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#868744 - 06/23/03 11:47 PM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
Lazy Pianist Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/03
Posts: 973
 Quote:
Originally posted by Jolly:

Quit thinking like pointy-headed intellectuals, and get out and talk to a few ordinary folks. Ask them what they think, without coercion.

I think a majority would easily agree that America is essentially a Christian country, even those who aren't Christian.
[/b]
Jolly,

You may get this answer in Louisiana, but I am not so sure you would get that answer in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles or a host of other places.

You see, what people have come to realize is that those who argue strongest that the US is a Christian country do so for more than an academic reason. They do so because they have an agenda to impose fundamentalist Christian moral teachings on the society as a whole (after all, they argue, we ARE a Christian country and therefore people should not be against government policies based on these "Christian" values such as denying abortion to women or censoring what people can see on the Internet or denying the same civil benefits of marriage to loving and caring, committed same-sex couples as are given to any similar heterosexual couple).

They also seek to impose "Christian" religious practices on the society as a whole. (After all, they argue, "God" has been kicked out of the schools. Children should be led in prayer in schools. This should not happen in a "Christian" society).

And they seek to have specifically "Christian" theological and spiritual concepts imposed on the society. (After all, they argue, what is wrong with a prayer to Jesus before a high school football game? Those who don't believe in Jesus as God should just show respect because after all, this IS a "Christian" country.)

The fact that the predominate religious affiliation in this coutnry may be Christian does NOT make this a Christian country -- and certainly cannot be used as the basis for the changes in our laws, customs and mores that are sought by those people seem bound and determined to have this country labeled Christian.
_________________________
WMD = W[/b]ords of M[/b]ass D[/b]istortion
----------------------
Seek those who seek the truth.
Avoid those who have found it.

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#868745 - 06/23/03 11:48 PM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
Ariel Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/07/03
Posts: 3028
Loc: NE
Renauda,

\:D \:D \:D

Same wit' dat Kool-ade, I bet!
_________________________
If this is coffee, bring me tea. If this is tea, bring me coffee.
~Abraham Lincoln~

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#868746 - 06/24/03 12:02 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
Jolly Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/20/01
Posts: 14051
Loc: Louisiana
No, I think you would get that answer in most of the "fly-over" country, and I would think that you would find the same answer on most of the East and West Coast.

If you'd like to go a bit further abroad, ask any Middle Easterner.
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Over 1,000,000 posts where pianists discuss everything. And nothing.

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#868747 - 06/24/03 12:08 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
Jolly Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/20/01
Posts: 14051
Loc: Louisiana
Ariel,

Without splitting hairs too much, over a subject that I believe was settled long ago, ask yourself, "What is a Christian?"

Then apply that definition to the founding fathers.

I believe that in most people's broad definitions, they would qualify.

Because if they weren't Christian, what would you call them? And what would you call the majority religion of the populence at that time?
_________________________
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Over 1,000,000 posts where pianists discuss everything. And nothing.

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#868748 - 06/24/03 12:14 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
Ariel Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/07/03
Posts: 3028
Loc: NE
Jolly, on the definition of a Christian:
 Quote:
If you'd like to go a bit further abroad, ask any Middle Easterner. [/b]
Well, to them we're all Crusaders, Zionists and Masons anyway (or all three)!

Now...down to brass tacks.
_________________________
If this is coffee, bring me tea. If this is tea, bring me coffee.
~Abraham Lincoln~

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#868749 - 06/24/03 12:18 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
Ariel Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/07/03
Posts: 3028
Loc: NE
Oh, by the way (we're crossing electrron beams here), what I would call them?

I'd call them "Deists" or "Unitarians" - same as they mostly described themselves (as it says in the link...if you...read...it? Don't judge by the label I gave it! :p ).

I think that's a mighty thick hair to split - as in a steel cable trussing a suspension bridge!

