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    (Original post by macromicro)
    I never mentioned your parents. This isn't an opinion or up for debate - religious beliefs are heavily influenced by environment which is why you will find less new Christians in India than Muslims and more new Christians in NI than Hindus.

    You do not have free will. You are a product of your nature and nurture like everyone else.



    No I disagree with new generations being encouraged to be religious, e.g. faith schools (i.e. indoctrination centres). I agree with all attempts to maximise freedom of thought via a neutral environment and the scientific method.



    Like I said, you are a reformed Christian. You have those beliefs because of the brave efforts of homosexuals in standing up to traditional Christianity. If you were born a little earlier you wouldn't have those beliefs. You have them because society forced Christianity to reform. One day the same will be done with Islam too - we are already making progress. Ultimately, as reformation continues as it has done, the world will be entirely secular and religion-free.

    And you didn't choose anything. You cannot will yourself to will something. The choice was made already, you simply acted it out.



    Political, social, ethical, religious, financial, geographical... There are a variety of problems. "Political" is a vague and loosely defined term that could mean all those.words in one.

    You've been constantly saying how my upbringing influences me. Yet you have no idea about my upbringing or my environment so you can't say that's what influenced me.

    Fair enough that's your thoughts but please realise that others do not agree. Many people choose religion of their own freedom.

    I don't hold those beliefs because I'm a reformed Christian. My church does not teach those beliefs. Stop making assumptions about me when you know absolutely nothing about me.

    My mother was born in 1955 and hold the same views on those issues as I do so you cannot say I wouldn't hold them had I been born earlier.

    I chose my beliefs and values. Perhaps if you'd asked why I believe the things I do instead of making assumptions based on where I currently live then you wouldn't have had such a hard time accepting that

    Just as you have limited experience of NI yet make assumptions about the people of it.
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    Because Catholicism is Mystery Babylon the great.

    And the Pope the Anti-Christ

    And the Vatican the little horn of Daniel
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    (Original post by 0to100)
    Christianity is an old faith in Europe especially Catholicism in the middle ages and before that but I'm saying that Catholicism is why they were mainly fighting each other, since their differences in faith prevented stable control of England over Ireland and why it still does. At least that's my opinion. I was agreeing with the other person tat fighting over religion is the smoke screen to fighting for economic reasons.
    I'm quite sure you're right there. Although the two-sides of the Northern Ireland conflict were Catholic and protestant, they weren't actually fighting over religion. It's not like the IRA was fighting for the protestants to recognise the spiritual doctrine of transubstantiation (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transubstantiation). They were fighting for better access to economic/material resources (better housing, access to decent jobs) and there's no doubt the Catholic community in Northern Ireland suffered appalling discrimination before the 1980s. Even though they were half the population, the electoral system had been completely gerrymandered so that the protestant community won something like 90% of the seats in the Northern Ireland parliament. The protestants had control of the police, the courts, almost all judges and barristers were protestant, all the best manufacturing and unionised jobs were for protestant men (almost like an apartheid-lite). The Catholics in Derry literally lived in a separate walled off area of the town which was on top of the old town swamp.

    As you said the conflict was not about religion, there were more material concerns at play.

    Example: you think the West has a problem with the East because of Islam? No, the main reason is for natural resources that have the UAE rich as balls but the religious differences create this political and economic organisation that prevents mutuality between the East And west, it's similar to the Crusades and Irish Catholicism and Protestantism
    I don't entirely agree with that. The US and UK have little in the way of substantial economic interests in Iraq and Afghanistan. The reason we fight there is because fanatical Islamists decided to fly four airliners into buildings and declare war on the United States, even at a time where the United States was reducing its defence budget, withdrawing many of its foreign bases and reducing its overseas commitments. Bin Laden was religiously motivated, he believed his religion demanded he make war on the West.

