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Thread: "Christian child" or "Child of christian pare

  1. #1 "Christian child" or "Child of christian pare 
    Forum Professor Obviously's Avatar
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    The headline was to long (for some strange reason). The original headline is:

    "Christian child" or "Child of christian parents"?

    I've been reading Richard Dawkins, "The God Delusion", and I find his view upon children and religion interesting. He argues that a child cannot be labeled as a "christian child" because the child is obviously to young to decide for him/her self. That "a child of christian parents" is a much more correct statement. He also argues that children gets separated from other children, in some cases society. People with the same religion often seem to "mingle" together and separate themselves, and their children, from the outside world. You have jewish schools and catholic schools and so on, and it's unfair to make your children go to a school because you believe in the religion the school advocates. A school with different religions and other views is a much more healthy alternative for your children, is it not?

    Obviously, I think that children should have the right to know what other religions and non-religions are out there, other than their parents religion. In that way, the child won't be "forced" to believe what his/her parents believe. A child should get the chance to choose for themselves.

    Any thoughts upon this?


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    i think Dawkins is mistaken because he fails to understand how tightly religion is interwoven with the fabric of life - for many people removing religion is like tearing the heart of their lives

    no-one objects that a child is called british when born from british parents in the UK, even when it doesn't have a passport yet
    i was born in belgium and as such was born a catholic - it came with the package at the time; obviously the label wore off after some time, but learning the basic tenets of a catholic society was not only seen as normal, but anything else would have been seen as an assault on society

    so imo RD is wrong in comparing religion with political conviction - they're different animals


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    Forum Freshman Nikolas_Miller's Avatar
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    marnixR brings up a good point. Also I believe that we are thrown into many categories at birth that children have no control over due to lack of understanding (i.e. name, residency, what athletics we are in).
    Philosophy consists very largely of one philosopher arguing that all others are jackasses. He usually proves it, and I should add that he also usually proves that he is one himself.
    --Henry Louis Mencken.
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    Telling a child they're French or German etc, is fine, encouraging a child to follow a particular sport is fine, these things are real. But to teach a child to follow lies, bigotry, and hatred, is wholly different.
    Dawkins makes this point about religion, it is extreme harmful to the Childs mentality, for several reasons.
    The child could rebel and be bitter to his family; the child could follow the teaching to the letter and kill.
    With Santa and the tooth fairy, we do this kind of white lying to put an air of surprise and excitement, to the event, and at a certain age around five we let them know the truth, but not so with religion.
    We enforce the lies, and continue to do this right into adulthood and still then we don’t stop. we condemn, the child for asking question regarding religion, we put fear into the Childs heart, with religion it is just not a good thing to do the child should only be taught about religion when he is at an age to better understand and to use his own free will to choose.
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense - Buddha"
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    I too agree that it is harmful to a child. Since I was forced to break away from my raised religion (which is a miracle in itself), I can fully understand why not to overwhelm your child in a religion he/she can't create an objective view about.

    Essentially it creates a stupid child. A child that enters life with religious bias, and a child that will most likely leave life with it. I managed to escape it because at a young age I ended up with access to the internet, and a particularly brilliant person (who is himself "agnostic" but "born" catholic). Because of this I managed to break away from the outright lies my own religion had been telling (parents especially), and I spent quite a few years learning everything I could about both religion and things like biology.

    I also picked up psychology from this very same route. My "innate" knowledge of how the human mind works come from my many diverse debates and experiences.

    Yet I am a lucky one. Most children do not break away, and cannot create their own ideas. The ideas of their parents are pummeled on them from the moment of birth. The only reason I can figure for my turn-around was simply because I liked learning anything and everything.
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    WYSIWYG Moderator marnixR's Avatar
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    you may have noticed that i made no value judgement of the fact that religion is often so interwoven with the fabric of life that is fed to the child with the mother's milk - i just stated it as a fact of life that this is what happened until recently in western europe, and still happens in many parts of the world

    a lot of the characteristics of religion (such as exclusivity and intolerance)are better understood if you think "way of life" as the backdrop to religion
    after all, people react most vehemently if their way of life (with or without religion) is threatened
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." (Philip K. Dick)
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    Quote Originally Posted by geezer
    Telling a child they're French or German etc, is fine, encouraging a child to follow a particular sport is fine, these things are real. But to teach a child to follow lies, bigotry, and hatred, is wholly different.
    \
    Tell me how Nationalism doesnt have elements of bigotry and hatred? And when the hell did religion associate with hatred?

