Author Topic: A world without Religion  (Read 2969 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Bluecolour

  • Student
  • **
  • Posts: 81
  • Darwins +5/-5
  • Gender: Male
  • WWGHA Member
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #29 on: August 12, 2013, 09:26:08 PM »
-snip-
Yes, I know missionaries and other religious folks go into areas where there are poor people and wars and try to help while converting, in hopes of making the worlds a better place. But their motivation comes from the wrong source, an imagined "wonderful place" where we all get to go when we die, and its boss. The religious are doing their "good" works in the name of a non-existent being whose contributions are nil and whose powers are limited to those which misdirected humans can make up. Those efforts don't count.

But let's imagine a world without "shit holes."  Let's imagine a world in which there is not starvation or economic marginalization.  Let's imagine a world in which everyone has access to clean water and nutritious food and shelter from the elements.  Let's imagine a world in which no one's family faces institutionalized persecution because of their race or ethnicity or political perspectives. 

That world would have no need for religion.

I find it funny putting these two posts together.


Offline neopagan

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1161
  • Darwins +86/-3
  • Gender: Male
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #30 on: August 12, 2013, 10:24:28 PM »
I must admit that since I have given up on faith I feel somewhat rudderless and hopeless.  I look at the bins of Christmas decorations in my hallway and want to cry.  Some of those ornaments are treasures and precious memories to me of people who gave them to me or made them for me.  Now what do I do with them?  I am 50 years old and for all of my previous years it has been tradition to put up a tree and decorate and celebrate and my son is 14 and I have always done this with him.  Now do I just say "No present for you, no reason to celebrate."?

 LPA, I see where you are coming from, having myself finally parted ways with faith right after christmas 2012.

 However, it isstill a great time to spend with family, remember the fun times of christmas past, and (without the baggae of faith) know it is better to give than receive. I encourage my kids every year to find ways to give away at christmas... fill toy bins at collection points, put money in the bellringers buckets, make gifts for each other instead of buying. They love it and have always enjoyed putting together samaritan's purse boxes for kids in poor countries ( I know, a jeezus tie in, but it is harmless).

All I mean is to find ways to make it a happy time for you and yours. Life may be kicking you now, but you have your son and you can find small things to celebrate together this xmas.
If xian hell really exists, the stench of the burning billions of us should be a constant, putrid reminder to the handful of heavenward xians how loving your god is.  - neopagan

Offline William

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 3564
  • Darwins +92/-2
  • Gender: Male
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #31 on: August 13, 2013, 12:31:31 AM »
I find it funny putting these two posts together.

I'm not seeing the joke. Care to explain?
Git mit uns

Online Bereft_of_Faith

  • Postgraduate
  • *****
  • Posts: 926
  • Darwins +39/-2
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #32 on: August 13, 2013, 01:47:10 AM »
I must admit that since I have given up on faith I feel somewhat rudderless and hopeless.  I look at the bins of Christmas decorations in my hallway and want to cry.  Some of those ornaments are treasures and precious memories to me of people who gave them to me or made them for me.  Now what do I do with them?  I am 50 years old and for all of my previous years it has been tradition to put up a tree and decorate and celebrate and my son is 14 and I have always done this with him.  Now do I just say "No present for you, no reason to celebrate."?

Little late here, but I may be able to offer a bit of hope. 

I chose the screen name 'Bereft of Faith' because when I came here I was suffering from the loss of faith, which I had given up a few years before. 

It does get better.  I went from leaning on faith at every turn, to having it pulled out from under me, hobbling along, to finally walking on my own, and being grateful that there is and never was any need for crutches. 

I feel remarkably lighter, despite my infirmities, because I no longer look to an inscrutable, unreliable, seemingly capricious god to help or save me.  I rely on myself, the expertise of my doctor, the innovations of science, and the help and understanding of my family.  These things are all real, somewhat responsive, and can be rated on their effectiveness, unlike (an imaginary fantasy such as) God. 

