Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length

Religion in Modern America

Re: Religion in Modern America
August 03, 2009, 04:18:12 PM
Quote
Who needs evidence when we can just make wild assertions and then use "philosophy" to excuse ourselves from ever having to provide justification?

That's so exactly it.

They presuppose that religious bullshit is somehow a higher plane than materialism.  Requests for evidence are narrow-minded. 

Bullshit.

The idea that religion is of any value whatsoever, any real value to anybody, is in itself a sacred cow for which no evidence has ever been offered.

Re: Religion in Modern America
August 03, 2009, 04:36:38 PM
Should our goal be truth?  I propose that our goal should be health.

Re: Religion in Modern America
August 03, 2009, 04:44:30 PM
A model of the world approaching truth is perhaps the single most defining characteristic of mental health.  When you start believing religious bullshit on the basis of zero evidence, you're no different from people in insane asylums who believe that they're Napoleon.

Or who believe that god talks to them.

Re: Religion in Modern America
August 03, 2009, 04:52:23 PM
What if this fear was conceptualized in another way, for example, as respect?

In my research on ancient culture and religion, I tend to find that the fear and control aspects were overstated by 20th century thinkers within their various leftist, liberal or humanist schools of dogma. Much of ancient tradition was held together by awe and reverence, with all of its positive connotations.

This could possibly be true. Even the word fear has changed in its meaning over time. A god fearing man is not a man who fears god in the modern sense of the word. He is a man who is aware of god's capability and destructive power and thusly shows a genuine respect. I suppose you could say that fear in its older form is the awareness of the power of something (this is what causes modern fear) but rather than being afraid one gives their admiration.
 

You two are right. I just have to say that you will feel whether scared or reverently amazed depending on your intellectual perception, that's the exoteric/esoteric perception of God's fear.


No.  Materialism is just a lack of belief in the absence of evidence.

Materialism and positivism are not the same thing.

A wider, less limited perspective on reality?  I call bullshit.  Where's your proof?  If you don't have any, get the fuck out of town.

Perhaps what nous is talking about it's an intuitive perception of reality, which is not brought by science, but that in some way or another, it does conform our conception of the world. This could be merely reduced to psychological reasons,  in more detail, to neurological reasons, understanding the right hemisphere as the source of religion. On the other hand, if there's a divinity, or a divine principle, it could be understandable that all mystic perceptions could be translated into physical phenomena in order to be remembered and transmitted from a brain to another. Perhaps our human design (I'm not creationist lol) is an organization of matter, aware of itself, which needed religion in order to complement (not to substitute, nor to be substituted by) science.

Obviously I have a subjective (not solipsist) approach towards spirituality, and I think that religion, in spite of its corruption as a social product, is there to help others to awake this perception. Finally, in my opinion, religion is the preservation of its literature.

Re: Religion in Modern America
August 03, 2009, 05:50:58 PM
nous, you seem to love putting words into my mouth.  i should not have to "expand my perception of reality" to accept unproven dogma as truth.  i'm neither materialist nor strictly individualist, and my beliefs/lack thereof are not born from some ingrained pessimism.  you're making many more speculations about me than i am of you. 

Re: Religion in Modern America
August 03, 2009, 06:44:34 PM
Religion's here to stay, folks. You don't have to like it, but it's not going away. It's nice to know facts about the world, for which science is great, but facts without context are meaningless. Knowing the difference in the distances to the sun at the apogee and perigee of the earth's orbit doesn't provide the bearer of that knowledge with a purpose to use that knowledge towards. The universe is meaningless - religion is a method of imbuing it with a meaning.

this "fear of god" has certainly not had a uniformly positive influence on either ancient societies or modern ones.  "fear of god" has been responsible for torture, exorcisms, genital mutilation, snake handling, sexual abstinence, and all sorts of other things that are shocking and abhorrent to all but the rigidly faithful.  history is full of peoples and societies that lived unsustainably until they tore each other apart, "fearing god" all the way.

