Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

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Pez Dispens3r
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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Pez Dispens3r » Wed Sep 29, 2010 3:29 pm UTC

podbaydoor wrote:
Pez Dispens3r wrote: Atheists, in this respect, are more like soccer fans who've studied the official rulebook but have never observed a bunch of kids playing it in a park.

Yeah, no. Have you missed the numerous stories told in this very forum of atheists who grew up with religious backgrounds and made the choice to leave? Thank you for continuing yet another misconception.

My point was that Catholics are very likely to imagine the bread/wine are symbolic of the blood/body, regardless of the actual teachings, and as a theological point it's something an atheist is more likely to be aware of than is a regular churchgoer. People tend to practice their religion however, and coming as someone who's studied their religion it's kind of pointless to tell them they're doing it wrong if they go against official teachings. It's more important how religion is actually practiced than how it's meant to be practiced.

And I guess what I'm saying is that atheists are more likely to be cynics and, as cynics, research all the corner rules which don't really matter to the majority of people who practice.
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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Rinsaikeru » Wed Sep 29, 2010 4:10 pm UTC

They did teach about transubstantiation in my Catholic highschool--but there were several priest/nun teachers at my school and so the theology aspect was actually relatively high. I'm not sure many of my peers remember any of it however.
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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Pez Dispens3r » Wed Sep 29, 2010 4:16 pm UTC

But would you agree you could approach a random aunt and they would know jack about transubstantiation? I have lots of family and family-friends heavily invested in the Catholic church who largely make it up as they go, and always get snooty with me when I bring up a technicality.
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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Rinsaikeru » Wed Sep 29, 2010 4:25 pm UTC

I can't think of one of my aunts who is an actively practicing catholic--I'm nearly positive my grandmother has never heard the word transubstantiation.

The only current catholic I regularly speak with would know about transubstantiation, but I'm sure he knows more about pokemon and flight sims...
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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby JudeMorrigan » Wed Sep 29, 2010 5:30 pm UTC

I will admit that as a more-or-less practicing Catholic, a good bit of my grounding in "what Catholics believe" is a direct byproduct of allowing myself to get drawn into online debates by various groups. Since hoping to "win" an argument on the internet generally bears rather a great deal of resemblance to tilting at windmills, I try to look at them as a an opportunity to educate myself.

Now, what angle I took always depended on who I was arguing with. I know far more about the history of the early church as a result of my discussions with atheists and neo-gnostics. My discussions with fundamentalist Christians have lead me to a considerably greater understanding of the Bible and how it relates to Catholic doctrine. The thing I always find remarkable, however, (and how this post relates to the point being discussed) is how much I've learned about the Catechism by talking to fellow Catholics. I've been on message boards with really Seriously Catholic communities, only to find many of them who not only didn't know what the Catechism said (except where it fit their particular prejudices), but didn't seem to care either.

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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Aetius » Wed Sep 29, 2010 6:10 pm UTC

What's the joke? "Of course I haven't read the Bible, I'm a Catholic!"

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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Роберт » Wed Sep 29, 2010 6:33 pm UTC

Aetius wrote:What's the joke? "Of course I haven't read the Bible, I'm a Catholic!"

Martin Luther didn't find that joke funny.
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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Oregonaut » Wed Sep 29, 2010 6:39 pm UTC

I'm not certain that Martin Luther finds much of anything funny nowadays.
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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Telchar » Wed Sep 29, 2010 7:13 pm UTC

Is that supposed to be a funny comment on Catholocism or the generally illiterate public during the reformation.
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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby podbaydoor » Wed Sep 29, 2010 7:13 pm UTC

If we take Prairie Home Companion as an authoritative guide, it appears that he handed his lack of humor down to the Lutherans...
tenet |ˈtenit|
noun
a principle or belief, esp. one of the main principles of a religion or philosophy : the tenets of classical liberalism.
tenant |ˈtenənt|
noun
a person who occupies land or property rented from a landlord.

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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Oregonaut » Wed Sep 29, 2010 7:17 pm UTC

You see, that's what is great about my comment. There are a number of interpretations, ranging from dead serious to really fucking funny.
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Mumpy wrote:And to this day, librarians revile Oregonaut as the Antichrist.

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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby CorruptUser » Wed Sep 29, 2010 7:26 pm UTC

I lost 1 single point on the "Great Awakening". Never even heard of it before.

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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby EsotericWombat » Wed Sep 29, 2010 8:06 pm UTC

The Great Awakening was the birth of American Fundamentalism. Jeff Sharlet's The Family has some chapters about him and his followers that were a good read, if you're interested.
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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Tirian » Wed Sep 29, 2010 9:02 pm UTC

I would have had to guess on the Great Awakening question. And I would have offered my best guess on how the Catholics feel about transubstantiation* and justification by faith while recognizing that both are officially nuanced issues. Oh, and the last guy in the "What is this person's faith" question is completely unknown to me.

