6 votes

The pivotal point in the upward curve from bondage to liberty is spiritual faith

In response to the recent spate of anti-Christian, anti-faith and anti-semitic posts on this site:

"The world's great civilizations have progressed through this sequence: from bondage to spiritual faith; from spiritual faith to great courage; from courage to liberty; from liberty to abundance; from abundance to selfishness; from selfishness to complacency; from complacency to apathy; from apathy to dependence; from dependence back again into bondage." - Alexander Fraser Tytler

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ks7CU9lKej8&list=PL1C889ED74C...

Liberty is based on faith in God. Without faith, there will be no lasting Liberty.



Trending on the Web

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Religion everywhere, liberty nowhere

The world has been perpetually religious for thousands of years yet it has also been authoritarian throughout that same period. Why is this so if religion is a product of faith and faith serves to create liberty? What happened that the world had both faith yet not liberty? The equation does not hold. Why were even the most powerful of societies (which were near exclusively religious) slave holders? Religions themselves typically have authoritarian themes, like complete unquestioning submission to authority, being judged without recourse, imposition of ultimatums, pervasive spying power, hierarchies and castes that are enforced by impetuous believers, divine right to power, just to name a tiny handful. What about people who have faith in religions that are deliberately and unabashedly opposed to your notion of liberty? Do they still release people from bondage? No? Then the equation has to be changed or we have to write it off as wrong.

There's another thing to contend with - if spiritual faith is what eliminates bondage then it should follow that lack of spiritual faith initiates bondage. And of course your statement that, "Liberty is based on faith in God. Without faith, there will be no lasting Liberty." Without even really getting into the first half of your claim, that liberty is based on faith in a god (it isn't for me,) can you show a real verified causal link of a growth of atheism resulting in less liberty? Atheism was far more prominent in the late 1800s than it is now. The most prominent authors and public speakers of that era were atheists espousing atheistic ideas. Under which state did individuals have more liberty (excepting of course liberty due to technology) do you reckon - 1880 US or 2013 US? It's just sad that you feel the need to resort to an argument like this - to use our point of agreement as an attack against our point of disagreement. That's the exact opposite of being respectful and diplomatic and a moral person, and the opposite of what Ron Paul would do, which is one reason why so many people like him.

Finally, your conflation of anti-Christian, anti-faith, and anti-Semite is extremely disingenuous. It's a dishonest comparison. You're stereotyping anyone who would hold one as holding all of the positions. At an even more basic level, you're being a collectivist.

Well...

you make some good points and I can understand where you're coming from because I used to be of the exact same way of thinking. Don't have time to go through your post point by point so I'll select a couple.

"Atheism was far more prominent in the late 1800s than it is now."

I think you're mistaken about this. There may be hundreds of millions of people in the US that claim to be Christian, but as I've argued on other threads, it matters not what you CLAIM, but what you DO. This goes for all the other references of 'faith' societies you make. They simply weren't really, they just claimed to be. If you look at the actions of people now, and compare them to Jesus' teachings or for instance the 10 Commandments, you can see clearly that people are decidedly less Christian now than they were then. For one example alone: pornography. Less or more now?

So this goes precisely to answer another of your questions:

"can you show a real verified causal link of a growth of atheism resulting in less liberty?"

Yes, in the United States of America. Are you happy with the Liberty you have today? If not, it is because as a society we are departing from God.

Do you think it is a coincidence that every fighter for Liberty against the communist state happens to be a Christian and fighting for Christian values? Randy Weaver, even the Branch Davidians if you think about it. Granted they had some wrong practices but the reason for this correlation is because Liberty is a righteous and Christian cause. And those most ardent fighters for it, and those who achieve it, are Christians. Look at this:

http://youtu.be/di_7aBLVn3Q

Notice anything?

Finally this:

"You're stereotyping anyone who would hold one as holding all (anti-Christian, anti-faith, and anti-Semite) of the positions."

In Truth, they are the same. To be against Jews for being Jews, is to be against God. And to be against God is to be against Christ.

Obedience to God is resistance to tyrants.

Direct replies

"I think you're mistaken about this. There may be hundreds of millions of people in the US that claim to be Christian,"

I'm not mistaken. You're employing a fallacy called 'No True Scotsman.' Whether or not someone is a perfect Christian or if someone doesn't believe in the way you think they should, all of that is irrelevant to the question of 'are you an atheist.' What matters is whether or not that person believes in a god. If they do, they are a theist, and if not, they are an atheist. Placing additional qualifiers might satisfy some personal desire of yours to discredit the position of others, but it doesn't in any way invalidate their claim of belief.

