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Has organized religion outserved its purpose?

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  • Has organized religion outserved its purpose?

    I imagine religion began as a way for man to attempt to explain his natural environment. But these days, science does that and even more compelling, it is subscribed to by more people. Even though there seems to be a revival of religion in this country as of late, these "Great Awakenings" have come and gone before, and it shouldn't be long before everyone slings their knapsack over their shoulder and gets back to whatever it is they normally do.

    And even more startling, religions haven't proven to be concrete over time. What happened to meatles Fridays? Grape juice for Communion? (I realize I'm targetting Catholicism, but those are the only examples I can cite of the top of my head that most people here would be familiar with).

    So is it God we're after and not organized religion? I don't want the blasé and fanfare that accompanies religion-Church, do's and don'ts, strange traditions, etc. I trust God, not a Church or Temple or Synagouge or Mosque or Pope. The other physical entities are somewhat meaningless because they just slow down the real reason for spiritualist thoughts. You're so muddled up following someone else's values you never form your own.

    Any other opinions?

  • #2
    I agree, I think the problem is that a lot of people who are religious (before people...or at least wannabee freak out, I said a lot, not all, not most...just a lot) get way too focused on the physical church because they are very concerned with how it looks to other people. They're more concerned with looking like good people instead of actually being one.

    Its not that people believe in organized religion that bothers me. People can believe whatever they want and it has nothing to do with me. Its that so many people look to it to solve their problems or find out what they believe instead of looking inside themselves to see what they believe. I used to date this mormon girl, and occasionally we'd get to talking about religion and it really felt like I was talking to a brick wall. Every response to something I said or asked would be "well in the bible it says..." or "in the book of mormon it says...", and then she'd go on to say something way out of left field with absolutely no logic behind it other than "because it says so".

    I know organized religion helps a lot of people in many different ways and that's awesome. I just dont think its necessary to have to be religious to lead a moral life. I'm what I would call a spiritual person, but I'm not at all religious. Out of all the worlds religions, I have absolutely no reason to think I should believe one over the other.


    • #3
      Well my mom tried to raise me to be Catholic, sending me to First Communion CCD, private Catholic school where we have religion class 4/5 days of the week, and just recently sending me to Confirmation class. I've just been so tired of hearing "Jesus this Jesus that" I've given up, and I really don't care anymore. I'm a junior at this school and the religion class (and the teachers) get more ridiculous as we go farther up the grades. Now this is my own opinion here but I say whatever to there being all this stuff. I was recently doing the Creation stories for a project, and I learned how bogus it sounded when you actually analyze it and read it. You can believe there's a God and whatnot but for me I'll just take my life and live it and go flying. Whatever happens happens. Just try to make the best of it


      • #4
        I was raised catholic too. Went to catholic school from 3rd-6th grade, which is when we moved overseas. I just kinda went along without questioning anything. First confession, first communion, was an altar boy (yea yea, let the jokes fly), and then confirmation. I didn't go every sunday, but we went pretty often. Went on a church trip to Lourdes to see the whole St. Burnadette thing. Went to Romania to bring supplies to a group of orphanages that our church supported. I never questioned anything, Catholocism was all I knew, so yeah I thought it was right.

        At the end of my senior year of high school our AP English teacher had us read Herman Hesse's "Sidhartha". After reading that I got to thinking about religion and such and began to think "ok, so why do I believe what I do?" and I couldn't come up with an answer other than that it was all I knew. I looked at catholocism, and a bunch of other religions and I didn't really feel a particular pull towards any of them. I also found that really, every major organized religion all believes in the same morals. The only difference is in the stuff that in my opinion doesn't matter. Its the who supposedly did what a long time ago, which to me doesn't matter because I think the focus should be on how to treat people, including others. I've sat through entirely too many masses of a priest babbling on about St. Beavis doing whatever thousands of years ago, but then they never get to the part about what its supposed to mean to us.

        That was a lot of rambling, so here's the cliffs notes:

        I think that it doesn't matter what religion you are as long as you treat yourself and others with respect. They all pretty much believe the same thing anyway. I believe there's some sort of spiritual being, but I dont believe it is possible to know what religion, if any, is "correct" until we die...if even then.

        Oh yeah, and nothing pisses me off more than people who try to "save" you and shove their religion down your throat. Concentrate on making yourself a better person and "help" people if they ask for it, but till then keep to yourself.


        • #5
          I was baptised a Lutheran and raised a Catholic. I have throughly explored the meaning of religion to me and realized that as was mentioned here before, all of the major religions share the same moral values. Organized religion was, I think, intended to be a moral compass and maybe a means to understand our reality in the infancy of the human race. Thus, I think that organized religion is only a manifestation of our collective soul. I personally belive (in a Universalist sense) in a Christian God. However, I recognize that other religions fit in my belief system as well. We all quest to "Know God's thoughts" as Einstein said. That is why some pursue religion through prayer while others through science.


          • #6
            I don't use any religion, I make my own morals. But they are mostly the same morals in many religions, I won't steal, drink, smoke, kill, or anything like that. I think its good because religion never gets in the way of my decisions, so everything I do is going by my morals, not morals that were decided for me.


