What religion are you?   307 members have voted

  1. 1. What religion are you?

    • Catholic
      16
    • Protestant
      39
    • Mormon
      86
    • Jewish
      13
    • Muslim
      12
    • Buddhist
      2
    • Hindu
      3
    • Cosmereism
      7
    • Atheist/Agnostic
      74
    • Other
      18
    • Christian - Other
      37

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812 posts in this topic

I'm just curious. I wanted to see whether Brandon's books were more likely to be read by a certain religion.

P.S. I did put cosmereism there as a joke. If you're okay with sharing, then I would much rather you answer truthfully.

Edited by TheYoungBard
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Considering I'm non-denominational and currently attending an Anglican church, I find neither "Catholic" nor "Protestant" are particularly all-encompassing for Christian Sharders. Might I meekly suggest replacing them with a single "Christian" option?

Edited by Kobold King
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Considering I'm non-denominational and currently attending an Anglican church, I find neither "Catholic" nor "Protestant" are particularly all-encompassing for Christian Sharders. Might I meekly suggest replacing them with a single "Christian" option?

 

Isn't "Protestant" already a Christian none-of-the-above catch-all?  I ran out of hyphens.

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Isn't "Protestant" already a Christian none-of-the-above catch-all?  I ran out of hyphens.

 

Nope, not at all. There's still Anglicans, Episcopalians, Greek Orthodox, Russian Orthodox, Mormons, and probably others that I'm not thinking of at the moment. :P "Christian" is better, if there isn't room for all the different denominations.

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Nope, not at all. There's still Anglicans, Episcopalians, Greek Orthodox, Russian Orthodox, Mormons, and probably others that I'm not thinking of at the moment. :P "Christian" is better, if there isn't room for all the different denominations.

 

I have to second that. Also, by using the umbrella term of "Chrisian", you bring it in line with the other options (you don't have options specifically for Sunni or Shia Muslims, for instance), and you leave it vague enough that, if someone wants to elaborate on their faith in the comment section then they can.

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Agnostic.

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I've always been confused by the desire of the English-speaking countries to define their religion by the flavor of Christianity they believe in instead of just claiming to be Christian. It's a phenomenon I haven't seen in other countries (of which I've only had contact with a few). 

 

As for myself, I am an atheist. I have a tiny bit of a problem with the term "agnostic" because its existence implies a certain level of arrogance in people who have been using the label "atheist," but this is only a remark, not something I want to discuss here and now.

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I've always been confused by the desire of the English-speaking countries to define their religion by the flavor of Christianity they believe in instead of just claiming to be Christian. It's a phenomenon I haven't seen in other countries (of which I've only had contact with a few). 

 

I imagine- to some extent- it's a left over from Tudors.

 

For anyone who isn't aware, the simplified version is: Henry VI broke with the Catholic Church and made the Church of England the offical state religion of England. When he died, he was succeeded by his daughter, Mary who enforced Catholicism as the state religion rather... vigorously. There was a reason she got the title "Blood Mary" after all. Upon her death, she was succeeded by her sister Elizabeth, who overturned Mary's decision, but generally put a blind eye towards Catholics so long as they publicly followed the church of England, and kept their own religious practices private. Furthermore, when Elizabeth reigned, England's main enemy was Spain- which was strongly Catholic.

 

There isn't (at least as much world-shattering) argument between various Christian countries nowadays, but I think that backdrop- occuring at a time when the British Empire was expanding- probably has something to do with why they choose they identify themselves as one denomination or the other. There was a period of history where being with or against the Catholic church (ie: what denomination you were) was kind of a big deal.

Edited by Quiver
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I've always been confused by the desire of the English-speaking countries to define their religion by the flavor of Christianity they believe in instead of just claiming to be Christian. It's a phenomenon I haven't seen in other countries (of which I've only had contact with a few). 

 

As for myself, I am an atheist. I have a tiny bit of a problem with the term "agnostic" because its existence implies a certain level of arrogance in people who have been using the label "atheist," but this is only a remark, not something I want to discuss here and now.

I'm confused as to how labling yourself as agnostic would be arrogant. It simply means that you believe there is a higher power, but not a certain one. It isn't arrogant at all.
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As a Catholic i agree that it would be better to just have the label "Christian"

 

Also, i am quite interested to see what the actual spread of beliefs on this forum are :D

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I'm confused as to how labling yourself as agnostic would be arrogant. It simply means that you believe there is a higher power, but not a certain one. It isn't arrogant at all.

 

You misunderstood me. I meant that you calling yourself agnostic implies that I am arrogant. Agnosticism is actually define as true neutrality on the belief spectrum - "I don't know if there is a higher power, but I am willing to accept evidence for its existence if it presents itself" kind of sums it up. It's a good stance, but it makes people who call themselves atheists look like people who won't accept evidence for the existence of a higher power. It's a very subtle distinction that may very well exist only in my head, which is why I didn't want to go into it.

 

@Quiver, I guess the historical argument is believable enough. I can accept a lot of today's nonsense simply because of some tangentially related event in the past...

