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Sikh News The Texas State Capitol's Ten Commandments at the Supreme Court

Discussion in 'Breaking News' started by Sikh News Reporter, Mar 11, 2005.

  1. Sikh News Reporter

    Sikh News Reporter United States
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  3. S|kH

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    Jul 11, 2004
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    Re: The Texas State Capitol's Ten Commandments at the Supreme Court

    Hamilton is known to write BS.

    look at her apparent liberal slant.

    I agree with O'Conner, it's a very, very tough decision.
    But, I am for the Ten Commandments to remain.
  4. ravisingh

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    Jan 21, 2005
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    Re: The Texas State Capitol's Ten Commandments at the Supreme Court


    Just my humble opinion, I don't think they should remain especially not outside courthouses as
    they are irrelevant (and in at least one case go against the consitiution of the United States
    to the laws of the land. Rather than the many arguments re: religious
    toleration, etc. that are out there (a lot of them legitimate in my view)
    I will examine the 10 commandments themselves to demonstrate why in my view
    they are irrelevant to law as most of they are inconsistent
    with the current legal system in the United States.

    The 10 Commandments
    1. You shall not worship any other god but YHWH.
    Well last time I checked this is not illegal in the USA Otherwise as a
    Sikh you would be indicted. And this commandment goes against the first ammendment

    2. You shall not make a graven image.
    Ditto on this one.

    3. You shall not take the name of YHWH in vain.
    Try to take someone to court on this one and see what happens.

    4. You shall not break the Sabbath.
    Ditto on this one.

    5. You shall not dishonor your parents.
    If this one were illegal boy would I love to be a lawyer! You know how
    much $ I would make?

    6. You shall not murder.
    Ok, I'll grant you this one.

    7. You shall not commit adultery
    Again, not illegal in the US

    8. You shall not steal.
    This one is still relevant unless by "steal" we mean to include some
    shady business practices

    9. You shall not commit perjury.
    Nope most lying is a-ok in the US

    10. You shall not covet.
    Envy is also a-ok in the US of A.

    So only 2 of 10 are actually consistent with the US judicial system.
    Hardly a ringing endorsement for having them prominently displayed in
    and around US public offices and courtrooms.

    Also, I did not realize that 'Liberal' (a group in which I include myself)
    was a bad word. Would honestly love to hear your thoughts on this one. I've noticed
    a trend like this in the US and am interested to hear your thoughts on this.

    Do you and other forum members think that Sikh thought is liberal or conservative?
  5. Arvind

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    Jul 13, 2004
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    Re: The Texas State Capitol's Ten Commandments at the Supreme Court

    Forgive my ignorance. What is YHWH ? And what is the commandment fuss about?

  6. CaramelChocolate

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    Jul 13, 2004
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    Re: The Texas State Capitol's Ten Commandments at the Supreme Court

    YHWH is shortened name of God. I think the shortening is something to do with Jewish people not being allowed to spellt God's name.

    RaviSingh - Why do you agree that breaking the sabbath and not worshipping idols should be in the law? If that happens then it would be forbidden to even cook on saturday and sunday [the sabbath for Jews, Christians]. And as for idol worship you would not exactly be giving freedom which America supposedly stands for.
  7. ravisingh

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    Jan 21, 2005
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    Re: The Texas State Capitol's Ten Commandments at the Supreme Court


    I must have been unclear in my response. I do not agree that the 10 commandments should be placed outside of courthouses, etc. because they are irrelevant especially things like don't break the sabbath. By "ditto" I meant "the same as the above" ie. they are not consistent with the US judicial system. Sorry for the confusion. I'll quote my own post to attempt to clarify:
    The 2 that are consistent are don't steal (#8) and don't murder (#6)


    Yes YHWH is God. Jews do not use vowels when writing it as the name of God is divine.