    I'm sick of narrow-minded people associating all religion with backwoods-american-white trash-racists.
    The 8 fold path of Buddhism is entirely set on love, the Bible is entirely set on love. Tell me how the role models of Christianity and/or Buddhism were people of "lie, bigotry, and hatred?"

    You and many others, geezer, need to realize that religion does not = all that is bad in the world.
    Philosophy consists very largely of one philosopher arguing that all others are jackasses. He usually proves it, and I should add that he also usually proves that he is one himself.
    --Henry Louis Mencken.
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    WYSIWYG Moderator marnixR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nikolas_Miller
    You and many others, geezer, need to realize that religion does not = all that is bad in the world.
    no, but there is often a disturbing discrepancy between the benevolence of selected sacred texts and the intolerance practised by its adherents
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." (Philip K. Dick)
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  10. #9 Re: "Christian child" or "Child of christian 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Obviously
    Obviously, I think that children should have the right to know what other religions and non-religions are out there, other than their parents religion. In that way, the child won't be "forced" to believe what his/her parents believe. A child should get the chance to choose for themselves.

    Any thoughts upon this?
    Yes. Mind your own business and let people raise their kids as they see fit. Whatever mistakes they make they are almost guaranteed to do a much better job than anyone else will.
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    Once again upon further reflection I actually find this entire topic a tad biased. This situation happens not only with religious ideas, but with ideas in general. A parent that thinks Relativity is "unrealistic" will most assuredly implant those ideas onto their child. Parents have a horrible trait of attempting to carbon-copy themselves onto their children, a trait which has led to a lot of confusion.

    I can say without much second thought that if you have any ideas that are based on something your parents said, there's at least an 80% chance (estimating based on what I've seen) that it's incorrect.
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    Well, I believe an adult has the right to impose a religion onto a child. In the sense that, they believe it is the best way to raise a child, and they only want the greatest life they can give to he/she. However, I believe that when the child is old enough to understand religion, and make their own views on God and religion, the parents should let the child do what they want. As that is only fair to let the child be who they want to be.
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    haha i love how we never talk about all the problems Science has caused.

    I couldn't even begin to list the problems religion has caused, and i could say the same of science.

