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Thread: Does organised religion have any real purpose.

  1. #1
    Heavenly Creature
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    Does organised religion have any real purpose.

    So, does organised religion have any real purpose in modern life, or should it just go the same way as the dinosaurs and become extinct, fading away into non-existence.



  2. #2
    lone wolf survivalist.
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    it was invented(Christianity that is) to control the ignorant and illiterate peasants, I think we have all progressed past this now, most people are only nominal Christians now, its only used on forms and applications these days, I don't think many people go to church these days, the congregations have been dwindling for years, its only the very old that go now and even they are only hedging their bets!!

  3. #3
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    There is an element of control within the dynamics of religion, I remember being dragged off to church as a kid, every week it would be the same old rhetoric, some vicar would be telling people a story about how not to be arseholes to each-other, how there is this hell place and how if you pray you'll have nothing to worry about. I don't see how it is relevant to modern life as you don't need organised religion to be a good person or be kind to your neighbour. A lot of congregations now are just old people and they will not be around one day, so what really is the point.

    I'd like to think that most humans are not as savage as we were two thousand years or more ago and we can just get on with one another without some religious organisation telling us to do so.

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  4. #4
    Comfortably Numb Rick69's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by rhythm
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    I'd like to think that most humans are not as savage as we were two thousand years or more ago and we can just get on with one another...
    Put ten men in a room with enough food for two and within a few days i think youd see that we as a species are just as savage as we have ever been.

    Religion was invented as hagrid said for power and control by the few over the many.

    Has it any place or purpose in modern society - well it seems to keep quite a few people in employment which is obviously still good for that side of the table, and it gives quite a few other people hope in difficult circumstances so if people believe then they also get something out of it. I guess its the same as a placebo drug, Absolutely nothing in it but the power of thought..

    So i guess that means that it does have a place, myself i choose to believe its all a load of horseshit but i am also quite accepting that other peoples ideas may be different. As long as what they are doing doesnt affect me then i arent really bothered.

  5. #5
    Heavenly Creature Wulfie's Avatar
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    I believe religions were created initially with good intent and honest beliefs but the nature of mans greed then quickly corrupted the words for profit, power ect. unlike Wakan Tanka which is carried.
    Not all who wander are lost

  6. #6
    Heavenly Creature itinerant child's Avatar
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    I do notice that when religion is mentioned,people on here often lean towards using just one religion as an example.

    Is it good that a bunch of people go and drum up the sun at stonehenge on solstice?

    Is it good that a bunch of people set up prayer flags?

    Is it good that people meet in a church to celebrate and remember someone who has passed?

    A lot of the comments that I read on here can be very one sided and anti other faiths and religions,which bizarrely rates them up there with the things that they are knocking!!

    The purpose of most organized or named religions is often plain to see and often has good intention. What some people do in the name of that religion is sometimes bad,and also sometimes good.

    There is positive and negative in most situations and it is upto us how we view it. Many people tend only to concentrate on the negative side of religion in debate and often forget to look at what good it offers within the community in what it serves.

    Here is an example which I have used in this forum before-

    I was off to stonehenge to bring in the solstice(my spiritual-religious belief) and picked up a good friend who has grown up within the bounds of christianity. He is a chap full of love and was quite vibed up on the love of the occassion and kept wishing everyone a merry christmas and this was wished with all his heart. There were quite a few pagans-spiritualists-druids etc who kept telling him that it was not xmas,but solstice and this was said with disaproaving tones !!

    He was sharing his love and religious thoughts with them with the intent of passing on his good feelings to others with good intent,yet the people who kept dissing his thoughts did so as they thought him wrong. It was the 21st of december,was he wrong in wishing merry christmas to others?
    He was one of the most open minded and genuine people who I spent time with that morning.
    Just because we may not agree with some other religious viewpoints does not mean that they are wrong or bad.

    There may be a few or even a lot of power hungry people profitting from certain religions,though we can not tar all the followers of said religions with the same brush,as I would not tar every person at stonehenge that winter as being closed minded bacause of a few disrespectful people who were picking on my friend.

    Many people say prayers and find serenity because of them as some people do with meditating and accepting the universe into their being.

    I say live and let live to those who practice with good hearts and open minds,and boo to those who knock them for their beliefs.

    All religions have a real purpose to those who embrace them and use them for their own spiritual gain without hurting others and who are happy to share the love that helps them. It is upto the individual what they do with the shared advice,though if it is given with good intent,then surely it is not a bad thing,whether you agree with it or not.

    AMEN XX
    anything is possible,that my friends is a mathematical certainty ;-)
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  7. #7
    Love's the shire Offgrid hero's Avatar
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    I do enjoy a good hymn at Christmas i saw three ships is nice and the sound of monastic monks in full chant is a nice way to fall asleep but that's about it for me.
    just a simple guy

  8. #8
    Heavenly Creature itinerant child's Avatar
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    Whatever floats your three ships
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    I will add that I have no religious ties myself,but I am also a white man and will still stand up for the rights of a black woman
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    anything is possible,that my friends is a mathematical certainty ;-)

  9. #9
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    I personally think religion should be tolerated so long as it harm none in any way.
    For some people, religion of some kind is a necessary part of their life, even otherwise sensible people.

