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Searcher101
12-10-2012, 05:02 AM
Hello everyone, I just signed up and i thought it would be appropriate to introduce myself.
I have been searching for the true religion for about a year now. I've checked out many different religions, Buddhism, Hinduism, Christianity, and Islam.
After many months of study, I've come to the conclusion that gods true religion is either Catholicism, or Islam.
I suppose I just have a desire to learn the truth. Any help would be appreciated. :statisfie
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Hulk
12-10-2012, 05:26 AM
Welcome to the forum, I hope you will find your stay beneficial. May I know what is the criterion you use to recognise the truth?
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Muslim Woman
12-10-2012, 06:55 AM
Salaam/ Peace

Welcome here.

Feel free to ask about Islam .

What makes u believe that Cathocism and Islam could be true religion ?
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Abu Zainab
12-10-2012, 08:13 AM
Welcome to the forum brother. Searching for the truth is the best trait a human possesses. Only those that are the best and pure at heart constantly search for the truth and try to make themselves better.

Even when you arrive at a conclusion that a certain religion is the truth you should never leave your quest for the truth.

We should always, ALWAYS go back to God sincerely and ask Him to renew our faith and show us the true path. There are so many divisions and sects in all the major religions and the adherents of those sects would all claim to be on the true path - no matter how major their differences are. So the best way to find the true path and "to be on the safe side" is to use the logic that God has given us, study, ponder and at the same time bow down to the Almighty with all sincerity and humility and ask Him to forgive our mistakes and to guide us to His path.

May the Almighty guide you to His religion and keep you happy in this life and the next.
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sister herb
12-10-2012, 11:30 PM
Salam alaykum/Peace with you

Welcome to forum. We all are looking for truth so welcome to the same path with us - where ever it will leads us.
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Searcher101
12-11-2012, 02:50 AM
Thank you for the replies everyone. And as for the criteria I use to find out the truth, I don't really have a list or anything. When I started on my search I looked at a lot of protestant denominations. Some of the things they said were nice, however I couldn't bring myself to be a protestant. The whole "faith alone" stuff really got on my nerves. What good is your faith if you don't do any good works? Also a total lack of authority. Protestantism didn't start with a divine mission from god, it was spearheaded by men with no divine mission whatsoever. Therefore they can claim no authority when it comes to religious matters. However faith is still important. As is reason. And it's because of this that I ruled out Judaism. Judaism is essentially a lot of works with little to no theological backing or any reason behind it. So I move on to eastern religions, Buddhism, Hinduism, etc. The problem with them is the same problem with protestants, no authority. Buddhism is more of a philosophy which doesn't deal with the divine, and that's not what I was looking for. And then you have Hinduism, which for me was immediately ruled out because its a pagan religion essentially. And so it came down to Catholic Christianity and Islam, and as to which one is correct I'm not sure about. I've gone to the catholic mass often, and have been taking classes at the local parish. As for Islam I bough a Koran, and some books about it. I'm at something of an in pass so to speak. It really is down to those two religions, now it's just a matter of studying both and deciding which one is true.
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Insaanah
12-11-2012, 07:00 PM
Greetings Searcher101 and welcome to the forum.

Originally Posted by Searcher101
And then you have Hinduism, which for me was immediately ruled out because its a pagan religion essentially. And so it came down to Catholic Christianity and Islam, and as to which one is correct I'm not sure about. I've gone to the catholic mass often, and have been taking classes at the local parish. As for Islam I bough a Koran, and some books about it. I'm at something of an in pass so to speak. It really is down to those two religions, now it's just a matter of studying both and deciding which one is true.
Some non-Catholic Christians see Catholicism as pagan. Catholics apart from praying to Jesus (peace be upon him) and Mary (peace be upon her), also pray to a plethora of saints for various purposes. There are more than 10,000 Catholic saints that Catholics can pray to. Essentially, a human being like us decides that someone is righteous/pious, and when that person dies, designates the deceased a saint. This then gives people the license to pray to the deceased, even though the deceased does not even possess the capability to turn him/herself by 1 inch in his/her grave! This is no different than Hindus praying to their various deities. Christians also believe in incarnations of God, as Hindus do, as they believe that Jesus (peace be upon him) is God incarnate. When you consider Catholicism along with Islam, you're essentially considering two opposites as far as the concept of God goes.

