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What is religion?

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#1    Ligia Cabus

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 01:35 AM

What is religion?

- A faith, the belief in some kind of superior protector power?
- a book?
- a social control institution...

Yes. Because many people talk religion' associating this word to those things quoted above. Even here, oh, many times here, in this forum.

Always somebody begins to talk about religion, soon, the discussion inflames. And then, we see or read the persons, quickly, deviating from the central theme - the WHAT - to talk in Bibles and even to quote (think, write) excerpts of these books.

Others, they concentrate the thinking in social aspects of the Religion in a conventional link among Religion and Churchs. This association isn't needed. In fact, with the current advance of the religious thinking, one thing can and even must exist without the other.

And, about faith like a fundament of all religions, here, the question is what is faith e faith in what?

And also, why religion is associated to ritual, (sometimes, very weird rituals)?

OK, Let's meditate.

Edited by Ligia Cabus, 31 March 2014 - 01:36 AM.


#2    Beany

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 01:46 AM

Here's one of the Bing dictionary's d efinitions of religion" believing in a higher being: believing in and showing devotion or reverence for a deity or deities. I think this is the general understanding of religions, by consensus and usage. While it talks about deities, devotion, and reverence, it doesn't give any prescribed forms or practices.


#3    redhen

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 01:58 AM

Religion comes from the Latin word religare;

relig(are) to tie, fasten (re- re- + ligare to bind, tie; cf. ligament)

It's a spiritual belief system that ties together a community.

http://dictionary.re...browse/religion

Edited by redhen, 31 March 2014 - 01:59 AM.


#4    Ligia Cabus

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 02:13 AM

View Postredhen, on 31 March 2014 - 01:58 AM, said:

Religion comes from the Latin word religare;

relig(are) to tie, fasten (re- re- + ligare to bind, tie; cf. ligament)

It's a spiritual belief system that ties together a community.

http://dictionary.re...browse/religion

Excellent. I love etymology but, this religare - re-ligation, reconnection is, in deep, in occultist terms, not a link between a  community members. Is a conscious re-conection with another thing which can be called The being's Origin, the creator energy of all things.

In this sense religion is a technique based on the application of many sciences,technique based on the knowledge that turns someone able to execute this technique.

Edited by Ligia Cabus, 31 March 2014 - 02:19 AM.


#5    willowdreams

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 02:31 AM

I used to see religion as a social belief system making everyone the 'same', or working towards a same value system.

Probably began in cave man time when you worshipped fire.. and protected it so it would protect you at nights with light, and with cooking food of course.. and providing heat.  The group worked together to keep fire going.. (you get what I am getting at)

Then i think as people evolved and power struggles became more and more rampant, it became as a symbol of control and power used by whoever wanted control of the land and to get the land you had to control the people.

Even today religion/faith is used as 'power' to control people by making laws based on religious belief system which controls all others even if not of the same belief system (the gay marriage is a perfect example of this as is abortion control and birth control issues).

Its power wrapped up in purdy words like love, morals and protection.

as an edit.. i should explain something else i believe.

In the beginning faith ran rampant, and it was needed. As time grew and mankind began understanding more and throwing away the shackles of faith based belief systems that government  and church used to control us with law, we grew. I see us growing more and more and superstitions of faith and religion becoming something that many are pulling away from, to down right running away from it.

I see tiny groups/pockets always being about here and there through time, but as we grow, I see religion dwindling down to nothing more than pockets of groups here and there.

And that too as is it should be. We are evolving, growing.. and moving away from superstitions and blind faith in a being or beings. We are moving towards learning, understanding and realizing that even though we are not able to find answers to all the mysteries there are right NOW, there are concrete answers to everything, and therefore we do not have to fall pray to supernatural belief systems.

I feel comfortable with this.



(i am trying to eat and watch taped episode of cosmos at same time, so excuse me if my thoughts/words mesh a bit)

Edited by willowdreams, 31 March 2014 - 03:21 AM.

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#6    pallidin

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 07:04 AM

By nature of inconclusive evidence, religion is mostly "faith-based"

Just the way it is, I guess.