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You misunderstood me. I meant that you calling yourself agnostic implies that I am arrogant. Agnosticism is actually define as true neutrality on the belief spectrum - "I don't know if there is a higher power, but I am willing to accept evidence for its existence if it presents itself" kind of sums it up. It's a good stance, but it makes people who call themselves atheists look like people who won't accept evidence for the existence of a higher power. It's a very subtle distinction that may very well exist only in my head, which is why I didn't want to go into it.

 

@Quiver, I guess the historical argument is believable enough. I can accept a lot of today's nonsense simply because of some tangentially related event in the past...

ooooOOOHHH okay. I completely misread your post, my bad! I see what you're saying now.
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other: anti-theist. It means that if any of the proposed religions turned out to be true and I believed any of them, I would still be morally against all deities that have thus far been proposed. nothing wrong with the people who do side with them; I just have morals not compatible with those of gods that have been suggested to exist up to this point. 

 

My personal belief is that just because someone exists, doesn't mean their actions are in the right. Again, nothing at all against anyone who is a part of a religion. In fact, I think religion is one of the most beautiful things to come from human cultures. That's why I spend my life learning about it.

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Considering I'm non-denominational and currently attending an Anglican church, I find neither "Catholic" nor "Protestant" are particularly all-encompassing for Christian Sharders. Might I meekly suggest replacing them with a single "Christian" option?

 

I believe the issue is that having a catch-all "Christian" option would negate the OP's purpose in running this poll. He has a hypothesis that has not been expounded (if I were to hazard a guess, I would say it would be that a good portion of Sanderson readers are Mormon... what I find interesting are the number of agnostics/atheists).

 

So having a non-denominational and an Anglican option might better serve the poll

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I'm with Kobold so far as the Catholic/Protestant options go. See, I attend a Protestant church, was raised Protestant, and by all means should label myself Protestant...but within Protestantism there exists a pervasive anti-Catholic bias. They don't hate Catholics; they just don't quite consider their methods of worshipping God quite good enough. I don't buy into that, and I think all the hair-splitting Protestants do with denominational differences is silly. So I think simply "Christian" would more accurately describe my beliefs.

Edited by TwiLyghtSansSparkles
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I know I've stated this before, but I'm a Kemetic pagan.  Kemetic = ancient Egypt, so my gods are those that the ancient Egyptians had.  I'm not quite sure that "worship" is quite the right word for what I do - I pay attention to them, I give offerings, and I do the occasional ritual, but my relationship with my three primary deities is more based on teacher/student sort of dynamic than what most folks would consider a traditional religious practice.

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(if I were to hazard a guess, I would say it would be that a good portion of Sanderson readers are Mormon... what I find interesting are the number of agnostics/atheists).

 

This may be because, I believe, the majority of the members in this forum are millennials, a generations known for its low levels of religiosity. 

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For context here: I'm a Bible-believing Christian, perhaps what some would call a fundamentalist, though I'm currently unsure exactly how that term is perceived. 

 

I'm personally with Orlion here. There is a wide swath of beliefs that call themselves "Christian" with huge differences. Mormons, for example, believe in a very different interpretation of the Bible, and therefore a very different God than, say Catholics or Lutherans. All three groups call themselves Christian. There are New-Agey Christians, Pentacostal Christians, and Reformed Christians, all of whose beliefs I diverge from on differing levels. Some of the different beliefs I consider different enough that I don't consider to be the same religion; some I believe trust in the same God and any differences we have are minor. (One interesting thing to note: In Mexico (as far as my experience has extended), they distinguish between "Christiana" and "Catolica" churches, indicating a further split between perception of the two belief systems.)

 

I do recognize that Islam, Buddhism, and other religious categories have similar splits, but I did want to note that just because someone calls themselves "Christian" doesn't mean that I'm going to automatically agree with their general worldview. 

 

Twi and Unknowingly, I'm curious as to what you see as the biggest differences between Catholicism and Protestantism. When I have asked this question in the past, I've received a fascinating variety of answers.

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I'm one of the Mormons on the forum, most of the older members probably know that, or knew that anyway haha. On the question of the Christian option for the poll, personally I like it as it is, but if others felt more comfortable- not because of OCD labeling or convenience but for belief- than I'd support it. I haven't studied the masses of divides in christianity because my church has-to me- a much clearer distinction between other churches, and I just haven't had time. Religion fascinates me and the divisions are something that I do want to study in the future.

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I thought for sure Twi would've been a Pastafarian...

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There's nothing I love more than a good, friendly discussion. This type of thread is one of my favorites.

 

I'm a Mormon...

 

56db5971274e1d08d54eea1ed7732c35.jpg

 

^_^

 

Anyways, yeah. Personally, while I believe that my religion is the only one to contain the whole truth (as I'm sure many other people of different faiths do, of course) I have nothing but respect for others and their respective beliefs. If you are, say, a Kemetic pagan (which I've never heard of before; the things you can learn!), or an atheist, that's fine. I do not share your beliefs. That's also fine. I think what matters a lot is not your specific denomination or faith, but that you're a nice human being. Which all of you are. :D

 

Keep going, guys. Y'all are awesome.

