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How Fundamentalist Religion Is Destroying the World


World  (tags: religion, religion and politics, RELIGION GONE MAD, world, violence, society, politics, usa, israel, palestine, war, iraq, middle-east )

Carrie
- 1144 days ago - alternet.org
The countries in the world that are the most fundamentalist and religious, and/or those whose identity is most religion-based, are the world's greatest troublemakers. Pakistan, Iran, Saudi Arabia, the USA, Vatican City and the state of Israel come to mind



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Comments

Allan Yorkowitz (453)
Friday July 8, 2011, 1:07 pm
This article was already put out there. It STILL has a lot of false information
 

Carrie B. (309)
Friday July 8, 2011, 1:08 pm
By Frank Schaeffer

" The earth bursts with life. Far right exclusionary religion bursts with death. If there is a creator of life He/She/It must hate fundamentalist religion.

The countries in the world that are the most fundamentalist and religious, and/or those whose identity is most religion-based, are the world's greatest troublemakers. Pakistan, Iran, Saudi Arabia, the USA, Vatican City and the state of Israel come to mind.

If the rest of the human race could find a time machine to roll back the clock and make a world where these countries/city states had never existed we'd live in a better world.

Just take one example of religion's baleful influence: President Woodrow Wilson's messianic religion-inspired intervention in World War One. "My life would not be worth living" Wilson wrote, "if it were not for the driving power of religion, for faith, pure and simple." (Letter to Nancy Toy, 1915.)

Wilson's religious views were the driving force in his political career, informing his quest for world peace. And like all fanatics he decided to achieve this "peace" through war. The devout Woodrow Wilson upset fellow Presbyterians as he moved the nation toward entering World War One, including William Jennings Bryan, who quit as secretary of state in protest.

What did Wilson's religious idealism actually achieve? Germany's loss of World War One led to the rise of Hitler, and the Second World War. Wilson picked sides between two equally tarnished nationalistically-inspired colonial contenders and weighed in. So Wilson set the stage for the rise of Hitler and World War Two. With no World War Two there would be no Israel because there would have been no holocaust. Zionism would have simply become a forgotten quirk. And there would have been no Cold War either, maybe not even a Soviet Union.

The twentieth century began with wars rooted in religion and nationalism and ended as the century of wars rooted in ideological atheism led by the likes of Stalin, Hitler and Mao. Now the twenty first century seems to be shaping up to be the age of renewed wars of religion led by fundamentalist fanatics on all sides who believe in the divine destinies of their nations and/or religions.

These fanatics - they are all of the far right - have ranged from the Ayatollah Khomeinito George W Bush, from the far right leaders of the state of Israel to far right American fundamentalist like Michelle Bachmann who - if she and her fellow travelers have their way - would replace the Constitution and Bill of Rights with the Bible and turn America into a (Reconstructionist) theocracy.

The deluded religious belief that any people or nation or church is a "chosen" people is the root of almost all our troubles. So is the lunacy of believing in "Truth" revealed through one special prophet to one special peoples and/or tribe, be they Jews, Muslims or American Evangelical Christians, or conservative Roman Catholics who believe in the special primacy of their popes.

Eliminate willful self-serving tribal religious delusion from the globe and there might be hope for the survival of the human race. Combine tribalism and religious conviction with nukes and the "right" to exploit the earth and disaster looms.

It's no accident that the most dangerous cultures today are also the most religiously observant societies. The ultra-religiously observant USA embraces perpetual war as a way of life. With our notion of "exceptionalism," we fear the "other" who might challenge our notion of having been chosen by God for some special task.

Like the USA the state of Israel has become an intransigent provocation to the world as it slides inexorably toward becoming the next apartheid state taking up oppression based on race and tribe where South Africa left off. Israel is the place where a demographic minority of the "chosen" already represses (and/or has expelled) the majority of the "un-chosen."

As for the ultra religious state of Pakistan it was actually founded on self-aware religious difference! Pakistan is now the leading exporter of terror worldwide alongside Iran. Both Iran and Pakistan's intelligence agencies are the purveyors of terror. And both countries (when not busy condemning people to death for the crime of heresy etc.,) see themselves as having special prophetic religious destinies.

The Saudis - "keepers of the Holy Places" -- don't need nukes because they have oil. They threaten destruction to the rest of us every bit as catastrophic as war by funding terror, not to mention exporting the most intolerant forms of Islam worldwide into tens of thousands of madrassas.

If Israel, Pakistan, Iran, Saudi Arabia, the Vatican and the USA just went away, or had never existed, and/or changed their essential neuroses and accepted a role of "ordinary" nations filled with just folks or saw their religions as a way, not the way, the world would take a giant step toward peace.

But to admit this, let alone to say it publicly, is to court the condemnation of being anti-Semitic, and/or anti-Islamic, anti-Catholic and/or anti-Christian, even anti-American…

.which is a little ironic because

the sort of right wing religious Americans who fancy themselves as "pro-American" and "pro-Israel" regularly get our men and women in uniform killed and maimed by starting wars of choice. So who is the patriot here?

Let's get one thing straight: Iran, the USA, Israel, Pakistan, the Vatican and Saudi Arabia aren't special, except in the religion-addled brains of the members of their religious right wings and ruling elites. They're just geographical areas like any others filled with ordinary people like any others, no better and no worse.

Someday these "special" and "chosen" countries will cease to exist as will all nation states. Someday they will not even be remembered because all things pass from time into oblivion, nor will their "holy" books and "holy" places exist forever, simple geology will take care of that. What makes them dangerous today is their shared religious delusion that they are somehow essential and eternal.

The delusion is this: "We're chosen, special and enlightened, and only we have The Truth."

Birds of a feather So

it is no coincidence that the USA has a "special" relationship with Israel, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia and special "respect" for the Vatican and a soft spot for religion in general, for instance giving religion tax deductions. And thus it is no coincidence we are at war without end.

Certainty is a killer. And tolerance of certainty is, by nature, intolerant when it comes to results.

For instance; we tolerate Zionism and Christian Zionism and so messed with the Middle East, because we picked sides in a religious war and decided to back one "chosen people" (Jews) over another "chosen people" (Muslims). This picking of sides between two equally ridiculous pre-science claims to divine selection is the real -- and only -- reason for 9/11 and all that's followed.

America needlessly meddled in a tribal religious Middle Eastern war of religion and has paid and is paying the consequences.

Meanwhile the world's most pressing problems, from global warming to endless wars relate to the self-"chosen" nations and tribes and countries. Of course China and India et al are involved in global warming too, mostly because they imitated the West. Of course others start wars too. But I'm talking about first causes of war and threatened global destruction.

If and when we're plunged into capitalist/consumer global ecological destruction chances are future generations - if any - will have right wing fundamentalist religion of all kinds to thank for "justifying" the rape of the earth.

And if and when we're plunged into an age of nuclear terror, lose Washington DC or New York or London chances are that the fateful moment will be rooted in Middle Eastern/American tribal-religious war. We'll have the states of Israel, Pakistan, Iran, Saudi Arabia, the Vatican and/or the USA to blame for putting humanity on a collision course with reality.

The Jews gave us a book that commands the "dominion" of the earth. The Muslims picked up this theme in their book and predicted the dominion of their one and only "true" religion over the earth, a global "caliphate" that -- for instance -- the Pakistani extremists and Iranian "holy men" in charge of their nukes (or soon to be in charge of their nukes) are working to implement with the same religious ferocity as that displayed by the Israeli "settlers" as they "justify" stealing another Semitic tribe's land.

