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Religion can make you a better person?

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posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 01:03 PM
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Does region make you a better person?

Research by the Nottingham University Business School suggests that it can increase trust and generosity – but only towards people of your own faith. The research also suggests that having a religion doesn't increase discrimination towards people outside your group, unless you are a fundamentalist.


The two most interesting things about this study are that it was conducted by economists, and that they used Malaysian students for their guinea pigs, rather than the more usual Anglo-Saxon students chosen in most studies of this sort.

The participants were paired off to play repeated rounds of prisoners' dilemma games, a standard method of measuring generosity and trust. When no one had any clue as to the identity of their opponents, they co-operated at almost exactly the same rate as when they knew that their opponents were of a different ethnicity or religion. There was a marked and significant rise in co-operation and trust when either ethnicity or religion were shared between players, though this was not additive: the two together were not stronger than one or other on its own, and religion was slightly stronger than ethnicity.

There were two other effects worthy of note. Religiosity – ie commitment to a belief system – did not increase altruism towards outgroup members. Fundamentalism, a separate quality measured by such things as literal belief in the scriptures, did have a small but statistically significant effect in raising the level of discrimination against outgroup members.

The Guardian


So the research suggests that on the one hand, religious groups don't actively harm non religious people (although they will tend to favour their own co-religionists).

On the other hand, when dealing with fundamentalists, for instance people who take a literal belief in the scriptures, then such groups can cause harm, perhaps a great deal of harm, to people outside the group.

In other words, religion is neither harmful nor beneficial to non-religious people unless religious people take it too seriously?

It's just a pity that its often the people with the strongest belief, the fundamentalists, that manage to dominate religious movements.

edit on 6-2-2013 by ollncasino because: (no reason given)




posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 01:10 PM
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reply to post by ollncasino
 


I have found this to be the case almost everywhere I go. Once your passion turns to fanaticism, rational thought seems to disappear and other's must be converted to your way of thinking at all costs.

A look around ATS will give many, many examples of this.

In other words, I agree completely.



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 01:12 PM
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Star and Flag, olln!
I saw this article early this morning, and thought about posting a thread on it. Glad you did so!!

I agree completely. "Outsiders" are not treated the way "fundamentalists" treat each other. They are exclusive, and arrogant, and laboring under false premises. In my opinion, many of them miss the mark entirely. Due to inadequate education in liberal arts, humanities, and Western Civilization (the study of how our culture came to be).

I think it's VERY dangerous that American colleges and universities are going to drop those profound, broad-based classes that are CRITICAL for people to be truly aware of what's going on. Music, poetry, philosophy, art, and literature MUST BE INCLUDED in an education.

Or we wind up with an Idiocracy full of sheep.



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 01:27 PM
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Religion is good if its done within your walls and in your private life.

Once it goes into public..... then well you know.. what we currently have..



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 01:36 PM
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reply to post by ollncasino
 


Sounds about right...

The only bad ones are those that will tell you... "our way is the only way"...

or in extreme cases...

Join us or you'll burn...

You have to admit, they are amusing though




posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 02:23 PM
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Originally posted by ollncasino
Does region make you a better person?

Research by the Nottingham University Business School suggests that it can increase trust and generosity – but only towards people of your own faith. The research also suggests that having a religion doesn't increase discrimination towards people outside your group, unless you are a fundamentalist.


The two most interesting things about this study are that it was conducted by economists, and that they used Malaysian students for their guinea pigs, rather than the more usual Anglo-Saxon students chosen in most studies of this sort.

The participants were paired off to play repeated rounds of prisoners' dilemma games, a standard method of measuring generosity and trust. When no one had any clue as to the identity of their opponents, they co-operated at almost exactly the same rate as when they knew that their opponents were of a different ethnicity or religion. There was a marked and significant rise in co-operation and trust when either ethnicity or religion were shared between players, though this was not additive: the two together were not stronger than one or other on its own, and religion was slightly stronger than ethnicity.

