Religion - anything exclusively good about it ? (in Debates)


Sickone March 2 2012 6:41 AM EST

What I mean by that is
"does any religion have any GOOD effects that are NOT achievable by any other non-religious means? and if not, why do we bother protecting them?",
but that was a title too long to fit.

Personally, I posit that there is absolutely nothing inherently good in any religious belief that is not already achievable via non-religious means.
Furthermore, I also posit that the added non-positive baggage (on top of the "good stuff") usually has a more detrimental overall effect to both individuals and society as a whole than any overall benefits obtainable from the "good stuff".

In other words, that anything good about any religion comes from common sense snippets embedded in said religion, and the less palatable stuff usually overwhelms the good stuff.


Subsequently, I move that religions should lose any kind of legal protection, with no exemptions from duties or responsibilities that every other citizen has (except things that are allowed due to non-religious reasons too).
That means that whatever religious rules you want to follow should be overridden by any normal laws in effect in case of any conflict between them.
It also means churches and other religious organisations should be considered businesses like any other, their income should be taxed, and they should be audited in the same way you would audit any training seminars or for-profit self-help groups. They only get tax deductions for money actually donated to charity and reasonable operating expenses, with appropriate documentation for both.

Gunny Pew Pew [Red Permanent Assurance] March 2 2012 7:13 AM EST

Are there any crazy cases about taking the notified day off from work for sensible religious holidays and getting fired for doing so? Think that's probably the only grey area to fairly debate on in regards to legal protection.

Wise March 2 2012 7:41 AM EST

So what you're saying is that your morals (our legal code) is better than any religion? You do realize that all laws are no more than morality enforced.

Gunny Pew Pew [Red Permanent Assurance] March 2 2012 8:02 AM EST

Yes, our legal system is better than biblical damnations or stonings.

Wise March 2 2012 8:10 AM EST

Ah, clearly you don't read the Bible because those laws were removed in the New Testament.

Gunny Pew Pew [Red Permanent Assurance] March 2 2012 8:15 AM EST

Oh good, I hated that hell business too.

Wise March 2 2012 8:22 AM EST

Ah, well Hell is still in place. Basically, Christ said Christians shouldn't throw the first stone because they sin themselves and should leave judgment to Him. The only people Christians are to judge is other Christians.

So really if you accept Christ as Lord and Savior, Hell is nothing to worry about.

Gunny Pew Pew [Red Permanent Assurance] March 2 2012 8:32 AM EST

uhhh 0.o unless Jesus started the clone wars those were jews, used Judge Deadite as a get out of jail free card for all, and the judging others bit was boldly contradicting the previous statement.....
I'm going to concede defeat this instant before you say something completely stupid.

Adminedyit March 2 2012 9:18 AM EST

we've gone from politics to religion on the forums....

THE END IS NIGH!!!

QBJohnnywas March 2 2012 10:30 AM EST

Catholic guilt is MUCH better than the secular kind.

AdminQBnovice [Cult of the Valaraukar] March 2 2012 10:46 AM EST

+1 JW

No other force could have given so much to culture and society throughout history.

The very notion of a tribe, the structure that took humanity from the wilderness to the empires of old depends on a shared belief structure.

Hubris in any form, be it religiously or intellectually based is folly.
Finding in a way to acknowledge the validity of all perspectives is the only way to really make a difference. Making others wrong doesn't help.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 2 2012 11:35 AM EST

Afterlives.

I mean, where else can you get to go and live forever eating/drinking/fighting/loving as much as you want?

Forever!

Sign me up!

Lord Bob March 2 2012 11:49 AM EST

Exclusively? No. There are several positive aspects to certain religions. None that can't be achieved without religion.

That said, I would never want to take away one's right to worship as they choose. That is a large component of free expression.

AdminQBVerifex [Serenity In Chaos] March 2 2012 5:00 PM EST

My favorite part of religion is that it gives me an excuse to talk existentialism with my friends and hear wildly different answers. I think religion can be used as crutch, as a club, as a pretty flower, a refreshing glass of water, and a painkiller.

AdminQBVerifex [Serenity In Chaos] March 2 2012 5:03 PM EST

Hey, here is a timely article about this subject: http://www.inlander.com/spokane/article-17576-the-godless.html

Demigod March 2 2012 5:58 PM EST

Oh good, I hated that hell business too. ~FawkesNoose

Ah, well Hell is still in place. ~Wise

You both may want to do a quick web search for Hell, Sheol, and Gehenna. Just like with the Old Test. laws ending with Jesus, opinions of Sheol vary with sects, but there's reason to think most Christian denominations shouldn't accept the general view of Hell as a fire & brimstone torment.

