Rational Response Squad based on irrational fear?

centure7
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Rational Response Squad based on irrational fear?

This is regarding the Rational Response Squad goal of "fighting to free humanity from the mind disorder known as theism". Surely, the members of the Rational Response Squad joined NOT because of an irrational fear of religion, but because of numerous well-conducted studies showing the harmful effects of religion. Its funny, before this website informed me that I needed to be freed from religion mental disorders, I thought of religion as harmless as an *invisible pink elephant*. I guess I should join the cause upon reading all about the complete objective studies showing how harmful religion is. Surely such studies must have taken enormous work!

Any way, after reading the studies over, I'll either join this website's cause, or form a new Rational Response Squad of my own, with the stated purpose of "Fighting to free humanity from the mind disorder known as irrational anti-religion."


BenfromCanada
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The Patrician wrote: True,

The Patrician wrote:

True, I love Dawkins as an intellectual proponent of reason whilst hating his smugness and confrontational approach.

But then again he's sold gazillions of books, some of which might have opened people's eyes so what do I know? Eye-wink

Interestingly, I watched a Brett Keane video recently where he claimed Dawkins wasn't confrontational enough, that he let theists walk all over him. 

centure7 wrote:

Regardless, does the lack of objective research showing that religion is a negative force indicate that the RRS exists for emotional reasons? I believe it does.

There's a lot of objective evidence, regardless of the research. The areas and eras where religion has ruled have been the worst, generally. If religion wasn't negative, this would not be so.


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The Patrician wrote: Well,

The Patrician wrote:

Well, I'm here because of the debate and some of the guys on another board I frequent (mainly moderate theists and atheists - we tend to barbecue fundies) mentioned the site.

Ah, but how did they hear about it? I admit it's possible that they, you, and others found it another way(and some most assuredly did), but when I found the site it was because of the blasphemy challenge being mentioned in an editorial in the L.A. Times. Most people who have found the site recently did so because of the blasphemy challenge gaining such notoriety.

The Patrician wrote:

I largely agree with you, I just worry that it's being noticed for the wrong reasons. If I as an atheist can think "WTF!?" then what do the moderate theists think?

You're right though - i's just my opinion and it may not be how things actually pan out.

Actually I think all approaches to the situation are equally valid and necessary. There are a lot of atheists out there that argue against theism, and think the RRS and people like me take things too far. While I disagree with that notion, I don't disagree that they should keep doing things the way they are doing them. You supply the sugar and I'll supply the salt. Eye-wink

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centure7
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BenfromCanada wrote: The

BenfromCanada wrote:
The areas and eras where religion has ruled have been the worst, generally. If religion wasn't negative, this would not be so.
Do you mean that literally areas where church has authority over the state? Keep in mind that there are reverse instances (England?) where the state establishes a church. In those instances, would you consider that an equal indicator of religious rule? I would consider it a lesser indicator.

Also, in some areas there is a more religious population with a church that has little government authority. In that situation, do you also see a negative impact?


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centure7

centure7 wrote:

BenfromCanada wrote:
The areas and eras where religion has ruled have been the worst, generally. If religion wasn't negative, this would not be so.
Do you mean that literally areas where church has authority over the state? Keep in mind that there are reverse instances (England?) where the state establishes a church. In those instances, would you consider that an equal indicator of religious rule? I would consider it a lesser indicator.

Also, in some areas there is a more religious population with a church that has little government authority. In that situation, do you also see a negative impact?

For the first part: More or less, however, the country doesn't need to be directly ruled by the church to be a theocracy. For every England there's a couple of Irans.

For the second: Those areas don't exist. In EVERY area with a highly religious population, government is impacted by the church. 


Vastet
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The church of England wasn't

The church of England wasn't established by the English government, it merely broke away from Rome(catholics) in the 1500's or so. Correct me if I'm wrong, but if I remember correctly, it had more to do with removing the influence of Rome from England than it had with the state of England wanting to have the church under it's sway.

