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The 12 Worst Ideas Organized Religion Has Unleashed On the World

By Feux Follets following x   2018 May 4, 1:59am 584 views   45 comments   watch   sfw   quote     share    


These dubious concepts advocate conflict, cruelty and suffering.

Some of humanity’s technological innovations are things we would have been better off without: the medieval rack, the atomic bomb and powdered lead potions come to mind. Religions tend to invent ideas or concepts rather than technologies, but like every other creative human enterprise, they produce some really bad ones along with the good.

These twelve dubious concepts promote conflict, cruelty, suffering and death rather than love and peace.

1. Chosen People –The term “Chosen People” typically refers to the Hebrew Bible and the ugly idea that God has given certain tribes a Promised Land (even though it is already occupied by other people). But in reality many sects endorse some version of this concept.

2. Heretics – Heretics, kafir, or infidels (to use the medieval Catholic term) are not just outsiders, they are morally suspect and often seen as less than fully human.

3. Holy War – If war can be holy, anything goes. The medieval Roman Catholic Church conducted a twenty year campaign of extermination against heretical Cathar Christians in the south of France, promising their land and possessions to real Christians who signed on as crusaders. Sunni and Shia Muslims have slaughtered each other for centuries.

4. Blasphemy – Blasphemy is the notion that some ideas are inviolable, off limits to criticism, satire, debate, or even question. By definition, criticism of these ideas is an outrage, and it is precisely this emotion–outrage–that the crime of blasphemy evokes in believers.

5. Glorified suffering – Picture secret societies of monks flogging their own backs. The image that comes to mind is probably from Dan Brown’s novel, The Da Vinci Code, but the idea isn’t one he made up. A core premise of Christianity is that righteous torture—if it’s just intense and prolonged enough–can somehow fix the damage done by evil, sinful behavior. Millions of crucifixes litter the world as testaments to this belief.

6. Genital mutilation – Primitive people have used scarification and other body modifications to define tribal membership for as long as history records. But genital mutilation allowed our ancestors several additional perks—if you want to call them that. Infant circumcision in Judaism serves as a sign of tribal membership, but circumcision also serves to test the commitment of adult converts.

7. Blood sacrifice – In the list of religion’s worst ideas, this is the only one that appears to be in its final stages. Only some Hindus (during the Festival of Gadhimai, goddess of power) and some Muslims (during Eid al Adha, Feast of the Sacrifice) continue to ritually slaughter sacrificial animals on a mass scale.

8. Hell – Whether we are talking about Christianity, Islam or Buddhism, an afterlife filled with demons, monsters, and eternal torture was the worst suffering the Iron Age minds could conceive and medieval minds could elaborate. Invented, perhaps, as a means to satisfy the human desire for justice, the concept of Hell quickly devolved into a tool for coercing behavior and belief.

9. Karma – Like hell, the concept of karma offers a selfish incentive for good behavior—it’ll come back at you later—but it has enormous costs. Chief among these is a tremendous weight of cultural passivity in the face of harm and suffering. Secondarily, the idea of karmasanctifies the broad human practice of blaming the victim.

10. Eternal Life – To our weary and unwashed ancestors, the idea of gem encrusted walls, streets of gold, the fountain of youth, or an eternity of angelic chorus (or sex with virgins) may have seemed like sheer bliss. But it doesn’t take much analysis to realize how quickly eternal paradise would become hellish—an endless repetition of never changing groundhog days (because how could they change if they were perfect).

11. Male Ownership of Female Fertility – The notion of women as brood mares or children as assets likely didn’t originate with religion, but the idea that women were created for this purpose, that if a woman should die of childbearing “she was made to do it,” most certainly did. Traditional religions variously assert that men have a god-ordained right to give women in marriage, take them in war, exclude them from heaven, and kill them if the origins of their offspring can’t be assured. Hence Catholicism’s maniacal obsession with the virginity of Mary and female martyrs.

12. Bibliolatry (aka Book Worship) – Preliterate people handed down their best guesses about gods and goodness by way of oral tradition, and they made objects of stone and wood, idols, to channel their devotion. Their notions of what was good and what was Real and how to live in moral community with each other were free to evolve as culture and technology changed. But the advent of the written word changed that. As our Iron Age ancestors recorded and compiled their ideas into sacred texts, these texts allowed their understanding of gods and goodness to become static. The sacred texts of Judaism, Christianity and Islam forbid idol worship, but over time the texts themselves became idols, and many modern believers practice—essentially—book worship, also known as bibliolatry.

