean they based off each other. The Dionysus dying annually and rebirth annually dates as well as his birth are not on the same dates as Jesus - of course the whole Dionysus dying and coming back (once again) thing entirely depends on which version of the story you read. And who worshiped him - some Greeks didn't see him as the god of death and rebirth. Seems like those guys couldn't really keep their story straight at all. Many versions claim he dies in the WINTER and was reborn (technically not resurrected ) in the SPRING. No matter how you look at it, their deaths are not even close to the same dates, seeing as Christ supposedly died in SPRING and was resurrected in the SPRING. If you are wondering why Christ dies AND is resurrected in the Spring specifically, you need look no further than the Jewish Passover, which takes place in Spring and was celebrated by Jesus and the apostles at the Last Supper, just before he died. Also Dionysus death and rebirth by Zeus all happen ''before he was ever actually born''. This version where he was alive and reborn was a completely different version. This version claims that Demeter( the goddess of harvest) was the mother of Dionysus, though others say Persephone (goddess of the underworld wife of Hades). Only thing they could really agree on was that he was the son of Zeus.
***
Zeus. It should also be pointed out that the symbolism of the deaths and resurrection of Dionysus and Christ are in fact different. According to most theologians Dionysus' death was meant to symbolize the dying and regrowth of the Greeks harvest, which died off in winter seasons and grew back in spring, differing greatly from that of Christ. To understand symbolism in Christ’s death one would have to look at the story of the first Passover (many historians believe the fact that Christ’s death and resurrection centers around Passover isn’t a coincidence). During the first Passover the Israelites had to sacrifice a lamb (a sacrificial lamb) and used it blood cover the tops of their doors to protect their first born from the angel of death that god down on Egypt. How does it this have any connect with Christ? Well Christ has been called “the lamb of god” in several of the canonical Gospels, implying his death was sacrificial. So many assume that Christ's death was in some ways meant to symbolize the lambs that were sacrificed during Passover, who’s blood was then used to protect the Israelites from God's final plague, and whose bodies were used in the Passover feast. So their symbolism when it came to their deaths and resurrection isn't so similar at all.
6th Nov '17 9:58:07 AM SoapheadChurch
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** The origin (i.e., the Hebrew version of the Bible) states that "יִּתְפְּרוּ עֲלֵה תְאֵנָה וַיַּעֲשׂוּ לָהֶם חֲגֹרֹת", i.e., they took fig leaves and made themselves belts (or aprons). God did give them leather shirts before He kicked them out, but it isn't clear why.
*** God is a JewishMother and it was ''cold'' outside the Garden. [[YiddishAsASecondLanguage You want that they should freeze their little punims off without a warm jacket]]?
*** A common Christian interpretation of the coverings is that they're early symbols of Christ's death. Let clothing be a symbol for righteousness; Adam & Eve try to cover themselves with righteousness, but their efforts are inadequate - just some big leaves they've sewn together pretty roughly. In steps God and graciously gives them fabulous fur outfits that cover them perfectly, but it's come at a price - blood had to be shed to provide them. The blood of a lamb, perhaps?

to:

** * The origin (i.e., the Hebrew version of the Bible) states that "יִּתְפְּרוּ עֲלֵה תְאֵנָה וַיַּעֲשׂוּ לָהֶם חֲגֹרֹת", i.e., they took fig leaves and made themselves belts (or aprons). God did give them leather shirts before He kicked them out, but it isn't clear why.
*** God is a JewishMother and it was ''cold'' outside the Garden. [[YiddishAsASecondLanguage You want that they should freeze their little punims off without a warm jacket]]?
***
why. A common Christian interpretation of the coverings is that they're early symbols of Christ's death. Let clothing be a symbol for righteousness; Adam & Eve try to cover themselves with righteousness, but their efforts are inadequate - just some big leaves they've sewn together pretty roughly. In steps God and graciously gives them fabulous fur outfits that cover them perfectly, but it's come at a price - blood had to be shed to provide them. The blood of a lamb, perhaps?



* Literature/TheBible does not say that exactly three wise men visited Jesus, nor does it say they were kings, nor does it say they rode on camels. Their names aren't known either, and neither is said that one of them was [[TokenMinority black]] (although it doesn't say they ''weren't'' black either). It also does not say that they visited Jesus as an infant at the stable, they were simply said to have come when Jesus was a "young child" and at "the house". On that note, "young child" probably means three to six years old, which would mean "the house" refers to his parent's house in Nazareth. The grouping of 3 stems from the fact that there were ''three gifts'', [[RuleOfSymbolism Gold, Frankincense, and Myrrh]]. Their depiction was later expanded into European, (black) African and Asian, to symbolize people all over the world worshiping Jesus (in the future).
** "The house" (yes, not stable) is explicitly in Bethlehem; the wise men followed the star there, and Herod ordered all the baby boys of two years old or younger in the neighbourhood of Bethlehem to be killed. Which also proves Jesus' maximum possible age at the time. Seems Mary and Joseph found a house to stay in at Bethlehem after Jesus was born, had him circumcised and dedicated at the Temple while living there, then at some point after that the wise men came to visit, then they went to Egypt/back to Nazareth. This presumes, of course, the Nativity accounts can be harmonised so neatly.
* Nobody knows specifically when Jesus was born,[[note]]And as it turns out, the modern calendar may in fact be a few years behind schedule because of this -- the original math that the current year scheme was based on had a few flaws.[[/note]] but there is a prevailing idea that the date accorded was an attempt to co-opt Aurelian's ''Feast of the (Birthday of the) Unconquered Sun'' or ''Dies Natalis Solis Invicti'', a festival that took place on what was, in the Julian Calendar, the Winter Solstice, December 25.[[note]]In the Gregorian Calendar, which was first proposed as an improvement to the Julian Calendar -- which was about two weeks off schedule at that point -- the Winter Solstice is now December 21.[[/note]] While the earliest hard evidence regarding Dec. 25 as the date of Christmas is from 336 A.D., and it wasn't made an official festival until 379, there is evidence that the date was already being put forth by the integration of several strands of thought. The formulation of the date of Christmas actually has to do with the attempt to set the date of Good Friday and Easter, for the purposes of smoothing out the liturgical calendar.[[note]]The seasonal progression of the Catholic Church's worship theme, primarily organized as Advent, Christmas, Ordinary Time, Lent, Easter, Ordinary Time. NB: The Catholic Church also employs a three year rotation.[[/note]] After [[JewsLoveToArgue years of argument]], two dates were generally held for the timing of Good Friday: the Eastern Church claimed the date of April 6, while the Western Church observed March 25.
** In order for this to make sense, we need to concern the idea of "Integral Age", the extra-Scriptural, though apparently widespread, Judaistic idea that the great prophets of history had all died on the same day as their conception or birth. This gives the dates extra significance of being candidates for Jesus' birth or conception, and eventually March 25 took prominence. To the day, March 25 is celebrated as the Feast of the Annunciation (or Incarnation), when the ArchangelGabriel visited Mary and related a certain request to her, and upon her acquiescence conceived the "Eternal Word of God" in her womb. Anyone remotely familiar with pregnancy can make the nine month jump to December 25. April 6's nine month jump led to January 6, which is celebrated as the Feast of the Epiphany (the visitation of the Magi). Combine that with the "Chronicle" of Hippolytus of Rome (which precedes ''Dies Natalis Solis Invicti'' by a good ''three decades'') stating that the birth of Jesus "took place eight days before the kalends of January", and suddenly it seems more like ''Dies Natalis Solis Invicti'' was a political statement and a ''paganization'' of a significant date to Christians.