    The 10 commandment issue is very big in the states right now. Many (especially the religious right) argue that they should remain prominently displayed in public buildings and outside of courthouses. Ultimately, it comes down to the separation of church and state. Others argue that the US was founded based on Chrisitian ideals and that the 10 commandments play a big part in this. Incidentally, the US consititution was not based on christian ideals but rather stem from Enlightment philosophers --most of the founding fathers were in fact deists and opposed to Christianity.
  8. S|kH

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    Jul 11, 2004
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    Re: The Texas State Capitol's Ten Commandments at the Supreme Court

    Nice response Ravi, but to say the 10 Commandments are irrelevent to America is pretty foolish. Try to pass that by Justice O' Conner.
    America, according to tradition and even the judges today, still believe that their authority is derived from God. The Commandments are a historical record of the first laws passed by God's followers (whether God be Allah or not, thats up to you). Many Americans, and by tradition the Court has always believed such a thing. The Court also holds a traditional mandatory prayer before each of their hearings, should this be removed too? The Mayflower Compact is also up for display in many courtrooms, that should be removed? So is the DOI. The Mayflower Compact has nothing to do with anything in our current Judicial system, so let's take that down? How about many other displays that are in writing...

    Obviously any document or anything on display in a court room can be seen as irrelevent. This in fact, destroys your next arguement when you claim that it is against the 1st amendment, or the "Separation of Church and State". The State does NOT have to be hostile towards religion, and IT can decide to treat funds to all religions equally, and display religious material on government grounds as LONG as it does NOT rule by that material. So, if the Commandments are "irrelevent" there not ruling by the Commandments either way, so therefore its ok for the Judges to have it. E.G. "I am sentencing you to 10 days in Jail for violating Commandment #1." You won't see that in a U.S. Court.

    As far as you saying that most of the founders of America are deists, is simply wrong too. Most were Christians, and some were deists. And as far as "Separation of Church and State"...this is being overused to destroy all religoius symbolism and other religious material from this country. This is what the left wants, secularists, to make us into something like Europe, where even the word of "Christianity" reminds them of the devil and disaster.

    Declaration of Independence also stated "The Creator" and referenced God. Should that be removed? If something is historical, or has been seen as historical for many Justices and Judges than there is no need to remove it.

    Also, read this article I sent into my college newspaper :

    lol, and your question of using the word "liberal" in a bad way... This came about from conservatives as a lash back at Europe, since most liberals or leftists want us to become exactly how Europe is, and we would like to take our own road, no matter how backwards it seems to some of you. I include myself as conservative.

    And as far as what "Sikh thought" is, I think it's a mix of both conservatism and liberalism. I am liberal at the same time as I am conservative. I am usually liberal when it comes to blind tradition, but if I see meaning behind it, I tend to become conservative. (See reasons why Sikh Thong should be allowed, but yet why the Commandments should remain). Thats jus my personal views though. I have many friends which are liberals, and we usually kid around with each other about the liberal-conservative word-throwing and such.

    But, most conservatives use the word liberal in a bad way, because liberals are more aligned to that of Europe and making America become like Europe/Canada.

    Interesting debate, let's keep this going...
  9. ravisingh

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    Jan 21, 2005
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    Re: The Texas State Capitol's Ten Commandments at the Supreme Court


    I agree that we should keep this going as there are many relevant issues being raised here re:what it means to be a religious person within the context of a modern state --I would argue that this os one of the most important issues in modern times so I would love to hear other people's views on this as well.

    Nice well written article! I think you raise very good point esp. about the perceived importance of religious impartiality. This last issue is especially important to Sikhs as in many countries (including the US, Canada, UK, France, etc) this issue lies at the heart of many of the claims made against the Sikh's right to wear the turban. I can see how your view allows you to consistently maintain that Sikhs and other religious groups should be given certain concessions re:religious rights --ex. a judge wearing a turban in your view would be completely acceptable because all religious groups should be allowed to express their religious views equally. I, of course, believe that a judge should be allowed to wear a turban as well but I will post my views on this in my next post. First, I would like to get the founding fathers were christians/diests thing out of the way.

    I will offer my view on the following issues you raise as well as the liberal/conservative divide and how it relates to Sikhism in my next post:

    On the founding fathers thing. I should have said the most of the most famous founding fathers were in fact deist and in many cases quite hostile to religion. I apologize for the oversight.

    Read below (taken almost verbatim from www.deism.org)

    America's Most Famous Deists

    "The United States of America should have a foundation free from the influence of clergy."
    -George Washington

    "The founders of our nation were nearly all Infidels."
    -The Rev. Bird Wilson, an Episcopal minister and historian (lamented in an 1831 sermon)

    Founding Father Quotes You Won't Hear on the 700 Club

    Ex-Judge Moore felt that keeping a monument of the 10 Commandments in a courthouse was appropriate because he felt it was the foundation of American law. He obviously never read the Constitution of the United States.

