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You can't have morals if you're religious.

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posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 10:02 AM
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I often hear people stating that you can't have morals if you're an atheist. Personally, I would argue that is the other way round. You can not be a truly good person when you're religious.

Petr Kropotkin held this argument, and this is a story he tells in a speech:



A child is drowning, and two men who stand upon the bank see it struggling in the water. One of them reasons "If I save the child, a good report of my actions will be made to the ruler of heaven, and the creator will reward me by increasing my flocks and my serfs," and thereupon he plunges into the water. Is he therefore a moral man? Clearly not, he is a shrewd calculator. The second individual, this man has been brought up from his childhood to feel himself one with the rest of humanity: from his childhood he has always regarded men as possessing interests in common: he has accustomed himself to suffer when his neighbours suffer, and to feel happy when everyone around him is happy. Directly he hears the heart-rending cry of the mother, he leaps into the water, not through reflection but by instinct, and when she thanks him for saving her child, he says, "What have I done to deserve thanks my good woman? I am happy to see you happy; I have acted from natural impulse and could not do otherwise!"


I have omitted certain areas of this story that aren't relative to the thread.

So, we have seen that the religious man has done this deed not through morals but through selfishness. He is doing it for the award in which he believes his creator will give him. This either being during the life or afterlife. This is clearly immoral compared to the man that does it through his own impulses, without thinking, without calculating the reward he may get.

This story helps us show the argument that the religious man is the immoral one, not the atheist.




posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 10:05 AM
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Religion is an uneducated persons only way to cope with their limited understanding of science.



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 10:08 AM
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I like the point you make, but I don't think every religious person would save someone JUST so they could get a reward of some kind. To many, it's just the right thing to do.

We all learn our morals from the environment in which we are raised. That's why the morals of Afghanistan people are different from those of people raised in the US. And morals in the Amish community are different from those in a Jewish community.

I would state my position as everyone has their own set of morals, none being "morally superior" than the others. It's all in what we're taught and choose to believe and internalize for ourselves.


Good story, though and good point.



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 10:10 AM
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Religion is all about morals and i definitely see more religious people with morals anyway.



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 10:15 AM
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Originally posted by theBigToe
Religion is an uneducated persons only way to cope with their limited understanding of science.


Science is an uneducated persons only way to cope with their limited understanding of the spirit.

Weird how i can flip it around like that huh?



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 10:18 AM
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reply to post by Benevolent Heretic
 


I do mostly agree. This is more of a counter-argument to those who state or feel that you can't have morals if you're an atheist. Of course not all religious people do it for the reward but some do.


reply to post by Viking9019
 


Religion is all about slavery, but that's an argument for another thread.
Like Breivik? And many others.



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 10:29 AM
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i have always agreed with this. i can only use christianity as an example because i'm not all that familiar with the morals of other religions. i went to a catholic school my whole life and of course we always learnt about the ten commandments and how if we wanted to go to heaven we had to live by the golden rule. if we lived a life of sin we were damned to hell. blah blah blah. it's like the only reason we are supposed to be kind is because we will suffer if we don't. it all just seemed rather selfish and ingenuine. i do have to say though that even people who aren't necessarily religious and believe strongly in karma tend to come off as selfish in their good deeds. i've heard so many people say things like "i just gave a homeless man money, i better get get good karma for this!" i even catch myself doing it sometimes and i feel terrible. we live in a society where we want instant gratification for the positive things we do. i think most of us could practice doing good things more often without expecting anything in return.
edit on 29-1-2012 by ZiggyStardust because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 10:30 AM
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When David got to where Goliath was, he asked why the people on his side allowed him to curse their God, then he asked if he could marry the king's daughter if he killed Goliath. There really is no morals to religion. This is something well meaning people have to extract from it by ignoring the most obvious aspects of it, which is to get in touch with the spiritual, life changing thing that is there to be found by those who seek it.



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 10:30 AM
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reply to post by theBigToe
 


Quite a wild sweeping statement, I was raised a Catholic however don't practice it now I have faith in god and an afterlife and try to live life as a good person. I advise high growth companies like life science and bio medical device projects etc do I fit your category ???



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 10:32 AM
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Originally posted by On the level
reply to post by theBigToe
 


Quite a wild sweeping statement, I was raised a Catholic however don't practice it now I have faith in god and an afterlife and try to live life as a good person. I advise high growth companies like life science and bio medical device projects etc do I fit your category ???


You sound like my parents, who are Catholic but believe in evolution and the big bang and blah blah. What I have to say to you people is that youre not Catholics. You can call yourself one all youd like but the Catholic church is no different then any other sect of religion. They follow a doctrine. If you dont believe in that doctrine then that is your choice, you would be the smart one, and because of it you shouldnt subscribe your name to their religion. Say youre spiritual, youre not a Catholic.

And I would hope by the way, that you wouldnt want to be associated with these idiots. I would hope being that you value the truth, that you say youre spiritual and that organized religion is the evil controlling device that it is and then give it the finger.
edit on 29-1-2012 by theBigToe because: (no reason given)

edit on 29-1-2012 by theBigToe because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 10:36 AM
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Originally posted by Tea4One
This is clearly immoral compared to the man that does it through his own impulses, without thinking, without calculating the reward he may get.

