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Freeform Discussion on the Issue of Religion

  1. gmwilliams profile image86
    gmwilliamsposted 3 years ago

    http://s2.hubimg.com/u/8570845.jpg
    What is YOUR premise regarding the issue of religion in postmodern society?  Do you believe that religion is relevant in postmodern, 21st century society?  Do you maintain that religion is an outmoded, even regressive concept in postmodern society?   How do YOU feel about religion and/or religious beliefs in general?

    1. wilderness profile image96
      wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Religion is most certainly relevant in 21st century society - it runs the lives of a large percentage of humanity.  It is a driving force behind most politics in the US.

      It is also outmoded and regressive; religion has always lagged behind secular society in the morals and ethics of living together.

      1. gmwilliams profile image86
        gmwilliamsposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        WIlderness, you are a voice of reason.   You are highly appreciated in the religious forums.  Glad to have you here, adding to the discussion.

        1. wilderness profile image96
          wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          LOL - I'm afraid that not everyone would agree with you. big_smile

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            Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            I agree with GM

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      Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      It depends on the type of religion you are referring to. Personal faith is still relevant on the 21st century as it does (when applied) provide a moral and ethical guideline as to how to live. This is even more of a case when people are examining the example of Christ.


      Organized religion, on the other hand Is an outdated system as it is grounded in the thought process of "we're right and everyone else is wrong." It also uses the bible as more of a tool of control and instilling fear by telling others that if they aren't with the crowd they are hell bound.

      Organized religion is little more than am exclusionary club that does not allow for people to cross the velvet rope

      1. wilderness profile image96
        wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        You're right - personal faith can (and hopefully does) give a guideline as to correct moral and ethics. 

        Unfortunately, it gives those guidelines based upon a 2,000 year old book that is badly outdated and lagging far beyond civilization in the field of morality.  Things such as bigotry and racism are still coming out of that book, and will as long as people interpret it to fit their prejudices.

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          Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          And you get no argument from me there. Yes people will use it that way. But there are some principles contained in that same book that are relevant today. That those same ideas can be found in any book does not diminish the values of those principles just because they are on the bible, do they?

          1. wilderness profile image96
            wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Most definitely the bible contains some really good guidelines for living.  Judge not.  Throwing the first stone.  Love neighbors. 

            Unfortunate that those are too often set aside for lack of emotional impact (and because we don't really like them when applied to ourselves) while those bashing gays or demanding obeisance by all are shouted from the rooftops.  Much better to condemn something we don't like anyway, and vilify it to all that will listen.

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              Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Once again no argument from me there. There are some good ones and bad ones. Unfortunately, actions don't always match intentions in some, but sometimes they totally match in others

              1. wilderness profile image96
                wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                No, actions don't always match intentions, but that's all right.  We're all human, we all make mistakes and none of us have total control over our minds and actions.

                To try, to do our best, is all that we can ask of anyone, including ourselves.

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                  Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  Exactly. What you just said here is basically the main thing that the Bible teaches that Christ espouses. It also says basically that if your actions miss the mark of good intentions, then you acknowledge it, apologize if it harms, then try again to get it right. First time is a mistake, second time is a choice. If God does punish people (provided he exists out of respect for your lack of belief) , he punishes only deeds done with bad intentions. So realistically, there are some Christians that should probably hope that God isn't real, especially since they try to hide their bad intentions behind the Bible

                  1. wilderness profile image96
                    wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Not sure that the first time is a mistake - few people don't understand that hurting others is bad.  Yet it is done with distressing regularity from bar fights to rape to child abuse.  One does not grab a stick to beat a child with without having the intent to do so, for instance.

                    The problem seems more along the lines that too many are unable or unwilling to control their anger or other emotions.  So they  do things, intentionally, that they know are wrong.  Not by accident (a car wreck hurting someone) but by intent.

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          Emile Rposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Bigotry and racism used Darwin's theories to enslave and murder others. You can't blame any writing for the actions of those who use it to justify bigotry and racism. Well, you can...but does that make sense?

          1. wilderness profile image96
            wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            To some degree it does make sense.  The bible has many directions that tell us to do this or that but that also need some "interpretation" to actually implement.

            The strictures against homosexuality need o such interpretation; they are quite straightforward and the only interpretation is how to get around them to something reasonable.  There is no "justification" you need to twist into the bible for homophobia, then, just for NOT being homophobic.  Similarly, I have known people that directly quote, without any spin, directions for beating a child or wife and USE those directions in their daily life. 

            In these kinds of things, then, the bible's instructions and guidelines are directly opposed to the guidelines we espouse as a civilized people today and the bible is directly to blame for the actions of some that still espouse some of those old "morals" that the rest of us have long given up.