I don't know how much you know about the concept of God in Islam, but will mention some things here:

There is only One God. He alone should be worshipped. He is our Creator, Sustainer, Cherisher, and Lord. No being, no object, nothing other than Him, is worthy of prayer/worship.

He does not beget, nor is He begotten. He has no sons, daughters, siblings, parents, cousins, or relatives of any sort.

He is eternal and does not die.

He does not depend on anyone/anything yet we all depend on Him. He is free of all want and need.

There is nothing like Him. He is all Hearing, all Seeing, all Knowing, all Powerful, the Creator of the Universe.

He did not and does not, dwell in human or animal bodies, nor are there any incarnations of Him. He is not mixed up in His creation in any way.

He is not composed of persons, nor a trinity.
There are no secondary, lesser, greater, equal, or multiple gods, no intermediaries, and no denying of God's existence either.

There are no sharers or associates or parts whatsoever in His exclusive Divinity. Simply, He is One, in every sense.



I'll leave it there for now, and wish you well with your studying and please don't hesitate to ask questions.

Peace.
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YusufNoor
12-11-2012, 07:53 PM
Peace,

not so sure i agree with your conclusions on Protestantism. i assume, by one man, you mean Luther. in general, Lutheranism and Anglicanism are Catholicism without the Pope with a dose of Humanism. Calvinism and Zwingli-ism, along with other sects, are more radically anti Catholic and claim to be based on "the Bible."

the reforms in Catholicism stem from the deviancy of the Church leadership. local priests were under control of the landlords and Bishops and Popes not much different than Dukes and Kings. this led to the lower castes questioning Mass. while many were "unsure" that Priests could turn bread into the "body of Jesus", there was little question that corrupt Priests could do so. was new doctrine or new Priests the answer? this, along with an increase in literacy, led many to study and translate Scripture. you sought to justify your faith or to "tweak" your faith justifiably.

how do you justify your faith? while most look to Paul to define or justify their faith, wouldn't the one who the faith is about be the best authority? Moses is clearly understood to be a Prophet, but no one claims he was incapable of clarify the religion. Christians claim that Jesus was so much more, yet build their faith on Pauline concepts in spite of that. would "God" really come and be less of an authority than Moses? could Moses, who only "talked" with God, possibly be more precise about God than "God"?

looking at the Gospels, no proof exists who wrote them. according to the majority of scholars, Mark is believed to have been written between 65 and 75CE, Matthew and Luke around 85CE, and John sometime around 95CE. curiously, it is in the last to be penned that Christians claim most assuredly confirms Jesus' "Godhood". is God the author of confusion? if God had a message that was to last more than a generation, especially a final Message, wouldn't it be preserve in total? and wouldn't the Messenger of that Message deliver it completely?

Islam goes back directly to its Messenger, no changes. you can't change the Qur'an, and we follow the way of the Messenger. no one came along 65 years later claiming he was God. if anyone does, they aren't following Islam.

Peace
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Searcher101
12-11-2012, 08:48 PM
With catholisism, prayer doesn't equall worship by any means. Praying to saints is the same thing as asking a friend to pray for you. And I
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Searcher101
12-11-2012, 08:58 PM
With catholisim, prayer doesn't equal worship. Praying to a saint is no different than asking a friend to pray for you. And all a saint is according to Catholic theology is someone in heaven. To them, there are millions of saints that we don't know about. The process of cannonization to become a Catholic saint is a process, and to be a confirmed saint you have to have two miracles attributed to you. And I do understand the Islamic concept of God. I'm not lumping Catholisim and Islam into the same category, or saying they hold a similar view of God, all I'm saying is that one of them is the true religion. They are readically different from each other, but they both offer the most evidence in support of their claim of being the one church. And while there is no doubt that there have been some deviant priests, and even popes, they certainly aren't the majority. I find that judging any faith by its members to be a bad idea. I look at a religions tenents, beliefs, and practices before I look at the behavior of its members. So as to how some priests and bishops acted in the past doesn't matter to me.
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YusufNoor
12-11-2012, 11:20 PM
these miracles, how are they witnesses? [kind of a trick question]
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Searcher101
12-12-2012, 12:31 AM
My understanding of it is that if there is say a medical problem, and there is no cure and someone prays to a saint and they are miraculously cured, then that's a sign. I think there are other ways as well, but I don't know for certain. I didn't come on here to argue, I came here to learn. My position isn't the Catholic position don't get me wrong. I'm undecided. I came here to learn, and I'm looking forward to learning more about Islam.
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YusufNoor
12-12-2012, 12:40 AM
i'm asking you to look into the matter. i'm not arguing. i got my answer from a Catholic Professor. if you knew what he said, you'd realize it is a trick question. i'm just being honest, not arguing. and don't lock your mind into today. after Constantine, the Church needed new candidates for saints as the title usually went to martyrs before for that.

