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devilsadvoc8

Defend your brand of Fairy Tale!

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In the 2012 thread, I made some comments that were rather critical of religion which steered the discussion a bit off-topic for a bit. If anyone wants to discuss religion, I'd be happy to debate here. Its a big topic with so many rabbit holes. I'll talk about any of them and how religion is wrong. We can start at the beginning if you want. Anyone here want to defend creationism/ID? Otherwise suggest another topic (morality without religion, seperation b/t church & state, abortion, monotheism, the fictional and thoroughly ridiculous books of reference, etc).

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lol im going to go out on a limb here and assume you are an atheist? If I am wrong, then let me know.

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Yes I am an athiest. Episcopal upbringing (Catholic Light).

The FSM is just as valid as Zeus or Allah or whatever. So if you want to discuss his noodly appendages go right ahead.

Edited by devilsadvoc8

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I think it was necessary to explain things that couldn't be explained. I think humans are more and more quickly growing out of it.

I was raised Catholic and learned good moral lessons but as far as it factually explaining existence and a creator...I never bought into that part. Even as a little kid; I always thought it was more of a fairy tale that offered some good lessons.

Two thousand years ago people didn't know where the sun went at night... how would they know the answer to the most puzzling important question that exists.

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Yes I am an athiest. Episcopal upbringing (Catholic Light).

The FSM is just as valid as Zeus or Allah or whatever. So if you want to discuss his noodly appendages go right ahead.

Ah ok. I guess I would consider myself Agnostic as I do believe in some higher spirit, but not neccessarily a god or gods. I am not a fan of organized religion and do believe in evolution.

I had a Presbyterian upbringing, but never really went to church much as my parents would tell me the Bible is as just as good of a read as the Grimm Brothers tales lol.

However, I feel the constant attack on religion is just as silly as the constant attack by religious nuts on "non-believers." I guess I feel that people should practice and believe in whatever they want just dont preach it to others when it is unwanted and do not shove it down someone elses throat. This goes for both sides.

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Ah ok. I guess I would consider myself Agnostic as I do believe in some higher spirit, but not neccessarily a god or gods. I am not a fan of organized religion and do believe in evolution.

I had a Presbyterian upbringing, but never really went to church much as my parents would tell me the Bible is as just as good of a read as the Grimm Brothers tales lol.

However, I feel the constant attack on religion is just as silly as the constant attack by religious nuts on "non-believers." I guess I feel that people should practice and believe in whatever they want just dont preach it to others when it is unwanted and do not shove it down someone elses throat. This goes for both sides.

I'll agree and disagree with you. What people choose to do in their own lives is fine. I don't have any interest in homosexuality but that doesn't make it wrong. Whatever makes you happy go for it. If you want to practice some religion on your own time, fine. That's where we agree.

Where we disagree is (1) where religion starts to influence public affairs and (2) Where someone's beliefs are so wrong and they influence public affairs that in my opinion they should hold any public office. Now we may not disagree at all on #1 but it is rare that someone with strong religious beliefs doesn't bring them into politics or their business. Let's just say we agree for now on #1.

As for #2, If someone says that they believe that the earth is flat would you support them for public office? If someone can ignore the preponderance of scientific evidence in favor fairy tales written by goat herders thousands of years ago, I question their intellectual abilities. I worry that that irrational thought may influence their decisions that impact ME. Belive in Zeus or whatever but you have no credibility with me to make any ANY decisions for others.

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I'll agree and disagree with you. What people choose to do in their own lives is fine. I don't have any interest in homosexuality but that doesn't make it wrong. Whatever makes you happy go for it. If you want to practice some religion on your own time, fine. That's where we agree.

Where we disagree is (1) where religion starts to influence public affairs and (2) Where someone's beliefs are so wrong and they influence public affairs that in my opinion they should hold any public office. Now we may not disagree at all on #1 but it is rare that someone with strong religious beliefs doesn't bring them into politics or their business. Let's just say we agree for now on #1.

As for #2, If someone says that they believe that the earth is flat would you support them for public office? If someone can ignore the preponderance of scientific evidence in favor fairy tales written by goat herders thousands of years ago, I question their intellectual abilities. I worry that that irrational thought may influence their decisions that impact ME. Belive in Zeus or whatever but you have no credibility with me to make any ANY decisions for others.

If someone said that the earth is flat and they are running for public office then I would think they are an idiot. However I do feel pretty much all of congress and both political parties are full of idiots so it really wouldn't change my opinion of them already.

