Posted by EpicSteve (6479 posts) 4 months, 1 day ago

Poll: Do you actively participate in a religion? (723 votes)

Yes 15%
No 86%

Weird topic for a game site. But I'm writing an article in a paper about people in their late teens to late twenties about their relationship with religion.

There are a ton of statistics, but I wanted to do some of my own research. You know...journalism.

When I say "actively", that can be subjective. What I mean by that is that you subscribe to a religion, and you go to church on a regular basis or perform whatever duties your religion asks of you.

Please vote and comment below (or PM me if you aren't comfortable) with your age, gender, the state you live in, and what university you attend if you're a student. Also throw in your major if you can.

I suspect that a large portion of this country might say "I'm a Christian", but they never read their religious text, only go to church on Christmas, and not live by that doctrine. Or the person that had Jewish parents claim to be part of the Jewish "faith", but see Judaism as more of a race. That wouldn't count as a "yes" in my poll.

Simply asking if someone subscribes to a religion wouldn't provide the kind of information I'm seeking.

I'd also like to get an answer of why or why not. Be aware of the forum's rules and try not to be aggressive in answering that question.

#151 Posted by Galiant (2185 posts) -

No, 25, male, Sweden.

I don't believe in any religion because I see them as ancient stories of comfort with no place in a modern society.

#152 Posted by peffy (12 posts) -

28, female, Canada

Born a Catholic, attended Catholic schools from kindergarten to the end of high school. Majored in Math in university.

Was never much of a believer, but I went to church whenever my parents would drag me along, and I went through ceremonies like communion & reconciliation because it was expected. I gave up on religion entirely when I was 17, after 2 of my grandparents died and I played Final Fantasy X (if you have played it, you would know why). I haven't "outed" myself to my family, so if they asked I would still say I'm a Catholic. But to anyone else I would identify myself as an agnostic.

I presently hold the opinion that most of organized religion is a scam. I don't believe the idea that I have to go to a church every Sunday and put money in a bowl or else God will send me to hell. It just comes across as scare tactics to extort money from gullible people so they can continue to build bigger, fancier churches.

I have nothing against religion itself, as it has value for people who need comfort/guidance, and I think there are important morals and lessons that can be learned from the old texts. But whenever those teachings infringe on the rights of others (such as women and homosexuals) I get super offended. These things were written hundreds/thousands of years ago and need to be adjusted for the modern era. [I could go on and on about this for days but I will cut myself off here]

#153 Posted by MonkeyKing1969 (2597 posts) -

@quarters said:

Sorry, bit of a tangent. More to your question, I'm 26, male, live in Arkansas, currently am working full time, but seeking to go to college(late bloomer) for psychology/criminolgy dual major. Still in the application process. Trying to get into College of the Ozarks.

Honest question: Will you be able to go for free? I hear students do not pay tuition, and students NEED to work to cover many of their educational costs there. If that what you are hoping for, or is it just close by to where you live?

#154 Posted by Marcsman (3130 posts) -

I guess my worship of boobies does not count.

#155 Posted by chilipeppersman (1146 posts) -
#156 Edited by CrimsonAvenger (264 posts) -

No, Agnostic, 19, male, USA (NC), and I go to Wake Technical Community College. Advertising & Graphic Design is my major. I was raised Catholic but grew out of it several years ago. Used to consider myself an Atheist but now I consider myself an Agnostic. I realized that well the universe is a big place and I can't possibly know what kind of things are out there. Nobody can. I'm sure there are things out there that are far beyond our comprehension.

#157 Edited by BigBoss1911 (2414 posts) -

Male, 20, USA. Agnostic. My theory on religion is this; Why is having faith in something without proof good? Why put up metaphorical borders and live you're life by how some, as of now, imaginary being tells you to? I think people should be able to believe whatever they want to believe, however no matter the religion/belief, they should have some kind of basic moral code (don't murder, steal, rape,ect).

#158 Posted by Matthew_Otts (4 posts) -

I'm 26, Male, live in Atlanta, currently working full time. Very active Christian(but go to a church that welcomes anyone) go to church every Sunday and read my bible throughout the week.

#159 Posted by goreyfantod (115 posts) -

@link_dc:

As another Canadian from a JW family, I know first-hand how claustrophobic & crazy-making it can be. If you ever want to talk about it, feel free to drop me a line.

#161 Posted by Quarters (1635 posts) -

@quarters said:

Sorry, bit of a tangent. More to your question, I'm 26, male, live in Arkansas, currently am working full time, but seeking to go to college(late bloomer) for psychology/criminolgy dual major. Still in the application process. Trying to get into College of the Ozarks.

Honest question: Will you be able to go for free? I hear students do not pay tuition, and students NEED to work to cover many of their educational costs there. If that what you are hoping for, or is it just close by to where you live?

