World view – Sunday

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For posting on events, news, opinions and anything of interest from around the world.

98 Comments

  1. Mother

     /  December 16, 2018

    This past week somebody commented about capitalism vs socialism in regards to poverty. As a Church member, here are my thoughts –

    Poverty spirit is reduced when capitalist practitioners of the Christian ethos are free to be their generous selves. Right wing politics is balanced by compassion. Far left politics is minimised by the prevalence of critical thinkers and free speakers.

    I think that Church is more integral to a future that works well politically than most people realise.

    Up until now, we have benefited from being a society built upon the Christian ethos. There is now an urgent need for purer Church. Therefore fellowships will do well to separate from state entirely ie –

    – not registering with Charity Services
    – not owning buildings
    – not collecting money

    The people/groups within the fellowships may freely choose how/when/what to contribute. They will do so as law abiding citizens and may link with government for projects if they wish.

    Purer Church means Equality and Freedom. Purer Church fits with capitalism perfectly and her presence moderates the country’s politics within the centre.

    The present churches could adjust to these ways of the future. It would mean a big come down in pride for those in hierarchy and a much greater willingness from leaders for servanthood, faith in action and repentance. It’s possible, but realistically? Um….

    (When I started my community project, which I said was All for Jesus, my church life began to crash. How strange. Once I got started, with church leaders’ permission, they manipulated against me. I loved my leaders. I wanted to honour them with the success of my project. I wanted them to be encouraged that I was putting into action a life time of listening to their preaching. My hope also was that others would see something positive to model, and Church would grow.
    All I needed from them in return was acceptance – aka ‘receiving as much respect and forbearance as I had always given them.’)

    The model I suggest can be a gentle true shift in Kiwi fashion.
    Imagine how relieved the people felt 500 years ago when a Catholic monk boldly declared that there was no need for them to pay money for the forgiveness of their sins. Martin Luther’s list stuck on the door of the building was a part of the Reformation which did usher in dangerous times. It also ushered in truer Church.

    We can usher in purer Church at this time in history, without upheaval. As with any social movement, most people get to live on more comfortably because of progress. A few do the harder yards and God’s grace sustains them.

    Do we really want to lose our Christian heritage? What will happen if Church is silenced?

    (As with everything else I have suggested on YourNZ, I am making my contribution to political discussion. I am not conducting any sort of evangelical outreach. My stance is that –

    – Politics has no place in the Church of the future. I believe this is well possible to achieve. I think many citizens of Aotearoa New Zealand would prefer that we hold on to our Christian heritage.)

    In this Oct blog I think PartizanZ has some very good ideas –
    https://yournz.org/2018/10/14/the-anti-kiwi-royals-dont-care-if-we-ditched-them-so-we-should/

    “You’ve actually stated there what we need to do Pete … We must define Kiwi values, including the place of religion, especially Christianity … decide our collective stance on equality … and reset, renew or transform [so-called] ‘democracy’ … our present form of which is a direct inheritance from the Monarchy”

    I think PartizanZ said some awesome things in that thread regarding the development of our own Constitution. And I see Christianity really stepping up within Aotearoa. It’s very exciting, if only the churches weren’t so off track, or if only people would openly discuss why they are hurt/annoyed by the churches, and if only church people could wake up to see how they are being led astray. With realisation comes the will to change and to improve by sure incremental steps of increasing maturity.

    I have the notion that if I had the opportunity to talk with the Queen, she would be able to grasp my point of view. I noticed that over the years her Christmas message has tended to lean in favour of outright naming Jesus as the Saviour. She doesn’t hedge her bets like she used to. I think that she is aware of her personal need for the Saviour.

    Aotearoa New Zealand needs political capitalism, tempered by the compassion of Christianity. This can be gently achieved by embracing purer Church. Kiwi style.

    • Mother

       /  December 16, 2018

      Oops. I suppose my post was supposed to be in the open forum.
      Never mind – Kiwis are world tops aren’t we?

    • Griff.

       /  December 16, 2018

      The church is dying .
      We are now a majority atheist state.
      Rationalism is the future not some primitive bronze age goat herders magic sky fairy.

      • Gezza

         /  December 16, 2018

        Not really likely it’ll be a totally rationalist future here or elsewhere Griff. Some, perhaps many, will still feel or go looking for and believing in some higher power or force & believe they can hear or feel it, or that it can hear them. I don’t entirely rule that out, nor do I rule out a creator-being for the universe. It’s an unknowable thing; all cultures develop some level of such belief in their early stages because of many feeling a power of some kind is there. I just don’t live my life attempting to be guided by others’ beliefs or ancient myths in scriptures.

        • Griff.

           /  December 16, 2018

          In just the same way that any democracy is better than any dictatorship, so even the compromise of agnosticism is better than faith. It minimizes the totalitarian temptation, the witless worship of the absolute, and the surrender of reason, that may have led to saintliness but can hardly repay for the harm it has done.

          —Christopher Hitchens

          • Gezza

             /  December 16, 2018

            Yes I’m a big fan of Chris, although he allowed his hatred of the Abrahamic faiths to dominate his thinking & I have only ever seen him arguing against the existence of and belief in THEIR god(s). His thinking was too limited and his antagonism and vehemence worked against him when it came to breaking thru the beliefs of the truly committed believers who were convinced in the existence of their god and the sense that he was guiding them and working in their lives.

            • Mother

               /  December 16, 2018

              My stance is much wider than personal takes on religion. We inherited a Christian heritage, whether we like it or not. We need to decide collectively and intelligently what we will do about Christianity in our land. This is a most important discussion.

              Griff, the Church never dies. Would you prefer that her fellowships hide away underground in Aotearoa NZ? If so, what will our political landscape look like for this to become necessary for Christians?

  2. Mother

     /  December 16, 2018

    “…any democracy is better than any dictatorship…”

    Exactly Griff!

    • Gezza

       /  December 16, 2018

      Are you saying Griff is a dictator, or should there have been a comma after exactly? o_O

    • Mother

       /  December 16, 2018

      “Not really likely it’ll be a totally rationalist future here or elsewhere.” (from Gezza above)

      Your pessimism reminds me of PCANZ and Anglican leaders’ attitude and behaviour.

