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Bruce Baker
12-14-2002, 03:02 PM
Three young ladies who were sent out into the neighborhood of Barnegat, going door to door to testify to the glory of god just got blown off with one of my lessons of God is the Universe, not the writings of men who will be here and gone, while the universe goes on.

I tried to be somewhat polite, but after years of having various wide eyed stupid wandering children sent out to testify for their church or religion, I pretty much have had enough.

Not very Aiki, was it?

Since this thread is lying here dead, what you do when these wide eyed empty headed testifiers come to your door?

I really would like all of you who wrap yourselves in that blanket of religion to wake up to the fact that we are all trying to describe what our purpose is in this life, this universe, while trying to come to terms with death.

That is the short of it.

The real long hard question is ... how can we come to terms with our religion, and our lives, and still provide the lessons of what we should be, our children should be to understand our small existence in this universe?

In terms of balancing our Aikido, balancing our lives with religion, lessons learned ... should we blow off these wandering crazys, or let the dog chase them off as most dog's instincts are as right as they are wrong ... or something more Aiki?

I go with my instincts, but I would like to hear some other ways to deal with it.

Might be a more aiki solution than mine out there.

siwilson
12-14-2002, 05:03 PM
Try this:

"No Thank you!"

The "Aiki" way is respect for others, and there is also this thing called "freedom of speach!" ...

... "I may not agree with what you say but I will defend your right to say it!"

Don't worry about what others say. Worry when they are not allowed to say it!

Arianah
12-14-2002, 09:42 PM
You know, I sometimes wonder if (and hope that) you're kidding when you say some of the things you do.

I don't have a religion, but your post still knotted my stomach (and I very rarely get truly offended). I don't believe in "religion." But I do believe in the divine/god/universal, the essence/soul/self, and that there is a connection between the two. I don't have a religion, but I do study any and every religion I can, and take the tenets I think are meaningful and apply them to my own philosophy. I see religion as a guide, a structure for those that wish to have it; a way to connect to the divine, making the spiritual meaningful to we who cannot understand it. If you don't need that guide to connect, then good. Fine. However, that does not mean that what you think you know is correct, and what "they" (insert your own "they" of choice here) think they know is incorrect. You don't have the answers, they don't have them, I don't have them. That is the curse of mortal existence: ignorance of anything but that mortal existence.

On my way to work, I pass by a library, outside of which, I have seen many times a sad, frightened looking woman who passes out tiny pamphlets, while a confident old man preaches. I pass by with a smile for both of them, and a very polite "no thank you" to the pamphlets, having taking it and skimming it once. I even stopped and listened to the man when I was particularly early for work one day. What he had to say didn't interest me. I smiled at him (since I was the only one who had stopped, so he was preaching directly to me) and went on my way. Some of the things he was saying were pretty out there, so what did I do? How did I deal with them? I moved on. If people come to my door, I take their literature, say that I'll read it and that if I feel that it is something that interests me, I'll follow up on it. They leave me with a smile; a sense of accomplishment. Whether or not I show up at their church doesn't matter to them. They were probably just happy not to have someone yell at them and slam the door in their face.

So next time those "wandering crazies" come to your door, maybe chat with them. Learn something from them, even if it is just that their approach is not for you. How do you know that they aren't the ones who really have all the answers?

Sarah, serious this time

Kevin Wilbanks
12-14-2002, 11:20 PM
I just don't answer the door. I don't answer telemarketer calls either, or, if I answer, I hang up the instant I'm certain it's a solicitor, and put the event out of my mind as soon as possible. My response is to waste as little time, energy, and thought as possible on parasites of all types.

I usually don't agree with Bruce, or even read more than about 10% of his meandering posts, but I think both of you others are off your nut. I don't see how anyone can see intrusion upon one's property and time to proselytize and challenge one's deepest and most personal values as anything but an affront.

It has nothing to do with the constitution or free speech - no one has suggested banning them or putting them in jail.

I also don't see how some wishy-washy relativistic philosophy excuses this kind of behavior. Although, if you choose to believe in relativism to such an extreme that you don't even believe what you believe strongly enough to act upon it, I suppose that's your business, but it seems like a pretty limp way to live. In fact, the extremely "relative", subjective, and personal nature of the beliefs and values they are coming around and sticking their noses into is precisely why most find their agressive prosyletizing is offensive.