Meanwhile along with American Evangelicals, the Vatican still holds out a misogynistic/homophobic vision of "progress" and still claims that it and it alone is God's special envoy on earth. The very existence of such exclusivist claims - we'll go to heaven, it's hell for the rest of you! -- is a threat to human survival.

And the United States, the inventor of the bomb, the only country to ever use it, is the granddaddy of the exploitation of the earth in the name of economic growth, as something "given" by God to us as "natural" and "right." And now we Americans run a worldwide war making machine par excellence, sure that we are the "good guys."

The Wilsonian ideological perspective --advocacy of "the spread of democracy," the spread of Capitalism,in favor of intervention to help create "peace" and the "spread freedom," is rooted in an older religious tradition: we're special a "city set on a hill." This insanity goes back to the very religious foundation of the American colonies that were peopled by Calvinist cranks from England and Holland who thought that they were too good, too theologically pure and too "chosen" to co-exist the likes of ordinary folks. So they left those bad folks behind and soon were burning Pequot Indians to death in the name of their Old Testament "God."

That same intolerant Puritan inheritance drives us today and divides America into "Real Americans" as Sarah Palin calls herself and her followers, and everyone else. This is the "saved" and "lost" model of theology directly applied to politics. Result? We "Real Americans" believe we're so special that we can and should police the world!

The "holy books" all the religious cultures mentioned here follow are compendiums of Bronze Age tribal self-serving myths, adopted and updated by ignorant tribes in order to try to make sense of their places in the universe pre-science. Today they are the source of war and the rape of the earth.

It's time to stop being polite about the religions that are motivating the self-deluding right wing Israelis, the self-deluding right wing Saudis and the self-deluding right wing Iranians, Americans and popes. They may all hate each other, but below the surface they all share one dreadful and silly conviction: the unfounded belief that they and they alone (and their tribes) are morally right and that the rest of us are the "other" to be suppressed, converted or sometimes killed. And they all say God is on their side.

If there is a God - I happen to believe there is, but I could be wrong -- a creator, a force responsible for the magnificent diversity of nature and human aspiration, then that actual God, by definition, must despise exclusive-type religion and tribalism and the black and white world of "in" or "out" and "saved" and "lost."

Guessing what God might actually be like by what we see around us, He, She or It is big, generous, non-ideological, wonderful and all encompassing. Just open your eyes to the earth below and heavens above and try to reconcile what you see, hear and feel with petty popes, Ayatollahs and preachers or the books they call "holy"!

If there is no creator (and who can say there is or isn't?) then nature's diversity and adaptability is a silent and powerful rebuke to exclusivity. Put it this way; the Rockies don't know they're part of an "exceptional" country and the Negev desert doesn't know it was "given" to anyone! Nor do the sands of Medina know that they're "holy" much less does the dust of Iran's "holy city" of Qom know it's "sacred," or the plaster under the paint in the Sistine Chapel know it's "owned" by the Vatican and the "one true church!"

The religions and tribalism of those who threaten the world the most - Iran, the state of Israel, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, the Vatican and the USA -- is small, inward looking and backward. It's time to tell the truth and say that maybe it is possible to love God - if there is such an entity -- but it's not possible to love God and love the sort of tribal exclusionary religions that are taking us all down."

 

. (0)
Friday July 8, 2011, 2:21 pm
It's simply not accurate to portray religious nations as the 'greatest troublemakers' (though I have zero tolerance for fundamentalism of any kind and little tolerance for religion in general). It's the powerful (whether worldwide powerful or merely powerful in their own neighborhood) who have the ability to cause trouble and exert influence - whether religious or not. The Soviet Union and China, for example, were (and in China's case, is) hardly driven by religious fundamentalism. Nor is the European Union, decidedly a meddler and an influential player in world affairs. Nor is North Korea. Japan is hardly a fundamentalist religious nation and yet its hawkish behavior was a major factor in WWII. And the list goes on.
 

Mike S. (86)
Friday July 8, 2011, 2:31 pm
Noted and shared. Thank you Carrie.
 

Past Member (0)
Friday July 8, 2011, 2:57 pm
Some truths, some half-truths, and some false statements.
But, damn it, it is provocative and should cause any one of us to THINK.

.....And thank you for submitting it, Carrie.
 

Kit B. (277)
Friday July 8, 2011, 3:03 pm

I agree with Lindsey's premise that countries that historically have not been driven by religion have indeed been trouble makers. I prefer to think of religion in more basic terms and direct human interactions. (Welcome Back - Lindsey, you have been missed.)

There are no absolutes in life, we say killing is wrong - in fact for the religious it is a sin. Yet, most countries have laws that allow killing given certain specific situations so killing is not absolutely wrong. We are not a religious country and our laws are for the most part based on the logic of human situational interaction. In this religion has no place and no value, because each form of religion will interpret these interactions differently. We need consistency not variable opinions.

What I do find most odious is the fundamentalist demand that only that particular view is correct and all others are therefore, wrong. For me religion has no meaning other then it's attempts to interfere with the rights and freedoms of this country. If a person chooses to bay at the moon, pray to a rock or chose a god for their life style it does me no harm. The harm is when any group attempts to force others to follow their choice of belief.

When religious Christians, Jews or Muslims use the religion to trample the natural rights of others then they are wrong and no printed word can justify that. There can be no peace that is won from a war.
 

Carrie B. (309)
Friday July 8, 2011, 3:08 pm
We are not a "religious country", yet we have religious fanatics driving us to destruction. How does that work? Welcome back Lindsey, but I do wish you would comment occasionally when you have a positive outlook on something.
 

. (0)
Friday July 8, 2011, 3:16 pm
Carrie, I believe accuracy to be an extremely 'positive' thing.

Though there's little other positivity to be found in this subject - since the options are to decry the role fundamentalist religion plays in harming society or to point out that there are many other factors equally harmful. I suppose one could insist that religion should be wiped off the face of the earth and fundamentalists who refuse to repent of their idiocy be thrown to the wolves; but however delightful I would find a world without religion and a world with beautiful well-fed wolves, my fondness for the Constitution forbids that particular 'positive' suggestion.
 

. (0)
Friday July 8, 2011, 3:19 pm
Oh, what the hell. Let's wipe religion off the face of the planet and throw all non-repentant fundamentalists to the wolves. Other than finding homes for stray cats, I can't think of anything else more positive to do!

 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Friday July 8, 2011, 3:22 pm
"There can be no peace that is won from a war."

Ah, a comment with a much better tome. Knew that you could do it. Keep up the good work. Just a little fact slippage in your last sentence, but what the heck, no big deal.
 

Carrie B. (309)
Friday July 8, 2011, 3:24 pm
Your assumption that I or anyone else posting here wants religion "wiped off the face of the earth" is completely without foundation. There is some truth to the article, and as Gerald M. stated "some half truths, and some false statements". I have a difficult time seeing everything as 100% black or white.
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Friday July 8, 2011, 3:30 pm
Carie, Lindsey is just joshing. Southern Belles occasionally display an unusual sense of humor. Besides, she would be charged with having to determine which fundamentalists were truly repentant.
 

. (0)
Friday July 8, 2011, 3:34 pm
Well, there's at least one person (likely two at least) posting here, Carrie, who'd like to see religion completely absent from the human condition - I'd find that a cause for rejoicing, if it could be done through persuasion rather than force (though I probably wouldn't object too loudly to some minor force being used - such a good cause, after all...)
 

Carrie B. (309)
Friday July 8, 2011, 3:40 pm
There's that 100% black or white again. Not all religion is bad, nor is it all good. Praying and spiritualism have nothing to do with organized religion and many find it quite peaceful and comforting. I find nothing wrong with that.
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Friday July 8, 2011, 4:00 pm
It's not often that you miss the boat Lindsey but Carrie is right. You can't tell me that you find no redeming value in Buddhism, Hinduism .......
 