 

At this point, you can bet that pretty much any pantheon of gods that is known from history has some sort of modern practice that's been built in the recent resurgence.  There's actually an entire Kemetic Orthodox church based out of Chicago; I read a bit about them, and ultimately decided that it wasn't for me. 

 

What's fun about me is that I have very different private and public practices.  In private, I have three Egyptian deities as my main focus, while the rest I'm more familiar with on a casual basis.  But publicly, I go to a Unitarian Universalist church that is populated almost entirely by a wide variety of pagan folks, so our weekly rituals tend to run the gamut of every religious tradition imaginable.  It works very well for us.

 

I'm going to spoiler this just in case. This community is open enough that I don't see it starting a fight, but I'll spoiler it anyway.

 

Well, I spent most of my childhood attending Baptist churches, but my parents switched over to Pentecostal churches when I was about ten. I say this because I know Baptists and Pentecostals differ enough from other branches of Protestantism that my answer could be distinct from someone who was raised in a different denomination. I don't think there is a right or a wrong answer here; I'm just saying that different denominations give their members different perspectives, meaning you could get a different answer from an Anglican or a Seventh Day Adventist. Furthermore, I've become far more cynical about denominations since my teen years, so my answer will differ from one who is more optimistic about the whole deal. 

 

Growing up, the main thing I was taught about the difference between Catholics and Protestants is that Catholics put a strong focus on ritual, and that they pray to saints instead of God. I've never attended a Catholic church, so I don't feel comfortable saying whether or not this distinction is true. I'm passingly familiar with the concepts of patron saints, praying to Mary, and going to Confession, but having never experienced any of these things myself, I won't say whether or not I think they're biblical. I will say that in my family's branch of Protestantism, these things are frowned upon, viewed as distractions from God rather than methods of drawing closer to God. Catholicism, in general, is seen as a branch of Christianity that may or may not foster sincerity in its members, while Protestant branches do. Catholicism's reliance on ritual is seen as something that can too easily lead believers to go through the motions, whereas Pentecostalism creates believers who are truly "sold out" for Jesus. 

 

I don't buy this. 

 

I went to youth church every Wednesday night as a teen, and I saw people my age raising their hands during songs, praying at the altar, talking through various devotionals with one another, taking notes on every sermon. I saw them go to summer camp and winter camp, pray and sing there, go on to become leaders in their youth groups. I saw some of those teens stay in church into their adult years. And I saw some of them leave the church once they turned eighteen. 

 

See, I was raised to believe that the main difference between Protestants and Catholics is that the Catholic focus on ritual leads people to rely on that ritual to get them to Heaven; while Protestantism's lack of Catholic ritual fosters true believers. And honestly, I think both could be true, depending on the individual. There are some Catholics who uphold their church's rituals without changing their hearts—but there are some Protestants who will scold teens for wearing jeans and T-shirts to church, then turn around and gossip about their new worship leader. Denominational differences don't determine whether someone is sincere or not; a person determines that. They decide what they believe and how strongly they believe it, and I don't think denomination has much of a say. 

 

I think one thing that changed my mind, completely and totally, was the day Pope Francis was instated. I was sick, so I stayed home from work and watched it on the news. I had seen Pope Benedict instated (and if that isn't the proper term, Catholics please correct me) and I saw him wave to the crowd as though soaking in their attention. Francis, on the other hand, spent a long time behind closed doors before greeting the crowd—I later learned that the Vatican has a room called the Room of Tears where the new Pope can compose himself before greeting the crowd. When he walked out on that balcony, he gave a small, shy wave, watching them round-eyed behind his glasses. They cheered, but he never acted as though he enjoyed the attention. When he gave his first address, he asked believers around the world to pray for him, that he would have wisdom as the new Pope. 

 

This, I thought, was the most beautiful example of sincerity and humility I had ever seen. The leader of the Catholic Church, asking his flock to pray for him? I knew then that this was the sort of man I'd look up to, whether he prayed to Mary or prayed directly to God. 

 

So I suppose the point of this long, rambling post is this: I don't see Protestantism or Catholicism the way I used to, or the way many in my family's denomination do. I think both are equally valid expressions of one's faith. Do I think God accepts a prayer directed to him over one directed to Mary? Absolutely not. If a prayer to Mary is sincere, and made with (as I understand) the expectation that she will bring the prayer to God, then I think God will accept it. It can be empty ritual—or it can be a sign of devotion. Likewise, a Pentecostal kneeling at the altar can be empty ritual—or it can be a sign of devotion. Like 1 Samuel says, "The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart."

 

Very well said. :) 

 

To pull a quote from The King and I:  "We do not see the world as it is; we see it as we are."  I think that this is very true for religious practice.  What we do and what we believe is very much shaped by our lives and how we see the world.  The paths we walk reflect ourselves.  The point to never lose sight of is that whatever religion we follow, it should be spurring us to try to be better people.  Better than last year, than last week, than yesterday - so long as we are always striving to be our best selves, we're on the right path.

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