Top Ten Religious Misconceptions

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History is full of misconceptions and misrepresentations. Very few areas are as lush with historical falsities as religion.

Whether facts have been changed due to artistic license or intentionally altered for political reasons, religious facts are as questionable now as they ever were.

Below are some of the most questionable misconceptions and their true accounts regarding religion, religious leaders, and religious practices.

The Top Ten

1 Jesus was born on Dec 25th

The Christians looking for followers wanted to convert the Pagans, so they told them that they had a holiday during the Winter Solstice: Jesus' "Birthday". Now whenever I say this to someone, they give me a weird look and tell me to go to church. But it's the TRUTH

The Bible never claims that as a birthday. The most likely cause of the December date was due to Pope Julius the First declaring it to correspond with the Roman Winter Solstice during which many pagan festivals occurred.

The bible does not say this. No one knows when he was born, I only know when he died and rose again. We only celebrate his birth on this day. - letdot52

Please someone tell me who came up with this ridiculous theory. He was born some where in spring or summer.

I believe December 25th was chosen to counter act the pagan Roman holiday Saturnalia. So blame ancient dead people. - TheCreamPuffLovinFox

2 The word "Jihad" means "holy war"

"Jihad" means "struggle" not a war. While there are references to a "struggle of the sword" most Islamic scholars believe that implies a spiritual struggle.

3 The Quran promises martyrs 72 virgins in heaven

This is a "hadith" or a saying of the Prophet Muhammad as reported by others but not part of the Quran itself. Muslims are not meant to take hadiths as scripture.

Does that mean 72 mother-in law as well?

4 The historical Buddha was obese

The fat Buddha is not a Buddha. It's a god in taoism of prosperity, wellness, money etc... The real Buddha was thin. He ate during his meditation to reach nirvana one seed a day. There are two representations of the Buddha ( the real thin one ). One during the meditation where his two hands are together and one where he has reached nirvana where he touches the ground with his right hand. The fat god has many representations. He can sit ( like the Buddha ) and sometimes he is represented lying on his side. The god is also represented smiling while Buddha doesn't smile ( because he is in meditation ).

The fat Buddha comes from a 10th-century Chinese folk hero believed to a reincarnation of the Bodhisattva.

5 Christians are homophobic

Jesus loves everyone!

Only the nutters believe this.

6 The Buddha is a god

This belief came much later in some of the Chinese schools of thought. Buddhism has always taught self-reliance and individual striving rather than a deity-based paradigm.

7 There were 3 kings who visited the baby Jesus

Nowhere in the Bible does it say exactly three magi came to visit the baby Jesus, nor that they were kings, rode on camels, or that their names were Casper, Melchior and Balthazar. The number of 3 has been assumed based on the 3 gifts being mentioned and nowhere does it say that they visited him on the day of his birth.

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8 The Pope is infallible

Roman Catholic dogma does not say that the Pope is sinless or free from error.

9 Jesus was white with blue eyes

People should realize... Jesus was Middle Eastern! Bethlehem is in the Middle East! And he was Jewish. Jesus was Jewish. People should get to know this, why would Jesus believe in something that revolved around himself? (Also the religion started hundreds of years after his death, and the religion is based mainly off of his death, so Jesus being Christian would never make sense)

He was born in Bethlehem, Middle East. He probably had dark skin, black hair, and brown eyes. - Hajj

Almost nobody actually thinks this.

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10 Allah is a moon god

"Allah" is actually the Arabic word for God. My family consists of Arabic-speaking Christians and they call God "Allah".

Allah was the name of mother of the " three " great idols

Actualy allah was the name of mother of the four great idols! That is why Muslims say allah o akbar, meaning : god is greater (than other idols) not "the only god" is the greatest.

The Contenders

11 Mormons are polygamists

While the early Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints practiced polygamy in its various forms, members who do so now are excommunicated.

12 Jonah was swallowed by a whale V 1 Comment
13 The forbidden fruit was an apple
14 Catholics worship the Pope and the saints

No, we don't. If we did, we would be breaking one of the Ten Commandments. We just ask them to pray for us.
In the Hail Mary prayer, we say "Holy Mary, mother of God, PRAY for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death".
You see? We officially only pray to the Lord our God. - ethanmeinster

Exactly! I'm Catholic and this stereotype pisses me off. There is a very clear difference between honoring the saints and worshipping them. Saying that Catholics worship the saints is like saying that Muslims worship the prophet Mohammad when Muslims actually have stricter rules against idolatry than Christians. We don't worship the Popes either, but look to them for guidance. Our Popes are human, so they have the same flaws as all other human beings. There have also been Popes who were very bad men, and most Catholics are aware of that.

15 The immaculate conception is related to the birth of Jesus

It also has nothing to do with the supposed belief in the virgin birth of his mother Mary. It is referring to the belief that Mary was conceived free from original sin.

16 Christians are not allowed to listen to heavy metal
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