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Why do we Need Religion?

ANON_TacTiX
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9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM
Posted: 3 months ago
LEASE READ THIS BEFORE YOU POST ON THE THREAD

First, I would like to welcome everyone to this forum. I hope that you find the discussion interesting and stimulating. I would ask that all that post in this forum are respectful and polite to others in the forum. No insults or name calling please. I ask this because I have seen many an interesting debate be ruined by insults, and I do not want that to happen to this forum. I want this to be a place where people can come to exchange ideas and opinions freely. Thank you.

Now, we can talk about the topic at hand. Well, I think the title says it all. Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity? I would love to hear what people think.
Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning. - Albert Einstein
PetersSmith
Posts: 5,848
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9/7/2016 9:17:39 PM
Posted: 3 months ago
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
LEASE READ THIS BEFORE YOU POST ON THE THREAD

First, I would like to welcome everyone to this forum. I hope that you find the discussion interesting and stimulating. I would ask that all that post in this forum are respectful and polite to others in the forum. No insults or name calling please. I ask this because I have seen many an interesting debate be ruined by insults, and I do not want that to happen to this forum. I want this to be a place where people can come to exchange ideas and opinions freely. Thank you.

Now, we can talk about the topic at hand. Well, I think the title says it all. Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity? I would love to hear what people think.

The first is a cognitive/intellectual function, where the individual feels comfortable using it to explain the unexplainable that has no "logical" answers. Humans, specifically, have developed to have a strong desire to understand themselves and the world around them. But because this understanding is so imperfect, religion provides a framework for giving meaning to events and experiences that cannot be explained in any other way. It assures its believers that the world is meaningful, allowing people to maintain their worldview even when events seem to contradict it.

The second is an emotional function. Where religious belief is "thought up" because it helps people cope with everyday anxieties like death. They turn to religion in an attempt to control, through supernatural means, their circumstances. The less control people have, the more likely they are to practice religion. Religion thus acts as a source of emotional strength when people are faced with a frightening situation. Religious rituals are used to attempt to control the forces people believe they don't have control over.

Then of course there is the development of social functions of religion (instead of the development of just religious belief). One is, most notably, social control. Religion maintains social order by encouraging socially acceptable behavior and discouraging socially inappropriate behavior. Religion, regardless of the form, is an ethical system. When social sanctions are backed by a supernatural force they become more compelling. Michael McCullough and Brian Willoughby believe that sincere belief in religion gives people internal control, resistance to temptation, and obedience to social norms. In their 2009 study, they said that research has shown that religious people are more successful in school, live longer, and have more satisfying marriages. In their brain scan studies, they found that praying, reading scriptures, and meditating stimulate two parts of the brain associated with self-regulation of attention and emotions. In another 2003 study, they concluded that there is a close correlation between religious beliefs and practices and self-control, consciousness, and adherence to social norms.

A second theorized social function of religion is conflict resolution. Religion reduces the stress and frustrations that often lead to social conflict. People avoid the potential disruptiveness to their own society that might occur if they took out their frustrations on "evildoers". Bengt Sundkler conducted a study in South Africa where he believed that certain Africans broke away from the Christian church to reduce conflict by diverting resentment away from the wider power structure (religion as an opiate of the masses).

Finally, there is reinforcement of group solidarity. Religion enables people to express their common identity in an emotionally charged environment, creating powerful social bonds and strengthening a person's sense of group identity and belonging.

Now is there a "need"? Not 100%, but it has its uses and I'm sure we can all agree that what I said here has some degree of truth to it.
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ANON_TacTiX
Posts: 460
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9/8/2016 12:51:32 AM
Posted: 3 months ago
At 9/7/2016 9:17:39 PM, PetersSmith wrote:
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
LEASE READ THIS BEFORE YOU POST ON THE THREAD

First, I would like to welcome everyone to this forum. I hope that you find the discussion interesting and stimulating. I would ask that all that post in this forum are respectful and polite to others in the forum. No insults or name calling please. I ask this because I have seen many an interesting debate be ruined by insults, and I do not want that to happen to this forum. I want this to be a place where people can come to exchange ideas and opinions freely. Thank you.

Now, we can talk about the topic at hand. Well, I think the title says it all. Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity? I would love to hear what people think.

The first is a cognitive/intellectual function, where the individual feels comfortable using it to explain the unexplainable that has no "logical" answers. Humans, specifically, have developed to have a strong desire to understand themselves and the world around them. But because this understanding is so imperfect, religion provides a framework for giving meaning to events and experiences that cannot be explained in any other way. It assures its believers that the world is meaningful, allowing people to maintain their worldview even when events seem to contradict it.

The second is an emotional function. Where religious belief is "thought up" because it helps people cope with everyday anxieties like death. They turn to religion in an attempt to control, through supernatural means, their circumstances. The less control people have, the more likely they are to practice religion. Religion thus acts as a source of emotional strength when people are faced with a frightening situation. Religious rituals are used to attempt to control the forces people believe they don't have control over.

Then of course there is the development of social functions of religion (instead of the development of just religious belief). One is, most notably, social control. Religion maintains social order by encouraging socially acceptable behavior and discouraging socially inappropriate behavior. Religion, regardless of the form, is an ethical system. When social sanctions are backed by a supernatural force they become more compelling. Michael McCullough and Brian Willoughby believe that sincere belief in religion gives people internal control, resistance to temptation, and obedience to social norms. In their 2009 study, they said that research has shown that religious people are more successful in school, live longer, and have more satisfying marriages. In their brain scan studies, they found that praying, reading scriptures, and meditating stimulate two parts of the brain associated with self-regulation of attention and emotions. In another 2003 study, they concluded that there is a close correlation between religious beliefs and practices and self-control, consciousness, and adherence to social norms.

A second theorized social function of religion is conflict resolution. Religion reduces the stress and frustrations that often lead to social conflict. People avoid the potential disruptiveness to their own society that might occur if they took out their frustrations on "evildoers". Bengt Sundkler conducted a study in South Africa where he believed that certain Africans broke away from the Christian church to reduce conflict by diverting resentment away from the wider power structure (religion as an opiate of the masses).

