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Thread: What purpose does religion serve?

  1. #1
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    What purpose does religion serve?

    I have often wondered about this.

    Regarding all religions in genearl:

    I think when ancient man saw something he could not explain, he tried to credit it to some supernatural being that he also could not explain. But there are a few things I do not understand:

    Where did the concept of "worship" of this mythical supernatural power came from? Is this mythical supernatural power egotistical?

    Where did the concept of immortality and an afterlife (in utopia or hell) come from?

    I personally think religion is nothing more than a phycholigical crutch for the weak.

    Please, don't start quoting the Bible. That is not the answer.
    Steve

    Treaty of Tripoli : Appropriately Ratified
    "ARTICLE 11.
    As the government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion"

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by wsm2506
    Where did the concept of "worship" of this mythical supernatural power came from? Is this mythical supernatural power egotistical?
    Early man worshiped/prayed to/made sacrifices to his gods because it was the only way he could control (in his mind) events around him that were otherwise uncontrollable.

    Quote Originally Posted by wsm2506
    Where did the concept of immortality and an afterlife (in utopia or hell) come from?
    Good question. Maybe it was simply unacceptable or unimaginable that death was the end.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by wsm2506
    Where did the concept of "worship" of this mythical supernatural power came from? Is this mythical supernatural power egotistical?
    in man's perspective, any being with supreme power and authority is necessarily arrogant and egotistical. the only way to demonstrate the superiority of this power is by making oneself as inferior as possible

    Quote Originally Posted by wsm
    Where did the concept of immortality and an afterlife (in utopia or hell) come from?
    religion is the response to the percieved evil that exists in the world. whenever tragedy strikes hard, people immediately and almost instinctively consider a larger picture. this is especially true when the tragedy is caused by something totally beyond man's control (like earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, etc. to counter this 'evil', there must be some hope that a good greater than such exists, otherwise most people would be totally overcome with despair and wouldnt be able to function. what is the worst thing that can happen to someone? death. what good could possibly overcome this ultimate tragedy? an afterlife of eternal bliss, of course

    Quote Originally Posted by wsm
    I personally think religion is nothing more than a phycholigical crutch for the weak.
    we all are weak at sometime, and, like being strong, being weak is learned and can be unlearned. in religious environments, members are regularly remided of their weaknesses, another ploy that produces more inferiority, worship, and very often manipulation and oppression
    Quote Originally Posted by wsm
    Please, don't start quoting the Bible. That is not the answer.
    i think quotes from the bible will add a dimension of first-hand religious mentality and should be welcomed, but its not my topic
    when man tried to understand nature, theism was born
    when man tried to understand God, atheism was born

  4. #4
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    ah-ha....no

    Quote Originally Posted by wsm2506
    Where did the concept of "worship" of this mythical supernatural power came from? Is this mythical supernatural power egotistical?
    Where did the concept of immortality and an afterlife (in utopia or hell) come from?
    It all came from the belief that there was a higher power (of which i believe) that we all came from. that we and our spiritual being are all part of a balenced and unified cycle of millions of energies and phases that with our actions we balance out and since the earlier ages could not physically cope with that, they made the idea that it was all up to a one being that controlled everything.

    uhg. i feel sorry for the god, im getting exhausted just putting it all down.

    Quote Originally Posted by wsm2506
    I personally think religion is nothing more than a phycholigical crutch for the weak.
    it is, in some ways, a crutch for the weak, but it can also be the spirit that burns in the heart of a war hero. and if your so phycholigicaly up to date, you wouldnt be even questioning this matter because having a spiritual belief is one of the key basics to understanding the phycholigical mind. go back to college.

    Quote Originally Posted by wsm2506
    Please, don't start quoting the Bible. That is not the answer.
    some parts of the bible...are ridiculous, i agree, but it does not mean that there is no wisdom in it at all, and it's in turn even more ridiculous to disregard the bible for that reason.
    I came. I saw. I Conquer.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by amadeus_reborn
    It all came from the belief that there was a higher power (of which i believe) that we all came from. that we and our spiritual being are all part of a balenced and unified cycle of millions of energies and phases that with our actions we balance out and since the earlier ages could not physically cope with that, they made the idea that it was all up to a one being that controlled everything

    uhg. i feel sorry for the god, im getting exhausted just putting it all down.



    it is, in some ways, a crutch for the weak, but it can also be the spirit that burns in the heart of a war hero. and if your so phycholigicaly up to date, you wouldnt be even questioning this matter because having a spiritual belief is one of the key basics to understanding the phycholigical mind. go back to college.
    I never claimed to be "phycholigicaly up to date". My degree is in engineering, not psycholigy. I have no desire for a degree in psychology so I won't be going back to college for it.


    Quote Originally Posted by amadeus_reborn
    some parts of the bible...are ridiculous, i agree, but it does not mean that there is no wisdom in it at all, and it's in turn even more ridiculous to disregard the bible for that reason.
    I agree that there is wisdom in the Bible. So is there wisdom in Aesop's fables. But Aesop is not basis for a religion.

    But we are off from the question I posed; what is the purpose of religion?
    Steve

    Treaty of Tripoli : Appropriately Ratified
    "ARTICLE 11.
    As the government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion"

  6. #6
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    Has the gramatical rule that one begins a sentence with a capital letter been revoked? It makes your posts very difficult to read.
    Steve

    Treaty of Tripoli : Appropriately Ratified
    "ARTICLE 11.
    As the government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion"

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    Quote Originally Posted by amadeus_reborn
    if your so phycholigicaly up to date, you wouldnt be even questioning this matter because having a spiritual belief is one of the key basics to understanding the phycholigical mind. go back to college.
    If you're sending people back to college to study psychology you might want to spell it such that they can find the classes in the schedule.
    "They asked if I had found Jesus and I didn't even know He was missing."

