reply to post by Conspiracy Chicks fan !
Our behaviour does have consequences and rewards, but why introduce unneccessary and illogical ''moral codes'' ? Why burden oneself with rules
about an arbitrary and made-up concept ?
First of all, if one makes a decision to follow any given behavioral construct, and that decision is informed by past personal experience or
intuition, it really wouldn't be considered a "burden" to that person.
And by intuition, I really mean an inherent instinctual survival mechanism that most mammals (and anything else with half a brain - pun) employ,
naturally. It's hard to explain this objectively since I'm a part of society myself, but I think I would know instinctually to not kill another
human (or another animal more cunning or dangerous than I), lest I face the same from another, unless they were holding the last piece of nutrition on
the planet and I had everything to lose.
Of course, some people don't seem to have this natural, instinctual moral compass, and either learn it through experience (if they survive the
lessons), or through a rational interpretation of common societal programming, which often benefits the same survival instinct.
I think theists might have a problem understanding this concept because they typically shrug off the notion that we are indeed animals with very basic
instincts (if you peel away the layers of learned societal BS), not to mention the anthropocentric dogma that most religions espouse. This dogma
becomes a survival instinct replacement, favoring the protection of their belief system instead of their own being, since they have generally turned
over their well-being and ultimate destiny to an unseen, non-corporeal entity (i.e. read blind faith, albeit in some cases through perceived divine
That being said, in general, I think some (most?) people should have some religion (belief in a feared arbiter of moral behavior with deadly
consequences) for the very reason that I've postulated above - for without it, and otherwise without a natural or intuitive sense of morality, or in
some cases lacking the ability to learn such from society early enough in life, that they may become a menace. If not for this service of religion,
fellow humans would have to "play god" and teach these moral deviants a lesson (i.e. we'd have to full on torture people in this life, instead of
just the after-life. BTW, I think society has mostly confirmed that torture is bad, no? Why isn't there a thou shalt not torture? Perhaps a
Even with this "admission," as it were, of the importance of religion in terms of it's morality stick, herein lies one of the main problems I have
with religions (emphasis on the plural) in general - because different religions espouse different moral codes, rewards and punishments, they will
never all get along, and hence the fact that most of the senseless wars throughout history have been perpetrated in the name of gods (again with the
plurality). And this of course begs the ultimate question - If a loving, all-knowing, omnipotent deity created all that is, and us in "his"
(apparently "his" Creator was also a bigot) image, why "design" in us, the ability to be amoral at all, unless again, he wanted a loophole for
that whole killing the other people that don't believe in him thing?
I've never had anyone concisely answer that question - it always comes back to using satan as the excuse, or that we were designed to be imperfect
sinners at the outset, and that that's
just part of gods plan (really? remind me not to RSVP for the next exercise in celestial sadism)
Sorry, I didn't mean to rant on specifically about religion too much there at the end, but I think it's related to the debate at hand, especially in
explaining to others why one might choose to state that they don't believe in deities.
[edit on 20-5-2010 by Greyling2012]