Religion Is Progressive and Necessary
I am completely against the proposition. According to me, religion is regressive and works as a wall of division between people. Why? Here are my points.
1. Religion gives countenance to child-abuse
In most of the religiously-runinstitutions, the students are labelled as religious. This happens in case of religious parents too. When a child is born to Jewish parent, the child is labelled as a Jewish child. In case of Christian parents, the child is labelled as a Christian child. In case of Hindu parents, the child is regarded a Hindu child. I am not generalizing, but it is the majority of cases. This creates a division of human-beings and demolishes unity. If a child is called a Racist child or a Stalinist child, it does not make any sense. It is ludicrous to assert such a thing just because the parents are motivated by a certain ideology. The parents have every right to rear up their children in a religious background and teach him about religion. But LABELLING is CHILD-ABUSE. Religion does that very well.
2. Religion Slows Down Scientific Progress
I do not need to say anything about these. The cases of Gallileo, Bruno, Andre Vesalius are proofs of the assertion. They speak volumes for it. How can we simply deny that? [Contextually, the Bible, the Qur'an presents a lot of things that Science reject.]
3. Religion Spreads Hatred
I am a man without any religion. But I have respect for every human being. I am an atheist, but I do not hate religious people. I have friends who are deeply religious. However, most of the religions ask people to hate non-believers. It asks people to commit hateful jobs against those who do not subscribe to that particular school of thought. For example : Hatred against homosexual people, the Crusades, bombing attacks because of religious-faith. Sorry. I can not and will never support a thing that kills people to ensure a good place in imaginary heaven.
4. Cult and Dogmatic Views
Religion, organized religion, in most of the cases, turns out to be dogmatic. Doubt is not allowed there. You are asked to have faith on 'God' (no proof for it, of course!). It is like an axiom. You cannot question it. That is very much opposite to what we may call 'progressive'. On the other hand, things which are well-debated and well-questioned and discussed have always turned out to be progressive and in favour of advancement. Religion prevents that. Sometimes, it goes to the extent of advising us not to take certain medicines and not to use contraceptive-measures. In Ireland, they did not permit an abortion, which resulted in the death of both the innocent mother and the embryo inside.So 'innocent' religion is!
Religion makes people frightened about 'hell'. It makes the children believe a lot of fairy-tales which give the children hallucinations of demons. This is going to be an empirical evidence. Still I am going to tell an incident. Do not take it as an argument. Just an anecdote. A family-member of mine had hallucinations of demons, in her childhood. When the person who used to tell him stories of demons stopped doing so, the hallucinations stopped. He enjoys horror-stories and have encountered no such problem ever again. Religion does the same thing. It is dangerous.
Most of the religions treat women in a harsh manner, as if their only work is to reproduce. Woman are considered here as commodities, owned by the patriarchal administrators. Religions is the wolf in sheep's clothing. It gives countenance to patriarchy. I will use verses from most of the religions' holy books to back my claim, if my opponent asks me to do so.
I am not saying that religion has done only bad things. IT HAS DONE GOOD THINGS TOO. But those are very small in amount, when compared to the gigantic ocean of regressive and bad things. It is used to oppress the working-class. Religions have preached good things too. But the contradictory views and egregious customs presented by religion, in the long run, has degraded the civilization.
Religion, according to me, is NOT progressive. NOT AT ALL!
The best that can be said about religion is that intent matters, particularly when we add human body politics to any ideology on earth. If the intent of leaders is peace, then they can highlight the communal nature of religion and seek policies to that end. If the leaders intent is rapacious, he can highlight the differences and seek to demonize the other as "ungodly". What matters here is intent, not religion. Its not the shovels fault that someone smashes a person over the head with it, it"s the persons fault he used it inappropriately. We should, above all else, avoid blaming a body of often loft a virtuous doctrine for the fact that men sometimes abuse it " men very often abuse a great many things, like money, without invaliding its value.
1. Religion is not child-abuse
I have yet to see a police SWAT team bust down a door and haul off parents for applying labels to their children. Particularly when those labels are meant to induct the into a community of values that the parents wish to inculcate into their children. Attending services as a Hindu Temple is not abusive thing, nor is attending mass on Sundays. Indeed, the failure to properly raise our children in an ethical framework is damaging not just to the society, but to an individual as well. Religion may not be the only way to do this, but the way is acceptable. Parents are stewards of the their children until they reach adulthood. The label of child, until that point is hardly abusive. As the label changes to adult, so too does the child inherent the ability to change the labels he affixs to himself to. Every parent realizes that a child grows up and heads his or her own way as an adult. They have done their best to mold them, but an adult (no longer a child) can label themselves anyway they want.
Additionally, if we are looking for abuse, we should probably start with naked over reach. Stepping into the parent child relationship should only be done when legitimate abuse is occurring. The spurious nature of "labels" would never withstand any form of jurisprudence. We should pretend that this is valid.
2. Religion Helps Scientific Progress
Considering the Bible tells us that he desires us to become more like him, we can, and indeed many of do, infer that he has used processes that are discernable, understandable, and teachable. We believe that science will lead, behind the instant of the Big Bang, to the Creator. Atheists, by in large, believe we will discover something else. Yet the processes and procedures laid out since that instant are fascinating and exciting.
There is also a failure of understanding here. Science requires all ideology to be removed to be effective. That doesn"t matter whether the ideology is religion, atheism, or stand upside downism. It has no place in science. A religious person can, and indeed we do, participate in science all the time. We, as you do, acknowledge that we have potential biases, which we attempt to limit, and submit to processes like peer review to ensure that the finding are as objective as possible. That takes a ethical commitment to honesty, and the religious commandment to honesty is a inducement to just such an aim.
3. Religion Spreads Tolerance
We call this the biased sample fallacy. Of the billion or so Muslims out there, how many are committing acts of violence? Far less than one percent. Indeed, I can personally testify that I have fought side by side with Muslims to put down those who abuse in the name of "religion". And when we look beyond Islam, how is it that less than 1% of Muslims somehow tar ALL religion? There is a logical disconnect here in taking such a small sample and ignoring the much greater body of evidence to draw a conclusion. The reasoning is fallacious.
