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Featured Earth: 0% religion

Discussion in 'General Religious Debates' started by Xavier Graham, Oct 3, 2022.

  1. 1213

    1213 Well-Known Member

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    I think people have always a religion. If it is not around Bible God, it is around something else, person himself, Xi Jinping, Fauci, some modern climate prophet....
     
  2. LuisDantas

    LuisDantas Aura of atheification
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    Religion is not going anywhere in predictable future.

    Atheism, however, has been artificially repressed for too long a time. It is a serious mistake to assume that religion requires atheism. It does not, never did, never will.


    Superstition, including literal theism, is perhaps unavoidable as a step in the development of religions. But it is not a sustainable nor healthy step. It must be transcended at some point between the development of agriculture and the establishment of national identities (which must be transcended itself, but I digress).

    Religion, too, must transcend both superstition generally and reliance on literal theism more specifically. Or else be treated as a potentially dangerious relic that others must ward against.

    But religion is not supposed to be a sorry thing with no constructive purpose. It can work and be constructive, by providing languages, tools and encouragement for the development of practical solutions to ethical and existential challenges.

    It just happens that attachment to god-beliefs is of no help there. Religion and and should aim higher.


    Atheism is no threat nor rival to religion. Reliance in superstition is.

    Religion proper will have a significant and constructive role in human affairs for centuries still, because it addresses everyday matters that do not currently have better outlets. But for a while still it will have major trouble dealing with its own most superstitious strains before it can go forward.
     
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  3. AppieB

    AppieB Active Member

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    I think it's certainly possible to 'evolve' intelligently without religion. The problem with most religions (or any worldview) is dogmatic beliefs. Once you get rid of dogmatic beliefs all would be better.
    Atheism itself doesn't tell you anyting apart from the belief in a god. If they would all become secular humanists (or someting similar) then the future would look bright.
     
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  4. AppieB

    AppieB Active Member

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    I don't have a religion.
     
  5. Valjean

    Valjean Veteran Member
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    How is atheism the result of theism? How are you defining atheist?

    Religion doesn't necessarily involve theism, nor does spirituality.
     
  6. Valjean

    Valjean Veteran Member
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    Maybe society would begin to look like Scandinavia....;)

     
  7. wellwisher

    wellwisher Well-Known Member

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    Religions assume a higher power than the ego and man. This belief in a higher power allows the ego and man to submit to a higher collective authority. Without religion and any acceptance of a higher power, we would default to relative morality, with humans playing the role of god, with relative morality far less unifying.

    For example. in America there is a strong political divide; laws of man, where neither side wishes to compromise with the other. This goes beyond compromise to sabotage and misinformation. However, there are religious people on both sides, who by virtue of their mutual belief in a higher power, will still be part of the same religion; Trump and Biden are both Christians. Relative morality is where they prey on each other but religion is where they can pray together; balance.

    In the USA, when secular leaders are sworn in, a Chaplin's prayer will often be part of the ceremony. The idea is to reinforce the point there are higher powers and even if we disagree in terms of human relative morality, we still need to seek common ground that is larger than the self serving will of the ego and man.

    A future without religion would look like a Mad Max movie with willful warlords preying on the weak and faithful. The weak are inhibited by higher powers; conscience, while the willful have no conscience besides their own lusts and greed; relative morality equals me first. Corporate greed is not part of any religion. It is part of relative morality.

    Religions do not all get along, because each religion is tuned to a culture, with the needs of culture having connections to ego, individualism and relative morality. Since the needs of different culture can be different, religions have evolve side-by-side to specialize in ways that can unite and maximize cultural secular needs. This is often where religions clash; needs of secular stability, through religion that can complement that culture, but may be too tight or too loose for another culture.

    For example, America is a very open Wild West culture with individual liberty and choice. This would be chaos without religion; relative morality, as one can see happening due to the secular anti-religious push based on relative morality. The type of religion that works best under these open conditions and freedoms, is is one that promotes the inner voice of the spirit, and to love one another. Spontaneous creative choices can be seen as from God and love one another is from Jesus, There is a mutual evolution for controlled chaos. This is not for all cultures, with some cultures doing better with a more restrictive; Middle East, or even introverted religion; Far East.

    An analogy for the dynamic relationship between religion and culture is like the herding dog. The herding dog follows the orders of the Shepherd and carries these orders to the sheep. The sheep have a mind of their own, and wish to graze, with the herding dog trying to to keep the herd safe and drive them to fertile ground, where they are then free to be sheep; culture. Without the shepherd of religion, the herding dog has no sense of direction and he and the sheep begins to follow their own instincts. he preys upon his flock which is then scattered.
     
  8. Heyo

    Heyo Veteran Member

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    Yes, there are non theistic religions but someone opposed to those wouldn't be an atheist. You can't be an a-philatelist without stamps or the idea of stamps existing.
     
  9. firedragon

    firedragon Veteran Member

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    Do you mean concocted beliefs like you just portrayed? Yes. That is scientific illiteracy. Believing in things with no research whatsoever.

    If that is the outcome of this "if" defined future, so be it.
     
  10. firedragon

    firedragon Veteran Member

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    You just made a hypothesis with out any basis whatsoever. Just made up. Did you even do a qualitative study for this assertion? At least could you test your hypothesis and then come to an assumption like the one you made with nothing behind it?
     
