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Religion, good or bad?

Discussion in 'Philosophical Forum' started by PervertedMonkey, May 19, 2005.

  1. PervertedMonkey

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    Better off without religion?

    When you take a look at the all the death and suffering caused by 'religion', such as the crusades, the inquisition, the holy wars, to name a few, it begs the question, would the world be better off without religion?

    Now I know there is no way to remove religion from society (atleast not in the near future), but I guess the question is, has it done more harm than good? So many of our conflicts today and past have been caused by the belief in different religions, and so much of our efforts and resources have gone into them, would the world be a different(better?) place today if religion did not exist?

    Thoughts anyone?
     
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  2. stomponfrogs

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    Who's to say that religion didn't prevent more wars at the same time? Things would be different, but it's impossible to know whether it would be better or worse.
     
  3. Kaeriuchi

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    No. Religion in itself is perfectly fine. It's the people that abuse/misuse religion as an excuse to wage wars that is wrong. Or the people that want to force their (religious) beliefs on others. That's where it gets messy.
    I think it's good for people to have something they believe in, something that gives them hope when everything else seems like shades of dark. (I'm agnostic, but that's beside the point) The basic ideas of religion aren't bad at all. But like I said, it's the people that misuse the name of religion for their own desires that really farks things up.
     
  4. NinjaJedi007

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    true dat. but then that makes me think: no religion --> people cant use it for excuses. i think things would probably be better without religion though. theres too much my god is better than your god which then causes way too many problems.
     
  5. koopo

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    Humans will always put believes in something higher. Oh stupid humans -_-
     
  6. baconbits Retired Staff

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    Religions are often just worldviews and you can never really get rid of worldviews. For example I have a christian worldview and I know that its right, but if you just eliminated all churches I'd still have that worldview. The problem is that some worldviews tend to advocate murder of innocent people or people use the cause of religion to do distastful acts. Lets not forget, atheism itself is a religion and people use that to act intolerant of those who believe in God, so all types of worldviews and philosophies can be abused.
     
  7. Takuza

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    xd. I could not have possibly said it better myself baconbits.
     
  8. PervertedMonkey

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    I guess it just stresses the fact that its human nature to believe in a something greater/higher state of being.
     
  9. Tsukiyomi

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    Personally I think it would be interesting to see the world if religion had never existed.

    Total I believe it has done more harm than good during its long run, someone said that religion may have prevented wars, when? When did it prevent war? I'm not saying that to be sarcastic, that is an honest question to anyone with an answer.

    Religion throughout all of history has mainly sparked intolerance of those who choose another path for themselves. One could easily find thousands of examples. Take Queen Mary I of england (aka bloody mary), she killed hundreds of people for being protestant instead of catholic, thats just for differences within the same basic religion.

    When Elizabeth took over the pope excommunicated her and said anyone following her would be excommunicated, he also encouraged anyone who wished to assasinate her to do so. Thats from the friggen pope.

    Its true religion itself isn't the direct cause of these problems, but it is a cause, possibly the main cause. These things wouldn't be possible without religion for the leaders to rally these people behind.

    Just my thoughts on the subject.
     
  10. Kamendex

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    People use religon as an excuse to start wars.

    If we didnt have religon, there would be no morals, and people would act based on instinct.

    Instinct is not the best thing to act on.

    In the Qu'ran it says that those who forget the ways of the original Jewish and Christian religon will fight amongst eachother.

    Specifically it says that the Christians will become seperated and attack eachother, and the Jews will have many catastrophes happen to them :|

    Now I'm not trying to feed anyone here a different religon, but isnt it odd that both are true.

    I guess im trying to say religon is only causes wars against Christians, and any war that involves muslims is based on oil.

    and jews have been peaceful for a while, so religon causing wars for them isnt a problem.

    there are like 30 different Christian religons, and the holocaust.
     
  11. PervertedMonkey

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    I disagree, morality isnt a product of religion, its just an individual's sense for right and wrong, besides, if your simply talking about ethics, we still have laws and rules in society for that.

    And just to point out how subjective 'morality' in church is, there are many religions out that preaches violence and destruction.
     
