Let's abolish religion!

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by likeitaloud, Dec 25, 2008.

  1. SField

    SField Senior member

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    Fuuma alludes to my point above, but more specifically, while few religions are new, the ability to worship is not exclusive to those praying only to God. What is going on in this country now is pretty good proof of that. We now worship our own supposed ability to perfect man, and to engineer him into a more perfect beast, against all evidence to the contrary. It is our new fatal conceit, and no more ridiculous, or more wrapped up in myth, than are most religions.



    My point is that if you want subculture X to become more rational and less religious through an organic process, you really have to wait for them to do it. What you want is for another group in the same society to change something from outside in order to prod them on your way. I am not saying that your goal is bad in any way, just that it really isn't an organic process, it is a managed one.



    I don't think that you're understanding me. I have no agenda or goal of specifically making society less religious. My priorities as a voter and as a person are to simply have a more educated, cultured, and healthier population. None of my ideals have anything to do with a political usurpation of religion. I don't think that's possible, as I've said. Again, I will say that if the United States can build a stronger middle class and have better schools, I think it's quite likely that we'd have far less religious people. It's a different mode of thought than what I think your idea of my concept is. I'm not proposing a method, I'm suggesting a likely effect of a vastly improved education system and economy.
     


  2. nootje

    nootje Senior member

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    Working absolutely great for quite a number of people.

    I highly doubt that these people are not looking towards any other source of morality than their own minds, which was what I was referring to.. A lot of people are looking for the law to provide them guidelines, without realising that this system too can only go so far..
     


  3. SField

    SField Senior member

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    I highly doubt that these people are not looking towards any other source of morality than their own minds, which was what I was referring to.. A lot of people are looking for the law to provide them guidelines, without realising that this system too can only go so far..

    Except that in a place where people are well educated in arts and sciences, and they know they don't have to steal, murder or commit crime to survive, morality is something that works out quite well without religion. Now, if you consider prevalence of sex in entertainment and a liberal outlook on homosexuality and sexuality in general along with a liberal view of most social issues, then indeed you may believe that their morality is indeed lacking.
     


  4. Fuuma

    Fuuma Franchouillard Modasse

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    I don't think that you're understanding me. I have no agenda or goal of specifically making society less religious. My priorities as a voter and as a person are to simply have a more educated, cultured, and healthier population. None of my ideals have anything to do with a political usurpation of religion. I don't think that's possible, as I've said. Again, I will say that if the United States can build a stronger middle class and have better schools, I think it's quite likely that we'd have far less religious people. It's a different mode of thought than what I think your idea of my concept is. I'm not proposing a method, I'm suggesting a likely effect of a vastly improved education system and economy.


    I'm not disagreeing here although I doubt it is that linear. I'm for actions that bring religion to the private sphere and outside of public affairs so I guess it is possible to say I am more interventionist than you.
     


  5. nootje

    nootje Senior member

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    Except that in a place where people are well educated in arts and sciences, and they know they don't have to steal, murder or commit crime to survive, morality is something that works out quite well without religion. Now, if you consider prevalence of sex in entertainment and a liberal outlook on homosexuality and sexuality in general along with a liberal view of most social issues, then indeed you may believe that their morality is indeed lacking.

    I think we do share the same beliefs, allthough I do think that the prerequisites for this society that you mention are not so easy to obtain... Thus I have a tolerance for religion as it fills the gap during the LONG transition period towards this future..
     


  6. SField

    SField Senior member

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    I'm not disagreeing here although I doubt it is that linear. I'm for actions that bring religion to the private sphere and outside of public affairs so I guess it is possible to say I am more interventionist than you.

    I think that I'm more subtle and cowardly of my disdain for religion. I think overt interventionism will not work in the United States, and will only serve to further polarize the political spectrum. Great education and a strong economy (one that includes a large, and strong middle class) is something that benefits everyone on every level which is why I'm interested in those goals. They're obviously not going to happen in a generation. But, I do think that the cause and effect is more linear than you think. Once people become more capable of independent thought, and are granted greater economic agency, people tend to have less of a need for religion. Faith, I'm sure, endures to an extent, but the pagan rituals and bedtime stories start to take on less significance. I do not think there is any way to do this invasively. It cannot be cut out like a tumor.

