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Is religion a necessity for society?

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North German Realm
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Postby North German Realm » Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:31 am

Region of Dwipantara wrote:
Purple Rats wrote:
So, if I am not religious, i have nothing to live for?

If we're being really technical and objective here, yes

Just because you waste your life for one of the worst gambles anyone could ever make so maybe you'll go to heaven after you die doesn't mean those who don't believe in your afterlife have "nothing" to live for. On the contrary, they have nothing to die for.
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Han Scon
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Postby Han Scon » Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:33 am

Rojava Free State wrote:
Han Scon wrote:Yes. Without religion, people's morals will slowly fade away and people will return to primitive thugs engaging in all sorts of degeneracy, only barely kept safe from each other by the rule of the law.

There is also the matter of, y'know, not burning in hell for eternity for disobeying god.


Strange how I as an atheist abhor violence and believe that murder is generally bad.

Also so much for a kind, loving God. Just be honest, the only love abrahamic God feels is the love to hate.


When you're an atheist as of right now, you're still within generations removed from a majority christian society, therefore I believe that as society becomes more and more departed from religion, more people will become criminals and degenerates. Religion provides ethics.

It doesn't matter how cruel you think God is, also, His rules are His rules.
Last edited by Han Scon on Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:36 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Albrenia
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Postby Albrenia » Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:36 am

Sorry for the tiny nitpick, but Atheist can mean anything from someone not convinced of the evidence (such as me), to someone who has never considered the idea of supernatural things, all the way to the stereotypical 'hard atheist' who actively disbelieves in any form of supernatural things.

Atheist and Agnostic aren't always mutually exclusive terms, although obviously not all Atheists are Agnostic.

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Purple Rats
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Postby Purple Rats » Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:38 am

North German Realm wrote:
Region of Dwipantara wrote:If we're being really technical and objective here, yes

Just because you waste your life for one of the worst gambles anyone could ever make so maybe you'll go to heaven after you die doesn't mean those who don't believe in your afterlife have "nothing" to live for. On the contrary, they have nothing to die for.


I think people can have both: something to live for, and something to die for as well, if needed. And still not be religious.

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Swindenland
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Postby Swindenland » Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:38 am

Han Scon wrote:
Rojava Free State wrote:
Strange how I as an atheist abhor violence and believe that murder is generally bad.

Also so much for a kind, loving God. Just be honest, the only love abrahamic God feels is the love to hate.


When you're an atheist as of right now, you're still within generations removed from a majority christian society, therefore I believe that as society becomes more and more departed from religion, more people will become criminals and degenerates. Religion provides ethics.

It doesn't matter how cruel you think God is, also, His rules are His rules.


Why then are secular societies more moral than religious societies? :)

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Han Scon
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Postby Han Scon » Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:41 am

Swindenland wrote:
Han Scon wrote:
When you're an atheist as of right now, you're still within generations removed from a majority christian society, therefore I believe that as society becomes more and more departed from religion, more people will become criminals and degenerates. Religion provides ethics.

It doesn't matter how cruel you think God is, also, His rules are His rules.


Why then are secular societies more moral than religious societies? :)


Do you have a source on this??

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Saint Nicholas and the Hussars
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Postby Saint Nicholas and the Hussars » Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:42 am

The Catholic church is responsible for loads of atrocities. Two modern ones that come to mind right away include discouraging the use of contraception in countries stricken by HIV and the rampant pedophilia in the clergy. The latter alone is enough to denounce the Catholic Church as an institution, and in the US it should be under FBI surveillance. Being a religious institution shouldn't excuse it from its human rights abuses.

After being intertwined with repressive power structures around the world for centuries, the church continues to throw its support behind causes that aim to reduce the rights and dignity of humanity. The world would be better, and humans more equal, without it.


Yo buddy, this ain’t hoi4. They aren’t a super nazi fascist racist global superpower, and in fact the extent of their power is really low. To think that the church is what’s stopping us from achieving a Tau-like Heaven Utopia is silly. Oh yeah, and those problems? As if every nation, institution, ideology, etc. is perfect, huh?
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Albrenia
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Postby Albrenia » Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:43 am

Ankenland wrote:- People are inherently selfish (though sometimes altruistic, they are still very selfish) and so it is a benefit to society to train them to be more altruistic
- The supposition of inescapable metaphysical reward and punishment is the only logical argument for not being selfish, there is no other possible case in which not behaving in your own best interest could be in your own best interest, this would be a contradiction in terms.
- We are near-certainly in a simulation, and near-certainly subject to whatever system of metaphysical reward and punishment to which we, ourselves, would subject the population of simulations we control.


I'm still not convinced of the 'near-certain' nature of us being in a simulation, and rather even less so of the 'near-certain' reward and punishment system being involved having anything to do with what we at this moment in time consider moral and/or immoral or what we would subject our simulated creations to if we somehow could create our own simulation at this time.