      I think that pessimism (from church leaders) at this point in our history is extreme cowardice. If they behave so silly now how will they behave if irrationalisation gets out of hand? They can’t lead people now – How will they ever lead people?

      The full out Pentecostals don’t have answers either. They remind me of Jezebel’s prophets carrying on with weird behaviour in their quest for Baal to send fire for their altar.

      Church fellowships need to decide. Do we want Christianity or paganism? Equality or oppression? Democracy or tyranny?

      • Gezza

         /  December 16, 2018

        “Not really likely it’ll be a totally rationalist future here or elsewhere.” (from Gezza above)
        Your pessimism reminds me of PCANZ and Anglican leaders’ attitude and behaviour.

        I not pessimistic about that. I think you might be trying to mind-read me there and you’re no good at it. Please don’t try and read into what I’ve said something that isn’t there and isn’t true. If you ever want to know what I mean just ask me to clarify.

        • Mother

           /  December 16, 2018

          I’m sorry Gezza.

          So if you’re not pessimistic about life becoming collectively irrational, why not?

          Of course we will never achieve total rationalisation. But could we work together to be as rational as possible?

          I think it is pessimistic to just accept the course seemingly laid out in front of us. Christianity can help us change the course for the better. I was just using your comment to point out that church leaders are very pessimistic. As far as I can tell, most are not practising Christianity of the future. Christianity is very positive, so what are they practising? They need to learn the meaning of purer Church. I believe many church leaders suffer from depression. I have said before on YourNZ that there are many Jesus’ nowadays.

          Gezza, I am contributing on YourNZ in the faint hope that there might be Church people who read what I say. I never intended to insult you by my choice of flowing our conversation. I’m not trying to mind read you, because I can’t. Also, I’m just a busy mother. I’m only ever reading my own mind! In regards the churches – I read ‘frustration.’

          I can’t imagine the churches allowing me to write to their people. YourNZ gave me back my freedom of speech. Kiwi fashion.

          Now please don’t try to read my mind. I didn’t say I’m trying to use YourNZ to reach the churches necessarily. It’s just a wee wonder I have. Maybe? Maybe not.

          It is aiding my healing to be allowed to suggest to my countrymen that we need Christianity like never before. This is rational.

          • Gezza

             /  December 16, 2018

            So if you’re not pessimistic about life becoming collectively irrational, why not?

            Griff was obviously using the term rationalist in the context of religious belief, and so that was the context of my reply. People who rightly conclude that there is no reliable, empirical evidence for any of the supernatural claims – and even many of the historical events which are most likely to be mythological in origin themselves & have counterparts in what we know of extant or preceding religions – reject the Abrahamic religion on grounds of lack of evidence & logic – and consider that to be the rational position.

            Of course we will never achieve total rationalisation. But could we work together to be as rational as possible?
            You may be looking for rationalisation (presumably with non-believers) but they are looking for rationality when it comes to your beliefs. Your evidence will be your own interpretation of your own or others’ personal experience, but you will have no proof of anything other than your personal convictions & self-generated sense of God within you.

            Non-believers can certainly work together with good Christians when they can all agree on what the values are that Kiwis should hold to. But as for believing in the truth of the Biblical Jaweh and Trinity and Allah, this is impossible for those who know we were given the ability to think and critically analyse & search for the answers with evidence.

            • Mother

               /  December 16, 2018

              Working together, yes. Individual rationalisation is an individual private matter which we would do well to cherish.
              Corporate rationalisation is another matter. This is why I am asking the question – Can we hope to survive and thrive if we force silence on the Church?
              I have indicated many times (I think) that I will not be entering discussions within this blog about the rationalisation, or not, of the Christian faith.

              As for working with others, how come I generally find it more satisfying to communicate with unbelievers than with people who profess to be Christians? As an individual who clearly states that ‘Jesus Christ is my Saviour’ why am I alienated from the churches?

              To unbelievers I say – stay free, if you are.

              To Christians I say – wake up.

      • Mother

         /  December 16, 2018

        “…minimizes the totalitarian temptation…”

        Exactly, Griff!

        Christianity works for democracy. Whether we acknowledge it or not, people are always going to perceive that they have a god shaped hole in their heart.

        Which religion do we want at the core of Kiwi ness? Should we legislate that we all practise atheism?

        We need to develop a different mind set about Christianity. ‘You don’t have to be one to be one.’

        But we do need to be Kiwis together.

        • Gerrit

           /  December 16, 2018

          You cannot have a single religion at the heart of “Kiwiness”. No legislation is required to force one religion onto the people.

          Each individual can choose whatever their “religion” is or is not.

          That is what democracy and freedom is.

          Christianity is but one religion one could choose to voluntarily follow, but the choice must remain with the individual, not state legislation.

        • Pickled Possum

           /  December 16, 2018

          Christian means belonging to Christ … Not some-body of people. I’m not a kiwi (tho we have one in our ngahete looking for a mate) … I am Maori … you can be kiwi but you csn’t speak for every one.

          • Mother

             /  December 16, 2018

            But I can ask the question – do we want to cherish our Christian heritage and move on from there? And do the Christians want to embrace purer Church?

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  December 16, 2018

            I am not a kiwi, I am a Kiwi; the person, not the bird. Kiwi as a generic term for NZers has been around for a very, very long time.

        • Griff.

           /  December 16, 2018

          Atheism .
          The lack of a belief in god /gods.
          Saying you practice atheism is like saying you are watching the TV Chanel off .

          Which religion do we want at the core of Kiwi ness?

          None.
          Our society is not based on Christianity. The roots of the ideas underlying western society predate the imposition of a bronze age cult from the middle east.
          Your personal idea of an invisible friend is not a universal part of the New Zealand identity and never has been.
          Democracy exists in spite of not because of Christianity.
          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_of_Enlightenment

          • Mother

             /  December 16, 2018

            ‘Which religion do we want at the core of Kiwi ness?’

