Open Letter to Atheists: Religion Debate (Contd.)

If you believe in evolution, then how can you not believe that religion is an essential part of the human evolution?  A part of the fabric of humanity. During the steps of the evolution of the eye, would you ask “if the genetic code had gone that way, would our vision have been better off?”  No, you don’t question evolution because evolution is meant to adapt to its surroundings and religion was and still is a successful way of human beings adapting to their environment and circumstances.

Instead of asking if religion has any relevance in today’s world, the real question is, why is atheism trying to eradicate a huge part of what makes me who I am?  A human being who is a product of my ancestor’s beliefs and wisdom.  Some of these religious stories come from the beginning of recorded time, when human beings separated themselves from animals and became compassionate, ritualistic, humane, advanced creatures that we are today.

Atheists should admit they are a religious sect.  Atheism is not a “lack of belief”, it is firmly believing there is no Higher Power.  Otherwise, you would call yourselves agnostics.

Would atheists be as altruistic as religious folks if they weren’t out to prove something (that they are as charitable as religious people)?  If atheism stood alone as a non-belief system throughout our history, what kind of society would we have evolved into?

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5 thoughts on “Open Letter to Atheists: Religion Debate (Contd.)

  1. Firstly, atheism isn’t a sect – we’re not organised like religious groups, we’re individuals with a similar, not identical, viewpoint.

    Secondly, we’re not a “religious sect”, because, ya know, atheism kinda means no religion, no “god”. It’s right there in the definition.

    Thirdly, “Religion was and still is a successful way of human beings adapting to their environment and circumstances.” And as a means discrimination, mis-education, fear and hatred.

    I’m perfectly fine with you having your religion – doesn’t bother me one way or the other, blah blah – but blatant untruths are unacceptable. Do yourself a favour and get educated before you start casting aspersions

    Unless, of course, you have an agenda- but that would NEVER happen, now, would it? What with truth being an integral part of being religious and all that…

  2. i seen a vision of one angel i have my eyes i speak to my angel she said you have good life be head of you i smile and give her hug and kiss her on the cheeks i was frozening my heart feel with special angel with ariel is one of my angels from heaven she hold hand and just smileing that me and another angel name is gabiel and i ask gabiel to ariel my angel to bless me and help me with my dear life and someone enter the room his name was michael a angel to and he gave my blessing from god and michael gave strength and courage i was feeling the power of my angels i was so happy i gave all my angels my hugs and michael was leving me and gabiel was leving me and ariel was staying me and she gave me kiss in the cheeks i love hold ariel and ask to stay with me and another angel come enter the room uriel gave me a gift to from heaven was bless by all the angels take care jenn hyun’s

  3. my heart like the water flowing in the win my is like the ocean moveing back to forth may heart is like a angel from heaven i take to my angels and one of them show up to me i talk to one of them she was very kind angel from heaven and i give he my hand to give gifts from angel from heaven i was happen around her i gave her hug to a kiss on the cheeks and i was touched and move by my angel from heaven and she speaks to me to say you life will change my dear one she was glowing like light on a tree on a chrismax tree i was smileing to my angel from heaven she went back to heaven and gadriel was in my peasents i was looking in to her eyes and she smile that me i was smileing back that her she show me gift from havean she was loveing angel and she heal my mind to body to my soul and i was feeling much better and my angels was saying good by my dear one .

  4. I had a close friend who did his doctoral work in human evolution. I visited his lab one day when they were doing Proton Emission Tomography scans on chimpanzees. The project involved comparing PET scan data from chimps and humans when they displayed various vocalization behaviors. When humans speak, it turns out, we use a completely different part of the brain than chimps do — EXCEPT when we use what are commonly called “swear words.” Did you ever notice that you tend to remember the swear words from a language you have studied, long after other, unused vocabulary has faded from your memory? Turns out, in a sense the swear words constitute a separate language from regular speech, expressing (and stored in) a whole different part of the brain. To me this suggests (among many other things) that swearing gives expression to a part of my being that would otherwise remain unexpressed and stifled.

    I think this is similar to your idea that religion evolved to meet some adaptational need. Assuming this is true, the first question I would ask is, “what need”? It appears that religion serves many purposes in human society. One obvious, major one is that it is integral to many systems of social control.

    When you look at the hundreds of “commandments” in the Hebrew Bible, for example, you essentially are perusing the legal code of an ancient Middle Eastern society. Certainly I believe that law and the making of legal codes is a very important human behavior that it would be supremely difficult, as social animals, for us to live without. Atheists are equally as capable of doing this, however, as religious people are. And perpetuating an ancient Middle Eastern system of law in a modern society, side-by-side with its own system of laws, is problematic. People often challenge the usefulness of this by posing questions about what would happen if we truly applied certain aspects of ancient Hebrew law today.

    Would putting homosexuals, adulterers, and unruly children on death row seem reasonable today, or would it constitute a horrific affront to modern moral sensibilities? Would we expect prison authorities to operate grade school programs for the thousands upon thousands of children who would have to be sentenced to death under such a literal application of biblical law? Or would we simply turn our back on these “lost souls” and let them get what they deserve?

    Would it truly be acceptable for a father to sell his daughter into slavery? International law enforcement agencies along with the FBI and local authorities nationwide already have programs in place to combat sex slavery (though MUCH more is needed). Would we have to modify these programs to allow slavery for girls and young women sold legally by their fathers, as opposed to those taken against their fathers’ will (often from other countries) and sold on the black market?

    The Bible has a rule against making cloth with different basic materials woven together. What should be the penalty for producing cotton/poly blend fabric? Would this be controlled by a regulatory agency, or by criminal law enforcement authorities directly?

    So many of the laws in the Bible are so bizarre when held up to modern scrutiny that actually enacting them would be out of the question. Religious people make all kinds of excuses for that, but excuses aside, there is one REASON for it — that our moral sensibilities evolve just like other aspects of our being, and we have learned that such rules are either unnecessary, or actually destructive to us and the communities in which we live.

    Nations that have such laws because they have practiced them since ancient times, however, seem to get a pass. It isn’t difficult to find videos on YouTube of women being publicly beheaded by sword for sleeping with someone they were not married to. The men involved, however, are held blameless. For the woman, it is so heinous that it demands the ultimate punishment — for the man, however, perfectly O.K. Largely however such beheadings are tolerated because they are commanded by some “religion.” Good, decent, fair?

    There are many rules we have in common with ancient Hebrew law. A prohibition against murder, for example. Of course, a legislature of atheists would be perfectly likely to pass such a law. You ask, if not for religion, would people be good and decent and fair? I would say yes, of course, T least as much as we are now, because the urge to cooperate with others and to practice kindness and charity comes from a biological imperative arising from our fundamental nature as social beings.

    Anyway, religion doesn’t seem very good at encouraging common fairness, such as equality of all people before the law. Fundamental rights, such as the right of a woman to go about her business without fear of being beheaded for looking the wrong way, etc., are often secured by atheists fighting against religious authorities who not only allow, but command such things. When horrific, bizarre, unnecessary cruelty is woven into religion, it becomes strangely difficult to oppose. In that sense, a society without religion might well be better, more decent, and fairer.

    Law, religion, etc. cannot be the be all and end all of social control anyway. One day I was filing all the new laws passed by the Washington State legislature, when I blurted out “Oh My GOD!!” And a law student said “What?” and I said, “They just passed a law making necrophilia a crime!” And he said, “You think that should be LEGAL!?” and I said “No. I think a basic sense of decency should be enough to control that kind of behavior. If we have reached the point where the only thing standing between polite society and rampant necrophilia is a criminal statute, we are way too far gone anyway.”

    • Thanks for your concise and thought-provoking response to my post. You made valid points and I believe we humans have made great strides in improving upon the laws of ancient times. Because we live in a democratic country, we have the right to dispute religion, and this was all made possible by our Christian forefathers. It was religion that first recognized the value of human life and the spirit, it was religion that was able to not only bring strength to a nation, but generations and generations of communities who have evolved to contributing the most to science and medicine among other things (i.e. Jews and Americans having the most number of Nobel Prize winnings.)

      Like anything, religion can be taken too far, but so can science. I believe there should always be a place in the world where faith and religion can be practiced in peace without atheists overreacting to the way people want to worship their God.

      Thanks again for your comment.

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