Well, I really like what I've seen of the place academia-wise, and I actually really like the sound of the work program. I'm 26, and have worked full-time since I got out of high school, so the idea of just going to school and not having a job much actually really bums me out, so I'm interested in how all of it works. Plus, one of my best friends went there, and recommends the place in the highest regard(she's not far from the same economic bracket as me, as well), as does everyone else who's gone there that I know. Christian campus, which I would prefer when studying something like psychology(base it more off Biblical principles, though I'm not interested in Biblical counseling itself). Has some good mission opportunities and such. Plus, pretty location(the stuff that isn't the main strip in Branson), and only four hours away from home. It would still allow me to visit my family, my nieces, so on with at least a little regularity, so I'm not just a complete stranger.

Obviously, I won't be able to go for completely free, because that isn't how it works. You still have to pay for books/room and board(though getting into a summer work program can alleviate the room and board part). So yeah, long story short, there's a multitude of reasons, though the work program is one of them.

#162 Posted by Slag (4092 posts) -

@epicsteve For me the answer is Nope.

I'm a Lapsed Catholic, or Culturally Catholic I've heard it called before. Most practicing Catholic friends of mine say I'm atheist, although I'm largely indifferent to the matter altogether. According to the internets looks like I might be called a Agnostic apatheist or a Secular Humanist? Don't really know, theological terminology is not something I'm well versed in.

I don't think about religion or a creator much. The only time I typically care is when people try to impose their religious beliefs on others to their detriment. Had a falling out with my parish when I was pretty young pretty much right after I went through Communion, never had any desire to go back. Honestly it never held much appeal to me although I do feel guilty about knowing how much the faith means to some in my family.

I certainly respect that faith means a great deal to a lot of people though and I certainly appreciate the value faith has for a lot of people. It can be a tremendous source of comfort for people going through tough times, especially the terminally ill. And organized religion gives a lot of people a social group to connect with. Which is something that is probably undervalued in today's fragmented society. Not to mention it can serve as inspiration for some people to do some pretty incredibly altruistic things. The charitable works of the Christian community can be absolutely amazing, I think too many people casually disregard that when putting down organized religion.

On the flipside the human failings of many such organizations are pretty well known . Certainly they are not exclusive to any one faith either.

Certainly a meaningful life choice for a lot of people, just not for me. Although I do envy the devout at times when seeing how much clarity and comfort their faith provides them in tough times.

#163 Edited by Buttenator (188 posts) -

Nope, I'm quite capable of thinking for myself.

26, male, Ontario, Canada.

#164 Edited by Lysergica33 (518 posts) -

I don't participate in any religions as such, although I would describe myself as being deeply religious. I'm not a Christian, a Buddhist, a Muslim, a Jew or anything. I'm just me and have my own perspective on things. I worship through art and music, I meditate, I read and study various esoteric subjects while never really feeling like I ever have to become a member of their ranks. But I believe in God, or rather I see divinity and perfection in all things as they actually are. This is why I prefer to say I see or feel it rather than believe it, as I don't really feel there's much there to believe, rather I am just an observer and participator of the deeply vast and complex organism that is our Universe that I can't help but see as existing in a state of absolute perfection. And that, to me, is God.

Aside from that, I'm male, 23, musician by trade, from England.

Also, cool topic duder.

#165 Posted by Slag (4092 posts) -

@belegorm said:

. What'd I'd find interesting, particularly for ethics, is if there were agnostics who don't know if there's a God or not, but more or less act as if there was.

My anecdotal impression is there are a lot of Americans in Gen X and Gen Y that do what you'd describe especially college educated ones. I'd say the vast majority of my peers from school were that way. I barely knew anyone who went to church, and the few times I did go there was less 20 people there for what was supposedly the most common denomination on campus.

A lot of them seemed to self identify as "spiritual but not religious", which some legitimately meant as way to avoid saying they didn't believe in God and some literally did mean that they did but just didn't go to church.

#166 Posted by Aquablak (187 posts) -

36, male, Canada.

I grew up going to church, but stopped going in my 20's, while pursuing my faith on my own. I now go to church every Sunday and read the Bible regularly.

Simply put, I'm a believer because every part of me recognizes the Word as true.

#167 Posted by Stonyman65 (2609 posts) -

I don't. I grew up Catholic and went to Sunday School and even received my First Communion but I was never the religious type. I can honestly say I've only been in church maybe a dozen times in my life, and 3 of those times were for weddings or funerals. I guess the best way to describe my religious views would be agnostic. It's not that I do or don't believe, but I question faith, and honestly I don't really care either way. The way that I see it is that if the religious people are right I'll atone for my sins when the time comes, and if the atheists are right then it doesn't really matter anyway. That being said, I do believe in karma and I believe good things will happen to good people and vice versa, and I also believe that everything happens for a reason - now if that is the doing of God or whatever I don't know. As far as the whole morals thing goes I was always taught to be honest and to treat other with respect the way that I would want to be treated. I just don't understand how people try to lump in being moral with being religious like you can't have one without the other.

But anyway - Male, 23, Jacksonville, FL, born and raised in Clark, New Jersey. High School grad but not in college (at least not as of now) but possibly pursuing a degree in Criminal Justice or Computer Science. Political views would be best described as an "American Libertarian".

#168 Posted by ch3burashka (5018 posts) -

No.