    The underlying problem is greed. There is greed in religion, and there is greed in science. :|
    Philosophy consists very largely of one philosopher arguing that all others are jackasses. He usually proves it, and I should add that he also usually proves that he is one himself.
    --Henry Louis Mencken.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ten_ben
    Well, I believe an adult has the right to impose a religion onto a child. In the sense that, they believe it is the best way to raise a child, and they only want the greatest life they can give to he/she. However, I believe that when the child is old enough to understand religion, and make their own views on God and religion, the parents should let the child do what they want. As that is only fair to let the child be who they want to be.
    Part of the problem here is what does "impose a religion onto a child" entail. Me and my wife are members of different religions. She may lament this but I see this as very healthy for my three boys for it makes it that much easier for them to realize that they are free to make their own choices. I see no harm at all in the efforts of my wife to indoctrinate my children into her religion, because I am quite confident that in the end they will make their own decisions, no matter what she may want. For me to do anything else would be to deprive them of their own right to choose. But this is my judgement for my children only, for every parent must make their own decision for their own children.
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    Forum Masters Degree geezer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nikolas_Miller
    Tell me how Nationalism doesn’t have elements of bigotry and hatred? And when the hell did religion associate with hatred?
    if you read what I said, I said these are real, without any evidence religion is just fantasy/lies/ imaging’s, I never said that nationalism could not breed hatred, after all it's just as dogmatic as religion.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nikolas_Miller
    And when the hell did religion associate with hatred?
    it always has, since it's onset, religion has been intolerant of others not of it's ilk.
    Or do we forget the Inca who sacrificed their enemies to there gods, or the Spanish inquisition, who killed all and sundry who weren't catholic.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nikolas_Miller
    I'm sick of narrow-minded people associating all religion with backwoods-American-white trash-racists.
    no sorry I get my information from the world media, Muslims killing Christians, and vice versa, Jew killing Muslim,and vice versa, Sikh killing Hindu, and vice versa. I could go on and on, if you like.
    The narrow minded are the religious, the intolerant who stick to there own beliefs.
    I dont have within me the propensity to kill, and perhaps the religious feel they dont, but if they believed it was what there god wanted they would.
    Any cult sect, that openly promotes and encourages killing, or any cult sect, born out of fear, is any evil cult.
    Such is religion.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nikolas_Miller
    The 8 fold path of Buddhism is entirely set on love,
    cant say I know too much about Buddhism, but what I do know is, even Buddhists hate and kill, people of other religions.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nikolas_Miller
    the Bible is entirely set on love. Tell me how the role models of Christianity and/or Buddhism were people of "lie, bigotry, and hatred?"
    have you took a long look, at the bible, come back when you have, as for Buddhism again I cant say I've read too much, so you could be right in regard to it's teachings, but it's people still have killed. So something’s wrong.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nikolas_Miller
    You and many others, geezer, need to realize that religion does not = all that is bad in the world.
    No perhaps not, but it's a good two thirds of it.
    so getting back on topic, to indoctrinate a child and put fear and hate, in his mind is child abuse.
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense - Buddha"
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    A child should have the right to know that he/she can indeed NOT believe in something, and also know what other choices within belief there is. Parents should have their right to teach their children about their religion, but not completely shut them out from everything else.

    That is agreable, right?
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    I have no problem with parents encouraging children to believe this or that religion. But when it turns from encouragement to force, and from being described as belief to truth, it begins to cause a problem for me.
    The fact is a lot of people DO simply end up believing what their parents did. I hardly know anybody who is an entirely different religion than their parents - atheist vs theist is more common in my experience but not like, catholic parents and buddhist child.
    Religion is a set of beliefs that every individual should freely chose and stuffing one particular set of beliefs down a child's throat can hinder that free choice by inserting extreme bias into the child's thought process.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Obviously
    A child should have the right to know that he/she can indeed NOT believe in something, and also know what other choices within belief there is. Parents should have their right to teach their children about their religion, but not completely shut them out from everything else.

    That is agreable, right?
    What exactly are you proposing? A new law prohibiting parents from teaching their children one religion? Then you could have inspectors go into people's homes to make sure the tots are receiving the proper religious education. Or maybe you think it should be voluntary. People who believe in one true religion should tell their kids, "well our religion is the only way to get into heaven but if you want to follow some other religion, or be an atheist, that's fine with us." Preposterous.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    Quote Originally Posted by Obviously
    A child should have the right to know that he/she can indeed NOT believe in something, and also know what other choices within belief there is. Parents should have their right to teach their children about their religion, but not completely shut them out from everything else.

    That is agreable, right?
    People who believe in one true religion should tell their kids, "well our religion is the only way to get into heaven but if you want to follow some other religion, or be an atheist, that's fine with us." Preposterous.
    But fair.
    You’re just giving them the same rights as you, to use there own free will and judgment, or is it your wish; they should take that away from them, oh shit! They are already.