Additionally, there is grave danger here. Its easy to find simplistic answers to complex events, and groups like the Taliban, who do use religion to justify their aims, will not be swayed by such simplistic arguments. Indeed, such a simplistic argument plays into their hands that their critics neither know about Islam or care enough to gather it. It is only through understanding the faith, and being able to demonstrate the Prophets guidance correctly that the argument can be diffused. There is also the larger political reality of what hey are engaged in and why, the Taliban are not at all apologetic at harnessing religion to achieve those ends " particularly in a region where it is the ONLY force that can cross ethic/tribal lines (save criminality and greed). Should they be apologetic about it? Or should they not use a unifying tool and condemn themselves to another 2,000 of nascent tribal warfare?
4. Learned views stooped in education
The idea that there are no questions asked in religion is wantonly false. The doctrine of religion is often incredible detailed and explanative. It is so complex and thorough that it requires Seminaris that teach to the Ph.D level to understand properly and be certified in. Many of the questions asked already have very detailed answers, and the trick is realizing that you are not the first person to ask the question and it behooves you, at the very least, to see the answer before declaring that no one will answer it. If you subsequently disagree, you should be able to explain why. If you argument is convincing, the doctrine may very well be changed.
The religion is not always receptive to petulant questions is a given. If we value rationalism and see that someone is not willing to take time to understand and seek answers, sometimes the wiser counsel is simply to send the young person on his journey to find the answers he seeks " especially when its clear he will not accept those pro-offered from the faith.
Many religions have no concept of Hell.
Hell in the Bible and Koran are barely mentioned, and when they are it is done in a spirit of acknowledgement only. The concept of Hell is actually quite simple: consequence. If you do good things, you will have good consequences (by in large) " and not in the after life, here and now. Being a proper steward, for example, produces a healthy business, while rapacious actions lead to failed businesses. Not rocket science. Indeed, in a temporal sense, the failure to enact consequences would be ludicrous. Murder is an action that has a consequence. That this consequence crosses into the spiritual should hardly come as a shock.
Indeed, the spiritual consequences of these actions are severe, but there is grace to overcome all but a single sin: the unpardonable sin. You have to know God is truth, with all your heart and mind, and then reject him anyway. God will then let you wander into outer darkness as your heart (not his) desires.
In short, if you fear hell, you need only reject it to avoid it.
The religious idea is that men and women are different. Aside form the obvious, that one has a penis and the other has a vagina, there are wired differences between men and women. Many of these are inconsequential, but there are some things that the other cannot do. As a Father, no matter how hard I try, I can never be a mother. A Mother, no matter how hard she tries, can never be a Father. In single parent or same sex parent households, it is precisely that knowledge that ensures that these roles are met " that two gay men, for example, ensure that their daughter has access to string female role models. Its such an obvious thing, that its self evident when presented.
Religions vary on aspects of utilizing these differences in the most productive manner. Yet all, even Saudi Arabian conservative Islam, treat and afford women incredible respect. To the Saudi"s, our pornography laced treatment of women as sexual objects is horrific. To us, the failure to allow women access to political power is horrific. There is certainly a debate there, but the treatment of women is as much a cultural thing as it is religious. Indonesian women are not treated the same way as Saudi women " yet they are Muslims, often very pious Muslims, and the intersection between culture and religion should not be ignored simple because we wish to brand religion false or offensive.
The real problem with each of the these is that the analysis is itself a rejection of progress. Rather than treat complex interactions with a healthy dose of respect, examining them in context with understanding as our goal, we see the exact opposite. We see a few instances of misconduct taken as justification to condemn the whole. Indeed, we cannot even acknowledge the benefits of the system.
Should we pretend that Pope Leo I did failed to prevent Attila the Hun from sacking Rome? How many thousands of lives did he save?
Should we pretend that Gregory Mendel, discover of genetics, was not a Catholic Monk?
Should we pretend that religion, time and time again, has served as the basis to turn men away from everything form alcoholism to criminality?
Should we ignore vast and effective charity networks founded and funded by religious people deliver everything from health care to food and education?
What we do with religion makes it good or bad, yet, even by your own examples, 99% of the time, its quite positive. The danger of regression here comes from accepting cherry picked data analysis to demonize religion rather than understand it and tap into its benefits in a convincing manner.
Indeed, the world is religious, whether we like that or not, and if we stomp around in ignorance of that reality, we risk doing grave harm " not the least of which is dismissing legitimate concerns with a hand wave that will only dehumanize our fellow man. Faith drives men, it is a part of who they are, and we do them no services by fundamentally misunderstanding them because we view their faith to have no value. If progress requires mutual understanding and respect, then the study of religion is imperative. One dos not have to agree with religion to understand it, but we should, at the very least, understand it enough to be able to delineate between terrorists and actual religious people following the commandments of the religion is respect and piety.
If we cannot do even that? Perhaps we need to examine why.
1. Why labelling is ABUSE
a) I have no problem if a child is reared up in a certain background. It does not matter if she is taken to the churches or the temples, as long as they are not forced into doing something. In India, Brahmins (a caste in the Hindu. The most 'reverred' class, though the records of oppressing working-class can put this caste to the blush) CONSTRAIN their children to COMLETELY REMOVE THEIR HAIR AND WEAR A PIECE OF THREAD. That is forced. Is not this mental abuse? You are not giving the child any option to think form himself. Well, he is just a child. How can he think about such complex things? Well, but you said, "Parents are stewards of the their children until they reach adulthood." Then is it not the parents duty to teach the children have the practice of thinking for himself and try to decide between what is suitable for him or not?
Forced genital mutilation is another gruesome side of religion. Some religions do provoke this. This is insane. Yes, circumcision may result in good health. In fact, the smagma is naturally cleaned in the absence of the foreskin. But, HOW CAN YOU FORCE THAT?
If it is forced, it is ABUSE. The child is dependent of adults. The adults should make them proper human-being, instead of deceiving them and compelling them to join a community.
I do not have any problem with teaching. But the labelling is dangerous. I have seen that a lot kids cannot even befriend kids from other religious background, just because they are labelled as 'Muslim' child or 'Hindu child'. I am not giving anecdotes, this is evident everywhere in the world. Religion teaches the children that 'they are different' and provokes the idea of separation. If that is called 'unity', then I do not subscribe to that school of thought. I cannot.