    And again with ISIS; it rose like a phoenix from the ashes of Al-Qaeda in Iraq (which the Americans had all but destroyed while they were in Iraq). It was after the Americans had left Iraq in 2011 that ISIS arose and started taking vast swathes of land. There are no economic interests here to speak of; the massive conflagration in Syria and Iraq benefits no-one economically. What we're facing is a war with religious fanatics who can only be stopped at the barrel of gun
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    (Original post by BeastOfSyracuse)
    I'm quite sure you're right there. Although the two-sides of the Northern Ireland conflict were Catholic and protestant, they weren't actually fighting over religion. It's not like the IRA was fighting for the protestants to recognise the spiritual doctrine of transubstantiation (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transubstantiation). They were fighting for better access to economic/material resources (better housing, access to decent jobs) and there's no doubt the Catholic community in Northern Ireland suffered appalling discrimination before the 1980s. Even though they were half the population, the electoral system had been completely gerrymandered so that the protestant community won something like 90% of the seats in the Northern Ireland parliament. The protestants had control of the police, the courts, almost all judges and barristers were protestant, all the best manufacturing and unionised jobs were for protestant men (almost like an apartheid-lite). The Catholics in Derry literally lived in a separate walled off area of the town which was on top of the old town swamp.

    As you said the conflict was not about religion, there were more material concerns at play.



    I don't entirely agree with that. The US and UK have little in the way of substantial economic interests in Iraq and Afghanistan. The reason we fight there is because fanatical Islamists decided to fly four airliners into buildings and declare war on the United States, even at a time where the United States was reducing its defence budget, withdrawing many of its foreign bases and reducing its overseas commitments. Bin Laden was religiously motivated, he believed his religion demanded he make war on the West.

    And again with ISIS; it rose like a phoenix from the ashes of Al-Qaeda in Iraq (which the Americans had all but destroyed while they were in Iraq). It was after the Americans had left Iraq in 2011 that ISIS arose and started taking vast swathes of land. There are no economic interests here to speak of; the massive conflagration in Syria and Iraq benefits no-one economically. What we're facing is a war with religious fanatics who can only be stopped at the barrel of gun
    No no no I disagree with you there about the Iraq thing and USA. Apparently Bush made monetary promises to bin laden

    http://theinternationalcoalition.blo...mily-rich.html
    I already know this stuff, but linking a source since people like that on the internet, also saw Bowling for Columbine an acclaimed docufilm on the war on guns and Bush's...welll...word of the day "collusion"
    So basically at least the 9/11 thing happened not for religious zeal but for money reasons that Bush was personally and now politically involved in
    Among other controversies and scandals that makes me question how the man can sleep at night

    And about the Catholic thing well aside from the details, I still feel that Catholicism was always around yes, but became a way out of imperialism once Ireland continued to side with a powerful organisation that the Catholic Church is. They would've been screwed if they weren't Catholic because there would've been less incentive to fight English and other imposition, and less in the way for England to succeed in doing so. Catholicism became a thorn in the English side even if it wasn't the primary reason to gain more land and expand economy.
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    (Original post by 0to100)
    you just look ignorant right now
    that's because I obviously am...
    ...laddy
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    (Original post by Frostyjoe)
    Hi, I'm from Northern Ireland. I've moved to England (South) for university this year so this post is related to my experiences thus far.

    Anyway, I have come across alot of ignorant people who aren't very aware of cultures outside their own region. In regards to Ireland as a whole, some people that I have met still think that Ireland is a very poor country with no resources.

    For instance, I have met a female who is particularly ignorant and almost always boasts about her town and local area. She thinks that there is nothing as great as England and that Ireland is just a backwater dump. While England does have many, many fantastic places, there are also many, many places that are rife with crime and poverty. The town that I have moved to itself is quite isolated from other regions, I get the impression that it's an area that doesn't get as much funding from Westminster. I have travelled quite moderately, to me the area that I am in now is a typical middle class town, it's not out of this world and it's not cosmopolitian and bussling like London. I have certainly been to far better places in the world.

    Alot of English people seem to think that we in Ireland live very sheltered lives. Alot of people I talk to think that it is a completely foreign land and are surprised when we have motoroways, Tesco etc. TBH, they give me the impression that they think that we live in cottages and use horse and karts.

    It's quite comical actually. Ireland isn't that different to England, I don't know where this view comes from. Do English people in general, just not travel outside their own regions? Do they learn about other countries in School? Why do people in this country still have such ancient views?
    Because they are dumb.

    Why do some people become terrorists?

