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Posted: Tue Mar 11, 2008 4:10 pm
by Matt Z
By the way, it's been my experience that people who wear their religion on their sleeve and/or try to force their beliefs on others, are often compensating for their own doubts, weakness and/or hypocracy. People of strong faith rarely feel the need to act this way.

Posted: Tue Mar 11, 2008 4:15 pm
by Ironman
I'm not sure if you are talking to me or not, but here is my reply.

I dislike religion for many reasons. I am tolerant of people's religious beliefs provided they aren't forcing them on others, or hurting anyone. I certainly don't look down on any who's beliefs are different than my own. They are all human beings who deserve respect.

I can see why you might think that, because I am critical of religion, which is something sacred to some people, so it comes off rude. There really isn't a nice way to be critical of things others consider sacred though. I do respect them as people and believe they have a right to hold any belief they choose, but I have the right to be critical of religion when stating my own convictions.

I am intolerant of forcing others to believe or do things against their will. I am intolerant of doing evil in Gods name (or any other for that matter). I do look down on people who are intolerant, hypocritical, bigoted, force religion on others, or commit wrongful acts even if those acts are in accordance with their religion.

Fish fry Catholics, Americanized moderate Muslims, your typical moderate jews, or any other person not doing things to people undesired by said individuals are all ok in my book and I respect them as people and their rights to their beliefs.

However I have no respect for any people fitting the description in the paragraph regarding the things I am intolerant of. This is anything from suicide bombers and the genocidal such as the perpetrators of the Darfur crisis, or Milosivich, who tried to exterminate all the Muslims in eastern Europe, all the way up to your typical fundies trying to ban p0.rn, or the members of government who inserted the words "under God" in the pledge in 1954.

Posted: Tue Mar 11, 2008 4:30 pm
by corless319_
It is what it is. People believe what they want to. It's that simple. I believe i have a consience and that is more than enough, in my opinion at least. All I know is there has been more death due to religion then anything else. What is a Jew? Hitler tried to eradicate them because of religion? what about the holy crusades holy being the key word. Also 9/11? religion does things to some unsane people they twist it and then create disaster. I am nothing which in turn could then make a religious person want to eraditcate me? I don't know Its all very touchy stuff to talk about.


Posted: Tue Mar 11, 2008 4:51 pm
by Matt Z
Yes, Hitler killed may Jews, and Gypsies, and homosexuals, and the physically and mentally challanced, and the mentally ill, and anyone else who didn't fit the [email protected]! ideal. But Hitler himself was an Atheist, and so were all the other high-ranking [email protected]!s. You can blame religion if you want to, but the real problem is intolerance, which comes in many forms (racial, ethnic, cultural, economic, etc).

Posted: Tue Mar 11, 2008 4:57 pm
by Ironman
Hitler was a Christian. Stalin was the one who was an Atheist. However Stalin did have fanatical belief in communism. His megalomania didn't help either.

Posted: Tue Mar 11, 2008 5:17 pm
by Matt Z
No, Hitler was definitely an atheist, athough the [email protected]!s did eventually incorporate some aspects of Christianity. They did this for political/propoganda reasons after early attemps at promoting atheism were largely unsuccessful.

Posted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 4:32 am
by Ironman
There were some [email protected]!s who were atheists, but Hitler wasn't one of them. He was a Christian, although he had nothing but contempt for the meek humble aspect. He had his own brand of Christianity, which was much more militant and focused on the very things modern moderate Christians ignore. It is also widely known that Hitler was obsessed with the occult. Atheists do not believe in such things. Hitler's most hated enemies were the Godless communist Soviets. However he did tolerate atheism in some of his highest ranking men. He also tolerated Muslims as he was allied with many of them including the Grand Mufti. The Jews were simply a scapegoat, someone to lay all the blame on, a common enemy to help propel him into power. Being the sociopath that he was he had no problem killing millions of them. [email protected]!.sm is very much like a religion because of the fanaticism, but not quite the same thing. So while Hitler was religious, it had little to do with his acts. ... us_beliefs ... sFaith.htm ... itler.html

There are some secular dictators who are simply blood-thirsty megalomaniacs. But most conflicts are due to religion. All conflict today is because of religion.

Posted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 9:20 am
by corless319_
Thanks ironman I agree. If people didn't have religion I think the world would be better off but then again some people would say well I don't have god to reprimand me anymore I'm going to do what I want when I want. That's why I have a consience. Also I believe that the lack of science was the main reason why religion was made. People used to say It rains praise god the crops were almost gone. Rain? God? Thats science one day science will be so prevalent religion will be moot. I believe people can be good with out a god they just need to be raised correctly. Morals are pretty much the same thing as religion. Some of them are based on religion. God, Gods Godesses Witches voo doo budhism Scientology? Theres even a group in austraila practicing THE FORCE. What ever feels the best people go with.

Posted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 10:39 am
by TimD
I usually won't touch discussions on religion, because I've got a live, let live type of attitude. To each their own. But I saw Buhdism mentioned. I'm not all that knowledgable about, but I was watching a promo show on PBS, smothing like "know your inner self" or something similar, and this guy was giving a seminar on the beginnings or Buhda, and from what I heard, I'm not thinking of it as a religion, but rather a philosphy of life.Interesting stuff. Might have to do some reading up on it.

Posted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 11:07 am
by corless319_
Good idea Tim. I have time all day at work haha.

Posted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 12:36 pm
by Ironman
I don't believe in the religious aspect of Buddhism, but the meditation is real. It really does work. It is a very useful therapy.

Corless, you are on the right track. We have an inborn sense of right and wrong that came about through natural selection. It was vital for people to get along in groups. So the ones who did survived to pass on their genes and the ones who did not, didn't make it.

This sense of right and wrong, is the only explanation for moderate Christians. They know that genocide, slavery, the stoning to death of disobedient children and homosexuals and all that other sort of thing is wrong. They also have not had the severe abusive upbringing required to cause them to do things contrary to their ethics for the sake of religion.

For more detailed information do a search for evolutionary biologist, Richard Dawkins. Professor Dawkins also holds the Charles Simonyi Chair for the Public Understanding of Science at the University of Oxford.
In particular, his book The God Delusion, is probably the best source of information. It is by far the most entertaining book on the subject. Dr. Victor Stenger's book is interesting also coming from a physics point of view. Then of course there is Christopher Hitchens, Sam Harris and Daniel Dennet, who's books are from a strictly philosophical point of view.

Posted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 3:30 pm
by Matt Z
Perhaps your experience with religion differs greatly from mine. I've been a practicing Catholic my entire life and I don't remember any genocide, stonings or slave auctions at Sunday mass. I do however agree that no one religion can claim ownership of basic human decency.

Meanwhile, I don't think that science will ever replace religion, although many in the scientific community would clearly like it to. Instead science will merely change the way people think about religion. For example, MOST modern-day Christians and Jews reguard the story of creation as a parable.

Posted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 3:40 pm
by Matt Z
"All conflict today is because of religion." - Ironman

I think you're vastly overstating your case. What about racism, and greed, not to mension plain old fasioned ignorance?

Posted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 3:52 pm
by Matt Z
I'm also a little puzzled at why you seem to catagorize all religious people as either intolerant extremists, or lacking any real faith or commitment. Did it never occur to you that someone could have strongly held beliefs without trying to force them on others or looking down on people who don't share their beliefs?

Posted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 4:22 pm
by ironmaiden708
I'm also a little puzzled at why you seem to catagorize all religious people as either intolerant extremists, or lacking any real faith or commitment. Did it never occur to you that someone could have strongly held beliefs without trying to force them on others or looking down on people who don't share their beliefs?