  12. Narrrf

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    I personally prefer not to defend religeon but attack atheism. Like, how many people total or in ratio, did all the crusades, inquisitions, and whatnot kill? Think of the number, then tell me how many people did communism, socialism, and atheism kill just in this past century? Think long and hard before you talk. The answer?



    YOU GOT PWNED!


    EDIT: I have three red rep bars? It just gets better and better. That sounds nice. Red rep. Red rep pwning y'all~
     
  13. PervertedMonkey

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    ummmm... how is that connected to having or not having religion?

    communism and socialism are both types of government, and has nothing to do with influences or lack of influence from religion. And im pretty sure alot of people with different religions/beliefs serve under these types of government so im really not sure what your trying to prove here.

    and since when has atheism killed anyone? please provide some examples..
     
  14. G. Hawke

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    Hmmm......

    Hmmm......
    To state, first i do not believe in any religion.
    Pls note that i said religion, not god.

    If u were to push i would admit that might well be some sort of supreme being looking down on us.
    But on the other hand i utterly and totally believe that religion is going to be the death of us.

    At it's core every religion preaches good, but the reality is that most humans are totally unable stick to actual teachings of religion.
    There is wide assumption that Islam is a terrorist religion considering well most terrorist attack are done by muslims, but this is wrong. I am not a muslim, but after reading the Al-Quran it is probably in my opinion one the better and fairest religion in the world.

    Back to my point. Humans were probably never actually ready for religion for as i noted we are unable to stick to it so we twist and defile it to suit our purposes and that is where it all goes wrong.

    So, considering in my opinion that most religions in the world have gone bad because of us humans, i decided years ago to drift away. Why bother with something that no longer serves it purpose?

    So i live my my way according to ethics of right & wrong. It ain't for everyone but it works for me. :smile-big
     
  15. Narrrf

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    Oh, cheap debating tactics time! Go quote, requote power!

    Because the negative influence of religeon is so often cited in terms of the dead numbered, while everybody just turns a blind eye to even worse offenders. Wanna know how many people cars killed? Let's ban cars! I just wish everyone would think about that before proclaiming jihad on religion. It's a crusade! Protect the holy city of atheism! Wahaha...

    I'm not very funny am I? :sad:

    Err, it's no coincidence that the worst offending governments of human rights, (notable the right to live), in this past century were all atheist. Stalin, Hitler, Polpot, Ho Chi Minh, Mao, Kim Jong Il, uhh, the somailan warlords, so on and so forth.
     
  16. pajamas

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    you're an idiot :oh


    I completely hate religon so my answer will be biased. I'd love to have a world without religon, I think it would be a lot of fun. I'd like to go back in time and just wipe out the race that created religon first, go, see what happens, go back, stop myself from ever killing them. I'd like to see what would happen. And I completely believe it would be a better place.

    prove it
     
  17. Fear The Mullet

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    Are you shitting me? You have to be shitting me, or you are just frustratingly mentally inept. Stalin alone, for no reason whatsoever, killed upwards of 20-30 million people in the Ukraine by a government imposed and sanctioned famine on those lands to try and gain control. Thats only the people he's killed there, and that was in peace time. NO wars. Not to mention the actions of the KGB, the communist revolution itself killed thousands of people, the purges even more, the Gulags, the NKVD. He alone can be held responsible for at lesat 40-50 millions deaths. And guess what, the USSR was atheist. Why? Because communism is atheist. IN a communist country there is no state religion, and the politicians (if they're good) will at least put up a front of atheism. Therefore atheism can be held linked to all those deaths.

    This is the exact same comparison when people say "religion caused the crusades". No it didn't. The establishment did, the people running it did, the corrupt popes of the past did. Religion is a neutral institution , when people abuse it to get what they want, it gets a bad rep. Same with my exapmple above about communism and its atheist ideals.
    Religion cannot be bad, or evil, or cause death, because it is just an institution. It is not self supporting, and is organized and run in society by people, because they believe in it. If they become corrupt they deal corruptly in the name of that religion. It tiself infact, never becomes corrupt.
     
  18. Kitty

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    Actually, Atheism is not a religion. Religion is a "Belief in and reverence for a supernatural power or powers regarded as creator and governor of the universe."
     
