30th September 2008

“Those who worry about the removal of public school-sponsored religious practices and doing away with sectarian prayers at meetings of county commissioners might take solace in knowing that although religion can encourage moral behaviour, most of us will continue to be good citizens whether or not religion influences us. And looking around the world where so much cruelty is practised in the name of religion, perhaps we will discover someday that, without religion, we can be more inclined to be empathetic with strangers and generous with foreigners and feel loyal to our fellow human beings in spite of racial and cultural differences.”

Anthony Layng

6 Responses to “30th September 2008”

  1. chris Says:

    Um, Amen!

  2. Oxymoronic Christhinker Says:

    I agree.

  3. ENTROPY Says:

    Completely agree… I find it curious that so many people need religion to act as their moral compass. I spent 8 long years in a parochial school only to learn that religion is not about morality, rather oppression, dominance, and control. Fear of the consequences, in my opinion, is the least of the deciding factors on which morality should be determined.

    So, you’ll go to hell if you’re naughty, but to heaven if your nice? What kind of morality is that? Morality should exist outside of consequences, i.e., it’s wrong because it hurts people or animals; it’s bad because it harms someone someone emotionally, it’s wrong because it causes others to suffer… not because you’ll go to hell for it.

    Whats wrong with the “simplest” (if anything this complex can be explained simply) of all explanations…

    Morality is the determination of whether an action causes or relieves suffering?

  4. Chris Says:

    AND, what kind of mean old bastard God would make masturbation so fun and then tell you you’re going to hell for it? Geeze what a tosser.

    sorry.

  5. Oxymoronic Christhinker Says:

    ENTROPY says:
    “I spent 8 long years in a parochial school only to learn that religion is not about morality, rather oppression, dominance, and control. Fear of the consequences, in my opinion, is the least of the deciding factors on which morality should be determined.”

    Those who exersized their “oppresion, dominance, and control” over you do not do what they do for fear of the consequences; they do so because they fear there are no consequences (actually, they KNOW there are no consequences), and so they create consequences for you and try all they can to hold you to them. Were they “gods,” they would indeed send you to heaven or hell, according to their will, and gleefully either way. God does niether.

    “So, you’ll go to hell if you’re naughty, but to heaven if your nice? What kind of morality is that?”

    Whatever heaven or hell there is has happened, is happening, and will happen, right here on Mother Earth. God does not play go-to-heaven/hell games with his/her/its/? children. As for morality, see my final post on yesterday’s AQOTD.

    Chris says:
    “. . . what kind of mean old bastard God would make masturbation so fun and then tell you you’re going to hell for it?”

    Seems to me any God that makes us capable of having such fun is a god-damned good God! And I’m not sorry!

  6. ENTROPY Says:

    Sorry, my point wasn’t as clear as I had hoped. You’re right, Oxy, those who are in control do know that there are no consequences. But, it’s those people that use the fear of hell (or whatever) to force their morality onto the believers (especially children… Jesus Camp ring a bell, anyone?).

    That’s the problem with almost any hierarchal control; the ones in power do not (need to) fear the consequences they use to control the powerless. But the idea of morality is personal and cultural, and should not fit into the same schema as law.

    It’s fine with me that you take a “different” approach to the idea of heaven and hell. But for the mainstream Christians out there… heaven and hell is still the reward and punishment for your actions. For them, morality is built upon fear (or worse… attainment of reward), and that’s just wrong.