On the other hand, if the people are coming to your door simply to invite you to church, and nothing more, I see no reason to be rude. Then again, I see no reason to pay attention to them either.

Williamross77
12-15-2002, 12:18 AM
I being Catholic have always been extra scowerd by the Jehova witnesses, at which point my AIki source assumes control of by being and I simple state, "your absolutely right about everything, you better get to my neighbors' house quick, they are all going to hell!"

then i jiggle like a child as they scurrey off down the street with the water i offered them...

Arianah
12-15-2002, 08:44 AM
... but I think both of you others are off your nut.
Um...
I also don't see how some wishy-washy relativistic philosophy excuses this kind of behavior.
Er...
Although, if you choose to believe in relativism to such an extreme that you don't even believe what you believe strongly enough to act upon it, I suppose that's your business, but it seems like a pretty limp way to live.
Now just a minute. I may sound like a reincarnation of Protagoras, but I just can't believe that you can know with certainty the truth about everything in the afterlife (if you even believe in such) or god/the divine/the universal (all right, I'm not typing that out again. From now on it's "god"). We deduce things by applying what we know to an unknown to try to figure the unknown out. We apply what we know of the physical world (erm, I think I'm starting to sound a little too newagey, but bear with me) to the spiritual world. However, you can't really apply your knowledge of peeling an orange to learn how to play the piano. If we only understand the material world, and if the spiritual world is completely different, then how can we hope to know anything about it, since we've only experienced the physical world? I mean, we havenít even figured out much of this world. *shrug*

It seems pretty arrogant to think that you've got it all figured out while everyone else is simply a parasite. Those who go door to door to talk about their beliefs aren't like solicitors. Solicitors get paid for calling you up; they get commissions on everything they sell when they come to your door. People who talk to you about religion believe that they are "saving" you. Yeah, that's a pretty arrogant mindset, too. No wonder it's so offensive to you. How dare they think that they know everything, and tell you that your beliefs are wrong (or wishy-washy and limp, if you prefer ;))

To address this in particular:
Ö that you don't even believe what you believe strongly enough to act upon itÖ
Act upon it? What would you have me do? Run out to my door with a shotgun and chase them down the road screaming, "Even though I think truth is relative and beliefs are personal, because you donít agree with that Iím going to slit you from groin to gullet! Get out! Get out! GET OUT!" Doesnít seem very in line with my beliefs, now does it? ;)
I don't see how anyone can see intrusion upon one's property and time to proselytize and challenge one's deepest and most personal values as anything but an affront.
Hmm... ok. I was once friends with a Jehovah's Witness, who was very intent on his beliefs, and argued very well. I used to battle with him constantly on the subject of religion (I was born into Christianity, so that's what I was at the time). He would always win because he argued well and I was not secure in my beliefs at the time. A few years later, when my ideas on relgion and spirituality had changed, I ran into him. We started talking and one of our old battles flared up again. I had asked him who he was going to vote for, and he told me that Jehovah's Witnesses didn't believe in voting, because if they choose a politician, and s/he starts a war, let's say, the voters would be responsible for every death in that war. He argued it well, and I simply listened to him. He finally said, "Do you agree?" And I said, "I don't agree, but I see what you're saying." He had nothing more to say to me about it, because I had seen his point, and it had just not been for me. That was the only argument he hadn't "won" with me, and it is because you can't fight with someone who has respectfully listened to you, and simply disagreed. Hint... :)

Sarah, who's got to stop responding to threads, because it takes so damn long

Kevin Wilbanks
12-15-2002, 09:20 AM
It seems pretty arrogant to think that you've got it all figured out while everyone else is simply a parasite. Those who go door to door to talk about their beliefs aren't like solicitors...
I disagree. What makes the proselytizers parasites is not whether they are correct or incorrect, but the fact that they are making uninvited intrusions on a person's time, property, energy, and, most heinously, their privacy. The subject of religion is more private and sensitive for most folk than discussion of their own genitalia. How would you like it if people banged on your door and started challenging your sexual practices or tried very hard to convince you to pierce your clitoris?