Honestly at this moment, I cannot think of a single way religion-influence civic affairs have impeded on my life. I really couldn't care less if my money says "In God We Trust" or not, though the historian in me knows that back 240 years ago our nation was founded by people who had heavy Protestant values and so it would be slightly tragic to lose that bit of heritage. However if that did come off our money my reaction would be more along the lines of "oh that is too bad" rather than outrage. In terms of abortion I am pro-choice, but either way that issue doesn't bother me either as I do not plan on having kids and take precautions against that. I have no problem saying "under god" in the pledge of allegiance and if it is removed, I will have no problem saying it without under god.

Enough about me though, but can you provide an example or two of any laws or ordinances that are religious-influenced and have impacted or impeded your life tremendously? I cannot think of any and when I ask that question to some of my friends who are atheists or just non-practicing, they cannot really give a good example either. Honestly, this is just a bunch of rabble-rousing about nothing and just as silly as the ultra-reiligious nuts rabble-rousing about their agenda.

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As for #2, If someone says that they believe that the earth is flat would you support them for public office? If someone can ignore the preponderance of scientific evidence in favor fairy tales written by goat herders thousands of years ago, I question their intellectual abilities. I worry that that irrational thought may influence their decisions that impact ME. Belive in Zeus or whatever but you have no credibility with me to make any ANY decisions for others.

Your question reminds me of something my astronomy professor said that you can be a very good lawyer, a successful investment banker, or what have you, and not believe something as fundamental that the earth revolves around the sun. So believing in the burning bush or a talking snake does not mean that you're incapable of having good ideas that matter more to the electorate, such as tax policy, military affairs, public spending, etc.

So until someone starts saying I believe the world was created in seven days 4000 years ago AND it ought to be taught in science class, I generally don't care what someone's religious beliefs are.

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I don't care what anyone believes. I hate it when politicians aren't called out for using religion as a criteria for public policy.

The only thing that drives me nuts is when people who are self proclaimed atheists are intolerant of even agnosticism, yet speak on behalf of a hypothetical God. When they use examples along the lines of An omnipotent God doesn't care about you so why believe in him... :blink: If you can come up with the analogies, you can conceive of a creating spirit beyond our comprehension - so why ridicule even the agnostic? Because there is stronger political purpose to being atheist. It's as if admitting there could be a higher spirit invalidates any defense against religious zealots. But religious zealots don't care what you believe.

Atheists interested in a discussion mostly want to belittle a spiritual person - and it all falls under the guise of defending the right to their own beliefs. They're fundamentalists - part of their dogma is that all spiritual people want to convert them. Discussion starts off under that assumption. Which is natural because otherwise what's the point of discussing? Why have a discussion about a God you don't believe in?

The discussion here is even introduced as everyone's Fairy tale - that's condescending and combative. I don't mind Mythology. The discussion you want to have however is Why do people tolerate politicians using religion as justification for creating public policy that clearly infringes on people's civil rights? It's a country founded on separation of church and state. What the heck is up with that? Why did they put "under God" into the pledge after WWII? I feel like that's when it all started - the integration of church and state. I don't approve.

ANYHOW -- I'm up too late.

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The discussion here is even introduced as everyone's Fairy tale - that's condescending and combative. I don't mind Mythology. The discussion you want to have however is Why do people tolerate politicians using religion as justification for creating public policy that clearly infringes on people's civil rights? It's a country founded on separation of church and state. What the heck is up with that? Why did they put "under God" into the pledge after WWII? I feel like that's when it all started - the integration of church and state. I don't approve.

This. I used to be somewhat Catholic. Ever since they picked a Nazi to be pope, I've had no involvement with any church. Even when I was religious, I had issues with forcing my views on others. I feel strongly about the separation of church and state, and on a more personal note, I've never believed Christians "got it right" any more than Buddhists or Muslims or Hindus or anyone else.

Insulting everyone for having a religion is unfair, though. Most religious people are intelligent and thoughtful, and don't want their beliefs forced down anyone else's throat. A vocal minority has politicized God and mobilizes people in scary, dangerous ways, but when you call everyone's beliefs fairy tales, you're not much better (though you're not trying to force your views on an entire country, just sharing them on a message board).

