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Dagobahn Eagle 07-20-2006 05:28 PM

Is religion evil?
 
This has been discussed before, but I believe it can't hurt to bring it up again.

This documentary asks if religion is "the root of all evil". Do you agree (watching the movie before replying is encouraged, but of course optional).

What are the arguments for religion being good, besides from myths such as "Christians invented the democracy"? One is that it helps people. It aids millions or even billions of people out of suicide, self-mutilation, depression, hatred, grief, violence, isolation, self-loathing, and other "dark places".

But does that make religion necessary? You say that you were saved from suicide by hearing that God loves you? I say bring psychology into schools. Educate on suicide, depression, and all these other important things as early as possible. Teach coping skills, encourage seeking of help, and educate students on what that help is like so that they won't developed skewed misconceptions about psychiatry, preventing them from getting the said help (as it were with me:(). What I learned about suicide in school (and it was not until middle school, either) was not only so limited that it's a joke, but also for whatever reason in religion class, which in Norway is a subject from which you can be excempted from with a note from your guardians at home.

Chances are that real education, rather than the belief in the love of some mythological entity, will save at least as many lives. Likewise with education on marriage and divorce, drugs, alcohol, safety, grief, and the list goes on.

You say there's wisdom in religion, and I agree, there is. I wasn't a Buddhist for a period of time for nothing. Some advice is sound, some is unsound. It's the religious religion I have a problem with.

What I mean to say is this. Which is better of these two pieces of advise?
#1.
Quote:

Originally Posted by The Buddha
An insincere and evil friend is more to be feared than a wild beast; a wild beast may wound your body, but an evil friend will wound your mind.

#2.
Quote:

Don't have evil friends, it makes God cry.
The first, while spoken by the founder of a religion, is an agnostic advice backed up by good reason. The second is purely a matter of "this entity doesn't like it, so it must be avoided". A shallow rationale at best. And while there is community in Churches and Mosques, there's often just as much community in your local animal shelter, pub, Red Cross facility, or community center. Religion is not needed for belonging and community, or for that matter charitable projects (I dare say Amnesty is accomplishing more good things than Vatican City).

Another argument is that of teaching morals and educating children on right and wrong. Yes, religion does that. Just like atheists, religious parents pass their morals on to their offspring. Anyone who says that religious people are more prone to do good things as they got their morals from a Holy source is living in a fantasy world.

That's just some of the arguments. I personally believe that religion is obsolete, while I'm not sure if it does more harm than good.

Discuss.

swphreak 07-20-2006 06:15 PM

I'm SkinWalker!

Before I watched the video, I would have voted +4. After watching about 10 minutes of the video, I still vote +4.

I presonally despise religion. I will have nothing to do with it, but I don't go running in the streets and stabbing people for not believing in what I believe.

I just wish religion would stay in the church, and out of schools and the government.

TK-8252 07-20-2006 06:41 PM

If there is a root of all evil, religion is about it; not money, and not women (although they're pretty close).

Tinny 07-20-2006 10:29 PM

Aw TK, having girl problems? :(. Religion can be abused just like everything else (money, video games, alcohol, science) and can be used in ways the authors did not originally intend it to be used. Does that make it inherently bad? I don't think so.

Spider AL 07-21-2006 07:08 AM

First of all, I'm a big Dawkins fan. The guy's great, and I saw the documentary that the clip was excerpted from when it was first shown in England. I enjoyed it immensely.

Secondly, organised religion is indeed one of the major catalysts of evil both in the world today, and throughout history. Today, people using the excuse of fundamentalist Christianity, fundamentalist Judaism and fundamentalist Islam are basically killing thousands of people weekly throughout the world, and causing massive pain. (Although, perhaps any decrease in the global population isn't in reality... a great evil. The pain is, however.)

Religion by itself however, is merely a static fantasy concept, and without the addition of individual human prejudices and flaws, it can do no harm. The Bible or the Quran left on the bookshelf does no harm. But when interpreted by a fanatic, the nonsense contained within those books can be used as a TOOL, to do harm.