This story helps us show the argument that the religious man is the immoral one, not the atheist.




So, you hold this other man as one to follow and come preaching his gospel?

You just created another religion around this man and became it's high priest!

LOL

This is how religion is born.

Some one does a good deed and it inspires others to do good deeds who otherwise may not have.



With Love,

Your Brother



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 10:37 AM
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reply to post by theBigToe
 


I do believe me but as I said your statement doesn't seem to fit when it comes to me. I would say it would fit devout and blind followers rather than those who have faith



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 10:37 AM
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Originally posted by On the level
reply to post by theBigToe
 


I do believe me but as I said your statement doesn't seem to fit when it comes to me. I would say it would fit devout and blind followers rather than those who have faith


And the Pope would call you an infidel.



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 10:38 AM
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I kinda think none of us have real morals. We are ruled by our id. So even good selfless acts are things we do not for others but in fact for ourselves. Wether we do good things to appease our id with some form of intrinsic validation or because we think it will help us get into heaven we only do thinngs for ourselves and our own selfish reasons.
edit on 29-1-2012 by theubermensch because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 10:46 AM
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The Nazi's were roman catholic including Hitler and his mates.
What about Israel, oh yeah they're kind of like Nazis too
Islamic nations, well they're nutters as well.
Those three religions are based on fear, not love for fellow man.

I am a godless heathen, I dont have any of those restraints in my life called religion.
I am a free man



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 10:55 AM
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morals are a suppression of goodness. Some people will avoid doing good because it conflicts with their morals. Only the man with no morals, no ideologies, no belief, no walls in his perception, no limitations, is free to be nothing but love. Everything he does is virtue.

you guys are confusing morals with the inner nature of man. morality is a calculation. acting from inner being has no calculation, any calculation results in the action emerging from the surface
edit on 29-1-2012 by biggmoneyme because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 11:20 AM
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reply to post by theubermensch
 

. . . or because we think it will help us get into heaven we only do thinngs for ourselves and our own selfish reasons.

That is perfectly acceptable according to Jesus. God will bless you through those acts that are so motivated, to become better so you can go to heaven.



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 12:43 PM
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I like the Communist countries they are so free of expression
I like the human dictators without religion so wise they have been
How many have been nutters, how many have been killed without religion and anti religion policies
How many leaders have gone onto think they are god like and mythical without religion

We have not seen a world without religion don't expect it to be harmony, it just means the differences will not be 4 sects of Communism, Christianty, Sharia and Democracy but every man to their own and like our current godless generation crime and tribalism will reinvent it self and being bad and evil will equate with respect.

Where as a healthy dose of Christianity will balance the people out, it says that our ancients were wiser then us and they showed what mistakes they made and differences over time that man managed to find some peace and that was with Christ, to emulate him is not a bad thing compared to those who want to be a movie character or a rap star which often ends in their destruction.
edit on 29-1-2012 by The time lord because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 07:01 PM
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I personally think the OP is ridiculous- for both the atheist and the theist, it is not their beliefs that will promote them to jump in the water, but their innate selfishness/non-selfishness... the OP assumes that the religious person will always be selfish because they only do good to get themselves to heaven, when in fact, different religious people would do different things. Some might be selfish and think about before hand what they were doing and why, while others would jump in just as instinctively as the atheist in this case to benefit the greater good. Some religious people may just follow blindly in order to get the reward at the end, while others really "live" the religion- they understand its rules and the implications of breaking them, and why it makes the most sense to follow these rules/morals.

The atheist also is not always "good"- they can be equally as selfish if they chose to not jump in because they didn't want to endanger themselves or they jump for their own type of reward such as publicity.

The reason creationists say atheists can't have morals is because by subscribing to their viewpoint they have to believe that there is no absolute morals, no absolute good or evil... the only morals are what are made by man. Whereas religious people believe the absolute morals are made by God or have always been here. So technically, an atheist could do something "immoral" and feel no regret/repercussions, while a religious person, if they did something immoral, would believe that they did something truly bad. Of course an atheist can still choose to be "good," and moral, even if they don't believe it truly matters in the end.

And what's more, at least in Christianity, it isn't good actions that determine whether you go to heaven or not, it is simply the belief in Christ and acceptance of him as Lord and Savior from ones' sins, so jumping in the water wouldn't effect if the religious person went to heaven or not anyways



posted on Jan, 29 2012 @ 07:06 PM
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Originally posted by Tea4One


How about we say it like this. All who have morals, that point one towards love, prove the spirit of christ lives in them.

Don't let the church fool you. If an athiest knows love and follows love the bible says that Christ is in them.

If you cannot accept this at least accept that something is guiding you to love your neighbor as yourself and that Jesus was teaching us that.

So even if you refuse religion and the bible we can both follow the same moral code.

Whith love your brother
edit on 29-1-2012 by sacgamer25 because: (no reason given)

edit on 29-1-2012 by sacgamer25 because: (no reason given)



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