Notices
Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 100 of 348
Like Tree11Likes

Thread: Is religion really the root of all evil?

  1. #1 Is religion really the root of all evil? 
    ox
    ox is offline
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    874
    It's 5 years since Richard Dawkins aired on Channel 4 (UK) his famous 2 part documentary about religion being the root of all evil. I remember watching it and thinking it to be a bit strong. If you had no religion you would miss out on religious art, architecture and music. You would be left without Christian love or Islamic and Buddhist peace. On the other hand there would have been no Crusades, no Inquisition and no terrorism. On the balance I have to agree with Dawkins. Was not the organisation of religion the main driving force behind child abuse, racial tension, and the suppression of women? Does it not racially divide the world into tribes that transcend borders in a way that politics can't? If you are of European or African origin it is overwhelmingly likely that you have been brought up in the Christian tradition. If you are of middle eastern appearance it is likely that you are of Islamic culture. Central south Asians are mostly Hindu and South east Asians Buddhist. Religion is therefore nothing but geographical twisted culture. St Francis Xavier attempted to convert southern and eastern Asia to Christianity, but apart from a few isolated pockets he failed miserably.
    Extreme political ideas have a tendency to come and go, but it seems that extreme religious ideas have the power to carry on forever. We have only 4 or 5 world religions, but the number that have existed and could potentially exist runs into many, many more than this.
    And what's the point of religion anyway? None of it is true. Not one shred of dogma. Not one sentence of scripture, however much you would wish it to be. We are all sentient apes who occupy our own quantum of cosmic spacetime. We aint gonna go to heaven or paradise or attain to some blissfull state of liberation because there aint no heaven, paradise or nirvana. It's nothing but wishful thinking that when we're gone there's a better state for us all up in the sky somewhere, provided we've been good and loyal to our localised faith system. Anybody that has studied the biological tree of life must surely know that nothing separates us from other life forms other than a leap forward in evolution.


    Reply With Quote  
     

  2.  
     

  3. #2  
    Moderator Moderator
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Washington State
    Posts
    8,308
    "all evil" is an exaggerated position. And it almost trivial exercise to find atrocities which weren't conducted for religious reasons such as the Katyn massacre, heavy handed tactics used by China in Tibet, the Rwandan genocide, or ethnic cleansing of the Kurds by Sadam.


    Meteorologist/Naturalist & Retired Soldier
    “The Holy Land is everywhere” Black Elk
    Reply With Quote  
     

  4. #3 Re: Is religion really the root of all evil? 
    Forum Bachelors Degree
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    482
    Quote Originally Posted by ox
    On the other hand there would have been no Crusades, no Inquisition and no terrorism. On the balance I have to agree with Dawkins. Was not the organisation of religion the main driving force behind child abuse, racial tension, and the suppression of women? Does it not racially divide the world into tribes that transcend borders in a way that politics can't?
    Crusades - Maybe those specific wars, but not war in general, surely?
    Inquisition - Maybe, but the crumbling Roman empire would have found another way to levy power over Europe, or at least try to.
    Terrorism - ETA.
    Child abuse - Child abuse without religion? Better tell Gary Glitter.
    Racial tension - Way, way off the mark with this one.
    Suppression of women - May have prolonged the suppression, but i'm pretty sure it wasn't the cause. Maybe an anthropologist could comment.

    Also some of your facts are wrong .I have no problem with the basic premise with your argument but please get facts right.


    My opinion; knowledge and reason, and by extension, science, is the root of all evil.


    I love the story of the Garden of Eden. The snake that tempts mankind into eating fruit from the tree of knowledge. In so doing we become aware of good and evil. Our thirst for knowledge led us to the Fall.

    It is our reason that leads us to be able to distinguish good and evil. A lion will kill without remorse, indifferent to its prey's young. But a man may spare his prey for the communal good, letting its young live with a mother. Therefore, reason and knowledge is the root of all evil. That's not to say 'evil' deeds were not done by lesser animals, including our ancestors, but only that we now perceive these things to be evil.

    But it is also our reason and knowledge that will help us be like gods, and determine for ourselves what is right and wrong. I thank the snake.
    The mark of a moderate man is freedom from his own ideas - Tao Te Ching

    Fancy a game of chess?
    http://www.itsyourturn.com/
    Challenge me, Delphi, and join the Pythian games.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  5. #4  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    8,822
    Evil is not a scientific concept. Therefore, this thread does not belong.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  6. #5  
    Veracity Vigilante inow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Austin, TX
    Posts
    3,500
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    Evil is not a scientific concept. Therefore, this thread does not belong in the Scientific Study of Religion forum. Given the nature of your inquiry, I suggest that it may be more appropriate to discuss in Philosophy, or even the General Discussion forum. Thanks.
    Corrected.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  7. #6  
    Moderator Moderator
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Washington State
    Posts
    8,308
    This is a risk of overlapping the other interesting discussion about humanity but why reject the thread because it uses a qualitative term?

    If, for example, we exchanged "crimes against humanity," for "evil" it would could certainly be considered more scientific because it would be quantitative based on a clear standard of measurement.
    Meteorologist/Naturalist & Retired Soldier
    “The Holy Land is everywhere” Black Elk
    Reply With Quote  
     

  8. #7  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    8,822
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox
    This is a risk of overlapping the other interesting discussion about humanity but why reject the thread because it uses a qualitative term?

    If, for example, we exchanged "crimes against humanity," for "evil" it would could certainly be considered more scientific because it would be quantitative based on a clear standard of measurement.
    Not really. Crimes are legally defined and may be viewed differently by different people at different times. For example, slavery was legal in certain places. Therefore it was not a crime. Are you counting that as a crime against humanity or not?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  9. #8  
    Moderator Moderator
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Washington State
    Posts
    8,308
    To me your argument is like stating a long time for a meteorologist is a short time for a geologist so there's no sense in discussion trends based on time.

    --
    In short pick your definition and stick to it. For the sake of argument I'm referring to international laws which define "crimes against humanity" as they've been for about 70 years. Someone else could pick another--say out of Deuteronomy--it really doesn't matter. The point is there are available definitions suitable enough to quantify the a definition of "evil," from which to apply scientific method.

    The hypothesis put forth claims religion is responsible for all "evil." I'm defining "evil" by replacing it with a firmer definition so we can examine that hypothesis. I absolutely realize that doing so can be full of traps with some so severe they might completely throw out any conclusion. Nevertheless its a solid method used to study many things, particularly in the social sciences, and even physical science when dealing with proxies, where objective characteristics aren't so easy as most of us learn in school. Finding ways to quantify things so they can be examined is part of the scientific method we don't pay nearly enough attention to. Hell most of our best science is far messier than we pretend.
    Meteorologist/Naturalist & Retired Soldier
    “The Holy Land is everywhere” Black Elk
    Reply With Quote  
     

  10. #9  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    8,822
    Even if you are correct, and I don't think you are, no one has made any attempt to come up with any statistics or proof which tie any religion to any specific "crimes against humanity" as defined by any international laws. As a matter of fact, international law was never mentioned until you just did.

    It is just another of many anti-theistic rant threads here on the "scientific study of religion" forum, aka the church of atheism.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  11. #10  
    ox
    ox is offline
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    874
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    It is just another of many anti-theistic rant threads here on the "scientific study of religion" forum, aka the church of atheism.
    Would you accept that all children are effectively atheists until they are brainwashed into religion by educational institutions? At least it's never the other way around is it? I think it's broadly true that someone who has made up their own mind is tending towards atheism. Someone that hasn't tends to agnosticism. Someone that has had their mind made up for them is likely to be religious, as faith is trusting the sayings and doings of another. Children really have no chance, and the virus of faith can extend well into adulthood before doubts creep in. I don't see why a person cannot be spiritual but also embrace atheism. What is spiritual about belief in the supernatural anyway?

    On the subject of confusing political and religious wars I don't really know of too many wars fought without religion. Catholic and protestant Europe clashed in the 20th century. God is always on the side of the righteous even when they lose.
    And slavery was never condemned by the Church was it? Or the Holocaust was not condemned by the Vatican.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  12. #11  
    Time Lord
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    8,046
    Religion is like a special kind of government institution. One could just as easily point out that most wars are declared by governments and go on to suggest that governments started the institution of people killing each other.

    Or we could look at how guns are used for most of the murders in the world, and start thinking that maybe murder would stop if there were no guns. Then it would all happen with knives, and we'd have to eliminate the knives. Then people would start learning lethal martial arts, so we'd have to outlaw martial arts. Then they'd start using their bare hands, and we'd have to start eliminating hands.
    Some clocks are only right twice a day, but they are still right when they are right.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  13. #12  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    8,822
    Quote Originally Posted by ox
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    It is just another of many anti-theistic rant threads here on the "scientific study of religion" forum, aka the church of atheism.
    Would you accept that all children are effectively atheists until they are brainwashed into religion by educational institutions? At least it's never the other way around is it? I think it's broadly true that someone who has made up their own mind is tending towards atheism. Someone that hasn't tends to agnosticism. Someone that has had their mind made up for them is likely to be religious, as faith is trusting the sayings and doings of another. Children really have no chance, and the virus of faith can extend well into adulthood before doubts creep in. I don't see why a person cannot be spiritual but also embrace atheism. What is spiritual about belief in the supernatural anyway?
    What in the world does this have to do with the thread topic?

    On the subject of confusing political and religious wars I don't really know of too many wars fought without religion.
    Nothing else much was done without religion either, for good or evil. But like I said, good and evil are not scientific concepts. People were religious, and attributed most of their important actions to their religion.

