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Old 05-20-2006, 04:23 PM   #15
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Well said Chris, Stephanie I'm the eternal optimist. I believe in the Christian ethic of taking people at face value until proven otherwise. My experience and training with Young Life gave me great insight when I lead a youth group some years ago.
I don't believe your random sampling is either a majority or minority. It is likely the best of the best. The minority of bad actors influence the majority of kids in public schools today.
For reference I'm a 54 year old former hippie... fine art major, reformed drug user, born again Christian, who has seen and done most all of it.... Finding great kids is a reward for all of us as we age. Enjoy those you meet and do your part to help them achieve their goals.
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Old 05-20-2006, 04:53 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GlenCoombe
I believe in the Christian ethic of taking people at face value until proven otherwise.
Glen, my friend, so far in this thread I have ignored the mis-quote of Paul; the slander of the Hindus; and the ignorance our Muslim brothers but this comment needs an explanation.
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Old 05-20-2006, 05:43 PM   #17
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No, human beings are not "inherently good". That is why we have infant baptism and some religions "put you on probation until 12 years of age"
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Old 05-20-2006, 06:27 PM   #18
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Catholic answers

Weighing in on the Catholic side of the aisle . . .

The Church teaches that Man was created very good, as was all of creation. Man and the angels were both given free will, but Man and some of the angels chose to disobey God. The result for Man is "death"--immediate alienation from God and the rest of creation, with physical and spiritual death to follow. The tendency toward evil which Mankind inherits from Adam, called Original Sin, defaces but does not obliterate our inherent goodness (although in the case of the fallen angels, their sin did indeed render them inherently evil and therefore unredeemable).

We still make choices. Our choices still matter. However, in our sin-weakened condition it is only only by God's grace through faith that we can have the strength to make and keep choices that lead to salvation.

In the First Adam, Man died; in the Second Adam (God's Son, Jesus Christ), Man is "born again" through water and the Word, delivered from sin and death by Christ's shed blood. By the way, who do you think the Second Eve is? If you're interested in pursuing this thread, you'll find much food for thought on www.catholic.com ,the Catholic Answers website.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have some jammed galley tambour to yank out of my '72 International.
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Old 05-20-2006, 09:19 PM   #19
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right now, no!

We sold our house in another city to relocate. Our prerequsites for our new home were no "Hoa" and enough space to park our Airstream on "our" property. We told this to the real estate agent before we traveled to look at properties. When we arrived she had nothing to show us so we gave her a list of about 6 houses that advertised rv/boat parking. We saw one we liked, the ad said bring your boat or rv! There is even a place to park it in the back yard. I asked the agent at least 5 times including once at closing, where the previous house owners, their agent, our agent, and someone to officiate were in attendance. She once again assured us it was ok. There are also various boats and trailers in back yards throughout the neighborhood. Well long story short the HOA sent a final notice that we are in violation (we never recieved the first one) so we called them and they said NO!,the agent lied. So here we are, We are sick about this, We were misled and feel cheated. The new house we loved and were excited about now suck's and we are no longer happy here.
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Old 05-20-2006, 09:43 PM   #20
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I always assume people are good, until proven otherwise.

In my expereince, it is upbringing - not religion though - that makes the difference. The worst experiences of my life were with very religious people, who apparently don't practice their beliefs beyond Sunday mornings.

I am associated with many young people through my kids, our exchange students, and their friends. I am very impressed with most... they are smart, and often kind. But there have been a few very bad situations... doing illegal/immoral things, lying about what they are doing, more lying to distract from their wrongs, and causing harm to others.

But I still assume people are good, to ensure we have the opportunity for more great experiences. We recently had a wonderfull 10 days with a High School girl visiting from south Germany... We took a chance, again, and this time we won! We will visit her and her family in the fall.
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Old 05-20-2006, 10:45 PM   #21
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Being in and out of the church most of my life, there is now question that good and bad are in the church and outside the church. I personally grew up in a very unstable family enviroment and could have turned out mean and ugly, but I always wanted to do good and I try to find good in all. I have had the privelege to work with some pretty messed up teenagers in our church and they know that when their family life gets unbearable that they have a church family to depend on. Sadly I have seen people misuse the church, but there are those of us who try to live by God's word. Many of you are right God doesn't make you good, that's our choice, but He sure makes me want to do good.
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Old 05-21-2006, 06:30 AM   #22
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Kent, my comment is based upon my Saviour commanding us to "Love one another." If we practice this as a testiment to our faith we end up accepting people as they are, without preconceptions of them. "Judge not...."

Dmac, religion is man made, faith is of the spirit. Many confuse religion with faith, churches are full of people who attend yet have little faith.

