I think that religion didn't cause anything good but only start wars, create gilt , hold science back , repressing women's rights, repress sexual subjects , promotes violence racism sectrianism backwardness discrimination ignorance , violates human rights , opression of homosexuals , bigotry , hatred , extremism , terrorism . But sometimes it helps people cope with their problems. I want to hear your opinions and arguments. Plus excuse my English since it's a second language.
PS : I meant abolish not by forcing but using logic and reason.
Tom - I do not have an answer for your question. I was just curious where you were going with the question.
Jim, where am I going with "Outside the sciences and mathematics, have logic and reason ever defeated emotion?"
I've been in two such places - business and politics. What I saw inspired my question.
Tom, I would accept math and to a large degree science as being more logic and reason based, although some scientists become emotionally attached to their theories and overlook those signs that tell them they may be on the wrong path. Certain aspects of business are driven by logic and reason, although marketing of products is usually based on an emotional approach. The stock market is often driven by emotion, although computer trading has decreased that. Politics is a whole nother kettle of fish. What I have observed over many years is that emotion plays a very large role in politics, probably an increasing role as the nation continues to "dumb down". By that I mean, the average citizen knows and cares very little about government, which is one reason why lobbyists are so powerful.
Jim, would you agree that the certain aspects of business you mention, as well as the development of computer trading and even non-computer trading, are driven by a fear of poverty?
Politics is certainly driven by a fear of powerlessness.
If I have sufficient wealth or power, I need not trust other people -- except police, firefighters, health care workers, suppliers of food and clothing, and those who make reproduction possible.
Hm-m-m, that's a lot of people a wealthy or powerful person has to trust.
Tom, no I do not think computer trading is driven by a fear of poverty. It is just an outgrowth of technological development and sophistication. I do think many aspects of politics are driven by a fear of powerlessness, or as a desire for more power.
I agree that everyone has to trust a lot of other people, whether they have money or not. You could add airline pilots, engineers who design bridges, those who manufacture drugs, military, etc. Not sure what you are driving at here.
Banning alcohol, smoking, morality, and any addictive substance or belief does not reach low enough into the psych of a person. There is pleasure or comfort or reassurance through addiction and one can't legislate these factors. If a person is addicted to alcohol, we can put them in jail if they drink and drive, if the addiction is smoking we can legislate they not smoke in public places, if the addiction is morality, the Puritans cut off the ears, noses and put a hot iron through tongues of Quakers; none of which changed the behaviors and beliefs.
An atheist, liberal, left wing, feminist, has as much right to thought and actions that do not harm or interfere with others, as theists, conservative, right wing, maleist.
Frankly, not everyone in the world is smart enough to rid themselves of superstitions beliefs. In a vacuum of religion, religions would arise. We're wired that way. But of course, a more educated population would reduce that tendency.
I believe that "collectives" like religion -BUT WITHOUT THE MAGIC WORSHIP, are the future way to go. Based on reason, a place where the smart and not-so-smart can agree. Collectives or organizations that can provide atheists with counseling, weddings & funerals, charities... hope?
Religions are the mental equivalent of nations. They have populations and laws (rules) and even a constitution (holy book). By contrast, atheist are NOMADS with no nation, and therefor can't move mountains.
It's a paradox though -to ask "freethinkers" to join an ideology.
There is nothing about not believing in god/s that prevents one from counseling, weddings, funerals, caring for others. Weddings and funerals with loved ones and those who want to show honor to these events happen in my garden. Support of peers provides very good counseling without the strings of religion attached. Many times battered children and women receive counseling to yield, pray, obey, turn the other cheek, love him to the lord, crucify yourself daily; not a very healthy thing to advise for a toxic environment.
Atheists are NOMADS; many often think and act out of care, concern and compassion for others. To be obedient or submissive to tyranny is no virtue.
I so agree with you Joan. You can be "good" and show care, compassion and concern for others without god.
John, your "Religions are the mental equivalent of nations" is an interesting insight.
Religions are also the emotional equivalent of nations. For instance, most Americans are emotionally committed to the Pledge of Allegiance, especially to those two words added in 1954.
About those two words, this atheist dislikes both the "god" part and the "under" part. I dislike the "under" part because it requires accepting the submissive role in a dominant/submissive relationship.
A dominant/submissive relationship with an imaginary being! Religions are taught; the resulting mental ill health is learned.
Comparing, during both WW1 and WW2, German soldiers' belt buckles had their words for "with god" on them. According to one WW2 history, they were more efficient killers; whether advancing, fighting in place, or retreating, German soldiers killed 150 Allied soldiers for every 100 German soldiers that Allied soldiers killed. In the ugly work of war, their "with god" empowered them.
BTW, the collectives you mention can be the employees who own the companies where they work. When more employees own their companies, fewer sociopaths will own them.
China is an officially atheistic, although often superstitious country/culture. They have many holidays that are not religious. That shows we don't need religion to have holidays. "China has seven legal holidays in a year, including New Year's Day, Spring Festival, Qingming Festival, May Day, Dragon Boat Festival, Mid-Autumn Day and National Day".
I think that in countries where religion where religion undergoes official suppression, there is also repression. Such as USSR and China, probably Pol Pot's Cambodia. Im not a historian so can be corrected on those.
On the other side, where enlightment renders religion obsolete, such as much of Scandinavia, life can be pretty good. I could live with that.
I agree with you Ibriham on all of the negatives of religious oppression. Maybe the invention of religion had a role in "civilizing" ancient humanity into cultures and societies, but it's time to move on. Rationality is a much better way to cope with our problems, more realistic. I will take rationality over any religion.
"probably" Pol Pot's Cambodia ?
Sentient Biped - I suggest Yale University's Cambodian Genocide Program as one of many sources -
"The Cambodian genocide of 1975-1979, in which approximately 1.7 million people lost their lives (21% of the country's population), was one of the worst human tragedies of the last century ...the Khmer Rouge regime headed by Pol Pot combined extremist ideology with ethnic animosity and a diabolical disregard for human life to produce repression, misery, and murder on a massive scale."