/hijack

Sickone March 2 2012 6:29 PM EST

So what you're saying is that your morals (our legal code) is better than any religion?

Actually, I am saying two things:
- that religion is NOT better than the law
- that common sense is just as good as most religions

You do realize that all laws are no more than morality enforced.

You do realize that religion is morality enforced by rewards and punishments dispensed in a way that can not possibly be verified at this time (i.e. after death and/or in some unspecified future).

Ah, clearly you don't read the Bible because those laws were removed in the New Testament.

Well, if you insist on talking only about christian denominations, fine, let's - but I was generally talking about any religion.
The New Testament is not a standalone document, it's supplemental reading. Just because something is not stated in the NT doesn't mean it's been abolished, whatever's in the OT still stands. There are very few things in the NT that actually override any of the things stated in the OT, most of them are more like pleas for leniency rather than even guidelines, let alone rules. But we digress.

Catholic guilt is MUCH better than the secular kind.

Keyword, guilt. As in, regret for something that you have already done or plan to do anyway.
What do you think works better:
a) you hate somebody and want him dead, you kill him, you repent "truly" immediately after, you get "forgiven", then when you die you go to heaven anyway
b) you hate somebody and want him dead, but you know that if you kill him chances are you'll end up dead yourself (or in jail for a very long time), and with nothing else afterwards, you certainly think quite a few times before actually seriously considering doing it

No other force could have given so much to culture and society throughout history.

No other force in human history has been responsible for more deaths, pain and suffering either. Put it all on a scale and it doesn't even begin to even out.

Also, I seriously doubt your statement's veridicity. While some deeply religious people MIGHT have given us some cultural treasures, as far as society goes, nothing else but SCIENCE (and secular science at that) has been more of a contributor to humankind's current well-being.
Democracy was a secular initiative even in antiquity, the republic also, whereas monarchies, tyrannies and dictatorships are usually religiously-motivated.
The USA was founded by mostly secular principles, with emphasis on the SEPARATION of church and state... ANY church. And in today's terms, if they would be transported and acclimatized to our times (exposed to what science knows today), most of the founding fathers would have been mostly agnostic or even atheists themselves (back in the day, given the state of human knowledge, they were called "deists").

Finding in a way to acknowledge the validity of all perspectives is the only way to really make a difference. Making others wrong doesn't help.

Financially supporting a belief unfounded on any falsifiable, verifiable or observable concepts is hardly better, wouldn't you agree ?
For instance, just because billions of people falsely believe antibiotics cure viral infections doesn't make it true - and that's actually something science knows for sure, is empirically testable and so on and so forth. With humanity's wonky false belief track record, just because so many people believe something doesn't even begin to make it true.

That said, I would never want to take away one's right to worship as they choose. That is a large component of free expression.

Oh, they can worship anything they want, from an invisible man in the sky to a dry pebble on a lake bed or anything else they want.
But only as long as they obey all "secular" laws too, and only as long as they pay their dues to society like every other citizen in their country.

I'm not saying we should forbid religion, far from it.
I'm just saying we should just stop encouraging it in any way at all, stop giving any religion any type of preferential treatment like tax-exempt statuses or heavy-duty governmental subventions.
And that we should stop being influenced by any of it in legislative, economic or political decisions.

Lord Bob March 2 2012 6:32 PM EST

I'm just saying we should just stop encouraging it in any way at all, stop giving any religion any type of preferential treatment like tax-exempt statuses or heavy-duty governmental subventions.
I certainly agree with this.

QBRanger March 2 2012 6:46 PM EST

And then again, we should not force beliefs onto religious organizations that they do not accept.

Lord Bob March 2 2012 6:56 PM EST

They should have to follow the law like everyone else. They don't get to skip out on providing a key part of health care that every other employer has to because Sky Cake told them it's naughty.

QBRanger March 2 2012 7:05 PM EST

And that I completely disagree with. There is a sepertaion of church and state and the state should not be able to override a basic tenant of the church.

QBRanger March 2 2012 7:06 PM EST

The key part of health care, according to that Georgetown student who testified for Pelosi is 3000 bucks so she and her other lawyer students can have sex as much as they want.

Sorry bud, but I should not have to pay for her sexual escapades.

