1. guamyankee
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    guamyankee Contributing Member

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    The "Let's Discuss Religion As Though We Were Grownups" Thread

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by guamyankee, Feb 17, 2011.

    This thread is for anyone who wants to have a reasonable, logical, discussion regarding all things religion. Here are the groundrules:

    1. Be respectable. Respect other's opinions.

    2. Debating the validity, benefits, and drawbacks of ANY religion IS allowed. This includes atheism, agnosticism, and ALL religions. Essentially, anything goes, as long as rule #1 is taken into consideration.
     
  2. Chickendancer
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    Chickendancer Senior Member

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    Hello Guamyankee. In my humble opinion:

    Good on you for having a go at this. I wish you all the best of luck with it. But, respectfully, are you nuts!!!!

    I could participate in this project or I could shove a starving squirrel down my pants. Same result.

    I truely hope that you prove me wrong. Good luck. CD.
     
  3. guamyankee
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    guamyankee Contributing Member

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    Guess I'll kick things off by stating my own "religion." I'm an agnostic. To me, an agnostic believes there might be a God, or there might not. Who am I to say one way or the other? I personally believe that Agnosticism is the only non-religion. Athiests believe there's no God, but they can't prove it. All other religions believe in God, but they can't prove it. Therefore, both athiests and other religions rely on some form of faith.

    ok, I'll stop there for now.
     
  4. Agreen
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    Agreen Faceless Man Contributor

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    I don't think this will last long, because such discussions have fantastic potential for disaster. I think you'd be more successful generating this type of discussion if you presented a specific topic as a starting point.

    Edit for above post: I suppose it depends on your definitions. I like how Dawkins presented it, as a scale between absolute belief in a god, and absolute disbelief. I don't absolutely disbelieve, because it can't be proven, but I strongly suspect that there aren't any gods. I am still comfortable identifying as an atheist.
     
  5. guamyankee
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    guamyankee Contributing Member

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    Thank you. The success of this thread is dependant on everyone who uses it, not just me.
     
  6. sidtvicious
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    sidtvicious Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'm an atheist. Though I generally dislike using such a title, I do have occasional thoughts pertaining to the possibility of intelligent design, that being said. I do not refer to myself as an agnostic for the sake of my own psyche. Calling myself an agnostic feels as though I'm saying "the jury is still out." I feel this is a cop-out to my own beliefs. No disrespect to anyone who claims themselves agnostic.
     
  7. guamyankee
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    guamyankee Contributing Member

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    No, you're wrong! Ha ha, just kidding. I see your point, but I wanted to leave it open-ended and just see where it goes. Hopefully, it won't go into admin lockdown.
     
  8. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    I'm agnostic as well, and it seems to me to be a good place to be. I don't find enough evidence, personally, to believe in the existence of a divine being. But I can't logically rule it out as impossible, either. So I suppose that fits with the definition of agnosticism pretty well.
     
  9. Agreen
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    Agreen Faceless Man Contributor

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    You should have included your 2nd post in the OP, as it provides a starting point for discussion :p

    I hope the thread lasts as well, a large part of my studies were in religion so it's actually one of my favourite discussion topics.
     
  10. guamyankee
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    guamyankee Contributing Member

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    I also lean towards not believing in any gods, but I'm still closer to the agnostic side.

    I also believe in a type of reincarnation. I'll probably discuss that later if there's interest. I would call my reincarnation ideas a hypothesis.
     
  11. guamyankee
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    guamyankee Contributing Member

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    I considered that, but I didn't want the first post to be about myself.
     
  12. arron89
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    arron89 Banned

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    I'm also in the atheist camp. There's (to me, at least) no evidence of any kind of divine intervention in human existence, and certainly noting empirical, so I don't find any reason to believe in god on those grounds. As for the more philosophical arguments, questions of purpose, etc, I still don't find any need to invoke a god.
     
  13. Sabreur
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    Sabreur Contributing Member Contributor

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    Valhall awaits me when I die. ;)
     
  14. Speedy
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    Speedy Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'll go along the Quantum Entanglement wave of thought, and the extreme version of it.

    I wish i could express something that happened to me once, but lets face it....this is the internet.
     
  15. Chudz
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    Chudz Contributing Member

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    This world is too complicated to have no progenitor. It has all the earmarks of a corporation, meaning everyone with a little bit of power wants their share. Think that's wrong? I will simply reply with "mosquitoes." Who the heck decided that mosquitoes had to be a part of life?