#169 Edited by Tomzombie (396 posts) -

nope i do not believe in organized religion for the reason: I gone threw the CCC and have been out in nature for about half of last year some times with no real communication to the out side world helping Build habit of Salmon in norther California from extinction. I have to say the relay only thing i be live in is that the world is always changing and you can't stop it so basically i would say i am a naturalist. if there was crater I would say it had to be women cause its a crazy but interesting world that has its roots in cycles that are continualy running. 21, male, California, MSJC enviermental science.

#170 Posted by Colourful_Hippie (4331 posts) -

Nah

#171 Edited by Yagami (581 posts) -

Sex: Non-identified, likely male.

Age: of Reason.

"Country": I reside within the fictional borders of Sweden. I am a citizen of Earth and don't consider myself as a Swede.

No. I am an Atheist and Anti-Theist. I work against it to remove it from politics and society.

When I was 7 and asked if I believed in a god, I asked; "what is a god?" - Silence ensued and was then told that "He created the Universe." - And I posed the terminal question which ended it all. "You said A god, are there more?" - Silence once again ensued and no answer was given. I knew of Thor Odinsson, the Norse god of thunder, but I also knew of lightning and thunder, and that Thor had nothing to do with it.

Later on in school, about 2 and a half year later, we were told about the Christian deity and the Islamic deity among many others. To me, the answer had already been obvious and I found it all to be complete and utter bullfuck. I even questioned why this was being taught because nobody with a sane mind would believe in this crap. This was met by laughter and a gentle pat on the head, and was rewarded with 5 sticky gold stars. Hahah, the memories. I remember it as if it was yesterday.

I later on, just a few years back, from 13-15 went on to read the bible and the quran. A well-spent few years. I am now more of a vicious atheist than I'd thought I'd ever be. I'm extremely confident in my position, but am, of course, always changing with facts and evidence. - I have never lost a debate once, and I find the religious incredibly unfamiliar with their own holy books, their arguments pitifully weak and easily smashed to pieces, and their sign of desperation, overhauling.

- Religion is a weapon for the powerful to control the dishonest of mind/not so clever/uninformed people. This sounds like an insult, and so be it. It doesn't make it any less true.

If you believe in a deity, you've failed to reason/investigate.

Faith - which is belief in something for which there is no evidence; is utterly destructive, and it saddened me greatly when Vinny, of all people, went ahead to say "I believe in ghosts". Sure, but you have no good reason to do so. - You may as well believe you can jump off an airplane in flight from a very high altitude without a parachute, hit the concrete ground with vicious force, and come away unharmed.

-

There is a total amount of ZERO credible evidence for a deity that is said to have created the Universe.

Faith is not a virtue, it is a failure to think.

Common sense, a phrase used a lot by the religious, may be just that, common. Basically because the common human is gullible and fearsome of death.

Over 80% of the world's population (and shrinking) is religious, so clearly common sense in this sense, is not a commendation, but an insult.

Now, to set something straight: I do not regard most religious people as being inferior,

however their religious beliefs (faith) is total and utter intellectual nonsense, and they have failed to reason that argument out. In THAT way, they are inferior.

Most? Some know religion is false and make money out of it. LOTS. Televangelists, priests, and so on... These folks, I revere viciously. - I regard them as inferiors not just to atheists and agnostics, but to the unfortunate who are deceived by these scammers.

But again, most of the religious KNOW that it is nonsense, and believe it anyway.

They lie to themselves, and that's not healthy, but it is what they do, and it only works against them.

A pretty recent scientific study has shown that religious belief is connected to Alzheimer's disease, so to be religious, is actually, physically and mentally dangerous.

Do I seem angry? Do I have a reason to be angry? Look at the world today, how we treat each other and you will instantly know the answer to why. And trust me, were all people critical thinkers, these folks would be pretty damn pissed off at the so called leaders of the world, and the overall situation we have.

I'll end with two quotes: "If the answer to everything is "god", or "jesus" or "allah", I fear to correct my pupils' mathematics-test."

"Investigate the claim. If it cannot be investigated, discard it as nonsense for now and await actual evidence." - Lord Bertrand Russell

#172 Edited by Broomhitches (172 posts) -

Answer: No, I do not actively participate in a religion.

Gender, Age: Male, 27

Degree, College: B.S. Communications, Southern New Hampshire University

Long-Winded Story That Nobody Asked For:

I was raised in a Christian household and went to church just about every Sunday, and some nights, if anything was happening. I also have fond memories of being sick (excessive vomiting) and being dragged to church. I remember when I was 10, I threw up in church one night. My Mom took me home, made sure that I bathed, told me to put on fresh church clothes and took me right back, but I digress. I have thought and continue to think about religion and the existence of God. I don't know if God exists, and I am not going to practice anything just to be safe because that contradicts the notion of faith. Also, the Bible has been tampered with so much, that it's a big, confusing mess. People have revised the Bible so much, tailoring it so that it can be used to serve whatever nefarious purpose. And if by chance God does exist, I think it's pretty fucking moronic to allow something like Satan to fuck with people, he should have avoided creating him, or anyone who is skeptical or outright doesn't believe in his existence, rather than condemning them for eternity.