Go to the local Planned Parenthood and get some free condoms. Or get the generic BCPs at 9 bucks a month. When you are paying 50k in tuitiion, there is no reason you cannot afford 120 a year to have sex as much as you want.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 2 2012 7:21 PM EST

Still no comments on afterlives?

They are singularily the largest selling point if *any* religion.

Lord Bob March 2 2012 7:31 PM EST

They are singularily the largest selling point if *any* religion.
True, but it's not a real benefit. Any comfort gained from believing in an afterlife is purely psychological, and this is certainly not exclusive to religion.

QBJohnnywas March 2 2012 7:47 PM EST

Science has it's own afterlife anyhow, cryogenics, with the belief that at some point everything will be cured and you can be unfrozen and live again.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 2 2012 7:52 PM EST

True, but it's not a real benefit. Any comfort gained from believing in an afterlife is purely psychological, and this is certainly not exclusive to religion.

Proove it.

Otherwise, you;ll have to accept that only a religion can 'sell' you an afterlife.

And you'd be silly not ot want one of those. The other option is just to cease to exist when you die.

Why plan for that?

QBRanger March 2 2012 7:53 PM EST

Like this:

AdminTitan [The Sky Forge] March 2 2012 10:04 PM EST

They don't get to skip out on providing a key part of health care that every other employer has to

every other employer has to

employer has to

has to

Problem found. Forcing employers to provide "x" benefit should not exist.

QBRanger March 2 2012 10:10 PM EST

Problem found. Forcing employers to provide "x" benefit should not exist.

Exactly!!

My wife and I cannot have any more children, yet we are forced to pay for everyone else who wants to have sex. And will have to pay for OB coverage even though we will never use it again.

Sickone March 2 2012 10:39 PM EST

And then again, we should not force beliefs onto religious organizations that they do not accept.

See if you can follow the dots...

So if one religious organization believes it's ok to kill those that speak against it, should we let them kill anybody for only doing that and nothing else, and not put them in jail for it ?

Say another religion believes it's quite ok to kill his own child if he or she has shamed the family, should we allow that and not put them in jail for it ?

Yet another religion probably thinks it's ok to have sex with children, should we roll over and accept that if they claim to follow that religion ?

Say yet another religion says it's quite ok to beat your wife as hard as you like if she was disobedient, should we allow them to keep beating their wives and not punish them for doing it ?

What if another religion says it's a sin to pay taxes, we should just let tax evaders go if they simply claim to be part of that religion ?

And what if yet another religion wants to employ untipped workers but they believe they should only pay them half of the minimum wage, should we allow that too ?

...

The answer to any and all of the above question MUST be a clear and resounding NO all around.

Now, to connect those dots - a religious organization should NOT get a pass from any law just because they're a religious organization.

Sure, MAYBE employers should NOT be FORCED to pay for birth control or any other number of things for their employees, the employees should either pay it out of their own pocket or settle it with their medical insurance company, but as long as all the other employers HAVE to do it, religious organizations SHOULD ALSO HAVE TO DO IT.

Besides, churches are already paying for their employees' birth control, since they pay them wages ; the employees are usually quite free to just go out and buy whatever contraception they damn well please using the money they just received from the religious institution.
If the churches offer employees health insurance benefits, the only control they should be allowed to have over the process is deciding the TOTAL AMOUNT PAID to the insurance company, for everything else, it's only a matter of doctor and patient.

AdminTitan [The Sky Forge] March 2 2012 10:41 PM EST

Sure, MAYBE employers should NOT be FORCED to pay for birth control or any other number of things for their employees, the employees should either pay it out of their own pocket or settle it with their medical insurance company, but as long as all the other employers HAVE to do it, religious organizations SHOULD ALSO HAVE TO DO IT.

I'm fine with this.

Sickone March 2 2012 10:47 PM EST

My wife and I cannot have any more children, yet we are forced to pay for everyone else who wants to have sex. And will have to pay for OB coverage even though we will never use it again.

In the long run, it will be far more expensive to pay for an unwanted child that would get abandoned, with all the foster care checks, public school education costs and so on and so forth, not to speak of possible future food stamp or other similar things.
The total and ongoing cost for that certainly goes at least an order of magnitude higher than the 10$/mo that would be needed for a lousy generic pack of birth control pills, wouldn't you say so ?

Wise March 2 2012 11:06 PM EST

Since the thread has switched to the contraceptive debate, I'll give my thoughts.