    Just like there is no miracle drug for obesity, we'll have to create a culture of more active living and better eating. We cannot simply perform gastric bypasses en masse. I agree with you that having religion be such a significant part of public life is an absolute malignance, but I cannot see any way to get rid of it besides the one that I am proposing. Intervention and legislation in this regard would be unamerican and undemocratic. Let the free market of ideas change it and evolve it.
     


  7. itsstillmatt

    itsstillmatt The Liberator Dubiously Honored

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    I don't think that you're understanding me. I have no agenda or goal of specifically making society less religious. My priorities as a voter and as a person are to simply have a more educated, cultured, and healthier population. None of my ideals have anything to do with a political usurpation of religion. I don't think that's possible, as I've said. Again, I will say that if the United States can build a stronger middle class and have better schools, I think it's quite likely that we'd have far less religious people. It's a different mode of thought than what I think your idea of my concept is. I'm not proposing a method, I'm suggesting a likely effect of a vastly improved education system and economy.
    No, I understand you, and I don't disagree with your aims or methods, though I do think, like Fuuma, that you are making something simple which is really quite complex, as people are not atoms, and react in an undetermined way to various new inputs. What I am saying is that it is not really organic, because while you are not trying to legislate, or impose, religion on a section of society, you are proposing to change the way they are educated in a fashion which is beyond their choosing. Simply because you are citizens of the same country, and because it is done by a vote, does not mean that it is being done in conjunction with the actual choices of the people receiving the new, better education, an education they might not see as better at all. As far as bringing religion out of the public sphere, I am probably more like Fuuma, though I would go much further in taking things out of the public sphere than he would.
     


  8. SField

    SField Senior member

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    No, I understand you, and I don't disagree with your aims or methods, though I do think, like Fuuma, that you are making something simple which is really quite complex, as people are not atoms, and react in an undetermined way to various new inputs. What I am saying is that it is not really organic, because while you are not trying to legislate, or impose, religion on a section of society, you are proposing to change the way they are educated in a fashion which is beyond their choosing. Simply because you are citizens of the same country, and because it is done by a vote, does not mean that it is being done in conjunction with the actual choices of the people receiving the new, better education, an education they might not see as better at all.

    As far as bringing religion out of the public sphere, I am probably more like Fuuma, though I would go much further in taking things out of the public sphere than he would.


    I agree with Fuuma but I don't see how you'd do it. You cannot prevent a large part of America from being represented. As stupid and useless as their views are, they unfortunately pay taxes and as citizens have the right to representation in the political sphere.

    I don't see what the big problem is with having better teachers, higher standards in math and english and things like that. I never said it isn't a difficult problem, but I doubt that either of you are against having a better education system. I know that people are not atoms and that they are not all the same, but I will find it very hard to believe that after a greater emphasis on education, which we have evidence is quite possible in other countries of relevance, that there will not be a drop off in religious preoccupation in the united states. Perhaps we'll agree to disagree, but I'm happy because I know that both of us want the same thing, and even though you may not agree with how I'd go about it, that we both do want a better educated america as well.
     


  9. bluemagic

    bluemagic Senior member

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    I agree with Fuuma but I don't see how you'd do it. You cannot prevent a large part of America from being represented. As stupid and useless as their views are, they unfortunately pay taxes and as citizens have the right to representation in the political sphere. I don't see what the big problem is with having better teachers, higher standards in math and english and things like that. I never said it isn't a difficult problem, but I doubt that either of you are against having a better education system. I know that people are not atoms and that they are not all the same, but I will find it very hard to believe that after a greater emphasis on education, which we have evidence is quite possible in other countries of relevance, that there will not be a drop off in religious preoccupation in the united states. Perhaps we'll agree to disagree, but I'm happy because I know that both of us want the same thing, and even though you may not agree with how I'd go about it, that we both do want a better educated america as well.
    You ignore shifting United States demographics. Secular humanists have less children than highly religious immigrants from south of our borders. That's the problem with perfectionist teleologies; there's always some complication.
     


