God in America by PBS

100percentAtheist
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God in America by PBS

In an attempt to educate myself in the American history in the retrospect of the evolution of religious doctrines, I am watching "God in America" by PBS.   I don't really understand how an intellectual person can still retain delusional beliefs after watching this film. 

 

I have about zero background in American history (well, I've heard about Columbus...), so I would greatly appreciate any comments on the historical and political accuracy of "God in America".

 

Thanks.

 

 


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I am watching it on pbs.org

I am watching it on pbs.org now.  I will comment later.

 

Shit! it is a six hour Frontline special...

 

 

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Answers in Gene...wrote:I'am watching it on PBS.Org

     A six hour documentary on Stupidity,no thanks,I can only listen to so much about religion and it's followers.       It does look good,but I would have to get back to you in three days.       "REASON"S  GREETINGS"

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100percentAtheist wrote: God in America

     This is a update,so far I watched 3 hrs. . This program is very well done (in my opinon).

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They were way to careful not

They were way to careful not to offend the religious for fear of having public funding cut off.

 

But I think you can see how religion became totally ingrained in the American culture. There has always been a great social advantage in appearing to be a believer rather than an atheist. So many 'intellectually persons' still remain religious for cultural reasons when it's convenient.

“Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful.” Seneca


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 EXC wrote:But I think you

 

EXC wrote:
But I think you can see how religion became totally ingrained in the American culture. There has always been a great social advantage in appearing to be a believer rather than an atheist. So many 'intellectually persons' still remain religious for cultural reasons when it's convenient.

 

That factor should probably be a good deal more prominent if you want my not so humble opinion.

 

We know what numbers tend to come up in general polls. 15~20% claim atheism. About as many more claim agnosticism or go for whatever is offered as the “no comment” option. However, there are without any real doubt many more people out there who are using some form of religion as a default for any number of reasons.

 

Personally, I suspect that the Unitarians and Buddhists are probably only in the other camp so that they can claim that they have something special going on. Well, many of them anyway. I can't see that they don't have a fair share of the self deluded among their numbers.

 

Then there are people who hold to whatever religion they claim for any number of other reasons. For example:

 

It is expected of them where they live.

 

It is a social circle they wish to take part in.

 

Possibly a place where business deals can be made among friends outside of public scrutiny (now that exclusive clubs are much harder to form for that very reason).

 

They don't live the life but they cannot give up the way they were brought up.

 

If there were a way to capture those numbers, I would bet that the actual count of the devoutly religious would turn out to be a minority to a similar extent as those of us who are willing to declare that they are real atheists.

 

Side note:

 

I forget what I was reading the other day but it was written by someone in the physical sciences. In the article, he was going into the religious leanings of scientists.

 

Now in polls, the number of scientists who are willing to express a religious affiliation runs about 50~55% depending on the specific poll. However, the author of the article has professional contact with a great many scientists. His personal estimations was that the percentage of scientists who are really devoutly religious in probably <5%. The others are religious so that they can maintain contact with society in general. Pretty much something to do with what to do at weddings and funerals.

 

 

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