And let us not forget the evil that is done WITHOUT religion. Animal abuse, child abuse, murders for money, murders for lust, rapes, racial genocide... All can be, and have been, committed throughout history without the interference of religion. Scientists have done evil, businessmen have done evil, politicians have done evil, and the average joe has done evil.

The root of all evil is the self interest, lack of empathy and ignorance of people.

Religion is merely a handy excuse for the manipulative. Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by rulers... as useful. Let us never ignore the fact that while people like Georgie Bush may use religion as an excuse for a lot of their more dubious decisions, the acquisition or preservation of power and money can often be discerned to be the true reasons behind them.

Let us remember that the major organised religions such as the Catholic church were historically no different than major corporations, with massive financial resources, an ability to apply political pressure and a harshly self-interested business ethic. And while those ancient globalised "companies" are still with us, more modern, "real" corporations are also terrible harbingers of evil. Look at arms dealers, and fossil fuel companies, loggers and property developers.

I have at last come to the conclusion that people are either moral or amoral, and whether they're religious or agnostic, they will do good or commit evil according to their natures, regardless of the belief systems they're involved in. While some psychos are indeed recruited by Jihadi terrorists or employed by Mossad, and though those people take part in religious wars, an equal number of psychos find other, non-religious means to indulge their viscious impulses.

-

But now we come to the really vital question, what IS good, and what is evil?

Without the handy delusion of religion it becomes a more difficult question. I am a moralist, I believe that the causing of unneccesary pain to any living thing is negative, because I have empathy and am able to put myself in the shoes of the creature I might harm.

I believe that a person is either moral or amoral, and that those who are moral have more intrinsic worth than those who are amoral. Those who are amoral are in fact, dangerous and should be controlled, if not culled.

Quote:

The first, while spoken by the founder of a religion, is an agnostic advice backed up by good reason.
As Buddhism is a merely a moralistic way of self-improvement and not a religion (no god nor metaphysical sky-daddy nor flying spaghetti monster, no ritual in true buddhism, etc. etc.) it's somewhat unfair to compare them. I've met good Christians and bad Christians, very pleasant and tolerant Muslims and idiot fanatic Jihadists... I think it would be inaccurate to believe for a moment that religion can MAKE someone "bad". It would be like believing that computer games can cause children to go postal.

The "postal" has to BE THERE FIRST, and then the game may trigger the existing impulse. But without the seed, no amount of sunlight nor water can make a plant sprout up.

toms 07-21-2006 07:42 AM

Good post.

Dagobahn Eagle 07-21-2006 08:16 AM

Quote:

As Buddhism is a merely a moralistic way of self-improvement and not a religion (no god nor metaphysical sky-daddy nor flying spaghetti monster, no ritual in true buddhism, etc. etc.)
Actually, there are Gods in Buddhism. Mara, who allegedly tried to tempt Buddha into thinking about sex while he meditated under the famous tree of his, is just one example.

Spider AL 07-21-2006 09:02 AM

Quote:

Actually, there are Gods in Buddhism. Mara, who allegedly tried to tempt Buddha into thinking about sex while he meditated under the famous tree of his, is just one example.
I didn't say "no Buddhist text ever mentioned metaphysical entities". "Mara" is merely the personification of material temptations and the fear of death. In other words, when Buddha conquered the temptations of "Mara", he was conquering his own fleshly desires and fears, and rising above such trivial things as lust, desire for wealth and material possessions. Though commonly referred to as a "demon" in buddhist myth, even in classical texts it was clearly a character that was metaphorical in nature, and it is often posited that the character was derived from the Hindu "Maya", the "power of illusion".

Buddha even mentions "the gods in heaven", in the texts, presumably referring to Hindu gods. But he makes it clear that the presence or lack of presence of these gods is not relevant to the belief system which he is espousing.