The fact that they don't get paid in money doesn't exempt them from solicitor status. They think they are earning brownie points with God or whomever, which is a currency of sorts. Moreover, they get 'paid' in terms enriching their own sense of righteousness, which is something I definitely don't want to contribute to.
Act upon it? What would you have me do? Run out to my door with a shotgun and chase them down the road screaming, "Even though I think truth is relative and beliefs are personal, because you donít agree with that Iím going to slit you from groin to gullet! Get out! Get out! GET OUT!" Doesnít seem very in line with my beliefs, now does it? ;)
I think you could take an active role in not letting them suck up any of your time and energy. I do. (Except this conversation, of course... DOHH!)

I agree that there are no certain answers to questions about dieties and alternate planes of existence - which is why I find most of what religion is about simply irrelevant to my life. Lack of certainty about such things doesn't imply that people with other points of view are entitled to my time and attention. If they come around demanding it, they will get little from me in the way of consideration.

SeiserL
12-15-2002, 10:21 AM
I actually have a small sign in my window that says, "Please, no solitictors or handbills, thank you." Works quite nicely. To the rest I just say, "no thanks".

Until again,

Lynn

akiy
12-15-2002, 10:28 AM
Hi folks,

Please keep it civil here.

Despite the fact that this is the "Open Discussions" forum, please keep from inciting each other into divisiveness. We've already had people leave over such things in the "Open Discussions" forum and I'd rather not have such repeated.

As always, the first rule of the AikiWeb Forums is, "Treat your fellow AikiWeb Forums members with respect."

Thank you.

-- Jun

Brian H
12-15-2002, 02:31 PM
I can be a very out going person, but I agree completely with Kevin's assessment of the privacy of religious and sexual matters. I rarely will discuss either topic, even with the closest of friends. I also do not like any intrusion into my personal space and will go to great lengths to maintain my privacy in most matters.

That being said, I treat those who come to me with the sole interest in saving my soul with respect. A simple "Thank you for your time, but I am very busy," is not to much.

I must confess to answering the door in my police uniform, as I was getting ready for work, and telling a group, "This guy is going to be very busy for the next twenty years. If you have a prison ministry, I will give him your card." They declined and took off.

siwilson
12-15-2002, 02:44 PM
No-one should condone invasions of privacy, but no-one should invade anyones right to their opinion Ė misguided or not!

Jim ashby
12-15-2002, 04:56 PM
Anyone who comes to my door wishing to inflict his/her world view on me is a waste of oxygen. I tend not to spend time with people who are trying to get me to believe in their imaginary friend.

Have fun

Kevin Masters
12-16-2002, 07:46 AM
Answer the door in your underpants and chainmaile shirt.

Make eye-contact.

Insist that they are "transmitting".

Back away slowly and close the door.

They haven't been back since!

I have a worse problem with my mailman. He comes almost every dang day. He leaves me bills, drops a spent fag off in my yard, and leaves tire tracks in my grass. The God of the Mailman is way eviler.

Bronson
12-16-2002, 10:56 PM
Once while I was at a friends house some Jehova's Witnesses came a'knockin'. My friends father, a devout catholic, politely explained to them that he would be more than willing to listen to them, attentively and without interruption if they would then give him equal time and the same courtesy. They politely said "no thank-you" and walked away.

Bronson

Bruce Baker
12-17-2002, 08:11 AM
Dear Sarah,

Am I kidding? Mostly.

Life is as real as the ironys of life's situations, and although there is comedy in life, so too the pathos of life's drama turns to irony as we try to make sense of it.

The dark humor of breaking some fingers when they toot the horn, but not their legs so they can still push the pedals of the automobile to get to work, are funny when said in jest and yet sad when played out in real life. That knot in your stomach is your own failings to come to grips with things in your mind that you have to deal with, but are afraid to. Once you do, that knot will disappear, and you will see the practical reality as well as the comedy for situations in life.

My wife tells me to behave all the time. I am just a bear who growls, but that is instinct not the actions of the bear. School of hard knocks and all that.

As far as poor little wandering Mormons ... if I had dressed in the fine clothes these three young women were dressed in with more than adequete thickness to endure the weather, I would be put in jail as a traveling salesman soliciting door to door.