Full Article with more on each of the 12 categories. https://www.alternet.org/12-worst-ideas-organized-religion-has-unleashed-world

#Religion #Organization #Culture

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8   Heraclitusstudent   ignore (1)   2018 May 4, 11:55am   ↑ like (3)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Here's a podcast discussing the roots of christian ideas: https://samharris.org/podcasts/what-is-christianity/

- sources of information: Gospels were written a generation or 2 after the facts
- resurrection: mostly hearsay but without which Jesus would have been a loser figure.
- Which books are part of the bible: there were other books that could have been included like Tomas Gospel. Which made it or not is the result of discussions between people at the time.
- contradictions between Gospel: they don't agree on the day Christ was crucified.
- Messiah, or Christ in Greek: this was supposed to be a king, a political figure, inheriting from David which is a key reason why Jews stopped believing in Jesus when he was killed and didn't become Christians. Jesus more or less stated he was going to be the Messiah but that didn't work out well for him.
- Crucifixion takes away the sins of the world: this reeks of human sacrifice. Why can't God forgive humans without killing his own son in the process? It's bizarre.
- Jesus is divine: this idea appeared slowly centuries later, he was a divine being, then indistinguishable from God.
- Hell: didn't really exist in the bible: non-followers were just facing annihilation. Only the book of revelations starts showing the enemies of Christ burning in a lake of fire. Not exactly the modern version of hell.
- Paradise: the bible tends to describe good people raised from the dead at the end of times with Christ second coming, and living forever in a second Eden with God. This was never a place where body less souls go immediately after death.
9   Strategist   ignore (1)   2018 May 4, 11:58am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

NuttBoxer says
What kind of a god falls apart under human scrutiny!?


Every God falls apart under scrutiny.
10   NuttBoxer   ignore (2)   2018 May 4, 12:07pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Strategist says
Every God falls apart under scrutiny.




Then I'd say you've never heard of a god worth knowing.
11   Heraclitusstudent   ignore (1)   2018 May 4, 12:23pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

NuttBoxer says
Agreed if you're talking about a cult. But a sincere religion should encourage it's beliefs and holy works to be tested. What kind of a god falls apart under human scrutiny!?


No religion encourages it's beliefs and holy works to be tested.
12   Strategist   ignore (1)   2018 May 4, 12:31pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

NuttBoxer says
Strategist says
Every God falls apart under scrutiny.




Then I'd say you've never heard of a god worth knowing.


Aphrodite, the Goddess of love is worth knowing.
13   Tenpoundbass   ignore (10)   2018 May 4, 12:37pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Jesus doesn't care if you don't want to play religion or not. That's what the reckoning is for.
14   Strategist   ignore (1)   2018 May 4, 12:41pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Tenpoundbass says
Jesus doesn't care if you don't want to play religion or not. That's what the reckoning is for.


So why has Jesus reserved a special place for me in hell if he does not care?
15   NuttBoxer   ignore (2)   2018 May 9, 1:44pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Heraclitusstudent says
No religion encourages it's beliefs and holy works to be tested.


Mine does.

"“Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. And thereby put me to the test, says the LORD of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you a blessing until there is no more need."
- Malachi 3:10

"Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect."
- Romans 12:2
16   NuttBoxer   ignore (2)   2018 May 9, 1:49pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Strategist says
Aphrodite, the Goddess of love is worth knowing.


So is my God. You should let me introduce you sometime.
17   NuttBoxer   ignore (2)   2018 May 9, 1:52pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Strategist says
So why has Jesus reserved a special place for me in hell if he does not care?


He hasn't. The Devil get's a special place in Hell, people just go there. Not because God wants them to, but because they choose to. Choice is foundational to everything God has done in this world.
18   Heraclitusstudent   ignore (1)   2018 May 9, 2:03pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

NuttBoxer says
Mine does.

If it works based on testing hypothesis, you don't need faith, correct?
20   HEYYOU   ignore (13)   2018 May 9, 2:13pm   ↑ like (2)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Man's greatest problem is being brainwashed to believe in something in which he has no proof.
Santa Clause,Easter bunny,Bigfoot,UFOs,
Republican & Democratic bullshit! That must be real .Everywhere they go they leave a pile of proof,U.S.A.!