    And slavery was never condemned by the Church was it? Or the Holocaust was not condemned by the Vatican.
    What the hell are you talking about? Slavery was condemned by many churches. As a matter of fact, the Quakers, among others, played an important part in the abolitionist movement. And I do believe the Vatican has condemned the Holocaust.
    http://www.catholicnews.com/data/sto...ns/0900414.htm
    Reply With Quote  
     

  14. #13  
    ox
    ox is offline
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    874
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    What in the world does this have to do with the thread topic?
    The indoctrination of children into religion at an age when they are not fit to decide for themselves is effectively child abuse. Not only that, they are likely to be alienated from science and other faith groups, depending upon which global location they happen to reside. They can't disagree with the taught faith, which has no basis in any scientific truth. They have no choice but to tow the line. A child cannot be an apostate. An adult can, but the penalty can be death.
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    Nothing else much was done without religion either, for good or evil. But like I said, good and evil are not scientific concepts. People were religious, and attributed most of their important actions to their religion.
    What important actions are these? Do you mean spreading the faith no matter how? The fundamental tenet of Christianity is 'love thy neighbour' but there is little evidence for this in history (see below). We owe more to the growth of political systems, social reform and law and order, than we do to faith.
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    What the hell are you talking about? Slavery was condemned by many churches. As a matter of fact, the Quakers, among others, played an important part in the abolitionist movement. And I do believe the Vatican has condemned the Holocaust.
    Like the Church's treatment of Galileo, when the apology came 400 years later, the apology for slavery was only made after the event. In fact slavery is the last word that any Christian apologist ought to mention. It was not condemned by Jesus Christ, an omission which proves the failing of scripture to be the divine revelation of God. So slavery flourished, and how. In the 6th Century Pope Gregory I even banned slaves from the priesthood. Up until the Middle Ages the Pope himself even kept slaves. Even monasteries exploited them. 8000 were kept at Saint Germain des Pes, and no doubt performed the work of the indolent monks. The greedy monks of Verdun traded in castrating young males and selling them as eunuch-slaves to Moors and Greeks via Venice.
    Around 10 million men were deported from Africa over a period of 1200 years, by the followers of Christ and Allah. Muslims were not forbidden by their religion to enslave. You could always make slaves of non-believers.
    The killing of infants was a charge brought by Pagans (no less) against Christians, where female infants were left to exposure. If they survived they were collected by baby farmers and reared for slavery or prostitution. This practice was not condemned as murder until the 4th Century.
    The Church did not even condemn serfdom. It remained in England until the 16th Century, in central Europe until the 18th, and in Russia 42 million were not emancipated until 1861. On the other hand the clergy and monks luxuriated in their wealth.
    When the Reformation arrived, that did of course provoke further horrors. At the taking of Magdeburg by the Catholic leader Tilly, the men were let loose on the citizens. 'The soldier must have some reward', said Tilly. In the ruins of one church were found the bodies of 53 women raped and beheaded. All girls and women were raped and babies were flung upon the burning buildings or stabbed. Of 30,000 citizens, only 4000 were spared.
    Did the Vatican condemn Hitler? No, they were a mutual admiration society. They both detested Jews and Communists. The Catholic church informed the Nazis who was Christian in Germany. thus identifying the Jews. The Church turned a blind eye to the death camps. Cardinal Bertram ordered a Requiem Mass in memory of Hitler. Later the Church helped war criminals evade justice. It's no use condemning the Holocaust after the event.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  15. #14  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    8,822
    Quote Originally Posted by ox
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    What in the world does this have to do with the thread topic?
    The indoctrination of children into religion at an age when they are not fit to decide for themselves is effectively child abuse. Not only that, they are likely to be alienated from science and other faith groups, depending upon which global location they happen to reside. They can't disagree with the taught faith, which has no basis in any scientific truth. They have no choice but to tow the line. A child cannot be an apostate. An adult can, but the penalty can be death.
    This is hogwash. People indoctrinate their children in all sorts of ways. It's what humans do, and how they pass along their culture. To do otherwise would be the cruelty. And, until you prove that religion is harmful, you cannot assume that it is harmful.

    What important actions are these? Do you mean spreading the faith no matter how? The fundamental tenet of Christianity is 'love thy neighbour' but there is little evidence for this in history (see below). We owe more to the growth of political systems, social reform and law and order, than we do to faith.
    Well, up until fairly recently, the social reforms, law and order were tied to faith. Now you could argue that it would have happened anyway without the faith, but so could the wars and everything else. That's part of the "everything" I was talking about.
    Like the Church's treatment of Galileo, when the apology came 400 years later, the apology for slavery was only made after the event. In fact slavery is the last word that any Christian apologist ought to mention. It was not condemned by Jesus Christ, an omission which proves the failing of scripture to be the divine revelation of God.
    There you go veering off topic again. This isn't a topic about Jesus Christ, or whether any particular religion is true. It's about harm from religion.
    So slavery flourished, and how. In the 6th Century Pope Gregory I even banned slaves from the priesthood. Up until the Middle Ages the Pope himself even kept slaves. Even monasteries exploited them. 8000 were kept at Saint Germain des Pes, and no doubt performed the work of the indolent monks. The greedy monks of Verdun traded in castrating young males and selling them as eunuch-slaves to Moors and Greeks via Venice.
    Around 10 million men were deported from Africa over a period of 1200 years, by the followers of Christ and Allah. Muslims were not forbidden by their religion to enslave. You could always make slaves of non-believers.
    The killing of infants was a charge brought by Pagans (no less) against Christians, where female infants were left to exposure. If they survived they were collected by baby farmers and reared for slavery or prostitution. This practice was not condemned as murder until the 4th Century.
    What did the atheists of the time have to say about it? If you can prove that the abolition of slavery was an atheist enterprise I would be interested to hear about it. Moral standards evolve, and you are expecting people to adhere to moral standards that were developed after their lifetimes. It is unrealistic.
    The Church did not even condemn serfdom. It remained in England until the 16th Century, in central Europe until the 18th, and in Russia 42 million were not emancipated until 1861. On the other hand the clergy and monks luxuriated in their wealth.
    When the Reformation arrived, that did of course provoke further horrors. At the taking of Magdeburg by the Catholic leader Tilly, the men were let loose on the citizens. 'The soldier must have some reward', said Tilly. In the ruins of one church were found the bodies of 53 women raped and beheaded. All girls and women were raped and babies were flung upon the burning buildings or stabbed. Of 30,000 citizens, only 4000 were spared.
    Did the Vatican condemn Hitler? No, they were a mutual admiration society. They both detested Jews and Communists. The Catholic church informed the Nazis who was Christian in Germany. thus identifying the Jews. The Church turned a blind eye to the death camps. Cardinal Bertram ordered a Requiem Mass in memory of Hitler. Later the Church helped war criminals evade justice. It's no use condemning the Holocaust after the event.
    You are condemning all religion for the acts of a few individuals. You are also spewing one-sided propaganda. There were some members of the church who actively opposed Nazism.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion_in_Nazi_Germany
    In 1937 Pope Pius XI issued the encyclical Mit brennender Sorge condemning Nazi ideology, notably the Gleichschaltung policy directed against religious influence upon education, as well as Nazi racism and antisemitism. Pius XI's encyclical Humani Generis Unitas was never published due to him dying before it could be issued, but the similar Summi Pontificatus was the first encyclical released by his successor (Pius XII), in October 1939. This encyclical strongly condemned both racism and totalitarianism, without the anti-Judaism present in Humani Generis Unitas. The massive Catholic opposition to the euthanasia programs led them to be quietly ended on 28 August 1941, (according to Spielvogel pp. 257–258) in contrast Catholics only at some occasions actively and openly protested Nazi anti-Semitism in any comparable way, except for several bishops and priests like bishop Clemens von Galen of Münster
    .
    Reply With Quote  
     

  16. #15  
    ox
    ox is offline
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    874
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    [
    In 1937 Pope Pius XI issued the encyclical Mit brennender Sorge condemning Nazi ideology, notably the Gleichschaltung policy directed against religious influence upon education, as well as Nazi racism and antisemitism. Pius XI's encyclical Humani Generis Unitas was never published due to him dying before it could be issued, but the similar Summi Pontificatus was the first encyclical released by his successor (Pius XII), in October 1939. This encyclical strongly condemned both racism and totalitarianism, without the anti-Judaism present in Humani Generis Unitas. The massive Catholic opposition to the euthanasia programs led them to be quietly ended on 28 August 1941, (according to Spielvogel pp. 257–258) in contrast Catholics only at some occasions actively and openly protested Nazi anti-Semitism in any comparable way, except for several bishops and priests like bishop Clemens von Galen of Münster
    .
    Maybe you have not read The Fatal Silence by Robert Katz, which deals with the treatment of Jews in 1943 by the Nazis in Rome and when the Pope was Pius XII. The Nazis rounded up 1000 Jews and carted them off to the death camps, under the noses of the Vatican, which as Katz puts it, maintained a 'deafening silence'.
    Religion always has double standards. It depends which side the coin drops. I'm sure that even you can see that it makes its living by false promises. Either religion is true or it is false. It is always projected on to the population as being The Truth. It cannot engage with science because that would invalidate its dogma.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  17. #16  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    8,822
    Quote Originally Posted by ox
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    [
    In 1937 Pope Pius XI issued the encyclical Mit brennender Sorge condemning Nazi ideology, notably the Gleichschaltung policy directed against religious influence upon education, as well as Nazi racism and antisemitism. Pius XI's encyclical Humani Generis Unitas was never published due to him dying before it could be issued, but the similar Summi Pontificatus was the first encyclical released by his successor (Pius XII), in October 1939. This encyclical strongly condemned both racism and totalitarianism, without the anti-Judaism present in Humani Generis Unitas. The massive Catholic opposition to the euthanasia programs led them to be quietly ended on 28 August 1941, (according to Spielvogel pp. 257–258) in contrast Catholics only at some occasions actively and openly protested Nazi anti-Semitism in any comparable way, except for several bishops and priests like bishop Clemens von Galen of Münster
    .
    Maybe you have not read The Fatal Silence by Robert Katz, which deals with the treatment of Jews in 1943 by the Nazis in Rome and when the Pope was Pius XII. The Nazis rounded up 1000 Jews and carted them off to the death camps, under the noses of the Vatican, which as Katz puts it, maintained a 'deafening silence'.
    Religion always has double standards. It depends which side the coin drops. I'm sure that even you can see that it makes its living by false promises. Either religion is true or it is false. It is always projected on to the population as being The Truth. It cannot engage with science because that would invalidate its dogma.
    Do you want to blame all of Pol Pot's murders on atheism?
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pol_Pot
    The Khmer Rouge also classified by religion and ethnic group. They banned all religion and dispersed minority groups, forbidding them to speak their languages or to practice their customs.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  18. #17  
    Universal Mind John Galt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    14,169
    Maybe it would be more productive, if blame is to be assigned, to blame people, not ideologies.
    jbrodrickd and Andrei like this.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  19. #18  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard SkinWalker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Grand Prairie, TX
    Posts
    2,377
    Whether or not good and evil can be discussed in scientific terms aside (and I tend to think they can be and have been elsewhere), this seems more a philosophical discussion.