I agree with Ranger. I also believe that arguing that we should pay for contraceptives because it's cheaper than paying for unwanted kids, is exactly the same as arguing that since certain people are more likely to steal, we should just give them money to avoid the possible expense of incarcerating them.

A thief is a thief regardless if they use force or blackmail.

Lord Bob March 2 2012 11:31 PM EST

Science has it's own afterlife anyhow, cryogenics,
No. Everyone knows cryogenics is a joke. That is not "science's afterlife." Not even in the ball park.

Prove it.
No. You prove it.

Otherwise, you;ll have to accept that only a religion can 'sell' you an afterlife.
No. No I don't. They may con you in to believing in one, but they can't sell you one.

Why plan for that?
I don't think it's something you plan for.

Problem found. Forcing employers to provide "x" benefit should not exist.
In lieu of a national, universal health care system, which is what we should have, yes we should.

Wise March 2 2012 11:40 PM EST

Universal health care is what we have, why?

The only reason that comes to mind is because we want it. The reason conservatives don't want it is because every time we receive something from the government we must surrender more of our freedom in return. In this case, money and freedom of choice.

Really it boils down to people who tend to want security over freedom as opposed to those who tend to want freedom over security. Of course, people differ wildly on what freedoms and securities they wish to exchange.

Sickone March 2 2012 11:48 PM EST

I also believe that arguing that we should pay for contraceptives because it's cheaper than paying for unwanted kids, is exactly the same as arguing that since certain people are more likely to steal, we should just give them money to avoid the possible expense of incarcerating them.

I read that as you being against welfare, unemployment benefits and food stamps.

Lord Bob March 2 2012 11:54 PM EST

Universal health care is what we have, why?
Wait, what? We don't have it.

...every time we receive something from the government we must surrender more of our freedom in return. ... Really it boils down to people who tend to want security over freedom ...
You know, I just got done watching The Confederate States of America. It's a movie that examines what would have happened if the South won the Civil War. The argument the Confederates used to justify slavery even into the 21st century in the movie was along the lines of "abolition infringes on our freedom! You're not against freedom, are you?"

I'm not equating your argument with justifying slavery. Your reasoning just reminded me of what they were saying.

QBRanger March 2 2012 11:55 PM EST

In lieu of a national, universal health care system, which is what we should have, yes we should.

Beware of what you ask for.

As a physician, once you are told how to practice, instead of being able to practice patient centered medicine, the quality disintegrates.

Lord Bob March 2 2012 11:58 PM EST

Beware of what you ask for.
Ok.

I'm still asking. Why? Because I know what I'm asking for.

Wise March 3 2012 12:01 AM EST

Well we do have it in a sense - anybody can receives care in the ER, but I suppose not in the sense you intend. In fact, even ER care provided to illegal aliens is reimbursed to the hospital by the government.

And the slavery argument you reference is pretty much the opposite of the argument for freedom...

QBRanger March 3 2012 12:03 AM EST

LB,

We have had this discussion numerous times in the past.

Gunny Pew Pew [Red Permanent Assurance] March 3 2012 2:36 AM EST

Demi, Hell is a twitter short blurb in the good book which I rule out as a documented place for that reason.
we should not force beliefs onto religious organizations that they do not accept.
Woot! Time to knock up my 13 year old cousin!
3000 bucks so she and her other lawyer students can have sex as much as they want.
Someone restrain OB post haste!
And will have to pay for OB coverage even though we will never use it again.
Oh...too late nvm my bad...OB is immune to pepper spray so get a tazer.
In the long run, it will be far more expensive to pay for an unwanted child
Love the stat theory that our crime is still dropping because of affordable abortions.
btw doubt two pennies from your W2 went to gov'rubbers ;p
surrender money and freedom of choice
We already do that with the current line of capital healthcare! Bonk.
As a physician, once you are told how to practice,
Think medical school, malpractice suits, health boards, and good will towards man might just save us from concrete in the butt. With get rich scams involving immigrant braces and prosthetics still intact I can't see red hammer and scalpel fears ever coming true.
instead of being able to practice patient centered medicine, the quality disintegrates.
You haven't been employed/injured in another country to say even a slight majority are awful doctors. They also have many of the same medicines. As we have turned to restless leg syndrome and hiring doctors out of Mexico maybe we are suffering from depleted quality.

Amazing how quickly we went from asking the good of religion to universal healthcare. When it's what Jesus would do!
Dunno what the robed dinosaur would say on free condoms, but he's not made a trip to Wal-Mart.