2. "A religious person can, and indeed we do, participate in science all the time." Yes, I agree. I FULLY AGREE. But they do not preach their religion in science. There is a difference between someone who happens to have a religion and someone who does something because of religion.
Science basically accepys something after observation, arguments, judging contradictory evidences, experimentation. On the contrary, Religion gives some books the status of 'axiom'. The 'holy' books are static, not dynamic. Something totaly opposite to what Science says.
The Inquisitions is another sign of religious regressiveness. Blasphemy laws, even today, accuse many people who tend to be progressive.
3. Religion Spread Intolerance. I am telling it again that I do not have any problem with someone who happens to have a religion. But when a religion rovokes people to commit bad things, even if the provoked person constitute only 1% of the whole population, does not make religion good. I AM NOT GENERALIZING. There are very good people who are religious. It is undeniable. What I want to say is that the religious ideas provoke a lot of persons to do bad things.
I do not care about what individual people are doing. That would really be 'biased sample fallacy'. What I have a problem with is how religion instructs people to do bad things.
For example, I am quoting some instructions. THERE ARE OCCASSIONAL GOOD VERSES IN THE 'HOLY BOOKS, VERY GOOD VERSES. BUT IT IS MIXED UP COMPLETELY WITH THE MOST CONDEMNABLE VERSES. Totally contradictory!
They wish you would disbelieve as they disbelieved so you would be alike. So do not take from among them allies until they emigrate for the cause of Allah . But if they turn away, then seize them and kill them wherever you find them and take not from among them any ally or helper. (Qur'an 4:89)
Whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre's sake. (Titus 1:10 and 1:11)
When the Lord heard them, he was furious; his fire broke out against Jacob and his wrath rose against Israel,
for they did not believe in God or trust in his deliverance. (Psalm 78:21 and 78:22)
These are only fragments. ALMOST EVERY ORGANIZED RELIGION SPREADS INTOLERANCE. (BUDDHISM IS A BIT DIFFERENT, BUT HAS STAIC AND ILLOGICAL VIEWS ABOUT MANY THINGS : SOMETHING THAT BUDDHA WAS NOT FOND OF)
4. If religion welcomes doubts and questions, why was Darwin harshly criticized after proposing his revolutionary theory? Why does Religions oppose ptogressive moves?
I have even mentioned specific incidents. You did not answer those.
If religion really welcomes questions, and the opinions of people, then why Bruno was killed? Why was Gallileo mentally and almost physically tortured? Why are people still prosecuted because of exposing so-called miracles? Have you any answer?
Did you forget Andreas Vesalius?
People, throughout the ages, have questioned Religions' teachings. But they were always stopped. Why is something wrong? Because the 'holy' book says that it is wrong.
How can I deny that? I just cannot.
5. "Many religions have no concept of Hell.". Yes. They do not. But they still instill fear in the minds of people, for example : God's wrath.
"Hell in the Bible and Koran are barely mentioned" Really? "when they are it is done in a spirit of acknowledgement only."
The Qur'an :
Indeed, We have sent you, [O Muhammad], with the truth as a bringer of good tidings and a warner, and you will not be asked about the companions of Hellfire. (2:119)
And when it is said to him, "Fear Allah ," pride in the sin takes hold of him. Sufficient for him is Hellfire, and how wretched is the resting place. (2:206)
Say to those who disbelieve, "You will be overcome and gathered together to Hell, and wretched is the resting place." (3:12)
And whoever opposes the Messenger after guidance has become clear to him and follows other than the way of the believers - We will give him what he has taken and drive him into Hell, and evil it is as a destination. (4:115)
But those who disbelieve and deny Our signs - those are the companions of Hellfire. (5:10)
Do they not know that whoever opposes Allah and His Messenger - that for him is the fire of Hell, wherein he will abide eternally? That is the great disgrace. (9:63)
Plenty of other mentions of hell. Over 50, surely. If you want, I will mention each of them.
The Bible, too, has plenty of mentions. I will post them in the next round, if you wish.
6. I am not saying that religion has done anything good. What I am saying is that it has done mostly bad. Do you know how many children of India are malnourished? But still, for the sake of religion, a gargantuan majority of religious people pour gallons and gallons (literally) milk on a black stone. All of that milk is WASTED.
Should not we condemn that? Yes, religion sometimes has done a lot of progressive things. For example, in India, the country I live in, a colossal number of schools are monitored by religious organizations. But do you know how 'indoctrination' is prevalent there?
I will end my argument with two quotations.
“Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent.
Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?” - Epicurus
"There is a distinct difference between having an open mind andhaving a hole in your head from which your brain leaks out." - James Randi
And when the broccoli eating kids become adults, any of the things can be stopped.
Finally, you continue to cherry pick data points. Female genital mutilation is a Pre-Islamic practice whose practice is restricted to certain tribes in Africa. Its ties to Islam through chastity a is, at best, tenuous. You ignore the culture and tribal aspects of the practice, but to somehow tar the entirety of religion with a cultural practice is not correct. Where is the acknowledgement that even within Islam the practice is often strongly condemned.
That stands in sharp contrast to famous atheist Richard Dawkins, who apparent support for "mild" (as if there is such a qualifier) pedophilia.
I would imagine that you would be among the first to qualify that Dawkins does not speak for all atheists? Neither does female genital mutilation reflect the wider religious world, where there exists no where, in any religion, a commandment for this practice. Religious people think this is needless mutilation. How does religion cause this?
2. You once again tar the whole with a single data point. Its called the Spanish Inquisition precisely because it was in Spain, and not " France, Great Britain, Germany, Austro-Hungary, Poland, Sweden should give one pause before tarring so many. The unique politics of Spain, involved in long war with Moors did not exist elsewhere. Religion here was merely an excuse. The Cultural Revolution? Is political abuse a religious thing alone?
Indeed, you seem to ignoring that you atheism induces human biases. Science also has a stage called the hypothesis stage. At this point, barring a test for God, your atheism is no more the result of a testable, observable science process than any other hypothesis. Induction is what counts here, and the strongest most probable argument should carry the weight until, and unless, something stronger arises or there is a test that confirms or denies. There is risk that thinking atheism is science, rather than an opinion about God, can induce grave biases.
