The Con of Religion
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01-07-2016, 11:50 AM
The Con of Religion
This question is directed at the non-believer. Theists are, of course, free to reply, yet your input is irrelevant as the insistence of the question is that belief in a certain religion, let alone a super-daddy, is laughable.

When we watch a person preach or otherwise insist on the existence of a god, do you ever get the impression that person is putting on a fairly elaborate con? It's obvious there are numerous instances of this, but I am beginning to get the impression the occurrence of con-artist preaching is rampant.

There are those who insist on the existence of a god based on upbringing and church attendance a few times a year. There are those who attend church regularly, and have a good idea about the bible, but subconsciously (or consciously?) ignore the conflicts within. There are those who have delusions and believe because they "see" things. These persons, I believe, are not trying to deceive anyone (at least not consciously). But the person who has read the Bible or Koran (or whatever magic book) and studied the material, the person who has been confronted with the evidence of science (in contradiction to religious claims), are they delusional? Is it possible they continue to put stock in a lie out of the fear of the finality of death? Or is it much worse in many cases, are the majority of religious professionals conning the masses with religion as a means of survival (and in some cases, great wealth)? There is such a preponderance of contradiction and evil in religious texts that I can't believe these "educated" religious persons actually believe the fantasy themselves.
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01-07-2016, 12:05 PM
RE: The Con of Religion
(01-07-2016 11:50 AM)Armageddon it Wrote:  This question is directed at the non-believer. Theists are, of course, free to reply, yet your input is irrelevant as the insistence of the question is that belief in a certain religion, let alone a super-daddy, is laughable.

When we watch a person preach or otherwise insist on the existence of a god, do you ever get the impression that person is putting on a fairly elaborate con? It's obvious there are numerous instances of this, but I am beginning to get the impression the occurrence of con-artist preaching is rampant.

There are those who insist on the existence of a god based on upbringing and church attendance a few times a year. There are those who attend church regularly, and have a good idea about the bible, but subconsciously (or consciously?) ignore the conflicts within. There are those who have delusions and believe because they "see" things. These persons, I believe, are not trying to deceive anyone (at least not consciously). But the person who has read the Bible or Koran (or whatever magic book) and studied the material, the person who has been confronted with the evidence of science (in contradiction to religious claims), are they delusional? Is it possible they continue to put stock in a lie out of the fear of the finality of death? Or is it much worse in many cases, are the majority of religious professionals conning the masses with religion as a means of survival (and in some cases, great wealth)? There is such a preponderance of contradiction and evil in religious texts that I can't believe these "educated" religious persons actually believe the fantasy themselves.

Here in the U.S. there are many mega-churches where there is no doubt in my mind that they are intentionally conning people.
A fear of death without an afterlife could cause some to continue to push their religion, but not their actual beliefs for fear of losing face.
There are also resources for people who have religious professions who no longer believe.
The Clergy Project
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01-07-2016, 12:27 PM
RE: The Con of Religion
I think most believers truly believe what they claim. Most humans adapt the religions of their parents in regards to the societies they were born in.

Having said that, religion most certainly is used as a marketing ploy and used to con people. Many because they truly believe it, but for others also, certainly a way to gain power and status. Megga churches are a total fraud. People like Falwell and Olsteen for that matter prey off the gullible and live very lavish lives of that con.

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01-07-2016, 12:44 PM
RE: The Con of Religion
(01-07-2016 12:27 PM)Brian37 Wrote:  I think most believers truly believe what they claim. Most humans adapt the religions of their parents in regards to the societies they were born in.

Having said that, religion most certainly is used as a marketing ploy and used to con people. Many because they truly believe it, but for others also, certainly a way to gain power and status. Megga churches are a total fraud. People like Falwell and Olsteen for that matter prey off the gullible and live very lavish lives of that con.

I think what you said is true. I think people go to church for the placebo effect it gives them. It's hypnotic. It's also a very theatrical experience. You have costumes, a set, lighting, sound, a plot with various actors. The leading actor from the book is good looking. He goes through some tricky situations. At the end of the play there's the final denouement where he lives happily ever after and that makes everyone happy too. Then the whole thing is replayed the next week. Same time, same station.

Shakespeare's Comedy of Errors.... on Donald J. Trump:

He is deformed, crooked, old, and sere,
Ill-fac’d, worse bodied, shapeless every where;
Vicious, ungentle, foolish, blunt, unkind,
Stigmatical in making, worse in mind.
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01-07-2016, 12:45 PM
RE: The Con of Religion
(01-07-2016 11:50 AM)Armageddon it Wrote:  This question is directed at the non-believer. Theists are, of course, free to reply, yet your input is irrelevant as the insistence of the question is that belief in a certain religion, let alone a super-daddy, is laughable.

When we watch a person preach or otherwise insist on the existence of a god, do you ever get the impression that person is putting on a fairly elaborate con? It's obvious there are numerous instances of this, but I am beginning to get the impression the occurrence of con-artist preaching is rampant.

