Firstly, I think reason is good. It is already late in this discussion, but I'll reply once and dissolve.
I would like to quote one of RedReign's anti-Utilitarian declarations as a reminder and a hinter to what I'm going to say:
As I've said repeatedly, the utilitarian argument (argument from morality) has been devastatingly debunked.
I'm perplexed after reading the sentence quoted above and the the following statements:
"Well, something that increases violent crime, obesity, rates of drug use and teenage pregnancy."
Ah, such an intermingling of phenomenons...
Overall...this is a Utilitarian Fallacy. Why? because you try to justify the righteousness of Science by 'benighting' the "accomplishments" of Religion or of "ignorance", which is the mental outcome of religion and faith. Since the examples give here are being treated as "wrong" - one can conclude it is the same fallacy you bestowed upon your dialectic enemies throughout this thread. This is a crude contradiction. But this is not the only grotesque thing one can say about this sentence. It is strikingly visible that you conclude things which are not conclusive, but rather circumstantial and that you mindlessly ignore things that might be used against these Utilitarian claims. It is important to say that "rates" vary too much to be held in such high-esteem. Another problem is with the reference to the factor that "increases" the phenomenons specified. "Increase" and "Decrease" do not eliminate. Increase or Decrease are "optimal" parameters, they simply depend on the crossly occurrence of several inter-connected events. Therefore, we must conclude, and you did so yourself - that such things are here to stay. Indeed, Reality doesn't favor purity, what could be or what should be - whether humans like it or not. It is a Purist's illusion to believe that he can predict or know what the will be the results of actions, and since Science is not only "reasonable" and Hypothetical in its nature, but also practical (and Mr. RedReign tried to support his counter-claims by exemplifying physical evidence to prove the correctness of Science) it is logical to conclude this is yet another UTILITARIAN FALLACY. Believing that any system can predict accurately the outcome of actions and practicality is yet another Utilitarian illusion - true to ethics, in particular. The thing most offensive about Modern Science is that it pretends to be able to both predict things expertly and not only that - but also rehabilitate what previously strode awrong, correct things up and omit bad theories. That's not the case - this is actually a fallacy. There's a limit for self-correction. Some things may just turn irreversible.
Another point - Life in the "high civilization" requires certain things that make God dispensable, in that context. Let's use examples from our contemporary milieu: A Christian drives a car. Does it make him religious? no it doesn't. People take their medications - there's nothing religious about it. In other words - RELIGION -- the official, institutionalized religion of the "civilized man" can go hand in hand with PROGRESS, even if religionists have to compromise or "readjust" belief-systems. Civilization is indeed governed by intellect or intellect turned on objects and particles -- yet all Civilizations have their malfunctions, countless standing-ovation the modern civilization gets for its malfunctions.
We can examine this with the subject of "obesity"; indeed it is crucial to with deal the subject of "Obesity" Mr.RedReign was kind enough to mention, in pertaining to the concept of civilization I presented. THE PLAGUE OF OBESITY IS A MODERN PHENOMENON, CAUSED BY TECHNOLOGICAL ADVANCEMENTS; instant access to food and a general state of super-abundance never seen before in the History of mankind - all thanks to Science/Technology. Everything in the modern world works that way (Science/Technology effecting people's lives inevitably). It is through extensive advertising propagated by manipulative economists who use scientific tools to determine such and such things, and other "vehicles" produced by scientific disciplines - that the wheels of modernity rotate. The whole modern life style stimulates laziness and passivity -- the air-conditioner, the refrigerator, cars, supermarkets, TV and more. Obesity is the outcome of the modern life style, more than anything else - this is what determines the nature and 'graph' of this phenomenon and other phenomenons. Professors can be obese, Scientists can be obese - educated people can be obese.
It is possible to deal with each of the other examples given by Mr.RedReign - but it is a waste of time, since the "ignorance" stimulated by Religion and Faith is only a "catalyst" of such phenomenons, not the cause of them. Laconically, violent crimes, are *sometimes* positive and only to the utilitarian minds it is not - since it causes pain and suffering to a great majority of people.
Some people value the truth intrinsically. If you're advocating brainwashing on a massive scale I have to question whether you've thought about the matter thoroughly. Religious dogma damages peoples' logical ability irreparably.
