• baker
    4.7k
    Were you graded on a bell curve?
  • guanyun
    12
    No, my exam is to decide who can go to the university for graduate school, there are four subjects, Chinese politics, English, Chinese philosophy and Western philosophy, whoever has the highest score will be admitted
  • Jackson
    1.6k
    What's with all the religions threads recently?
  • Bitter Crank
    10.9k
    I did not remember the project name: it's the Jesus Seminar. Thanks to @wayfarer
  • emancipate
    446
    What's with all the religions threads recently?Jackson

    Just get over it.
  • Jackson
    1.6k


    So you turned this into a religion forum. Do you post on religion forums about epistemology?
  • emancipate
    446
    You've never encountered of philosophy of religion? I've noticed that you can't help displaying your aversion whenever anyone dares mention religion on this forum. That's a you problem. Deal with it.
  • emancipate
    446
    Plenty of discussion taking place on this forum that has nothing to do with religion. You could engage with that but you prefer to enter into threads about religion to proclaim how much you dislike religion. Leave / stay. Your choice. /Shrugs
  • Relativist
    1.7k
    Hi, I am preparing my post-graduate entrance examination(philosophy), after I read the Chinese version of medieval philosophy of religion, our textbooks tend to explain the birth of Christianity in terms of class struggle, but I wanted to know the subtle reasons why people chose Christianity over other religions in the first place.guanyun
    The basic reason is that it promised a heavenly reward to them for living a good life, and eternal punishment for those who oppressed them.

    In sociologist Rodney Stark's book, "The Triumph of Christianity", he attributes much of the success to its having appeal to women - giving them an elevated status (vs the cultural status of the time). Convert a woman, and the family follows.
  • Ciceronianus
    2.4k


    Well, a religion which one can profess and yet disregard so blithely, as most Christians do, is bound to be popular.
  • Jackson
    1.6k
    Well, a religion which one can profess and yet disregard so blithely, as most Christians do, is bound to be popular.Ciceronianus

    It is whatever you want it to be.
  • 180 Proof
    8.7k
    Well, a religion which one can profess and yet disregard so blithely, as most Christians do, is bound to be popularCiceronianus
    :smirk:
  • Agent Smith
    5.2k
    Tuhe success of Christianity can be pinned down to how easily it can accommodate for human nature - there are very few restrictions and even if you break the rules, there's always Divine Grace (forgiveness), essentially a get-out-of-jail card. What a deal, man! I'm converting to Christianity ASAP!

    Father, I have sinned... — Lucifer

    :rofl:
  • Moses
    137
    My previous post was based on the OT.

    With the NT you just gotta have faith, love, and if you break every rule in the rulebook just say it was done for Heaven and you should be basically in line with Jesus.
  • Moses
    137
    A group of scholars sifted through the gospels trying to nail down what, with certainty, could be attributed to Jesus. There wasn't a lot left when they finished.Bitter Crank

    If certainty is our standard for reasonable belief then the field of history is in trouble. Jesus very likely existed; he can found mentioned in Jewish sources and in a Roman source. They mention his execution. I think we could doubt the historical certainty of a lot of figures in antiquity; we really just come to know them through records which could be lies or fiction. GEM Anscombe argues that we take figures like Caesar's existence as a historical benchmark, not as "we know Caesar exists because X, Y, and Z." What evidence is infallible or beyond doubt?
  • baker
    4.7k
    Well, a religion which one can profess and yet disregard so blithely, as most Christians do, is bound to be popular.Ciceronianus

    Awww.
  • Ciceronianus
    2.4k


    Awww.baker

    I'm picturing a cute, but very sad, Christian puppy or kitten with abnormally large eyes, too.
  • Ciceronianus
    2.4k
    Father, I have sinned... — Lucifer

    Ego te absolvo a peccatis tuis.
  • Paulm12
    94

    I think the two main reasons Christianity spread was 1) because of Jesus and 2) (whether or not Christianity is “true” in the sense that Jesus rose from the dead) it speaks to the human condition/experience. I say this as a Christian.

    Going a bit deeper, I think Christianity isn’t super restrictive or necessarily too vague, it’s somewhat in the middle. This means it has a core figure with basic principles, but it is easily adapted to different cultures and philosophical systems. Think of early church fathers like St Augustine, who were able to synthesize Christianity with Neo-Plantism. If he hadn’t done so successfully, there’s a chance (in my opinion) Christianity may not have survived. Then you have Thomas Aquinas, who was able to mostly reconcile Christianity and Aristotelianism.

    If it was too vague, I think it would have died out. If it was too restrictive, it never would have spread or caught on. Also, it seems to me that most successful movements have a single “person” or figurehead at their center. For Christianity, this is Jesus. I believe this is because we as humans respond to other people/humans more than ideas/ideologies. Hence why countries have leaders/presidents, movements like the civil rights movement have people like MLK at the center, etc.
  • Agent Smith
    5.2k
    Eureka!

