18th May 2012

“To my mind the biggest flaw in any religion's credibility is that every society has evolved a belief system that each insists is fundamental truth. Broad-minded as I am, I can hardly believe them all, so I believe none of them.”

Charlie Munn

7 Responses to “18th May 2012”

  1. Sinjin Smythe Says:

    That and the whole reliance upon the supernatural. I mean if the all being master of time, space, and dimension is also some unseen actor operating beyond the senses of his own creation then one has to ask “why?”

    Not “why?” and then some endless stream of hypotheses, but why would something be said to be both omnipotent and omnipresent, then also imperceptible? Seems a stupid waste of effort!

  2. Dan Says:

    Apologies – this doesn’t relate to today’s quote, but I thought commenters and visitors here would like to know that there is a special “Human Conflict” issue of Science: http://www.sciencemag.org/site/special/conflict/index.xhtml

    The article that is perhaps most interesting to us here is the one that touches on Religious and Sacred Imperitives in Human Conflict. It’s behind a subscription firewall though, so I can’t read the whole thing. The abstract though:

    Religion, in promoting outlandish beliefs and costly rituals, increases ingroup trust but also may increase mistrust and conflict with outgroups. Moralizing gods emerged over the last few millennia, enabling large-scale cooperation, and sociopolitical conquest even without war. Whether for cooperation or conflict, sacred values, like devotion to God or a collective cause, signal group identity and operate as moral imperatives that inspire nonrational exertions independent of likely outcomes. In conflict situations, otherwise mundane sociopolitical preferences may become sacred values, acquiring immunity to material incentives. Sacred values sustain intractable conflicts that defy “business-like” negotiation, but also provide surprising opportunities for resolution.

  3. The Heretic Says:

    Sinjin, I addressed your comments on yesterday’s thread.

    As for today’s quote. People need to ‘believe’ in something. If science cannot tell them answers, then they will believe in anything, plausible or not. Most religions started thousands of years ago before science really started answering fundamental questions accurately. Tradition propels religion through the centuries as a lifestyle choice, although sometimes not much of a choice is involved. One must grapple with the concept that you are pitting tradition with science. Some people just don’t like it when you move their cheese!!

  4. Sinjin Smythe Says:

    Heretic,

    Groups of the like minded are more powerful than a single voice I agree, and that is precisely why legislation has been drafted to overturn the Supreme Court mistake you mention.

    The odd thing about political partys today is the mandate to subscribe to the party platform or not be supported by the party. I mean if the party leaders feel their positions are that important then they should run and not depend upon surrogates.

    Recently John Kerry feighed loss over Dick Lugar, as a moderate voice. John Kerry? That imbecile votes party line 97% of the time. Why is he necessary?

    Conversely Scott Brown votes party line 54% of the time.

    You either support the person’s principles, or that they are a mindless drone extension of some rarely seen actors. I fail to see how how supporting groups or parties or unions or corporations over individuals is tangential.

    I sympathize with what I think is at the core of what you are saying and hope to find common ground going forward.

    As for your comment today: This is common ground between us.

    Dan,

    I’ll check you link out shortly.

  5. Sinjin Smythe Says:

    Annals of Law
    Money Unlimited
    How Chief Justice John Roberts orchestrated the Citizens United decision

    Read more http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2012/05/21/120521fa_fact_toobin#ixzz1vEXCqjWn

  6. R J Says:

    i think ”WHY” is the most beautiful question.

  7. Sinjin Smythe Says:

    Agreed R j!