Much like "ghosts", "demons", "angels", "ET-UFO's", etc...


#7    Whisperer

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 07:39 AM

A control mechanism based on psychology....

I be Ra...The river of life, the ebb and flow of summer tides...
Make not an image of me, nor offer unto me the limitations of form...
For I be Soul....and I will not be limited...

#8    Mr Walker

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 12:46 PM

View PostBeany, on 31 March 2014 - 01:46 AM, said:

Here's one of the Bing dictionary's d efinitions of religion" believing in a higher being: believing in and showing devotion or reverence for a deity or deities. I think this is the general understanding of religions, by consensus and usage. While it talks about deities, devotion, and reverence, it doesn't give any prescribed forms or practices.
I have to disagree That is precisely what a religion is not. A religion is a codified form of spiritual practice/observation. It is almost always applied/applicable to more than one person.It is theoretically possible for a person to have a singular religion but it wouldn't been seen as such but as an individual worship. A religion is where a group of people come together and hold certain things in common or at least within a set of fixed parameters  Those things might   include  common beliefs, but might also include a need for certain practices or rituals.

I am a spiritual person with a personal connection to god but I am not religious Ie I do not go to any church. I do not belong to any group or church. I do not have rituals or special prayers or songs.  I do not need the company  or validation of other worshippers, because my life is connected directly to gods. So I believe in( or rather know) god. I respect and listen to him  but I am NOT religious. I attach certain practices to my life like not drinking smoking or eating meat because they are healthy good for me and good for my planet not because they are a part of a religious expectation.

A religion is indeed basically a set of prescribed forms and practices, and a religious person adheres to those forms and practices as part of their religious belief. It is interesting tha the forms and practices of religions are similar tot hose of any human group such as the members of a football club. Think singing, regular group meetings in a specially built place. Passionate devotion. A certain uniformity of dress and often even specialised dress/uniform There are ritual words which are almost liturgies and there is all the associated hierarchical paraphernalia  within a club structure; but most significantly  there exists a strong division into US (those who belong to our club) and THEM (those who do not.)

I am like a person who enjoys the fun and pleasure of kicking a football around but has no attachment to, or interest in, a  football  club or  organisation  .

Every individual human is, by the nature of our thought processing, a spiritual person. However religion really has no connection to this spirituality. It is driven by many other basic human needs including community, validation, a love of song, the importance of ritual in creating security and stability, a love of theatre, fancy dress etc.

Strange as it might seem, humans do not need religions to express their natural spirituality and most of us do not use religions to meet this need. Religion is  something which serves a much wider range of psychological need in humans just as foot ball clubs, sorority groups,  lodges  etc. do. A church is, to many people, what  a front bar or a sporting clubroom is to others, and serves almost identical human needs..

Edited by Mr Walker, 31 March 2014 - 12:59 PM.

You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world..

Be cheerful.

Strive to be happy.

#9    markdohle

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 01:12 PM

View Postwillowdreams, on 31 March 2014 - 02:31 AM, said:

I used to see religion as a social belief system making everyone the 'same', or working towards a same value system.

Probably began in cave man time when you worshipped fire.. and protected it so it would protect you at nights with light, and with cooking food of course.. and providing heat.  The group worked together to keep fire going.. (you get what I am getting at)

Then i think as people evolved and power struggles became more and more rampant, it became as a symbol of control and power used by whoever wanted control of the land and to get the land you had to control the people.

Even today religion/faith is used as 'power' to control people by making laws based on religious belief system which controls all others even if not of the same belief system (the gay marriage is a perfect example of this as is abortion control and birth control issues).

Its power wrapped up in purdy words like love, morals and protection.

as an edit.. i should explain something else i believe.

In the beginning faith ran rampant, and it was needed. As time grew and mankind began understanding more and throwing away the shackles of faith based belief systems that government  and church used to control us with law, we grew. I see us growing more and more and superstitions of faith and religion becoming something that many are pulling away from, to down right running away from it.

I see tiny groups/pockets always being about here and there through time, but as we grow, I see religion dwindling down to nothing more than pockets of groups here and there.