"Yes, in the United States of America. Are you happy with the Liberty you have today? If not, it is because as a society we are departing from God."

I asked for empirical or rational evidence of a causal link. You provided only weak, unsupported correlations. To say that the USA is where it is due to a decline in religiosity is to fail to realize the increase in religiosity, as well as the myriad other factors which lead to our current state.

"Do you think it is a coincidence that every fighter for Liberty against the communist state happens to be a Christian and fighting for Christian values?"

This is simply false. Most libertarians are also atheists, check polling figures; check the statistics from Ron Paul voters in the republican primary; just look around you - liberty fighters, communism-opposed, and atheist - everywhere. The originators of liberty philosophy and many of its proponents are largely anti-religion, because religion and religious people are opposed to liberty more than most groups. Which groups most seek to enforce their morality on the populace through social policy? Which groups most defend laws which deprive people of individual liberty for the purpose of protecting them from themselves?

"In Truth, they are the same. To be against Jews for being Jews, is to be against God. And to be against God is to be against Christ."

This is a glaringly false equivalence.
When equivocating terms, they must bear truth in reverse.
In other words, 1 + 2 = 3, therefor 2 + 1 = 3, 3 = 2 + 1 and 3 = 1 + 2. Get it?

Therefor, if you conflate anti-semite with anti-god (your original claim was anti-faith, but I'll let that slide) then the reverse must be true, but it simply isn't. Being anti-god or anti-faith does not mean you are automatically anti-semite, and to suggest otherwise is disingenuous, condescending and/or ignorant. To not believe in a god has nothing to do with whether or not you hate or fear Semitic people. To not subscribe to Christianity does not mean that you by default believe in no gods. This is just another logical fallacy called false equivocation.

Well David only now noticed your reply

'No True Scotsman'.

I sympathise with the inconvenience of the answer, but there is still no getting around it. People are Christians based on how they keep to Jesus Christ's principal teachings:

1) Love God
2) Love one another

That encompass and fulfill the Mosaic and earlier teachings of God, principally the 10 Commandments, that, although superceded by Christ's laws, are still guiding measures as to breach them is to breach Christ's teaching.

Your argument that as long as someone professes a certain belief, they are then automatically not an atheist, does not hold water. People lie. If you are talking about people who merely claim Christianity or some other qualifying (for you) belief system, then I agree with you completely!

However you try to manipulate it, that is not a Christian, and it is Christians that I am talking about.

You wanna know why they support Liberty? Because Christianity demands it. No true Christian can be against Liberty nor support tyranny. It is quite simply anti-Christian. Read the book of Exodus. It is the story of Liberty from oppression.

"This is simply false. Most libertarians are also atheists, check polling figures; check the statistics from Ron Paul voters in the republican primary.."

Um, how about RON PAUL himself? Are you sure you're on the right site? His name is at the top, and he is a committed Christian.

"I asked for empirical or rational evidence of a causal link. You provided only weak, unsupported correlations. To say that the USA is where it is due to a decline in religiosity is to fail to realize the increase in religiosity, as well as the myriad other factors which lead to our current state."

Now you are trying to twist my words. For the Christian Faith I am talking about, you have substituted 'religiosity'. That is not what I said, nor does it have anything like the same meaning (as above), arguably it is the complete opposite. Please try to argue honestly.

Ok you want some empirical evidence? How about the Nazis & the USSR?

- The Nazis were expressly and overtly atheistic, they were not Christian at all. The greatest resistance to Nazi tyranny within Germany was from Christians.

- Stalin and the Bolsheviks were also absolutely and completely an atheist movement. They banned Christianity!!

- As stated below, it is a straight lie that the largest mass-murders in the 20th Century were done by anyone but the most atheistic and anti-Christian regimes in existence. Are you going to argue that Mao was a Christian? Well he killed more people than anyone else. He was an atheist.

- Atheism is Satanism. Satanism is the worship of the self, aided by the biggest self-worshipper, Satan. To achieve this, it is first necessary to deny God's authority over oneself. The most common way to do that is to deny God's existence (atheism). This is why those that most strongly promote atheism have historically been and still are, Satanists. And one of the chief evil-doers among them are: communists. Karl Marx was an avowed Satanist, long before he was a 'communist'. The whole idea of communism was drummed up by satanists to lure people away from God's protection through Christ and into slavery, a process that is far advanced now, as Christianity is being rolled back in the United States, and as we can see, surprise surprise, Americans are simultaneously being rolled into communist oppression. communism and satanism are the same thing. Jesus Christ is and always has been the saviour of Liberty, and its only true hope in the world.