I don't want to pat myself on the back, though. If they asked questions about the different flavors of Judaism or Islam of the same intensity as their questions about the differences between Catholics and Protestants, I'd quickly be out of my depth.

* Why is there only one "s" in "transubstantiation"?

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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Oregonaut » Wed Sep 29, 2010 9:16 pm UTC

It cuts down on the spitting.
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The EGE wrote:
Mumpy wrote:And to this day, librarians revile Oregonaut as the Antichrist.

False! We sacrifice our card catalogues to him in the name of Job Security!

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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Telchar » Wed Sep 29, 2010 9:20 pm UTC

Tirian wrote:I would have had to guess on the Great Awakening question. And I would have offered my best guess on how the Catholics feel about transubstantiation* and justification by faith while recognizing that both are officially nuanced issues. Oh, and the last guy in the "What is this person's faith" question is completely unknown to me.

I don't want to pat myself on the back, though. If they asked questions about the different flavors of Judaism or Islam of the same intensity as their questions about the differences between Catholics and Protestants, I'd quickly be out of my depth.

* Why is there only one "s" in "transubstantiation"?


Here you go...
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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Tirian » Wed Sep 29, 2010 9:27 pm UTC

Ah, that's where it went. :roll:

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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Rinsaikeru » Wed Sep 29, 2010 10:29 pm UTC

Telchar wrote:Is that supposed to be a funny comment on Catholocism or the generally illiterate public during the reformation.


It goes beyond even basic literacy as the bible was printed in Latin. Part of the protestant reformation included printing bibles in german (and other languages).
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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Aetius » Wed Sep 29, 2010 10:33 pm UTC

Rinsaikeru wrote:
Telchar wrote:Is that supposed to be a funny comment on Catholocism or the generally illiterate public during the reformation.


It goes beyond even basic literacy as the bible was printed in Latin. Part of the protestant reformation included printing bibles in german (and other languages).


And even though the Catholic church has bibles in English, etc, the tradition of just taking what the priest says about the Bible on faith never really went away.

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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Rinsaikeru » Wed Sep 29, 2010 10:52 pm UTC

Aetius wrote:
Rinsaikeru wrote:
Telchar wrote:Is that supposed to be a funny comment on Catholocism or the generally illiterate public during the reformation.


It goes beyond even basic literacy as the bible was printed in Latin. Part of the protestant reformation included printing bibles in german (and other languages).


And even though the Catholic church has bibles in English, etc, the tradition of just taking what the priest says about the Bible on faith never really went away.


Particularly if you consider that in my mother's childhood mass was still said completely in Latin.
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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Levi » Thu Sep 30, 2010 12:02 am UTC

Qaanol wrote:
Levi wrote:He changed the way people think about the Bible? That's one of the things that started me questioning. I've not thought about it in a while and I first thought this years ago, so I wouldn't be surprised if I came to the completely wrong conclusion, but I remember thinking "Doesn't that mean that either the Protestants are wrong and they're not saved or the Catholics are wrong and nobody for a thousand years was saved?"

That’s a pretty big false dichotomy you’ve got there, have you considered getting it removed?


Yep:

Levi wrote:I wouldn't be surprised if I came to the completely wrong conclusion

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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby Greyarcher » Thu Sep 30, 2010 12:10 am UTC

Pez Dispens3r wrote:And I guess what I'm saying is that atheists are more likely to be cynics and, as cynics, research all the corner rules which don't really matter to the majority of people who practice.
[citation needed]

I imagine a more natural possible cause of atheists knowing more religious factoids would be doubt; simply combine with a modicum of curiosity or interest in truth, and you have the basis for research. For former religious people, it may be because they doubted, looked more thoroughly into [their] religion, and found dubious details that others glossed over or handwaved away (e.g. "the majority of people who practice"). For people who were always atheists, they may have looked into religion to see if there was sufficient reason to believe, and stumbled across these bizarre points.

Admittedly, considering the large percentage of theists, I could see this leading to an unimpressed view of humanity's cognitive virtues. This could contribute to a cynical mindset amongst more negative folks--though not necessarily produce one--but it would mean you have the cause reversed with the effect.

Cynicism, on the other hand, I don't see naturally producing an interest in researching religion; it seems an incidental trait.

Of course, I do not attest this alternative as fact, lest I too fall victim to a fair charge of [citation needed]
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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby deerie » Mon Oct 11, 2010 9:19 am UTC

Aetius wrote:And even though the Catholic church has bibles in English, etc, the tradition of just taking what the priest says about the Bible on faith never really went away.