            Yes, and I will ask it again because if we don’t take ongoing action toward the fact that we want democracy, then we will get overcome by hatred while we slept or wrung our hands.

            • PartisanZ

               /  December 16, 2018

              Well … we were overcome by Rogerednomics and Ruthanasia while we slept …

              That was ‘democratic’ wasn’t it?

              I think you might be trying to shut the gate after the horse has bolted.

          • PartisanZ

             /  December 16, 2018

            @Griff – “Our society is not based on Christianity.”

            Hence the furore about dropping Christ’s name from the Parliamentary prayer … right here in ‘New Zealand’ in 2018 eh?

            I didn’t realize ‘utopian views’ could operate in retrospect …

            Like it or not, we are a part of Western Christendom.

            Christianity is not the core of Kiwiness as much because there’s no such thing as Kiwiness as for lack of Christianity.

            What has arisen to take the place of failing Christian ‘morals’, defective though they may be? Neoliberalism and the morality of money …

            • Mother

               /  December 16, 2018

              Yes, the churches love money, whether outright boldly or secretly or from fear.

              “Like it or not, we are a part of Western Christendom.” So true. Individuals have some important decisions to make. I hope that we each make those decisions in light of our children’s future freedom.

            • PartisanZ

               /  December 16, 2018

              Informed decisions rely on getting the relevant information.

              Like some form of ‘ethics’ education, along with logic, critical thinking, emotional intelligence and creativity.

            • Griff.

               /  December 16, 2018

              Hence the lack of furore about dropping Christ’s name from the Parliamentary prayer … right here in ‘New Zealand’ in 2018 eh?
              Fixed….

              It might have been a topic on some blogs.
              Most dont give a fcuk and did not notice at all .
              When was the last time an openly Christian prime minster was elected here? 1980’s?
              Bill English don’t count he failed to be elected twice .
              Religious belief is not a political question in NZ and has not been for many decades.
              Attempts to generate a Christian focused party have come to…. well Graham Capilland and Colin Craig …. I dont need to say any more.

            • PartisanZ

               /  December 16, 2018

              IMHO what you say only proves Mother’s assertion that it’s kinda gone “underground” in a funny sort of way … nudge nudge, wink wink … Say no more …

              If you think National baldheads like Mark Mitchell and Matt Doocey, Matt King and Shane Reti or gung-ho gals like Judy Collins et al don’t play the ‘seen at Church’ and Church-State networking cards in their electorates and Parliament you’re sadly mistaken IMHO …

              Church Christianity is part of the corporate-political mix …

              Take a goblet of Corporate-Political elitism, stir in spoonfuls of Church Christianity and Masonism and you have the ‘Lodge’ which runs this show …

  3. Mother

     /  December 16, 2018

    There will always be disastrous and unhelpful things happen in politics. My main argument is that Church can now grow purer, and this in turn will moderate worldly politics. Church now needs to get herself totally free from state. I would rather see this happen with everyone’s hands on the table, than to see a corrupt political environment force Christians underground.

    • Mother

       /  December 16, 2018

      Yes, education!!!
      When PG is prime minister may I please be involved in educational decisions?

      • Mother

         /  December 16, 2018

        Griff, Christians should not be trying to band together to create political parties. It is a nonsense practise, which is why nonsense results from it. Do you have any idea how much I have cringed while watching my fellow Christians band together politically?

  4. The Consultant

     /  December 16, 2018

    “Our society is not based on Christianity. The roots of the ideas underlying western society predate the imposition of a bronze age cult from the middle east” – Griff

    What has arisen to take the place of failing Christian ‘morals’, defective though they may be? Neoliberalism and the morality of money – PartisanZ

    The reference to Chris Hitchens reminded me of this, published just the other day by an ld friend of his. Andrew Sullivan – America’s New Religions:

    Everyone has a religion. It is, in fact, impossible not to have a religion if you are a human being. It’s in our genes and has expressed itself in every culture, in every age, including our own secularized husk of a society.

    By religion, I mean something quite specific: a practice not a theory; a way of life that gives meaning, a meaning that cannot really be defended without recourse to some transcendent value, undying “Truth” or God (or gods).

    In his highly entertaining book, The Seven Types of Atheism, released in October in the U.S., philosopher John Gray puts it this way:
    “Religion is an attempt to find meaning in events, not a theory that tries to explain the universe.”
    It exists because we humans are the only species, so far as we can know, who have evolved to know explicitly that, one day in the future, we will die. And this existential fact requires some way of reconciling us to it while we are alive.

    As is usually the case with Sullivan (aside from when he’s bemoaning the absence of Obama The Great), he makes some interesting points, especially when he gets to dealing with what fills the vacuum as traditional Western religions fall away:

    So what happens when this religious rampart of the entire system is removed? I think what happens is illiberal politics. The need for meaning hasn’t gone away, but without Christianity, this yearning looks to politics for satisfaction. And religious impulses, once anchored in and tamed by Christianity, find expression in various political cults. These political manifestations of religion are new and crude, as all new cults have to be.

    Ugh.

    Now look at our politics. We have the cult of Trump on the right, a demigod who, among his worshippers, can do no wrong. And we have the cult of social justice on the left, a religion whose followers show the same zeal as any born-again Evangelical.

    Or environmentalists. Or feminists. In the case of the 4th wave (?) feminists I feel – after 40 years of sex, drugs and rock n’ roll – like I’m suddenly dealing with The Victorian Age on steroids. The old world of traditional Western “conservatism”, whether on matters of sex, drugs, welfare, work, military service, you name it, was trashed and fell. And yet…

    For many, especially the young, discovering a new meaning in the midst of the fallen world is thrilling. And social-justice ideology does everything a religion should. It offers an account of the whole: that human life and society and any kind of truth must be seen entirely as a function of social power structures, in which various groups have spent all of human existence oppressing other groups. And it provides a set of practices to resist and reverse this interlocking web of oppression — from regulating the workplace and policing the classroom to checking your own sin and even seeking to control language itself. I think of non-PC gaffes as the equivalent of old swear words. Like the puritans who were agape when someone said “goddamn,” the new faithful are scandalized when someone says something “problematic.” Another commonality of the zealot then and now: humorlessness.

