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post #46 of 71 (permalink) Old 01-28-2014, 12:08 PM
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Re: Religious Beliefs and Divorce

And?

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post #47 of 71 (permalink) Old 01-28-2014, 12:22 PM
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Re: Religious Beliefs and Divorce

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Why do I hate it? Read your responses in this thread. I assume you're an intelligent, reasonable person. And yet here you are telling me how all this marry your rapist stuff is actually good. Think about that.

And for the record, nothing ever happened in my life or in the church that scarred me. I don't know why Christians always immediately jump to that conclusion. The only thing that happened to me was that I decided to apply my logic and reason to everything in my life, not just everything minus god.
The world is a complex place. People do all sorts of things to survive. I assume you are American, modern urbane and confortable. Even today, there are places in the world where life is not so comfortable, child prostitution is a valid career option (I have seen that with my own eyes, though not used it) and perhaps maiming your child so they have a career as a beggar is the best education you can give (I have seen beggars and been told of this practice by locals).

I have not studied the Deuteronomy passage, I cannot comment on the replies you have received, but it is obvious from my reading that marriage was very different then, as has been discussed, and that there were severe economic consequences to being so used. Consider Stockholm Syndrome, and how it might apply in this context.

If you insist on evaluating everything by modern American standards, even the world today will not make sense, let alone writings that were in very different times. Throwing these sort of passages in is a useful notion if the objective is deep discussion, but some people do it as a cheap trick to win debating points, and that has nothing to do with deeper truth.

It's admirable to aspire to know more and more. It is wise to apply logic. But in my view it is also wise to assume you do not (and cannot) know the whole truth. Which is why there is the need for faith, as we discussed in another thread. It's also wise to recognise that your thoughts are constrained by your cultural blinkers.

Let me throw you an example. What so you think of arranged marriage? How does that fit with your ethos? What changes if you assume marriage because you were told to takes the place of marriage because you were in love? Is it barbaric and cruel, or just different?
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post #48 of 71 (permalink) Old 01-28-2014, 12:40 PM
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Re: Religious Beliefs and Divorce

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The world is a complex place. People do all sorts of things to survive. I assume you are American, modern urbane and confortable. Even today, there are places in the world where life is not so comfortable, child prostitution is a valid career option (I have seen that with my own eyes, though not used it) and perhaps maiming your child so they have a career as a beggar is the best education you can give (I have seen beggars and been told of this practice by locals).

I have not studied the Deuteronomy passage, I cannot comment on the replies you have received, but it is obvious from my reading that marriage was very different then, as has been discussed, and that there were severe economic consequences to being so used. Consider Stockholm Syndrome, and how it might apply in this context.
Yeah, everyone always says "well, things were different back then." Ok. Was an all-powerful god incapable of coming up with some better solution than "marry your rapist"? Could he not have made the people understand some better way? Is he limited by the culture of his people at the time?

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If you insist on evaluating everything by modern American standards, even the world today will not make sense, let alone writings that were in very different times. Throwing these sort of passages in is a useful notion if the objective is deep discussion, but some people do it as a cheap trick to win debating points, and that has nothing to do with deeper truth.
I think way too many christians just blow off these passages. I think they need an explanation. And I find "things were different then" and "god is good we just don't understand" to be insufficient. Frankly, I don't think there is a good explanation, outside of admitting that it's not inspired by god and things like "marry your rapist" are the fault of the men who wrote it. But of course admitting that has some bad ramifications.

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It's admirable to aspire to know more and more. It is wise to apply logic. But in my view it is also wise to assume you do not (and cannot) know the whole truth. Which is why there is the need for faith, as we discussed in another thread. It's also wise to recognise that your thoughts are constrained by your cultural blinkers.
We absolutely do not NEED faith for anything. Anything. It's not a virtue. It's believing things for no good reason.

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Let me throw you an example. What so you think of arranged marriage? How does that fit with your ethos? What changes if you assume marriage because you were told to takes the place of marriage because you were in love? Is it barbaric and cruel, or just different?
I think it's barbaric.
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post #49 of 71 (permalink) Old 01-28-2014, 01:09 PM
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Re: Religious Beliefs and Divorce

Why is an arranged marriage barbaric?

What does "all-powerful God" mean? For example, can God contradict him/her self?
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post #50 of 71 (permalink) Old 01-28-2014, 01:45 PM
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Re: Religious Beliefs and Divorce

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Yeah, everyone always says "well, things were different back then." Ok. Was an all-powerful god incapable of coming up with some better solution than "marry your rapist"? Could he not have made the people understand some better way? Is he limited by the culture of his people at the time?
I agree.

If culture of the times dictates what's acceptable that opens up a whole can of worms. If certain Deuteronomy passages ("marry your rapist") are explained under the notion that things were different back then and we don't do that anymore then that means same sex marriages should be ok too since many people in modern society accept it and certainly several states have legalized it. The things are different now for same sex couples, society is changing. The things are different back then line of reasoning by Christians opens up a can of worms for them if applied to things they oppose like same sex marriage.

