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The Millennial Generation

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  • The Millennial Generation

    This is a post Starlight's made on the Screwballs (in Tektonics) thread which I feel is worthy of deeper discussion (and obviously not in Screwballs )

    Originally posted by Starlight
    One of the things that tends to be a bit different about the millennial generation, is less willingness to accept things just because an authority figure has said them. They tend to think authority needs to be earned not simply claimed. So they are more likely to pay attention to the views of someone they personally respect who they feel has earned that respect, rather than someone that speaks for a traditionally respected institution like a Church who they may feel has unjustly claimed authority. Their universal access to the internet also gives them access to a great deal of evidence to fact-check any claims being made, and also allows them to interact with people from other countries and other cultures more readily in order to get a diversity of views and opinions.
    Starlight gives the millennial generation (MG) credit for ditching authority but if the Church is silenced then all that has happened is that there has been a swop from one authority to another. I also find it ironic that Starlight gives MG credit for ditching authority and cutting their own path yet doesn't think they are capable of embracing the gay lifestyle if there are any anti-voices.

    Originally posted by Starlight
    On the subject of homosexuality, the repeal of sodomy laws has also made a difference as people are increasingly open about their sexuality, and so a millennial is vast more likely to know someone who is openly gay than their parents' generation would have been at the same age.
    I guess this is true to a certain extent. Thinking back to my own childhood we had an extended family member (sibling of an in-law) who was openly gay. We didn't hardly see the guy as he lived in the neighbouring country but everyone in the family knew he was gay and when he did come on holiday he would spoil my cousins with gifts. My parents never said anything unkind to us about him and I remember them being upset when he was killed in a car accident. My mom's favourite hairdresser was also quite evidently gay (very camp) and he was quite open about it when talking whilst doing her hair.

    Besides the fact that I still think that civil-partnerships were the non-religious equivalent of marriage and that I would have preferred for marriage to stay as defined 'in the beginning', I still think that if people want to live a same-sex lifestyle they should be free to do so openly if that is their choice. Obviously the Church is a theocracy and we do not get to vote out the bits we don't like, so this does not extend to the Church. I thought there was merit in the points Muz made the other day (in Ecclesiology 201) that we should make Christian maturity our goal and that openly gay people could be viewed within the church as less mature with the goal being maturity ie that they would eventually come to the point where they would view being celibate as the better option. Anyway, that is how I understood him.

    So the point of discussion I feel is that if the Church is shut-up then the MG is really just changing one authority for another because they are not getting to hear both. The Church can't be silenced just because it hinders gays from embracing the lifestyle. If a gay person does not want to live a gay lifestyle because the Church says it is wrong then that is because the gay person respects Church authority and that is their choice and it is valid. If someone is secretly indulging in gay behaviour while paying lip-service to Church authority then that is a different thing and either the person does indeed respect the authority of the Church but has fallen into sin and needs to repent or if they don't respect the authority of the Church then one wonders why they are even bother to pretend they do.
    Last edited by Abigail; 07-08-2015, 05:26 AM.

  • #2
    Firstly "gay lifestyle" is not a phrase I am willing to use, as a lot of gay people find it derogatory and insulting. I am going to presume that by it you mean something like "normal life for a person who is gay" (ie having a partner of the same sex, getting married, raising children etc), as contrasted with a rather unusual life where for religious reasons they opt for a path of celibacy or try to suppress their homosexuality.

    Starlight gives the millennial generation (MG) credit for ditching authority but if the Church is silenced then all that has happened is that there has been a swap from one authority to another.
    Really? What/who is the new authority?

    I said that millennials are typically only prepared to listen to authority figures they personally feel have earned that authority status. A lot of millennials probably care a lot more about what their favorite celebrity or favorite youtuber thinks on an issue than they care what their local church pastor thinks. The Church, potentially, could earn their respect, if the Church was to consistently act in a way that was praiseworthy and respectable. Unfortunately for the Church, endless pedophilia scandals and a very publicly wrong stance on gay rights issues have turned its name to mud in the eyes of most millennials.

    I also find it ironic that Starlight gives MG credit for ditching authority and cutting their own path
    I wasn't claiming those were necessarily positive attributes, just saying that they are common attributes in millennials.

    yet doesn't think they are capable of embracing the gay lifestyle if there are any anti-voices.
    I never said anything of the sort. My view is that anti-voices are psychologically damaging for gay people.

    I thought there was merit in the points Muz made the other day (in Ecclesiology 201) that we should make Christian maturity our goal and that openly gay people could be viewed within the church as less mature with the goal being maturity ie that they would eventually come to the point where they would view being celibate as the better option.
    Seems a reasonable view.

    So the point of discussion I feel is that if the Church is shut-up then the MG is really just changing one authority for another because they are not getting to hear both.
    Who is this other authority figure you keep mentioning?

