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Aemeth

....andgodwins

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Aemeth

For those who are unfamiliar with Pascal's Wager, it can be summed up crudely as:

If theists/eternalists are right, the atheists lose everything.

If atheists are right, the theists/eternalists lose nothing.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pascal%27s_Wager

But now:

Generally, religion and spirituality increases happiness in life:

http://www.dailygalaxy.com/my_weblog/2008/...eligious-p.html

I am not offering proof of God. I am saying, that from a social and philosophical standpoint, it makes more sense to believe in God (whether or not he actually exists is irrelevant), because, GENERALLY SPEAKING, religious/spiritual people are happier in this life AND aren't risking eternity by not believing...

What are your thoughts?

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InnerSpace
For those who are unfamiliar with Pascal's Wager, it can be summed up crudely as:

If theists/eternalists are right, the atheists lose everything.

If atheists are right, the theists/eternalists lose nothing.

Except the opportunity to 'live now'. :D

But now:

Generally, religion and spirituality increases happiness in life:

http://www.dailygalaxy.com/my_weblog/2008/...eligious-p.html

I am not offering proof of God. I am saying, that from a social and philosophical standpoint, it makes more sense to believe in God (whether or not he actually exists is irrelevant), because, GENERALLY SPEAKING, religious/spiritual people are happier in this life AND aren't risking eternity by not believing...

What are your thoughts?

Hi Aemeth. =) Generally, religion and spirituality increases dopamine, and that gives you the illusion of happiness. :)

The role of the extrapersonal brain systems in religious activity:

Religious activity includes beliefs, experiences, and practice. Neuropsychological and functional imaging findings, many of which have derived from studies of experienced meditators, point to a ventral cortical axis for religious behavior, involving primarily the ventromedial temporal and frontal regions.

Neuropharmacological studies generally point to dopaminergic activation as the leading neurochemical feature associated with religious activity. The ventral dopaminergic pathways involved in religious behavior most closely align with the action-extrapersonal system in the model of 3-D perceptual-motor interactions proposed by Previc (1998).

The evolution of religion is linked to an expansion of dopaminergic systems in humans, brought about by changes in diet and other physiological influences.

Revue / Journal Title -Consciousness and cognition ISSN 1053-8100 2006, vol. 15, no3, pp. 500-539 [40 page(s) (article)] (11 p.1/4)

http://cat.inist.fr/?aModele=afficheN&cpsidt=18045085

http://www.unexplained-mysteries.com/forum...t&p=2984618

Research demonstrates that expectation is more dopaminergic than actually receiving the thing desired. Therefore, the mesolimbic/striatal dopamine pathways evolved.

To be rewarded through a delusion of grandeur is beneficial. Our heightened acknowledgment capacity provides that ability to happen.

Basically, people get rewarded to be deluded. Source

Also, studies show that religion is bad for society as a whole. More crime and dysfunction within religious countries.

As far as who's really the happiest...? it would seem that it's the Northern Europeans that have been given the title of the happiest people on Earth.

They are also the least religious.

Happiest people on Earth:

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2008/02/14/...in3833797.shtml

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/5224306.stm

http://abcnews.go.com/2020/story?id=4086092&page=1

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Dr. Peter Venkman
Except the opportunity to 'live now'. :D

Hi Aemeth. =) Generally, religion and spirituality increases dopamine, and that gives you the illusion of happiness. :)

The role of the extrapersonal brain systems in religious activity:

http://cat.inist.fr/?aModele=afficheN&cpsidt=18045085

http://www.unexplained-mysteries.com/forum...t&p=2984618

Also, studies show that religion is bad for society as a whole. More crime and dysfunction within religious countries.

As far as who's really the happiest...? it would seem that it's the Northern Europeans that have been given the title of the happiest people on Earth.

They are also the least religious.

Happiest people on Earth:

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2008/02/14/...in3833797.shtml

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/5224306.stm

http://abcnews.go.com/2020/story?id=4086092&page=1

Oh V... whut wit yer crzy siense n' whut nawt!!!!!

morans.jpg

Jaysus whut do it!!!!

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The Infidel Guy
I am not offering proof of God. I am saying, that from a social and philosophical standpoint, it makes more sense to believe in God (whether or not he actually exists is irrelevant), because, GENERALLY SPEAKING, religious/spiritual people are happier in this life AND aren't risking eternity by not believing...

