Date: 2017-04-17 12:00 am (UTC)
I've never heard Buddhism say that suffering is *good*, merely that it happens.

Buddhism does have a tendency to see pleasure as bad, but only insofar as it relates to attachment. When something gives one pleasure, one tends to seek it out, to be dissatisfied when it doesn't work, and to push for it, even when it leads one to do bad things.

Christians do have the baggage of Paul who quite famously said "you should just keep it in your pants, but damn, if you can't, you just *can't*, okay, fine, get married."

Christianity also has the complete gonzo idea that "since there was sin in the world, someone had to *suffer*."

I mean, that's totally bonkers. You could convince me that an act of evil needs a more powerful act of good to set things right. But the idea that evil must be punished, rather than made right, just doesn't make any sense at all. Sure, punishing behavior is a way to make sure it doesn't pay. If a thief just has to return the value stolen, sneaky stealing is a great idea, if you're good enough not to get caught most of the time. But if you're going to lose what you stole, and face nasty consequences, now stealing looks like a bad idea.

That's a human thing, though - it makes no sense for someone from the outside to want to impose it.

(Though I suppose you could convince me that God's response is "Hey, dude, I gotta talk to them in a manner they might understand!")

Judaism does have a mixed baggage. For example, predominate theory is "Onan refused to obey the law, and was punished for it" but there was, even back then, a minority voice saying that "and besides, spilling one's seed is not right!"

Kinda sad that being uptight over jerking off goes back 4000 or so years.

I don't know about Islam. I know all three push the notion of sex only inside marriage, but I've always pondered whether those were rules for the times. Today, if Moses brought the law, would it say "you make sure any children will be cared for, and you WILL use a condom *anyway* until you're fluid bonded, because fucking is too holy to let you risk spreading something vile as a side effect"?

I think that's what the rule would be. But fundamentalists insist that the bible is the sole source of truth, which makes no sense either.

Someone once summarized how I felt: basically "if God created the whole universe in 144 hours (with a 24 hour rest period), I could believe that far more easily than believing that one book could hold all the answers, in different times and places and even in different languages."

And yet... one of the reasons Christianity bugs me is that, if there was some universal goodness that could be distilled down to essence, it would make sense if the primary goals were to try to love what is good, and to try to love other people, so you could understand and appreciate them, and understand what goodness might be.

You would be called to do as the beatitudes call; you would be judged as whether you gave food to the hungry, drink to the thirsty, shelter and comfort to those in need.

What it's commonly described as is pointless to me, but there is some deep and abiding good within it, and I like to pretend that this goodness is deep within its nature for those who seek to find it.

Then again, I think any who seek to do right will learn more about how to do right. There are better and worse ways to seek what's right and good, though, especially from an individual perspective.
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