0
   

The Abrahamic Faiths

 
 
Reply Mon 23 Nov, 2009 07:58 pm
Most people will know that the Abrahamic faiths all have similar origins - of course the easiest way to put it as that all of them believe in Abraham's God.

But throughout the cause of history, their practice of the religion and certain beliefs went along separate lines, of course with the issue of Jesus Christ being one of the greatest cause for division.

I feel however, at the end of the day, aren't they worshipping the same God? And if that's the case, let's assume if the God of Abraham is real, and there is an afterlife, isn't it irrelevant how they choose to practice their worship of God, the most important thing is that they do worship that God?

Seriously, if the God of Abraham really exists, does it really matter how you go about worshipping that God?

I mean it's a question I've been thinking about. Why would a Christian go to a Heaven and not a Muslim? Why would a Jewish guy go to Heaven and not a Christian? And so on and so forth. Aren't they all worshipping the same God?
  • Topic Stats
  • Top Replies
  • Link to this Topic
Type: Discussion • Score: 0 • Views: 2,045 • Replies: 19
No top replies

 
Victor Eremita
 
  1  
Reply Mon 23 Nov, 2009 08:08 pm
@Olejniker,
Olejniker;105506 wrote:
Most people will know that the Abrahamic faiths all have similar origins - of course the easiest way to put it as that all of them believe in Abraham's God.

But throughout the cause of history, their practice of the religion and certain beliefs went along separate lines, of course with the issue of Jesus Christ being one of the greatest cause for division.

I feel however, at the end of the day, aren't they worshipping the same God? And if that's the case, let's assume if the God of Abraham is real, and there is an afterlife, isn't it irrelevant how they choose to practice their worship of God, the most important thing is that they do worship that God?

Seriously, if the God of Abraham really exists, does it really matter how you go about worshipping that God?

Unfortunately, for them, it does indeed matter. Let's say employee A and employee B have the same Boss, and want to do a good job pleasing the Boss. Employee A tries to please the Boss by doing a good job day in day out and being friendly and considerate. Employee B tries to please the Boss by forcing Employees C, D, and E to do his work him and then passing it off as his own, bribing the Boss with gifts and bowling tickets, and pretending to be working hard whenever the Boss comes by. Both are trying to please the same Boss, but some people won't like the way Employee A or Employee B goes about doing it.

Quote:

I mean it's a question I've been thinking about. Why would a Christian go to a Heaven and not a Muslim? Why would a Jewish guy go to Heaven and not a Christian? And so on and so forth. Aren't they all worshipping the same God?


Probably the same reason a certain employee gets promoted over others. If the Boss likes the way Employee A does things, maybe he will go to Heave-- I mean, VP Accounting.
0 Replies
 
salima
 
  1  
Reply Tue 24 Nov, 2009 01:12 am
@Olejniker,
i think jewish tradition doesnt have a heaven or afterlife. but islam has strictly laid out exactly what is considered a ticket to hell with no return; both christianity and islam allow for mercy and certain errors/sins to be forgiven. islam has grades of heaven as well. i dont know which they are in christianity, and i would have to check and be sure even before i mentioned which they are in islam. (i ought to know these things, but since i am not planning on doing those particular offenses, they were moved to some obscure part of the memory banks of mind. they are in there, just not sure where...)
0 Replies
 
Krumple
 
  1  
Reply Tue 24 Nov, 2009 02:46 am
@Olejniker,
From what I have read, many of the Abrahamic beliefs have been passed down from other superstitions or practices. Which culminated into a central figure to give them more credit. From my point of view, Christianity is Judaism-light. They just didn't like all the rules. It is also the same reason I think many Romans were drawn to Christianity. Imagine having to purchase trinkets to offer to the dozens of gods every weekend. That would be a lot of cash to spend every week. It would be so much easier if you didn't have to buy any trinkets and only had one temple to visit once a week.
prothero
 
  1  
Reply Tue 24 Nov, 2009 09:07 pm
@Krumple,
Krumple;105554 wrote:
From what I have read, many of the Abrahamic beliefs have been passed down from other superstitions or practices. Which culminated into a central figure to give them more credit. From my point of view, Christianity is Judaism-light. They just didn't like all the rules. It is also the same reason I think many Romans were drawn to Christianity. Imagine having to purchase trinkets to offer to the dozens of gods every weekend. That would be a lot of cash to spend every week. It would be so much easier if you didn't have to buy any trinkets and only had one temple to visit once a week.
You can not imagine anyone could actually "believe" any of those things, eh?Smile:eek:
0 Replies
 
Aedes
 
  1  
Reply Tue 24 Nov, 2009 10:06 pm
@Olejniker,
Olejniker;105506 wrote:
But throughout the cause of history, their practice of the religion and certain beliefs went along separate lines
To be honest, the religions didn't exactly start from one common point and then diversify. The VAST majority of early Christians were never Jews, had no Jewish heritage, but followed traditional 'pagan' religions, and their conversion to Christianity took place long before much Christian doctrine had been settled upon. The same was true for Islam -- the VAST majority of early Muslims were non-Christian, non-Jewish Arabs. And the vast majority of Jews after ~71 AD represented a small subset of the pre-Christian Jews, namely the Pharisees. In fact there were several such events in Jewish history in which the ancestral religion was lost and a divergent spur became dominant.

