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View Diary: And so it begins....Church lays down the law. (185 comments)

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  •  Religion (3.18)
    Nothing good has ever come from religion. It's generated wars, created societal hierarchies and destroyed cultures and civilizations, for starters.  The charitable deeds offered by most religions are no more than contained venues to proselytize and coopt the poor.  Most religions and religious clergy wouldn't recognize Christian values if they tripped over them.
      •  This is simply not true (4.00)
        I despise Catholics and recently gave the defiant finger to the Episcopal Church.  It's also still true that a lot of good has come out of religions--if you know where to look.

        I'm guilty of casting all republicans as stupid fascist bigots, and that's not true either.  I don't mean to self-righteously be down on y'all.

        Off the top of my head, Alcoholics Anonymous never, ever would have been established in the United States without the Catholic church.  That's a plain fact.

        •  True.... (none)
          But I've started to differentiate between "organized religion" and "spirituality".

          There are many, many good people in positions in organized religion all over the world, including the Catholic Church--we have a neighbor and close friend who is a former priest, and he truly goes about his life with a view towards serving others. It comes naturally to him.

          But your larger organized religions have stpower structures, like governments, and some of them have very dark hearts indeed.

          "The country we carry in our hearts is waiting" --Bruce Springsteen.

          by bdizz on Wed Nov 17, 2004 at 10:08:39 AM PST

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      •  "hear hear!" (none)
        argh.

        "The state has no place in the bedrooms of the nation." - Pierre Trudeau

        by fishhead on Wed Nov 17, 2004 at 08:05:03 AM PST

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    •  Not quite true (4.00)
      Some of the greatest art that has been created was done with religious themes and inspirations. It's a tough call, though. Is getting rid of the Inquisition and modern-day fundamentalists worth losing Handel's Messiah and the Sistine Chapel?

      -dms

    •  untrue (4.00)
      "Nothing good has ever come from religion."

      That simply is not true and I don't think making sweeping generalizations about all religions helps this discussion one bit.

      "The charitable deeds offered by most religions are no more than contained venues to proselytize and coopt the poor."

      Also untrue and if you'd ever been on the receiving end of such charity perhaps you'd change your opinion.

    •  Oversimplification (none)
      It's no more true to say that nothing good has ever come of religion than it is to say that anyone who supports abortion (or rather, is pro-choice -- not exactly the same thing) is in violation of church doctrine. Don't fall into the far right's tendency to oversimplify extremely complicated things into black-and-white either-you're-with-us-or-against-us mentality. There's plenty of "nuance" in all of this ...
    •  You mean ORGANIZED religion (3.50)
      I am one of those who has given the Catholic Church the bird, and I have deep-rooted theological problems with the whole Judeo-Christian tradition, and I agree that organized religion is largely focused on membership retention and bringing glory to the upper eschelons of the church heirarchy, and I believe that proselytizing is nothing more than a metaphysical pyramid scheme, a cosmic Amway where individuals believe they will gain more personal glory and favour with JC if they broaden the base of the pyramid.

      That being said, I belive that personal religion does do a lot of good. Deeply held personal beliefs can and do inspire people to make long term efforts to make the world a better place. Those beliefs can be religious, scientific, secular, whatever, but There are a lot of people who are inspired by their personal sense of the divine to go out an make a difference, whether they belong to an organized religion or not.

      Although it is not true that all conservatives are stupid people... it is true that most stupid people are conservative - John Stuart Mill

      by Sarkasba on Wed Nov 17, 2004 at 08:30:19 AM PST

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      •  religion vs spirituality (none)
        With a nod to Mark Twain -- I never let religion interfere with my spirituality.

        Proud member of the reality-based minority

        by Bearpaw on Wed Nov 17, 2004 at 12:00:09 PM PST

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