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Is religion overall beneficial on the human race?

Discussion in 'Opinion Polls' started by Admin Singh, Jul 5, 2010.

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Is religion overall beneficial on the human race? Share your views

  1. Yes, why?

    5 vote(s)
    50.0%
  2. No, why?

    2 vote(s)
    20.0%
  3. Not Sure!

    2 vote(s)
    20.0%
  4. Yes and No, why?

    2 vote(s)
    20.0%
  1. Admin Singh

    Admin Singh
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    Source: Debate.org | Religion on the whole benefits the human race.

    1. Is illogical

    The conception of God that most people around the world have simply cannot exist. First, let me define what most people think of as God: An all-powerful being, who created the universe, who is all-good. Now, you would think that a universe created by such a being would be a wonderful place to live in. Of course, as we all know, this is not the case. Innocent children get raped by pedophiles. Criminal CEO's rob people of billions and get away with it. People in third world countries work their asses off and yet they live horrible lives. If God is both willing and capable of stopping these perversions of justice, then why doesn't he? The answer, of course, is that he doesn't exist.

    2. Obstructs science.
    Science has proven more to us in the last 10 years than religion has for 3 Millennium. Who stopped Galileo from informing people that the Earth revolved around the Earth? THE CHURCH. Who Killed people who thought of new ideas? THE CHURCH. Who kept all the Greek, Roman, and Latin scientific texts and literature from the common public during the middle ages? THE CHURCH. Not to mention the only period in history the church was in complete power was the worst of all time. Refute this please.

    3. Corrupts man

    Defined by urban dictionary:
    Allah Boom: 1. These two words mark the end of a suicide bomber's life. He or she will scream anything related to their god and detonate their bomb which is attached to their body, sacrificing themselves for religious reasons. It is believed that doing so will reward the bomber with 72 virgins in Heaven. ( Or so it is said )

    Right now suicide bombers end their life in hope that they will go to paradise. Also right now, Christians say thanks in hope that they will go to heaven. One evil, the other pointless.

    4. Examples

    1) God does not cause evil, the Devil does.
    OK, this one is perhaps the stupidest one. If you believe the Devil is capable of subverting God's will and causing evil, then you believe that the Devil is as powerful as God, and you shouldn't call yourself a monotheist. Plus, if the Devil can do whatever he wishes despite God's will, then God is not all powerful. Therefore this argument doesn't fly,

    2) God is all good, evil comes from man's free choice.
    I don't buy this one either. God created everything (according to the religious people). Therefore, he must have created both humans and free will. Now why would he create free will if he knew some men would choose evil? You might say that evil people turn away from God, so he has no responsibility towards them. Ok, fine. But what about the innocent, good people that are harmed by the evil people? Doesnt God care? Of course not, because he doesnt exist.

    3) Evil exists in the world for reasons we don't and CAN'T understand. God's reasons are unknowable because we are mere puny humans. This is probably the best reason, but I still don't buy it. According to this statement, you are supposed to just accept evil because you trust that god has a reason for it. Now, I simply can't accept this. Why would God give us intelligence if we weren't meant to use it? If God simply intended for us to be herded around like sheep, why didn't he make us sheep? The answer, of course, is that God did not make us, because he does not exist.
     
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    #1 Admin Singh, Jul 5, 2010
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2010
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  3. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    Aman Singh ji

    Do you think it would be a good idea to clarify that these are or are not necessarily your own beliefs, but they are arguments from an Internet debate site?

    LOL Otherwise you might get lumped in there with Joginder Singh of Rozanna Spokesman and others who were found guilty of asking honest questions.
     
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  4. Seeker9

    Seeker9 United Kingdom
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    Sat Sri Akal Aman Singh Ji

    What a great question to get a debate going. I don't want to start with a lengthy post...I daresay they will follow! But for now, I wonder if I could make a distinction between religion and belief in God?? (And I don't want to get into a debate right -away about what is God either)

    I think it is fair to say that over time, religious differences have been the source of great conflict, which clearly is of no overall benefit. So, if we look at what is at the core of most religious teachings which is a belief in "God" and usually a moral code and guidance to what is right and what is wrong...then there is scope for this to be of benefit to the human race.

    (Again I am talking in very high - level general terms here)

    But following on from one of your initial points, let me seek some guidance from you and others here...