Kit B. (277)
Friday July 8, 2011, 4:16 pm

tome 

–noun
1. a book, especially a very heavy, large, or learned book.

2. a volume forming a part of a larger work.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Kit B. (277)
Friday July 8, 2011, 5:32 pm

I will not speak for Lindsey she more then most is fully qualified to answer any question. For me organized religion does not offer any positive attributes that could not be completely replaced by a number of less divisive forms of social interaction. Believing in gods should not require the followers to pay large sums of money to prove their devotion. To follow that, leaders of the religious groups should not be better clad nor housed then those loyal followers. In addition, by using texts written by ancient nomadic peoples grasping for ways to control and organize their groups are not the sort of rules that are logical or fair in the modern world. Of the 613 commandments, only 10 are generally recognized yet if one truly believes then should not all 613 be followed? Just looking at the 10 that are generally recognized what do they say to us? They remind us that our nature may be to ignore and disregard the elderly, our parents....seems that Congress and mostly those who stake a claim on religious zealotry are the worst offenders by callously wanting to disembowel the very few safe guards we have for them. The commandments tell us not to take another's property, fair enough but done daily as our own government takes from us and offers us no protections from corporate theft. Next, we are not to take another's life and yet we pick and chose how to use that commandment, we can kill if we are so disposed to declare another an enemy, or an offender of the law, and most correctly for self protection, so not really a meaningful law after all, as we can pick and chose how it is honored. Adultery - of the countless surveys done we fine that between 80 and 92% of all men and women will cheat on their husbands and wives, another commandment that has little real meaning. I do think the idea that people should have at least one day of rest, used in any way they find suitable and personally fulfilling a very good idea. As to the ideas of how to treat our slaves - do we really need to discuss that? Well maybe we do, considering the number of states that use prisoners for slave labor and that wish to revoke all child labor laws. It is not the book or the name of the god at issue but rather the inherent morality or lack thereof within each individual. No, morality does not come from a book as even our non-reading animals friends show a great deal of morality.

Many claim they do not adhere to organized religion only spirituality or personal relationships with their gods. As long as that remains a personal and private issue it is none of my business, once it crosses a line into my choices for my life then it is very much my business.

As to Buddhism, HInduism, Jainism, Bahai and the many other religions, I find little difference from one organized religion to another, all desire first and most the money and then the power and control over the individual.

Again, it does me no harm for any one to believe as suits them one god or hundreds, so long as they keep that within the boundaries of a private and personal issue.
 

Eternal Gardener (734)
Friday July 8, 2011, 6:51 pm
That is why religion should be separated from governing, period!
 

ellen m. (233)
Friday July 8, 2011, 7:58 pm
You would think it was the god of intolerance and vengence that all those who would do such evil are worshiping when you look at what is being done under the umbrella of his name.
Buddism seems the only truly sane practice/belief left.
 

. (0)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 6:10 am
On the contrary, I believe that a 100% elimination of religion from the world would indeed be beneficial. While some modes of religious thought are benign (and even helpful), the overwhelming remainder are not (in my own opinion, of course). And even those more benign forms are usually twisted out of recognition by their adherents, who can cause just as muich trouble in this world at times as can others.

(And, by the way, I'm speaking of religion, not philosophy - which is an entirely different animal.)

Moreover since I consider logic and rationality to be of overwhelming importance, any mode of thought which isn't based on rationalism is I think a negative in this world. And since belief in the supernatural isn't based on reality, I would prefer to see it vanish from the pages of history.

Of course, the whole argument is moot since religion, in one form or another, is here to stay. Too many people need their comforting illusions and for some odd reason find the glories of the natural world to not be enough for them. A fondness for supernatural theoies seems to be part of human nature and we aren't going to be able to change human nature to the extent of eradicating that predilection.
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 9:50 am
Now Lindsey let me try and follow your logic. You might have to help me out.
Some religion is helpful and some is not. So cast it out. Lets's see, some politicians are helpful and some are not.So we should cast out politicans.
Say, this is fun! Now I'm on a roll, how about lawyers, used car salespersons, bankers, hedge fund managers, the elite, CEO's, fast food franchises, cigarette makers, gun makers, liberals. Oops, how that get in there?
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 9:51 am
how did that
 

. (0)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 10:10 am
You're comparing apples to oranges, Lilith. Religion isn't a job or a business or a political persuasion. It's a mode of thought which involves worship of the supernatural and the irrational.

I also would prefer that belief in fairies be eliminated. I rather doubt that such a belief, in and of itself, is particularly harmful; however, since such a belief is intrinsically irrational and since irrational belief is not something to be desired, I think banishing fairies to their mythological realm is a good goal.. Especially since belief in one irrationality tends to spread to other aspects of life, like an infection invades the body.
 

. (0)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 10:20 am
Moreover, the aspects of religious thought that are beneficial can (and are) replicated outside of religion. Those who are unbelievers need no divine "carrot and stick" to tell us that we shouldn't commit murder, steal from one another, etc. Because we recognize that certain behaviors are beneficial if we wish to live as members of human society and that if we wish to be free of unjust treatment and violence from others we must also respect their right to be free of the same from us.

In short, why take the convoluted and irrational path to achieving decent goals when there's a simpler and more straightforward (and certainly more logical) means of achieving the same goals?
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 10:22 am
Dear Lindsey, how can one eliminate a "mode of thought"? Thou shalt no longer have any religious thoughts. And now you've declared war on fairies.
I was particularly fond of The Tooth Fairy not to mention the economic benefits.

What next? Will you call for no thought of Santa Clause? Perhaps the Great Ceiling Cat should be on guard
 

Carrie B. (309)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 10:31 am
I need to be more careful about what I post. I had no idea this was going to turn into a discussion about the pros and cons of ALL religious philosophy. It's quite distressing to see some of what is being written here. Whether people want to pray to a God, the stars, or nothing at all is none of my concern as long as their beliefs stay out of my government and don't hurt others.
 

. (0)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 10:34 am
As I said before, Lilith, religion is here to stay in one form or another. Though there is always the hope that as time goes on more and more people will choose a different way of thinking - one "eliminates a mode of thought" through education - usually incrementally. That's why most people today have rejected, say, slavery, which has been endemic throughout nearly all cultures in history. Why people today, especially in Western nations, are more likely to accept that women are not the subordinate and inferior sex, despite millenia of belief by our ancestors that we were indeed inferior. And so on.

 

Kit B. (277)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 10:38 am

We can all eliminate modes of thinking in our lives. We no longer have the mode of thinking of our husbands or wives as mates once a divorce intervenes. We no longer have the mode of thinking that one is alive, after death. We make the choice to change our mode of thinking when we choose to no longer be addicted to any thing harmful to us. Once our children reach the age of majority we change our mode of thinking to respect them as independent adults. Changing our thinking does require some discipline and practice but is far from impossible. Reason and logic and are part of our daily lives even for those who make the choice to ignore that.

A "war" on fairies? Then I declare a war on all pixies. The point of course, is to make the choice for rational thinking above the choice for dependence on mythological creations.

Ceiling Cat has nothing to be worried about - it that needs explaining then...

Those who make the choice to believe in alien creatures that "settled" this planet are as firm and unshakable by logic as those who choose other paths of irrational thinking.
 

patricia lasek (317)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 10:39 am
"Whether people want to pray to a God, the stars, or nothing at all is none of my concern as long as their beliefs stay out of my government and don't hurt others."

I agree with you whole-heartedly on this Carrie.
 