What are your thoughts?

Tell that to the woman of Afghanistan or the people of Saudi Arabia or the multiple sexual abused victims at the hands of Priests - this is just to name a few.

You cannot just make a claim and say Religious/Spiritual people are happier.

Religion has caused more destruction to the welfare of people - War on "terrorism", Israel/Palestinian conflict (longest running war), Crusades, Hitlers genocide of the jews (which the Vatican supported).

Peace

T.I.G

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The Infidel Guy
Except the opportunity to 'live now'. :D

Hi Aemeth. =) Generally, religion and spirituality increases dopamine, and that gives you the illusion of happiness. :)

The role of the extrapersonal brain systems in religious activity:

http://cat.inist.fr/?aModele=afficheN&cpsidt=18045085

http://www.unexplained-mysteries.com/forum...t&p=2984618

Also, studies show that religion is bad for society as a whole. More crime and dysfunction within religious countries.

As far as who's really the happiest...? it would seem that it's the Northern Europeans that have been given the title of the happiest people on Earth.

They are also the least religious.

Happiest people on Earth:

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2008/02/14/...in3833797.shtml

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/5224306.stm

http://abcnews.go.com/2020/story?id=4086092&page=1

:tu:

Peace

T.I.G

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SQLserver
I am not offering proof of God. I am saying, that from a social and philosophical standpoint, it makes more sense to believe in God (whether or not he actually exists is irrelevant), because, GENERALLY SPEAKING, religious/spiritual people are happier in this life AND aren't risking eternity by not believing...

A. Of course, the most happy person would be one completely incapacitated person who is consistently hooked up to a machine which spews endorphins into his/her brain. Is this the life style that you want to live? The neurological difference between a "Matrix" like that from the movie, and a delusional world in which the host is convinced he lives in is very small.

B. There is no "risking eternity". The fact of the matter is that the chance that god exists is so small that he can be rationally said to not exist.

For example, what if I told you that you must learn a specific language spoken solely in one tribe in Borneo, because in 27 years your life will depend on it?

Would you waste the time learning the language for the single obscure chance?

Probably not. This is how most nonbelievers feel about belief. Why waste time with something that almost absolutely does not exist?

-SQLserver

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Sherapy
A. Of course, the most happy person would be one completely incapacitated person who is consistently hooked up to a machine which spews endorphins into his/her brain. Is this the life style that you want to live? The neurological difference between a "Matrix" like that from the movie, and a delusional world in which the host is convinced he lives in is very small.

B. There is no "risking eternity". The fact of the matter is that the chance that god exists is so small that he can be rationally said to not exist.

For example, what if I told you that you must learn a specific language spoken solely in one tribe in Borneo, because in 27 years your life will depend on it?

Would you waste the time learning the language for the single obscure chance?

Probably not. This is how most nonbelievers feel about belief. Why waste time with something that almost absolutely does not exist?

-SQLserver

:tsu::tsu::tsu::tsu::clap::clap::clap::clap::clap::nw::nw::nw::nw:

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Manszilla

God promises peace and joy for the saved. But He didn't promise a "happy life" that trials and tribulations and temptations are to be expected not to be the exception but that believers will be held up by the peace and joy of the Gospel and power of the Holy Spirit. That they will overcome.

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Lt_Ripley
God promises peace and joy for the saved. But He didn't promise a "happy life" that trials and tribulations and temptations are to be expected not to be the exception but that believers will be held up by the peace and joy of the Gospel and power of the Holy Spirit. That they will overcome.

opinion ! not fact !!

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Aemeth
A. Of course, the most happy person would be one completely incapacitated person who is consistently hooked up to a machine which spews endorphins into his/her brain. Is this the life style that you want to live? The neurological difference between a "Matrix" like that from the movie, and a delusional world in which the host is convinced he lives in is very small.

B. There is no "risking eternity". The fact of the matter is that the chance that god exists is so small that he can be rationally said to not exist.

For example, what if I told you that you must learn a specific language spoken solely in one tribe in Borneo, because in 27 years your life will depend on it?

Would you waste the time learning the language for the single obscure chance?

Probably not. This is how most nonbelievers feel about belief. Why waste time with something that almost absolutely does not exist?