Anywoo, guess no one can answer you Sickone. You win.

Lochnivar March 3 2012 4:05 AM EST

Someone restrain OB post haste!
Already done, the girl he's with is into that sort of thing apparently.

Oh...too late nvm my bad...OB is immune to pepper spray so get a tazer.
That's what she said...

I thought this was a religious discussion, how did we end up on healthcare?

QBJohnnywas March 3 2012 4:20 AM EST

Things religion does better. Jesus is a better socialist than Obama ever will be.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 3 2012 5:07 AM EST

No. You prove it.

I don't have to.

Relgions sell afterlives. Nothing else does yet. Not until we can download ourselves into the 'net, and live elecronically forever.

Whether you belive in an afterlife or not is frankly irrelevant. The *only* way you can get one is through a religion.

The choice is yours.

No. No I don't. They may con you in to believing in one, but they can't sell you one.

You don't pay to be in a Relgion? And I'm not just talking about money here...

It's all a transaction.

Do 'x', be rewarded with an afterlife.

It's a sales pitch.

I don't think it's something you plan for.

You don't have too, sure. But you don't have to plan for anything.

Sickone March 3 2012 6:04 AM EST

I thought this was a religious discussion, how did we end up on healthcare?

Ranger, obviously. :P

QBRanger March 3 2012 11:34 AM EST

Ranger, obviously. :P

No Sickone. You are wrong in your Ranger bashing.

The first mention of healthcare was by LB on March 2 6:56 PM EST.

The post before I mentioned about not imposing beliefs on religious organizations but that was a general thought including healthcare, gay marriage and who they can hire.

A prime example is http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2012/01/supreme-court-backs-church-in-landmark-religious-liberty-case/

So before you go Ranger bashing yet again, how about you actually know the facts and stop being a troll. Since that was a classic troll type post.

Lord Bob March 3 2012 12:04 PM EST

We have had this discussion numerous times in the past.
Correct. No need to hijack this thread with it again.

Lord Bob March 3 2012 12:16 PM EST

GL,

This is a sale:
Customer: "Here is my payment!"
Seller: "Here is your product!"

This is not a sale:
Customer: "I agree to provisions x, y and z in exchange for a good afterlife."
Seller: "Ha ha! I conned you into believing you'll get a reward after you die! Dance puppet, dance!"

Lord Bob March 3 2012 12:19 PM EST

...but that was a general thought including healthcare, gay marriage ..
I normally don't like to get into the topic of gay marriage, since it's not my issue, but I have a question. How does legalizing gay marriage infringe on another's religious freedom? Nobody is forcing any religious institution to perform the ceremony.

QBRanger March 3 2012 12:24 PM EST

Nobody is forcing any religious institution to perform the ceremony.

Yet.

Nobody thought the government would force religious institutions to pay for the morning after pill, or birth control. Yet they have.

Nobody thought the government would get involved in the decision of a religious group to fire one of its ministers. Yet they tried.

Yet, is the key word.

Lord Bob March 3 2012 12:29 PM EST

Ah, a slippery slope argument.

Churches and other religious institutions can refuse to perform a wedding ceremony now. They aren't forced to marry anybody they don't approve of. Nothing would change.

But again, I'm not usually one to get into the gay marriage argument, and since this topic has a 99.571% success rate in hijacking any discussion the moment it is brought up, I'm going to quit right now.

QBRanger March 3 2012 12:37 PM EST

I never wanted or intended to get into the specific arguments such as gay marriage.

The thread was about religion and my post and point was to expect the government to stay out of religion.

Something that used to be understood by Presidents past.

And yes, there is a slippery slope argument. A very valid one indeed.

Lochnivar March 3 2012 12:59 PM EST

I'll give you a point for consistency LB.

You were against Sharia law superseding US laws and you seem to be holding the same principle here.

Lord Bob March 3 2012 1:16 PM EST

You were against Sharia law superseding US laws and you seem to be holding the same principle here.
Why wouldn't I be? I am an atheist. I am against any religious law superseding secular, constitutional law, not to mention personal liberties or the general welfare.

Gunny Pew Pew [Red Permanent Assurance] March 3 2012 1:39 PM EST

Something that used to be understood by Presidents past.
And it's a line drive that hit the ball girl. >.> Put your head in a pillowcase and shout it out.
You'll feel better.

QBRanger March 3 2012 1:43 PM EST

Fawkes,

Troll is as troll does, mamma Ranger used to say.

