Is the UK a Christian Country?

Viewing 40 posts - 201 through 240 (of 781 total)
  • Is the UK a Christian Country?
  • mrmo
    Member

    ecause the way things are done is based on a set of traditions that are developed from and largely based upon christianity. the traditions that predate and influence christianity.

    And christianity is the latest and most recent therefore we are christian, when the next tradition has subsumed the current then we will no longer be Christian, until that day we are christian. Whether you practice or not is actually irrelevant.

    konabunny
    Member

    The argument that it is Christian because historically it always (well for ages, anyway) has been is all very well

    Has anyone here actually made that argument, though?

    ‘m not entirely disagreeing with you but the reason why many people get married in churches is because they’re big, pretty, cheap and photogenic venues. The vicar (or whoever) is an experienced performer (six shows a week for x years) and has all the props for the production. More or less the same with funerals – even if people know of humanist etc officiants of funerals, there are a lot of amateurs and nut cutlet eaters out there. At least with a vicar you’ll probably get someone who knows what to do and has a routine.

    agree entirely, i think you’ve summed up why i chose to get married in a church and why i’d rather have a church service when i check out despite not being any kind of practicing christian.

    however, doesn’t that rather prove just how deep the christian part of our culture is, that we accept it in that way and we’re comfortable to adapt it and use it how we want and when we want. same could be said of christmas i guess.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    mrmo – Member

    And christianity is the latest and most recent therefore we are christian, when the next tradition has subsumed the current then we will no longer be Christian, until that day we are christian.

    There you have the fundamental difference of opinion I think. Although I’ll be quite honest, I don’t understand how you can possibly accept that these traditions pre-date christianity, exist independantly of christianity, and will outlive christianity, and yet still claim them as christian.

    Once you seperate belief and practice from a religion, there is nothing left of it- what remains is what was there before, the underlying structures of civilisation that the religion was built on top of. You don’t need to wait for a new tradition to arrive; it’s already here, and never went away. Before christianity was humanity; it’s still there, once the more recent branding rubs off.

    MrSmith
    Member

    i haven’t read all 6 pages of schismatic discourse but is this an official ‘TJ-thread’ yet?

    The next tradition is already here. Before, during and after christianity was humanity.

    WTF was the “tradition” called humanity ?

    And how did it manifest itself before christianity – through raping and pillaging ?

    Some of you guys are losing touch with reality, as you attempt to denigrate christianity and show your oh-so rebellious anti-establishment credentials.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    I’ll just leave you to read the last couple of pages, where this has already been discussed in great detail, rather than explaining it again.

    As for raping and pillaging- yes, that’s a human trait, which religion also absorbs. It’s not just the good things that religion puts its branding onto and claims for its own.

    poly
    Member

    You are both missing the point- the census got a 70% result “I am christian” but if you ask the exact same question then follow it with “are you religious” you get 30%. Since you can’t be christian and not religious, the numbers are demonstrably broken.

    Actually I think the error is yours; you are “over interpretting” the meaning of the two questions. To get a full understanding you would need to interrogate each respondent, but I think its quite possible to be Christian without being Religious. As I said earlier it is also possible to be christian without being a Christian! But clearly it is possible to believe in the teachings of Christianity without actually participating in the religion – i.e. being religious.

    I’ll just leave you to read the last couple of pages

    I’ve already read the last couple of pages and there’s no mention of a pre-christian “tradition” called humanity. So explain what is and how it manifested itself.

    I suspect you’re deluding yourself with some hippy middle-class bollox about a tree-hugging peace-loving folk-singing people, who were inextricably connected with their environment and who’s wonderful Garden of Eden was cruelly smashed by invading bloodthirsty christians. But who knows.

    The most amazing tortuous logic presented here to attempt to make the case that the UK is a Christian country.

    A small minority of the population are Christians,
    The major “Christian festivals” actually have almost nothing to do with Christianity being pre Christian festivals with a thin veneer of Christianity laid on them and the symbols mainly being prechristian

    Some of you guys are losing touch with reality, as you attempt to denigrate christianity and show your oh-so rebellious anti-establishment credentials.