so 2 miracles, how are they witnessed?
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Searcher101
12-12-2012, 01:00 AM
I would think that they are witnessed by the people who prayed in the first place. So say a miracle occurred, they would tell the bishop, and them the bishop would tell the Holy See. Say for example a patient was sick, there was no known cure for the ailment, prayers were directed to the person, the patient was cured, the cure was spontaneous, instantaneous, complete and lasting, and doctors cannot find any natural explanation. The miracle was witnessed by the patient, and the doctors.
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YusufNoor
12-12-2012, 01:32 AM
there are Catholic saints. how were they canonized. i'm not asking how you think it might happen. how DID it happen, and how were those "miracles" witnessed?

examples please.
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Searcher101
12-12-2012, 01:48 AM
"1. To begin a cause it is necessary for at least 5 years to have passed since the death of the candidate. This is to allow greater balance and objectivity in evaluating the case and to let the emotions of the moment dissipate.

"2. The bishop of the diocese in which the person whose beatification is being requested died is responsible for beginning the investigation. The promoter group ('Actor Causae'): diocese, parish, religious congregation, association, asks the bishop through the postulator for the opening of the investigation. The bishop, once the 'nulla osta' of the Holy See is obtained, forms a diocesan tribunal for this purpose. Witnesses are called before the tribunal to recount concrete facts on the exercise of Christian virtues considered heroic, that is, the theological virtues: faith, hope and charity, and the cardinal virtues: prudence, justice, temperance and fortitude, and others specific to his state in life. In addition, all documents regarding the candidate must be gathered. At this point he is entitled to the title of Servant of God.

"3. Once the diocesan investigation is finished, the acts and documentation are passed on to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. The public copy used for further work is put together here. The postulator, resident in Rome, follows the preparation of the 'Positio', or summary of the documentation that proves the heroic exercise of virtue, under the direction of a relator of the Congregation. The 'Positio' undergoes an examination (theological) by nine theologians who give their vote. If the majority of the theologians are in favor the cause is passed on for examination by cardinals and bishops who are members of the congregation. They hold meetings twice a month. If their judgment is favorable the prefect of the congregation presents the results of the entire course of the cause to the Holy Father, who gives his approval and authorizes the congregation to draft the relative decree. The public reading and promulgation of the decree follows.

"4. For the beatification of a confessor a miracle attributed to the Servant of God, verified after his death, is necessary. The required miracle must be proven through the appropriate canonical investigation, following a procedure analogous to that for heroic virtues. This one too is concluded with the relative decree. Once the two decrees are promulgated (regarding the heroic virtues and the miracle) the Holy Father decides on beatification, which is the concession of public worship, limited to a particular sphere. With beatification the candidate receives the title of Blessed.

"5. For canonization another miracle is needed, attributed to the intercession of the Blessed and having occurred after his beatification. The methods for ascertainment of the affirmed miracle are the same as those followed for beatification. Canonization is understood as the concession of public worship in the Universal Church. Pontifical infallibility is involved. With canonization, the Blessed acquires the title of Saint."

That is the process of Canonization for the Catholic church.

Also there's and article that explains the specifics of how a miracle is investigated on the website foreign policy. I tried to post a link, but apparently I can't do that yet.