"No one is quite sure how many gods are still worshiped in modern times, but the list is likely no fewer than 24 major gods and maybe about a 100 or so minor deities and spirits. It’s hard to pin downs since a lot of Asian cultures have a lot of minor divinities in their theologies."
I guess believers would say, "I believe!"
Some would respond, "I believe you're an idiot."
https://www.quora.com/How-many-gods-are-currently-worshipped-on-earth
21   Onvacation   ignore (2)   2018 May 9, 2:18pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (1)   quote        

Feux Follets says



The religion of global warming climate change!
22   Feux Follets   ignore (1)   2018 May 9, 2:26pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Onvacation says
The religion of global warming climate change!

Wrong - that would be the "religion" of the Trump doctrines.

Speaking of which The Golden Golem is considering removing the credentials of certain news media outlets again under the guise of freedom of speech and not wanting to see anything bad written about himself anymore.

Some special snowflakes are more special than others it seems.

We can go back to climate change any time however - overdue for a few threads on that anyway. Something to work on - thanks !
23   Quigley   ignore (0)   2018 May 9, 3:05pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Epicurus was short sighted.
Taking his third supposition/question in hand: “If God is able and unwilling to prevent evil, whence comes evil?”

I define evil as the INTENTIONAL infliction of suffering on human beings. As far as I know, only human beings have the capacity for empathy, and thus the capacity to understand suffering well enough to creatively and maliciously inflict it on each other. Thus, human beings are the source of all evil!

Should a good God prevent us from being this way or behaving in such a manner? Then how would be be sentient? Taking away our agency would forever stunt us into unconsciousness, and remove our capacity for growth. This would also be evil, and a good God is not evil and so wouldn’t engage in such an activity.

But what about all the unintentional harm that may befall we tender and vulnerable people? To that I answer this: “should we be then invulnerable and impervious to harm?”
Let’s say we weren’t able to be harmed. We wouldn’t have or require the capacity for caring or growth or love or any of the virtues that humans may express. We would be automatons. We would be monsters!
Our experience as humans therefore necessitates our vulnerability to harm. And not just one harm or a few harms, but a plethora of them! We may then struggle forward, letting the elimination(or suppression) of one harm at a time be our goal. Because we must have a mission to motivate us, to make our lives of suffering worthwhile.

As Frederick Nietzsche said: “What is happiness? The feeling that power is growing, that resistance is being overcome.”

Without our human state of severe limitation, leading often to sorrow, we would have no reason for happiness.

This is the Tao.
24   Heraclitusstudent   ignore (1)   2018 May 9, 3:09pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

NuttBoxer says

"“Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. And thereby put me to the test, says the LORD of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you a blessing until there is no more need."
- Malachi 3:10


[Yeshua says: Woe unto them, the dogmatists—for they are like a dog sleeping in the manger of oxen. For neither does he eat, nor does he allow the oxen to eat. ]
Thomas 102.
25   drB6   ignore (1)   2018 May 9, 3:22pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Quigley says
As far as I know, only human beings have the capacity for empathy, and thus the capacity to understand suffering well enough to creatively and maliciously inflict it on each other. Thus, human beings are the source of all evil!

In some ways, it is much more complicated. Two thousand years ago, if you did not raid neighboring tribe and did not steal from them, perhaps your own tribe would starve to death. A lot of raids/mass human movements in those ages were caused by overpopulation, crops failing due to too much/little rain, too much heat or cold etc. One can reasonably argue that many if not most of these conditions were caused by external effects and not humans. Humans killing each other en masse were the result of these effects. This world, if indeed it is programmed by some higher power, has been programmed/created with YUUGE inherent flaws that required humans to kill each other to survive.
26   drB6   ignore (1)   2018 May 9, 3:26pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Feux Follets says
The Golden Golem is considering removing the credentials of certain news media outlets again under the guise of freedom of speech

Given the fact that media (both left and right-leaning) has lost its last bits of sanity and has morphed into propaganda apparatus for the wealthy owners, I actually kind of like the YUUGE ego going after them. I have not seen any logical, impartial analysis of nearly anything in media recently. May be Taibbi in Rolling Stone is one of few journalists worth reading. Nearly everyone else is a corporate shill, and for some reason these corporate shills have received order to attack the yuuge golden ego.
27   mell   ignore (1)   2018 May 9, 3:31pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Feux Follets says
4. Blasphemy – Blasphemy is the notion that some ideas are inviolable, off limits to criticism, satire, debate, or even question. By definition, criticism of these ideas is an outrage, and it is precisely this emotion–outrage–that the crime of blasphemy evokes in believers.