    Nothing to do with that Ernie – everything to do with a real understanding of the situation. Christianity is a small and waning influence on the country that is ignored by the majority and adhered to by a tiny minority. Its the remnants of medieval superstition.

    poly
    Member

    I’m not entirely disagreeing with you but the reason why many people get married in churches is because they’re big, pretty, cheap and photogenic venues. The vicar (or whoever) is an experienced performer (six shows a week for x years) and has all the props for the production. More or less the same with funerals – even if people know of humanist etc officiants of funerals, there are a lot of amateurs and nut cutlet eaters out there. At least with a vicar you’ll probably get someone who knows what to do and has a routine.

    Whilst I understand where you are coming from, I’d have to say that every humanist ceremony I’ve ever been to has been excellent, “performed” professionally by someone who made it very personal and delivered by people who engaged with their audience. The same has not always been the case with religious ceremonies.

    Mr Woppit
    Member

    ernie_lynch – Member

    I’ll just leave you to read the last couple of pages

    I’ve already read the last couple of pages and there’s no mention of a pre-christian “tradition” called humanity. So explain what is and how it manifested itself.

    I suspect you’re deluding yourself with some hippy middle-class bollox about a tree-hugging peace-loving folk-singing people, who were inextricably connected with their environment and who’s wonderful Garden of Eden was cruelly smashed by invading bloodthirsty christians. But who knows.

    Clearly not you. Surprisingly, give your usual essays.

    I assume what was meant here is the clear human instinct to mark the regular cycles of the year with some sort of ceremony.

    That is the “tradition” being referred to, I think. Doesn’t take a genius to work it out. Clearly, it’s beyond the reach of someone who can’t spell “bollocks”, though…

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    ernie_lynch – Member

    I’ve already read the last couple of pages and there’s no mention of a pre-christian “tradition” called humanity. So explain what is and how it manifested itself.

    There is considerable mention of it 😕 I don’t know what else to say to this. I don’t much feel like repeating it all tbh.

    poly – Member

    clearly it is possible to believe in the teachings of Christianity without actually participating in the religion

    Absolutely- it just doesn’t make me a christian.

    The irony is, my own personal morals are very compatible with christianity, other than the god stuff of course. In fact, in a lot of ways I’m more christian than many christians. But christianity is not just a moral code, it’s a faith. Without the belief, you cannot be a christian (it does seem that as long as you have the faith, you can disregard a lot of the morals and still be considered christian, though)

    Course, my morals are also fairly compatible with islam, judaiism, and buddhism, and no doubt many others that I’m ignorant about. The reason being, they’re all fairly similiar takes on the same core issues of being a human. .

    Nothing to do with that Ernie – everything to do with a real understanding of the situation.

    Understanding of the situation ??? Some of you guys are clearly in complete denial of the situation.

    You surprisingly Ernie. Christianity is irrelevant and is only adhered to by a small minority that is shrinking.

    Clearly, it’s beyond the reach of someone who can’t spell “bollocks”, though…

    So now the counterarguments are reduced to comments concerning how I spell the word bollox. Excellent 🙂

    deluded
    Member

    I’ve read SBZ opening post and not much else.

    I would say that the UK is a ‘post Christian’ county that is moving towards modernity.

    The link between church and state in the UK is mostly froth, pomp and tradition as the governance here is very much secularized.

    Statistics relating to the UK population by religion are often nebulous and inaccurate I suspect. One superfluous question as to an individuals religious alignment reveals one answer but further more penetrative questions would expose a different landscape of religiosity. For example – in regards to Christianity, many have a pastural or cultural sense of identity and would say they were C of E on a questionnaire because it’s been inculcated in them from a young age. However if that same individual were asked if they actually believed in the fire and brimstone elements of the Bible i.e. virgin birth, rapture, resurrection, most would say no – or at least they would state their belief of Christianity was a very personal interpretation that was free not to accept some or all of the supernatural/miracle claims as real historical events, rather they choose to view them as allegorical or metaphorical. For me that position is such a distillation or dilution of the Bible that their belief is Pascalian and not worthy of a tick in the C of E box.

    poly
    Member

    TJ – A small minority of the population are Christians,

    Can you back that up with any meaningful evidence conducted in a large scale statistically significant manner? Perhaps a question that every member of the population has to answer that specifically asks them this question?