    If a gay person does not want to live a gay lifestyle because the Church says it is wrong then that is because the gay person respects Church authority and that is their choice and it is valid. If someone is secretly indulging in gay behaviour while paying lip-service to Church authority then that is a different thing and either the person does indeed respect the authority of the Church but has fallen into sin and needs to repent or if they don't respect the authority of the Church then one wonders why they are even bother to pretend they do.
    Obviously most gay Christians will simply change their churches and attend a Church that is welcoming to them and doesn't claim homosexuality is sinful. The US branch of the Anglican church voted this week to perform same sex marriages, with an overwhelming 87% majority vote. I believe a few other denominations in the US are supportive also. One of my best friends helps run an Anglican church in Australia that runs special pro-gay services and I understand that attracts a fair number of gay people who would not otherwise attend church.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Starlight View Post
      Firstly "gay lifestyle" is not a phrase I am willing to use, as a lot of gay people find it derogatory and insulting. I am going to presume that by it you mean something like "normal life for a person who is gay" (ie having a partner of the same sex, getting married, raising children etc), as contrasted with a rather unusual life where for religious reasons they opt for a path of celibacy or try to suppress their homosexuality.
      I think you are reaching here to be insulted since all I was trying to do was define what we are actually discussing.
      Originally posted by Starlight
      Really? What/who is the new authority?
      Progressives who wish to silence anyone who holds the traditional Biblical interpretation and replace it with the thinking that there is absolutely nothing wrong with being in an active gay relationship.

      Originally posted by Starlight
      I said that millennials are typically only prepared to listen to authority figures they personally feel have earned that authority status. A lot of millennials probably care a lot more about what their favorite celebrity or favorite youtuber thinks on an issue than they care what their local church pastor thinks. The Church, potentially, could earn their respect, if the Church was to consistently act in a way that was praiseworthy and respectable. Unfortunately for the Church, endless pedophilia scandals and a very publicly wrong stance on gay rights issues have turned its name to mud in the eyes of most millennials.
      I will give you that there has been a lot of hypocrisy in the Church when it comes to practising what we preach, however that doesn't mean the message is wrong but only that some people are hypocrites. And as for "endless pedophilia scandals", I think you are being biased there. Yes the Church has had pedophiles but so too has many other walks of life. I think more is the case that the media, many of whom are openly anti-Christian, have been only to happy to expose all the Christian scandals they could whilst ignoring those amongst their own. And of course progressives were the major driving force behind turning a blind eye to things like the Rotherham abuse because it suited them. We have seen the truth of this lately in UK where many cases of historical child abuse have been exposed and the people involved are politicians, teachers and media figures and ordinary members of the public.

      Originally posted by Starlight
      I wasn't claiming those were necessarily positive attributes, just saying that they are common attributes in millennials.
      What you claimed is that millennials have rejected the Church because the Church has not earned their respect. I know this happens but it is in itself not a respectable position to adopt since the promises of God depend on His faithfulness and not the members of the Church. Further you seemed to intimate that millennials have access to all sorts of information and facts and cultures for different views which can only be interpreted as you saying millennials are somehow post religion because they know better. If this is so then why is there such opposition to the Christian message, especially when no one is forced to become a Christian. I don't worry about keeping Ramadan because I don't believe the message of the Koran.

      Originally posted by Starlight
      I never said anything of the sort. My view is that anti-voices are psychologically damaging for gay people.
      I think gay people have had a raw deal in the past because I think they have been misunderstood and that they have been stigmatised for being gay when there is nothing wrong with being gay but only with acting on the sexual feelings. So I can see how that might have harmed people in the past because the two were conflated but people are more thoughtful nowadays. Christians are not supposed to marry non-Christians, so no gay Christian should look at a non-Christian as a prospective partner. Two gay Christians who both held the same interpretation of the Bible would be like-minded that they should not engage in the physical part of a relationship, however there is nothing that should stop them from enjoying each other's companionship in non-sexual ways. So I am not sure how you see the anti-voices as psychologically damaging.

      Originally posted by Starlight
      Seems a reasonable view.
      I hope that is sincerely meant.

      Originally posted by Starlight
      Who is this other authority figure you keep mentioning?
      Progressives like you who want to silence views you don't like. You guys are setting yourselves up as the new authority.

      Originally posted by Starlight
      Obviously most gay Christians will simply change their churches and attend a Church that is welcoming to them and doesn't claim homosexuality is sinful. The US branch of the Anglican church voted this week to perform same sex marriages, with an overwhelming 87% majority vote. I believe a few other denominations in the US are supportive also. One of my best friends helps run an Anglican church in Australia that runs special pro-gay services and I understand that attracts a fair number of gay people who would not otherwise attend church.
      As long as the members are sincere and continue to seek God's will.

      Comment


      • #4
        Considering I'm a millennial I would like to join in the topic,but I'm kinda busy right now.
        "Kahahaha! Let's get lunatic!"-Add LP
        "And the Devil did grin, for his darling sin is pride that apes humility"-Samuel Taylor Coleridge
        Oh ye of little fiber. Do you not know what I've done for you? You will obey. ~Cerealman for Prez.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Cerealman View Post
          Considering I'm a millennial I would like to join in the topic,but I'm kinda busy right now.
          Video games, texting and taking pictures of what you're about to eat sure do consume a lot of time.

          I'm always still in trouble again

          "You're by far the worst poster on TWeb" and "TWeb's biggest liar" --starlight (the guy who says Stalin was a right-winger)
          "Of course, human life begins at fertilization that’s not the argument." --Tassman

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by rogue06 View Post
            Video games, texting and taking pictures of what you're about to eat sure do consume a lot of time.
            Sometimes we just need a break from all that unrestrained drug usage and sexual licentiousness and debauchery that we do on you old people's lawns, you know?
            Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow.--Isaiah 1:17

            I don't think that all forms o[f] slavery are inherently immoral.--seer

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Abigail View Post
              I think you are reaching here to be insulted since all I was trying to do was define what we are actually discussing.
              There are different ways of saying things, some of which are more acceptable than others. "Gay lifestyle" is one of those terms that you should erase from your vocabulary.

