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Thread: Explain to me the cons of basing our culture off religion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by houndourm View Post
    But that would require all government officials to be atheist or even the morals they get from their religion would be imparted on there judgement.
    They wouldn't necessarily need to be atheist. I'm also not saying that the morals taught by some religions don't have their merits (yeah, it's pretty common sense that killing and raping are bad things). I therefore don't see any problem with heads of State being religious as long as they recognize that religion is an individual experience and can separate their religious views from what is rationally in the best interest of the people they represent. That's essentially all that separation of Church and State means.
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    Yes but that's impossible because its who hey are. Everything they say and do is affected by their experiences and beliefs from anything including religion. But also you could have it be atheist only. Itbwould be discrimination and atheists have beliefs. And couldd be grudging. Soo
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    Quote Originally Posted by GhostAnime View Post
    That doesn't mean we give up. An ancient book isn't going to point us in the direction anymore than us intellectually discussing and reflecting with each other. That's what we've done for the past few centuries. If we didn't, we'd still be living in the stone age raping our women and calling blacks monkeys.

    Clearly it has been done.
    Doesn't mean we give up? whut? do you think I believe we should abandon teaching the masses to reason? Because I don't think that.




    Debatable? All you have to do is look at the history of all corruption and how it was done. If we examine the most common factors... they include financial and academic disadvantage, different ethnicity, and God. God has been the excuses for the most major things in history. Sure, you can point out exceptions. I acknowledge them, but when you're talking about the likelihood and the impact, nothing has compared to racism and religion (religion being the tool; racism being the foundation).
    As atheism hasn't been a mainstream view for a long amount of time, there hasn't been much chance for irreligious groups to flex their potential cruelty and influence the way religious groups have shown us how potentially cruel they can be. The reason I say debatable is that several irreligious regimes and groups have in the last couple of centuries shown their potential for cruelty, coupled with the first sentence and I'm not convinced one is moar capable of evil than the other. My view so far is that any person can be as morally low or high as they wish.

    Wait? are you linking racism to religion? that's absurd.


    The laws and guidelines in Leviticus were given by God to Moses. Regardless of whether Jesus supplanted them later on, God still gave them to Israel to live by.

    Also, one could argue that Jesus himself was a blood sacrifice. [?]

    And God is said to have sent the bears to kills those youths.
    Repeating obscure quotes from the Bible doesn't prove anything inherently cruel about Christianity. I could use one of Dawkins' many examples of arrogance, evangelical-style fanaticism and hypocrisy to say all atheists and atheism itself breed arrogance and a a desire for forced ideological imposition. I don't because it's not true. Basically, arguing for religion's evil by using a few quotes that no-one adheres to is really displaying a lack of thinking.


    To counter this continuing facetiousness argument about whether or not Hitler was an atheist or not and whether it has any relevance to this current debate.
    You seemed fairly interested when you attempted to accuse me of saying Hitler was this or that.



    I think that religion certainly has its place within our culture as it can have benefits for the individual. But like all institutions, organized religions seek power, and power in numbers. They do this by essentially polarizing their followers against people of other faiths and with non-normative lifestyles, and each faith claims to have the market cornered on being the 'correct' one. If religious institutions truly had the good of humanity at heart they would simply adopt a 'live and let live' mentality toward other faiths and let people decide for themselves, but instead their fierce competition has only led to hatred, xenophobia, and even wars.
    Yes, someone who gets it. Good old fashion human greed and lust for power for the win.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vermehlo_Steele View Post
    Repeating obscure quotes from the Bible doesn't prove anything inherently cruel about Christianity.
    Leviticus isn't some set of obscure quotes; it is the God-given law to Moses for the people of Israel. It was the will of God, the same God of Christianity, and whether or not an avatar of God came to Earth later and made some conflicting statements about whether or not that law was to be changed doesn't change that they represent God's will for his chosen people on how to live their lives at some point in history. They're referenced throughout the Bible, anyway. Hardly obscure.


    I could use one of Dawkins' many examples of arrogance, evangelical-style fanaticism and hypocrisy to say all atheists and atheism itself breed arrogance and a a desire for forced ideological imposition. I don't because it's not true. Basically, arguing for religion's evil by using a few quotes that no-one adheres to is really displaying a lack of thinking.
    And you wouldn't do that because Atheism doesn't function like that anyway. Richard Dawkins isn't an 'Atheist Bishop' whose will we all bow down to or even agree with.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vermehlo_Steele View Post
    Doesn't mean we give up? whut? do you think I believe we should abandon teaching the masses to reason? Because I don't think that.
    Pointing to an ancient book or society thousands of years ago is essentially giving up to me. I understand the general significance of history, but that significance should in no way heavily influence today's standard values.

