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fred johnson

Fear that expanded Duty To God requirement drives us out of schools ... AGAIN ...

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Doesn't need to be "god-fearing" to do that. All the boys go off to the interfaith service' date=' he tags along sits quietly and just watches. [/quote']

 

There's no reverence there. Unless it relates to his faith and his Duty To God, it is not an act of reverence. It is more a curiosity than an act of faith.

 

 

I have participated in worship experiences other than my religion. No big deal ...

 

Say's you. That's your faith. If your going to be accepting, then you need to accept that others are more strict. Other families are less understanding. Heck, I have a big time problem attending interdenominational services ... especially when they start refering to the "great scout spirit in the sky". I do not have my kids attend them. I find them worse than meaningless.

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Does anybody have a link to the actual requirements? Have they gone into effect? I have heard new "faith" requirements are on the way for both Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts' date=' and there have been some discussions on here about them, but they all seem to be in the abstract.[/quote']

 

Look in the link for "Adventure requirements and insignia" in the Cub Scout section.

 

 

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In what way is Scouting a faith-based program? There is a vast difference between the 10 Commandments and the 12 points of the Scout Law. I can find nothing in the Congressional Charter that suggests that the Boy Scouts of America is a "Faith-based Organization". About the closest it gets to spirituality is the wording "kindred virtues" but that could refer to something completely different as well. Yes, there is the Declaration of Religious Principles, the 12th point of the Scout Law and the Duty to God in the Scout Oath, and the BSA allows Scouts to wear religious emblems - a non-Scouting award. I'd call the BSA more "Faith Friendly" than "Faith-based".

 

Based on what has been released so far, the Boy Scouts aren't making it "ok to ask" about Duty to God - they're making it a requirement to ask about Duty to God in the Scoutmaster's Conference. It's always been ok to ask, it just hasn't necessarily been wise to ask. If it's true that it's now being required to ask, it's doesn't make it any more wise to ask.

 

If folks haven't noticed lately, we live in a new media world - when my Eagle Scout BOR refused to approve because they didn't want to accept my faith as legitimate, it never made the newspapers or the 10 o'clock news. Today it would have been reposted from Facebook so many times it would have had a very good chance of becoming a national news story. We can hope this new emphasis doesn't result in this kind of thing happening anymore but lets face some reality here - a lot of us have been around enough to have seen a lot of things get discussed on this forum that makes us scratch our heads and wonder what the leaders were thinking.

 

So far, the BSA has been weathering the athiest thing fairly well (yes, they're still obnoxiously wrong about it from a A Scout is Reverent, he respects other people's beliefs about God and religion perspective) but how big a hit will they take when the first Jewish boy is denied rank because his Methodist Scoutmaster says he answered the question "wrong", or the first Methodist boy is denied rank because his Catholic Scoutmaster says he answered the question "wrong". Don't tell me that won't happen - it has happened, it probably is happening, and it always will happen. I've seen issues like this tear units apart.

 

My question - indeed all of us should be asking - what is the motivation and reasoning behind these changes? What are they intended to fix - and who said things were broken in the first place. I really wonder if this isn't an over-reaction to Trails Whosamagidgits or something.

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... and is reverent towards others

 

... You can be respectful of others faith, but you can't be reverent toward others or reverent torward the faith of others. You can only be reverent toward your own faith.

 

 

 

Inquiring about one's faith and judging it are two different things. I don't think BSA is in favor of the second part. If the boy is doing his duty towards his religion and is reverent towards others, there's no need to be doing any judging. Like I said it is okay to ask, but I didn't say it was okay to judge.

 

 

No. A "requirement" means judging. Did you complete the requirement? Someone judges.

 

"If the boy is doing his duty towards hs religion" ... "if" ... that's judging. What "if" he is not doing his duty? Who makes that decision?

 

Also ... are we only for youth in organized religion? Many families profess faith, but are not affiliated with a church. Their duty is effectively leading a good life (i.e. the scout law / scout spirit). It becomes a circular requirement ... which is a non-requirment.

 

The smart scout leader is only going to dive shallow into these requirements.

 

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... You can be respectful of others faith, but you can't be reverent toward others or reverent torward the faith of others. You can only be reverent toward your own faith.

 

Not according to most definitions of the word reverent. Feeling or showing deep and solemn respect. That may or may not have anything to do with religion. I have reverence for our veterans who serve our country. I can show deep and solemn respect for my flag, other people, other people's religion etc. I have no idea how to show deep and solemn respect for my religion. My God, maybe, but not my religion per se. I don't have deep and solemn respect for my beliefs. I just have beliefs.

 

 

No. A "requirement" means judging. Did you complete the requirement? Someone judges.

 

"If the boy is doing his duty towards hs religion" ... "if" ... that's judging. What "if" he is not doing his duty? Who makes that decision?