              What you claimed is that millennials have rejected the Church because the Church has not earned their respect. I know this happens but it is in itself not a respectable position to adopt since the promises of God depend on His faithfulness and not the members of the Church.
              Non-Christians are always going to judge Christianity based on what they can see of it, not on the ethereal 'promises of God' that they have no way of seeing or judging.

              Also, a lot of people think the Church's anti-gay teachings are biblical, and hence anyone who doesn't respect the church due to moral disapproval of the Church's anti-gay stance is not really doing it because the Church is failing to live up to God's standard, rather they're rejecting "God's standard" as immoral and evil.

              Further you seemed to intimate that millennials have access to all sorts of information and facts and cultures for different views which can only be interpreted as you saying millennials are somehow post religion because they know better.
              That wasn't really what I was meaning by it, I was more saying that in a monocultural society where all religious figures speak with one voice they can easily be an "authority", but in a multicultural society where multiple different religious figures all claim authority from different Gods and different religions and all say different things, there is not the same level of inclination by people to treat them as actual authority figures - it's obviously impossible to treat them all as authority figures and obey their conflicting commands.

              If this is so then why is there such opposition to the Christian message, especially when no one is forced to become a Christian. I don't worry about keeping Ramadan because I don't believe the message of the Koran.
              You don't think there's widespread opposition to Islam???

              I hope that is sincerely meant.
              It was.

              Progressives like you who want to silence views you don't like.
              Most people would prefer everyone else agreed with them, that's just human nature. The church, of course, has somewhat of a history of rooting out heretics and burning them at the stake. Freedom of speech and opinion is a core progressive value, so I can't imagine the progressives would ever silence the opposition in the same way that Christians once did.

              As long as the members are sincere and continue to seek God's will.
              I assume they are just as sincere as any other Christian on average... possibly more sincere if they still want to attend a Church despite having been mistreated in the past by Christian groups.

              Comment


              • #8
                Hello, my name is Chrawnus, and I'm a millennial.



                ~Formerly known as Chrawnus~

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Chrawnus View Post
                  Hello, my name is Chrawnus, and I'm a millennial.



                  Nobody's perfect.

                  I'm always still in trouble again

                  "You're by far the worst poster on TWeb" and "TWeb's biggest liar" --starlight (the guy who says Stalin was a right-winger)
                  "Of course, human life begins at fertilization that’s not the argument." --Tassman

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Starlight View Post
                    There are different ways of saying things, some of which are more acceptable than others. "Gay lifestyle" is one of those terms that you should erase from your vocabulary.
                    No, and this is what I mean by silencing. You wish to control terminology so will reject anything which might not give voice to the views you want. In your own words:
                    Originally posted by Starlight
                    Firstly "gay lifestyle" is not a phrase I am willing to use, as a lot of gay people find it derogatory and insulting. I am going to presume that by it you mean something like "normal life for a person who is gay" (ie having a partner of the same sex, getting married, raising children etc), as contrasted with a rather unusual life where for religious reasons they opt for a path of celibacy or try to suppress their homosexuality.
                    When I use the term it is not an insult at all, but is giving voice to the notion that people do ultimately have a choice in the lifestyles they want to lead. Freewill.

                    Originally posted by Starlight
                    Non-Christians are always going to judge Christianity based on what they can see of it, not on the ethereal 'promises of God' that they have no way of seeing or judging.
                    Because you had said:
                    Originally posted by Starlight
                    A lot of millennials probably care a lot more about what their favorite celebrity or favorite youtuber thinks on an issue than they care what their local church pastor thinks.
                    I understood that we were talking about kids brought up in Christian environments who should have a fuller picture of Christianity and know that Jesus Himself saw hypocrites as a problem. However yes you are right that for non-Christians it is a turn-off though again one would hope they actually read the Bible for themselves.

                    Originally posted by Starlight
                    Also, a lot of people think the Church's anti-gay teachings are biblical, and hence anyone who doesn't respect the church due to moral disapproval of the Church's anti-gay stance is not really doing it because the Church is failing to live up to God's standard, rather they're rejecting "God's standard" as immoral and evil.
                    These are the ones setting themselves up as the new authority and who want the Church silenced.


                    Originally posted by Starlight
                    That wasn't really what I was meaning by it, I was more saying that in a monocultural society where all religious figures speak with one voice they can easily be an "authority", but in a multicultural society where multiple different religious figures all claim authority from different Gods and different religions and all say different things, there is not the same level of inclination by people to treat them as actual authority figures - it's obviously impossible to treat them all as authority figures and obey their conflicting commands.
                    Christianity grew and flourished in a culture with many competing religions and cultures. Homosexuality has not IMO, as has been claimed, had widespread approval in ancient times (Greek/Roman). It existed and was tolerated but that doesn't necessarily mean approval since what we see is that the accepted rules and customs were that men and women married and had children. It is fact that gay people are least persecuted in the traditionally Christian nations of the West where people respect the notion of freewill and where gay people were able to point to Christian teachings of love, charity and patience etc when bad treatment was meted out. It is the traditionally Christian nations which provide space for views which don't accord with their own.

