Maybe religion is needed.

General discussions

Do some people need religion?

Total votes: 19
Kevin Ronayne
Posts: 53
Joined: Fri Feb 09, 2007 5:41 pm
Location: Galway

Post by Kevin Ronayne » Tue Mar 27, 2007 6:30 pm

Gee ... I feel exhausted just reading through this thread, and I'm a moderator at the RDF, where some threads go past the 100-page (2,000 post) mark!

Anyway, has anyone dealt with "belief for the sake of belief" argument yet? Or, as I like to call it, the Utilitarian argument. Arguing that religion is good because it makes people better has no bearing whatsoever on the claims of that religion. Anyway, there are plenty of ways to keep society quiet, such as bread and circuses, or the 21st century equivalent, Pizzas and Sky Sports (or Hello! Magazine, or whatever)! Or just let everyone take feel-good drugs.

Secondly, the whole point of arguing for religion as a source of morals is fatally undermined by the simple observation that religion can never make up it's mind what morals it wants to offer. Compare Ireland today to the the Bible belt of the US of A, or the fundamentalist Islamic societies. Better still, compare Ireland today with Ireland 20, 40, 60 years ago. What changed and why? Religion didn't change people, people changed religion. You might think that the current interpretation of Catholicism is (all things considered) a good one, but how have we even come to this point? The Church has had to be dragged kicking and screaming into conceding the most basic principles of morality and ethical living. Don't kid yourself that the Church was the prime mover here. The Church is following (and very, very reluctantly in many key respects). Society as a whole shapes morals, not the Church.
God has no place within these walls, just like facts have no place within
organized religion. - Superintendent Chalmers
Posts: 119
Joined: Wed Jan 03, 2007 1:08 pm

Post by Niamh » Tue Mar 27, 2007 7:07 pm

Martha wrote:
BTW, it seems to me that Niamh is, yet another, covert apologist for the Catholic Church. As far as I'm concerned, any adult who looks to the Catholic Church (or any organised religion) for moral guidance is, by default, an ammoral person - uness he/she is completely insane :roll:
Hi Martha,
First of all I'm not exactly sure when I said that I looked to the Church for moral guidance :roll: Although I should not feel the need to defend my (lack of) belief to you,I am an atheist and was not in any way defending religion.

It seems to be that you are not able (or unwilling?) to grasp complexity in any argument and instead of engaging in intelligent debate like to attack other people's posts and scorn them for not being 'proper atheists'. Your attitude to me is just as rigid, narrow minded and dogmatic as that of the Church or any religious person.

BTW You still haven't replied to my earlier post when I asked you for clarification on the point that you were making in your rep ly to my original post... perhaps because you didn't really have one? :?
Posts: 564
Joined: Thu Jan 04, 2007 10:54 pm
Location: Sligo

Post by brianmmulligan » Tue Mar 27, 2007 8:07 pm


it is obvious that if you don't hate all who are not atheists then you are not an athiest. If you can't see that then you are insane.

Now are you following the logic of my argument?

If you want to just use very traditional forms of reasoning (eg. evidence, logic etc) then it might be as well to engage only with others of a similar leaning.

Anyway if other movements can have a fundamentalist wing that are mostly motivated by a hate of other persuasions rather than a pragmatic approach to trying to make life more pleasant, why can't we?

Chin up.
Post Reply