#173 Posted by Gatehouse (583 posts) -

I'm 25, live in England and did Journalism at the University of Central Lancashire (crap university for pretty much everything apart from journalism, forensics and a couple of other things).

I've grown up in a non religious house, but was taken to church regularly until about the age of twelve. My parents wanted me to make up my own mind about religion, which I really respect now and intend to do with my kids too if/when I have any. Since then I have become non-religious and actually think that religion can be a very dangerous thing if it gets skewed and corrupted in peoples minds, but the same can be said about most things in the scary thing that is the human brain.

But hey, if it gets you through the day and doesn't ruin someone else's then I ain't gonna stop you doing what you do.

#174 Edited by Osaladin (2515 posts) -

I find it interesting how much hatred religion is getting. Why do people who don't believe in it feel the need to attack it so harshly?

Yes, 28, California, I have an MD and an MBA.

My thoughts on religion are, let people do whatever they want to as long as it doesn't negatively affect others. Also, as long as you don't preach to everyone and anyone. I'll answer questions openly if people ask, but otherwise I don't talk about it. I can honestly say I'm a better person because of religion. Take that as you will.

#175 Posted by Brodehouse (9652 posts) -

@osaladin said:

I find it interesting how much hatred religion is getting. Why do people who don't believe in it feel the need to attack it so harshly?

Because of the unparalleled damage that people who believe things about the world that are not true are capable of causing.

There is a certain holy book that says that this world and everything in it is worthless, and that its only a temporary condition until the eternal hereafter. Imagine the incredible destruction that would result if someone who legitimately believes that gains control of nuclear weaponry. Not only would annihilating every aspect of humanity on earth be possible, but it would be considered the most altruistic and noble thing that person could do. They have hastened the world into their God's hands.

The best will do the best they can, and the worst will do the worst they can, but it takes religion to convince the best to do their worst.

#176 Edited by SMTDante89 (2552 posts) -

Yes (Non-Denominational Christian)

Age: 24

Location: West Virginia

Education: Graduated from Concord University in December 2013, English Major and Philosophy Minor.

Grew up in a Christian household, though it hasn't always been perfect with some frequent arguments (not about religion) happening every now and then. I had some time where I kind of rebelled against religion a bit when I was younger, but never really felt happy about it. My college schedule kept me out of the church a good bit for the 5 1/2 years I was in college, but since graduating, I try to go every Sunday (outside of extenuating circumstances such as weather or sickness that might keep us at home), but I don't read my Bible as often as I should.

Before college, I tried to be tolerant of others who had different beliefs to mine or lived lifestyles that church doctrine frowns upon without really accepting it. Now, however, I'm generally pretty accepting of most everything as long as certain habits (drugs/alcohol) aren't done in excess to the point that it could cause one to injure (or worse, kill) someone else or yourself. I don't agree with absolutely everything that is said in church, and I try not to be one of those "holier than thou" types either, extremely judgmental Christians actually irritate me. I'm generally pretty laid back and friendly to everyone as long as they're pretty cool to me.

Basically, I try to live by Giant Bomb's golden rule: Don't be a jerk.

#177 Edited by horseman6 (366 posts) -

I'm a Messianic Jew, so yes. Although I always have questions, I have no doubt the God exists for the simple reason that existence makes no sense and can't be explained with science. I've always felt that the newer generations animosity towards religion has more to do with narcissism than intelligence.

Also, Programmer, in my 30's, MBA in Business, BA in Econ.

#178 Posted by horseman6 (366 posts) -

@osaladin said:

I find it interesting how much hatred religion is getting. Why do people who don't believe in it feel the need to attack it so harshly?

Because of the unparalleled damage that people who believe things about the world that are not true are capable of causing.

There is a certain holy book that says that this world and everything in it is worthless, and that its only a temporary condition until the eternal hereafter. Imagine the incredible destruction that would result if someone who legitimately believes that gains control of nuclear weaponry. Not only would annihilating every aspect of humanity on earth be possible, but it would be considered the most altruistic and noble thing that person could do. They have hastened the world into their God's hands.

The best will do the best they can, and the worst will do the worst they can, but it takes religion to convince the best to do their worst.

Huh? Hundreds of millions of people have been murdered for reasons other than Religion. I know it's great to come out and say religion is evil, blah blah blah but there are great things that have come out of Religion. Hitler didn't murder Jews because of religion, nor did Mao kill his own people because of Religion. Stalin didn't murder his own people because of religion. People kill people for many reasons, people destroy the environment for many reasons, It's only leftist stupidity that paints religion as the culprit.

#179 Posted by believer258 (11685 posts) -

@brodehouse said:

@osaladin said:

I find it interesting how much hatred religion is getting. Why do people who don't believe in it feel the need to attack it so harshly?

Because of the unparalleled damage that people who believe things about the world that are not true are capable of causing.

There is a certain holy book that says that this world and everything in it is worthless, and that its only a temporary condition until the eternal hereafter. Imagine the incredible destruction that would result if someone who legitimately believes that gains control of nuclear weaponry. Not only would annihilating every aspect of humanity on earth be possible, but it would be considered the most altruistic and noble thing that person could do. They have hastened the world into their God's hands.