Offline bertatberts

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1446
  • Darwins +52/-8
  • Gender: Male
  • Humanists. Not perfect. Not forgiven. Responsible.
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #33 on: August 13, 2013, 03:11:26 AM »
A world without religion would be like cold-war era Russia or present day North Korea.
How so explain! And while doing so, check out the more secular countries of the world where religion isn't dominant and correlate that with the most happy countries. Then rethink what you posted thanks. It is the dumbest I have seen this year.
« Last Edit: August 13, 2013, 09:47:13 AM by Star Stuff »
We theists have no evidence for our beliefs. So no amount of rational evidence will dissuade us from those beliefs. - JCisall

It would be pretty piss poor brainwashing, if the victims knew they were brainwashed, wouldn't it? - Screwtape. 04/12/12

Offline Hatter23

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 3950
  • Darwins +265/-7
  • Gender: Male
  • Doesn't believe in one more god than you
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #34 on: August 13, 2013, 08:22:03 AM »
A world without religion would be like cold-war era Russia or present day North Korea.

Why do you say that as opposed to examples of places Japan or Sweden?

Cold war Russia and North Korea have secular equivancies of religion, complete with the acceptance of dogma before evidence, venerated dead figures, unquestionable leaders.
An Omnipowerful God needed to sacrifice himself to himself (but only for a long weekend) in order to avert his own wrath against his own creations who he made in a manner knowing that they weren't going to live up to his standards.

And you should feel guilty for this. Give me money.

Online ParkingPlaces

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 6620
  • Darwins +791/-6
  • Gender: Male
  • If you are religious, you are misconcepted
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #35 on: August 13, 2013, 09:41:54 AM »

Absolutely right. However, as long as so many of us are going to insist on being a-holes, we'll need religion to justify ourselves. The muslims can look at every death as "gods will" and shrug their shoulders, rich christians can look at the poor and say they have no value because they obviously don't have jesus on their side. Or whatever their mindset is. It doesn't come up enough for me to guess right. I can only go by their actions, which are nil. Well, not nil. Their actions are making it worse.

The casualness of religious justifications does the majority of the harm on this planet, I fear. Or at least such attitudes provide an avenue for the continuation what Quesi so aptly describes as "shit holes". The problem now is that we are creating even more of them. Again, with religious justification.

-snip-

America is a shit hole in the making. Detroit is just the beginning of a new round of crises. And this is happening with religion as an operational social construct, a "necessary" component, a root cause.

As an atheist, I have no way to justify the slums and the poverty and the insensitivity displayed by believers towards the aptly labeled "misfortunate" ones. It ain't misfortune, folks, it is, among other things, a religiously caused, and religiously justified, disaster.

Yes, I know missionaries and other religious folks go into areas where there are poor people and wars and try to help while converting, in hopes of making the worlds a better place. But their motivation comes from the wrong source, an imagined "wonderful place" where we all get to go when we die, and its boss. The religious are doing their "good" works in the name of a non-existent being whose contributions are nil and whose powers are limited to those which misdirected humans can make up. Those efforts don't count.

If we could take away religion, we could take away a lot of excuses. Maybe then we would be able to look at problems with relevant horror and with sensitivity and with the sense of urgency each should be invoking. Instead of so casually.

You're making the mistake of assuming that those a-holes couldn't find alternative reasons to justify their actions in the absence of religious ones, or that taking away religion would even make the task substantially more difficult for them.

I don't know if you've ever spoken to someone who was cheating on their spouse or was having an affair with a married person. A few minutes in that conversation will leave you flabbergasted at the rationalizations that a thoroughly educated man can hold to when he is determined to outwit himself.  The excuses of such a person do not even need to be coherent much less rational. This is because self-justification is a powerful force always in operation within the human mind.

In any event I do not need a logically valid argument to explain why I left my wife and children to pursue a relationship outside my home provided it is not in my plan to ever have to give one. When a person does something immoral fully believing that he will not be caught, he does not bother creating excuses for his actions, he just does them. Naturally, he will only even encounter this need for self-justification when he comes face-to-face with the judgement of his own conscience, much of which ironically will be a direct result of his own socioreligious indoctrinations.

Aside from this you make a perfectly valid point. People have used and still use religion to justify some of the most horrific things that have occured in our past. However, this doesn't change the reality that these people are both capable and willing to use any all methods available to justify their behavior. There are people today that use Darwinism to justify racism.

You're argument is that by removing religion we leave people with less excuses to justify immoral actions, I say that by removing religion you simply give them room to create more excuses by which to justify those immoral actions. With that in mind we do nothing by removing religion and so might as well keep it since [in respect to this] it neither adds nor removes from the real problem.