. (0)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 10:44 am
What I think would be "distressing", Carrie, is a world in which issues such as the pros and cons of religion (or anything else) couldn't be debated openly. And any belief which can't withstand open scrutiny and intellectual criticism isn't, to my mind, worth much to begin with.
 

Kit B. (277)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 10:48 am

That however, Carrie is the problem right now in our country. Far too many will not accept that others chose a different path for their life. Far too many want to make this a nation based on theology and not the true intent of the founding fathers nor the constitution.

 

Carrie B. (309)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 10:50 am
Unfortunately Lindsey, your form of debate is no different from those annoying individuals who peddle their religion door to door. You're just peddling a different philosophy.
 

. (0)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 10:52 am
That's the essential point, Kit. To "make the choice for rational thinking." Irrationality is one of the truly great human enemies - since how can we make wise choices in our lives if we don't have the best grasp possible of what's real and what isn't?
 

. (0)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 10:59 am
What "form of debate" am I engaging in, Carrie, that is so very annoying to you?
 

Kit B. (277)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 11:02 am

I of course, disagree. I don't that rational thinking can be compared to any form of religious proselytization. One encourages only that each person through formal or self education learn the open, healthy and independence of logic which by it's nature leads to rational thinking. Making choices for one's life based on reality and not fear of the unknown, or superstition. The other - organized religion feeds fear and from that extracts money and domination of independent thinking.

I just can not see the two in the same light, nor do I proselytize for atheists. That is a choice, one that only comes from years of study, not just philosophy but religion, society and history.
 

. (0)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 11:06 am
True, Kit. Reality exists independent of human belief. What is, simply is, whether we like it or not.
 

Kit B. (277)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 11:06 am

Carrie, I know your own belief system as you have explained it to me. How then can a open discussion be offensive? This is just an exchange of thinking, not a condemnation of any thing. Sure. Some of us - many of us would like to see the damage caused by organized religion eliminated - that is not going to happen, so how is a discussion harmful or painful? I am really wanting to understand that.
 

Carrie B. (309)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 11:15 am
This has turned from discussion and open debate to promoting the no belief system and very politely ridiculing others by constant reference to logical thinking and reality. As if to say Lindsey, you are the only logical thinker here and your reality is the only reality. Not very accepting or tolerant at all. As I said before, you are just peddling another philosophy.
 

. (0)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 11:23 am
There's no such thing as "my reality", Carrie. There's just reality. And I really don't see that something as positive as promoting rationality and logic means the speaker is implying he or she is "the only logical thinker here."

And as for being "accepting and tolerant" - although I accept and am tolerant of the right of any person to believe as he or she pleases on any subject (a major human right), I'd be a fool to personally accept or be tolerant of each and every belief itself. Just as you apparently don't accept or tolerate the beliefs of those fundamentalists noted in this article (much though those individuals likely believe in such things quite fervently and genuinely.)
 

Past Member (0)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 12:18 pm
Kit B said: "We are not a religious country and our laws are for the most part based on the logic of human situational interaction. In this religion has no place and no value, because each form of religion will interpret these interactions differently."
I beg to differ, almost every law on our books (here in America) has religious signifigance or backing. The church has consistently been unable to convince most people to follow "God's Laws" voluntarily so resorted to getting their religious agenda enacted into our legislature. We legislate religious morality every day and have since our ancestors landed here.
 

Past Member (0)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 12:30 pm
And this misguided belief that there is only "one true way" has got to stop..... Some people may like the color white while others like the color black (simplistic I know but I am trying to make a point. that will probably get lost in religious fervor) this doesn't mean that either group is wrong in their belief, they just chose a different path to follow, the same can be said of faith but most religious zelots don't see it that way and create hatred and spout vitriol about differences we SHOULD be celebrating! The world would be very dull without diversity.....
 

Thomas b. (29)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 12:44 pm
my thinking on religion is a line from an old song. "nobody's right if everybody'' wrong. think you know who or what god is? think again. god is god. stop putting him in a box---and just enjoy life.
 

Sarah G. (110)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 12:57 pm
Although the article is broadly drawn and fails to take into consideration the fact that religion is a ready tool for politicians and unscrupulous power-mongers of all stripes, it conveys a powerful truth: organised religion has caused untold suffering, delusion, and bloodshed in the world.
 

Southern G. (42)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 12:57 pm
The battle has been going on since Adam and Eve were expelled from the Garden of Eden. That said, if someone is going to write an article bashing religion, you'd think they would at least tell the truth....not so in many instances in this article. "Religion" is not the problem....greed and selfishness and hunger for power (which would be the lack of religion in most instances) is the problem and most dangerous.
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 1:24 pm
That's it. I've had it. I'm going to start a petition to ban atheism!! It's just a mode of thought and a mindset. Why do we need atheists if we have reasonable goals. Polls show that atheism's percentages are declining, so my petition might not be necessary too much longer.
 

Sarah G. (110)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 1:25 pm
I think it would be more accurate to say that religion is not the *only* problem-- but it is a powerful method of mind control and manipulation, something that people are conditioned to slavishly obey, and which is assumed to be good and virtuous while plainly doing quite the opposite.
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 1:48 pm
Why do we need atheists. Golly, if everyone not believing in something, had to have their own name, we would run out of words.
 

Past Member (0)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 2:00 pm
Lilith, where did your rant come from? Just because others have opposite viewpoints doesn't mean you can lump them up with Atheists.....
I don't personally subscribe to Christianity, does that make me an atheist in your mind ( I do believe in a higher 'power' )? It sounds like it from your last two posts....
We all could learn from each other if we just stopped (as most perceive it) attacking our most sacred beliefs and started thinking instead of reacting.....
I'll say it again, I don't think there is ONLY ONE TRUE WAY and everyone needs to find their own road to belief, you can't bludgeon someone into your faith, try just living your scripture....
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 2:15 pm
Atheism is the rejection of belief in the existence of deities. A deity is a recognized preternatural (beyond what is normal or natural) or supernatural (anything above or beyond what one holds to be natural or exists outside natural law) immortal (not dying or not being subject to death) being. Some faiths and traditions consider it blasphemous to imagine or depict the deity as having any concrete form.

So a deity could be a chemical substance or a mathematical equation or a form of Higgs Boson or a membrane (string theory) or a computer simulation or ......
..
And atheists are absolutely sure that there is no deity. Wow!!
 

Scott Freewheeler (45)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 2:16 pm
If only people would obey God's Laws there would be no political problems in the world. All Great Faiths forbid evil and promote good. It is just that twisted evil people have pretended to be religious and used prejudices within people to create havoc. Religion has been 'falsely flagged' by tyrants and devils in their bid to hide their shameful acts and draw support from ignorant fools.

No truly religious person can start a war; only evil can do that. No decent person could amass huge wealth at the expense of others having to starve to death; this is evil again. All religions teach that we are all equal and it is our deeds which raise or lower our nobility yet racism and bigotry allow innocent people to be collectively punished; evil again.

The problem is idolatry; submitting to a flag or a human leader or some ideology other than that of the Teachings of any of the Great Faiths. It is polytheistic choosing of our own demigods by fallible mankind instead of listening to the perfect Teachings from God. If we obey devils instead of God we get megalomaniacs and that is trouble.

This only happens because although these fools know that there are graveyards full of dead people and they know their grandfathers died and even when their own parents die they still somehow manage to forget their own inevitable death.

Even a person without much access to their conscience knows that life is short yet their actions here on Earth are so devoid of compassion. It amazes me that evil people are so oblivious to the misery their flaws are driving them.

