The Instigator
lord_megatron
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
enderwiggin
Con (against)
Winning
3 Points

Religion is becoming a business

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
enderwiggin
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/14/2016 Category: Religion
Updated: 8 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 504 times Debate No: 92734
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (31)
Votes (1)

 

lord_megatron

Pro

Yes, religion has been corrupted, its not just about faith anymore.
enderwiggin

Con

I accept. I would like for you to clarify the parameters of the debate. First of all, are you asserting that religion IS a business, or is in the process of BECOMING a business. (The caps are just for emphasis, I'm not mad or anything). Second of all, are you referring to universal religion (every religion), Western religion (Catholicism, Mormonism, Protestantism, etc.), or Christianity. Finally, do you mean that the business side of religion has overridden the spiritual side, i.e. Joel Osteen, televangelists , or that there is merely some aspect of business present in religious circles (Like, tithing and rent and overhead).
Debate Round No. 1
lord_megatron

Pro

A merely argue that the business side is equal to the spiritual side in the view of religious officials. I will now expose the subtle ways in which many religions have used religious propaganda to sell their products.
1. Holy books- The Quran, the Bible, the Bhagavad Gita and other holy books have made record sales throughout the world. If that many educational books were sold, we would have no problem in educating children. Holy books are printed in mass amounts and even now provide profit to the publishing industry.
2. Artifacts/trinkets- We all know the Christian cross has sold a lot as an accessory. Lockets depicting images or symbolic items related to religion have sold more, and have the same manufacturing cost as normal lockets, but higher price due to the religious factor.
3. Gods' statues/idols- The Statue or painting of Jesus Christ is common in every Church, and sometimes a miniature model in the believers' homes. Religion greatly increases the business of photo frames, statues and idols. Many temples have a statue or idol of their God.
4.Candles/diyas, matchsticks and oil- Hindus and Christians use candles/diyas to worship their lord. This increases consumption of oil, and boosts the wax industry. I would say it is rare to buy candles these days except for special occasions, and only religion has kept the art alive. Also, matchsticks or lighters have increased sales as they are required to burn these things. While I won't argue it causes pollution, it certainly is a great wastage of oil and other materials.
5. Fortune tellers- Some fortune tellers rely on religion to establish their credibility, as they claim that God themselves have given them word. Without religion, their business would finally be shut down and be a relief to all.
6. Festivals- Festivals such as Christmas and Eid cause a great spike in sale of many items and boost business. While people need to celebrate, it is also a business strategy to revive dead shops.
7.Turbans and mats- The Muslim community have lot of mats as they bend over the ground to worship their Lord, and sikhs wear turbans. This gives a small boost to the clothing industry.

Con may argue that all/some of these things have religious meaning and are a part of tradition, but that doesn't negate the fact that a side-goal of religion was business, and that as time passes, it is becoming one of the main goals. All the workers employed in religious jobs (priests, pope, sages) need money to survive, and this is their way of earning money.
enderwiggin

Con

I will not rebut your points in this round, as that would be unfair considering that I go second.

In Apologia,

The main goal of religion, in the eyes of religious officials (i.e. clergy, imams, pastors) is to convert souls. While there is definitely an aspect of business to religion, because everyone needs to survive, I believe that the role of business is less important to religion than the keeping of said religion itself.

1. Think of the religious leaders who were tortured or have died for their faith (John Huss, John Wycliffe, John the Baptist, Richard Wurmbrand, etc.) . If business was equal or greater than faith, then very few would be martyred. They would recant or capitulate when faced with extreme adversity.

2. I know many pastors who don't earn enough to be a pastor full time, but continue to preach out of dedication to the ministry. My own church's pastors have taken several paycuts.

4. Sure, religions have to be profitable, or at least break even, to survive. However making money is not the all-consuming desire for many religions. Look at people like Mother Teresa and Hindu and Buddhist teachers, who live in extreme poverty. Buddhism itself is based on rejecting material wealth.

5. 'What is the primary purpose of your religion? Religion in general has many purposes, most of them dealing with forming and maintaining relationships: with God or Goddess, with gods and goddesses, with our ancestors, with the spirits of Nature, with our families and communities.'- Josh Beckett, a high-ranking Druid priest.

6. Pope Francis- 'Money has to serve, not rule'.

In conclusion, just because religion can be profitable does not mean it stands on the same level as faith and conversion in the eyes of the champions of each respective faith.

