2,142 reputation
828
bio website timothy.green.name
location Offaly, Ireland
age
visits member for 2 years, 7 months
seen 6 hours ago

I'm Irish, of English parents. I was brought up as one of Jehovah's Witnesses, but am now an atheist. I remain fascinated by religion, both those similar to the one I left, and those very different, though I am more interested by the cultural context and the way people approach their beliefs than I am in the actual theology. (From this angle, Liberal Christianity and Liberal Islam are quite similar, and Conservative Christianity and Conservative Islam are quite similar.) Because I am interested in the social context and the interaction of religion and society, I often see religion at its worst, when it is trying to impose its rules on others, being intolerant and sometimes frankly bigoted. As an antidote, to remind myself that religious people are not necessarily evil, I hang around slacktivist (whose writings often attempt to answer the question, Why does the religious right tell lies all the time?) and The Slacktiverse (where people of many religious backgrounds have very civilised arguments, often about literature).

I might describe my own views as empirical materialist (see Tim Minchin: "Storm"), and my philosophy is probably secular humanist (see Tim Minchin: "White Wine in the Sun").


Mar
27
comment Why is Christianity so despised in the World?
possible duplicate of What is the source of hatred often perceived by Christians in western society?
Mar
27
comment Why is Christianity so despised in the World?
Er, Christianity is the dominant religion in much of the world, and has often been adopted as an official state religion. It has that status in many many countries (including, de facto, the USA). In other words, you're talking utter nonsense.
Feb
6
comment Do Jehovah's Witnesses have their own version of the Bible?
Hi Jeremy. The phrasing "The old English from the KJV has been rendered in modern English" suggests that the NWT is an update of the KJV. In fact it is not, but is a separate translation (and isn't even based on the same set of manuscripts). Perhaps that could be reworded a little?
Jan
25
comment Did those feet in ancient time walk upon England's mountains green?
Who was it who described the hymn "Jerusalem" as "a series of questions to which the answer is no"?
Jan
16
comment What is the Scriptural Basis Against the Trinity
"Someone who believes that Jesus was the first creature created in God's creation will point to different verses to support their doctrine than someone who believes that Jesus did not exist until his birth." There's a third category: Oneness Pentecostalism says that Jesus is God, but there's no Trinity. God (all of God) came to Earth.
Jan
13
comment Are there Christian denominations that are beginning a discussion about the fact that Jesus was really the son of God?
There's a way to conceive of Christianity doing practically anything. As phrased, this is pretty much a list question, but I think it could be tidied a bit to look at movements and such. Largely, though, "does X exist?" is a poor question on this site, as the answer is almost certainly "Yes, but in tiny numbers, and in ways which are hard to categorise".
Jan
10
comment What is Christian about Christian Kabbalah?
@TheFreemason. I've completely rewritten your question. I think this is an improvement to the clarity, but if you're at all unhappy with it please feel free to roll back.
Jan
10
comment What is Christian about Christian Kabbalah?
@DJClayworth. A bit of quick poking around on Wikipedia seems to suggest that Cabalah is the usual term for Christian Kabbalah. (Meanwhile, Cabala is a disambiguation page.)
Jan
2
comment God loves everyone… Even dictators?
It's okay, Claudio. I can see that it is a genuine question, and it might be okay to ask it here, but it really should be phrased very very carefully with a lot of thought beforehand. If you'd asked just that question, it probably wouldn't immediately be deleted. But there's a rule against asking two questions at once anyway, which is a much more straightforward guideline to follow, and made it easy for me to remove that one. You could probably ask it separately, later, but I'd advise you to wait till you're more established on the site, and to discuss it in Christianity Chat before asking.
Jan
2
comment Does “no part of this world” mean no involvement in politics?
@Narnian, your edit comment makes reasonable sense, but applying that classification strictly would invalidate existing answers. I'll try to think of a way to narrow the scope of this question.
Jan
2
comment How do Jehovah Witnesses explain differences between NWT and Hebrew/Latin/Greek in Zechariah 12:10 and Acts 20:28?
@Luis. If you want clarifications on how best to edit and clarify a closed question, the best place to ask is on Christianity Meta.
Dec
31
comment What was the main reason for excluding 35 latest names from the list of recognized saints by ROC?
Clarifying comments should be edited into the question itself, @brilliant.
Dec
10
comment How do Jehovah Witnesses explain differences between NWT and Hebrew/Latin/Greek in Zechariah 12:10 and Acts 20:28?
This really is two completely separate questions, and I'd suggest splitting it out as such.
Dec
10
comment How do Jehovah Witnesses explain differences between NWT and Hebrew/Latin/Greek in Zechariah 12:10 and Acts 20:28?
The NWT didn't translate Zechariah from Latin or from Greek, but from Hebrew. That's what's relevant.
Dec
9
comment What should I expect at a Roman Catholic funeral?
This works for me, anyway, but my requirements about not participating in "foreign religious observance" are probably less strict than yours.
Dec
9
comment What should I expect at a Roman Catholic funeral?
I've been to Catholic funerals as a Witness, and again as an atheist. For a small funeral, it's perfectly possible to sit at the back of the church: you're at some distance from the congregation, and if you remain seated, not standing and kneeling at the appropriate points, it's fairly obvious that you're observing, rather than participating. I don't know whether that would be distant enough for you. For a larger service, there's usually overflow into the carpark, where again you can perch on the edge of the wall or something, or simply stand at the back.
Dec
8
comment Why does God, who is omibelovelent, send those that fail to understand or believe in him to hell?
Hi Matthew. This is certainly a place where Christian views will differ wildly. People might try to offer you advice from their own perspectives, but that's not really the purpose of this site. Christianity Stack Exchange exists to answer questions such as "What does [denomination] teach about [X]?", not "Which belief about [X] is true?" You could ask what a certain denomination teaches about theodicy or universalism, and these questions would be answerable, but this one really isn't.
Dec
8
comment Why does God, who is omibelovelent, send those that fail to understand or believe in him to hell?
And Paul is clearly talking through his arse. Might I remind you of the guidance not to answer this kind of question, but to direct the user to chat or to offsite resources instead?
Dec
3
comment Why do Jehovah's Witnesses have a problem with my relationship with one of their members?
If you married, neither your religion nor his would be happy with the situation, but as far as I'm aware (I'm ex-JW), this is not actually a disfellowshipping matter (i.e., he would be allowed to remain a Witness).
Sep
23
comment How do Christians in support of gay marriage interpret anti-gay Bible verses?
There's also an argument from "my kingdom is not part of this world", where "this world" means the political system, that Christians shouldn't care about the secular, legal definition of marriage one way or the other. But I suspect this question is specifically about same-sex marriage within the Church, so that's a different issue.