                    Originally posted by Starlight
                    You don't think there's widespread opposition to Islam???
                    Of course there is opposition to Islam however Muslims are free to practise their religion in traditionally Christian nations because space is made for those who differ from us because we accept that people have freewill. Yes we hope Muslims reject their religion in favour of ours but ultimately that is their choice. But as Hamster pointed out it is socially acceptable to say things such as other religions are wrong but not that gay sex is wrong. Anyway, my actual point in drawing the parallel I did is that on the one had you appeared to be claiming that millennials had thought about the issues and rejected the churches teachings on same-sex relationships as invalid and yet on the other hand you claim that the Church's views on same-sex marriage hinders people from choosing a gay lifestyle. My point was that if they did see the teaching as invalid then why are they hindered? If they are hindered then it is because they do see the Churches teaching as valid.

                    Originally posted by Starlight
                    Most people would prefer everyone else agreed with them, that's just human nature. The church, of course, has somewhat of a history of rooting out heretics and burning them at the stake. Freedom of speech and opinion is a core progressive value, so I can't imagine the progressives would ever silence the opposition in the same way that Christians once did.
                    Progressive views are becoming more and more repressive and are silencing people. You really need to take a look at yourselves because you are post freedom of speech

                    Originally posted by Starlight
                    I assume they are just as sincere as any other Christian on average... possibly more sincere if they still want to attend a Church despite having been mistreated in the past by Christian groups.
                    Good for them if that is so. In our new climate of non-discrimination we do fear that we may have atheists and the like foisted upon us because of non-discrimination laws gone mad and it is a worry that cultural changers worm their way in with secular agendas. I have suspected some church leaders of being secular at heart. People like this are a problem for all Christians - gay and straight - because they do not have God's will at heart.
                    Last edited by Abigail; 07-09-2015, 05:18 AM.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Abigail View Post
                      No, and this is what I mean by silencing. You wish to control terminology so will reject anything which might not give voice to the views you want. In your own words: When I use the term it is not an insult at all, but is giving voice to the notion that people do ultimately have a choice in the lifestyles they want to lead. Freewill.
                      This is simply a case of you using offensive terminology. It's like the difference between saying "African Americans" vs "Nig---s". Or calling people "gays" vs "f-gs". In each case one term is accepted and the other is offensive. So please discontinue the use of the offensive term "gay lifestyle". Say what you actually mean instead of using that phrase. I have no objection whatsoever to you talking about how gay people can live their lives in different ways. That is totally fine - talk about that all you want. But you can say the same thing in different ways, and some terminology is offensive. I'm just pointing it out to you, because I assume you didn't realize.

                      Also, a lot of people think the Church's anti-gay teachings are biblical, and hence anyone who doesn't respect the church due to moral disapproval of the Church's anti-gay stance is not really doing it because the Church is failing to live up to God's standard, rather they're rejecting "God's standard" as immoral and evil.
                      These are the ones setting themselves up as the new authority and who want the Church silenced.
                      If you say so.

                      Homosexuality has not IMO, as has been claimed, had widespread approval in ancient times (Greek/Roman). It existed and was tolerated but that doesn't necessarily mean approval since what we see is that the accepted rules and customs were that men and women married and had children.


                      It is fact that gay people are least persecuted in the traditionally Christian nations of the West where people respect the notion of freewill and where gay people were able to point to Christian teachings of love, charity and patience etc when bad treatment was meted out.
                      Not really. The Christian nations of the West have a long history of persecuting gay people. From the Spanish Inquisition to McCarthy, gay people have been subjected to witch-hunts, death, imprisonment and ridicule. It is only in the last 30 years where we've seen the influence of Christianity on government policy significantly recede that gay people have been granted more rights. It was certainly not a result of Christian teachings on love leading Christians to generally treat gay people well.

                      It is the traditionally Christian nations which provide space for views which don't accord with their own.
                      That is true, but those nations also share a common history of philosophy and political thought. So people like the extremely influential atheist political philosopher John Stuart Mill laid the foundations for our modern Western political paradigms.

                      Ascribing anything good that the West does to the fact that it's "historically Christian", and ascribing anything bad that the West does to modern secular progressivism (as seer likes to do) is rather selective.

                      But as Hamster pointed out it is socially acceptable to say things such as other religions are wrong but not that gay sex is wrong.
                      You're using the word "wrong" in two totally different ways in that sentence. I assume you mean other religions are 'wrong' in the sense of being factually false. But you're saying gay sex is 'wrong' in the sense of making a moral value judgement against it, ie wrong as in a sin or evil. I think you'll find that if you go around claiming various things are sinful you'll get quite a lot of pushback from people who find fault with your moral judgements. Quite a lot of people today have a strongly ingrained sense of objective morality, and you going around and calling good 'evil' is likely to irk people.

                      Anyway, my actual point in drawing the parallel I did is that on the one had you appeared to be claiming that millennials had thought about the issues and rejected the churches teachings on same-sex relationships as invalid and yet on the other hand you claim that the Church's views on same-sex marriage hinders people from choosing a gay lifestyle. My point was that if they did see the teaching as invalid then why are they hindered? If they are hindered then it is because they do see the Churches teaching as valid.
                      I think anti-gay teachings are harmful to gay people insofar as those gay people are exposed to them and take them to heart. I think now that society as a whole has become much more affirming, it is much less harmful for churches to internally espouse anti-gay teachings, as gay people have a choice whether to take those teachings seriously and can simply leave the particular church and go to a different one. However, previously when anti-gay attitudes were pervasive in society and limitations on basic human rights for gay people (sex, marriage, employment etc) were enshrined in law, gay people couldn't ever get away from anti-gay discrimination even if they wanted to.