Without the immovable rock of Jesus Christ as a foundation, no belief system nor political movement has any surer footing than the ever-shifting sea, and is washed away as easily.

“I wish to avenge myself against the One who rules above.”
-- Karl Marx

“Thus heaven I’ve forfeited, I know it full well. My soul, once true to God, is chosen for hell.”
-- Karl Marx

http://www.amazon.com/Marx-Satan-Richard-Wurmbrand/dp/089107...

Obedience to God is resistance to tyrants.

Are you delusional? Re-read

Are you delusional? Re-read your book and follow it's teaching to the t. Then you'll be a real xtian and you'll also spend the rest of your life behind bars, because rape and murder is not ok, though it's condoned in that book. It's another case of xtians picking pieces out of the bible that fit with the good.
And you thinkn Atheist don't fight for freedom and liberty?
Thomas Paine or Walter Block ring any bells?
Noam Chomsky
Ayn Rand
The list goes on.

You idiot.

Have you read it? Doesn't sound like it. I have, and can tell you that the popular (in our day) falsehood that such things are anywhere condoned in the Bible is not true. Both of those things are expressly prohibited as being against God. Exodus 20:1-17, Galatians 5:19-21 (among others).

Both Paine and Chomsky are socialists/ communists. Paine passionately defended and supported the totalitarian and communist French revolutionary terror - about as tyrannical as you can get. Rand may be the only exception.

Obedience to God is resistance to tyrants.

Resorting to name calling.

Resorting to name calling. I'll take that as a win. Thank you.

You can take it any way you like.

Its a loss for you. But then I guess communists are used to insisting emphatically that white is black and black is white, right?

Obedience to God is resistance to tyrants.

I wouldn't know, I'm not a

I wouldn't know, I'm not a communist.

Wrong. All that required is

Wrong. All that required is some arse kicking. Liberty is based on faith in oneself, own abilities to affect the outcome of ones future. Action is the word you're looking for. Praying for "good" outcome is something that cowards do.

In response to the recent spate of anti-Christian, anti-faith and anti-semitic posts on this site:

All those things are in response to the people who use those things to submit others to their will. All organized religions are about oppression of individual will to succeed. Keep your religion, I'll keep my faith. (copyright this phrase) ;-)

It's posts like these...

that make it difficult, if not impossible, for the secular minded to consider with any seriousness the value or validity of a life lived by faith.

As someone who has been on both sides of this issue, let me say to the OP. If the best response you can offer "to the recent spate of anti-Christian, anti-faith and anti-semitic posts on this site" is a quote of questionable origin and veracity, essentially a blanket statement with little or no supporting evidence, followed up by the obligatory YouTube video, then perhaps you should not be surprised when you are challenged and even ridiculed. In your defense, you did at least attempt to share an original thought, or what I presume to have been an original thought at the end of your post. Unfortunately, even that was not entirely accurate.

As for the "free" thinkers among us, those liberty minded pagans, atheists, agnostics, unapologetic hedonists et alia, perhaps we could take your words more seriously if you made even a feigned effort to convince your fellow laborers, neighbors, and friends of liberty that your resistance to matters of faith has not also deprived you of any sense of propriety, tolerance, common decency, or God forbid, simple kindness. Must you really put forth your own arguments by attacking every person of faith as though they were brute beasts, devoid of human emotion or intellect, placed here for your own personal amusement?

As a person of faith and science, I agree with what I suppose to be the OP's intended point, Liberty is God given. I believe I am in good company, and would refer you to the Declaration of Independence as graphic support for this statement.

One of the common misunderstandings I see regularly in these threads, and what appears to be the basis for so much of the anger directed towards anyone who dares to openly express their particular brand of spirituality is that faith and religion are somehow synonymous, or the even more erroneous conclusion that reason and spirituality are somehow mutually exclusive, nothing could be further from the truth. Religion and Government/Politics are another story altogether, two halves of the same worthless currency, I put my trust in neither.

What good is Liberty if we don't use it to enrich the lives of those around us?

Love one another.

πολλα γαρ πταιομεν απαντες ει τις εν λογω ου πταιει ουτος τελειος ανηρ δυνατος χαλιναγωγησαι και ολον το σωμα

good job--

.

it's hard to be awake; it's easier to dream--

Wow

Well said, my friend.

Quite articulate and well reasoned. Thank you.

Saying that

One religion or another is required for liberty to succeed flies in the face of everything freedom represents.

---

Willl, liberty is based on faith in Allah. Without faith, there will be no lasting liberty.

