Originally Posted by Blizzard Beast
Johnmansley; you sir are a SMEGHEAD!
Thank you! Someone who knows what I'm on about at last!
Anyway back to seriousness...
Religion, in my eyes, is a waste of time. I respect the fact that people have the right to believe whatever they want but the Old and New testaments are flawed beyond belief. I can't believe people actually believe that the Earth was created in 6 days and that it sits at the centre of the universe. Scientific proof
exists to blow those two theological ideas out of the (holy) water.
I think there are many questions that people have to ask themselves when they consider the religion argument. The first, I would conjecture, is why does religion exist in the first place? Intuitively, the answer lies in the fact that people wanted to enforce a moral code to live by. This moral code was provided and then enforced by people with stories of living the afterlife in tranquility if they obeyed and eternal damnation if they strayed.
The next question follows naturally. What happens when we die? Religion helped to ease any fears of death among the law abiding citizens and frightened unlawful people into obeying the law. The truth is nobody will ever know until the moment that death occurs. There is and cannot ever be any physical proof of either Heaven or Hell but religion played on people's fears and coerced them to believe that it must be true.
A further question: what motivated people to become religious leaders? This is an easy one. Power and control over people. Following from this was the fact that they saw an oppotunity to exploit the people that they were preaching to, again trading off the fear of Divine reprisals.
What of the modern times? Science has disproved many of the stipulations of religion so the religious leaders are now changing tact. Many aspects of the Old and New Testaments are no longer considered to be 'literal' by the church and are now thought of to be metaphors.
This leads me to my final question: isn't a religion based on metaphors a mythology?
I like what Undying Hatred said vis-a-vie his belief that religion should be a private matter. The church is very against this vein of thought as there would obviously be no need for priests or places of worship, thus bringing an end to the lavish lifestyles that many bishops and cardinals enjoy (while many Christians around the world are living in abject poverty, may I add).
I have no problem with people who gain faith, confidence and the will to be good human beings from religion. In this sense religion is a good thing. This is the only way I can see religion surviving. There have been too many advances in science that have brought logic and reason and too many scandals within the Church that have spread disillusion amongst the masses.