 

Also ... are we only for youth in organized religion? Many families profess faith, but are not affiliated with a church. Their duty is effectively leading a good life (i.e. the scout law / scout spirit). It becomes a circular requirement ... which is a non-requirment.

 

The smart scout leader is only going to dive shallow into these requirements.

 

A scout leader who doesn't understand it will dive even shallower into these requirements.

 

According to Christian belief we are all sinners and fall short of the glory of God. If one is going to rely only on judgments, then NO Christian scout will ever get beyond the Scout rank and BSA requirements will keep it from ever being a Christian based organization.

 

Then again the scout that goes to church every Sunday, drops 10% in the offering, and says his prayers every night just because his parents insist he do so is not doing his duty either.

 

Have fun figuring that out under your definition of judgmentalism.

 

Stosh

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. . .

 

"Morally straight." Well, we've already shown that morality is malleable in the program. As kids like to say, "Don't judge."

 

 

There might have been someone else who said not to judge. "Out of the mouths of babes" and all that.

 

 

And jblake has a point, I think. Can you be "reverant" without a supreme, creator deity? Apparently so since we have BSA-approved reverently atheistic Scouts.

 

 

It used to be that we said that one's "Duty to God" was defined in the family. I find it hard to believe that B.S.A. is going to attempt to place the power to make that definition elsewhere.

 

 

BP tried to help us: "The religion of a man is not the creed he professes but his life - what he acts upon, and knows of life, and his duty in it."

 

 

... You can be respectful of others faith, but you can't be reverent toward others or reverent torward the faith of others. You can only be reverent toward your own faith.

 

We are all prisoners, to some extent, of our experience. "Reverent" may mean deeply respectful. Many religions teach that one should be reverent towards the religions of others, and BSA teaches the same, yes?

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Not sure where some posters continue to get this idea that somehow BSA is pushing Christianity. I do not see any such thing. And, yes there is a broader definition of reverence than many seem to be able to understand. This will continue to be subjective. Will some make it more difficult than it should be? They already are. Do we know the complete approach yet? No, so quit reading stuff into it before you even get the details. Then, use your brain and simple common sense, and work with it, while trying to be as flexible as possible. You likely will find very few instances that cannot be worked with.

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Not according to most definitions of the word reverent. Feeling or showing deep and solemn respect. That may or may not have anything to do with religion. I have reverence for our veterans who serve our country. I can show deep and solemn respect for my flag, other people, other people's religion etc. I have no idea how to show deep and solemn respect for my religion. My God, maybe, but not my religion per se. I don't have deep and solemn respect for my beliefs. I just have beliefs.

 

.... .... ....

Stosh

 

We're playing word games now. My point was I can show respect for other faiths, but I can't do my Duty To God by attending a faith service for a faith that I don't believe in.

 

Perhaps it is my old school herritage, but reverence in a faith context has a deeper meaning than just "deep respect". There are dozens of articles on this. When you combine Duty To God and Reverent, there is much more to it than deep respect.

 

Heck, I have deep deep respect to philosophers and writers who expose atheist views. But I in no way feel "reverent" when I show them respect. Nor do I feel like I am doing my Duty To God other than living a good life and being nice to others.

 

Reverent in a faith setting means more.

 

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In what way is Scouting a faith-based program? There is a vast difference between the 10 Commandments and the 12 points of the Scout Law. I can find nothing in the Congressional Charter that suggests that the Boy Scouts of America is a "Faith-based Organization". About the closest it gets to spirituality is the wording "kindred virtues" but that could refer to something completely different as well. Yes, there is the Declaration of Religious Principles, the 12th point of the Scout Law and the Duty to God in the Scout Oath, and the BSA allows Scouts to wear religious emblems - a non-Scouting award. I'd call the BSA more "Faith Friendly" than "Faith-based".

 

Based on what has been released so far, the Boy Scouts aren't making it "ok to ask" about Duty to God - they're making it a requirement to ask about Duty to God in the Scoutmaster's Conference. It's always been ok to ask, it just hasn't necessarily been wise to ask. If it's true that it's now being required to ask, it's doesn't make it any more wise to ask.

 

If folks haven't noticed lately, we live in a new media world - when my Eagle Scout BOR refused to approve because they didn't want to accept my faith as legitimate, it never made the newspapers or the 10 o'clock news. Today it would have been reposted from Facebook so many times it would have had a very good chance of becoming a national news story. We can hope this new emphasis doesn't result in this kind of thing happening anymore but lets face some reality here - a lot of us have been around enough to have seen a lot of things get discussed on this forum that makes us scratch our heads and wonder what the leaders were thinking.