Note: edited out reference to Franklin being a "Friend" after Shantinik's comments below.
_________________________
If this is coffee, bring me tea. If this is tea, bring me coffee.
~Abraham Lincoln~

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#868750 - 06/24/03 12:50 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
shantinik Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/23/01
Posts: 4271
Loc: Olympia, WA
Franklin wasn't a Friend -- though when in France, it was politically useful for him not to disabuse people of the idea. Paine was, in a manner of speaking. As was the man without whom the Declaration of Independence would never have been signed, the very, very conservative, very wary Dickinson of Pennsylvania. Hopkins from Rhode Island was, as was one of the signers from North Carolina.

As to whether all those folks are Christian, it would easy to do a test: go to Jolly's church -- ask if they would accept 60 or 70 folks as members who don't believe in the Trinity, the Resurrection, salvation through the death of Jesus, the special divinity of Jesus, the special divine inspiration of the Bible, the miracles, and don't believe in original sin. Not only that, but that they are going to be pretty loud about it. ;\)

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#868751 - 06/24/03 01:08 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
Renauda Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/02
Posts: 5066
 Quote:
Originally posted by Jolly:
Furthermore, in a more practical vein, considering this is a case of too many piano nuts with too much time on their hands:

Quit thinking like pointy-headed intellectuals, and get out and talk to a few ordnary folks...[/b]



"Like us Gov'ner?"

I think a majority would easily agree that America is essentially a Christian country, even those who aren't Christian.

Perception is reality.[/b]


"Well, I would not at all be amused if it were otherwise,
as we did everything possible
to raise you and all the other colonials properly."

 Quote:
Originally posted by shantinik:
As to whether all those folks are Christian, it would easy to do a test: go to Jolly's church -- ask if they would accept 60 or 70 folks as members who don't believe in the Trinity, the Resurrection, salvation through the death of Jesus, the special divinity of Jesus, the special divine inspiration of the Bible, the miracles, and don't believe in original sin. Not only that, but that they are going to be pretty loud about it. ;\) [/b]
Shantinik:

Does not have to be Jolly's church it could be any number of churches in North America or elsewhere on the planet.

How then did they view the separation of church and state? Seems to me that if they were as you describe above they would have believed in the total separation of church and state.
_________________________
"The older the fiddle, the sweeter the music"~ Augustus McCrae

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#868752 - 06/24/03 01:22 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
.rvaga* Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/14/02
Posts: 2046
Loc: Portland, Oregon
The article Arial links to is fascinating. You don't have to read far, before it becomes apparent how quotes out of context, as well as quotes of documents are used to support the author's agenda.

For example, citing the "Treaty of Friendship:"
"It was during Adam's administration that the Senate ratified the Treaty of Peace and Friendship, which states in Article XI that "the government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion." [/b]

Well, the U.S. has signed plenty of "Treaties of Freindship" over the years. This particular one:
Treaty of Peace and Friendship between the United States of America and the Bey and Subjects of Tripoli of Barbary.[/b]
Treaty of Peace and Friendship, signed at Tripoli November 4, 1796 (3 Ramada I, A. H. 1211), and at Algiers January 3, 1797 (4 Rajab, A. H. 1211). Original in Arabic.

As part of the treaty, and to appease any concern that the U.S. would use any religious basis to justify a conflict, Article XI complete (note that besides taken out of context, the author also left out the first word "as" :
 Quote:
As[/b] the government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion,-as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion or tranquility of Musselmen,-and as the said States never have entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mehomitan nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.
My point is not to start a debate over this treaty, but rather to point out spin.
===========

I'm also with Jolly on this. The colonies had strong religious constituencies. The point of the exercise was to ratify a constitution. So, freedom of religion was the best solution, not freedom from religion. The colonies insisted on the Bill of Rights amended to the constitution, before there would be complete agreement on a federal government. A common sense solution.

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#868753 - 06/24/03 01:36 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
Ariel Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/07/03
Posts: 3028
Loc: NE
rvaga,

I appreciate your pointing out "spin" (I am quite against unremarked editing of quotes - I think its tantamount to lying, in fact).