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              Emile Rposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              I don't disagree, except that all are responsible for their actions. Everyone, you included, points to the writings of others to justify opinions. The Bible is no more responsible for racism and prejudice in the free world than Darwin is for the Rwandan genocide. Claiming otherwise is ignoring the man who never stood behind the curtain and it allows people to continue to feel justified in anti social behavior.

              1. wilderness profile image96
                wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Absolutely we are all responsible for our own actions.  But to extend that concept past all reason, to stretch it to the point that nothing in the bible has had any affect on the world, is not reasonable.  There is no other single piece of literature that has had anywhere near the effect the bible has, from near genocide to torture and murder of millions to the creation of the loving holiday we are about to celebrate. 

                And among those effects is an increase in homophobia, particularly among adherents of the bible.

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                Rad Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Here is the problem, we have people justifying bad behaviour with the bible. We have people in another forum justifying bigotry with the bible. They claim it's okay to hate and spread hatred to homosexuals because the bible says so. They are NOT taking responsibility for their own actions and words and are hiding behind the bible. We both know they should be taking responsibility for their own actions, what do we do to help them understand?

                1. wilderness profile image96
                  wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  Fire them. lol

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                  Emile Rposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  You can't help someone  understand what they don't want to. A bigot wants to be a bigot. A bigot will justify their actions and thoughts through whatever means available. That isn't the point.

                  Do we blame 'Catcher in the Rye' for assassination attempts? Do we blame 'Descent of Man' for genocide? No. Why not? Seriously. If the Bible is responsible for hatred why don't we blame other works for violence caused by the people who twist the words and take those twisted words to heart?

                  You can quote anything you want. Post any link you choose. However, your conclusions and  your actions are your own. Or  are they? If they are why doesn't the same hold true for someone using a different source in order to come to their conclusions?

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                    Rad Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    That is in fact the point, but by accepting the bible you've given them something to hid behind that they think is divine.


                    But nobody thinks these books are divinely written.

                    They should be your own opinions, yet we see people claiming that they are just the messenger.

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                  Deepes Mindposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  Which begs the question, is the bible truly to blame? The Bible is in and of itself a book. It is a book that contains violent material but by itself has no sentience in coercing people to do bad things or to take on a specific mindset. People tried to blame heavy metal and punk rock for violence and suicides committed by teens and adults who are of the age of knowing better. But does that truly make it responsible? The bible also contains guidelines and principles for moral living, but it does not get credit for that.  Some atheists will argue that those values and principles can be found in books other than the bible and even in predated books. Violent material can be found on other books as well. Mein Kampf is such a book and people killed for what was in that book. It is unjust to only give blame to the bible for the poor decisions of man that can get those things from other books but not give credit for the good decisions made by men who got their values from that same bible. People take what they want out of the bible, but that is their decision, not the bible's

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                    Rad Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Right, the bible is but a book. I see it kind of like a portfolio. I've been building and watching the results of my portfolio for almost 35 years since I first tried to get into a high school art school. The results of everything I've learned and from everything I've read about producing a portfolio is that we are judged/remembered by our worst pieces and not our best. So, if I only have 4 great pieces it's better to show just the four rather than ten pieces with six that are so so.

                    If you except the good as the truth you must also except the bad. To answer your question "is the bible truly to blame?". No, but the men you wrote it are to blame as are those who pick pieces out of it to do either harm or good, if you except the best of it as truth you must except the worst as truth. If you look at my portfolio you may except that I may produce designs as good as my best and as poor as my worst. My portfolio is me as a professional designer, good and bad, the bible is the God you believe in, good and bad. We have to except and take the good with the evil or move and hire another designer.

                  2. EncephaloiDead profile image60
                    EncephaloiDeadposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Uh, yes it does, backed by the organization that has been put in place to indoctrinate people into being coerced.



                    The Bible is heavily outweighed by it's negative affects on people and societies than anything positive it could ever contribute.



                    True, and in fact many of those values and principles contradict the Bible.



                    Are you comparing the Bible with Mein Kampf? Apples and oranges.

    3. Titen-Sxull profile image93
      Titen-Sxullposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Religion is struggling very hard to stay relevant to the increasingly connected, increasingly educated, world in which we live.

      If I may make some predictions about the future of religion, I believe that religious mythologies will no longer be viewed as literal truths but that religion will eventually become much like what we are seeing with Comic-Con. In other words people will still respect their religious canons, find valuable lessons and emotional attachment in their respective religious mythologies but will treat them as precious and important fiction, rather than as true accounts of history or reality.

      In the modern world of cosplay, Live Action Roleplay,etc we have conventions with thousands upon thousands of fans showing support for hundreds of different forms of entertainment. I think religion will go this way and religious wars will be a thing of the past. Conflicts between religions will be much like conflicts between fandoms. Ever seen two nerds arguing over which was better Star Wars or Star Trek, well that's what I suspect religious arguments will look like in the future.

