I'm tired of it. (non gaming rant)

The United States is one of the most religious places on earth, but it is also a nation of shocking religious illiteracy.

Only 10 percent of American teenagers can name all five major world religions and 15 percent cannot name any.

Nearly two-thirds of Americans believe that the Bible holds the answers to all or most of life's basic questions, yet only half of US adult citizens can name even one of the four gospels and most US citizens cannot name the first book of the Bible.

Atheists, 'Christians,' followers of Christ, Political groups and the like all use the Bible to push their agenda. No one takes the time to read what the Bible really says about anything, because that would take thought, and a lot of it. We'd have to discuss the Greek and Hebrew languages, as well as all seven tenses and it would tear down your emotional based arguments, and bring up real conversation.

Just hold up the Bible and make it say whatever you want. God forbid you read it and think about it on your own.

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Posted by l4wd0g

The United States is one of the most religious places on earth, but it is also a nation of shocking religious illiteracy.

Only 10 percent of American teenagers can name all five major world religions and 15 percent cannot name any.

Nearly two-thirds of Americans believe that the Bible holds the answers to all or most of life's basic questions, yet only half of US adult citizens can name even one of the four gospels and most US citizens cannot name the first book of the Bible.

Atheists, 'Christians,' followers of Christ, Political groups and the like all use the Bible to push their agenda. No one takes the time to read what the Bible really says about anything, because that would take thought, and a lot of it. We'd have to discuss the Greek and Hebrew languages, as well as all seven tenses and it would tear down your emotional based arguments, and bring up real conversation.

Just hold up the Bible and make it say whatever you want. God forbid you read it and think about it on your own.

Edited by No0b0rAmA

It seems like for more and more Americans, religion is playing a smaller roll on their lives, so it only makes sense that other than the religiously devout, many are more or less apathetic about Christianity and it's teachings.

Oh man, this thread is probably going to get ripped apart, or at least religion in general.

Please surprise me Giant Bomb.

Posted by DriveupLife

How do other people's beliefs affect you? Just write them off, choose your own crowd and don't try to figure out why it is the way it is. If they're in your face, walk around them and don't bother giving them attention. Problem solved.

Posted by JCTango

@l4wd0g: I'm not here to say who's right or not, and lately I've been questioning the truth about all the stuff I've been taught about religion - something that isn't necessarily bad in terms of helping/hurting your faith... but I don't think people should be forced to read religious literature if they don't want to.

If they're debating about things of religious nature, then sure, they should educate themselves on the teachings (that goes for the Bible, Qur'an, etc., but if they're choosing to remain agnostic or whatever about religion (of whatever faith), they should have the choice to remain as such.

Personally, I've been having a hard time dealing with a lot of the stuff that surrounds religion as an institution - there just seems to be too much bureaucracy, hypocrisy, favoritism, and all sorts of stuff for me to accept it. I still hold many of my religion's values though... but most of these values can be shared by moral people of any other religion.

Posted by wewantsthering

@l4wd0g said:

Only 10 percent of American teenagers can name all five major world religions and 15 percent cannot name any.

Where did you get that stat? Sounds fake to me...15% can't even come up with Catholicism and Christianity? I highly doubt that...

Posted by bushpusherr

@DriveupLife said:

How do other people's beliefs affect you? Just write them off, choose your own crowd and don't try to figure out why it is the way it is. If they're in your face, walk around them and don't bother giving them attention. Problem solved.

People's beliefs affect how stuff is run, such as getting nonsense taught to kids in school, or my home state giving millions of dollars in tax breaks so that the Creation Museum folks can make a Noah's Ark Park. I would love to not give a shit what other people believe, but for that to happen people need to stop imposing their opinions on others as the law of the land.

Also, one thing I'm confused about...how do Atheists use the Bible to push their own agenda?

Posted by ManU_Fan10ne

@l4wd0g said:

The United States is one of the most religious places on earth, but it is also a nation of shocking religious illiteracy.