However, please recall as I said near the bottom of the last page, I am specifically questioning commonly held assumptions about the personal beliefs of the "Founding Fathers", not any strategic, poltical decisions they made to achieve a consensus in writing the Declaration of Independence, Constitution, Bill of Rights or for any other reason.

Nobody has to alter his or her own belief structures on this account, but to make false attributions about those of anyone else is, I think, very dishonest in itself. One has to ask, in fact, why would anyone feel the need to do so? Because to find that our heros do not share our conception of God exactly, makes us call this conception into question ourselves? Why should there be any practical meaning attached to their personal religious identities, other than the need to validate ourselves?

The political thinking of these courageous innovators, stands quite solidly in its own right. We can espouse it or not as we choose, independent of their (or our) religious convictions - exactly, I dare say, as they would have wanted us to do!

Ariel
_________________________
If this is coffee, bring me tea. If this is tea, bring me coffee.
~Abraham Lincoln~

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#868754 - 06/24/03 02:41 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
.rvaga* Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/14/02
Posts: 2046
Loc: Portland, Oregon
 Quote:
Nobody has to alter his or her own belief structures on this account, but to make false attributions about those of anyone else is, I think, very dishonest in itself. One has to ask, in fact, why would anyone feel the need to do so? Because to find that our heros do not share our conception of God exactly, makes us call this conception into question ourselves? Why should there be any practical meaning attached to their personal religious identities, other than the need to validate ourselves?
Huh??


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#868755 - 06/24/03 03:06 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
Ariel Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/07/03
Posts: 3028
Loc: NE
rvaga,

Yes, it was ponderous.

Will this do?
*************************************

However, please recall as I said near the bottom of the last page, I am specifically questioning commonly held assumptions about the personal beliefs of the "Founding Fathers".

I'm not discussing any political strategems they used to get enough signatures on the Declaration of Independence, Constitution, Bill of Rights or for any other reason. I'm also not talking about the beliefs of anybody else in the Colonies or in the US today - much less the conventional categories they might fall into with little reference to faith or observance.

Nobody has to alter his or her own beliefs according to whatever we find out about these Founders. However, to make false attributions about their beliefs, is I think, even more dishonest than mere "spin".

One has to ask, in fact, why would anyone feel the need to do so?

Could it be, that we might feel our own conception of God threatened if we find that our heros' conception of God is different? Why should their personal religious identities make any earthly difference to us, unless we feel the need to validate ourselves through them?

For some reason, nobody besides Shantinik seems willing even to stay on the single topic, of their self-professed religious identity. Looks evasive.

The political thinking of these courageous innovators, stands quite solidly in its own right. We can espouse it or not as we choose, independent of their (or our) religious convictions - exactly, I dare say, as they would have wanted us to do!
_________________________
If this is coffee, bring me tea. If this is tea, bring me coffee.
~Abraham Lincoln~

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#868756 - 06/24/03 10:33 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
justme Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/11/03
Posts: 4418
Loc: Englewood, FL
Ariel,
From what I've read in the past particularly "Founding Brothers" by Joseph Ellis, the founding fathers were mostly Deists. They scorned organized religions. Most were raised as Christians (mostly Episcopal). They were highly ethical with virtue of honor, honesty, trustworthiness, courage, patience, industry, simplicity, justice, fidelity, integrity, etc...
These values, of course, do not pertain to just "Christians."
Here are some quotes by Thomas Jefferson

"And the day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerve in the brain of Jupiter. But may we hope that the dawn of reason and freedom of thought in these United States will do away with this artificial scaffolding, and restore to us the primitive and genuine doctrines of this most venerated reformer of human errors."

-Thomas Jefferson, Letter to John Adams, April 11, 1823

"Among the sayings and discourses imputed to him [Jesus] by his biographers, I find many passages of fine imagination, correct morality, and of the most lovely benevolence; and others again of so much ignorance, so much absurdity, so much untruth, charlatanism, and imposture, as to pronounce it impossible that such contradictions should have proceeded from the same being."

