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What happens when religion/spirituality is replaced with secularism?

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posted on Nov, 18 2012 @ 02:11 AM
Certain people believe society would function better without religion, which they see as a stumbling block to reason and progress. Religion is portrayed by secularists as some kind of a veil of ignorance that needs to be lifted in order for society to progress.

Very well... I'd like to ask what happens when religion/spirituality is replaced with secularism?
With religion out of the way, can we expect to see the rise of rational scientifically oriented societies? Will the masses become passionate about science and progress? Will the average individual apply reason and logic to making a difference for the better? With religion removed from existence, will we start progressing as a species in leaps and bounds?

Its easy to measure the progress of a secular society that is free from religious influence.
Just look into what society spends energy, time and money on. To do this, look at its mass media which is a reflection of society. Does the mass media reflect a general interest towards science, progress and all those good things religion gets in the way of? Or does it reflect an obsession with something shallow entertainment, celebrities and materialism?

Take a look at the trash being passed off as "entertainment" and "lifestyle" on your TVs and cinema.
Look at the overpaid celebrities / entertainers / sports stars.... and the movies, shows, music and big games that they make happen. There are entire industries that keep this garbage in production, influencing millions. This isn't something that is being forced on to people by governments or corporations for profit, but rather the people living in secular societies want this kind of garbage. The minds of the secular masses fuel these industries. These masses indirectly pay for the mansions, cars, vacations, drug habits of celebrities. Never mind soaring prices, poverty, debt, war... the "the show will go on". The industry produces it because the people want it because the industry produces it, and so on.

This shallowness and vapidity that pervades society are direct products of a secular system, not a religious one. Period.

Sure, we all can sit on pedestals smugly laugh at people who enjoy trash like *insert stupid TV show* and pretend to be better because our taste in entertainment are more refined. But that's not the real issue as this is NOT a rant against trashy mainstream entertainment and its millions of followers. Rather, its just one simple example of how stupidity and irrationality can breed even in a secular framework, without any religious influence

A secular society sans religion did not make the masses passionate about science and progress. Instead it has cultivated an obsession with shallow celebrities and the "entertainment" they have to offer. The average childs role models and heroes are glorified pop stars and fictional characters.... not Einstein or Darwin.
A secular society sans religion has failed to influence individuals to try and make a difference for the better. Instead it has made individuals selfish and apathetic, coveting flashy gadgets and cars that are marketed. These are the true fruits of an irreligious, secular society.

Can we honestly say that a secular society without religion guarantees intellectual development?
Is it logical that secular society monetarily rewards shallow entertainers MORE than scientists, doctors and teachers who work to make a difference in the lives of many?
Is the dumbing down of the masses through godless entertainment the promised progress of a secular society?
If these are the kind of questions that you have asked yourself, then you are the kind of person I'd like on board this discussion.

My stance is secularism is NOT a magical solution to the 'absurdity' of religion, but rather brings with it its own brand of absurdity.

edit on 18-11-2012 by sk0rpi0n because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 18 2012 @ 02:24 AM
You get a better and rational world.

This shallowness and vapidity that pervades society are direct products of a secular system, not a religious one. Period.

I could argue this is actually an inherent part of Catholicism that valued gold and adornments more than helping its congregation.

Sorry, but I am secular and I am a moral person. I live by the rule of finding my own happiness without taking away from the experience or pursuit of it from others.

posted on Nov, 18 2012 @ 02:27 AM
Well, I have asked myself these questions and I think that people would be free to develop intellectually if they wish, or free to be artistic if they wish.

I think whether or not God is present in entertainment is irrelevant to the quality of the entertainment. A lot of bands I appreciate like System of a Down have good messages but are secular. A lot of religious doctrine hampers human rights.

Most of the atheists I know watch higher quality television than the religious people I know, in fact, the latter might make up most of the audience for the shows you are mentioning.

HOWEVER you will not have to worry because your time of religious suppression of science and societal progress is coming. We are not heading towards an atheist society, but the other way around, towards a totalitarian religious police state. Things go in cycles. Atheists are weak because they are too individualistic.