  19. dR.wHaCk

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    i dont care what you guys say... i will be a Christian forever!
     
  20. baconbits Retired Staff

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    Alright people, chill out. We're debating in here so allow people to disagree without getting rude. And I'm just saying this to everyone and not just this poster.

    Its alright to disagree with religion but to hate it seems a bit extreme. If I said I hated muslims, I'd get flamed all the way outta NF.
    I don't think it would because of the reason that christianity keeps people from following their base instincts. If their is no God then all rules are merely man's rules, so any law can be changed. Rape can be ok. Murder is ok if you want it to be. Even religions outside of christianity serve to limit the ability of the powerful to just manipulate the law to their purposes.
    The proof is this and I'll give three examples. In Nazi Germany Nazism was anti religious and strongly atheistic. Their actions are well noted.

    Communism and Marxism is very atheist, which is why you are not allowed to be a christian in China. In Russia christians were killed and they also killed way more jews than the Nazis did (mainly because they were around longer). In China they just persecute and jail the religious. I don't know much about the casaulty numbers.

    Now I'm not saying that atheists are murderers but I am saying that regardless of what belief system evil people use, evil people will be evil people. They will murder, plunder, and rape regardless of whether they believe in God or not.
     
  21. vervex

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    Well, of course, if you only see the bad effects of religion, I understand you are wondering why it exists. We could say just the samething of cars that are polluting the environnement : Should we walk instead ? ;)

    There are many good sides to religion (to cars also, lol). If you take the Buddism for example, you can reach some spiritual peace within yourself. I'm not hearing quite often that there are wars between the Buddists. Unless I'm wrong ? Christians have a lot of hope and can make wonderful thing also, when they are all together. And so on with the other religions, because there are a lot of them ;)

    I agree with you when you say it brought and still brings a lot of conflicts, but it's not the only source of trouble. If we take out religion, there will still be political conflicts for example. Should we eliminate politics then ?
    I think humanity is just not mature enough to deal with differences of opinion, religion, or simply differences in general. Maybe one day will we grow up a little bit...
     
  22. Stealth Tomato

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    Religion gives many people direction who would otherwise have none. While I'm not a fan, religion does promote good basic morals, although some of its teachings are flawed.
     
  23. SoulFire

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    No.

    Humans are responsible, not teachings of whatever kind. if you take out religion, something else will take its place. At least religion offers some form of peace to those who accept it, wether they be muslim, Christian or Catholic, they all have morals and so forth, it just gets overshaded by the fanatic idiots.

    Leave it alone.
     
  24. PervertedMonkey

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    I'm gonna respond to this in my reply to Narrrf's post, please read below.

    Now this is exactly my point, if you put an evil man in power, it wont really matter if he believed in God or not, he would go about and murder, look at Saddam, he's not an atheist and look at what he's done

    With regards to religion however, let's take 'Bloody' Queen Mary for example, she ordered the burnings and deaths of countless protestants during her reign because she was catholic. And then later when Elizabeth took throne, the pope himself encouraged her assassination because she was a protestant, this coming from the pope.

    No one is saying that religion is unique here in its role in violence, if you want to make a thread about how bad cars are and how we should ban them then by all means, go ahead and make one, this is, afterall, a forum, where we can all freely share our thoughts and opinions and hopefully, even debate on things we dont agree on.

    Perhaps if you put a little more effort into it and less sarcasm :smile-big

    Ok first of all, none of these guys killed people in the name of atheism, unlike many of the massacres caused by religious zealots in the name of their so called 'religion'

    Beleive it or not Hitler was not an atheist, he was infact Catholic and wrote many times about the benefit of Christianity, ofcourse you could say that this was merely all propaganda, but fact is, although he MAY not be a Christian, he was not an atheist either.

    And to that I offer this link for some light reading and background on our favourite 20th centure butcher.

    Now as for the rest of your examples goes(those of whom are ruling a communist nation), none of them, I repeat, none of them killed people in the name of atheism, the communist government see religion as a potential focus of opposition and a threat to its power, that is basically the only reason for their so called 'war' on religion, its not because of any belief system that they have that says religion is wrong and stupid but mainly because they see religion as a threat to their power.