    When natural disasters occur and tens of thousands of people die at once, I find it very difficult to think about it in positive spiritual terms. Were they all meant to die at that same time? Was this their collective karmic fate? Was this God's will for them. These are questions that have troubled me greatly in the past

    Grateful for your thoughts

    Thank you
     
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  5. jasbirkaleka

    jasbirkaleka India
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    Organised religion has done more harm than good to mankind.
    More brutalities and astrocities have been committed in the name of religion then for any other cause.
    Religion instead of making us pius, makes us egoistic and arrogant,because as long as one believes that his religion is the best,he will always look down upon other religions.and that, in a way, breeds hatred and intolerance.
    Religion makes us live in a cocoon,thus hampering our thouhgts and limiting our horizen.:disgustedmunda:
     
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    #4 jasbirkaleka, Jul 6, 2010
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2010
  6. Seeker9

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    Dear Jasbirkaleka Ji

    Everything you have said is true

    It is true religion has resulted in conflict...but then again so have other things like political ideology, skin colour and outright racism - just look at the Second World War

    It is also true that religion can result in a superiority context...but how much of that is a human output and how much of that is down to the religion itself

    I don't think any of the great scriptures (and certainly not SGGSJ) would advocate that sort of outlook on life and attitude to one's fellow man. Yet within Sikhism itself, we have caste issues.....

    Personally, I would suggest that is down to the individual and their psyche and their environmental inputs (upbringing, education, family and friends etc) There must already have been a seed there that has been fertilised, albeit negatively, by exposure to the religion. And we can see examples of negative exposure when we look at terrorist training camps for example...

    But I am sure you have met plenty of religious people in your lifetime who are genuine and positive as well....

    I guess a good question to ask would be if we were all Godless and united as Atheists or Agnostics, would conflict disappear? Would negative behaviours disappear??

    I'm not sure it would.......
     
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  7. polpol

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    I wish to participate but may I say that I am not trying to convince anyone about anything. I come from an atheist background and made up my own theology so to speak, according to my own life expereances. About the debate presented by Aman Singh:
    So God created humans and all the universe but for some that is not enough. God gave us the most precious gift, the gift of life and a world plenty of everything we need to survive and prosper but for some that is just not enough... Come on! Isn't that like a spoiled brat of a son who instead of showing gratitude to his father for giving him life and the best he could do, would unmercilly blame his father for all the problems he is facing? Is it the father's fault if the son makes stupid choices in life. Why should God be responsible for all the bad things humans do to themselves and to other humans. Though we like to imagine God as human, he is not and we can't blame him for being "inhumane" when he allows bad things to happen to good people. God gave us a big brain and a heart to help us figure out things when the brain does not suffice in making the right decisions. We cannot blame God for creating a most unique type of species, one that can evolve not only through natural evolution but through reflexion and will. God wanted us free, how can we blame him for being like a loving father who trusts his children and who knows that even if they are weak and troublesome, with time, they have the potential of becoming strong and virtous. Nobody I am sure would want to change his human condition for that of an ant or a cow who cannot even imagine being different from what they are. God made us different and I personally like it like that. I too hate religions for monopolising and perverting spirituality but it's not God that invented religion, it's humans. Spirituality is one trait among others that define humanity. We are not only social, rational beings, we are also capable of creativity scientifically and artistically, we invent songs, poems, we are capable of going far beyond. We have a sense for the devine. Where does that come from? Why are we not satisfied with our fate like the other living creatures?
    As for science, it seems that it is following the same pattern as with religion before. Today we do not see many free thinkers like Galileo and other early scientists. What we see is scientists that have become the proletarians of multinational enterprises who impose on researchers not only the subjects of their scientific inquiry but more and more often the results. Scientists are getting fed up with such practices and want more freedom from the dictatorship of finance, the new religion for some.
    Also, we see scientists (real ones), adopt a more humble attitude in regards to faith and spirituality. I heard a very prominent scientist on the radio. He was asked a question regarding faith and he was quick to say that he has no competence to answer such questions. He said his work is limited to scientific inquiry and has nothing to say on any issue that lies beyond the realm of science. He simply refused to assume the role of High Priest that some want to bestow on scientists.
    It makes me sad to see people turn their backs on God because of the abuses of organised religions. In a way God also is the victim of religion.
    Funny, I enjoy sharing my vews here whereas in real life I never dare talk about my
    beleafs because atheism has become the dominant ideology which is normal since people here suffered so much from the tyranny of the Catholic Church.
    So wether I am a beleaver or a non beleaver there seems to always be some self proclaimed authority that wants to tell me what to think! I started to think about the existance of God precisely because I felt I shouldn't and I don't like being told what or what not to beleave in. So in conclusion it's all about freedom and our ability to question and confront what is supposed to be taken for granted.
     