One other thing. You used yourself as an example of how the absence of a formal religion allowed you to act more ethically. While I cannot speak on the subject of your behavior or the validity of your personal experience, I do question its general applicability. While it feels easy to say that without religion people would be better human beings one must be made to question these assumptions. What are we in effect saying; that the man cheating on his wife would not have be doing so if he was an Atheist, or that the prostitute that he did this with would not be in that situation if she had not been raised Catholic?

You brought up some legitimate points, and I indeed ignored other common reasons for being an a-hole besides religion. But at least I said that without religions we "could take away a lot of excuses", not all excuses. I don't pretend (though I wasn't clear in my post) that all problems would go away with religion gone, but I still contend that it would help removed some of the bullshit from everyday life and remove useless tools that religion provides from our repertoire (prayer, marriage counseling from celibate priests, etc) .

Or it would make us even more delusional, if that is what I am when I say such things.  ;D

P.S. Even though I am an atheist, I don't see the removal of religion as a realistic goal. There is no humane way to do it. One would have to resort ot Stalin or Mao-level methods, which includes replacing religion with some other, even more disastrous, mind-set. Plus a lot more dead bodies. My vote is for opening up our world in such a way that none of us are so caught up in our own philosophies (religious or otherwise) that we're automatically willing to kill those who disagree with us or dispute our claims. That alone would improve the planet a hundred fold.
Jesus, the cracker flavored treat!

Offline nogodsforme

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 6879
  • Darwins +925/-6
  • Gender: Female
  • Jehovah's Witness Protection Program
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #36 on: August 13, 2013, 10:44:47 AM »
A world without religion would be like cold-war era Russia or present day North Korea.

Why do you say that as opposed to examples of places Japan or Sweden?

Cold war Russia and North Korea have secular equivancies of religion, complete with the acceptance of dogma before evidence, venerated dead figures, unquestionable leaders.

Interesting how the lack of religion is immediately assumed to equal oppressive dictatorships where people are forced to adopt an ideology. Why not instead examine the reality of places where people freely and voluntarily live quite well without religious belief?
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Offline Star Stuff

  • Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 5783
  • Darwins +151/-4
  • Gender: Male
  • Carbon-based life form.
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #37 on: August 13, 2013, 10:48:38 AM »
"There was a time when religion ruled the world, it was known as the dark ages."
God is an Imaginary Friend for Grown-ups

Offline epidemic

  • Postgraduate
  • *****
  • Posts: 908
  • Darwins +61/-14
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #38 on: August 13, 2013, 01:06:37 PM »
Interesting how the lack of religion is immediately assumed to equal oppressive dictatorships where people are forced to adopt an ideology. Why not instead examine the reality of places where people freely and voluntarily live quite well without religious belief?

What society is free from religion?

How do you propose eliminating religion from a society? (by attrition over centuries through education, I say fine to that.)

I know a couple of people who absent religion would revert to being dicks.  Where religion turned their life around.   Now god may not have been involved in these transformations but the former criminal who finds god and decides to perform good works makes up some fraction of society.  How is removing religion good if it on occasion makes some bad people good.?

Offline neopagan

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1161
  • Darwins +86/-3
  • Gender: Male
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #39 on: August 13, 2013, 01:09:20 PM »
^^^ well, murder sometimes gets rid of horrible people and sometimes gets rid of wonderful people... we could still live without murder
If xian hell really exists, the stench of the burning billions of us should be a constant, putrid reminder to the handful of heavenward xians how loving your god is.  - neopagan

Offline epidemic

  • Postgraduate
  • *****
  • Posts: 908
  • Darwins +61/-14
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #40 on: August 13, 2013, 01:29:31 PM »
^^^ well, murder sometimes gets rid of horrible people and sometimes gets rid of wonderful people... we could still live without murder

True but a majority of people are not murderers,  Most people are not murderers by nature.  Most people I think seek religion because it makes life easier for them?  How would you eliminate murder by edict?  Murder is an action and religion is a thought.   How you gonna eliminate religion?

Offline neopagan

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1161
  • Darwins +86/-3
  • Gender: Male
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #41 on: August 13, 2013, 01:40:51 PM »

True but a majority of people are not murderers,  Most people are not murderers by nature.  Most people I think seek religion because it makes life easier for them?  How would you eliminate murder by edict?  Murder is an action and religion is a thought.   How you gonna eliminate religion?