It is irreligion that is responsible for evil; it is the shadows where the love of God has not reached. Those who reject the Holy Teachings and do the opposite of them have created all the evil in this world. Those who disagree have not understood the Teachings of Religion.
 

Carrie B. (309)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 2:19 pm
Religious fanatics are not destroying the world, but they certainly are helping! Unfortunately, they are getting lots of help!
 

Sarah G. (110)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 2:33 pm
The concept of "god's law" is extremely protean, and it is a huge mistake to equate religion with morality.
 

. (0)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 2:40 pm
The problem with any of the religions begin when there is a lack of tolerance for others' beliefs. Everyone in the world will never believe the same thing as everyone else. People need to show people the beauty in their ideas or beliefs and let others join willingly. Pressure to conform is always dangerous. Those that can see no other path than their own are the most narrow-minded and will always have more against them than for them.
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 3:12 pm
@Britin - "I don't personally subscribe to Christianity, does that make me an atheist in your mind ( I do believe in a higher 'power' )?,

Well now Britin, my earlier comments were tongue in cheek. Of course that doesn't make you an atheist any more than me. I also believe in a higher power.. I was not kidding about atheists being absolutely sure that there is no deity per my comment above.

Bright blessings!
 

Past Member (0)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 3:17 pm
Lillith -Thanks for clarifying, tone is very hard to get across when it is typed on a keyboard.
Bright Blessings to you as well!
 

Donn M. (56)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 4:26 pm
It seems rather laughable to include Israel, the Vatican!!!??, and the US in the list of most trouble-making countries and ignore China and Russia. Fundamentalism may have some problems, but good old greed, nationalism, and horrible ideologies like communism have contributed their fair share of trouble.

Frankly I think religion, fundamentalist or not, makes for a much more interesting world.
 

monka blanke (74)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 4:50 pm
When it comes to "religion" I'm glad I'm not one of those guys, who are not allowed to switch the light on every friday evening,(to do this they have to ask somebody else to switch it on for them),in the name of god, and luckily I don't belong to the "chosen" ones, who steal land from others for the sake of their god...I'd rather stick to my own believe, without convincing others about it.I think there is not much wrong with "religion" by itself, but with "religious" people and their interpretation about their believes.
 

. (0)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 5:48 pm
No, Lilith. Disbelief in a divinity doesn't mean that all disbelievers are 'absolutely sure' none exists. Although some atheists would characterize themselves as quite certain beyond any shadow of a doubt, others simply would say that based on the available evidence, they see no credible reason to believe in any divinity. If and when such evidence does become available is the time when beliefs should be reevaluated.

And where you got the idea that a "deity" could be a "chemical substance", a "mathematical equation", etc. I have no idea. Because that isn't the definition of a deity:

de·i·ty (d-t, d-)
n. pl. de·i·ties
1. A god or goddess.
2.
a. The essential nature or condition of being a god; divinity.
b. Deity God. Used with the.

http://www.thefreedictionary.com/deity
 

Elle B. (81)
Saturday July 9, 2011, 9:57 pm
ALL religions are human-made...that should be the prime clue and reference point for perspective and humility.

A preponderance of humans throughout history to the present day claiming to be devoutly religious are actually in practice religiose whether committing atrocities and reprehensible acts or performing meritable good deeds. A critical distinction not accurately discerned for the most part.

"God has no religion." ~Mohandus K. Ghandi

'It is impossible that God, who is the God of Justice, could have made the distinctions that men observe today in the name of religion.' ~Mohandus K. Ghandi

"Hypocrisy and distortion are passing currently under the name of religion." ~Mohandus K. Ghandi

"On the dogmas of religion - as distinguished from moral principles - all mankind, from the beginning of the world to this day, have been quarreling, fighting, burning and torturing one another, for abstractions unintelligible to themselves and to all others, and absolutely beyond the comprehension of the human mind. Were I to enter on that arena, I should only add an unit to the number of Bedlamites." ~Thomas Jefferson

There still seems to be substantial numbers of religiose Bedlamites wreaking havoc amongst us.
 

Joy Wong (76)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 3:04 am
NOTED.
 

Past Member (0)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 3:27 am
Amen Scott F! As a Roman Catholic, I can tell you, I am neither fanatic, nor fundamentalist, and I am very tired here on Care2 of seeing people treat my faith, or me, as some sort of mindless, selfish, robot. It borders on the completely offensive and it needs to stop. This is not respectful ~ most of my friends are athiest or agnostic, and I have no problems with that, and never will. I exclude no one, based on their belief system, from what my faith and I hold Heaven to be, and their place in it. As a Christian, I believe many who call themself Christians, will not be headed there, and that those places may be held for people who upheld only humanistic principles. It's time to tolerate Christians and Jews again people....
 

holly masih (60)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 6:35 am
Religion is not the cause of the world's problems.Distortion of religion and/or people twisting it for their own personal gain is.For example,if everyone fololowed the REAL teaching of Christianity,for instance,tolove God,love yourself,and love others,there would be no fighting,no war,no crime at all.If I love you,I will not rob you or kill you.I could give other examples,but I think I have made my point.
 

. (0)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 7:33 am
I agree, Holly - I've found in pretty much all of the religionists I've known an unwillingness to follow those rules that would personally cause difficulty or inconvenience to themselves. Whether it's a refusal of some Christians to accept Christ's admonition that divorce is only allowed in cases of adultery or a Christian or Muslim refusing to actually seriously look for work and living on welfare instead (despite Mohammed's statement in the Hadith that it's better to carry a load of firewood on your back rather than beg from others or Paul's admonition that those who won't work shouldn't eat either), or whatever, I doubt I've ever met anyone who was willing to actually seriously try and live up to the dictates of the entirety of his or her own holy scripture. I'm sure some do exist - but they don't seem to exist in great numbers - it's the pickers-and-choosers who appear to most often inhabit this world, and they don't tend to give others confidence in the validity of their own chosen faith.
 

Teresa W. (679)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 7:40 am
noted
 

Lindsay Kemp (1)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 8:37 am
It would be good if all people could respect each other, even if they have different opinions or faiths.

Don't overlook the fact that a lot of good has also been done in the name of religion!
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 8:46 am
It's truly astounding how some delight in discussing their atheism. It's as though they are lost and desperately want someone to guide them.
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 11:18 am
atheist & unbiased = oxymoron
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 11:31 am
Why are atheists always harping on religion?
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 12:00 pm
Atheism is the rejection of belief in the existence of deities. A deity is a recognized preternatural (beyond what is normal or natural) or supernatural (anything above or beyond what one holds to be natural or exists outside natural law) immortal (not dying or not being subject to death) being. Some faiths and traditions consider it blasphemous to imagine or depict the deity as having any concrete form.

So a deity could be a chemical substance or a mathematical equation or a form of Higgs Boson or a membrane (string theory) or a computer simulation or ......
..
And atheists are absolutely sure that there is no deity. Wow!!
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 12:35 pm
I can't try and help you out of you don't read the comments

A deity is a recognized preternatural (beyond what is normal or natural) or supernatural (anything above or beyond what one holds to be natural or exists outside natural law) immortal (not dying or not being subject to death) being.
 

Bonnie Clark (30)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 1:23 pm
Be honest Religion is here promote wealth, control and enslave people, and keep Political Tzars in power. We are ready to begin our own communities based on logical life sustaining pratices. Not judgments or rules that belong in a fairy tale. I have felt God/ Consciousness and do believe that it is highly likely we are connected to something much larger and very loving. This seems to be a place to learn. We need to get people thinking! Like creating a One World Ideal, and due to health and intimacy that we all need communities that can take care of themselves.
 