I do think the connection between religion and politics has affected my life. I'm not gay, and I've never gotten anyone pregnant, so gay marriage and Roe v. Wade haven't directly affected me, but the attack on Roe V. Wade and the existence of DOMA (which is unconstitutional) are a direct result of religion and politics, and those things are bad for this country and bad for people I care about deeply. Banning gay marriage especially is unconstitutional, and if right wing fundamentalist Christians (notice I didn't say all Christians) didn't have power in politics, gay marriage would be legal, and we wouldn't be comparing ourselves to theocracies in the middle east and Africa when trying to justify our stance. On a more practical note, I would argue that Bush was elected the second time partially because of religion. Abortion became a major campaign issue rather than war or jobs, and Kerry's religion became a problem when conservative Catholic bishops refused to give him communion for being pro-choice. I don't want to get into a political debate on the merits of Bush or Kerry, but I think it's a problem when the presidency of the United States, a country founded on the belief of separation of church and state, is influenced to a large degree by religion (also, how many non-Protestant presidents have we had? 1, and he was still Christian).

To go back to your original post (and sorry, this rambled a bit), I think there are serious issues with religion in America. I also think most religious people are fine, and that many of them agree about these issues. Demonizing people for having faith is unfair, and is not an effective way to successfully resolve the problems we have. If anything is going to get better in this country, it's going to be because people who disagree learn to work together (something we've gotten crappier and crappier at), so insulting a huge bloc of people for their views is just going to exacerbate the problem.

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If you don't think that religion is affecting you consider the following:

If you think overpopulation is an issue, why does a major religion prohibit condoms and other forms of birth control

If you think that you should be able to marry whomever you want, consider the controversy on gay marriage

If you think that the creation myth is not science then why are state legislatures and state school boards still considering rules to teach it alongside evolution to our youth

If you think that women are equal to men, why are hundreds of million of women not afforded equal rights in Muslim countries

If you think that freedom of speech is important why was EVERY major news outlet in this country afraid to publish a cartoon of Mohammed

If you worry that the conflict between Israel and the rest of the ME will spark a nuclear war then consider the role of religion there

If you or a loved one is faced with certain illnesses and you are looking for a cure think about why stem cell research is constrained here in the US

If you lost a loved one in 9/11 consider religion's role in that

If you think that the sexual abuse and the cover up this abuse and the protection of the abusers is wrong, why hasn't the government come down on the catholic church like it does lone offenders like at PSU?

If you think that the mutilation of females in the form of female circumcision is wrong why is this practice allowed to continue (the whole concept of male circumcision is highly questionable as well but less harmful)

If you value free thought why do we allow children to be brainwashed and indoctrinated into fundamentalist religions before their critical thinking skills are mature

I could go on but I think you get the point.

If you want to practice witch craft and be completely ignorant on your own time, I find it sad but I'll let you do it. As soon as your wacky beliefs impact my world I do get aggressive about it PK because it is based on made up fairy tales. We don't pass laws based on Santa's naughty and nice list and we shouldn't pass laws based on the psychotic visions of an illiterate shepherd who had visions in a cave, a shepherd who spoke with burning bush or some "man" who strangely couldn't have a Y chromosome that had zombie powers.

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Why are you attacking me advoc8? You don't know what I believe.

I never state my beliefs when an atheist puts up a challenge because I find it amusing they assume I have some mythology I must cling to. They never think I am a tolerant atheist. I find that to be akin to the rabid fundamentalist who MUST start with the premiss that I'm going to hell before knowing one damned thing about me.

Why don't you tell me why you choose fairy tale opposed to the less combative mythology? That's what I'm interested in because I think it harms your cause. What is your cause actually? Just to argue with no hope to teach? You can set up the whole the onus is on the believer to prove the existence of God. It's -- blah it's just a tired old rant I'm not amused by - neither side is compelling because I'm comfortable with what I believe.

Now... as for all the things you've called out as being effected by religion. You're implying spirituality caused these things -- but what you MEAN is that dogma does. Why not be less offensive and more specific? Dogma is created to control the masses. It's not a spiritual message it's a tyrannical message. You're not arguing the real point.

But I understand you nonetheless and agree with you. You're just inarticulate -- OR you just know it's a pointless discussion.

You have to start off with basic assumption even if false, in order to set the discussion on the right path for you to pontificate in the way you would like. You want to manipulate the faithful into saying what you want them to... but it' s pointless - you're changing nothing just amusing yourself - feeling like you won something - like you've proven your superiority to yourself - like my signature quote. You can't sway a fundamentalist mind telling them how smart you are and how dumb they are.

