It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.


Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.


To understand religions

page: 1

log in


posted on Sep, 3 2010 @ 04:14 PM
Consider this thread as a response to constant attacks against religions and their believers. Also, consider this as an attempt to provide information, that may soothe the quite widespread angst (which I often find quite hypocritical) towards religions.

While I do not recognise any religious dogma, I see that there may be an obvious task for all religions. When considering the fact that very many people need moral guidance and object of shared beliefs for more stable society (less crimes, more obedient citizens etc and communion, which we will inquire later on this post.) religions may have their burden to bear in communities and societies. Let’s begin.

Let us first take look at the word itself:

Modern scholars such as Tom Harpur and Joseph Campbell favor the derivation from ligare "bind, connect", probably from a prefixed re-ligare, i.e. re (again) + ligare or "to reconnect".

While there may be some dispute about the origins of the word, taking account the purpose of religion in society, the above explanation becomes rational. The task of the religion is to unite people into society by it’s shared symbols and because of it, the social ties amongst community (and society) are enforced. Religion is ritualized communication, where common symbols are shared and spread amongst the people.

Now let us take a look of the word ‘communication’:

late 14c., from O.Fr. comunicacion (14c., Mod.Fr. communication), from L. communicationem (nom. communicatio), noun of action from communicare "to share, divide out; communicate, impart, inform; join, unite, participate in," lit. "to make common," from communis (see common).

It is now becoming clear that communication and religion are very much related. You may have also heard about communion. Which – in light of all this – is nothing more than shared set of symbols and beliefs, that define faith of the believers that share the same religion.

So it is quite likely that the ultimate goal of religions was to unite people together with the shared set of symbols which required faith in metaphysical concepts – of which existence has always fascinated human being. Religion was an attempt to explain the mysteries of existence in a symbolic manner, allowing space for imagination, not defining the obvious too strictly so that even the simplest person could get something out of it.

The task of religion was also to manifest the ever evading truth, as people have been interested in ultimate answers from times immemorial. The religion was of course the best possibility when our collective knowledge was in babies shoes. However the tragedy is that when various religions (with their respective cultures) collide and human beings are so box-brained that they think to posses the ultimate truth – taught to them by their culture – conflicts are inevitable.

But there is one more point to note: Religions are not to blame, but human beings are. There are people from various religions who can get together fine, but there are also not-so-few thick-headed idiots that cannot tolerate other people, yet the religion-bashers blame religions for it. In my opinion, that is lame and juvenile and often hypocritical. Many of these religion-bashers are in fact these box-brained thick-headed idiots that cannot tolerate alternate views, but in their stupidity blame religions and believers for their and other people’s misery.

Unfortunately, these people are abundant in all walks of life, blaming others for their personal misery. Yes, in the name of religion there have been wars, but it is so with capitalism, communism and whatever-ism. It is not the –isms that cause the wars, but people, the thick-head idiots that yell each other on Internet forums, politics and wherever, blaming each other, though they cannot see their own errors. Often it is in the mirror, where the worst adversary can be found.

I said earlier that flaming religions and believers is hypocritical. What I meant was that these people really think that they are correct and others are wrong, just as the zealous believers to whom they target their angst at. Of course, there are many people whom find this thread of little or zero value. And probably the people whom this is targeted to, will not even read it – and if they do, they don’t get it. All said above relates to so many things, few being individual psychology, culture, education, TPTB and so on. But I feel like a crap after a long day, so I say no more except:

Have a nice day,


[edit on 4-9-2010 by v01i0]

posted on Sep, 4 2010 @ 02:21 AM
I’ll make an attempt to compress the OP into shorter and more coherent form.

Our capability in symbolic expression (language) is our greatest tool. This allows shared symbolism and exchange of thoughts. Once same symbols (be they religious, ideological or else) become widely recognized, they’ll become cultural dogmas like religions.

So in this sense, widely evident faith in science is no exception. Scientific dogmas will take the place of religious dogmas (in fact there is no substantial difference between these two). People are now believing in so called scientists, when before they were believing in words of priests.

Of course science itself is not to blame, but yet again we have to point the blaming finger to the human beings. Science and most scientists acknowledge there may be no way to know the ultimate truth, but they are researching. Religions (almost?) without exception claim to know the truth. Likewise, this is the case with all the new-age crap based on theosophy and Indian metaphysics and other various “sources”.

I ask anyone to read following:

There are guardians of public morals who suddenly find themselves in compromising situations, or rescue workers who are themselves in dire need of rescue. Their desire to save others lead them to employ means which are calculated to bring about the very thing they wished to avoid. There are extraverted idealists so consumed by their desire for the salvation of mankind that they will not shrink from any lie or trickery in pursuit of their ideal. In science there are not a few painful examples of highly respected investigators who are so convinced of the truth and general validity of their formula that they have not scrupled to falsify evidence in its favour. Their sanction is: The end justifies the means. Only an inferior feeling function, operating unconsciously and in secret, could seduce otherwise reputable men into such aberrations.