Only 10 percent of American teenagers can name all five major world religions and 15 percent cannot name any.

i think the reason is that as a country, we are becoming more and more stupid (ignorant?), and this is really taking a toll on our social and political lives, including our interactions with people from other countries. The school system has been completely torn apart due to budget cuts and stupid politicians. i mean, when i mentioned that Africa is NOT a country in class, there were some people who were seriously surprised. and you can even look at some of the comments on online newspapers (and Yahoo! articles, some of those guys are really retarded), the level of stupidity is not even funny, and it really makes me ashamed. it does not surprise me that this country, supposedly one of the most religious countries, knows absolutely nothing about religion.

Posted by No0b0rAmA

@wewantsthering said:

@l4wd0g said:

Only 10 percent of American teenagers can name all five major world religions and 15 percent cannot name any.

Where did you get that stat? Sounds fake to me...15% can't even come up with Catholicism and Christianity? I highly doubt that...

Catholicism is a division of Christianity.

Posted by Jace

@l4wd0g said:

Atheists... use the Bible to push their agenda.

Posted by wewantsthering

@No0b0rAmA said:

@wewantsthering said:

@l4wd0g said:

Only 10 percent of American teenagers can name all five major world religions and 15 percent cannot name any.

Where did you get that stat? Sounds fake to me...15% can't even come up with Catholicism and Christianity? I highly doubt that...

Catholicism is a division of Christianity.

Either way you slice it, that's more than zero. Haha. "cannot name any."

Posted by No0b0rAmA

@Jace said:

@l4wd0g said:

Atheists... use the Bible to push their agenda.

I think he means Atheists criticize the bible, and use those criticisms to push their agenda

Posted by iam3green

well i don't have a thing for religion as i find it boring. i went to church when i was younger and then stopped going.

this thread is going to end well i think. people are going to read it and then start trolling other people.

Posted by Toxeia

Really seems like the internet destroyed one of church's major functions as a weekly social gathering, and because of that people just aren't exposed to it anymore. It's a shame too, because while religious literature is commonly used to incite it's actually a wonderful source of teaching people to be kind and understanding (if read with that intention anyway). But since America's still a nation founded by people seeking religious freedom it's rooted in everything that is American, including politics.

I plan on teaching my children about all the different religions so they're well rounded individuals when they grow up.

Posted by No0b0rAmA

@wewantsthering said:

@No0b0rAmA said:

@wewantsthering said:

@l4wd0g said:

Only 10 percent of American teenagers can name all five major world religions and 15 percent cannot name any.

Where did you get that stat? Sounds fake to me...15% can't even come up with Catholicism and Christianity? I highly doubt that...

Catholicism is a division of Christianity.

Either way you slice it, that's more than zero. Haha. "cannot name any."

I'm assuming he got all of these numbers from this book:

http://www.amazon.com/Religious-Literacy-American-Know-And-Doesnt/dp/0060859520

Posted by CaLe

Ignorance breeds ignorance. Teaching a developing mind to 'believe' or 'have faith' in any form of religion should be illegal. I'm sure a lot of the people who believe in any form of religion today simply didn't have any choice in the matter. Their developing mind was corrupted by their ignorant parents.

Posted by wewantsthering

@No0b0rAmA said:

@wewantsthering said:

@No0b0rAmA said:

@wewantsthering said:

@l4wd0g said:

Only 10 percent of American teenagers can name all five major world religions and 15 percent cannot name any.

Where did you get that stat? Sounds fake to me...15% can't even come up with Catholicism and Christianity? I highly doubt that...

Catholicism is a division of Christianity.

Either way you slice it, that's more than zero. Haha. "cannot name any."

I'm assuming he got all of these numbers from this book:

http://www.amazon.com/Religious-Literacy-American-Know-And-Doesnt/dp/0060859520

From the reviews on the book, it doesn't seem super credible. Haha. I just have a hard time believing a stat like. It's really easy to stretch/take out of contrext stats to make your agenda sound solid.

Posted by leebmx

I think it is a problem in all arenas of debate that people decide what they believe and then find the facts that fit that viewpoint and ignore discredit everything else.

I also have not read the whole Bible but from what I have seen it seems so contradictory and vague in parts that people can use in anyway they chose.

'If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman.....he shall surely be put to death' vs 'Thou shalt no kill'

Posted by believer258

This isn't going to end well.

Also, I'll accept that a disappointingly large percentage of Americans cannot name five major religions - I know, I live here - but not that small. As far as naming the four gospels, I'll believe that one too but, again, not that small. Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John - not a difficult thing to remember.

