The Instigator
Nidhoggr
Pro (for)
The Contender
ZenekPr0
Con (against)

All religions should be respected

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/21/2016 Category: Religion
Updated: 1 week ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 92 times Debate No: 97207
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (3)
Votes (0)

 

Nidhoggr

Pro

I will be arguing that all religions should be respected. The first round can be for acceptance or for arguments. You can start off the debate if you wish.
ZenekPr0

Con

I'd like to welcome my opponent and thank him for an interesting subject of debate.. I'll start.

=Definitions=

Respect - admiration felt or shown for someone or something that you believe has good ideas or qualities. [C]
Religion - the belief in and worship of a god or gods, or any such system of belief and worship. [C]
Belief system - A set of principles or tenets which together form the basis of a religion, philosophy, or moral code. [O]

=Burden of Proof=

My opponent will be arguing that all religions should be respected. It means he will be arguing that all religious systems of belief and their systems of worship should be admired for having good ideas or qualities. This is harder BoP to meet than arguing for only some religions, it's also harder than arguing that only some parts of some religions are worth respect. My opponent has to show explicitly that there is something about all religions that make them worth of our respect. It's not enough to prove that only some religions meet these criteria. I'll be arguing that there is not enough reason to think that all religions, without exception, should be admired. In doing so I will either show why evidence given by Pro is insufficient to say that religion X should be respected plus I'll be proving that some religions are highly unworthy of human respect because of particular reasons. My opponent will have to address those examples.

=Arguments=

A1. Religions teach people how to be ignorant.

Probably all religions that ever existed and which exist contemporary require their followers to abandon reason in favour of blind faith. There no evidence that any god exists, nor we have any reason to think miracles do happen. Usually lack of evidence is sufficient reason to not believe in a proposition. However in case of religions we're expected to leave our standard of evidence behind and accept proposed claim anyway.

Why is it worth of high disrespect?

Because it makes people more credulous and dumber. Religious folks openly tells us we can't trust our critical thinking, instead we should trust their preaching and belief in unwarranted claims concerning such fields of science as cosmology, biology, geology, etc. Critical thinking s highly valuable trait. It allows us to look at the world in unbiased way. It means that people with critical thinking ability are less susceptible to propaganda and manipulation, they are less likely to blindly follow self proclaimed authority figures. Given all dictatorships that history saw, it becomes obvious how dangerous religion can be.

Another important thing is that it stops scientific progress which by any reasonable standard is something good. Due to many anti scientific claims which we can find in most of Holy Books, many people still believe in extremely silly things, including flat earth, geostationary model of universe or creationism. Actually according to Gallup research 42% of Americans believe that god created humans in current form within last 10000 years. The more religious people, the more likely they are to believe it [1].

Science is extremely important, It drastically improves our quality of life. Average life time doubled during last 100 years. It wouldn't be possible without scientific progress. And science is highly dependent upon people. After all in most countries voters chose their representatives, it stands to reason that the more ignorant voters are the more likely they are to choose similarly ignoramus candidate who won't be willing to support scientific endeavour.

Unfortunately belief in supernatural, unsupported by any evidence claims is shared by many religions. I think this fact alone outweigh potential benefits coming from religions. What gain do we have from viewing human life as sacred if at the same time the same religious belief causes us to retard scientific progress causing people to suffer?

And finally the seek for actual truth is admirable as well. Even if you despise science it's unlikely you despise truth. After all we all prefer honest, but not boorish people over corrupted liars. However religions teach us that truth is often a bad thing, they teach us that some tenets are so sacred they can never be called into question and if they are it's a result of intolerance against religion rather than genuine desire to simply set things to rights. Such frame of mind isn't anything I would call to be worth respecting.

A2. Human sacrifice isn't worth respecting.

This is a very simple argument. I believe that religions which practice human sacrifice aren't worth respecting no matter how decent values they propagate. We know for the fact, that human sacrifice is quite common among religions of ancient civilizations like Aztecs[2].
Why it is not worth of respect?

I think it goes without saying. Human life is valuable in both transcendental or mystical sense and with respect to utilitarian aspect. Another important aspect is a way by which executions were done. As you probably expect it's not enough to merely kill human. Wretches were killed in most brutal ways, having their hearts cut out when still beating, or being drowned alive. Even if we somehow find an excuse for human sacrifice it's hard to believe deliberate cruelty can be excused to. If we don't respect other human beings, then what's left? It certainly doesn't teach us anything good.