    "...but America was founded as a Christian nation," many say. Not so. Most of the more famous Founding Fathers were, in fact, Deists. Just listen to their own words.

    The Constitution of the United States

    Article VI, Section 3: “...no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.”

    First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion...”

    George Washington

    George Washington to Tench Tilghman, (March 24, 1784):
    "I am a good deal in want of a House Joiner and Bricklayer, (who really understand their profession) and you would do me a favor by purchasing one of each, for me. I would not confine you to Palatines. If they are good workmen, they may be of Asia, Africa, or Europe. They may be Mahometans, Jews or Christian of an Sect, or they may be Atheists."

    John Adams

    From a letter to Charles Cushing (October 19, 1756):
    “Twenty times in the course of my late reading, have I been upon the point of breaking out, ‘this would be the best of all possible worlds, if there were no religion in it.’”

    A Defense of the Constitutions of Government of the United States of America, 1787–88:
    “The United States of America have exhibited, perhaps, the first example of governments erected on the simple principles of nature; and if men are now sufficiently enlightened to disabuse themselves of artifice, imposture, hypocrisy, and superstition, they will consider this event as an era in their history. … It will never be pretended that any persons employed in that service [forming the U.S. government] had interviews with the gods, or were in any degree under the influence of Heaven, more than those at work upon ships or houses, or laboring in merchandise or agriculture; it will forever be acknowledged that these governments were contrived merely by the use of reason and the senses. …Thirteen governments [of the original states] thus founded on the natural authority of the people alone, without a pretence of miracle or mystery… are a great point gained in favor of the rights of mankind”

    Treaty of Tripoli, Article 11: Written during the Administration of George Washington and signed into law by John Adams.
    “The government of the United States is not in any sense founded on the Christian religion.”

    John Adams, letter to Thomas Jefferson, (July 16, 1814):
    "Cabalistic Christianity, which is Catholic Christianity, and which has prevailed for 1,500 years, has received a mortal wound, of which the monster must finally die. Yet so strong is his constitution, that he may endure for centuries before he expires."

    Thomas Jefferson

    Letter to his nephew, Peter Carr, August 10, 1787
    "Shake off all the fears of servile prejudices, under which weak minds are servilely crouched. Fix reason firmly in her seat, and call on her tribunal for every fact, every opinion. Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason than that of blindfolded fear."

    Thomas Jefferson to Jeremiah Moore, August 14, 1800
    "The clergy, by getting themselves established by law, & ingrafted into the machine of government, have been a very formidable engine against the civil and religious rights of man. They are still so in many countries & even in some of these United States. Even in 1783, we doubted the stability of our recent measures for reducing them to the footing of other useful callings. It now appears that our means were effectual."

    Letter to Dr. Benjamin Rush, September 23, 1800
    “[The clergy] believe that any portion of power confided to me, will be exerted in opposition to their schemes. And they believe rightly: for I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man”

    Thomas Jefferson, March 4, 1801, First Inaugural Address
    "And let us reflect that, having banished from our land that religious intolerance under which mankind so long bled and suffered, we have yet gained little if we countenance a political intolerance as despotic, as wicked, and capable of as bitter and bloody persecutions."

    Thomas Jefferson, letter to Edward Dowse, April 19, 1803
    "I will never, by any word or act, bow to the shrine of intolerance, or admit a right of inquiry into the religious opinions of others."

    Thomas Jefferson to Samuel Kercheval, January 19, 1810
    "But a short time elapsed after the death of the great reformer of the Jewish religion, before his principles were departed from by those who professed to be his special servants, and perverted into an engine for enslaving mankind, and aggrandizing their oppressors in Church and State."

    Letter to Alexander von Humboldt, December 6, 1813
    "History I believe furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil government. This marks the lowest grade of ignorance, of which their political as well as religious leaders will always avail themselves for their own purpose."

