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NowTheSerpent
NowTheSerpent
Joined: Sep 30, 2011
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November 16th, 2011 at 11:35:51 AM permalink
Quote: Nareed

If confession were a good means of thought control and wholesale management of the populace, then the secular religions, like Communism and Nazism, would have adopted it as well.



What about plea bargains offered to persons charged with drug possession if they give the names of their sellers, and so on? To be spared torture and execution during the Inquisition, it wasn't enough to renounce one's heresy; he had to expose his confederates as well. Aren't these scenarios similar?
Nareed
Nareed
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November 16th, 2011 at 11:51:58 AM permalink
Quote: NowTheSerpent

What about plea bargains offered to persons charged with drug possession if they give the names of their sellers, and so on? To be spared torture and execution during the Inquisition, it wasn't enough to renounce one's heresy; he had to expose his confederates as well. Aren't these scenarios similar?



To be fair, the police and the DA will offer such deals to all criminals, where aplicable, not only to those related to drugs. Do note I think drugs shouldn't be illegal, and that the "war on drugs" has been a dismal flop.

But none of these has anything to do with the practice of confession as I understand it to be. Not that I endorse such a practice, either, but that's another matter.
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FrGamble
FrGamble
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November 16th, 2011 at 11:55:42 AM permalink
Quote: EvenBob


Why do you think confession was started in the first place?



Bob I hate to disappoint you but there is no sinister plot behind why we have confession in the first place. Confession itself is good for the soul. Even outside of the specific sacramental discussion it is just common sense that being able to tell someone whom you trust what your interior struggles are and how they may have manifested themselves in outward actions you are not proud of is a good thing. It is healing to take ownership of and talk about your mistakes and an important step in overcoming them. Not that the Sacrament of Reconciliation is therapy or anything like that, but it should be obvious what Jesus is trying to do and what the Church's only concern is, namely the healing of guilt and the freedom from past mistakes.

Confession is the bold statement that my sins do not define me. My mistakes are not who I am, I am better than that, I am a child of God called to be holy. Confession in the Church is meant to remind you and I of two things: 1) God loves you always and 2) No matter what lies your sins whisper to you about who you are the truth is that you are good and wonderful in God's eyes. The result of this is not guilt or fear but transforming grace and the inspiration to live in a way worthy of your calling.

It sounds like your view of the Church and its practices have been really affected by some of the things you have read in regards to its mistakes in the past. I don't want to even try to defend the obvious sins committed by members of the Church because there is no defense, but I think some of your facts may be a little off leading you to generalizations and characterizations about the Church as a whole that are off as well. I might recommend even something as simple as reading wikipedia's brief treatment of The Spanish Inquisition for an update on the facts. Don't worry there are still plenty of mistakes made by the Church, but I think you will see that the official Catholic Church was worried and concerned, not ruthless concerning the Spanish Monarchy's establishment of their own inquisition.
Nareed
Nareed
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November 16th, 2011 at 12:04:39 PM permalink
Quote: thecesspit

I may be missing sarcasm on the internet here but...



No sarcasm. Communism is as much a religion as Christianity, and in fact they share many of the same goals. The former just happens to be much more totalitarian. But noth are based on a belief for which there is no proof. It's worse in the case of cimmunism, because you can prove it won't achieve its stated aims.

Anyway:

Quote:

Communism (at least Maoist and Cambodian versions) did have "confession". I forget the exact term for it, but cadres were encourage to not only look out for counter-revolutionary behaviour in others, but also admit and correct their own failings. These confessions were always useful if they wanted to perform a purge later.



Whom would they confess to? Some form of political officer? A work leader? The local Soviet? I can see some use in such practices, but as far as I know they weren't very widespread.

To be sure there were show trials followed by very public confessions and swift executions. If you read 1984, or saw the movie with Richard Burton, that's portrayed rather well near the end (BTW that's one book i've refused to re-read).

Quote:

The Nazi's and Russian Commies seemed to be much more keen on shopping your neighbour and exhorting each other to be "better" members of the party. That's a pretty good technique too.



It sure is, especially if you hand out rewards for it. That, too, is also portrayed in 1984. Winston's co-worker (Parsons?) was denounced by his children.
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thecesspit
thecesspit
Joined: Apr 19, 2010
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November 16th, 2011 at 12:59:52 PM permalink
Quote: Nareed

No sarcasm. Communism is as much a religion as Christianity, and in fact they share many of the same goals. The former just happens to be much more totalitarian. But noth are based on a belief for which there is no proof. It's worse in the case of cimmunism, because you can prove it won't achieve its stated aims.



The sarcasm I was thought was that the communists did use confession as part of their methods.

Quote:


Anyway:

Whom would they confess to? Some form of political officer? A work leader? The local Soviet? I can see some use in such practices, but as far as I know they weren't very widespread.



The cadres were the party worker and campaigners, the more senior members of the party. So they'd be confessing to each other and the top level leaders. Tis a funny thing, for all it's preached awareness of equality, there's a strict and delineated hierarchy in most evolved communist revolutionary parties (which is then shaken up in the next purge/revolt). Much more so than in a mainstream democratic party.

I think fear and retribution was used for the normal folks.

There was certainly parts of the Cultural Revolution in China which were used by the party as confessions of anti-revolutionary activities that didn't (always) lead to trial, detainment and/or death (Den Xiaoping was basically ex-communicated from the party during that time for his "sins".... and then was rehabilitated and became the leader later on).