Posted by Canteu

Woah, woah, woah.

Are you going to sit there, and try to tell me that religious people are ignorant?

I am shocked.

Posted by MikeGosot
@Canteu said:

Woah, woah, woah.

Are you going to sit there, and try to tell me that religious people are ignorant?

I am shocked.

Dick move, bro. And i'm not even religous.
Posted by MikeGosot
@Canteu said:

@MikeGosot: But, that's what he said.

something something 1 third don't know stuff something something bible something

His point was more that "People are ignorant about religion" than "Religious people are ignorant".
Posted by Demoskinos

@wewantsthering said:

@l4wd0g said:

Only 10 percent of American teenagers can name all five major world religions and 15 percent cannot name any.

Where did you get that stat? Sounds fake to me...15% can't even come up with Catholicism and Christianity? I highly doubt that...

You'd be surprised how many people lump both of those together.

Posted by wewantsthering

@Demoskinos said:

@wewantsthering said:

@l4wd0g said:

Only 10 percent of American teenagers can name all five major world religions and 15 percent cannot name any.

Where did you get that stat? Sounds fake to me...15% can't even come up with Catholicism and Christianity? I highly doubt that...

You'd be surprised how many people lump both of those together.

I understand that, but that's not what I was talking about. lol I was saying that his quote said they couldn't even come up with a single one. They would at least have come up with one of those.

Posted by Animasta

I dunno what the 5th of the major 5 would be (the other 4 being christianity, islam, hindu and buddhism)... Confucianism/Taoism? Shinto? Judaism?

Posted by No0b0rAmA

@Animasta: It's Judaism

Posted by MikkaQ

@Animasta said:

I dunno what the 5th of the major 5 would be (the other 4 being christianity, islam, hindu and buddhism)... Confucianism/Taoism? Shinto? Judaism?

Really? Really?!

Posted by Animasta

@No0b0rAmA said:

@Animasta: It's Judaism

according to wikipedia, that's just not true, unless you mean in the west...

Posted by No0b0rAmA

@Animasta said:

@No0b0rAmA said:

@Animasta: It's Judaism

according to wikipedia, that's just not true, unless you mean in the west...

That's by number of worshippers. Judaism is considered a major religion because it's the religion where Christianity and Islam originally came from, hence the three being called Abrahamic Religions.

Posted by evilrazer
@No0b0rAmA

@wewantsthering said:

@l4wd0g said:

Only 10 percent of American teenagers can name all five major world religions and 15 percent cannot name any.

Where did you get that stat? Sounds fake to me...15% can't even come up with Catholicism and Christianity? I highly doubt that...

Catholicism is a division of Christianity.

I thought he burried himself by that statement and I was not wrong.
Edited by Draxyle

I do wish that religious studies were a bigger thing in grade school. I mean it's fascinating stuff really, just from a historical perspective. You get a better sense of the world and existence in general by exposing yourself to these huge aspects of culture. Heaven forbid we introduce this world-defining stuff into the classrooms on an intellectual level.

But yea, religious education in the US is disgraceful.

Edited by SteamPunkJin

@DriveupLife said:

How do other people's beliefs affect you? Just write them off, choose your own crowd and don't try to figure out why it is the way it is. If they're in your face, walk around them and don't bother giving them attention. Problem solved.

The problem here is that Freedom of Religion allows people to believe whatever they want, and act accordingly. Major issues arise when those people try to push their religious views into National Policy. We have the Separation of Church and State for a reasons. Sadly it's not as simple as walking away.

Posted by TentPole

I approve of this rant.

Posted by Whamola

I've read quite a bit of the bible. It's not hard to realize it was written by multiple people. It ranges from poorly written, milquetoast, masochistic, sadistic, to just very generic. It's just a very uninteresting book when looked at from a literary perspective. Honestly, if you want a book that describes humanity and what it means to be human, I'd suggest Albert Camus' The Plague.

My point is, you really don't need to read the bible to criticize religion. That's like saying you have to have seen The Hidden Fortress in order to call Star Wars a crappy movie. Religion is so far removed from its source material that it's an entirely different thing. Although, I'd have to say, I'm glad most religious people don't follow the bible because women would have no rights at all, most children would not survive until adulthood, and life would be incredibly boring.

