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Do you ever go to church?

General socialising and light-hearted discussions take place in here.

On what occasions are you prepared to set foot in a church? (Apart from as a tourist!)

Wouldn't set foot in one
16
10%
Would attend only for a ceremony (specify below)
70
43%
Would attend for a ceremony, memorial service or a carol service.
49
30%
Would attend a normal service.
29
18%
 
Total votes: 164

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Stempy
Posts: 5
Joined: August 22nd, 2011, 11:59 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#301 Postby Stempy » September 3rd, 2011, 12:45 pm

Latest post of the previous page:

As "token Christian" ( :wink: ) obviously I voted for "would go to a normal service" - but the "normality" of the service definitely depends on which church and which particular service you're talking about!
"In truth, there was only one Christian, and he died on the cross." Nietzsche, The Anti-Christ

thundril
Posts: 3607
Joined: July 4th, 2008, 5:02 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#302 Postby thundril » September 3rd, 2011, 8:57 pm

I used to really like attending, back when I was 10 or 11 years old, Catholic ceremonies were all bells and smells, and everything was in Latin. My favourite was Benediction, a short ceremony (about 20 mins IIRC) which always included the Tantum Ergo, (A hymn with lyrics by Thomas Aquinas, no less!) sung inna Gregorian stylee, as in this clip.
I can still remember most of the words.
When I was 15, our new parish priest instituted a new practice, of singing this lovely song to the tune of Deutschland Uber Alles. I kid you not!

Marian
Posts: 3985
Joined: August 23rd, 2009, 2:25 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#303 Postby Marian » September 5th, 2011, 2:19 am

No, I don't recall the last time I stepped foot in a church but the only thing that still fascinates me are the stained glass windows in cathedrals...that and thinking about how money it must have cost to create something like that. Couldn't the money have gone to a better cause than an imaginary being? ;)
Transformative fire...

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Gottard
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Re: Do you ever go to church?

#304 Postby Gottard » September 5th, 2011, 11:15 am

Marian wrote:No, I don't recall the last time I stepped foot in a church but the only thing that still fascinates me are the stained glass windows in cathedrals...that and thinking about how money it must have cost to create something like that. Couldn't the money have gone to a better cause than an imaginary being? ;)

I wonder if "imagination and dreaming", as a characteristic of the Human being, is the original "sting" inserted in our brain.
The only thing I fear of death is regret if I couldn’t complete my learning experience

thundril
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Joined: July 4th, 2008, 5:02 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#305 Postby thundril » September 5th, 2011, 11:41 am

Marian wrote:No, I don't recall the last time I stepped foot in a church but the only thing that still fascinates me are the stained glass windows in cathedrals...that and thinking about how money it must have cost to create something like that. Couldn't the money have gone to a better cause than an imaginary being? ;)

Art and beauty both are needed for the human soul. So are learning and philosophy. In cultures where the only context for such things is religious, (for example medieval Europe, and some Islamic cultures today) real art and real beauty will find expression in religious works. Hence the great mosques and cathedrals. Hence the beautiful songs.
Learning and philosophy likewise are encouraged where they suit the present power structures, and strangled where they do not.
In cultures dominated by powers other than religious, art and beauty have to find other outlets, other sponsors. Consider the Benetton ads of a couple of decades ago.

Marian
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Re: Do you ever go to church?

#306 Postby Marian » September 5th, 2011, 2:07 pm

Gottard wrote:I wonder if "imagination and dreaming", as a characteristic of the Human being, is the original "sting" inserted in our brain.

I'm not quite following you this morning, gottard. Could you please explain more?
Transformative fire...

Marian
Posts: 3985
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Re: Do you ever go to church?

#307 Postby Marian » September 5th, 2011, 2:23 pm

thundril wrote:Art and beauty both are needed for the human soul. So are learning and philosophy.
Not sure I agree with art and beauty being 'needed'. Perhaps I'm just all to aware of deaf/blind culture who still survive without the exposure. Maybe it's just the term 'needed' that gets me. And plenty of people live just fine without learning and philosophy although I have to agree that all of those things are a great enhancement to life.



thundril wrote: In cultures where the only context for such things is religious, (for example medieval Europe, and some Islamic cultures today) real art and real beauty will find expression in religious works. Hence the great mosques and cathedrals. Hence the beautiful songs.
'real art and beauty"? I think much of the symbolism of medieval European religious stuff was 'stolen' (innocently borrowed? lol) from pagan sources. I think your comment about learning and philosophy being strangled is right on the mark.

But ultimately, my point was about the huge discrepancy between the wealth of the religious powers and their display of that wealth versus the extreme poverty that most people had to eke out a subsistence living on. These are the sick things that come to my mind as I ponder the cathedrals. Is there a way to turn off these thoughts because surely others must manage to do it?
Transformative fire...

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Gottard
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Re: Do you ever go to church?