    I'm moving to Philosophy.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  20. #19  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    8,822
    Quote Originally Posted by SkinWalker
    Whether or not good and evil can be discussed in scientific terms aside (and I tend to think they can be and have been elsewhere)
    Where?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  21. #20  
    ox
    ox is offline
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    874
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    Do you want to blame all of Pol Pot's murders on atheism?
    I respect your concern for evil in all its forms, but I think you're missing my point, that religion is the root of all evil. Religion as I understand, is about 10,000 years old (but let's not go into another debate about its age). The fact is, despicable political regimes under the control of evil dictators still continue to wreak havoc in the world. Where did they get their mandate from? Religion predates politics. There is no end in sight to this, and we must assume that mankind is barking up the wrong tree when it comes to the spread of religion. You cannot argue against a man's religion because God is always on his side, and arguing with God is simply not allowed. Hitler claimed to be Catholic and he encouraged the youth of Germany to pray to Jesus.
    I am not necessarily against religion as such, because it can provide a crutch for many. A man can contemplate suicide. In most cases he will never do it, but the very thought provides him with an escape route and sooner or later he will come round. A man can attend church/mosque/temple and it provides him with an escape route from the dullness of life. He comes into contact with others who have the same mindset. On the other hand his mind becomes replete with phoney and sometimes dangerous dogma. I think the historical clash between Protestant and Catholic (despite both being Christian) or between Sunni and Shia (despite both being Muslim), proves this assertion.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  22. #21  
    Forum Bachelors Degree
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    482
    Quote Originally Posted by ox
    Religion predates politics.
    Really? How do you know this?


    So you are asserting that without religion there would never have been any evil?
    The mark of a moderate man is freedom from his own ideas - Tao Te Ching

    Fancy a game of chess?
    http://www.itsyourturn.com/
    Challenge me, Delphi, and join the Pythian games.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  23. #22  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    8,822
    Quote Originally Posted by ox
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    Do you want to blame all of Pol Pot's murders on atheism?
    I respect your concern for evil in all its forms, but I think you're missing my point, that religion is the root of all evil. Religion as I understand, is about 10,000 years old (but let's not go into another debate about its age). The fact is, despicable political regimes under the control of evil dictators still continue to wreak havoc in the world. Where did they get their mandate from? Religion predates politics. There is no end in sight to this, and we must assume that mankind is barking up the wrong tree when it comes to the spread of religion. You cannot argue against a man's religion because God is always on his side, and arguing with God is simply not allowed. Hitler claimed to be Catholic and he encouraged the youth of Germany to pray to Jesus.
    I am not necessarily against religion as such, because it can provide a crutch for many. A man can contemplate suicide. In most cases he will never do it, but the very thought provides him with an escape route and sooner or later he will come round. A man can attend church/mosque/temple and it provides him with an escape route from the dullness of life. He comes into contact with others who have the same mindset. On the other hand his mind becomes replete with phoney and sometimes dangerous dogma. I think the historical clash between Protestant and Catholic (despite both being Christian) or between Sunni and Shia (despite both being Muslim), proves this assertion.
    If I understand you correctly, you think that when atheists commit mass slaughter, religion is the root cause because the atheists got the idea for mass slaughter from religion? It seems a rather strange hypothesis to me.

    I don't think 10,000 years is the right age for religion, because there are cave drawings which suggest some sort of shamanism that date back to the Paleolithic, more than 300,000 years ago.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paleolithic_religion
    There is evidence for homicide of a Neanderthal by homo sapiens about 50,000 to 75,000 years ago. This is about the time that homo sapiens reached full behavioral modernity.
    http://news.nationalgeographic.com/n...al-murder.html
    Warfare was well under way by 12000 bc, so if your 10,000 year old date for religion is accurate, then religion would have been too late to be the root of all evil.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prehistoric_warfare

    I think it is likely that there was smaller scale warfare between neighboring bands of people much earlier, just as there is now between chimpanzees.
    http://www.theatlanticwire.com/techn...-humans/23984/
    Do you consider chimp wars to be evil? I don't think that involves any religion.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  24. #23  
    墨子 DaBOB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    1,674
    I feel like I just said this somewhere else. But, technically speaking yes, religion is the root, simply because the concept of evil was devised as a contrasting element to explain things in a religious system. There are cultures in the world, including some very large ones, that did not naturally develop such a concept. Most large cultures now are aware of this concept only because it has been brought to them. Confucius (Kongzi), Mencius (Mengzi), Xunzi, Mozi, Zhuangzi and Laozi never spoke of evil. They have spoke of good and bad, but any translator using the word "evil" has not realized his own indoctrination. If only we could study the world's classics through native eyes.
    Do not try and bend the spoon. That's impossible. Instead... only realize the truth. There is no spoon. Then you'll see that it is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself. -Spoon Boy
    Reply With Quote  
     

  25. #24  
    Forum Sophomore
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    112
    No. People commit evil. The root of evil is the will to power.
    Religion is a powerful tool for executing both good and evil.

    Also, Ox
    And what's the point of religion anyway? None of it is true. Not one shred of dogma.
    It's as true as you make it. Faith works like a placebo. I'm a little familiar with the New Testament, there's a lot of good stuff there. Whatever Jesus was he was certainly an upbeat philosopher who often spoke in very simple terms.

    Anyway, here's some hot stuff for your fire
    http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xbv...-fr_shortfilms
    Reply With Quote  
     

  26. #25  
    ox
    ox is offline
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    874
    'Evil prevails when good people do nothing' (Edmund Burke). More so from the standpoint of politics than religion alas, for where religion is concerned it can do no evil. Transgressions are blamed on fractious individuals, and never on the faith. The Pope is infallible. So when he orders an inquisition against heretics and introduces torture as a means to confession, his Jesuit storm troopers describe it as being humane. Yes, even the rack, thumbscrew and burning coals are humane. If they don't confess they are murdered. If they do, they are imprisoned for life in conditions also described as humane. At least they are with their friends, even if life consists of being chained and living on bread and water in foul dungeons.
    ...in its procedure this holy court, presided over by the holiest of men, under the direct control of their holinesses the Popes, was the most infamous instrument of injustice and the worst fomenter of murderous cupidity that the world has ever seen. (gold from bones provided the Church with rich pickings)
    The slaughter of innocent Jews on the way to the First Crusade (sometimes known as the First Holocaust) was justified because the Jews were Christ-killers. Death to all non-believers be they Jews or Muslims. And why were the Jews so reviled? Because they failed to accept Christ as their Messiah. Simple as that. Ultimately this led to the Nazi Holocaust.
    You cannot challenge holy scripture. It is faultless, even if inspired by illiterate peasants like Jesus and Mohammed. Death threats will result if you insult the faith. Bad politics can be challenged. Bad religion cannot, because there is no such thing as bad religion.
    It makes no difference to point out that, for instance, Jews and Palestinians are chromosonal brothers, and that not one facet of religion has any foundation in scientific truth. But only the truth is safe, and nothing else is safe. The way forward to a more peaceful world is to challenge religion.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  27. #26  
    Teb
    Teb is offline
    Forum Freshman
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    50
    Like said before religion is a concept that impact life of those that believe in it more then anything else. One could easily use it to manipulate.
    One could argue that this is what the TS had in mind, yet this is the case for most ideals.

    There is also the case of correlation, one wouldn't argue that religion has anything to do with child abuse in certain religions on the sole basis that the institute in which it statistically occurs the most, is a church of said religion. Isn't the chance greater that it might be related to a certain lifestyle (celibacy for instance)
    Reply With Quote  
     

  28. #27  
    Forum Freshman
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    85
    people are the root of all evil. they are the ones that make the choices that are acts of evil. at the same time, people are good to. it really all depends on the choices people make. religion has nothing to do with it.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  29. #28  
    Forum Freshman
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    10
    Evidently it is not the root of ALL evil..
    Reply With Quote  
     

  30. #29  
    New Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    3
    This topic is always a difficult one because one has to start by defining what exactly what 'evil' refers to. No doubt individual difference will have a relatively significant role in determining what evil refers to because what may be viewed as evil to one individual may not be perceived as so to another. For example, in some religions the punishment for blasphemy involves the pushing of broom sticks under the finger nails of the culprit guilty of blasphemy. Of course, to an outsider with a 'moral conscience', this would seem a barbaric act and would solidify in their mind that religion (in this case) would undoubtedly be the route of this particular evil. However, to the instigator of the punishment, he/she would simply be carrying out an act that would be seen as preserving codes of conduct within his/her own religious faith. In arguments such as this, individual difference will always have the last word because can any one person ever really be ‘more’ right than another? Now, if we were to look at this question from the perspective of what is morally right and what is morally wrong, ( assuming we gather the opinions of every individual in the world ) based on factual, undeniable evidence, Religion would have to be the route of a lot of evils ( notice I say ‘a lot’ and not ‘all’) Assuming that the majority of the individuals asked would say that murdering someone was bad, end off, full stop, we are left with not choice but to include murder on behalf of religious faith as murder, regardless of ones own personally belief. That being said I wish to clarify that I am not by any means linking all murders back to religion, because obviously a lot of murders are committed for other reasons i.e. revenge, robbery, drug induced madness etc. what I am trying to focus on the notion that if murder (or any other act that goes against what the majority of society believes is morally unacceptable) is committed seemingly without any other reason other than the other person being ‘different’ i.e, racial difference, difference in sexual preference etc, religion consistently appears to be resent in its origin.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  31. #30 Re: Is religion really the root of all evil? 
    Forum Ph.D. Raziell's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    928
    Quote Originally Posted by ox
    If you had no religion you would miss out on religious art, architecture and music.
    If you love art, architecture and music why would being religious or not have any relevance on enjoying these? Please dont connect things that arent relevant to eachother as an argument.