Edited by Dexter_Morgan_

@l4wd0g said:

Atheists, 'Christians,' followers of Christ, Political groups and the like all use the Bible to push their agenda.

Thank you for including Atheists to this. I cannot tell you how many times I have debated with both the devout and Atheists who lack any real knowledge of what they are trying to preach.

You cannot hold the bible in the air and use it to try to sway others into a certain mindset when you, yourself haven't even read it.

EDIT

@Whamola said:

I

My point is, you really don't need to read the bible to criticize religion. That's like saying you have to have seen The Hidden Fortress in order to call Star Wars a crappy movie. Religion is so far removed from its source material that it's an entirely different thing. Although, I'd have to say, I'm glad most religious people don't follow the bible because women would have no rights at all, most children would not survive until adulthood, and life would be incredibly boring.

You don't need the bible to criticize religion, but when you use it's teachings and scriptures as a way to prove your point when you yourself haven't even read or at least studied it, it makes you (not you silly) look stupid.

Posted by SuperMeatToy

@Whamola:

Whether people find the bible interesting to read is I suspect entirely subjective, but what is undeniable is the context it provides for much of the literature, art and architecture

produced in the past two millennia. For example, one would probably gain a deeper appreciation for a painting like the Last Supper if they knew the story behind it, so the bible at least worth that much.

However, I feel it goes without saying that looking for a moral compass in that book that is relevant today is a near pointless exercise. As for those who would enforce religious dogma over reason and common morality, it should be obvious that this is out of the question.

Posted by TheDudeOfGaming

The Bible is a combination of myths, metaphors and events that actually took place. It's up to you to decide which is which. But you know, if nothing else it truly is a piece of great literature. At the end of the day, so long as you follow the golden rule of being a good duder, I'm cool with whatever you believe in.

Also, this thread will not end well.

Edited by scalpel

I would love it if somebody would clarify what the "atheist agenda" is. If the answer is "the separation of church and state", then you could just as justifiably call it the Christian agenda, or the Jewish agenda; any rational politically-minded person will recognize that the wall that keeps religious influence out of government is monumentally important for the well-being of a country.

@TheDudeOfGaming said:

The Bible is a combination of myths, metaphors and events that actually took place. It's up to you to decide which is which. But you know, if nothing else it truly is a piece of great literature. At the end of the day, so long as you follow the golden rule of being a good duder, I'm cool with whatever you believe in.

Also, this thread will not end well.

Would you agree that there are some ways that are better than others in the task of determining truth from untruth?

Posted by frankfartmouth

If the Deep South and a couple of Midwest states were removed, America would be a totally different place socially and politically (and that would be a small percentage of the population). Even if they were kept in, but we just changed to direct democracy and removed the electoral college and changed the Senate to be apportioned rather than 2 per state, it would be a lot different. Ignorant people exist everywhere, it's just that in America, they're more politically empowered than they should be. That's why we're still struggling to get legislation like gay marriage to pass despite the fact that polling shows the majority of the country supports it. "Hold on, we have to wait on ole Jeb over here to saunter over cuz he gets to pull his lever twice." It's this structure that allows ignorant fundamentalists to influence the system more than they should.

Posted by supamon
Edited by MAGZine

@frankfartmouth said:

"Hold on, we have to wait on ole Jeb over here to saunter over cuz he gets to pull his lever twice."

This one is in actually in the bible. Mark 14:31.

See? Backed up by the bible. Pushing my agenda like nobody's business.

But Peter insisted emphatically, "Even if I have to die with you, I will never disown you." And all the others said the same. Passage selected entirely randomly.
Posted by TheDudeOfGaming

@scalpel said:

I would love it if somebody would clarify what the "atheist agenda" is. If the answer is "the separation of church and state", then you could just as justifiably call it the Christian agenda, or the Jewish agenda; any rational politically-minded person will recognize that the wall that keeps religious influence out of government is monumentally important for the well-being of a country.

@TheDudeOfGaming said:

The Bible is a combination of myths, metaphors and events that actually took place. It's up to you to decide which is which. But you know, if nothing else it truly is a piece of great literature. At the end of the day, so long as you follow the golden rule of being a good duder, I'm cool with whatever you believe in.

