Jump to content
aberdeen-music
Sign in to follow this  
Stroopy121

Respect for Others' Beliefs

Recommended Posts

To paraphrase the late great Christopher Hitchens, it doesn't take religion to make people do good things but it does take religion to make good people do terrible things.

Agree with most of what you say, but if I have sympathy for religious believers, it's because if you take away god and the supernatural, people have still shown great capacity to dream up and act on ideologies that call for killing and subjugating others (someone mentioned misanthropy earlier? :D). Communism, imperialism/colonialism (obviously there can be a religious element there but not necessarily), more extreme free market ideologies, so-called "social Darwinism" (which might refer to the aforementioned free market ideologies or Nazism). All of these are or were supposed to be based in science and some of them might have done some good (like religion), but still...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Agree with most of what you say, but if I have sympathy for religious believers, it's because if you take away god and the supernatural, people have still shown great capacity to dream up and act on ideologies that call for killing and subjugating others (someone mentioned misanthropy earlier? :D). Communism, imperialism/colonialism (obviously there can be a religious element there but not necessarily), more extreme free market ideologies, so-called "social Darwinism" (which might refer to the aforementioned free market ideologies or Nazism). All of these are or were supposed to be based in science and some of them might have done some good (like religion), but still...

how are any of your examples based on science?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
My personal view is that I respect peoples right to believe whatever they want and I won't go out of my way to debate this with people. I believe that religion, on the whole, is a force for good but not that religion in itself is a good thing. In other words, most people who are part of an organised religion feel part of it through a love for their fellow man, a desire to good and a deep sense of what is morally right. Encouraging these values is a good thing. There are some who use religion for very bad things indeed. However this isn't the fault of religion, this is the fault of bad people with religion as their tool.

Religion, the belief in a higher spiritual being and other fairy tales, is a total distraction from what we should be focusing on as a planet. We are in a unique position among carbon based lifeforms to be able to combine all our efforts in the pursuit of knowledge, peace and exploration yet we waste trillions on areas that are just a sideshow. I'd rather build spaceships than cathedrals.

I have no respect for extremist religious views however. creationists who and anyone who wants to teach religious doctrine as fact in schools are dicks. we should be aiming for a greater seperation of church and state, towards a full secular society not more religious schools. fuck that.

My problem (though it's not a problem as such because I fully expect from my fellow humans) is that science goes hand in hand with the discovery of weapons (usually dressed up as "defend" rather than attack) and other military applications. All forms of science can and will be used at some point to bloody someones hands so it's no different to religion in that regard. People do use science as a tool of evil as well. Not that i advocate that science should be discouraged because that would be arrogant of me and show a complete lack of understanding of the good that many scientists do.

We build spaceships, we surely need weapons to "defend" ourselves against whatever pesky hostile or nor aliens there are or aren't out in the deep black recesses of whatever part of space we're trawling to ruin of it's natural resources and remove anything offensive that we don't understand (namely aliens, if there are any).

I agree that human kind should be focusing on positives like knowledge and peace but there's no reason that science and religion can't happily co-exist.

As for cathedrals? Architectual and artistic marvels that highlight the abilities of humans to create masterpieces and feats of sheer genius.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
As for cathedrals? Architectual and artistic marvels that highlight the abilities of humans to create masterpieces and feats of sheer genius.

If there's one thing that religion is good for it's the passion it has instilled in man to create incredible music/art/structures.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
how are any of your examples based on science?

Scientific socialism? Communism is based around the social sciences, obviously economics and history. It's strongly atheist if nothing else.

Phrenology, for example. The idea of Progress (arguably, anyway). Or to pick a current example, Chinese imperialism in Tibet and Uyghurstan is explicitly anti-religious and again ostensibly based around a developmental and civilising mission.

Free market theories are pretty obviously based in social science and plenty of Chicago School types would paint them as comparable to any hard science. Generally speaking they're based in Darwinian notions of self-interest. This is certainly pertinent to "Social Darwinism" which could be applied either to the most ruthless of free market opinions or as I mentioned Nazism.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There's often a good chunk of religion behind the development of weapons. Religion and Science hand in hand for evil!