They were neither poor, nor uneducated, but sent door to door to be educated in the school of hard knocks. What they didn't expect was to be told they were being told the partial truth of despots, and crazys who wanted them to be sheep, when the answer to what they were seeking was their existence of life, and lessons we are to learn from the world around us, translated as life's lessons in the universe, not the universe bent to learn from us or be imposed upon by our will to change the universe.

Lood outside. Observe how humanity trys to bend the universe to their will, and yet that little blade of grass grows in the cracks of the sidewalk ... what's up with that?

It means ... we are transitory, our religion, our lives, our very race is but a wink in the eye of the universe, but it is a piece of life in the universe so in that context we are the life of the universe for that wink of an eye, its power for energy.

Humanity creates its own religions, not a bad thing, it creates continuity in social structure, calms the mind, creates peace ... mostly.

Chase away the poor little babbling mormons? That is exactly what was supposed to happen. In most cases that was the planned strategy of who sent them out to testify so that when they get back to the fold they can feel all warm and fuzzy about being the chosen few who will live forever in their religious closness to their God.

Ow! Now I am giving myself a knot in my own stomach. That kind of thinking is narrow, the creation of men seeking power.

Aikido teaches us to find the harmony of the universe. The peace within the disharmony.

Well, before you can do that, you have to understand how you are manipulated, if you like being part of that kind of thinking, don't think, don't rock the boat. Stay where you are and do what you can do to be in or out of those particular clubs. Churches are clubs, aren't they? Never mind.

Within the teachings of your Christianity, find the origins of the teachings, becoming closer to the One God, how it changes over the centurys as men redefine those teachings, and what is goal of humanity in trying to find the best of our moral consciousness for society.

Once you get that house in order, then talking to the babbling idiots on the street is much clearer in the context of their own mental problems, physical situation, and what you can do with either a kind word, or disgruntled word to continue the precepts set up within your society of maintain social order.

Disharmony create order?

Sometimes disharmony is the harmony of a situation, or the resolution to a situation. Hopefully you will learn when to use it or not with finding the harmony of disharmony in Aikido practice.

Take a look at practice some time. Sit and watch two weeks instead of physically practicing. Take notes on the interaction, the resolutions to harmony through disharmony, the methods to resolve variations in practice. See if it doesn't enlighten you to the same scenarios in your everyday life?

Am I kidding? You profess to "GET" Aikido. Well, how about its social teachings for handling interactions beyond a physical level also?

Them mormon's got more money than you suspect, and they keep it that way too.

Darrell Aquino
12-18-2002, 06:22 PM
I once heard someone say, "Never let your religion or anyone's religion get in the way of your relationship with God." Think about it.

udoka1
12-19-2002, 04:02 PM
just invite em in and tell them the sacrifice will begin shortly....lol. that will scare em away.

warriorwoman
12-19-2002, 11:02 PM
This reminds me of an incident which occurred to me years ago when I was living in Thailand:

Some Thai friends asked me to participate in a fund-raising effort to repair the roof of a temple in a poorer village on the outskirts of the town where I lived at the time. Basically, you get a truck with a bunch of young guys playing drums, some pretty women and then anyone else who wants to participate and create a parade. As the parade progresses through the streets, the bystanders donate money in bowls carried by the paraders. As our "parade" progressed through the town, my friends spied a Western young man dressed in black slacks, white shirt, black tye and carrying a briefcase and asked me to go by and offer my bowl to him for a donation. When I went over, the guy looked at me with more hatred than I had experienced in a long time and said loathingly, "You should be ashamed of yourself!". When my Thai friends asked me what he said, I told them and they didn't understand his anger. I then realized this guy was one of the hundreds of Mormon missionaries that are given visas each year by the Thai government as guests in this Buddhist country and in effect, given permission to proselitize their own religion. I've thought about this incident many times since then and wondered what kind of respect this guy's religion was teaching him. Here was a guest who was not merely oblivious to the hospitality of his hosts by granting him permission to spread his propaganda, but who obviously was affronted by the suggestion that he might want to contribute to another religion. In the intervening years, I've used this incident to remind me that these misguided people aren't interested in a dialogue. They want merely for you to listen to them. To respect their religion. To hear what they have to say. But please, don't expect the same courtesy from them.