Gunny Pew Pew [Red Permanent Assurance] March 3 2012 1:47 PM EST

It's quite possible I just took the bait you set. We do smell our own.
Mean why else would you be so quick to yell troll twice in the same thread for your political deviations? ;)

QBRanger March 3 2012 1:49 PM EST

I seem to be trying to have a discussion.

You obviously are just trying to provoke with your replies. As you do with most of your posts.

Gunny Pew Pew [Red Permanent Assurance] March 3 2012 1:58 PM EST

We mirror each other so well. :)
But, no, you aren't trying to have a talk. Are spouting off from that cold corner, wrapped in your hate blanket, adjusting the tin hat. The Fed isn't after your clutched cross. Obama isn't going to send Seal team 6 after donation boxes. Government wasn't the enemy here until you made it so. At least aim at the target so I can't have fun with your shattershots.

Lochnivar March 3 2012 1:58 PM EST

Wait... politics now?

So back to the original point...

1) Yes some good things come from religion, and no I don't think that there is a secular replacement for it.

2) Religious entities should be subject to the same laws as everyone else though I will allow that there may be circumstances where this needs to be modified.

3) Religious organizations are typically non-profit and charity focused, so I think the tax free status is okay. They also help establish a level of 'community' for people that I think is undervalued. (Irony being I am in no way religious or sociable..heh)
I am ok with auditing though, but that's because I have trust issues.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 3 2012 1:58 PM EST

LB, it's still a sales pitch.

That you get conned at the end is irrelevant.

419's?

"I have won the lottery, but can't get to the money. If you give me your bank account details, I will give you half of the winnings!"

Oh, and who's to say you *don't* get your afterlife? No one has *every* registered a complaint in that deprtment...

Lord Bob March 3 2012 2:11 PM EST

LB, it's still a sales pitch.
It's a sales pitch. It's not a sale. I was going to use the same example of the lottery scam to prove my point.

If all religion has to offer in that department is the equivalent of the Nigerian lottery scam, well, that's not exclusive to religion either.

Oh, and who's to say you *don't* get your afterlife? No one has *every* registered a complaint in that deprtment...
Which only supports my argument.

QBRanger March 3 2012 2:17 PM EST

Religious organizations are typically non-profit and charity focused, so I think the tax free status is okay.

Tell that to the Vatican, or the Boston diocese that have billions of dollars in assets.

I agree with LB, if they make a profit, the pay taxes.

If they are truly non profit, then there is nothing to tax = tax free!

Lochnivar March 3 2012 2:20 PM EST

I did say 'typically'... and I did also say that I was down with them getting audited.

Gunny Pew Pew [Red Permanent Assurance] March 3 2012 2:27 PM EST

The Vatican isn't under our jurisdiction and it's a bank so might have got bailed out if was. lol

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 3 2012 2:53 PM EST

What arguement LB?

Currently, Religions are the only way to get an afterlife.

There's no changing that.

Whether you disbelive in the existence of the afterlife on offer, or even if you get scammed and don't end up with an afterlife, there's nothing else on earth that offers (at least the potential for) one.

That's an effect, that the OP aked for, that is plainly not achievable by any other non-religious means.

As for being sold one, you are being sold one. You have to give a combination of time, activites and money to the organisation in question to get your benefit.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 3 2012 2:54 PM EST

As for it not being a sale, of course it's a sale. You don't have to recive your goods *now* to have been sold something.

Investing on futures for one example.

QBPit Spawn [Abyssal Specters] March 3 2012 3:05 PM EST

Currently, Religions are the only way to get an afterlife.

Supposedly. However there is an alternative now. Film doing something really stupid and post it on youtube.

Lord Bob March 3 2012 3:06 PM EST

What argument LB? Currently, Religions are the only way to get an afterlife.
No, there is NO way to get one. That is my point. It's not getting your goods later. It's a scam, intentional or not.

What they are really selling you is psychological comfort, which is not exclusive to religion.

Lord Bob March 3 2012 3:06 PM EST

Supposedly. However there is an alternative now. Film doing something really stupid and post it on youtube.
Ha! Pit wins.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 3 2012 3:18 PM EST

That's purely your opinion LB. ;)

You have no proof to back it up. You cannot prove it's a scam, nor can you prove no one gets an afterlife.

Of course, you'll just say the same thing back. ;)

But that's really the point.

You *can't* get an afterlife without Religion. Religion gives you the posibility of one. Guarentees it, if you belive.

