For discussions on all matters relating to personal development, religion, philosophy, psychology and so on.
Churches as we currently have them are mostly the creation of governments. The Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Churches are remaining fragments of the church created by the Roman Imperial Government. Most Protestant Churches are affiliated with governments, essentially "national religions". (E.G. - The Episcopal Church is still the "official" religion of the UK, for example, but the various laws that could be used to penalize believers in other religions are not actually used any more.) Religious movements that don't have government endorsement have tended to suffer persecution by those that do have it. Consider the various Anabaptists (Amish, and related movements) or the Quakers. So it's not some idiosyncratic view on my part to say that religions, at least in the "West", are actually political movements. Nothing 'Marxist' about it either. (But then there's not much at all original about Marx anyway...)
The word hamartia, translated very closely by 'sin', is used in NT documents written long before the co-opting of the religion by the Imperial government. So no, I would not claim that 'sin' did not exist prior to 'churches' inventing it. But the concept has been severely corrupted by the drive to control people. The sense of debt, and the power of the official church to judge it and even discharge it, is the new layer that concerns me (and many others). Mainly, I dispute that this authority exists among mortal kind. But it is in the interest of the guilt-mongers to keep things conflated so they can have the leverage over people. I think this is what Susan is trying to untangle, though she might not realize it.
Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 31-May-18 00:15 by Nolondil.