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Richard Dawkins and Christianity

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XenoFish
6 minutes ago, DieChecker said:

Do you want my individual opinion about myself??

Thanks for the response. As for myself the "good" I do is out of my own free will and desire. I do it because I can, I don't do it all the time, because I can not 'save the world'. Sometimes doing good is just a kind word, or simple act of kindness, giving someone a laugh. I expect nothing from what I do, no reward at all. But that's just me. I think most of us are similar. I don't hate religious people regardless of what some might perceive here, I dislike any form of suffering that religions and the religious can create. 

I figure that what a person believes is between them and their god. 

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psyche101
10 hours ago, simplybill said:

I personally wouldn’t disagree with the opinion that ‘Christianity-as-Theocracy’ has a bad history, though I do disagree that mere Christianity (as taught by Jesus Christ) is in any way harmful. Christianity is ‘benign’ in the sense of being ‘salt’ as a ‘preservative’ for society rather than the main ingredient. Your opinion may vary.

I assure you, my opinion varies. 

10 hours ago, simplybill said:

The situation today is the rise of an aggressive Theocratic Islam that isn’t recognized as a Theocracy, but is instead considered a mere religion, and its followers invited into secular societies that are unrealistically expecting a non-aggressive assimilation into the host countries. Modern-day Christians now understand the folly of Theocracy, whereas many modern-day followers of Islam see Theocracy as a duty. I believe that is the ‘something worse’ that Mr. Dawkins is warning us about.

Yes, that's pretty much what he illustrated in the twitter comment. I've seen quite a few of his debates, show's and listen to his audio books which he narrates, and hearing him describe religions in many different situations  there's little doubt that's exactly what he is referring to. He is particularly unforgiving to YECs too. 

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psyche101
11 hours ago, khol said:

I dont know...not anymore. 2000yrs ago yeah. Developments in science are pushing the boundries of our knowledge. Creating new gods to replace old ones are a thing of the past

I'd really like to hope so too. I just can't see religion being justified forever. 

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psyche101
7 hours ago, Illyrius said:

Well the demise of morals and sanity follows nicely the rise of atheism and demise of religion. Nothing new under the sun in historical terms. The civilization is dying and Dawkins is singing like the Nero was singing watching the Rome burning.

You are fast becoming fundamental and illustrating every reason to abhor religions. That chip on your shoulder must top the rock of Gibraltar. 

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XenoFish
2 minutes ago, psyche101 said:

I'd really like to hope so too. I just can't see religion being justified forever. 

Perhaps not religion. Some form of spirituality will always exist. Because some people need hope. My only concern is what they do because of it (negative). 

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psyche101
6 hours ago, Clockwork_Spirit said:

I will go even further: Christianity - at it's core - is the very foundation of Western society.

Yes, it helped shape social order and law, no doubt it played a part in our development good or bad. But it's redundant now. 

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XenoFish
1 minute ago, psyche101 said:

You are fast becoming fundamental and illustrating every reason to abhor religions. That chip on your shoulder must top the rock of Gibraltar. 

It's this same fanaticism that show's that religion and spirituality have a dark side. I've always figured that those who are spiritual should have a decent head on their shoulders. Tolerance, compassion, morally upright, strong for the weak, and kindness in their hearts. Yet I do not see this much. Just the opposite really.

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I'mConvinced
7 minutes ago, DieChecker said:

Question: But you had been raised as a Christian and indoctrinated in what they considered socially good, right?

Do you think if you were raised by a Muslim, that you might turn your back on Islam, but still have much of your morality/ethics be Islamic in nature? Or, if you were raised as a Hindu, might you still live as a Hindu, even if you turned your back on Hinduism? 

Point being - Were you "good" because you were good, or because you were raised that way?

Some of both. Genetics, upbringing and environment are the big factors. 

I don't believe I would be more or less moral if I had been brought up a Christian, Muslim, Atheist or anything else. Certain genetic traits predispose us to certain behaviours, how those become expressed depends on upbringing and environment.

'Core morals' as I see them are things common to the continued successful survival of your society, regardless of which society that is. Murder is quite a good example, I don't know of a successful society that holds murder as a virtue.

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psyche101
3 minutes ago, XenoFish said:

Perhaps not religion. Some form of spirituality will always exist. Because some people need hope. My only concern is what they do because of it (negative). 