    Stalin was a pathological, paranoid, cold blooded killer who killed indiscriminately, segments of the Russian population without regard to religion in most cases. People who were killed in communist countries died for alot of reasons, so if you take a closer look, this is really more of a political issue and not a question of atheism.

    I came across an article some time ago that explains what i want to say quite well and since i saved it i'd like to post it here...

    Also, note that just because a government is communist, it does not necessarily follow that its also an atheist, in fact, there have been many communist countries in Europe and elsewhere that were Christian, including Roman Catholic Italy, Hungary, and Poland, and Lutheran Germany.

    Now if I may, I wish to sum up my points as so...

    Acts of Religion: "You are all wrong, my god is the true god, you must all die"

    Acts of a communist goverment: "Religion is a threat to our form of government, we must wipe out all form of religion"

    Now if what you have been saying is true and atheism is in fact responsible for all those deaths, would a communist government not sound more like so: "Religion is stupid, there is no god, anyone who believes otherwise must die"

    EDIT: edited to include baconbits' reply, didnt want to double post
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2005
  25. religion is all brainwash. but you know what, i like that kind of brainwash. you know what every religion has in common? they all teach about love and kindness. and i support that. :)
     
  26. PervertedMonkey

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    Even the type of brainwashing that tells you you should kill other people coz they dont have the same faith as you?
     
  27. Narrrf

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    For the sake of argument, I'm only going to be talking about Christianity. Let Islam fend for itself.

    Why the heck would we debate on the things we agreed upon? It makes no sense. What I'm saying is that the violent side effects of religion are so small as to not matter. Tell me, how many abortion doctors did christians kill? How many gays did they kill? The answer? Not many. Actually, very few.

    I hate it when my humor is misinterpreted as sarcasm. How is that from all the punches I pulled, it's all sarcasm. I swear, it makes no sense.

    Anyways, err, PervertedMonkey? Did you read the website you cited agaisnt me? I sure wish you would've. Or at least a bit more thoroughly. Hitler was not a Christian. He was not a Catholic. By default, that makes him an Atheist. He was a monster.

    Someone can't just say "I'm Christian," and then be christian. It is an embodiment of your actions and the reflection of your soul. By gum, you think this is just for the taking? Hitler was not a Christian as his actions documented by that website make abundantly clear.

    As for the other communist countries, no, they did not kill in the name of atheism persay. Certainly they were atheists. Their religion was politics. Their religion was power. They were hedonists, living for themselves, only too warped on who they were. They denounced religion and killed whatever christians they may. Now, certainly they didn't explicity come out and said they killed in the name of atheism. But they didn't have to. Their actions speak for them. Now you don't see the connection between atheism, hedonism, and these wicked governments? You still think it's a political issue and not that they were damned atheist monsters?
     
  28. PervertedMonkey

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    First of all, I dont agree that violent side effects of religion are small and do not matter. and secondly, I'm also not saying that its the only and main reason for violence in the world, I am merely asking the question if the world would be better off if religion did not exist, hence the title of my thread.

    Yes Narrrf I did read it, and I hope you read my post clearly, I also stated that although hitler may not have been a crhistian, he was not an atheist either. The website also stated that Hitler considered himself to be religious.

    And where does it say that your either a Christian or an Atheist by default?

    If you were refering this:
    then there would seem to be no point in continuing this debate since you would consider a non-christian belief to be atheism.

    I totally agree, you cant say one thing and do another, BUT, like I said before, he may not be a christian but it doesnt mean he's an atheist, but if you insist on sticking by with your 'atheist by default' then this fact is moot.

    No there is no connection, as I have stated before, they killed to preserve and maintain their form of government/power, it had nothing to do with atheism.

    Yes I do, its a political issue and not coz they were athiest, what would be the point if they were doing it all for ahteism??? You really mean to say that all those killings were merely the 'purging' of religion and it was done simply for that reason alone?
     
  29. i dont believe any religion tells u to kill. people kill on their own because of their own selfish reasons. the religion never tells them too.
     
  30. Mineko-Iwasa

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    they don't tell us to kill, but allow us to do so, BUT just in certain translations from holy books....
     
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