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Saint Nicholas and the Hussars
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Postby Saint Nicholas and the Hussars » Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:47 am

Rojava Free State wrote:
Han Scon wrote:Yes. Without religion, people's morals will slowly fade away and people will return to primitive thugs engaging in all sorts of degeneracy, only barely kept safe from each other by the rule of the law.

There is also the matter of, y'know, not burning in hell for eternity for disobeying god.


Strange how I as an atheist abhor violence and believe that murder is generally bad.

Also so much for a kind, loving God. Just be honest, the only love abrahamic God feels is the love to hate.


Strange how empathy exists, right? “What? I’m an atheists and have the morals born within almost every human being?? That means that every religious institution that has a structure sent by divine will to prevent stuff like society-hindering distractions, degeneracy, and pleasure seekers is wrong and should be discarded for literally going down in evolution”
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Vivolkha
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Postby Vivolkha » Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:48 am

Ankenland wrote:
Vivolkha wrote:Point me back to these arguments and I will try to address them.


- People are inherently selfish (though sometimes altruistic, they are still very selfish) and so it is a benefit to society to train them to be more altruistic
- The supposition of inescapable metaphysical reward and punishment is the only logical argument for not being selfish, there is no other possible case in which not behaving in your own best interest could be in your own best interest, this would be a contradiction in terms.
- We are near-certainly in a simulation, and near-certainly subject to whatever system of metaphysical reward and punishment to which we, ourselves, would subject the population of simulations we control.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Superrationality

1st point: humans are social animals, and thus require a balance of selfishness and altruism to survive. The latter is worth cultivating indeed, but religion is not required for it.
2nd point: your own best interest might not be behaving in a selfish way, as the benefit you get from benefitting others is frequently larger than benefitting yourself at the expense of others, even if this benefit is not material (feelings of acceptance and belonging to a community, being unexpectedly helped later, etc.). None of this requires religion.
3rd point: I really don't get what you are trying to argue here. For one, where does the assumption that we are in a simulation come from? How do you distinguish the simulation from reality (if both are indistinguisable, then there is no point in asking if the simulation is real or not, because it is your reality regardless)? If God is superrational, why does He assume His imperfect creations are superrational as well?
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Albrenia
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Postby Albrenia » Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:50 am

Saint Nicholas and the Hussars wrote:
Rojava Free State wrote:
Strange how I as an atheist abhor violence and believe that murder is generally bad.

Also so much for a kind, loving God. Just be honest, the only love abrahamic God feels is the love to hate.


Strange how empathy exists, right? “What? I’m an atheists and have the morals born within almost every human being?? That means that every religious institution that has a structure sent by divine will to prevent stuff like society-hindering distractions, degeneracy, and pleasure seekers is wrong and should be discarded for literally going down in evolution”


Note that this isn't the 'religion should be destroyed' thread, but the 'is religion a necessity for society' thread.

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Ankenland
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Postby Ankenland » Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:51 am

Atheism is, in the broadest sense, an absence of belief in the existence of deities.[1][2][3][4] Less broadly, atheism is a rejection of the belief that any deities exist.[5][6] In an even narrower sense, atheism is specifically the position that there are no deities. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atheism

Agnosticism is the view that the existence of God, of the divine or the supernatural is unknown or unknowable. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agnosticism
Last edited by Ankenland on Mon Sep 21, 2020 1:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Albrenia
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Postby Albrenia » Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:57 am

Ankenland wrote:Socially speaking, atheists are a group of people who are defined by their unifying faith in an unfalsifiable worldview, and so they are a cult. They often strongly feel the need to moralize their worldview to other people, and are usually deeply uncomfortable with the notion that they will ever be held accountable for anything they do. These people exist at least in universities and on the internet, and agnosticism is a necessary social invention, even if it were to have no unique idea to it, as a way to distance ones own self from both hives of groupthink.


That's just wrong.

You're thinking everyone who disbelieves in religion is Richard Dawkins with a hangover and it's simply not the case. The 'deeply uncomfortable with being held accountable' is just a generalisation similar to all 'All X are Y' bullshit type arguments.

C'mon man, your other stuff in this thread has been really thought-provoking and interesting, don't shrink to this sort of garbage now.
Last edited by Albrenia on Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:58 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Vivolkha
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Postby Vivolkha » Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:58 am

Albrenia wrote:
Saint Nicholas and the Hussars wrote:
Strange how empathy exists, right? “What? I’m an atheists and have the morals born within almost every human being?? That means that every religious institution that has a structure sent by divine will to prevent stuff like society-hindering distractions, degeneracy, and pleasure seekers is wrong and should be discarded for literally going down in evolution”


Note that this isn't the 'religion should be destroyed' thread, but the 'is religion a necessity for society' thread.