Olejniker;105506 wrote:
aren't they worshipping the same God?
According to tradition they are, but not because of some direct continuity between these groups. They've grown more similar thanks to cross-fertilization, interchange, convergent evolution -- rather than from common ancestry.

Olejniker;105506 wrote:
if that's the case, let's assume if the God of Abraham is real, and there is an afterlife, isn't it irrelevant how they choose to practice their worship of God, the most important thing is that they do worship that God?
Seems that would depend on what God wants. And this isn't something that people from these faiths agree upon.

---------- Post added 11-24-2009 at 11:07 PM ----------

salima;105544 wrote:
i think jewish tradition doesnt have a heaven or afterlife.
That is correct (it's more complicated than that, but that is basically true).
salima
 
  1  
Reply Wed 25 Nov, 2009 01:14 am
@Aedes,
Aedes;105734 wrote:
To be honest, the religions didn't exactly start from one common point and then diversify. The VAST majority of early Christians were never Jews, had no Jewish heritage, but followed traditional 'pagan' religions, and their conversion to Christianity took place long before much Christian doctrine had been settled upon. The same was true for Islam -- the VAST majority of early Muslims were non-Christian, non-Jewish Arabs. And the vast majority of Jews after ~71 AD represented a small subset of the pre-Christian Jews, namely the Pharisees. In fact there were several such events in Jewish history in which the ancestral religion was lost and a divergent spur became dominant.

According to tradition they are, but not because of some direct continuity between these groups. They've grown more similar thanks to cross-fertilization, interchange, convergent evolution -- rather than from common ancestry.

Seems that would depend on what God wants. And this isn't something that people from these faiths agree upon.

---------- Post added 11-24-2009 at 11:07 PM ----------

That is correct (it's more complicated than that, but that is basically true).


but if the messages that were received were from the same source, but arrived within different contexts of humanity, there still would be a continuity, as well as a different picture regarding development of the sects. as though three distinct seeds of different varieties of the same flower or tree were scattered across three different lands and they became cross pollenated.

it is the people who received the message that argue about what it means, not the sender...should i say 'alleged sender'?

---------- Post added 11-25-2009 at 12:47 PM ----------

there are commentators and scholars in islam who see the message as having been sent in stages that suited the people who received them and the historical context, but each one that followed was an amended version of the previous.
re turner jr
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 10:45 am
@Olejniker,
Olejniker;105506 wrote:

Seriously, if the God of Abraham really exists, does it really matter how you go about worshipping that God?


It would depend if that God states what is appropriate worship and what is not. All three major Abrahamic faiths believe that He (God) has.
0 Replies
 
Aedes
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 11:42 am
@salima,
salima;105759 wrote:
but if the messages that were received were from the same source, but arrived within different contexts of humanity, there still would be a continuity.
But there is just as much continuity with Greek and Roman literature and philosophy as well as local / traditional beliefs and rites, including pagan ones. The difference is that this continuity is not acknowledged when it's not doctrinal.
re turner jr
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 12:01 pm
@Aedes,
Aedes;106391 wrote:
But there is just as much continuity with Greek and Roman literature and philosophy as well as local / traditional beliefs and rites, including pagan ones. The difference is that this continuity is not acknowledged when it's not doctrinal.


I think the point Salima was making is that of origin. Greek and Roman mythology and religion does not find it's origins in the same place.
Aedes
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 01:03 pm
@Olejniker,
Several aspects of Abrahamic tradition, starting from the Hellenic period in Palestine, directly find their origins in Greek and Roman antiquity. They are just not directly acknowledged within the religions.
0 Replies
 
Arjuna
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 01:13 pm
@re turner jr,
Abrahamic religions are obviously kin, they're monotheistic. Christians overtly accept the Israelite God as their own (except for gnostic versions which didn't become dominant) and the Prophet Muhammad accepted Jesus as an important person.

Good point though about how many non Semitic people have converted, each of them bringing their own values and images into the mix.