Finally, there is reinforcement of group solidarity. Religion enables people to express their common identity in an emotionally charged environment, creating powerful social bonds and strengthening a person's sense of group identity and belonging.

Now is there a "need"? Not 100%, but it has its uses and I'm sure we can all agree that what I said here has some degree of truth to it.

I don't really have an argument against that. I agree that religion has its uses, and that it can be a good thing for people.

There is only one thing that you mentioned that bothers me. In religion, people are given morals and rules that they adhere to, and they are not questioned because thy come from a supernatural force. Usually, the religion gives rules that we can all agree on. Don't kill, don't steal, etc.

Occasionally, however, people take it too far. Religious extremists take their religions, and they use them to justify horrible things. They take their religion word for word, and it is not questioned, only followed. This is where I start to have a problem with morals and rules placed on people by their religions. Don't get me wrong. When done right, it can be a good way to make sure people stay moral, but no religion is perfect. Remember, religions like Christianity were created a long time ago. This means that you have extremely old rules and morals (like gays are bad) in the modern world, and they don't mix. It gets even worse when you have people that believe that their religion tells them to kill those that oppose them.

Again, I do agree that religion has its uses, and when done right, it can be a good thing. The problem arises when religions bring old values into the modern world, and people follow them without question.
Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning. - Albert Einstein
Willows
Posts: 2,063
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9/8/2016 3:14:58 PM
Posted: 3 months ago
At 9/7/2016 9:17:39 PM, PetersSmith wrote:
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
LEASE READ THIS BEFORE YOU POST ON THE THREAD

First, I would like to welcome everyone to this forum. I hope that you find the discussion interesting and stimulating. I would ask that all that post in this forum are respectful and polite to others in the forum. No insults or name calling please. I ask this because I have seen many an interesting debate be ruined by insults, and I do not want that to happen to this forum. I want this to be a place where people can come to exchange ideas and opinions freely. Thank you.

Now, we can talk about the topic at hand. Well, I think the title says it all. Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity? I would love to hear what people think.

The first is a cognitive/intellectual function, where the individual feels comfortable using it to explain the unexplainable that has no "logical" answers. Humans, specifically, have developed to have a strong desire to understand themselves and the world around them. But because this understanding is so imperfect, religion provides a framework for giving meaning to events and experiences that cannot be explained in any other way. It assures its believers that the world is meaningful, allowing people to maintain their worldview even when events seem to contradict it.

This is a very lazy and ignorant way out of searching for the truth...not knowing the answer so make one up instead. The problem is that if the premise is wrong in the first place the whole understanding will be way out of kilter in time.

The second is an emotional function. Where religious belief is "thought up" because it helps people cope with everyday anxieties like death. They turn to religion in an attempt to control, through supernatural means, their circumstances. The less control people have, the more likely they are to practice religion. Religion thus acts as a source of emotional strength when people are faced with a frightening situation. Religious rituals are used to attempt to control the forces people believe they don't have control over.

This is the "imaginary friend" concept and induces the believer into a false sense of somebody being there when in fact it is his own voice telling him to act on whatever distorted thoughts happen to be going on in his mind.

Then of course there is the development of social functions of religion (instead of the development of just religious belief). One is, most notably, social control. Religion maintains social order by encouraging socially acceptable behavior and discouraging socially inappropriate behavior. Religion, regardless of the form, is an ethical system. When social sanctions are backed by a supernatural force they become more compelling. Michael McCullough and Brian Willoughby believe that sincere belief in religion gives people internal control, resistance to temptation, and obedience to social norms. In their 2009 study, they said that research has shown that religious people are more successful in school, live longer, and have more satisfying marriages. In their brain scan studies, they found that praying, reading scriptures, and meditating stimulate two parts of the brain associated with self-regulation of attention and emotions. In another 2003 study, they concluded that there is a close correlation between religious beliefs and practices and self-control, consciousness, and adherence to social norms.

Except that the "social control" is made up by religious heirachy who interpret religious scripture for whatever ends that will enable them to control their hapless, naive followers.

A second theorized social function of religion is conflict resolution. Religion reduces the stress and frustrations that often lead to social conflict. People avoid the potential disruptiveness to their own society that might occur if they took out their frustrations on "evildoers". Bengt Sundkler conducted a study in South Africa where he believed that certain Africans broke away from the Christian church to reduce conflict by diverting resentment away from the wider power structure (religion as an opiate of the masses).

Religion has, since its inception created more conflict than it has ever attempted to resolve, born out by the fact that there are many religions and many factions within them, each fighting the others in order to prove authenticity.

Finally, there is reinforcement of group solidarity. Religion enables people to express their common identity in an emotionally charged environment, creating powerful social bonds and strengthening a person's sense of group identity and belonging.

Their "common identity" is determined and imposed upon them by the group.

Now is there a "need"? Not 100%, but it has its uses and I'm sure we can all agree that what I said here has some degree of truth to it.

There is not one function of religion you mentioned that could not be better provided by other means such as support groups, sports clubs, common interest groups etc.
We do not need religion and society would be much better without it.
ANON_TacTiX
Posts: 460
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9/9/2016 3:21:51 AM
Posted: 3 months ago
I just realized that I posted this on the wrong forum. I meant to post on the religion forum. Oops.
Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning. - Albert Einstein
Willows
Posts: 2,063
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9/9/2016 3:30:26 PM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/9/2016 3:21:51 AM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
I just realized that I posted this on the wrong forum. I meant to post on the religion forum. Oops.

Actually, I think this would be the right forum, since the need for religion is more of a society issue.
Skepsikyma
Posts: 8,285
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9/9/2016 4:53:00 PM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/9/2016 3:21:51 AM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
I just realized that I posted this on the wrong forum. I meant to post on the religion forum. Oops.

Lol, if you want civilized discussion, don't post it there.
"The Collectivist experiment is thoroughly suited (in appearance at least) to the Capitalist society which it proposes to replace. It works with the existing machinery of Capitalism, talks and thinks in the existing terms of Capitalism, appeals to just those appetites which Capitalism has aroused, and ridicules as fantastic and unheard-of just those things in society the memory of which Capitalism has killed among men wherever the blight of it has spread."
- Hilaire Belloc -
ANON_TacTiX
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9/9/2016 6:44:21 PM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/9/2016 3:30:26 PM, Willows wrote:
At 9/9/2016 3:21:51 AM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
I just realized that I posted this on the wrong forum. I meant to post on the religion forum. Oops.