I honestly think that education would play a part in that. Depending on how well the globe can be educated I think would have an huge impact in outgrowing outdated myths. If we have the opportunity to learn about real science, surely such myths would fade away as so many already have.

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XenoFish
1 minute ago, psyche101 said:

I honestly think that education would play a part in that. Depending on how well the globe can be educated I think would have an huge impact in outgrowing outdated myths. If we have the opportunity to learn about real science, surely such myths would fade away as so many already have.

I'm quite sure most if not all myths would die out, but there would still be something that people would put hope in. It might be spiritual or not. People need something to believe in. Even my own perspective of life is just a belief and I fully acknowledge it. It's based on philosophy rather than spirituality, I might be a rare case on this, might not be also. I don't know. All I do know is that religion and spirituality function on human desires. The desire for belonging, hope for a better tomorrow, or just hope in general. However I also know there is a dark side to all of this. Like there is with everything. I'm trying to present a middle ground approach. The way I figure it, if someone's believes in the great unknown, they should strive to understand as much about it as possible. No one can answer "Why". All we know is that we exist for a finite amount of time. Then 'poof' gone.

Are we really making the most of it?

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psyche101
4 hours ago, DieChecker said:

That's too bad. Here I was thinking he was getting lenient and tolerant as he ages.

He's not that bad. He has the same attitude as Ricky Gervais posted on the first page. He has stated he enjoys the bible as a literary work, but doesn't harbour any ill will towards the faithful, if anything he wonders at their faith, and i have to say I do too. It's the propogation of the church under the falsehood of a creator, hindering the advancement of knowledge that he largely objects too. He gives homeopathy scathing reviews as well as horoscope writers, faith healers and those who claim to speak to the dead. Superstition in general really. He even tested some water diviners, and the entire test and exchange was respectful and pleasent, even though he proved the experts to have no more skill than chance. 

4 hours ago, DieChecker said:

I didn't want to assume Islam, though I agree to a point that Islam is a danger in the world

I have no doubt that is what he is referring to, but it's more a danger to initiate religious separation when acceptance and tolerance is really the only chance at any sort of peaceful resolution. 

4 hours ago, DieChecker said:

A choice, as in one ignorant, but relatively tolerant, religion (Christianity), or one that is ignorant and also intolerant? :lol:

That's pretty much the situation as I understand the article and Dawkins himself. 

4 hours ago, DieChecker said:

I don't know, to hear some people talk about Tesla, or even some modern inventors/celebrities, you'd think they are the New Gods. The name Kardashian comes to mind.

Its embarrassing though. People who really do read up on Tesla cringe at the fringe adoration. It's just as silly as any other movement. And the Kardishans aren't that big here, they are celebrities like any other but I don't see them getting special celeb status, it might confort you to know its somewhat contained. 

4 hours ago, DieChecker said:

President Obama was another, who was practically worshiped by masses of people.

He was just a likeable personality though, from an outside view where he doesn't run the country he a likable character. I have no doubt you have good reason to see his presidential term in a dim light, but I don't have the knowledge to comment on that. 

4 hours ago, DieChecker said:

Give it 50 to 100 years and you could see religion based on the "teachings" of some of these people. All it takes is a philosophy and a figurehead.

LOL Oprahism? 

I honestly think that depends on if we can better conditions and constantly increase learning and knowledge levels. Imagine if it what we are discovering now at the Cutting edge of science is primary school basics one day? For the entire population perhaps all conneted on a global network? Why would people at that level of comprehension bother with myths when they have unlocked those doors were just beginning to crack open now?

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psyche101
2 hours ago, DieChecker said:

So then is the OP a cherry pick, like Psyche told me, or is it a real comment, meant the way it was phrased.

I feel if you give the TED talk a go you might get a better understanding from listening to him speak about why he thinks militant atheism is a necessary approach to religion as a whole. It's a Cherry Pick because he quite clearly would like to see religion phased out altogether sensibly as opposed to leaving one standing in the ring so to speak. I do however agree with eight bits, it's irrelevant in any case. 