    I was talking about this with a friend who is a retired psychologist, and he stated that in his experience some people found it a necessity to have a religion, or religious feelings. Others had no inclination towards religion whatsoever, yet were often found helping their fellows because they just thought it their duty to do so. We are a very mixed bunch!
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  10. #10
    Heavenly Creature itinerant child's Avatar
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    Absolutely. Its a shame that there are always a few who spoil it for the many good people who practice religion.

    I have good friends that come from a wide assortment of religions and spiritual beliefs and the reason that they are friends is because of their moral standings and good charecter. Some of these friends have accepted religion into their lives and are much happier people than they were once were as they all feel that they have got something that they need from it. So I would say that organized religion has served a real purpose to them.

    I have no hangups about religion and can see lots of positive things that make a great contribution to the communities that use them.

    Nature and love are my chosen gods and stone circles,mouintains and forests are my church. I suppose I am a devout worshiper of hippydom
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    anything is possible,that my friends is a mathematical certainty ;-)

  11. #11
    All religions teach good moral values and sectors of all organised religions do charitable work that provides practical and emotional support to vulnerable people in need.
    Are there idiots in positions of power in the churches? Of course. Are there people who misrepresent religion for their own gain? Of course. Is the theology often complete bullshit? Of course. None of that matters much to me. BILLIONS of people in this world look to their religion to learn what is morally right. By and large, the morals that religions teach - don't steal, don't cheat, don't kill - are ones that I agree with, so I am happy that those billions of people have a source of inspiration for those morals.

    Of course, it is totally possible for people to attain good morals without religion. But this becomes much more difficult for those who grow up in complicated situations of poverty, famine, or war, (which is at least half the planet).
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  12. #12
    FORM FROM THE VOID Danann's Avatar
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    Firstly ....I Be Thinking That "Beliefs/Ways Etc" Be Beautiful Things Of Cultures And Be Of And In Ones Heart Mind Body Spirit And So Be Flow Naturally And Beautifully ..And There Be So Of Peoples Free Own Choices/Wills/Ways Etc ..

    Where This "Organized Religion" You Speak Off Was More Of Being ..
    Forced . Controlled And Uggly ...And Mostly Sadly Used In The Most Uggliest And Cruels Of Ways...And Spreads Fear
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    As It Did Not And Does Not Flow Naturally Or Beautifully ...Because Anything Or Anybodies That Be Forced And Used To Control Free Spirit And Free Thinking And Free Living Etc ..And Spread Fear And Cause Fear
    Is Uggly And Wrong And Be Causes Nothing But Hurt Pain And Unhappiness And Fear.
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    But That Be Just My Thoughts And Beliefs And I Be Knowing That There Be People Who Still Believe And Are And Live With This "Organised Religion" Whether That Be There Own Be Choosings Or Sadly By NOT there Be Choosing.
    Form From The Void & Mists
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  13. #13
    I don't doubt the social value of the potential for any religion to draw people together and offer questioning that encourages self reflection.

    I would propose that religion is not necessary. Individuals can move toward the above without implicating organised religion in their decision making processes......There is plenty of new evidence that supports evolutionary processes.....Very few of these require submission of one's soul to an outdated concept of GUIDING POWER.

    It's definitely a mental health issue because God represents that which is practically unknowable in times past when the information was not available.......Ignorance in these times unless state enforced is a questionable motivation for hiding in religion.

    It is very shitty that the extremely well educated and culturally aware heads of organised religion do not confess the truth of their realisations and awareness to the ignorant masses.....By telling those subjects that it is a lie.....
    ????
    Last edited by zendaze; 23-04--2017 at 12:05 AM.

  14. #14
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    Originally Posted by stuoolong
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    All religions teach good moral values
    That's not what my religious teacher told me, when he caught me reading LaVey's Satanic Bible under the desk
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  15. #15
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    you need religion so you can go and kill another person that does do not think the same as you

  16. #16
    Religion isn't really required for the killing to continue.

    It's more subtle/deniable when religion is removed or discounted but continues as a more abstract and slow murder in the name of neofascist capitalism.

    It's very murky for most people but remains fantastically uncomplicated in simple minds.

    Organised religion and capitalism serve a very real and similar purpose.....

    Obfuscating the masses to achieve wealth and status for the few are obvious, real outcomes for the elite that continue to cannibalise for selfish gain and self justify because they have convinced devout subjects to attempt the same.
    Last edited by zendaze; 23-04--2017 at 03:08 AM.

