The "One True" religion

Discuss philosophical questions regarding theism (and atheism), and discuss religion as it relates to philosophy. This includes any philosophical discussions that happen to be about god, gods, or a 'higher power' or the belief of them. This also generally includes philosophical topics about organized or ritualistic mysticism or about organized, common or ritualistic beliefs in the existence of supernatural phenomenon.
Post Reply
Steve3007
Posts: 4371
Joined: June 15th, 2011, 5:53 pm
Favorite Philosopher: Eratosthenes
Location: UK

Re: The "One True" religion

Post by Steve3007 » March 7th, 2017, 11:55 am

If a religion says the statement "there is only one god" they have to give an explanation why there is only one god. They just can't throw it out there and leave it at that.
Sounds reasonable on the face of it. What form would that explanation take? Would it offer the existence of one (and only one) god as an explanation for various things that we detect with our senses?
I would think that your last sentence is a proper use of the word "why", but we're here to talk religion, not English grammar.
We're using English grammar to to do that. You have stated that a true religion would give good answers as to "why" its statements are true. In order to do that we need to know the meaning of the word "why" in the context that we are using it here. Do you agree?
"Even men with steel hearts love to see a dog on the pitch."

Belindi
Moderator
Posts: 954
Joined: September 11th, 2016, 2:11 pm

Re: The "One True" religion

Post by Belindi » March 7th, 2017, 2:14 pm

Steve3007 asked Lark_Truth:
How do you think a true religion could explain why there is only one god in a way that would make the statement "there is only one god" true?

If I say "it is sunny outside" and somebody says "why?" and I reply "because there are no clouds in the sky", is this a proper use of the word "why"?
This isn't about English grammar, it's about meanings.

There are actually several ways to specify which meaning of why? that you intend. Six meanings of why? occur to me straight away and there might be more.

1. The immediate cause of my question e.g. I like to see my opinion on the monitor screen: or I object to wishy washy statements about the state of the weather: or I felt a need to change the subject to something more innocuous: or we have already agreed to go out as soon as it stops raining: etc etc.

2. I have verifiable evidence from scientific instrumentation that it's sunny outside.

3. I have a revelation from God about the truth of the claim that it's sunny outside.

4. My claim coheres with other beliefs within a coherent narrative that certain visual effects mean it's sunny outside, e.g." because there are no clouds in the sky"

5. I have immediate subjective experience of sunny outside other than mystical revelation and you cannot deny what is subjectively known to me.

6. Someone who knows better than I has told me it's sunny outside.

Now, let's substitute 'there is only one God' claim for 'It's sunny outside ' claim.

Steve3007
Posts: 4371
Joined: June 15th, 2011, 5:53 pm
Favorite Philosopher: Eratosthenes
Location: UK

Re: The "One True" religion

Post by Steve3007 » March 7th, 2017, 8:01 pm

Belindi:

Perhaps a cruder distinction can be made between two basic meanings of the word "why". It is sometimes used when we are looking for an underlying mechanism for something - a reason in terms of causality. E.g: "Why do apples fall to the ground?", "Because of gravity". It is when it is used in that sense that many people think of science as a search for reasons "why" things happen. But many, or perhaps most, people also appear to think that there is a deeper meaning to the word. I think that's why Lark_Truth repeated this commonly held notion that science deals with the "how" and religion deals with the "why". The trouble with this supposedly deeper meaning is that it is extremely difficult to define. I think it is a reflection of the apparent human need (at least for many humans) to find a meaning and purpose for their lives that they regard as somehow deeper than the purposes of, for example, putting food on the table for their children or learning interesting things. It seems to relate to a need to be a small part of a big plan.
"Even men with steel hearts love to see a dog on the pitch."