The best will do the best they can, and the worst will do the worst they can, but it takes religion to convince the best to do their worst.

Huh? Hundreds of millions of people have been murdered for reasons other than Religion. I know it's great to come out and say religion is evil, blah blah blah but there are great things that have come out of Religion. Hitler didn't murder Jews because of religion, nor did Mao kill his own people because of Religion. Stalin didn't murder his own people because of religion. People kill people for many reasons, people destroy the environment for many reasons, It's only leftist stupidity that paints religion as the culprit.

Both yours and @brodehouse's arguments are pretty flawed. Brodehouse didn't say that all atrocities were done in the name of religion, just some of them. This doesn't mean that religions haven't been harmful, though. All you have to do is look at the homophobia in the Bible for evidence of that. You could write an entire book on the ways that blind faith and religion have gotten in the way of progress, not only scientifically but also humanely.

However, Brodehouse, you seem to have just pulled something out of your ass. I don't think that any major religion endorses the destruction of the entire world. In fact, I think that most of them have an appreciation for beauty in this world. The Bible itself does, in places - it just promises that its supposed next life is better. What you're talking about is an illogical extreme.

I stand by what I said early in this thread - that these days, I view religion in the same way that we view Greek mythology. There is a hell of a lot that we can learn about ourselves and the world around us from those old books, we just have to be discerning enough to know what to look at and say "that doesn't apply to the modern world".

Online
#180 Posted by Video_Game_King (36122 posts) -

However, Brodehouse, you seem to have just pulled something out of your ass. I don't think that any major religion endorses the destruction of the entire world.

I don't think he's saying that religion praises active destruction of the world (well, maybe you could interpret Revelations as such, but let's not for the sake of argument). I think he's saying that religion's focus on a super-awesome-next-world makes it very easy not to give a shit about this world. It's the type of logic that gives Nietzsche a hate-boner.

#181 Posted by believer258 (11685 posts) -

@believer258 said:

However, Brodehouse, you seem to have just pulled something out of your ass. I don't think that any major religion endorses the destruction of the entire world.

I don't think he's saying that religion praises active destruction of the world (well, maybe you could interpret Revelations as such, but let's not for the sake of argument). I think he's saying that religion's focus on a super-awesome-next-world makes it very easy not to give a shit about this world. It's the type of logic that gives Nietzsche a hate-boner.

Well, either way, my point still stands that major world religions are most definitely against the destruction of the world. At least as far as Christianity goes, that's something that will (supposedly) happen when God decides that it's time for the world to end. It's not something that humanity can rush towards. If an individual did find himself in control of a large supply of nukes and did believe that it was his responsibility to bring about the end of the world, I can assure you that he would be deluded in his understanding of the Bible.

Both posters were going too far either way, really.

Online
#182 Edited by Brodehouse (9652 posts) -

@horseman6: Hitler did murder Jews because of religion. He repeatedly mentions that his work is commanded by God, blessed by God, and that God was his inspiration and his justification for 'Jewish crimes'. He did not invent anti-Semitism, he merely applied contemporary propaganda techniques to the same suspicions and hatreds that made millions of people believe in blood libel for centuries. If you don't know what the blood libel is, it was a popular rumor in the Middle Ages that Jews required Christian blood in order to live. Sometimes they merely drank it, sometimes people said Jews were born as rat-dog-like creatures and the parents needed Christian blood in order to make them appear human. If you had heard this from authority figures that you trusted with your allegedly undying soul, you would believe it as fully as a small child believes its parents.

Edit: I just explained blood libel to a Meesianic Jew. How foolish of me. Still, worth explaining for anyone who didn't know.

But no, it's not religion that makes good people do bad things and believe they're good, it's the evil leftists who do bad things because they're so stupid.

#183 Edited by Brodehouse (9652 posts) -

@believer258 said:

However, Brodehouse, you seem to have just pulled something out of your ass. I don't think that any major religion endorses the destruction of the entire world. In fact, I think that most of them have an appreciation for beauty in this world. The Bible itself does, in places - it just promises that its supposed next life is better. What you're talking about is an illogical extreme.

No, it's just not from Christianity. It remains religion. It remains a collection of things that are not true about the world, that people are taught from a young age as if they were things that were true about the world. It remains a worldview based on ravings of people thousands of years in the past, that is taken as incontrovertible and timeless truth. If you want evidence or direct quotations, I completely understand, but I'd prefer to put that work in tomorrow if you please. It's 10:30 and I don't want to spend 45 minutes tracking down sources.

Ah hell, here's just some fun ones.