All things being equal - you cannot establish the correct point of view - you can only attack with no hope to prove or disprove. You cannot force someone into choosing YOUR path. They have to take their own. Doing your best to belittle their view in attack mode is ineffective. Especially since I expect nothing fresh or compelling will be presented. It will just be the distillation of the writings of atheists smarter than you. :evil: A person is psyched to enter a battle of wits because they have a preconceived outcome which involves their own mental superiority - because they are re-hashing a battle already fought by clearer mind in carefully controlled circumstances (generally their own book).

THIS is the discussion I find interesting. Why do intelligent people have to set themselves up as fundamentalist atheists? You catch more bees with honey. Aggressive mental combat is not the solution to the dissolution of dogma. I've heard Richard Dawkins say that his spreading of the athiest message is to end dogma. It's so hard to get the ear of the minds that follow dogmatic rule. It just seems ineffective to me.

Edited by Pepperkorn

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To streamline a more relevant response to your post now:

Tyrany will exist with or without God

Compassion will exist with or without God

Morality will exist with or without God. Immorality will exist with or without God. And not everyone will agree on the definition of either.

If you take way the belief in God nothing changes - it's will just be given a different name.

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If you don't think that religion is affecting you consider the following:

If you think overpopulation is an issue, why does a major religion prohibit condoms and other forms of birth control

If you think that you should be able to marry whomever you want, consider the controversy on gay marriage

If you think that the creation myth is not science then why are state legislatures and state school boards still considering rules to teach it alongside evolution to our youth

If you think that women are equal to men, why are hundreds of million of women not afforded equal rights in Muslim countries

If you think that freedom of speech is important why was EVERY major news outlet in this country afraid to publish a cartoon of Mohammed

If you worry that the conflict between Israel and the rest of the ME will spark a nuclear war then consider the role of religion there

If you or a loved one is faced with certain illnesses and you are looking for a cure think about why stem cell research is constrained here in the US

If you lost a loved one in 9/11 consider religion's role in that

If you think that the sexual abuse and the cover up this abuse and the protection of the abusers is wrong, why hasn't the government come down on the catholic church like it does lone offenders like at PSU?

If you think that the mutilation of females in the form of female circumcision is wrong why is this practice allowed to continue (the whole concept of male circumcision is highly questionable as well but less harmful)

If you value free thought why do we allow children to be brainwashed and indoctrinated into fundamentalist religions before their critical thinking skills are mature

I could go on but I think you get the point.

If you want to practice witch craft and be completely ignorant on your own time, I find it sad but I'll let you do it. As soon as your wacky beliefs impact my world I do get aggressive about it PK because it is based on made up fairy tales. We don't pass laws based on Santa's naughty and nice list and we shouldn't pass laws based on the psychotic visions of an illiterate shepherd who had visions in a cave, a shepherd who spoke with burning bush or some "man" who strangely couldn't have a Y chromosome that had zombie powers.

I am not a catholic so the condom issue doesn't affect me.

I am not gay so that issue doesn't affect me.

I am not Muslim so that issue doesn't affect me.

I and no one in my family is gravely sick so that has not affected me.

The media is just the media and I can turn off the tv or put down the paper so that doesn't affect me.

I have never been sexually abused by and clergy member and I do not know anyone personally who was sexually abused by a member of the clergy so that doesn't affect me

Please please please just give you an example where it has affected YOU personally and not just hot button issues that doesn't affect me personally.

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Why are you attacking me advoc8? You don't know what I believe.

I never state my beliefs when an atheist puts up a challenge because I find it amusing they assume I have some mythology I must cling to. They never think I am a tolerant atheist. I find that to be akin to the rabid fundamentalist who MUST start with the premiss that I'm going to hell before knowing one damned thing about me.

Why don't you tell me why you choose fairy tale opposed to the less combative mythology? That's what I'm interested in because I think it harms your cause. What is your cause actually? Just to argue with no hope to teach? You can set up the whole the onus is on the believer to prove the existence of God. It's -- blah it's just a tired old rant I'm not amused by - neither side is compelling because I'm comfortable with what I believe.

Now... as for all the things you've called out as being effected by religion. You're implying spirituality caused these things -- but what you MEAN is that dogma does. Why not be less offensive and more specific? Dogma is created to control the masses. It's not a spiritual message it's a tyrannical message. You're not arguing the real point.

But I understand you nonetheless and agree with you. You're just inarticulate -- OR you just know it's a pointless discussion.