    Yes, I’ve really begun to despise that word, “problematic”. I must use it more often.

    And so the young adherents of the Great Awokening exhibit the zeal of the Great Awakening. Like early modern Christians, they punish heresy by banishing sinners from society or coercing them to public demonstrations of shame, and provide an avenue for redemption in the form of a thorough public confession of sin. “Social justice” theory requires the admission of white privilege in ways that are strikingly like the admission of original sin. A Christian is born again; an activist gets woke. To the belief in human progress unfolding through history — itself a remnant of Christian eschatology — it adds the Leninist twist of a cadre of heroes who jump-start the revolution.

    What’s sweeping across the US today very much reminds me of The Great Awakening – or maybe the Salem Witch Trials!

    • Griff.

       /  December 16, 2018

      Andrew Sullivan Claims It’s Impossible Not to Have Religion “If You …
      https://friendlyatheist.patheos.com/…/andrew-sullivan-claims-its-impossible-not-to-hav…

      2 days ago – Andrew Sullivan’s blind spots are on full display in this article.
      Andrew Sullivan’s “new religions” essay is twaddle. – Slate Magazine
      https://slate.com/news-and…/12/andrew-sullivan-new-religions-essay-twaddle.html

      3 days ago – This piece is adapted from The Gist. In his latest work in New York magazine, Andrew Sullivan argues that America has a new religion, and it’s …
      Political tribalism in Trump’s America: what Andrew Sullivan gets … – Vox
      https://www.vox.com/policy…/andrew-sullivan-religion-tribalism-christianity-trump

      4 days ago – Sullivan’s essay on political tribalism shows he’s blinded by his own.

      That was in the first page of result for googling Sullivan’s name … hence cant be arsed reading his twaddle
      NZ is not in the god forsaking mess that is the majority Christian usa politics.
      If you referrer to god here in a political speech you get laughed at in the USA it is an imperative.’ NZ politics is the question not Americastanian god addled dribbling.

    • Mother

       /  December 16, 2018

      The lack of furore about dropping Christ’s name from the Parliamentary prayer?

      There is certainly a groundswell of displeasure about that Griff!

      What should Christians do about it? Get violent or noisy? Christianity is gentle. I can cope with Jesus’ name being dropped in Parliament because nobody can ever take Him away from me personally. He is my Good Shepherd, whatever happens.

      You are feeding my arguments – that is, the main question – Do we want to drop Christianity? What sort of political environment will we have allowed in order for Christians to need to go underground?

  5. The Consultant

     /  December 16, 2018

    Oh – and this, Sad Radicals:

    When I became an anarchist I was 18, depressed, anxious, and ready to save the world. I moved in with other anarchists and worked at a vegetarian co-op cafe. I protested against student tuition, prison privatization, and pipeline extensions. I had lawyer’s numbers sharpied on my ankle and I assisted friends who were pepper-sprayed at demos. I tabled zines, lived with my “chosen family,” and performed slam poems about the end of the world. While my radical community was deconstructing gender, monogamy, and mental health, we lived and breathed concepts and tools like call-outs, intersectionality, cultural appropriation, trigger warnings, safe spaces, privilege theory, and rape culture.

    Woah! This guy went the whole hog. Sad!

    What is a radical community? For the purposes of this article, I will define it as a community that shares both an ideology of complete dissatisfaction with existing society due to its oppressive nature and a desire to radically alter or destroy that society because it cannot be redeemed by its own means.

    Fuck me! And Fuck You Too apparently, you… member of society. SAd! What happens next sounds like Milton’s Paradise Lost:

    I eventually fell out with my own radical community. The ideology and the people within it had left me a burned and disillusioned wreck. As I deprogrammed, I watched a diluted version of my radical ideology explode out of academia and become fashionable: I watched the Left become woke.

    SAD!

    Does this not sound exactly like Mother’s experiences of her church community and family?

    • Griff.

       /  December 16, 2018

      The left is all SJW .
      yess as soon as I read that I discount the comment as the ranting of rightwing ideologues.
      Left and Right as defined by whom ?
      It echos the sort of nonsense the consultant has been pushing on here.
      I could easily find some rant from the right that is absurd and say thats all right wingers.
      like

      Bush-appointed Judge James Leon Holmes explicitly used the lie that pregnancy never results from rape to support a constitutional ban on abortion: “Concern for rape victims is a red herring because conceptions from rape occur with approximately the same frequency as snowfall in Miami

      Hence The right is full of Primitive god addled whacks.

      Except there is no value in posting such illogical nonsense.

      • Mother

         /  December 16, 2018

        And I hold to my stance that purer Church is the only thing which will moderate future politics and keep us safe from extremism.

        • Griff.

           /  December 16, 2018

          I hold to my stance that purer Church is the only thing……………..

          No true Scotsman or appeal to purity is an informal fallacy in which one attempts to protect a universal generalization from counterexamples by changing the definition in an ad hoc fashion to exclude the counterexample.
          No true Scotsman – Wikipedia

          • Mother

             /  December 16, 2018

            There’s nothing ad hoc about my specific proposals for how Church can now become purer –
            – no money collections
            – no building ownership
            (and in a gentle shift which avoids upheaval, encourages political capitalism and is far removed from the cult like behaviour of churches presently.)

    • Mother

       /  December 16, 2018

      Except that I didn’t fall out with them. They pushed me out. And I would go back any time they wanted me (the whole me).

      In hindsight, I think that they couldn’t cope with the longterm deprogramming the Lord was achieving within me whilst I was under their oppression.

      Many people left the churches so that they could be free. SAD.

      I belong to Church. No one can push me out of Church.