janet dtantirojanarat

www.warriorwoman.org

Kevin Wilbanks
12-20-2002, 08:21 AM
I wonder if that was a representative case of Mormonism (incidentally, I think they are all required to do missionary work). I've read a little about the history of Mormons, and they were definitely a hard, authoritarian bunch, but I think they've softened up some these days - the stories I've heard have been all over the map. My dad tells stories of Mormons he has known that portray them in an almost opposite light: generous, honest, trustworthy, and non-proselytizing to him, even after he told them he had no interest in converting. On the other hand, it wasn't too many years ago that they would routinely expel dissenters from their midst or even kill them. We had a Mormon kid in my high school who would get into a fist fight with anyone who said anything critical of his religion. Weird.

Kevin Leavitt
12-21-2002, 06:22 PM
Funny thing I have had a few mormon friends and they are wonderful people.

I don't particularly subscribe to their views and they can be fundamentalist, which I consider all forms of fundamentalism with a great deal of caution. It can be very dangerous.

Anyway, to answer Bruce's orginal question...

I agree with Janet's assessment above.

As a buddhist, I tend to not really feel threatened by anothers beliefs.

Basically I think they simply want to spread the joy and happiness that they feel to others.

While it can be sometimes annoying to be interrupted by a door bell or a telephone, in a way it is another chance to great another fellow human being who has found something that they are excited about and want to share.

Other than being anoying, what harm are they doing?

What is disappointing to me is when people use religion or dogma to put down other people or to oppress them with it. History is chocked full of examples of this. Fundamentalist can use religion as a tool to leverage and coerce people...that is wrong.

To me fundamentalism (following without thinking)...is just one step above cultism (following without questioning). both are dangerous and need to be checked.

In my philosophy, you should question everything you hear and know constantly...but you should also be compassionate and see the good in people as well...that means being tolerant of those that ring your door bell from time to time. Smile and say "no thank you".

Bruce Baker
12-22-2002, 03:40 PM
Wish I could smile and send them on their way, but I can't.

Learning about the origins of Mormons, their intent, their religious programs that seem to border upon fanatical... well ... I would rather hear the storys of how the angels guide their lives and watch over all people of the Mormon faith than have these kids walking the street.

Oh well.

I suspect they will continue their education until they start popping out the babys and being the good mothers of a new generation.

I guess it is time to write that thesis paper that prescibes the basis of religions and the ways we interpret religion from nature.

Better not ... bad idea. Don't want them coming to save me

How about some barbed wire, or a light sensitive alarm that comes on with movement and warns them off?

I kind of like the way my grandfather used to shoot dogs and wise acre kids with rock salt, but them days are gone... or are they?

JPT
12-22-2002, 06:01 PM
Take an extra 1/2 minute to answer the door, Cold callers, preachers, beggers, sales men (& trick or treaters ?), will all assume you are not in & wandered off onto the next door, but friends will keep on waiting.

:triangle: :square: :circle:

Bruce Baker
12-23-2002, 09:38 AM
Very good Jay!

Of course, maybe some old mats out in the front yard or a tarp on the leaves will suffice to " .. . you tell me about your god, and I will show you Aikido .... is that a deal?"

Definitely a lot more fun than a moot argument about religion.

jeda
12-24-2002, 10:00 AM
I'm mormon. Does anyone have a problem with me?

Williamross77
12-24-2002, 10:13 AM
Great to have you here, I love the diversity!

I don't have a problem with you and i am sure that the above descriptions were anologies not directly intended towards the average religious person of any faith, keep comming back., i love your signiture "the other guys" that's great!

jeda
12-24-2002, 10:34 AM
Funny how blanket statements include everyone in a group.

opherdonchin
12-24-2002, 05:19 PM
Hey Jessica,

I missed out. I saw your post before I got back to the beginning of the post to read through what everyone else had said. I wish I'd read their posts without knowing that there were also mormons reading them. I'm curious if I would have noticed that this was a possibility that we should all have been considering.