Belindi
Moderator
Posts: 954
Joined: September 11th, 2016, 2:11 pm

Re: The "One True" religion

Post by Belindi » March 8th, 2017, 5:49 am

Steve3007 wrote:Belindi:

Perhaps a cruder distinction can be made between two basic meanings of the word "why". It is sometimes used when we are looking for an underlying mechanism for something - a reason in terms of causality. E.g: "Why do apples fall to the ground?", "Because of gravity". It is when it is used in that sense that many people think of science as a search for reasons "why" things happen. But many, or perhaps most, people also appear to think that there is a deeper meaning to the word. I think that's why Lark_Truth repeated this commonly held notion that science deals with the "how" and religion deals with the "why". The trouble with this supposedly deeper meaning is that it is extremely difficult to define. I think it is a reflection of the apparent human need (at least for many humans) to find a meaning and purpose for their lives that they regard as somehow deeper than the purposes of, for example, putting food on the table for their children or learning interesting things. It seems to relate to a need to be a small part of a big plan.

I completely agree.

We all long for order in the cosmos, for love. It's idolatry not love when one religion or belief system is claimed to be identical with order, with love.

-- Updated March 8th, 2017, 5:51 am to add the following --

Longing for meaning, order, love, is expressed when some mourner hangs a placard with the question "why?"on a railing beside where there was a road traffic accident.

Steve3007
Posts: 4371
Joined: June 15th, 2011, 5:53 pm
Favorite Philosopher: Eratosthenes
Location: UK

Re: The "One True" religion

Post by Steve3007 » March 8th, 2017, 6:05 am

Belindi:
We all long for order in the cosmos, for love.
And I think it's that need for something analogous to a human relationship with the Cosmos that creates this belief that there is a "deeper" meaning to the word "why". Being a small part of a big plan implies consciousness because, by definition, a plan is a thing that is created by a conscious being. In your list of 6 meanings for the word "why" in post #92, I guess this is item 3. Items 2, 4, 5 and 6 are various ways in which we attempt to find non-conscious mechanisms (the "shallow" version of "why" which we associate with empiricism and science). Item 1 is about human psychology.
Longing for meaning, order, love, is expressed when some mourner hangs a placard with the question "why?"on a railing beside where there was a road traffic accident.
I guess a particularly cruel person might hang a placard saying "why not?"
"Even men with steel hearts love to see a dog on the pitch."

Belindi
Moderator
Posts: 954
Joined: September 11th, 2016, 2:11 pm

Re: The "One True" religion

Post by Belindi » March 8th, 2017, 7:39 am

I guess a particularly cruel person might hang a placard saying "why not?"
Good question only there's time and a place for it and philosophy is the time and the place for it.

-- Updated March 8th, 2017, 7:43 am to add the following --

Religion deals with the innate sense of fairness by attempting an answer. Religionists might do well to remember that fairness is part of the human, as some prophet said in some form of words.

-- Updated March 8th, 2017, 7:49 am to add the following --

Religion deals with the innate sense of fairness by attempting an answer. Religionists might do well to remember that fairness is part of the human, as some prophet said in some form of words. Fairness is innately human a human quality and that's why it's "closer than your breath".

Philosch
Posts: 407
Joined: July 25th, 2012, 3:42 pm

Re: The "One True" religion

Post by Philosch » March 8th, 2017, 10:01 pm

There is no "truth" to be had in this discussion, there is no religion that could claim such a thing. Religions have to do with beliefs in unknown things so the answer to the question lies within the questions itself, there is no "truth" to be had.

Belindi
Moderator
Posts: 954
Joined: September 11th, 2016, 2:11 pm

Re: The "One True" religion

Post by Belindi » March 9th, 2017, 4:45 am

Philosch wrote:There is no "truth" to be had in this discussion, there is no religion that could claim such a thing. Religions have to do with beliefs in unknown things so the answer to the question lies within the questions itself, there is no "truth" to be had.

Post modernist Philosch is right but postmodernism is appropriate only for talking about. It's impossible to live post modernism because you have to commit yourself to some sort of belief if only to get out of bed when you wake up.