                      Progressive views are becoming more and more repressive and are silencing people.
                      I can't really foresee the pendulum swinging any further against religious people. I think that most progressives and gay rights groups are now satisfied with where things stand in the West (save that the US doesn't yet have employment protections for gay people). I just can't see things becoming "more and more repressive".

                      Instead I think the next major shift we'll see is churches changing their position on the issue. I think in 20 years time the majority of churches will have decided to allow same sex marriages to be performed in their churches, and they'll ignore the bible verses on the topic entirely, much as they do on the subject of slavery.

                      I have suspected some church leaders of being secular at heart.
                      Well the Church of England has always been believed to contain quite a number of atheists and nominal believers.
                      Last edited by Starlight; 07-09-2015, 06:21 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Starlight View Post
                        This is simply a case of you using offensive terminology. It's like the difference between saying "African Americans" vs "Nig---s". Or calling people "gays" vs "f-gs". In each case one term is accepted and the other is offensive. So please discontinue the use of the offensive term "gay lifestyle". Say what you actually mean instead of using that phrase. I have no objection whatsoever to you talking about how gay people can live their lives in different ways. That is totally fine - talk about that all you want. But you can say the same thing in different ways, and some terminology is offensive. I'm just pointing it out to you, because I assume you didn't realize.
                        I find it absurd that anyone can truly find this terminology offensive, if I really believed it was I would stop it in a heartbeat. It is like a vegetarian attacking me for saying they live a vegetarian lifestyle. The only reason I can see that it would be found offensive is as a means of stifling opposing opinion. Just for interests sake, how would I say the same thing in terms that would be acceptable to you?

                        Originally posted by Starlight
                        Not really. The Christian nations of the West have a long history of persecuting gay people. From the Spanish Inquisition to McCarthy, gay people have been subjected to witch-hunts, death, imprisonment and ridicule. It is only in the last 30 years where we've seen the influence of Christianity on government policy significantly recede that gay people have been granted more rights. It was certainly not a result of Christian teachings on love leading Christians to generally treat gay people well.
                        Lots of people, not just homosexuals, were subject to things that were perhaps not very good and yes the Church has made mistakes in its treatment of people. I don't think I have ever claimed it hasn't. Regarding homosexuals, there has always been antagonism to gay people in most cultures and I think people were happy to live with the Church teachings on the matter. Adulterers and fornicators also came under sanction in past times. In the past, communities were smaller and disorder and family breakdown could often be the difference between life and death. Practises which we today square off as consenting adults etc and claim are not harming anyone were probably viewed quite differently. People needed homosexuals to produce children as the family was important. Who would look after you if you had no children or grandchildren. Who would plough your fields etc. Adulterers were a problem because they caused strife in the community and fornicators were a problem because they produced children which they often were not prepared to take care of. We can make all sorts of judgements from the positions of wealth and security now but, roll back a few years and these kinds of things were demonstrably detrimental. Even up to the end of WWII, family order was important for the well-being of all. It is with the abundance of the last few decades that people, feeling less constrained by duty, have increasingly been able to live for themselves that boundaries have come up for contest. It is the wealthy who have always been freer to indulge in things like homosexuality and keeping mistresses etc since they have resources and free time and also because of their wealth are somewhat immune to the financial stresses family breakdown brings to the ordinary. No surprises that these wealthy ones are the most likely to be in government too. Add to the mix that the people doing these things are not likely to have a high regard for Biblical teaching, then of course it can be said that the main people for change were not actively Christian. It is not surprising that in times of affluence we see a loss of Church influence and arguments which years ago would have sounded quite selfish and irresponsible now sound 'fair' and 'right'. With the sexual revolution in the 1960s it became harder to say 'no' to one sin when you were allowing others. Obviously while the Church was the state it could not condone certain actions but it has drawn back on account of freewill as people have demanded more space to do their own thing. The Church has also definitely been a voice which has reminded us that we should seek to separate the sin from the sinner, so love and wanting best for others has been part of their message on homosexuals and has been instrumental in improving treatment of homosexuals. I know I can say that because of my Christianity I truly just want what I believe is best for homosexuals. I don't think I could bear myself if I pretended it was ok when I really believe it isn't.

                        Originally posted by Starlight
                        That is true, but those nations also share a common history of philosophy and political thought. So people like the extremely influential atheist political philosopher John Stuart Mill laid the foundations for our modern Western political paradigms.
                        John Stuart Mill was educated by his father who had been ordained as a Church of Scotland minister so there must surely have been Christian influences in some of the teachings even if he and his father did not ultimately acknowledge them. From the wiki page we have this about JSM

                        Originally posted by Wiki on John Stuart Mill
                        Mill defines the difference between higher and lower forms of happiness with the principle that those who have experienced both tend to prefer one over the other. This is, perhaps, in direct contrast with Bentham's statement that "Quantity of pleasure being equal, push-pin is as good as poetry",[38] that, if a simple child's game like hopscotch causes more pleasure to more people than a night at the opera house, it is more imperative upon a society to devote more resources to propagating hopscotch than running opera houses. Mill's argument is that the "simple pleasures" tend to be preferred by people who have no experience with high art, and are therefore not in a proper position to judge
                        Again it is the same thinking about who is best to judge. You think it is you and people like JSM. I think it is God.
                        Originally posted by Starlight
                        Ascribing anything good that the West does to the fact that it's "historically Christian", and ascribing anything bad that the West does to modern secular progressivism (as seer likes to do) is rather selective.
                        Well it does seem that where Christianity goes the people prosper.