-Thomas Jefferson, letter to William Short, April 13, 1820

"Christianity neither is, nor ever was a part of the common law."

-Thomas Jefferson, letter to Dr. Thomas Cooper, February 10, 1814

"The whole history of these books [the Gospels] is so defective and doubtful that it seems vain to attempt minute enquiry into it: and such tricks have been played with their text, and with the texts of other books relating to them, that we have a right, from that cause, to entertain much doubt what parts of them are genuine. In the New Testament there is internal evidence that parts of it have proceeded from an extraordinary man; and that other parts are of the fabric of very inferior minds. It is as easy to separate those parts, as to pick out diamonds from dunghills."

-Thomas Jefferson, letter to John Adams, January 24, 1814

"Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between man and his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legislative powers of government reach actions only, and not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should 'make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,' thus building a wall of separation between church and State."

-Thomas Jefferson, letter to Danbury Baptist Association, CT., Jan. 1, 1802

"You say you are a Calvinist. I am not. I am of a sect by myself, as far as I know."

-Thomas Jefferson, letter to Ezra Stiles Ely, June 25, 1819

Source: www.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jefferson_on_Deism
_________________________
justme

http://toosad4words.blogspot.com/

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#868757 - 06/24/03 10:38 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
justme Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/11/03
Posts: 4418
Loc: Englewood, FL
One more:

"Where the preamble declares, that coercion is a departure from the plan of the holy author of our religion, an amendment was proposed by inserting "Jesus Christ," so that it would read "A departure from the plan of Jesus Christ, the holy author of our religion;" the insertion was rejected by the great majority, in proof that they meant to comprehend, within the mantle of its protection, the Jew and the Gentile, the Christian and Mohammedan, the Hindoo and Infidel of every denomination."

-Thomas Jefferson, Autobiography, in reference to the Virginia Act for Religious Freedom
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#868758 - 06/24/03 10:54 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
shantinik Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/23/01
Posts: 4271
Loc: Olympia, WA
While it would be clear from Jefferson's writings throughout his life that he would likely not fit comfortably in Jolly's church, I would caution quoting either from him or any of the Founding Fathers anything written 1805 or later. Their beliefs may or may not have changed, but the discourse around them would have, and in some cases very radically. (I could give you dozens of examples in Quaker discourse, but this is the wrong list.)

Those who proposed the 1st Amendment thought they were doing two things set in seeming contrary motion: proclaiming the total separation of church and state (yes, the context surrounding WHY they proposed it at that particular time in history makes that clear), while at the same ensuring that government would be strictly prohibited from interfering in the practice of religion. In both cases, what they feared was Christianity, the only religion in the New World at the time that would have posed a threat in either case. They feared religious (read: Christian) tests for public office (knowing, of course, that under these tests, in many cases they themselves would be disqualified!), and they feared establishment of state religion (read: Christian) under which they themselves would have been outsiders. And that's the point: they may have been "Christian" (even if Jolly's church might not welcome them -- Jolly, I'm still awaiting your reply as you know your own church better than I do , but they saw Christianity (and no other religion) as a threat to the new republic. ;\)

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#868759 - 06/24/03 11:02 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
Jolly Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/20/01
Posts: 14051
Loc: Louisiana
Why, Shant, we would probably even welcome a heretic such as yourself.

I'd be glad to help baptize you. ;\)
_________________________
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Over 1,000,000 posts where pianists discuss everything. And nothing.

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#868760 - 06/24/03 11:12 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
shantinik Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/23/01
Posts: 4271
Loc: Olympia, WA
 Quote:
Originally posted by Jolly:
Why, Shant, we would probably even welcome a heretic such as yourself.