"God is the enemy of the unbelievers." 2:98

"The unbelievers are like beasts which, call out to them as one may, can hear nothign but a shout and a cry. Deaf, dumb and blind, they understand nothing." 2:172

"How steadfastedly they seek the Fire! That is because God has revealed the Book with truth; those that disagree about it are in extreme schism." 2:176

"Slay them wherever you find them. Drive them out of the places from which they drove you. Idolatry is worse than carnage... If they attack you put them to the sword. Thus shall the unbelievers be rewarded; but if they desist, God is forgiving and merciful. Fight against them until idolatry is no more and God's religion reigns supreme. But if they desist, fight none but the evildoers." 2:190-193

"Fighting is obligatory for you, much as you dislike it. But you may hate a thing although it is good for oyu, and love a thing although it is bad for you. God knows, but you know not." 2:216

"Those that deny God's revelations shall be sternly punished: God is mighty and capable of revenge." 3:5

"As for the unbelievers, neither their riches nor their children will in the least save them from God's judgment. They shall become fuel for the Fire." 3:10

"Let the believers not make friends with infidels in preference to the faithful - he that does this has nothign hope for from God - except in self-defense." 3:28

"Believers, do not make friends with any but your own people. They will spare no pains to corrupt you. They desire nothing but your ruin. Their hatred is evident from what they utter with their mouths, but greater is the hatred which their breasts conceal." 3:118

"Believers, if you yield to the infidels they will drag you back to unbelief and you will return headlong to perdition... We will put terror into the hearts of the unbelievers... The Fire shall be their home." 3:149-51

"Let not the unbelievers think that We prolong their days for their own good. We give them respite only so that they may commit more grievous sins. Shameful punishment awaits them." 3:178

"Those that disbelieve and deny Our revelations shall become the inmates of Hell" 5:86

"They deny the truth when it is declared to them: but they shall learn the consequences of their scorn." 6:5

"Who is more wicked than the man who invents falsehoods about God or denies His revelations?" 6:21

... does that sound like the beliefs of someone you'd be comfortable possessing a nuclear device? Sad that I couldn't find the one quotation about how the world and everything in it can't compare to God's love or Paradise or whatever the F it was. Even more than those more actively violent ones, a belief structure that says that the natural world and everything in it including human life has no value compared to the edicts of the one book you will ever have read to you in your entire life.... that's far scarier to me. Mutually assured destruction only worked because neither side saw any benefit in their own destruction. Here we have a belief structure that incentivizes death in the pursuit of God's dominion of the entire world.

#184 Posted by Video_Game_King (36122 posts) -

"God is the enemy of the unbelievers." 2:98

"The unbelievers are like beasts which, call out to them as one may, can hear nothign but a shout and a cry. Deaf, dumb and blind, they understand nothing." 2:172

"How steadfastedly they seek the Fire! That is because God has revealed the Book with truth; those that disagree about it are in extreme schism." 2:176

"Slay them wherever you find them. Drive them out of the places from which they drove you. Idolatry is worse than carnage... If they attack you put them to the sword. Thus shall the unbelievers be rewarded; but if they desist, God is forgiving and merciful. Fight against them until idolatry is no more and God's religion reigns supreme. But if they desist, fight none but the evildoers." 2:190-193

"Fighting is obligatory for you, much as you dislike it. But you may hate a thing although it is good for oyu, and love a thing although it is bad for you. God knows, but you know not." 2:216

"Believers, do not make friends with any but your own people. They will spare no pains to corrupt you. They desire nothing but your ruin. Their hatred is evident from what they utter with their mouths, but greater is the hatred which their breasts conceal." 3:118

"Believers, if you yield to the infidels they will drag you back to unbelief and you will return headlong to perdition... We will put terror into the hearts of the unbelievers... The Fire shall be their home." 3:149-51

"Let not the unbelievers think that We prolong their days for their own good. We give them respite only so that they may commit more grievous sins. Shameful punishment awaits them." 3:178

"Those that disbelieve and deny Our revelations shall become the inmates of Hell" 5:86

Where are you getting these quotes? Because I've read snippets of the Bible (so many boring-ass genealogies), and I don't quite recall any of the chapters going 100+ verses long. Is that common in Revelations (I get the feeling that many of these quotes come from the New Testament)?

#185 Edited by Brodehouse (9652 posts) -

@video_game_king: Why must it come from the Bible? The Bible is not the only holy book in the world, and Christianity is not the only religion.

Oh, here's a killer.

"Whoever changes his religion, kill him." This is not from the holy book itself, but rather the collection of quotations from the prophet that explain how to interpret the holy book.

#186 Edited by Video_Game_King (36122 posts) -
@brodehouse said:

Why must it come from the Bible?

The number:number format coded to Bible for me, since that's usually how it's cited. In retrospect, Quran makes more sense (based on what you're saying later and what I know about its format), although you should've been a bit more explicit about that.

And if you are citing Islam, I think you're forgetting the hundreds of years they peacefully coexisted alongside Christians, Jews, Hindus, and probably a bunch of other people. Except Byzantine Christians, I guess.

#187 Edited by Brodehouse (9652 posts) -

@video_game_king said:
@brodehouse said:

Why must it come from the Bible?

The number:number format coded to Bible for me, since that's usually how it's cited. In retrospect, Quran makes more sense (based on what you're saying later and what I know about its format), although you should've been a bit more explicit about that.

I was specifically cagey about it because I want people to judge those quotations without thinking what religion they're from. I wanted to just present the data without the social and cultural stigmas and controversies surrounding it. I want people to consider what it means to be raised in that worldview without making the "well, I know some Muslims and they're not like that". The problem is not that there are religious people who know to ignore the shittiest of commands from their holy books, the problem is that there are religious people who don't know, and specifically those who have no reason not to ignore them.