Roman and Greek religion is pantheonistic... and it evolved into one pantheon. Interestingly, though Romans and Greeks would worship the same gods and goddesses, their religious outlook was different. For the Greeks, the pantheon was more human. The Roman religion was more vacuous poetically. One way to describe it would be to say the Roman Bacchus was all human experience with alcohol... as opposed to a divine person (if I understand it correctly)
0 Replies
 
prothero
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 01:46 pm
@re turner jr,
re_turner_jr;106394 wrote:
I think the point Salima was making is that of origin. Greek and Roman mythology and religion does not find it's origins in the same place.
Well in the most general sense they all originate in basic existential questions intrinsic to self awareness.
Why am I here, what happens after death, what is my meaning or purpose, etc?

In a less general sense they are have the same archetypal patterns found in say Joseph Campbells "the power of myth".
And of course all new traditions or solutions borrow from contemporary or preceeding traditions.

The trick is too see all religions and myths as primarily human constructs seeking after the divine.

That is not to say there is not a divine just that it is always interpreted through the partial incomplete and limited understanding of man (through a glass darkly). It is certainty and lack of humility that causes the problems.
jeeprs
 
  1  
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2009 03:15 am
@Olejniker,
Quote:
Emic and etic are terms used to refer to two different kinds of data concerning human behavior. In particular, they are used in cultural anthropology, to refer to kinds of fieldwork done and viewpoints obtained.

An "emic" account is a description of behavior or a belief in terms meaningful (consciously or unconsciously) to the actor; that is, an emic account comes from a person within the culture. Almost anything from within a culture can provide an emic account.

An "etic" account is a description of a behavior or belief by an observer, in terms that can be applied to other cultures; that is, an etic account is '"culturally neutral". (Wikipedia)


The reason I quote this is because you are considering the question from a etic perspective. It is one thing to be 'above', as it were, the three great traditions and think about them from the perspective of one who might not have any kind of stake in any of them, or in whether they are true or not, or whether there might or might not be any real consequences in believing in them or being part of them.

From an 'emic' perspective, the question looks very different. In other words, for a Jew, the relationship with Islam and Christianity, is redolent with all kinds of meanings and subtelties in historical memories which it is very easy to overlook or diminish as an outsider. The same could be said for each. Within each community, there are those inclined to emphasize the commonalities, and those inclined to emphasize the differences. And, when you think about it, even within these communities, there are tremendous schisms and divisions (Sunni-Sh'ite, Protestant-Catholic, etc) which again reflect the internal complexity of such relationships.

I think with respect to all of the actual communities of the faithful in these various religions, the idea of a commentary from the outside along the lines of 'don't you all worship the same God' would be met with 'yes, but...' followed by a considerable amount of qualification, explanation, exegesis, and so on, most of which we would probably find very hard to understand without quite a bit of hard study.

And that, I suppose, is a 'meta-perspective' and something to bear in mind when considering these questions. It ain't nearly so straightforward as it looks.
xris
 
  1  
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2009 05:11 am
@jeeprs,
Surely we must look at their similarity, now and how the dogma has become sanctified. Their dogma looks very similar but the emphasis appears to be racial or social.

The Abrahamic faiths have this inclination to dogma and the only way to ever overcome dogma is for the faiths to diverge and create differing dogma. So in my opinion dogma is their common currency, it describes them all and defines their differences.
0 Replies
 
jeeprs
 
  1  
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2009 03:06 pm
@Olejniker,
I think the problem is with authoritarianism, not with dogma, per se.

Dogma is simply a systematic presentation of an opinion, doctrine, or point of view.

The real conflcts that have arisen between and within the Abrahamic faiths revolve around the power structures that have grown up around these dogmas. If an institution is dogmatic without being authoritarian, it could easily be dismissed or ignored. In the classical era, though, they could not be dismissed or ignored because they were institutionally powerful. This is why the separation of Church and State was such an important phase in European history. (It is interesting to note that this division has never been recognised, and may not even be conceivable, in Islam, which is why there is always such a strong tendency to theocracy in Islamic states.)

And aside from that, the basic doctrines, ideas, dogmas, and liturgy of Judaism, Islam and Christianity are worlds apart. Like I said before, if you look at them from 'the outside' it seems like they are branches of the same tree, and worshiping the same God, but I think that from inside, the view is radically different. I challenge you to find an evangelical who thinks that Allah and Jehovah are the same. Islam, meanwhile, insists that there is 'one God, and Allah is his name'. There is limited recognition of Judaism and Christianity within Islam on the basis that all three faiths share a common religious heritage, but the relations between them have always been (and if we're honest about it, continue to be) fraught with a great deal of tension and latent or actual hostility.
Reconstructo
 
  1  
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2009 03:45 pm
@prothero,
prothero;106405 wrote:

The trick is too see all religions and myths as primarily human constructs seeking after the divine.
That is not to say there is not a divine just that it is always interpreted through the partial incomplete and limited understanding of man (through a glass darkly). It is certainty and lack of humility that causes the problems.