I was raised Catholic, and that was actually one of the things I liked about Catholicism. I didn't go around quoting Bible verses at people I disagreed with. I never had to complain about how the Bible treated slavery or women because I wasn't raised on it. My Church taught us to be good people and do God's work (good deeds, not necessarily recruiting more members). That's why I view religion positively despite being atheist. Homilies were about how the readings showed us ways to be better people. I feel like that's what religion should be about, not memorizing ancient family trees and battles. It's really easy to say, "religion is bad because the Bible says all these terrible things that people believe!!!!!!" but it's hard to admit that religion brings out the good in a lot of people because it often focuses on teaching people to be good. /rant

On transubstantiation: I remember being really surprised when I found that out as a kid, and I think there's a high chance that many Catholics that are aware of that official belief of the Church kinda roll their eyes and ignore it.

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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby The Reaper » Mon Oct 11, 2010 2:18 pm UTC

deerie wrote:
Aetius wrote:And even though the Catholic church has bibles in English, etc, the tradition of just taking what the priest says about the Bible on faith never really went away.


I was raised Catholic, and that was actually one of the things I liked about Catholicism. I didn't go around quoting Bible verses at people I disagreed with. I never had to complain about how the Bible treated slavery or women because I wasn't raised on it. My Church taught us to be good people and do God's work (good deeds, not necessarily recruiting more members). That's why I view religion positively despite being atheist. Homilies were about how the readings showed us ways to be better people. I feel like that's what religion should be about, not memorizing ancient family trees and battles. It's really easy to say, "religion is bad because the Bible says all these terrible things that people believe!!!!!!" but it's hard to admit that religion brings out the good in a lot of people because it often focuses on teaching people to be good. /rant

On transubstantiation: I remember being really surprised when I found that out as a kid, and I think there's a high chance that many Catholics that are aware of that official belief of the Church kinda roll their eyes and ignore it.
I figured that was standard practice, to ignore some of what the official church says. My parents (from my biased pov) are the nicer sort of catholics, the "do good regardless" types, but I think the teachings I got out of going to church most of my life left me being an agnostic theist. I've also abstracted what I define as a deity, as well. (I'm told by my mom that I'm just frustrated that the human language lacks the capacity to fully describe 'The Mystery', which is plausible)

Transubstantiation is a rather strange concept. I can understand the symbolism behind the words and actions, but to go so far as to saying that ritual is suddenly reality, boggles the mind.

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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby TheKrikkitWars » Mon Oct 11, 2010 3:33 pm UTC

deerie wrote:
Aetius wrote:And even though the Catholic church has bibles in English, etc, the tradition of just taking what the priest says about the Bible on faith never really went away.


I was raised Catholic, and that was actually one of the things I liked about Catholicism. I didn't go around quoting Bible verses at people I disagreed with. I never had to complain about how the Bible treated slavery or women because I wasn't raised on it. My Church taught us to be good people and do God's work (good deeds, not necessarily recruiting more members). That's why I view religion positively despite being atheist. Homilies were about how the readings showed us ways to be better people. I feel like that's what religion should be about, not memorizing ancient family trees and battles. It's really easy to say, "religion is bad because the Bible says all these terrible things that people believe!!!!!!" but it's hard to admit that religion brings out the good in a lot of people because it often focuses on teaching people to be good. /rant

On transubstantiation: I remember being really surprised when I found that out as a kid, and I think there's a high chance that many Catholics that are aware of that official belief of the Church kinda roll their eyes and ignore it.


That describes my up bringing down to a tee, I just drifted away (as despite him raising me catholic, my dad had done in his twenties oddly enough) over time.
There are catholics who feel very strongly about following the actual vatican line on things, but they're generally zealots, and often dismissed... I knew several priests who were very scathing about such people, one telling the head of RE (at my catholic secondary school) that "in holding fast to that belief, you have missed the point of almost every mass I've ever given entirely".

I still hold catholism fondly, despite being a Humanist, and by and large a Secularist; Should I get married to someone who wants a church wedding I'd have a catholic service, and I'd like a Requiem Mass for my funeral... Strange eh?

Catholics are often stereotyped (quite accurately) as being endlessly guilty for not being good enough catholics, in spite of all their good deeds... Which is easily explained when you realise how many people are out theire doing amazing things for others, yet can't quite bring themselves to be comfortable with the more inexplicable vatican beliefs.
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Re: Basic Religion Test Stumps Many Americans

Postby brume » Mon Oct 11, 2010 11:31 pm UTC

14/15 - I missed the sabbath day question too, and made informed guesses on a couple.

I think it shows that the people who chose to reject the overwhelming majority viewpoint on religion did so by first doing a little research to confirm their suspicions that what they rejected was, well, rejectable.


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