#188 Edited by Hockeymask27 (3683 posts) -

No but I had my moments when I was younger. At the end of the day I want to be a good person because I want too. Not because I think I have too. That being said people can do what they want and it erks me when people go out of the way to bash people who enjoy going to church ect.

#189 Edited by Video_Game_King (36122 posts) -

I was specifically cagey about it because I want people to judge those quotations without thinking what religion they're from.

That seems grossly misrepresentative.

#190 Posted by horseman6 (366 posts) -

@brodehouse: Hitler was not a religious person. He referenced God to drum up some support but he was a cultist and didn't really believe in God at all. Christianity was a tool for him, crazy Nationalism and fear-mongering is what really gave him power. I also never said that religion hasn't been used in the past, but to think that without religion everything would be peaceful is pretty ridiculous.

#191 Edited by dr_mantas (1807 posts) -

I don't. Neither actively nor passively. I was raised Roman Catholic, but haven't done anything that resembles practicing a religion for a while, simply because I don't believe. And I'm pretty sure I have never believed.

My demographics aren't important for you, probably, because I'm not from the States. 24, male, from Lithuania, studying Medicine at Vilnius University.

#192 Edited by Osaladin (2515 posts) -

@brodehouse said:

@osaladin said:

I find it interesting how much hatred religion is getting. Why do people who don't believe in it feel the need to attack it so harshly?

Because of the unparalleled damage that people who believe things about the world that are not true are capable of causing.

There is a certain holy book that says that this world and everything in it is worthless, and that its only a temporary condition until the eternal hereafter. Imagine the incredible destruction that would result if someone who legitimately believes that gains control of nuclear weaponry. Not only would annihilating every aspect of humanity on earth be possible, but it would be considered the most altruistic and noble thing that person could do. They have hastened the world into their God's hands.

The best will do the best they can, and the worst will do the worst they can, but it takes religion to convince the best to do their worst.

I'm sorry, but there's no basis for your argument. The fundamental flaw with crazy people isn't religion, it's that they're crazy. If it wasn't religion that is being used to justify what they're doing, it'll be something else. Bottom line is, it will happen regardless of religion or not. A lot of atrocious things done in the name of religion are just using religion as a tool/scapegoat. For every crazy religious person, there's a thousand sane ones. I'm pretty sure that goes for all of humanity, religious or not.

This thinking that if religion was eradicated, there would be peace throughout the world is ludicrous and naive. You'd get farther outlawing currency. People have done far more terrible things because of greed.

#193 Posted by Brodehouse (9652 posts) -

@brodehouse: Hitler was not a religious person. He referenced God to drum up some support but he was a cultist and didn't really believe in God at all. Christianity was a tool for him, crazy Nationalism and fear-mongering is what really gave him power.

This is revisionism to convenient targets. Hitler invokes God in diaries and correspondence. That it is not your favorite God is not my point. You fail to address the issue with religion, with people believing things about the world that are not true, in your attempt to divorce Hitler's massacre of the Jews from your pet deity. That you would say "Hitler was a cultist" as if it were a bad thing in an attempt to make religion seem harmless is something.

@brodehouse said:

I was specifically cagey about it because I want people to judge those quotations without thinking what religion they're from.

That seems grossly misrepresentative.

How so? I said they were quotations from a holy book and they are. Are some holy books to be held on higher regard than others? On what grounds, would be most interesting.

#194 Posted by 8TeKeNt3 (2 posts) -

Was put in foster care young remember praying every night with my older brother. Grew up Christian went to church as a kid but I guess I never found an answer. I'm a deep thinker skeptical an mostly rely upon proof. All the stuff I been thru I seen no evidence. Still haven't seen my little brothers since then which was 2001. Honestly all these religions all these god's who's right? I would say I call myself athiest but a part of me hopes there is someone to guide me help me out. I sorta believe there is a higher power but still a mystery to me. "prayin to any god's out there, willin to listin" maybe it's just something made to keep people good. Mass control. Who knows seems alot of people are talking to a god but me. Even when I want to try. How would you know what who it is. This can go deep. Lol anyways new here, here's my input

TEKent

23 M CO

#195 Posted by Brodehouse (9652 posts) -

@osaladin said:

I'm sorry, but there's no basis for your argument. The fundamental flaw with crazy people isn't religion, it's that they're crazy. If it wasn't religion that is being used to justify what they're doing, it'll be something else. Bottom line is, it will happen regardless of religion or not.

Citation needed. Thousands of people painting holy symbols on their firearms while carrying out religious pogroms over a period of months onto years has nothing to do with religion; it's that they're crazy. They're all crazy.

Did you know that suicide bombers trend towards the middle class and college educated? There was a suicide bomber who survived their own explosion. When asked why they wanted to do it, they responded because being a martyr was the most noble and beautiful thing they could ever do. And to you, that's not a terrifyingly rational decision reached by a person operating on information about the world that is not true.... that's "a crazy person".

This thinking that if religion was eradicated, there would be peace throughout the world is ludicrous and naive.