-SQLserver

If they are happier, why wouldn't that be the lifestyle I want to live? I just...can't....be....that....dumb. But sometimes, I am a little envious of the people who live simple, happy and perfect lives because they are high on religion all of the time.

Er, you are still risking eternity, even if it is a small risk. No matter how you twist it, Pascal's wager still favors the existence of deities.

Tell that to the woman of Afghanistan or the people of Saudi Arabia or the multiple sexual abused victims at the hands of Priests - this is just to name a few.

You cannot just make a claim and say Religious/Spiritual people are happier.

OK, I would tell her that one unfortunate situation shouldn't dictate humanity's happiness...?

And why can't I make the claim? I made a proposition and backed it up with some research. It makes sense, doesn't it? Somebody living for a heaven vs. somebody living for mortality? Hope of eternal life? Yes please...

Also, studies show that religion is bad for society as a whole. More crime and dysfunction within religious countries.

Which studies? And good point about the Northern Europeans, I forgot about that. But it doesn't end the discussion. It seems religion clearly helps the majority of its followers "be happier."

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Marcus Aurelius
A. Of course, the most happy person would be one completely incapacitated person who is consistently hooked up to a machine which spews endorphins into his/her brain. Is this the life style that you want to live? The neurological difference between a "Matrix" like that from the movie, and a delusional world in which the host is convinced he lives in is very small.

B. There is no "risking eternity". The fact of the matter is that the chance that god exists is so small that he can be rationally said to not exist.

For example, what if I told you that you must learn a specific language spoken solely in one tribe in Borneo, because in 27 years your life will depend on it?

Would you waste the time learning the language for the single obscure chance?

Probably not. This is how most nonbelievers feel about belief. Why waste time with something that almost absolutely does not exist?

-SQLserver

Unless YOU are the one hooked to the machine, and THIS is the delusion.

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Cynical Sounds

I have 2 issues with pascals wager

1. I can't force myself to believe in god, I just can't yeah I could pay lip service or even devote my life to god/gods but at the end of the day I could never truly believe there would always be a part of me thats screaming

"THIS IS ALL (insert a more powerful word than rubbish)" and surely any god worth their salt (or thunderbolts) would know this thus knowing you aren't a true believer which either won't be good enough or won't matter because you've lived a good life but then what's the point the belief's part why can't you just live a good life helping people and generally being moral and helpful

2. which god, out of every god that is or has ever been worshipped which one's the right one/ones. You can't worship/believe in all of them as that will likely break the tenets of most the other gods. Ok i can see how u could argue its better to worship one than non at all as then there is a infinitesimal chance you've picked the right one and behaved good enough to end in whatever happy place that religion allows you to end up in but then that leads be back to problem 1

Edited by Spend

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Cadetak

What the OP is trying to say is that....Ignorance is bliss

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Tiggs
Er, you are still risking eternity, even if it is a small risk. No matter how you twist it, Pascal's wager still favors the existence of deities.

Which Deity? There are quite a few of them.

You're also making the assumption that if a Deity exists that he would treat non-believers and believers of false Deities the same, whereas most Dieties tend to be of the "Thou shall worship no other Diety than me" variety.

If, on average, Dieties tend to instantly condemn believers of false Deities whilst judging non-believers on the life that they have led - then Pascal's wager favours Athiests that lead a good life.

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Cadetak

You know there is the very real possibility that God hates Theists.

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Spankster
Generally, religion and spirituality increases happiness in life:

First part of yer post:

Pascales wager is fudnamentally flawed in that it asks people to make a willful choice, about pre-collected beliefs. I do not believe in god, pointing out that this wont get me any sort of reward cannot change my beliefs. It can make me WANT to believe in something (for the wrong reasons i might add). Do you get me ? Even if i agree with his wager, and even if i agree with its pseudo-logic, it wont actually snap me into believing in god will it ?

Second part of yer post, Ever been to Sweden ?

No ? Didnt think so. Over 80% of the population describe themselves as having no religious beliefs. Are you telling me that the country with some of the lowest cancer rates, lowest unemployment rates, lowest road deaths, among the highest GDP, well respected education and health systems in Europe is unhappy ?

If you can prove that Sweden is unhappier than the UK (BWUAHAHAHAHAHA!!! yeah right)and indeed AFGHANISTAN WITH OVER 95% religious belifs then im with ya. Which you wont.