The bible claims anger=murder (no distinction between thought and action in the crazy book), so by the bible rules all are murderers by nature...

I assumed the OP was imagining a world without religion... not a removal of it by fiat (however that could be done).

I'm sure reasons for seeking religion are as varied for individuals as the many interpretations of religion. Some may seek easier life, some promises of blessings or fear of hell, some may just go along with what theywereraised in...
I only hope religion decreases over time, but I took the post to be inspired by the John Lennon tune...
If xian hell really exists, the stench of the burning billions of us should be a constant, putrid reminder to the handful of heavenward xians how loving your god is.  - neopagan

Offline bertatberts

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1446
  • Darwins +52/-8
  • Gender: Male
  • Humanists. Not perfect. Not forgiven. Responsible.
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #42 on: August 13, 2013, 02:02:30 PM »
Quote from: epidemic
I know a couple of people who absent religion would revert to being dicks.
Really! I find that hard to belief. "'Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion" - Steven Weinberg
Quote from: epidemic
How is removing religion good if it on occasion makes some bad people good.?
Because the bad outweighs the good.
We theists have no evidence for our beliefs. So no amount of rational evidence will dissuade us from those beliefs. - JCisall

It would be pretty piss poor brainwashing, if the victims knew they were brainwashed, wouldn't it? - Screwtape. 04/12/12

Offline epidemic

  • Postgraduate
  • *****
  • Posts: 908
  • Darwins +61/-14
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #43 on: August 13, 2013, 02:09:44 PM »
Quote from: epidemic
I know a couple of people who absent religion would revert to being dicks.
Really! I find that hard to belief. "'Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion" - Steven Weinberg
Quote from: epidemic
How is removing religion good if it on occasion makes some bad people good.?
Because the bad outweighs the good.

hey I don't know what is in the guys mind but one in particular who stands out was a thug and hoodlum,  he was arrested several times, an addict and he says when he found god he turned things around.  I have heard the story many times on the news, talk shows and in person twice.  Could they be lying, I don't know but they seemed genuine.

Offline screwtape

  • The Great Red Dragon
  • Administrator
  • *******
  • Posts: 12573
  • Darwins +703/-28
  • Gender: Male
  • Karma mooch
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #44 on: August 13, 2013, 03:43:14 PM »
How you gonna eliminate religion?

That's the million dollar question, innit?  As I see it, religion is not the problem.  Yeah, yeah, it is one problem and a pretty effing big one at that.  But the root of it is our horrible, irrational brains.  Those organs were not evolved to think rationally.  They were evolved to find food and reproduce. Our burgeoning rational thought is probably a happy(?) result of early apes having to outsmart each other for dominance and mating priviledges. 

So the only way to get rid or religion is to get rid of magical thinking.  And the only way to do that, really, permanently, is to breed people with better brains, and breed out the idiots.  Since there are no selective pressures for rational thought and plenty for magical thinking, it would require a conscious plan to promote more people with more rational brains.

If there were a cabal of extremely motivated, wealthy and powerful rationalists, it could be done.  But by Cipolla's First and Second Laws of Human Stupidity[1], you are not likely to find enough of them.  And stupid people are unlikely to go along with the plan either because they revel in their own idiocy or because "Hitler".

The human species is doomed.

 

 1. paraphrased: stupid people are everywhere and are equally distributed throughout society.  Thus rational people are rare and also equally distributed.
Links:
Rules
Guides & Tutorials

What's true is already so. Owning up to it does not make it worse.

Offline bertatberts

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1446
  • Darwins +52/-8
  • Gender: Male
  • Humanists. Not perfect. Not forgiven. Responsible.
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #45 on: August 13, 2013, 04:02:09 PM »
hey I don't know what is in the guys mind but one in particular who stands out was a thug and hoodlum,  he was arrested several times, an addict and he says when he found god he turned things around.  I have heard the story many times on the news, talk shows and in person twice.  Could they be lying, I don't know but they seemed genuine.
You're talking about anti-theists and junkies and drunks who had god in there lives from birth, but became anti when life threw them a few curves or they got led astray.