Past Member (0)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 1:48 pm
There are at least 5 of us
I believe that a 100% elimination of religion from the world would indeed be beneficial. While some modes of religious thought are benign (and even helpful), the overwhelming remainder are not (in my own opinion, of course). And even those more benign forms are usually twisted out of recognition by their adherents, who can cause just as muich trouble in this world at times as can others.
And I am sure there is/are no:
gods, devils, angels, ghosts, spirits, witches, warlocks, trolls, gremlins, gnomes, leprechauns, easter bunnies, tooth fairies or any other fairies
 

Myron Scott (70)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 2:13 pm
Fundamentalists, authoritarian personalities, climate change deniers, bluenoses, dogmatists and fanatical ideologists of all kinds - including atheists - all share a fundamental characteristic: a deep dread of uncertainty. That is why Socrates was executed: He shattered people's sense of certitude. He denied that he was wiser than other people, except that he was aware of his lack of wisdom. Such an attitude fosters questioning, seeking, tolerance, openess, provisional and prudential action. The opposite is hubris, and hubris always brings a tragic end. IF there is a God(ess), (S)he cannot fill a cup already overflowing with ego.
 

Mary P. (157)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 2:31 pm
There is No compulsion in Religion. GOD Almighty says, if you believe, well
And good, if you Don't believe, then too, well and good. You to your
Beliefs, we to our own beliefs. No one is forcing their religions, down anyone
Else's throat; and if they are, then they are disobeying their Holy
Scriptures. GOD maybe a myth to some of you; But GOD is a Reality,
To millions of people, all over the world. Just as its wrong to Mock
Atheism, its equally wrong, to mock and ridicule any religion. Some people here
Wish to Promote atheism(their OWN Belief), by bringing down religions.

Religions are NOT the problem!! Its, it's ignorant followers, who alter and mis-
Interpret, the verses of the Holy Revelations, to suit their OWN evil
Agendas,
 

James E. (16)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 2:55 pm
“…ultra-religiously observant USA….” Ultra-consumption observant perhaps, but please. While I do not disagree with the author’s general broad brush view of the impact of religious dogma and zealots, his speculation on the flow of history is flawed. Some of the leaps and bounds taken are unsupportable by historic facts. Is dogmatic absolutist organized religion a danger to peace and the world? Yes, after all, God and religions were created in man’s image to control others.
 

Ray M. (0)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 4:54 pm
Absolutely. Caution: They're getting closer everyday in the USA, i.e., tea party fanatics, republicon congress and most of republicon presidental candidates. They must be stopped or the likes of the Taliban will have nothing over us. Voters Beware.
 

Tom Edgar (56)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 5:00 pm
That first bit by Carrie then Kit B and Lindsey. Such erudition and perceptiveness, so clearly written.

The only point on which I digressed was in the area of a God's existence. I can't exactly prove that there is no such being any more than any religionist can prove the affirmative. On the grounds of evidence, or more correctly no evidence for Gods of any belief system, I can only rest my case that the probability is, that none have ever existed, and it is unlikely they ever did outside the fertile imagination of manipulative leaders of the gullible. As for praying, I agree it could be of comfort to those gullible enough to pursue the activity in expectation of a positive response. But as Mother Teresa found out after a long life of useless incantations. Don't hold your breath waiting for a personal, favorable response.
 

Past Member (0)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 5:23 pm
How Atheism Can Make the World Better By Tearing Down Religious Irrationality

'Atheism is not just about disproving religious belief; it's also a burgeoning social justice movement intent on tearing down the social structures that perpetuate injustice.'

 

. (0)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 5:33 pm
MJM, I admire your avatar.
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 5:36 pm
Thou shalt not covet!
 

Past Member (0)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 5:47 pm
One More Reason Religion Is So Messed Up: A respected, mainstream theologian is seriously arguing that as long as God gives the thumbs-up, it's okay to kill pretty much anybody.

 

Past Member (0)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 5:49 pm
Thank you Lindsey, ditto
 

Anne K. (128)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 6:00 pm
Why are some comments "dissing" atheists? Some atheists are the most caring, compassionate, empathetic people I know. They don't use religion to defend arrogance and selfishness. How many god-fearing people kill animals to satisfy their taste buds and defend it by saying that God put animals on earth for humans to eat, or support clear-cutting old growth forests for softer tissue or cheaper beef?
 

Dotti Lydon (116)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 7:25 pm
@ Anne K. I so agree with you. My significant other of 28 yrs who died recently, was an Atheist. A kinder man I have never known. He would not kill a flea, literally. When our dog needed to be de-fleaed, I had to do it. He was a vegetarian, loved those old growth trees and we visited "our" trees often. Am about to cry so I will sign off and thank you for your comment.
 

HELEN V. (51)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 9:21 pm
thank you for the posing and all the diverse comments. I enjoyed reading the different views.. It is good that we are different. I enjoyed reading all the comments even the ones that I didn't agree with, because they challenge me to think beyond my own personal beliefs.

I have no problem with any religion, but I have a problem with those who use religion to elevate one man above the other or take advantage of others or against others

Everyone mn has the right to choose what they believe whether they be aeithist- god fearing etc. This is the birthrigh just as every individual.

Personally apart from my own spiritual beliefs, is the respect for others.
I am afraid due to my own prejuidices that I don't always succeed in giving this respect to everyone, but I do try and will conitinue to do so.

thank you again care2 friends and members for making me think!
 

Past Member (0)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 9:42 pm
George Carlin on Religion
 

Past Member (0)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 9:56 pm
When Did Jesus Become a Teapublican?
 

Mary P. (157)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 10:17 pm
As muslims, we do NOT believe, Islam is better than Judaism or Christianity,
As the Quran CONFIRMS the Torah (unaltered version) and the Bible
(Unaltered version); reaffirming, ALL three are from GOD,, having the same messages
And path to GOD Almighty. Its MAN that Divides and instill Hatred
Amongst MANKIND. Instead of making Religion, the Scapegoat and
Problem, in this world, open your
Eyes to the Real FOE, the zionist NWO; whose presence, you will
FEEL very soon; when it starts, all its nuclear wars, against cointries,
Killing millions of innocent human beings, for oil and world domination.
Watch and weep, when ISRAEL(NWO) becomes the SUPERPOWER,
After it causes the Destruction of its best ally AMERICA!!!
 

Carrie B. (309)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 10:18 pm
John C. Fantastic! Thank You!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 

Past Member (0)
Sunday July 10, 2011, 10:43 pm
David B, I like how you are slamming those of us like Lilith and I who do believe in God, and claiming that athiests are the ones with all the answers. Amazing, you just made my point! Athiests can be just as stubborn, rude, and unrelenting as those who claim belief in God! It has nothing to do with religion, but the problems originate in the heart of the believer, whatever that belief system may be.
 

ellen m. (233)
Monday July 11, 2011, 1:11 am
@ Mary P., But you obviously feel superior to judiasm, which is exactly what this is about!
And @ David B., Lillith isn't the one having a hissy fit, you are. It feels like you want to bully somepeople into seeing things your way..and pal, that dog won't hunt!
Geez...Thanks again Carrie dear.
 

ellen m. (233)
Monday July 11, 2011, 1:24 am
@ David Buchan, again. Now I get it..i looked at your profile and it says your here to "change the unchangable". Good Luck Dude! I again agree with Lillith, but with a twist..
David B + care2 +changing anything = oxymoron.
 

Roger Garin-michaud (61)
Monday July 11, 2011, 1:19 pm
indeed !
 

