Religion

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by Bullypulpit, Mar 10, 2004.

  1. Bullypulpit
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    Bullypulpit Senior Member

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    Religion is defined as "...a belief binding the spiritual nature of man to a supernatural being..." This seems harmless enough, but why then has so much conflict arisen around religion?

    The reason lies in some fundamental assumptions about the nature of man and the universe. One is that there is a "self" which is separate from, and independent of, the physical self. This metaphysical "self" is, in most cases, regarded as permanent and eternal. The rpoblem here, than, is one of causation. A permanent and eternal "self" implies causelessness. This, in turn, leads to the epistemological confusion resulting from apparently uncaused events and any relations between these events appear to be meaningless and arbitrary. A supernatural, absolute spiritual and moral authority is used in an attempt to avoid this confusion.

    Even greater confusion and conflict arises when attempts are made to determine the dictates of this supernatural agency. And, therein lies the rub. Who will be the interpreter of these dictates? How will they be verified? Who wields the power of this agency on earth?

    It is this last question which is key to understanding the reason for religious conflict..."Who wields the power...?" From its inception, religion has been a tool for control and subjugation. And when this notion of an all-powerful and absolute spritual and moral authority is added to the mix, those who wield the power begin working from an absolutist premise which allows no room for opposing viewpoints. Any who dare stand in opposition, or are simply following a different path, are branded as heretics and blasphemers, and sinners, and so on. This same structure can be observed insecular politics where the state replaces the divine as the absolute moral authority. Once labeled as heretical, blasphemous or sinful, no other justification is needed to suppress any opposition.

    How then does one know what displeases their favorite deity? Since such an entity is, invariably, beyond human experience, we can only speculate. Reliance on scriptural tradion is, at best, suspect. Religious writings have been retranslated and rewritten so many times that their reliability is questionable. Even those which come to us in original form are often so vague in their language that they can be interpreted in any way one might choose. And, regardless of any claimds of "divine inspiration", these texts are the products of human perception and conception, and are thus subject to their limitations. They cannot be regarded as absolutes.

    Stripped of their absolutist metaphysics, most of the worlde religious doctrines are strikingly similar in their means and goals of promoting individual and social welfare. It is only when absolutist reasoning and its attendant metaphysics is added to the equation that chaos erupts.
     
  2. rtwngAvngr
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    rtwngAvngr Guest

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    There have also been eruptions of antireligious bigotry. Communist states have outlawed and oppressed religions and the people who practice them. That's what libs like, rounding christians or jews up into pens and shooting them at point blank range.
     
  3. _dmp_
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    _dmp_ Member

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    Neat article...Guess that means Buhdism is full of crap too eh?


    Nevermind the fact that Biology, and other sciences point MORE towards 'devine design' than any other cause of creation/live/existance.

    :)
     
  4. rtwngAvngr
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    rtwngAvngr Guest

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    No. Just christianity.:rolleyes:
     
  5. 5stringJeff
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    5stringJeff Senior Member

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    So your argument is... God is made up, and people have used the concept of God as a controlling power throughout history.

    So what woud happen if one witnessed a miracle that was unexplainable outside of supernatural/divine intervention? For instance, someone was beaten and murdered, lay in a guarded tomb for a couple of days, and then was seen alive by dozens of people. How would that be explained in your "there is no God" universe?
     
  6. Bullypulpit
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    Bullypulpit Senior Member

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    Just as with any other religion, over the centuries you find the detritus of pointless and unfounded metaphysical speculation that leads to absolutist notions. Strip away all that crap and you find something useful.

    As far as intelligent design...well gosh that would mean that one's nose was designrd to hold one's glasses.
     
  7. Bullypulpit
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    Bullypulpit Senior Member

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    They're all burdened with a load of crap. You just have to be willing to sort through the crap to find the jewels. Most that I've seen posting here are too lazy.
     
  8. eric
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    Sit in Zazen, and you shall have your answers, no need for the interpretation of texts.
     
  9. Bullypulpit
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    Bullypulpit Senior Member

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    An unexplainable event is simply one which we have not yet discovered the causal links. As for the miracle you're talking about, it was documented a couple of centuries after the claimed event happened...no contemporary written eyewitness accounts. And, as is the case with any figure in history, the stories about their accomplishments and the circumstances of their lives grow with the telling.

    Secondly, the existence of an omnipotent, omnisicient and eternal being is something which would be beyond human ability to experience. Its existence is arrived at through a process of deductive reasoning, which takes one from a stated premise to a formally valid conclusion. Given a premise, depending upon the quality of the supporting information and how it is manipulated a formallly valisd conclusion can be reached. This conclusion though, can be true or false, depending on the point one wants to make, and no genuinely useful conclusion can be reached.
     
  10. Bullypulpit
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    Bullypulpit Senior Member

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    That's how you sort through the crap to find the jewels.
     

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