  6. The Consultant

     /  December 16, 2018

    And with almost perfect timing – and you have to know here that this old game, so beloved by nerds in the late 70’s and 80’s, has made a huge comeback with online audiences & participants of Gen Z – here’s another example of the similarities between our “secular” present and religious past:

  7. The Consultant

     /  December 16, 2018

    And now for a bit of a laugh, because we all need that – especially the angry people.
    I now understand how Nelson Mandela felt:

    Do not pity me. As a woman in a heteronormative patriarchal world I am accustomed to males like Jack Dorsey attempting to keep me silent. In my absence from Twitter, I took the opportunity to spend some time at a resort in Val d’Isère, where I could relax and contemplate my oppression. I even managed to write a book which I have entitled Woke: A Guide to Social Justice.

    I did want to call it My Struggle, but that title was already taken apparently.

    • Griff.

       /  December 16, 2018

      ROFL
      from the comments

      Sandra

      December 13, 2018

      That so many people out there cannot identify “her” tweets as satire and actually take them seriously is proof positive that staggering ignorance has become the norm. That revelation, to me, is the most important contribution of Twitter. We now know beyond a shadow of a doubt that the majority of people are idiots.

      Home goal big boy……

      • Griff.

         /  December 16, 2018

        Poe’s Law states:[1]
        “”Without a clear indication of the author’s intent, it is difficult or impossible to tell the difference between an expression of sincere extremism and a parody of extremism.

        It is an observation that it’s difficult, if not impossible, to distinguish between parodies of fundamentalism or other absurd beliefs and their genuine proponents, since they both seem equally insane. For example, some conservatives consider noted homophobe Fred Phelps to have been so over-the-top that they argue he was a “deep cover liberal” trying to discredit more mainstream homophobes

    • Mother

       /  December 16, 2018

      If my postings and comments have escalated anger, then I have failed.

      Christianity brings peace and comfort to people and moderation to the politics of a country.

      Nobody has yet outright answered me! Do we want to lose Christianity or keep Christianity?

      I am able to state here that I believe Jesus Christ is the Saviour. But that’s only the point for me, because I am enjoying my freedom of speech alongside others – and it’s a great feeling, one which I never felt within the churches.

      I said above, ‘You don’t have to be one to be one.’

      I would love to get just one person’s answer here. Do you want Aotearoa NZ to hold on to our Christianity?

  8. The Consultant

     /  December 16, 2018

    Good satire should be painfully close to what it is satirising: “Adulting” classes teach millennials basic skills like sewing, cooking and changing a tire

  9. PartisanZ

     /  December 16, 2018

    If belief systems are religions then economics is the most popular religion of our time …

    “And they shall worship false gods.”

    • The Consultant

       /  December 16, 2018

      This seems an appropriate addendum to that argument, at least with regard to New Zealand. Croaking Cassandra – The China Council Takes The Stage:

      As it happens, there was another good example yesterday of our cowering “leaders”. Newsroom has an account of MFAT’s appearance at a parliamentary select committee, where much of the discussion seems to have been around the PRC, the “FTA”- upgrade, and so on. I’m not going to excerpt the story, but read it and all you sense is fearfulness from both sides – if the Opposition is critical it is that the government might have upset Beijing.

      There is no sense of self-respect, no sense of values that matter, just a backdrop of deals and donations – and that weirdly misplaced view about the significance of the PRC to New Zealand’s economic fortunes so actively fostered by yet another former Foreign Minister, Murray McCully.

    • Mother

       /  December 16, 2018

      Yes people will worship false gods (they’re doing so in the churches. They don’t know which Jesus to follow), but I’m not talking about belief systems for the purpose of asking others to believe in something. It does not matter what people believe in, or not.
      I am suggesting that Christianity works for our democracy and I am asking Christians to hurry up and figure out what works for Church, because what we have now is not working.

      • Mother

         /  December 16, 2018

        I will read that later, thank you. My kids want me to go to the lake now.

        I notice ‘fearfulness from both sides.’ I agree.

        We don’t need to live in fear. I want fearless politicians to serve us.

        Come on Church. Only you can help. But you need to become purer. It’s not too late.

    • Gezza

       /  December 16, 2018

      If belief systems are religions then economics is the most popular religion of our time …
      “And they shall worship false gods.”

      Seems a reasonable enuf conclusion:

      religion /rɪˈlɪdʒ(ə)n
      noun
      1. the belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, especially a personal God or gods.
      “ideas about the relationship between science and religion”
      synonyms: faith, belief, divinity, worship, creed, teaching, doctrine, theology; sect, cult, religious group, faith community, church, denomination, body, following, persuasion, affiliation
      “the right to freedom of religion”

      2. a particular system of faith and worship.
      plural noun: religions
      “the world’s great religions”

      3. a pursuit or interest followed with great devotion.
      “consumerism is the new religion”

      • Mother

         /  December 16, 2018

        Still nobody has answered my question –
        Do you want to lose our Christian ethos in Aotearoa New Zealand? Do you want people like myself who name Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour to only be able to practise our faith secretly? Do you value Christianity as our heritage and do you want Church to flourish, the result of becoming purer? Perhaps even quite different to what you have seen of Church so far?
        Christianity fits in our country like no other religion. Does anyone else agree?
        (I did not say that no other religions are welcome.)
        Also remember I have said, ‘You don’t have to be one to be one.’ Nothing about what I am doing on YourNZ is evangelical persuasion from my point of view.

        Please could somebody answer?

        • Gezza

           /  December 16, 2018

          I don’t mind some Christians keeping their Christian ethos as long as they’re honest, truthful, generous, kind, forgiving, and tolerant of others, including secular humanists, who are like that too, but who don’t buy in to their beliefs in the unbelievable parts of what the bible says. I’m not really happy with Christians who teach their children to believe this stuff from an early age. It makes it too hard for them (fear of hell, loss of reward of paradise) to think critically about other possiblities.

          • Mother

             /  December 16, 2018

            The difficulties you have described are serious to children indeed.

            Purer Church will learn to drop the cult practises, which are rife.

            We also need politicians who strongly value growing our education system to raise critical thinkers.

        • Gerrit

           /  December 16, 2018

          Mother,

          Your questions are superfluous.

          You can practice and worship the Christian faith in complete freedom and without restriction in New Zealand. Why do you think it will be pushed underground?