You have to start off with basic assumption even if false, in order to set the discussion on the right path for you to pontificate in the way you would like. You want to manipulate the faithful into saying what you want them to... but it' s pointless - you're changing nothing just amusing yourself - feeling like you won something - like you've proven your superiority to yourself - like my signature quote. You can't sway a fundamentalist mind telling them how smart you are and how dumb they are.

All things being equal - you cannot establish the correct point of view - you can only attack with no hope to prove or disprove. You cannot force someone into choosing YOUR path. They have to take their own. Doing your best to belittle their view in attack mode is ineffective. Especially since I expect nothing fresh or compelling will be presented. It will just be the distillation of the writings of atheists smarter than you. :evil: A person is psyched to enter a battle of wits because they have a preconceived outcome which involves their own mental superiority - because they are re-hashing a battle already fought by clearer mind in carefully controlled circumstances (generally their own book).

THIS is the discussion I find interesting. Why do intelligent people have to set themselves up as fundamentalist atheists? You catch more bees with honey. Aggressive mental combat is not the solution to the dissolution of dogma. I've heard Richard Dawkins say that his spreading of the athiest message is to end dogma. It's so hard to get the ear of the minds that follow dogmatic rule. It just seems ineffective to me.

I wasn't attacking you but if you feel I am, I don't care. Devsman stated that they didn't think that religion affected them and I gave them a list on how it might. If you have some hypersensitivity about something it isn't my fault that is your own personal issue.

Now, since you feel I am attacking you, I will address you directly: You are a hypocrite. You outright dismiss any opinion contrary to yours regarding AGW and belittle other's opinions. Here, when you topic changes to religion that tactic is wrong. :argh: From your ivory tower you state that I am aggressive and insulting yet you feel perfectly comfortable saying:

stated that I am:

Inarticulate

I'll just distill statements from smarter people

I don't give a sh!t what discussion YOU feel is interesting. If you want, start your own thread on that topic.

As for the topic at hand, until people start addressing religion full on as the joke that it is, it will continue to fvck up human existence. The fundamentalists need to be pushed to the margins. Injustices in this world didn't get righted using honey, PK. Brave men and women took stands and called it like they saw it instead of trying to make nice. The founding of this country, women's rights, racial equality, the end of slavery all occurred in this country because people confronted the issue and told people : You are wrong. This is not what our country stands for.

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I am not a catholic so the condom issue doesn't affect me.

I am not gay so that issue doesn't affect me.

I am not Muslim so that issue doesn't affect me.

I and no one in my family is gravely sick so that has not affected me.

The media is just the media and I can turn off the tv or put down the paper so that doesn't affect me.

I have never been sexually abused by and clergy member and I do not know anyone personally who was sexually abused by a member of the clergy so that doesn't affect me

Please please please just give you an example where it has affected YOU personally and not just hot button issues that doesn't affect me personally.

I have lost a good friend to a disease that stem cells hold promise for curing

I have lost my best friend when they married a fundamentalist

I lost a co-worker on one of the 9/11 planes

I do worry about finite natural resources on this planet so overpopulation is a concern

I do worry about a nuclear ME conflict

My 9 yr old daughter who attends public school is ostracized by the god squad girls at school b/c she doesn't attend church. Not once have I ever told my daughter what I believe. I have never told her god doesn't exist and I haven't told her it does. I will let her make her own decision for the right reasons not because I indoctrinated her in a particular belief structure when her mind has rudimentary critical thinking skills.

Get the movie Jesus Camp from Netflix.

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I wasn't attacking you but if you feel I am, I don't care. Devsman stated that they didn't think that religion affected them and I gave them a list on how it might. If you have some hypersensitivity about something it isn't my fault that is your own personal issue. To use an expression I hate: my bad - you are correct - but can anyone be surprized I made it all about me?

Now, since you feel I am attacking you, I will address you directly: You are a hypocrite. You outright dismiss any opinion contrary to yours regarding AGW and belittle other's opinions. Here, when you topic changes to religion that tactic is wrong. :argh: From your ivory tower you state that I am aggressive and insulting yet you feel perfectly comfortable saying:

stated that I am:

Inarticulate

I'll just distill statements from smarter people Yeah -- I meant to say that :evil: I like insulting you - and you seem to enjoy it so!

I don't give a sh!t what discussion YOU feel is interesting. If you want, start your own thread on that topic.

As for the topic at hand, until people start addressing religion full on as the joke that it is, it will continue to fvck up human existence. The fundamentalists need to be pushed to the margins. Injustices in this world didn't get righted using honey, PK. Brave men and women took stands and called it like they saw it instead of trying to make nice. The founding of this country, women's rights, racial equality, the end of slavery all occurred in this country because people confronted the issue and told people : You are wrong. This is not what our country stands for.

