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Ginza

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A woman holds a sign saying "There is no salvation without Christ" in Ginza. She is part of a group that has been on several corners in Ginza for the past few days, playing a recording and handing our leaflets.

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Bailout Request !

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Cult cult cult

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There is no salvation.

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There is no Christ.

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What a whack-job. Pray to the invisible man AND by the way, give me some money...

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Funny. The Taliban believe the same thing. But instead of Christ, they believe there is no salvation without Allah. Hmmm.

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Christ was an important teacher. The trick with all this is to listen, think, digest what sounds right and discard the rest. A bit like food really. Just leave what you don't like. I'm happy to listen and think but there's no way I'd join any religion. I'm quite happy to go along with friends to bahai, christian, buddhist services if time allows but they just don't get it that I don't want to join anything. No point...

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Wow, 6 posts so far, and all take a pot shot at this woman or Christ. Obviously living in this society, which believes in nothing higher than Toyota and Louis Vuitton, has rubbed off on many JT posters. Sad, really, in this time of year that should be devoted to being joyous and accepting of others. Personally, I'd like to think that she is genuine in her feelings, and give her credit for facing the public scorn that having those beliefs seems to bring her way here.

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Not only Ginza, not all over Shibuya too.

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Wonderful message any time of the year -- Jesus Christ is the only Way, and He saves only those who are sinners. The phrase is from Acts 4:12 -- "There is none other Name... whereby we must be saved."

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Even if the popular opinion with JT posters is that there is no Christ, it doesn't change the reality that He does exist. When there are popular opinions about many things being right (like the Iraq war), only for that opinion to change a couple of years later, does it mean that it wasn't right in the first place? We humans are fickle and our opinions do not have any impact on reality!

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These people are freaken annoying! Why do they not go to where they are needed....Roppongi!LOL Man they would be really loved there.....

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religion is the root of all evil!! let us give up religion and live like humans!!

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Why so many haters? Some people find solace and love and a happy life in the teachings of Christ, be he mythical or a construct of the roman empire to keep social order.

Y'all don't think YOUR heads are filled with false notions that you act on as true every day?

God Bless and Lets all sing happy B-day to Jesus together....

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sappquest at 09:21 AM JST - 24th December We humans are fickle and our opinions do not have any impact on reality!

Ok that was a good one. Our opinion has no impact on reality?

Opinions are what drive the word. If enough people have the same opinion, then folks take head. This happen and things change.

Perfect example is the Change that has come to the United States. We went from an oppression Theocratic leadership to more Democratic leadership. All this came about from people with the same opinion.

Now if you do not mind having folks like these wingnuts blaring their PA's at us while we are shopping then that is your opinion. But I suspect that a majority do not like it.

I just hope they would do the Christian thing and go save some lives in places where they are really needed you know like Iraq or Afghanistan. I think that the Muslims would receive them with open arms.LOL

They are trying to save souls in the wrong country.

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nutsagain, what you have described is called Cafeteria Christianity. If the Bible is the "word of god" (as the Bible itself says) you have to accept everything, even the lapidation for working on saturdays.

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In 600 years, religion as we know it today will not exist.

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I saw some of these people on Saturday. They are harmless enough. I don't think anyone could even hear the recording. By the way, why do so many readers above feel threatened by such people? I don't mind a bit of the spiritual at Christmas and in fact, I'll be at a Catholic church in Roppongi tonight to listen to the carols and attend Mass. I don't try and convert anybody and do anything evangelical like these people in Ginza, but I do think the Christmas story is quite beautiful in many ways. It gives me hope. However, as the age-old saying goes, for those who believe, no explanation is necessary; for those who don't, no explanation will suffice.

Anyway, I don't know whether Christ existed or not, but since tomorrow symbolizes his birthday, I'll try to figure out what he would most like for his birthday and give it to him: an outstretched hand of tolerance, kindness and peaceful wishes to all on Earth (I borrowed part of that from a movie).

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Lapidization? Nope, you've got me on that one... I say, let them be and yes, religion is a smorgasbord of useful things. Tools if you like, to navigate. But is there a single true way? Phooey... Take the good discard the 'I am a jelous god' stuff. I like to read through the Bible as there's some wonderful concepts, just as there is in the buddhist sutras. Sorry to say, all I ever found in the Koran was moral authority demanding respect rather than reason as its appeal. Says much about the believers themselves I guess. Let 'em be... Live and let live on the Ginza or anywhere else.