to:

* Literature/TheBible does not say that exactly three wise men visited Jesus, nor does it say they were kings, nor does it say they rode on camels. Their names aren't known either, and neither is said that one of them was [[TokenMinority black]] (although it doesn't say they ''weren't'' black either). It also does not say that they visited Jesus as an infant at the stable, they were simply said to have come when Jesus was a "young child" and at "the house". On that note, "young child" probably means three to six years old, which would mean "the house" refers to his parent's house in Nazareth. The grouping of 3 stems from the fact that there were ''three gifts'', [[RuleOfSymbolism Gold, Frankincense, and Myrrh]]. Their depiction was later expanded into European, (black) African and Asian, to symbolize people all over the world worshiping Jesus (in the future).
**
future). "The house" (yes, not stable) is explicitly in Bethlehem; the wise men followed the star there, and Herod ordered all the baby boys of two years old or younger in the neighbourhood of Bethlehem to be killed. Which also proves Jesus' maximum possible age at the time. Seems Mary and Joseph found a house to stay in at Bethlehem after Jesus was born, had him circumcised and dedicated at the Temple while living there, then at some point after that the wise men came to visit, then they went to Egypt/back to Nazareth. This presumes, of course, the Nativity accounts can be harmonised so neatly.
* Nobody knows specifically when Jesus was born,[[note]]And as it turns out, the modern calendar may in fact be a few years behind schedule because of this -- the original math that the current year scheme was based on had a few flaws.[[/note]] but there is a prevailing idea that the date accorded was an attempt to co-opt Aurelian's ''Feast of the (Birthday of the) Unconquered Sun'' or ''Dies Natalis Solis Invicti'', a festival that took place on what was, in the Julian Calendar, the Winter Solstice, December 25.[[note]]In the Gregorian Calendar, which was first proposed as an improvement to the Julian Calendar -- which was about two weeks off schedule at that point -- the Winter Solstice is now December 21.[[/note]] It's assumed that the Roman authorities just said "Hey, we're Christian now, so let's change the meaning of our holidays," but the reality is, to put it mildly, much more complicated:
**
While the earliest hard evidence regarding Dec. 25 as the date of Christmas is from 336 A.D., and it wasn't made an official festival until 379, there is evidence that the date was already being put forth by the integration of several strands of thought. The formulation of the date of Christmas actually has to do with the attempt to set the date of Good Friday and Easter, for the purposes of smoothing out the liturgical calendar.[[note]]The seasonal progression of the Catholic Church's worship theme, primarily organized as Advent, Christmas, Ordinary Time, Lent, Easter, Ordinary Time. NB: The Catholic Church also employs a three year rotation.[[/note]] After [[JewsLoveToArgue years of argument]], two dates were generally held for the timing of Good Friday: the Eastern Church claimed the date of April 6, while the Western Church observed March 25.
**
25. In order for this to make sense, we need to concern the idea of "Integral Age", the extra-Scriptural, though apparently widespread, Judaistic idea that the great prophets of history had all died on the same day as their conception or birth. This gives the dates extra significance of being candidates for Jesus' birth or conception, and eventually March 25 took prominence. To the day, March 25 is celebrated as the Feast of the Annunciation (or Incarnation), when the ArchangelGabriel visited Mary and related a certain request to her, and upon her acquiescence conceived the "Eternal Word of God" in her womb. Anyone remotely familiar with pregnancy can make the nine month jump to December 25. April 6's nine month jump led to January 6, which is celebrated as the Feast of the Epiphany (the visitation of the Magi). Combine that with the "Chronicle" of Hippolytus of Rome (which precedes ''Dies Natalis Solis Invicti'' by a good ''three decades'') stating that the birth of Jesus "took place eight days before the kalends of January", and suddenly it seems more like ''Dies Natalis Solis Invicti'' was a political statement and a ''paganization'' of a significant date to Christians.



** Further, the particular sun-centric date was foreign to either of the two Roman temples of the sun. The one to whom Aurelian's clan belonged celebrated its dedication festival on August 28, but by the second century, both temples had fallen into disuse and neglect by the second century, when the eastern sun cult Mithraism was gaining ground. And none of the above had ceremonies dealing with Equinoxes or Solstices.
** [[OverlyLongGag SO! To sum up]], the idea that Christmas has pagan roots is utterly bogus. It is the taking of dates featured in the new testament, combining them with an (admittedly extra-Scriptural) Jewish ('''not''' pagan) theory about the lifespan of Jewish ('''not''' pagan) prophets. That they adopted Aurelian's festival is more of a [[ChessMotifs checkmate]] in that he gave them more material to work with. Instead of allowing him to copyright the sun for Roman Paganism, [[OutGambitted they put it in the service of Jesus Christ]].
*** Actually, a lot of the former fails to acknowledge that the Good Friday was originally structured as based on Mediterranean Sun rebirth dates (see the numerous solar imagery in John, and you'll get the idea), so it does have a pagan origin, albeit a far more subtle one than Sol Invictia. Furthermore, Mithraic cults did have celebrations about the Sun's rebirth, though they were never public and probably did not affect the development of Christmas much. Finally, Christian proselytism did play up Christmas as based on the Winter solstice across Europe, as nearly all native religions did celebrate the mid-Winter as the Sun's rebirth.
*** That is a possibility. Of course it is also a possibility that they simply chose the date of Good Friday and Easter to coincide with what the scriptures said about Jesus being crucified on the Friday after Passover and rising again on the Sunday after Passover. But you be the judge.

to:

** Further, the particular sun-centric date was foreign to either of the two Roman temples of the sun. The one to whom Aurelian's clan belonged celebrated its dedication festival on August 28, but by the second century, both temples had fallen into disuse and neglect by the second century, when the eastern sun cult Mithraism was gaining ground. And none of the above had ceremonies dealing with Equinoxes or Solstices.
** [[OverlyLongGag SO! To sum up]], In summary, the current date of Christmas is the result of various attempts to calculate Jesus' age based on tradition and Biblical accounts, decades of debate about various chronological theories, and the coincidence of several religious practices already existing in Rome. So while Christmas does ''technically'' have "pagan roots", the idea that Christmas has pagan roots is utterly bogus. It is the taking of dates featured in the new testament, combining them with an (admittedly extra-Scriptural) Jewish ('''not''' pagan) theory about the lifespan of Jewish ('''not''' pagan) prophets. That they adopted Aurelian's festival is more of a [[ChessMotifs checkmate]] in that he gave them more material to work with. Instead of allowing him to copyright the sun for Roman Paganism, [[OutGambitted they put it in the service of Jesus Christ]].
*** Actually, a lot of the former fails to acknowledge that the Good Friday was originally structured as based on Mediterranean Sun rebirth dates (see the numerous solar imagery in John, and you'll get the idea), so it does have
Romans just took a pagan origin, albeit a far more subtle one than Sol Invictia. Furthermore, Mithraic cults did have celebrations about the Sun's rebirth, though they were never public and probably did not affect the development of Christmas much. Finally, Christian proselytism did play holiday, dressed it up Christmas as based on the Winter solstice across Europe, as nearly all native religions did celebrate the mid-Winter as the Sun's rebirth.
*** That is a possibility. Of course it is also a possibility that they simply chose the date of Good Friday and Easter to coincide
with what Christan trappings, and decided it was the scriptures said about Jesus being crucified on the Friday after Passover birth-date Christ is very much inaccurate, and rising again on the Sunday after Passover. But you be the judge.to a certain extent rooted in Anti-Catholicism.



* There were attempts to smear Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI by claiming he was a Nazi because he was drafted by them at age sixteen (membership was mandatory at that point). Not only was the Pope never a Nazi, his family had to keep moving house because of their strong anti-Nazi beliefs. The 'Hitler Youth' part of the equation never even happened - they told him to join, and he got a note saying he was excused. Not exactly a leader of the SS here.
** Oh yes, and his fourteen-year-old cousin was taken away and killed by the Nazis because he had Down Syndrome.
** And he deserted from the army during the war, hardly the action of a rabid National Socialist.

to:

* There were attempts to smear Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI by claiming he was a Nazi because he was drafted by them at age sixteen (membership was mandatory at that point). Not only was the Pope never a Nazi, his family had to keep moving house because of their strong anti-Nazi beliefs. The 'Hitler Youth' part of the equation never even happened - they told him to join, and he got a note saying he was excused. Not exactly a leader of the SS here. \n** Oh yes, and his fourteen-year-old cousin was taken away and killed by the Nazis because he had Down Syndrome.
**
Syndrome. And he deserted from the army during the war, hardly the action of a rabid National Socialist.



* UsefulNotes/AdolfHitler called himself a Catholic during his speeches, as well as in ''Literature/MeinKampf'', but actions both public and private suggest that he was strongly atheist, or even anti-religion entirely.

to:

* UsefulNotes/AdolfHitler called himself a Catholic during his speeches, as well as in ''Literature/MeinKampf'', but actions both public and private suggest that he was strongly atheist, or even anti-religion entirely. He ''was'' RaisedCatholic by his devout mother, but in his adult life his attitude towards the Church became more "the rituals are cool, but all this religious stuff is stupid." He later tried to unify and Nazi-fy all of the Protestant churches in Germany into worshiping him as a messiah, which the majority of German Protestants did not take kindly to.



* Regarding the hierarchy of angels (from Catholic theology, though common in general Christianity and often in works that need an angelic army or government system) there are nine orders of a celestial hierarchy -- from least to greatest: Angels, Archangels, Virtues, Powers, Principalities, Dominions, Thrones, Cherubim, and Seraphim. [[ArchangelMichael Michael]], the angel who cast Satan from heaven, has proven difficult regarding which order, exactly, he belongs, to -- the most common interpretation of his position, as you may have guessed from the trope, is as an archangel, which is the position accorded to him by St. Basil and a good many Greek Fathers, in so far as he is the prince of all angels. St. Bonaventura, on the other hand, refers to him as the prince of the Seraphim, the highest order of the angels, whereas St. Thomas Aquinas places him as prince of the Angels (lowest choir). This latter interpretation makes sense when considering the role of the angelic hierarchy as regards the degrees of their servitude -- in a reverse from the human way of doing things, the higher orders of angels actually ''serve'' the lower orders.
** Following the Summa Theologiae of St. Thomas Aquinas and the writings of Dionysius the Pseudo-Areopagite, the division is more on nature rather than status. Archangel is not a choir so much as it is a title. Under the hierarchy listed by those two theologians, the only angels whose nature was sufficiently close to temporal to fall were the Cherubim (meaning Satan must have been one as well, though he was "unique" and his references tend to depict him more like a suped-up Seraphim). Of course, this goes into the nature of the soul as well and the intellective and sensitive powers. Animals possess only sensitive powers[[note]]This is debated though, as the Bible is actually completely silent on the topic of animal spirits. It is worth noting, however, that many animals are capable of learning to understand a given language as fluently as any human (the sole reason most cannot ''actually speak'' is because that actually requires specific anatomical equipment), and elephants and everything above them are actually ''conscious of their own mortality''.[[/note]], angels only possess intellective powers (and thus the only sins an angelic being can commit are envy and pride, as the others require a body, and thus the sensitive powers), whereas humanity is horizon (possessing both). It also demonstrates why a demon (fallen angel) cannot be redeemed, since they are eternal (there is no concept of "when" so "when" would they be able to change?).
*** Note the above is all WordOfDante. In the Bible the only thing said about Angelic hierarchy is that Michael is higher than the others.
*** Actually, "Archangel" simply means 'chief of angels', so by definition, there can only be one. By extension, many people believe that Archangel Michel is Jesus before his coming to earth.

to:

* Regarding the hierarchy of angels (from Catholic theology, though common in general Christianity and often in works that need an angelic army or government system) there are nine orders of a celestial hierarchy -- from least to greatest: Angels, Archangels, Archangels,[[note]]Technically, "Archangel" simply means 'chief of angels', so by definition, there should only be one, but traditionally, multiple "archangels" are recognized. By extension, many people believe that Archangel Michel is Jesus before his coming to earth.[[/note]] Virtues, Powers, Principalities, Dominions, Thrones, Cherubim, and Seraphim. [[ArchangelMichael Michael]], the angel who cast Satan from heaven, has proven difficult regarding which order, exactly, he belongs, to -- the most common interpretation of his position, as you may have guessed from the trope, is as an archangel, which is the position accorded to him by St. Basil and a good many Greek Fathers, in so far as he is the prince of all angels. St. Bonaventura, on the other hand, refers to him as the prince of the Seraphim, the highest order of the angels, whereas St. Thomas Aquinas places him as prince of the Angels (lowest choir). This latter interpretation makes sense when considering the role of the angelic hierarchy as regards the degrees of their servitude -- in a reverse from the human way of doing things, the higher orders of angels actually ''serve'' the lower orders.
**
orders. Following the Summa Theologiae of St. Thomas Aquinas and the writings of Dionysius the Pseudo-Areopagite, the division is more on nature rather than status. Archangel is not a choir so much as it is a title. Under the hierarchy listed by those two theologians, the only angels whose nature was sufficiently close to temporal to fall were the Cherubim (meaning Satan must have been one as well, though he was "unique" and his references tend to depict him more like a suped-up Seraphim). Of course, this goes into the nature of the soul as well and the intellective and sensitive powers. Animals possess only sensitive powers[[note]]This is debated though, as the Bible is actually completely silent on the topic of animal spirits. It is worth noting, however, that many animals are capable of learning to understand a given language as fluently as any human (the sole reason most cannot ''actually speak'' is because that actually requires specific anatomical equipment), and elephants and everything above them are actually ''conscious of their own mortality''.[[/note]], angels only possess intellective powers (and thus the only sins an angelic being can commit are envy and pride, as the others require a body, and thus the sensitive powers), whereas humanity is horizon (possessing both). It also demonstrates why a demon (fallen angel) cannot be redeemed, since they are eternal (there is no concept of "when" so "when" would they be able to change?).
***
change?). Note that all of the above is all WordOfDante. In the Bible the only thing said about Angelic hierarchy is that Michael is higher than the others.
*** Actually, "Archangel" simply means 'chief of angels', so by definition, there can only be one. By extension, many people believe that Archangel Michel is Jesus before his coming to earth.