I'd be glad to help baptize you. ;\) [/b]
Why, thank you! and I'd probably enjoy it. I am occasionally seen at the local African-American Baptist Church, and my daughter has sung in their women's Gospel choir. Don't think you'd want me as a member, though.
;\)

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#868761 - 06/24/03 11:13 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
Renauda Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/02
Posts: 5066
 Quote:
Originally posted by shantinik:


Those who proposed the 1st Amendment thought they were doing two things set in seeming contrary motion: proclaiming the total separation of church and state (yes, the context surrounding WHY they proposed it at that particular time in history makes that clear), while at the same ensuring that government would be strictly prohibited from interfering in the practice of religion.

[/b]
Thank you. I suspected as much. I don't understand why "some" here find this either dangerous or offensive.
_________________________
"The older the fiddle, the sweeter the music"~ Augustus McCrae

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#868762 - 06/24/03 12:25 PM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
kluurs Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/24/02
Posts: 3739
Loc: Chicago
 Quote:
Originally posted by shantinik:
 Quote:
Originally posted by Jolly:
Why, Shant, we would probably even welcome a heretic such as yourself.

I'd be glad to help baptize you. ;\) [/b]
Why, thank you! and I'd probably enjoy it.
;\) [/b]
Jolly,

Please take pictures -- preferably on video...

Ken

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#868763 - 06/24/03 12:40 PM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
shantinik Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/23/01
Posts: 4271
Loc: Olympia, WA
Hey, one church's water is as good as another's.

(I've bathed in the Ganges, too. )

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#868764 - 06/24/03 12:43 PM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
The D's Pianist Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/08/01
Posts: 624
Loc: Southwestern Oregon
Renauda,

Your Archy post was fantastic! \:D
_________________________
Musically,
Benjamin Francis
http://www.myspace.com/benjaminfrancis
(I just changed my sig., so no grief, yeah?)
----------
Sofia Gilmson regarding Bach:
"Bach didn't write the subject; he wrote the fugue."

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#868765 - 06/24/03 01:32 PM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
Jolly Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/20/01
Posts: 14051
Loc: Louisiana
I do hope everyone involved realizes one very, very important fact:

The more sin the sinner has, the longer the time of immersion. \:D

Remember, if you ain't dunked, your're sunk! ;\)
_________________________
www.coffee-room.com

Over 1,000,000 posts where pianists discuss everything. And nothing.

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#868766 - 06/24/03 01:38 PM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
The D's Pianist Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/08/01
Posts: 624
Loc: Southwestern Oregon
 Quote:
Originally posted by Jolly:
The more sin the sinner has, the longer the time of immersion.[/b]
Uh oh... this is bad news for me...

But, I have beat just about everyone I've ever competed against for under-water breath-holding... \:D
_________________________
Musically,
Benjamin Francis
http://www.myspace.com/benjaminfrancis
(I just changed my sig., so no grief, yeah?)
----------
Sofia Gilmson regarding Bach:
"Bach didn't write the subject; he wrote the fugue."

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#868767 - 06/24/03 02:04 PM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
shantinik Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/23/01
Posts: 4271
Loc: Olympia, WA
 Quote:
Originally posted by Jolly:
Why, Shant, we would probably even welcome a heretic such as yourself.

I'd be glad to help baptize you. ;\) [/b]
I would LOVE to see the Founding Fathers' applications for membership in Jolly's church! Actually, what I'd REALLY love to see are the looks on the faces of the membership committee! :p

(and some folks thought problems were caused when gay people joined their church -- that would be rather lightweight stuff compared to this! )

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#868768 - 06/24/03 02:18 PM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
apple* Offline


Registered: 01/01/03
Posts: 19862
Loc: Kansas
Thanks Peggy. The voice of Thomas Jefferson speaks for me. I was befuddled; wondering what to say to the above hair splitting discussion, wondering how I could convey a sense of sense, a sense of what God - him or herself would hope to communicate. I am grateful Jefferson's thoughts were preserved.