If religion must be destroyed, then it is not necessary to society. But even if religion is not necessary to society, it does not imply that it must be destroyed.

Ankenland wrote:Socially speaking, atheists are a group of people who are defined by their unifying faith in an unfalsifiable worldview, and so they are a cult. They often strongly feel the need to moralize their worldview to other people, and are usually deeply uncomfortable with the notion that they will ever be held accountable for anything they do. These people exist at least in universities and on the internet, and agnosticism is a necessary social invention, even if it were to have no unique idea to it, as a way to distance ones own self from both hives of groupthink.

This is nothing but an arbitrary generalization drawn from an incorrect consequential relation "if atheists think faith is unfalsifiable then they are a cult!!!" with the clear attempt to non-rationally smear atheism.
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Estanglia
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Postby Estanglia » Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:59 am

Ankenland wrote:Socially speaking, atheists are a group of people who are defined by their unifying faith in an unfalsifiable worldview, and so they are a cult. They often strongly feel the need to moralize their worldview to other people, and are usually deeply uncomfortable with the notion that they will ever be held accountable for anything they do. These people exist at least in universities and on the internet, and agnosticism is a necessary social invention, even if it were to have no unique idea to it, as a way to distance ones own self from both hives of groupthink.


I'm questioning your understanding of atheism.
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Saint Nicholas and the Hussars
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Postby Saint Nicholas and the Hussars » Thu Apr 02, 2020 2:03 am

Albrenia wrote:
Saint Nicholas and the Hussars wrote:
Strange how empathy exists, right? “What? I’m an atheists and have the morals born within almost every human being?? That means that every religious institution that has a structure sent by divine will to prevent stuff like society-hindering distractions, degeneracy, and pleasure seekers is wrong and should be discarded for literally going down in evolution”


Note that this isn't the 'religion should be destroyed' thread, but the 'is religion a necessity for society' thread.

Yeah. One can almost correlate to another in most ideas presented in text from both sides
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Ankenland
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Postby Ankenland » Thu Apr 02, 2020 2:11 am

Vivolkha wrote:1st point: humans are social animals, and thus require a balance of selfishness and altruism to survive. The latter is worth cultivating indeed, but religion is not required for it.


Again I concede that, since anti-religious communist societies exist, religion is clearly not required. What I argue here is that it is beneficial.

Vivolkha wrote:2nd point: your own best interest might not be behaving in a selfish way, as the benefit you get from benefitting others is frequently larger than benefitting yourself at the expense of others, even if this benefit is not material (feelings of acceptance and belonging to a community, being unexpectedly helped later, etc.). None of this requires religion.


This is a contradiction. It is always in my own best interest to behave in a selfish way - this is a tautology. If cooperating with other people gets me more of what I want than acting at their expense, the selfish thing to do is to cooperate. Businessmen do this every day.

Vivolkha wrote:3rd point: I really don't get what you are trying to argue here. For one, where does the assumption that we are in a simulation come from? How do you distinguish the simulation from reality (if both are indistinguisable, then there is no point in asking if the simulation is real or not, because it is your reality regardless)? If God is superrational, why does He assume His imperfect creations are superrational as well?


This is not exactly the right question.
Last edited by Ankenland on Mon Sep 21, 2020 1:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Ankenland
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Postby Ankenland » Thu Apr 02, 2020 2:17 am

Albrenia wrote:You're thinking everyone who disbelieves in religion is Richard Dawkins with a hangover and it's simply not the case. The 'deeply uncomfortable with being held accountable' is just a generalisation similar to all 'All X are Y' bullshit type arguments.

C'mon man, your other stuff in this thread has been really thought-provoking and interesting, don't shrink to this sort of garbage now.


In my experience, a certain level of garbage-posting is necessary. It discloses my conflicting interests or prejudices underlying my argumentation, and it also provides anti-sensitivity training to the recipient, which helps them to mature as a person.
Last edited by Ankenland on Mon Sep 21, 2020 1:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Albrenia
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Postby Albrenia » Thu Apr 02, 2020 2:29 am

Ankenland wrote:
Albrenia wrote:You're thinking everyone who disbelieves in religion is Richard Dawkins with a hangover and it's simply not the case. The 'deeply uncomfortable with being held accountable' is just a generalisation similar to all 'All X are Y' bullshit type arguments.

C'mon man, your other stuff in this thread has been really thought-provoking and interesting, don't shrink to this sort of garbage now.


The only reasons to be an atheist instead of an agnostic is if you look in the mirror in the morning and see Richard Dawkins's bloodshot eyes looking back at you, or if you didn't understand the question, or thought that "false" and "unfalsfiable" were the same things, or thought you could evaluate the probability of something happening once in a situation you have seen zero examples of.

