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Unseen benefits of religion...(for the athiest)


petrushka.googol
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But I think what you mean is that religion as you know it gives you the creeps.

Of course I only know what I know!! Sounds like something from a certain American politician.

 

Who was running the school? If it was the Catholics you have my sympathies.

Can't say I recall what particular division, other than to say what I would call one of the English varieties. Upon visiting the area by chance the other day, I noticed the church had been knocked down.

 

Had them knock on my door recently. They started by mentioning the spirit world. Apparently not receiving a sympathetic response from me, they turned to a recent TV program - that being Stargazing Live (which suggests the date of their call). They started on about how wonderful it all is, and appeared to be about to enter a discourse of God's work. I interrupted them and said that their kind had even denied the Earth went round the Sun for 2000 years. And what's more, anyone who suggested it did would likely be tied to a post and set alight. They then said when turning to depart that they were looking for people who could think. I wished them every success in their quest.

 

I've even had them call and suggest that the egg contradicts the second law of thermodynamics. I think they've got me marked down for taking on a certain approach.

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I think I have them marked down as taking a certain approach, one that is ridiculous. I will always leap to the defence of religion, but really it is can be very difficult in the face of such nonsense.

 

My bookshelves are full of books on religion, and lately I asked a visiting posse of five (five!) Jehovah's Witnesses in for tea, I'm sure I saw one of them make the sign of the cross when he saw my bookshelf. I mentioned Buddhism. A day later one of them dropped off a sheet of A4 paper on which there was a half-page photocopied argument against Buddhism. I despair. The idea that we are a rational species is not plausible.

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  • 3 weeks later...
Unseen many benefits of many religion are as many.......some of them give below...

 

- you stop thinking about new idea

- you have to follow what is already written

- you have to make other people think as it is written

- innovation is bad word ....

- you have to participate in hooligans... either convert people or wipe them out....

- you have to differentiate human based on their faith

- you have to shoe polish your GOD else he will do something terribly bad ...

- you have to earn money to support people sitting in religious place doing nothing

- you have to destroyed other cultures and assets, artifacts, books as many as you can

​- people of two different cult cannot sit together...

- kaizen is bad practice...

 

so many more that .. cannot be included here...

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Religion is the opposite to rationality, it's close-minded; I would say that some academia is also close-minded. There are rare, often off the normal path of religion, cases where religion that concerns God could be beneficent; such as for the control of a population, or primal education for civilized society; maybe even unto like-God anomalies or natures.

 

These are not truly unseen, I imagine many people have thought about this in the past, it's just pointless because of the state of God-belief in society. If we support anything about God we are often forced to think about or worship other aspects of God. I think rationality is the way forward, pure rational belief, as oppose to a belief in a God, or person, who defines rationality, rationality in the form of doctrine that cannot be replicated by the self through the observation of nature---you can only be in it's stupor because you succumb to whatever forces had play in it's application into your mind.

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A religious atheist is a contradictio in terminis...

Not really. You can have a cultural religious person who doesn't believe a deity actually exists. An obvious example is a cultural Jew or a Buddhist. Recall that atheist is a term applying to god(s), not religion.
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Indeed, "cultural" was the key word there. These are folks who align with the community and remain connected with tradition or food or music and celebrate holidays and act in accordance with local customs, but who do so absent the belief in god(s). It's less common, but certainly exists. Sometimes, the same is seen among "cultural" Christians... People who try to be good to those around them, follow the teachings of Jesus and love thy neighbor, etc... but who think that belief in god(s) is somewhat silly or akin to belief in a tooth fairy.

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In Judaism a Kabbalist would often be a religious atheist. Mystics rarely endorse a simple atheism. I don't know what the ration of atheists to theists is in religion, but it's a good proportion. That's the problem with our commonplace western religion, it leads us to think all religion is the same. Many intended arguments against religion fail because they target only a small handful of believers from down the road.

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@John Cuthber:

The stoning as depicted there has never been practiced by Jews, it looked totally different... the culprit was brought to some place high above the ground and thrown down and if they did not die, stones were used. And these weren't small stones but big heavy ones that were mean to finish the victim off. That story from the New Testament was probably fabricated by Christians in order to make Jews look like villans and make their prophet take more credit for "abolishing" these barbaric practices

 

The second aspect of that punishment is that even before Jesus, Jews introduced such rigoristic standards of proof that death penalty became de facto illegal.