          Just like someone who practices and worships in the Buddha, Islam, Hindu, Bahai, Sikh, Shinto, Confucian, etc., etc., etc. faiths is complete free to and without restriction, able to worship here.

          Christian ethos is what? Superior to other religions and thus more ethical? Judgement call best left to the individual. What is there to lose or gain?

          I don’t value Christianity above any other religion.

          Christianity does not fit “our” country solely, “Our” country is a not a hegemony of Christianity above any other religion.

          “Our” country has a hedonistic mixture of religions. Not one of those fits “our” country as a single entity, instead as a collection of thoughts and attributes, they form “our” country.

          As a multi cultural country, ALL religions have a place in New Zealand. As have the atheists.

          • Mother

             /  December 16, 2018

            “As a multi cultural country, ALL religions have a place in New Zealand. As have the atheists.”

            Agreed.

            “Christian ethos is what?”
            The Christian ethos is what we were founded on! You cannot ignore a foundation. Yes, the fact that our country is founded on Christianity makes Christianity a ‘superior’ religion here – one which fits us just right?

            “Judgement call best left to the individual. What is there to lose or gain?”

            Yes, judgement is best left to individuals. There is LOTS to gain or lose from this issue.

            • Gerrit

               /  December 16, 2018

              I think you need to explain just what Christian ethos “we” were founded on.

              Just because the early settlers were Christians did not mean their ethos was founded on Christian principles.

              Their “love thy neighbour” certainly did not include the Maori ethos and values a prevalent at the time.

              Whilst Christianity might have been the first white “religion” to arrive here, the religion and believes of Maori gods and practices were ignored or considered heathen.

              Is the Maori believe that the souls of the departed take a rest in the pohutakawa tree at the very top of the North Island before passing onto meeting their spiritual ancestors, less superior to the Christian believe that all souls pass through the pearly gates before meeting with their long dead ancestors?

              The idea to think that Christianity is superior to any other religion is pure bunkum.

              One can call such “superior” attitude; elitism. Your Christian believe is no better and no worse than any other believe construct.

          • Mother

             /  December 16, 2018

            “You can practice and worship the Christian faith in complete freedom and without restriction in New Zealand. Why do you think it will be pushed underground?”

            Not so Gerrit. Why don’t you ask the PCANZ? And the Anglicans, who are dangerously rude people in my experience.

            If the churches don’t wake up, the real Christians amongst them will either be pushed underground or move on to grow purer Church without them. Purer Church will only survive in open view where others remain tolerant. And people generally are becoming more intolerant and stressed.

            • Gerrit

               /  December 16, 2018

              More rubbish, You have beef with the Anglicans but they don’t stop you joining any other Christian church you desire.

              Will they stop you joining the Salvation Army? Ratana? Mormon?

              No.

              Yes people are intolerant of churches simply because the churches have become, as you suggest, rich and uncaring.

              The fact that the Anglicans, despite owing nearly 3/4 of Parnell, wont spend an extra penny to rebuild the Christchurch cathedral is as bad as the Catholic church, with all their riches in the Vatican, not funding the rebuild of their Cathedral in Christchurch.

              But why are you concerned to right their wrongs? Just join a church that meets your needs.

              Life is too short tilting at the windmills of the intolerant churches.

            • Mother

               /  December 16, 2018

              Thank you Gerrit, I hope it is needless to say that if I had been an early Christian settler, if I was a leader, those moral injustices against the Maori would not have occurred. Some things were terribly wrong. If only the settlers had had more insight, more compassion, more open mindedness, more ability to think critically….all the things we still need more of today.

            • Gerrit

               /  December 16, 2018

              Problem for religions is that critical thinkers have less believe in a god (and a religion) than non critical thinkers. Be careful what you wish fro if religious and desire critical thinking.

              Hence why churches (and politicians) want to keep us stupid.

              Worth a read

              https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-critical-thinkers-lose-faith-god/

  10. The Consultant

     /  December 16, 2018

    Speaking of belief systems, this one’s a doozy – not that it’s the first time I’ve seen this…Student cooperative stays silent on student housing:

    A student housing group associated with the University of California, Berkeley, is staying silent regarding questions about its nonwhite “Person of Color” student housing, a facility that one official said is “not meant” for non-minority students.

    There’s also a vegan-only house and Sherman Hall, a “Women only” residence, which is fair enough – except…

    “Sherman Hall strives to be a welcoming home for all cis womxen, trans womxen, and non-binary people,”

    No-TERF’s allowed will be their next website announcement I’d guess. Seems the 21st century will be all about slicing and dicing the populations up into our respective safe spaces. If only George Wallace were alive to see this, “segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever”

    • Mother

       /  December 16, 2018

      “Christianity fits in our country like no other religion. Does anyone else agree?”

      I still haven’t got a straight answer to a straight question. I might try again next year.

      • Gezza

         /  December 16, 2018

        Well, if nobody else has agreed, the answer is pretty clearly no other commenter agrees.

        And as somebody has pointed out above – Christianity doesn’t fit our country like no other religion; other religions DO fit our country just as well as Christianity.

        So it seems to me you have got straight answers to your straight question.

        Perhaps your question is wrong?

        • Mother

           /  December 16, 2018

          If people don’t agree with me that Christianity fits with us better than any other religion, I’m OK with that. I’m interested to know what people think. After that, I will decide how much longer to argue. I have not yet heard any arguments which counter my reasons why Christianity fits us best. The foundation of a matter is impossible to change.
          Yes, Christianity was ‘poorly done’ to some degrees during our country’s foundation. But it’s still our foundation. We really need to get our heads around this. Our future well being is dependent upon this.

          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  December 16, 2018

            All religions have too much rubbish in them to justify their value IMO. Just try to br a good person and look after your friends and family, Mother.

          • Gezza

             /  December 16, 2018

            Well, it’s up to you of course but I find your arguments circular & obscure. You probably need to define what Christianity is – to you – and why you think it fits us best.

            For example:
            Do you believe in Jesus’s divinity, and that he came to save mankind from something – if so, what?