Yes, and if I had said something that patently ridiculous I would probably have straw coming out of my shoulders.

You'd get farther outlawing currency.

THE PROBLEM WITH THE WORLD IS THAT THE MEDIUM OF EXCHANGE BY WHICH PEOPLE TRADE THE PRODUCT OF THEIR LABOR FOR GOODS AND SERVICES TO MEET THEIR NEEDS IS WRONG AND CORRUPT. TAKE AN ECONOMICS COURSE MY GOD.

Oh my fuck it's bed time.

#196 Edited by fetchfox (1234 posts) -

Puh, it's a little hot in here. Anyway,

Age: 25

Gender: Male

Country: Norway (as long as your paper isn't purely about America I'm cool with being a statistic)

Lillehammer Universty College, Bachelor of Organisation and Management

I'm not religious, and consider myself an agnostic atheist. I don't believe in a god, but I'm agnostic in that I take no stand on the existence of god as he cannot be proven nor disproved.

#197 Edited by Video_Game_King (36122 posts) -

@video_game_king said:

@brodehouse said:

I was specifically cagey about it because I want people to judge those quotations without thinking what religion they're from.

That seems grossly misrepresentative.

How so? I said they were quotations from a holy book and they are.

Yes, because "kill people who don't agree with you" is the absolute core belief of the religion you're citing, along with every other religion you fail to cite but indict anyway. It seems you're criticizing religion on its abuses (or the abuses of one religion) rather than on what it considers its own terms. Why not bring out the teapot argument, or mention how the moral systems are so tied into the cosmology that you can't buy one without the other? (Those aren't me being a dick; those are actual arguments I'd like to see.)

#198 Edited by Dasacant2 (215 posts) -

Not at the moment but I tend to be happier when I am. Male 23 USA

#199 Edited by Legion_ (1256 posts) -

No, I am not a man of faith. But in some ways, I wish I was. I envy people who truly believe in a life after death. Hate to admit this, but I'm scared stiff of dying. And, I think that's probably the most important aspect of why people are religious, they need something to comfort them, because their scared of dying. And I'm not saying it's a bad thing at all, it's just not right for me at this specific time in my life.

In a way, I'm sad to see the results of this poll. I think religion is too easily mocked and unfairly blamed for a lot of things. People need to realize that religion is not a bad word. In fact, religion is the most important factor of good morals in our society. Religion is good, but extremism is never, and that's what needs to be defeated. People always point fingers at religions and blame them for horrible things. Christians for the crusades, muslims for the certain terrorist attacks, and so on. But the important thing to note is that there is no basis for the things that they did in their holy books. Yes, they called themselves christians and muslims, but in truth, they were far from it.

I've read both the Bible and the Quran, and I feel I'm a better man for it. Truly, it had to have been written by enlightened men, certainly for their time. A good read if your into history. Because what is religion other than history? Anyway, I hate to see all the shit religion has to take on the internet nowadays. Just be respectful. Show respect to earn respect, it's a two way street.

Maybe I ranted on a little. 22 year old guy from Norway, currently serving in the Navy.

#200 Posted by believer258 (11685 posts) -

@brodehouse said:

"God is the enemy of the unbelievers." 2:98

"The unbelievers are like beasts which, call out to them as one may, can hear nothign but a shout and a cry. Deaf, dumb and blind, they understand nothing." 2:172

"How steadfastedly they seek the Fire! That is because God has revealed the Book with truth; those that disagree about it are in extreme schism." 2:176

"Slay them wherever you find them. Drive them out of the places from which they drove you. Idolatry is worse than carnage... If they attack you put them to the sword. Thus shall the unbelievers be rewarded; but if they desist, God is forgiving and merciful. Fight against them until idolatry is no more and God's religion reigns supreme. But if they desist, fight none but the evildoers." 2:190-193

"Fighting is obligatory for you, much as you dislike it. But you may hate a thing although it is good for oyu, and love a thing although it is bad for you. God knows, but you know not." 2:216

"Believers, do not make friends with any but your own people. They will spare no pains to corrupt you. They desire nothing but your ruin. Their hatred is evident from what they utter with their mouths, but greater is the hatred which their breasts conceal." 3:118

"Believers, if you yield to the infidels they will drag you back to unbelief and you will return headlong to perdition... We will put terror into the hearts of the unbelievers... The Fire shall be their home." 3:149-51

"Let not the unbelievers think that We prolong their days for their own good. We give them respite only so that they may commit more grievous sins. Shameful punishment awaits them." 3:178

"Those that disbelieve and deny Our revelations shall become the inmates of Hell" 5:86

Where are you getting these quotes? Because I've read snippets of the Bible (so many boring-ass genealogies), and I don't quite recall any of the chapters going 100+ verses long. Is that common in Revelations (I get the feeling that many of these quotes come from the New Testament)?

It has also been a while since I picked up my Bible, but the New Testament books tend to be shorter than the Old Testament ones. Many of these definitely are not Biblical.

I'd like to see some citations, too, @brodehouse, because most of these seem like they come from the Qu'ran. Or, at least, that's what I've discerned just from Googleing a few of them.

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