We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
If human beings were going to invent a religion based on wishful thinking, they could come up with something a lot “easier” than Christianity. After all, why not wish for a religion that promised eternal life in heaven, but at the same time allowed promiscuous sex, encouraged gluttony, did away with all the commandments, and forbade anyone to ever mention the idea of judgment and punishment?
Yes - why not, doggone it? We have no problem with atheists - or with any other religions, here at Maggie's. Life, and consciousness, is a deep mystery and a puzzlement, and we all must find our own ways through it with whatever sources of illumination we can find. As readers know, I am a Jesus guy - and I am not even particularly attracted to the idea of eternal life.
Believe it or not, you have main line religions that are headed in the direction you mentioned in the interest of being more "inclusive." The church I left a few years ago has a minister that tells parishoners every Sunday that God's love is automatic and has no strings attatched. Just mentioning to her that repenting and making an honest effort to not repeat the sin is a condition of that forgiveness and you get to see the hair stand up on the back of her neck. The handful of people who still attend her service are those who like a minister who tells them "do whatever you want, it's all good, every morning when you wake up God forgives you for whatever you did the day before.
BD, interesting comment at the end that happen to agree with. I was raised Catholic, although I have not attended church regularly since I left home (much to my mother's chagrin). I have come to see the value of religion, though, as a blueprint for how to conduct an honorable life. The moral framework that religion provides makes our society a better place for all of us to live in, even if you do not believe in the afterlife. Thanks for making me think.
The idea that religion sets a moral tone is utterly bizarre and erroneous. Neither do I need a religion to lead a good life or be told what a good life is but I also do not need the ancient mysogynist, violent texts such as the Bilble and Koran being used by those who claim to get their moral guidance from these repugnant fairy stories.