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Round 1. chissler v Parabol: Is Religion Dangerous?

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posted on Feb, 16 2008 @ 01:57 AM
The topic for this debate is "Organized religion is inherently dangerous".

chissler will be arguing the pro position and will open the debate.
Parabol will argue the con position.

Each debater will have one opening statement each. This will be followed by 3 alternating replies each. There will then be one closing statement each and no rebuttal.

There are no limits on the length of posts, but you may only use 1 post per turn.

Editing is strictly forbidden. This means any editing, for any reason. Any edited posts will be completely deleted. This prevents cheating. A debate moderator must be contacted to request any necessary edits. Check your spelling and use the preview post function- editing will be minimal.

Opening and closing statements must not contain any images and must have no more than 3 references. Excluding both the opening and closing statements, only two images and no more than 5 references can be included for each post. No post shall contain more than 10 sentences quoted from a reference. Links to multiple pages within a single domain count as 1 reference. There is a maximum of 3 individual links per reference, then further links from that domain count as a new reference. Excess quotes and excess links will be removed.

The Socratic Debate Rule is in effect. Each debater may ask up to 5 questions in each post, except for in closing statements- no questions are permitted in closing statements. These questions should be clearly labeled as "Question 1, Question 2, etc.
When asked a question, a debater must give a straight forward answer in his next post. Explanations and qualifications to an answer are acceptable, but must be preceeded by a direct answer.

Responses should be made within 24 hours, if people are late with their replies, they run the risk of forfeiting their reply and possibly the debate. Limited grace periods may be allowed if I am notified in advance.

Judging will be done by a panel of anonymous judges. After each debate is completed it will be locked and the judges will begin making their decision. One of the debate forum moderators will then make a final post announcing the winner.

[edit on 19-2-2008 by The Vagabond]

[edit on 24-2-2008 by The Vagabond]

[edit on 28-2-2008 by The Vagabond]

posted on Feb, 18 2008 @ 11:05 PM
It has come to my attention that damajikninja is temporarily unable to participate. Another debater will take over for him and begin with an opening statement.

Chissler is now arguing the affirmative and will now make his opening statement
[edit on 19-2-2008 by The Vagabond]

[edit on 19-2-2008 by The Vagabond]

posted on Feb, 20 2008 @ 02:54 PM
Greetings to one and all.

As usual, a heartfelt thank you to our main dude Vagabond for taking charge of this amazing forum. For far too long this forum was dormant, but Vagabond has taken the reigns and is keeping us busy. So thank you. A short note to my opponent Parabol, good luck! If nothing else, let's have some fun.


"Organized religion is inherently dangerous"

Before we begin, we must first examine the subject matter that we are dealing with.

  • Religion: A religion is a set of beliefs and practices generally held by a human community, involving adherence to codified beliefs and rituals and study of ancestral or cultural traditions, writings, history, and mythology, as well as personal faith and mystic experience.

    Organized Religion

    Any established organization that is going to dictate what an individual should believe has the potential to be dangerous. Our actions on a daily basis are a direct result of our own beliefs, so when you control the beliefs of an individual, you control them. That is a scary thought.

    A 2003 poll done in Minnesota indicated that 77% of the population felt that religion was responsible for the world's wars and conflicts. This is an astounding number, and is a fair representation of what is actually leading to the wars that innocent men and women are forced to take part in. So if organized religion is the leading contributor to this world's major conflicts, how could it be anything but dangerous?

    Of the seventy seven percent of the population that feels religion is the lead contributor to the world's conflicts, very few actually feel that their own religion contributes. It is a well known fact that people believe it is other religions that are causing the problem, and their own set of beliefs are above such conflicts. Terrorists all over this planet kill innocent men, women, and children in the name of their god. Religion is not the shield that protects us from harm, it is the sword that many use to strike down on the unsuspecting.