    My children manage ok, and we don’t ram rubbish down their throats, when they ask why the sky is blue, they don’t get told, because god made it that way.
    Fairy tales in my household remain fantasy and fun, they are not something to run your life.
    you tend to forget, people who believe, without evidence are simply lying to there children, not a good start to a relationship.
    and if you enforce those lies through as you say, well mummy's religion is the only way to get into heaven, if you dont believe, you will burn in hell, that's child abuse.
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense - Buddha"
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    My children manage ok, and we don’t ram rubbish down their throats, when they ask why the sky is blue, they don’t get told, because god made it that way.
    And of course your way is the only right way. You are simply displaying your religious intolerance.
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    Harold how does a man of religion(I hope im not assuming too much, but thats how you appear) become an engineer? arent the questions you have to ask and answer forbidden? If not why do you then condone parents that do forbid this kind of questioning, depriving them of the truth of the physical world at the development and likely most important stage of their lives?
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    Quote Originally Posted by GhostofMaxwell
    Harold how does a man of religion(I hope im not assuming too much, but thats how you appear) become an engineer? arent the questions you have to ask and answer forbidden? If not why do you then condone parents that do forbid this kind of questioning, depriving them of the truth of the physical world at the development and likely most important stage of their lives?
    You are assuming too much. I haven't posted anything here that would tell you anything about my religious beliefs. Nor do I intend to, because I think an argument should stand on its own merits, regardless of the person making the argument. I am arguing in favor of tolerance, not religion.

    Your assumption that scientists/engineers are automatically atheists is incorrect. Many great scientists have believed strongly in God, including Maxwell by the way. There are also Descartes and Newton and many more.
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    ALL BECAUSE they kept their religious beliefs out of their work. This seems to be a fact quite readily overlooked by everyone.
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    On the contrary, this is not overlooked. Just forever troublesome to understand how anyone could consolidate the two(for me anyway).
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    By you it isn't. Let me rephrase: almost everyone. That way I can still sound like a pompous asshole while remaining slightly accurate. 8) :P
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    Forum Masters Degree geezer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    And of course your way is the only right way. You are simply displaying your religious intolerance.
    how so, allowing my children to think for themselves, is hardly me being intolerant, now is it, I never said I told them it was rubbish, children have to be brought up with an unbiased view, they know of God, Allah, and Krishna, and even Buddha, they can make up their own minds as to what they consider true.

    However you are right to say I've a religious intolerance, I have,
    It is the most evil of cults known to man, anything that promotes hatred, bigotry and murder.
    is wholly evil in my book, but I have no hatred what’s so ever for it's adherents, they are mere puppets who cant really be held responsible for their actions, they have no comprehension they are doing wrong. Take away the irrational tool that incites them to violence and they are very unlikely to do it.
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense - Buddha"
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    We're here to SA-sa-sa (bless me) SAVE people, not crucify them……..it means a change is in the air, with Jesus as LORD……….and we his children.

    we're all good in the eyes of the lord until he finds out you hate him......

    .....and.......well, if the Jews (honorable Jewish citizens who took the baton from Egypt) claim not jesus (as their rightful savior).........then the sin we are born in, w-w-w-oooooow..............wait till he finds you hate him...........because you weren't booooOOOOOOrrrrnnnnnnn in sin (with jesus).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    Quote Originally Posted by GhostofMaxwell
    Harold how does a man of religion(I hope im not assuming too much, but thats how you appear) become an engineer? arent the questions you have to ask and answer forbidden? If not why do you then condone parents that do forbid this kind of questioning, depriving them of the truth of the physical world at the development and likely most important stage of their lives?
    You are assuming too much. I haven't posted anything here that would tell you anything about my religious beliefs. Nor do I intend to, because I think an argument should stand on its own merits, regardless of the person making the argument. I am arguing in favor of tolerance, not religion.

    Your assumption that scientists/engineers are automatically atheists is incorrect. Many great scientists have believed strongly in God, including Maxwell by the way. There are also Descartes and Newton and many more.
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    I am arguing in favor of tolerance, not religion.
    Don't forget that overtolerance is a problem as well (like for example NAMBLA, who demands TOO much tolerance than can be allowed NAMBLA).
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    Geezer wrote
    Take away the irrational tool that incites them to violence and they are very unlikely to do it.
    Do you have any evidence of that?