It seems as if you already know though, so perhaps you could tell me the answer to your trick question?
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YusufNoor
12-12-2012, 02:50 AM
sorry, you just listed a process. not really an expose, so to speak.

here's how Prof. William Cook put it: when there was a calamity, such as a flood or a plague, the people would go and dig up the bones of some "holy man", generally a monk in post Constantine Christianity, and pray to the bones. eventually, when the natural disaster abated it would be attributed to the dead person. not that the dead person did the miracle, but that the dead person prayed to God after hearing the prayers of the living and then God in turn, answered the prayers of the dead guy.

ta da, miracle!

did the natural disaster abate early? or when it was over? eventually being the key word there. likewise, where is the witness to the dead guy praying to God? and where is the proof that God 1) answered any prayer, 2) the dead guys prayer or 3) the prayer of someone that is actually alive?

that is why it is kind of a trick question.

edit. sorry, from these lectures:

http://www.thegreatcourses.com/tgc/c....aspx?cid=6640
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Insaanah
12-12-2012, 07:24 PM
Originally Posted by Searcher101
I came here to learn, and I'm looking forward to learning more about Islam.
I posted this earlier, don't know if you read it, or if you already knew this and had other questions to ask.

Originally Posted by Insaanah
I don't know how much you know about the concept of God in Islam, but will mention some things here:

There is only One God. He alone should be worshipped. He is our Creator, Sustainer, Cherisher, and Lord. No being, no object, nothing other than Him, is worthy of prayer/worship.

He does not beget, nor is He begotten. He has no sons, daughters, siblings, parents, cousins, or relatives of any sort.

He is eternal and does not die.

He does not depend on anyone/anything yet we all depend on Him. He is free of all want and need.

There is nothing like Him. He is all Hearing, all Seeing, all Knowing, all Powerful, the Creator of the Universe.

He did not and does not, dwell in human or animal bodies, nor are there any incarnations of Him. He is not mixed up in His creation in any way.

He is not composed of persons, nor a trinity.
There are no secondary, lesser, greater, equal, or multiple gods, no intermediaries, and no denying of God's existence either.

There are no sharers or associates or parts whatsoever in His exclusive Divinity. Simply, He is One, in every sense.
How does the concept of God in Islam strike you?

Please feel free to ask other questions you may have.

Peace.
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Searcher101
12-12-2012, 08:20 PM
"There is nothing like Him." What strikes me is the lack of human charecteristics. Also the oneness of God. The Islamic idea of God seems more like a master and teacher, as opposed to the christian idea of god, which is more paternal. This makes more sense to me than most other concepts of God. With him being one, you don't have to explain the entire conveluted concept of the trinity.
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Ernest
12-15-2012, 11:20 PM
Welcome! I'm Catholic! This is a great forum for you to learn about Islam. I came here because I was enamoured by Arabic culture and I wanted to expand my knowledge on the this Abrahamic religion. A long, while ago, i didn't care about Islam until I discovered that the one and only God of Abraham is also worshipped by Muslims. Now I find myself sometimes saying Praise Allah or insha Allah/God willing.
It is quite fascinating to find links from The Bible and Quran i.e. Mary/Maryam is believed to have given birth to Jesus as a virgin in both Christianity and Islam!(for a Christian that is amazingly awestrucking as Muslims don't even believe in the mystery of the Trinity. )

I admire the piety of Muslim worship....and the Muslim daily devoution to prayer. (Salat)

I am so glad you already figured out that Catolicism is the original, true Christian Church. It is the only Church with all four marks: one, holy, catholic/universal and apostolic. All the beliefs of the Catholic Church is summed up in the creed.

I am Catholic because the Catholic Church has everything I need e.g. Confession, Eucharist...etc. and you won't that in Protestatism.

You most definitely have great knowledge to be able to narrow the term " truth" to Catholicism or Islam!

As for Islam there are the five pillars (you've probably heard it).

I recommend you google "the Catechism of the Catholic Church". Even people from Catholic Answers quote regularily from it. That way, you will be able to see the Church's stances on anything.

I also recommend the Muslims here if interested to do likewise if they need to post a question/comment on Catolicism. It makes me sad to see posters using half-statements in the wrong context. :s

You might want to befriend a priest or a knowledgable Muslim like a imam on Facebook.

God bless you.

I pray that you will find the truth.
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Ernest
12-15-2012, 11:22 PM
I see there is a discussion going on... It is late I have to come back tomorrow.
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