    When you base SUBJECTIVE concepts on religions that state ABSOLUTE TRUTH, then you have no room for subjectivity. You'd just be picking and choosing what you like. Wouldn't it be easier to just say what feels right to you and make an argument for it instead of on ancient societies?

    As atheism hasn't been a mainstream view for a long amount of time, there hasn't been much chance for irreligious groups to flex their potential cruelty and influence the way religious groups have shown us how potentially cruel they can be. The reason I say debatable is that several irreligious regimes and groups have in the last couple of centuries shown their potential for cruelty, coupled with the first sentence and I'm not convinced one is moar capable of evil than the other. My view so far is that any person can be as morally low or high as they wish.
    So, you feel that if non-religious people were the majority, they'd be as corrupt?

    This idea has been entertained by many people (most notably South Park), but I'll put it like this... corruption will always exist as long as there is a gain for some human being. You are right that regardless of what one's beliefs are about the universe, one can still do corrupt things.

    What I'm trying to simply say is that, a religious person is going to have an easier time being corrupt than an irreligious person. Why?

    Many religions have that "authority figure" that gives you that extra avenue of truth. You can say anything you want and it'll be justified. Think of priests, parents, or even the Pope himself.

    With non-religious people, you don't really have to abide by any such rules whether it's from a book or an authority. They mostly rely on some abstract form of beliefs. They are still capable of being corrupt and convincing people to do bad things, but that depends on the population he's convincing. If this population was a least developed country, it would be a cinch regardless of their beliefs.

    Wait? are you linking racism to religion? that's absurd.
    I'm not necessarily linking them. What I mean is that religion is what's used, and racism is the "hidden reasoning". A "racist" will use religion as a "tool" to justify his racism. Get it?
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    Originally Posted by Vermehlo_Steele
    Repeating obscure quotes from the Bible doesn't prove anything inherently cruel about Christianity.
    Repeating any quotes from the Bible doesnt prove anything either.

    ^
    And you wouldn't do that because Atheism doesn't function like that anyway. Richard Dawkins isn't an 'Atheist Bishop' whose will we all bow down to or even agree with.
    indeed, we dont really have any real atheist leaders whom we bow down to. some atheists come up with good evidence or theories, but we dont automatically believe them because they dont hold a position of "power" over us, because we dont believe in some higher being that has power over our fates, and we arnt afraid to think differently beaucase we arent afraid of eternal damnation, so we dont keep our mouths shut and pretend it isnt happening if something goes wrong
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    Quote Originally Posted by AzukanAsimbu View Post
    indeed, we dont really have any real atheist leaders whom we bow down to. some atheists come up with good evidence or theories, but we dont automatically believe them because they dont hold a position of "power" over us, because we dont believe in some higher being that has power over our fates, and we arnt afraid to think differently beaucase we arent afraid of eternal damnation, so we dont keep our mouths shut and pretend it isnt happening if something goes wrong

    Are you suggesting that religious individuals possess warped senses of logic, whilst Atheists are "modern day moses'" who will split the sea of misinformation and recommend corrective action?

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    Quote Originally Posted by AzukanAsimbu View Post
    Repeating any quotes from the Bible doesnt prove anything either.

    ^

    indeed, we dont really have any real atheist leaders whom we bow down to. some atheists come up with good evidence or theories, but we dont automatically believe them because they dont hold a position of "power" over us, because we dont believe in some higher being that has power over our fates, and we arnt afraid to think differently beaucase we arent afraid of eternal damnation, so we dont keep our mouths shut and pretend it isnt happening if something goes wrong
    No, we don't believe them because they are "above us normies" (?!), we believe them because they present a strong argument with well researched evidence that has been tried, tested and reviewed by a community of (genius) scientists. This is the reason why atheists are atheists, the only thing we listen to is evidence and fact. Also, the reason I hate religion (EDIT: I don't hate religion itself, I hate its extremist members, religion itself is an interesting part of human history and I very much enjoyed learning about them all in school) is because (essentially all religions) attempt to force beliefs onto others with no grounds, and they shouldn't have a right to do so in the first place. Fair enough if you wish to convert on your own accord, but don't try and force anyone to do the same. This also applies to children, children who have beliefs forced on them lack the ability to think critically about their surroundings and the nature of our existence (I have probably stolen this from Dawkins but it is a very important point for me).
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    I'll merely point to how religion paves the way for:
    ~ Attacks on Abortion Clinics and Doctors who preform abotions.
    ~ Attacks on people who believe in a different religion, sometimes even merely a different form of the same religion, or none at all (both with words and, more dangerously, with violence).
    ~ Putting people to death in horribly cruel ways for 'crimes' such as adultery, apostasy or blasphemy.
    ~ Taking away that normal human awareness and fear of mortality opening the way for suicide attacks.