* ''Purgatory'', as Catholic teaching goes, is not a third place where souls go after they die. [[{{Series/Supernatural}} Don't confuse it with other portrayals on television, either.]] It's a place/state where the souls of folks ''who are headed to heaven'' are cleaned up of the ''effects'' of their sins before they enter the Pearly Gates.
** In other words, a Christian should die with all serious (or ''mortal'') sins confessed to God. If you're ''very'' contrite, you don't go to purgatory before heaven since your soul is that squeaky-clean. Often, such folks are recognized in the Catholic Church as Saints. Fail to confess your sins at all, and Hell is your only destination.
*** Not exactly. The mortal sin can be forgiven if you truly repent it- truly meaning because you see how it destroyes your relationship with God who loves you (see the perfect repentance)not because you're afraid of punishment. So you still can go to the Purgatory if you repent even in the very last moment of your life if you're not able to confess to a priest (because pefect repentance means you will or would confess a s soon as it's possible). That's exactly why the Catholic Church never stated that a precise person, say John X, went to hell for sure.Because even if he comitted mortal sin and never managed to confess it, he still could have repented moments before dying. Same goes for those who committed suicide (that plus them usually suffering from serious mental disease which questions that they sinned really of their won will).
** Catholics believe that the damage we cause from ''forgiven sins'' leaves tarnishing on the soul. As St. Paul notes, purgatory removes such impurities "with fire" before the soul can enter heaven, for "Nothing unclean can enter heaven."
** A good analogy of purgatory is what happens if a young child is given a drink, purposefully spills it, and regrets it. The child can say "I'm sorry," and the mommy says, "That's OK." But there's still a mess to be cleaned up from the effect of the spill. You can also think of purgatory as the "front porch" of heaven, where God gives you a thorough scrub-down of any remaining impurities. Your mom loves you and wants you to come in for supper, sure. But you're going nowhere if you're tracking mud inside.
** Not even Catholics can tell you how or what goes on in purgatory, or how long the process lasts.[[note]]Dante for his part favored--with some justification--a timeframe on the order of ''centuries''. In the ''Purgatorio'', he caught up with the Roman poet Statius, whom he claims--without historical evidence--converted to Christianity in his old age. Statius lived in the first century CE; when Dante visits in the early fourteenth he is only just being completely purged.[[/note]] To help in cleaning yourself up from the effects of sin before you die, the Catholic practice of ''plenary indulgence'' began. It has very specific rules to complete. It is NOT the same as "buying your way into heaven" or "working your way to heaven." Historically, a few rich people and misunderstandings in almsgiving made indulgences seem like heavenly bribes. Today, nothing is required to be given except a person's devotion to the practices (defined by the Pope) that allow the indulgence to help clean you up, reducing your "time" in or eliminating the need for stopping in purgatory.
** For those playing at home, the word "purgatory" isn't found in Literature/TheBible; hence, the concept does not exist in the Protestant tradition. But then, neither is the word "Trinity." Yet, the concepts are there for both. See 1 Corinthians 3:11-15 to start. The book of 2 Maccabees, which isn't in many Protestant versions of The Bible's Old Testament, also shows support in praying for the dead to help them find purity so as to complete their journey to God.
*** Or better, start at 1 Corinthians 3:10 and the few verses before it, and see how Paul introduces the reference to "fire". It shouldn't be difficult to see why Protestants think that Catholics have to stretch & change the passage in order to find the concept of Purgatory.
*** The relevant details: The topic was the work of various ''ministers'' of the gospel--one person building on a foundation laid by another. ("like a skilled master builder I laid a foundation, and another man is building upon it. Let each man take care how he builds upon it.") That warning leads straight into Paul's teaching that the fire ''reveals'' the sort of work each person has done. In other words, the fire isn't applied simply to people who've been judged to need cleaning up--it's applied to ''everyone's'' work, in order to reveal its quality in the first place. (And arguably, it's specifically the work of every ''minister'' who labors to build up the Church, not a general concept of revealing the quality of every Christian's works.)
*** This really isn't the place to be making definite claims that the concept of Purgatory actually is found in 1 Corinthians 3:11-15--or that it isn't found there.[[/folder]]

to:

* ''Purgatory'', as Catholic teaching goes, is not a third place where souls go after they die. [[{{Series/Supernatural}} Don't confuse it with other portrayals on television, either.]] It's a place/state where the souls of folks ''who are headed to heaven'' are cleaned up of the ''effects'' of their sins before they enter the Pearly Gates.
** In other words, a Christian should die with all serious (or ''mortal'') sins confessed to God. If you're ''very'' contrite, you don't go to purgatory before heaven since your soul is that squeaky-clean. Often, such folks are recognized in the Catholic Church as Saints. Fail to confess your sins at all, and Hell is your only destination.
*** Not exactly. The mortal sin can be forgiven if you truly repent it- truly meaning because you see how it destroyes your relationship with God who loves you (see the perfect repentance)not because you're afraid of punishment. So you still can go to the Purgatory if you repent even in the very last moment of your life if you're not able to confess to a priest (because pefect repentance means you will or would confess a s soon as it's possible). That's exactly why the Catholic Church never stated that a precise person, say John X, went to hell for sure.Because even if he comitted mortal sin and never managed to confess it, he still could have repented moments before dying. Same goes for those who committed suicide (that plus them usually suffering from serious mental disease which questions that they sinned really of their won will).
**
Gates. Catholics believe that the damage we cause from ''forgiven sins'' leaves tarnishing on the soul. As St. Paul notes, purgatory removes such impurities "with fire" before the soul can enter heaven, for "Nothing unclean can enter heaven."
**
" A good analogy of purgatory is what happens if a young child is given a drink, purposefully spills it, and regrets it. The child can say "I'm sorry," and the mommy says, "That's OK." But there's still a mess to be cleaned up from the effect of the spill. You can also think of purgatory as the "front porch" of heaven, where God gives you a thorough scrub-down of any remaining impurities. Your mom loves you and wants you to come in for supper, sure. But you're going nowhere if you're tracking mud inside.
** * Not even Catholics can tell you how or what goes on in purgatory, or how long the process lasts.[[note]]Dante lasts. Dante for his part favored--with some justification--a timeframe on the order of ''centuries''. In the ''Purgatorio'', he caught up with the Roman poet Statius, whom he claims--without historical evidence--converted to Christianity in his old age. Statius lived in the first century CE; when Dante visits in the early fourteenth he is only just being completely purged.[[/note]] To help in cleaning yourself up from the effects of sin before you die, the Catholic practice of ''plenary indulgence'' began. It has very specific rules to complete. It is NOT the same as "buying your way into heaven" or "working your way to heaven." Historically, a few rich people and misunderstandings in almsgiving made indulgences seem like heavenly bribes. Today, nothing is required to be given except a person's devotion to the practices (defined by the Pope) that allow the indulgence to help clean you up, reducing your "time" in or eliminating the need for stopping in purgatory.
** * For those playing at home, the word "purgatory" isn't found in Literature/TheBible; hence, the concept does not exist in the Protestant tradition. But then, neither is the word "Trinity." Yet, the concepts are there for both. See 1 Corinthians 3:11-15 to start. The book of 2 Maccabees, which isn't in many Protestant versions of The Bible's Old Testament, also shows support in praying for the dead to help them find purity so as to complete their journey to God.
*** Or better, start at 1 Corinthians 3:10 and
God. Needless to say, a lot of heated debate about the few verses before it, and see how Paul introduces Biblical basis (or lack thereof) for the reference to "fire". It shouldn't be difficult to see why Protestants think that Catholics have to stretch & change the passage in order to find the concept of Purgatory.
*** The relevant details: The topic was the work of various ''ministers'' of the gospel--one person building on a foundation laid by another. ("like a skilled master builder I laid a foundation, and another man is building upon it. Let each man take care how he builds upon it.") That warning leads straight into Paul's teaching that the fire ''reveals'' the sort of work each person
doctrine has done. In other words, the fire isn't applied simply to people who've been judged to need cleaning up--it's applied to ''everyone's'' work, in order to reveal its quality in the first place. (And arguably, it's specifically the work of every ''minister'' who labors to build up the Church, not a general concept of revealing the quality of every Christian's works.)
*** This really isn't the
taken place to be making definite claims that over the concept of Purgatory actually is found in 1 Corinthians 3:11-15--or that it isn't found there.centuries, which need not be replicated here.
[[/folder]]



* Much debate is possible about the attitudes of various Christians toward sex, and there have been very many problematic statements made and repressive attitudes held by Christians. ''However'', a work ''does'' fail Religious Studies forever if it claims or implies that Literature/TheBible or any mainstream Christian denomination (including Catholics and mainstream fundamentalists such as evangelicals) ''actually teach'' that you shouldn't have sex because [[SexIsEvil Sex is Bad]]. As opposed to "you shouldn't have sex unless you [[MarriageTropes promise to stay with the person forever]]."
** You are also wrong if you believe that the Catholic Church teaches that sex is solely for procreation, and that all forms of birth control are wrong. As of ''Humanae Vitae'' and ''Evangelium Vitae'', the Church teaches that sex has two purposes: procreative and unitive (bringing the couple closer together and helping preserve the marriage). The Church is opposed to ''artificial'' contraception, maintaining that artificial methods disrupt both the unitive and procreative aspects of sex; however, natural methods, such as Natural Family Planning (which, by the way, is ''NOT'' the Rhythm Method) do not disrupt these aspects and are permissible if the couple has important reasons (physical, psychologiacl, material or others) to limit the number of children or to postpone conception of a child .
*** Specifically, Catholicism requires 4 facets for the sex to be considered a "good" act. It has to be Relational, Unifying, Humanistic, and Fecund. It can satisfy that through the law of double effect though, meaning intent, course, and principle can lead to it even if the result is not the production of life. Doing less is considered a privation, or lessening of the act (sort of like cutting down a redwood forest for the sake of obtaining a single toothpick). That said, natural family planning is a sufficient method.

to:

* Much debate is possible about the attitudes of various Christians toward sex, and there have been very many problematic statements made and repressive attitudes held by Christians. ''However'', a work ''does'' fail Religious Studies forever if it claims or implies that Literature/TheBible or any mainstream Christian denomination (including Catholics and mainstream fundamentalists such as evangelicals) ''actually teach'' that you shouldn't have sex because [[SexIsEvil Sex is Bad]]. As opposed to "you shouldn't have sex unless you [[MarriageTropes promise to stay with the person forever]]."
**
" You are also wrong if you believe that the Catholic Church teaches that sex is solely for procreation, and that all forms of birth control are wrong. As of ''Humanae Vitae'' and ''Evangelium Vitae'', Vitae'' (official doctrinal letters issued by Pope Paul IV and Pope John Paul II respectively), the Church teaches that sex has two purposes: procreative and unitive (bringing the couple closer together and helping preserve the marriage). The Church is opposed to ''artificial'' contraception, maintaining that artificial methods disrupt both the unitive and procreative aspects of sex; however, natural methods, such as Natural Family Planning (which, by the way, is ''NOT'' the Rhythm Method) do not disrupt these aspects and are permissible if the couple has important reasons (physical, psychologiacl, material or others) to limit the number of children or to postpone conception of a child .
***
child. Specifically, Catholicism requires 4 facets for the sex to be considered a "good" act. It has to be Relational, Unifying, Humanistic, and Fecund. It can satisfy that through the law of double effect though, meaning intent, course, and principle can lead to it even if the result is not the production of life. Doing less is considered a privation, or lessening of the act (sort of like cutting down a redwood forest for the sake of obtaining a single toothpick). That said, natural family planning is a sufficient method.



** Also, the more exact stance is that using condoms is still better than unprotected sex. The Catholic Church does not look kindly on sex before marriage (or slightly more liberally, without intent to marry or without being in love, which brings in different cultural matters), but they are against that more than they are against using condoms ''at all'', and the general advice is that you should not be having sexual intercourse before marriage (CCC 2353). Period.
*** That said, the Church's stance on condom use--as noted above--has not always been particularly clear: hence the debate. (Whoever said that [[JewsLoveToArgue Jews had a monopoly on religious argument]]?)

to:

** Also, the more exact * The Catholic stance is that using condoms is still better than unprotected sex. The Catholic Church does not look kindly on sex before marriage (or slightly more liberally, without intent to marry or without being in love, which brings in different cultural matters), but they are against that more than they are against using condoms ''at all'', and the general advice is that you should not be having sexual intercourse before marriage (CCC 2353). Period.
***
Period. That said, the Church's stance on condom use--as noted above--has not always been particularly clear: hence the debate. (Whoever said that [[JewsLoveToArgue Jews had a monopoly on religious argument]]?)