#308 Postby Gottard » September 5th, 2011, 3:19 pm

Marian wrote:
Gottard wrote:I wonder if "imagination and dreaming", as a characteristic of the Human being, is the original "sting" inserted in our brain.

I'm not quite following you this morning, gottard. Could you please explain more?

It's probably me not having properly expressed the concept:
It is often said that most people turn to religion in search for an imaginary friend. I figure out this to be a "sting" inside the brain; a sharp tingling sensation.
The only thing I fear of death is regret if I couldn’t complete my learning experience

thundril
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Re: Do you ever go to church?

#309 Postby thundril » September 5th, 2011, 3:32 pm

Marian wrote:
thundril wrote:Art and beauty both are needed for the human soul. So are learning and philosophy.
Not sure I agree with art and beauty being 'needed'.

I suppose I mean that the need to create art (including 'beautiful' art) is something in us that struggles to come out no matter what the circumstances. The way plants grow through thick concrete, cracking it with tiny irrepressible determination.
Marian wrote:
thundril wrote: In cultures where the only context for such things is religious, (for example medieval Europe, and some Islamic cultures today) real art and real beauty will find expression in religious works. Hence the great mosques and cathedrals. Hence the beautiful songs.
'real art and beauty"? I think much of the symbolism of medieval European religious stuff was 'stolen' (innocently borrowed? lol) from pagan sources.

i mean that our urge to create beauty can adapt itself to more-or-less any environment. Even the soul-destroying sinister hand of the Vatican cannot kill it.
Marian wrote: I think your comment about learning and philosophy being strangled is right on the mark. But ultimately, my point was about the huge discrepancy between the wealth of the religious powers and their display of that wealth versus the extreme poverty that most people had to eke out a subsistence living on. These are the sick things that come to my mind as I ponder the cathedrals. Is there a way to turn off these thoughts because surely others must manage to do it?

But why should you drive truth out of your mind?
I remember visiting a 'stately home' that had a spiral staircase built entirely of silver. It was supposed to be a tremendous work of something or other. I could only think about the money that came from the slave trade.
At the same time, I could see that, even whilst working for slave-owners, human beings had tried their best to make something beautiful.

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Val
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Re: Do you ever go to church?

#310 Postby Val » September 5th, 2011, 11:28 pm

I may have said this earlier on this thread, if so forgive me if I repeat myself. My late partner, Rita, and I used to visit churches, especially in the Yorkshire countryside. All the local history was there, both inside on plaques and outside in the graveyard. She used to fake playing the organ whilst I took her photo and I used to fake being in the pulpit, pontificating, if that is the correct word , in an Anglican church, whilst she took my picture. Now I attend the local church once a year because I want to see my grandson being a shepherd
in the nativity play. I look forward to the day when the nativity play is superceded by something like "Joby" a play I can recommend, although I can't remember the author. Yes I can it was Stan Barstow.

Sandra Price
Posts: 46
Joined: October 16th, 2011, 5:01 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#311 Postby Sandra Price » October 19th, 2011, 4:54 pm

At my age, my age group is dropping like flies. When I graduated from high school in 1950, there were 4 others who had been pals from the beginning on the Santa Monica beach. As we moved around and married we still managed to meet every other year. There is only one other than myself who is still upright. We now communicate via email which is easier than our driving long distances. All our husbands are dead and our kids and grand kids all married. We had one final reunion around 2004 and that was the last one. I got a photo of the last meet up and another taken in 1949. We are a tad heavier but the eyes remained the same and I cherish my two pictures.

I managed a chamber music group on the central coast of California and they performed at St. Tim's Catholic Church about 4 times a year. That was enough religion for me!
Not for Prophet

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Dave B
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Re: Do you ever go to church?

#312 Postby Dave B » October 19th, 2011, 7:20 pm

Just realised that I never replied to this thread.

I only attend church for weddings (not for about 30 years) and funerals (two in last five years, though there may be more . . .)

About the only hymn I ever join in with is Jerusalem but that is only because is it a superb piece of music and I find Blake fascinating. Feel a bit annoyed about some of the things said and have to bite my lip!

I only go out of respect for the people.
"Look forward; yesterday was a lesson, if you did not learn from it you wasted it."
Me, 2015

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Trickle
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Joined: October 10th, 2011, 9:43 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#313 Postby Trickle » October 19th, 2011, 7:53 pm

No 'other' option?

I've been in several Churches over the last few months because they are often beautiful buildings which I enjoy visiting irrespective of my lack of religious inclination. I feel no need to avoid buildings with a religious purpose because I don't believe in God or because they are frequented by the religious, and I've never been made to feel unwelcome either.

That is not to say that there aren't some monstrous religious building which I avoid like the plague such as this thing which graces the city nearest to my birthplace, Liverpool, and which is just as disguisting inside.