  11. cOLTER

    cOLTER Well-Known Member

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    If there was no religion, then there wouldn't be any atheists. Atheists exit in opposition to God, its how they draw attention to themselves on religious forums. Without any religion or God concept to oppose then there wouldn't be an atheist identity. In fact, the atheist type of personality would probably begin to suspect that there is a God and they would become religious!
     
  12. Mock Turtle

    Mock Turtle Hey God, what went wrong?
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    Perhaps having religions helped humanity to progress but perhaps it didn't - how would we know? Just as nationhood, monarchies, cultures, and languages might have done so too - in forming more cohesion and stability within societies. But one can hardly dispute that these were often involved in conflict and division too. I suspect that religions were and are just an inevitable process that humanity had to go through - due to our own intellectual development as a species. And as pointed out, religions are just another ideology that can bring people together or divide them, but at least some of these others are more amenable to democratic processes - us choosing which system we prefer rather than having any one imposed upon us. With this latter often being slyly done as 'education' for children. :oops:

    That many can live as 'good' lives without religions seems to me enough evidence that we, and perhaps most, don't actually need religions and we might be better off without their divisive influences. This especially being the case when so many outdated beliefs seem to come attached with religions and where these are less amenable to change - being 'fixed' in some particular religious text all too often. As far as I'm aware, there is no evidence that those without religion are any less moral than those having one, and we can see religions often being behind the worst behaviours. One perhaps has to weigh up the options of being anchored to the past versus being free to decide our own futures. Personally, I would choose the latter. And of course, this is the one aspect that does tend to separate religions from any other ideology - that they often tend to have pronouncements regarding the future, and expectations as to such, and all based upon interpreting some 'true' (but rather old) religious tome.

    As to what the future might be without religions - well, we might not have the situation currently in Iran where some apparently feel oppressed by a dictatorial religious regime, and much the same occurring in Afghanistan, but worse. We might not have the ongoing situation of hatred between many in the Middle East or as often exists between neighbouring countries having different religions. We also might not have so many disputing the findings of science, even if much of this isn't seen as being definitive regarding humans and our existence. At least science evolves to hopefully uncover the truth, whereas this is hardly an attribute of many religions, so firmly rooted in the past, when actual knowledge was rather rarer than the myths so readily gobbled up by the masses. :oops:

    But I do tend to agree with others who see religions enduring for quite a while yet - given that they do fulfil so many of the needs of humans - even if some of us don't seem to need such. :hearteyes:
     
    #32 Mock Turtle, Oct 4, 2022
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2022
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  13. Valjean

    Valjean Veteran Member
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    A-thism isn't anti-theism. It's a simple lack of belief.
     
  14. ChristineM

    ChristineM "Be strong" I whispered to my coffee.
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    I believe religion developed after civilisation began. Certainly early modern humans (cro magnon) showed no signs of religious belief.
     
  15. Valjean

    Valjean Veteran Member
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    We would default to reason-based policies, based on practical issues promoting human rights and the public good, rather than policies based on a hundred competing mythologies, promoting hundreds of different, impractical, divinely commanded rules and policies.
    Religion promotes tribalism. Historically, religious societies have a poor track record -- of repression, divisiveness and war. A Christian Republic would be no better than one of the Islamic Republics currently in the news.
    Yet, comparing religious vs secular countries, the least religious countries consistently score at the top of freedom. happiness, equality, prosperity and public safety indices. There seems to be an inverse relationship between religion and peace, prosperity and happiness.
    So we need a Strong Leader and rigid hierarchy to prevent us from running amok?
    No, authoritarianism has as bad a track record as religion. Democracy is a better alternative. A people can rule itself competently.
     
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  16. Valjean

    Valjean Veteran Member
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    Where do you come up with this stuff? Atheists exist in opposition of something they don't believe in? There's an atheist 'identity'?
     
  17. ChristineM

    ChristineM "Be strong" I whispered to my coffee.
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    Eh?

    There wouldn't be any atheiests because thery would be no theists and therefore no god concept in the first place.
     
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  18. Brickjectivity

    Brickjectivity Turned to Stone. Now I stretch daily.
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    It all goes back to thermodynamics in the human brain. We want answers and entertainment, but we don't like to exert. If you don't change that, then you change nothing. You can take away all atheism or make everyone atheist. It will be the same situation as what we have now or worse. At least right now we have both religious people and people that disagree with religion. That generates a lot of discomfort, hence a lot of thought. Being uncomfortable with people around you -- that drives you to overcome your thermodynamic slumber.
     
  19. Augustus

    Augustus the Unreasonable

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    I hate to ruin your illusion, but that certainly isn't any kind of "default"...

    Both history and, increasingly, science attest to this.

    The human brain is hard wired to promote tribalism. Removing religion won't magically change our evolved cognition.

    It's a nice comforting myth to think our problems can be solved by removing religion, but it's about as likely as the return of Jesus.
     
  20. Valjean

    Valjean Veteran Member
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    But there are plenty of non-civilized cultures even today. They all seem to have their religions -- though some hunter-gatherer cultures don't divide it into a separate cultural category.
    I don't think religion is an artifact of civilization. I blame neurology. ;)
     
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