(I assume rebuttals in Round 2?)
Debate Round No. 2
lord_megatron

Pro

Rebuttals
1. "Think of the religious leaders who were tortured or have died for their faith" As you said, they were tortured and have died for faith. These days, none of the officials are that brave. Furthermore, the goal of conversion is not to spread their God's message, but to get more clients to sell their products.
2. They are but deluded believers.
3. You have skipped a number.
4. "Look at people like Mother Teresa and Hindu and Buddhist teachers, who live in extreme poverty. Buddhism itself is based on rejecting material wealth." As I said, these people are of the past. Furthermore, the laughing Buddha is one example of a business product boosted by Buddhism.
5."...." Josh Beckett, a high-ranking Druid priest. Mere religious propaganda to encourage believers to buy their stuff.
6. Pope Francis- 'Money has to serve, not rule" Even he agrees he needs money to serve him.

Many religions ask for donations outright, and have donation boxes in their place of worship. While some claim it is for charity, others use it for their personal profit.
Con hasn't managed to rebut my points that religion has a growing business aspect. While con may argue it doesn't overtake faith, faith is but a tool for religious officials to make sure their client is blinded and unquestioning while he buys their products. Religion has been corrupted. It's not just about praying anymore.
enderwiggin

Con

(Oops, I did forget #3)

Rebuttals:

1. 'Holy books- The Quran, the Bible, the Bhagavad Gita and other holy books have made record sales throughout the world. '

So? Religious leaders do not profit from the sales of these books. Most of the Bible translations and the Bhagavad Gita are public domain. Furthermore, the people making money are the book companies and publishers, not the priests, imams, and clergy. The cardinals aren't out saying 'Well, Bill, I don't know, the sales of Bibles in Uganda are plummeting. I'll have to scale back my sermons this week so I can meet with our advisor about it!" These people rarely, if ever, have any interest in or connection to the sales of holy books.

'If that many educational books were sold, we would have no problem in educating children.'

Completely irrelevant.

'Holy books are printed in mass amounts and even now provide profit to the publishing industry.'

True, but publishing companies are not religious figures. They often have no connection to a religion.

2. 'Artifacts/trinkets- We all know the Christian cross has sold a lot as an accessory. Lockets depicting images or symbolic items related to religion have sold more, and have the same manufacturing cost as normal lockets, but higher price due to the religious factor.'

While some shops are affiliated with religions, most people can buy those at Walmart or some jewelry store. Many of these businesses are completely separate entities. How does the Catholic Church make money off of cross necklaces sold at Kay Jewelers?

3. 'Gods' statues/idols- The Statue or painting of Jesus Christ is common in every Church, and sometimes a miniature model in the believers' homes. Religion greatly increases the business of photo frames, statues and idols. Many temples have a statue or idol of their God.'

If the temples have statues, then they purchase from other companies! They don't make these statues! They aren't running a side sculpting business! While it is true that people make money off of making statues, how is the Pope responsible? There is a common theme here.

(I think you mean 'many Catholic/Anglican/Episcopal churches'. Thousands of churches across multiple denominations regard statues of Christ as a sin.)

4.'Candles/diyas, matchsticks and oil- Hindus and Christians use candles/diyas to worship their lord. This increases consumption of oil, and boosts the wax industry. I would say it is rare to buy candles these days except for special occasions, and only religion has kept the art alive. '

Fine, so many Catholic/Anglican churches offer candles to burn at an altar. But you have to factor in that those candles and oil cost money to purchase, and that these elaborate churches cost money for upkeepance. I will concede that this practice is a business aspect, however.

'While I won't argue it causes pollution, it certainly is a great wastage of oil and other materials.'

Once again, completely irrelevant. Unnecessary mudslinging.

5. 'Fortune tellers- Some fortune tellers rely on religion to establish their credibility, as they claim that God themselves have given them word.'

Most fortune tellers have NO connection to the clergy at all! Fortune telling is actually usually against religious practices and statutes.

'Without religion, their business would finally be shut down and be a relief to all.'

Not true. And the last bit is completely irrelevant.

6. 'Festivals- Festivals such as Christmas and Eid cause a great spike in sale of many items and boost business. While people need to celebrate, it is also a business strategy to revive dead shops.'

It is a religious practice that shops can profit off of, however the MAIN idea of these festivals (important because the business aspect is not equal to the religious aspect, although it can be a bonus) is to adhere to the traditions/rules/statutes of religion and celebrate said sect! There is a definite link between these festivals and the economy, however clearly its not a ruse so that the bakers union can sell more bread. Christmas, for example, is heavily marketed. But not by the church! Many sermons focus on 'The True Meaning of Christmas', or 'Jesus is the Reason for the Season'. The church often denounces the emphasis on presents and products and the shift away from Christ. And what churches make money off of candy cane sales or holiday wreaths? The only real profit to the church is the increase in attendees on Christmas services, and that is a spiritual blessing, more so than a financial one.