    I think religion is evil because it is based on depraved and destructive forces like superstition, lies, dogmas, faith and social control. Opposed to true virtues like freedom, science, logic, reason, common sense and knowledge.
    A lie is a lie even if everyone believes it. The truth is the truth even if nobody believes it. - David Stevens
    Reply With Quote  
     

  32. #31  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    8,822
    Quote Originally Posted by Lloyd Ihenacho
    what I am trying to focus on the notion that if murder (or any other act that goes against what the majority of society believes is morally unacceptable) is committed seemingly without any other reason other than the other person being ‘different’ i.e, racial difference, difference in sexual preference etc, religion consistently appears to be resent in its origin.
    What?? There is a Neanderthal skeleton with an arrow in it that is suspected to be from a homo sapiens. Chimpanzees kill other chimps because they are members of other bands. Every war that's ever been fought was between two different groups who fought each other because they were in some way different.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  33. #32  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    24
    mis-interpretation, conflicts of intrest, power gain, conquest, racism (Hitlers eugenics), and religion are some reasons people fight. Simple.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  34. #33  
    Universal Mind John Galt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    14,169
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    What?? There is a Neanderthal skeleton with an arrow in it that is suspected to be from a homo sapiens. Chimpanzees kill other chimps because they are members of other bands. Every war that's ever been fought was between two different groups who fought each other because they were in some way different.
    When Harold and I agree on something you can be pretty damn sure it is correct. (Don't you agree Harold. :wink: )
    Reply With Quote  
     

  35. #34  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    8,822
    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    What?? There is a Neanderthal skeleton with an arrow in it that is suspected to be from a homo sapiens. Chimpanzees kill other chimps because they are members of other bands. Every war that's ever been fought was between two different groups who fought each other because they were in some way different.
    When Harold and I agree on something you can be pretty damn sure it is correct. (Don't you agree Harold. :wink: )
    Did that happen again? I must be slipping.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  36. #35  
    Universal Mind John Galt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    14,169
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    Did that happen again? I must be slipping.
    Just another sign of advancing years.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  37. #36  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    24
    eventually there will be no conflict.

    Human philosophy will be null.

    professing to be wise, they were made fools.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  38. #37  
    ox
    ox is offline
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    874
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    There is a Neanderthal skeleton with an arrow in it that is suspected to be from a homo sapiens. Chimpanzees kill other chimps because they are members of other bands.
    I understand that chimps kill other chimps because they they are after more territory. This is not necessarily an act of premeditated evil. I don't think that you can say that animals are evil. I don't think you can say that Homo Sapiens when encountering Neanderthals were evil as both engaged on a nearly level playing field where both had advantages over the other. But no doubt they were competing for the same nutrition.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  39. #38  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    8,822
    Quote Originally Posted by ox
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    There is a Neanderthal skeleton with an arrow in it that is suspected to be from a homo sapiens. Chimpanzees kill other chimps because they are members of other bands.
    I understand that chimps kill other chimps because they they are after more territory. This is not necessarily an act of premeditated evil. I don't think that you can say that animals are evil. I don't think you can say that Homo Sapiens when encountering Neanderthals were evil as both engaged on a nearly level playing field where both had advantages over the other. But no doubt they were competing for the same nutrition.
    So if humans kill each other when competing for the same nutrition, that would not be evil in your opinion?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  40. #39  
    ox
    ox is offline
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    874
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    So if humans kill each other when competing for the same nutrition, that would not be evil in your opinion?
    Did the last Neanderthals, spending their last days in caves in Gibraltar, and no doubt starving and cold, condemn evil Homo Sapiens for their sad fate? I doubt it. I think this was an incredibly sad end for them and no doubt if they had survived they would be integrated now into European society. Maybe their genes still survive inside a very few people. You might as well argue that natural selection is evil, or some genes are evil. Maybe there is a religious gene which propogates evil in this world. Dawkins appeared to suggest this.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  41. #40  
    Forum Senior
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    386
    Did the word evil originate from religion, probably. We still know right from wrong regardless of what term we use to describe wrong.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  42. #41  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    8,822
    Quote Originally Posted by Max Time Taken View Post
    Did the word evil originate from religion, probably. We still know right from wrong regardless of what term we use to describe wrong.
    This is from Wikipedia:
    Evil
    (also called badness or egregiousness) is the violation of some moral code. Evil is usually seen as the opposite of good. The philosophical question of whether morality is absolute or relative leads to questions about the nature of evil, with views falling into one of four opposed camps: moral absolutism, amoralism, moral relativism, and moral universalism.
    The root meaning of the word is of obscure origin though shown to be akin to modern English "over" and modern German über (OE ofer) and "up" (OE up, upp) with the basic idea of transgressing.
    There is nothing here to suggest that the word evil originated from religion. I don't know if there has ever been a time when humans did not have religion. If there were, then surely they still had a moral code, which could be violated, and such violation would then fit the above definition of evil.

    You say that we "still know right from wrong." I'm not sure what you mean by "still" but how do you think we "know" this? It's not a trick question. I'm just curious.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  43. #42  
    Forum Senior
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    386
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Max Time Taken View Post
    Did the word evil originate from religion, probably. We still know right from wrong regardless of what term we use to describe wrong.
    This is from Wikipedia:
    Evil
    (also called badness or egregiousness) is the violation of some moral code. Evil is usually seen as the opposite of good. The philosophical question of whether morality is absolute or relative leads to questions about the nature of evil, with views falling into one of four opposed camps: moral absolutism, amoralism, moral relativism, and moral universalism.
    The root meaning of the word is of obscure origin though shown to be akin to modern English "over" and modern German über (OE ofer) and "up" (OE up, upp) with the basic idea of transgressing.
    There is nothing here to suggest that the word evil originated from religion. I don't know if there has ever been a time when humans did not have religion. If there were, then surely they still had a moral code, which could be violated, and such violation would then fit the above definition of evil.

    You say that we "still know right from wrong." I'm not sure what you mean by "still" but how do you think we "know" this? It's not a trick question. I'm just curious.
    Still is irrelevant, we learn right from wrong through : experience,trial and error,witnessing events,education from others/nurture(untried,unproven until tested or witnessed so has less effect,eg,a warning rather than threat ).
    Reply With Quote  
     

  44. #43  
    Forum Freshman
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    37
    Religion isn't the root of ALL evil. Depending on your definition of evil, things like greed and jealousy are part of the human condition and have been around since the times of our common ancestor with apes and probably before that.
    However, I do think that religion is the root of much evil in this world, and will continue to be until it ceases to exist (if that ever happens).
    Reply With Quote  
     

  45. #44  
    New Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    1
    Quote Originally Posted by ox View Post
    Would you accept that all children are effectively atheists until they are brainwashed into religion by educational institutions? At least it's never the other way around is it? I think it's broadly true that someone who has made up their own mind is tending towards atheism. Someone that hasn't tends to agnosticism. Someone that has had their mind made up for them is likely to be religious, as faith is trusting the sayings and doings of another. Children really have no chance, and the virus of faith can extend well into adulthood before doubts creep in. I don't see why a person cannot be spiritual but also embrace atheism. What is spiritual about belief in the supernatural anyway?

    On the subject of confusing political and religious wars I don't really know of too many wars fought without religion. Catholic and protestant Europe clashed in the 20th century. God is always on the side of the righteous even when they lose.
    And slavery was never condemned by the Church was it? Or the Holocaust was not condemned by the Vatican.
    You confuse the issue by pretending that a personal religious opinion leads one to do all things in the name of religion. The Holy Roman Empire, despite its name, answered to the Kaiser, not the Pope. They were Catholic by creed, yet they fought wars against the patriarch of their faith. Those were wars without religion. You can pretend if you'd like that WWI and WWII were fought in the name of religion. You may pretend that the actions taken in communist China against Tibet were somehow motivated by the officially atheistic stance of the Chinese government. But the fact is, humanity is warlike by nature. Our religious philosophies can, at worse, do nothing but reflect the humanity which produced them.

    Nature Herself, says Cicero, has imprinted upon the minds of all the idea of God. I'm inclined to believe Cicero, because all the atheists I know understand what God is supposed to be. Our nature has granted us the ability to comprehend what a God is.

    As to our 'natural' religious tendencies, kids are well known for asking disturbingly pious questions in the face of death or extreme circumstances.

    As to your inference that atheism doesn't brainwash its children, tell me how an atheist would explain to a child the death of a grandparent. Would they not explain that death is what happens when someone's life ends? Would they not tell their child less bluntly that Grandma is gone and is never coming back? From a positivist standpoint, this assertion is pure brainwash, because we have absolutely no proof of either the existence or non-existence of an afterlife.

    I believe in God. I also believe that science tends to suggest belief in a God. Someone or something must have started time, and someone or something must determine the quantum-level randomness of the universe. Even if our every chemical thought or idea is predetermined, some identity must inhabit the physical shells of our bodies to make the unique property of self. Somehow that unique identity must inhabit our physical shells after certain chemical reactions have taken place. In fact, the only ways to assume complete atheism is to assume that there is either A.) no such thing as self identity, B.) an eternal and ephemeral thing called a soul that cannot be seen or encountered except through special objects that have been mystically marked as "alive", or C.) a subatomic physical reaction that takes place when certain physical entities all come into alignment.

    Regardless, religion is no more to blame for holocausts than democrats are to blame for occupy wall street violence. Religion is an idea. Ideas have power, and power can corrupt, but power can also change the world for good. Religion is just another source of power; and the argument that we need give up electricity for the sake of the electrocuted is as base and repulsive as the idea that we must give up freedom for the sake of the incompetent.

    There must be balance in all things.
    Let children their hosannahs sing!
    Abstract truth has little bearing
    On the merit of their caring.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  46. #45  
    ox
    ox is offline
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    874
    That provides a lot of food for thought, so thanks Drake, and if this really is your first post, then welcome to the forum.I guess I am not the only one who lives in fear of the power of religion, even today. A few years ago I was given a death threat from a Muslim for saying something which offended his faith. On the other hand I now have Muslim friends, but I have learned to be very guarded in what I say. I am aware that atheists in general love freedom of speech, while theists hate it. Atheists as individuals do not in my experience make death threats against theists. The reverse does not hold. Historically you could have been silenced or burned at the stake for even asking inconvenient questions. If I ever come face to face with my creator, and he demands an explanation for my doubt, I will say: 'Not enough evidence'. I will also point out to him that he never condemned slavery, but instead gave a trivial commandment relating to coveting your neighbours possessions, even his ox...
    Reply With Quote  
     

  47. #46  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    808
    The answer to the question is "No." 1 Timothy 6:10
    For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
    1 Timothy 6:9-11 (in Context) 1 Timothy 6 (Whole Chapter)

    Love of money, for example, is the cause of all wars, with the militarilly 'have' nations destroying the militarilly 'have not' nations for whatever convertible-to-money-resources they do have.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  48. #47  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope Paleoichneum's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Washington State, USA
    Posts
    4,561
    So how does that fit in with the genesis stories and evil coming into being with the eating of a fruit?
    If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world. -Thorin Oakenshield

    The needs of the many outweigh the need of the few - Spock of Vulcan & Sentinel Prime of Cybertron ---proof that "the needs" are in the eye of the beholder.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  49. #48  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    grail search
    Posts
    811
    "Root" meaning "source".