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post #51 of 71 (permalink) Old 01-28-2014, 01:53 PM
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Re: Religious Beliefs and Divorce

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Why is an arranged marriage barbaric?

What does "all-powerful God" mean? For example, can God contradict him/her self?
I guess before we get down in the weeds over arranged marriages, I should clarify I'm talking about ones where one or both parties has no say in the arrangement. Just to be clear. So with that in mind....

Do you think it's possible to make objective determinations on whether an aspect of someone's morality is good or bad? Whether one is better or worse than another? I think we can. I think I can say that not beheading gays is better than beheading them. That freedom is better than slavery. That not marrying your rapist is better than marrying your rapist. Does being in a different time or culture make slavery ok...as long as they think it's ok?

It's why i can't stand the argument that it was just a different time and culture. So what. Why couldn't god straighten them out? Why could he at some point have told them not to own other humans as property? Were the ancient israelites just too stupid to get it?
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post #52 of 71 (permalink) Old 01-28-2014, 02:16 PM
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Re: Religious Beliefs and Divorce

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I guess before we get down in the weeds over arranged marriages, I should clarify I'm talking about ones where one or both parties has no say in the arrangement. Just to be clear. So with that in mind....

Do you think it's possible to make objective determinations on whether an aspect of someone's morality is good or bad? Whether one is better or worse than another? I think we can. I think I can say that not beheading gays is better than beheading them. That freedom is better than slavery. That not marrying your rapist is better than marrying your rapist. Does being in a different time or culture make slavery ok...as long as they think it's ok?

It's why i can't stand the argument that it was just a different time and culture. So what. Why couldn't god straighten them out? Why could he at some point have told them not to own other humans as property? Were the ancient israelites just too stupid to get it?
You need to answer the question about whether an all powerful God can self-contradict as a means to consider what God can and cannot do. Glib statements about "surely he can do better" are pretty meaningless otherwise.

I think it is sometimes easy to make objective statements about what is ideal. But the real world is more complex. Slavery is a great example. We abhor slavey, and yet the rich world uses it's power to brutalise those in the third world so we can have cheap consumer goods. Workers kill themselves to escape it. Yet people sign up for those jobs. Why?

Why is an arranged marriage bad if the alternative is starvation?
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post #53 of 71 (permalink) Old 01-28-2014, 02:22 PM
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Re: Religious Beliefs and Divorce

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If Christ was the Word of God, and he spoke in parables when he taught the population, public, whatever, was he always the Word of God? Maybe God decided, "hmm. I think I'll make, The Son of God, the Word of God." Did they always exist or were they made? You see, it takes some faith to believe in this. Christ said something like, "It takes the faith of a child to enter the kingdom."
Matthew 18:3

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post #54 of 71 (permalink) Old 01-28-2014, 02:37 PM
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Re: Religious Beliefs and Divorce

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You need to answer the question about whether an all powerful God can self-contradict as a means to consider what God can and cannot do. Glib statements about "surely he can do better" are pretty meaningless otherwise.
He's not my god. You tell me what he's capable of. I think he did a woeful job with his creation given how powerful and loving he's supposed to be. His word, his truth, the thing that is supposed to spread his message is a convoluted, muddy disaster. I think any one of us could have written a more coherent and effective holy book. Basically, I've found nothing about this being that would make me want to worship him even if someone could prove to me he exists.

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I think it is sometimes easy to make objective statements about what is ideal. But the real world is more complex. Slavery is a great example. We abhor slavey, and yet the rich world uses it's power to brutalise those in the third world so we can have cheap consumer goods. Workers kill themselves to escape it. Yet people sign up for those jobs. Why?

Why is an arranged marriage bad if the alternative is starvation?
Oh, absolutely the world is more complex. There are matters of morality that will be much more difficult to make distinctions of better or worse about. No doubt about that. I agree. But there are a lot of things I think we CAN make those statements about. Whether it's good or bad to be forced into marrying your rapist seems like an obvious one to me.

Is arranged marriage bad if the alternative is starvation? I don't really see that as a moral decision. A decision of survival, perhaps, but not really a moral one in the sense that it's arranged marriage vs. starvation. The question is arranged marriage vs no arranged marriage. Arranged marriage is bad either way.
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post #55 of 71 (permalink) Old 01-28-2014, 02:53 PM
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Re: Religious Beliefs and Divorce

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He's not my god. You tell me what he's capable of. I think he did a woeful job with his creation given how powerful and loving he's supposed to be. His word, his truth, the thing that is supposed to spread his message is a convoluted, muddy disaster. I think any one of us could have written a more coherent and effective holy book. Basically, I've found nothing about this being that would make me want to worship him even if someone could prove to me he exists.
Not your God yet you insist on throwing around buzzwords about him without delving into what they mean then use them to condemn the notion. Cheap debating trick. You raised the notion of omnipotence. I am trying to engage with it to discuss your ideas.

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Oh, absolutely the world is more complex. There are matters of morality that will be much more difficult to make distinctions of better or worse about. No doubt about that. I agree. But there are a lot of things I think we CAN make those statements about. Whether it's good or bad to be forced into marrying your rapist seems like an obvious one to me.

