Is Christianity bad for society?
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02-01-2011, 11:48 AM
 
RE: Is Christianity bad for society?
(02-01-2011 03:08 AM)TheKetola Wrote:  
(02-01-2011 02:28 AM)TheModerateBeliever Wrote:  
(01-01-2011 08:16 PM)No J. Wrote:  
(01-01-2011 05:11 PM)TheModerateBeliever Wrote:  Religion is not the problem in any of those cases. The problem can be laid at the feet of radicals who believe that so long as they do it in the name of God anything is allowable.

But that is where religion is the problem. Blind obedience to a fanatic who claims that s/he speaks for god. Nobody speaks for god, nobody knows god, know one knows that a god exists, and the sooner everyone gets that through their head, the better for everyone.

I'm afraid I must continue to disagree. Nowadays, at least in Catholicism (the religion I am most familiar with), we don't blindly follow what our priest tells us. I'm not going to go gun down a doctor at an abortion clinic because my priest tells me to. The problem is that there are people who allow themselves to be manipulated like that. Again, I say, the problem is people; weak-willed individuals who allow themselves to be herded like sheep.

Religion takes advantage of the weak minded people in a way nothing else could, for religion was created to ease a mind without answers, and evolved into a control mechanism. A History of God by Karen Armstrong gives some great evidence of Gods evolution, and from what I can tell God was originally for the people, but the roles got reversed around the time The Exodus "took place" when God basically demanded that the people be for him.
When you say it changed in Exodus, you are referring to when the Hebrew people changed from a long standing oral tradition to the new codified religion, right? I agree with you there. When it was an oral tradition it would have been very difficult for a man to manipulate the system. However once you start writing it down, any belief system is going to be modified by the wishes of those who are creating it.
I think we're arguing a difference in viewpoint here Ketola, what you ascribe to religion as a whole, I ascribe to the men who created the institution of religion. They are two different things, Religion (or spirituality) is not (at least to me) inherently flawed; institutionalized religion, because it was created by men, who aren't perfect, is flawed.
This difference is why, after 4 years of theology in High School (I went to a Catholic High School after having been in public school), I consider myself a lapsed Catholic. Men don't have all the answers (at least not yet).
These questions that are at the heart of spirituality: 1. Why are we here? 2. Where did we come from? 3. Where are we going?
Science has answered the second question: we evolved from earlier primates to become the beings we are now. But it hasn't yet found the answers the "Why are we here?" and "Where are we going?" at least not in anything I've recently read
Now, thank you for mentioning that book. I haven't read it, but I will be tracking down a copy. I hope to find it very informative.
Now, I think we're getting off topic. The question was "Is Christianity bad for society?"
I think I need the question clarified: Are you asking if Christianity is bad for modern society? Or, are you asking if throughout its' history, has Christianity been a negative influence on society?
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02-01-2011, 02:13 PM
RE: Is Christianity bad for society?
(02-01-2011 02:28 AM)TheModerateBeliever Wrote:  
(01-01-2011 08:16 PM)No J. Wrote:  
(01-01-2011 05:11 PM)TheModerateBeliever Wrote:  Religion is not the problem in any of those cases. The problem can be laid at the feet of radicals who believe that so long as they do it in the name of God anything is allowable.

But that is where religion is the problem. Blind obedience to a fanatic who claims that s/he speaks for god. Nobody speaks for god, nobody knows god, know one knows that a god exists, and the sooner everyone gets that through their head, the better for everyone.

I'm afraid I must continue to disagree. Nowadays, at least in Catholicism (the religion I am most familiar with), we don't blindly follow what our priest tells us. I'm not going to go gun down a doctor at an abortion clinic because my priest tells me to. The problem is that there are people who allow themselves to be manipulated like that. Again, I say, the problem is people; weak-willed individuals who allow themselves to be herded like sheep.

You will forgive me when I say that if a priest calls on people to do such a thing they should be thrown in jail. The problem is even with evidence like crimen sollicitationis (Vatican press March 16, 1969) the Vatican and it's people have never been publicly tried for any major crime they have committed.

Also what of all the viticims of the 80 year old practice of can canoobi? Do I even need to point out how much damage that dogma has caused in Africa and indeed around the world?

Not only are there people honestly stupid enough to follow the advice of these men about sex (from which they abstain and thus have zero experience for) but people refuse to hold these men accountable for the crimes and suffering they commit.

What really should get everyone's goad personally is the tax exemption that all priests get. They get to write off all their mortgage as professional expense as well as all travel and clothing. Essentially they don't pay taxes on over 70% of their income. Truly they must beleive in equality and separation of church and state.