                        Originally posted by Starlight
                        You're using the word "wrong" in two totally different ways in that sentence. I assume you mean other religions are 'wrong' in the sense of being factually false. But you're saying gay sex is 'wrong' in the sense of making a moral value judgement against it, ie wrong as in a sin or evil. I think you'll find that if you go around claiming various things are sinful you'll get quite a lot of pushback from people who find fault with your moral judgements. Quite a lot of people today have a strongly ingrained sense of objective morality, and you going around and calling good 'evil' is likely to irk people.
                        I am sure you know what I was meaning even if you take issue with the bad writing. Again, homosexuality seemed to people to be objectively detrimental in past times and may be so again in future if what we are sowing now is bad seed, so your 'objective morality' may prove short-sighted. It is your freewill. You think you are in a position to judge. I do not think you are in position to judge, even though that might irk you.
                        Originally posted by Starlight
                        I think anti-gay teachings are harmful to gay people insofar as those gay people are exposed to them and take them to heart.
                        Well I think that the individual gay person needs to decide for his/herself whether they should take something to heart or not.

                        Originally posted by Starlight
                        I think now that society as a whole has become much more affirming, it is much less harmful for churches to internally espouse anti-gay teachings , as gay people have a choice whether to take those teachings seriously and can simply leave the particular church and go to a different one. However, previously when anti-gay attitudes were pervasive in society and limitations on basic human rights for gay people (sex, marriage, employment etc) were enshrined in law, gay people couldn't ever get away from anti-gay discrimination even if they wanted to.
                        The main point here is that you did not like gay people keeping their identity to their private domains and yet are quite content for churches to keep their voice to the private. How do you explain your position on this that somehow makes it ok for you do do this to the churches but wrong when they did it to you.

                        Originally posted by Starlight
                        I can't really foresee the pendulum swinging any further against religious people. I think that most progressives and gay rights groups are now satisfied with where things stand in the West (save that the US doesn't yet have employment protections for gay people). I just can't see things becoming "more and more repressive".
                        Well I can quite easily see it happening and I think your preceding quote on keeping certain espousings (you dont agree with) within the church building is perhaps an indication of what we can expect. Will people be jailed for referring to some verses in public?

                        Originally posted by Starlight
                        Instead I think the next major shift we'll see is churches changing their position on the issue. I think in 20 years time the majority of churches will have decided to allow same sex marriages to be performed in their churches, and they'll ignore the bible verses on the topic entirely, much as they do on the subject of slavery.
                        Lots will but equally lots won't. The Bible seems pretty clear on it and we have never yet heard any decent explanations as to why we should ignore those verses.

                        Originally posted by starlight
                        Well the Church of England has always been believed to contain quite a number of atheists and nominal believers.
                        Yes, that is true enough.
                        Last edited by Abigail; 07-09-2015, 01:01 PM.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Abigail View Post
                          I find it absurd that anyone can truly find this terminology offensive, if I really believed it was I would stop it in a heartbeat.
                          I've never met a single gay person who found the term unoffensive.

                          The primary reason I think the term is offensive is because it smacks of the implication that gay people live their lives in a way that is significantly different to straight people. The 'gay lifestyle' has historically been used to imply that gay people instead of just settling down in marriage like straight people (which they were, of course, banned from doing by the very same people supposedly opposed to the 'gay lifestyle'), would be out partying at bars, having sex with someone different every night, cross-dressing, or whatever fantasy situation exists in the imagination of the anti-gay Christian (Darth Executor, for example, keeps bringing up sex with multiple anonymous men at truck stops). The 'gay lifestyle' then stands for some sort of ongoing hedonistic orgy, in contrast to the 'straight lifestyle' which presumably represents responsible monogamous marriage and child rearing. Funnily enough, those gay people who simply want to marry their partner and live a normal boring life totally without the hedonistic orgy component, find the term 'gay lifestyle' offensive when applied to them. And the notion that straight people are never out partying or cheating on their partners etc in contrast to gays who supposedly always do, is equally absurd.

                          Basically gay people, like straight people, are diverse in the way they live their lives, so saying that there is such a thing as one 'gay lifestyle' is nonsense in the first place.

                          Just for interests sake, how would I say the same thing in terms that would be acceptable to you?
                          Glaad's offensive terminology guide suggests "gay lives" as a non-offensive synonym. I am unsure whether that is what you meant by your use of the term. I suggest simply finding your own synonym by explaining what you are meaning, which appeared to be something like "people who choose to pursue gay relationships despite church teachings" or "gay people who do not opt for the church's preferred practices of celibacy or heterosexual marriage".

                          Regarding homosexuals, there has always been antagonism to gay people in most cultures
                          No.

                          and I think people were happy to live with the Church teachings on the matter.
                          No.