No, I said there was no "god". Nobody to pray to, nobody to worship, no laws from on-high that one must obey. That stands. And frankly the statement "there are gods in Buddhism" is misleading. Gods or lack of gods have no relevance to the teachings of Buddha. He makes that quite clear in his texts. He separates enlightenment from any theistic belief system. There is no "pantheon" to pray to. You do not make offerings to gods to speed your way to enlightenment. You just have to perfect your self-control.

But this is becoming off-topic. Enough said.

Dagobahn Eagle 07-21-2006 10:05 AM

Wow, thanks. Before we go back on topic, I'd like to ask where the heck part 2 of the film I linked to went? Suddenly yesterday it told me "the film is currently not available, try again later".

toms 07-21-2006 02:15 PM

well, if its from the same channel4 documentary I saw then it would be copyrighted material and google might have removed it...

Pho3nix 07-26-2006 08:03 PM

I'm SkinWalker !

"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."

'nuff said.

Datheus 07-27-2006 01:31 AM

This guy is a bit arrogant. Comparing the congregation to the Nuremberg? GODWIN.

I kind of agreed with Haggart. This guy is a kind of a douche.

TK-8252 07-27-2006 01:40 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Datheus
I kind of agreed with Haggart. This guy is a kind of a douche.

Right, and the whole "get off my property or I'll have you arrested" thing REALLY makes Haggart look like a great guy.

Datheus 07-27-2006 01:48 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TK-8252
Right, and the whole "get off my property or I'll have you arrested" thing REALLY makes Haggart look like a great guy.

Well? You don't go into someone's house and crap on their drapes, man. What would your reaction be if someone walked into your living room for coffee, and you ended up finding out he just wanted the 5 minute argument?

Samnmax221 07-27-2006 01:52 AM

I agree very strongly with the statement, although I respect the right of others to think whatever they want no matter how stupid the belief. I find religion to be much like a prison, depending on what religion you are in your life becomes regulated to some degree, I believe that the only one fit to regulate your life is you (As long as you don't violate anybody else's rights, and are in good mental standing yourself). Religion brings in the idea that the group is more important then the individual, and that all life must serve some being or idea, these are both dangerous and enslaving ideas.


I'll finish this off with a few lines on this topic quoted from Anthem by Ayn Rand.

At first, man was enslaved by the gods. But he broke their chains. Then he was enslaved by the kings. But he broke their chains. He was enslaved by his birth, by his kin, by his race. But he broke their chains. He declared to all his brothers that a man has rights which neither god nor king nor other men can take away from him, no matter what their number, for his is the right of man, and there is no right on earth above this right. And he stood on the threshold of the freedom for which the blood of the centuries behind him had been spilled.

But then he gave up all he had won, and fell lower than his savage beginning.

What brought it to pass? What disaster took their reason away from men? What whip lashed them to their knees in shame and submission? The worship of the word "We."

TK-8252 07-27-2006 01:59 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Datheus
Well? You don't go into someone's house and crap on their drapes, man. What would your reaction be if someone walked into your living room for coffee, and you ended up finding out he just wanted the 5 minute argument?

Well, for one I wouldn't invite ANYONE into my living room who I think should be put in jail.

But I don't get it. Apparently this guy, Haggard, agreed to talk to Dawkins. Invited him to his building place worship thingy, whatever the hell you call his big brainwashing center. And when Dawkins starts demolishing your arguments, you threaten to have him arrested?? How does THAT make sense? If you don't want to talk to someone who's smarter than you, fine, but don't invite him to talk and then say I'll have you thrown in jail because I don't like you anymore.

Datheus 07-27-2006 02:14 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TK-8252
Well, for one I wouldn't invite ANYONE into my living room who I think should be put in jail.

But I don't get it. Apparently this guy, Haggard, agreed to talk to Dawkins. Invited him to his building place worship thingy, whatever the hell you call his big brainwashing center. And when Dawkins starts demolishing your arguments, you threaten to have him arrested?? How does THAT make sense? If you don't want to talk to someone who's smarter than you, fine, but don't invite him to talk and then say I'll have you thrown in jail because I don't like you anymore.