However you worded it as if they were religious, but once they left, they became violent a-holes.
Quote from: you
I know a couple of people who absent religion would revert to being dicks.
Now you are saying they were violent and now they're righteous.
Hence why I said I found it hard to believe, I agree that people who have gone astray can reconnect with they god. But people that leave the violence that is religion, are rarely violent people. As the respect a persons right to live in peace.
« Last Edit: August 13, 2013, 04:05:02 PM by Star Stuff »
We theists have no evidence for our beliefs. So no amount of rational evidence will dissuade us from those beliefs. - JCisall

It would be pretty piss poor brainwashing, if the victims knew they were brainwashed, wouldn't it? - Screwtape. 04/12/12

Offline nogodsforme

  • Professor
  • ********
  • Posts: 6879
  • Darwins +925/-6
  • Gender: Female
  • Jehovah's Witness Protection Program
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #46 on: August 13, 2013, 10:40:31 PM »
It could also be that there are people who decide that it is time to stop being d!cks, usually because they have matured and can think better. They want to become settled members of society. Few people become thugs, start taking drugs or join street gangs at age 30, but many want to stop doing those things around that age. And one socially acceptable way to stop being a d!ck is to "find god".

Back in the day, young folks stayed out of gang recruitment by carrying a bible, professing to be sanctified, or belonging to the Nation of Islam. Parole boards look kindly on the inmates who go to bible study. Churches welcome and reward the reformed sinner. Even street gangs and other thugs sometimes allow a fellow member to leave if they get religion.

Some of them probably are quite sincere, while others are playing the game--not exactly lying, but saying what they know people want to hear so they can get out of the thug life.

What I find interesting is that nobody can tell the difference.
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Offline Add Homonym

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 2756
  • Darwins +222/-4
  • Gender: Male
  • I can haz jeezusburger™
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #47 on: August 14, 2013, 12:23:58 AM »
Australia already has no clue about religion. This particular "woman" had been putting stickers on supermarket food items, saying that halal foods supported terrorism.



I looked up haram, and found that it was the path of sin : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haram

I think the One Nation party has plans to take Australia back to the Eden state, where nobody knew anything.
Humans, in general, don't waste any opportunity to be unfathomably stupid - Dr Cynical.

Offline Traveler

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 2056
  • Darwins +142/-2
  • Gender: Female
  • no god required
    • I am a Forum Guide
    • Gryffin Designs
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #48 on: August 14, 2013, 12:56:00 AM »
There are two people in my past who are now very fundamentalist religious folks. In both cases, they were drug addicts beforehand. In my opinion, its not quite true that religion fixed them. Rather, its that religion, for them, is a more benign addiction than drugs.
If we ever travel thousands of light years to a planet inhabited by intelligent life, let's just make patterns in their crops and leave.

Offline Nam

  • Laureate
  • *********
  • Posts: 12682
  • Darwins +335/-85
  • Gender: Male
  • I'm on the road less traveled...
  • User is on moderator watch listWatched
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #49 on: August 14, 2013, 02:47:07 AM »
I must admit that since I have given up on faith I feel somewhat rudderless and hopeless.  I look at the bins of Christmas decorations in my hallway and want to cry.  Some of those ornaments are treasures and precious memories to me of people who gave them to me or made them for me.  Now what do I do with them?  I am 50 years old and for all of my previous years it has been tradition to put up a tree and decorate and celebrate and my son is 14 and I have always done this with him.  Now do I just say "No present for you, no reason to celebrate."?

Christmas isn't about Jesus or Christianity. Jesus wasn't even born on December 25th[1]. Paganism, as it stands, holds the holiday of "Christmas". From being persecuted Christians celebrated their special days in masque of pagan holidays. What does a tree have to do with Christianity? What do lights on said tree? What do presents? What does Santa Claus or reindeers have to do with Christianity? Absolutely nothing.

Easter is also masqued in the veil of a pagan holiday for a god called Eostre who looked a lot like a bunny who laid eggs. What does that have to do with Christianity? Absolutely nothing.

So...celebrate away.

-Nam
 1. if he actually existed
This thread is about lab-grown dicks, not some mincy, old, British poof of an actor. 

Let's get back on topic, please.


Offline Hatter23

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 3950
  • Darwins +265/-7
  • Gender: Male
  • Doesn't believe in one more god than you
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #50 on: August 14, 2013, 07:29:06 AM »
Interesting how the lack of religion is immediately assumed to equal oppressive dictatorships where people are forced to adopt an ideology. Why not instead examine the reality of places where people freely and voluntarily live quite well without religious belief?