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These folks appear every year around Christmas time, like the unwanted inlaws that appear on your doorstep on Christmas day. Don't know if they are a cult or not, but the people holding these poles have a striking resemblence to the folks who used to wear the "elephant" hats and sing songs praising one "Matsumoto Chizuo" aka Shoko Asahara.

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heaven forbid that she should try to spread a little happiness to a society in desperate need of hope. good for her, and God bless.

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What happiness is she spreading? Her message is 'There is no salvation without Christ', in other words, 'Join us or you're dead (for ever)'.

Sounds more like a threat than a happy message to me.

'God is Love', that's the one I like. I don't believe it any more than I believe this lady's message, but it gives you more to work on.

The practical, down-to-earth message people can believe in, of course, is 'Happiness is a warm blanket.'

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"He saves only those who are sinners"

He must be pretty darn busy saving everybody.

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"He saves only those who are sinners"

its a shame he cannot save the victims of sinners from the sinners.

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Religion is a window( restricted space) for human to look at the universe which is vast and unlimited ( like God),we just can not get the whole thing. That is why from the beginning of time till modern day, with so many human generations just come an go on this tiny planet, no one ever come back and tell us what it is like in paradise.

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The Christian street preachers do seem to emphasise the "or else you're going to hell" part here.

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There is no salvation without Christ

Wasnt Jesus a Jew? Not Japanese???

Its great when the Japanese choose to mimic religion of a foreigner because it looks cute or cool.

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Sappquest -

Even if the popular opinion with JT posters is that there is no Christ, it doesn't change the reality that He does exist.

In YOUR opinion of course.

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The poster has a meaning and Christ is the way to lead a life. Not a simple life, but a joyous and powerful life. I appreciate the person holding the poster. May God bless them.

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Wasnt Jesus a Jew? Not Japanese???

Also not European, not American, not African... what's your point? That only Jews should be Christians and everyone else from the Pope on down is just mimicking someone else's religion?

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Jesus and the Bible is just a rip off of ancient religions. The duality between good and bad goes in every religion. Daytime, night time.Pre Christianity there was the Egyptan god Horus and satan Set. In the morning Horus would win the battle against Set - while in the evening, Set. Both Horus and Jesus was born on the same day a time when the sun was at the lowest and start to rise again in the northern hemisphere.

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smartacus -- well said. See you tonight.

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Why should anyone believe such nonsense that we have to be "saved" from anything in the first place? And then the hubris they exhibit of eternally believing they are the "only" path to whatever it is they and every other creature that vibrates with the universal force are seeking, or that the Bible is the last literal word on anything of importance. Middle ages thinking in today's world just doesn't cut it anymore.

"I think it's about time we gave up religion and got back to God." --Lenny Bruce

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Merry Christmas to all.

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I'd also like to add that I hope everyone has a merry Christmas and great Oshogatsu, too. Jesus -- if he existed as we've been taught -- was indeed a great teacher, and we can all learn much from him, just as we can learn from other great teachers through the ages.

But it's the arrogance and myopia of many religious sects, namely Catholics (from my experience), that needs to change, to seek a wider, more all-embracing perspective, if we're all -- wherever we're from and however we believe in "God" -- going to live in some semblance of peace with one another. Making things right here in this reality is probably a more pressing thing to work on, too, rather than focusing so much on possibly fictional worlds that have their basis primarily on belief alone.

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These people are doing important work for Christ. I try to contribute a little money to them every year. It's sad that so many in Japan have turned their back on Christ.

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@escape_artist Jesus did exist if you believe the best archaeological evidence. Whether he was a messiah, a prophet, or whatever is a matter of opinion, but it's as close to fact as possible that he existed as a human being at some point in history.

I don't understand why this woman and her sign are news. Christians feel it is part of their duty to God to try and "help" people by teaching their beliefs. The vast majority act out of a genuine desire to "save" people because they deeply believe their eternal souls are at risk. I don't believe this, but I do know that these people mean no harm.

If their message doesn't appeal to you, ignore it. That's the freedom we all have when being exposed to the viewpoints, dogma, etc. of others. There's no need to malign them or cast aspersions on all Christians (or all of any group of people) because you may have witnessed bad behavior from a few.

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Actually, her message is more accurately described as "All your religions are false except mine, and you're all going to hell." Not the only religion to have such a position.

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We all know (or believe) that Christ existed as a human-being (or in human form) 2000 years ago. That is the reason why we are celebrating Christmas. Christmas is the time we celebrate Jesus's birthday. It is not Santa Claus bd (if you didn't know). The message Christ preached was clear. He preached the message of love. He said "we must love our neigbors as ourselves". Anybody offended by that should insult the woman in the picture. There is no other saviour than Christ = without love, nothing good can be accomplished. If you are against that, then go ahead and criticise the woman.