Bernard Cronyn (30)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 3:09 am
Frank Schaeffer makes some valid points but he comes over somewhat as the rehabilitated alcoholic ranting about the evils of the demon drink. Many toss around words without understanding there meaning - herewith a definition and origin,” Fundamentalism is strict adherence to specific theological doctrines typically in reaction against the theology of Modernism. The term ‘fundamentalism’ was originally coined by its supporters to describe a specific package of theological beliefs that developed into a movement within the Protestant community of the United States in the early part of the 20th century, and that had its roots in the Fundamentalist-Modernist Controversy of that time.” I think that looking at just “adherence to specific theological doctrines” is only a part of the problem (assuming our writer uses this definition). Strict adherence to the Marxist ideologies of Lenin, Stalin, Mao Tse Sung and Pol Pot as well as to the National Socialist ideologies of Hitler, Mussolini and General Hideki Tojo resulted in the deaths of around half a billion people in the 20th century alone. I do not decry the dangers of religious fundamentalism, but it is worth noting that political ideologies have surpassed their religious counterparts in the head count of the many who have died for the fantasies of a few.
 

Mary P. (157)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 9:58 am
ELLEN, " But you obviously feel superior to judiasm" , sorry to Disappoint you but, I disagree . To Me judaism, christianity and Islam are all equal .None are superior or inferior to the other. All are
GOD'S Religions, and GOD clearly states, Superiority is judged, ONLY
By HIM, and that is, according to, how much Love, each Individual
Has, in his\her heart, for GOD Almighty. By the way Pride(superiority) is detested
By GOD Almighty and will come before one's fall. Sorry didn't mean
To preach, just letting YOU know, how true muslims think. Peace and
Best wishes to you.


 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 11:25 am
You too can find salvation David.
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 11:50 am
Man is born of a fallen race, condemned because of his participation in Adam's sin, doomed because of the fact that he has only a fallen nature, judged as one who is under the dominion and power of sin, and guilty before God because of his personal sins (Rom. 3:9-23; 5:12). Consequently he is "dead in trespasses and sins," a child of disobedience, by nature a child of wrath, having no hope, and without God in the world. This is the Almighty's appraisal of him (Eph. 2:1-3,12). Unless he obtains God's salvation during his lifetime, he will experience everlasting punishment in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone. Cowards deny and scoffers laugh at this truth, but that doesn't change the fact, the reality, one iota. The Holy Bible is mercilessly clear on the subject of eternal damnation and punishment of the lost. A careful reading of Luke 16:19-31; Revelation 20:11-15 and the Lord's own words in Matthew 24:41,46 and Mark 9:43-48, will prove this.
 

Mary P. (157)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 12:18 pm
David B,"What a load of mumbo jumbo supported by so many mindless people. Amazing! - It is 2011AD kiddies, not 2011BC.avid B,"

David, 'we' Believers, in GOD Almighty, could call you 'MINDLESS' too, for YOUR unbelief, but 'we' will NOT stoop to your low level, instead will quote
from the Quran: 'we, to our beliefs, and YOU, to YOUR Belief'. BTW your 2011AD is very close to 'The 2nd coming, of Christ(P.B.U.H.), hope and pray YOU, are still around, to witness his, Great Return to earth, Inshallah Ameen. Would love to see your face, probably, your 'dropped' jaw will be exposed.
 

Past Member (0)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 1:11 pm
I'd rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief.

To sit alone with my conscience will be judgment enough for me.

Religion is the most malevolent of all mind viruses.

There is not enough love and kindness in the world to give any of it away to imaginary beings.

It is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring.

Fear paints pictures of ghosts and hangs them in the gallery of ignorance.

The world holds two classes of men - intelligent men without religion, and religious men without intelligence.

Religion is fundamentally opposed to everything I hold in veneration--courage, clear thinking, honesty, fairness, and, above all, love of the truth.

Christianity is the most ridiculous, the most absurd and bloody religion that has ever infected the world.

Freedom of religious belief is an inalienable right. Stuffing that belief down other people's throats is not.

When one person suffers from delusion, it is called insanity. When many people suffer from a delusion, it is called Religion."
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 1:26 pm
@MJM "It is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring."

And how do you propose to grasp the Universe as it really is if you have a closed mind?
 

Past Member (0)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 1:37 pm
A man's ethical behavior should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and social ties and needs; no religious basis is necessary. Man would indeed be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death.

Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence.
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 3:01 pm
You're sounding desperate.
 

Past Member (0)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 3:16 pm
Is Religion Based on Astrology? Part 1

Is Religion Based on Astrology? Part 2
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 3:54 pm
Is there a creator pt. 1 - of 3 (Click Here)

Is there a creator pt. 2 - of 3 (Click Here)

Is there a creator pt. 3 - of 3 (Click Here)
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 4:45 pm

Is there a creator pt. 4 - of 4 (Click Here)
 

Past Member (0)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 4:46 pm
Of course there is a 'creator'....he lives in YOUR head! He forces you to ignore reality and then you project that into the real world, and that's what makes religion so harmfull to mankind and the world!

Lilith, I see again that you missed the whole point of the article. Do you even read the articles, or are you just trollin' again?
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 4:57 pm
@MJB - You should be very proud that you have been able to draw a definitive conclusion where the (other) finest minds in the world have not yet been able to. Hope to see you soon in scientific literature and the media.

You can't veer off course and complain that the discussion is off course.
 

Past Member (0)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 5:02 pm
Sure thing...and I'll see you in the funny papers.
 

Past Member (0)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 5:32 pm
Ok Lil, I’ll try to explain this so that even you can understand. The article is about the damage that fundamentalist religion is doing to the world. The obvious solution would be to eliminate fundamentalist religion. What better way to do that than to point out what a crock of manure that whole foundation rests on? When you say ‘veer’, if you mean ‘cut to the chase’, then yes, I did veer.

Your response is to try to prop up that foundation. Where are you ‘veering’? Are you trying to tell me that it is YOUR god’s will to let religion destroy the world? OMG! that’s what you brainwashed ‘believers’ are hoping for, isn’t it??
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 5:39 pm
You say that the Creator lives in your head. If you looked at part 2 of the film clip you would see that, if that is true, it's an integral part of the brain. I'm a spiritualist and freely admit that I don't have the answer regarding a Creator. It just amazes me that so many non-believers do.
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 5:42 pm
Part 3.

And that's all you can come up with Dave?
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 5:49 pm
Is that really the best that you can do Davie? Certainly not very astute.
 

Past Member (0)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 6:05 pm
Thanks David....as for Lilith, believe whatever you have to believe, if it helps you to live with yourself. I am a bit curious as to why your 'god', conscience, whatever you want to call it, allows most of the comments you make on so many articles, (Kit B comes to mind) that are so obviously designed to hurt or put somebody down? I've always written you off as just a bitter troll. I've been told by some folks that you have a few other aliases, too. Hans?
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 6:19 pm
Guess this is what happens when a couple of twits run out of intellegent conversation. Perhaps you can entertain each other.
 

Past Member (0)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 6:20 pm
David, something tells me that you have a better chance of an answer than I do.
 

Carrie B. (309)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 6:26 pm
David, Lilith, and MJM, Please take your argument elsewhere! You all are off point and offensive!
 

Past Member (0)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 6:28 pm
Midnight Oil
 

Past Member (0)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 6:31 pm
Sorry Carrie
 

Carrie B. (309)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 6:33 pm
Thank you MJM. Wish Mr. Hans, Paul, Lilith, and David would go away!
 

Carrie B. (309)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 6:34 pm
Thank you David!
 