They will not be able to stop what is coming, because they think they have already won, and underestimate the power of religious culture.
edit on 18-11-2012 by darkbake because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 18 2012 @ 02:37 AM
I'd say those with a strong personal morality and sense of responsibility won't much care either way and didn't need organized religion to begin with. Spirituality is apart from that in my mind and a deeply personal thing not necessarily tied to any religion at all.

Those with no morals or values to start with, likewise would be unaffected. They'd go on being predators and victimizing people like always. Just finding a more competitive market, perhaps.

It's that majority....and stats put it as a healthy majority World Wide, who identify with an Organized religion and strongly at that. I can't help but think for a large % of those people, their sense of morality and values is derived from the code they find in religion and a sense of paying a high price after death for violating the most important of them. have extremists of ALL religions that hide behind them to do even worse things. There are nearly 7 Billion people on this rock though and a vast majority are religious. So, if religion begets violence, it should be a world of anarchy and slaughter, rather than some pockets of it where extremism seems to rule, right?

posted on Nov, 18 2012 @ 02:40 AM
reply to post by sk0rpi0n

I think it's a very interesting idea to define the influence of religion on society by comparing the progress of countries with different levels of religiousness / secularism.

Originally posted by sk0rpi0n
Its easy to measure the progress of a secular society that is free from religious influence.
Just look into what society spends energy, time and money on.

I agree up to this point but not on the rest about mass media being a good indicator of a countries progress.

Educational level, the quality of life or environmental awareness are much better indicators for the progress of a society IMO.
edit on 18-11-2012 by ColCurious because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 18 2012 @ 02:53 AM
reply to post by sk0rpi0n

Like secularism, all of your examples are the result of democracy. People can choose what garbage they watch on television much like they choose their religious beliefs.

Of course, as you rightfully pointed out, most people do make the wrong choices.

posted on Nov, 18 2012 @ 03:37 AM
Also I find that in the absence of heavy religion (let's not forget that none of us have probably experienced a society where religion is absolute) one can find unity by doing things they enjoy with someone else, and learning about life.

posted on Nov, 18 2012 @ 08:53 AM
An interesting premise Skorpion. S&F for the thought you put into this.

The problem with measuring religious vs secular in our society is that must account for a third factor, or faction, if one prefers to see it that way. Either way, we must account for world leaders and mega corporations who expend much in the way of resources every day to mold our society, and public perception, to their will. Neither science nor religion is pure and untainted from these entities, and therefore, no objective measurement can truly be made.

Now if one were to take a group of atheists, and a group of "your religion here", and place them in a situation free from outside interference, and with the same resources to form a society, you might be able to measure the success or failure of each group in a given area.

As things stand, there is no hope of either group of common people forming a society based on their given principles and beliefs. Therefore, no realistic interpretation of merits, or lack thereof, can be made, excepting a subjective cursory review by us as individuals based on the information we have about each group. We can only hypothesize.
edit on 11/18/2012 by Klassified because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 19 2012 @ 10:18 AM
Interesting topic! SnF for you.
I agree with you that secularism has done nothing that it can claim as only possible because of it.
The divide between the church and science lead to the backlash that made religion look obsolute and a hurdle for progress and people went to the other extreme causing problems of its own that we see now.
The progress thats happening in the secular world is rudderless, we innovate and research in any field just because we can, never asking if its required or will it help humanity or harm. Its driven by profit alone.
Any new technology first goes through a check of its military application.
Individuality is promoted and the message is "you are free to do what you want till the law allows" yet the laws are basically individual oriented not society oriented. The sense of personal responsibility by morals is diminished requiring more policing.
In short secularism suddenly gave individuals almost unlimited freedom without first teaching them the responsibility that comes with it.
Religion already has a framework, guidelines to reach a balance between individual freedom without causing social harm and decay.
Secularism is a sukling infant, it would grow as people slowly realise and learn by trial and error. Maybe in thousand years, but it would be funny if they reach the same understanding and fine tune the laws as religion already has now!

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