    Political leaders all around the world often refer to their God when given speeches and condemning those that cross them. Terrorists have attacked the western world in the name of their own, and the western world has responded back with death in the name of theirs. I ask you this, what makes us any different? We tell children on the playground that it is not appropriate to hit another child because he or she hit you. But is it acceptable to kill innocent women and children on the other side of the planet in the name of God, because someone killed some of our own in the name of their god? No, it's not. And we were taught that in grade school.

    When we look into our history, it paints a grim picture when it comes to the powers of organized religion. As we progress through this debate, we will emphasize on these facts. But a small section of what we'll be investigating is Nazi, Germany and what Adolph Hitler had attempted to accomplish. The Nazi regime came very close to taking control of this planet. Not only did Adolph Hitler seek to take over Europe and promote genocide, but he also knew that to fully leave his mark, he must infiltrate the beliefs of the people. Adolph Hitler wanted to replace Jesus Christ as the savior and wished to be worshiped by all.

    As I've stated earlier, when you control the beliefs of a person.. you control them. And by definition, an organized religion seeks to control the beliefs of it's followers.

    Religion can do a lot of good for people. But even in all of it's glory, it remains completely and utterly dangerous. There's no two ways about it.

    "Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful."

    -Seneca the Younger

  • posted on Feb, 24 2008 @ 02:53 PM
    Over four days has past since my opening statement without a reply, so I am moving forward with my position to prevent stagnation of the debate tournament.


    The Narrow Mindedness of Fundamentalism

  • Fundamentalism:
    - A belief in the infallibility, and literal interpretation, of a particular religion’s doctrine or holy books.
    - a movement that sees itself opposed to Modernism, stressing the infallibility of the Bible in both religious matters and historical accuracy
    - uncritical acceptance of revealed truth and willingness to follow a leader embodying authority

    The common denominator in almost all religions is fundamentalism. Taking the above definitions into account, we can see that this basic premise is an untested belief in the infallibility of one's own belief. So we do not question it, we do not look twice, we just close our eyes to the topic at hand and force ourselves to accept things for as they are. Is that not dangerous? Is this something that you would teach your child?

    A famous case that many of us are probably familiar with would be the Scopes Trial where John Scopes, a high school teacher, was brought up on charges for teaching evolution. Evolution being a concept that went against the story of divine creation, it was deemed offensive and not to be taught in the school system.

    Now here lies the biggest fault of any organized religion. When you promote fundamentalism and you ask your followers to not question or not test one's own beliefs, the preaching of narrow mindedness is something that I for one can not see for anything but completely dangerous. In a community like our own, where we tend to question the main stream media or any facts that are presented, how can we accept fundamentalism as anything but dangerous?

    It's simple really, as it is dangerous.

    The Butler Act is another example of the government deeming the teaching of anything opposing divine creation as unlawful. This was strictly for the state of Tennessee.

    Albeit some of these references are not exactly current, but they are accurate representations of the flaws of fundamentalism. And even though our governments have retracted some of their prior mistakes, the flaws of fundamentalism still exist in organized religions. Society itself has somewhat evolved and become more understanding, which is directly attributed to the evolution of our technology. But the basic premises that these religions were founded on remain as is, and they still promote the narrow mindedness that one may need to accept some of the doctrines and writings.

    It is in this narrow mindedness that we have seen millions and millions and millions of lives lost over the hundreds and hundreds of years.

    When you take large populations of Christians, Jews, Mormons, Islamics, Hindus, or Buddhists, and each believe that their beliefs are superior to that of the others and that their god is infallible; combined with the narrow mindedness of their fundamentalism.. is it any wonder that so many lives have been lost?

    You can not preach these facts without expecting some sort of conflict.

    This really comes across as the foundation of the asinine arguments we see among school aged boys who stick to their guns that their father could beat your father.

    Thank you.


    I'm cutting this first reply short as I'm waiting to see if my opponent is going to appear. The ball is back in his court.

  • posted on Feb, 24 2008 @ 06:52 PM
    Parabol is disqualified. Chissler will advance to round 2.

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