 

These are the steps that must have taken place for someone to be eligible for death penalty for any offence under Jewish law:

1. Before comitting the crime the perpetrator was warned by two kosher witnesses that the actions he/she is about to do is punishable by death. The witnesses must be upstanding citizens known to have never sinned in public, with the knowledge of both Torah and Talmud, plus they cannot be related to the perpetrator.

2. The perpetrator accepted the warning, i.e. stated that he has heard the it but is going to do it anyway

3. The perpetrator then comitted the crime immediately after accepting the warning. This is determined by the amount of time it takes to say "Shalom Lecha Rabbi", - about 3 seconds.

 

Imagine that - you are about to commit adultery, two witnesses who are known to be perfect citizens warn you that it's a capital crime and you disregard the warning and commit the crime within, like, 3 second after that... how probable is such a sequence of events? O.o But all of that is needed just to consider the POSSIBILITY of giving you death sentence - as that's not everything so let's move forward.

 

4. The punishment can be carried out only by the Sanhedrin, the highest religious court in Jerusalem which has been disbanded since 70 AD. So unless it is rebuilt, there is no one capable of carrying out your stoning.

5. The witnesses were examined separately. Any discrepancy - even a minor one - would render their testimony invalid.

6. The witnesses could be called to either defend the accused or to claim the other witnesses were lying (eidim zomemim)

7. The judges (there must be 23 of them) would deliberate. During this process, a judge who argued for innocence could not change his mind and argue for guild, while a judge who argued for guilt would be allowed to raise arguments for innocence (after which he could not raise any arguments for guilt).

 

 

5. The most junior judges would speak first with more senior judges speaking later on, so that the younger jusges would not be worried about contradicting the most senior judges.

6. The court would then vote. A majority of two votes was needed for guilt.

 

So your argument that the bible advocates stoning is pretty much BS. No one interprets it in such a way since, well, antiquity. I think that the Bible can have positive influence on people.

 

 

I have to address this, religion, Christian and Muslim still practice stoning people to death, just because it occurs in some far off land where you seldom hear of it doesn't make it non existent.

 

http://www.religionnews.com/2014/05/28/pregnant-pakistani-woman-stoned-death-family/

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stoning

 

Christianity has been gelded by most modern societies but burning alive is more common than stoning.

 

http://thetaleofbittertruth.wordpress.com/2013/09/08/suspected-witches-burned-alive-by-christians-in-kenya/

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Hopefully, this is on topic-

 

Buddhism is more of a lifestyle, not a religion, so we have enough on our plate, people, lets keep Buddhism out of this. Hinduism too, for that matter. By far, the main religions which affect the vast majority of the world's population are Judeo-Christian, Islam, and the offshoots from J-C like Baptist, Protestant, Pantacostals, etc etc.

 

In a strange perverted way, Catholic schools BY FAR prepare our American students better for College than do the public schools- no comparison. Im not saying though, the ends justify the means. Yes, strange how even wasting 45 minuted every morning from "bible reading" these students end up blowing away others in subjects like math/reading/and yes, science. Maybe the nuns scare the hell out of them, to do their studies......LOL!

 

I have hardly ever read anything from the "Bible". I am not interested in reading misinterpreted/copied junk written and the rewritten/transcribed/translated by no one we know, with no credentials, and outdated as far even as 30 centuries, when the world was full of superstition, ignorance, and fear of the wrath of God if we didnt behave.

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  • 3 weeks later...

When the first groups of our ancestors started banding together, one of the first things introduced was not science, nor the arts, it was religion.

It provided them with, what we would now call, ideals and a moral compass. The animals that we descended from had instinct based behavior, and this might-is-right mentality is incompatible with large groups or an organized society. And although some animals have a pack mentality, they often sacrifice their sick or infirm to predators, they don't honor their dead with storytelling ( A mechanism for passing on information ), or display other non-instinctual behavior.

As an example the dominant male in a pack ( wolves, lions, gorillas, what have you ) will mate with any female he chooses. How would that work in our society ?

Because I'm bigger and stronger than Brad Pitt, I get to sleep with Angelina ? ( I wish ! )

No, religion gives us morals which are counter-instinctual, and tells us " Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife"

 

So , I would argue that one benefit of religion, whether Diety based or not, is that it has allowed for civilization and ordered societies.

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When the first groups of our ancestors started banding together, one of the first things introduced was not science, nor the arts, it was religion.