    Actually it strikes me there are three types of people being identified by this thread which I would say are common across society in general:

    – Religious practicing Christians (even if infrequently), who are content to consider the country Christian and are amazed that anyone would consider the country anything other than Christian, and why should it change. These are the sort of people who would send their children to faith schools, christen their children etc even if they don’t go to church regularly.

    – Those who recognise that whilst all logic says practising christianity is on the decline and in general “belief” is on the wane, but that there is no getting away from the fact that religion is entrenched in significant parts of our society and so like it or not this is a christian country. Some of those are trying to do something about it; most couldn’t care!

    – Those whos “anti-religious” stance is so strong that they can’t see that in reality christianity is still entwined in the systems of our society. On this thread rather than arguing why it is wrong, they seem to simply be denying the reality of the situation.

    Accepting that it IS a christian country isn’t the same as accepting that that is a good thing.

    druidh
    Member

    poly – Member

    – Those who recognise that whilst all logic says practising christianity is on the decline and in general “belief” is on the wane, but that there is no getting away from the fact that religion is [b]customs and practices which pre-date but have subsequently been subsumed by christianity are[/b] entrenched in significant parts of our society

    FTFY

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    TandemJeremy – Member
    A small minority of the population are Christians

    Actually it appears that a very large minority of the population are christians- reliably you find between 30% and 50% which is enormously significant. (it’s more than enough to get Jesus voted prime minister- though apparently not enough for him to go on strike)

    Accepting that it IS a christian country isn’t the same as accepting that that is a good thing.

    But all the evidence is that that is not a christian country

    Mr Woppit
    Member

    ernie_lynch – Member

    Clearly, it’s beyond the reach of someone who can’t spell “bollocks”, though…

    So now the counterarguments are reduced to comments concerning how I spell the word bollox. Excellent

    I take it you didn’t read the rest of the post? Would you like me to repeat it?

    Christianity is irrelevant and is only adhered to by a small minority that is shrinking.

    is it a small minority that marry/ get buried in church* ? have all the village churches and church houses been knocked down leaving christrian dominated landscapes a minority ? is it a small minority that celebrate easter and christmas in a variety of interpretations ?

    i think that a definition of christianity that seems to revolve solely around bums on seats/knees on floor on a sunday morning is one that suits your agenda rather than one that reflects the true nature of the influence of christian culture upon uk culture.

    * might be minority but certainly not a small one, 39% still marry in church despite the comparitively higher cost

    Premier Icon aracer
    Member

    The most amazing tortuous logic presented here to attempt to make the case that the UK is not a Christian country.

    FTFY

    Premier Icon v8ninety
    Subscriber

    Your second group there Poly, strikes me that’s the vast majority, and where I would put myself. Would you count them as Christian or non Christian? I would count myself as non Christian, but only because I have thought about it. I suspect that many in that group would tick the c of e box, just because they haven’t thought about it and because of the afformentioned gentle indoctrination we are mostly all exposed to.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    trailmonkey – Member

    is it a small minority that celebrate easter and christmas in a variety of interpretations ?

    No. But I celebrate christmas, and I’m not a christian. My colleague Firas celebrates christmas, and he’s a muslim. Albeit a crap one. My friend Leif will be celebrating yule, as he’s a smartarse. Mu old boss Fiona will be celebrating a bleak christmas that most of us wouldn’t recognise, because she’s some sort of fundamentalist christian and hates all this santa claus and commercialism and happiness stuff.