Actually, I think this would be the right forum, since the need for religion is more of a society issue.

That's true, but it could probably work there, too.
Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning. - Albert Einstein
ANON_TacTiX
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9/9/2016 6:46:30 PM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/9/2016 4:53:00 PM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 9/9/2016 3:21:51 AM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
I just realized that I posted this on the wrong forum. I meant to post on the religion forum. Oops.

Lol, if you want civilized discussion, don't post it there.

Also true. The thread might get more activity, but there would be a lot of religious people getting offended over nothing and retaliating with insults. That seems to happen a lot there.
Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning. - Albert Einstein
NHN
Posts: 624
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9/9/2016 8:19:21 PM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity?
"Christianity is Platonism for the masses" (Nietzsche).

Religion institutionalizes a sense of higher purpose for those who are unable to philosophize. And instead of falling into the hands of superstition and nihilism, believers are presented a neat framework into which they they can fit their designs ("spirituality" is still a thing http://www.pewresearch.org...).

This is precisely why religion is necessary.
Skepsikyma
Posts: 8,285
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9/10/2016 12:02:11 AM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:

Now, we can talk about the topic at hand. Well, I think the title says it all. Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity? I would love to hear what people think.

Religion ties mythology, with its associated imagery and symbolism, and a universal sense of human smallness in the face of nature into something cohesive that regulates society and allows a sense of flourishing within those bounds.

My favorite description of it:
'And if we took the third chance instance, it would be the same; the view that priests darken and embitter the world. I look at the world and simply discover that they don't. Those countries in Europe which are still influenced by priests, are exactly the countries where there is still singing and dancing and coloured dresses and art in the open-air. Catholic doctrine and discipline may be walls; but they are the walls of a playground. Christianity is the only frame which has preserved the pleasure of Paganism. We might fancy some children playing on the flat grassy top of some tall island in the sea. So long as there was a wall round the cliff's edge they could fling themselves into every frantic game and make the place the noisiest of nurseries. But the walls were knocked down, leaving the naked peril of the precipice. They did not fall over; but when their friends returned to them they were all huddled in terror in the centre of the island; and their song had ceased.'
- G. K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy -
http://www.ccel.org...
"The Collectivist experiment is thoroughly suited (in appearance at least) to the Capitalist society which it proposes to replace. It works with the existing machinery of Capitalism, talks and thinks in the existing terms of Capitalism, appeals to just those appetites which Capitalism has aroused, and ridicules as fantastic and unheard-of just those things in society the memory of which Capitalism has killed among men wherever the blight of it has spread."
- Hilaire Belloc -
ANON_TacTiX
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9/10/2016 5:17:07 AM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/9/2016 8:19:21 PM, NHN wrote:
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity?
"Christianity is Platonism for the masses" (Nietzsche).

Religion institutionalizes a sense of higher purpose for those who are unable to philosophize. And instead of falling into the hands of superstition and nihilism, believers are presented a neat framework into which they they can fit their designs ("spirituality" is still a thing http://www.pewresearch.org...).

This is precisely why religion is necessary.

Yes, it provides people with some higher purpose, but that doesn't make it necessary. You do not need some supernatural higher purpose to keep on living. You can still have purpose and goals to reach for. I know I do. Not all people just turn straight to nihilism without religion. Really, all religion does is give people an easy answer when they ask why they are here and why their lives have purpose. They don't have to find purpose in their lives for themselves. That is what I hate about religion. It just gives people some easy answer for big questions, rather than encouraging them to look for themselves.

Also, you said that religion keeps people from turning to superstition, but religion involves a lot of superstition.
Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning. - Albert Einstein
ANON_TacTiX
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9/10/2016 5:28:30 AM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/10/2016 12:02:11 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:

Now, we can talk about the topic at hand. Well, I think the title says it all. Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity? I would love to hear what people think.

Religion ties mythology, with its associated imagery and symbolism, and a universal sense of human smallness in the face of nature into something cohesive that regulates society and allows a sense of flourishing within those bounds.

My favorite description of it:
'And if we took the third chance instance, it would be the same; the view that priests darken and embitter the world. I look at the world and simply discover that they don't. Those countries in Europe which are still influenced by priests, are exactly the countries where there is still singing and dancing and coloured dresses and art in the open-air. Catholic doctrine and discipline may be walls; but they are the walls of a playground. Christianity is the only frame which has preserved the pleasure of Paganism. We might fancy some children playing on the flat grassy top of some tall island in the sea. So long as there was a wall round the cliff's edge they could fling themselves into every frantic game and make the place the noisiest of nurseries. But the walls were knocked down, leaving the naked peril of the precipice. They did not fall over; but when their friends returned to them they were all huddled in terror in the centre of the island; and their song had ceased.'
- G. K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy -
http://www.ccel.org...

So without religion, there would be no color or fun in the world? I find that extremely hard to believe. There are a lot of extremely creative atheists out there. I don't think that it is religion that gives the world culture, art, and color. It is just what humans do. We like to create. We like to have fun. We like to do daring things and fill our world with color and art. Religion can be an interesting outlet for people's creativity, and there are some fantastic festivals and traditions that come from religion. That doesn't mean that religion is humanity's only hope for a vibrant and colorful world.
Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning. - Albert Einstein
Heterodox
Posts: 293
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9/10/2016 5:29:16 AM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
LEASE READ THIS BEFORE YOU POST ON THE THREAD

**Paragraph of BS**

**Paragraph in the wrong sub-forum **

Think you may have missed the Forum section titled "Religion".
Skepsikyma
Posts: 8,285
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9/10/2016 8:16:39 AM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/10/2016 5:28:30 AM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
At 9/10/2016 12:02:11 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:

Now, we can talk about the topic at hand. Well, I think the title says it all. Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity? I would love to hear what people think.

Religion ties mythology, with its associated imagery and symbolism, and a universal sense of human smallness in the face of nature into something cohesive that regulates society and allows a sense of flourishing within those bounds.