            • #7
              Originally posted by Crunk415balla
              I don't use any religion
              You and me both.

              ATLcenter that was a well written post, some thought obviously went into it.

              Life’s to short to be tied down with religion, I can't see much good in it as well to be honest, sure you hear of one or two people changing their lives around through religion but still.

              Let's be frank about this. Fact: religion breeds war and violence. Fact: followers of mainstream religion are no different as a whole than atheists, in terms of alcoholism, child abuse, murder etc.


              • #8
                Originally posted by Messerschmitt Man
                Let's be frank about this. Fact: religion breeds war and violence. Fact: followers of mainstream religion are no different as a whole than atheists, in terms of alcoholism, child abuse, murder etc.
                I think it's not religion that breeds war and violence it's people that use it as an excuse.

                Unfortunately, I have to agree with you on the second "fact".

                However, I think must religions are a good thing.

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                • #9
                  Well, I grew up being told by my parents to choose my religion at my own free will, and as a result, I didn't choose any religion . But seriously, I agree with previous posters that religion is being used as a reason for war too often, and strong believers are often too easily influenced. As an example, look at how some radical Muslim a-holes *cough* Ahmadinedshad*cough* use an actually peace-preaching book in the koran to get other Muslims to blow themselves to pieces, because they are being told that they do it for their belief and people, and once they died a martyr, they will enter paradise, where they will have 72 virgins. I mean, sorry, but if somebody really believes, he definitely is way too influencable, and there are many such people out there. Not just Muslims, hell no, the same happenings, albeit with different promises, can be found across all religions, and along the history of mankind, be it the witchhunt in Europe, conquesting South America, or something else.
                  To make my thesis short:
                  As long as there are easily influenced humans, religions will be used as an excuse for war and fighting.


                  • #10
                    I just can't go through life living by the notion that we evolved from apes when there are still apes.

                    Every religion has its little group of fundamentalist hypocritical freaks like Jerry Falwell or the 9/11 terrorists. Even Hitler proclaimed he killed Jews in the name of God. The true followers of those religions, Christianity and Muslim are ahsamed that those freaks group themselves in the same religion. The fact of the matter is that religious people including myself realize we're not perfect and we don't claim to be. It shames me that there are religious people out there who think they're better than everyone else. I'm not one of those people.

                    Historical records outside the Bible show that Jesus was in fact a real person. I believe Jesus was more than just a carpenter. I believe he came to earth for all of mankind to claim our sins and make it possible to spend eternity in heaven. I believe heaven is only accomplished through believing in Christ and trusting Him as my savior. I believe that it takes more than just being a "good person" to get into heaven. I believe than I have a specific purpose here on earth - although I'm not sure what that purpose is I'm looking for it. I believe than when I have fulfilled that purpose sufficient to God's desire, I will die - whether I'm 29 or 99 years old. I don't fear death.

                    Feel free to send me a PM if my post sparks any interest or anger or whatever. I'm not here to debate religion. I honestly don't believe I'm any better than anyone else here. I just felt it was the right time after being here for over 2 years to share what I really believe.
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                    • #11
                      Paul you are entitled to your opinion without question.

                      However, my opinion is that evolution did take place. For some reason I just can't picture "magical wonders" happening. Now I'm not saying that we crawled out of the sea, but as time went on, changes happened and somehow we are here today. Jesus may have been a real person, but I don't really think that he was magical. It seems strange really. Especially that movie "Jesus of Nazareth" we watched in religion where he's got these huge blue eyes and throughout the whole movie, HE NEVER BLINKS ONCE. It's so freaky! It seems a little strange as well.

                      I dunno. I'm just tired of hearing about Jesus and stuff...speaking of which, I got a religion quiz today on Jesus's circumcision, the "New Moses," and Luke and Matthew with Matthew having the story of the Magi and Luke having some other stuff.....but exactly is reading this going to help me in life? Simply, it's not. I really don't like wasting my time going to religion class. Once 1 1/2 more years though!

                      This thread may turn into a heated debate but I'm tryng my best not to be too argumentative. <-- Is that a word?


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Crism
                        I dunno. I'm just tired of hearing about Jesus and stuff...speaking of which, I got a religion quiz today on Jesus's circumcision, the "New Moses," and Luke and Matthew with Matthew having the story of the Magi and Luke having some other stuff.....but exactly is reading this going to help me in life? Simply, it's not. I really don't like wasting my time going to religion class. Once 1 1/2 more years though!
                        British Literature, Chemistry and Trigonometry aren't going to help many of us in life either, but we still have to study them. I know what you mean. What kind of school do you go to that makes you study religion? I took a neat college class called "Magic, Ritual & Religion." It was a blow-off class but it was very interesting and informative about pretty much every religion.
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                        • #13
                          Private Catholic school that's principal is a guy that could resemble Hitler lol


                          • #14
                            I was raised the first several years in a lutheran school, but I am not religous at all. I believe more in science over than a religous explination for everything...I guess Im a scientologist! :P
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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by dneedham
                              I guess Im a scientologist! :P
                              So, do you enjoy your flights to the moon on your engineless DC-8s ?