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Old 03-02-2013, 05:13 AM   #391
vicky_molokh
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Default Re: Real-Life Weirdness

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Originally Posted by RogerBW View Post
The word "XPAM", used in the original story, is often translated "temple", but it's the usual term for an Orthodox church too. I'd say that "chapel" would be a better translation in this case.
Either way, the image of an army mobile temple (chapel) has been provided. Without the paradrop equipment, but still.
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Old 03-02-2013, 05:16 AM   #392
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Originally Posted by Flyndaran View Post
I know that X and P were the first two letter of the Greek spelling of Christ, so Church might be the best translation, I would guess.
Quick check seems to indicate it originates from хоромы, or an old word for a wooden building, usually a rich/big one.
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Old 03-02-2013, 05:17 AM   #393
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Actually, there just seems to be a big split between atheists and (Russian) orthodoxes. Things are complicated, and even people who are positioning themselves as believers seem to be more about adhering to ritual than to actually following the important bits like loving one's neighbour.

Then there's the other side of the coin: I consider myself an atheist*, but I still eat paskha when it comes around, taking off my head-covering clothing (if any) when sitting down to eat etc.

* == Well, maybe with a bit of an agnostic and some very small other bits thrown in, but definitely not Christian.
The stats I have seen suggest no more than 15% (maybe less) of Russians are atheists or agnostic.
I'm sure it gets fuzzy with all the unchurched people.

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Old 03-02-2013, 05:32 AM   #394
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As I understand it, Russia's population is declining, but the actively religious people (Christians, Muslims, and Buddhists) are having more kids as well as gaining some re-converts. The trend may not hold, but if it does I'd expect Orthodoxy will gradually reassert its majority status. It seems to already be gaining political traction and increased soft power.

You live a lot closer to that country and , I am sure, know much more about it than I know.

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Old 03-02-2013, 05:43 AM   #395
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The stats I have seen suggest no more than 15% (maybe less) of Russians are atheists or agnostic.
I'm sure it gets fuzzy with all the unchurched people.
If you mean social questioning, then I suspect that more people claim to be than can actually argument the very fact that they are actually adherents of Christianity, let alone the Slavic Orthodox Christianity branch. Then again, I don't clearly understand the differences between the various branches either. But it's disturbing that I can actually participate in theologically-themed discussions with people who deem themselves religious and don't look totally ignorant compared to them.

Some of them also do things that are strictly anti-Christian, such as sacrificing stuff to the graves / their dead relatives or to spirits / minor gods. And sure, maybe it's just a fused folk religion, henotheistic more than monotheistic. But that just signifies that the folk religion and the church live in two different worlds, spiritually speaking.

It's a weird world where things aren't what they seem nor what they're called. Too bad I can't ever find the percentages of various beliefs and activities. I wonder if the Japanese are more honest with themselves as far as beliefs go, with their Shintou/Buddhism fusion.
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Old 03-02-2013, 05:45 AM   #396
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As I understand it, Russia's population is declining, but the actively religious people (Christians, Muslims, and Buddhists) are having more kids as well as gaining some re-converts. The trend may not hold, but if it does I'd expect Orthodoxy will gradually reassert its majority status. It seems to already be gaining political traction and increased soft power.
Don't see much in the way of Buddhists here, but Islam does have a noticeable trend of converting people in Kyiv. No idea about the eastern neighbour, really.

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You live a lot closer to that country and , I am sure, know much more about it than I know.
That doesn't always translate to more knowledge. Anecdotal knowledge is infamously prone to differ between even nearby regions, or even between different people in the same region.
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Old 03-02-2013, 06:41 AM   #397
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Originally Posted by Daigoro View Post
An abandoned, derelict, rat-infested Russian cruise ship is floating adrift around the North Atlantic. --Linky dink--
And I can't help but think of the 2002 movie Ghost Ship, any time I hear about a ghost ship. Passable horror movie but with a famously awesome opening sequence.

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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
It's a weird world where things aren't what they seem nor what they're called. Too bad I can't ever find the percentages of various beliefs and activities. I wonder if the Japanese are more honest with themselves as far as beliefs go, with their Shintou/Buddhism fusion.
Well it is anecdotal, but I've found that when I out myself as pagan here I got a warmer reception--well, until I mentioned the Baron Samedi anyway.
I remember someone telling me a poll places most of them as practicing ritual only and not really believing. I had two thoughts on that--one, was the person polling them conspicuously not-Japanese? That would definitely throw the answers. And two--if those rituals are empty, why do they happen at every meal and on every street corner in addition to festivals at least twice a year? Though the really big production at the mayoral candidate's headquarters could easily have been pandering.

http://s218.beta.photobucket.com/user/lurkingheretic/library/Japan%202012/winter2012%20to%202013/500%20lights


Incidentally the Buddhist temples in this town are amazingly beautiful.
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Old 03-02-2013, 10:39 AM   #398
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Default Re: Real-Life Weirdness

The question that comes to my mind is, what do people there generally mean when they say "pagan"? Around here, it's usually a New-Agey fusion of semi-understood Wicca and a few of the more popular bits of ancient Celtic religions (absent the whole Wicker Man thing, assuming that was even a Celtic ritual and not just Gaius Julius Caesar trying to drum up support for his northern campaigns with a bit of propaganda). Baron Samedhi, as a loa of an established religious faith, wouldn't fit in well with people who babble about "the Goddess" and don't even know what the three aspects of the Triple Goddess are.
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Old 03-02-2013, 11:10 AM   #399
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The question that comes to my mind is, what do people there generally mean when they say "pagan"?
Uh, the same thing that they mean when they talk about the religion of Rusyns, Egyptians, or pre-Daruma Japanese, Aztecs, Ancient Greeks etc., perhaps? (The equivalent word would be язичники/язычники.)
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Old 03-02-2013, 02:36 PM   #400
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Default Re: Real-Life Weirdness

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The word "XPAM", used in the original story, is often translated "temple", but it's the usual term for an Orthodox church too. I'd say that "chapel" would be a better translation in this case.
That's actually a field altar - there's no narthex, so its not properly a chapel. And there's a reason it has 4 doors... Deacon door, pair of royal doors, deacon door. The Byzantine Catholic equivalent is much simpler - a field table vested, and two or 4 icon stands.

It's equivalent to the dais of the Roman or Lutheran or Anglican arrangements...
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