            Do you believe that Jesus Christ was born to a virgin, was God made man, and died on the cross to atone for the sins of all men past and present? If not, or if more – what exactly do you believe about Jesus Christ? There are many, perhaps most now, people who don’t believe these things because they are unnecessary and don’t have any rational basis or justification.

            Do you believe that he reinforced or prescribed an existing moral code – such as the 10 commandment, and/or that he instructed new rules for men to follow (beyond “do unto others as you would have them do unto you” – the Golden Rule – which is common to many religions, and also to secular humanists – because it’s just basic common sense for living happily together in societies.

            When you talk about “Christianity” it’s basically largely meaningless. There are literally thousands of interpretations of what that means, not even counting the different sects. I think to have any kind of sensible discussion with even other Christians you need to identify what you specifically are talking about and what you are asking people to agree with.

            • Gezza

               /  December 16, 2018

              Drat. Mentally insert a closed bracket at the end of “societies”, penultimate para. >:D

      • Gezza

         /  December 16, 2018

        When you say above:

        As an individual who clearly states that ‘Jesus Christ is my Saviour’ why am I alienated from the churches?

        What do you mean? What exactly has Jesus saved you from, or what do you think his being your saviour gets you?

        Somehow there seems to be a disconnect between you and the churches.

        • Mother

           /  December 16, 2018

          I acknowledge your questions here Gezza, but these can only be answered face to face and between people who know each other.
          I said elsewhere in this thread that sometimes I write something with the thought that maybe church people might read it and be suitably challenged.

          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  December 16, 2018

            Unlikely. Better you talk to Gezza rather than folk who aren’t here.

          • Gezza

             /  December 16, 2018

            I might have a go sometime soon at writing out my commandments that I would be broadcasting all the time in multiple languages across multiple platforms if I was God, mother.

            I think I would do a better job than the bible does and Jesus is supposed to have done.

            • Mother

               /  December 16, 2018

              Perhaps you are both older men?
              I think younger people might understand the unsettled ness we are suffering as a society and they might be more open minded to my suggestion that we actually need to decide what to do about Christianity.
              Just being ‘a good person’ is not going to work into the future where confusion needs an antidote.
              I think glide time is over. If NZ was a teenager, he would be fast approaching the time where he needs to make some important decisions about life.

            • Gezza

               /  December 16, 2018

              I’m 63. I’ve thought about these kinds of things, and my researches and my experiences all my life. I’m not just older, I’m wiser. That’s why you’re finding it difficult to discuss this stuff me, perhaps.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  December 17, 2018

              You are very confused but Gezza and I are not, Mother.

              A good start for you would be to answer honestly at least for yourself some of Gezza’s questions and let go of all the stuff you believe for no other reason than that someone (or a lot of gullible people) once told you it was true. Many of them lied, first to themselves and then to you.

        • MaureenW

           /  December 16, 2018

          Why do you need to incessantly harvest people’s opinions on your religion? Isn’t your own belief enough for you?
          I loathe all religions so not a candidate for your happy, clappy good times, nor am I interested in donating money to you so you can go after Gloriavale.
          I’m like “whatever .., another thread consumed by you and your god-bothering stories”. Poor felliow!

  11. Mother

     /  December 16, 2018

    Oh, 63 is not old.
    I don’t think you are wise. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.
    But you have communicated with me (which is more than the PCANZ and Anglican leaders did) and that makes you very likeable. Wise? No.

    • Mother

       /  December 16, 2018

      And you’re not hugely older than myself. Face to face, I could talk through what you say is circular and obscure.
      Again – I did not come on to YourNZ to practise evangelising, nor to engage in theological discussions (although it’s tempting).

      • MaureenW

         /  December 16, 2018

        You must have been an older mother then – glad that’s settled

      • Mother

         /  December 17, 2018

        Very tempting to get into theological discussions. But I won’t because I know it won’t help.
        Christianity is Christianity Gezza, and I think you know it. You said that you have thought about these things and researched throughout your life.
        It is you who has been circular and obscure in your communications with me. I could remind you that if I carried on talking about Church, you would ignore me😇
        I think that you know plenty for yourself about Christianity and general history (and that I belong to Church) to be able to give me a straight as answer –

        “Christianity fits in our country like no other religion. Does anyone else agree?”

        • Gezza

           /  December 17, 2018

          I always answer your questions, Mother. Cogently & rationally, & neutrally. You rarely answer mine, although you should be able. You obfuscate & divert. I find that highly suspicious & thus no longer worthy of further discussion.

    • Gezza

       /  December 17, 2018

      Oh, 63 is not old.
      It means I am no longer a child & my beliefs are no longer those of a child.

      I don’t think you are wise. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.
      What Lord? Living in fear does not engender wisdom. It screws people up & creates psychological problems for them.

      But you have communicated with me (which is more than the PCANZ and Anglican leaders did)
      Why would they need to? You seem to need or want to start your own church. Get on with it. When you build your church if it meets a need the followers will come.

      and that makes you very likeable
      I hope so. I like people. I chat easily to them & that seems to make them respond in kind.

      Wise? No
      Yes I am. A lot wiser than I was when A Christian, as a child. I think for myself & don’t let bizarre holy books confuse my thinking. I choose what few gems are among them, as I do with other lessons for living. You lack such wisdom, as I see it, but wisdom, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder.

      • Mother

         /  December 17, 2018

        You were never a Christian Gezza if you thought you were one as a child and now say that you aren’t.
        Wisdom is not in the eye of the beholder! That is arrogance.
        Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
        Wisdom is as a precious gem.

        • Mother

           /  December 17, 2018

          And when I first arrived on YourNZ you did not ‘chat’ with me. You attacked. It was my chatting which brought you around to friendliness.

        • Gezza

           /  December 17, 2018

          Good night Mother. It’s late & I will leave you to wrestle with your demons.