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by sinjin
    If you're sending people back to college to study psychology you might want to spell it such that they can find the classes in the schedule.
    WSM2506 is the one who spelled it wrong in their opening of this thread.

    "personally think religion is nothing more than a phycholigical crutch for the weak."

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by HeavenBound
    WSM2506 is the one who spelled it wrong in their opening of this thread.

    "personally think religion is nothing more than a phycholigical crutch for the weak."
    my apologies Wolfgang.
    "They asked if I had found Jesus and I didn't even know He was missing."

  10. #10
    Choscura Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by wsm2506
    I have often wondered about this.

    Regarding all religions in genearl:

    I think when ancient man saw something he could not explain, he tried to credit it to some supernatural being that he also could not explain. But there are a few things I do not understand:

    Where did the concept of "worship" of this mythical supernatural power came from? Is this mythical supernatural power egotistical?

    Where did the concept of immortality and an afterlife (in utopia or hell) come from?

    I personally think religion is nothing more than a phycholigical crutch for the weak.

    Please, don't start quoting the Bible. That is not the answer.
    for a while i thought the same thing. then i realized that religion DOES serve a purpose: it binds the masses together so that they can achieve great (or heinous) works. the pyramids of egypt, for example- these were accomplished not by slaves, but by an entire caste of master artisans- who wants to live forever in a crappy slave-built house that might collapse? then theres the giant stone buddhas that the taliban got in trouble for blowing up in ~'98- do you think the buddhas were built because they'd 'look pretty'? no, they were built because people believed he was a god and wanted to honor him.

    this continues even today: the majority of aid workers are religiously motivated, as are the people you hear about every once in a while who go to college here and then go over to africa to become school teachers or some such profession.

    the good part of all of this is that the need for religion is shrinking as peoples' knowledge-of their world and how it works-grows.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Choscura
    the good part of all of this is that the need for religion is shrinking as peoples' knowledge-of their world and how it works-grows.
    Religion is far from shrinking. Christianity and Islam are having some of their biggest growth spurts in ages.

  12. #12
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    I discovered some time ago that religion puts fear and doubt and hate in the hearts and minds of people. It has delivered quite a XXXX to Christianity over the years infiltrating the purest of faiths and setting itself up as Christianity. Some of us are aware of it, can see it plainly, but to expose it and differentiate it is futile due to political correctness that is held so dear by so many.
    Corruption is not the only tool it uses. Take Catholicism for instance. For quite awhile now Iíve known why so many people hate Catholicism Ė itís not because that certain faith is evil or that church is evil, but because of what people perceive it to be. Most of those that oppose it are from another faith, not atheists or agnostics, but from sister churches. Why? Because it goes against their particular belief, not due to having a different Lord, a different Savior as one would think.

    The Catholics take on a very heavy burden, I believe. (I was guilty once of adding a pound or two of that)

    So, actually, what you say in ridicule about religion is true, but to lump Christianity in with it is wrong, IMO.

    Religion preaches, teaches, and practices whatís wrong with mankind; Christianity does the opposite. Religion spouts hell, Christianity Heaven. Religion judges you, Christianity sanctifies you. Religion breaks you down, Christianity builds you up. Religion binds you, Christianity sets you free.

    I can easily distinguish the differences between religion and Christianity, but I also know thereís no separating them at this timeÖor forever, as far as I can tell.
    Ain't life funny...

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Orn
    I discovered some time ago that religion puts fear and doubt and hate in the hearts and minds of people. It has delivered quite a XXXX to Christianity over the years infiltrating the purest of faiths and setting itself up as Christianity. Some of us are aware of it, can see it plainly, but to expose it and differentiate it is futile due to political correctness that is held so dear by so many.
    Corruption is not the only tool it uses. Take Catholicism for instance. For quite awhile now Iíve known why so many people hate Catholicism Ė itís not because that certain faith is evil or that church is evil, but because of what people perceive it to be. Most of those that oppose it are from another faith, not atheists or agnostics, but from sister churches. Why? Because it goes against their particular belief, not due to having a different Lord, a different Savior as one would think.

    The Catholics take on a very heavy burden, I believe. (I was guilty once of adding a pound or two of that)

    So, actually, what you say in ridicule about religion is true, but to lump Christianity in with it is wrong, IMO.

    Religion preaches, teaches, and practices whatís wrong with mankind; Christianity does the opposite. Religion spouts hell, Christianity Heaven. Religion judges you, Christianity sanctifies you. Religion breaks you down, Christianity builds you up. Religion binds you, Christianity sets you free.

    I can easily distinguish the differences between religion and Christianity, but I also know thereís no separating them at this timeÖor forever, as far as I can tell.
    So you don't think Christianity is a religion?

  14. #14
    Choscura Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by HeavenBound
    Religion is far from shrinking. Christianity and Islam are having some of their biggest growth spurts in ages.
    pay attention. i said the NEED for religion is shrinking, not that religion itself is shrinking.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Choscura
    pay attention. i said the NEED for religion is shrinking, not that religion itself is shrinking.
    If the need for religion is shrinking, there shouldn't be any growth going on.

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