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psyche101
37 minutes ago, XenoFish said:

I'm quite sure most if not all myths would die out, but there would still be something that people would put hope in. It might be spiritual or not. People need something to believe in. Even my own perspective of life is just a belief and I fully acknowledge it. It's based on philosophy rather than spirituality, I might be a rare case on this, might not be also. I don't know. All I do know is that religion and spirituality function on human desires. The desire for belonging, hope for a better tomorrow, or just hope in general. However I also know there is a dark side to all of this. Like there is with everything. I'm trying to present a middle ground approach. The way I figure it, if someone's believes in the great unknown, they should strive to understand as much about it as possible. No one can answer "Why". All we know is that we exist for a finite amount of time. Then 'poof' gone.

Are we really making the most of it?

I think it depends on our approach to the future and how technology shapes the world. Industry builds futures and that brings more help than hardship. We have made some decent strides in science, if that can be applied on wider scales with planning, the next century could change the shape of the planet. We are the first generations to see space travel, global networking, fast travel, the end of diseases like smallpox, philanthropists are few but rising in number, its an open book and I feel there's a glimmer of reason to hope optimistically. 

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psyche101
2 hours ago, DieChecker said:

I'd think both. For a long time religion has been about both. Do what is right... OR ELSE!!!! :devil:

It still is on too many places though. 

Many still find the afterlife quite a motivator too, which I can't see in a good light. 

2 hours ago, DieChecker said:

It is something that I think the US lacks in today's world. I think if we were friends with our neighbors and our co-workers and (gasp!) our extended family... We'd all be a lot more tolerant of each other, and loving toward each other, instead of confrontational.and aggressive.

I cant recall a strong history of universities going to war :)

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khol
3 hours ago, XenoFish said:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_new_religious_movements

A lot on the list look like the same cereal in a different box. But people do create new takes on old ideas. 

The only thing I can hope for is this list of NRM's shows the fragmentation of existing main religions and how people are moving away from them ..creating there own. They as well would eventually face the same demise and over time, lose credibility and wither away. Religious belief in some form has been driven into humanity for eons. It will take a long time for it to crumble but I believe it will one day..Its a powerful force but we see indications of it weakening now as science progresses.

This is all wishful thinking on my part :blink: I definitely know what your saying. That security blanket humanity holds onto is not easily shaken

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khol
1 hour ago, psyche101 said:

I'd really like to hope so too. I just can't see religion being justified forever. 

Lets keep our fingers crossed.It would be then we truly begin to make progress in defining our place in the cosmos. I just wish we could be around to witness that happen

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DieChecker
42 minutes ago, psyche101 said:

I feel if you give the TED talk a go you might get a better understanding from listening to him speak about why he thinks militant atheism is a necessary approach to religion as a whole. It's a Cherry Pick because he quite clearly would like to see religion phased out altogether sensibly as opposed to leaving one standing in the ring so to speak. I do however agree with eight bits, it's irrelevant in any case. 

I might watch it, but I started to, and it looked like it would be a long watch, so I had to abort.

What Dawkins said in a video isn't necessarily what he believes at the time of the tweet in the OP. Aren't you basing your opinion on an assumption of what Dawkins really thinks? I'm not saying you are wrong, but that unless someone asks him if he meant that tweet in this way, or that way, we'll really never know.

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DieChecker
32 minutes ago, psyche101 said:

It still is on too many places though. 

Many still find the afterlife quite a motivator too, which I can't see in a good light. 

True enough. I've heard that Christianity is making a sweep of the central part of Africa, but that they are mixing it with the native Animism and witchcraft. The result isn't pretty, and isn't very Biblical. Part protestant evangelism, and part black magic.

Still I believe that Christianity is moving away from the Fire and Brimstone, and toward more pacifistic and (frankly) bland in nature. The Evangelicals appear (according to statistics) to be the only group of Christianity that is gaining followers, and I think that group is the one that favors following Love, Peace and Tolerance. 

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I cant recall a strong history of universities going to war :)

They call it Sports now a days. Are you saying there isn't any University Athletic rivalries? 

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Scudbuster
38 minutes ago, khol said:

..Its a powerful force but we see indications of it weakening now as science progresses.

This is all wishful thinking on my part :blink: I definitely know what your saying. That security blanket humanity holds onto is not easily shaken

Unfortunately here in the US science is under attack by the far right whack nuts.......