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  8. Seeker9

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    "When natural disasters occur and tens of thousands of people die at once, I find it very difficult to think about it in positive spiritual terms. Were they all meant to die at that same time? Was this their collective karmic fate? Was this God's will for them. These are questions that have troubled me greatly in the past"

    This is from one of my earlier posts on this thread

    I do not know how to answer this, so would appreciate some guidance as it is something that to date, I have been unable to reconcile with my beliefs
     
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  9. polpol

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    Dear seeker, I ask the same questions too and I would like to know if there is such a thing as collective karma. I don't know if it may be of any help to you but a very wise person told me that we must keep in mind that we are not in heaven here. This is Planet Earth, this is not paradise. So on earth, volcanos erupt, there are earthquakes and all sorts of natural disasters that cause people to die but death is part of life and we do not chose when or how we die. There is nothing we can do but to be resilient as earthlings. That person also said that while God may not interfere to avoid bad things happening to innocent people, He always gives us the strength to go through the most difficult times. That reminds me of a nice little prayer (I don't remember from which religion, but that's not important), It says: " God, please give me the wisdom to accept what I cannot change and the courage to change what can be changed" Nice, no?...Blessings dear Seeker!
     
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  10. findingmyway

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    Depends how the religion is followed and for what reason. Those who use religion to separate people are massaging their won ego only. Religion has also bred much goodness. Many charities doing some of the toughest aid work around the world are faith based. Due to religion, more people think about others (whether its only because they are mandated to or are inspired to is another story). As humans we always focus on the negative (just switch on the news and you will see).
    There are always 2 sides to every story!
     
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  11. Ambarsaria

    Ambarsaria Canada
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    First things first true Sikhism based on “Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji” and the teachings of the Ten Gurus is not,

    • Illogical
      • The messages and teachings are reasoned out logically and at great lengths and repeatedly. The core of the teachings is driven towards ”understanding” rather than “blind faith”.
    • Obstructs science
      • Teaches one to follow and develop understanding without making Scientific claims or disputing any wisdom, how can that be obstructing Science?
    • Corrupts man
      • If encouraging “understanding of grand scheme of things, recognizing the vastness, etc.” corrupts, it is hard not be corrupted! This is so untrue.

    1. Is illogical


    …… God: An all-powerful being, who created the universe, who is all-good ……

    Unfortunately one has to remember that the shallower you think the less you are going to understand.

    Let me explain, Sikhism teaches everything having a place in the Universe and interlinked to everything else with a common source for all. The examples given are hardly descriptive of the greatness of the “universal truth” espoused in Sikhism. To put a positive value as the following actually achieve anything internally is absurd,

    • Pedophiles, Criminal CEO's, People in third world countries, etc.
    • If the grandness of the ultimate that we are part of did not exist, why would earth spin to create and support life. If it did not spin there will be two parts without life, one frozen and the other scorched. So to understand Hell (euphemistically), that is not earth today but could have been possible is a miracle of good.
    • We also got to recognize that in the colloquial concept of God (Sikhism focuses on understanding of the truth rather than God), sameness of all is not a design concept but variety is. Within the variety there are no exclusions of ugliness physically, mentally or all other possibilities. Similarly within the variety there no exclusions for beauty physically, mentally or all other possibilities. That is part of the deal in grand understanding of creation.
    • Grand creator does not just create good as observed by me or any other writer or evil similarly. It is a separate topic to discuss whether personal evil has global benefits in the grand scheme of things.
    • Global needs to be understood beyond one, many and this earth that we live on


    2. Obstructs science.
    Science has proven more to us in the last 10 years than religion has for 3 Millennium. Who stopped Galileo from informing people that the Earth revolved around the Earth? THE CHURCH. Who Killed people who thought of new ideas? THE CHURCH. Who kept all the Greek, Roman, and Latin scientific texts and literature from the common public during the middle ages? THE CHURCH. Not to mention the only period in history the church was in complete power was the worst of all time. Refute this please.



    3. Corrupts man

    Defined by urban dictionary:
    Allah Boom: 1. These two words mark the end of a suicide bomber's life. He or she will scream anything related to their god and detonate their bomb which is attached to their body, sacrificing themselves for religious reasons. It is believed that doing so will reward the bomber with 72 virgins in Heaven. ( Or so it is said )

    Right now suicide bombers end their life in hope that they will go to paradise. Also right now, Christians say thanks in hope that they will go to heaven. One evil, the other pointless.