    Letter to Horatio G. Spafford, March 17, 1814
    “In every country and in every age, the priest has been hostile to liberty. He is always in alliance with the despot, abetting his abuses in return for protection to his own”

    Thomas Jefferson to Horatio G. Spafford, January 10, 1816
    "You judge truly that I am not afraid of the priests. They have tried upon me all their various batteries, of pious whining, hypocritical canting, lying & slandering, without being able to give me one moment of pain. I have contemplated their order from the Magi of the East to the Saints of the West, and I have found no difference of character, but of more or less caution, in proportion to their information or ignorance of those on whom their interested duperies were to be plaid off. Their sway in New England is indeed formidable. No mind beyond mediocrity dares there to develope itself. If it does, they excite against it the public opinion which they command, & by little, but incessant and teasing persecutions, drive it from among them. Their present emigrations to the Western country are real flights from persecution, religious & political, but the abandonment of the country by those who wish to enjoy freedom of opinion leaves the despotism over the residue more intense, more oppressive. They are now looking to the flesh pots of the South and aiming at foothold there by their missionary teachers. They have lately come forward boldly with their plan to establish " a qualified religious instructor over every thousand souls in the US." And they seem to consider none as qualified but their own sect."

    Thomas Jefferson to John Adams, May 5, 1817
    "I had believed that [Connecticut was] the last retreat of monkish darkness, bigotry, and abhorrence of those advances of the mind which had carried the other States a century ahead of them. ... I join you, therefore, in sincere congratulations that this den of the priesthood is at length broken up, and that a Protestant Popedom is no longer to disgrace the American history and character. If by religion we are to understand sectarian dogmas, in which no two of them agree, then your exclamation on that hypothesis is just, 'that this would be the best of all possible worlds, if there were no religion in it.'

    Letter to John Adams, April 11, 1823
    "One day the dawn of reason and freedom of thought in the United States will tear down the artificial scaffolding of Christianity. And the day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the Supreme Being as His father, in the womb of a virgin will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter."

    Jefferson's Autobiography
    “[A]n amendment was proposed by inserting ‘Jesus Christ,’ so that [the preamble] should read ‘A departure from the plan of Jesus Christ, the holy author of our religion’; the insertion was rejected by a great majority, in proof that they meant to comprehend, within the mantle of its protection, the Jew and the Gentile, the Christian and Mohammedan, the Hindoo and Infidel of every denomination”

    James Madison

    Letter to William Bradford, April 1, 1774:
    "Religious bondage shackles and debilitates the mind and unfits it for every noble enterprise"

    Memorial and Remonstrance Against Religious Assessments, Section 7, 1785:
    “During almost fifteen centuries has the legal establishment of Christianity been on trial. What have been its fruits? More or less, in all places, pride and indolence in the clergy; ignorance and servility in laity; in both, superstition, bigotry, and persecution.”

    Ibid, Section 8:
    “What influence in fact have ecclesiastical establishments had on Civil Society? In some instances they have been seen to erect a spiritual tyranny on the ruins of the Civil authority; in many instances they have been seen upholding the thrones of political tyranny: in no instance have they been seen as the guardians of the liberties of the people. Rulers who wished to subvert the public liberty, may have found an established Clergy convenient auxiliaries”

    James Madison, introducing the Bill of Rights at the First Federal Congress, Congressional Register, June 8, 1789:
    "[The] civil rights of none shall be abridged on account of religious belief or worship, nor shall any national religion be established, nor shall the full and equal rights of conscience be in any manner or on any pretext infringed."

    James Madison, Detached Memoranda, believed to have been written circa 1817.
    "The establishment of the chaplainship to Congress is a palpable violation of equal rights, as well as of Constitutional principles: The tenets of the chaplains elected [by the majority] shut the door of worship against the members whose creeds and consciences forbid a participation in that of the majority. To say nothing of other sects, this is the case with that of Roman Catholics and Quakers who have always had members in one or both of the Legislative branches. Could a Catholic clergyman ever hope to be appointed a Chaplain? To say that his religious principles are obnoxious or that his sect is small, is to lift the evil at once and exhibit in its naked deformity the doctrine that religious truth is to be tested by numbers. or that the major sects have a right to govern the minor."

    James Madison, letter to Robert Walsh, March 2, 1819
    "The Civil Government, though bereft of everything like an associated hierarchy, possesses the requisite stability and performs its functions with complete success, whilst the number, the industry, and the morality of the priesthood, and the devotion of the people have been manifestly increased by the total separation of the Church from the State."

    James Madison, letter to Edward Livingston, July 10, 1822:
    "I observe with particular pleasure the view you have taken of the immunity of Religion from civil jurisdiction, in every case where it does not trespass on private rights or the public peace. This has always been a favorite principle with me; and it was not with my approbation, that the deviation from it took place in Cong[ress], when they appointed Chaplains, to be paid from the Nat[ional] Treasury. It would have been a much better proof to their Constituents of their pious feeling if the members had contributed for the purpose, a pittance from their own pockets. As the precedent is not likely to be rescinded, the best that can now be done, may be to apply to the Const[itution] the maxim of the law, de minimis non curat."