Haggard (? Haggart? Whatever. You're probably right.) Haggard invited him probably in an attempt to convert him. But you know what I do when the JWs come up to my door? I smile, wave, and politely wish them a good day as I say goodbye. Dawkins is OBVIOUSLY looking for a fight. Not an argument, but a fight.

TK-8252 07-27-2006 02:18 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Datheus
Haggard (? Haggart? Whatever. You're probably right.) Haggard invited him probably in an attempt to convert him. But you know what I do when the JWs come up to my door? I smile, wave, and politely wish them a good day as I say goodbye. Dawkins is OBVIOUSLY looking for a fight. Not an argument, but a fight.

Oops, is it Haggart or Haggard? Might actually be Haggart. Oh well, makes little difference. :p

Watching some other clips from the same documentary on YouTube, this is really the only discussion of his where he seems to be looking for a fight. He goes and talks to all sorts of loonies who I'm just thinking have GOT to be the biggest dumbasses on the face of the earth. How he manages to stay civil with such ignorance is amazing. Maybe it's because he's an atheist. >_>

Samnmax221 07-27-2006 02:19 AM

It's Haggard, I Checked

Datheus 07-27-2006 02:23 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TK-8252
Oops, is it Haggart or Haggard? Might actually be Haggart. Oh well, makes little difference. :p

Watching some other clips from the same documentary on YouTube, this is really the only discussion of his where he seems to be looking for a fight. He goes and talks to all sorts of loonies who I'm just thinking have GOT to be the biggest dumbasses on the face of the earth. How he manages to stay civil with such ignorance is amazing. Maybe it's because he's an atheist. >_>

In the beginning, he takes some pot shots at religion. I'd hardly call the parents of my friend (they're Catholic) delusional. They're wonderful people, and never once mentioned a THING to me about religion. They simply choose to believe that there is a divine power. I don't find that to be delusional. It makes perfect sense to me. I simply choose not to believe it.

TK-8252 07-27-2006 02:31 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Datheus
In the beginning, he takes some pot shots at religion. I'd hardly call the parents of my friend (they're Catholic) delusional. They're wonderful people, and never once mentioned a THING to me about religion. They simply choose to believe that there is a divine power. I don't find that to be delusional. It makes perfect sense to me. I simply choose not to believe it.

Dawkins never said that religious people can't be wonderful. He's saying that someone must be delusional to seriously believe that there is a Flying Spaghetti Monster, also known as "God," which all Catholics believe in.

SkinWalker 07-27-2006 02:39 AM

First, here are a few more clips from Richard Dawkins via YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AB2vmj8eyMk (Pt 1)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nVQoxrrMftA (Teapot Atheists)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=76UDVB-ofpI
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gmNjfpoRZpE
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YGeL1yFeK6I
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_kcKInudkq4 (Pt 2.1)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T27Ef_xvYMs (Pt 2.2)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qPBdz-TXlaI (Pt 2.3)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dTKLM09FeNM (Pt 2.4)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RwD9HOrjLRw (Pt 2.5)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mGLPViVW5ms (Pt 2.6)

It should also be noted that Dawkins was against the title, The Root of All Evil? and protested. BBC won, but the inclusion of the question mark was their consolation to Dawkins.

Second, I'll offer a quote by theoretical physicist, Steven Weinberg:
Quote:

Originally Posted by Steven Weinberg
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.

As an anthropologist, I find religion a fascinating topic. Clearly, humanity is hardwired to "believe" and to engage in magical thinking. The evidence is abundant to support this hypothesis and found in neurology, biology, and anthropology. I won't bore anyone with the details unless requested, but suffice to say that there are repeatable and predictable experiments that show there to be neurological causes of religiosity and through anthropology we can evaluate human cultures to see religion to be a common element.

That there are so many religions in human culture, both geographically and temporally, is suggestive that there are none which are genuine in their claims of supernatural agency.

But to answer the question of whether or not religion is evil would require two definitions: one of religion and another of evil. I'll answer the first here.