My favorite description of it:
'And if we took the third chance instance, it would be the same; the view that priests darken and embitter the world. I look at the world and simply discover that they don't. Those countries in Europe which are still influenced by priests, are exactly the countries where there is still singing and dancing and coloured dresses and art in the open-air. Catholic doctrine and discipline may be walls; but they are the walls of a playground. Christianity is the only frame which has preserved the pleasure of Paganism. We might fancy some children playing on the flat grassy top of some tall island in the sea. So long as there was a wall round the cliff's edge they could fling themselves into every frantic game and make the place the noisiest of nurseries. But the walls were knocked down, leaving the naked peril of the precipice. They did not fall over; but when their friends returned to them they were all huddled in terror in the centre of the island; and their song had ceased.'
- G. K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy -
http://www.ccel.org...

So without religion, there would be no color or fun in the world? I find that extremely hard to believe. There are a lot of extremely creative atheists out there.

That's irrelevant, because the idea is that a religious society creates the conditions in which pagan abandon can exist. Atheists are perfectly capable of living in a religious society.

I don't think that it is religion that gives the world culture, art, and color. It is just what humans do. We like to create. We like to have fun. We like to do daring things and fill our world with color and art.

First of all, you're overgeneralizing here. The original argument had to do with a specific type of Pagan merriment, not just 'art'. This very much died during the course of the industrial revolution, while surviving in those areas which retained strict religious influence.

Religion can be an interesting outlet for people's creativity, and there are some fantastic festivals and traditions that come from religion. That doesn't mean that religion is humanity's only hope for a vibrant and colorful world.

Once again, that isn't the argument. The argument, in basic form, runs as follows:

1. Fundamentally irrational festivals, culture, and merriment are enjoyable for people.
2. That a healthy society needs both these aspects and a set of rules to order life surrounding them in order to function.
3. That region provides these rules in the form of a pious fiction.
4. That materialistic rationalism and the corrosion of both the underpinnings of Pagan joy and Christian restraint cause this system to collapse into dull monotony and fear.

This is incredibly difficult for any typical modern atheist to address head-on and ignore. It has become modish to 'stick to the facts', which often means sniffing out, deriding, and discarding any trace of the mystical or transcendent in society. And if that's not enough, history bears stark witness to the degradation of Western culture into a gray monotony of capitalist grind and sterile community life. In the places where the old traditions do persist, they are invariably linked to the vestiges of a once universal religious social fabric. Cases in point: The Azores, Malta, the Toraja people of Sulawesi, Shinto in Japan, and parts of Mexico. All of these custom-rich, tightly knit cultures are tied to intense religiosity and are largely insulated from the toxic influence of secular materialism and neoliberal capitalism.
"The Collectivist experiment is thoroughly suited (in appearance at least) to the Capitalist society which it proposes to replace. It works with the existing machinery of Capitalism, talks and thinks in the existing terms of Capitalism, appeals to just those appetites which Capitalism has aroused, and ridicules as fantastic and unheard-of just those things in society the memory of which Capitalism has killed among men wherever the blight of it has spread."
- Hilaire Belloc -
foxxhajti
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9/10/2016 9:29:22 AM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/10/2016 8:16:39 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
Once again, that isn't the argument. The argument, in basic form, runs as follows:

1. Fundamentally irrational festivals, culture, and merriment are enjoyable for people.
2. That a healthy society needs both these aspects and a set of rules to order life surrounding them in order to function.
3. That region provides these rules in the form of a pious fiction.
4. That materialistic rationalism and the corrosion of both the underpinnings of Pagan joy and Christian restraint cause this system to collapse into dull monotony and fear.

This is incredibly difficult for any typical modern atheist to address head-on and ignore. It has become modish to 'stick to the facts', which often means sniffing out, deriding, and discarding any trace of the mystical or transcendent in society. And if that's not enough, history bears stark witness to the degradation of Western culture into a gray monotony of capitalist grind and sterile community life. In the places where the old traditions do persist, they are invariably linked to the vestiges of a once universal religious social fabric. Cases in point: The Azores, Malta, the Toraja people of Sulawesi, Shinto in Japan, and parts of Mexico. All of these custom-rich, tightly knit cultures are tied to intense religiosity and are largely insulated from the toxic influence of secular materialism and neoliberal capitalism.

I agree and I can also confirm what you said about Malta. I'm an Atheist/Agnostic who comes from Malta. Our culture is influenced quite heavily from Catholicism. I kind of enjoy our religious culture, from the festive aspect. Our holidays, unite us. My country is kind of evolving into a more secular society overtime, in the sense that, most of us are becoming more tolerant towards others of different cultures and whatnot, but this hasn't stopped us from celebrating our culture and our religious feasts (which even I, tend to celebrate quite often). I don't think my country's population's intense religiosity is harmful. Some countries can take it to a harmful extent, but that isn't the case in most civilized countries.

Just a demo of what our feasts generally consist of:
https://www.youtube.com...
"It's interesting to observe that almost all truly worthy men have simple manners, and that simple manners are almost always taken as a sign of little worth" - Giacomo Leopardi

"It is more honorable to be raised to a throne than to be born to one. Fortune bestows the one, merit obtains the other." - Francesco Petrarca

"You too must not count too much on your reality as you feel it today, since like yesterday, it may prove an illusion for you tomorrow." - Luigi Pirandello
NHN
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9/10/2016 11:33:35 AM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/10/2016 5:17:07 AM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
Yes, it provides people with some higher purpose, but that doesn't make it necessary.
You and I both know that meaning is created. But if philosophy is too difficult, ordinary life too mundane, and the battles of the day are already won, then where do people venture to establish meaning?

Re: http://www.debate.org...

You do not need some supernatural higher purpose to keep on living. You can still have purpose and goals to reach for. I know I do. Not all people just turn straight to nihilism without religion.
The question is rather, What is nihilism? (http://www.debate.org...).

The most dangerous aspect of nihilism isn't despair before nothingness. It is the reactive force in which "man would sooner have the void for his purpose than be void of purpose." It is the point at which action for the sake of action, or violence for the sake of violence, is undertaken -- simply to sustain basic psychological needs. Political revolution, moral disorder and disunity, criminal upheaval are all symptoms of this condition.