7. 'Turbans and mats- The Muslim community have lot of mats as they bend over the ground to worship their Lord, and sikhs wear turbans. This gives a small boost to the clothing industry.'

This is true, but mosques do not produce these goods. Clothing manufacturers do.

8. 'Many religions ask for donations outright, and have donation boxes in their place of worship. '

Should they work for free? Can they work for free? Yes there will be some con-men who line their pockets, but there are a few bad folks in every business.

'While some claim it is for charity, others use it for their personal profit.'

Can you prove that?

9. 'Con hasn't managed to rebut my points that religion has a growing business aspect.'

Did you read the opening line of my Round 2 statement?

10. While con may argue it doesn't overtake faith, faith is but a tool for religious officials to make sure their client is blinded and unquestioning while he buys their products.

I believe I have debunked your assertions that religious officials profit from the aforementioned sales.

Summations in Round 4?
Debate Round No. 3
31 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by lord_megatron 8 months ago
lord_megatron
He didn't try hard enough
Posted by tejretics 8 months ago
tejretics
Therefore, I win.
Posted by whiteflame 8 months ago
whiteflame
*******************************************************************
>Reported vote: tejretics// Mod action: NOT Removed<

3 points to Con (Arguments). Reasons for voting decision: The debate came down to the issue of whether religion as a whole was in the process of becoming a business. Pro offers arguments that provide various examples of religious organizations gaining profits, etc. but none of those is conclusive as to whether "religion" as an entity is a business. Con negates that by showing how religion as a whole isn't a business, because there are people spreading religion who don't profit from anything, and individual religious organizations profiting from religion does not make the entirety of religion a business. Pro doesn't prove the connections between individual cases of profit from religious endeavors to the entirety of religion becoming a business. Lacking those links, I vote Con. Addendum: since this resolution is a fact claim on what a certain societal structure is transforming into, Pro has the burden of proof, so that's sufficient to vote Con.

[*Reason for non-removal*] The voter clearly explains the decision, referring to specific points made by both sides and explaining how their outcomes factored into the overall debate.
************************************************************************
Posted by whiteflame 8 months ago
whiteflame
My bad, wrong debate guys.
Posted by whiteflame 8 months ago
whiteflame
*******************************************************************
>Reported vote: fire_wings/ Mod action: NOT Removed<

3 points to Con (Arguments). Reasons for voting decision: http://www.debate.org......

[*Reason for non-removal*] This debate's voting period ended over 2 months ago, making it well outside of the statute of limitations for vote moderation.
***********************************************************************
Posted by fire_wings 8 months ago
fire_wings
>No. He dislikes the moderator who removed my vote, and was protesting against that, and I was defending the vote standards and moderation generally (despite my disagreement with this removal, which I'm talking to Airmax about).

And tej, that is what you call a tattytailer.
Posted by tejretics 8 months ago
tejretics
>Do you two dislike each other or something?

No. He dislikes the moderator who removed my vote, and was protesting against that, and I was defending the vote standards and moderation generally (despite my disagreement with this removal, which I'm talking to Airmax about).
Posted by tejretics 8 months ago
tejretics
>And I hate whiteflame

First, you just want power with no responsibility, and you haven't come up with a coherent argument for that at all.

Second, why is that an argument to dislike him as a person?
Posted by whiteflame 8 months ago
whiteflame
Well, that's too bad. I'd hope that you would be more willing to talk things out with me instead of just hating me. But you're welcome to those feelings.
Posted by lord_megatron 8 months ago
lord_megatron
No I just hate humans. And I hate whiteflame
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by tejretics 8 months ago
tejretics
lord_megatronenderwigginTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: The debate came down to the issue of whether religion as a whole was in the process of becoming a business. Pro offers arguments that provide various examples of religious organizations gaining profits, etc. but none of those is conclusive as to whether "religion" as an entity is a business. Con negates that by showing how religion as a whole isn't a business, because there are people spreading religion who don't profit from anything, and individual religious organizations profiting from religion does not make the entirety of religion a business. Pro doesn't prove the connections between individual cases of profit from religious endeavors to the entirety of religion becoming a business. Lacking those links, I vote Con. Addendum: since this resolution is a fact claim on what a certain societal structure is transforming into, Pro has the burden of proof, so that's sufficient to vote Con.