    Benjamin Franklin

    From Franklin’s autobiography:
    “Scarcely was I arrived at fifteen years of age, when, after having doubted in turn of different tenets, according as I found them combated in the different books that I read, I began to doubt of Revelation itself ”

    “...Some books against Deism fell into my hands....It happened that they wrought an effect on me quite contrary to what was intended by them; for the arguments of the Deists, which were quote to be refuted, appeared to me much stronger than the refutations, in short, I soon became a thorough Deist.”

    Benjamin Franklin, The Writings of Benjamin Franklin: London, 1757 - 1775
    "If we look back into history for the character of present sects in Christianity, we shall find few that have not in their turns been persecutors, and complainers of persecution. The primitive Christians thought persecution extremely wrong in the Pagans, but practised it on one another. The first Protestants of the Church of England, blamed persecution in the Roman church, but practised it against the Puritans: these found it wrong in the Bishops, but fell into the same practice themselves both here and in New England."

    Ethan Allen

    From Religion of the American Enlightenment:
    “Denominated a Deist, the reality of which I have never disputed, being conscious that I am no Christian.”

    Thomas Paine

    Excerpts from The Age of Reason:

    "My own mind is my own church. All national institutions of churches, whether Jewish, Christian or Turkish, appear to me no other than human inventions, set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit."

    "Whenever we read the obscene stores (of the Bible), the voluptuous debaucheries, the cruel and torturous executions, the unrelenting vindictiveness which which more than half the Bible is filled, it would be more consistent that we call it the word of a demon than the Word of God."

    "...when I see throughout the greater part of this book (the Bible) scarcely anything but a history of the grossest vices and a collection of the most paltry and contemptible tales, I cannot dishonor my Creator by calling it by His name."

    "(The Christian) despises the choicest gift of God to man, the Gift of Reason; and having endeavored to force upon himself the belief of a system against which reason revolts, he ungratefully calls if 'human reason' as if man could give reason to himself."

    “Of all the systems of religion that ever were invented, there is no more derogatory to the Almighty, more unedifying to man, more repugnant to reason, and more contradictory in itself than this thing called Christianity”

    Thomas Paine, Answers to Friends regarding The Age of Reason, Paris, May 12, 1797

    "As I have now given you my reasons for believing that the Bible is not the Word of God, that it is a falsehood, I have a right to ask you your reasons for believing the contrary; but I know you can give me none, except that you were educated to believe the Bible; and as the Turks give the same reason for believing the Koran, it is evident that education makes all the difference, and that reason and truth have nothing to do in the case. You believe in the Bible from the accident of birth, and the Turks believe in the Koran from the same accident, and each calls the other infidel. But leaving the prejudice of education out of the case, the unprejudiced truth is, that all are infidels who believe falsely of God, whether they draw their creed from the Bible, or from the Koran, from the Old Testament, or from the New."

    "It is often said in the Bible that God spake unto Moses, but how do you know that God spake unto Moses? Because, you will say, the Bible says so. The Koran says, that God spake unto Mahomet, do you believe that too? No. Why not? Because, you will say, you do not believe it; and so because you do, and because you don't is all the reason you can give for believing or disbelieving except that you will say that Mahomet was an impostor. And how do you know Moses was not an impostor?"
  10. S|kH

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    Jul 11, 2004
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    Re: The Texas State Capitol's Ten Commandments at the Supreme Court

    The Founding Father debate...

    I've went through this debate so many times, but if it's all about picking quotes, than no one wins. Most of the Founding Fathers whether they be famous or not, were Christians, some were deists. All of the one Fathers you listed, also have quotes which would resemble that of staunch Christians. The reason America is not a Theocracy is because they were also students of the Elightenment Era, but were also traditional and conservative at the same time. They were not students as some of their peers were in other nations, where people had started to speak and attack religion directly.

    NOTE - I do not necessarily agree with some of the quotes I am about to post, but that does not change the words said from the Fathers.

    PATRICK HENRY- "Let us never make the mistake that this nation was formed
    for mere religious freedom. No! it was founded upon Christian principles for Christian freedom."