    You can’t actually believe there’s a correlation between celebrating christmas and being christian though.

    mrmo
    Member

    Northwind it is very simple, or at least for most people it is, traditions develop, there was a time when this was a Celtic country, it consisted of small tribes fighting, worshiping local gods, although this does rather suppose that the celts are a people and not an idea. That in itself is debatable.

    Then there was a time when belief was roman, and there was a belief in the roman pantheon which in itself was a adoption of earlier ideas, look at how many grave stones are carved IOM, Jupiter Optimus Maxiumus, or with reference to the Genii. The laws the actions were based on a set of beliefs. That was subsumed into a belief in one christian god and became the official religion under Constatine, in 409 when Honerius withdrew Roman control from Britannia another set of traditions were formed, moving forward through the “dark ages”, the stories of the anglo saxon chronicles, of Beowulf, of bede.

    Move further forward through the viking raids, of the danelaw, Norman invasion, the crusades, through the tudor period where Britain was divorced from the mainstream, where people were executed for there religon, the puritanism following the civil war, the banning of christmas, The pendle witch trials, each step forming the country we now live in. move further forward and where do we see the royal wedding? in a CHURCH or a registry office.

    Have a read of the oath of allegiance that MPs swear, The minor detail that the queen is the defender of the faith,

    Consider also that Darwin, Newton, Keppler these were church men there actions were done to prove the power of god, not to prove religion was wrong but to prove it was right.

    Read the national anthem, read Jerusalem, etc. look at the world around you, do you see spires or minarets? we may be becoming a less religious society but as is clear from the Census returns the majority of the people in this country regard themselves as christian, the majority of our offices of state are based on religious laws.

    Do you know why yew trees are to be found in Churchyards? it is about adoption of development.

    And just to be clear i am an atheist i do not believe in a god but i accept that the country in which i was born and in which i live has a history and that history is for the last 1000 years christian, the laws are christian,

    There is no such thing as a tradition of humanity, there are cultures, the idea of having a picnic in a church yard to me is odd but forms a key part of the celebrations on the day of the dead, in the UK we have halloween at the same time of year, both merge christian and pre christian ideas. Easter, some say it is pagan but as the earliest references to Eostre i believe are actually in Bede, it could well be a made up story to give support to the newer tradition.

    anyway i am bored The UK is currently a christian country you may deny if you wish but your wrong.

    As said above – Christmas is actually very little to do with Christianity.

    Its the pagan midwinter festival with a thin veneer of Christianity. almost all the symbols used are pre Christian,

    Holly and ivy, Father Christmas, yule log, Decorated Trees, Flying raindeer

    poly
    Member

    Northwind,

    I didn’t say it made YOU a christian.

    The problem is not the “Are you a christian?” question – which people can answer based on their own beliefs. The question in the census is actually “What is your religion, and gives all sorts of options”. Whilst possibly leading in that is suggests you should have some sort of religion one of the options is none.

    The problem is the “Are you religious?” question and the interpretation you are putting on it. You are assuming that a NO to that question means they cannot be a Christian. I’d guess most people would interpret that question to mean something similar to: “Do you go to Church / prey etc?”. Even friends of mine who christened their children and who go to the odd christmas service at church would probably answer that NO, because they don’t consider themselves to be “god botherers”. Indeed even the minister who married us (a compromise we made because at the time to get married outside a church required a minister – or to be in a dull registry office ceremony) was quite comfortable with my hethenism and said he wasn’t even that religious! The question is too open to interpretation to be useful in comparing it to the “what is your religion” questions.

    No. But I celebrate christmas, and I’m not a christian

    good, then you should be primed to accept the point that i’m trying to make. christianity is such a part of our culture that we accept it without being christians. saying that it’s not a christian country because not many people go to church just seems ludicrous when for many of us, the landscape is dominated by it, many of our cultural norms revolve around it and it’s an intrinsic part of our unwritten constitution.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    Mrmo, it’s surprising how close we are to agreeing- we’re just drawing different conclusions from the same facts. You certainly seem to agree that the key messages of christianity transcend christianity- they pre-date it, will outlive it, they exist everywhere that humans exist even where christianity is barely heard of, and they exist even where other religions hold sway.

    mrmo
    Member

    Course, my morals are also fairly compatible with islam, judaiism, and buddhism, and no doubt many others that I’m ignorant about. The reason being, they’re all fairly similiar takes on the same core issues of being a human. .

