Do you think that Religion is foundation of Human hope and prosperity?
Debate Rounds (5)
1. Can religion be taken to far, and at times, hinder the progression of a race/civilization?
Yes, it can most definitely do this. Some example of this is the Islamic State and other Islamic extremists, Fundamentalists, and Nazis, yes, I say the Nazis, etc. Their views can contradict what is right and what is wrong morally and can, at times but not always, ruin the lives of others. The Islamic State has continually shown how they have taken their religion too far with (though technically speaking, ISIS does not follow Islam or the Koran to begin with and does not have a 'true religion') committing bombings on foreign soils the most recent as of now in Turkey to beheading innocent shepherds/persons barbarically. This is said enough on how religion can go to far.
A civilization can be hindered as well with these religions. As an example, if gay marriage were to remain illegal (as if a piece of paper can make a difference) it would likely have stalled the progression of our civilization, of our own kind at that.
But what does this have to do with hope? It has a lot actually.
2. Hope of an afterlife and beyond.
Death is a very, very scary thing to think about. No man can think about it nor can they understand it properly for it is just another possibilities of a 'lights out' 'no thinking, no seeing, no doing' 'no more talking' no nothing to say the least. So what do we do to cope with the unthinkable, the non-understandable? We exaggerate, we dream and come up with a 'solution' to the problem, we create a false hope, something that we can understand to a point, religion.
Religion does create a false sense of hope, it is meant to, of an afterlife for the many. I will talk more of this later for, as of now, I have nothing to see your opinion (which this debate, as religion is, based off of.) so that I may base my hypothesis and further build it.
I again would like to thank you for accepting this debate with me.
It is obvious that some people get hope out of religion, so if your argument is that religion can be used to give hope, then you are correct, but that would be an incredibly weak position. I would assume you aren't just thinking that it can be used to give hope, but that the hope is its purpose. I find such a claim to be very dubious. Religious leaders frequently seek political and economic power, they are rarely satisfied to remain a cult with no economic and political benefits. I would suggest that the hope people get is incidental to the true goal which is to gain wealth and power.
I can give many examples of this.
Ancient Egypt: The Pharaoh was considered to be a god and this was used to maintain power over the masses.
"The task of the king as the protagonist of human society was to retain the benevolence of the gods in maintaining order against disorder. This ultimately pessimistic view of the cosmos was associated principally with the sun god and the solar cycle. It formed a powerful legitimation of king and elite in their task of preserving order."
Ancient China: The Mandate of Heaven was used as an excuse to justify their emperors. The people thought that the gods gave him the right to rule, so he had power.
Christianity: The Catholic church has historically had as its goal the acquisition of power. This has led to bitter and bloody conflicts with heads of state and events like the Crusades.
"In essence, the earliest vision of Christendom was a vision of a Christian theocracy, a government founded upon and upholding Christian values, whose institutions are spread through and over with Christian doctrine. In this period, members of the Christian clergy wield political authority. The specific relationship between the political leaders and the clergy varied but, in theory, the national and political divisions were at times subsumed under the leadership of the Catholic Church as an institution. This model of church-state relations was accepted by various Church leaders and political leaders in European history."
That people are afraid of death provides religions with a powerful tool to control the people. The powerful religions would hold your eternal fate hostage which forced you to fall in line. I am most familiar with Catholicism and the threats of excommunication and hell still exist. These force people to go to church and donate to a group that is already incredibly wealthy. We cannot directly measure their wealth because they are exempt from normal laws, but a measure of how much they spend can help us to guess.
The Catholic Church spent an estimated $170 billion in 2012. That is some massive economic power.
Now most religions do hold these views against you such as the Catholic Church and being excommunicated from the church and being forced to go in the fear of going to 'hell' should you not. This is where religion can go down the drain of course but I suppose it could provide some but little hope for the people.
"Now most religions do hold these views against you such as the Catholic Church and being excommunicated from the church and being forced to go in the fear of going to 'hell' should you not. This is where religion can go down the drain of course but I suppose it could provide some but little hope for the people." Religion's purpose is to control people so that the people in charge gain power and wealth. If the people are able to be controlled using fear, then the religion is still doing very well. If the people have hope but the leaders of the religion do not have control of the people and do not have wealth and power, then the religion has gone wrong. That would be a situation where the main function is not present, but a side effect is present.
Sciguy forfeited this round.
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