Your next claim demonstrates this. The Biblical Canon process has never been called a science project. It is history. It was the compiling of the renditions that were MOST accurate for the life of Jesus Christ. How exactly should that evolve? Should Jesus in the next edition have been the first guy to stone the adulterous woman? Should he have a guitar like ZZ Top? Is there a need to update teachings about the adultery? Has it suddenly become a beneficial practice?
It is precisely this secular confusion and fear of education about religion that has caused the secular community to get it wrong. Religion is primary ethics and wisdom; science is observation and testable conclusions. This view that religion has somehow poisoned the process is itself the poison to the process.
3. Religion Spread Intolerance.
Do you hate George Patton? William T. Sherman? Napoleon? Harry Truman? Because each of these men have given brutal orders that resulted in thousands of often indiscriminate deaths. Yet these orders given, though controversial, by in large lead to the ending of terrible and greatly destructive wars. Yet Moses issues the same orders in similar context and its evil now?
The Prophet Mohammed fought ONE war. It was a war he allowed himself to be beaten, humiliated, and exiled to avoid. His adversary dealt in treachery, bribery, and cruelty without even the pretense that diplomacy could reconcile them. The advice to fight such an adversary to the bitter end? To end the war quickly? It is the same guidance that Churchill, Roosevelt, and Stalin gave when fighting the Nazis.
No one states that war is necessary, but only the non-religious pretend that giving sound battlefield advice, intended only for the battlefield, is wrong. Condemning sound and sage advice in war merely because it is religious, belies the pretense of the criticism.
4. Darwin published his beliefs despite criticism. Are you seriously claiming that only in the religious world do people criticize ideas they do not agree with? Many scientific theories, when first postulated, receive a great deal of criticism. The initial theory on black holes was opined as ridiculous. Is that because scientists are so intolerable?
Again, how long has the atheist favorite been around? The Problem of Evil? Why does suffering happen with such a benevolent God? And how many times do you think that question has been asked and answered? Is it no longer being asked?
Indeed, the very premise of take revolutionary claims and comporting them with questions is a leap to extremes yet again. Indeed, if questions alone lead to intolerance, you should note the festering war between Bart Erhman and Richard Carrier, which has erupted because the former chose to be true to his academic credentials and clarified that Jesus was real. Rejecting religion is not the cure to this human issue.
5. "Many religions have no concept of Hell."
Buddhism, for example, has no concept of Hell. In Judaism, Shoal is very different from what has been viewed as Hell within Christianity, which itself comes from Dante"s Inferno. We now add God"s wrath to the list, while discussing not a single instance of what drove that? Today, our special operations forces routinely attack and terrorists, pirate bases, and the virtual destruction of say, enclaves of the Lord Resistance Army happens with nary a raised a hackle. So wrath against injustice if fine, unless God does it, and then it is wrong?
Again, consequence for actions. In the days before governance, God brought consequence to right wrong, today, it"s a SEAL team.
The Qur'an, if you are going to quote it as saying something, then you should quote it. Show me where it says, "Sam, believe or I will caste you into hell!!!" It says, as you quoted, that Pride would lead a man to hell " because it is an acknowledged consequence to poor decisions and choices.
Is it wrong, for example, to tell a man thinking about becoming a drug dealer, that there is a very real risk he will wind up in jail? Yet that concern that the effects of the drugs on potential thousands will have spiritual, as well as temporal consequences, inducing consideration for the effects on others is the point at which it becomes wrong?
The Bible, has exactly 15 mentions of hell:
It is the same thing. Teaching people the concept of consequence is not evil. In either case, if you are honest and earnest man, you have nothing to fear.
Your criticism is bit like saying the government is evil merely because it has prisons. If the prisons are full of murderers?
6. The Good of religion. I think you claim that religion does mostly bad is both emotional and wrong. You continue to cheery pick extreme examples and smear the whole rather than examine in context " and it is not a standard you would even allow disbelief to be judged by. Indeed, you examples continue to be taking minor things and making a mountain out of them. The idea that someone can be moved to charity, and yet not be able to speak of the thing that lead them to serve others rather than chase profits is " rather weak.
Indeed, when people have shared their faith with me, it is not something viewed as compulsive. If your reasoning is strong, the very idea that listening to different opinion is dangerous reveals a great weakness. The Hegelian Dialectic requires a counter argument to function properly. Why should we ever be so ungracious when sitting with our host that we would not listen? If he chose to share with us something that was important to him, even if we disagreed, to treat it as anything other than a gift? Merely listening is not compulsive. Bringing in a Ranger Battalion and killing people until they submit? That would be.
What is missed are the food kitchens, clothing drives, the grants and loans, the health networks, the hospice care, the emergency calls answered by clergy, the counseling, the fellowship, the work projects, the communities built, accountability, the forgiveness of sins and rehabilitation, etc. It occurs around you anonymously everyday " and being blind to it is not a particularly grand demonstration of perception and superior insight.
Besides, atheists get mad when we brag about our charitable works. ;-)
Finally the PoE has been around for millennia " so have the answers.
Aquinas"s answer " written hundreds of years ago itself. Why indeed would we bring up ancient history and pretend that there is no answer? Academics as taught to me requires one to garner both sides of an issue, at a minimum, rigorous examination and an explainable basis for your conclusion. To not even have the pretense that Epicurus has been answered? Or that religious people would not know? Regression is where?
My quote for you: "Science without Religion Is Lame, Religion without Science Is Blind." - Albert Einstein
1. Eating broccoli and having been forced to be labelled 'religious' - these are completely different things. RELIGION gives a malign influence which brocoli cannot give.
I am not saying that teacjing religion is abuse. I am completely in favour of teaching that. But what I call abuse is 'labelling'. Won't you consider it an abuse if the media starts to label a man as 'Marxist' while he is ignorant about Marxism?
We should teach religion to kids, if we are religious. But we should always tell them to choose what benefits them, when they grow older.
I am not against learning, I am not even against forced learning. What I am against is 'labelling'.