    Why not say, "Is not religion the root of all good and all evil?"
    Reply With Quote  
     

  50. #49  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    grail search
    Posts
    811
    I mean, if you wanted to say, "religion is the root of only evil, not good", and yet you still believe you are trying to represent an entirely evil world today, how then in history did evil defeat good if the Church bleives they had some good to offer? Or, are you suggesting more implicitly that religion may be not be the "root" of all things, that there are greater descriptions of roots of beginnings.......right?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  51. #50  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    808
    Quote Originally Posted by theQuestIsNotOver View Post
    "Root" meaning "source".

    Why not say, "Is not religion the root of all good and all evil?"
    God, not religion, is the source of all evil and all good. Isaiah 45:7
    I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.
    Isaiah 45:6-8 (in Context) Isaiah 45 (Whole Chapter)
    Reply With Quote  
     

  52. #51  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope Paleoichneum's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Washington State, USA
    Posts
    4,561
    why are you worshiping a god that willing creates evil?
    If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world. -Thorin Oakenshield

    The needs of the many outweigh the need of the few - Spock of Vulcan & Sentinel Prime of Cybertron ---proof that "the needs" are in the eye of the beholder.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  53. #52  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    grail search
    Posts
    811
    God, the central character of religion, offers choice, the freedom to choose between good and evil.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  54. #53  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    808
    Quote Originally Posted by Paleoichneum View Post
    why are you worshiping a god that willing creates evil?
    Worship God? I wish I could worship him as he deserves. How else is God going to correct and/or punish those evil doers who absolutely will not turn to doing good? By feeding them cake and ice cream? 1 Corinthians 5 King James Version (KJV)


    1 Corinthians 5
    1It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father's wife.
    2And ye are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he that hath done this deed might be taken away from among you.
    3For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed,
    4In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ, 5To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

    We sometimes forget that Jesus told us to "repent" as well as "believe" .. and those exhortations are aimed first at those who believe in him as his own household.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  55. #54  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    grail search
    Posts
    811
    The eye of the needle. It was never said absolute wealth was impossible, only that the hardest task is reserved for those who aquire wealth and behave according to the directive. A reward in itself. A "confirmation" of one's acceptance initially of being in sin.

    Money doesn't make man evil, unless it were the embodiment of the devil itself. And where is the proof of that? Biblically, it's a number of the devil, that "allows" people to buy and sell. But the Church guarantees that through faith we will not see this horizon, but clearly therefore God willing another, one where money is made entirely anonymously and shared accordingly to any condition acting as a default from the already stated failed regime of "evil". The game would not be a faith in money, but an exact use of it in accordince with a justified provision of capturing an otherwise chaos and caging it up./\

    Has this touched on refuting the idea of money being the root of all evil?>

    Worshipping God while using money would then seem a mere formality against an otherwise quagmire of unreasonable dispute of right and wrong that at this stage of the game would seem tangential to what we already know of history.
    Last edited by theQuestIsNotOver; November 9th, 2011 at 03:52 AM.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  56. #55  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    808
    Quote Originally Posted by theQuestIsNotOver View Post
    The eye of the needle. It was never said absolute wealth was impossible, only that the hardest task is reserved for those who aquire wealth and behave according to the directive. A reward in itself. A "confirmation" of one's acceptance initially of being in sin.

    Money doesn't make man evil, unless it were the embodiment of the devil itself. And where is the proof of that? Biblically, it's a number of the devil, that "allows" people to buy and sell. But the Church guarantees that through faith we will not see this horizon, but clearly therefore God willing another, one where money is made entirely anonymously and shared accordingly to any condition acting as a default from the already stated failed regime of "evil". The game would not be a faith in money, but an exact use of it in accordince with a justified provision of capturing an otherwise chaos and caging it up./\

    Has this touched on refuting the idea of money being the root of all evil?>

    Worshipping God while using money would then seem a mere formality against an otherwise quagmire of unreasonable dispute of right and wrong that at this stage of the game would seem tangential to what we already know of history.
    Not money, but "Love of money is the root of all evil." The number of the beast 666 era is not that the number is money, but the number serves as money, doing away with money (the cashless society in which purchases are made through computers tied with bank cards, etc. The planet is almost there.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  57. #56  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope zinjanthropos's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Driving in my car
    Posts
    3,802
    Quote Originally Posted by theQuestIsNotOver View Post
    God, the central character of religion, offers choice, the freedom to choose between good and evil.
    Why isn't giving us that freedom considered an evil act? God had choices: Keep us away from evil forever would be one of them.

    Furthermore, the OT God is known to have analytically proclaimed that each of his creating days was good which indicates to me at least that the presence of evil is a good thing even if just by default.

    Ergo, the root of evil appears to be the Creator, for believers there is no other option. The Creator is a component of several religions and so it now becomes guilt by association.....religions with Creators are the root of all evil.
    Last edited by zinjanthropos; November 9th, 2011 at 12:45 PM.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  58. #57  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    808
    Quote Originally Posted by zinjanthropos View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by theQuestIsNotOver View Post
    God, the central character of religion, offers choice, the freedom to choose between good and evil.
    Why isn't giving us that freedom considered an evil act? God had choices: Keep us away from evil forever would be one of them.

    Furthermore, the OT God is known to have analytically proclaimed that each of his creating days was good which indicates to me at least that the presence of evil is a good thing even if just by default.

    Ergo, the root of evil appears to be the Creator, for believers there is no other option. The Creator is a component of several religions and so it now becomes guilt by association.....religions with Creators are the root of all evil.
    Babylon fell to the confusion of tongues.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  59. #58  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope zinjanthropos's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Driving in my car
    Posts
    3,802
    Quote Originally Posted by Aristarchus in Exile View Post
    Babylon fell to the confusion of tongues.
    Glossolalia has been around far longer than most people think.

    The Creator God is ultimately responsible for everything. Humanity did not invent evil....you can deduce that from the OT simply by the fact the creator withheld the knowledge of evil from us.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  60. #59  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    808
    Quote Originally Posted by zinjanthropos View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Aristarchus in Exile View Post
    Babylon fell to the confusion of tongues.
    Glossolalia has been around far longer than most people think.

    The Creator God is ultimately responsible for everything. Humanity did not invent evil....you can deduce that from the OT simply by the fact the creator withheld the knowledge of evil from us.
    Gold in the throat, flash fiction, black metal .. or which glossolalia. Thanks for the new word.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  61. #60  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope Paleoichneum's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Washington State, USA
    Posts
    4,561
    If god was omnipotent, he would have the power to prevent evil form happening. Quoting a book put together centuries after the events that are purported to have occurred. but which are demonstrably fictitious does not work.
    If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world. -Thorin Oakenshield

    The needs of the many outweigh the need of the few - Spock of Vulcan & Sentinel Prime of Cybertron ---proof that "the needs" are in the eye of the beholder.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  62. #61  
    ox
    ox is offline
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    874
    The accumulation of money when married to religion is a candidate for evil. The richest organisation on the planet may be the Catholic Church whose assets have been estimated at around a trillion dollars. No wonder they can afford to pay off victims of child abuse. No wonder they outlaw contraception and abortion as it is in their interests to generate more Catholics and keep people poor, as the poor are likely to have more children. No wonder that the heads of religion live in palaces. No wonder that historically, children have been abducted from their homes to serve a life of monastic poverty. It seems incredible that relatively rich countries like Brazil, Mexico and the Philippines have such a large percentage living in poverty. But money, be it cash or cashless, when used as a method of transaction is not evil, but evil would soon prevail if you removed this facility.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  63. #62 Amazing. 
    Forum Sophomore
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Nebraska, the Heartland!
    Posts
    129
    I am overwhelmed.

    ox cannot differentiate Islam from Christianity from the Roman Catholic Church from shamanism. They are all just 'religion'. No wonder he's so confused.

    zinjanthropos and Paleoichneum would prefer a Creator who made mindless robots to a Creator who made thinking individuals.

    Aristarchus in Exile
    - who I suspect is a fairly decent sort and probably a brother of some form to me - does not understand the concept of 'evil' in Isaiah 45. "Evil" in that context refers to what we think of bad fortune. 'Evil weather', meaning bad weather. God sends misfortune on those He chastises; God does not generate 'sin' or 'trespass' in the sense of man 'doing evil' to others. God does not encourage man to commit evil acts. (Actually, that's pretty simple to counter, if the reader cares to look at it.)

    Those are the obvious ones from a casual glance. There's more confusion and illogical statements in this thread. This is simply incredible. Lacking sufficient grounds to be believed.
    The universe is a real place. However, you can't see it, you have to imagine it. Like it or not, God designed, built and sustains the Universe. Deal with it.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  64. #63  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope Paleoichneum's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Washington State, USA
    Posts
    4,561
    mindless automatons? Would you care to explain how you arrived at that conclusion from my comments?
    If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world. -Thorin Oakenshield

    The needs of the many outweigh the need of the few - Spock of Vulcan & Sentinel Prime of Cybertron ---proof that "the needs" are in the eye of the beholder.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  65. #64  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    grail search
    Posts
    811
    Satellites. Robot technology. Machines. Automatons. GPS satellites. We are surronded by them. They hold the higher ground.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  66. #65  
    Forum Bachelors Degree
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    418
    The problem with religion is there is such a small percentage of people that actually walk the talk of their faith and they believe that if they claim they are a member of their faith, that the title deserves some respect and their religious choice somehow tells others what kind of person they are based on the teachings of that faith. The wars in history that claim it supports their religious views is an out right lie since thou shall not kill is written in every religious doctrine. The powers and the elite that control their societies is responsible for the destruction they cause within and with other nations.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  67. #66  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    808
    Quote Originally Posted by Barbi View Post
    The problem with religion is there is such a small percentage of people that actually walk the talk of their faith and they believe that if they claim they are a member of their faith, that the title deserves some respect and their religious choice somehow tells others what kind of person they are based on the teachings of that faith. The wars in history that claim it supports their religious views is an out right lie since thou shall not kill is written in every religious doctrine. The powers and the elite that control their societies is responsible for the destruction they cause within and with other nations.
    James 1:27
    Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.
    James 1:26-27 (in Context) James 1 (Whole Chapter)