To define religion, I agree with Daniel Dennett's assessment: "social systems whose participants avow belief in a supernatural agent or agents whose approval is to be sought."

I won't attempt to define evil, I think we can all come to some mutual agreement that evil means bad for you and others. But I'm afraid I cannot agree that religion, in the broad term of the word is "evil." Certainly, there are those within specific religions that are evil and, certainly, there are those religious sects and cults that are evil in their deeds (most cults of christianity and islam come to mind). But religion on the whole is a social system and is not capable of being either good or evil.

Weinberg suggested that for man to be truly evil, religion is required, but I think this also gives too much credit to a social system. I do, however, think that religion enables the worst in humanity to come out and religion has traditionally been one of the main points of contention in wars and the justification for the persecution of "others."

But the poll question itself is, does religion do "more harm than good"? I would say this depends upon the individual society. But if it is modern western society (American society) we're talking about, I would have to agree.

Religion does more harm than good. There simply is no evidence that religious ideals influence people to live morally and ample evidence that religion has failed to give positive results. Those that consider themselves religious have all the problems they say are immoral: abortion, addiction, crime, adultery, etc. Moreover, religious superstition threatens the advancement of science and world peace.

Religion inspired civilizations of prehistory to build monumental architecture and develop agriculture. For that, ancient religion should be praised. But, in modern times, that same ancient religion is obsolete and getting in the way of the progress it once inspired.

Nancy Allen`` 08-01-2006 04:58 PM

No, I don't think religion in and of itself is evil. How Christians can use it to justify killing homosexuals, Jews believing they are the chosen ones and are entitled to kill civillians in the name of God, Muslims twisting the Koran so terrorism appears legitimate, that is where the true evil lies. Pure worship of Jesus, Yahwah, Mohammed, Buddha, ect should not be a problem, and if it is then it is those who are intolerent of other religions that has the problem, not the one who chooses to follow said religion.

Dagobahn Eagle 08-01-2006 06:29 PM

But there are others out there who actually do and think bad things because their mythological beliefs ask it of them.

And as for people using mythology as an umbrella, many of them would probably be as bad without that umbrella. But would all of them? I doubt it.

What is more is that mythology asks people not to question their beliefs (no need to come up with good arguments against gays when you have the Bible to agree with you that it's wrong.)

Quote:

But I don't get it. Apparently this guy, Haggard, agreed to talk to Dawkins. Invited him to his building place worship thingy, whatever the hell you call his big brainwashing center. And when Dawkins starts demolishing your arguments, you threaten to have him arrested?? How does THAT make sense? If you don't want to talk to someone who's smarter than you, fine, but don't invite him to talk and then say I'll have you thrown in jail because I don't like you anymore.
Quite so. From what I gathered from the movie, he did not treat his "victim" unfairly. I wouldn't have made the Nazi-analogy if I was him, but I don't think Haggarts had reason to react as he did. If it was only the "your children are animals"-argument he reacted to, then it was really an unproportionate response.

Nancy Allen`` 08-02-2006 12:05 AM

The way I see it, religion is used as an excuse to commit many atrocities. Osama Bin Laden claims to be fighting for the Muslims yet the Koran does not preach Jihad, this is something Islamic terrorists twist around to try and justify their atrocities. Likewise for Christians, the Bible condemns homosexuality and the Israelites were commanded by God to slaughter those who worshipped other idols. Yet those who set out against other religions and gays and lesbians are, certainly by our modern standereds are out of touch beyond any religious beliefs they may be influenced by. The same goes for things like school shootings, people who play violent video games or watch violent films and then go on a massecre are sick to begin with. It is not the film makers or game producers who are at fault, or for when religion is said to be responsible it is not Christianity or Judism or Islam that is to blame, it is the individual or individuals who carry them out.

El Sitherino 08-02-2006 12:27 AM

I've found religion to be a very scenario by scenario kind of thing.

For some it's simply a hope for something better. For others it's complete rule of life, to dangerous extremes.