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    yep - all of the above ............... have a shufti at Inner Engineering by Sadhguru ..... looks a little more like a real deal to me, it's saying you are religion, not you belong to this or that religion. Also in terms of your actions, you will be done by as you did, so do as you would be done by. This is only a law of nature, that if you do not understand, you will learn to understand - so you will find yourself on the receiving end so you can learn the difference. No need to panic though, just to try every day to make progress in changing one's self for the better and that a form of psychophysical yoga is very beneficial, instead of competitive - sports, shopping, religion, golf club etcetera
    Last edited by verticalis48; 23-04--2017 at 06:01 AM.

  18. #18
    Abandon ship. Duckman's Avatar
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    I once heard an anecdote of a man who as a teenager was always in trouble with the police and went from bad to worse when he left school. Then one day he became a Jehovah Witness and started to behave himself. I guess it gave him at least some moral compass. Jehovah Witnesses generally attract not the most sophisticated people.
    We all lead different lives.

  19. #19
    Abandon ship. Duckman's Avatar
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    I attended charismatic/full gospel churches in the 1980s. Although helpful in getting my life back on track to start with after a while, I came to realise they were sincere but clueless, irrelevant and not all that helpful. Sir Humphrey Appleby once remarked that newspapers pander to readers' prejudices. I think the same applies to sermons.
    I remember one sermon where the pastor was appalled at the amount of promiscuity around at the time. Just think all the people born then as a result of all this promiscuity are now in the workforce paying income tax that would pay for his state pension. He also had a problem with sex education. Curiously he made no mention of playing with or breaking a young girl's heart. Presumably he must have thought to do so was a benign thing. I admit I have done so when I was young and not proud I did so.These days I consider such behaviour to be 100% wrong. The Bible says,
    "Strain out a gnat, swallow down a camel." Matthew 23:24
    Even alleged pedophile Michael Jackson in his song he wrote Billy Jean had the lyrics,
    "And don't go around breaking young girls' hearts."
    Rock music is supposed to be the work of Satan.
    We all lead different lives.

  20. #20
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    Organised religion is also so obsessed with sex, more than a lot of other organisations it seems, these preachers talk about promiscuity and 'sins of the flesh', why are they so obsessed with it. Look at Catholicism for instance, loads of celibate priests telling people when and when they should not have sex and telling people about family values and things, what gives these celibate priests licence to peddle this nonsense, oh yeah, some 2000 year old book that could possibly be filed under fiction in a library.

    I suppose organised religion gives people a moral structure and a crutch to lean on when in hard times, but the people that lead are preaching ancient stories which some folk take literally word for word, these stories just do not reflect modern times and the how the world has changed. You do not necessarily need preachers to tell you not to be an asshole in life, it is your own choice whether or not you are an asshole.

    Part of me thinks that organised religion in its current form is not relevant or compatible with modern society anymore. Burning bushes, water into wine, virgin birth?, fair enough these stories are allegorical, but some people believe these things actually literally happened. Also I have noticed how a lot of folk pick and mix what part of religious scripture they follow, especially if they can use certain pieces of scripture to try and justify their bigotry and hatred. Maybe when organised religion started out it had good intentions, but does it still have now, or is it just a system designed to control people through fear and guilt of the past and the future to come.

    I've nothing against folk who follow an organised religion, and if it helps bring out the best in them because it gives them a routine and structure, then that is good I suppose. So maybe some aspects are good and should be kept whilst other aspects should be let go of to fade away because they serve no purpose.
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  21. #21
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    yeah, I can do burning bushes and wine into water - it's called thrush and alcoholism
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    seriously.......I no longer really know what means good and what means bad sometimes.........I see all this "goodness" going on and I some of it is really genuinely good shit - and some of it is really genuinely bad shit - same with "badness" - it can kind of get a bit tricky. So I'm trying for as little judgementalism as I can manage and that's religion enough for me at the mo
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  22. #22
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    Originally Posted by Duckman
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    I once heard an anecdote of a man who as a teenager was always in trouble with the police and went from bad to worse when he left school. Then one day he became a Jehovah Witness and started to behave himself. I guess it gave him at least some moral compass. Jehovah Witnesses generally attract not the most sophisticated people.
    yep DM, think it's a matter of quantity as well of quality.......enough Jehovahs gubbins to pull yourself out of the quicksand, but not so much Jehovahs gubbins that you go around trying to push it down vulnerable peeps - and soon as you exchange one addiction for another - you're still on the treadmill...........it's how to get off the wheel is the real thing..that's worth the membership
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  23. #23
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    Originally Posted by verticalis48
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    yeah, I can do burning bushes and wine into water - it's called thrush and alcoholism
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    In that case it is not faith in religion you need, but faith in a good AA group and a good over the counter pharmacy product
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  24. #24
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    Originally Posted by Wulfie
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    I believe religions were created initially with good intent and honest beliefs but the nature of mans greed then quickly corrupted the words for profit, power ect. unlike Wakan Tanka which is carried.
    love your reference to Wakan Tanka Wulfie - right up my street, like Tao, Wicca, Yoga - direct connection - hotline - no need to join anything, just doing it.............marvel ous
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