    Why don't some people like Jews etc

    Some people are dumb


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    (Original post by l'insegnante)

    And fyi to be a Christian you accept Christ as Messiah and Saviour and are justified by your faith if it is true. Therefore, I do not have to follow a set of strict rules to be a 'proper Christian' as you so put it. I follow Biblical teaching but not as you assume I do.
    Got to ask here, what is the point of the Bible as a religious text in the 21st century? I won't get into the Ireland issue, but this guy who's debating with you has a point that your views reflect more the liberal society we have developed than what your religious text/God would wish you to believe .

    Now I know most Christians say any quotes from the Old Testament do not apply to the modern day (which is odd, it's a big waste of trees to add it into each book if only the NT matters) so I won't quote God itself on his personal disdain for homosexuals. But New testament wise Paul is pretty clear on it, to save time I won't fill this post with quotes but...

    1 Cor 5:9-13 on the matter of sexually immoral people being ostracized from the community (of which those engaging in homosexual sex is the focus)

    1 Cor 6:9-13 follows the same theme, albeit instead of expelling them from the religious community, he tells us homosexuals shall not enter heaven.

    Lol I need to set off for work, but there are many more NT references to homosexuality being immoral, practicing homosexuals will be judged harshly by the lord/not enter heaven etc.

    Now I applaud for your attitude, but it would suggest your saying you're know better the intentions of your God/faith than a key prophet in your religion, which seems a bit odd. If you discount so many aspects of your faith, would it not be better to choose one which fits your social beliefs more accurately, say Hinduism (since any Hindus against homosexuality really are going against their scripture as it supports the idea of a third gender and homosexual relations as being as a natural aspect of sexuality).

    If you just want to be a very accepting and loving person as you imagine Jesus to be great, but there are other religions with peaceful prophets/holy people that have less violent outlooks than the Abrahamic faiths.
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    (Original post by l'insegnante)
    You've been constantly saying how my upbringing influences me. Yet you have no idea about my upbringing or my environment so you can't say that's what influenced me.
    I know that you grew up in the most Christian country of the UK and went to a predominantly Christian school and you are now a Christian. If you think this is purely coincidental then have a look at the geography and education of religion.

    Fair enough that's your thoughts but please realise that others do not agree. Many people choose religion of their own freedom.
    No they don't - they are born into it or are influenced into it, both of which need not happen.

    I don't hold those beliefs because I'm a reformed Christian. My church does not teach those beliefs. Stop making assumptions about me when you know absolutely nothing about me.
    You are a reformed Christian whether you like it or not. The Christianity you believe in today is the product of years of reformation by scientists, activists, philosophers, public intellectuals and the pressure of the public.

    My mother was born in 1955 and hold the same views on those issues as I do so you cannot say I wouldn't hold them had I been born earlier.
    That's because abortion was legalised in 1967, homosexuality was decriminalised in the '60s, the first Gay Pride was in the '70s. Your mother was at the turning point of a huge reformation of Christianity.

    When I said "a little earlier" I meant 100 years or so not the previous generation!

    I chose my beliefs and values.
    Please explain the process in which you choose your beliefs and values? In other words, you need to explain how you will yourself to will somethjng. Put differently still, you would have to show that you have a belief independent of all influence - that you are the cause of yourself. If you can manage this you may have missed your calling since it is a problem philosophers have reluctantly accepted since Aristotle two and a half millennia ago.

    As for your repeated point that you have more experience of NI than me: You do not need to live somewhere to study it and can quite easily have a better understanding than those who do live there. Your living there has given you a biased perspective and a narrow-minded view of the country. I have analysed it impartially. By your logic, whoever has lived there the longest is always correct.
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    (Original post by joey11223)
    Got to ask here, what is the point of the Bible as a religious text in the 21st century? I won't get into the Ireland issue, but this guy who's debating with you has a point that your views reflect more the liberal society we have developed than what your religious text/God would wish you to believe .

    Now I know most Christians say any quotes from the Old Testament do not apply to the modern day (which is odd, it's a big waste of trees to add it into each book if only the NT matters) so I won't quote God itself on his personal disdain for homosexuals. But New testament wise Paul is pretty clear on it, to save time I won't fill this post with quotes but...

    1 Cor 5:9-13 on the matter of sexually immoral people being ostracized from the community (of which those engaging in homosexual sex is the focus)

    1 Cor 6:9-13 follows the same theme, albeit instead of expelling them from the religious community, he tells us homosexuals shall not enter heaven.

    Lol I need to set off for work, but there are many more NT references to homosexuality being immoral, practicing homosexuals will be judged harshly by the lord/not enter heaven etc.