And that too as is it should be. We are evolving, growing.. and moving away from superstitions and blind faith in a being or beings. We are moving towards learning, understanding and realizing that even though we are not able to find answers to all the mysteries there are right NOW, there are concrete answers to everything, and therefore we do not have to fall pray to supernatural belief systems.

I feel comfortable with this.



(i am trying to eat and watch taped episode of cosmos at same time, so excuse me if my thoughts/words mesh a bit)

Some good points my friend.  However, just as today the study of NDE's is becoming more mainstream, so in the past I believe people had these experiences, but shared them, and from that the belief in something 'more' come to the fore.  Also the world around us screams intelligence and rationality, so that could also point to believe in an underlying intelligence.  The belief that we are just 'meat', or beings without a soul does not add up to peoples inner experience, now being studied at ever deeper levels.

NDE's for instance, all of the opposing views have been dealt with, and most of those who study the NDE become believers on some level, not in any particular religion, but in the reality that in fact we do live on after death.  This is not good news for many, for there are some who wish not to continue after death.

So perhaps all of our religions started with some sort of NDE, the being of light etc, that has led us to see to unite ourselves to this light.  My own faith, is another issue, apart form the overall understanding of what religion means.

Peace
Mark

Edited by markdohle, 31 March 2014 - 01:13 PM.


#10    Ligia Cabus

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 02:10 PM

View PostMr Walker, on 31 March 2014 - 12:46 PM, said:

A religion is where a group of people come together and hold certain things in common or at least within a set of fixed parameters  Those things might   include  common beliefs, but might also include a need for certain practices or rituals.
I perceive you have a broad thinking. Only a observation. you say "WHERE a group of people come together".

"Where" refers to a place or, by extension, a situation in which persons are together to practice certain rituals based in a religious doctrine or line of thinking. This "where' - generally is linked to a institution that we recognize like a Church (not the buildings) but a civil institution like an association.

Then, religion is synonymous of CHURCH (churchs)? I think no. What comes first in History? Religion or Church? I think is religion.


#11    Ligia Cabus

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 02:33 PM

I want to call attention exactly for this point: the deturpation of the religion concept., the understanding of true meaning of this word and of the religion practice.  And I say again. I would like that persons think about this idea: Religion is technique. I'd like people pay attention in this idea: Religion like a technique.

A technique which practice took many forms, the most, perverted by human, personal understandings and interests - but, still a technique and its truly goal is lost after millenia of contaminations,  misrepresentation of its real function.


#12    J. K.

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 02:39 PM

Are you looking for religious technique in its purest form, the way it should have been?  Or are you looking at how the technique has become muddled by humanity over the centuries?

One's reality is another's nightmare.

#13    Ligia Cabus

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 05:06 PM

View PostJ. K., on 31 March 2014 - 02:39 PM, said:

Are you looking for religious technique in its purest form, the way it should have been?  Or are you looking at how the technique has become muddled by humanity over the centuries?
Yes, I'm talking about the practice and primordial function of this technique called religion.


#14    J. K.

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 05:14 PM

View PostLigia Cabus, on 31 March 2014 - 05:06 PM, said:

Yes, I'm talking about the practice and primordial function of this technique called religion.

I just posted something similar in another thread.  Religion in its purest sense should be a person's relationship with his higher power.  Unfortunately, humans can't leave well enough alone and try to mess with the status quo.  In this case, religion has morphed into a money-making industry instead of an institute that promotes personal growth.

One's reality is another's nightmare.

#15    Ligia Cabus

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 05:19 PM

View PostJ. K., on 31 March 2014 - 05:14 PM, said:

I just posted something similar in another thread.  Religion in its purest sense should be a person's relationship with his higher power.  Unfortunately, humans can't leave well enough alone and try to mess with the status quo.  In this case, religion has morphed into a money-making industry instead of an institute that promotes personal growth.
And this is what has to change. It is hour and it is needed that people understand the real nature of Religion. Please, give me the URL of your thread

Edited by Ligia Cabus, 31 March 2014 - 05:20 PM.





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