    Yes, we do not walk the walk because we are saved by grace and not by actions .. we cannot be perfect until heaven. You are right about many or most other religions being controlled by people who contribute or actually promote wars (for material gain of course) there are exceptions, the Jehovah's Witnesses being a prime example, they will not particiapate in any way in war and teach not to participate as a fundamental doctrine. If I were to believe Jesus Christ was onth a man or only the son of God I would become a JW, but I believe he was God in the flesh, and cannot deny that no matter how sound the JW doctrines are.
    Last edited by Aristarchus in Exile; December 1st, 2011 at 05:44 PM.
    Search engines are such useful tools .. I wonder why more people don't use them?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  68. #67  
    Forum Bachelors Degree
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    418
    Quote Originally Posted by Aristarchus in Exile View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Barbi View Post
    The problem with religion is there is such a small percentage of people that actually walk the talk of their faith and they believe that if they claim they are a member of their faith, that the title deserves some respect and their religious choice somehow tells others what kind of person they are based on the teachings of that faith. The wars in history that claim it supports their religious views is an out right lie since thou shall not kill is written in every religious doctrine. The powers and the elite that control their societies is responsible for the destruction they cause within and with other nations.
    James 1:27
    Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.
    James 1:26-27 (in Context) James 1 (Whole Chapter)

    Yes, we do not walk the walk because we are saved by grace and not by actions .. we cannot be perfect until heaven. You are right about many or most other religions being controlled by people who contribute or actually promote wars (for material gain of course) there are exceptions, the Jehovah's Witnesses being a prime example, they will not particiapate in any way in war and teach not to participate as a fundamental doctrine. If I were to believe Jesus Christ was onth a man or only the son of God I would become a JW, but I believe he was God in the flesh, and cannot deny that no matter how sound the JW doctrines are.

    You are saved by grace and not by actions and you cannot be perfect until Heaven is the worst excuse I have ever heard from someone that claims to follow their faith. It is this attitude of "can't be held responsible" that has created our environmental destruction. That is it, I'm now an official Atheist as of today.
    zinjanthropos likes this.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  69. #68  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard icewendigo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    2,148
    Is religion really the root of all evil?


    No, not imo.


    “Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful.” Seneca


    Religion is a tool to manipulate populations, the same way the Media (propaganda) can be used to make people kill themselves, kill others, accept being financially raped and enslaved or to rape and enslave other populations. [A tool can be used both for good (hammer to build a house) an evil (hammer to commit homicide), but manipulating people has an unethical aspect given that one should strive to educate the people so that they can arrive at the beneficial conclusions, which is understandably not an option when one wants to provoke evil/unethical/destructive/detrimental behavior.]


    Religion and Media's structure are part of the problem but they are not the root of all evil.


    Some important Factors that contribute to Evil are imo;


    - Money: dependancy, conflicts of interest, corruption, concentration of power, etc
    - Institutional Hierarchy: dependancy, conflicts of interest, concentration of power, institutional barrier(lack of openness and transparency), abuse of authority, etc
    - Secrecy: Proprietary, Private Deals, National Security Secrets, Negociations behind closed doors, institutional opacity, disinformation, deceith, propaganda, ignorance, censorship, compatementalization


    Generally speaking, these factors BOTH facilitates evil being perpetrated on large scales AND create an environment that is fertile for developing evil(sociopathic) mindset among the population.
    Last edited by icewendigo; December 2nd, 2011 at 09:40 AM.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  70. #69  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope zinjanthropos's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Driving in my car
    Posts
    3,802
    [QUOTE=icewendigo;294767]
    Religion and Media's structure are part of the problem but they are not the root of all evil.


    Some important Factors that contribute to Evil are imo;


    - Money: dependancy, conflicts of interest, corruption, concentration of power, etc
    - Institutional Hierarchy: dependancy, conflicts of interest, concentration of power, institutional barrier(lack of openness and transparency), abuse of authority, etc
    - Secrecy: Proprietary, Private Deals, National Security Secrets, Negociations behind closed doors, institutional opacity, disinformation, deceith, propaganda, ignorance, censorship, compatementalization


    Generally speaking, these factors BOTH facilitates evil being perpetrated on large scales AND create an environment that is fertile for developing evil(sociopathic) mindset among the population.
    These factors contribute to evil.....so that would mean if I were an evil organization then I couldn't have become one unless I collected a few of these factors. Organized religion isn't immune from gathering in any of these factors and they have done a good job at utilizing practically everything you've mentioned. Knowing that you need a few of these negative attributes to be evil, doesn't it qualify religion as a root of evil?
    All that belongs to human understanding, in this deep ignorance and obscurity, is to be skeptical, or at least cautious; and not to admit of any hypothesis, whatsoever; much less, of any which is supported by no appearance of probability...Hume
    Reply With Quote  
     

  71. #70  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard icewendigo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    2,148
    "These factors contribute to evil.....so that would mean if I were an evil organization then I couldn't have become one unless I collected a few of these factors. Organized religion isn't immune from gathering in any of these factors and they have done a good job at utilizing practically everything you've mentioned. Knowing that you need a few of these negative attributes to be evil, doesn't it qualify religion as a root of evil?"
    Im not sure I fully understand your question so I will throw a few opinions/statements around in case it helps explain my point of view


    ~If a car is black, it does not mean all cars are black, nor that cars are the only objects that are black.~


    "so that would mean if I were an evil organization then I couldn't have become one unless I collected a few of these factors"
    I would say you would be less likely to become an evil organization in the first place, and the ability to project evil would be more limited than would otherwise be the case.


    "doesn't it qualify religion as a root of evil?"
    A manifestation of evil, or disposed for potential evil, but not as a "root" imo. Let me illustrate:

    The citizens of a town controlled and oppressed by the Scicilian Mafia can perceive the Italian Mafia as the root of evil in their town (even if its not a religion btw), but that is inacurate because if they were to rid the town of the Scicilan Mafia, all things being equal, another Mafia (Italian Mafia rivals, Russian/Jewish Mafia, or Just local people corrupted to fill the vacuum) would be likely to take over. Which to me indicates that the *root* of their problems was not the Mafia itself but rather its characteristics and the social enviroment/system that created the fertile ground for the Mafia to thrive. If the Town identifies the Italian Mafia as the root of their evil plight they gain a tactical advantage by knowing the instance/incarnation of the problem (which is better than being clueless about who's behind it all) but they might make a strategic mistake that makes a victory(driving out the Italian Mafia) only a temporary reprieve (the environment being fertile for a replacement). Of course, the elements of the social environment that are fertile for the evil, being part of the environment and being something people are used to for generations and find normal, are difficult to identify and difficult to change("thats the way it is", "its always been like this", "why should we change that again?").



    So if you focus on religion itself as a root, even if it were as evil as the Mafia, you would imo miss the real root of the evilness and would make it harder to find a lasting solution.
    Last edited by icewendigo; December 2nd, 2011 at 12:31 PM.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  72. #71  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope zinjanthropos's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Driving in my car
    Posts
    3,802
    If you don't have any evil attributes to begin with then how can one be evil? Religion introduced Satan, is he a root? Satan has all the evil attributes, so I think he's a good candidate for a root of evil. As I said, Satan was introduced by and is big part of religion, so how is religion not a root for evil? How does a religious person, one who believes in a Satan like entity, honestly think that evil is not part of the religion?
    Last edited by zinjanthropos; December 2nd, 2011 at 09:49 PM.
    All that belongs to human understanding, in this deep ignorance and obscurity, is to be skeptical, or at least cautious; and not to admit of any hypothesis, whatsoever; much less, of any which is supported by no appearance of probability...Hume
    Reply With Quote  
     

  73. #72  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    8,822
    Quote Originally Posted by zinjanthropos View Post
    If you don't have any evil attributes to begin with then how can one be evil? Religion introduced Satan, is he a root? Satan has all the evil attributes, so I think he's a good candidate for a root of evil. As I said, Satan was introduced by and is big part of religion, so how is religion not a root for evil? How does a religious person, one who believes in a Satan like entity, honestly think that evil is not part of the religion?
    As I probably mentioned before, evil is not an objective concept, and different people may have different ideas about what it is. However, most people would probably include homicide, theft, starvation, natural disasters, and so forth. All of these things existed before, so are obviously not caused by religion. Satan is just a personification or explanation of evil. You seem to be saying that thunder and lightning did not exist until people invented Thor or some other thunder god as the entity that cast down the thunderbolts.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  74. #73  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope zinjanthropos's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Driving in my car
    Posts
    3,802
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370 View Post
    You seem to be saying that thunder and lightning did not exist until people invented Thor or some other thunder god as the entity that cast down the thunderbolts.
    We're talking evil, not thunder. Just merely pointing out for believers that Satan is the root of their evil. I think most would have to agree. Satan is either real or a religious construct. If real then there's your root. Satan cannot be the root if he is just a construct of the mind. So what is it?

    Steven Weinberg : "With or without religion, good people can behave well and bad people can do evil; but for good people to do evil - that takes religion."
    All that belongs to human understanding, in this deep ignorance and obscurity, is to be skeptical, or at least cautious; and not to admit of any hypothesis, whatsoever; much less, of any which is supported by no appearance of probability...Hume
    Reply With Quote  
     

  75. #74  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    8,822
    Quote Originally Posted by zinjanthropos View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370 View Post
    You seem to be saying that thunder and lightning did not exist until people invented Thor or some other thunder god as the entity that cast down the thunderbolts.
    We're talking evil, not thunder. Just merely pointing out for believers that Satan is the root of their evil. I think most would have to agree. Satan is either real or a religious construct. If real then there's your root. Satan cannot be the root if he is just a construct of the mind. So what is it?
    A believer would think that Satan (not religion) is the root of evil. An atheist would or should believe that Satan is a religious construct. Neither should believe that religion is the root of evil.
    Steven Weinberg : "With or without religion, good people can behave well and bad people can do evil; but for good people to do evil - that takes religion."
    This doesn't even make sense. Is this supposed to mean that atheists believe that good people cannot do evil? I don't think that is true.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  76. #75  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope zinjanthropos's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Driving in my car
    Posts
    3,802
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370 View Post
    A believer would think that Satan (not religion) is the root of evil. An atheist would or should believe that Satan is a religious construct. Neither should believe that religion is the root of evil.
    What is Satan without religion? If Satan is a part of your religion then he is the root of all evil. God apparently is exempt from this distinction but if you want to argue for God as the root of evil then that also works. God & Satan are linked, they form a major component within religion, ergo religion is a root of evil.