2. I cannot stand a LIAR in a debate. You said that I have talked about FEMALE GENITAL MUTILATION.
This is A LIE. YOU LIED. SHAME!
I have not uttered a single word about 'female genital mutilation'. I have mentioned the practice of forced genital mutilation (circumcision). That is prevalent in Islam.
I have to carry on debating. But it is painful to debate with you. What is the outcome of a debate, if you start to lie!
PLEASE DEBATE HONESTLY. PLEASE. THIS IS A REQUEST.
3. If person A is a criminal, his crimes are not justified just because person B too is a criminal who has not yet been prosecuted.
4. So, you think, the quotes I have given from 'The Qur'an' are not provoking INTOLERANCE? Really! You say something like 'non-believers will go to hell' (or 'the apostates'), induce fear, that is not intolerance? Please judge the thing from a human perspective, not a religious one.
5. "emotional and wrong." - REALLY? Like 'lying' and misconstruing the opponent's argument in a debate? That is interesting.
Moreover, the Bible is not 'history'. It is an account of a certain time, and it contains fragments of real history. But there is ABSOLUTELY NO EVIDENCE to prove that the Bible is completely based on true history.
6. Einstein also said,"I am a deeply religious nonbeliever. This is a somewhat new kind of religion."
You have cherry-picked one certain quote, but you forgot to mention this one, as it might destroy your argument.
Einstein was a pantheist, he was deeply influenced by Spinoza. Pantheists use the word 'God' as a non-supernatural synonym for nature. 'Non-supernatural'.
Einstein's religion is not ehat you are arguing in favour of. Want to know the definition of the Einsteinian 'Religion'?
"To sense that behind anything that can be experienced there is a something that our mind cannot grasp and whose beauty and sublimity reaches us only indirectly and as a feeble reflection, this is religiousness. In this sense I am religious."
And you did not cherry-pick? Clear example of quote-mining.
NOW , A REQUEST. Please DON'T LIE in the next round. It is horrible to debate with a liar.
My opponent has now devolved into naked ad hominem, a sure sign that someone is on the ropes in a debate.
What my opponent very clearly claimed, was that forcing children to do thing against their will was somehow abuse. Specifically, that ‘forcing’ them to attend religious ceremonies was somehow cruel and unusual – and should be stopped.
Unfortunately, and what my opponents spurious accusations misconstrue, and never actually addresses is that children very often have to do things that they do not want to, including learning things they do not want to … like math. My Son regularly complains about math, guess what he has to do in the end? (How dare I force him to learn something against his will, eh?) He also has to eat his broccoli, get haircuts, etc. My opponents claim, that forcing children to do things against heir will as abuse? Its just plain wrong – so supercilious that it should never have been pro-offered as a point.
The idea that rebutting it somehow makes someone dishonest? It’s quite petty, and is little more than an attempt to use anger to avoid having to concede a point.
Instead of getting involved in mutual acrimony, lets actually examine the claims.
Thesis: That religion is positive.
Support: Religion has been involved in many historical processes and clearly has a benefit. In fact, at its most basic, religion conveys an identifiable evolutionary advantage:
In fact those with religion, any religion, seem to have an identifiable advantage over their non-religious counter parts (i.e. better able to handle stress and adversity).
Religious people appear to be more charitable.
The practice of clergy and the effects of counseling, support, and services provided is difficult to calculate, but the attempts to do so, indicate that the economic effect of these actions is well into the billions of dollars.
Religion also serves as one of the few bridges capable of breeching tribal gaps created by wealth, nationalism, culture, political boundaries, etc. even in the very worst of places.
Religion helps pull people back from addiction and criminality. John Calvin and his focus on alcoholism when it was ripping society apart is powerful testimony to religions appeal and problem solving focus.
As you can see the benefits of religion, from evolution through economic and into the political realm all the way down to the individual level is apparent and easily identifiable.
Rebuttal of opponent’s claims:
A. All of my opponents examples, in sharp contrast to the examples above, are specific to individual religions and do not apply to the whole. The Spanish Inquisition happened in Spain, not in the rest of Europe or Catholicism, and certainly not in Buddhism or Islam while it happened in Spain. Yet all are tainted by the broad-brush strokes with no thought given to peculiarity of Spanish misbehavior. The same applies to female genital mutilation, whose existence came well before the one religion that tolerates it, and remains confined to West Africa where, even there, it is strongly condemned within Islam. That too somehow taints everything from secular humanism to Scientology.
We know what this is: a logic fallacy.
Specifically, the Texas Sharp Shooter Fallacy.
B. My opponent fails to address issues in human history, from war to drift, that clearly have no religious origins. One of the most destructive actions in the past century was the Cultural Revolution, and how such things can happen without religion is simply ignored. The Atheistic virtues of North Korea remain unexplored and unacknowledged, and even Dawkins exaltation of pedophilia is hand waived.
This has every appearance of judgment through duplicity, one standard for you, and another for me.
That too is a logical fallacy. Special pleading.
C. My opponents other claims are all appeals to emotion, as if religion (which runs the gamete of full integration to exclusion) somehow is all misogynistic. The concern of religious people at the pornographic reduction of women to sex objects is ignored, as is the reality that in our secular society, even with significant numbers of single mother house hold, the problem of income inequality (equal pay for equal work) is avoided. The effect is clearly little more than someone saying you hate women but not me!
The very premise is wantonly absurd as women represent at least half the religious population of the world. Do women hate themselves if they are religious?
This too is a logical fallacy: An Appeal to emotion.
D. The last round, my opponent seems to think that Einstein’s deism proves that religion is harmful, when it is simply not relevant. That his argument is reduced in its sole attempt at rebuttal to what appears to be a desire for a cherry picking quote war is silly and simply not germane.
Einstein was a desist, he believed that the universe could only exist because of supernatural power, but was so vast that it was impossible for him to believe that Creator God could care about tiny specks of humanity in that vast universe.
This is at best an attempt to use anecdotal issues to inform the process. That is also a logical fallacy.