Also, this thread will not end well.

Would you agree that there are some ways that are better than others in the task of determining truth from untruth?

Generally yes. In the case of the Bible? I doubt it.

@supamon: I heard about those guys, that is so freaking awesome!

Posted by dopplerganger

Haters gonna hate... women, gay people. Vote atheist :)

Posted by scalpel

@TheDudeOfGaming said:

@scalpel said:

I would love it if somebody would clarify what the "atheist agenda" is. If the answer is "the separation of church and state", then you could just as justifiably call it the Christian agenda, or the Jewish agenda; any rational politically-minded person will recognize that the wall that keeps religious influence out of government is monumentally important for the well-being of a country.

@TheDudeOfGaming said:

The Bible is a combination of myths, metaphors and events that actually took place. It's up to you to decide which is which. But you know, if nothing else it truly is a piece of great literature. At the end of the day, so long as you follow the golden rule of being a good duder, I'm cool with whatever you believe in.

Also, this thread will not end well.

Would you agree that there are some ways that are better than others in the task of determining truth from untruth?

Generally yes. In the case of the Bible? I doubt it.

@supamon: I heard about those guys, that is so freaking awesome!

Why not in the case of the Bible?

Posted by supamon

@TheDudeOfGaming: I know right? I think it's fascinating to see them grow but I'm still not sure whether to take them seriously or as a joke.

Posted by theguy

@Draxyle said:

I do wish that religious studies were a bigger thing in grade school. I mean it's fascinating stuff really, just from a historical perspective. You get a better sense of the world and existence in general by exposing yourself to these huge aspects of culture. Heaven forbid we introduce this world-defining stuff into the classrooms on an intellectual level.

But yea, religious education in the US is disgraceful.

In my old school we had to take religion classes up to Junior Cert (so like 11-12 yrs old till 14-15 yrs) and it was supposed to be about all religions but we had a catholic teacher who made it catholicisim class. I think it's very hard to have a general religion class without the teachers personal beliefs getting in the way. It didn't just happen in our school either basically every school has some form of religious education but it teaches a religion while officially its supposed to cover all major world religions.

Posted by Steve5513

I really don't see what the point of this thread is. Your premise is that people are ignorant of what the bible says. This is something I fully agree with and would also extend to every religious text. So, what's your point? Are you saying that if more people understood the Bible the same way you do, that they'd be Christian? Or that it would more people Atheist? You don't go any further than the premise.

I'm guessing the OP is either a Christian annoyed that more people don't share his particular version of Christianity or someone who calls themselves Agnostic and thinks that anyone who takes any position other than "All sides are equally valid" is being unreasonable.

Anyway, it doesn't matter if every person on the planet spent their life researching the Bible and studying ancient Greek and Hebrew. They will make the Bible support their views. If they hate gays, they'll find a passage that supports their hatred and ignore the ones that tell you to treat all people well. If they don't hate gays and think that they should have equal rights, they will find a passage that supports that, while ignoring the ones telling the reader to kill gay people.

Posted by Paindamnation

Everybody is different in their own special way.

Posted by ds8k

Religion is inherently ignorant.

Edited by Metzo_Paino

I'm an atheist, but I think kids having a good understanding of all of the major religions is important in helping them learn tolerance. This is important when tied with history because it can help you understand the viewpoints of civilisations and why they did what they did, and how that has influenced the way things are now.

Our Religious Studies class in school was pretty terrible. I've learned more from the Crash Course videos on YouTube.

Posted by SuperMeatToy

@Steve5513 said:

Anyway, it doesn't matter if every person on the planet spent their life researching the Bible and studying ancient Greek and Hebrew. They will make the Bible support their views. If they hate gays, they'll find a passage that supports their hatred and ignore the ones that tell you to treat all people well. If they don't hate gays and think that they should have equal rights, they will find a passage that supports that, while ignoring the ones telling the reader to kill gay people.

Cherrypicking passages is a big problem, made worse by the dangerous belief many people have that anything said in the bible is not only law, but untouchable truth. The fact is that almost all religious texts come from a time when humanity understood F all about the world around them, so looking to them for an infallible guide to everything is nonsensical.

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