Why does a disagreement in perception lead people to seek solace in hate?

I've been on almost every conceivable side of the religion argument at some point throughout my lifetime. Currently I have come to the conclusion that 99% of religions have the same basic premise at heart. That being said, why is it that almost every person who has claimed belief in some higher power gets so angry when they come into contact with some one who doesn't believe in one?

Religions are supposed to be about bringing people together who have similar values, and creating a community around those beliefs. They are supposed to love their fellow man, and help to end other peoples suffering for the good of humankind. Again, these are the beliefs almost EVERY religion holds dear (and I would assume most any sane Atheist as well)... yet when you express to them that your beliefs differ greatly from their own, at least in my own experience, they treat you like you have a disease. If suspension of belief is contagious, then I surely hope I can pass it on (as long as it works for the person who is infected).

My main problem is this... I don't care what someone believes or chooses to do as long as I am allowed the same courtesy, and as long as it doesn't hurt or suppress another individuals will. What is so difficult about that? Why MUST these people with their beliefs be so militant (Atheists can be guilty of it too) and attempt to replace another persons ideals, beliefs, and morals for their own. What makes us want to either through coercion or force, cause some body to have a perception shift whether or not they are prepared for it?

I look forward to your responses.

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Good that your misogyny is showing so that people can see it.
meabh: Sooner or later, I reckoned you'd be invoking Hitler or the Nazis.

Godwin's Law. Entirely predicted and expected.
Interesting how you keep trying to reframe so many of the discussions on this site. I don't remember seeing anyone suggest that Danny should get a "free pass" because he's Jewish.
I wish I was Jewish now.
Sooner or later, I reckoned you'd be invoking misogyny to justify your own behavior.

Precisely what behaviour? Questioning the way you twist what people write?

Sit up and beg, meabh. There's a good little bitch.

Interesting how you refer to a woman as a bitch dog and demand her obedience in one discussion, and then take issue with a "sexist title" in another.

There's a show on Nat Geo called 'Life After Man.' In spite of its sexist title, it gives a pretty clear picture that Earth will go on long after we're gone. In fact, the planet might be better off without us.
any good that most would point to has an assured ulterior motive of cultivating souls as a trade for the seemingly altruistic gestures.

I disagree. I know some nuns running an adult literacy program. I've visited one of their main sites. They don't proselytize, they don't teach people how to read out of any Roman Catholic texts, and they don't ask anyone what their belief system is before helping them attain literacy. This is only one example; I could give more.

Sure, there are religious people who do what they do to harvest "souls", but others do what they do because they genuinely want to help others.
Judith, I was specifically responding to that snippet I quoted from what Michael wrote:

any good that most would point to has an assured ulterior motive of cultivating souls as a trade for the seemingly altruistic gestures.

I didn't say it was their religion being good. This particular group of nuns doesn't teach catechism.

Because there's a growing lack of clergy, an increasing number of non-clergy teach catechism.
While this discussion is close to surpassing my knowledge of history and my degree in armchair philosophy, I will attempt to elucidate my thoughts on the current points.

If we do not blame or ridicule religion itself for the crimes its people create (racism, sexism,rape,murder, etc.) than where do we look for the culprit? Yes, environmental factors contribute to the formula for making a human with ideals, but when we speak about doctrine, it can and will override the other factors.

A person in America,Nepal,Iran, and South Africa, can all be devout Muslims, practicing that faith nearly the same way as all the others, and use that faith to justify their actions. What other practice or part of society could lead them or justify their actions, when all other social factors are almost entirely different? Perhaps I am being naive and simplifying a much more complicated process.

I admit though, if I had nothing to go on but what a persons faith was, I would choose the stranger who was not superstitious over a person who was a christian, jew, muslim etc. Whether that is the right or wrong decision, I do not know. But as a species we will always assume things, nah, we must assume them. Imagine the person behind you frustration when you won't go at the green light because you are unsure if the meaning is still the same.
For an armchair philosopher that was pretty damn spot on Matt.
Very true, and I wish I had the stats to post here on comparisons of the same type between the U.S. and western Europe. If I'm not mistaken the results are very similar. I have seen the stats on teen pregnancy, std's, abortion, etc.....and Europe has fewer problems of this nature. Yet I would hypothesize that the average middle class "moderate" Christian would be shocked, at the sex education European teens receive. And it's co-ed OMG!! The horror.....the horror....
I don't know if we can draw such a comparison easy enough without considering other factors. That pretty much falls into the fallacy of false dichotomies otherwise.

Income is directly related to both social status and education. Education means more money, proper jobs, less children. Better economy means fewer people who commit crimes to make up for a loss of income. Better education means a higher possbility to rationalize and therefore a less likelyhood that somene would be religious.

I am pretty sure a majority of the people on AN are or belong to lower middle class or above. If you don't you probably can't afford a computer with a proper internet speed anyway or have time to spend enough time to write a message.

So, the issue I see it, how are these things correlated, and how can these things increase religious fundamentalism? Obviously, it is an emotional crutch, but it's not enough. Social conditioning is another issue, churches giving out money and food to poor people may be another (any priest is stupid as to not preach a little during those occasions).

I'd like to turn the tables around and saying that poor social status, low income and little to no education increases chance of religious fundamentalism and additionally as a sidenote leads to problems with society itself, but it may nothing have to do with the actual religion.

Anyway, that would be my anthropological answer. I honestly doubt you can disclose one issue and saying A leads to B and B leads to C, because there may be so many factors playing a role why someone would develop religious fundamentalism.
I believe that the reason you get such a harsh response from people when you tell them you will NEVER believe the way they do, is that most religions, are there to promote themselves. That principle has been sold to people as "faith", and indoctrinated into their consciousness that anything outside of that faith, endangers their mortal soul. (How convenient...) You know, when I told my dear mother that I was a non believer, didn't believe in the bible or Jesus or god...none of it. She cried and told me she was afraid I was going to hell...how could I do that to her?? What I told her next, shut her up for a while. I asked her in her honest opinion, who was the better person, someone who was a loving an kind human being, just because it was the right thing to do, without really caring about going to heaven? Or someone who was a loving and kind human being so they could ensure they would get to heaven?
I for one second made her think outside of that book she'd been bullied to giving her mind up to, and for that half a second she saw my point.
No way it would keep. She's too afraid to let that thought germinate in her mind for fear of going to hell, so she had to push it away. All religions in some way do that to those they indoctrinate. People cannot let you believe what you believe, because it will eventually DESTROY what they believe. Period. Science will slowly but surely destroy more and more of the crap ideas their religions have force fed them as fact, and they can't let that happen. (And gay marriage will destroy the world....rofl! ) What worries me, is that people really are that dumb! ( I take no pride in saying that by the way!)




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