Catholicism is all about stupidity. Question your priest all you like just don't question the centuries old dogma without evidence made by men who just went alone into a room and decided to pass some new proclamation about history without evidence.
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02-01-2011, 03:45 PM
 
RE: Is Christianity bad for society?
(02-01-2011 02:13 PM)Godless Wrote:  
(02-01-2011 02:28 AM)TheModerateBeliever Wrote:  
(01-01-2011 08:16 PM)No J. Wrote:  
(01-01-2011 05:11 PM)TheModerateBeliever Wrote:  Religion is not the problem in any of those cases. The problem can be laid at the feet of radicals who believe that so long as they do it in the name of God anything is allowable.

But that is where religion is the problem. Blind obedience to a fanatic who claims that s/he speaks for god. Nobody speaks for god, nobody knows god, know one knows that a god exists, and the sooner everyone gets that through their head, the better for everyone.

I'm afraid I must continue to disagree. Nowadays, at least in Catholicism (the religion I am most familiar with), we don't blindly follow what our priest tells us. I'm not going to go gun down a doctor at an abortion clinic because my priest tells me to. The problem is that there are people who allow themselves to be manipulated like that. Again, I say, the problem is people; weak-willed individuals who allow themselves to be herded like sheep.

You will forgive me when I say that if a priest calls on people to do such a thing they should be thrown in jail. The problem is even with evidence like crimen sollicitationis (Vatican press March 16, 1969) the Vatican and it's people have never been publicly tried for any major crime they have committed.

Also what of all the viticims of the 80 year old practice of can canoobi? Do I even need to point out how much damage that dogma has caused in Africa and indeed around the world?

Not only are there people honestly stupid enough to follow the advice of these men about sex (from which they abstain and thus have zero experience for) but people refuse to hold these men accountable for the crimes and suffering they commit.

What really should get everyone's goad personally is the tax exemption that all priests get. They get to write off all their mortgage as professional expense as well as all travel and clothing. Essentially they don't pay taxes on over 70% of their income. Truly they must beleive in equality and separation of church and state.

Catholicism is all about stupidity. Question your priest all you like just don't question the centuries old dogma without evidence made by men who just went alone into a room and decided to pass some new proclamation about history without evidence.
1. Well seriously, if ANYONE tells you to start gunning down abortionists (or ANYONE else for that matter) turn their asses in, that goes without saying
2. When it comes to crimes within the priesthood, including the pedophilia that has been springing up more and more, I honestly have no idea why they've never been criminally charged. I am personally disgusted by this and welcome the day I see charges brought against criminal members of the clergy.
3. I am not familiar with 'can canoobi' and my google-fu is turning up nothing, so please, enlighten me.
4. In regards to priests and sex. It is true that all catholic priests swear vows of chastity and celibacy (there's a difference) that doesn't necessarily mean that they never had sex... Just, hopefully, not since they made those vows.
5. I'm not finding too much on the clergy and a tax status, but here's what I have found: http://www.allbusiness.com/personal-fina...801-1.html and http://www.wwwebtax.com/income/clergy.htm this appears to be for any ordained minister regardless of denomination.
6. Lastly, what you said about Catholicism can be applied to damn near ANY organized religion. As I have previously stated, the problem lays with not belief itself, but with the Institution of Religion.
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02-01-2011, 04:51 PM
RE: Is Christianity bad for society?
Sorry it's been a while since I've done Latin. Try searching for Casti Cannnubii. It was published by the Vatican on Dec 31 1930 (thus the dogma is now 81 years unchanged!).

Yes I am aware of the difference between chastity and celibacy. One refers to the act of sex while the other refers to the act of marriage.

My point still stands however. I am arguing that priests have little to no sexual experience and so are unqualified to give advice.

Also despite both our feelings we can both see historically that the Catholic church is NEVER prosecuted for any of the crimes it commits nor the damage it does to people's lives.

All we as a secular community are implying is that morality does not need to be religiously based and basing morality on a single organization leads to corruption. Religion by it's very nature will always encourage extremism because it discourages active discourse.
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02-01-2011, 05:29 PM
RE: Is Christianity bad for society?
I'd just like to make a quick note, maybe someones said this before.
Yes there are people who would believe anything a priest tells them, and it is partially their fault for believing it, but to say that the religion is not to blame is a dishonest at best.
If it weren't the church saying "NON-BELIEVERS ARE EVIL, THEY SHOULD BE BURNED" is not the person coming up with that it is the church putting out the idea that their god commands or endorses this.

Hey brother christian, with your high and mighty errand, your actions speak so loud, I can't hear a word you're saying.

"This machine kills fascists..."

"Well this machine kills commies!"
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02-01-2011, 05:35 PM
RE: Is Christianity bad for society?
(02-01-2011 11:48 AM)TheModerateBeliever Wrote:  
(02-01-2011 03:08 AM)TheKetola Wrote:  
(02-01-2011 02:28 AM)TheModerateBeliever Wrote:  
(01-01-2011 08:16 PM)No J. Wrote:  
(01-01-2011 05:11 PM)TheModerateBeliever Wrote:  Religion is not the problem in any of those cases. The problem can be laid at the feet of radicals who believe that so long as they do it in the name of God anything is allowable.