Is arranged marriage bad if the alternative is starvation? I don't really see that as a moral decision. A decision of survival, perhaps, but not really a moral one in the sense that it's arranged marriage vs. starvation. The question is arranged marriage vs no arranged marriage. Arranged marriage is bad either way.
Why is arranged marriage bad in absolute terms? I can argue for absolute morality on the grounds that a God imposes it. What grounds have you got? On what basis is arranged marriage morally bad?

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post #56 of 71 (permalink) Old 01-28-2014, 03:16 PM
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Re: Religious Beliefs and Divorce

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Not your God yet you insist on throwing around buzzwords about him without delving into what they mean then use them to condemn the notion. Cheap debating trick. You raised the notion of omnipotence. I am trying to engage with it to discuss your ideas.
I raised the notion of omnipotence since that's a trait he's usually given. What do you want me to answer? Whether he can contradict himself? I would say not. Is he powerful enough to be able to convince people that forcing a raped woman to marry her rapist is not a good idea? I would say yes.

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Why is arranged marriage bad in absolute terms? I can argue for absolute morality on the grounds that a God imposes it. What grounds have you got? On what basis is arranged marriage morally bad?
Again, going back to my earlier point and assuming we're talking people being forced into it....freedom is better than slavery. Period. My grounds for saying so? My brain.
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post #57 of 71 (permalink) Old 01-28-2014, 03:21 PM
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Re: Religious Beliefs and Divorce

What is freedom?

I have to go to work each day. Am I free? Someone in a third world country has to work in conditions I would not tolerate for a second. Are they free? The slave had choices....they weren't very good. Maybe the third world sweat shop worker has more choices. Why is that acceptable but slavery not? At what point does it toggle from unacceptable to acceptable.

Regarding omnipotence, it is obvious to me that there must be limits on God's power. That's important in understanding why I don't reject the notion of God because of imperfection in our world.

It's nice to know your brain dictates absolute morality
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post #58 of 71 (permalink) Old 01-28-2014, 04:06 PM
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Re: Religious Beliefs and Divorce

[QUOTE=Wazza;6824425]What is freedom?

I have to go to work each day. Am I free?[quote]

Does someone own you? Are you going to get beaten by a master if you don't go to work?

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Someone in a third world country has to work in conditions I would not tolerate for a second. Are they free?
If no one owns them and they're working by their own choice, then yes, they're free.

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The slave had choices....they weren't very good. Maybe the third world sweat shop worker has more choices. Why is that acceptable but slavery not? At what point does it toggle from unacceptable to acceptable.
Good question. Like I said earlier, there's a lot of complexity and nuance to these questions. I'm not saying there isn't. But I don't think it's a stretch at all to say freedom is better than slavery. I'd say the same about killing. Not killing is better than killing, but there's obviously a billion different scenarios you could come up with there too.

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Regarding omnipotence, it is obvious to me that there must be limits on God's power. That's important in understanding why I don't reject the notion of God because of imperfection in our world.

It's nice to know your brain dictates absolute morality
I don't reject god because of that notion either.
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post #59 of 71 (permalink) Old 01-28-2014, 05:30 PM
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Re: Religious Beliefs and Divorce

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So, Arb, I'd like to ask if Christ is the Word of God, and He spoke in parables while in human form, would much of the Old Testament also be in some sort of parable which makes it hard to understand as my previous post suggests? Not all will understand or be able to accept?
I'd certainly take that position, particularly with respect to the first 10 or 12 chapters of Genesis.
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post #60 of 71 (permalink) Old 01-28-2014, 05:51 PM
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Re: Religious Beliefs and Divorce

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Good question. Like I said earlier, there's a lot of complexity and nuance to these questions. I'm not saying there isn't. But I don't think it's a stretch at all to say freedom is better than slavery. I'd say the same about killing. Not killing is better than killing, but there's obviously a billion different scenarios you could come up with there too.
As a general statement of principle. I would agree freedom is better than slavery. But this is a functioning and complex world. By my values a sweatshop worker with kids to feed or a parent forced to sell their child into prostitution is not much better off than a slave. In some ways worse off maybe. Their choices are awful.

A government, or a God, is always going to balance moral issues and have to choose the lesser evil. That's the whole point of the notion of fallen humanity. God (constrained by reality) can make you perfect, or make you free. He can't do both.

The bible, and Christian teaching, exists in a social and cultural context. You cannot read it apart from that context.

Bringing it back to marriage...even now in prosperous western countries, there is a debate about the role of marriage. If things get tough can you divorce? Should you stay for the kids? Should you stay for the economic security? These are still hard questions. Many of us here have had to make hard choices. There is a lot more than love to marriage. And maybe if we were a bit less obsessed with what we get from marriage, like some mega consumer transaction, maybe things would be better.

We have more freedom than the ancient Jews had. Marriage was more an economic institution then. Women had less equality. And so on. I don't want to live with ancient Jewish marriage, 15th century roman plumbing, or whatever. That doesn't mean it was a bad idea at the time.
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