Still, I'm curious. As a mormon, how do you feel about the obvious annoyance and anger that some mormons seem to cause by proselytizing. Have you ever been door-to-door proselytizing? Did you encounter much anger? If so, how did you deal with it?

Hope I'm not prying.

Bruce Baker
12-27-2002, 12:17 PM
So long as we don't testify, I don't have a problem with any religion, even those screaming vegetables the vegetarians say are not alive!!!

Really.

I have a problem with people sent out to be educated by testifying.

Doesn't matter what religion it is.

One of my best friends is a mormon, and although he is quite deeply into the church, we are quite agreeable to discuss how things have been since we last saw each other, and occasionally, we touch upon the weirder sides of what is religion, martial training, and what "normal" people believe our religious beliefs to be.

No, I don't have a problem with what religion you are, I just thought we might get a lesson in here about sheep wandering the streets, and a few laughs in on the more human side to help connect us through these typed words?

Was that so hard to do?

If it were Christians, I would have asked them if they wanted to be nailed to my tree to meet Jesus?

I am an equal opportunity pain in the butt for all religions, all races, and all creeds!

Brings us closer together, ya know?

Bruce Baker
12-27-2002, 12:21 PM
Let me explain.

If you can defend your beliefs, without losing the convictions of your faith, you are not only stronger for it, but you are able to forgive yourself and others. Hence you find the peace, the ability to laugh at yourself, and with this ... others will learn to laugh with you.

Roundabout way to make friends, but many of the best lessons in life are not easy either.

warriorwoman
12-29-2002, 05:32 PM
Jess -

With all due respect, given my experience, the question is more appropriately posed: "I'm Buddhist, do you have a problem with me?".

janet dtantirojanarat

www.warriorwoman.org

Thalib
12-29-2002, 06:02 PM
Janet, your surname sounds Thai. Am I correct?

Michael Neal
12-30-2002, 07:18 AM
Bruce (with all due respect) with all of the sermons that you preach here on Aikiweb on a daily basis I would expect you to be a little more tolerant. :)

Brian H
12-30-2002, 09:44 AM
Bruce,

Are you peeved at anyone who comes to your door uninvited?

If so, why do you not post a little sign outside stating "No solicitors or religious inquiries, please. Anyone wishing to drop off unwanted cash always welcome."

If you do not warn them away prior to them reaching them reaching your door, then your are (I my mind) obligated to at least be polite to them if you choose to answer the door.

warriorwoman
12-30-2002, 03:34 PM
Thalib-

That's correct.

janet dtantirojanarat

www.warriorwoman.org

Veers
12-31-2002, 01:41 PM
Bruce, one thing...A close study of Christianity will show you that, yes, while the middle age church (anyone read the comic strip Non Sequitor?) was corrupt, the basics of my belief have not changed. Remember when I e-mailed you about that book (Mere Christanity)? That book explains quite well what Christianty, real Christianity, is and has always been. Sure, other people have put the name Christianity on their own little systems of beliefs, but if at the core they're different, they are undeserving of that name. One other thing, Christians do not/should not believe that they can save you. I'm sure you'll be the first to affirm that nothing I do will convert you, and I know that full well. (just in case you were wondering who we think would save you, then, the answer is that God would...)

As for the initial topic, I usually take what someone's giving me, say something to the effect of I'm not interested, tell them bye, look at what they gave me, and throw it away (unless it's something that's quite curious, which I've never had happen to me).

Bruce Baker
01-07-2003, 07:50 PM
The basics of your beliefs should not be able to be changed, if they are true?

I have endeavored to find the basis of most beliefs in man's environment from where he dreams up most of his/her religious philosophys and draws conclusions that either give him/ her faith or take it away.

It could be I have been privy to too many backroom deals, guest preachers who have or have not appealed to an audience for faith while haggling for money collected after the service is over, or it is merely the a practical manner in finding the roots of faith as much simpler than many religions purport in their theology.

Preaching? I never thought as writing as preaching?

Must be the way you were brought up, and the manner is which you were brought up that set that one into motion? I don't fall for the dancing preachers, or the mumbo jumbo of holy this or holy that. The world is what it is, and we try to make sense of it. If we can not, it is either 'God's work' or something "evil and unholy." We determine in our mind what creates the balance, and label things in a manner that make sense to us.