I just wish I could recall the term for it that Pol Pot used. It's one of the words that like "re-education" that sounds very innocuous, but really isn't.
"Then you can admire the real gambler, who has neither eaten, slept, thought nor lived, he has so smarted under the scourge of his martingale, so suffered on the rack of his desire for a coup at trente-et-quarante" - Honore de Balzac, 1829
Nareed
Nareed
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November 16th, 2011 at 1:56:56 PM permalink
Quote: thecesspit

The sarcasm I was thought was that the communists did use confession as part of their methods.



Why not? they used others: a holy book, prayer services, god figures, prophet figures, Satan figures. If they'd found the confessional useful, they'd have used it, too.

Quote:

So they'd be confessing to each other and the top level leaders.



That makes sense.

Quote:

Tis a funny thing, for all it's preached awareness of equality, there's a strict and delineated hierarchy in most evolved communist revolutionary parties (which is then shaken up in the next purge/revolt). Much more so than in a mainstream democratic party.



Not funny at all. They also had more political advertising. Not just posters, TV and radio spots, but entire films, novels, text books, just about everything was party propaganda of one sort. They had to. The Nazis were just like that, too.
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EvenBob
EvenBob
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November 16th, 2011 at 4:32:05 PM permalink
Quote: FrGamble

It sounds like your view of the Church and its practices have been really affected by some of the things you have read in regards to its mistakes in the past.



From about 1250 to 1810, when it was finally banned, the Church
prosecuted the Inquisition in Europe. Thats 550 years of a 'mistake'?
It wasn't a mistake, it was a slow moving Holocaust on the Jews
and heretics and anybody else the Church didn't like. It was the time
of the Church's greatest increase in wealth, they robbed Europe blind,
all for the glory of making the Church rich. Calling it a 'mistake' is like
calling an amputated finger a hangnail. How can someone not be
affected by such an abomination on humanity? They tortured and
murdered ten's of thousands of people to fatten their pockets,
and did it in the name of Jesus Christ.

They tortured and murdered them in the most hideous ways possible.
When this is brought up, you always say "But look at all the good
the Church has done." When we put someone on trial for being a
serial killer and murdering 15 people, is his defense that he gave
10 million to a childrens hospital, that he did a lot of good? Of course
not, that would be ludicrous. The Church was power hungry, vain,
disdainful, corrupt, and yes, evil. They were guilty of every sin they
preached about, to the n'th degree. They've never answered for their crimes.
You don't make a 'mistake' for 550 years. It was planned, plotted,
and cleverly executed religious persecution whose main purpose
was to grow the Catholic Church into what they became, the most
powerful religion the world had ever seen. The immense wealth they
accumulated during those 550 years still props them up to this day.
They haven't made restitution, or even made any attempts to. Why
is that, Padre? They kept extremely detailed records of the tortures and
the murders and the property they confiscated. They have the records,
they know what happened.

Read the whitewashed version on Wikipedia? I don't think so. Who wrote
that, the Church? There's no details there of what happened in the
torture chambers, or what happened in the public trials. They gloss over
the fact that the Jews were the hardest hit and were followed by their persecuters
all over Europe in an attempt to convert them or wipe them out. The
public trials in the 16th and 17th centuries in Spain and Portugal were as
well attended as the bull fights.

Since the 1960's there has been a concerted effort by the Church to
'revise' the severity of the Inquisition or Inqusition's. To imply that, hey,
its wasn't that bad, a lot of it is myth and urban legend. Much like
Muslims like to deny there was a Holocaust. But the truth is out there,
it was extensively researched and written about in the 19th and early
20th century. Ever since Vatican II in the 60's, the Church has been
trying to reinvent itself. Trying to crawl out from under the burden of
its terrible history.

As one Catholic scholar put it: "We have come thusfar with broken
hearts and bruised spirits, betrayed again and again by shepherds
who became predators and preyed on our trust."
"It's not enough to succeed, your friends must fail." Gore Vidal
SOOPOO
SOOPOO
Joined: Aug 8, 2010
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November 16th, 2011 at 4:35:45 PM permalink
Bob- tell us what you really think! No need to be shy!
EvenBob
EvenBob
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November 16th, 2011 at 4:58:58 PM permalink
Quote: SOOPOO

Bob- tell us what you really think! No need to be shy!



Pope Paul II actually apologised for the Inquisition in 2004,
kind of. This was after the Symposium Report, a large
783-page volume assessing the Inquisition based on up-to-now
unseen documents from the Vatican archives. This
is like asking the Nazi's to go thru their records of what
happened in the Holocaust and give us their version of
what really happened. "Holocaust? What Holocaust?"

The Vatican records that show the torture chambers,
witch-burning, and vindictive power-crazed churchmen
were nonexistent, part of the “black legend” invented by
the Protestants. So the Pope apologised for the new, PC,
sqeaky clean version of the Inquisition, not the real one,
which of course is just made up nonsense by the
Protestants. Catholics are buying it hook line
and sinker. Anything to get from under the burden of
the truth.
"It's not enough to succeed, your friends must fail." Gore Vidal
Nareed
Nareed
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November 16th, 2011 at 5:03:45 PM permalink
Quote: FrGamble

It sounds like your view of the Church and its practices have been really affected by some of the things you have read in regards to its mistakes in the past.



I've no idea what Bob said, as I have him blocked (handy feature, that one), but I agree the past is over and doen with, and it makes no sense to blame a good man like the late Pope John Paul II, or for that matter you, for what happened then, mistake or deliberate policy.

Howvere, recently a young man's been raked over the coals for failing to do enough to stop a pedophile. The Catholic Church has its own problmes there, much mreo recent. So I would like to ask: of those priests and other Church officials who knew or suspected anything about pedophiles withing their ranks, how many reported their findings or suspicions to the police?
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