And since nihilism is irreversible, that final stage requires a creative act to turn the destructive order on its head. And, if we turn to history, only institutionalized religion has had the ability to do so. It was the new order of the Roman Catholic church that besieged pagan Rome and its peoples, not vice versa.

Also, you said that religion keeps people from turning to superstition, but religion involves a lot of superstition.
Religion is institutionalized superstition. It is the grand design that applies a preexisting narrative to nightmares, reveries, and errors of thought. For when there is no calm hand guiding errant thought, we again find ourselves at the primitive beginnings of mankind.

That said, I do agree that Christianity is over and passing into insignificance; the moment of death in Europe arrived in the mid-19th century with the emergence of political atheism (socialism, social democracy). But I don't see this secular decline as a cause for celebration. Rather, I am not sure how Western civilization will survive without Christianity, the most complex religion devised in the history of mankind, as its moral interface.
Hiu
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9/10/2016 2:55:47 PM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
LEASE READ THIS BEFORE YOU POST ON THE THREAD

First, I would like to welcome everyone to this forum. I hope that you find the discussion interesting and stimulating. I would ask that all that post in this forum are respectful and polite to others in the forum. No insults or name calling please. I ask this because I have seen many an interesting debate be ruined by insults, and I do not want that to happen to this forum. I want this to be a place where people can come to exchange ideas and opinions freely. Thank you.

Now, we can talk about the topic at hand. Well, I think the title says it all. Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity? I would love to hear what people think.

I agree with peter Smith...I would only add this is a chicken and the egg issue because religion did not manifest itself without some influence.
AlyceTheElectrician
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9/10/2016 5:30:37 PM
Posted: 2 months ago
I feel religion is needed and used as more of a comforting blanket , or a vent so to speak. a vent to cope with the harsh perceived reality of the world, so in this context religion is good in comforting those who find life too harsh at times, come together with like minds for a positive energy re-charging before you go back into the world, and it can be a very therapeutic and have positive effects.

For instance I'm atheist, and instead of god and church, I choose music and attending rock concerts to vent, every weekend there is a show, and people come together who love the band, sing together, re-charge with positive energy (for the most part) and become a family just for a few hours, and in a way it's kind of like going to church, where you just let yourself go in like minded mass hysteria for a few hours, not focusing on harsh reality is therapy.

Plus, even as an atheist, I know for a fact there are many religious institutions do a lot a good charitable, and selfless things that often go unmentioned for the sake of promoting negative narratives for mass manipulation.

That's the only thing I can see a need for religion at this point.
Be who you are, Say what you feel, Because those who mind don"t matter, And those who matter don't mind.

BANGTAN! Blood, Sweat, & Tears> Check it out yes! https://www.youtube.com...
ANON_TacTiX
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9/11/2016 12:50:01 AM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/10/2016 5:29:16 AM, Heterodox wrote:
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
LEASE READ THIS BEFORE YOU POST ON THE THREAD

**Paragraph of BS**

**Paragraph in the wrong sub-forum **


Think you may have missed the Forum section titled "Religion".

Which is why I addressed this in an earlier post.
Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning. - Albert Einstein
ANON_TacTiX
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9/11/2016 1:03:38 AM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/10/2016 8:16:39 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 9/10/2016 5:28:30 AM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
At 9/10/2016 12:02:11 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:

Now, we can talk about the topic at hand. Well, I think the title says it all. Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity? I would love to hear what people think.

Religion ties mythology, with its associated imagery and symbolism, and a universal sense of human smallness in the face of nature into something cohesive that regulates society and allows a sense of flourishing within those bounds.

My favorite description of it:
'And if we took the third chance instance, it would be the same; the view that priests darken and embitter the world. I look at the world and simply discover that they don't. Those countries in Europe which are still influenced by priests, are exactly the countries where there is still singing and dancing and coloured dresses and art in the open-air. Catholic doctrine and discipline may be walls; but they are the walls of a playground. Christianity is the only frame which has preserved the pleasure of Paganism. We might fancy some children playing on the flat grassy top of some tall island in the sea. So long as there was a wall round the cliff's edge they could fling themselves into every frantic game and make the place the noisiest of nurseries. But the walls were knocked down, leaving the naked peril of the precipice. They did not fall over; but when their friends returned to them they were all huddled in terror in the centre of the island; and their song had ceased.'
- G. K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy -
http://www.ccel.org...

So without religion, there would be no color or fun in the world? I find that extremely hard to believe. There are a lot of extremely creative atheists out there.

That's irrelevant, because the idea is that a religious society creates the conditions in which pagan abandon can exist. Atheists are perfectly capable of living in a religious society.
So all creativity that comes from atheists is only due to the fact that we are surrounded by religion?
I don't think that it is religion that gives the world culture, art, and color. It is just what humans do. We like to create. We like to have fun. We like to do daring things and fill our world with color and art.

First of all, you're overgeneralizing here. The original argument had to do with a specific type of Pagan merriment, not just 'art'. This very much died during the course of the industrial revolution, while surviving in those areas which retained strict religious influence.

Religion can be an interesting outlet for people's creativity, and there are some fantastic festivals and traditions that come from religion. That doesn't mean that religion is humanity's only hope for a vibrant and colorful world.

Once again, that isn't the argument. The argument, in basic form, runs as follows:

1. Fundamentally irrational festivals, culture, and merriment are enjoyable for people.
These can exist without religion.
2. That a healthy society needs both these aspects and a set of rules to order life surrounding them in order to function.
You don't need religion to provide rules or festivals, culture, and merriment.
3. That region provides these rules in the form of a pious fiction.
Which are just accepted without question. That is not always a good thing. Many homophobes, when asked why they hate gays can only say that it is because the Bible says so. The rule is just accepted.
4. That materialistic rationalism and the corrosion of both the underpinnings of Pagan joy and Christian restraint cause this system to collapse into dull monotony and fear.
Religion is not the only source of fun and security for people.
This is incredibly difficult for any typical modern atheist to address head-on and ignore. It has become modish to 'stick to the facts', which often means sniffing out, deriding, and discarding any trace of the mystical or transcendent in society. And if that's not enough, history bears stark witness to the degradation of Western culture into a gray monotony of capitalist grind and sterile community life. In the places where the old traditions do persist, they are invariably linked to the vestiges of a once universal religious social fabric. Cases in point: The Azores, Malta, the Toraja people of Sulawesi, Shinto in Japan, and parts of Mexico. All of these custom-rich, tightly knit cultures are tied to intense religiosity and are largely insulated from the toxic influence of secular materialism and neoliberal capitalism.
So in the western world, there is no fun? No festivals? Only work, come home, sleep, repeat? I don't think so. Again, religion is not the only source of culture and fun.
Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning. - Albert Einstein
ANON_TacTiX
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9/11/2016 1:17:19 AM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/10/2016 11:33:35 AM, NHN wrote:
At 9/10/2016 5:17:07 AM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
Yes, it provides people with some higher purpose, but that doesn't make it necessary.
You and I both know that meaning is created. But if philosophy is too difficult, ordinary life too mundane, and the battles of the day are already won, then where do people venture to establish meaning?