I've always been uncomfortable discussing religious viewpoints. I am not a woman of faith by an means but undeniably admit the existence and power of God. I am so uncomfortable when people attempt to articulate what God is in terms of their own experience and language. I think,,, "Don't they know that God in his infinite wisdom (to use a church term) can communicate with the savage, the intellectual, the Asian, the African and the Baptist?"

The wisdom of our forefathers who have allowed us Freedom OF Religion was stupendous.
_________________________
accompanist/organist.. a non-MTNA teacher to a few

love and peace, Õun (apple in Estonian)

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#868769 - 06/24/03 08:07 PM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
JBryan Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/19/02
Posts: 9798
Loc: Oklahoma City
 Quote:
Originally posted by Jolly:

The more sin the sinner has, the longer the time of immersion. \:D

[/b]
I'm afraid I would need scuba gear.
_________________________
Better to light one small candle than to curse the %&#$@#! darkness.

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#868770 - 06/24/03 08:12 PM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
Renauda Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/02
Posts: 5066
 Quote:
Originally posted by JBryan:
 Quote:
Originally posted by Jolly:

The more sin the sinner has, the longer the time of immersion. \:D

[/b]
I'm afraid I would need scuba gear.[/b]


That makes two of us. :p

_________________________
"The older the fiddle, the sweeter the music"~ Augustus McCrae

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#868771 - 06/24/03 10:23 PM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
apple* Offline


Registered: 01/01/03
Posts: 19862
Loc: Kansas
The name Jolly the Baptist is forever etched in my brain.
_________________________
accompanist/organist.. a non-MTNA teacher to a few

love and peace, Õun (apple in Estonian)

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#868772 - 06/25/03 02:07 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
Ariel Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/07/03
Posts: 3028
Loc: NE
Peggy: Thanks for all the info about the Founding Fathers' religion and great quotes from Jefferson from your wide reading. I'm starting to get interested in this Bible he wrote himself. It must have been pretty short with all the parts of the original he left out - or perhaps he added his own "revelations"?

I see you weren't kidding when you said you liked history. You sure are well-read! Did this begin before or after you managed at Barnes & Noble? I worked in two bookstores and they were among my favorite (regular) jobs - but I did find it hard to hold onto much from my paycheck by the time all my discounted purchases were subtracted! You too?

Shantinik: What happened in 1805?

JBryan and Renauda outdoing each other on the scuba diving...: \:D \:D \:D Maybe that's why Judaism has a "mikve" for symbolic cleansing and ceremonies - a small swimming pool!

Jolly warned us:
 Quote:
Remember, if you ain't dunked, your're sunk! [/b]
:D \:D How about, "If you ain't dunked, you're skunked!"

Still waiting to hear whether the Founding Fathers were really Christians according to your actual religious definition of "Christian" :p ....rather than just in terms of what might be called their cultural tradition?

I thought one of the main things - some would say THE main thing - distinguishing Christianity from other religions is its emphasis on the absolute primacy of Faith over all else.

As opposed say, to good deeds or even just duties to perform certain actions - such as, for Muslims, the Pilgrimage to Mecca and fasting at Ramadan.

Because if it hangs on specific articles of faith, well then, I think you may have a serious problem.

Ariel
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~Abraham Lincoln~

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#868773 - 06/25/03 09:57 AM Re: The Founding Fathers Weren't Christian
Jolly Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/20/01
Posts: 14051
Loc: Louisiana
A neat tidbit: Political Science professors at the University of Houston, curious about who influenced the founders, gathered 15,000 quotes made by them. The effort took over ten years. They reduced the number to those that had a significant impact on the founding fathers and the result was 3,154 quotes. They determined that the Bible was quoted far more than any other source. Thirty-four percent of all quotes were from the Bible, and another 60% of the quotes were from men who were using the Bible to make their point. God's word was important to the nation's founders.

On another note, there is a letter written by Washington's daughter after his death, that proclaims her father as Christian. I'm trying to find it, and will post it when I do.
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