    As far as I can see if you look at human morals and remove anything that relates to religion (ie "Thou shall have no strange Gods before Me") what you're left with are basically rules you HAVE to have in order so that a group society can function.

    I mean let's face it society couldn't function if people were going around killing each other, or stealing from each other, or openly having it away with other people's partners.

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    99.99% Of Religions Are Based On Absolute Morals. (E.g. 613 Commandments Of The Torah)

    Basing A Culture/Socitey Off A Religion Means Basing It Off Of The Religions Moral Standards. This Is Fine As Long as EVERYONE Wants To Follow These Moral Absolutes.

    The Cons Are That Not Everyone Would Want To Follow A Set Morality (E.g. Follow Their Own "Wrong And Right") Also, Every Religion Has differing Moralities.
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    Pros: It gives people something to believe in.

    Cons: Many people wouldn't want to follow it.

    It really depends on the individual tbh. /stating the obvious

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    Quote Originally Posted by Night_Walker View Post
    As far as I can see if you look at human morals and remove anything that relates to religion (ie "Thou shall have no strange Gods before Me") what you're left with are basically rules you HAVE to have in order so that a group society can function.

    I mean let's face it society couldn't function if people were going around killing each other, or stealing from each other, or openly having it away with other people's partners.
    So, are you saying religion is necessary in order for a society to function, or merely the morals that come from it? Because rules/morals are entirely different from a supernatural agent.
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuboy View Post
    Quick, someone get the scientific community onto this one! A truly brilliant hypothesis that would have been insofar overlooked by every researcher who has contributed to this field of science. And it's only 8th grade stuff!
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    Quote Originally Posted by GhostAnime View Post
    So, are you saying religion is necessary in order for a society to function, or merely the morals that come from it? Because rules/morals are entirely different from a supernatural agent.
    He was saying secular morality is required for society to function. He listed cons of religion having a controlling position in society, and even suggested we look at morality while removing everything edited in by religion.

    Which is a good argument, in fact. All of the objective morals that actually are necessary for a society to function and survive are based on practical reasoning. Morals tied to religions are superfluous from an objective standpoint because they're only significant within their given religion.

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    Crusades.

    That is to say, religion can be used to justify ANYTHING, a society based entirely on some religion or other would not be the utopia you believe it would be, because it would almost immediately be corrupted and used for some form of violence or oppression.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Byzantine View Post
    Crusades.

    That is to say, religion can be used to justify ANYTHING.
    I disagree. Religions have Set absolute morals, if you break them (e.g. cursades in a christenized nation) then your not in a nation based on religion.

    Athiesm is the only worldview in which anything can be justified morally.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NINJA PENGUIN View Post
    I disagree. Religions have Set absolute morals, if you break them (e.g. cursades in a christenized nation) then your not in a nation based on religion.
    That doesn't mean it hasn't been used as a tool. Hardly anyone can even agree on what's absolute in the first place.

    Athiesm is the only worldview in which anything can be justified morally.
    What does atheism say in ANYTHING regards to morally?
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuboy View Post
    Quick, someone get the scientific community onto this one! A truly brilliant hypothesis that would have been insofar overlooked by every researcher who has contributed to this field of science. And it's only 8th grade stuff!
    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Zero
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    Quote Originally Posted by NINJA PENGUIN View Post
    I disagree. Religions have Set absolute morals, if you break them (e.g. cursades in a christenized nation) then your not in a nation based on religion.

    Athiesm is the only worldview in which anything can be justified morally.
    No, they justified those as well, they simply called the people they were attacking heretics, and that automatically made their actions right. Religion can be used to justify everything, as can atheism.

    The difference is atheists are less likely to brutally beat someone for having a worldview that they find "wrong" because they have less means to justify it.
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    "Justified" is a tough word to use here. You can "justify" almost anything, by reshaping context or definition or even simply appealing to authority (credible or otherwise), and religion is one of society's biggest abusers of that power. But to consider something justified doesn't always make it right, just, or logical. The world at large will still frequently accept something as "justified" even if it has been justified by misleading authorities or even flat-out bad reasons. History is rampant with false/invalid justifications.

    Quote Originally Posted by GhostAnime View Post
    What does atheism say in ANYTHING regards to morally?
    I think the only statement atheism makes on morality is that it shouldn't be based on religious doctrine.

    But of course, that's simply a different combination of words that translates into "morality should be objective," which is a defining requirement of ethics in the first place, so it's less like atheism has etablished that statement and more like atheism is silently pointing at it and jerking its head in that direction.