    Judaism, Christianity and Islam are Abrahamic religions, as for buddhism which version are you talking about, different versions exist depending on the cultural needs of the adherents.

    Religions may have similarities but they also have differences.

    Because, though you deny it, you are the result of a christian environment. Morals are not some fixed marker they are the result of the way society develops. Infanticide is culturally quite normal but do you regard it as right? What about leaving bodies to rot on hill sides, again quite normal? How about cannibalism, culturally a normal thing, just not in the UK.

    Our moral code is nothing to do with Chrstianity. again Christianity took a preexisting code and claimed i for their own.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    trailmonkey – Member

    good, then you should be primed to accept the point that i’m trying to make. christianity is such a part of our culture that we accept it without being christians.

    I understand your point; and again we’re not so far from disagreeing. However you would maintain that the continuing success of christmas proves the continuing influence of christianity; whereas I would say that modern christmas is largely divorced from christianity. Muslims celebrating christmas aren’t accepting christianity! They’re just able to seperate the two.

    mrmo – Member

    Infanticide is culturally quite normal but do you regard it as right? What about leaving bodies to rot on hill sides, again quite normal? How about cannibalism, culturally a normal thing, just not in the UK

    But also, not found in many non-christian countries. Therefore it cannot simply be christianity that forms these cultural norms.

    You mention sky burials- but that’s just a matter of ritual, not a basic tendancy. Ultimately cremation, burial, sky burial, burial at sea are all different takes on the same thing- the desire to celebrate and commemorate the passing of another human being. And, ultimately, dust to dust.

    mrmo
    Member

    Northwind i know we are fairly close, the detail is that we are in what i can best describe as a lapsing christian society, lapsing but still a christian society.

    As Voltaire says, if god did not exist mankind would have to invent him. Religion allows control, it gives power to some and removes it from others. In many ways i guess you could argue that this is a capitalistic society, the power has been given to business and banks rather than religious organisations. Yet we still give oaths on the bible and not the Economist.

    When we no longer marry in churches, when we no longer swear on the bible, when we no longer sing songs to a christian god then we will not be a christian society, until that day we are.

    A minority of weddings in church,very few people sing songs to a christian god. so by your logic………

    mrmo
    Member

    Our moral code is nothing to do with Chrstianity. again Christianity took a preexisting code and claimed i for their own.

    Your point? that is how people work, reuse, recycle, people don’t go to bed a pagan and wake up the next day and say i am christian lets get rid of everything from yesterday.

    Christmas is actually a good marker of where we are going, it is a pre christian festival that was adopted, and has developed, at its core we regard it as christian, when the core is no longer about Christ then you can argue about it not being Christian.

    The core is never about Christ. Look at the festival – its a midwinter feast. The symbols are not Christian.

    whereas I would say that modern christmas is largely divorced from christianity

    i think that my rather confusing analysis, is that this proves the intrinsic influence of christianity not disproves it.

    but yeah, i don’t think we’re too far apart.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    mrmo – Member

    When we no longer marry in churches, when we no longer swear on the bible, when we no longer sing songs to a christian god then we will not be a christian society, until that day we are.

    To which I say- When we get married in christian churches without belief; when we swear on the bible and it means nothing to us; when we sing songs to a christian god just because they’re good songs- we have stopped being a christian society.

    mrmo – Member

    when the core is no longer about Christ then you can argue about it not being Christian.

    I think TJ would agree with me when I say I believe it already has.

Viewing 40 posts - 201 through 240 (of 781 total)

The topic ‘Is the UK a Christian Country?’ is closed to new replies.