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escape_artist> "Why should anyone believe such nonsense that we have to be "saved" from anything in the first place?"

Well lets seeeee...What could we possibly have to be saved from in "today's world"? Millions upon millions slaughtered in the last century by Holocaust, world wars, civil war, Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Nanking, Stalin, Mao, Polpot, Mussolini, Saddam,...the list goes on. Not to mention starvation, famine, poverty & disease. I think there is a lot of saving to do. Jesus himself could do no miracles in his own hometown because of unbelief. Your cynicism is negative enough to limit the very Power that made the universe. Unless you become like a little child, you will never see. Faith is wisdom the world will never understand.

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good for them but would prefer if they kept their blinkered opinions to themselves. The jehovahs witnesses have been round 3 times this month already and the local church have been round twice this week, this has been ongoing for several years. I was polite the first few times and have been consistently rude since but it doesnt stop them, they have become idiotic stalkers. The origins of this holiday season are far from christian, and christians who whine about the hijacking of it's true spirit really have no idea what they are talking about.

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Salvation. Hmmmm....

A bit like the world economy?

That is, I cannot save myself. I have a sense of falling, or failing, and I cannot stop myself by my own power. I have tried, but it doesn't work. Is there someone or something that can help me, something stronger than me that can set me in balance or equilibrium or stability and give rest to my panicky heart?

Some people reach a time in life where they sense no way forward except a choice between going insane, committing suicide or joining a religion.

To such a person with the temptation to try religion the banner above would be very appealing, I should imagine... It's in black and white and there is no doubt.

To most of the posters on JT who are not at such a time in their lives, the banner looks illogical, because the Muslims etc., say exactly the same thing.

Through Mohammed and Allah, or Christ and Jehovah, etc.

In the meantime, Happy Christmas, and Happy every other day of this year and next to everyone!

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Religious people are going nuts.

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Wait people handing out leaflets in Japan? There's something you don't see on every street corner.

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If Jesus is who he said was I only pray to be protected from his followers.

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A harmless lady holding a sign and passing out flyers...and this is news??? Good on her for being dedicated to her beliefs in a peaceful manner. Unlike many other who kill you for not believing the way they do. At some point in the future, these times might become known as the Islamic Crusades.

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It's about time people stopped peddling a 2,000 year old myth. It would be harmless if weren't for all the deaths, misery and intolerance it has caused throughout the centuries.

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There may be no salvation without Christ but within it's too dark and cramped to enjoy it.

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I think religious fanatics are merely using the name Jesus for their own benefit. I'm staying at my folks' place for Xmas, and I picked up a book lying next to the toilet. It was left there by the religious portion of my extended family. First page I opened, it said 'we must spread the truth and convince everyone that blah blah blah.' Closed the book and continued to have a dump.

Xmas is for shopping, spending your free time and getting drunk. Spend spend spend everyone. I noticed the plane back home was 75% empty, though.

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brainwashed

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This bunch has an office here in Kobe too, they drive around blaring music and making announcements over a mike. The weirdest thing is that the guys driving the jeep-like car they drive are all dressed in camouflage and have crew cuts. I stay away from them. They look seriously po'd most of the time.

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There is NO salvation without Christ

That kind of thinking of "only my way is right" or "your either with us or not" is the kind of thing that leads to wars from these evil religions.

The irony from those religions originating from the middle east that they share the same things but give them different names.

If anything Japan should stay with Shinto or Buddhism it has a lot less history of polarized issues with other peoples around the world.. would also make them less of a target for narrow minded extremist terrorists.

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I dunno about Protestants and their multiple sectors, but Catholics believe the Justs will also be saved - the Justs are those people who have not found Christ but live honorably and love Mankind, with action and thought. However the bottom of the question remains, for us believers Christ is the Savior.

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE! ^0^!

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Come on folks. Religion is great form of control for a lot of nuts who would otherwise be out of control. Religion is your friend even if you don't believe. Yeah, sometimes its used as an excuse for violence, but without religion or something else, it would be chaos out there. It is for the most part benevolent. Far wiser to use their religion to keep them under control than rile them up.

Tell a kid about Santa Claus and it gives them pleasure and comfort. They control themselves because they think Santa is watching and a mistep could mean no reward come Christmas. Tell a kid there is no Santa and watch them crack. Some people never grow up in certain areas. Just pat them on the head and go about your business.