    Now I applaud for your attitude, but it would suggest your saying you're know better the intentions of your God/faith than a key prophet in your religion, which seems a bit odd. If you discount so many aspects of your faith, would it not be better to choose one which fits your social beliefs more accurately, say Hinduism (since any Hindus against homosexuality really are going against their scripture as it supports the idea of a third gender and homosexual relations as being as a natural aspect of sexuality).

    If you just want to be a very accepting and loving person as you imagine Jesus to be great, but there are other religions with peaceful prophets/holy people that have less violent outlooks than the Abrahamic faiths.
    I'll start off by saying that the Old Testament is just as important as the new.

    For me personally it's not about thinking I know better than God it's about following the golden rule of Jesus' teaching. 'Do unto others as you would have them do to you'

    I wouldn't want to be persecuted for my faith, gender, sexuality or anything else. So therefore I won't do that to others. I accept everyone just the way I would would want them to accept me.

    I recognise Paul's epistles say quite a bit on homosexuality. However, the context of the society was that men were having orgies etc with very young boys and a lot of his letters are targeting that.

    If homosexuality is immoral then God will judge that, it's not my place to judge it.

    Again, the violence in the Old Testament must be contextualised. It is also part of the old story but with Jesus came the new. I actually wrote an essay about this for uni this year.

    I can't follow any other religion because then I'd be going against the true faith and wouldn't have a chance at salvation. I'd be worshipping a false God/s.
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    (Original post by macromicro)
    I know that you grew up in the most Christian country of the UK and went to a predominantly Christian school.



    No they don't - they are born into it or are influenced into it, both of which need not happen.



    You are a reformed Christian whether you like it or not. The Christianity you believe in today is the product of years of reformation by scientists, activists, philosophers, public intellectuals and the pressure of the public.



    That's because abortion was legalised in 1967, homosexuality was decriminalised in the '60s, the first Gay Pride was in the '70s. Your mother was at the turning point of the a huge reformation of Christianity.

    When I said "a little earlier" I meant 100 years or so not the previous generation!



    Please explain the process in which you choose your beliefs and values? In other words, you need to explain how you will yourself to will somethjng. Put differently still, you would have to show that you have a belief independent of all influence - you would have to show that you are the cause of yourself. If you can manage this you may have missed your calling since it is a problem philosophers have reluctantly accepted since Aristotle two and a half millennia ago.

    As for your repeated point that you have more experience of NI than me: You do not need to live somewhere to study it and can quite easily have a better understanding than those who do live there. Your living there has given you a biased perspective and a narrow-minded view of the country. I have analysed it impartially.
    No you don't know that I grew up in the most Christian country in the UK. You don't even know if I was born in the UK. You only know I started school in NI when I was 14. You're assuming I did.

    You're also assuming my mother grew up in NI.

    I explained the basis of my view on homosexuality as influenced by my faith to another poster who bothered to ask. So I won't repeat to you.


    You use stereotypes to define NI and your limited experience living here which is narrow and biased.
    You know little about the day to day lives of people in NI or the dynamics of how people live and deal with eachother in reality.
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    (Original post by l'insegnante)
    No you don't know that I grew up in the most Christian country in the UK. You don't even know if I was born in the UK. You only know I started school in NI when I was 14. You're assuming I did.
    Which had a massive influence on your beliefs. You joined a predominantly Christian school in the most Christian country in the UK during your formative years.

    You're also assuming my mother grew up in NI.
    Another strawman argument. Where in my post did I even slightly imply that your mother grew up in NI? My entire post is about Christianity itself - abortion was legalised in the rest of the UK and NOT NI, homosexuality was legalised for the whole of the UK, the first Gay Pride was in LONDON.

    I explained the basis of my view on homosexuality as influenced by my faith to another poster who bothered to ask. So I won't repeat to you.
    You missed the point. You can't prove that you are the cause of yourself.

    You use stereotypes to define NI and your limited experience living here which is narrow and biased.
    You know little about the day to day lives of people in NI or the dynamics of how people live and deal with eachother in reality.
    You underestimate the power of research and knowledge. Most people know very little about the socioeconomic, political and religious circumstances of where they live, and certainly don't know more than someone else simply by virtue of them living there. Using your logic, we could never understand ancient Athens because we can't live there.
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    (Original post by macromicro)
    Which had a massive influence on your beliefs. You joined a predominantly Christian school in the most Christian country in the UK during your formative years.