    Obviously wrote
    Don't forget that overtolerance is a problem as well (like for example NAMBLA, who demands TOO much tolerance than can be allowed NAMBLA).
    I think you have really gone beyond the pale by comparing religious parents with child molesters.

    Again, what is your remedy for the problem?
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    Who said anything about direct remedies, It's more a matter of condoning what is going on in our midst.


    But you could bring in a religious abuse of children law. Just like there are mental abuse of children laws(at least I believe there are in some countries).

    If a parent is inflicting an undue amount of pressure and distress on a child, bust their ass!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    Geezer wrote
    Take away the irrational tool that incites them to violence and they are very unlikely to do it.
    Do you have any evidence of that?
    the Bible, the Qu'ran etc...
    and if you mean the latter part of my sentence then common sense.
    to walk the path of peace, you must understand what cause's peace. When you understand what cause's peace, you know where to put your efforts.
    A peaceful mind leads to all things peaceful, If the human minds is at peace, the world will be at peace.
    pure common sense.
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense - Buddha"
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    The bible and the quran both have highly violent scriptures. It's only fortunate that in modern times most people prefer the peaceful and loving ones.

    Unfortunately this leaves us with a bias where they refuse to comprehend the scriptures that espouse violence.

    I agree with geezer nonetheless.
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    Quote Originally Posted by geezer
    if you mean the latter part of my sentence then common sense.
    That is not a very scientific attitude. I asked for evidence. Common sense might tell someone else that people will run amok without religious values to guide them. Prove your common sense is better than their common sense.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    Quote Originally Posted by geezer
    if you mean the latter part of my sentence then common sense.
    That is not a very scientific attitude. I asked for evidence. Common sense might tell someone else that people will run amok without religious values to guide them. Prove your common sense is better than their common sense.
    If you HAVE common sense, it will tell you that we have "mirror neurons" in our brain that prevent most people from doing anything remotely sociopathic. I'm an atheist, yet at the same time I'm incapable of harming even an animal severely.

    All it takes to reach that conclusion is simplistic logic that I deem "common sense".

    happy?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremyhfht
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    Quote Originally Posted by geezer
    if you mean the latter part of my sentence then common sense.
    That is not a very scientific attitude. I asked for evidence. Common sense might tell someone else that people will run amok without religious values to guide them. Prove your common sense is better than their common sense.
    If you HAVE common sense, it will tell you that we have "mirror neurons" in our brain that prevent most people from doing anything remotely sociopathic. I'm an atheist, yet at the same time I'm incapable of harming even an animal severely.

    All it takes to reach that conclusion is simplistic logic that I deem "common sense".

    happy?
    No. Here is a list of common sense ideas. The earth is flat. Heavy objects fall faster. Light waves need a medium to propagate.

    Now, if the these mirror neurons work so well, how are they disrupted by religious beliefs, but not by atheist concepts?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    No. Here is a list of common sense ideas. The earth is flat. Heavy objects fall faster. Light waves need a medium to propagate.
    You apparently define common sense as "absolutely illogical".

    Sound judgment not based on specialized knowledge; native good judgment.
    Common sense (via answers.com). Most people without specialized knowledge know the earth isn't flat, that heavy objects don't fall faster, and that light waves don't require a medium. So too do they know that one can be moral without religion.

    Contrariwise, it all depends on how you define "specialized knowledge". If you argue that what I've listed is specialized, I can argue that the religious view that morals degrade without religion is specialized.

    Now, if the these mirror neurons work so well, how are they disrupted by religious beliefs, but not by atheist concepts?
    I said they were...? No I didn't.
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    All the common sense ideas I listed were commonly accepted at one time by the most educated people, until they were proven false. So, the "common sense" argument proposed by geezer is worthless.