My opponent may argue here, that we no longer practice it. Well, I'm fine with that, but it can't be taken as serious rebuttal. After all my opponent claims that all religions should be respected so I think it's fair to say it also includes the religion of ancient Aztecs.
Pro will have to show here, that despite such shameful practice we should still admire Aztecs religion.

A3. It causes people to do horrible things.

Without religions bad people do bad things, and good people do good things. However it takes religion to make good people do bad things. In case of Aztecs for example their religious belief was one of factors which led them to fight their neighbours[3]. The need for captives for later sacrifice was so high. I dare to say religion whose gods demand their followers to go fight other people and then sacrifice them on altar aren't worth of our respect. As mentioned earlier religions turn down our critical thinking and therefore leave us in the open against influences of various ideologies, which can easily result in tragedy. People start to follow ideological demagogues who claim to possess revealed knowledge.

A4. It tells us humans are worthless yet it makes us arrogant at the same time.

Contrary to popular belief it's a theistic position that human life has no intrinsic value. In most cases theists are forced to belief that human life has any value at all solely because divine creator decided so. I find it repugnant. Religion teaches people that without it humans are merely wild animals who can't tell the difference between right and wrong. Religious preachers often say that if god didn't chose us there would be no way for us to have any value at all.

At the same time religious folks claim that after all it's not so bad because entire universe was created with us in mind! It embeds arrogance in human minds who tend to think they are in some sense in the centre of the universe.

It's an awful mix of sadomasochistic abjection with almost ridiculous arrogance to say that without god we're nothing, yet at the same time universe was created for us.

A5. Children indoctrination have its limits, which religions break.

I believe that parents have rights to bring up their child the way they like. However child isn't a property, it's another human being which deserves its rights, therefore complete freedom in raising children can't be allowed. I think children indoctrination is an abhorrent practice which should be despised. Let me stress this. It's ok to say to child that either he behaves well or father will spank him when back in home. We may then explain to him in more details why it's good to behave well. However It's all but ok, to say to child that either he respects gods for which existence there is no evidence at all, or he will suffer for eternity in hell. But that's how religious folks act. It's usually a slow process, but in a process of time it leaves its mark on its victim.

There are numerous people who struggle to believe in gods they were indoctrinated to believe in. They suffer because they don't really believe, yet they are either afraid of eternal punishment, or they feel as traitors on the sheer mention of leaving their religions. Those are people often raised in conviction that as atheists they can't be good human beings. I think it hurts people and rob them from some kind of freedom. Just imagine that you're indoctrinated for years that eating fruits is harmful, but it's perfectly ok to smoke cigarettes. Imagine that you were told for all that time that if you break out you're going to spark off in your society, imagine that it's a very old tradition in your region. Would you defend it as something worth respecting only because of how old such tradition is? Or maybe you would rather say something like "Wait, these people lie to their children, and put in their heads unhealthy habits, it's not fair." Because that's exactly what religious folks do to their children.

=Conclusions=

My opponent is yet to show any affirmative arguments for his claim. He has to prove that there is something about all religions which makes them worth of respect. He has to show that either all of them share some respectable properties (for example maybe belief in deity itself is somehow beneficial, therefore worth respecting) or that every single religion has it's own unique values which still makes them worth of respect.
As for now we saw quite a few arguments against this motion, and I think every one of them refute it on its own.

=References=

[C] Cambridge Dictionary
[O] Oxford Dictionaries
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Debate Round No. 5
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by ZenekPr0 1 week ago
ZenekPr0
Seriously, I've spend almost an hour trying to make my postt look intelligible, but it sucks anyway due to terrible formatting bugs.
Posted by ZenekPr0 1 week ago
ZenekPr0
Oh my god, they should hire new technician, I could hardly write my argument, and even then formatting failed, so for some mysterious reason font size decreased plus there are places with more enters than necessary. Nightmare.
Posted by ZenekPr0 2 weeks ago
ZenekPr0
Well I can just come up with my own religion, in which human sacrifice or rape is common, and you lose.
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