If you dispute this then you're anti-Islam and anti-liberty.

/sarcasm

The word "liberty"occurs 27 times in 25 verses in the KJV

Read these verses, just one itty bitty page of search criteria and see if the verses make sense re:God-given liberty vs mans perversion of liberty (i.e., "false brethren")

Particularly Jeremiah 34, 2 Corinthians 3:17, Galatians 5:1, Galatians 5:13 and James 1:25

Ecclesiastes 8:9 All this have I seen, and applied my heart unto every work that is done under the sun: [there is] a time wherein one man ruleth over another to his own hurt.

That's all I have to say about that. ;)

Freedom is not: doing everything you want to.
Freedom is: not having to do what you don't want to do.
~ Joyce Meyer

Whoever just down-voted this could not have read it that quickly

--there is no way you even considered what I had to offer to the conversation yet down-voted me? That makes no sense whatsoever and shows a sense of "close-mindedness" that one might also accuse a "religious" person of being. Pot meet kettle.

Freedom is not: doing everything you want to.
Freedom is: not having to do what you don't want to do.
~ Joyce Meyer

Those who deny or mock spirituality

... always fall back on their own religion called "science". Science says ______ so it's truth !
Sorry to burst y'alls bubble : science is a government propaganda vehicle.
The theory of evolution is crumbling under new evidence of intelligent design built right into your DNA. So-called "junk" DNA ( you gotta love how anything science fails to explain is called "junk") is where incredible un-tapped human potential lives. Science liars like Michael Mann:

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/03/05/irony-on-steroidsuva-p...

... are paid to provide justifications for tyranny... and to fill the empty void in all the lost souls who stray from their divine path. You are more than just a collection of bones and muscles : you have a consciousness which science fails to explain and never will understand.

“The gift of mental power comes from God, Divine Being, and if we concentrate our minds on that truth, we become in tune with this great power. My Mother had taught me to seek all truth in the Bible.”
- Nikola Tesla

"you have a consciousness

"you have a consciousness which science fails to explain and never will understand. "

Religion explains it quite clearly though right?
"God did it!" There. Explained.

Sorry, but this is absurd premise.

Human beings living in the forest of the Amazon may be more attuned to the world than we will ever be, and I doubt they believe in Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny or any other man created entity or idol to try and satisfy their fear of or need to explain their own existence.

beephree

may be or may not be

Isn't this the people that practice witch craft and voodoo and run around naked (a person might like that, sorry).

Maybe worship a stick that was stuck into the ground, put some mud on it and call themselves, "enlightened"?

I'll give 'em that they're able to avoid snakes, big snakes probably much better than say, ones here. Alligators, big ugly spiders?

Has atheism been designed for laughter when all else has failed?

; - \

Isn't atheism...

...a religion in itself? Even the high courts have concluded it as such. A simple belief that God is who He said He was is good enough for me and I have someone greater than myself to go to when I need to. Lol...some people call belief in God a crutch...glad to have that!

Definitions, definitions

They always make the difference, because the answer to your question is both yes and no, though even that needs elaboration.

'Atheist' has two prime uses.
1 A person who does not believe in a god.
2 A person who believes that there are no gods.

I'm sure you can see how those are quite different.
Essentially, it's a matter of the individual's certainty in answering the question. Some people will automatically understand/know that nothing is certain, at least as far as the so-called ultimate questions (or perhaps applied even further.) While you might jump to call them agnostic, a person who does not believe in any god is technically an atheist regardless of how much they feel they do or don't know.

On the other hand, the second use -can be- interpreted as a religious position, being that it posits to answer one of said ultimate questions, and because it's a position of faith. You don't ultimately know with certainty that there are no gods, therefor making such a claim is impossible without faith or at least unrealistically exhaustive research because it's extremely difficult to prove a negative, especially one where the goalposts can always be shifted.

However, as a religion, atheism (or anti-theism) is very weak and hardly counts as a religion. Not because atheists aren't activist and don't interact with each other, or because there aren't many of them, but because atheists themselves don't even consider themselves a religion, they generally don't devote that much time to being an atheist, and there are no guidelines, rules, restrictions, laws, decrees, rulers, codes, rituals, or anything else that you might find in a traditional religion. The only comparison is that they're concerned with the same question "to God or not to God," and they both hold a position which requires faith, or belief without the possibility of even functional certainty.

Others have proposed a scale instead of worrying about which words to use, and perhaps that works even better. For example, there are 9 stances, #1 being, "I know for certain that a god exists," #9 being, "I know for certain that no god exists," and #5 being, "I have drawn no conclusion in either direction."