  10. Fuuma

    Fuuma Franchouillard Modasse

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    You ignore shifting United States demographics. Secular humanists have less children than highly religious immigrants from south of our borders. That's the problem with perfectionist teleologies; there's always some complication.

    Dude, this is a discussion involving white highly educated atheists that hang out with other white, highly educated atheists. As long as we can make believe that all these unwashed and coloured masses share our ideas and hopes for the future by not hanging out with them we're golden. Stop messing it up!!
     


  11. SField

    SField Senior member

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    You ignore shifting United States demographics. Secular humanists have less children than highly religious immigrants from south of our borders. That's the problem with perfectionist teleologies; there's always some complication.

    I'm not a perfectionist, and I've never advocated that we go the same road other countries have, because we don't exactly want a negative birth rate. But, we can cut down on the fundies and become a more rational country. Keep in mind that lower fertility rates can't only be pinpointed to religious households. Remember to tie that into lower income families as well. It becomes a choice. The people in Europe having babies, in the west at least, are muslims, many of them quite religious. They are also poor and uneducated. Choose your poison, really.
     


  12. SField

    SField Senior member

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    Dude, this is a discussion involving white highly educated atheists that hang out with other white, highly educated atheists. As long as we can make believe that all these unwashed and coloured masses share our ideas and hopes for the future by not hanging out with them we're golden. Stop messing it up!!

    GOD you're not supposed to spell out our dirty secret out loud. This role playing only works if there's absolutely no objective reflexivity at all.
     


  13. Fuuma

    Fuuma Franchouillard Modasse

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    GOD you're not supposed to spell out our dirty secret out loud. This role playing only works if there's absolutely no objective reflexivity at all.

    Oh shit, sorry. Thank GOD the Epsilons can't read. On a more serious note this just goes to show that a society isn't an end game (end of history, kiss my ass!) but an ever-changing process. We can only try to act to further education, integrate (and be altered) by newcomers and keep ways of thinking we deem as possibly negative in check by challenging them in the public space.
     


  14. SField

    SField Senior member

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    Oh shit, sorry. Thank GOD the Epsilons can't read. On a more serious note this just goes to show that a society isn't an end game (end of history, kiss my ass!) but an ever-changing process. We can only try to act to further education, integrate (and be altered) by newcomers and keep ways of thinking we deem as possibly negative in check by challenging them in the public space.

    And the more educated the population, the more skeptical they become of people like Rick Santorum and fucking Sarah Palin.
     


  15. Sucrose

    Sucrose Active Member

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    Religion was necessary as a part of evolutionary adaptation, and to this day, it continues to function in this role. In fact, it is necessary to our survival.

    A world w/o religion would have far fewer hospitals, schools, orphanages, soup kitchens, thrift stores, counselors, conflict negotiators, community organizers, homes for various social outcasts (elderly, mentally and physically handicapped, delinquent kids), etc.. The world might not even have any of these things since most if not all of the secular versions of these originated through religion.

    Whether its God, or Allah, or Buddha, or whoever people pray to, religion is nessessary to lay down morale laws for the people.

    This is the "Appeal to Consequence" fallacy. See http://www.fallacyfiles.org/adconseq.html

    From the site:
    In other words, even if the above assertions are correct, the real question remains unaddressed, i.e., is religion true? Arguing for (or against, as seemingly does the OP) religion based on the consequences of religious belief fails to address the question of whether religion is true.

    Atheists actually do have a religion of their own.
    Your "atheism" is not any different than another "religion" just that it shares a different interpretation of your beliefs.

    Not so. Atheism is merely the lack of belief in something that others claim is true. Lack of belief in God is no more rationally significant than lack of belief in unicorns.

    I'm torn if discussions like this are a good thing or a bad thing. It is good to share perspectives and some day, hopefully, humanity will peacefully work these issues out. However, most often these discussions result in insults, frustration, and/or hard feelings.

    Well, there is a difference between a believer and his beliefs (and an arguer and his argument). While no belief inherently deserves respect, I think we should by default try to respect the believer. In other words, even if we don't respect the beliefs we can still respect the believer.
     


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