Is there a place for religion in today's modern world

Just an observation - not an argument

Firstly, let me state my position here. This is not a criticism of religion or an attack on religious people. It is merely an opinion and an observation.

With science understanding more and more of the world around us, are religions taking account of these discoveries and is it affecting peoples faith. Does religion still have a part to play in today's modern society?

Being an aethiest, or more importantly not following any religion, I have always struggled to understand how religious people can follow a blind faith that doesn't offer any proof. All religions rely on the fact that they have been around for a long time and that's the way it is. It happens because it happens, we don't need proof....or that's the message portrayed.

It is my belief that all religions stem from society building a set of rules and morals that should be followed by all in order to maintain stability and conformity within that social group. Each religion offers its punishment for not adhering to these rules but also offers its rewards for sticking to them. An admirable notion and the foundation for laws.

We have moved on

So the bible's, Koran's and various scriptures detailing these "rules" have been passed down through the ages. Those heads of religion have at times altered the rules or which rules they wish to include as time marches on.  Its a well known fact that there are hundreds of different versions of the bible and its writings and chapter contents has changed considerably through the years.

This is all well and good, but society has moved on and developed specific laws and punishments of its own to maintain that balance and now I believe we should question whether these old handed down stories still have a place in modern society, especially as there are many conflicting elements between religious writings and modern day laws.

The problem we now face is that of extremism. Every religion has its extremists. Those that take the relgious scripts and practise them to the letter, often with their own interpretations of any meanings in there.

 

Admiring the extremists?

 Now there's a controversial statement.  I do have a level of adniration for religious extremists.  For someone to absolutely believe in something to such a degree they are prepared to be ridiculed or in some cases killed for their beliefs takes a very dedicated person.

If that level of dedication was aimed at something commercial for example, they would be the most successful people and deserving of everything they receive.  I am presuming that it is the "rewards" of their religion, the promises of the afterlife that drives them to be so extreme in their beliefs.  However, I must also balance this with the scientific and modern view points that would counter any of their arguments.

Blind faith is not a sufficient argument to counter scientific fact.  Without wishing to ridicule any religion, it would be difficult to argue any reality with statements along the lines of "its (insert the name of any deity) will for it to be so".

Extremism in anything...sport...hobbies or religion is a very unhealthy thing.  It blinds peoples perceptions and block out everything else in the world.  It causes friction, it kills people, it causes wars.  Nearly every war that has ever been fought in this world of ours has been beacuse of religion.  With so many different religions out there.....they can't all be right can they?  Consequently, is any of them right......is there one we haven't discovered yet?  Can science help us out here?

To answer the question....

 So to answer the question, is there a place for relgion in today's modern society?

Personally, I think there is.  Mans desire to believe in life after death will always be there and if we can mould that belief around the basis that the afterlife is affected by your mortal life, then I think that will give us conscience.

However, take that belief too far and it becomes a dangerous weapon against society itself.

My take is...the religious scripts of your chosen belief are there to illustrate a point.  They may be based on real or historical events but it is the underlying message the stories were trying to portray that is the important aspect and not the detail.

There are no hidden meanings....these are ancient guidelines for society.  Please don't make them something that they are not.  Balance them with scientific fact and we can all live in harmony.

Let each person believe what they wish to believe but do not force people to believe what you believe.  I don't think there is a religion in the world that commands you to kill everyone else that doesn't believe what you believe.  Let's stop the wars, let's have some common sense.

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Comments 11 comments

Arnie 5 years ago

Transit Camper - I like the name... to me, (my belief) its not what satisfies the individual but rather what satisfies God

The banquet of religions on offer today is to satisfy each ones cravings

(2 Timothy 4:3-4) 3 For there will be a period of time when they will not put up with the healthful teaching, but, in accord with their own desires, they will accumulate teachers for themselves to have their ears tickled; 4 and they will turn their ears away from the truth, whereas they will be turned aside to false stories.


Transit Camper 5 years ago Author

Thanks Arnie, a good well written comment. This does lead to a separate discussion around creationism which again would be a long Hub in itself. As I have said, I don't wish to argue anyones point about what they believe and I certainly wouldn't criticise their beliefs. Religion serves a purpose to those that wish to follow one as it provides explanations to difficult questions. Whether those explanations are right or wrong can be irreleventas long as it satisfies the individual.


