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Thread: Religion

  1. #1371
    Roundy-Round Racer tigeraid's Avatar
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    Apparently "who gets to define what good really is" is a bunch of backward savages from the stone ages, or King James.

    As I've said many, many times in this thread, altruism and charity have been observed and documented countless times in nature (much like homosexuality!) You do not need a religion to be inherently good.

  2. #1372
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    Thing is that there no good nor bad in moral relativism. We can observe a lot in nature, but that doesn't mean everything observable is 'good' and not observable is 'bad'. I've yet to witness anything traveling to space naturally, so it's therefore bad to launch people into space?

    Each species in nature has in the past been programmed either thru it's Creator or by evolution to follow their own code of ethics... and not to do whatever the heck they want in order to ensure its long term survival. My point is that we ought not to look down upon all past traditions as backwards. If they've managed to help us survived this long, maybe they have some values!

    Speaking of homosexuality, even they recognize the 'good' in human marriages, which isn't really observable in nature...

    The funny thing is that we humans failed miserably at marriage. Lots of folks get divorce or just end up in loveless boring marriages. If another intelligent species were observing us, I'm sure they'd conclude that marriage is a horrible idea!

  3. #1373
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    I don’t think “in nature” makes something good or bad, just natural.

    And it’s hard to put down any absolutes, because someone will come up with an example that confuses it.
    Murder = bad, but what about self defense?
    Slavery = bad, but what about prisoners?

    The “golden rule” is a great starting point. And try to make it a better place for everyone.

    Obviously we are also selfish and that’s ok. Don’t need to give everything to charity. But don’t be too greedy, certainly not to the direct expense of others.

    See... you can be off to a start and could discuss morals with someone else and see where you agree or even disagree.
    And it’s all about me/you/everyone/those still to come.
    Doesn’t need a deity. Doesn’t need devine guidance, reward or threat.

    Certainly when it comes to laws I don’t think there is any place for religion.
    But I also think that my morals shouldn’t define the laws. There are plenty of grey areas where I wouldn’t do something, but don’t think it’s serious enough to stop others. Things like drugs and prostitution. Lots of people are against it because they don’t think it’s morally right. They would not do it. Someone saying “it’s immoral” is not a good reason to ban something. Saying “people are harmed” is a reason. Even then it needs to be a reasonable balance - if harm was the only reason to ban it, we would ban cars.

    And now jumping back to religion...
    One of the big problems with religious belief (rather than religious institutions) is that many followers take it as fact that their religion is true and that it is some absolute that must apply to everyone. It’s part of their belief that it should be imposed on everyone, because it is “gods word”.
    So instead of their religion being between them and their god or even their church group, suddenly it’s something they expect to force on everyone. Typically they will deny they force their religion on you (you don’t have to believe) but they will try to force the religions morals.
    This becomes a big problem if a religion dominates a country.

    What I find very hypocritical is that people scream about Muslims introducing sharia law, but happily do the same thing with Christianity. Don’t do X because the bible said so. But without a hint of it happening, post in Facebook saying “lookout Muslims want to ban people eating bacon or going to the beach in a bikini”.
    Hang on - so “do unto others” suddenly goes away when it’s “make my religion law”.

    Religion is a very poor way for a society to pick laws and morals. Because we don’t agree on a religion. So anyone saying “because my religion” is saying basically nothing to other people, other than they are intolerant and controlling (and yes - that’s bad)

  4. #1374
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    Golden rule is a great starting point? Really? I wonder what's the origin of the golden rule?

    Besides it's origin, perhaps it's also just common sense too for typical mentally healthy person. So if everyone were not hypocritical and follows such rule, will moral relativism still exist in human culture? I honestly don't think so.

    I do believe if anyone on earth who had practiced the golden rule perfectly... that person would be Jesus.

  5. #1375
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    As for your other concerns, I believe early Christian American founding fathers share with you the same concerns...

    We're not a theocracy not because they don't believe in God but because they know the human tendencies of powerful men disregarding golden rule.

