The Nerd's discussion is very popular and spirited, so I suggest breaking it up into subcategories, so as not to be inundated with comments.

I've always felt that religion weaves a pernicious web in human behavior. Making people to associate guilt and shame with our natural bodies is a crime against humanity. Religious orthodoxy takes a wonderful gift of nature and

If sex were a positive and natural activity, I believe rape would diminish and eventually cease in an enlightened society.

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Yes, its a thing that we call a conscience. That feeling of guilt that the church plays on to sell their ideas. We are born with it, it doesn't come from believing that Jesus lived or what have you. We have to sleep at night. We have to look at our selves in the mirror. I prefer to sleep well and smile at myself with pride in the mirror. Has not a damn thing to do with God.
I'm with you Ray. "There's no morality without God." What bullshit. Morality comes from Reason.

In Reason We Trust, should be the motto on money. What the heck does God have to do with it?
Good point, Christina. I mentioned the Prime Directive before and it's key here. Self preservation is the main instinct, but the second part, reproduction, is also very important. It is the latter that gives rise to territoriality.

Territoriality is the culprit and the main cause of many problems. In humans rigid male-dominated hierarchy, bureaucracy, xenophobia, nationalism, armed forces, cops, war, mistreatment of immigrants, all stem from it.

The fact that the Chinese, while lacking Western religious influence, still have male dominance is strong evidence that the PD determines human behavior. It’s what Sagan called the Reptilian Factor, Freud called Id, and Golding called Jack.

How about foot binding of young girls? Barbaric custom, seems to make no sense at all— but does in light of the PD.
Wow I never realized that these two were Chinese girls. They seem so happy...

The question, to me, becomes this: If the Abrahamic religions lend to the roots of rape and chauvinism, why are they so pervasive in secular Asian countries? Why are their philosophies so chauvinistic? I have to say that outside of this, everything I've read of Eastern Philosophy seems sensible and logic driven.
If the Abrahamic religions lend to the roots of rape and chauvinism, why are they so pervasive in secular Asian countries?

David, this is a very complex issue with many variables. Sexual suppression (call it being horny) certainly plays a part. Just as in suicide, feeling there is no other way, helplessness and hopelessness are a factor. This will be the case in the Orient to some extent.

To test the hypothesis an experimenter would have to hold all the variables fixed, except for religion. This would be very difficult to do but is possible with a wide population.
Precisely the point of my question. So far as I know, greater asia is even more chauvinistic than any place in the west that I can think of. This happens in spite of a lack of Abrahamic religion which bring me to this point: Judeo-Christian beliefs have done little help the plight of women, but are probably not solely responsable for the mistreatment of women. I remember Jacqueline mentioning the neolithic revolution (bronze working, animal husbandry, and agriculture) and that seems like more of a point of origion to me. Honestly I'm not sure about this part but arn't those neolithic technologies older in Asia than in the west? If they are, could that be an interesting clue?

In the spirit of avoiding misunderstandings, I'm saying that it seems likely that masogynist philosophies are more of a symptom than an origional cause of chauvinism. I used to think that it had to be that men had simply forcefully imposed male dominance and that chauvinism evolved to this chauvinism, but is it possible that the answer is so simple?
Wow, David, wonderful. I was thinking about this. In biology, there’s the phenomenon of biological convergence. (It’s not even taught today in high school bio classes.) We all understand “divergence,” speciation, but there is also an opposite occurrence. “Convergence” refers to regressing to earlier forms to adapt to a new environment. Water buffaloes and fish converged by the mammals’ growing fins to swim faster.

This is only a theory: The Agricultural Revolution caused a convergence by bringing humanity to an earlier stage culturally. The tribal system, which lasted since hominids descended from the trees, was replaced by the family system and humanity regressed to an earlier monkey stage of strict hierarchic male dominance. (We can see how strong this is in baboons.) There was no such thing in tribes; a child was a village child and didn’t know nor care who the biological parents were. Females were tribal and orgies were common. Modesty was an unknown concept.

Private property might have spurred these changes. Modesty became the norm; promiscuity is good for genetic vitality (and perhaps happiness in least in my case) but was sacrificed for the sake of the male line of inheritance. The father because the strict head of household. (Read your Bible.) lol.

This is where specialization of labor came in. From hunter/gatherer to farmer/herdsman, you can bet policeman/soldier came on the scene sharing in the harvest for protecting it.
Eventually a lawyer/priest/scribe developed and the new order took off. They controlled inheritance.

Human population rose from just a few million 15,000 years ago to the current 6.8 billion. Plenty of food was available through farming and the family and clan were able to protect the young.
Now this makes sense to me. It is not at all uncommon for humans to experience this sort of social regression in small scales, why not globally with a great enough exchange of information? Also it makes a lot more sense that chauvinistic philosophies would follow and not proceed such an event. My reason for that is the sententious teaching/preaching that is a part of these philosophies- it is clear that they are designed to enforce, not reinforce, the misconception of inequality. That is, they make up reasons that men should rule over women- like because God said so. If they were reinforcing traditional male dominance they'd be more likely to say, "hey if she thinks she's equal, kick her ass." I guess people needed better reasons then that... lol
The theory is pretty much saying that private property (greed) caused major (bad) social changes to control the wealth.

I think if you'd say to a pre-Agricultural Revolution tribesman, "This is my land," he wouldn't have been able to understand.

The 5.5 million years, since Ardipithecus, is key to human happiness. We're only in the current social situation for 15,000 years, a second, compared to earlier hominid forms.

The logical conclusion, I think, is the best things in life are free and the inner man is basically good.
...and for that man to do bad things, it takes religion.
I could imagine such a tribesman being like, "Yup, it's mine too."

So you're saying that the manner in which hominids lived before us is the key to our happiness? That's brilliant, I never thought about that. Though this sort of screws us- there's no way to convince people of such simple and honest wisdom

While I agree that people are generally good, I feel that they're also generally evil. Maybe that's just a negetive outloook.
Some species of higher animals have been known to rape others in their species. Dolphins, for example. Seeing as humans are also higher animals I don't know that escaping religion alone will be enough to deminish the frequincy of rape, though it would certainly help.




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