Utilitarian Fallacy. The most disturbing thing about this claim is that you simply ignore the fact that great minds worked with and despite the overwhelming dominance of the various religious dogmas at their time and it never "procrastinated" their innovative skills. On the other bank of the rives, we have "Plebes". Plebes thrive, and no science in the world can save them from their sheepish mentality. The ignorant religious man of yesterday, will be the lazy, passive, terminal atheist, freelancer, liberal, humanist, sub-culture hipster or the passive nihilist of tomorrow. I see those non-godheads, they're null-headed as much as their religious counterparts. They're techophilic, gadget-obsessed - their whole reason is based upon what Science gives them, their psychology is that of the common consumerist, they validate science if it provides them with comfort and well-being -- else, Science is something you mention in lively living-room discussions and virtual debates. As I said, they differ little from their religious siblings. "Religions dogma damages logical ability irreparably" - that is incorrect. No matter what humans do today in order to "Trans-humanize" their organic state, they're conformists by nature. Individualism proves it. Religion came to provide a solution to questions and to become a monolith of order, and it did. When it finally reached fatigue, Science came to replace it as the new shepherd.
Education doesn't prevent humans from behaving like fools. Science can't help them. And I'm not saying religion does...but seeing the whole "Science Vs. Religion" thing in black and white is not reasonable.
Religion has stood in the way of every single major medical and scientific advance in the last 500 years. Until 500 years ago they successfully prevented any major advances.
This is an interesting argument, since prior to which Mr.RedReign counter-claimed openly: "Once again, your argument is utilitarianism. The usefulness of religion as a motivator. "
Therein, the usefulness of Science is hailed as a motivator or the uselessness of religion is denounced as a "demotivator". This argument turns things into a battle of analogies. Dismissing or debunking the argument that "religion" is a utilitarian motivator just to replace it with another utilitarian motivator, which is supposedly better - is contradictory. Saying "Science is more useful" is an utterly futile argument. The word "advance" which is used in this sentence is blank or ambiguous. According to Modern Science - advance is made for the well-being, comfort and the general Apollonian tendencies of the public. In other words, it has utilitarian values and motives, enhanced by practicality and materialism -- it is from the same branch of thought (or intermingled prehension) that all the aforementioned strike thrice.
The fact is that we're entering the civilized world along with most of Europe.
Oh, please...the "Civilized world". Sounds rather ecclesiastical.
Civilization is a terminal state. It is always from youthful flair, virginal reasoning and imagination that they become what they are. When civilizational intellect thwarts that 'fountainous' force and formulates various structures, methods and over-repeated paradigms, it is only the petty, the selfish and the prideful who remain to brace their smug sense of superiority with theoretic polemics and redundant dialectics (among the intellectuals) -- while the casual folk, regardless of their education - flock together where the blurry of illusion flashes. II also opine that there' little to no room for innovation in modern science. Now, what we have is "educated-casual-working-folk" - with all their whimsical prehensions, their boastful desires or every "derivatives" plucked from usual earthly intentions. It is fallacious to believe that educated humans are better humans, in such absolute manner and especially when education works according to certain disciplines and to fulfill periodic demands.
I must clarify - not the Reason do I criticize, but the ambiguous interpretations and prehensions that reason may forge. Modern Science is simply that - a reason-driven system that provides self-gratifying, Apollonian and Utilitarian solutions to men's problems. And that's even worse then that -- since our Modern Science is a reason-oriented system based on empiricism and evidence - everything Science gratifies, is, by its very nature, "true" until another grasp of things is suggested. It fails greatly to find a state of Equilibrium between human desires and realistic knowledge - and I think it can't. This is what we have today, Liberal Science. Saying this is not Science but hailing the products of modern science is idiotic - when "reason" is applied on the actual lives of people, there are motives, agendas and desires behind that. The "Ideal of Knowledge" is lost in the abyss of modernity. Science is exactly what it is today - not what should be or could be. Modern Science is Utilitarian, Liberal, Humanistic. This is not a surprise, the very scientific method was "refined and honed" by 19th-20th century liberal thinkers - Science is a vehicle of "pleasure", "happiness" and other such Utilitarian desires. It is almost too fantastical to think it isn't!
It's the Science of the educated working-men - the wonderful and primordial science of deeds is dead - or perhaps only preserved in a few "classical" fields, especially mathematics and theoretical physics. Another distinction we must make regarding Science - there's Science that works for the sake of knowledge - let's say Archeology, Theoretical Physics/Astrophysics, Astronomy and Mathematics - and there are "practical" sciences or scientifically approved practical systems - the various Technological fields, such as engineering and electronics; Health, "practical" physics, chemistry, biotechnology, etc. There are Science who stand in betwixt - Natural sciences and Social sciences. Science is too broad to be over-simplified. Throwing into discussion a term like "Science", and saying this is "Reason" and therefore - good, is WRONG. Trying to support Science with physical and "realistic" or "practical" evidence, overshadows the term Reason. One cannot say that Science is not Utilitarian or that Religion's utilitarian value doesn't count (dialectically or "physically") and on the same present evidence with a strong Utilitarian value to prove Science's worth, in such reductionist fashion. Nevertheless, we cannot deny or ignore the fact that some sciences, mainly those untamed and untouched by utilitarian thought, are flourishing. Astrophysics for instance.