    Another strawman argument. Where in my post did I even slightly imply that your mother grew up in NI? My entire post is about Christianity itself - abortion was legalised in the rest of the UK and NOT NI, homosexuality was legalised for the whole of the UK, the first Gay Pride was in LONDON.



    You missed the point. You can't prove that you are the cause of yourself.



    You underestimate the power of research and knowledge. Most people know very little about the socioeconomic, political and religious circumstances of where they live, and certainly don't know more than someone else simply by virtue of them living there. Using your logic, we could never understand ancient Athens because we can't live there.

    You keep changing your argument about me every time I add more detail.

    I never said my mother even grew up in the UK or had any connection to the UK prior to me being 14.

    You just assume I was indoctrinated from an early age when you know nothing about me or what my experience in my pre 14 developmental years was

    We may know things about ancient Athens but you cannot say exactly what the day to day experience was for the average Joe there.

    I know a lot about where I like or else I'd be failing half my uni modules atm. Carrying out research on actual people is far more effective than you're detached research.

    You have a serious superiority complex lol.
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    (Original post by l'insegnante)
    You keep changing your argument about me every time I add more detail.

    I never said my mother even grew up in the UK or had any connection to the UK prior to me being 14.
    You're digging a hole. You don't want to admit the enormous influence that a Christian country and Christian schools have on its new citizens becoming Christians. Whether you spent x or y years only affects the extent of the influence. Ask yourself this - why do people in NI not grow up to be Muslim or Hindu or Buddhist? Do you honestly think it's a coincidence?

    You just assume I was indoctrinated from an early age when you know nothing about me or what my experience in my pre 14 developmental years was
    Everyone is affected by their environment. It's not an assumption, it's an inevitable fact. If I had a baby now and sent it to a predominantly Islamic school and raised it in an Islamic country, the chances of it growing up believing in Islam are astronomically higher than if I sent the child to a Catholic school in a Christian country. Our environment influences all "choices" we make which is why it is so important to encourage a neutral and open one - something that highly religious countries and religious schools can't offer.

    We may know things about ancient Athens but you cannot say exactly what the day to day experience was for the average Joe there.
    Yes we can. We also know much more important things like the political crises, social issues, religious beliefs and the ethical debates of the time.

    I know a lot about where I like or else I'd be failing half my uni modules atm. Carrying out research on actual people is far more effective than you're detached research.
    More biased reasoning. Why would I research only individual people if I wanted to understand the political and social climate of a country? What do you think economists and sociologists and public intellectuals do? Door to door interviews?

    You have a serious superiority complex lol.
    Irrelevant to the veracity of my posts. It's impossible not to be superior when talking to a theist. It's like talking to a homosapien from a bygone era that hasn't evolved with modern human beings. You have been left behind in human progression - the same problem NI suffers from.
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    (Original post by macromicro)
    Irrelevant to the veracity of my posts. It's impossible not to be superior when talking to a theist. It's like talking to a homosapien from a bygone era that hasn't evolved with modern human beings. You have been left behind in human progression - the same problem NI suffers from.
    *tips fedora*
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    (Original post by macromicro)
    You're digging a hole. You don't want to admit the enormous influence that a Christian country and Christian schools have on its new citizens becoming Christians. Whether you spent x or y years only affects the extent of the influence. Ask yourself this - why do people in NI not grow up to be Muslim or Hindu or Buddhist? Do you honestly think it's a coincidence?



    Everyone is affected by their environment. It's not an assumption, it's an inevitable fact. If I had a baby now and sent it to a predominantly Islamic school and raised it in an Islamic country, the chances of it growing up believing in Islam are astronomically higher than if I sent the child to a Catholic school in a Christian country. Our environment influences all "choices" we make which is why it is so important to encourage a neutral and open one - something that highly religious countries and religious schools can't offer.



    Yes we can. We also know much more important things like the political crises, social issues, religious beliefs and the ethical debates of the time.



    More biased reasoning. Why would I research only individual people if I wanted to understand the political and social climate of a country? What do you think economists and sociologists and public intellectuals do? Door to door interviews?