Lord Bob March 3 2012 3:22 PM EST

That's purely your opinion LB.
It's not an opinion, it's a hypothesis at worst. So is yours, so pointing that out does nothing but put us both back at square one.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 3 2012 3:26 PM EST

At best it's an opinion. At worst it's a belief. ;)

Lord Bob March 3 2012 3:32 PM EST

An opinion expresses personal taste. "I like Coke better than Pepsi." That's an opinion.

"We have no evidence whatsoever for an afterlife, nor is one needed to explain any natural event, so it follows that an afterlife does not exist" is not an opinion. I am not expressing whether I prefer there to be an afterlife or not. I am stating the existence of one is highly improbable.

Sickone March 3 2012 3:36 PM EST

You know, you USofAians still have it mildly good.
You may have a minority of agnostics and atheists, but at least you do not have an overwhelming majority of any single subset of any religion, and you do not have a semi-official state religion ; even if some religions do get governmental funding they do it in a slightly roundabout way ; you do not have state-sanctioned, state-funded country-wide religious indoctrination starting from kindergarten up to highschool.

That's not the case in Romania.
We have almost 90% of the population identifying as Eastern Orthodox, almost all the rest other christian denominations, with less than 0.1% declaring either agnosticism or atheism.
While ON PAPER the state is a secular state (a leftover from the communist days) and it has no official state religion, you just know you are not getting anywhere if you even begin to openly oppose any obviously christian views, let alone specific orthodox views, and that you pretty much have to act like a pretty strong believer to hope for any large number of votes.
The orthodox church has been strongly lobbying the legislative branch and the government to get preferential treatment over any other religions, IN SPITE OF EUROPEAN UNION DIRECTIVES TO THE CONTRARY, and it looks like they are getting it more and more each day.

The state pays the salary of all the clergy. They ALSO pay the salary of religion teachers which are not actual teachers of comparative religion nor anything like that, but alumni of orthodox seminars, which now START INDOCTRINATING CHILDREN FROM KINDERGARTEN UP TO THE 12TH GRADE. There is no actual moral being thought, just a list of "bad things you do for which you can go to hell". There is no study of religions nor history of religions, there is only study of the orthodox version of the bible. And last but not least, they teach INtolerance of other religions during religion classes, which should actually be called "orthodox indoctrination" classes.
ANY AND ALL OF THIS IS ALSO DIRECTLY CONTRARY TO E.U. DIRECTIVES WHICH ROMANIA SHOULD BE FOLLOWING, BUT ISN'T.
And yet, almost nobody gives a damn.


Oh, and the Orthodox Church of Romania not only is getting massive financial assistance from the government, but it's also getting dirt-cheap (or free) land, including forests and other things that you'd think the state should hold in its possession.
They (the church) has a huge selection of buildings they also own, with most clergy residing in them for a nominal fee, unlike just about any other Romanians, which pay nearly european-level rents on nothing even close to an european-level salary.
The church also operates quite a few business arms, like candle-making, calendar printing and other such things, let alone charging an "as good as mandatory" donation for any services provided (baptism, marriage, and a lot of other things I care not to explain), but of course, they don't pay a single dime to the state, since, hey, tax exempt. They're SUPPOSED to be a non-profit, but somehow, in spite of constantly expanding their holdings, they still manage to end up with many millions of liquid euro "balance surpluses" on a regular basis.


Overall, in the past 20 years, Romania has slipped from being high in the upper half of european statistics concerning cultural and scientific education down to almost the very bottom. Children are rapidly losing interest in any science teaching (or don't even develop any taste for it), and it persists until the end of their studies... but worse still, the literacy percentage is dropping instead of increasing (it was increasing all throughout the communist years, with children almost completely becoming literate and old illiterate people dying naturally of old age, now it's starting the other way around).
We are nowadays also "leading from the bottom" not only in termsof literacy, but also in terms of intolerance (religious or otherwise), predisposition towards bribery, cheating and even theft in general, also LACK of "civic duty".

If you can get my drift.

Lord Bob March 3 2012 3:40 PM EST

TIL Sickone is from Romania.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 3 2012 3:52 PM EST

While an opionion certainly is;

a personal view, attitude, or appraisal

And I take it that there being no possible afterlives is a personal viewpoint of yours, an opinion is also;

a belief or judgment that rests on grounds insufficient to produce complete certainty.

Your persional judgement that there's can't be an afterlife is by definition, an opinion. ;)

But you mention above, it's not you don't belive there are no afterlives at all, just that they are higly unlikely.