E. We see what my opponents fallacious reasoning is reduced by in large to the spurious accusations of calling someone a liar. Even the pretense of a logical case has been abandoned. The premise apparently so indefensible that even the appearance of a rational case is no longer possible. We are left with accusations whose sole intent is injury. The claim? I am wrong because I am a liar, a deliberate attack upon an opponent’s character rather than presentation of a rebuttal.
This too is a logical fallacy, a very well known one.
The benefits of religion are straightforward and are, regardless of the chosen religion, almost universally positive. When religion does go bad, it appears to be the result of a very human political process. My opponent appears unable to acknowledge and unable to explore obvious contributing factors from culture, politics, economics, conflict, ethnicity, etc. Preferring the simplistic hand wave that religion is flawed. The entire support of the claims against religion appears to have faulty logic as a basis. The end result is quite clear, religion is obvious beneficial and the claim that it is not is simply irrational.
One thing I need to clarify. You clearly said that I have talked about FGM. No, I did not. YOU LIED in a DEBATE. You did not even confess that. Why, sir?
Now, the points -
1. I have never said that YOU CANNOT FORCE ANYONE TO LEARN THINGS. Yes, you can. Surely. But what I am calling abuse is not the force to learn, the compulsory LABELLING. I am against LABELLING.
Would that be justified if my child is labelled as a 'Marxist' child, just because I am a Marxist? IS THAT NOT ABUSE?
You completely ignored the 'labelling' thing in the previous round. Why are you ignoring that?
'Labelling' is child-abuse.
'Teaching' or 'forcing to learn' is not.
Simple as that. That is what I said and you ignored.
2. I am saying it again. I DID NOT TALK ABOUT FEMALE GENITAL MUTILATION.
3. I am not talking about a specific religion. I am talking about RELIGION as a whole. And, CHRISTIANITY is part of the religious arena.
Moreover, each religion has a CULT-like authority. An questionable, illogical leap of faith. EACH AND EVERY ONE OF THEM.
For example, Buddha was a materialist. However, today's Buddhism, too, is run by a cult-like system.
4. I personally admire the Cultural Revolution. However, if, for the sake of the debate, I acknowledge for a certain time that the Cultural Revolution was destructive, how can that justify the crimes Religion has done?
I am saying it once again. If person-A is a criminal, and has not yet been prosecuted, does not justify the crimes done by person-B.
You want information for every religion?
What about the Crusades? Involves major religions.
Hinduism had flagrant customs like the 'widow-burning'.
You may say that these religions might have done bad things. But that does not debunk the concept of Religion, as a whole. No, it doesn't. Then why I am blaming Religion as a whole?
That is because IT IS A CULT. IT IS STATIC.
On the other hand, scientific studies are dynamic. Science is progressive and preferable over Religion. Because, Scientists have never been killed for challening previous-views or doubting them. Yes, they might have been killed in the past because of jealousy and other problems. But not because of CHALLENGING THE PAST-VIEWS.
5. Womens do not hate themselves. But most Religion doctrines are hateful towards women.
It does not matter what a woman thinks or what a woman hates. The question here is, how the major Religions treat woman?
6. I WOULD NEVER HAVE SAID ANYTHING ABOUT EINSTEIN, IF YOU HAD NOT SAID IN THE FIRST PLACE.
And, I did not even slip to 'appeal to authority'.
"Einstein was a desist, he believed that the universe could only exist because of supernatural power, but was so vast that it was impossible for him to believe that Creator God could care about tiny specks of humanity in that vast universe."
What is the source of that?
However, it does not matter what Einstein believed in. At least, not in this case.
7. I called you a liar for a reason. Because, you clearly lied about my argument. I have never said that you're wrong because you are liar. Please STOP misconstruing.
And tell me then, where did I say anything about Female Genital Mutilation? If I do not say anything about it, and you claim that I claimed, and even give a rebuttal, that too in a debate, is that not lying?
[It is not a part of the debate. But while in a debate, you should try to stay honest.]
My opponent has clearly given up on the pretense of logical support for a claim here.
I think my opponent continues to struggle with basic concepts of integrity. Once again, (putting aside whatever the hell FGM is? Which is not something I mentioned so I am not sure how that works?)
His claim: the children forced to attend religious rituals were being abused.
Counter: Children very often have to do things against their will, and this is not abuse precisely because they are children. Forcing a child to learn math and learn religion are the same thing, and neither are abuse. Its just called parenting.
The idea that simple parenting makes religion evil or regressive? Silliness itself.
The ultimate test? My opponent could call the police force and file a formal complaint of abuse – where the reality for the complaint would be met appropriately. This is nothing but an appeal to emotionalism.
You very clearly said that ‘forcing’ children to attend religious rituals was abuse. Children do many things by force … and none of abuse. The very idea that attending mass if someone in the same league and rape or being viciously beaten? Silliness.
And no, a Marxist father bringing his son to a Marxist talk is not child abuse. I personally may disagree with someone opinion, but I mindful of the US Constitution that allows diversity of thought. I also have enough confidence in my beliefs that I am not worried by a different opinion.
2. The label of ‘child’ is applied to children, it is not abuse – it is an accurate term. How is this abuse? Akin to rape and physical beating? Who knows, its just an appeal to emotion.
3. You very clearly brought up female genital mutilation.
: Forced genital mutilation is another gruesome side of religion.
Your subsequent reference to simple circumcision is silly. We all now what genital mutilation is, and it is not circumcision. Its what you want to talk about, and I simple made the case based on actual harm.
Somehow this makes religion bad? you are aware that science has documented benefits from male circumcision?
Are you seriousley attempting to make a scietifically proven benefit a religious problem/
4. If you are talking about religion, then you need to stop picking things that are specific to a single religion and applying them to all religion. Circumcision is a widely practiced secular practice now, for example, to blame religion for this just down right silly.
5. Now we are cults? The Manson family of drug induced haze and murder is the same thing as Buddhism is it? Identical in every aspect? We are indeed reaching to smear at this point.
By all means, prove that Buddhism is a cult. That it is the same thing as Jim Hones.
4. “I personally admire the Cultural Revolution.” You admire the slaughter of upwards of 50 million people to cement Mao’s political authority and the blocking of economic reforms that would have helped to cerate a middle class in China a generation earlier?