I think you're wrong. Your playing into the fundamentalists hands trying to take on a war that no one can win. It's a physical war not a mental one. Their beliefs are rhetorical. Any response then is as well... I'm talking about jihad mostly here. (And crusades etc.)

The change you're citing came about not from society abandoning religion - that's quite a leap. It came about from people folding more progressive beleifs into their religion.

again I state:

Tyrany will exist with or without God

Compassion will exist with or without God

Morality will exist with or without God. Immorality will exist with or without God. And not everyone will agree on the definition of either.

If you take away the belief in God nothing changes - it's will just be given a different name.

Edited by Pepperkorn

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Also you completely disregarded:

The discussion you want to have however is Why do people tolerate politicians using religion as justification for creating public policy that clearly infringes on people's civil rights? It's a country founded on separation of church and state.

Let's not discuss abolishing all religion - instead focus on reinvigorating the concept of separation of church and state. It's a winnable battle. Abolition is never a realistic starting point

(When you disregard responses that are not insulting and directly address your topic you ignore them. I have to insult you and say something off topic to get you to respond, So I am left conclude you want a fight not productive discussion.)

Edited by Pepperkorn

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Also you completely disregarded:

Let's not discuss abolishing all religion - instead focus on reinvigorating the concept of separation of church and state. It's a winnable battle. Abolition is never a realistic starting point

(When you disregard responses that are not insulting and directly address your topic you ignore them. I have to insult you and say something off topic to get you to respond, So I am left conclude you want a fight not productive discussion.)

PK, I am not afraid of any question you might have the mental focus to put together. I have to admit, however, I really only skim your posts as they are generally incoherent dribble but extra points for excellent smiley use.

As for your question, if something is wrong, its wrong. If slavery is wrong, you don't chastise only the slaveowners who treat their slaves poorly. If women should have the right to vote you don't start with allowing them just local elections. You suggest treating the symptoms not the disease. I disagree.

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If you don't think that religion is affecting you consider the following:

If you think overpopulation is an issue, why does a major religion prohibit condoms and other forms of birth control

If you think that you should be able to marry whomever you want, consider the controversy on gay marriage

If you think that the creation myth is not science then why are state legislatures and state school boards still considering rules to teach it alongside evolution to our youth

If you think that women are equal to men, why are hundreds of million of women not afforded equal rights in Muslim countries

If you think that freedom of speech is important why was EVERY major news outlet in this country afraid to publish a cartoon of Mohammed

If you worry that the conflict between Israel and the rest of the ME will spark a nuclear war then consider the role of religion there

If you or a loved one is faced with certain illnesses and you are looking for a cure think about why stem cell research is constrained here in the US

If you lost a loved one in 9/11 consider religion's role in that

If you think that the sexual abuse and the cover up this abuse and the protection of the abusers is wrong, why hasn't the government come down on the catholic church like it does lone offenders like at PSU?

If you think that the mutilation of females in the form of female circumcision is wrong why is this practice allowed to continue (the whole concept of male circumcision is highly questionable as well but less harmful)

If you value free thought why do we allow children to be brainwashed and indoctrinated into fundamentalist religions before their critical thinking skills are mature

I could go on but I think you get the point.

If you want to practice witch craft and be completely ignorant on your own time, I find it sad but I'll let you do it. As soon as your wacky beliefs impact my world I do get aggressive about it PK because it is based on made up fairy tales. We don't pass laws based on Santa's naughty and nice list and we shouldn't pass laws based on the psychotic visions of an illiterate shepherd who had visions in a cave, a shepherd who spoke with burning bush or some "man" who strangely couldn't have a Y chromosome that had zombie powers.

A few things come to mind. Religion helped bring down Communism and played an important role in the abolition of slavery.

Also, this idea that we'll someone live in a more moral or peaceful world if there wasn't any religion has been proven wrong. Atheism was/is official state doctrine in the Soviet Union, North Korea, China and Cuba. These countries have murdered/starved to death uncounted millions in a short period of time. Moreover, I would submit that this was a product of atheism. Leaders of at least two of these countries, Stalin and Mao, were completely nihlistic and hence didn't give a thought to widespread death in their own countries, which was in large part influenced by their atheism.