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    It is? I would think that it pointed to relativism more.
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuboy View Post
    Quick, someone get the scientific community onto this one! A truly brilliant hypothesis that would have been insofar overlooked by every researcher who has contributed to this field of science. And it's only 8th grade stuff!
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    Quote Originally Posted by GhostAnime View Post
    It is? I would think that it pointed to relativism more.
    What, an atheist stance on morality? I certainly hope not. Relativism is a pretty destructive view of ethics. I've read both philosophers and scientists who champion the objectivity of morality.

    Sam Harris, famous not so much for being an atheist as he is for hating religion, wrote "The Moral Landscape" recently, where he proposed a theory of moral values drawn from facts; facts about health, biology, economy, and psychology. The poor book was half theory, half footnote! But a very interesting and envigorating read.

    Atheism is all about empirical fact, isn't it? Relativism isn't quite so. Ethical theory needn't be any more wishy-washy and indistinct than scientific theory, and an atheist ought hold all his theories to a standard of objectivity, after all.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GhostAnime View Post
    So, are you saying religion is necessary in order for a society to function, or merely the morals that come from it? Because rules/morals are entirely different from a supernatural agent.
    No.

    What I meant is when you take away the clearly religious things from the Ten Commandments, that are held up as the basis of morality in the western world, and you look at what's left what I see aren't 'religion inspired morals' they're actually morals that make perfect sense has having arisen in order to keep harmony within a group situation.

    To put it another way, there are numerous types of other social animals who are not religious who live in relatively harmonious communities thanks to abiding by, broadly, the same kinds of 'morals'/restrictions on what is acceptable in their society - ie not stealing food or implements from one another, not killing or attacking one another at the slightest excuse.

    In short my opinion is that morality is something we've come by because it was necessary for our success as a social species, not something that comes from religion.

    Religion provides justifications to discriminate against and even be violent towards other people over things that are really personal matters that don't harm anyone.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GhostAnime View Post
    What does atheism say in ANYTHING regards to morally?
    Nothing, Thats the Point. It Leads to Everyone Inventing Their Own Morality, And We Lose all Sense Of Right And Wrong. How Can You Base A Culture With No Sense Of Right And Wrong?
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    Quote Originally Posted by NINJA PENGUIN View Post
    Nothing, Thats the Point. It Leads to Everyone Inventing Their Own Morality, And We Lose all Sense Of Right And Wrong. How Can You Base A Culture With No Sense Of Right And Wrong?
    Because terms like 'right' and 'wrong' are too simplistic to describe the complex morality of life?

    Besides, people have been 'making up' their own morality based on differing interpretations religious texts for thousands of years, why is secularism, which provides no nasty texts to be twisted, or figureheads to be blamed, the worse option here?

    (I'd also like to question your assumption that inventing your 'own' morality would necessarily be a bad thing/result in loosing what you call 'right/wrong.' ).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sabonea_Masukippa View Post
    Because terms like 'right' and 'wrong' are too simplistic to describe the complex morality of life?
    So you dont accept their is such a thing as right/wrong or Good/evil?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sabonea_Masukippa View Post
    (I'd also like to question your assumption that inventing your 'own' morality would necessarily be a bad thing/result in loosing what you call 'right/wrong.' ).
    So i can invent my own morality, then if i should decide to slaughter millions, then i can, and it would be right.

    Anything can be justified if you invent your own morality, rape, murder, genocide... its self destructive. Hitler justifed himself killing the jews, Stalin did the same. (infact, Hitler presented the works of Nietzsche to Stalin and Mussolini)

    If you dont atleast base your culture off of a SET morality. Then you can never instill a law, or any sort of legal system, why? because people invent their own law.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NINJA PENGUIN View Post
    So you dont accept their is such a thing as right/wrong or Good/evil?

    So i can invent my own morality, then if i should decide to slaughter millions, then i can, and it would be right.

    If you dont atleast base your culture off of a SET morality. Then you can never instill a law, or any sort of legal system, why? because people invent their own law.
    Ninja Penguin, the concepts of right and wrong exist outside of a religious worldview just as much as they do within one. A secular society can understand that slaughtering innocent people is wrong without needing a god to tell them that is so. (In fact, you've got to wonder whether a society that does need a god to tell them it's wrong is really morally capable to begin with...)

    Morality is not based on religion, it is based on reason and logic. Anyone with enough education can reason, with or without religion. Some people might even consider religious doctrine, at times, a hindrance to reason. A "SET morality" would be a set of logical principles and sound reasoning, not omens from an invisible puppeteer(s).

    You know, my last two or three posts in this thread all touch directly on what you're speaking about. You might want to read them before continuing. Here's one:

    Quote Originally Posted by Profesco View Post
    All of the objective morals that actually are necessary for a society to function and survive are based on practical reasoning. Morals tied to religions are superfluous from an objective standpoint because they're only significant within their given religion.

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