Friday, September 11, 2009

Conversation Topic 14: Being Nice to Religion

I am away from my blog for a couple of weeks. This is an experiment in posting some conversation topics while I am gone.

The two questions to answer relevant to the statement below is are:

• Is it true?

• Is it important?

(14) The real question should not be whether one should be nice when it comes to religion, or whether one should treat religion harshly. The real question really should be, "What is true about religion?"


Eneasz said...

I'm not sure about this one. If that was the actual question then the religious would soon find themselves without a religion. Seeing as this is unacceptable to most religious people, I don't think this is the best course of action. Let them have their religions, as long as they aren't too harmful.

Capt'n John said...

To the religious, there is nothing but truth in their own particular sect. This is demonstration of their faith. On the other hand in a person without religion it is difficult to find anything actually true or real in religion. Since all religions have "truths" that are the antithesis of "truths" found in other religions I see no way that any religion can possess even a particle of the truth.

Anonymous said...

I don't think religion should get any special treatment, either positive or negative.

Rather all, "is it true?" should greet religious claims instead of

"Oh well that's your faith"


"you deluded sheep"

Emu Sam said...

I have reason to believe my mother was an atheist. In her mid 40s, she was also baptized Presbyterian. Her argument was, "I believe there was a historical person Jesus who had a lot of good ideas." (The real reason was probably that she had been a member of their choir for so long.) She remained an atheist.

I would like to hold her up as an example of a religious person who did not believe in the parts that can't be tested with the scientific method. The idea that killing is wrong formed part of her religious beliefs. We can accept that as true. We might think the god part should be thrown out - she did not, although she did not believe it was true.

I wish I could have the opportunity to talk with her about whether holding it up as truth to the next generation is a wise or valuable use of church resources.

Louis Gedo said...

My take is that it behooves atheists to be nice, but not at the cost of truth or worrying that something we say will be found to be offensive by a religionist.

If religionists (or anyone for that matter) cannot find it to not be offended in the civil discussion of faith and reason then I submit that this is their shortcoming and their personal issue to be dealt with by themselves.

If societies and indeed individuals don't seriously and intensively engage in discerning truth from fantasy or faith-based beliefs through rigorous dialogue and debate, then the long term consequences will be as ugly as human societies can get...can the world really sustain the dangerous fantasies of widespread and prolonged religiosity (namely Christianity, Judaism, and Muslim beliefs) in a world faced with dwindelling resources and precious, finite land? Wouldn't that look a lot like the Middle East conflict but sprawled over all the continents?