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Vastet wrote: The church of

Vastet wrote:
The church of England wasn't established by the English government, it merely broke away from Rome(catholics) in the 1500's or so. Correct me if I'm wrong, but if I remember correctly, it had more to do with removing the influence of Rome from England than it had with the state of England wanting to have the church under it's sway.

 

You're right.  CoE pretty much only exists because Henry VIII wanted to divorce his then wife and remarry and the Pope wouldn't sanction it.  Henry, not being one to turn down a golden opportunity, used this as a catalyst to break the Catholic church's hold on religion and to establish himself as the religious head of the country.  

Freedom of religious belief is an inalienable right. Stuffing that belief down other people's throats is not.


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centure7 wrote: Quote: You

centure7 wrote:

Quote:
You do a lot of babbling without making any points. Care to try again?
OK, I'll start over. I question what the Rational Response Squad can hope to accomplish. Their argument is that religion causes all sorts of horrible things, and therefore religion should be ended.

Sure, a lot of bad things have been done in the name of religion. So have a lot of good things! So far from the responses the only thing I'm told is "just look around, its obvious". And yes, it is obvious that many bad things are done because of religion. Having attended church many times, its just as obvious to me that many good things are done in the name of religion. I believe that Christians could match, meet, and perhaps exceed each one of those stories with something good that religion has done. Some churches actively help community members with financial problems. I've seen many hospitals and universities with religious foundations.

Yes, in 2001 there were at least about 3,000 people murdered because of a religion-based dispute. News focuses on the negative, which seems to be a primary cause of irrational fear of religion. Now, how many were saved that year because of religion? My point is that because both good and bad things frequently happen in the name of religion, I should expect to see rational evidence of a net negative effect before joining the club.

Some churches also buy their pastor $4 million houses for him so he won't have to pay taxes on it. http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2007703170416

"Offensive or not, sacred or not - religion and superstition – Islam, Christianity, Hinduism, Judaism, Scientology and so on - must be open to all forms of criticism and ridicule." - Maryam Namazie


centure7
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vger wrote: Some churches

vger wrote:
Some churches also buy their pastor $4 million houses for him so he won't have to pay taxes on it. http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2007703170416

The link was a little disturbing. How was the $40,000 going to be spent in that case? Considering the neighborhood, maybe the 40k was going to beautify their already overfluffed neighborhood. Maybe no harm was done on the account of a religion.

I should also point out that the vast majority of pastors, even in the US, are poorly paid.


centure7
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BenfromCanada, what kinds

BenfromCanada, what kinds of things do the religious authorites do with their political power to cause a negative impact on society? Responses from anyone else would be helpful as well.


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centure7

centure7 wrote:
BenfromCanada, what kinds of things do the religious authorites do with their political power to cause a negative impact on society? Responses from anyone else would be helpful as well.

Recently? Hm...Blue laws (prohibitions against selling goods and providing services on certain days, like Sundays, due to purely religious reasons. These obviously discriminate against those who don't follow these religions, yet want a beer on Sunday, and these laws also harm the economy). The prohibition of atheists serving jury duty, testifying in court, and holding an elected office in several states (all of those are laws that are in effect in 6 U.S. states, at least) Anti-homosexual legislation that prohibits gay couples adopting and marrying wouldn't exist if there was no religion, and that's undoubtedly negative discrimination. Intelligent Design is taught IN SCIENCE CLASSES in Kansas, because of religion, and that's not good because it suppresses actual science. Science classes all over the U.S.A. and Canada HAVE to mention the christian creation account when teaching evolution, by law, which again, suppresses real science. Religion was actually one of the justifiers for the Iraq war, and the war in Afghanistan, and war is not good. Religious figures in the U.S.A. are influencing elections through their influence, which undermines democracy, especially with such an obediant crowd (Pat Robertson, for example, said on more than one occasion that God wanted George W. Bush to be president, and if you don't think that influenced at least a few voters, you're  foolish). Anti-abortion legislation is being signed in various U.S. states, because of religious influence, and that leads to all sorts of negative things, such as inflated birth rates, extra strains on society, increased poverty rates, etc. Let's not even mention obvious theocracies like Bhutan and Iran and Saudi Arabia, and partial theocracies like Thailand, in which brutality and religious persecution run rampant.

