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View Diary: "How will we explain our ignorance and our compliance to our grandchildren?" (229 comments)

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  •  Freedom FROM Religion (47+ / 0-)

    That's what I want!  Freedom to live my life without some pastor/priest/mullah/etc grabbing all the headlines with their endless yammering for attention.

    How many people in this country really practice a religion?   Not so many, but the religious talk is woven into everything.

    "Drill Baby Drill": Stupid in 2008, criminally stupid now.

    by MD patriot on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 12:28:31 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Actually, and sadly, (4+ / 0-)

      most people in this country practice a religion. They just don't tend to live in the big cities. Go visit a small town in Alabama or Georgia sometime; you won't find anyone who admits to being an atheist.

      There is an art to teaching that is independent of the subject matter. - daveinojai

      by Killer of Sacred Cows on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 12:33:47 PM PDT

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      •  "you won't find anyone who admits" (8+ / 0-)

        With the exception of Rep. Pete Stark, the same holds true for Congress, though statistically and intuitively, there must be more.

        "Give to every other human being every right that you claim for yourself." - Robert G. Ingersoll

        by Apost8 on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 12:40:26 PM PDT

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      •  Is that because they believe what they are (9+ / 0-)

        saying or because they know they will be ostracized if they stray from what is the norm?  There is a difference.

        Now is the time to register everyone you know will vote Democratic! Over 18 and breathing - get them registered now and to the polls in November!

        by Blogvirgin on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 12:43:17 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I think most folks really and truly and deeply (5+ / 0-)

          believe it.  I've been more than a little shocked at the very bright scientists, lawyers, doctors, etc. that have a very deep faith in this fantasy.  I'm sure some of them have doubts and some of them maybe don't believe at all, but I suspect most of them really and truly do.

          "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

          by gustynpip on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 01:14:43 PM PDT

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          •  Ok, I'll accept that most folks honestly believe (0+ / 0-)

            what they say. How then do they reconcile their day to day actions with what they say they believe?

            Now is the time to register everyone you know will vote Democratic! Over 18 and breathing - get them registered now and to the polls in November!

            by Blogvirgin on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 05:22:07 PM PDT

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            •  None of us are particularly consistent in what (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              TomP
              we say and what we do.  Most of us try to do the best we can.  Others think saying it is as good as doing it and if they say it, they don't need to do it (I was married to someone like that once).  And others just don't give a shit - they think they're above such petty things as living their beliefs.

              "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

              by gustynpip on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 05:32:03 PM PDT

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              •  If they are not willing to live it, do they (0+ / 0-)

                really believe it?  I don't think so.  I think it is just a tool they use to fit in.

                Now is the time to register everyone you know will vote Democratic! Over 18 and breathing - get them registered now and to the polls in November!

                by Blogvirgin on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 05:41:29 PM PDT

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                •  It's the "saved by faith" vs "saved by works" (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Cedwyn

                  debate.

                  The people who profess to be conservative Christians overwhelmingly adhere to a "saved by faith" theology: you profess your faith in Jesus and bingo, you're saved. No further anything necessary - you've got your ticket to heaven. It's like a business transaction.

                  The people who profess to be liberal Christians (if they even profess a faith) overwhelmingly adhere to a "saved by works" theology: being a good example through how you behave in the world and what you do for others is the important thing, and you gotta do it all the time. It's an ongoing process that needs consistent renewal and attention.

                  The folks you're talking about are the "saved by faith" folks. They've got theirs; they don't need to help anyone else.

                  There is an art to teaching that is independent of the subject matter. - daveinojai

                  by Killer of Sacred Cows on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 06:08:10 PM PDT

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            •  They don't feel the need to. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Cedwyn

              To get a really good sense of most believers in this country, I strongly, strongly recommend the book "Stealing Jesus: How Fundamentalism Betrays Christianity" by Bruce Bawer. He explains, in meticulous detail, the rise of the fundamentalist movement from dispensationalism and premillennialism, how it is fundamentally (g) different from Christianity as practiced prior to the eighteenth century, and the focus shift from "how Jesus lived" to "how to follow the rules and get rewards". It's both fascinating and frightening.

              There is an art to teaching that is independent of the subject matter. - daveinojai

              by Killer of Sacred Cows on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 06:05:54 PM PDT

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      •  not true (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        The Liberty of Meat

        and you have to put up with a ton of proselytizing to boot.

        •  I've never seen any proselytizing by the religiou (0+ / 0-)

          on this website.  There are more than a few of us here. On the other hand, we aren't hiding, nor will we.  If you think any and all religious speech is proselytizing, then you have a very limited vocabulary

          Newt 2012. Sociopath, adulterer, hypocrite, Republican.

          by tikkun on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 07:06:39 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  context (0+ / 0-)

            the original comment was that no one in the bible belt admitted to being atheists, to that I replied that that wasn't true, but that if you did speak up, people proselytized you heavily.  I am routinely handed religious tracts so I can find Jesus, invited to church because their church is different, ie, not crazy right wing evangelicals, and I would feel comfortable there, etc.  Religion and church is such a part of life in small towns in the south, people just find it hard to believe that you don't believe in God versus have problems with a particular church or denomination.

            There is no need for you to be so defensive, and insulting to boot, when this site wasn't even part of the discussion.

      •  That sounds like hell to me. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        blueoasis, Killer of Sacred Cows

        Go visit a small town in Alabama or Georgia sometime; you won't find anyone who admits to being an atheist.

        Harry Reid is a bigot. Howard Dean, too.

        by VictorLaszlo on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 02:59:46 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Perhaps the key word being "admits"? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Jantman

        If you are, and you want to participate in the community, it's best not to say so.

        "My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die."

        by davewill on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 04:38:20 PM PDT

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      •  Won't find many can explain QED theory either (0+ / 0-)

        clods

        who was it wrote give any one species too much rope and they'll fuck it up? (Roger Waters, Amused To Death)

        by leathersmith on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 06:52:31 PM PDT

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    •  Yeah, but (9+ / 0-)

      apparently, freedom from religion is the ultimate minority faith.

      Fuck me, it's a leprechaun.

      by MBNYC on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 12:43:15 PM PDT

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    •  Sounds as if you seek (7+ / 0-)

      to suppress speech.  

      Interesting.  Just like the right wing who want freedom from agnostics and secular liberals.  

      Pooties and Woozles unite; you have nothing to lose but your leashes!

      by TomP on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 12:54:46 PM PDT

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      •  not at all, just tired of the religious talk (5+ / 0-)

        Let them yammer, I'm just tired of all the attention they get from the RWCM and MSM.

        Nothing in my comment should have led you to believe I want to suppress their speech- I just don't want to hear them!

        "Drill Baby Drill": Stupid in 2008, criminally stupid now.

        by MD patriot on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 01:36:44 PM PDT

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        •  Then do not listen. (4+ / 0-)

          Otherwise, freedom from religion means suppression of speech.

          Pooties and Woozles unite; you have nothing to lose but your leashes!

          by TomP on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 01:48:04 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  not really tomp, freedom for religion also means (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MD patriot, MBNYC

            freedom from religion; it is part of the same thing. Freedom of religion allows believers of all religions to worship as they want without suppression from other religions or a dominant state religion. However, separation of church and state means that the state should and must be independent of religious influence. It is not a denial of free speech or religious freedom to not have prayers in the schools or have mangers put up around christmas in public areas; this doesn't stop religious people or religious institutions from putting them up ... it simply keep structures different. Historically states under pressure from religions or under religious control are reasonably intolerant of members of other religions (especially Christian countries and their treatment of Jews and Muslims). It was decided deliberately not to create a state religion in the US and also not to allow religious control over the state.

            No society can surely be flourishing and happy, of which the far greater part of the members are poor and miserable (Adam Smith, 1776, I, p. 96).

            by NY brit expat on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 06:24:24 PM PDT

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            •  and i don't think we do have (4+ / 0-)

              freedom from religion., de jure, sure, but not de facto.  "one nation, under god" in our pledge, "in god we trust" on our money.  swearing the oath of office on religious texts.  feh.  

              Die with your boots on. Gonna try? Well stick around. Gonna cry? Just move along. The truth of all predictions is always in your hands. - Iron Maiden

              by Cedwyn on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 06:57:18 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Everytime the religious right has managed to (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                MD patriot

                get a foothold, they threaten the separation between church and state; the "under god" in the pledge was added during the McCarthy period, ever since prayer in the schools was abolished they have been pushing to get it reinstated by separating it from a specific religion; in the UK (which has a state religion), you have the choice of swearing on a religious text or to god or just swearing an oath when you get citizenship; isn't this available in the US? I think that politicians get forced into this by pressure from fear of religious groups. The separation between church and state needs to be kept, but it is fear of backlash that keeps people from fighting for it.

                No society can surely be flourishing and happy, of which the far greater part of the members are poor and miserable (Adam Smith, 1776, I, p. 96).

                by NY brit expat on Tue Aug 31, 2010 at 08:06:44 AM PDT

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    •  Letting others practice their religion or have (14+ / 0-)

      their place of religious practice does not impose a religion on you.  I'm an atheist, but I don't see how a mosque, church, or anything else being somewhere harms me in any way.  Long as I'm not forced to kneel down and pray with them, (or have a "moment of silence" while they pray) I say let 'em do it.

      "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

      by gustynpip on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 01:12:51 PM PDT

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      •  no problem with religion- just not a fan (10+ / 0-)

        And I get tired of the religious types trying to force it on the rest of the world.  Many so-called "main stream" religions have the "spreading of their religion" as a central part of their mission.

        Gets tiring, and on balance I would say that religion has caused huge destruction in the world- way more harm than good.

        "Drill Baby Drill": Stupid in 2008, criminally stupid now.

        by MD patriot on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 01:39:19 PM PDT

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        •  Can't find a single thing in your post to disagree (6+ / 0-)
          with.  My preference would be for everyones' eyes to suddenly open, with a realization that they've all been living their lives based on a myth - a very silly myth, no less.  But it's not gonna' happen, so I have to be satisfied with just trying to avoid having their myths imposed on my life.

          "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

          by gustynpip on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 01:41:42 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  This statement... (5+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            tikkun, Cedwyn, blueoasis, TomP, LiberalATX

            My preference would be for everyones' eyes to suddenly open, with a realization that they've all been living their lives based on a myth - a very silly myth, no less.

            echos churchgoers who prefer that everyone should embrace their faith. It's the same intolerance for the beliefs of others.

            Slavery is the legal fiction that a person is property. Corporate personhood is the legal fiction that property is a person. -Jan Edwards

            by SoCalSal on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 02:48:42 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  hee hee...faerie tales (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MD patriot, maybeeso in michigan

            And the day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerve in the brain of Jupiter. But may we hope that the dawn of reason and freedom of thought in these United States will do away with this artificial scaffolding, and restore to us the primitive and genuine doctrines of this most venerated reformer of human errors.

            - Thomas Jefferson, Letter to John Adams, April 11, 1823

            Die with your boots on. Gonna try? Well stick around. Gonna cry? Just move along. The truth of all predictions is always in your hands. - Iron Maiden

            by Cedwyn on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 06:53:09 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  I just watched Maher's "Religiolous" (3+ / 0-)

          last night.  I appreciate his "I don't know" POV(having a streak of that myself), but he claims in the film that there are on the order of 14% of U.S. population who claim NO religious affiliation.  That's one in 7 folks, and represents more people thatn blacks/AA, Jews, and I think one other group.

          Food for thought (and btw I have no problem with any of the CoC head's statement), fwiw.

          Torture is Wrong! We live near W so you don't have to. Send love.

          by tom 47 on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 01:44:50 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  So don't pay attention.. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tikkun, TomP, KroneckerD

      Freedom to live my life without some pastor/priest/mullah/etc grabbing all the headlines with their endless yammering for attention.

      No one is forcing you to go to church or believe any particular path. This is the land of Free Speech, remember? Doesn't mean you are forced to listen or read all of it.

      Slavery is the legal fiction that a person is property. Corporate personhood is the legal fiction that property is a person. -Jan Edwards

      by SoCalSal on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 02:19:45 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I saw the Dalai Lama speak with such calm clarity (6+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tikkun, Cedwyn, Dallasdoc, MBNYC, TomP, Eric Nelson

      on this.  I wish I could remember word for word.  Someone in the large U.S. crowd asked some serious question about religion.  He calmly swept aside the entire premise (paraphrasing), "Religion isn't that important to people.  They may go to church once a week, but even then they don't think about it all that much."    I found that so refreshing, dismissing centuries of posturing and untold bloodshed as not really having that much to do with religion.  To him, of course, religion means hours of practice every day--that's how it looks when someone actually takes religion seriously.

      Not to undermine the point of this diary.  I strongly support religious freedom both for those who like to pretend religion is important to them and for those who are sincere in their religion.

      I know non-religious folks deserve to be acknowledged, but speaking practically, it certainly follows that tolerance of any religion means tolerance of no religion as well.

      Don't believe everything you think.

      by geomoo on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 04:34:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  You have freedom FROM ... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tikkun, TomP

      religion.  YOU are not forced to participate.

      Just as the presence of Public Libraries do not force reading onto any of the citizenry, the presence of churches do not force your acceptance, endorsement or participation.  You are using the basic argument that the RR uses agaisnt marriage equality: the mere presence of same sex marriage is somehow an affront to their freedom from it.

      If it's served to us and it's unpalatable but we smack our lips like it is the best thing we ever ate, how will the chef know to change the dish?

      by emsprater on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 05:22:32 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  And At This Point, The Proselytizers Hijack (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TomP

      the diary.  This diary is about freedom of religion.  if that's not your cup of tea, don't read it. Neither Tom nor Kinnamon suggested that the non religious should join a religion, Could the non religious please also avoid proselytizing for atheisim?  Your discomfort with our religious talk can be avoided simply by tuning us out.

      Newt 2012. Sociopath, adulterer, hypocrite, Republican.

      by tikkun on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 06:59:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I practice my religion (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TomP

      and religious talk is part of my culture.  Are you trying to tell me I have no right to be myself here?  I wouldn't begin to suggest that you should join my church.  It would clearly be a very bad fit for you.  Your attempts to silence those of us who are religious are rude and disrespectful.  Ignore us or shun us.  We won't know the difference and we certainly won't mind.

      Newt 2012. Sociopath, adulterer, hypocrite, Republican.

      by tikkun on Mon Aug 30, 2010 at 07:03:08 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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