This isn't to say that atheists are inherently immoral. By the same token though, religious people, and in fact most religious people aren't intolerant and backward as your post implies. The parade of horribles you present, are mainly the result of backward cultures that would most likely exist whether the actors were religious or not. For example, there are virtually no Muslims that have lived and grown up in the US engaging in acts of terrorism or even expressing any support for it. That's because, even the religious ones, they wanted to escape the more backward aspects of the culture of their homeland.

Look, I'm not religious myself, and am actually more or less atheist. It's just completely naive and simplistic to think that we'll live in a more advanced and less cruel civilization without religion.

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Well there is where we disagree - religion is the symptom. I see that as plain as day.

Religious dogma was created to control the masses - treat (ack! I wrote symptom -- I meant:) weakness of the human condition:

avarice

despair

gluttony

lust

pride

sloth

vanity

wrath

Do not take the name of the Lord your God in vain

Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy

Honor your father and your mother

Do not murder.

Do not commit adultery.

Do not steal.

Do not bear false witness against your neighbor.

Do not covet

and whatever... hahaha

All of things you are blaming religion for are the things religion is just seeking to control. Government seeks to control it as well. Dogma uses fictional punishment - rotting in hell for eternity - as if plain torture/death here on earth wasn't enough. Which it clearly isn't.

I'm not saying you're stupid to want to abolish dogma - I'm not saying there shouldn't be separation of church and state. I'm saying trying to rid people of their beliefs, historically, only serves to strengthen them. Trivializing with words like fairy tale only serves to disenfranchise - the people you want to reach gird their loins and hunker down for a real battle.

People only face truths when they feel safe.

YOU CAN STOP READING NOW

I don't think you're afraid to answer questions. I get the impression from your body of work on this forum that if there is no argument, you ignore, or if you see no clear path to "victory" in a debate, you ignore or hold off posting until you've formulated something you think you can win. The whole "win" thing is fun for sure - but I banter off the cuff and mostly I'm more interested in the topic than the competition. It bugs me when someone's desire to be the winner cuts into discussing the topic at hand. But there really isn't anything I can do to change that. It's a mistake more often than not to try to power through someone's mental defenses - but it is amusing, occasionally effective - and to be honest, a bad habit.

and when will people understand I WANT people to skim? if you miss my point you wouldn't understand it. I don't feel superior mentally - if I did, I'd couch my sh!t in pedantry to get you to tune out. Instead I like to couch it in simplicity and infantile musings or smartass ranting. If you do not have the light-heartedness to find my point you're not interested in the same thing I am and/or you're motivation for posting probably doesn't jibe with what I enjoy reading. I'll reach out to people in ways I think they might understand if I think we have something of value to relate to one and other. If I can't get through then -- who cares? Yeah -- a poster can get my goat and I do enjoy having my goat gotten. Also I interrupt often when someone else has sadi something compelling to me -- then it' sjust a big hassle when someone cuts in and argues - we all know how that is! BUT - I will say - In the interest of forward progression of topic at hand, I let you off up there accepting responsibility for cutting in to your conversation with dm84. You addressed me specifically unless someone else is PK and posted under the assumption I HAD a belief that would infringe on your life in some way. It wasn't lost on me -- it's just not that big a deal. and you probably skimmed your own post - I know how that is.

Edited by Pepperkorn

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This isn't to say that atheists are inherently immoral. By the same token though, religious people, and in fact most religious people aren't intolerant and backward as your post implies. The parade of horribles you present, are mainly the result of backward cultures that would most likely exist whether the actors were religious or not. For example, there are virtually no Muslims that have lived and grown up in the US engaging in acts of terrorism or even expressing any support for it. That's because, even the religious ones, they wanted to escape the more backward aspects of the culture of their homeland.

Look, I'm not religious myself, and am actually more or less atheist. It's just completely naive and simplistic to think that we'll live in a more advanced and less cruel civilization without religion.

I disagree a little here. Nearly all religions can be turned "backward." For example, I personally believe it is backward to believe in literal creationism. I don't mind those that can say God created science and thus created evolution and thus science and religion are both correct - Adam and Eve is just an allegory. If you say everything in your religious tome of choice is literal and accurate ... that's backward to me. US fundamentalists (it's not the country it's the religious sect - the 2 aren't as separate as you paint above and that is what I disagree with) seem want to turn the US backwards as described above. Now if a fundamentalist said God loves all people Gay or Straight - I think that is forward thinking. Death = backward Love = forward. BUT I struggle with sociopaths who I feel are beyond reformation. The farmer brain in me thinks cull those effers! So it's not cut and dry - you can always look more deeply.

