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Religion: Adherents or Doctrine?

GeoLaureate8
Posts: 12,252
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8/12/2010 12:16:12 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
Should a religion be judged by it's adherents or doctrine? This is based on a convo where Cerebral and I said "doctrine" where as Zetsubou and mattrodstrom said "adherents/establishment."

Ironically, I asked a similar question on a religion forum (populated by mostly religious adherents) and they unanimously said that a religion is defined by it's followers, not it's founder or scripture (notice my question was slightly different, but same idea). I find that response odd given that religions are given a bad rep for the adherents and not the doctrines.

Personally, I find that absurd. A religion should be defined and judged based on it's doctrines/scripture and founder, not the adherents. Perhaps you can judge the benefits and affects of a religion based on it's adherents, but then again, some adherents may not act accordingly to the religion.
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-- Frederic Bastiat
Puck
Posts: 6,457
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8/12/2010 12:20:42 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
IOW the religion is the doctrine which can be judged equally as any one persons actions who define themselves as religious. There is no necessary dichotomy.
GeoLaureate8
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8/12/2010 12:22:56 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 8/12/2010 12:18:35 AM, Puck wrote:
Eh all it does is introduce the 'no true X' card. :P

Mmm, I was accused of that before, but I'm not saying that followers aren't true followers of their faith, I'm saying that followers can't define the doctrines that the founder of their religion laid out.
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
-- Murray Rothbard

"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
-- Frederic Bastiat
Puck
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8/12/2010 12:23:13 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
Also such a response from a religious based forum probably stems from the acceptance of the certain base beliefs anyway making the judgement of the religious individual the measuring stick.
Puck
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8/12/2010 12:25:31 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 8/12/2010 12:22:56 AM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
At 8/12/2010 12:18:35 AM, Puck wrote:
Eh all it does is introduce the 'no true X' card. :P

Mmm, I was accused of that before, but I'm not saying that followers aren't true followers of their faith, I'm saying that followers can't define the doctrines that the founder of their religion laid out.

Define as in change/interpret? Doctrine is interpreted from scripture - all that your statement implies is an appeal to authority unless I'm not getting your point.
GeoLaureate8
Posts: 12,252
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8/12/2010 12:29:57 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 8/12/2010 12:25:31 AM, Puck wrote:
Define as in change/interpret? Doctrine is interpreted from scripture - all that your statement implies is an appeal to authority unless I'm not getting your point.

Ok, Jesus Christ laid out the doctrines of Christianity. Assuming that scripture is the actual word of Jesus, the founder and scripture are what define the religion of Christianity. His 12 disciples nor any of the 2 billion believers today can define Christianity contrary to what Jesus and scripture says. This isn't an appeal to authority, but rather a matter of definition (Christianity is the doctrine based on the teachings of Christ).
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
-- Murray Rothbard

"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
-- Frederic Bastiat
Puck
Posts: 6,457
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8/12/2010 12:32:40 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 8/12/2010 12:29:57 AM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
At 8/12/2010 12:25:31 AM, Puck wrote:
Define as in change/interpret? Doctrine is interpreted from scripture - all that your statement implies is an appeal to authority unless I'm not getting your point.

Ok, Jesus Christ laid out the doctrines of Christianity. Assuming that scripture is the actual word of Jesus, the founder and scripture are what define the religion of Christianity. His 12 disciples nor any of the 2 billion believers today can define Christianity contrary to what Jesus and scripture says. This isn't an appeal to authority, but rather a matter of definition (Christianity is the doctrine based on the teachings of Christ).

Sure but doctrine is interpretation of scripture which includes the teaching of Jesus. You can't remove a interpretative step to arrive at doctrine. 'What Jesus said' still requires translation, then interpretation > meaning > formation of doctrine based upon the claim 'Jesus said X'.
GeoLaureate8
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8/12/2010 12:34:16 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
The Buddha himself said: "I shall not pass into the final Nirvana, until there be not only brethren and sisters of an Order, but also lay-disciples of both sexes, who shall have become true hearers, wise, well-trained, ready and learned, versed in the scriptures, fulfilling all the greater and lesser duties, correct in life, walking according to the precepts - until they, having thus themselves learned the doctrine, shall be able to give information to others concerning it, preach it, make it known, establish it, open it, minutely explain it, and make it clear-until they, when others start vain doctrines, shall be able to vanquish and refute them, and so to spread the wonderworking truth abroad. I shall not die until the pure religion of truth shall have become successful, prosperous, widespread, and popular in all its full extent-until, in a word, it shall have been well proclaimed among men!" [Mahaparinibanna Sutta]
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
-- Murray Rothbard

"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
-- Frederic Bastiat
GeoLaureate8
Posts: 12,252
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8/12/2010 12:48:14 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 8/12/2010 12:36:16 AM, Puck wrote:
And? :P

Well, he makes clear that only his teaching is Buddhism in it's pure form. Anyone who comes after and tries to redefine it or make it something else isn't legitimate.
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
-- Murray Rothbard

"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
-- Frederic Bastiat
gerrandesquire
Posts: 1,258
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8/12/2010 1:21:33 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 8/12/2010 12:16:12 AM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
Should a religion be judged by it's adherents or doctrine? This is based on a convo where Cerebral and I said "doctrine" where as Zetsubou and mattrodstrom said "adherents/establishment."