    No one did, it was a concession to some uppity group so they would feel included. In effect, someone said, "I shall grant you dominion over mosquitoes," and it mollified a sub-section of those wanting to feel frekking important.

    Now, did I say this with tongue in cheek, or did I really mean it? Let's ask the lowly mosquito. . . .

    One other thought: If you think about natural selection, it boils down to giving the organism the best chance to replicate in the existing environment. If that's true, then why do we have opposite sexes that are needed to continue the species? An organism that can reproduce on its own has a much better chance at survival than one needing two parts, doesn't it?
     
  16. guamyankee
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    guamyankee Contributing Member

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    I knew this guy once who believed that, however you thought life after death was, that was how it would be. In other words, multiple realities, whatever you believed was the truth. I don't buy into that. I believe there's only one truth. I just don't know what it is.
     
  17. guamyankee
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    guamyankee Contributing Member

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    Mosquitoes might be around longer than humans. They might win, in the end.
     
  18. Chudz
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    Chudz Contributing Member

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    Heya,

    Thanks for the discussion. I edited my post while you were replying. What do you think about my addendum?
     
  19. guamyankee
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    guamyankee Contributing Member

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    Chudz said: One other thought: If you think about natural selection, it boils down to giving the organism the best chance to replicate in the existing environment. If that's true, then why do we have opposite sexes that are needed to continue the species? An organism that can reproduce on its own has a much better chance at survival than one needing two parts, doesn't it?

    I would say that at least during certain times in earth's history, the opposite sex species had to have fared a better chance of survival. You pose an interesting question though, and now I'm going to have to research that.

    Or maybe not a better chance. Maybe an equal chance, or a "good enough to survive also" chance.
     
  20. w176
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    w176 Contributing Member Contributor

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    I think it interesting from a international perspective, that different nation tends to have different needs to discuss religion. Seeming to depend on how much impact religion have on said society and how homo/hetrogenous religious views are within said culture.

    Americans seems to have a need to discuss religion in general, since you both got loads of variations within the country and religion is a strong force in society.

    In Sweden religion seldom pops up as a topic for debate, and if it do it a contextual debate. People don't tend to feel a need to start threads like this one for example. Religion has little impact on society, and the religions views are very hetrogenous (85% non believers/atheist/agnostics) about 10% Christians and 4% Muslims.

    And if we look at other European countries, that where religion have a great impact on society, but not a great diversity, they don't tend to debate religion in general much, mostly perceived threats to the main religion and the right to religious freedom for minorities.
     
  21. guamyankee
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    guamyankee Contributing Member

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  22. w176
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    w176 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Another international aspect is that the schism between faith and science mostly seem to be an American thing in Christianity, at least compared to Europe, who accepted that the creation myth as a allegory more readily early on.
     
  23. w176
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    w176 Contributing Member Contributor

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    And i find the threads name hilarious. Adults starts war over religion, children just stick out their tongue and say "My religion is better then yours" until they are bored and does something else. If we debated more like children there would be a lot less wars.
     
  24. jaywriting
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    jaywriting Member

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    My religion

    Ok I'll lay out my personal take on religion, feel free to pick it apart, it has proven fairly robust so far.

    I'm almost an atheist.
    I am prepared to accept there might be a higher power that set up the laws of physics as we now find them. I have no reason to believe that there is a higher power who gives a damn about the way human beings choose to live their lives. I'm not actively a deist but it is fairly compatible with my world view.

    I do believe in the power of society. I think that is where the concept of a personal god arises from. I think humans create their own gods, and in a limited sense, those gods become "real" because they do influence the way we behave. I do not know whether society has its own sentience, over and above the individuals that make it up. Even if society is sentient I see no reason to worship it in a religious manner.

    I am casually superstitious in a very minor way. My morality is largely Christian. Not for fear of hell or in hope of heaven, but because it works reasonably well. I suppose I'm a humanist.

    I generally support other people's right to believe whatever they like. However I do feel strongly on two issues, which overlap to some extent.
    Firstly I am a firm supporter of secularism. Religion has huge power to unify and influence large numbers of people. When religion mixes with the corrupting world of politics, bad things happen.
    Secondly I generally oppose evangelism. I'm with Dawkins on this. Mass religion employs methods of brainwashing to subjugate the mind. It's not something I can approve of.

    In defence of religion, it has historically been a great unifying force. It is a good starting point when tackling the Big Questions of life. However, that doesn't make it true.
     
  25. jaywriting
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    jaywriting Member

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    Perhaps that is because not so many children have guns...
     

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