    Irrelevant to the veracity of my posts. It's impossible not to be superior when talking to a theist. It's like talking to a homosapien from a bygone era that hasn't evolved with modern human beings. You have been left behind in human progression - the same problem NI suffers from.
    Actually my mother is Dutch and my father is English and I was brought up in an atheist household where Christianity was taught to me but in a 'it's bull' kind of way.

    My point is you keep telling me that I'm the way I am because I went to Christian schools etc. When I didn't go to a school that even taught Religious Education until I was 14. And for the record I'm not catholic.

    Native NI people and Irish people do tend to swing towards Christainity because that's the thing that done. Very few actually believe. However you can't tar everyone with the same brush.

    The best way to understand a country is by the people in it. Not by insisting that you have a right to judge the country because of your limited knowledge of it as you do.

    I haven't been left behind, I'm as evolved as you. I just don't have a huge bigoted ego that insists everyone but myself must always be wrong.

    I'm thankful of my religion because it's taught be to be accepting of everyone and Not to place myself above others.

    I'm also glad of my atheist upbringing as it allowed me to make my own decision.


    It must be lonely for you up there on your pedestal looking down on the lowly population.
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    (Original post by l'insegnante)
    Actually my mother is Dutch and my father is English and I was brought up in an atheist household where Christianity was taught to me but in a 'it's bull' kind of way.

    My point is you keep telling me that I'm the way I am because I went to Christian schools etc. When I didn't go to a school that even taught Religious Education until I was 14. And for the record I'm not catholic.
    Again, I have never mentioned your parents or said you spent every year in NI or called you Catholic. Nor have I said that every single person is affected in the same way. We are talking averages. It's no surprise to me in the slightest that you became Christian rather than Muslim or Buddhist or Atheist when considering your background.

    Native NI people and Irish people do tend to swing towards Christainity because that's the thing that done.
    Finally.

    You admit to environmental pressure and social indoctrination.

    The best way to understand a country is by the people in it. Not by insisting that you have a right to judge the country because of your limited knowledge of it as you do.
    No, countries are not understood by experts simply by getting to know individual people. That is one aspect of many that makes up the analysis and research required to understand complex social, political and historical climates.

    I haven't been left behind, I'm as evolved as you. I just don't have a huge bigoted ego that insists everyone but myself must always be wrong.
    Objectively, you and NI have been left behind. Scientific discovery and social justice has not waited for religion - it has forced it to reform. A theist in the modern day has two options:

    1. Continue with their dogmatic beliefs that have been proved scientifically erroneous and socially discriminatory, e.g. the DUP party which has led NI for years while actively against abortion and homosexuality and scientific discovery.

    2. Adapt their beliefs as their religion is reformed by the rapid progression we've experienced in the past 100 years. This requires a huge amount of self-delusion and doublethink and limits their ability to contribute to the progression of our race.

    As time goes on and reformation increases, the first category slips into the second and the second slips out of religion altogether and into the modern era.

    I'm thankful of my religion because it's taught be to be accepting of everyone and Not to place myself above others.
    These sentences don't mean anything. You don't accept everyone - you agree with rapists and murderers being placed in prison. The word "accept" has no inherent meaning in this context nor does "place above others". Empty, vague phrases. If you mean we all deserve equality then you're stating the obvious again.

    I'm also glad of my atheist upbringing as it allowed me to make my own decision.
    You didn't have an atheist upbringing. You grew up in the most Christian country in the UK in a Christian school during the most formative years of your life. You also didn't make your own decision and neither did I - we are products of our nature and nurture that we can't control. Even if you went to a hypothetical atheist school in a hypothetical oppressive atheist country and yet became Christian, this would still be because of your nature and nurture. The difference is that the PROBABILITY of becoming Christian was much lower hence why the AVERAGE would be atheist. The same goes for NI and Christianity.