To blame atheism for the extreme right and extreme left is a little...extreme. The God Delusion has a pretty good chapter debunking the theory that without religion the world would go to shit and that we need God to be good.

Also, the only person I've ever known to be entirely behind free market economies was a hardline fundamentalist Christian. I never worked that out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I kinda get where Phil is coming from... I think. We don't NEED religion to be good OR to be evil, but we DO need science to kill millions of people at a time... so which is the real "bad guy"?

However, if we have Aliens to defend our planet against, maybe people will stop committing so many horrible atrocities against each other and aim all our firepower skyward?

xx

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
There's often a good chunk of religion behind the development of weapons. Religion and Science hand in hand for evil!

To blame atheism for the extreme right and extreme left is a little...extreme. The God Delusion has a pretty good chapter debunking the theory that without religion the world would go to shit and that we need God to be good.

Also, the only person I've ever known to be entirely behind free market economies was a hardline fundamentalist Christian. I never worked that out.

I wouldn't blame atheism for Communism, but it's a pretty inherent part of the ideology, as is a belief in the scientific method.

And it's not that I believe "we need God to be good" but that if you remove God, the world is not going to become an altruistic, secular Humanist utopia like a lot of atheists seem to imply.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I kinda get where Phil is coming from... I think. We don't NEED religion to be good OR to be evil, but we DO need science to kill millions of people at a time... so which is the real "bad guy"?

However, if we have Aliens to defend our planet against, maybe people will stop committing so many horrible atrocities against each other and aim all our firepower skyward?

xx

It's hardly as if people are strolling into neighbouring countries to try out the nice guns and dirty bombs that the lab-coated scientists have granted them.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest davetherave

You don't need science to kill lots of people, just religious fanaticism or a twisted dictator with no conscience regarding genocide. Ok science has given us the means to kill more efficiently and in greater numbers, but huge numbers were wiped out in religious (and territorial) battles long before the 20th century. Even in medieval times dead animals were thrown into the wells of surrounded castles or towns to cultivate disease and death (early biological warfare, no science required). The conquistadors (acting under the catholic church) wiped out the aztec population with disease, (biological warfare via a carrier, no science required).

The planet is over populated, personally I think a few wars are needed to keep the population down! Life was so much easier when we had the cold war, the threat of nuclear annihilation kept order in the world, it also kept some of us in employment ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
My problem (though it's not a problem as such because I fully expect from my fellow humans) is that science goes hand in hand with the discovery of weapons (usually dressed up as "defend" rather than attack) and other military applications. All forms of science can and will be used at some point to bloody someones hands so it's no different to religion in that regard. People do use science as a tool of evil as well. Not that i advocate that science should be discouraged because that would be arrogant of me and show a complete lack of understanding of the good that many scientists do.

We build spaceships, we surely need weapons to "defend" ourselves against whatever pesky hostile or nor aliens there are or aren't out in the deep black recesses of whatever part of space we're trawling to ruin of it's natural resources and remove anything offensive that we don't understand (namely aliens, if there are any).

I agree that human kind should be focusing on positives like knowledge and peace but there's no reason that science and religion can't happily co-exist.

As for cathedrals? Architectual and artistic marvels that highlight the abilities of humans to create masterpieces and feats of sheer genius.

science in itself is not responsible for weapons, it's merely the methodology of researching such things. morality is something completely seperate from science yet often wrapped up in religion. it's this which dictates our actions and desire to do evil.

there is no argument for building weapons to defend ourselves from aliens. while life certainly does exist on other planets, the odds of us encountering intelligent life which is at precisely the same technological point as we are is impossibly slim. should we actually encounter intelligent life they would either be fantastically advanced and we would have no option but to be at peace or bow to them, or it would be so far in our own future that the role would be reversed. we've only had space travel for 60 odd years out of an existence in the millions of years. the universe is many billions of years old and life would develop at different rates in different circumstances.

science and religion can co-exist only if they ignore each other. otherwise you are dealing with evidence based methodology versus faith based belief, they are at direct odds with each other.