                          In the past, communities were smaller and disorder and family breakdown could often be the difference between life and death. Practises which we today square off as consenting adults etc and claim are not harming anyone were probably viewed quite differently. People needed homosexuals to produce children as the family was important. Who would look after you if you had no children or grandchildren. Who would plough your fields etc. Adulterers were a problem because they caused strife in the community and fornicators were a problem because they produced children which they often were not prepared to take care of. We can make all sorts of judgements from the positions of wealth and security now but, roll back a few years and these kinds of things were demonstrably detrimental. Even up to the end of WWII, family order was important for the well-being of all. It is with the abundance of the last few decades that people, feeling less constrained by duty, have increasingly been able to live for themselves that boundaries have come up for contest. It is the wealthy who have always been freer to indulge in things like homosexuality and keeping mistresses etc since they have resources and free time and also because of their wealth are somewhat immune to the financial stresses family breakdown brings to the ordinary.
                          It's certainly true that there is a significant cultural shift that happens between cultures where survival is a daily struggle versus cultures where it is not. When life is a daily struggle for survival, certain values will tend to win-out as everyone needs to live in a certain way to survive, whereas when survival is guaranteed the culture will quickly change as individuals try and optimize their happiness. The labels for this are "survival values" compared to "self-expression values". However, the religiosity of the culture seems to be totally independent of where the culture sits on a survival vs self-expression spectrum, giving two quite independent criteria for measuring cultures.

                          When I look history and different cultures and how they have had different attitudes to homosexuality, I conclude you've linked homosexuality to the wrong criteria. There were plenty of survival-values cultures in which homosexuality was totally fine and tolerated. Yes, I'll grant that the men always had wives on the side to bear them children, because that was essential for survival, but the cultures themselves had no problem at all with a homosexual relationship existing between men and often valued that relationship higher than they valued the actual marriages these men had with their wives (because women were property and far less important than men). Whereas what the religion taught about homosexuality was consistently extremely relevant, and historically controlled many culture's attitudes to the subject. In the last 30 years, the advancement of gay rights has been mostly a product of the decreasing influence of religion in our society. You can't, for example, seriously make the argument that 50 years ago when most people agreed with the ban on gay sex that the people's thinking was "if not every single person has children, how will our society ever survive?", rather it was clearly "the bible is against this", so it was religious opposition not survival-based opposition.

                          I know I can say that because of my Christianity I truly just want what I believe is best for homosexuals.
                          But your belief that this is so is a purely religious one - you believe that what the bible says must be best for them because you like to believe the bible. It's not a view you've arrived at by talking to gay people, studying the world etc. The vast majority of people who've followed that latter course have concluded that gay rights is the best course for gay people.

                          John Stuart Mill was educated by his father who had been ordained as a Church of Scotland minister so there must surely have been Christian influences in some of the teachings even if he and his father did not ultimately acknowledge them.
                          But then you're back to claiming that anytime anyone did anything good in the West then they did it "because of Christianity". Even when they were an avowed atheist. It's all very arbitrary and circular.

                          Well it does seem that where Christianity goes the people prosper.
                          Except for, like, the fall of the Roman Empire, the Dark Ages, the Crusades, the Spanish Inquisition etc.

                          The main point here is that you did not like gay people keeping their identity to their private domains and yet are quite content for churches to keep their voice to the private.
                          No the main point was that when the church's anti-gay policies were enshrined in law, gay people could never escape them no matter how much they wanted to. Now that they are not, if gay people voluntarily choose to become part of an anti-gay church, then that is their free choice.

                          Well I can quite easily see it happening and I think your preceding quote on keeping certain espousings (you dont agree with) within the church building is perhaps an indication of what we can expect. Will people be jailed for referring to some verses in public?
                          Seems highly unlikely to me.
                          Last edited by Starlight; 07-09-2015, 08:55 PM.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Hello, I'm another Millennial, and my name is not Pentecost. Because who the heck names a kid that?
                            Does he who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you do so by works of the law, or by hearing with faith? -Galatians 3:5

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Starlight View Post
                              I've never met a single gay person who found the term unoffensive.

                              The primary reason I think the term is offensive is because it smacks of the implication that gay people live their lives in a way that is significantly different to straight people. The 'gay lifestyle' has historically been used to imply that gay people instead of just settling down in marriage like straight people (which they were, of course, banned from doing by the very same people supposedly opposed to the 'gay lifestyle'), would be out partying at bars, having sex with someone different every night, cross-dressing, or whatever fantasy situation exists in the imagination of the anti-gay Christian (Darth Executor, for example, keeps bringing up sex with multiple anonymous men at truck stops). The 'gay lifestyle' then stands for some sort of ongoing hedonistic orgy, in contrast to the 'straight lifestyle' which presumably represents responsible monogamous marriage and child rearing. Funnily enough, those gay people who simply want to marry their partner and live a normal boring life totally without the hedonistic orgy component, find the term 'gay lifestyle' offensive when applied to them. And the notion that straight people are never out partying or cheating on their partners etc in contrast to gays who supposedly always do, is equally absurd.
                              I think gay people need to look to their own house for the origin of some of these ideas. For example some of the things seen at Gay Pride parades are outrageously over the top and if this is the only exposure people have to gays then they are going to get the wrong idea. Also there seems to be a media drive to give exposure to anyone who young and is gay. I am not a person who is interested in celebrities very much so I don't read the articles but it is hard not to notice the headlines and snippet pictures as I make my way down the news lists. How many more like me and more often than not it is the off-putting stuff like snaps of after party drunken trips on a pavement, linking the person to other colleagues in a manner which is suggestive of serial relationships etc. It isn't nice, it looks bad and I only hope the young person is not being used.

                              Originally posted by Starlight
                              Basically gay people, like straight people, are diverse in the way they live their lives, so saying that there is such a thing as one 'gay lifestyle' is nonsense in the first place.