    Religious persecutions can also be problematic, hence the need to have freedom of religion.

    Definitely have no need for religious laws, but our secular laws are based somewhat on the golden Judeo Christian rule... and it is that foundation which propelled the western cultures way forward than other cultures.
    Last edited by Crazed_Insanity; April 28th, 2018 at 02:53 PM.

  6. #1376
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crazed_Insanity View Post
    Golden rule is a great starting point? Really? I wonder what's the origin of the golden rule?

    Besides it's origin, perhaps it's also just common sense too for typical mentally healthy person. So if everyone were not hypocritical and follows such rule, will moral relativism still exist in human culture? I honestly don't think so.

    I do believe if anyone on earth who had practiced the golden rule perfectly... that person would be Jesus.
    Well, the earliest known mention of what we now call the Golden Rule came from the story of The Eloquent Peasant, reflecting the Egyptian goddess Ma'at, dating back to sometime between 2040-1650 BC.

    EDIT: and of course moral relativism would still exist. For example, I think we can all agree murder is bad, but as Dicknose mentions, what about self-defense? I think we can probably all agree that killing someone to save your own life is okay, but how do you know you are in imminent mortal danger before it's too late? On lesser crimes we might still differ - what if someone steals bread from a baker to feed their family because they don't have enough money to buy it? Even if you apply the golden rule, different people are going to feel differently about that. A person who can barely feed his family will feel differently about that than someone who's sunk his life savings into making a bakery and is having a hard time making ends meet.
    Last edited by Tom Servo; April 28th, 2018 at 03:45 PM.

  7. #1377
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    Golden rule is almost commonsensical and a central tenet of Christianity. Yeah, Egyptians predates Christ the man, but natural selection has managed to eliminate that religion as one of the possible true religions...

    Anyway, back to discussing the golden rule, if everyone practices it, why would there be a need to defend my life at all? Of course that'd be the ideal world. In this real world, Christ himself has demonstrated that while most won't think self defense is wrong, it's still not quite right either. Christ himself has never attempted self defense even to the point of death. That is the kind of morality in the absolute sense. No matter what happens, Jesus knows justice will prevail after crucifixion. Evil simply won't prevail in the end.

    For us imperfect beings, of course we won't be able to do as perfectly, thats perhaps why we need moral relativism to justify ourselves?

    Anyway, as lousy and imperfect as a lot of Christians are, people in the west are making progress moving closer to this absolute morality faster than folks in other cultures by following Jesus.

  8. #1378
    Senior Member G'day Mate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crazed_Insanity View Post
    Golden rule is almost commonsensical and a central tenet of Christianity. Yeah, Egyptians predates Christ the man, but natural selection has managed to eliminate that religion as one of the possible true religions...
    Truth isn't based on present popularity

  9. #1379
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    I agree true religion shouldn't be based on popularity; however, it should at least survive, right? Who on earth still believe in that Egyptian goddess?

    To qualify under consideration as a possible true religion, it needs to have a sufficiently old beginning and to also have some present day relevance too, right?

    If nobody worships Jesus anymore and civilization goes on just fine, I would take that as proof enough that Jesus is just a bogus myth...

    Anyway, I think the race is down to just 5 legit world religions. Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism.

  10. #1380
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    And here is the bit I find hilarious about religion...
    People worry which is “true”
    But it involves an all powerful being, who could instantly solve this problem.
    Is it Jesus, Muhammed or Ra?

    Just send us a message, a clear message, not this “it’s in a sunrise” or “holy book” - it’s clear each religion thinks it’s book is the only true book.
    It would stop a lot of fighting and problems in the world.
    But oh no - you need to work it out via belief and 3rd hand evidence

    Why be so obtuse, just be clear.

    And now so you might see how I feel about it.
    You know Thor is the true god. He sends us a reminder every time there is thunder.
    He is so important that we still honour him with a day of the week.

    Thor and Jesus and all the others seem no more true to me. Sure some are more popular today.
    But a god should be able to make it clear they exist.
    If they can’t do that, then I put them in the same pile with Ra and Thor.

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