The Instigator
cbass28
Pro (for)
Losing
7 Points
The Contender
RoyLatham
Con (against)
Winning
25 Points

has religion done more bad than good for our world

Do you like this debate?NoYes+2
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Vote Here
Pro Tied Con
Who did you agree with before the debate?
Who did you agree with after the debate?
Who had better conduct?
Who had better spelling and grammar?
Who made more convincing arguments?
Who used the most reliable sources?
Reasons for your voting decision
1,000 Characters Remaining
The voting period for this debate does not end.
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/4/2009 Category: Religion
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 3,265 times Debate No: 8875
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (3)
Votes (5)

 

cbass28

Pro

If my title is unclear i am saying the negatives religion has had on our world outways the positives i will allow my opponent to make the first arguments
RoyLatham

Con

Pro has made no case in support of his resolution. To make a case he must offer a theory of what the alternative would have been if there were no religion, and must then show that the alternative he hypothesizes would have been better than religion. Pro bears the burden of proof, so his case must be a solid one. Pro offers no definition of "religion" nor does he offer definitions of "bad" or "good." I'm willing to leave the definitions of "bad" and "good" to common sense for the time being, unless and until it becomes an issue in the debate.

The definition of "religion" poses more of a problem. Wikipedia offers, "A religion is an organized approach to human spirituality which usually encompasses a set of narratives, symbols, beliefs and practices, often with a supernatural or transcendent quality, that give meaning to the practitioner's experiences of life through reference to a higher power, God or gods, or ultimate truth.[1] It may be expressed through prayer, ritual, meditation, music and art, among other things. It may focus on specific supernatural, metaphysical, and moral claims about reality (the cosmos and human nature) which may yield a set of religious laws, ethics, and a particular lifestyle. Religion also encompasses ancestral or cultural traditions, writings, history, and mythology, as well as personal faith and religious experience." http://en.wikipedia.org... The definition does not require a god as the center of the religion, and we see that in practice with Buddhism and Jainism not having gods. Our debate is about religion, not about God.

Recently California passed a law against selling new cars that are painted black. To me, this is as clearly a religious law as any traditional religious prohibition against types of food or clothing. The connection to global warming is as remote as any religious prohibition on foods is to genuine health concerns. My point is that the alternatives to religion are pseudo-religions of some kind that govern behavior in the same way that religion governs behavior. Whether the pseudo-religious beliefs are actually a religion or not does not matter. Societies adopt elaborate sets of beliefs or customs that enable people to live most of their lives based upon those beliefs. Non-religious beliefs are no more likely to be good than religious beliefs, and in fact, because they are less likely to evolve as social institutions, they are more likely to be bad.

It is not true that if religion did not exist that people would be somehow forced to become rational models of Socratic contemplation. Societies that are not religious, and there are very few examples, always adopt a pseudo-religious mechanism for guiding their lives. Atheistic Communist societies such as the Soviet Union and China adopted rules every bit as rigid, and less rational, than those of traditional religion. In the Western world, traditional religion is gradually being replaced by the rigid rules of "green religion" that dictate what you can eat, and the most minute details of how one is to live one's life, right down to the permissible color for an automobile. Some of the "green religion" mandates and prohibitions are worthwhile, and others are arbitrary and harmful. It's good to eat more vegetables, bad to ban the DDT that prevented millions of deaths from malaria. The same is true of religion. It's good to "love thy neighbor," but it's bad to persecute infidels.

Traditional religion is a mechanism for social evolution. Christians used to believe that the Bible endorsed slavery; now Christians believe that the Bible forbids slavery. The past excesses of religion have mostly been left behind as religion as a social institution has evolved. Granted, there remain fanatical religious extremists that remain, and much of Islam has failed to evolve into accepting many basic human rights. But overall, in the grand scheme of things, the mechanisms for social evolution work upon religion. The problem with new pseudo-religions that arise to replace traditional religions tend to be extremist. Recently economist Paul Krugman wrote in his New York Times column, "Still, is it fair to call climate denial a form of treason? . . . Yes, it is — and that's why it's unforgivable." http://www.nytimes.com... So, for example, people like Prof. Lindzen http://www-eaps.mit.edu..., the foremost authority on convection modeling of the atmosphere, is a traitor, i.e., a heretic, for not believing as economist Krugman does. A religious leader could not today get away with calling those who fail to share his or her faith "traitors," but in the replacement for traditional religion, intolerance is allowed.

People do not have either the time or the ability to work out from scratch the answer to every issue that faces them. They will always rely upon a set of traditions or social conventions to short-circuit the process. What are the origins of evil in the world? The answer will be a short-cut reflexive response, perhaps "Satan" or perhaps, in effect, "George Bush." The religious or pseudo-religious short-cut method works as well in the smaller decisions of life. The virtue of traditional religion over pop culture faux religions is that by being institutionalized, they are able to evolve. That is why they have in the long run done more good than bad in the world. They are better than anything that would likely have replaced them. In fact, it is inconceivable that anything that would have replaced them would have been substantially distinct.

The resolution is negated.
Debate Round No. 1
cbass28

Pro

cbass28 forfeited this round.
RoyLatham

Con

Apparently Pro has left the building.

Arguments are extended.
Debate Round No. 2
cbass28

Pro

cbass28 forfeited this round.
RoyLatham

Con

I checked Pro's debate history. He starts debates and then frequently forfeits. During the time in which he was supposed to respond to this debate he started a new debate on another subject. I cite Pro for bad conduct.

Arguments are continued as we await Pro's next forfeit.
Debate Round No. 3
cbass28

Pro

cbass28 forfeited this round.
RoyLatham

Con

Pro has preserved his perfect record of forfeit. Pro started another debate rather than responding in this one, so it was bad conduct and not a personal crisis of some sort that prevented his response. Pro's entire opening argument was "If my title is unclear i am saying the negatives religion has had on our world outways the positives i will allow my opponent to make the first arguments" This does not make a prima facia case, and it contains multiple spelling and grammar errors: "I", "outweighs", and the missing period. None of my arguments were addressed.

This seems to me to be a good topic. If someone would like to have a serious debate, you might read my rebuttal argument and prepare an affirmative challenge accordingly.
Debate Round No. 4
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by MTGandP 7 years ago
MTGandP
All categories defaulted to Con. Con had some real arguments, while Pro had no arguments and forfeited nearly every round.
Posted by RoyLatham 7 years ago
RoyLatham
I suggest that anyone considering accepting a debate challenge from cbass28 keep his record of forfeiting in mind.
Posted by wjmelements 7 years ago
wjmelements
A disappointing forfeit.
5 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Vote Placed by 1Devilsadvocate 4 years ago
1Devilsadvocate
cbass28RoyLathamTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: F.F.
Vote Placed by F-16_Fighting_Falcon 5 years ago
F-16_Fighting_Falcon
cbass28RoyLathamTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:07 
Reasons for voting decision: I agree with Pro's position but he made no arguments at all.
Vote Placed by rougeagent21 7 years ago
rougeagent21
cbass28RoyLathamTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:70 
Vote Placed by MTGandP 7 years ago
MTGandP
cbass28RoyLathamTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:07 
Vote Placed by RoyLatham 7 years ago
RoyLatham
cbass28RoyLathamTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:07