Re: http://www.debate.org...

You do not need some supernatural higher purpose to keep on living. You can still have purpose and goals to reach for. I know I do. Not all people just turn straight to nihilism without religion.
The question is rather, What is nihilism? (http://www.debate.org...).
Nihilism: the rejection of all religious and moral principles, often in the belief that life is meaningless

All nihilists are atheists, but not all atheists are nihilists.
The most dangerous aspect of nihilism isn't despair before nothingness. It is the reactive force in which "man would sooner have the void for his purpose than be void of purpose." It is the point at which action for the sake of action, or violence for the sake of violence, is undertaken -- simply to sustain basic psychological needs. Political revolution, moral disorder and disunity, criminal upheaval are all symptoms of this condition.
But again, people don't just turn to nihilism without religion. At least, most people.
And since nihilism is irreversible, that final stage requires a creative act to turn the destructive order on its head. And, if we turn to history, only institutionalized religion has had the ability to do so. It was the new order of the Roman Catholic church that besieged pagan Rome and its peoples, not vice versa.

Also, you said that religion keeps people from turning to superstition, but religion involves a lot of superstition.
Religion is institutionalized superstition. It is the grand design that applies a preexisting narrative to nightmares, reveries, and errors of thought. For when there is no calm hand guiding errant thought, we again find ourselves at the primitive beginnings of mankind.
What I am seeing here is that without religion, there would be nothing to guide our thoughts, and we would wind up thinking like primitive humans. I would like to point out that Stephen Hawking is an atheist, and Einstein (though he was Jewish) hated religion and personal Gods. He hated authority and people telling others how to live. The same reason that he hated school. And no, he did not fail math. That is completely false.
That said, I do agree that Christianity is over and passing into insignificance; the moment of death in Europe arrived in the mid-19th century with the emergence of political atheism (socialism, social democracy). But I don't see this secular decline as a cause for celebration. Rather, I am not sure how Western civilization will survive without Christianity, the most complex religion devised in the history of mankind, as its moral interface.
Religion is not necessary for morality. It just pushes morals on people, and they just accept them. Religion does not encourage people to find their own morals or views. It just says, "Here is how you should live your life. Why? Because this book says so." Besides, Christianity may be complex, but only because it stole from other religions, changing things around every now and then to fit with the rest.
Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning. - Albert Einstein
ANON_TacTiX
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9/11/2016 1:24:05 AM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/10/2016 2:55:47 PM, Hiu wrote:
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
LEASE READ THIS BEFORE YOU POST ON THE THREAD

First, I would like to welcome everyone to this forum. I hope that you find the discussion interesting and stimulating. I would ask that all that post in this forum are respectful and polite to others in the forum. No insults or name calling please. I ask this because I have seen many an interesting debate be ruined by insults, and I do not want that to happen to this forum. I want this to be a place where people can come to exchange ideas and opinions freely. Thank you.

Now, we can talk about the topic at hand. Well, I think the title says it all. Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity? I would love to hear what people think.

I agree with peter Smith...I would only add this is a chicken and the egg issue because religion did not manifest itself without some influence.
Religion more than likely came about because primitive man needed explanations for how the world around them worked. Since primitive man didn't have the means to find scientific explanations for things like lightning, earthquakes, or even why the sun sets and rises again, these were explained away using gods and supernatural forces. Religion was born from ignorance.
Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning. - Albert Einstein
Hiu
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9/11/2016 1:27:00 AM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/11/2016 1:24:05 AM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
At 9/10/2016 2:55:47 PM, Hiu wrote:
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
LEASE READ THIS BEFORE YOU POST ON THE THREAD

First, I would like to welcome everyone to this forum. I hope that you find the discussion interesting and stimulating. I would ask that all that post in this forum are respectful and polite to others in the forum. No insults or name calling please. I ask this because I have seen many an interesting debate be ruined by insults, and I do not want that to happen to this forum. I want this to be a place where people can come to exchange ideas and opinions freely. Thank you.

Now, we can talk about the topic at hand. Well, I think the title says it all. Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity? I would love to hear what people think.

I agree with peter Smith...I would only add this is a chicken and the egg issue because religion did not manifest itself without some influence.
Religion more than likely came about because primitive man needed explanations for how the world around them worked. Since primitive man didn't have the means to find scientific explanations for things like lightning, earthquakes, or even why the sun sets and rises again, these were explained away using gods and supernatural forces. Religion was born from ignorance.

Scripture is very complex and descriptive but even before that something had to spark mankind to write about it...Primitive or not me thinking about another reality has to come about another way not something that I conjure up.
ANON_TacTiX
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9/11/2016 1:34:09 AM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/11/2016 1:27:00 AM, Hiu wrote:
At 9/11/2016 1:24:05 AM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
At 9/10/2016 2:55:47 PM, Hiu wrote:
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
LEASE READ THIS BEFORE YOU POST ON THE THREAD

First, I would like to welcome everyone to this forum. I hope that you find the discussion interesting and stimulating. I would ask that all that post in this forum are respectful and polite to others in the forum. No insults or name calling please. I ask this because I have seen many an interesting debate be ruined by insults, and I do not want that to happen to this forum. I want this to be a place where people can come to exchange ideas and opinions freely. Thank you.

Now, we can talk about the topic at hand. Well, I think the title says it all. Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity? I would love to hear what people think.