    People opt for Christianity for a very simple reason viz. Jesus was persecuted - tortured horribly and then crucified in the deserts of the Levant (as per Bibilical sources). Connect the dots mon ami, connect the dots!

    Then there's a more mundane reason - Christianity buys converts, at least in the poorer parts of the world.
  • baker
    4.7k
    I think the two main reasons Christianity spread was 1) because of Jesus and 2) (whether or not Christianity is “true” in the sense that Jesus rose from the dead) it speaks to the human condition/experience.Paulm12

    How does Christianity "speak to the human condition/experience"?

    I don't feel addressed by it at all.
  • Jackson
    1.6k
    How does Christianity "speak to the human condition/experience"?

    I don't feel addressed by it at all.
    baker

    Me as well. I never understood why a Jewish religion 2000 years ago is supposed to speak to me.
  • 180 Proof
    8.7k
    Almost uniquely among major religions (certainly among ancient pagan / mystery cults), Christianity has always been a religion by and for the weak contra the strong and all human beings are weak in some way or another. I agree with Freddy Zarathustra that this was and is the fundamental appeal of cult of the Crucified Messiah for many people – more females than males, more elderly than youthful, more sick than healthy, more have nots than haves, and so on.
  • Ciceronianus
    2.4k
    I don't feel addressed by it at all.baker

    Me as well. I never understood why a Jewish religion 2000 years ago is supposed to speak to me.Jackson

    Christianity has shown an extraordinary capacity to assimilate, defer to, and "work around" prevalent beliefs, customs, governments and cultures in those instances when it isn't possible to ignore them, or temporarily tolerate them or destroy them utterly. It will speak to you anyway it can, if it works. Ask and ye shall receive.

    In recent times, there's been a tendency to disregard the less credible aspects of or stories about Jesus, for example. I think most Christian apologists these days would rather not address the story of the loaves and the fishies, for example, or the water into wine business. There were a good number of miracle working religious folk wandering about the Roman Empire back then (and lepers and ex-lepers), doing similar things, and my guess would be these stories are more a source of embarrassment than anything else now, or are treated as mere allegories.

    Similarly, it's been useful for Jesus to be considered the Greek Logos, or Aristotle's First Mover, from time to time; useful for the Church to do deals with such as Mussolini or Napoleon; useful for them to don native garb in Japan--it's been a very pragmatic religion.
  • Jackson
    1.6k
    Similarly, it's been useful for Jesus to be considered the Greek Logos, or Aristotle's First Mover, from time to time; useful for the Church to do deals with such as Mussolini or Napoleon; useful for them to don native garb in Japan--it's been a very pragmatic religion.Ciceronianus

    Dumb people gravitate to Christianity.
  • Moses
    137
    Christianity is more dangerous than its predecessor. In making a virtue of weakness/simplicity/servitude the strong adopt sheep's clothing and the poor are none the wiser. It is socially brilliant. Christians are better communicators than their predecessors. You don't see much small talk with the Jews. Compare the cultures of the Midwest US with New York or Israel - like night and day. Not saying one's better than the other, just making observations. Jesus was also amazing with women.
  • Paulm12
    94

    If you look at the core teachings of Jesus, you have things such as
    • Love God.
    • Love your neighbor and enemies.
    • Treat others the way you want to be treated.
    • Forgive others who have wronged you.
    • Don’t judge others.
    Now these things may not resonate with you, but these teachings appeal to many people even outside of Christianity. Furthermore, there are many parallels to Jesus's teachings and the teachings of Buddha and other religions. Many scholars argue (secular) Humanism is simply a "rebranding" of Christian ethics/Christianity.

    When I say Christianity speaks to the human experience, I mean that whenever people appeal to a "common humanity," they are usually doing so under the influence of Christianity, especially in western society. When (even atheist) philosophers end up believing objective moral values that "conveniently" align with Christian values, the argument seems to be these philosophers are either a) still under the cultural influence/indoctrination of Christianity, or b) Christian values and most secular versions of moral realism both have common ground that speaks to the human experience. Either way, the fact that these ideas are still around are either a testament to the influence of Christianity or a testament to how Jesus's insight/the teachings of Jesus do resonate with many, perhaps most, people on a fundamental level.
  • Jackson
    1.6k
    Now these things may not resonate with you, but these teachings appeal to many people even outside of Christianity.Paulm12

    so why keep naming me?
bold
italic
underline
strike
code
quote
ulist
image
url
mention
reveal
youtube
tweet
Add a Comment

Welcome to The Philosophy Forum!

Get involved in philosophical discussions about knowledge, truth, language, consciousness, science, politics, religion, logic and mathematics, art, history, and lots more. No ads, no clutter, and very little agreement — just fascinating conversations.