Well, shouldn't there be a category for things in progress? There is a psychological reason as much as there is personal need to accomondate the unknown. Hence, there is a practical value to your blind faith, but you haven't yet discovered what it is?

The attitude of our society, at least the modern technology, is to control. What we can't control we either distroy, or we contain it so that we say we own it. In all cases, the modern society has some type of ownership over everything and everybody. Whether it is a loose or a tight ownership, our society encourages ownership in that society, whether it be material or social ownership.

Many of the arguements that stem from defense of ones organization, or policys of different groups comes from this very behavior of ownership. For instance, the little spat I had with the Yoshinkan guys tooting the ways of Yoshinkan this, and people learning that, when in fact all styles of Aikido have derived from studying many different martial arts, and their take on teaching or practicing Aikido is just temporary label for our time, our period of training, until someone else comes along with another label. It is the practice that make the label, not the label that makes the practice.

The real truth about religion is not the names, nor is it with any particular religion, but it is with the fact that we all believe in something greater than ourselves which will intervene on our behalf, enlighten us in life, and give us a peace in death.

Lots of different ways to get there, but they all lead to these three basic beliefs ... at least for now, until someone decides to add something at a later date?

If you are angry at any inference or labels of "the mormons," then speak up and get the general policy of sending kids out to testify changed in your church.

Ain't gonna do no good yellin' at me, I didn't send the out to testify?

All I did was to tell them to turn around, look out around them, and see that everything in our lives is God, and we are part of a living universe that we should interpret as god, not the things that people make up in their dreams, or write down in their nightmares as holy books. Humanity creates religion from hopes, dreams, experiences, and observations of their universe. Maybe that little spark of thought is the hand of God, but then again, maybe it more than that.

We all have some type of pigeonholing of different cultures, different people ... and some of them are quite vulger. Even the most pious and holier than thou have their little pet pieves about labeling people different than they are ... bad part of our human nature, I guess.

What you have to ask yourself, is not what I did, chasing away the mormon testifiers the right to do in a moral sense, but in the face of its implications did it help or hurt these three wandering sheep? I would bet they blew it off as the wanderings of some crazy, as I saw them going up and down the street the next day to continue testifying?

Did you blow off this question as comical, part of life's ironys, or did you take it as an insult, not blowing it off?

If you did not, what triggered the need to respond?

If you did blow it off, well then, at least there is someone besides me with an ironic sense of humor.

Good for you. How very Aiki of you.

Thank you very, very much.

Veers
01-08-2003, 07:08 AM
Don't get me wrong, Bruce... I wouldn't go door-to-door, or even bring up my faith in conversation with someone who is/was not a good friend of mine. I try my best to treat others how I'd like to be treated, and I know how annoying it can be to have people invade my/your privacy.

Kevin Leavitt
01-11-2003, 06:46 PM
I have a good friend/co-worker that is southern baptist and deeply devoted to the word of the bible. I am a buddhist, but very well versed in judeo-christian dogma.

Anyway, from time to time we go to lunch and talk about topics dealing with religion, ethics, and values. He draws deeply from his church his values.

While he and I differ greatly on our etiology of things i.e. the foundation of our religions, we find that we do have more than common than most people we hang out with at work since we are both very spiritual people.

He tends to be ultra conservative on many issues that I am very liberal on such as death penality, homosexuality etc.

But we both agree that commercialism, tv, and materialism is the new "religion" or spirituality of today's world.

Our last conversation over the Christmas holiday ended with us both agreeing that ultimately war is a bad thing and that people should spend more time trying to pursue how they are similar than how they are different!

I think religion can be good and bad. If it helps you find true happiness and peace with yourself and the world it is a good thing, no matter what you believe. If it oppresses, excludes or cause imbalance in the world and yourself...then it is a bad thing.

It is just as wrong to lump all Mormons/Baptist etc into a stereotype, nonhuman form and say the generally are all bad...as it is to be of a belief system, and believe that all others that do not believe what you believe are wrong. If you think about it....both are doing the same thing!

Brad Smith
01-14-2003, 07:26 AM
Hi Everyone;

Just a thought:

"W.W.O.D."