What, exactly, is wrong with torture, exorcism, genital mutilation, snake handling, and sexual abstinence? Why are these so SHOCKING and ABHORRENT? I don't think I'd mind these practices being applied to a majority of the human population.

Re: Religion in Modern America
August 03, 2009, 07:17:26 PM
A model of the world approaching truth is perhaps the single most defining characteristic of mental health.  When you start believing religious bullshit on the basis of zero evidence, you're no different from people in insane asylums who believe that they're Napoleon.

Or who believe that god talks to them.

I think that one of the most underrated mechanisms of the mind is the ability to forget.  Showing that you understand a model of the world approaching truth is one way to PROVE that you ARE mentally healthy - but it, alone (or perhaps at all), doesn't necessarily GET YOU TO health.  What gets you to health is catharsis - this goes for the body and the mind.  A healthy person quickly forgets who has wronged him or how we was wronged, he quickly does away with inimical feelings, THAT is how you GET to mental health.  This explains why we dream at night.  If we remembered EVERYTHING that ever happened to us as vividly as if it happened yesterday, we would be a mess.  I think mental health is more RELIANT on your emotions and you ability to deal with them than anything else. 

But I digress.  I agree with you that truth and health are not necessarily opposed to each other.  However, you acknowledge that the ability to understand or acknowledge truth is a CHARACTERISTIC of mental health.  You say it's the MOST DEFINING characteristic, I would reserve that for:  "the ability to forget."  But either way, you essentially acknowledge that HEALTH > TRUTH, correct?  Nietzsche said that the lie is a condition of life.  I don't necessarily believe in a God or "religious bullshit," but I just don't hold science, truth, and evidence in such high regard either, and yet, I realize I'm not Napoleon.  Octuple mentioned intuition, and I would that say I operate on more of an intuitive, instinctual, and aesthetic level than anything else.  I'm just trying to explain the angle some of us are coming from.

Re: Religion in Modern America
August 03, 2009, 07:27:47 PM
Religion's here to stay, folks. You don't have to like it, but it's not going away. It's nice to know facts about the world, for which science is great, but facts without context are meaningless. Knowing the difference in the distances to the sun at the apogee and perigee of the earth's orbit doesn't provide the bearer of that knowledge with a purpose to use that knowledge towards. The universe is meaningless - religion is a method of imbuing it with a meaning.

That's right.  Science only shows us HOW, not WHY.  Maybe there are some tough guys out there who claim they don't need a WHY, but I guarantee that long-term, big picture, for humanity, in general, WE NEED A "WHY."  It doesn't necessarily have to be "religious" in nature or imply the existence of a God, but we need a WHY, and science can't give it to us.  As Nietzsche said, if we have our WHY, we will take almost any HOW.

Re: Religion in Modern America
August 03, 2009, 07:34:25 PM
Quote from: Istaros
Religion's here to stay, folks. You don't have to like it, but it's not going away.

Actually, amazingly, this is not the case.  Fewer young people-- drastically fewer-- call themselves religious or spiritual than ever before.

Quote from: Jim Necroslaughter
Science only shows us HOW, not WHY.  Maybe there are some tough guys out there who claim they don't need a WHY, but I guarantee that long-term, big picture, for humanity, in general, WE NEED A "WHY."

You mean you need a made-up fairy tale for how the earth formed.  Religion doesn't actually provide a why.  It provides a social control agenda cloaked in childish fables.

Looks to me like there isn't a why.  If that's the case, what you need is a lie.

Re: Religion in Modern America
August 03, 2009, 07:34:51 PM
Quote from: istaros
Religion's here to stay, folks. You don't have to like it, but it's not going away.

I don't think this is true.  The perpetuation of religion in contingent upon two factors.  First, that our neurology remains unchanged, which seems very unlikely the way genetics is headed.  And secondly, that our species isn't wiped off the planet by a huge fucking asteroid or something.