Though if i was you i would just retract my statement that religious people are happier. I have never seen, or heard of a study (outside of religious circles) which not only verifies, but even supports this claim.

I think peoples own brain chemisrty, social situation and personal outlook has much, much more to do with it. Im not saying atheists are happier, im saying to make such wide ranging generalisations always ends in an inaccurate ASSumption.

Edited by Spankster

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Cynical Sounds
You know there is the very real possibility that God hates Theists.

yeah but working on that theory god might only like people called Jeff who were born on a Sunday

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Spankster

Are we forgetting god created theists, and theism ???

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Cadetak
yeah but working on that theory god might only like people called Jeff who were born on a Sunday

The point being...you can make whatever kind of bullpoo you wish and its all equally correct because nobody can even agree on a definition let alone agree on what the god(s) would or would not want you to do.

Cadetak's Wager-Put it all on black and let it ride!

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Cadetak
Are we forgetting god created theists, and theism ???

Are you forgetting that you can't prove that?

Or that there are a ton of gods to choose from any number of which could be false attached to any number of religions that could be false that go with any number of be interpretations that can be wrong.

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Spankster
Are you forgetting that you can't prove that?

Or that there are a ton of gods to choose from any number of which could be false attached to any number of religions that could be false that go with any number of be interpretations that can be wrong.

LOL, I agree, i was being sarcastic.

Im a non-theist myself. Although i would have said:

there are a ton of gods to choose from any number of which ARE false attached to any number of religions that ARE false that go with any number of be interpretations that ARE CATEGORICALLY wrong.

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Cadetak
LOL, I agree, i was being sarcastic.

Im a non-theist myself. Although i would have said:

Can't say it like that...because you don't know that as fact. I's possible a two thousand year old zombified carpenter and his magical ghost daddy want you to be straight and abstinent...of course it's just as possible as the guy from Top Gun and his aliens palls sucking the zeta waves out your head on top a volcano to save you from evil aliens(or w/e)...it's all possible, not very likely or probable, but still possible.

The worst part about not being religious is that we won't be able to go "told you so" if we are right.

Pascal's Wager is BS...because while one guy is saving people for god another person is killing them for god. They don't both have a better chance over Atheists.

Edited by Cadetak

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Emma_Acid
For those who are unfamiliar with Pascal's Wager, it can be summed up crudely as:

If theists/eternalists are right, the atheists lose everything.

If atheists are right, the theists/eternalists lose nothing.

But now:

Generally, religion and spirituality increases happiness in life.

I am not offering proof of God. I am saying, that from a social and philosophical standpoint, it makes more sense to believe in God (whether or not he actually exists is irrelevant), because, GENERALLY SPEAKING, religious/spiritual people are happier in this life AND aren't risking eternity by not believing...

What are your thoughts?

Pascal's Wager is a particularly nasty, childish piece of philosophy. "Never mind 4000 years of darkness, torture and bafflement, I want to get into heaven!"

Religion does not make people happier. It is something to fall back on in hard times, but the people I know who are religious are amongst the most confused, unhappy, unsure people I've ever met, partly I suspect because they know deep down that their religion, the backbone of their existence, is utterly baseless. I think this may be the reason why questioning someone's faith is taboo.

The reason why this argument gets to me is that faith, especially Islam and Christianity, has caused and continues to cause untold suffering the world over. Do a bit of research into monotheism and you'll discover that Yahweh, the original "one and only God" (as opposed to a collection of different deities) was only invented to unite the tribes of Israel as they wandered around the middle east battling the likes of the Philistines. Before then, there was no "God." Its a political invention.

So don't tell me that the rantings of sexually repressed Iron Age Jews is worth the misery its caused.

And "eternity"? Sounds like hell to me.

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Spankster

LOL, again, I agree.

And yes, i was passing off my own opinions as fact, but not toos eriously. Again i retort, no-ones right, including me, and i'd be thinking rather closed mindedly to suggest so.

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JamieSymptom

Pascal's wager is stupid.

On the very poor odds that 'God', presumably the christian god in Pascal's case, MIGHT exist - we should all pretend to believe in him and that will be cool?

What tosh.

How about my wager:

If God existed, we wouldn't even be having discussions about whether he existed or not. So you might as well not bother believing in him.

And religious people are happier? Pfffffffff, not in my experience.

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