Arnie 5 years ago

Enjoyed reading your balanced coments and I think all of us long for a world without religion. Though in most cases it's often people that misrepresent ancient writings like the bible which often make the bible seem outdated with scientific discoveries - for instance long before science discovered that the earth is round. The bible says in simple language "There is One who is dwelling above the circle of the earth" Is40:22 - this may not seem remarkable to modern thinkers but consider that those words were penned over 2,700 years ago or consider Job26:7 where it make another remarkable statement "He is stretching out the north over the empty place,Hanging the earth upon nothing" written nearly 3,500 years ago.

I personally find the teachings in the bible encouraging and the principles beneficial and motivates me to treat others with respect and dignity. While I cannot blame some for being aethiest because of the reputation of religion and it's leaders - one must ask whether aethiesm will lead to anything better? Theories of evolution teaches the survival of the strongest, How is that going to be better than religious extremests. The so called sexual revolution has led to the perversion of something beautiful that should exist between a man and woman in marriage - is not a marriage union the best platform to raise children or is the modern single family arrangement superior? Or maybe a good abortion clinic is a better scientific solution. Could it be that so called free thinking is actually enslavement to the consequences of bad choices spawned by unprincipled thinking?

I sometimes admire aethiests because it takes a great leap of faith to think that complex designs clearly seen in creation came about by mere chance - or the puzzeling question as to why apes are still being born apes and humans are still being born humans. Has evolution forgotten to follow through consistently?

I think maybe urbanized man simply forgets the wonders of the world because we are surrounded by a man made world and it's "smart" philosophy to deny the abundant proof that life in it's complex variety was created for our enjoyment. Man cannot figure out the complexities of living organisms, though we copy them - but we prefer to dig around in the dust and dig up dead things to tell us about living wonders... is this not ironic?

The universe started with a big bang and created a highly designed universe - with precision timing - complex life forms. An explosion formed this? How many human manufactures or engineers can you count that can create anything by exploding it? Why don't we use nuclear weapons to craete better cities - a big bang creation of something better!

Where is the intelligence in this kind of reasoning - what better future do you think this "smart" thinking foster?

A simple truth always proves true and even science will testify to this fact. Design needs a designer. Complex order in the movement of planets and galaxies needs a law giver (Law of gravity, Law of physics)

Or maybe I'm being unrealistic - maybe a big impersonal explosion sparked off everything and you and I just became unique individual by pure chance. Or maybe it's us humans that are the problem and not God.

Humans hate being accountable - we prefer to thing that this is not our mess.


Transit Camper 6 years ago Author

Excellent point Ashmi and a good argument for religion.


Ashmi profile image

Ashmi 6 years ago from Somewhere out there

Only when religion goes back to basics will there be a place for it.

Every religious, spiritual and mystical tradition in their essence teach the same fundamental values. Principally to love God and to love others as ourselves. Everything other than these two commandments are superficial and not of the importance that people have heaped on them. Hence the division and confusion.

Get rid of the small and trivial such as rituals and ceremonies and subjective commentary and religion may have a future.


Transit Camper 7 years ago Author

Thanks Mike, I like your way of thinking perhaps we may discover something to create or unite religion. This in itself could be the subject of an accompanying hub.


Mike Lickteig profile image

Mike Lickteig 7 years ago from Lawrence KS USA

It might not happen in my lifetime, but I believe there are more "religions" to be discovered--there might even be an ultimate truth that leads to the unification of major world religions. It also seems likely that unless some religious artifacts remain to be found that will advance one religion (at the expense of another or not), "advances" in religious doctrine will be based upon scientific discovery. As I said at the beginning, it seems unlikely to happen in my lifetime, but I believe it will happen. Religion cannot survive by only looking backward, it must look forward also.

Well, my guesses on the future of religion mean absolutely nothing, but I just thought I would throw them out there.

Thanks for a very thought-provoking hub.


Transit Camper 7 years ago Author

APPRECIATE YOUR COMMENT RYAN AND TANK YOU


Ravan 7 years ago

wow...ty...wonderfully written. It is nice to see someone else that shares my views on this topic.

Great work!


Transit Camper 7 years ago Author

Thanks pylos


pylos26 profile image

pylos26 7 years ago from America

hello transit camper...i can see you and your family are having great times with your modified van camper...sounds like real fun...and i basically agree with your concepts of religion...keep up the good work and fun...pylos26

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