It provided them with, what we would now call, ideals and a moral compass. The animals that we descended from had instinct based behavior, and this might-is-right mentality is incompatible with large groups or an organized society. And although some animals have a pack mentality, they often sacrifice their sick or infirm to predators, they don't honor their dead with storytelling ( A mechanism for passing on information ), or display other non-instinctual behavior.

As an example the dominant male in a pack ( wolves, lions, gorillas, what have you ) will mate with any female he chooses. How would that work in our society ?

Because I'm bigger and stronger than Brad Pitt, I get to sleep with Angelina ? ( I wish ! )

No, religion gives us morals which are counter-instinctual, and tells us " Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife"

 

So , I would argue that one benefit of religion, whether Diety based or not, is that it has allowed for civilization and ordered societies.

Replace strength for wealth and religion for monetary or asset attainment and your post would just about apply the same way. As we humans became more intelligent we realized more could be accomplished by greater numbers. So rather than the strong ( wolves, lions, gorillas, what have you ) chasing away outsiders humans learned that more people meant more power. Unfortunately the moral compass you referenced did not react to the pole oriented with slavery, torture, rape, or war. Rather than the strong humans merely raping Angelina Jolie they had a free for all with entire societies. People were enslaved and forced to do any number of this. Many of the ancient worlds greatest structures were built this way. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife is a nice saying but Vikings, Greeks, Persians, Mongols, Mayan and scores of other army's raped women and killed people in numbers that would be unimaginable for wolves, lions, gorillas, and what have you.
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Most religions also have guidelines about wealth and its attainment ( difficult to pass anything through the eye of a needle ).

The fact that religion is easily corrupted away from a well intended meaning is par for the course.

Any organization, well meaning or not, which is given some power, is easy to corrupt.

Do I need to bring up the example of politics and democracy ?

 

And what is it we say ...

'Its not a perfect system, but its the best we have'

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To me religion serves a dual purpose.

Firstly it focuses attention away from oneself and extrapolates it on some other entity (G_d in Judaism, the Cosmos in Buddhism etc.). It is not necessarily ethno-centric. This serves to make a person look outwards, rather than inwards, which I think is good in a way.

Secondly it serves as a kind of serotonin stimulator. Picture yourself in an austere Gothic Cathedral prostrating yourself (usually in a group) before an object of veneration. There is definitely a feel-good element in all of this.

 

Just my random musings...

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To me religion serves a dual purpose.

Firstly it focuses attention away from oneself and extrapolates it on some other entity (G_d in Judaism, the Cosmos in Buddhism etc.). It is not necessarily ethno-centric. This serves to make a person look outwards, rather than inwards, which I think is good in a way. <...> Just my random musings...

 

Actually, studies show quite the opposite and strongly suggest that people's religious ideas and views of gods are incredibly ethno and ego-centric, so your random musings are unfortunately displaced from reality a bit: http://www.pnas.org/content/106/51/21533.abstract

 

A good overview of what this all means is available here: http://scienceblogs.com/notrocketscience/2009/11/30/creating-god-in-ones-own-image/

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Actually, studies show quite the opposite and strongly suggest that people's religious ideas and views of gods are incredibly ethno and ego-centric, so your random musings are unfortunately displaced from reality a bit: http://www.pnas.org/content/106/51/21533.abstract

 

A good overview of what this all means is available here: http://scienceblogs.com/notrocketscience/2009/11/30/creating-god-in-ones-own-image/

 

To illustrate -

Religions like Judaism and Buddhism span the globe and are not ethno-centric.

Religion and "God" represents the super-ego which is above the individual ego. So it implies humility even if the orientation is purely by circumstance.

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To illustrate -

Religions like Judaism and Buddhism span the globe and are not ethno-centric.

Religion and "God" represents the super-ego which is above the individual ego. So it implies humility even if the orientation is purely by circumstance.

Of the worlds 7 billion people half are either Christian or Muslim. Over 3.5 billion. While Buddhism and Judaism add up to under 400 million. So while I agree that Buddhism and Judaism are ego-centric it is still fair to say most religious people world wide are.
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  • 4 months later...

To the thread subject: Being able to belly laugh upon encountering stories like this.

 

 

http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2015/03/nj_man_burned_while_praying_over_fajita_skillet_no.html

 

Applebee's not liable for N.J. man burned while praying over fajita skillet

A New Jersey man cannot collect damages for burns he suffered while bowing his head in prayer over a sizzling steak fajita skillet at Applebee's, a state appeals panel ruled today.

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