5. I am not even sure what this means: I am saying it once again. If person-A is a criminal, and has not yet been prosecuted, does not justify the crimes done by person-B.
No religion appears to be making this claim. Why this is here?
6. What about the Crusades? Involves major religions. How are the Crusades any different from the Persian expansion its empire? The French attempts at Weltpolitik? The colonization of Africa by European Powers? The Russian expansion into Central Asia? The Japanese conquest of North Asia? Why did the Hindu Kush (Hindu Killers) block so many Indian forces?
Right, any violence with even a tenuous link to religion is automatically bad. Other geo-political realities that lead to war are safely ignored.
Do you even understand why Papal indulgences were so effective in the First Crusade? Why do you think there would be literal armies of men in need of pardon?
Why do you thin the Mujahedeen today send there excess young men to war?
7. That is because IT IS A CULT. IT IS STATIC.
Yep we are all devil worshippers. Sigh .. Is there any reason to pretend that this is rational any longer?
And the clam that science has somehow stopped petty human emotions? Crime in eliminated is it? (Unless of course there are religious people involved … we are the only people that murder).
8. Women do not hate themselves. But most Religion doctrines are hateful towards women.
Then ray tell how the flood of pornography, prostitution, unequal pay for the same work, and an entire network of human trafficking is somehow a better way to treat women.
Putting aside the fact that you just ignored everything I said on the subject.
9. I WOULD NEVER HAVE SAID ANYTHING ABOUT EINSTEIN, IF YOU HAD NOT SAID IN THE FIRST PLACE.
Einstein remains irrelevant, the sole point he made about religion and science requiring one another remains unaddressed. If scientists can see the value of religion?
10. I called you a liar for a reason.
You called me a liar, repeatedly, because you did not like my answer and could not, indeed cannot, rebut the premise. You are a man without an argument.
11. [It is not a part of the debate. But while in a debate, you should try to stay honest.]
Indeed we should. Instead of resorting to flagrant insults and victimization, if a point is misunderstood, then we should attempt to correct it and explain the point … not waste an entire round screaming LIAR.
The basics of the argument remain unaddressed and unchanged.
1. The benefits of religion are clear – my opponent chose to skip them entirely.
2. The fallacious reasoning continues to be egregious justified with no real point. There is not a single general point about religion that withstands even the most cursory examination.
The bad of religion is apparently the same as the Culture Revolution. Any pretense that my opponent’s criticism against religion was valid was eliminated when you professed respect for a process that is estimated to have murdered 50 million people.
My opponent may have a thesis, he has no support, he cannot rebut the contentions laid before him, and he reaches no conclusion. The pretense of debate? The ability to actually structure an argument is gone. Religion appears to be bad now, because we are Satanic – any pretense that this is anything other than an appeal to spite is ended.
1. I am not against forcing the child to teach or to make him learn anything at all.
Labelling a 'child' and then forcing him to attend something as a 'religiuos' person, not as a learner, is something like an ABUSE.
"a Marxist father bringing his son to a Marxist talk is not child abuse." -- I did not oppose that. You can REAR A CHILD UP in your background. But labelling him from the beginning is a mental ABUSE.
2. "Akin to rape and physical beating" - If you are trying to say that the form of abuse I am talking about is not an abuse at all, if compared to this, what would you say about mental ragging?
Constraining to have a label from the day a child was born - is ab ABUSE.
Teaching and going to ceremonies without that label is not.
4. I am explaining why I called male circumcision a 'mutilation'. [What I have taked about is Forced Genital Mutilation. Not Female Genital Mutilation. If you can prove that I have talked about it, then I will confess my 'guilt' in the comment section.]
What does 'mutilation' mean?
According to The Free Doctionary, 'Mutilation' means
1. To deprive of a limb or an essential part; cripple.
2. To disfigure by damaging irreparably: mutilate a statue.
3. To make imperfect by excising or altering parts.
It is evident that there are a lot of health benefits of male-circumcision. What are they?
Decresing the chance of UTI: That's really funny, indeed. Do you remove you epidermis when you are born, just to decrease the chance of skin-diseases? Should I ampute my Vermiform Appendix when I am born, just to decrease the chance of Appendicitis?
Using that logic, Abstinence is the best way to prevent Gonorrhea.
The smegma can also be cleared
All of these diseases can prevented, if proper care is taken. And if the diseases occur even after taking proper medical care, it still can be cured. Science allows us to do so.
Cutting of body-part of an infant to prevent a disease? How can that be a prevention measure? It is a loss of a functional tissue. It contains a huge lot of nerve-endings, blood vessels. It is extremely sensitive, almost like the glans.
The BRITISH JOURNAL OF UROLOGY published a research-report, that shows how functioning tssues are lost due to circimcision.
Read it here : www.cirp.org/library/anatomy/taylor/
For more information, you can read this - "Circumcision:R32;Is the risk of urinary tract infection really the pivotal issue?" - Clinical Pediatrics, 1992;31(2):100-104, Chessare JB.
Cutting of a child's foreskin, when surgically not recommended by Doctors, is VIOLATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS.
When Circumcision is not surgically recommended by the Doctors, but by the religious-ideas, that IS A VIOLATION OF THE RIGHT OF HAVING A BODY PART.
Genitals are not hairs.
5. I am criticizing religion as a whole. What is the meaning of religion?
According to the Oxford Dictionary,
That is why I am constantly talking about religion being a cult.
6. Goutam Buddha was an atheist. He did not believe the proposition that a creator God exists. He even advocated some ideas which dialectical-materialists advocate.
[Source :1. Buddhism and the God-idea by Nyanaponika Thera. 2. 'Bouddha-Darshan by Rahul Sankrityayan, 3. Achintita Sutta.]
In 1990, a large number of Hindus were forced to escape Bhutan. This was done to 'preserve' the Buddhist culture! [The Guardian - April 20, 2008]
What would you say about the '969 Movement'?
7. If person-A is a criminal, and has not yet been prosecuted, does not justify the crimes done by person-B.
You brought up the 'Cultural Revolution'. Well, even if I acknowledge the bourgeois-claim and slanders that it was bad, it still does not justfy the crimes of religion.
8. You are completely ignoring what Einstein meant by saying 'Religion' and trying to impose the meaning of Religion from our perspective on the mouth of Einstein.