Reminds me of the modern left.

Feux Follets says
11. Male Ownership of Female Fertility – The notion of women as brood mares or children as assets likely didn’t originate with religion, but the idea that women were created for this purpose, that if a woman should die of childbearing “she was made to do it,” most certainly did. Traditional religions variously assert that men have a god-ordained right to give women in marriage, take them in war, exclude them from heaven, and kill them if the origins of their offspring can’t be assured. Hence Catholicism’s maniacal obsession with the virginity of Mary and female martyrs.


Nothing wrong with it in the context of the times where men were supposed to die in wars and dangerous jobs. Even today men die on oil rigs, in combat etc. at a ratio of like 100:1 compared to women, and it is sort of "expected". This has less to do with religion but with survivalism of your tribes. Of course in the modern context things have changed and so have the interpretations, today it's more the notion that the children can be aborted at will, so now it's female ownership of the children. And many cheer it! Same difference.
28   Quigley   ignore (0)   2018 May 9, 3:31pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

drB6 says
Two thousand years ago, if you did not raid neighboring tribe and did not steal from them, perhaps your own tribe would starve to death.


There’s always a choice. Perhaps they could have put their pride and hostility on the shelf, and traded or cooperated with the other tribe. This precise activity is what gave rise to what we know as civilization, which actually made humans MORE secure and safe and wealthy than tribalism ever could have done. We know this because the tribal communities of the world are backwards as hell and poor and their lives are miserable, dirty, and short.

Choosing to do good to other people is how we arrive at order, the opposite of chaos. Inflicting suffering on each other is how we arrive at Hell.
29   Aphroman   ignore (2)   2018 May 9, 3:32pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

drB6 says
Quigley says
As far as I know, only human beings have the capacity for empathy, and thus the capacity to understand suffering well enough to creatively and maliciously inflict it on each other. Thus, human beings are the source of all evil!

In some ways, it is much more complicated. Two thousand years ago, if you did not raid neighboring tribe and did not steal from them, perhaps your own tribe would starve to death. A lot of raids/mass human movements in those ages were caused by overpopulation, crops failing due to too much/little rain, too much heat or cold etc. One can reasonably argue that many if not most of these conditions were caused by external effects and not humans. Humans killing each other en masse were the result of these effects. This world, if indeed it is programmed by some higher power, has been programmed/created with YUUGE inherent flaws that required humans to kill each other to survive.


We are born in sin. Repent to the Lord, our Savior, and ye shall escape the smite of God
30   Quigley   ignore (0)   2018 May 9, 3:34pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Aphroman says
We are born in sin.


What this truly means is that the capacity for evil is in us all, and rare is the person who chooses always to do only good to other people.
31   Heraclitusstudent   ignore (1)   2018 May 9, 4:05pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Feux Follets says
11. Male Ownership of Female Fertility

Male own women fertility about as much as women make them jump hoops, and "own" them as providers that will work for them for free. It's this for that. Men can offer work, resources, and occasionally defense, while women hold the reproductive cards. The economy of life didn't change much.
32   justme   ignore (0)   2018 May 9, 4:23pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

>> 11. Male Ownership of Female Fertility – The notion of women as brood mares or children as assets likely didn’t originate with religion, but the idea that women were created for this purpose, that if a woman should die of childbearing “she was made to do it,” most certainly did. Traditional religions variously assert that men have a god-ordained right to give women in marriage, take them in war, exclude them from heaven, and kill them if the origins of their offspring can’t be assured. Hence Catholicism’s maniacal obsession with the virginity of Mary and female martyrs.

Complete, gynocentric balderdash propaganda. Such ownership does not exist, and never did. Note also the bizarre language being used. How on earth can anyone "own fertility". This is the hallmark of gynocentrism, using bizarre and illogical language to confuse the enemy and make serious discussion difficult. If you want to see the truth, you need to deconstruct the above propaganda and see what is really going on. Let's think for a minute...

Ah, I found out what is really going on: Women OWN MEN because men have high fertility and can easily be tricked into fatherhood. At that point (fatherhood), women will invoke "the needs of the child" as a mechanism to make her claim on the body (the labor) and assets of the man, and own him, and there is no stopping a woman using the man for her own self-serving purposes, rather than the needs of the child. And the child may not even really be his. Exploitation accomplished, mission accomplished.