But that is where religion is the problem. Blind obedience to a fanatic who claims that s/he speaks for god. Nobody speaks for god, nobody knows god, know one knows that a god exists, and the sooner everyone gets that through their head, the better for everyone.

I'm afraid I must continue to disagree. Nowadays, at least in Catholicism (the religion I am most familiar with), we don't blindly follow what our priest tells us. I'm not going to go gun down a doctor at an abortion clinic because my priest tells me to. The problem is that there are people who allow themselves to be manipulated like that. Again, I say, the problem is people; weak-willed individuals who allow themselves to be herded like sheep.

Religion takes advantage of the weak minded people in a way nothing else could, for religion was created to ease a mind without answers, and evolved into a control mechanism. A History of God by Karen Armstrong gives some great evidence of Gods evolution, and from what I can tell God was originally for the people, but the roles got reversed around the time The Exodus "took place" when God basically demanded that the people be for him.
When you say it changed in Exodus, you are referring to when the Hebrew people changed from a long standing oral tradition to the new codified religion, right? I agree with you there. When it was an oral tradition it would have been very difficult for a man to manipulate the system. However once you start writing it down, any belief system is going to be modified by the wishes of those who are creating it.
I think we're arguing a difference in viewpoint here Ketola, what you ascribe to religion as a whole, I ascribe to the men who created the institution of religion. They are two different things, Religion (or spirituality) is not (at least to me) inherently flawed; institutionalized religion, because it was created by men, who aren't perfect, is flawed.
This difference is why, after 4 years of theology in High School (I went to a Catholic High School after having been in public school), I consider myself a lapsed Catholic. Men don't have all the answers (at least not yet).
These questions that are at the heart of spirituality: 1. Why are we here? 2. Where did we come from? 3. Where are we going?
Science has answered the second question: we evolved from earlier primates to become the beings we are now. But it hasn't yet found the answers the "Why are we here?" and "Where are we going?" at least not in anything I've recently read
Now, thank you for mentioning that book. I haven't read it, but I will be tracking down a copy. I hope to find it very informative.
Now, I think we're getting off topic. The question was "Is Christianity bad for society?"
I think I need the question clarified: Are you asking if Christianity is bad for modern society? Or, are you asking if throughout its' history, has Christianity been a negative influence on society?

I'm not sure where you live, but where I am (In the United States) Christianity is being used as a tool to push irrational agendas, change the public education to be more Christian biased (like in Texas), irresponsiblity for the Earth is based on the Christian idea that God has the whole world in his hands, also in a few areas of this country you can not do certain community services without being a member of a church. I don't know how harmful Christianity is in your area, but as a whole (and not talking about the occasional outliar such as yourself) in the US it is very harmful and anti-progressive (infact they insult progressives).
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02-01-2011, 11:00 PM
RE: Is Christianity bad for society?
(02-01-2011 02:28 AM)TheModerateBeliever Wrote:  
(01-01-2011 08:16 PM)No J. Wrote:  
(01-01-2011 05:11 PM)TheModerateBeliever Wrote:  Religion is not the problem in any of those cases. The problem can be laid at the feet of radicals who believe that so long as they do it in the name of God anything is allowable.

But that is where religion is the problem. Blind obedience to a fanatic who claims that s/he speaks for god. Nobody speaks for god, nobody knows god, know one knows that a god exists, and the sooner everyone gets that through their head, the better for everyone.

I'm afraid I must continue to disagree. Nowadays, at least in Catholicism (the religion I am most familiar with), we don't blindly follow what our priest tells us. I'm not going to go gun down a doctor at an abortion clinic because my priest tells me to. The problem is that there are people who allow themselves to be manipulated like that. Again, I say, the problem is people; weak-willed individuals who allow themselves to be herded like sheep.

I know enough about human psychology to be 96% sure that if the whole congregation in your church stood up as a group strongly united, vocal and taking action in a cause, you would go along with them and abandon your moral code to be part of the group and you would not be aware of sacrificing your moral code at all. See that 96% above. That is a proven, repeatable statistic that a strong leader can rally to a cause no matter how unjust. That is related to political experiments. Religious leaders can rally more power over their followers than political leaders so your number will higher. Prove to me that you are not one of the 96%+ sheep. You can't. You can't know yourself until you are in that situation and you can look back and see what you did. I am aware of my vulnerability to it because of past experiences. If you think that you are not vulnerable, then you are extremely vulnerable. Don't bother trying to explain to me what you think, go research it, properly. I don't have available links for you because I didn't get any of this stuff from the net.

When I find myself in times of trouble, Richard Dawkins comes to me, speaking words of reason, now I see, now I see.
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