In my experience, a certain level of garbage-posting is necessary. It discloses my conflicting interests or prejudices underlying my argumentation, and it also provides anti-sensitivity training to the recipient, which helps them to mature as a person.


You seem to believe that Atheists are only Anti-Theists. That's only some of us. The majority of us would become theists were any credible evidence of potent enough strength presented to us, myself included.

Also, thank you for taking time to work towards my betterment as a person. :lol:

I'll try to answer your questions on your other posts when I've a little more time to consider them more fully. Sorry for the wait.
Last edited by Albrenia on Thu Apr 02, 2020 2:34 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Vivolkha
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Postby Vivolkha » Thu Apr 02, 2020 2:30 am

Ankenland wrote:
Vivolkha wrote:1st point: humans are social animals, and thus require a balance of selfishness and altruism to survive. The latter is worth cultivating indeed, but religion is not required for it.


Again I concede that, since anti-religious communist societies exist, religion is clearly not required. What I argue here is that it is beneficial.

While there are many ways to cultivate altruism through operant conditioning etc, what I am arguing is that the only rational reason you can provide a rational person to not be selfish is to propose a metaphysical mechanism which makes it impossible to externalize costs.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cost_externalizing

So you are operating under the assumption that religion makes it impossible to externalize costs?
Side note, but communism has a very wide range of problems that are not related to their anti-religious stance.

Ankenland wrote:
Vivolkha wrote:2nd point: your own best interest might not be behaving in a selfish way, as the benefit you get from benefitting others is frequently larger than benefitting yourself at the expense of others, even if this benefit is not material (feelings of acceptance and belonging to a community, being unexpectedly helped later, etc.). None of this requires religion.


This is a contradiction. It is always in my own best interest to behave in a selfish way - this is a tautology. If cooperating with other people gets me more of what I want than acting at their expense, the selfish thing to do is to cooperate. Businessmen do this every day.

Because I worded it badly, I'm guessing. If selfishness derives in cooperation, which benefits the whole community as well as you, then cooperation is the way to go. This goes from ethically questionable business masterminds to basic social cohesion between neighbours.

Ankenland wrote:
Vivolkha wrote:3rd point: I really don't get what you are trying to argue here. For one, where does the assumption that we are in a simulation come from? How do you distinguish the simulation from reality (if both are indistinguisable, then there is no point in asking if the simulation is real or not, because it is your reality regardless)? If God is superrational, why does He assume His imperfect creations are superrational as well?


This is not exactly the right question.

Many games have shown that the best way to play a game, if you do not know how many times you will play against the same player, is to begin by being superrational, add in a reasonable degree of error-tolerance according to the game, and then to play rationally (seflishly) once your error-tolerance has been exceeded.

If we accept the simulation hypothesis, then we will be in a game, in which we will have to form some strategy for how to deal with the populations we will simulate, AND in which we are most likely being simulated, AND in which the level of reality simulating us is also playing the same game.

Superrationality is the correct strategy.

So again you are tying back to the assumption that we are in a simulation?
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ArenaC
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Postby ArenaC » Thu Apr 02, 2020 2:33 am

The Right Hand of the King wrote:Well, because I am Catholic, I am obviously biased. With that being said, religion is needed for a society to function because that's where we get morals from. From our morals, come our laws.

An atheist myself— can definitely see where you’re coming from
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Postby Purple Rats » Thu Apr 02, 2020 2:33 am

Vivolkha wrote:So again you are tying back to the assumption that we are in a simulation?


It reminded me Bo Burnham song "from God's perspective" :

You are not my children, you are bad game of sims :lol2:
Last edited by Purple Rats on Thu Apr 02, 2020 2:34 am, edited 2 times in total.

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ArenaC
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Postby ArenaC » Thu Apr 02, 2020 2:38 am

But let’s think— religion has built societies for millennia, the way it was.. maybe always.. until at least 1776, and even then after a good amount of society was built on religion (how it still is today).
Like someone else said, it’s not required (anymore), per se, but it’s beneficial.
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Postby Respublika SErbska » Thu Apr 02, 2020 2:52 am

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Region of Dwipantara
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Postby Region of Dwipantara » Thu Apr 02, 2020 3:08 am

ArenaC wrote:But let’s think— religion has built societies for millennia, the way it was.. maybe always.. until at least 1776, and even then after a good amount of society was built on religion (how it still is today).
Like someone else said, it’s not required (anymore), per se, but it’s beneficial.

There is also a strong case against that. Most of the times, scientific and technological advancements happens despite of religion – not because of it. The Enlightenment, Islam's massive decline after increasing religious conservstivism under Al-Ghazali, etc.
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