Well said. It bothers me to see religion reduced to fraud, as if that is all that it has ever meant to anyone. This is an eyes-wide-shut view. I think much of organized religion is to blame. It's like that gnostic quote about institutions tending to become their own opposite.

Man makes Gods to mirror his most sublime moments. Myth understood as myth is a potent force, the center of living art. Just my opinion of course.
0 Replies
 
xris
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Dec, 2009 03:52 am
@jeeprs,
jeeprs;112718 wrote:
I think the problem is with authoritarianism, not with dogma, per se.

Dogma is simply a systematic presentation of an opinion, doctrine, or point of view.

The real conflcts that have arisen between and within the Abrahamic faiths revolve around the power structures that have grown up around these dogmas. If an institution is dogmatic without being authoritarian, it could easily be dismissed or ignored. In the classical era, though, they could not be dismissed or ignored because they were institutionally powerful. This is why the separation of Church and State was such an important phase in European history. (It is interesting to note that this division has never been recognised, and may not even be conceivable, in Islam, which is why there is always such a strong tendency to theocracy in Islamic states.)

And aside from that, the basic doctrines, ideas, dogmas, and liturgy of Judaism, Islam and Christianity are worlds apart. Like I said before, if you look at them from 'the outside' it seems like they are branches of the same tree, and worshiping the same God, but I think that from inside, the view is radically different. I challenge you to find an evangelical who thinks that Allah and Jehovah are the same. Islam, meanwhile, insists that there is 'one God, and Allah is his name'. There is limited recognition of Judaism and Christianity within Islam on the basis that all three faiths share a common religious heritage, but the relations between them have always been (and if we're honest about it, continue to be) fraught with a great deal of tension and latent or actual hostility.
Sorry but its the dogmatic held beliefs that separate them more than anything. For example, is Christ the son of god or just a prophet, the pope is the voice of god on earth. These fundamental dogmas will always define the beliefs.
0 Replies
 
KaseiJin
 
  0  
Reply Mon 21 Dec, 2009 09:12 am
@Olejniker,
I'm going to be to the point here...due to lack of time...but hope to spell out details later on down the road, in other places (thread, that is).

The answer is no, the gods are not the same and they can hardly be the god that any person having come from the part of the world of which the figure is said to have come, can historically be determined to have worshiped. The better evidence tells us that the Jewish belief-system is simply not that old.

The earliest Christian cult members held the resurrection to be a truth, but also had some number (as can best be understood) slated to become angels along with the sons of YHWH in the heaven of the heavens (there were layers in Judaism as well).

The god models simple do not match, and neither do the worship systems which these models demand. If we were to take a first come, first serve, we'd have to say that the YHWH model has priority. Of course, in a very natural way, power concerns (just as jeeprs has mentioned) were and have been the big 'mover' in these systems.

You'll have to allow me this shortness here, but I will make effort to further demonstrate it . . . one of these sunny days.
0 Replies
 
kiuku
 
  0  
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2014 06:45 pm
@Olejniker,
they don't choose though that's the thing. They had "prophets" who weren't choosing either. They set the tablet down, dude.

"Seriously, if the God of Abraham really exists, does it really matter how you go about worshipping that God?"

He said so. He said this is how you worship me. So it matters to followers of that faith, not by choice, literally.

They are not all worshipping the same God.

I hate choosing. I hate anything that implies choosing, I hate anything involving it-I hate human wisdom there, it's modern I think, well, I don't know I took different classes than the modern republic. And no one ever really said anything about choosing either, not in the bible, not in anywhere. It's very modern, and colleagues eager to write about it, or think about it. It's the new "way".

Ok choose. Never will I be there for that. I hate choose, so possibly that might be interesting to know, as a fact, of my account, later in the future, and no one else did.

I like God's choice. Not human choice. sort of. funny that. forget it.
0 Replies
 
 

Related Topics

How can we be sure? - Discussion by Raishu-tensho
DOES NOTHING EXIST??? - Question by mark noble
Proof of nonexistence of free will - Discussion by litewave
morals and ethics, how are they different? - Question by existential potential
Destroy My Belief System, Please! - Discussion by Thomas
Star Wars in Philosophy. - Discussion by Logicus
Existence of Everything. - Discussion by Logicus
Is it better to be feared or loved? - Discussion by Black King
 
  1. Forums
  2. » The Abrahamic Faiths
Copyright © 2019 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.04 seconds on 10/16/2019 at 01:14:37