What did Einstein mean by saying Religion?
"It was, of course, a lie what you read about my religious convictions, a lie which is being systematically repeated. I do not believe in a personal God and I have never denied this but have expressed it clearly. If something is in me which can be called religious then it is the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far as our science can reveal it."
That is Einsteinian religion. His letters in the same context will too speak volumes for it.
9. My personal admiration to anything does not justify the crimes done because of religion. I have no problem with anyone who happens to have a religion. My problem is with someone, who does something being motivated by a religion.
By saying Religion, I mean, any organized religion that is based of faith. That's what I am arguing against. Not a particular club, but a faith-based concept.
10. So If my opponent argues using lies and addresses something that I have never uttered a single word about, I have to stay silent? Otherwise, it is a logical fallacy?
The best word to describe my opponent’s actions at this point would be: dissembling.
The pretense of an argument here is missing entirely.
1. Whether labeling or ‘forced learning’ the pretense that this is abuse is simply false. Its simply an emotional claim, that calling ones own child the same religion as the parent is somehow damaging – no damage has ever been demonstrated save my opponents claim whatsoever. He’s added verbal abuse to the list, which labeling is not, as if this somehow demonstrates harm … and there is none.
When a child is an adult, he or she can make their own decisions and apply their own labels as they see fit. Until then, it’s the parent’s role, decision, and indeed duty, to raise their children in a manner that they think is best.
Using the excuse of a label, to term it abuse is just plain silly. No psychiatric organization even gives the pretense of this respectability. Using it to interfere in a parent child relationship? Good luck with that.
A pretty sure fire way to get parents riled up is screw with THEIR kids. My opponent should never have brought up this point, particularly as the only damage he seems to be able to demonstrate is his own indignation.
One personal offense as something is not the standard of abuse – it’s simply an appeal to emotion. Nothing more.
2. I am unsure why my opponent is focused on circumcision at all? It may have had religious origins, separating Jews from gentiles, but the practice is so wide spread these days, with health benefits clearly and solidly identified, that the practice is essentially secular at this point. In many religious communities, it’s not even an issue.
Ergo, #1 – its not a ‘religious’ issue these days. It’s health issue.
#2 – The attempt to make circumcision into some kind of trauma is just silly. It is again, an appeal to emotion.
And the idea that religion is a net negative because circumcisions happen?
It’s a recommended practice by pediatricians. Yet my opponent has attempted to make it into mutilation, even as he has violently avoided discussion of actual genital mutilation.
If religion brought us a recommended medical procedure that would actually be a benefit – no matter how emotionally depraved its portrayed.
3. It’s a bit late in the debate to pretend that the definition of religion somehow demonstrates its harm. We call that grasping at straws.
4. The Buddhism has atheistic practices in it, demonstrates no harm in religion. Indeed, more spiritual aspects of Buddhism contain which includes such spiritual beings like Devas and the ability to perform miracles. It’s why Buddhism is listed as a religion.
How this demonstrates a net negative effect? Who knows?
5. If person-A is a criminal, and has not yet been prosecuted, does not justify the crimes done by person-B.
Is still haven’t the foggiest clue what the heck he is talking about there. No religion on earth states that two wrongs make a right or that one person’s actions justify the others. On the contrary, most major religions preach tolerance and forgiveness … so if that is a standard that is bad, religion has LONG been on the right side of that standard.
6. 'Cultural Revolution' bourgeois-claim and slanders that it was bad. Really?
The murdering of tens of millions people is what made it bad. To be pointing a finger at religion as violent and then simply claim that the Cultural Revolution was slandered? It was murder on a massive scale – that is generally considered really bad in religious circles.
If rejecting religion leads one to wax over egregious crimes, then retaining religion seems incredibly important. It would be another net positive.
7. Once again, the Einstein quote was about the ability to blend science and religion where even great scientists understand the respective needs of the two disciplines. Cherry picking his quotes to make him an atheist when he is an acknowledged deist and we already know what a deist is?
It makes no demonstration of net negatives of religion at all. A point made three times now and studiously ignored.
9. People do bad things for all kinds of reasons. It’s not bad ONLY when they use religion to justify doing bad things. Indeed, you have skipped deliberately over the examination of those who DO USE religion, like the Taliban, to further political objectives in way that we would deem improper – and we easily see that it is more complex than meets the eye.
And the billions of people who use religion to drive them to do positive things? Can be safely ignored.
You completely failed to contrast the two, and have demonstrated no net negative. Indeed, you have made no case whatsoever that demonstrates that religion, among the many other things that drive criminality, is even a leading factor in the darker aspects of humanity.
You’ve simple said that you reject the concept that people use religion to justify something bad. Guess what? So do religious people by in large.
Your opinion is identical to the religious opinion. How again does having an identical opinion demonstrate net negatives?
10. My opponent simply is not making a case.
The claim: Religion is regressive and unnecessary. It remains a case built on emotional claims, devoid of objective criteria, is rambling and often bereft of valid points, and laced with false accusations and deliberate avoidance of evidence. At no point has he addressed the positives, other than a hand wave acknowledgement that its there, but offers no contrast to show how this leads to regression or demonstrates why it is unnecessary – despite the large amount it does at levels great and individual.
That is not always positive is a call to look for signs of its abuse, but we don’t throw away an entire farm system because someone grew some bad apples.
Simply put, my opponent did not support his case. I appreciate that he made it to the end, but the case presented speaks for itself.
|Agreed with before the debate:||-||-||0 points|
|Agreed with after the debate:||-||-||0 points|
|Who had better conduct:||-||-||1 point|
|Had better spelling and grammar:||-||-||1 point|
|Made more convincing arguments:||-||-||3 points|
|Used the most reliable sources:||-||-||2 points|
|Total points awarded:||3||3|
|Agreed with before the debate:||-||-||0 points|
|Agreed with after the debate:||-||-||0 points|
|Who had better conduct:||-||-||1 point|
|Had better spelling and grammar:||-||-||1 point|
|Made more convincing arguments:||-||-||3 points|
|Used the most reliable sources:||-||-||2 points|
|Total points awarded:||0||6|