Quote
The universe is meaningless - religion is a method of imbuing it with a meaning.

This is true, but religion is not the only method of giving meaning to the world.  So considering it's record, I'd say we can do better.

Re: Religion in Modern America
August 03, 2009, 07:35:47 PM
Quote
religion is a method of imbuing it with a meaning.

Religion is a method of imbuing it with a falsehood.

Re: Religion in Modern America
August 03, 2009, 07:40:40 PM
Quote
religion is a method of imbuing it with a meaning.

Religion is a method of imbuing it with a falsehood.

All meaning is illusory, so I don't think this is a legitimate critic.  However, not all illusions are equal, so the question becomes what are the most constructive illusions.  I favor none (I'm in the non need for WHY camp), but I don't think that's a realistic goal at this point.

Re: Religion in Modern America
August 03, 2009, 07:59:00 PM
Atheism (just another word for materialism) belongs in the same category as Democracy, Globalism, Egalitarianism, Equality: Typical modern ideas, based on a flawed / limited view of the world, taken as self-evident by the progressivist zealots and their herd. Read Evola, Guenon, Schuon, Meister Eckhart and the Bhagavad Gita for some authentic spirituality, not modern pseudo-"religion". The "religion" of today must not be confused with actual Tradition.

Also, I find the fact that sexual abstinence was equated with "torture, exorcism, genital mutilation and snake handling" quite remarkable. It tells quite a lot of how confused people these days really are.

Re: Religion in Modern America
August 03, 2009, 08:05:12 PM
Quote from: JewBob
All meaning is illusory, so I don't think this is a legitimate critic.  However, not all illusions are equal, so the question becomes what are the most constructive illusions.  I favor none (I'm in the non need for WHY camp), but I don't think that's a realistic goal at this point.

Belief based on evidence is not in the same category as belief based on zero evidence.  Some things are less illusory than others.

Quote from: Hrafn
Atheism (just another word for materialism) belongs in the same category as Democracy, Globalism, Egalitarianism, Equality

Is non-belief in the Easter Bunny also in the same category as those things?

Also interesting that you seem to use modernity as a pejorative.

Quote
Read Evola, Guenon, Schuon, Meister Eckhart and the Bhagavad Gita for some authentic spirituality

By "authentic" do you mean that it has some evidence supporting it?

Re: Religion in Modern America
August 03, 2009, 08:13:09 PM
Quote from: Istaros
Religion's here to stay, folks. You don't have to like it, but it's not going away.

Actually, amazingly, this is not the case.  Fewer young people-- drastically fewer-- call themselves religious or spiritual than ever before.


to their detriment, certainly.  let's see where those young people are 5 to 10 years from now.  plenty of them will be born again types, guaranteed, they will overcompensate as usual.  the rest will contiue to twist in the wind.
Quote from: Jim Necroslaughter
Science only shows us HOW, not WHY.  Maybe there are some tough guys out there who claim they don't need a WHY, but I guarantee that long-term, big picture, for humanity, in general, WE NEED A "WHY."

You mean you need a made-up fairy tale for how the earth formed.  Religion doesn't actually provide a why.  It provides a social control agenda cloaked in childish fables.

Looks to me like there isn't a why.  If that's the case, what you need is a lie.
We don't need a why for HOW THE EARTH WAS FORMED, we don't need a why as an EXPLANATION, we need a why that provides us with a goal greater than ourslelves - why should we get up everyday?  why should we work hard?  why should we strive for stong MORAL character?  We need a why because we need a DIRECTION, we need something to aim FOR.  Otherwise we are spinning our wheels.  Religion may or may not provide a why depending on the individual, I know that science certainly can't.  If you value greatness and genius, then life needs to be more than just survival.  Yep, we need a "lie" of sorts.  That's what I'm saying.  I'm not even going to try to bullshit you.  WE NEED A LIE.  "The lie is a condition of life."  - Nietzsche.