So, the real problem, religious and otherwise, is women's unearned claim on male labor. The notion that men are just beasts of burden that should be exploited for their labor by all women, both individually and collectively, with no right to demand ANYTHING in return.
33   drB6   ignore (1)   2018 May 9, 4:27pm   ↑ like (2)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Quigley says
There’s always a choice

Now - yes. Fifty or even hundred years ago - probably yes. Five hundred years ago - probably not, and that is a mathematical fact. If 100 sq miles can support 10000 people, and 25000 live in this area, then 15000 has to be killed, die off, or move away.

Even nowadays bombing people for no or little reason is very fashionable, including among religious types.
34   drB6   ignore (1)   2018 May 9, 4:29pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Aphroman says
We are born in sin. Repent to the Lord, our Savior, and ye shall escape the smite of God

I do not think all religions say that, and why should we choose one that says this? Furthermore, in areas where I am from, this religion came with a crusade and killed off half of the population, with the rest either running away or being converted (Northern Crusades). Should I accept religion which caused immense suffering and death for my ancestors, and was introduced through violence?
35   Heraclitusstudent   ignore (1)   2018 May 9, 4:35pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Aphroman says
We are born in sin.

Here is a tradition that corrupts the entire universe for you: Nature has fallen. Every natural impulse is sinful. We should feel guilty always.

Ah!
36   Heraclitusstudent   ignore (1)   2018 May 9, 4:37pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

drB6 says
I do not think all religions say that, and why should we choose one that says this?


"Choose"? Like, people "choose" their religion?
37   drB6   ignore (1)   2018 May 9, 4:51pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Heraclitusstudent says
"Choose"? Like, people "choose" their religion?

Some do these days. Before, they would be burned at stake/drawn/quartered/decapitated for trying to leave the Most Human of Religions.
Point is, why do adherents of Religion 1 nearly always think that Religion 1 is better than Religion 2, 3, 4, or 5?
38   Heraclitusstudent   ignore (1)   2018 May 9, 5:06pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

drB6 says
Some do these days.

Hummm... Logically, being able to "pick" your beliefs should destroy any vestige of credibility a religion could possibly have.
"Yeah that must be true because I chose that belief among the 10 others over there."
Maybe Fox Mulder would go for it.
39   Strategist   ignore (1)   2018 May 9, 5:13pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

NuttBoxer says
Strategist says
Aphrodite, the Goddess of love is worth knowing.


So is my God. You should let me introduce you sometime.


No thanks. I'm a one Goddess guy.
40   NuttBoxer   ignore (2)   2018 May 14, 11:13am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Heraclitusstudent says
If it works based on testing hypothesis, you don't need faith, correct?


Faith and trust aren't the same thing. This is a common misunderstanding. Faith is built on understanding of who God is, usually through study and experience. Testing would increase faith, not eliminate it. Trust is what you are referring to, an immature form of Christianity since it requires neither knowledge, nor experience to invoke.
41   NuttBoxer   ignore (2)   2018 May 14, 11:20am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Heraclitusstudent says
[Yeshua says: Woe unto them, the dogmatists—for they are like a dog sleeping in the manger of oxen. For neither does he eat, nor does he allow the oxen to eat. ]
Thomas 102.


What would be the application relative to this thread?
42   NuttBoxer   ignore (2)   2018 May 14, 11:22am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Strategist says
No thanks. I'm a one Goddess guy.


Then you have room for God, since he's not a goddess.
43   Tenpoundbass   ignore (10)   2018 May 14, 11:23am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Strategist says
So why has Jesus reserved a special place for me in hell if he does not care?

Does the airport security at the gate, care if you miss your connecting flight?
44   Heraclitusstudent   ignore (1)   2018 May 14, 11:38am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

NuttBoxer says
Faith is built on understanding of who God is, usually through study and experience. Testing would increase faith, not eliminate it.


Let's take the case of the parents of a 5 yrs old boy dying of cancer, and they're really religious, and pray God to spare their loved one.
How is this testing increasing faith?
Are you assuming nothing bad will happen to you? This being life, you're guarantied to get your lot of shit happening to you.

So what experience specifically do you interpret as reinforcing faith in the existence of God?
45   Heraclitusstudent   ignore (1)   2018 May 14, 11:38am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

NuttBoxer says
What would be the application relative to this thread?

As in: it says people believing in dogmas are wrong?

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