    You know, when I read arguments such as yours I start to think that the people within a religion never view it as a religion.....strange.

    Steven Weinberg : "With or without religion, good people can behave well and bad people can do evil; but for good people to do evil - that takes religion."
    This doesn't even make sense. Is this supposed to mean that atheists believe that good people cannot do evil? I don't think that is true.
    Read it again. He's saying that for the most part people are good, it's just that they need motivation to commit evil.

    Gee, am I interpreting something different? Where have I seen that before? Does it mean I'm religious? Does it mean I'm evil?
    All that belongs to human understanding, in this deep ignorance and obscurity, is to be skeptical, or at least cautious; and not to admit of any hypothesis, whatsoever; much less, of any which is supported by no appearance of probability...Hume
    Reply With Quote  
     

  77. #76  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard icewendigo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    2,148
    evil is a fabricated concept and satan is an imaginary character that personifies something people dont understand, just like thor was personification for lightning.


    If you burn a human being alive and say to the police that you did it because the victim was in league with a imaginary persona called satan, in some places people would not think you are an evil person but that you are mentally insane. THough the act would be considered bad(evil if you must).


    In primive times when ignorant pilgrims beleived in religion, burning a "witch" at the stake might have been considered by some a good thing. Is the witch burner an evil person per say or a human being that is influenced by a barbaric culture?


    In ancient times some People thought slavery was normal, but in many places now its considered bad(evil) and unacceptable.


    Its possible that in the future humans will look back at our current barbaric capitalist time with horror, but those that might (but probably wont) judge us to be bad will realize that if they had been born in our times theres a chance they would have found the way our society is organized as normal, just as we might have found it normal to kill people in sports arenas and own slaves if we were born to a roman state official during the roman empire.

    (Good and evil are simplistic labels [like black and white, but worst] that can be convenient to use, but they do not reflect the (complex, nuanced and interactive) reality. When a simplistic label is perceived to be real then the people using these labels have an extra barrier to overcome when examining the phenomenon the label purports to identify.)
    Reply With Quote  
     

  78. #77  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    grail search
    Posts
    811
    So for those born yesterday, or say 15 years ago, when something becomes complicated, too complicated to understand, is that an invitation to label such a thing as "evil" or perhaps "imaginary", as according to your analysis?

    It's a common trap of thought, making the idea of ignorance seem almost evil, hence the idea that education can not only liberate a person from slavery, but almost sancitfy a person in their ability to deal intelligently with others. Which is perhaps why in the past owing to the lack of education available then that atrocities were committed, yet this should not represent a standard assessment of the idea of good and evil based on the simple results achieved in just as simple times.
    Last edited by theQuestIsNotOver; December 4th, 2011 at 01:45 AM.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  79. #78  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope zinjanthropos's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Driving in my car
    Posts
    3,802
    Why is there a Satan in the first place? If man is an evil creature then it seems that Satan is overkill. It can only mean God created Satan because we are inherently good beings. He would know that. We couldn't get evil done if our life depended on it, unless we get pushed or guided by an outside evil agency. So believers, be happy, we're all good people. The only way we can be evil is if we were created evil, Satan being the perfect example of God's ingenuity.
    All that belongs to human understanding, in this deep ignorance and obscurity, is to be skeptical, or at least cautious; and not to admit of any hypothesis, whatsoever; much less, of any which is supported by no appearance of probability...Hume
    Reply With Quote  
     

  80. #79  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    808
    Quote Originally Posted by Barbi View Post
    You are saved by grace and not by actions and you cannot be perfect until Heaven is the worst excuse I have ever heard from someone that claims to follow their faith. It is this attitude of "can't be held responsible" that has created our environmental destruction. That is it, I'm now an official Atheist as of today.
    It gets even worse, Barbi, because God's angels are destroying the world, not man. Men are merely doing the will of the angels. Why? Judgement on an ungodly world in which lust, greed and violence are worshipped instead of love. Here's a small example:
    1. Revelation 16:8
      And the fourth angel poured out his vial upon the sun; and power was given unto him to scorch men with fire.
      Revelation 16:7-9 (in Context) Revelation 16 (Whole Chapter)
    2. Revelation 16:10
      And the fifth angel poured out his vial upon the seat of the beast; and his kingdom was full of darkness; and they gnawed their tongues for pain,
      Revelation 16:9-11 (in Context) Revelation 16 (Whole Chapter)
    3. Revelation 16:12
      And the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates; and the water thereof was dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared.
      Revelation 16:11-13 (in Context) Revelation 16 (Whole Chapter)
    4. Revelation 16:17
      And the seventh angel poured out his vial into the air; and there came a great voice out of the temple of heaven, from the throne, saying, It is done.
      Revelation 16:16-18 (in Context) Revelation 16 (Whole Chapter)
    Search engines are such useful tools .. I wonder why more people don't use them?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  81. #80  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope Paleoichneum's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Washington State, USA
    Posts
    4,561
    Prove it with physical evidence that the bible is anything but a group of bronze age writings for keeping a tribe functioning.
    If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world. -Thorin Oakenshield

    The needs of the many outweigh the need of the few - Spock of Vulcan & Sentinel Prime of Cybertron ---proof that "the needs" are in the eye of the beholder.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  82. #81  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    808
    Quote Originally Posted by Paleoichneum View Post
    Prove it with physical evidence that the bible is anything but a group of bronze age writings for keeping a tribe functioning.
    Read the Revelation.
    Search engines are such useful tools .. I wonder why more people don't use them?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  83. #82  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope zinjanthropos's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Driving in my car
    Posts
    3,802
    Quote Originally Posted by Aristarchus in Exile View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Paleoichneum View Post
    Prove it with physical evidence that the bible is anything but a group of bronze age writings for keeping a tribe functioning.
    Read the Revelation.
    Paleo.... I don't know whether to laugh or cry.... How does ones read ancient writings for proof they are not ancient writings?
    All that belongs to human understanding, in this deep ignorance and obscurity, is to be skeptical, or at least cautious; and not to admit of any hypothesis, whatsoever; much less, of any which is supported by no appearance of probability...Hume
    Reply With Quote  
     

  84. #83  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope Paleoichneum's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Washington State, USA
    Posts
    4,561
    Quote Originally Posted by Aristarchus in Exile View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Paleoichneum View Post
    Prove it with physical evidence that the bible is anything but a group of bronze age writings for keeping a tribe functioning.
    Read the Revelation.
    That is not an answer to my request and you are very much aware of that.
    If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world. -Thorin Oakenshield

    The needs of the many outweigh the need of the few - Spock of Vulcan & Sentinel Prime of Cybertron ---proof that "the needs" are in the eye of the beholder.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  85. #84  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    808
    Quote Originally Posted by Paleoichneum View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Aristarchus in Exile View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Paleoichneum View Post
    Prove it with physical evidence that the bible is anything but a group of bronze age writings for keeping a tribe functioning.
    Read the Revelation.
    That is not an answer to my request and you are very much aware of that.
    It is physical proof. Revelation 9:18 "By these three was the third part of men killed, by the fire, and by the smoke, and by the brimstone, which issued out of their mouths." That scripture refers to one third of men on earth being killed in one hour. Revelation foretells our present nuclear capability. Simply read the book.
    jbrodrickd likes this.
    Search engines are such useful tools .. I wonder why more people don't use them?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  86. #85  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope Paleoichneum's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Washington State, USA
    Posts
    4,561
    That is trying to put a bronze age book into modern context when all it was meant to do was put fear into a tribe and keep them compliant. Quoting a source to prove the source is NOT a valid argument.
    If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world. -Thorin Oakenshield

    The needs of the many outweigh the need of the few - Spock of Vulcan & Sentinel Prime of Cybertron ---proof that "the needs" are in the eye of the beholder.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  87. #86  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    808
    Quote Originally Posted by Paleoichneum View Post
    That is trying to put a bronze age book into modern context when all it was meant to do was put fear into a tribe and keep them compliant. Quoting a source to prove the source is NOT a valid argument.
    The tribe is humanity. The context is nuclear. The time frame is 2000 years after the source was written. Fear.
    Search engines are such useful tools .. I wonder why more people don't use them?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  88. #87  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope Paleoichneum's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Washington State, USA
    Posts
    4,561
    No the tribe was bronze age middle eastern, the context was the Bronze age, I'm glad we agree that the source was written to scare people.
    If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world. -Thorin Oakenshield

    The needs of the many outweigh the need of the few - Spock of Vulcan & Sentinel Prime of Cybertron ---proof that "the needs" are in the eye of the beholder.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  89. #88  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    808
    Quote Originally Posted by Paleoichneum View Post
    No the tribe was bronze age middle eastern, the context was the Bronze age, I'm glad we agree that the source was written to scare people.
    Think what thou shalt.
    Search engines are such useful tools .. I wonder why more people don't use them?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  90. #89  
    New Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    4
    I am not very old, or very wise. But I must question your idea that religion is the root of all evil. Regardless of whether religion ever existed or not, evil would still exist, and you can't blame religion for that. Every person is born with an inclination to what we call "evil". We all have desires that contradict what is "good". All that religion does is attempt to explain why we are inclined to "evil". If anything, religion is a root of "good" because it helps us realize that we do indeed have a "darker" side of ourselves that we must resist. If religion was never born, then what would we attribute our "darker" sides to? Science is what you would want to be the answer. If science were the answer, the reason would be somewhere along the lines that we have different hormonal, mental, and physical needs. I am way off on that, but I'm sure you get the idea. If that were the case, though, we would have excuses for all those things we do that we all see as "evil". Without religion, I believe that society would quickly fall apart to anarchy until some kind of religion was formed. It does help you realize that you are accountable for your actions, and that there are things that you should not do, those "evil" things. True, if there was no religion, there would be no evil. But, I dare say that what we qualify as "good" would be much larger than it currently is. I would like to see anyone try to live in a world without religion. By doing that, we would automatically fulfill part of religion, because we would essentially create hell.
    Last edited by jbrodrickd; December 8th, 2011 at 02:07 PM.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  91. #90  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope zinjanthropos's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Driving in my car
    Posts
    3,802
    Quote Originally Posted by jbrodrickd View Post
    I am not very old, or very wise. But I must question your idea that religion is the root of all evil.............. If religion was never born, then what would we attribute our "darker" sides to?..........True, if there was no religion, there would be no evil
    Are you questioning or agreeing? If I was a parishioner listening to you deliver the above sermon (post #89) then I'd probably applaud it in the end because somewhere in there you said the word 'good'. Normally I wouldn't really hear the entire thing because I'd be bored to death but if I hear the correct buzz words then I'm in with the flock thinking you've said something profoundly great. However if I take the time to read it then I can see the doublespeak, intentional or not. Holy text is a jumbled mass of nonsense that contains words you want to hear. That in itself is evil.
    All that belongs to human understanding, in this deep ignorance and obscurity, is to be skeptical, or at least cautious; and not to admit of any hypothesis, whatsoever; much less, of any which is supported by no appearance of probability...Hume
    Reply With Quote  
     