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DieChecker
1 hour ago, psyche101 said:

He's not that bad. He has the same attitude as Ricky Gervais posted on the first page. He has stated he enjoys the bible as a literary work, but doesn't harbour any ill will towards the faithful, if anything he wonders at their faith, and i have to say I do too. It's the propogation of the church under the falsehood of a creator, hindering the advancement of knowledge that he largely objects too. He gives homeopathy scathing reviews as well as horoscope writers, faith healers and those who claim to speak to the dead. Superstition in general really. He even tested some water diviners, and the entire test and exchange was respectful and pleasent, even though he proved the experts to have no more skill than chance. 

I can admire some for fighting ignorance, while at the same time trying to correct them. Especially if it is basically philosophy that holds religions together. That and ceremonies. I'd only lump religious people in with those others, if they are attempting to do something for you that doesn't work. So for instance if I was to pray for you, I'd understand if you said it was just worthless superstition. 

Ricky Gervais? I thought he was pretty militant in his atheism? Saying that he is not that bad (Gervais) is like saying Trump's not so bad, IMHO.

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Its embarrassing though. People who really do read up on Tesla cringe at the fringe adoration. It's just as silly as any other movement. And the Kardishans aren't that big here, they are celebrities like any other but I don't see them getting special celeb status, it might confort you to know its somewhat contained. 

I'd agree. I just can't seem to find myself being a willing (blindly loyal) follower of anyone. I will defend people like Trump, but more out of legalism, rather then out of hero worship. Though I do listen to the Right leaning Radio channels when I am driving alone in my truck. And I've heard plenty of callers who are flipping nuts in their fanatical support of President Trump. It is unreal.

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He was just a likeable personality though, from an outside view where he doesn't run the country he a likable character. I have no doubt you have good reason to see his presidential term in a dim light, but I don't have the knowledge to comment on that. 

LOL Oprahism? 

I honestly think that depends on if we can better conditions and constantly increase learning and knowledge levels. Imagine if it what we are discovering now at the Cutting edge of science is primary school basics one day? For the entire population perhaps all conneted on a global network? Why would people at that level of comprehension bother with myths when they have unlocked those doors were just beginning to crack open now?

I tend to agree with XenoFish that it will probably be impossible to wipe out religion. It is only possible to shape it to be as little dangerous as possible. I don't think all of humanity will ever be able to be "raised up" to the point that they can accept there being no religion. With Global Warming, Peak Oil, Overpopulation, Financial Collapse... All looming on the horizon, I don't think everyone in South America, Africa, And Asia all being able to live up to European/American standards.

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XenoFish
37 minutes ago, khol said:

Lets keep our fingers crossed.It would be then we truly begin to make progress in defining our place in the cosmos. I just wish we could be around to witness that happen

Even if religion did vanish. We'd still find that there were life philosophies floating around. Which I suppose might be a better thing???

I mean I hold a nihilistic view of spirituality. 

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DieChecker
30 minutes ago, XenoFish said:

Even if religion did vanish. We'd still find that there were life philosophies floating around. Which I suppose might be a better thing???

I mean I hold a nihilistic view of spirituality. 

I think I've read of several UFO True Believers who say they are atheist, while at the same time showing all the signs of following a religion in their following of UFOlogy.

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Hammerclaw
1 hour ago, psyche101 said:

I feel if you give the TED talk a go you might get a better understanding from listening to him speak about why he thinks militant atheism is a necessary approach to religion as a whole. It's a Cherry Pick because he quite clearly would like to see religion phased out altogether sensibly as opposed to leaving one standing in the ring so to speak. I do however agree with eight bits, it's irrelevant in any case. 

It certainly is. Most of Asia and half of Europe was dominate by a whole nation of " militant atheists" for over 70 years--and the last I checked--they batted zero.

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XenoFish
45 minutes ago, DieChecker said:

I think I've read of several UFO True Believers who say they are atheist, while at the same time showing all the signs of following a religion in their following of UFOlogy.

It's that fervent belief I guess.

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 a cause, principle, or system of beliefs held to with ardor and faith https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/religion

By definition I supposed that anything that one hold a certain mindset of faith towards is a 'religion'.:hmm:

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FFA
2 hours ago, khol said:

Lets keep our fingers crossed.It would be then we truly begin to make progress in defining our place in the cosmos. I just wish we could be around to witness that happen

Ah faith "Lets keep our fingers crossed." Why? Faith in What? Religion and the absence of it will always be here. It's too useful a social control mechanism. 

Edited by FFA

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