    It must be lonely for you up there on your pedestal looking down on the lowly population.
    Lonely? Religion is dying. Equality is increasing. Scientific discovery is escalating at a rate not seen before. The human race is making huge strides of progress in areas I am invested in financially and emotionally. Lonliness is the domain of those who don't evolve.
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    Political Ambassador
    (Original post by macromicro)
    It's true that Northern Ireland has been struggling economically and politically for some time. There are very few graduate jobs and there is an on going religious feud since the troubles. The whole place is steeped in religion which is why people from England - which is increasingly atheist and secular - view it suspiciously. You can't drive down a road without flags on lampposts and parades happening. Police officers have to keep their jobs secret out of fear of being blown up in the religious war, and outside of Belfast - which is a small city anyway - there are no other options for young, ambitious graduates. And to top it all off the arts scene is dead. I view it as a step back in time - a place that hasn't developed as quickly due to being cut off from the mainland. There are far better places to live in the UK.
    The Six Counties has not been struggling. We have a greater GDP per capita than both North East England and Wales.
    Throughout the 1990s, our economy grew faster than the rest of the UK, due in part to the Celtic Tiger rapid growth of the economy of the Republic of Ireland and the so-called "peace dividend". In 2005, the region's economy is estimated to have grown by 3.2%, almost twice as fast as the UK as a whole, and future growth is expected to be stronger than that of the rest of the UK.

    There is no religious feud. It's not about religion, it never was about religion. One of the cornerstones of Irish Republicanism is non-sectarianism and respect for Protestants who started the Republican movement.

    It is not, and never was a "religious war". It's clearly not about furthering the cause of Catholicism or Protestantism. It's about the opposing views of those who want the "ownership of Ireland by the people of Ireland", and those that support the imperialist union.

    PSNI officers do not "live in fear". Only about 3 or 4 officers have been killed since 2000.

    If there are "far better places to live" then why is it that a Halifax survey found the North of Ireland's average house price to be one of the highest in the UK, behind London, the South East and the South West. It also found it to have all of the top ten property "hot spots", with the Craigavon and Newtownards areas increasing by 55%.

    a place that hasn't developed as quickly due to being cut off from the mainland
    The mainland?

    :banghead:

    :argh:

    I'm going to try and not be triggered by you calling Ireland "off the mainland".

    Let's consider first that the 26 county state has a far higher Human Development Index than the UK.
    If being separated from Britain makes it less likely to be developed similarly, by that logic it will have developed more like the Free State, which is more developed than the UK.

    outside of Belfast - which is a small city anyway - there are no other options for young, ambitious graduates
    You do realise that there are 6 major cities in the North?
    And that statement is pure fiction.
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    (Original post by macromicro)
    Continue with their dogmatic beliefs that have been proved scientifically erroneous and socially discriminatory, e.g. the DUP party which has led NI for years while actively against abortion and homosexuality and scientific discovery.
    The DUP has not 'led' the North. It's called a power-sharing government, and while I disagree hugely with the beliefs of their voters, the DUP has seen fit to deny the democratic will of the people in vetoing same-sex marriage legislation which the majority of the region want.They are in a power-sharing coalition gov with Sinn Féin, who are far more progressive than their counterparts.
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    (Original post by macromicro)
    Again, I have never mentioned your parents or said you spent every year in NI or called you Catholic. Nor have I said that every single person is affected in the same way. We are talking averages. It's no surprise to me in the slightest that you became Christian rather than Muslim or Buddhist or Atheist when considering your background.



    Finally.

    You admit to environmental pressure and social indoctrination.



    No, countries are not understood by experts simply by getting to know individual people. That is one aspect of many that makes up the analysis and research required to understand complex social, political and historical climates.



    Objectively, you and NI have been left behind. Scientific discovery and social justice has not waited for religion - it has forced it to reform. A theist in the modern day has two options:

    1. Continue with their dogmatic beliefs that have been proved scientifically erroneous and socially discriminatory, e.g. the DUP party which has led NI for years while actively against abortion and homosexuality and scientific discovery.

    2. Adapt their beliefs as their religion is reformed by the rapid progression we've experienced in the past 100 years. This requires a huge amount of self-delusion and doublethink and limits their ability to contribute to the progression of our race.

    As time goes on and reformation increases, the first category slips into the second and the second slips out of religion altogether and into the modern era.



    These sentences don't mean anything. You don't accept everyone - you agree with rapists and murderers being placed in prison. The word "accept" has no inherent meaning in this context nor does "place above others". Empty, vague phrases. If you mean we all deserve equality then you're stating the obvious again.