The destructive quality of this thinking, as well as its limited usefulness on occasion, does not need stressing. But there is still another form of negative thinking, which at first glance might not be recognized as such, and that is theosophical thinking, which today is rapidly spreading in all parts of the world, presumably in reaction to the materialism of the recent past. Theosophical thinking has an air that is not in the least reductive, since it exalts everything to a transcendental and world-embracing idea. A dream, for instance, is no longer just a dream, but an experience “on another plane.” The hitherto inexplicable fact of telepathy is very simply explained as “vibrations” passing from one person to another. And ordinary nervous complaint is explained by the fact that something has collided with the “astral body”. Certain ethnological peculiarities of the dwellers on the Atlantic seaboard are easily accounted for by the submergence of Atlantis, and so on. We have only to open a theosophical book to be overwhelmed by the realization that everything is already explained, and that “spiritual science” has left no enigmas unsolved. But, at bottom, this kind of thinking is just as negative as materialistic thinking. When the latter regards the psychology as chemical changes in the ganglia or as the extrusion and retraction of cell-pseudopodia or as an internal secretion, this is just much a superstition as theosophy. The only difference is that materialism reduces everything to physiology, whereas theosophy reduces everything to Indian metaphysics. When a dream is traced back to an overloaded stomach, this is no explanation of the dream, and when we explain telepathy as vibrations we have said just as little. For what are “vibrations”? Not only are both methods of explanation futile, they are actually destructive, because by diverting interest away from the main issue, in one case to the stomach and in the other to imaginary vibrations, they hamper any serious investigation of the problem by a bogus explanations. Either kind of thinking is sterile and sterilizing. (CW 6: 349-354.)

I wish you the best,


posted on Sep, 4 2010 @ 02:41 AM
I'm not even sure this fits in your thread but I will write it anyway, correct me if I'm wrong.

Its not that people want to disagree with religion, its that people do not believe in the doctrine. No one wants to believe that god killed millions of people (or coaxed people to do so).

Our thought processes are not the same. No one was prepared for the evolution of our brains, so we are now faced with considering the differences for ourselves.

Dreams are what they are, but how dreams are perceived is not as different as an angel giving us wisdom. We, as people, as beings, as spirits have kind of gone with the flow. This is our flow. We have not all excepted, and thats why I feel we don't all perceive it.

If and at any point we get foreknowledge or information that would be relevant to today, is what I think will take us to our new age.

I don't take that lightly. The New Age is scary itself. We will be fooled, deceived and blinded. Most would prefer it to be on their own terms than others.

Peace, NRE.

posted on Sep, 4 2010 @ 10:28 AM
reply to post by NoRegretsEver

Originally posted by NoRegretsEver
I'm not even sure this fits in your thread but I will write it anyway, correct me if I'm wrong.

Don't worry, many things fits here. As acknowledged, religions (and other types of ritualized communication) have depencies in wide array of topics.

However I cannot guarantee that I understood your post properly.

Originally posted by NoRegretsEver
Our thought processes are not the same.

I agree to certain degree. We all have individual experiences about life, our culture may vary, our religions, our personal experiences, upraising, education and all. No one has ever experienced exactly same things in identical order, instead we all are somewhat distinct in this perspective.

However I believe that our basic structure is very much similar - I mean the characteristics typical to every human being. Mostly these include physiological structures like our biology and all that.

Originally posted by NoRegretsEver
No one was prepared for the evolution of our brains, so we are now faced with considering the differences for ourselves.

I have to think that nothing happens suddenly, but this process (call it evolution, or dance of shiva if you like) is ever flowing, in constant movement where nothing remains still. This chain of cause and effect inevitably lead towards some goal - yet the final destination is unknown.

Originally posted by NoRegretsEver
No one wants to believe that god killed millions of people (or coaxed people to do so).

This I found funny - not your observation, but the fact that people want to believe that their god(s) are not capable of killing beings, be they humans or whatever. In most religious traditions there are lots of instances where gods turn out to be murderous bastards. From religions of those Sumerian to Christianity there are scriptures that account gods killing life forms in extensive manner. I don't see how people can deny this, yet uphold their beliefs in other parts of the doctrine.

Originally posted by NoRegretsEver
We, as people, as beings, as spirits have kind of gone with the flow. This is our flow. We have not all excepted, and thats why I feel we don't all perceive it.

Might be. We're like lemmings, going of the edge of the cliff, just because of the flow. The sheer pressure of the masses push us to our destruction.


new topics

top topics

log in