What society is free from religion?

How do you propose eliminating religion from a society? (by attrition over centuries through education, I say fine to that.)


Education, yes. Also by not giving it legal status. By treating people's religion as if it was there community theater.

As long as there's a legal definition for a religion, there's going to be discrimination because silly belief X qualifies as okay, but not silly belief Z. Why should X get the housing deduction, lowered utilities, no property tax, the ability to not have to charge sales tax, but not Z? Because X is a wider held delusion. X gets privileges that only are acceptable because somehow X is special and no one can come up with a logical reason why X is special.

That's where reason comes in, as long as X is given a special legal status, you are basically admitting "we care fuck all about what actually makes sense."

You see a theater troop serves the community, and they can get 501C3 status. They don't pay income taxes. Nothing is stopping them from existing. However, if you were to say "I can't work on Fridays because my theater troop thinks it is wrong;" an employer doesn't have to legally comply with that. If you were to say "Hey, my theater troop doesn't tolerate people making fun of how bad they are, I want a law passed to make it illegal to criticize it" you would be laughed at by legislators. If you state "Because of my Theater troops beliefs, I want this dropped from the science curriculum" it wouldn't even be considered. If you whipped your children raw, what your theater troop stated about how it would make them better actors wouldn't be an issue in a court.

I, and many here, have no desire to outlaw theater troops or religion for that matter. Just that your beliefs don't get anything different or special legally speaking because of the shield the word 'religion' gives them.

And while that doesn't quite mean a society without religion, it does mean a society without any undue influence from religion.

An Omnipowerful God needed to sacrifice himself to himself (but only for a long weekend) in order to avert his own wrath against his own creations who he made in a manner knowing that they weren't going to live up to his standards.

And you should feel guilty for this. Give me money.

Offline LoriPinkAngel

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1250
  • Darwins +129/-6
  • Gender: Female
  • I'm Your Nurse, Not Your Waitress...
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #51 on: August 14, 2013, 06:22:51 PM »
As one who has recently given up on faith I can say I hereby promise not to go out and murder or lie or do any other crimes that I wasn't otherwise inclined to commit despite the people around me who continually piss me off.
It doesn't make sense to let go of something you've had for so long.  But it also doesn't make sense to hold on when there's actually nothing there.

Offline Nam

  • Laureate
  • *********
  • Posts: 12682
  • Darwins +335/-85
  • Gender: Male
  • I'm on the road less traveled...
  • User is on moderator watch listWatched
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #52 on: August 16, 2013, 02:14:34 PM »
As one who has recently given up on faith I can say I hereby promise not to go out and murder or lie or do any other crimes that I wasn't otherwise inclined to commit despite the people around me who continually piss me off.

Sorry, I couldn't hold it any longer and I really had to go pe...wait, what? Um, nevermind.

-Nam
This thread is about lab-grown dicks, not some mincy, old, British poof of an actor. 

Let's get back on topic, please.


Offline Astreja

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 3041
  • Darwins +270/-3
  • Gender: Female
  • Agnostic goddess with Clue-by-Four™
    • The Springy Goddess
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #53 on: August 16, 2013, 02:31:07 PM »
Easter is also masqued in the veil of a pagan holiday for a god called Eostre who looked a lot like a bunny who laid eggs. What does that have to do with Christianity? Absolutely nothing.

Certainly not *now* -- I have reclaimed My holiday.   ;D

And for the record, I don't look anything like a bunny.  Many years ago, however, My pet hare was roaming around in a farmyard near the Black Sea and was seen coming out of a chicken coop.  It's been trying to live that down ever since.
Reality Checkroom — Not Responsible for Lost Articles

Offline Hatter23

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 3950
  • Darwins +265/-7
  • Gender: Male
  • Doesn't believe in one more god than you
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #54 on: August 16, 2013, 03:22:10 PM »
Australia already has no clue about religion. This particular "woman" had been putting stickers on supermarket food items, saying that halal foods supported terrorism.



I looked up haram, and found that it was the path of sin : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haram

I think the One Nation party has plans to take Australia back to the Eden state, where nobody knew anything.

She wants Halal food banned????????????? I take it, then she wants only pork products on the shelves?