    You didn't have an atheist upbringing. You grew up in the most Christian country in the UK in a Christian school during the most formative years of your life. You also didn't make your own decision and neither did I - we are products of our nature and nurture that we can't control. Even if you went to a hypothetical atheist school in a hypothetical oppressive atheist country and yet became Christian, this would still be because of your nature and nurture. The difference is that the PROBABILITY of becoming Christian was much lower hence why the AVERAGE would be atheist. The same goes for NI and Christianity.



    Lonely? Religion is dying. Equality is increasing. Scientific discovery is escalating at a rate not seen before. The human race is making huge strides of progress in areas I am invested in financially and emotionally. Lonliness is the domain of those who don't evolve.
    Tell me what my background is then oh one who knows everything?


    How many times do I have to tell you that until the age of 14 I was brought up in an atheist household with a Dutch mother and an English father. I was school on secular schools until I was 14. None of which were even in the UK never mind NI. The USA and Holland are not NI or the UK now are they??
    So please stop thinking you know what my upbringing was like just because you have a massive ego.

    You clearly aren't evolved enough to understand than everyone is human and equal regardless of colour or creed. Since apparently I'm inferior to you for having faith.
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    (Original post by DMcGovern)
    The Six Counties has not been struggling. We have a greater GDP per capita than both North East England and Wales.
    I've already stated that. The North East and Wales are also struggling. It's akin to Bolton university saying they aren't struggling in research output and pointing to London Met's research output.

    Throughout the 1990s, our economy grew faster than the rest of the UK, due in part to the Celtic Tiger rapid growth of the economy of the Republic of Ireland and the so-called "peace dividend". In 2005, the region's economy is estimated to have grown by 3.2%, almost twice as fast as the UK as a whole, and future growth is expected to be stronger than that of the rest of the UK.
    This is all irrelevant to the post-2008 era that we live in and from when NI has been struggling economically (politically it has been struggling for centuries).

    There is no religious feud. It's not about religion, it never was about religion. One of the cornerstones of Irish Republicanism is non-sectarianism and respect for Protestants who started the Republican movement.

    It is not, and never was a "religious war". It's clearly not about furthering the cause of Catholicism or Protestantism. It's about the opposing views of those who want the "ownership of Ireland by the people of Ireland", and those that support the imperialist union.
    This has been discussed in some depth already and is academically subjective. It's a mixture of both and something of a chicken and egg argument.

    PSNI officers do not "live in fear". Only about 3 or 4 officers have been killed since 2000.
    Deaths are beside the point. There is a reason they carry firearms, are trained in anti-terrorism, are trained in bomb detection and keep their home location and occupation quiet. There were 67 legitimate bomb scares the year before last.

    If there are "far better places to live" then why is it that a Halifax survey found the North of Ireland's average house price to be one of the highest in the UK, behind London, the South East and the South West.
    Of course there are far better places to live - let's not be ridiculous. NI average house price is £150k, the same as the average for the North of England. House prices are one of many indicators and are not particularly relevant to students and recent graduates.

    Places like Newtownards are not attractive to young graduates. They are dead zones. Hmm Newtonwards or Edinburgh/Manchester/Brighton/any other city which is at least remotely interesting to someone below the age of 80.


    The mainland?
    I simply meant that its being isolated by water is not unrelated to its lagging economy and politics. Labour and residential mobility is lowered as a result, as well as political and social influence being slower, etc. It's no coincidence that NI is culturally stagnant relative to the UK.

    Let's consider first that the 26 county state has a far higher Human Development Index than the UK.
    If being separated from Britain makes it less likely to be developed similarly, by that logic it will have developed more like the Free State, which is more developed than the UK.
    The HDI has nothing to do with political and social matters. When I said development I was referring to religious beliefs, social prejudice and political stagnation. All of which Ireland suffers from as well as NI. I did not assert that their medical facilities are worse or their average GCSEs lower. These statistics tell us very little. The human race could achieve nothing while simultaneously having a very high HDI. What matters is having a high HDI (which the UK does) and doing something with it. It's more a base requirement for progression than any indicator of progression itself. What it does show is potential for progression, which is why NI is not a lost cause.

    outside of Belfast - which is a small city anyway - there are no other options for young, ambitious graduates
    You do realise that there are 6 major cities in the North?
    And that statement is pure fiction.
    "Major" is a relative term.

    Put simply, there is very little reason for graduates to go to NI. It has no attraction power due to its political and social climate, lack of graduate opportunities and geographical isolation.
 
 
 
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