Live your life by faith, your daily witness of that faith will show and be an example to those around you.
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Old 05-21-2006, 08:40 AM   #23
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Good Thread

I remember this quote from the Old Testament:

"Those who have heard the law will be judged acording to the law. Those who have not heard the law will be judged according to their conscience".

To me that implies that we all HAVE a conscience- that we have an inherent understanding of the difference between good and bad.
Makes me err on the side of goodness and try to believe that my fellow man wishes to do good and not ill.
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Old 05-21-2006, 08:50 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kistler
No, human beings are not "inherently good". That is why we have infant baptism and some religions "put you on probation until 12 years of age"
More Sunday School lessons are needed here. I hope you are not implying that baptism washes away the sin we are born with. Then confirmation or Bar Mitzvah is not the end of a probation.
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Old 05-21-2006, 09:48 AM   #25
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A thorough cleansing

Chaplain Kent said: "More Sunday School lessons are needed here. I hope you are not implying that baptism washes away the sin we are born with."

Then what does? I'll stick with the teaching of the Church on this one (for reference: Acts 22: 16 with I Pet. 3:21). However, as the Catechism of the Catholic Church {405} says, "Baptism, by imparting the life of Christ's grace, erases original sin and turns a man back toward God, but the consequences for nature, weakened and inclined to evil, persist in man and summon him to spiritual battle."
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Old 05-21-2006, 10:58 AM   #26
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"Iím feeling a bit philosophical today and started thinking more about the topic of whether or not people are inherently good". We are both good and bad. If one sees us a being inherently good, it depends on point of view. The first assumption is that we are pack animals. We have become dominant because the pack has been successful over time. What works for the pack is good. What doesn't is bad. That sounds a little Black vs. White. When in reality its relationship is many variations and shapes of grey. An Example: The members of the pack are hungry. What would be good for the pack is food. In a field stands a herd of quiet grass eating animals "Food". The Pack picks out one animal that looks like it will suffice the needs of the Pack. The hunt begins. Now good and bad. For the animal that the Pack picked as dinner, it is bad. For the rest of the herd our choice was good, because they survived. Now if the hunt is succesful, it is good for the Pack. If the hunt is unsuccessful, it is bad for the pack. Now for shades of grey. Lets say that the animal that was picked for dinner turns out to be too small the feed the entire Pack. For the dominate animals in the Pack the hunt was good. For the weaker members of the Pack the hunt was bad. Or lets look at the hunted animal. If it gets away, it is good that it escaped, however it is bad because it probably suffered injury. The injury could make it stronger or weaker, Good or Bad. Now for my specific point of view. A few years ago I had a near death experience. I got to a point of extream peace and freedom of choice. At this point I could choose to go or stay. I chose to stay, because I see this experience as being inherintly good. Envision a Pack of Airstream trailers gathered at a Rally. It is Good.
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Old 05-21-2006, 11:51 AM   #27
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I have read this thread and though it has nothing to do with Airstreaming it does raise some deep philosophical questions.

My belief is that the human animal is inherently bad. If it were inherently good, there would be no need for religion. We wouldn't have to be told to love one another, we would do it without being told. We wouldn't have to be told not to lie,cheat and steal, etc... . The Judeo/Christian religions have the ten commandments to tell its believers how to conduct their lives. Believers in most religions believe out of fear. Fear of not going to heaven, or of going to Hell or of being struck by lightning. In general the believers use their religions to justify their own actions and desires. The concept that if you don't believe as I do, or if you just insult my deity, I have the right to kill you is not new but seems ludicrous in today's enlightened society. The Middle East is currently demonstrating the lunacy that the corruption of a fairly reasonable religion can engender. But what they are doing is not so much different than what the white Christians did to the Native American in the not too distant past. Now they have an advanced technology at their command. They can fly commercial airplanes into buildings killing thousands of innocent bystanders.

The interesting thing is that the Jewish, Christian and Moslem religions all pray to the same God. Each has a somewhat different concept of who the deity is and what it wants from it's believers.

Is man basicly good? No. Left to his own devices anarchy would reign supreme. The veneer of goodness is thin. In the middle of all of the destruction of the gulf coast caused by Katrina, looters held sway. When the lights go out and law and order break down, all "hell" breaks loose. These are not the actions of inherent goodness.

I do not dispute that we are capable of major acts of goodness but for the most part these are learned responses.
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Old 05-21-2006, 01:27 PM   #28
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I would think that an attempt to answer this question should begin with a definition of 'Good'.

Buddhists would say that all conditioned phenomenon (the results of cause and effect) are 'empty' of inherent 'good' ness or 'bad' ness. They would also say that our conventional lives are dependent of causes (parents, etc.) so we have no inherent nature (good or bad).

I was raised a catholic but must say that the church has no credibility on any subject, especially the nature of humans.
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