Image
Liverpool Catholic Cathedral

I much prefer the Church of England Liverpool Cathedral which is truely stunning inside as well.

Image
I am currently reading...The Hedgehog, The Fox and The Magisters Pox by Stephen Jay Gould

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Alan C.
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Re: Do you ever go to church?

#314 Postby Alan C. » October 19th, 2011, 8:01 pm

Most of the weddings here are in the community halls but for some reason most of the funerals are at the Kirk (older generation I expect) I don't attend funerals as I think it would be hypocritical, everybody here in Shetland knows my views on organised religion from my letters in the local paper.
When a friend or neighbor dies it's tough not to attend the funeral but I couldn't stand the bullshit spouted from the pulpit, I normally just turn up for the actual internment but even there you get subjected to a level of bullshitery.

Weddings and baby namings are slowly being wrenched away from organised religion, hopefully funerals will soon follow.
Abstinence Makes the Church Grow Fondlers.

jamesjones950
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Re: Do you ever go to church?

#315 Postby jamesjones950 » October 19th, 2011, 9:04 pm

Leading on from Trickle's post above, I personally find most churches and cathedrals gross and distasteful, architecturally.

Nothing to choose between the two Liverpool edifices.....eqally grotesque.

Not to say that there aren't some that are okay, aesthetically, and lots that have a stunning effect on the inside, with sunlight streaming through stained-glass windows.

However, my overall view of them is that they all, having been built in praise of a purely imaginary being, represent nothing more than a dreadful waste of decent land and materials. Not to mention the pathetic waste of time spent inside them by their followers, all hoping for some sort of reward after death.

Right, I feel better now I've got that off my chest. Large whisky, anyone?
a "New Atheist" for the last 55 years

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Fia
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Re: Do you ever go to church?

#316 Postby Fia » October 19th, 2011, 11:08 pm

jamesjones950 wrote:Right, I feel better now I've got that off my chest. Large whisky, anyone?


Glad you feel better for that jj. From your frame of reference I agree both are grotesque. I'll have a Talisker with 1/3 water please :)

thundril
Posts: 3607
Joined: July 4th, 2008, 5:02 pm

Re: Do you ever go to church?

#317 Postby thundril » October 19th, 2011, 11:56 pm

Trickle wrote:
Image
Liverpool Catholic Cathedral

Paddy's wigwam! Ah, the memories!


I much prefer the Church of England Liverpool Cathedral which is truely stunning inside as well.

Image[/quote]

We speak with an accent exceedingly rare,
Meet under a statue exceedingly bare.
If you want a Cathedral, we've got one to spare
In my Liverpool home!

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Alan H
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Re: Do you ever go to church?

#318 Postby Alan H » October 19th, 2011, 11:59 pm

jamesjones950 wrote:Leading on from Trickle's post above, I personally find most churches and cathedrals gross and distasteful, architecturally.

Nothing to choose between the two Liverpool edifices.....eqally grotesque.

Not to say that there aren't some that are okay, aesthetically, and lots that have a stunning effect on the inside, with sunlight streaming through stained-glass windows.

However, my overall view of them is that they all, having been built in praise of a purely imaginary being, represent nothing more than a dreadful waste of decent land and materials. Not to mention the pathetic waste of time spent inside them by their followers, all hoping for some sort of reward after death.
Agreed. While I can admire the craftsmanship and sheer effort it mush have taken to build these enormous edifices to man's folly, I always think of the blood (literally), sweat and tears that must have gone into them - and likely as not, not by the vicars and priests who benefited most from them.
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

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Altfish
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Re: Do you ever go to church?

#319 Postby Altfish » March 28th, 2012, 6:49 pm

Only go to church for ceremonies to save there being a family/friendship fallout. On these few occasions that I do go it just confirms my atheism.
Been to quite a few humanist funerals at the local crem; then I went to a religious one - good grief it was awful.
My aunt asked me to be a god-parent some 30-years ago; I politely refused, she still hasn't properly forgiven me. [-X

Having said that, the buildings can be stunning and I often find myself visiting churches on holiday....then leaving thinking, "What a waste of money, time and effort"

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animist
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Re: Do you ever go to church?

#320 Postby animist » March 28th, 2012, 7:13 pm

I adore churches and cathedrals - they to me represent their societies' highest aspirations, though certainly the money would have been better spent on feeding the poor. They give me a sense of the spiritual, and I understand (I think) the genuinely pious feelings behind the buildings and the earnest activities which are described in the various pamphlets near the back. Then I remember, sadly, that all this is based on illusion.

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Alan H
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Re: Do you ever go to church?

#321 Postby Alan H » March 28th, 2012, 7:28 pm

animist wrote:I adore churches and cathedrals - they to me represent their societies' highest aspirations, though certainly the money would have been better spent on feeding the poor.
Even though I might be able to admire the engineering and workmanship, it's that what disgusts me.
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?


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