 

So far, the BSA has been weathering the athiest thing fairly well (yes, they're still obnoxiously wrong about it from a A Scout is Reverent, he respects other people's beliefs about God and religion perspective) but how big a hit will they take when the first Jewish boy is denied rank because his Methodist Scoutmaster says he answered the question "wrong", or the first Methodist boy is denied rank because his Catholic Scoutmaster says he answered the question "wrong". Don't tell me that won't happen - it has happened, it probably is happening, and it always will happen. I've seen issues like this tear units apart.

 

My question - indeed all of us should be asking - what is the motivation and reasoning behind these changes? What are they intended to fix - and who said things were broken in the first place. I really wonder if this isn't an over-reaction to Trails Whosamagidgits or something.

 

Calico ... You are dead on right with "faith friendly". Faith friendly means we can find a common working ground with schools and others. "Faith based" means we need to silo off into our own little church based units. Heck "faith based" means no one will be satisfied except LDS units.

 

Calico ... Also I'm sorry you did not receive your Eagle. It sounds like you earned it but were not recognized as such. You have my sympathies.

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We're playing word games now. My point was I can show respect for other faiths, but I can't do my Duty To God by attending a faith service for a faith that I don't believe in.

 

I don't suppose one can do that because it's two different issues. Showing reverence for others deals with Scout Law, Duty to God deals with the Scout Oath. It's not word games, it's apples and oranges. Duty to God is rather self explanatory, but reverent means reverence towards more than just other people's faith. It also is a reverence and respect for their culture, they way of life, their traditions, how they do things, what they feel is important in life and their attitude towards life itself. To limit reverent to just religions is taking a rather narrow view of that part of the law.

 

Perhaps it is my old school herritage, but reverence in a faith context has a deeper meaning than just "deep respect". There are dozens of articles on this. When you combine Duty To God and Reverent, there is much more to it than deep respect.

 

Why is it necessary to combine Duty to God and Reverent? They are two different things. It's your definition that seems to allow for combining them, but not all people think it's even possible.

 

Does my duty to God imply I'm trustworthy? Maybe Loyal? Certainly my duty to God implies helpful, courteous and kind. I could go on but the point is made. To think trustworthiness is only acceptable in the realm of religion is not what most people think, why would reverent or reverence towards others only acceptable in the realm of religion? Doesn't add up for me.

 

Heck, I have deep deep respect to philosophers and writers who expose atheist views. But I in no way feel "reverent" when I show them respect. Nor do I feel like I am doing my Duty To God other than living a good life and being nice to others.

 

That's your beliefs, it isn't necessary to impose them on others. One shouldn't be adding or subtracting from the requirements. When I stand in a national cemetery and think of the sacrifice those men and woman gave to our country, it has nothing to with my duty to God, or even my faith, but my reverence for those people is emotionally overwhelming. I'm not worshiping these people. I'm not paying homage to them. I'm only holding them for moment in a feeling of great reverence.

 

Reverent in a faith setting means more.

 

Maybe so, but reverent in a BSA setting means a lot of different things than just one's belief system.

 

Stosh

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As a Scout Chaplain, I find it unnecessary for this new requirement to be installed. I have to keep on referring to BP's definition, which says it all to my mind:

~~“â€ÂReverence to God and reverence for one's neighbour and reverence for oneself as a servant of God, is the basis of every form of religion. The method of expression of reverence to God varies with every sect and denomination. What sect or denomination a boy belongs to depends, as a rule, on his parents' wishes. It is they who decide. It is our business to respect their wishes and to second their efforts to inculcate reverence, whatever form of religion the boy professes.â€Ââ€Â

The BSA is a "religious" organization, and that cannot be avoided. It became so the first time "Duty to God" and "Reverent" was first espoused. It is NOT and should NOT be a "Religion". When we start asking a Scout HOW he "does his duty", we are implying that there is a right way to do it, I would NEVER imply that .

I can teach and grade a Scout on how to do a correct Bowline. I can show him how to avoid Poison Ivy. I can even show him God's creation, but I cannot tell him how to worship, even by asking such an open ended question as "How do you do your duty to God?". Such a question is correctly asked at the Church Summer Camp, and often is around the campfires at our Yearly Meeting Summer Camps. And maybe even around the Scout campfire, but not in a SMConference.

At the NatJam, us Chaplains had lots of good conversation on just that topic: how our various rituals (or lack of) and witness was similar and different, in "doing our duty". . I dare say Scouts do the same, given a chance.

 

It is a wonderful thing that Catholic, Methodist, Muslim, Jew and Buddhist can all find agreement in the Scout Promise and Law. Let's leave it at that.

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If the scout says the following would you advance him?:

 

"I cast a healing spell for the troop during the solstice"

 

"I meditated on qi"

 

"I had to sacrifice a lamb"

 

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This is an interesting discussion, but I would suggest there are a few folks who need to do some soul searching regarding their abject terror about religion.

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