Personally, I'm an 8. I am not absolutely certain there is no god, I am however certain that a god's existence is very improbable. Probably about as improbable as the Matrix existing or everything I experience being a dream state during a long coma I'm in. There's zero evidence for any of those scenarios.

Finally, everyone who is religious is also an atheist (by definition #2 above) for every other religion except the one they believe. They (believe they) know that all those other religions are wrong. The only difference between that person and a definition #2 atheist is that the atheist takes their atheism one god further. Neither of us believe in Zeus or Krishna.

comments like this...

"Finally, everyone who is religious is also an atheist (by definition #2 above) for every other religion except the one they believe. They (believe they) know that all those other religions are wrong. The only difference between that person and a definition #2 atheist is that the atheist takes their atheism one god further. Neither of us believe in Zeus or Krishna."

WOW! GOLD!

Atheistic religion of unbelief belief

Pretty-much is a religion I'd say, its practiced religiously. lol

Admitting religion to an atheist is the unforgivable sin, I think. Oop.

No, it's not.

Is "no cheese" a type of cheese? Same difference.

Your need to "have someone greater than myself to go to when I need to" is indeed a crutch. If you can't walk without a crutch, it's a good thing to have. But are you implying that those who have learned to walk without crutches are doing something wrong?

Recommended reading: The Most Dangerous Superstition by Larken Rose

No, I am not saying you are...

...doing anything wrong!=) My idea of a crutch is that when something bad happens in my life for a time, I have someone greater than myself to help me through it, and it may be simply to send a friend into my life at the right time with the exact wisdom and/or knowledge to help me through...even if that friend is an atheist! God is pretty practical. No, getting through life is just easier having God(except if one is caught up in "religiousness",which I am not). However, I can totally see where you come from...believe you and me, I have seen a lot of fake bs in the churches and even the t.v...it's enough to turn anyone away! Mine is personal and not shoved onto others or made up of a formula...no one can change that for me. Its not confusing, but very clear and I'm just a normal person like everyone else.=)

I respect that.

Totally.

A lot of folks (many of them posting on this thread) think that people with different moral beliefs are "the enemy." Atheists often think of religious people as superstitious fools, while secretly envying their moral certainty. Religious folk often think of atheists as immoral damned souls, while secretly wondering if faith is REALLY superior to reason, as a means of knowledge. Insecurity breeds antagonism, on both sides.

It's unfortunate, because people on both sides of the issue are mostly decent, well-meaning folk. Peaceful, freedom-loving people who deal with one another voluntarily, by trade, love or charity, are the civilized folk who make it worthwhile to live among our fellow men. Religious folk who live by the Golden Rule, and unreligious folk who live by the Non-Aggression Principle have infinitely more in common with one another than either has in common with folk who believe in the "religion" of mass murder and institutionalized theft called "government."

The common enemy of liberty-loving folk of all moral persuasions is not some religious or anti-religious group; it is people -- people of all faiths or of no faith -- who believe that initiating coercion is ethically proper, in some "good cause." Personally, I tend to doubt the goodness of any cause that requires evil means for its achievement. Those who steal and murder are the enemies of freedom and of civilization itself -- and the worst of them are the barbarians who have settled down to loot those they have enslaved, naming themselves "government."

Recommended reading: The Most Dangerous Superstition by Larken Rose

Good job Booda.

"Can't we all just get along?"

Only with liberty can we "get along."

When our freedom depends on which way other people vote, men must fear their neighbors -- fear anyone who wants something different for themselves. When men must compete for a share of the loot and favor being distributed by "government," every other "group" becomes a rival for scarce resources, and must be viewed with enmity. Atheists must fear that government will impose religious standards to their lives, and religious folks must fear the imposition of secular standards, particularly in government schools.

Liberty allows us to live with other people without fearing their "otherness." Government institutionalizes and perpetuates such fears.

Recommended reading: The Most Dangerous Superstition by Larken Rose

I was agreeing with you.

My quote was, of course, from both Rodney King and the remake of the movie "Planet of the Apes". I wasn't in any way implying that you were sowing divisiveness or conflict. I guess I shouldn't have used the phrase "Good job" as many people take it as always being sarcasm. I meant it literally, as "Good job, Booda" meaning "You hit the nail on the head."

Frankly, you and reedr3v are my favorite DPer's, as I always see posts consistent with liberty and analyses showing great insight into the workings of the free market and spontaneous order, not to mention an almost Christ like sense of good will toward those who attack you.

Again, "Good job, Booda!"