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Things What Do Baffle Me, Like

posted by St_Eddie on - last edited - Viewed by 785 users

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This is a thread for those of you who have questions about anything from life that they've ever been seeking an explanation from. This could range from the average cost of a pint of milk, to the very meaning of existence itself.

Hopefully we can all help to answer each others questions, whilst also having our own curiosity and general bafflement resolved in the process.

I'll kick things off...

* Oranges are orange, but why? It's not as if we refer to bananas as "yellows"! Did our wording for the colour derive from the fruit or vice versa?

* Who the heck is Gordon Bennett anyway?! Like many others, I have a tendency to utter his name in anger when I'm in a state of minor annoyance (I reserve the phrase "fucking cunt bag" for when my annoyance levels slip into the red!) but I am completely clueless as to whom Gordon Bennett actually was.

* Why does my neighbor insist on playing on his bongos at three in the morning? The fucking cunt bag!

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  • @thestalkinghead said: can you imagine going to church every week and living your life by a certain set of rules that may be all made up (its like subscription mmo's) you invest so much in something that the idea of loosing it is worse than doing it(even if it kinda sucks), and seeing other people not having to live by an unclear and contradictory set of rules is just annoying (like if WoW had a free version that was exactly the same as the paid version but in the paid one you have to log on and enter a worship hall for at least an hour each week and live by a different set of rules to keep your paid subscription) so they want you to join them so they don't feel like an idiot plus the chance it's true and they would have saved you from hell(this one can actually be hard to argue with) so in conclusion its about wanting other people to live by the rules they live by and (if they genuinely believe) also some soul saving.

    The only thing that I would add to this is that people are afraid of death and disorder. Pretty much every religion has something to say on those subjects. The idea that death isn't the end is incredibly appealing, as well as the idea of some sort of structure to the universe. When people don't believe in a religion and say so openly, it sows the seed of doubt into a religious person's mind and for an instant, they see the universe as a big, unforgiving, chaotic, disordered place... and it's terrifying.

    It's like that thing in Hitchhiker's Guide that shows how important you are in proportion to the Universe and drives everyone insane because they're so insignificant. With God, nobody's insignificant, a person can face the void because they've got a special all-powerful being looking over their shoulder every day.

    Then again, I'm finding myself to be something of a utilitarian nihilist, so my viewpoint may be slightly too depressing.

    @thestalkinghead said: Solid historiolinguistic answer, YES! YES!! Marry me!!

    Errr, I mean,

    For if a preest be foul, on whom we truste,
    No wonder is a lewed man to ruste;
    And shame it is, if a prest take keep,
    A shiten shepherde and a clene sheep.

    Chaucer still seemed to use the word quite freely at the end of the fourteenth century. But then again, the Canterbury Tales' aim at high literature is sometimes wonder- and purposefully off.

    You have no idea how much I was stressing over that post. Linguistics isn't really my field, but I find it fascinating and do spend a lot of time learning about the origin of words in a historical context (since I like history).

    And Chaucer... well, he was trying to write something that people who weren't monks would be able to read, I believe. So it stands to reason that he'd use the colloquial language. I sometimes wonder if the super educated people of the time thought of his work the same way people think of Twilight and the like today...

  • @Alcoremortis said: The only thing that I would add to this is that people are afraid of death and disorder. Pretty much every religion has something to say on those subjects. The idea that death isn't the end is incredibly appealing, as well as the idea of some sort of structure to the universe. When people don't believe in a religion and say so openly, it sows the seed of doubt into a religious person's mind and for an instant, they see the universe as a big, unforgiving, chaotic, disordered place... and it's terrifying.

    It's like that thing in Hitchhiker's Guide that shows how important you are in proportion to the Universe and drives everyone insane because they're so insignificant. With God, nobody's insignificant, a person can face the void because they've got a special all-powerful being looking over their shoulder every day.

    Then again, I'm finding myself to be something of a utilitarian nihilist, so my viewpoint may be slightly too depressing.

    i'm just agnostic about everything, i believe a god is possible but the matrix is possible as well or that i am a non corporeal entity living in a non-physical reality and i invented the physical world to keep my mind occupied, i don't know what will happen when i die, i assume i will just rot, but if i do go to an afterlife and i go to hell because i didn't pick the specific religion that god is associated with, that god is an ass hole and i would want to work for the underworld :)

  • Well, the only thing that really buffles me is religion and the fact that there are still people who believe in that crap.

    But, on a lighter note (and to steal from my hero George Carlin): It baffles me that if you cut two crumbs in half, you get two crumbs, instead of two half crumbs...

  • Try to respect people's faiths and refrain from call them 'crap'.

  • Oh, excuse me. Let me refrain, I think religion is a load of crap. This is my humble opinion and please feel free to disagree with me.
    I do invite anyone to discuss this subject though, since it's baffling to me why anyone would stand behind a unproven theory which has fueled most major wars, has a 'world leader' behind it who thinks homosexual people are evil and bad for society, tries to ignore the raping of children, is supposed to be based on love even though there's allegedly a place where you will burn and suffer for eternity if you do not pray to the right god or break any of the set rules. And this is just the Western idea of 'righteousness'.

    So, again, I'm truly sorry.

  • I find the idea of religion pretty baffling as well, but I generally don't call it "crap" because I don't want to be an a-hole about it. The type of atheist that wants to shove his non-beliefs down someone's throat just as much as the worst evangelical baffles me even more. YOU ARE EXACTLY WHAT YOU'RE AGAINST. WTF.

  • I don't want to shove anything in anybody's throat, except for some x-rated stuff I won't discuss here.
    I don't care if someone believes in god, jesus, the flying spaghetti monster or ron howard; I'm just really, REALLY curious why some people can still be religious. And I'm open to all arguments.
    I was raised Christian until I was 13 years old and thought to myself: Wait a minute... A dude living in a fish? People walking through the desert for 40 days? Raining frogs? Women being inferior to men?
    So yeah, that wasn't for me. BUT, I can also see that there are people who hang on to religion and even gives them hope. This is exactly the spot where I get lost.
    Maybe I'm waaaaay too down-to-earth to even begin to understand spiritual things, but still.. I'm curious.

  • Christianity is not about religion (ie. following rules), it's about having a relationship with God. Christians believe that no one has any chance whatsoever of even coming close to being worthy of being in his presence, and that God sent Jesus (that is to say, a human incarnaction of Himself--the only human incarnation of Himself) to become a sacrifice for our sin, as Jesus himself was without sin.

    This makes completely logical sense to me, and if you want me to go into it further, I can.

    It's not about religion. No simple following of rules will do any good whatsoever. In fact, Jesus heavily chastised the religious leaders of his day because following the rules for its own sake was all they cared about.

  • Yeah, this is what I was thought as well. Until I began asking for some proof. As a child I actually lived in fear sometimes because of this system. I was told jesus had died for my sins, so I didn't have to suffer for them, but still the notion of hell existed. There were times I was absolutely terrified because I had no clue what was a sin and what wasn't. These actually seem to change over time, though. A long time ago eating meat on a Friday was a sin.
    Do you personally believe in a hell, as a literal place?
    And I know it's called a 'belief', because you have to believe it, even if there are no facts.
    But what is the use of christianity or any other belief system? What are the benefits of 'having a relationship' with god? Is it just so you can go to heaven?
    I am pretty certain you don't need god, christianity or any religion to understand sin and to know the difference between right and wrong.
    Would a person who has lived his life only doing good and helping others still go to 'hell' if he chose not to believe in any religion?

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