I agree with peter Smith...I would only add this is a chicken and the egg issue because religion did not manifest itself without some influence.
Religion more than likely came about because primitive man needed explanations for how the world around them worked. Since primitive man didn't have the means to find scientific explanations for things like lightning, earthquakes, or even why the sun sets and rises again, these were explained away using gods and supernatural forces. Religion was born from ignorance.


Scripture is very complex and descriptive but even before that something had to spark mankind to write about it... Primitive or not me thinking about another reality has to come about another way not something that I conjure up.
So people don't have enough imagination themselves to think about alternate realities? It has to come from God? The reason that mankind created religion and wrote about supernatural beings was because that was the only way that primitive man could explain the world around them.
Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning. - Albert Einstein
Hiu
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9/11/2016 1:37:24 AM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/11/2016 1:34:09 AM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
At 9/11/2016 1:27:00 AM, Hiu wrote:
At 9/11/2016 1:24:05 AM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
At 9/10/2016 2:55:47 PM, Hiu wrote:
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
LEASE READ THIS BEFORE YOU POST ON THE THREAD

First, I would like to welcome everyone to this forum. I hope that you find the discussion interesting and stimulating. I would ask that all that post in this forum are respectful and polite to others in the forum. No insults or name calling please. I ask this because I have seen many an interesting debate be ruined by insults, and I do not want that to happen to this forum. I want this to be a place where people can come to exchange ideas and opinions freely. Thank you.

Now, we can talk about the topic at hand. Well, I think the title says it all. Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity? I would love to hear what people think.

I agree with peter Smith...I would only add this is a chicken and the egg issue because religion did not manifest itself without some influence.
Religion more than likely came about because primitive man needed explanations for how the world around them worked. Since primitive man didn't have the means to find scientific explanations for things like lightning, earthquakes, or even why the sun sets and rises again, these were explained away using gods and supernatural forces. Religion was born from ignorance.


Scripture is very complex and descriptive but even before that something had to spark mankind to write about it... Primitive or not me thinking about another reality has to come about another way not something that I conjure up.
So people don't have enough imagination themselves to think about alternate realities? It has to come from God? The reason that mankind created religion and wrote about supernatural beings was because that was the only way that primitive man could explain the world around them.

Again you are assuming mankind imagined things up...I'm from a position that not so much I do not disagree with you but I think there are things we are not aware of that could influence mankind.
ANON_TacTiX
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9/11/2016 1:46:00 AM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/11/2016 1:37:24 AM, Hiu wrote:
At 9/11/2016 1:34:09 AM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
At 9/11/2016 1:27:00 AM, Hiu wrote:
At 9/11/2016 1:24:05 AM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
At 9/10/2016 2:55:47 PM, Hiu wrote:
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
LEASE READ THIS BEFORE YOU POST ON THE THREAD

First, I would like to welcome everyone to this forum. I hope that you find the discussion interesting and stimulating. I would ask that all that post in this forum are respectful and polite to others in the forum. No insults or name calling please. I ask this because I have seen many an interesting debate be ruined by insults, and I do not want that to happen to this forum. I want this to be a place where people can come to exchange ideas and opinions freely. Thank you.

Now, we can talk about the topic at hand. Well, I think the title says it all. Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity? I would love to hear what people think.

I agree with peter Smith...I would only add this is a chicken and the egg issue because religion did not manifest itself without some influence.
Religion more than likely came about because primitive man needed explanations for how the world around them worked. Since primitive man didn't have the means to find scientific explanations for things like lightning, earthquakes, or even why the sun sets and rises again, these were explained away using gods and supernatural forces. Religion was born from ignorance.


Scripture is very complex and descriptive but even before that something had to spark mankind to write about it... Primitive or not me thinking about another reality has to come about another way not something that I conjure up.
So people don't have enough imagination themselves to think about alternate realities? It has to come from God? The reason that mankind created religion and wrote about supernatural beings was because that was the only way that primitive man could explain the world around them.

Again you are assuming mankind imagined things up...I'm from a position that not so much I do not disagree with you but I think there are things we are not aware of that could influence mankind.
Do you honestly think that ancient religions like Greek mythology were not made up? Or that the Bible was not written by man? Mankind imagines things up all of the time. It's what were best at. That and destroying ourselves.
Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning. - Albert Einstein
NHN
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9/11/2016 1:40:57 PM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/11/2016 1:17:19 AM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
The question is rather, What is nihilism? (http://www.debate.org...).
Nihilism: the rejection of all religious and moral principles, often in the belief that life is meaningless
I provided the context: Nietzsche's definition. Nihilism as a concept is simultaneously a historical process (devaluation of the highest values, secular decline) and a condition (ceaseless, endless becoming without unity) as well as a noble mode (creation of new values) and an ignoble mode (destruction for the sake of destruction).

You see, the dictionary is in place to inform you about how a word is spelled, as well as to provide a short version of the contemporary meaning. The dictionary is not where you turn for conceptual explication.

All nihilists are atheists, but not all atheists are nihilists.
Being a "nihilist" doesn't say enough. A Christian is a nihilist in the eyes of a Jew or a Platonist, yet a Platonist is a nihilist in the eyes of a Parmenidean or pagan. Our contemporary nihilism (postmodernity) is simply the last and final stage of the devaluation of all values hitherto. In that sense, an atheist is too much of an 18th century rationalist and nowhere near as nihilistic as a radical post-Heideggerian feminist.

But again, people don't just turn to nihilism without religion. At least, most people.
But I am referring to those who cannot create meaning singlehandedly, to those who lack the basic curiosity for philosophy or science or risk-taking. "Men without chests," as it were.

What I am seeing here is that without religion, there would be nothing to guide our thoughts, and we would wind up thinking like primitive humans. [...]
And that would scare the "men without chests" who find no recourse in philosophy or science or risk-taking. They don't seek out wars themselves; they are slave-mentality knaves who get pulled into wars. Throughout history, great scientists and thinkers have always defied convention and religion, and have as such generally functioned as public enemies. In secular days, however, where society (the socio-theologico-political order) has dissolved and the pressure on the individual dissipated, the blunt masses become a primitive and destructive force of their own. Suddenly it is they who define society. At that point, only a new religion can temper their rage.