Nancy Allen`` 08-02-2006 12:31 AM

Exactly. Blowing away those who say something offensive against your religion is asinine. Being moderate, no just using your common sense, and not jumping down people's throats on every single religious misdeed makes the religion you follow, whatever it may be, better than how some choose to portray Christianity, Islam, ect.

toms 08-02-2006 07:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nancy Allen``
The way I see it, religion is used as an excuse to commit many atrocities.

True. In some ways. But at what point does it stop being "an excuse" and start being "a reason"?

I know everything with religions is down to interpretations.. but you could argue that the so called "extremists" are being more true to the words of the religion than the moderates. Moderates might claim they are being more true to "the spirit" of the religion... but since most of the official texts for the big relgions were written long ago, in much less forgiving and tolerant times the extremists might have a point.

The scary thing is that if the small print of the christian religion was adhered to as strictly as the muslim religion then christian countries would be almost identical to the way Iran is right now. (and iran is possibly one of the nastiest places on earth to live).

I'm all for the softhearted liberal influence that has tempered western religions and caused them to abandon a lot of their previously long held beliefs... but it almost seems like those that are true to the religion ARE the extremists... its just that the majority has decided to be more pracmatic and less faithful.

-

IMHO the simple solution to all the ills of religion is that religion should be an internal thing... between you and your god. It should govern how you live your live, how you strive to better yourself. It shouldn't matter if others follow the same religion or not. Unfortunately the religious teachings don't take this approach, infact some outright forbid it.

Nancy Allen`` 08-02-2006 11:58 PM

That's a great idea, and as far as where the line is drawn between religion being used as an excuse and it becomes a reason, look at the core scripture and ask the religious experts, the priests and spiritual leaders. Not one religion preaches hatred and violence, not one. There are stories of violence in the Bible and Quran, even intructed to by God or Allah, but by and by religion in it's purest form does not preach the message of violence.

toms 08-03-2006 09:57 AM

I know i'm just being picky here, cos i understand exactly what you mean.. and agree with it, but anyway.. ;)

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nancy Allen``
That's a great idea, and as far as where the line is drawn between religion being used as an excuse and it becomes a reason, look at the core scripture and ask the religious experts, the priests and spiritual leaders. Not one religion preaches hatred and violence, not one. There are stories of violence in the Bible and Quran, even intructed to by God or Allah, but by and by religion in it's purest form does not preach the message of violence.

The texts often DO preach hatred and violence. The priests and spiritual leaders are very varied in how they interpret them.
Spiritual leaders have always let their own views influence how they interpret the (often ambiguous) texts.. and those views are always shaped by the attitudes of their society and time.

African church leaders look at exactly the same texts as english and us church leaders, but interpret them in a much more traditional way, because their society and upbringing is much more traditional.
You could infact argue that they are being much more faithful to the texts, which were also written in traditional times.

For example, the anglican church has, over the last 20 years, become very mdern in its attitudes, feeling that it needed to update it's views and teachings to take account of a changed world. It is now much more tollerant of things likde sex outside marriage, homosexuality, other religions and so forth. However in the UK it's congregations have plumeted, and a lot of people see that as being due to the fact it has "wavered". In africa the anglican church has stayed true to it's traditional views and texts... and their congregations are growing. However their views are much closer to those of Iran than those of the UK in many ways.

People like their spiritual guidleines to be clear and unflinching.. not to adapt to a changing world.. which makes them feel uncertain and confused.

So in many ways it isn't that the extremists are extreme, its that the moderates have drifted away from their views. Which you prefer seems to depend on the kind of person you are.

there are definatley parts in the bible and the qur'an that are very intollerant and violent, and wouldn't be seen as acceptable to a lot of people today. But if they are your holy texts is it ok to revise them because they are no longer acceptable, or do you have to stick to them no matter what???

Dagobahn Eagle 08-03-2006 01:08 PM

Quote:

Not one religion preaches hatred and violence, not one.
Funny, I thought nearly every single one did;).