* Likewise evolution. The claim that the Catholic Church/the Pope opposes evolution is still used today. Especially egregious considering that [[http://www.vatican.va/archive/ENG0015/__P19.HTM evolution is part of the Catholic catechism.]] Creationists are ''not'' representative of most Christians and some of the older, traditional branches embraced the work of Charles Darwin ''within a few decades of publication''. For the first decades after Darwin, the Church took no official position at all. However, in the debates over Modernism (1910s-1930s mostly) it tended to get bashed, so Pius XII put out an encyclical in 1950 clarifying (among many other things) ''that it didn't oppose any part of the massively well supported theory''. Before that there was no official position ''at all'', but some ''individual'' priests/theologians/etc opposed it; but it is indeed accurate to say that the ''Church'' never opposed evolution.
** In fact, the foundation of the molecular basis of evolution (genetics) was first laid by a Catholic priest, Gregor Mendel, experimenting with pea plants about the same time as Darwin.
*** For that part, the infamous case of Samuel Wilberforce, the Anglican Oxford Bishop who opposed Darwin's ideas, is grossly misrepresented in popular history. He is usually mocked for supposedly making bad arguments and resorting to simply mocking Darwin's theories with bad jokes about monkeys; in reality, he was a highly intelligent man and most of his arguments were based on orthodox scientific theories of the time- and were so good and insightful, Darwin himself took them on board and worked to modify his theories in response and went on to regard Wilberforce as an outright ''genius''. With regards to the infamous 1860 debate between himself and Darwin's supporter Thomas Huxley, Wilberforce (even if he technically lost) gave as good as he got, the two became friendly afterwards, and the debate itself- which is often presented as the TropeCodifier for Science vs Religion-, was actually a pretty jovial affair, a lively intellectual debate that was initially famous mainly because both sides thoroughly enjoyed themselves.
** It should also be noted that Christian opposition to evolution is only in part because it goes against a literal interpretation of Genesis.[[note]]Several Christian commentators, including St. Augustine, held to non-literal views of the creation account long before the true age of Earth and the universe were known.[[/note]] More importantly, they object to a naturalistic explanation because they think it would undermine the role of God in creation in general (i.e. life arising by chance) and the relationship between man and God in particular (i.e. consciousness arising by chance), and apparently think that something can't possibly come from God unless it popped out of nowhere fully-formed, and that God is somehow incapable of setting a gradual process in motion and occasionally poking it in the right direction. It's not like ''the beauty of nature and the the mechanisms by which it ticks couldn't be one of the reasons God created in the first place'' or anything.
** Creationism has always largely been a Protestant phenomenon. Not even all Protestants of course, but those of a particular fundamentalist variety. Modern creationism (with the idea of flood geology, an actual six-day creation, etc.) began in the 19th century as a reaction against modern scientific theories which showed literal interpretations of Genesis were untenable. Rather than accept this and reject such an interpretation (as Catholics plus many liberal Protestants do) they doubled down. Protestants of this variety tend to claim that Catholics are actually not Christians at all, it must be noted, and hold very negative views toward Protestants who don't take this stance as well.
* Not only does Catholicism accept the notion of the Big Bang, but it was actually Msgr. Georges Lemaître, a Catholic priest, who originally theorized it.
** In point of fact, the term "Big Bang" was [[AppropriatedAppellation originally supposed to be disparaging]], and the person who coined it, Fred Hoyle, backed a "Steady State" theory that held that the Universe has always been more or less the same. Why? Because he was an agnostic, and thought that the universe having a definable origin in time was ''too much like Biblical creation''.
*** However, when the Pope wanted to refer to the Big Bang as the moment of creation, Fr. Lemaitre explicitly advised him against it. Lemaitre was enough of both a scientist and a theologian to realize that mixing science and religion was not a good idea. He acknowledged that it didn't necessarily prove God, as a materialist interpretation was also possible.
** Basically, the Catholic church officially is completely fine with scientific theories detailing the history and development of the universe... up to a point. One of the major points of Catholic doctrine is the concept of ''Creatio Ex Nihilo'', or "Creation out of Nothing" and the "Prime Mover". This is the idea that there was nothing before the point the universe started and that God set the act of creation into motion. The "Big Bang" theory actually made the reconciliation of science with theology ''easier'', as it gives us a date of Creation (previous theories seemed to indicate that the universe had existed literally forever), and indeed some scientists rejected it at first because it was ''too'' Biblical (!). Everything that happens ''after'' that point is fair game for scientists.
*** Actually, the Big Bang and any possible preceding states are fair game. When we talk about Creation Ex Nihilo, we mean the Nihilo. Creation from absolutely nothing-substantial physical laws are not nothing, nor are space and time. The concept of Mu might be a good analogy, it's something that cannot even be described, because to do so would be to give a form of being to it.
** Don't forget the very real (and completely different from the way [[DanBrowned Dan Brown]] depicts it) 'Vatican Secret Archives' (in this context, the word "Secret" is closer to what we would call "private"), better known as the [[http://asv.vatican.va/?lang=en Papal Archives]]. To quote the official site:

to:

* Likewise evolution. The claim that the Catholic Church/the Pope opposes evolution is still used today. Especially egregious considering that [[http://www.vatican.va/archive/ENG0015/__P19.HTM evolution is part of the Catholic catechism.]] Creationists are ''not'' representative of most Christians and some of the older, traditional branches embraced the work of Charles Darwin ''within a few decades of publication''. For the first decades after Darwin, the Church took no official position at all. However, in the debates over Modernism (1910s-1930s mostly) it tended to get bashed, so Pius XII put out an encyclical in 1950 clarifying (among many other things) ''that it didn't oppose any part of the massively well supported theory''. Before that there was no official position ''at all'', but some ''individual'' priests/theologians/etc opposed it; but it is indeed accurate to say that the ''Church'' never opposed evolution.
**
evolution. In fact, the foundation of the molecular basis of evolution (genetics) was first laid by a Catholic priest, monk, Gregor Mendel, experimenting with pea plants about the same time as Darwin.
*** * For that part, the infamous case of Samuel Wilberforce, the Anglican Oxford Bishop who opposed Darwin's ideas, is grossly misrepresented in popular history. He is usually mocked for supposedly making bad arguments and resorting to simply mocking Darwin's theories with bad jokes about monkeys; in reality, he was a highly intelligent man and most of his arguments were based on orthodox scientific theories of the time- and were so good and insightful, Darwin himself took them on board and worked to modify his theories in response and went on to regard Wilberforce as an outright ''genius''. With regards to the infamous 1860 debate between himself and Darwin's supporter Thomas Huxley, Wilberforce (even if he technically lost) gave as good as he got, the two became friendly afterwards, and the debate itself- which is often presented as the TropeCodifier for Science vs Religion-, was actually a pretty jovial affair, a lively intellectual debate that was initially famous mainly because both sides thoroughly enjoyed themselves.
** * It should also be noted that Christian opposition to evolution is only in part because it goes against a literal interpretation of Genesis.[[note]]Several Genesis. Several Christian commentators, including St. Augustine, held to non-literal views of the creation account long before the true age of Earth and the universe were known.[[/note]] More importantly, they object to a naturalistic explanation because they think it would undermine the role of God in creation in general (i.e. life arising by chance) and the relationship between man and God in particular (i.e. consciousness arising by chance), and apparently think chance).
* Regarding creationism,
that something can't possibly come from God unless it popped out of nowhere fully-formed, and that God is somehow incapable of setting a gradual process in motion and occasionally poking it in the right direction. It's not like ''the beauty of nature and the the mechanisms by which it ticks couldn't be one of the reasons God created in the first place'' or anything.
** Creationism
has always largely been a Protestant phenomenon. Not even all Protestants of course, but those of a particular fundamentalist variety. Modern creationism (with the idea of flood geology, an actual six-day creation, etc.) began in the 19th century as a reaction against modern scientific theories which showed literal interpretations of Genesis were untenable. Rather than accept this and reject such an interpretation (as Catholics plus many liberal Protestants do) they doubled down. Protestants of this variety tend to claim that Catholics are actually not Christians at all, it must be noted, and hold very negative views toward Protestants who don't take this stance as well.
* Not only does Catholicism accept the notion of the Big Bang, but it was actually Msgr. Georges Lemaître, a Catholic priest, who originally theorized it. \n** In point of fact, the term "Big Bang" was [[AppropriatedAppellation originally supposed to be disparaging]], and the person who coined it, Fred Hoyle, backed a "Steady State" theory that held that the Universe has always been more or less the same. Why? Because he was an agnostic, and thought that the universe having a definable origin in time was ''too much like Biblical creation''.
*** However, when the Pope wanted to refer to the Big Bang as the moment of creation, Fr. Lemaitre explicitly advised him against it. Lemaitre was enough of both a scientist and a theologian to realize that mixing science and religion was not a good idea. He acknowledged that it didn't necessarily prove God, as a materialist interpretation was also possible.
** * Basically, the Catholic church officially is completely fine with scientific theories detailing the history and development of the universe... up to a point. One of the major points of Catholic doctrine is the concept of ''Creatio Ex Nihilo'', or "Creation out of Nothing" and the "Prime Mover". This is the idea that there was nothing before the point the universe started and that God set the act of creation into motion. The "Big Bang" theory actually made the reconciliation of science with theology ''easier'', as it gives us a date of Creation (previous theories seemed to indicate that the universe had existed literally forever), and indeed some scientists rejected it at first because it was ''too'' Biblical (!). Everything that happens ''after'' that point is fair game for scientists.
*** Actually, the Big Bang and any possible preceding states are fair game. When we talk about Creation Ex Nihilo, we mean the Nihilo. Creation from absolutely nothing-substantial physical laws are not nothing, nor are space and time. The concept of Mu might be a good analogy, it's something that cannot even be described, because to do so would be to give a form of being to it.
**
(!).
*
Don't forget the very real (and completely different from the way [[DanBrowned Dan Brown]] depicts it) 'Vatican Secret Archives' (in this context, the word "Secret" is closer to what we would call "private"), better known as the [[http://asv.vatican.va/?lang=en Papal Archives]]. Unfortunately, the fact they ARE open to scholars of all faiths (and none), and that this is thoroughly decent of them, is entirely lost on a lot of rather militant and ignorant people who continually demand access to what ''they'' think is 'a sealed vault full of all their dirtiest secrets'. The actual vault contains every letter ever sent to the Vatican, including the famous divorce correspondences of a certain [[UsefulNotes/HenryVIII Henry Tudor]] (a strange fellow who ruled most of a [[UsefulNotes/{{Britain}} pious if somewhat backwards little island off the coast of France]]), and a letter written on a roll of tree bark from a Native American tribe thanking the Church for the word of God. To quote the official site:



** Unfortunately, the fact they ARE open to scholars of all faiths (and none), and that this is thoroughly decent of them, is entirely lost on a lot of rather militant and ignorant people who continually demand access to what ''they'' think is 'a sealed vault full of all their dirtiest secrets'. Thanks a lot, [[DanBrowned Dan Brown]]. The actual vault contains every letter ever sent to the Vatican, including the famous divorce correspondences of a certain [[UsefulNotes/HenryVIII Henry Tudor]] (a strange fellow who ruled most of a [[UsefulNotes/{{Britain}} pious if somewhat backwards little island off the coast of France]]), and a letter written on a roll of tree bark from a Native American tribe thanking the Church for the word of God.
* The idea that Galileo was persecuted by the Church for his teachings is also false. Quite apart from the fact that he was overturning several thousand years of research, the theory he proposed was eighty years old by the time of the trial. Both Galileo and Copernicus, the guy who proposed the theory, were Catholics, and Copernicus was a priest. So why was Galileo actually put on trial? The story is hard to pin down exactly but the major reason is that he got on the backs of the ''scientific'' community and was an asshole to the pope, a former supporter of his. Galileo was basically told that his theory didn't have enough proof for him to go round saying it was fact and told him to stop teaching it. Galileo would later publish another scientific book without incident.
** Galileo was very difficult as a personality. He has been suspected to have suffered from a mild form of Autism. It is safe to say that he was in serious, often very personal disputes, with the leading scientific figures of the time. This being the Renaissance and most institutions of learning in Europe (and many leading scientific figures involved in disputes with Galileo) associated with the Catholic Church, the Church became involved in these disputes.
** The Galileo Affair is also touched on in [[UsefulNotes.HeresiesAndHeretics the Useful Notes for Heresies and Heretics]].
** Also worthy of note, though it may seem obvious to many : the Galileo Affair has absolutely nothing to do with the question of whether the Earth was flat or round. A surprisingly high number of people (including many Catholics) somehow believe that Galileo's revolutionary claim was that "the Earth was round, in contrast to the dominant opinion at the time that the Earth was flat", a statement which is amazingly wrong. The fact that the Earth is round and not flat was known since Antiquity (being easily proven through basic geometry) and had never been forgotten (see for instance Dante's ''Literature/TheDivineComedy'': Hell is a cone going through the spherical Earth, down to the center of the spherical Earth (which, once crossed, means that gravity is reversed), Dante and Virgil emerging on the Southern Hemisphere).

to:

** Unfortunately, the fact they ARE open to scholars of all faiths (and none), and that this is thoroughly decent of them, is entirely lost on a lot of rather militant and ignorant people who continually demand access to what ''they'' think is 'a sealed vault full of all their dirtiest secrets'. Thanks a lot, [[DanBrowned Dan Brown]]. The actual vault contains every letter ever sent to the Vatican, including the famous divorce correspondences of a certain [[UsefulNotes/HenryVIII Henry Tudor]] (a strange fellow who ruled most of a [[UsefulNotes/{{Britain}} pious if somewhat backwards little island off the coast of France]]), and a letter written on a roll of tree bark from a Native American tribe thanking the Church for the word of God.
* The idea that Galileo was persecuted by the Church for his teachings is also false. Quite apart from the fact that he was overturning several thousand years of research, the theory he proposed was eighty years old by the time of the trial. Both Galileo and Copernicus, the guy who proposed the theory, were Catholics, and Copernicus was a priest. So why was Galileo actually put on trial? The story is hard to pin down exactly but the major reason is that he the whole thing evolved into a personal dispute between everyone involved and got out of hand. The details are touched on in [[UsefulNotes.HeresiesAndHeretics the backs of Useful Notes for Heresies and Heretics]], but the ''scientific'' community basic rundown is that the Church was in the process of reconciling its theology with a heliocentric universe, with the help of invididuals like Copernicus, and was an asshole to the pope, a former supporter of his. asked Galileo was basically told that his and others not to publicly advocate the theory didn't have enough until they could find solid proof for him to go round saying it was fact and told him to stop teaching it. Galileo would later publish another Galileo, being a rather difficult person, refused, started squaring off against the Church, alienated his friends in the scientific book without incident.
** Galileo was very difficult as a personality. He has been suspected to have suffered from a mild form of Autism. It is safe to say that he was in serious, often very personal disputes, with
community, and publicly insulted the leading scientific figures of the time. This being the Renaissance and most institutions of learning in Europe (and many leading scientific figures involved in disputes with Galileo) associated with the Catholic Church, Pope, causing the Church became involved to come down hard on his head to protect its reputation. Another thing worth noting is that the Church's defense of a geocentric universe was not based in these disputes.a literal interpretation of the Bible, but rather the sum total of all Classical astronomy up to that point, particularly the Ptolemaic model. In fact, the official position of the Church was that there is nothing in scripture that contradicts a heliocentric model of the universe. The link between Biblical literalism and geocentricism came about much later, when "creation science" started becoming popular in the 1900s.
** The Galileo Affair is also touched on in [[UsefulNotes.HeresiesAndHeretics the Useful Notes for Heresies and Heretics]].
**
* Also worthy of note, though it may seem obvious to many : the Galileo Affair has absolutely nothing to do with the question of whether the Earth was flat or round. A surprisingly high number of people (including many Catholics) somehow believe that Galileo's revolutionary claim was that "the Earth was round, in contrast to the dominant opinion at the time that the Earth was flat", a statement which is amazingly wrong. The fact that the Earth is round and not flat was known since Antiquity (being easily proven through basic geometry) and had never been forgotten (see for instance Dante's ''Literature/TheDivineComedy'': Hell is a cone going through the spherical Earth, down to the center of the spherical Earth (which, once crossed, means that gravity is reversed), Dante and Virgil emerging on the Southern Hemisphere).



* If you genuinely think that mainstream Christianity thinks God is even ''confined to spacetime'' let alone a [[GrandpaGod bearded Homo-sapiens male]] in white robes who sits on a cloud within Earth's atmosphere, then you are ''inexcusably'' ignorant on the topic of Christianity (akin to a creationist who asks "if we evolved from monkeys, then why are there still monkeys?"), and therefore not qualified to discuss the matter at all. The closest actual depiction of God would be more closer to an EldritchAbomination which [[YouCannotGraspTheTrueForm seeing him would have you disintegrated]].

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* If you genuinely think The GrandpaGod image of God as a white-haired, bearded old man has its origins in Medieval and Rennaisance art, which was in turn heavily based on ClassicalMythology. That being the case, the charge that mainstream Christianity thinks God Christians worship a "bearded man in the sky" is even ''confined to spacetime'' very much mistaken. For the ''vast'' majority of Christians, God's form isn't confined by space or time at all, let alone a [[GrandpaGod bearded Homo-sapiens male]] in white robes a humanoid form.[[note]]A notable exception would be the Mormons, who sits believe that God has a physical, human-like form, and that he resides on a cloud within Earth's atmosphere, then you are ''inexcusably'' ignorant on the topic of Christianity (akin to a creationist who asks "if we evolved from monkeys, then why are there still monkeys?"), and therefore not qualified to discuss the matter at all. distant planet.[[/note]] The closest actual Biblical depiction of God would be more closer to an EldritchAbomination which [[YouCannotGraspTheTrueForm seeing him would have you disintegrated]]. The earliest Christians took that description so seriously that, for centuries, there was a strict taboo on depicting God in images at all, not unlike the prohibition that exists in Islam.
3rd Nov '17 9:15:14 AM ParcaKnight
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*** While it is kind of true that Easter has some ''symbolic'' things in common with pagan beliefs, it's more complex than that. and Easter does in fact have much more than "a vague "baptism" of being Jesus' Resurrection" you see early Christians use to called the celebration of Christ’s resurrection “Pesach,” the Hebrew word for Passover; today, most languages use a variation of that name: “Pesach” in French, “Pascua” in Spanish, “Pasqua” in Italian, “Pashkë” in Albanian and “Pask” in Swedish. This Christian holiday and festival is known as Pascha in non-English speaking countries. So most cultures don't even call the holiday Easter, it's just us English speakers who call it that. Our English word, Easter, comes from a stranger source: a pagan fertility goddess named Eostre (also known as Astarte or Oster). The festival of Eostre always took place around the spring equinox; so early Christian missionaries in Europe (only in Europe mind you) gradually melded the festival’s name, timing, and some of its symbols, into the Christian celebration.“The missionaries adapted a tremendous amount of the cultures from where they were doing their work into the faith, in large part to make people feel comfortable,” says Ace Collins, author of Stories Behind the Traditions and Songs of Easter. “Eventually, the Christian celebration took the place of the pagan festival.” So Easter doesn't really have pagan roots seeing as how many cultures don't even call the holiday Easter or celebrate the pagan aspect of it, and even then Easter or Pesach was celebrated by early Christians long before they added in any pagan traditions in to it, this a similar case with Christmas as well.

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*** While it is kind of true that Easter has some ''symbolic'' things in common with pagan beliefs, it's more complex than that. that, and Easter does in fact have much more than "a vague "baptism" of being Jesus' Resurrection" you see early Resurrection." Early Christians use used to called call the celebration of Christ’s resurrection “Pesach,” the Hebrew word for Passover; today, most many languages use a variation of that name: “Pesach” in French, “Pascua” in Spanish, “Pasqua” in Italian, “Pashkë” in Albanian and “Pask” in Swedish. This Christian holiday and festival is known as Pascha in non-English speaking countries. So most cultures don't even call the holiday Easter, it's just us English speakers who call it that. Our Swedish. The English word, Easter, comes from a stranger source: a pagan fertility goddess named Eostre (also known as Astarte or Oster). Oster). The festival of Eostre always took place around the spring equinox; equinox, so early Christian missionaries in Europe (only in Europe mind you) gradually melded the festival’s name, timing, and some of its symbols, symbols into the Christian celebration.celebration. “The missionaries adapted a tremendous amount of the cultures from where they were doing their work into the faith, in large part to make people feel comfortable,” says Ace Collins, author of Stories ''Stories Behind the Traditions and Songs of Easter. Easter''. “Eventually, the Christian celebration took the place of the pagan festival.So Easter doesn't really have pagan roots seeing as how many cultures don't even call the holiday Easter or celebrate the pagan aspect of it, and even then Easter or Pesach was celebrated by early Christians long before they added in any pagan traditions in to it, this it (Christmas is a similar case with Christmas as well.
case).
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