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Religion is a source of good

#1OnceInALifeTimePosted 6/8/2011 3:47:25 PM
...when it's good men and women telling good people to do good things. But often it isn't. It IS a source among many religions of unquestionable authority, and where you have unquestionable authority you also have intolerance and inequality, xenophobia - the hallmarks of essentially every evil act ever committed by an institution. As the old quote goes: "man can do good without religion, but needs religion to do bad". Religion allows bad people to do bad things, to tell good people to do bad things, all in the name of something that will never be accountable.

And it stretches beyond religion, of course it does. For the very same reason I hate organised religion I hate fascism, dictatorships and any system that exploits people under false proclamations, under and behind false moral authority. But we can freely criticise those systems without threat of being "mean", or "unfair". A false moral standard hangs like a shroud over the backs of those we should be criticising.
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http://www.gamereplays.org/community/uploads/post-396-1161708490.jpg :: sound advice from the NHS
"I like FosterTaken" - Darth Snake
#2kozlo100Posted 6/8/2011 3:55:42 PM
I don't buy the assertion that we can't criticize religion. We do it here every single day. We do it in our media, in common conversation, everywhere.

Of course some people are going to think you're being mean or unfair. That's the nature of the game. Do you think some North Korean politician isn't going to decry you as mean and unfair for criticizing Dear Leader? Of course he is, but you don't read that as a limitation on your ability to criticize dictatorships.

The reason you feel you can fairly criticize those other things is that you never do it to anybody who actually supports them. Of course you're not going to catch any flack when you're preaching to the choir.

Obviously people who disagree about your worldviews are sometimes going to see your criticisms as being mean and unfair. Sometimes they will be wrong, and sometimes they will be right. Would you restrict them from calling it like they see it?

Are you sure the double standard lies where you think it does?
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The problem, then, is that if subjective worlds are experienced too differently, there occurs a breakdown in communication. -- Philip K. Dick
#3OnceInALifeTime(Topic Creator)Posted 6/8/2011 4:16:10 PM
I guess you're right, although I think it largely depends on who you are and where you are. But this is a developing issue, it's only really been in the last few years where it's been acceptable to criticise it, at least here in the UK. Life of Brian, for instance, was a very clever parody that was actually pretty accurate (one of the Pythons jokingly said something along the lines that "the Life of Brian is a more accurate portrayal of Judea than the bible"), but if you were to watch the discussions happening in Britain when it first came out you'd realise that nobody wanted to talk about that. They were too busy talking about "disgracing the image of the lord" and all that nonsense, dragging the discussion down and getting away with it. And I think the public image of atheists even now is exceptionally low, from some polls conducted in America I've seen.

So while we can freely discuss it and criticise it, we're rarely actually getting into any real discussion. Religion does have a special place in society, and I think that carries over pretty far.
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http://www.gamereplays.org/community/uploads/post-396-1161708490.jpg :: sound advice from the NHS
"I like FosterTaken" - Darth Snake
#4kozlo100Posted 6/8/2011 4:39:11 PM
Not being able to find anybody to have the discussion you want to have is a much different thing that being unable to criticize a thing. If people ignore your criticism because it's not relevant to them, I don't think that's a problem with those people. Rather I think it's a problem with how you've selected your audience.

The problem you seem to be describing isn't that religion has some special protection via a double standard. Rather it's just something that most people like how it is. You're free to disagree, but I don't think you can claim a problem with society because nobody gives a rat's that you disagree. In other words, I don't think one can reasonably expect that people participate meaningfully in a discussion that they aren't interested in having.
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The problem, then, is that if subjective worlds are experienced too differently, there occurs a breakdown in communication. -- Philip K. Dick
#5Wu_ZonghaiPosted 6/8/2011 11:52:53 PM
You can thank internet atheists for the bag stigma atheists have. Most angstheists on the web are mad
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At night, the trolls crawl out from their bridges to dance under the pale moon.
#6OrangeWizardPosted 6/9/2011 2:12:30 AM
We can't criticize religion because we're so busy generalizing it. When you say "Religion" you're talking about all 4,200+ religions.

Be specific. Talk about one of them at a time.
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"this game is about reality. ... when you fire a gun you are not like "what is this am i shooting sausages?""
-General_Dong on Black Ops
#7MJackMageePosted 6/9/2011 6:25:10 AM
It should also be required to differentiate between Religion (say, Christianity or Islam) and religious institutions (Westboro Baptist). And The Church is generally an unacceptable inclusion in these catagories. To most follosers, it simply denotes the collective body of believers with no demarcation between denominational sects.
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Humans will only notice when the probability does not go their way.
-Thanatos2k-
#8zyzzvya01Posted 6/9/2011 6:53:22 AM
I think the point that Once in a Life Time is trying to make is that religious believers seem to think their beliefs are exempt from criticism for no other reason than because they hold those beliefs.
#9MJackMageePosted 6/9/2011 3:27:06 PM
That is an attitude that is far from exclusive to theists thougu. Generally you can tell who has a problem with what they accept/acknowledge/believs being questioned because their discussion points rapidly fall into degrading, insults and name-calling. I.e. saying someone's "invisbile friend" in reference to JBJ or stating that an athiest lacks any form of ethics. Most decent people I know don't mind lively discussions as long az they are kept civil and polite.
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Humans will only notice when the probability does not go their way.
-Thanatos2k-
#10OrangeWizardPosted 6/9/2011 3:31:10 PM
MJackMagee posted...
thougu

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UTGzW94JlGA
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"this game is about reality. ... when you fire a gun you are not like "what is this am i shooting sausages?""
-General_Dong on Black Ops