          • Mother

             /  December 17, 2018

            Gotcha Gezza. I won’t let you do that to me. Do what? Shove your own emotional/spiritual/
            whatever it is nonsense into my camp.
            I’m still healing from a lifetime of church and familial nonsense. If I was further down the track, I would take your parting nonsense on the chin. As it stands, you lost and I think you know it. I certainly do! God bless you. I think you’re a great bloke. I hope you will give me a definite answer one day, if I continue on YourNZ. You will be able to answer my question with neutrality!

            • Gezza

               /  December 17, 2018

              I can’t see that further discussion between us would be of any value to either of us, Mother. I am not a Christian because it is based on the Bible & I can’t pretend to believe things that are clearly not true. And I have my own moral compass & belief systems now – some of which I learned as a former Christian, & some of which come from empathy, & some from logic, & some from experiences I cannot yet explain. I try to be a good person & not hurt anyone who doesn’t need to be hurt. That’s all. You should talk to Christians, not me.

  12. Mother

     /  December 17, 2018

    The Christians in my vicinity are generally crazy or silly these days. I would rather talk to others. I have enjoyed talking with you Gezza. I think you are very nice and I hope you don’t stop joining in. Just don’t ask me to discuss theology nor to evangelize. I don’t think that’s appropriate for YourNZ, which is specifically re politics. Remember, I think that Church should become totally free from state and politics. Purer Church. And I’m serious about getting direct answers from people re my question. People can do their own research if they want to answer my question from a critical point of view.

  13. Mother

     /  December 17, 2018

    And Alan, you are rude.
    I am not at all confused, but it seems that my straight question has confused you.

    “Christianity fits in our country like no other religion. Does anyone else agree?”

    Gezza repeatedly tries to draw me in to his own personal spiritual searching. I have stated several times that this is not appropriate here.

    You should not be telling a woman that she is ‘very confused’. That is a well worn tactic from men who don’t want to think. This is the age of equality Alan. Don’t do that to me, or you might find yourself being ignored by me in the future.
    I didn’t expect that this thread would turn out to be enduring. I won’t be looking at it again. I might re present my question next year.

    As with Gezza, I have appreciated your taking time to communicate with me. You strike me as a gentleman also, with some way to go to become more gentlemanly too.

    Men are generally known as being straight thinkers and steady emotionally. But you haven’t yet answered me! It seems that you want me to think as you do, and if I choose to think differently, you go for psychological abuse. ‘Oh, she’s confused.’ Do you know what that does to a feminine person Alan? It frustrates her like crazy. Why? Because in one breath a knight in shining armour is telling her that underneath his shine, he has less strength than herself.

    (I’ll tell you what is ‘confusion’ Alan – going off track a little, but you have upset me:

    ‘Confusion’ is when pastor’s hench girls deliberately grossly falsely accuse a man at church and everyone, except myself, goes ‘ho hum, Jesus forgives this, we don’t need to properly investigate.’
    Further – ‘confusion’ is when a real victim of sexual assault gets not one inkling of understanding nor justice from family, church, Police nor wider community, all her life. Worse yet – ‘confusion’ is when good ideas for community are throttled time and again because people would rather spend copious energy proving that the victim is mentally unstable, than actually just stopping to think for themselves.)
    ~~~~~~~~~

    I’m trying to get you thinking about our religious foundation. It may have had some cantankerous stones laid, but it’s still our foundation. What would be necessary in NZ for that foundation to be rebuilt – and if we rebuilt it, what would happen? Would we be better off? Like it or not, the religion of Christianity is our heritage. It must be dealt with coherently. Debating this issue is healthy, otherwise our very foundation will be rebuilt in ad hoc fashion. Danger! If we don’t like our foundation, we should front up, get it sorted and move on intelligently. Ignoring this issue is not at all intelligent.

    This discussion needs serious consideration. Our future depends upon this. There is nothing confusing about that. If you are of an age and stage where all you want is a twilight of gentle easy thought processes, and the pondering of my question could upset your inner equilibrium, you could just say so. You could ask PG to get me to desist. But don’t tell me that I am confused. That is lazy and mean. You have read my guest posts? Then you have opportunity to practise compassion plus to learn something, if you want.

    YourNZ has given me a much needed spiritual outlet for my practising freedom of speech. I have been open about this. If others have need to openly post re their own spiritual and/or emotional musings, they also are free to do so. I, for one, would read with interest and apply careful consideration.

    The questions I pose have political undertones, much more so than spiritual undertones.

    I have shared the angsty things about my life in Church simply because it seems like the right thing to do. I am not confused Alan, and you deserve a telling off. You could turn off potential YourNZ participants with that bad attitude. These could be the very people with sensible arguments to the debate I present. Your bad attitude could possibly put a spanner in the works for the new foundation we need to lay, if that’s what our democracy wants to do. Or you could possibly put people like myself off – people who trust in Jesus Christ and who have much to offer our country politically – whatever we decide to do about our foundation.

    I’m a busy mother, I’ve said that several times. I’m taking a break now until February probably – and my question might not go away.

    • Gezza

       /  December 17, 2018

      Gezza repeatedly tries to draw me in to his own personal spiritual searching. I have stated several times that this is not appropriate here.

      No I don’t. I have asked you before please not to try and mind-read into what I say something that is not there. I simply tell you what I think and what I don’t believe, and why. I am not trying to convince you of anything.

      The difference between you and me, I reckon, is that there are several things that could convince me the Bible is true and that Jaweh, Trinity and heaven all exist and did all the things, and have the properties, claimed.

      Whereas there is nothing that would convince you they are false. Your belief is immutable. Even if it’s wrong, you would not be able to see that, it seems to me.

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  December 17, 2018

      I’m quite immune to being told off, Mother. You were the one who brought up confusion claiming that it needed religion to deal with it. No, it doesn’t and moreover some confusion is healthy since it allows debate and contests of ideas rather than a rigid religious conformity of non-thinking.

      Maybe you should rethink your view that confusion is necessarily bad. In fact it is often a prelude to finding a truth and suggests an important question has at least been found.

      But is the question you are putting important? I hope not, because it implies the nation should be adopting a religion and I would strongly disagree for a whole bunch of reasons not least because of my comment about confusion above.