I have no issue with cathedrals from an architectural point of view. they're amazing. the inspiration behind them must have been truly special. however, surely there are equal inspiration can be gained from the vastness of space, the idea that we're all made up of the same components as stars and that through the wonders of chemistry, physics and evolution these tiny particles have found a way to connect, merge and co-operate to form every living thing in the universe. that's way more impressive than some beardy wizard inventing it all.

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Scientific socialism? Communism is based around the social sciences, obviously economics and history. It's strongly atheist if nothing else.

Phrenology, for example. The idea of Progress (arguably, anyway). Or to pick a current example, Chinese imperialism in Tibet and Uyghurstan is explicitly anti-religious and again ostensibly based around a developmental and civilising mission.

Free market theories are pretty obviously based in social science and plenty of Chicago School types would paint them as comparable to any hard science. Generally speaking they're based in Darwinian notions of self-interest. This is certainly pertinent to "Social Darwinism" which could be applied either to the most ruthless of free market opinions or as I mentioned Nazism.

that's a good expansion on your point. just saying they were based on science wasn't particularly accurate. economics is interesting and very thorough but it's not the same as the scientific method as it can't have defined rules. communism and other political ideologies use science as a way to oppress and back up the state rather than as a way of empowering their populations. they pick and choose the science they like and dismiss (often violently) any evidence which contradicts such things.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Did I just make the same point as Dave? :eek:

But ya, I was just attempting to point out that people can find non-supernatural excuses to do really bad things.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another thought on the original point of the thread - when considering respect for religious beliefs I find it hard to do so based on the belief in an afterlife of most (I assume) religious people. Having such opposite opinions on the fundamental questions of existence makes it hard to relate to people sometimes. Although the everyday morals of most people may be basically the same they have developed for entirely different reasons. I suppose religious people and non-religious people are generally good because they want to be good humans, God aside, but the idea that they have to be good to be rewarded and not punished when they die is in total opposition to why I try to be good.

Do most religious people believe that my soul will burn for all eternity in the fiery pits of hell because I’m not going to accept Jesus or whoever as my saviour and I deny the existence of God? If so that’s pretty brutal considering I (would like to think) live as honourable an existence as them (apart from all the drugs, porn and pre-marital shagging and that).

Not sure what my point is here, I just started writing. Carry on.

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The term god-fearing is one to look out for. It suggests, you're not a good person because that's in your nature. But you just want to go to heaven. If it was proved that religion was hokum, would that same person behave badly?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A question for those who identify with a religion, and indeed for those who don't: How do you feel about psychics, the paranormal, ouija boards, and alternative therapies?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest davetherave
A question for those who identify with a religion, and indeed for those who don't: How do you feel about psychics, the paranormal, ouija boards, and alternative therapies?

I generally have to see/experience something to believe it (or have it scientifically proven), so if Jesus H Christ walked out of Tesco on a saturday I might get religion (I am an Aetheist) ! Same goes for ghosts, ghouls, vampires, zombies and anything undead :)

I'm pretty open to alternate beliefs, I totally get Paganism and Shintoism for instance, at least they worship something that can be seen and felt (air, earth, water, etc). Maybe its my welsh/druid roots ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
A question for those who identify with a religion, and indeed for those who don't: How do you feel about psychics, the paranormal, ouija boards, and alternative therapies?

Green = True

Orange = False

Red = Fucking Evil.

xx

Edited - misread Psychics to say Physics. I though it seemed like a strange one to add to the question.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
A question for those who identify with a religion, and indeed for those who don't: How do you feel about psychics, the paranormal, ouija boards, and alternative therapies?

Shite for idiots.

Same goes for your "I'm a strong believer in fate and everything happens for a reason" mob.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...