Ironically, I asked a similar question on a religion forum (populated by mostly religious adherents) and they unanimously said that a religion is defined by it's followers, not it's founder or scripture (notice my question was slightly different, but same idea). I find that response odd given that religions are given a bad rep for the adherents and not the doctrines.

Personally, I find that absurd. A religion should be defined and judged based on it's doctrines/scripture and founder, not the adherents. Perhaps you can judge the benefits and affects of a religion based on it's adherents, but then again, some adherents may not act accordingly to the religion.

yeah, well i believe that a religion should be judged according to its doctrines, and the reason for this is self evident, but in reality,it is natural to judge the religion according to its adherents.because the adherents or followers of a religion are like the representatives of the religion. aren't they?
Puck
Posts: 6,457
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8/12/2010 3:14:00 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 8/12/2010 12:48:14 AM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
At 8/12/2010 12:36:16 AM, Puck wrote:
And? :P

Well, he makes clear that only his teaching is Buddhism in it's pure form. Anyone who comes after and tries to redefine it or make it something else isn't legitimate.

You are missing the point (and as an aside there are different schools dedicated to particular Buddhist interpretations anyway) that to say Jesus said X is an interpretative stance as is. Did Jesus teach in parables? Yes? No? Each answer is an interpretation. What did each parable mean if yes? Again an interpretation. What is the meaning if no? Again an interpretation. And so on. There is no 'pure' doctrine there is interpretation that leads to doctrine.
InsertNameHere
Posts: 15,699
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8/12/2010 3:57:44 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
I personally think it's a bit of both. Sure, judging a religion by it's actual doctrine would make more sense, but really? How many people actually follow said doctrine 100%? With that said, it's often the adherents who are judged, especially if the person judging them knows very little about the religion in question; they'll just assume that they're acting the way their religion tells them to act.
tvellalott
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8/12/2010 4:50:28 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 8/12/2010 1:21:33 AM, gerrandesquire wrote:
...in reality,it is natural to judge the religion according to its adherents.because the adherents or followers of a religion are like the representatives of the religion. aren't they?

This.
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Cerebral_Narcissist
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8/12/2010 9:21:30 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 8/12/2010 12:16:12 AM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
Should a religion be judged by it's adherents or doctrine? This is based on a convo where Cerebral and I said "doctrine" where as Zetsubou and mattrodstrom said "adherents/establishment."

It does depend on the context.
The truth of doctrine can be assessed according to doctrine and logic.

Ignoring this, how we like a religion can be based on the actions of it's followers.

So for instance the Catholic perception of God may be correct, I will still not be using their day care centre.

Mohammed may be the true prophet of God, but until that is proved I'd rather restrict Islamic immigration and keep Muslims out of Government.
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mattrodstrom
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8/12/2010 9:26:20 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 8/12/2010 12:16:12 AM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
Should a religion be judged by it's adherents or doctrine? This is based on a convo where Cerebral and I said "doctrine" where as Zetsubou and mattrodstrom said "adherents/establishment."

well... I said Catholicism ought be judged by it's establishment figures.... as that's all that separates it from protestantism.

though I think the Adherents behavior, like that of Islamic terrorists can often be indicative of the elements of their religion.
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mattrodstrom
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8/12/2010 9:29:53 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 8/12/2010 9:26:20 AM, mattrodstrom wrote:
At 8/12/2010 12:16:12 AM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
Should a religion be judged by it's adherents or doctrine? This is based on a convo where Cerebral and I said "doctrine" where as Zetsubou and mattrodstrom said "adherents/establishment."

well... I said Catholicism ought be judged by it's establishment figures.... as that's all that separates it from protestantism.

well.. some different beliefs... more or less literalist than some sects... BUT the Establishment is the big thing that makes it special.


though I think the Adherents behavior, like that of Islamic terrorists can often be indicative of the elements of their religion.
"He who does not know how to put his will into things at least puts a meaning into them: that is, he believes there is a will in them already."

Metaphysics:
"The science.. which deals with the fundamental errors of mankind - but as if they were the fundamental truths."