There are those who insist on the existence of a god based on upbringing and church attendance a few times a year. There are those who attend church regularly, and have a good idea about the bible, but subconsciously (or consciously?) ignore the conflicts within. There are those who have delusions and believe because they "see" things. These persons, I believe, are not trying to deceive anyone (at least not consciously). But the person who has read the Bible or Koran (or whatever magic book) and studied the material, the person who has been confronted with the evidence of science (in contradiction to religious claims), are they delusional? Is it possible they continue to put stock in a lie out of the fear of the finality of death? Or is it much worse in many cases, are the majority of religious professionals conning the masses with religion as a means of survival (and in some cases, great wealth)? There is such a preponderance of contradiction and evil in religious texts that I can't believe these "educated" religious persons actually believe the fantasy themselves.

Some of them are undoubtedly con-artists, I think you have this horrible psychological dynamic going on where believers posses a world-view that ultimately rejects evidence for a means of determining what is true or not.

When you reject evidence, then anything goes. The predatory psychology of con-artists have taken notice of this and they know that they can roam about in this sub-culture without having to be challenged.

They are also aware that they will always be able to deny any accusations of their veracity or sincerity by hiding behind the facade of faith. The faithful have no means of determining between the faithful believer or the fraudulent con-artists.

Their only defense from accepting the absurd, fraudulent, imaginary claims of people are due to divine revelation, which is itself absurd, fraudulent and prone to ridiculous flights of imagination by those that use this method.

You get ridiculous stories such as this:

Pastor Orders Female Members To Remove Underwear So God Can Enter Their Bodies


So is this guy for real?

I think he actually believes this, his congregation believed it. What does that say about the pond the believer is swimming in?

Gods derive their power from post-hoc rationalizations. -The Inquisition

Using the supernatural to explain events in your life is a failure of the intellect to comprehend the world around you. -The Inquisition
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01-07-2016, 01:21 PM
RE: The Con of Religion
(01-07-2016 11:50 AM)Armageddon it Wrote:  This question is directed at the non-believer. Theists are, of course, free to reply, yet your input is irrelevant as the insistence of the question is that belief in a certain religion, let alone a super-daddy, is laughable.

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01-07-2016, 01:26 PM
RE: The Con of Religion
I think humans naturally and instinctively fear the unknown, there is so much we don't know, why are we here? What is goodness or evil? What happens when we die? Religion answers those questions, it uses extremely outdated guesses that are not scientific in any way, they're no better than myths really and very questionable morality but just imagine living thousands of years ago and not knowing where the sun went at night? It would be kinda scary, any answer would be a valid answer.

Now imagine you want power over the people, if you say you have "divine" right from this God character and rule not only with the cross (or whatever) but also the sword you will gain the people's allegiance. It will also help to invade other countries, convert everyone to your religion, the one that says you should rule, get everyone to agree to the same moral code, etc.

This is where the con started, it's still being used to bring dumb humans to heel, why? Because they don't understand? We understand far more about our universe and our lives than at any other time in the past, why do we still need religion? We don't but it still makes people feel good, safe, loved, etc. and their country's leaders, their families and their communities still follow the doctrines but so why not keep believing?

It's sad but true, most people don't want to think for themselves, they want to be told what to think and their church leaders tell them what to think, that's why so many don't understand evolution and say they do, because some dumbass pastor told them why it doesn't make sense without researching it on their own, they are falling for a very old con and they don't even care, they're happy to do it because if they don't they risk going to Hell, that's no good.

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01-07-2016, 01:30 PM
RE: The Con of Religion
(01-07-2016 01:21 PM)Aliza Wrote:  
(01-07-2016 11:50 AM)Armageddon it Wrote:  This question is directed at the non-believer. Theists are, of course, free to reply, yet your input is irrelevant as the insistence of the question is that belief in a certain religion, let alone a super-daddy, is laughable.

[This post intentionally left blank]

Very funny Aliza. Laugh out load

I think a theist's view on the con of a religion is still valid personally, I mean it's not like you believe every religion or denomination of that religion and they're all made differently and they have different goals so please share if you have anything to add. Wink

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01-07-2016, 01:33 PM (This post was last modified: 01-07-2016 01:39 PM by jennybee.)
RE: The Con of Religion
Even educated religious people can be brainwashed. I think some educated people use religion to con others, but I also think some genuinely believe.

When I was a Christian I started having doubts because I did some studying on my own (beyond the cherry picked church passages). I did what any *good* Christian would do and spoke to my church pastor. My pastor tried to pacify me with various responses to my questions. Responses included the usual: "The people God punished were really bad." "The women would have died if they weren't taken as war brides." "Slavery back then isn't the same as what we know now." "It was a different time back then." While these responses didn't work for me, I do think some who still want to believe buy into them as truths. When you want something to be true--educated or not--you will believe what you want to be true, even in the absence of fact.

There are also some educated theists (we have several on our forum) who are able to balance science and spirituality. I think for some, spirituality becomes a part of their identity, culture, family life and they like to hold onto it.

"Let the waters settle and you will see the moon and stars mirrored in your own being." -Rumi
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01-07-2016, 01:35 PM
RE: The Con of Religion
If it was just a straight hustle, just fleecing the rubes, I could ALMOST understand that. At least I could follow why they're trying to do it, unethical as it is. But I think in most cases it goes even deeper. I think most of them genuinely believe their own message. They see it as truly helping people and as performing a vital community function. They've been conned as well.
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