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If anything Japan should stay with Shinto or Buddhism it has a lot less history of polarized issues with other peoples around the world.. would also make them less of a target for narrow minded extremist terrorists.

The reasons for terrorism are so varied that either way won't matter.

But if we focus on the terrorism of today, and accept that most is committed by those who "claim" to be Muslims, well, it just so happens that REAL Muslims are far more tolerant of Christianity because they believe its worship of the same one God. But those terrorists generally come in two varieties: those who actually are confused about Islam or just don't give a damn. So neither way will save you from them. Even being Muslim won't save you from them! We have seen plenty of proof of that!

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Muslims are far more tolerant of Christianity because they believe its worship of the same one God.

likeitis, try going to Mecca in Saudi Arabia. On the highway, you will see a sign for two entrances to the city. One is labled "Mecca" and the other is "Christian Bypass" since non-belivers are not allowed to enter the city.

Now, go to Rome and visit the Vatican. I don't believe that they have any signs posted for Catholics and non-Catholics.

But, be that as it may, reading the posts here there are a lot of beliefs out there in terms of religion. Me personally I am a Protestant. Do I believe what the Bible says, yes. Do I have questions on its accuracy and beliefs, yes. But, I try to be tolerant of others and respect their beliefs. If someone is a Muslim, Hindu, or Zoraster, fine by me, as long as they don't steal from me or are messy neighbors. Because in the end, as a Christian I believe that I am ultimately responsible for my actions alone. I don't believe that God will have a scorecard up there with the total number of conversions that I have made, but will judge me on the life that I have lived; if I have been just to my fellow man; and look back at all of the sins I have committed (and there are a lot), and truly look into my heart at the moment.

I guess what I am saying is this, if someone ever asks me to tell them what I know about God and Christ, then I will tell and teach. If someone doesn't want to hear it, then I will not say anything, but continue to live my life according to what I believe is right.

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I think it's sad that people have come on here to turn this into yet another Anti-Muslim ranting thread, despite it having NOTHING to do with Islam and/or Muslims what-so-ever.

Not being Christian, I could care less about the 'origins' of Christmas -- it's a time to spend with your loved ones and family, or in Japan a time to stay at the office and wish you COULD spend the day with loved ones. Either way, and in particular in Japan, the current Christmas has almost nothing to do with Christ, and everything to do with how people celebrate it themselves. What I DO give this woman a bit of credit for is trying to inject a little of the origin of Christmas into the people of this country who would copy anything Western without having a clue as to its evolution and celebrations.

Again, I don't celebrate Christmas in any way Christian, but I do think it's a good idea to know about it from all angles possible.

Now, if the people in this woman's group would stop driving around the neighbourhood in cars with loudspeakers saying 'Jesus saves!' I would be even happier.

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Alphaape: Nice post, but I DO want to point out that likeitis was not comparing Muslims to Christians and saying the former are more tolerant than the latter; what he was saying is that TRUE Muslims are more tolerant of Christianity than the morons who blow themselves and others up and CLAIM to be Muslim. There are all sorts of countries where Muslims live side by side with Christians, and there is rarely any trouble, if any. In other words, they live their lives by the same mottos you have said above -- live their lives as best as they can and be good neighbours, etc.

Moderator: Back on topic please. Muslims are not relevant to this discussion.

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There is NO salvation without Christ That kind of thinking of "only my way is right" or "your either with us or not" is the kind of thing that leads to wars from these evil religions.

Wow, way to pick on an innocent lady holding a sign..... which by the way is well within her rights to do in Japan. I imagine that you would rather have someone yelling "free beer" or "topless women for your to have you way with" This is why Jesus said "anyone who sins is a slave to sin" You love your wickedness more than you love God.

I bet you don't even mind that Big Camera has people shouting louder than these folks about the sale on that of that piece of plastic you call a cell phone in your pocket. What hypocrites! You all need to get right with God!

I have talked with these people the other day in Ginza and the are as harmless as they come. They go through out Japan doing things that most missionaries would cringe at. I am proud to call them my friends! I am proud that someone will take a stand for Jesus in this Godless land! There IS no other way to God except through Jesus!

I will be joining these people for the next few days and I will starting a branch of there ministry right here in Tokyo!

Japan 4 Jesus! Jesus 4 Japan!

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I am proud that someone will take a stand for Jesus in this Godless land! There IS no other way to God except through Jesus!

I will be joining these people for the next few days and I will starting a branch of there ministry right here in Tokyo!