                              Glaad's offensive terminology guide suggests "gay lives" as a non-offensive synonym. I am unsure whether that is what you meant by your use of the term. I suggest simply finding your own synonym by explaining what you are meaning, which appeared to be something like "people who choose to pursue gay relationships despite church teachings" or "gay people who do not opt for the church's preferred practices of celibacy or heterosexual marriage".
                              Fair enough though 'gay' was the operative word. I poured no malign meaning into 'lifestyle' such as seems to have been found offensive. Equally I could take issue with your usage of 'anti-gay' in conjunction with religious conviction. I am not anti-gay. Anti-gay sex, but not anti gay.

                              Originally posted by Starlight
                              No.
                              Yes, look at cultures around the world and you will see that it goes on but is explained away for other reasons ie like the Greeks saw it as a sort of mentoring system or that it was because of some high-brow connection and the sex part was ignored. Lots of cultures punished people who engaged in it.

                              Originally posted by Starlight
                              No.
                              Yes. The Church has often been hijacked by people with their own agenda. Of course the Church leaders have their part in the blame because when the church goes into league with people who's agenda is clearly secular and self-serving then it is always the church who ends up compromising its values. Slavery is one such thing. A proper application of the teachings seen in the Bible would have rendered slavery as an abusive system powerless. Same with racism - there is no support for racism in the Bible. It is better for the Church to lose the dead wood then to keep their numbers up by compromising. This is equally important on teachings and on things like love and charity and patience etc

                              Originally posted by Starlight
                              It's certainly true that there is a significant cultural shift that happens between cultures where survival is a daily struggle versus cultures where it is not. When life is a daily struggle for survival, certain values will tend to win-out as everyone needs to live in a certain way to survive, whereas when survival is guaranteed the culture will quickly change as individuals try and optimize their happiness. The labels for this are "survival values" compared to "self-expression values". However, the religiosity of the culture seems to be totally independent of where the culture sits on a survival vs self-expression spectrum, giving two quite independent criteria for measuring cultures.

                              When I look history and different cultures and how they have had different attitudes to homosexuality, I conclude you've linked homosexuality to the wrong criteria. There were plenty of survival-values cultures in which homosexuality was totally fine and tolerated. Yes, I'll grant that the men always had wives on the side to bear them children, because that was essential for survival, but the cultures themselves had no problem at all with a homosexual relationship existing between men and often valued that relationship higher than they valued the actual marriages these men had with their wives (because women were property and far less important than men). Whereas what the religion taught about homosexuality was consistently extremely relevant, and historically controlled many culture's attitudes to the subject.
                              I am not sure how you think it good that a man has a wife and then a gay lover on the side, the relationship with who is somehow on a higher plane than that with his wife. Would you like to be a wife in that situation. It sounds pretty dire to me. The Biblical template of disallowing gay sex seems better to me since at least the woman could use that to claim rights for herself. Further, in past times gay sex was risky in that it necessarily has to use the waste pipe. This will have carried a risk of infection and all sorts of dangers, not only for the gay lovers but also for the poor wife.

                              Originally posted by Starlight
                              In the last 30 years, the advancement of gay rights has been mostly a product of the decreasing influence of religion in our society. You can't, for example, seriously make the argument that 50 years ago when most people agreed with the ban on gay sex that the people's thinking was "if not every single person has children, how will our society ever survive?", rather it was clearly "the bible is against this", so it was religious opposition not survival-based opposition.
                              We still believed that the best societies were those populated with traditional families in which people put the well-being of the family at heart. The last 50-60 years has seen people decide that the traditional template for family cramps their style and they don't like it. Gay rights have thrived in this climate.

                              Originally posted by Starlight
                              But your belief that this is so is a purely religious one - you believe that what the bible says must be best for them because you like to believe the bible. It's not a view you've arrived at by talking to gay people, studying the world etc. The vast majority of people who've followed that latter course have concluded that gay rights is the best course for gay people.
                              Actually I do see merit in what the Bible teaches on traditional family. People like to feel connected to their roots. I also believe that after a catalogue of errors it can be harder and harder to see what the right decisions really are. It is like we have been given a house plan to build and people have said I dont like this house so I will add this here and that there. It is no longer the same house is it and so we cannot talk about something being right on the new version in relation to the original plan because they have become independent of each other.

                              Originally posted by Starlight
                              But then you're back to claiming that anytime anyone did anything good in the West then they did it "because of Christianity". Even when they were an avowed atheist. It's all very arbitrary and circular.
                              No I am just pointing out the weakness of your own claim in holding up JSM as an atheist mover. He might be an atheist but his education has very obviously included much Christian thought. No circularity there.

                              Originally posted by Starlight
                              Except for, like, the fall of the Roman Empire, the Dark Ages, the Crusades, the Spanish Inquisition etc.
                              God punishes Christian nations too. We are not immune from corruption and sin and we get punished for it. When we do God's will we prosper. Further, there has been much anti-Christian bias in retelling things like the Crusades http://normangeisler.com/the-crusade...hey-justified/

                              Originally posted by Starlight
                              No the main point was that when the church's anti-gay policies were enshrined in law, gay people could never escape them no matter how much they wanted to. Now that they are not, if gay people voluntarily choose to become part of an anti-gay church, then that is their free choice.

                              Seems highly unlikely to me.
                              Time will tell.
                              Last edited by Abigail; 07-10-2015, 07:24 AM.

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