If it's just unlikely, then you also belive there is some chance to afterlives existing.

In which case, it's likely that the afterlife of a specific religion does, actually, exist.

However small the posibility.

Sickone March 3 2012 3:59 PM EST

/sidenote

TIL Sickone is from Romania.
Only today ?
I guess you seldom read threads you post in after you post, because there's a handful in which you posted where I state or at least strongly hint at me being Romanian after your post.
;)

/end-sidenote

Sickone March 3 2012 4:04 PM EST

As far as the afterlife goes...

TECHNICALLY, what the religions sell is the PROMISE of an afterlife. Or, if you prefer, the reservation, or, err, PREORDER of an afterlife slot whenever the afterlife might become available.
No actual sale of an afterlife can be attested, because the existence of an afterlife has not yet been conclusively verified.

And their return policy sucks.
:P

Lochnivar March 3 2012 4:05 PM EST

And their return policy sucks.

Wouldn't the return policy be reincarnation? :-)

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 3 2012 4:07 PM EST

There's at least one Relgion that sells that too. ;)

Lord Bob March 3 2012 4:10 PM EST

GL, if you were using the word opinion above similar to a judge's opinion, then let me re-answer your previous post.
That's purely your opinion LB.
And yours is purely your opinion. We're still back at square one.

Moving on to the possibility of an afterlife, if there's a miniscule chance an afterlife exist, then there is at least an equal chance that religion does not exclusively lead to it.

Still sounds like more of a scam then a sale.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 3 2012 4:17 PM EST

Too true LB! And I was waiting for that!

Afterlives could be 'natural', and we all get one anyway. But there's unkown. We don't know what they comprise of, what you can expect, or whether we'll like it!

Relgions sell specific afterlives, and you can pick the one that suits you best. ;)

Want to fight all day and drink all night? Valhalla is the choice for you! Want to go somewhere your every wish is fullfilled, instantly? Islam is the religion for you!

Want to dissapear in the unknown? Well, no need to buy into an established afterlive. Just do your own thing and see where the die lay!

;)

(In all seriousness, talking about proof in a subject based on faith and belief is just asking for tears! ;) )

Lord Bob March 3 2012 4:24 PM EST

Religions sell specific afterlives, and you can pick the one that suits you best.
But again, they're not selling the afterlife. They are selling the -promise- of a specific afterlife. There is a distinction.

In all seriousness, talking about proof in a subject based on faith and belief is just asking for tears!
You were the first to bring up proof.

Want to fight all day and drink all night?
Yes. *grin*

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 3 2012 4:29 PM EST

OK, you're preordering your Afterlife. Delivery on death. ;)

Yeah, I did. ;)

All you need to do is die with your sword in your hand! :D

Lord Bob March 3 2012 4:34 PM EST

OK, you're preordering your Afterlife.
You're not though. You're only preordering the promise of one. Again, all you really get is psychological comfort.

And the point of ordering a specific afterlife falls flat as well. As stated above, whatever tiny chance there is of an afterlife actually being real, there is at least an equal chance religion has nothing to do with it, the specifics of that afterlife are irrelevant.

All you need to do is die with your sword in your hand!
But I can't! It doesn't work that way, unfortunately.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 3 2012 4:35 PM EST

And again we're back to opinions and belief. ;)

Which to be honest, you can't get away form when talking about Religion!

Lord Bob March 3 2012 4:41 PM EST

Opinions in a certain sense, yes, if that's that's the definition you are using.

Sickone March 4 2012 7:40 AM EST

But what does it matter what some people believe about something which can not be verified, when other people believe differently, and other people don't even have a strong opinion either way ? Why do we need to encourage belief that is NOT based on knowable and known facts in general anyway ?
We already have laws, rules and regulations which (mostly, at least in areas where social behaviour is concerned) are based on pretty specific facts which are, so to speak, pretty much common sense (or at least should be). Why do we need to let some people that believe differently about some details bypass those specific laws regarding those details just because enough people (but NOT ALL) believe the same thing ?

Wise March 4 2012 8:14 AM EST

I agree that most laws should apply to everybody regardless of religion. If I violate a law for religious purposes, then I should accept the consequences for violating that law.
This thread is closed to new posts. However, you are welcome to reference it from a new thread; link this with the html <a href="/bboard/q-and-a-fetch-msg.tcl?msg_id=003HSk">Religion - anything exclusively good about it ?</a>