Is that enough?


centure7
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BenfromCanada wrote: Is

BenfromCanada wrote:
Is that enough?

Depends. Is that the bulk of the negativity? For example, wouldn't you want to throw in the Jews vs. Palestinians conflict?


BenfromCanada
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centure7

centure7 wrote:

BenfromCanada wrote:
Is that enough?

Depends. Is that the bulk of the negativity? For example, wouldn't you want to throw in the Jews vs. Palestinians conflict?

That is, at least in part, a racial conflict. There's a chance they'd still be fighting Jews vs. Arabs, even if they followed the same religion. However, there are other conflicts I could use, and other atrocities I could use. That was simply off the top of my head.


centure7
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Okay BenfromCanada, I'll

Okay BenfromCanada, I'll ask for everything positive about religion off the top of somoene's head. I'll find someone that I think will give me a detailed answer.


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centure7 wrote: This is

centure7 wrote:

This is regarding the Rational Response Squad goal of "fighting to free humanity from the mind disorder known as theism". Surely, the members of the Rational Response Squad joined NOT because of an irrational fear of religion, but because of numerous well-conducted studies showing the harmful effects of religion. Its funny, before this website informed me that I needed to be freed from religion mental disorders, I thought of religion as harmless as an *invisible pink elephant*. I guess I should join the cause upon reading all about the complete objective studies showing how harmful religion is. Surely such studies must have taken enormous work! Any way, after reading the studies over, I'll either join this website's cause, or form a new Rational Response Squad of my own, with the stated purpose of "Fighting to free humanity from the mind disorder known as irrational anti-religion."

Oh boy, one of the pollitically correct never fart in public people.

It is not illegal to be nuts. You probibly think we are nuts, I could care less.

If religion were treated like the "invisable pink elephant" and not taken so seriously as to fuel politics and war, it would be harmless.

I'm not going to demand the arrest of a homeless person walking down the street claiming to be Napolean. But if for example I am Jewish, and a Nazi is making laws that prevent me from being treated humanly and equally, you are damnd right I'd call that a mind dissorder.

The problem with religion is that it is not happy with treating itself as a passtime. It would be no skin off my nose if my neighbor beleived that they were going to be magically plucked of the planet during the raptue. However, these people vote and sit in office and write laws that I am forced by goverment to obey.

If religous people knew how to seperate religion from politics I wouldnt be bothered by weither I thought they were nuts or not.

Would you think it is ok, if time after time,  you demonstrated that the earth rotated around the sun, the people around you not only scoffed, but condemned you and had you arrested?

I dont care if someone thinks I am nuts, I am sure many people might merely because I am an atheist. But the difference between an atheist and a theist is that we dont rely on ancient stories of Santa for adults.   We are not claiming that disimbodied super natural brains that live in the cosmos pull our strings.

I wouldnt care that people make these claims(any religion). But when you believe that is your right to promote naked assertions without backing them up or allowing them to be challenged, I call that a mind dissorder. Hitler demanded worship of the Nazi party, the 9/11 hijackers were sending the message, "Obey Allah or else"  

Religion is the worship of a person, nation, or cult of personality  or deity. Just because something "feels" good, doesnt make it so, and without being able to examine what makes us feel good to see if it actually is good, we are promoting mental illness.

 

 

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BenfromCanada
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centure7 wrote: Okay

centure7 wrote:
Okay BenfromCanada, I'll ask for everything positive about religion off the top of somoene's head. I'll find someone that I think will give me a detailed answer.
Taken in context, you'll find no real positive.


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centure7, I would suggest

centure7, I would suggest you read The End of Faith by Sam Harris.

 


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Your post would be witty if

Your post would be witty if it wasn't so clumsy.

Anyway, I can't remember the last time an invisible pink elephant tried to legislate morality.

Do you live in America?