Religion is not necessary for morality. It just pushes morals on people, and they just accept them. Religion does not encourage people to find their own morals or views. It just says, "Here is how you should live your life. Why? Because this book says so."
Every moral order is imposed. That is why America is currently split between traditionalists who want to maintain things as they are and left-wing radicals (nihilists) who are looking to dissolve any power structure present in society, from the family to gender roles to marital laws to police enforcement and so on.

And this is an impossible war -- for both parties. The traditionalists can't win because nihilism always devalues, hollows out and secularizes existing values. And the nihilists can't win because there is no core to their cause. Only a new order -- a brand new socio-theologico-political order -- can ultimately salvage the situation.

Besides, Christianity may be complex, but only because it stole from other religions, changing things around every now and then to fit with the rest.
Intricate theft functions wonderfully in poetry and religion alike.
ANON_TacTiX
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9/11/2016 8:27:14 PM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/11/2016 1:40:57 PM, NHN wrote:
At 9/11/2016 1:17:19 AM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
The question is rather, What is nihilism? (http://www.debate.org...).
Nihilism: the rejection of all religious and moral principles, often in the belief that life is meaningless
I provided the context: Nietzsche's definition. Nihilism as a concept is simultaneously a historical process (devaluation of the highest values, secular decline) and a condition (ceaseless, endless becoming without unity) as well as a noble mode (creation of new values) and an ignoble mode (destruction for the sake of destruction).

You see, the dictionary is in place to inform you about how a word is spelled, as well as to provide a short version of the contemporary meaning. The dictionary is not where you turn for conceptual explication.

All nihilists are atheists, but not all atheists are nihilists.
Being a "nihilist" doesn't say enough. A Christian is a nihilist in the eyes of a Jew or a Platonist, yet a Platonist is a nihilist in the eyes of a Parmenidean or pagan. Our contemporary nihilism (postmodernity) is simply the last and final stage of the devaluation of all values hitherto. In that sense, an atheist is too much of an 18th century rationalist and nowhere near as nihilistic as a radical post-Heideggerian feminist.
Being a nihilist says plenty. It says that you don't think that life has any meaning or purpose, and you reject God and religion. What more do you need?
But again, people don't just turn to nihilism without religion. At least, most people.
But I am referring to those who cannot create meaning singlehandedly, to those who lack the basic curiosity for philosophy or science or risk-taking. "Men without chests," as it were.
It really isn't that hard to find purpose in your life. It doesn't take that much philosophy of curiosity. Do you have a family? Yes? There's a reason to keep living. Do you care for the well being of others? Yes? There's another one. Do you want to make the world a better place? Yes? Another one right there. Do you have goals that you would like to achieve? Yes? You just found another one. Anyone can find meaning in their lives. Anyone can find reasons to keep living. You don't need religion to tell you what your purpose in life is. You can find it on your own.

Even if there are people that are just completely incapable of finding reasons to live, it isn't that hard to teach. I'm not saying teach them what their purpose in life is, but teach them how to find it themselves. Basically, don't give the man a fish, teach him how to fish.
What I am seeing here is that without religion, there would be nothing to guide our thoughts, and we would wind up thinking like primitive humans. [...]
And that would scare the "men without chests" who find no recourse in philosophy or science or risk-taking. They don't seek out wars themselves; they are slave-mentality knaves who get pulled into wars. Throughout history, great scientists and thinkers have always defied convention and religion, and have as such generally functioned as public enemies. In secular days, however, where society (the socio-theologico-political order) has dissolved and the pressure on the individual dissipated, the blunt masses become a primitive and destructive force of their own. Suddenly it is they who define society. At that point, only a new religion can temper their rage.
So without religion, people are just primitive, angry people? Without religion, people become destructive? Then tell me why atheists are statistically the most well behaved group of people out there. Tell me why atheists represent only 0.1% of the prison population. That is one in every one thousand people in prison. Atheists also raise statistically less aggressive children.
Religion is not necessary for morality. It just pushes morals on people, and they just accept them. Religion does not encourage people to find their own morals or views. It just says, "Here is how you should live your life. Why? Because this book says so."
Every moral order is imposed.
Weird, I found my morals for myself.
That is why America is currently split between traditionalists who want to maintain things as they are and left-wing radicals (nihilists) who are looking to dissolve any power structure present in society, from the family to gender roles to marital laws to police enforcement and so on.
Morals are only imposed on people when they take sides and labels. That is why I also have a problem with the whole Republican versus Democrat thing in the U.S. it is incredibly stupid. It, like religion, does not encourage people to discover their own opinions or morals. You can say that all morals are imposed on people, but I know that to be far from the truth. At least, in my case. And the case of most of my friends and every atheist I've ever met.
And this is an impossible war -- for both parties. The traditionalists can't win because nihilism always devalues, hollows out and secularizes existing values. And the nihilists can't win because there is no core to their cause. Only a new order -- a brand new socio-theologico-political order -- can ultimately salvage the situation.
You lumped theology in with society and politics. Yes, theology is a huge part of society, but theology should have no part in politics. That is just a bad idea. Not to say that it isn't already happening. People may say that religion is separate from politics, but let's face it. If you aren't Christian of Jewish, your chances of becoming president in the U.S. is basically zero.
Besides, Christianity may be complex, but only because it stole from other religions, changing things around every now and then to fit with the rest.
Intricate theft functions wonderfully in poetry and religion alike.
Stealing a good line or idea from a poem does not make you a good poet.
Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning. - Albert Einstein
zaarbuc
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9/12/2016 8:30:06 AM
Posted: 2 months ago
At 9/7/2016 8:06:59 PM, ANON_TacTiX wrote:
LEASE READ THIS BEFORE YOU POST ON THE THREAD

First, I would like to welcome everyone to this forum. I hope that you find the discussion interesting and stimulating. I would ask that all that post in this forum are respectful and polite to others in the forum. No insults or name calling please. I ask this because I have seen many an interesting debate be ruined by insults, and I do not want that to happen to this forum. I want this to be a place where people can come to exchange ideas and opinions freely. Thank you.

Now, we can talk about the topic at hand. Well, I think the title says it all. Why do we need religion? In our modern world, what use is religion to humanity? I would love to hear what people think.

We don't.