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» Hatrack River Forum » Active Forums » Books, Films, Food and Culture » Religion vs Science (Page 2)

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Author Topic: Religion vs Science
Samprimary
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quote:
Bad religion would be doctrine that is seriously harmful for society.
Pretty much any religion anywhere would claim that abiding by their doctrine is ultimately the most beneficial thing you can do for society and would not accept judgment otherwise. So how does that get resolved?

quote:
Bad science is science that is not predictive; what is bad religion?
if we are still working on the whole "God in the Clouds" story, bad religion would be, one could guess, one which hasn't managed to stay hidden in the Gaps.
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GinetteB
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As I happen to think, the fundament of all major religions is beneficial to society, while all kinds of human interpretations have led to 'bad religion' (=harmful for society), I think religions should go back to their roots. And rigorously get rid of all the bad stuff.
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Samprimary
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what's the fundament of all major religions?
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King of Men
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Which roots did you have in mind? In the case of the three major monotheisms, one root is invading other countries, killing all the adult males "and all the women who have known men", divvying up "all the plunder and spoils, including the people and animals", and keeping the survivors as slaves. Which was, presumably, beneficial to the society that wrote all this down, because hey, free stuff! But I suspect this is not the root you had in mind. So perhaps you should rather say "I think all religions should do what I think is right", and give up on the 'roots' stuff. You're quite unlikely to convince anyone that the roots you favour are really the right ones. On the other hand, there's likely a lot more agreement on what is actually right, than there is on why it is right.

The 'roots' thing just avoids straightforwardly saying what you think is right action, and shifts the argument into what are the 'roots' of any given religion. Which is quite interesting in a historical sense but completely irrelevant to the problems you want to solve, namely "what ought we to do?" and "how should we enforce that?"

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GinetteB
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Yes I know what is right and what is wrong. That's very simple in fact. The only wrong actions are actions that seriously harm others. So that would be physical violence, stealing, blackmail, terror, fraud. You know, those things that are theoretically forbidden by law but common practice.
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GinetteB
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And the only way to have people obey those laws out of their own conviction, those things are wrong, is to educate them using their own conscience and trying to teach them to love others like they love themselves, so it comes natural to restrain doing those things.
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Samprimary
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uhhuh. I'm just asking what the fundament of the major religions is, that you're working off of?
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GinetteB
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0) faith in the goodness of our nature (as it comes from God, for theistic religions)
1) educating people to use their own conscience and their intelligence;
2) develop concern for others by the principle do not unto others what you don't want yourself, love them as you love yourself
3) judge and take countermeasures against harmful actions, but do not judge the person; to learn forgiveness and mercy
4) get a grip on emotions
5) contribute to a just social society and use talents and virtues to the benefit of it.
6) interdependency of all (one body in Christ, for example)

You can find all those in the major religions. And all religions teach, following those principles is the way to salvation. Not worshipping some 'God', but humbleness towards what ultimately cannot be known.

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King of Men
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Typical Religion Fallacy, anyone?

I mean yes, if you consider 'Christianity' to be all one religion, then you can certainly find all those things in Christianity. Likewise, if you consider 'mammals' to be all one kind of thing, then 'mammals' are intelligent; that is to say, you can find examples of intelligence within the chosen reference class. But by that point it should be clear that the dividing line between categories does not relate to anything that actually exists.

There are forms of Christianity that exhibit the things you mention. There are also forms that don't. Likewise Islam, likewise any broad religious category. It is only by a convention of naming that we consider the militant religion that launched the Crusades "the same" as the social/charity clubs that draw people to churches today; and for the purpose of discussing religious ethics, that convention is completely useless. The convention of naming both 'Christianity' is well suited for its intended purpose of discussing cladistics, that is, how one social movement arises from another; it is dreadfully misleading in the context of discussing ethics, because the two things that are mis-labeled as being the same are almost diametrically opposed.

To put it another way, you said earlier that there could be 'bad religion'; presumably those bad religions are the ones that do not observe the fundamental principles you identified. So then, by construction, there are some religions that don't have those principles, no? To say that the bad ones are not fundamental, and the good ones are, is just circular.

All that aside, for someone preaching "humbleness towards what cannot be known", you seem pretty sure of your conclusions. Since you cannot know it, how do you know that 9/11 wasn't the right answer?

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Samprimary
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quote:
And all religions teach, following those principles is the way to salvation. Not worshipping some 'God', but humbleness towards what ultimately cannot be known.
Religions don't generally follow that idea. Here's a pretty basic complaint with your notion, that I just want to present: the major religions don't actually state at all that "humbleness towards what ultimately cannot be known" is a path to salvation. To them, God is known and his position is absolute. Certain very specific things are the path to salvation, the best known being acceptance and admission of Jesus Christ as savior, for nearly all Christianity. Buddhism also has no path to salvation, but rather an ascendance to a more enlightened state. So on, so forth. Interdependency does not work across the major religions, Islam definitely judges the individual far more than Buddhism would, etc.

Fundaments of religions are actually generally not something that should be conflated into feelgoodianity, overall.

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GinetteB
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Sam, yes the religions do. But not their followers. That's the problem. The scriptures don't speak about 'God is known' at all. There are hundreds of passages in the Bible and the Qu'ran, where the idea is that you can only get to know God through following the path.
This 'best known being acceptance and admission of Jesus Christ as savior' is definitely a USA interpretation. Jesus forbids his disciples to ever tell anyone he is the Christ. (Matthew 16:20). And just read 2 John, there you can see the antichrist is those that do not confess Jesus came in the flesh (= was human) and do not bring his doctrine. It clearly states, those that follow the doctrine 'have' God. And those that don't, don't. Also in Matth 7:21 'Not those that say 'Lord oh lord, but those who do the will of the Father'...
In the Qu'ran, there is many passages about what a 'disbeliever' is. It says for example 'disbelieve the verses of Allah' instead of 'disbelieve in Allah'. Here is also one example: O ye who believe! if you obey any party of those who have been given the Book, they will turn you again into disbelievers after you have believed.
(Qu'ran Aal-e-Imran 3:101)
How true is that!

Buddhism has no path to salvation? Sure they do, it is called the Dharma.
And no, it should not be about feelgoodianity, but about the absence of suffering. Happy lifes for all.

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GinetteB
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quote:
All that aside, for someone preaching "humbleness towards what cannot be known", you seem pretty sure of your conclusions.
KingofMen, if you quote me, then at least have the decency to quote me correctly. I said 'humbleness towards what ULTIMATELY cannot be known', being a reference to that what cannot be known about God.

As to my analysis, yes I am pretty sure I can defend that originally, all major religions have this same path to salvation, and I can prove it with scripture. And I am certainly not the only one who draws this conclusion. I have been discussing those principles with muslim friends, and to be honest, there wasn't much discussion as they say 'Yes, that is what our religion teaches'. They do not want to agree upon my definition of a 'disbeliever' though, but they also do not disagree. They just ask me to read the Qu'ran again:=) Lol.

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