Japan 4 Jesus! Jesus 4 Japan!

to everyone else who posted "Merry Xmas!"

to Jesus4japan2 "peddle it elsewhere"

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You know, Jesus died in Japan, and was buried in Aomori-ken. Look it up.

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You know, Jesus died in Japan, and was buried in Aomori-ken. Look it up.

..and was Jerusalem, builded here on Aomori's dark Satanic mills?

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How about modifying the assertive message into more suggestive one such as "Use unrighteous wealth to make friends for yourself so that you may be saved in time of need" or something? And avoid black and yellow color scheme; those are colors for alarming rather than appealing as in the signs of road zoning and railroad crossing in Japan. Red and green may suit the season better. Also change the font of handwritten Ming-style into Hiragino gothic. And please don't use thumbtacks to pin up a poster in Ginza. Learn from Oriental Land Co, on how to win the hearts of the people by using Western software.

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"Other religions are tolerant of Christianity" is obviously stated by people who have never taken a stand for what they believe and said "No I won't pray in front of the hotokesan" or has never said "I won't pay the jichikai to give money to the local buddhist temple" or just plain closes their eyes to the reality of what happens when people say I want to follow Jesus and no other God. Go no farther than Japan to see what happens. blackflag is the perfect example of tolerance eh!!! Non-messianic Jews often won't celebrate Christmas but many people seem to think its good to take the good parts such as public holidays and neglect the reason which was that Christ was born to take the blame for every persons sins, believe it or not is up to you. Every one serves a God, but many don't know which one, just hope you are right when it counts the most because I would rather party with you in heaven.

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"Other religions are tolerant of Christianity" is obviously stated by people who have never taken a stand for what they believe

Go no farther than Japan to see what happens.

The Japanese are religious?

"No I won't pray in front of the hotokesan"

So what happened when you refused? Got treated a little cold? You think that is different than if some Japanese refused to bow his head during the pre-dinner prayers in a Christian house? You don't actually have pray you know. Just make the gestures and show some respect.

"I won't pay the jichikai to give money to the local buddhist temple"

That is about money not religion! You will get similar stuff for not putting into the collection plate or giving to charities if you were in a Christian church or moved into a Christian neighorhood (hard to find a real one these days though). The whole thing is more a culture and money thing than religious.

Maybe you can come up with some other things to tell us how oppressed you are? These things just are not making me feel it.

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scoobydoo--there is a difference between having your beliefs and disrespecting other's.

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"Jesus died in Japan and was buried in Aomori-ken"

OK.

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BlackFlag, why take offense at "Merry Christmas"?

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Yes Japanese people are religious, just go and look at the shrines on Jan 1 or look at the meanings of every festival here in Japan, how could you conclude any thing else? Appeasing the desires of people to conform to their religion, beliefs or opinions is what western people often dislike about Japanese culture of tatemae. Doing gestures and giving respect to what? their idols/gods or beliefs that I do not believe in and are an abomination to who I consider my God. It was stated that there is a difference between having your own beliefs and disrespecting others but the inference is that we should disrespect/compromise our own beliefs for the sake of others who insist on not respecting any other persons beliefs by pressuring them to pray (or fake it) in front of their idols. Not conforming to the rituals, in my case is not such a drama because the family is not so into it however, that is not always the case and to think other wise is ignorant and inexperienced in these matters. In my case there is always pressure applied to conform to the "Japanese way". Probably people who don't understand these pressures have never actually took any stand on much of what they believe or that they think any thing is OK. If people don't want to give thanks for dinner etc that is their decision. Not paying jichikai is not about money but the whole thing is about who you say God is and if you really believe it by your actions. I see people say lots of stuff about what they believe in, particularly in religions, but betray their words by their actions which is what its about. Even the buddhist monks who are generally sincere, have become famous for making tofu to taste nice despite the fact that they eat it to deprive their bodies of earthly pleasures. Can you see the contradiction in that action? It can be seen in more than just religion also. Your actions show your beliefs.

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likeitis at 10:01 PM JST - 24th December If anything Japan should stay with Shinto or Buddhism it has a lot less history of polarized issues with other peoples around the world.. would also make them less of a target for narrow minded extremist terrorists.

I agree.

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but seriously. What a waste of precious time.

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BlackFlag, why take offense at "Merry Christmas"?

whatever gave you that idea? One of Japan's many great points is the relative unimportance of religion here. I do take offense at people trying to convert me on my doorstep 3 times a week, unfortunately I must live in the bible belt of Chiba.

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