        • Example is the power of brain washing. All tools are available in mankind. It so happens the handlers of these men are using religion. I am sure one can find other ways to cause people to explode.
        • For example,
          • Believe in a cause
            • Kamikaze pilots
            • Buddhist monks self immolation
            • Soldiers on killing missions where the probability of them coming out alive is as close to zero as possible
              • Canadian soldiers landing on Normandy beaches in World War II
              • Chinese soldiers under armed attacking India in 1962 where the soldier behind will pick up arms from the dead ahead


    4. Examples

    1) God does not cause evil, the Devil does.



    • Sikhism does not separate that one entity does Good and the other does Evil. It is all one and all inter-related.
    • Sikhism states that there consequences of actions but does not stop you from any action though suggests good things to do.


    2) God is all good, evil comes from man's free choice.


    • Same answers as for Example 1) above.


    3) Evil exists in the world for reasons we don't and CAN'T understand.


    • Evil perceived actions of Humans or life are part of a choice for life with consequences, to choose to do what is desired. This is Sikhism.
    • Perceived Evil actions of nature (Earthquakes, famines, floods, are part of the Universe unfolding as it does. Such items can be devastating and unfair to one but are inconsequential in the grand scheme of things for the Universe.
    • If Universe did not support our existence we would have been hit by a meteorite long time ago. Take the chill pill.
    Sorry for the long post.

    Sat Sri Akal.
     
  12. Ambarsaria

    Ambarsaria Canada
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    <!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:WordDocument> <w:View>Normal</w:View> <w:Zoom>0</w:Zoom> <w:punctuationKerning/> <w:ValidateAgainstSchemas/> <w:SaveIfXMLInvalid>false</w:SaveIfXMLInvalid> <w:IgnoreMixedContent>false</w:IgnoreMixedContent> <w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText>false</w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText> <w:Compatibility> <w:BreakWrappedTables/> <w:SnapToGridInCell/> <w:WrapTextWithPunct/> <w:UseAsianBreakRules/> <w:DontGrowAutofit/> <w:UseFELayout/> </w:Compatibility> <w:BrowserLevel>MicrosoftInternetExplorer4</w:BrowserLevel> </w:WordDocument> </xml><![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:LatentStyles DefLockedState="false" LatentStyleCount="156"> </w:LatentStyles> </xml><![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 10]> <style> /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;} </style> <![endif]-->Seeker9 ji very thoughtful and very tough question.

    As it is said, (“Jis tun laageh so tun jaane, kaun jaane peerh prayee..”) only one who is going through a suffering can understand such, who can understand someone else’s suffering!

    It is rare if not impossible, for all of us as individuals to not face such a situation through self, friend, relatives or other aspects including loved animals, objects, etc.

    The major aspect of cause in this is “Attachment”of “What is!” versus “How it came to be”.
    o You say that thousands of people die at once!

    • Isn’t it true that thousands of people are also born in near time, at once globally (may be not in the same place)
    • “Simultaneously how others are coming to be”
    World Birth/Death Rates (2009 est.)<sup>1</sup>
    <table class="MsoNormalTable" style="background: none repeat scroll 0% 0% antiquewhite;" border="0" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0"> <tbody><tr style=""> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    Birth Rate:
    </td> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    </td> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    Death Rate:
    </td> </tr> <tr style=""> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    20 births/1,000 population​
    </td> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    </td> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    8 deaths/1,000 population​
    </td> </tr> <tr style=""> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    128.9 million births per year​
    </td> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    </td> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    53.4 million people die each year​
    </td> </tr> <tr style=""> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    353,015 births per day​
    </td> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    </td> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    146,357 people die each day​
    </td> </tr> <tr style=""> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    14,709 births each hour​
    </td> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    </td> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    6098 people die each hour​
    </td> </tr> <tr style=""> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    245 births each minute​
    </td> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    </td> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    102 people die each minute​
    </td> </tr> <tr style=""> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    4 births each second of every day​
    </td> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    </td> <td style="padding: 3pt;" nowrap="nowrap">
    almost 2 people die each second​
    </td> </tr> </tbody></table> ​

    • But if one believes we are all one, does it matter!

    • Personally through “Attachment” it does, without “Attachment” it shouldn’t.
    • “Is it a transformation or something else”
      • Universe is for ever in transformation at micro, macro and other levels

    • This one aspect also governs each of our births, life and death
    • So all natural small or large changes need to be recognized as transformations

    • If people are part of such transformations, unfortunate as it seems and cruel as it looks, it still is transformation which happens (stated right in your face style in "Mool Mantar"),

    • ਨਿਰਭਉ: Nirbhayu … without fear
    • ਨਿਰਵੈਰੁ:Nirvairu … without enmity
    I hope this adds to the dialog.

    Sat Sri Akal.
     

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