      I welcome such a change and truly hope religion does go in that direction because when treated as fiction it is fascinating and entertaining to say the least but when people try to assert it as actually true they run into trouble.

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        Lybrahposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        What bubble do you live in?  You're 100% wrong.  Unless, of course, you're not really serious and are trying to be funny.

        Christianity will never die as a relevant religion.  Religious wars are going to continue as the Muslim population grows.  We are living in the end times now, and the bible says that in the last days people will not living a life that is pleasing to God--well, I guess you're kind of right in saying that people are worshipping and respecting the religion less.  But the fighting is going to continue, and get worse (especially in the Middle East) until the tribulation begins and Jesus comes back on his White Horse.  Then, every knee will bow, and every tongue will confess that Jesus is Lord.  Ready?

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          Rad Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          And the sun will shine out my a**!

          The sky is falling...

          1. A Thousand Words profile image79
            A Thousand Wordsposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            The sun already does shine out of your a**, Rad.

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            Lybrahposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            I think within in the next hundred years, the prophecies talked about in Revelations will come to pass...maybe not in our lifetime, but definitely in the 2100's.

            1. wilderness profile image96
              wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              And yet...people have been saying that not for a mere 100 years but for 2,000 years.

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              Emile Rposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Wilderness brings up a valid point. It is fascinating that every prophecy has failed and no one sees that as telling.

              1. wilderness profile image96
                wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Oh, I don't know - I bet that if you consider each prophecy to be just a metaphor instead of literal, and just...twist..it a bit you could show that every one has been fulfilled already.  Isn't that the currently PC method of reading the bible?

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                  Emile Rposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  I don't know. Every sect has a different way of looking at it. Is there a politically correct way to see it?

                  1. wilderness profile image96
                    wildernessposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                    Sure - whatever twists and interpretations are necessary to make the tales and words match with reality.

                    No world wide flood?  It was local only.  Obvious as Noah couldn't get to a Kangaroo anyway.

                    Cannot survive in the stomach acid of a fish?  A metaphor only.

                    Earth is more than 6,000 years old?  God's year is different than ours.

                    Alternatively, you can declare that reality is wrong and scripture right.  Easy enough if you refuse to think about what you're saying.

                    Lots of ways to "correct" scripture - you just take your choice of whatever fits what you want and declare everyone else is wrong.  Easy-Peasey!

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              Rad Manposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Didn't Jesus apparently say it would happen in his generation?

              1. Disappearinghead profile image89
                Disappearingheadposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Yes he did, and yes everything he said would happen did with the siege of Jerusalem in AD70 to the wiping Israel off the map by AD135. But Christians aren't renowned for their study of history.

        2. A Thousand Words profile image79
          A Thousand Wordsposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          LoL. That "Ready?" at the end sounded like a threat.

        3. EncephaloiDead profile image60
          EncephaloiDeadposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Well, no, actually, I'm not ready to leave my bubble just yet, thanks. And, I have no intention to bow my knee to your God or your 'end times' beliefs and saviors on white horses. It's silly to believe that religious wars will stop simply because of population growth of one particular religion and even sillier to believe that people have at any given time in all history to have ever all lived a life pleasing to some particular God.

          Being obsessed with end times beliefs breeds apathy and depression, it makes one lose any interest in the future or any hope for mankind or the human condition.

          It's so easy to reject and discard such ridiculous superstitions for the reasoned mind and instead build foundations of solutions for real world problems.

    4. A Thousand Words profile image79
      A Thousand Wordsposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I think there is no simple answer to this question.

      Religion no doubt has certain perks as far as when considering human behavior. Although, it's hard to say that we really know how people would act if they'd never been introduced to the idea that ultimate goodness is unattainable and takes a life long process, or spirituality is only for fundies who make life boring and who act cold and inconsiderate.

      I wonder how we'd be treating each other and this planet had we not been subjected to religions that seem to bring out the worst in us and that feed the need to rebel and wreak havoc on the world and our own bodies.

      Don't get me wrong, I know personally of people who become more pleasant for the most part because they really trying to adhere to the better teachings from their holy books, but there is a tendency for even liberal religious people to become quite dogmatic eventually because it seems like the logical progression if they are honest with themselves about what their holy book asks of them.

      It no longer becomes "am I doing what's right according to what my fellow man tells me?" to "am I doing what's right 'in the eyes of God?" Such a mandate makes it so that people forget why they were liberal and fall into the fundie mindset that leads to such unpleasantness. They don't see the hate and bigotry and judgment that follows as wrong.

      Are they to blame? Is the book to blame? An inanimate object can do nothing, but a book like the bible and other religious books that perpetuate dogma were created to control. And that's what they do. The psychology they use is undeniable. And it's quite easy for sheep to fall pray to wolves.

 
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