    John Jay -"This nation was founded upon Christian principles, and can only
    be best served when Christians hold office."
    The following quotes reflect the Fathers and the Bible :

    GEORGE WASHINGTON- "It is impossible to rightly govern the world without
    the Bible."

    Declaration of Independence - "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--" SIGNED BY MOSTLY ALL OF THE PEOPLE YOU LISTED.

    James Madison - "We have staked the whole future of American Civilization, not upon the power of government, far from it. We have staked the future upon the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves, to sustain ourselves,
    according to the Ten Commandments of God"

    All of the signers of the DoI, the constitution / bill of rights, and federalists papers were Christians, all but 2 were regular attendees of a local church. 25% of them were ministers of The Lord Jesus Christ's Gospel.

    Thomas Jefferson - "I am a real Christian, that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus. I have little doubt that our whole country will soon be rallied to the unity of our creator."

    Although I would probably agree with you Jefferson became or was a diest at one point in his life.

    John Quincy Adams - "The highest glory of the American Revolution was this: "It connected in one indissoluble bond the principles of civil government with the principles of Christianity."

    Benjamin Franklin, June 28, 1787 Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania -
    “In the beginning of the contest with Britain, when we were sensible of danger, we had daily prayers in this room for divine protection. Our prayers, sir, were heard; and they were graciously answered. All of us who were engaged in the struggle must have observed frequent instances of a superintending Providence in our favor. To that kind of Providence we owe this happy opportunity of consulting in peace on the means of establishing our future national felicity. And have we now forgotten our that powerful Friend? Or do we imagine that we no longer need His assistance?
    I have lived, sir, a long time; and the longer I live the more convincing proofs I see of this truth---that God governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without His notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without His aid? We have been assured, sir, in the sacred writings, that ‘except the Lord build the house they labor in vain that build it.’ I firmly believe this; and I also believe that without His concurring aid we shall succeed in this political building no better than the builders of Babel; we shall be divided by our little partial, local interests, our projects will be confounded and we ourselves shall become a reproach and a byword down to future ages. And, what is worse, mankind may hereafter, from this unfortunate instance, despair of establishing government by human wisdom and leave it to chance, war, or conquest.
    I therefore, beg leave to move:
    That hereafter prayers, imploring the assistance of Heaven and its blessing on our deliberations, be held in this assembly every morning before we proceed to business, and that one or more of the clergy of this city be requested to officiate in that service."

    and the list goes on, if you really wish to read all the quotes, I can show you them. I have researched this before and went through this argument in great detail.

    Now, many people will rebuttle saying, "If they were Christians, why didn't they make America a theocracy"....and I say, I am a Sikh, but I would never make a country run solely by Sikhism, due to human nature, I know that it could never become perfect. Many religions have tried it before, and all have failed, democracy is the way to go. Also, some quotes from the Founders state something along the lines that "if this world had no religion in it, it would be excellent" etc... Does everyone not feel this at one point in time when they see "religious wars" around them? Many people expressed this view after 9/11 and the Christian vs. Muslim sentiments, they thought if there was no religion, than the world would be ok. It's usually just a swing, everyone goes through it, and says it at one point in time.

    Now, for the big Constitution quote :
    First Amendment - Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof

    "respecting an establishment of religion"...therefore Congress can not say they belong to "The Unitarian Church of Christ" and only donate money to that Church. Historically, and it still happens today, the government allocates EQUAL amounts of money to ALL religious temples and organizations. They do not respect JUST ONE establishment, or any for that matter, they treat them the SAME. And also, they can not prohibt the free exercise of religion.

    Anyways, this is getting a bit off-topic, but if you want more quotes from the Fathers, just ask...

    And here are my views as far as the Fathers go :
    Many of the founders obviously were Christian, and obviously some were Deists. BUT, they both knew that a government forcing any one religion on the people would inevitably lead to corruption of both the State and the religion. So they set forth measure to prevent that from happening! Yet, you could still maintain your own religion, regardless of the fact if you were a member of the government or not! And, the government could not favor one Church over the other, all had to be treated equally as far as financial distribution was concerned. Basically, the Churches had to be treated as business organizations, as Congress could not claim only ONE Church was the truth and others were Satanists.

    So, Christian Nation? No.
    Founded on Christian/Masonic Principles? Yes.

    More so to say that the rights were founded on Judeo-Christian or Masonic, if you believe so, principles, but are secured by a secular government.

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