    Geezer is the one who claimed moral superiority for atheism over religeous belief. You, Jeremy, seemingly agreed with him. Then you proposed a process (mirror neurons) that affect behavior independent of religious beliefs. So that does not support the proposition that religious belief (or disbelief) is more apt to promote violence, which was geezer's "common sense" idea, not mine.
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  38. #37  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    All the common sense ideas I listed were commonly accepted at one time by the most educated people, until they were proven false. So, the "common sense" argument proposed by geezer is worthless.
    Incorrect. The argument about a flat earth and the argument about heavy objects were neither accepted nor majority. If you said commoners thought so, then I would agree. Educated people? Ridiculous. Regarding light, that you have, but that's a specialized subject. Not as simplistic to test as the other two. I call that out of bounds.

    Then you proposed a process (mirror neurons) that affect behavior independent of religious beliefs. So that does not support the proposition that religious belief (or disbelief) is more apt to promote violence, which was geezer's "common sense" idea, not mine.
    I see. I do support that RELIGION can cause more violence in the form of fanaticism. Mirror neurons can be overcome (that's how military personnel can kill). Most religious beliefs have violence within their scriptural contexts, and fanaticism can arise from it. My opposite example was that nowdays most people prefer the peaceful interpretations.

    religion has potential for good as well as evil. Atheism, being based on no dogmatic belief, relies completely on humans. Which too have potential of good and evil.

    The only moral superiority? Atheists are more accepting of social progress. Similar details like that which most religious beliefs inhibit. Though it can be argued my "superiority" statement is unfair, since it denies the possibility their god exists and gives them such rules.

    I, personally, take a neutral stance. I entered debate because I thought you were being a bit too unfair.
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    Good and evil is something made by humans to both justify actions and undestand what is good and what is bad. I personally like better to say "necessity and unjust", because it fits better to the human world. Good and evil can be misunderstood. For example: "My path is righteous, therefore it is just to kill you whom don't follow my view."

    That was a little digression from what we were talking about though

    Maybe I should put it up in the "Philosophical Discussion" thread (I don't know if I spelled "thread" right :? )?
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    Well, I'm a little late into this, but it just so happens that I am reading The God Delusion as well. I agree with Dawkins, to call a child "Christian" or "Muslim" or anything else under the religous banner is wrong.

    The simple fact of the matter is, the child is to young to understand all that encompasses religious belief and the resulting ramifications thereof. If you really stop to think objectively about it, calling a child "Christian" or some such is really only part of the perpetual dogma of indoctrination fostered by nearly EVERY religion. If it wasn't for indoctrination, the majority of religions would never have survived till modern times.

    Allow me to demonstrate. I haven't read this entire post, just skimmed through it, but I assume that there is at least one person saying that children should be called "Christian" or "Muslim" or some such. To that person, I ask:
    What religion are your parents and your parents parents etc.? Chances are, it is the same as yours. Why? You were indoctrinated, from the moment your parents held you, into belief of that religion. Christianity is rife with indoctrination rituals ie: baptism. Honestly, does a baptised baby have any understanding of religion, when in truth it does not have the developed higher cognative functions elder members of our species have? It does not. Intellectually, morally, and spiritually, it cannot fend for itself.

    Children depend on the society around them to develop their early morals, long beforehaving reasoning abilities capable of wakening them to the potential horrors of ANY system of belief. Because parents set religion upon their child without it being able to reason on its own, the child believes what it is told is true, even when it is at an age were it is unable to fully comprehend its situation. (This is easy to see in a faithful family. Children, in their younger years, have very little ability to comprehend religion fully, which is why they make "cute" mistakes when talking of religion. It takes years of indocrination for them to develop "complete" understanding.)

    In the face of this unending proseltyzing(sp?) people are seldom able to make their own chocies concerning religion. I'm one of the lucky ones. Both of my parents, both of whom are faithful, never forced religion upon me. Because of this, I am intellectually, and, though it may not be the most appropriate term for an atheist, spiritually, a free mind.

    I apologize if I said anything that's already been pointed out, but, I figured I might as well add my two cents.
    "Sire, I have no need of that hypothesis." - As Laplace said when Napoleon wondered how the famous mathematician could write his book without mentioning God.
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