Bible on when you are to stone someone to death.

toms 08-03-2006 03:32 PM

Aren't most of the extreme muslim laws based on the same thing as the christian ones? Since a lot of the early religion is identical?? I think the rules about stoning adulterers, rape victims, etc.. are identical between the religions.

El Sitherino 08-04-2006 01:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TK-8252
How he manages to stay civil with such ignorance is amazing. Maybe it's because he's an atheist. >_>

What I'm getting here is "He learned how to deal with ignorance from his own experience in practicing it".

Atheism is just as dangerous as groups worshipping some invisible compassionate asskicker.

El Sitherino 08-04-2006 01:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by toms
Aren't most of the extreme muslim laws based on the same thing as the christian/jewish ones? Since a lot of the early religion is identical?? I think the rules about stoning adulterers, rape victims, etc.. are identical between the religions.

You are correct sir.

Most of the declarations of attack on non-believers starts and is basically a repetition of what is also found in the bible (OT). Islam and Christianity take the old texts from the Jewish rulebooks and expand on them with their own mythos.

Often they're essentially the same thing. Just in one, Mary wasn't miracled ****ed by god.

Nancy Allen`` 08-04-2006 02:27 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by toms
there are definatley parts in the bible and the qur'an that are very intollerant and violent, and wouldn't be seen as acceptable to a lot of people today. But if they are your holy texts is it ok to revise them because they are no longer acceptable, or do you have to stick to them no matter what???

I don't claim to be an expert or anything, but I think you have to obey the law of the land even if it conflicts with scripture. Case in point is how no uprising against Rome was supported even though it was barbaric and the tax collectors were out of control. To put things in a modern perspective a young man was found with drugs on him and put to death. When asked about this a church leader said 'he broke their laws', basically it didn't matter if killing, or murder, is something that is spoken against, the laws and penalties of the country taje presidence.

toms 08-04-2006 08:24 AM

The laws of man take precedence over the laws of god?? *surprised*

Dagobahn Eagle 08-04-2006 09:06 AM

Damnit, Nance, next they'll stop us from killing abortion doctors:mad:.

Quote:

Atheism is just as dangerous as groups worshipping some invisible compassionate asskicker.
Why?

rccar328 08-04-2006 01:30 PM

Well, between Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot, atheistic Communism has killed more people than any religion...and you can probably throw in Hitler for good measure, too, since his "final solution" had more to do with his pseudo-Darwinian ideas of racial superiority...and add in the eugenics movement.

Atheism certainly has done a lot of damage.

Dagobahn Eagle 08-04-2006 02:00 PM

Quote:

Atheism certainly has done a lot of damage.
No. Atheism wasn't the cause of any of the wars or atrocities you mention, as far as I know. The people responsible, minus Hitler, were atheists, but that does not not atheism is to be held responsible.

That's like saying that the love of dogs is responsible for World War II just because Hitler had a dog.

TK-8252 08-04-2006 02:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rccar328
Well, between Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot, atheistic Communism has killed more people than any religion...

Religion has been around since ancient Egypt, so basically, for thousands of years people have been killing in the name of their god or gods. All the people in ancient China, Mesopotamia, Medieval Europe, etc.

The number of people killed by the "faithful" is no where NEAR the number killed in the name of Communism.

Plus, god flooded the world... killed everyone... right down to every last child... so yeah.

And you must not forget that Communism itself is much like a religion. Stalin, Mao, Lenin, Kim Jong-Ill, Castro; each Communist leader has established a cult of personality where they are literally worshipped like a god. Communism is not atheistic.

Quote:

Originally Posted by rccar328
and you can probably throw in Hitler for good measure, too, since his "final solution" had more to do with his pseudo-Darwinian ideas of racial superiority...and add in the eugenics movement.

I'm not sure if you're serious here. Hitler was a Catholic, and feelings of racial superiority have been around forever.

Quote:

Originally Posted by rccar328
Atheism certainly has done a lot of damage.

Communism has done a lot of damage. Not atheism.


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