User avatar
Lark_Truth
Posts: 212
Joined: December 24th, 2016, 11:51 am
Favorite Philosopher: Brandon Sanderson

Re: The "One True" religion

Post by Lark_Truth » March 9th, 2017, 11:39 am

Can anyone confirm that scientists have proved that people dedicated to a religion out of hope and love are much healthier than people without a religion?
Truth is Power. Reason is Wisdom. Intelligence is Experience. Hope is Bright!

Fooloso4
Moderator
Posts: 2679
Joined: February 28th, 2014, 4:50 pm

Re: The "One True" religion

Post by Fooloso4 » March 9th, 2017, 12:10 pm

Lark_Truth:
Can anyone confirm that scientists have proved that people dedicated to a religion out of hope and love are much healthier than people without a religion?
With regard to the topic the question should be whether anyone can confirm that scientists have proved that people dedicated to a religion out of hope and love are much healthier than people dedicated to some other religion out of hope and love. If you want to extend it further the question would be whether anyone can confirm that scientists have proved that people dedicated to a religion out of hope and love are much healthier than people dedicated to some other cause or purpose out of hope and love.

Dolphin42
Posts: 885
Joined: May 9th, 2012, 8:05 am
Location: The Evening Star

Re: The "One True" religion

Post by Dolphin42 » March 9th, 2017, 12:58 pm

Or in other words: glass-half-full people tend to be healthier (other things being equal) than glass-half-empty people. Personally I'm a glass completely empty person and am as fit as a fiddle. But there are always exceptions.

Philosch
Posts: 407
Joined: July 25th, 2012, 3:42 pm

Re: The "One True" religion

Post by Philosch » March 9th, 2017, 6:09 pm

Belindi wrote:
Philosch wrote:There is no "truth" to be had in this discussion, there is no religion that could claim such a thing. Religions have to do with beliefs in unknown things so the answer to the question lies within the questions itself, there is no "truth" to be had.

Post modernist Philosch is right but postmodernism is appropriate only for talking about. It's impossible to live post modernism because you have to commit yourself to some sort of belief if only to get out of bed when you wake up.
That's interesting...is it really true? Not completely convinced but you may be right.

User avatar
Lark_Truth
Posts: 212
Joined: December 24th, 2016, 11:51 am
Favorite Philosopher: Brandon Sanderson

Re: The "One True" religion

Post by Lark_Truth » March 9th, 2017, 11:30 pm

Here's something interesting that I've found called "The 17 Points of the True Church" and while it seems to be only relevant to Christian religions, it does have relevance to this thread:
1) Christ organized the Church (Eph 4:11-14)
2) The true church must bear the name of Jesus Christ (Eph 5:23)
3) The true church must have a foundation of Apostles and Prophets (Eph 2:19-20)
4) The true church must have the same organization as Christ's Church (Eph 4:11-14)
5) The true church must claim divine authority (Heb 5:4-10)
6) The true church must have no paid ministry (1 Cor 9:16-18; Acts 20:33-34; John 10:11-13)
7) The true church must baptise by immersion (Matt 3:13-16)
8 ) The true church must bestow the gift of the Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands (Acts 8:14-17)
9) The true church must practice divine healing (Mark 3:14-15)
10) The true church must teach that God and Jesus are seperate and distinct individuals (John 17:11; 20:17)
11) The true church must teach that God and Jesus have bodies of flesh and bone (Luke 23:36-39; Acts 1:9-11; Heb 1:1-3)
12) The officers must be called by God (Heb 4:4; Ex 28:1; 40:13-16)
13) The true church must claim revelation from God (Amos 3:7)
14) The true church must be a missionary church (Matt 28:19-20)
15) The true church must be a restored church (Acts 3:19-20)
16) The true church must practice baptism for the dead (1Cor 15:16&29)
17) "By their fruits ye shall know them." (Matt 7:20)
An interesting story belonging to these seventeen points: It was compiled by a group of students studying the Christian New Testament and after they broke up to go about their lives, they searched diligently to discover for themselves the true church as described by Jesus Christ. Many years later, they got back together and discovered that they had all found the same church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (aka the Mormons). :shock:

Alternately, I have also found (on the same site) what is called "The Twenty Points of the True Church" as is described below:
Teachings of the True Church:
1. There will be no physical, visible coming of the Kingdom of God (John 18:36, Luke 17:21).
2. The celebration of the Lord's supper includes bread, wine (Matt 26:26-29) and the washing of each others' feet (John 13:4-15).
3. Marriage and divorce are frowned upon (1 Cor 7, Matt 19:9, Mark 10:2-12).
4. The Jewish Temple ritual will be observed (Acts 2:46).
5. The Church takes priority over family (Luke 14:26, 12:51-53, Matt 10:21).
6. Women must cover the head while praying (1 Cor 11:5-10).
7. Eunuchs will have special respect in the Church (Matt 19:12).
8. Only two commandments: Love God and love thy neighbor (Matt 22:36-40).

Members of the True Church can be recognized by the following:

9. They hold all things in common ownership (Acts 2:44-45).
10. They do not sin (1 John 3:6-9).
11. They can drink poison without harm (Mark 16:18).
12. They do not strike back if you strike them (Matt 5:39).
13. If you ask to borrow anything from them, you do not have to return it (Luke 6:30).
14. They never have to hire movers or earthmoving equipment, or use UPS; they can literally move anything by the power of God (Matt 17:20, 21:21, Mark 11:23).
15. They have no retirement plans, savings account, or food supplies stored away (Matt 6:25-34). And no possessions (Matt 19:16-21, Mark 16:21, Luke 18:22).
16. They never pray in public (Matt 6:5-8).
17. They are like sheep or children (Matt 19:14, 18:3-4, Mark 10:15, John 10:2-27, Heb 13:20).
18. They do not go to a doctor when ill, but heal each other with prayer (James 5:13-15, Mark 16:18).
19. Their children are not rebellious; they kill them if they are (Matt 15:3-9).
20. They do not die (John 8:51, 11:25-26).
This list has a similar story where a group of bible study students came together and compiled this list, went their separate ways, and then one of the group tracked down each of the original members and discovered that each of them had individually come to the same conclusion that there was no true church. :shock:
While the end to that story is indeed surprising, I can easily see why they did not find a true church that followed their list.

-- Updated March 9th, 2017, 11:31 pm to add the following --

Here's the site that I found this at so that you can see it for yourselves: http://packham.n4m.org/17points.htm
Truth is Power. Reason is Wisdom. Intelligence is Experience. Hope is Bright!

Steve3007
Posts: 4371
Joined: June 15th, 2011, 5:53 pm
Favorite Philosopher: Eratosthenes
Location: UK

Re: The "One True" religion

Post by Steve3007 » March 10th, 2017, 3:27 am

2) The true church must bear the name of Jesus Christ (Eph 5:23)
Looking from the outside, I've noticed before that there seem to be loads and loads of different brands of Christianity in America (different churches) and that a lot of them do indeed have "...of Jesus Christ" in their name. Perhaps now I know why. Given that they're already known to be Christian churches I had previously always considered it a bit redundant. Like having a car maintenance manual called "The car maintenance manual of car maintenance".
"Even men with steel hearts love to see a dog on the pitch."

Belindi
Moderator
Posts: 954
Joined: September 11th, 2016, 2:11 pm

Re: The "One True" religion

Post by Belindi » March 10th, 2017, 4:13 am

Lrk_Truth #103, isn't all of this evidence that The Bible ought not to be read like a book of instructions, but should be interpreted according to human reason and ordinary human kindness?

True, this would result in lack of any revealed instructions and advice from God. However, don't God-believers believers believe that God the creator gave humans the power to reason. And ought we not therefore to be as reasoning as we can be?

Post Reply