  92. #91  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    808
    Quote Originally Posted by jbrodrickd View Post
    I am not very old, or very wise. But I must question your idea that religion is the root of all evil. Regardless of whether religion ever existed or not, evil would still exist, and you can't blame religion for that. Every person is born with an inclination to what we call "evil". We all have desires that contradict what is "good". All that religion does is attempt to explain why we are inclined to "evil". If anything, religion is a root of "good" because it helps us realize that we do indeed have a "darker" side of ourselves that we must resist. If religion was never born, then what would we attribute our "darker" sides to? Science is what you would want to be the answer. If science were the answer, the reason would be somewhere along the lines that we have different hormonal, mental, and physical needs. I am way off on that, but I'm sure you get the idea. If that were the case, though, we would have excuses for all those things we do that we all see as "evil". Without religion, I believe that society would quickly fall apart to anarchy until some kind of religion was formed. It does help you realize that you are accountable for your actions, and that there are things that you should not do, those "evil" things. True, if there was no religion, there would be no evil. But, I dare say that what we qualify as "good" would be much larger than it currently is. I would like to see anyone try to live in a world without religion. By doing that, we would automatically fulfill part of religion, because we would essentially create hell.
    Excellent post, J. Genetics is, in the minds of many today, the form of God, but there will always be clear mysteries to that explanation, unanswerable questions which they will try to solve and fail. But there are scientists who do believe in a Creator, in an intelligent design, and in a true religion. I found attending Church of Christ Scientist interesting but don't say with any church long enough to get full understanding of their beliefs. My fault.
    Search engines are such useful tools .. I wonder why more people don't use them?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  93. #92  
    ox
    ox is offline
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    874
    Stay with any church long enough and you will realise if you are honest with yourself that it's nothing more than a nut cult. Take the Catholics. They stand up every Sunday to say the Act of Contrition: 'I confess to Almighty God and to you my brothers and sisters that I have sinned...'. What rubbish is this? They are NOT sinners. They are made to think this way, and not only that, they were sinners the moment they popped out of the womb. Even in a line back to Adam. Then they profess their faith: 'I believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, creator of heaven and earth...'. Not much choice there. They are forced into believing that the Universe was created by God alone. Science is irrelevant. Then they have to believe that in the process of blessing the bread and wine, the priest has magically transformed it into the body and blood of Christ. But that's how all religions operate. Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism and all the rest are nothing more than nut cults which prevail even today on this lonely lump of space rock.
    zinjanthropos likes this.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  94. #93  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    808
    Quote Originally Posted by ox View Post
    Stay with any church long enough and you will realise if you are honest with yourself that it's nothing more than a nut cult. Take the Catholics. They stand up every Sunday to say the Act of Contrition: 'I confess to Almighty God and to you my brothers and sisters that I have sinned...'. What rubbish is this? They are NOT sinners. They are made to think this way, and not only that, they were sinners the moment they popped out of the womb. Even in a line back to Adam. Then they profess their faith: 'I believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, creator of heaven and earth...'. Not much choice there. They are forced into believing that the Universe was created by God alone. Science is irrelevant. Then they have to believe that in the process of blessing the bread and wine, the priest has magically transformed it into the body and blood of Christ. But that's how all religions operate. Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism and all the rest are nothing more than nut cults which prevail even today on this lonely lump of space rock.
    You have very restricted view of religions. Why don't you check out Christian Science? Actually though, if you get it straight from the King James New Testament you'll do well.
    Search engines are such useful tools .. I wonder why more people don't use them?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  95. #94  
    Moderator Moderator
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    city of wine and roses
    Posts
    6,225
    I respect your concern for evil in all its forms, but I think you're missing my point, that religion is the root of all evil. Religion as I understand, is about 10,000 years old (but let's not go into another debate about its age). The fact is, despicable political regimes under the control of evil dictators still continue to wreak havoc in the world. Where did they get their mandate from? Religion predates politics.
    No. Religion tries to explain human strengths and weaknesses - politics is just one among many human activities and attributes. (And I think you're far too focused on Abrahamic religions and their various manifestations. Many religions are much more focused on mysticism than the peoples 'of the book'. Ethics and morality can be left to cultural 'control' or formalised outside religion like Confucianism. The people of the book tend to run ethics, morality and social matters entirely within their mystical, supernatural system.)

    Paganism and animism are much, much older. And they have different explanations and concepts.

    But they all have similarities. To explain the human condition and to try and control the things that affect people's lives. You can spend your life, and a great deal of effort, trying to appease the capricious god(dess) of a volcano or ocean or river or the (un)fruitful earth. Or you can fend off evil spirits by various incantations or offerings or sacrifices hoping to avoid illness or drought or flood or plague or pestilence.

    Explaining or understanding people means accepting that we are all variously capable of honesty, cruelty, loyalty, violence, courage, greed, gratitude, murder, generosity, deceit, kindness, jealousy, patience, selfishness, hospitality, vengefulness - among dozens of others. And most of the positive virtues listed here could, in some circumstances, be violated for good reasons. Killing in self-defence or lying about the domestic violence victim hiding in your cupboard would be regarded as morally defensible or even admirable in some circumstances. And all of these vices and virtues are inherent in people available for any political, cultural or religious movement to use or suppress.

    Politics is about social leadership and both personal and collective power. The acquiring and exercise of power relies on tapping into the existing cultural beliefs of the group in question. Culture may or may not include religion as an important element. Some political arrangements and some politicians bring out the best in people. Others deliberately incite the worst. Others manage to get the worst despite believing, and getting others to believe, that they're aiming for better.

    Most of this last group are the utopians. Of which the most outstanding example was the USSR. They revolted against untrammelled power of an elite, against violent, unpredictable secret police, against oppressive superstitious beliefs, against concentrated state power. Having apparently no insight into their own culture, let alone themselves, within 10 years they had re-established newly minted versions of the same processes and institutions. If you don't properly understand the history and culture of a group and how they relate to institutions and practices and your own perceptions, your politics are destined to fail. Most likely, you're destined to repeat the mistakes of your predecessors.

    Religion would neither have helped or hindered this - because religiously based movements have made exactly the same mistakes.
    Last edited by adelady; December 14th, 2011 at 07:28 PM.
    "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." Winston Churchill
    "nature is like a game of Jenga; you never know which brick you pull out will cause the whole stack to collapse" Lucy Cooke
    Reply With Quote  
     

  96. #95  
    Universal Mind John Galt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    14,169
    Quote Originally Posted by ox View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    Do you want to blame all of Pol Pot's murders on atheism?
    Religion predates politics.
    This is simply incorrect. Our primate cousins practice politics, so it is highly unlikely that the same was not true of our pre-homo sapiens ancestors.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  97. #96  
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    808
    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by ox View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    Do you want to blame all of Pol Pot's murders on atheism?
    Religion predates politics.
    This is simply incorrect. Our primate cousins practice politics, so it is highly unlikely that the same was not true of our pre-homo sapiens ancestors.
    Really now, propaganda blaming Pol Pot on the mass murder of people killed by U.S. bombing, landmines and executions during the invasion of Cambodia? Please can't we leave absolute garbage out of this forum?
    Search engines are such useful tools .. I wonder why more people don't use them?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  98. #97  
    WYSIWYG Moderator marnixR's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Cardiff, Wales
    Posts
    5,760
    i have the impression that this discussion has got bogged down in some misunderstandings

    of course humans (just like our relatives the chimps) are capable of unspeakable evil
    of course humans committing evil acts have often done so in the name of religion, just like they have done in the name of any other major ideology
    of course organised religion, just like any other major ideology, has at times encouraged acts that we now consider to be evil

    the evidence suggests that religion is not at the root of ALL evil, but one could ask the question whether it has created its own brand of evil that follows out of the dogmatism that is central to any religion
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." (Philip K. Dick)
    Reply With Quote  
     

  99. #98  
    Moderator Moderator
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    city of wine and roses
    Posts
    6,225
    I'd put it the other way around.

    Some religions fall prey to the dogmatism that far too many people bring to ideology, culture, politics, religion. Dogmatism is a failing of people. Religion is one among many human activities that can be adversely affected by dogmatism.

    Some people blame the ghastly excesses of the USSR, North Korea, Cambodia, China on atheism. They too would be wrong.

    It's all down to bad people doing bad things, and especially, encouraging others to do bad things they might not have thought of for themselves. By convincing them - through dogma - that the evil thing is the right and proper thing.

    So I'm afraid that we can't 'improve' the world by getting rid of religion.
    "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." Winston Churchill
    "nature is like a game of Jenga; you never know which brick you pull out will cause the whole stack to collapse" Lucy Cooke
    Reply With Quote  
     

  100. #99  
    Universal Mind John Galt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    14,169
    Quote Originally Posted by Aristarchus in Exile View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by ox View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    Do you want to blame all of Pol Pot's murders on atheism?
    Religion predates politics.
    This is simply incorrect. Our primate cousins practice politics, so it is highly unlikely that the same was not true of our pre-homo sapiens ancestors.
    Really now, propaganda blaming Pol Pot on the mass murder of people killed by U.S. bombing, landmines and executions during the invasion of Cambodia? Please can't we leave absolute garbage out of this forum?
    Agreed. Please stop posting, but if you must post then explain how your comments bear any relationship to my observations about primate politics.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  101. #100  
    ox
    ox is offline
    Forum Ph.D.
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    874
    "The Bible may, indeed does, contain a warrant for trafficking in humans, for ethnic cleansing, for slavery, for bride-price, and for indiscriminate massacre, but we are not bound by any of it because it was put together by crude, uncultured human mammals." – God is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything, 2007
    RIP Christopher Hitchens
    Reply With Quote  
     

Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast
Bookmarks
Bookmarks
Posting Permissions
  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •