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"Science Must Destroy Religion"

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posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 10:13 AM
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Incredible article, as to be expected, by Sam Harris.

www.huffingtonpost.com...



Most people believe that the Creator of the universe wrote (or dictated) one of their books. Unfortunately, there are many books that pretend to divine authorship, and each makes incompatible claims about how we all must live. Despite the ecumenical efforts of many well-intentioned people, these irreconcilable religious commitments still inspire an appalling amount of human conflict.

In response to this situation, most sensible people advocate something called "religious tolerance." While religious tolerance is surely better than religious war, tolerance is not without its liabilities. Our fear of provoking religious hatred has rendered us incapable of criticizing ideas that are now patently absurd and increasingly maladaptive. It has also obliged us to lie to ourselves — repeatedly and at the highest levels — about the compatibility between religious faith and scientific rationality.

The conflict between religion and science is inherent and (very nearly) zero-sum. The success of science often comes at the expense of religious dogma; the maintenance of religious dogma always comes at the expense of science. It is time we conceded a basic fact of human discourse: either a person has good reasons for what he believes, or he does not. When a person has good reasons, his beliefs contribute to our growing understanding of the world. We need not distinguish between "hard" and "soft" science here, or between science and other evidence-based disciplines like history. There happen to be very good reasons to believe that the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941. Consequently, the idea that the Egyptians actually did it lacks credibility. Every sane human being recognizes that to rely merely upon "faith" to decide specific questions of historical fact would be both idiotic and grotesque — that is, until the conversation turns to the origin of books like the bible and the Koran, to the resurrection of Jesus, to Muhammad's conversation with the angel Gabriel, or to any of the other hallowed travesties that still crowd the altar of human ignorance.


Continued in next post.


Mod Edit: External Source Tags – Please Review This Link
Don't quote entire articles. Readers can visit the link to read the rest

[edit on 2007/8/13 by Hellmutt]




posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 10:14 AM
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Continued from previous post.


*Snip*



Don't quote entire articles. Readers can visit the link to read the rest.

[edit on 2007/8/13 by Hellmutt]



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 10:21 AM
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The author of this article is obviously ignorant of the concept of a "Narrative" and the ideas codified by Jean-Lyotard.


I find it hilarious, that the author of this article assumes the same authority in his speech as the very religions he speaks of.


I really, really wish more people were educated before they posted such ignorant diatribes.



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 12:15 PM
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Sam Harris, like Richard Dawkins, has a very "in-your-face" attitude when it comes to the subject. He justifies, or attempts to, this attitude in his book "The End of Faith" by explaining that those whom are blinded by modern religion don't necessarily (in his belief) deserve to be addressed with what some would call "respect." He feels he needs to be abrasive and blunt with these people.

In his own words: "To speak plainly and truthfully about the state of our world – to say, for instance, that the Bible and the Koran both contain mountains of life-destroying gibberish – is antithetical to tolerance as moderates currently conceive it. But we can no longer afford the luxury of such political correctness. We must finally recognize the price we are paying to maintain the iconography of our ignorance."

I'm personally a fan of the guy. I got to see him do a 2 hour conference last year on religion. Fantastic public speaker.



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 12:15 PM
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Sam Harris, like Richard Dawkins, has a very "in-your-face" attitude when it comes to the subject. He justifies, or attempts to, this attitude in his book "The End of Faith" by explaining that those whom are blinded by modern religion don't necessarily (in his belief) deserve to be addressed with what some would call "respect." He feels he needs to be abrasive and blunt with these people.

In his own words: "To speak plainly and truthfully about the state of our world – to say, for instance, that the Bible and the Koran both contain mountains of life-destroying gibberish – is antithetical to tolerance as moderates currently conceive it. But we can no longer afford the luxury of such political correctness. We must finally recognize the price we are paying to maintain the iconography of our ignorance."

I'm personally a fan of the guy. I got to see him do a 2 hour conference last year on religion. Fantastic public speaker.



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 01:30 PM
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As for the argument itself, read "A brave New World" by Aldus Huxley before thinking about it seriously.

As for the article, Take out religion, by all means.
But then You'll have to take out every other opinion that causes social instability, otherwise the 'problem' will repeat itself, as it always does.

Also, this article is very extreme in it's terminology. the successes of science are NOT 'victories' on religion, the war of ideas here is only in the minds of those who seek it (plenty of those but by far not the majority of believers). Science does however disprove literal-fundamentalist interpretation of religion. If you mean 'destroys' by that, then yes, science does destroy religion.

I'm afraid that the real problem here isn't that religion is dangerous, it's that religion just annoys the author of the article. And it's OK. He gets to say anything he wants about it, just like the people who annoy him do.

We don't regulate what people can believe in, that is both our strength and our weakness. One that personally I'd like preserved.

And what's worse, a president who's secretly religious, or one that's secretly fascist?

Which do we ban first?

[edit on 12-8-2007 by HAL the bot]



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 01:41 PM
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hmm - title alone sounds like duality of which religion is made of.

on one level science and religion oppose each other - on a higher and deeper level, they are on the same page...and say the same thing, though one is covered more in allegories.

So overall, one can take religion and understand where i science is coming from...or one can take the 'parable' and call it the 'truth.'

Parables are pointers which point beyond themself...the same as when you tell fido to fetch the stick and you point to it - what does fido do? Fido looks at your darn finger and not to where its pointing. lol

we do the same with the bible.


Peace

dAlen

- by the way o.p. like your icon


[edit on 12-8-2007 by dAlen]



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 01:47 PM
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Originally posted by ModernDystopia
When we find reliable ways to make human beings more loving, less fearful, and genuinely enraptured by the fact of our appearance in the cosmos, we will have no need for divisive religious myths. Only then will the practice of raising our children to believe that they are Christian, Jewish, Muslim, or Hindu be broadly recognized as the ludicrous obscenity that it is. And only then will we stand a chance of healing the deepest and most dangerous fractures in our world.


wishful thinking, you cant make anyone more loving, less fearful.
This has to come from their own centered being and from a 'conscious' choice.

Most people are walk in a mind numbing 'possessed' (by the ego) state and believe they make choices.

But all is not lost, if you eradicate fear in yourself...then you have won.
The battle is within not without...leave the world to its struggles and have nothing to do with it.


Peace

dAlen



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 02:22 PM
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Science and spirituality must become one before any real progress is to be made. Spirituality without the fundamental knowledge of science is missing and viceversa. As for religiosity, that's just more control and keeping people from looking inside themselves and taking full responsibility for their own evolution.



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 03:03 PM
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While I agree with Dawkins and Harris about religion I don't think it's a good idea to try to "fight" religion and it's beliefs. Religion is a very succesful meme and it's practically impossible to deconvert someone using simple logic and reason. Any religion that is based on "holy" texts is able to change and adapt to new discoveries.

For example the book of genesis, when it was first written and read by people it was really believed and accepted as "scientific" fact that a supernatural entity created the whole universe (at the time the universe was taught to be a flat portion of earth, around which revolved a sun and a moon, and a bunch of lights stuck in the firmament) in 6 days. These religious texts show a huge lack of simple scientific knowledge which should be there if they were inspired by an all knowing and omnipotent being. This text was totally debunked by cosmology and biology but instead of being discarded, it has only adapted to new knowledge (i.e gap theory, etc).

So it's not possible for science to "destroy religion". Religion will only evolve as scientific knowledge is accumulated. God will always be found on the outskirts of our knowledge, for example today god spawned the big bang and tuned it so that all the events that happened on earth (an insignificant spot in the middle of nowhere) would happen. And when we will have discovered what caused the big bang, say it was 2 branes floating in a higher dimension, then god will be the creator of that higher dimension and the 2 branes, which were of course tuned so they would spawn this universe with this insignificant world.



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 03:50 PM
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Originally posted by Quazga
The author of this article is obviously ignorant of the concept of a "Narrative" and the ideas codified by Jean-Lyotard.


I think most people of a scientific flavour think postmodernists, like Lyotard, are of little consequence. Probably the result of the Sokal episode.

They likely think that philosophers will eventually move on to something just as pretentious.



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 05:17 PM
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Originally posted by ModernDystopia
Sam Harris, like Richard Dawkins, has a very "in-your-face" attitude when it comes to the subject. He justifies, or attempts to, this attitude in his book "The End of Faith" by explaining that those whom are blinded by modern religion don't necessarily (in his belief) deserve to be addressed with what some would call "respect." He feels he needs to be abrasive and blunt with these people.

In his own words: "To speak plainly and truthfully about the state of our world – to say, for instance, that the Bible and the Koran both contain mountains of life-destroying gibberish – is antithetical to tolerance as moderates currently conceive it. But we can no longer afford the luxury of such political correctness. We must finally recognize the price we are paying to maintain the iconography of our ignorance."

I'm personally a fan of the guy. I got to see him do a 2 hour conference last year on religion. Fantastic public speaker.



I'll buy that. I know what you mean about some situations requiring a false harshness of sorts. Although, I would also argue that you draw more bees with honey than salt.

(I'm sure I slaughtered that proverb)



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 10:43 PM
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Originally posted by melatonin

Originally posted by Quazga
The author of this article is obviously ignorant of the concept of a "Narrative" and the ideas codified by Jean-Lyotard.


I think most people of a scientific flavour think postmodernists, like Lyotard, are of little consequence. Probably the result of the Sokal episode.

They likely think that philosophers will eventually move on to something just as pretentious.


I would agree. I don't think many scientists are worried about what post-modernists think of them, even though Lyotard equated the incredulity towards metanarratives as a product of scientific progress.



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 10:47 PM
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Originally posted by Quazga

Originally posted by ModernDystopia
Sam Harris, like Richard Dawkins, has a very "in-your-face" attitude when it comes to the subject. He justifies, or attempts to, this attitude in his book "The End of Faith" by explaining that those whom are blinded by modern religion don't necessarily (in his belief) deserve to be addressed with what some would call "respect." He feels he needs to be abrasive and blunt with these people.

In his own words: "To speak plainly and truthfully about the state of our world – to say, for instance, that the Bible and the Koran both contain mountains of life-destroying gibberish – is antithetical to tolerance as moderates currently conceive it. But we can no longer afford the luxury of such political correctness. We must finally recognize the price we are paying to maintain the iconography of our ignorance."

I'm personally a fan of the guy. I got to see him do a 2 hour conference last year on religion. Fantastic public speaker.



I'll buy that. I know what you mean about some situations requiring a false harshness of sorts. Although, I would also argue that you draw more bees with honey than salt.

(I'm sure I slaughtered that proverb)


In Harris' and Dawkins' case, I don't think the harshness is false at all. It seems that both Harris and Dawkins are quite outraged at the state of modern religion and its negative effects on culture. While I don't think expressing your opinions through anger is always the best way to get your point across, it's easy for one to see why both men are so agitated.



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 10:48 PM
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Originally posted by ModernDystopia

Originally posted by melatonin

Originally posted by Quazga
The author of this article is obviously ignorant of the concept of a "Narrative" and the ideas codified by Jean-Lyotard.


I think most people of a scientific flavour think postmodernists, like Lyotard, are of little consequence. Probably the result of the Sokal episode.

They likely think that philosophers will eventually move on to something just as pretentious.


I would agree. I don't think many scientists are worried about what post-modernists think of them, even though Lyotard equated the incredulity towards metanarratives as a product of scientific progress.



heh... let us not forget that science is nothing more than natural philosophy.

It cracks me up how people forget about that. Keep in mind that the first time Andrew North Whitehead (Co-author of the most recent principia mathematica) ever stepped into a math class was when he began teaching it. His credentials? Philosophy.



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 11:03 PM
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Kind of hard for science to kill religion since science is based on empirical data and religion on faith.

So lets say science kills it is the world better off with religion or without it?

Now that is the bigger question.



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 11:03 PM
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Originally posted by Quazga

Originally posted by ModernDystopia

Originally posted by melatonin

Originally posted by Quazga
The author of this article is obviously ignorant of the concept of a "Narrative" and the ideas codified by Jean-Lyotard.


I think most people of a scientific flavour think postmodernists, like Lyotard, are of little consequence. Probably the result of the Sokal episode.

They likely think that philosophers will eventually move on to something just as pretentious.


I would agree. I don't think many scientists are worried about what post-modernists think of them, even though Lyotard equated the incredulity towards metanarratives as a product of scientific progress.



heh... let us not forget that science is nothing more than natural philosophy.

It cracks me up how people forget about that. Keep in mind that the first time Andrew North Whitehead (Co-author of the most recent principia mathematica) ever stepped into a math class was when he began teaching it. His credentials? Philosophy.


This is true. I just don't think that scientists are really worried about the opinions of people like Lyotard and Richard Rorty (even though he died fairly recently..)



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 11:31 PM
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Originally posted by ModernDystopia

Originally posted by Quazga

Originally posted by ModernDystopia

Originally posted by melatonin

Originally posted by Quazga
The author of this article is obviously ignorant of the concept of a "Narrative" and the ideas codified by Jean-Lyotard.


I think most people of a scientific flavour think postmodernists, like Lyotard, are of little consequence. Probably the result of the Sokal episode.

They likely think that philosophers will eventually move on to something just as pretentious.


I would agree. I don't think many scientists are worried about what post-modernists think of them, even though Lyotard equated the incredulity towards metanarratives as a product of scientific progress.



heh... let us not forget that science is nothing more than natural philosophy.

It cracks me up how people forget about that. Keep in mind that the first time Andrew North Whitehead (Co-author of the most recent principia mathematica) ever stepped into a math class was when he began teaching it. His credentials? Philosophy.


This is true. I just don't think that scientists are really worried about the opinions of people like Lyotard and Richard Rorty (even though he died fairly recently..)


First, let me clarify for the other readers. Jean-Lyotard called all of these ideas that we throw around "discourse". He singled out two primary types which have been presented through history. The primary is the "Narrative discourse". This is basically what the Bible is, and every other religious or social story.

It "legitimizes" itself "or makes it self believable, in it's own telling. For instance, "In the beginning there was Void!" The narrative discourse doesn't require any proof, to assert a legitimacy. Another more modern example would be the loose change video about 9/11.

Humans basically live off of these more than we realize. "Don't take wooden nickles", "A sucker is born every minute", "You only get robbed if you go down town", etc. Now obviously "in the beginning there was void" was probably more believable to primitive peoples than those of today, but you get the point.

At the same time, these narrative discourses also provide legitmacy to the societies in which they are told because the teller of the narrative is usually attributing his authority to having heard it from someone else deemed wiser..."My Father used to say..."


The other kind is the "Scientific Discourse". This type cannot legitimize itself. It makes what Jean-Lyotard called "Denotative Statements". Basically statements which require the teller to show proof for his statements and to disprove counter statements.

The key thing about Scientific Discourse, is that it cannot legitimize it's own activity. For instance "Why should our society encourage scientific studies?" Science must legitimize itself by relying on Narrative Discourse! (of all things). These are the Political Narrative, and the Philosophical Narrative. These were also referred to as Grand Narratives, as they supposedly where the ultimate narratives for society, up until WWII.

After that people lost their beliefs in both of these meta narratives. Which began the reduction of the legitimacy of science.

Science also began to come upon Paradoxes, like the particle/wave issue. When this happens, (or any other time it's legitimacy is questioned) it seeks to legitimize itself through "Performativity". (much like some posters in this forum who use technological advancements to legitmize science)

Basically it stops asking "What kind of research will unflod the laws of nature" and starts asking "what kind of research will work the best!". At this point science is no longer concerned with Truth... only Performativity.

It stands to reason that Physical Scientists would not pay attenot to these points, but to the Social Scientist and the psychologist, they are the bread and butter.

I really don't have to debate the legitimacy of science when viewed through this model. It's pretty self explanatory.

Sorry for the long post... but we are getting deep in here



[edit on 12-8-2007 by Quazga]



posted on Aug, 13 2007 @ 03:09 AM
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There would be no need to destroy religion if people of all faiths werent so retarded as to live their lives by this crap.

Wars, suicides, voting based on religion, killing because they believe abortion is murder, letting their children die because they dont believe in transfusions, giving up life savings to some fraud on TV.

Once you become deeply religious, you lose all common sense and let it rule your life.

Thats why the world is in the deep # that it is now. If only we could ban religion, if only.....



posted on Aug, 13 2007 @ 04:19 AM
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Both Science and Religion are equally to blame in this. Both are in for a major shake up in the near future. Religion has been holding back the human race Spiritually and Science technologically.

The world has started a major shift in awareness. If you have started questioning these things and have been wondering why everything is not all right with the world and feel that we are not on the right path, then you have already begun. The thousands of years of deception will end.

Very soon we will be shown our true origins and the free energy systems that the scientific community has supressed from us will be revealed. Only then can we can start to live our lives in a peaceful meaningful way.



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