Kit B. (277)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 6:53 pm

I made a few comments on this article, and I am an atheist though that is fully by logic and reason and not because I think I know more then any one about the topic of gods. I believe that for me rational thinking is the answer that guides me. As I have said on so many of these articles, I also believe that it causes no other person harm for me to make the choice I do or for others to make their choices. It is to me far more detrimental to cause of beliefs to have someone attempt to shove their beliefs at others, commonly called proselytization. Does it really resolve any thing to be rude and abusive to others with differing beliefs? Does it convert any one to constantly demean them by quoting biblical passages as if they were fools? I don't know a single atheist that can not quote the bible because they have actually studied it in some detail.

The answer is simple - acceptance. Religion verses belief is very different and that does anger many in our current climate of the right wing zealots attempting to force all of us into accepting only their way of thinking.

MJ M - I do wish you would use that spray more often.
 

Past Member (0)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 7:07 pm
That's what we need, some religious fundamentalist spray!
 

Carrie B. (309)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 7:39 pm
I have no problem with a person's personal belief system. What I do have a problem with is abusive language and the quoting of bible versus only meant to anger others. MJM and David very kindly apologized for some of their remarks. Unfortunately, the one person quoting the bible and promoting Christianity has behaved in a way to prove my point. This was just an argument promoting two opposing views, and the one promoting Christianity has behaved in a very un-Christian like manner. Thank you again MJM and David.
 

Lilith Cohen (202)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 8:11 pm
Kit B. Monday July 11, 2011, 8:34 pm

Keep us at one another and nothing is resolved nor accomplished.

Name calling, and every form of closed mind, is so insidious: It can make one crazy, and is very, very hard to make a clean break from.

By all means when someone does not know anything about another that they feel is a threat call them names and insult their intelligence because it
for sure brings out your lack of same!!

Let's be consistent, shall we.
 

Past Member (0)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 8:24 pm
Lilith honey, take it back under the bridge.
 

Mary P. (157)
Tuesday July 12, 2011, 11:29 pm
Hey where is 'Live and Let Live' gone to???

Why can't we ALL, I.e. Jews, Chrislians, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, ATHEISTS, Agnostic etc
, all us human beings just accept, Respect and LOVE each other, even with all our differences
In our personal beliefs???

Why can't we STOP, ridiculing, mocking and demonising, beliefs of others???

Where is the Freedom of Rights, to Beliefs ??? Without being picked on!!!

I will say this, to Athiests , 'I respect YOU, for YOUR beliefs; please show your decency by,
Respecting me and others, for ours !!! Instead of using words such as MINDLESS and UNINTELLIGENT!!! For
What you call unintelligence, is intelligence to me and billions of others throughout the
World!!!

If an individual believes in GOD Almighty, WELL and GOOD and if an individual DON'T
Believe in GOD Almighty, then too WELL and GOOD!!!

Take care all. Peace and Love to you all.
 

Past Member (0)
Wednesday July 13, 2011, 12:41 am
That's right Mary, it's all well and good up until you start forcing your beliefs on others. Or when acting on those beliefs you end up destroying people and the planet. I'm sure you'll agree, that's not all WELL and GOOD.

So hey, if you need to believe in some invisible entity to get you through life, by all means, whatever floats your boat. Just keep it in YOUR bathtub.

 

Past Member (0)
Wednesday July 13, 2011, 1:42 am
6 Ways Atheists Can Band Together to Fight Religious Fundamentalism

4. Greater support for science and reason.

Atheists should understand, and generally do understand, that irrational and dangerous faith flourishes in societies that don't value evidence and rational thinking. Surveys show that less educated people are more likely to believe in demons, creationism, biblical literalism, and all other kinds of harmful superstitions. And as a growing population strains the bounds of what the Earth can support, as our technology makes us more and more powerful, it's crucial to let science and reason guide us if we're going to thread the needle and avoid disaster. If we don't, as Carl Sagan said, then sooner or later "this combustible mixture of ignorance and power is going to blow up in our faces."

The poisonous effects of irrationality are everywhere to be seen in our politics. Religious right demagogues openly say that climate change can't be happening because God wouldn't let the climate change too much, or that it's futile trying to make peace in the Middle East because Jesus predicted there would be war there until he returns, or that there's no sense conserving natural resources because the world is going to end before we run out. On the other end of the spectrum, the purveyors of fashionable New Age nonsense teach that the way to end war, cure cancer or create a fairer distribution of wealth isn't to implement progressive taxation, march in antiwar rallies or support scientific research, but to sit at home and use our magical powers of wishing to reshape reality to suit our desires.

 

Past Member (0)
Wednesday July 13, 2011, 1:49 am
5. Support for marriage equality and LGBT rights.

'More than anyone else, atheists ought to have sympathy for oppressed minorities whose oppression has historically been justified by appealing to religion, and no group fits that definition better than LGBT people. The arguments against marriage equality and gay rights are purely religious in nature, with no legitimate secular basis. And for the most part, the bigots who make these arguments don't even try to disguise this.

For example, the Archbishop of New York, Timothy Dolan, wrote in vain to urge legislators to defeat a marriage-equality bill because he believes that "God has settled the definition of marriage." In Delaware, pastors screamed that a civil-unions law was "biblically incorrect" and "contrary to the will of God."

Left unexplained by all these people is why any group's opinions about God's desires should influence lawmaking in a secular, democratic republic like ours. Should we ban alcohol and coffee because Mormons think they're sinful to consume, or require all women to go veiled in public because Wahhabi Muslims think we should, or outlaw zippers because the Amish reject them? If not, why should Catholic views about marriage be any more relevant?'

6 Ways Atheists Can Band Together to Fight Religious Fundamentalism
 

Mary P. (157)
Wednesday July 13, 2011, 4:48 pm
MJM,"That's right Mary, it's all well and good up until you start forcing your beliefs on others. Or when acting on those beliefs you end up destroying people and the planet. I'm sure you'll agree, that's not all WELL and GOOD".

I disagree!!! I have NEVER tried to Force MY Beautiful Religion of ISLAM on
Anyone ; as ISLAM teaches : "there is NO COMPULSION in relifion".
People convert to ISLAM willingly, when they Learn the TRUTH
Of ISLAM. Intelligent people do NOT believe all the propanganda and LIES, the mainstream
Media spread about Islam.

The only ones, I see DESTROYING the Planet and MURDERING
People in their millions,, are the Evil
NWO members (NON Believers of GOD), in America and Israel; with their
Never ending WARs, oppressions, theft and greed!!!.
 

. (0)
Thursday July 14, 2011, 2:14 am
Mary, if "the only ones" you see "destroying the planet", with "wars, oppressions, theft, and greed" are "America and Israel", then I'm afraid you have an extraordinarily limited field of vision.
 

Sharon Balloch (132)
Tuesday July 19, 2011, 2:57 am
As a Christian I am happy that many fight fundamentalism, but then they step across the same line and become very thing they are fighting. They clump all religious folk into one group, we are way to diverse to do that with. I do not think all atheists are like that, that would be foolish, to clump all atheists into one group as religious bashers and haters..but they are way to dirverse to do that with.

The need to blame one group or another is the cause of war, strife and racism. people pointing and blaming.. think of the tracts put out on the Jews before WW11, it claimed Jewish folks were destroying the world, and so they were attacked.. religion was not the cause it was folks pointing at them and calling them evil that was the cause of millions upon millions of deaths.
Greed, and Power is the cause of destruction not religion..Millions did not die under stalin until he tore down the churches and kill the faithful. And he killed more than Hitler. Under such a system there can be only one God.. so the first thing done is to destroy religion.
So go ahead and bash those who are fundies but bashing all religious folks is the same as being an atheist fundie.. and we have enough of those.
 

jane richmond (10)
Thursday October 13, 2011, 7:20 am
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