People will find a way to do what they want and justify it - claim it is just and proper. Religion is just one of the ways they do that. if you took religion away something would replace it... Religion is just a name for a permanent and unchanging state of human existence. I think picking my nose is gross so I'm not going to let you pick yours even if I don't see you doing it. I now deem this an offense punishable by death. People will always think it is their right to proclaim (and enforce) things like this, whether they get to tack on "because God said so" or not.

YOU CAN STOP READING NOW

I'm not an atheist :P OBVIOUSLY. :evil: But I believe I have no way of knowing what is what. I do not believe in a mythological God or a personal God I guess they say - the dude in the clouds kind of thing. My beliefs are always shifting. I am a naturalist in that I can live with science as the creating spirit. I do not need to have an afterlife. I do not think that all will be revealed - though I used to when I was a kid. I thought "it will be so nice to know everything when I die." When I was about 12 it hit me... wait a sec... what makes me think I'm going to be enlightened at the end of my life?

Basically I love it so much here and I love the weird intangibles like emotions - I need to give thanks to something. That something is God to me. Existence is God to me - whatever that is :noclue: Things that blow my mind - I like creating a place to put those things - spirituality is like life's bookmark for me. It's hard for me to grasp good and evil. If you say chance put everything together -- then chance is God to me. I have an emotion towards, feelings for, I care about chance - maybe it's anthropomorphizing... I have no problem with that. Then anthropomorphizing is God to me. There is no catchall proof there is a God whatever that means to you. It's faith - I like faith. If it's a pointless faith I'm fine with that. The craziness starts is when the atheist has faith. That is what I love the most -- to me that is God :uni: To have purpose to me is to have faith... :noclue: I'm a Quaker - no one is wrong. You know in yourself what is right for you.

Edited by Pepperkorn

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A few things come to mind. Religion helped bring down Communism and played an important role in the abolition of slavery.

Also, this idea that we'll someone live in a more moral or peaceful world if there wasn't any religion has been proven wrong. Atheism was/is official state doctrine in the Soviet Union, North Korea, China and Cuba. These countries have murdered/starved to death uncounted millions in a short period of time. Moreover, I would submit that this was a product of atheism. Leaders of at least two of these countries, Stalin and Mao, were completely nihlistic and hence didn't give a thought to widespread death in their own countries, which was in large part influenced by their atheism.

This isn't to say that atheists are inherently immoral. By the same token though, religious people, and in fact most religious people aren't intolerant and backward as your post implies. The parade of horribles you present, are mainly the result of backward cultures that would most likely exist whether the actors were religious or not. For example, there are virtually no Muslims that have lived and grown up in the US engaging in acts of terrorism or even expressing any support for it. That's because, even the religious ones, they wanted to escape the more backward aspects of the culture of their homeland.

Look, I'm not religious myself, and am actually more or less atheist. It's just completely naive and simplistic to think that we'll live in a more advanced and less cruel civilization without religion.

Daniel, I am not going to argue that those countries you cite had some athiestic overtones at one point but we can certainly see what they ended up being. Look at the funeral proceedings in NK and the official press releases: traditional religion was simply replaced by religion of the state and its dictatorial leader. Same with Stalin and Castro. I will admit that currently China doesn't fit this mold very well but the communist party certainly takes on many of the trappings of religion in that society. They purged established religion in order to replace it with their own brand of mind control. I don't care if it is allah, jesus, Kim Il Jung or zeus, they all represent attempts to control the masses through control of information and the demonization of dissenting voices.

I will disagree that the human casualties are a direct product of atheism. I understand the point you are making but since the crimes perpetrated by those leaders have also been committed by religious leaders I don't think you can prove causality from that. You could make the same argument for a leader being male causing those tragedies.

I also disagree with your point that my parade of horribles would exist without religion. Most are solely based on religious dogma. I can concede that the repression of women by the physically stronger sex might occur without religion and children could be brainwashed into any doctrine at an early age for any reason. The rest are predicated on religious crap.

Edited by devilsadvoc8

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Religious dogma is predicated on human crap. This isn't which came first chicken or the egg. Behavior came first. Rules citing the behavior as immoral followed. You are saying without religion no one would seek to control any one else's behavior. That's a naive conclusion.

There must be some philosophical ruling on this - anyone feel free to throw it out there. As much as I love philosophy I really haven't studied it enough.

(BTW - if you don't respond to me it looks like you can't, not like you're above my base and feeble musings Langue31.gif )

Edited by Pepperkorn

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