An Omnipowerful God needed to sacrifice himself to himself (but only for a long weekend) in order to avert his own wrath against his own creations who he made in a manner knowing that they weren't going to live up to his standards.

And you should feel guilty for this. Give me money.

Offline screwtape

  • The Great Red Dragon
  • Administrator
  • *******
  • Posts: 12573
  • Darwins +703/-28
  • Gender: Male
  • Karma mooch
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #55 on: August 16, 2013, 10:16:24 PM »
My pet hare was roaming around ...

Did you ever read The Maxx?
Links:
Rules
Guides & Tutorials

What's true is already so. Owning up to it does not make it worse.

Offline Astreja

  • Fellow
  • *******
  • Posts: 3041
  • Darwins +270/-3
  • Gender: Female
  • Agnostic goddess with Clue-by-Four™
    • The Springy Goddess
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #56 on: August 16, 2013, 11:43:50 PM »
Did you ever read The Maxx?

First I've heard of it, but I found a description on Wikipedia.  Sounds like an interesting series, and I'll keep an eye out for it.
Reality Checkroom — Not Responsible for Lost Articles

Offline median

  • Reader
  • ******
  • Posts: 1848
  • Darwins +201/-16
  • Gender: Male
  • Yahweh: Obviously not obvious.
    • Talk Origins
Re: A world without Religion
« Reply #57 on: August 18, 2013, 11:24:17 AM »

You're making the mistake of assuming that those a-holes couldn't find alternative reasons to justify their actions in the absence of religious ones, or that taking away religion would even make the task substantially more difficult for them.

I don't know if you've ever spoken to someone who was cheating on their spouse or was having an affair with a married person. A few minutes in that conversation will leave you flabbergasted at the rationalizations that a thoroughly educated man can hold to when he is determined to outwit himself.  The excuses of such a person do not even need to be coherent much less rational. This is because self-justification is a powerful force always in operation within the human mind.

In any event I do not need a logically valid argument to explain why I left my wife and children to pursue a relationship outside my home provided it is not in my plan to ever have to give one. When a person does something immoral fully believing that he will not be caught, he does not bother creating excuses for his actions, he just does them. Naturally, he will only even encounter this need for self-justification when he comes face-to-face with the judgement of his own conscience, much of which ironically will be a direct result of his own socioreligious indoctrinations.

Aside from this you make a perfectly valid point. People have used and still use religion to justify some of the most horrific things that have occured in our past. However, this doesn't change the reality that these people are both capable and willing to use any all methods available to justify their behavior. There are people today that use Darwinism to justify racism.

You're argument is that by removing religion we leave people with less excuses to justify immoral actions, I say that by removing religion you simply give them room to create more excuses by which to justify those immoral actions. With that in mind we do nothing by removing religion and so might as well keep it since [in respect to this] it neither adds nor removes from the real problem.

One other thing. You used yourself as an example of how the absence of a formal religion allowed you to act more ethically. While I cannot speak on the subject of your behavior or the validity of your personal experience, I do question its general applicability. While it feels easy to say that without religion people would be better human beings one must be made to question these assumptions. What are we in effect saying; that the man cheating on his wife would not have be doing so if he was an Atheist, or that the prostitute that he did this with would not be in that situation if she had not been raised Catholic?

I like some of the things you wrote there. The problem is we have much scientific and statistical data which suggests otherwise. Numerous research projects have demonstrated that Atheist/Agnostic (less religious) societies/states/cities, etc are better off socially speaking - showing less crime and more happiness (general sense of well being).[1][2]

Now, whether or not people will still rationalize (at times) or not is, I think, aside from the point. Atheists/agnostics/non-believers tend to be more critically minded - practicing more critical (rational) thinking than religious people do, and basing decisions more upon reason and less upon emotion. This also applies to our decisions to commit crimes, and it is reflected in our prison systems. The numbers are staggering. There are very few atheists/agnostics in prisons in comparison to the religious. Are these numbers absolutely conclusive? No. But I think they do show some significant things regarding societal well being as it correlates to religious belief.


edit - added url tags so footnoted links function
 1. http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/our-humanity-naturally/201103/misinformation-and-facts-about-secularism-and-religion
 2. http://www.pitzer.edu/academics/faculty/zuckerman/Zuckerman_on_Atheism.pdf
« Last Edit: August 19, 2013, 08:39:45 AM by screwtape »
Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Carl Sagan