There were two other effects worthy of note. Religiosity – ie commitment to a belief system – did not increase altruism towards outgroup members. Fundamentalism, a separate quality measured by such things as literal belief in the scriptures, did have a small but statistically significant effect in raising the level of discrimination against outgroup members.

The Guardian


So the research suggests that on the one hand, religious groups don't actively harm non religious people (although they will tend to favour their own co-religionists).

On the other hand, when dealing with fundamentalists, for instance people who take a literal belief in the scriptures, then such groups can cause harm, perhaps a great deal of harm, to people outside the group.

In other words, religion is neither harmful nor beneficial to non-religious people unless religious people take it too seriously?

It's just a pity that its often the people with the strongest belief, the fundamentalists, that manage to dominate religious movements.

edit on 6-2-2013 by ollncasino because: (no reason given)


So does your OP imply a group think phenomena that is intrinsic to religious group? I can see this...

Personally, I have a problem with those that treat members of their own faith with favor and I question the integrity of their faith especially if we are talking about Abrahamic religions as I consider my theology and philosophy an off branch.



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 02:39 PM
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Originally posted by DelayedChristmas

So does your OP imply a group think phenomena that is intrinsic to religious group? I can see this...

Personally, I have a problem with those that treat members of their own faith with favor and I question the integrity of their faith especially if we are talking about Abrahamic religions as I consider my theology and philosophy an off branch.


Group think is a very real aspect of religion. It could be argued that the group think is the religion itself, or at least the dominant group's interpretation of it.

Heresy will not be tolerated!



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 03:30 PM
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reply to post by ollncasino
 


If we were to lie side by side the atrocities done in the name of religion beside the benefits religion has had on humanity, I wonder which side of the scale would be tipped?



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 04:30 PM
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Originally posted by TheSubversiveOne
reply to post by ollncasino
 


If we were to lie side by side the atrocities done in the name of religion beside the benefits religion has had on humanity, I wonder which side of the scale would be tipped?



I think we all know the answer to that.

Religion makes people certain. So certain that some can commit great acts of evil in the name of righteousness.



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 04:34 PM
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reply to post by TheSubversiveOne
 


I wouldn't say that it "doesn't matter how much the pros outweigh the cons", but it shouldn't. We can't turn a blind eye to any of those atrocities.

Then again, give credit where credit's due... well, actually, people use that funny look when someone goes, "Hitler built good roads, man."

It's a touchy subject, I guess.



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 04:37 PM
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reply to post by ollncasino
 


Redemption makes a person better. Religion makes two kind of people, depressed people and self-righteous douches.



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 04:43 PM
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reply to post by ollncasino
 


And I don't like the term "fundamentalist", that's just someone who appreciates the fundamental/original tenants of the faith. "Radical" would be a better term to use to describe the person mentioned above.



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 07:59 PM
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reply to post by NOTurTypical
 


And I don't like the term "fundamentalist", that's just someone who appreciates the fundamental/original tenants of the faith.

First of all, (forgive me) you mean tenets. Not 'tenants'.

And, NuT, if that's the case, why do you appear to be so reluctant to accept the fact that many of the 'tenets' you believe were invented 100s of years after Christ?



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 08:07 PM
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I think its the same for any group and not just limited to religion. Even a group of radical atheist can be equally damaging. A country established on atheistic principles can as likely enforce their view.
They basically just researched human nature.



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:48 PM
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Originally posted by wildtimes
reply to post by NOTurTypical
 


And I don't like the term "fundamentalist", that's just someone who appreciates the fundamental/original tenants of the faith.

First of all, (forgive me) you mean tenets. Not 'tenants'.

And, NuT, if that's the case, why do you appear to be so reluctant to accept the fact that many of the 'tenets' you believe were invented 100s of years after Christ?



Ur right, that would be an autotyper mistake on my cell.

And as for your second comment, I'm not Roman Catholic.



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 10:04 PM
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reply to post by NOTurTypical
 





And as for your second comment, I'm not Roman Catholic.

you dont have to be a RC to believe what they invented. Right?



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 10:04 PM
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reply to post by ollncasino
 


Depends on what the religion is. If it's based on total submission to Chist's will and commandments, then yes it will make you better person, provided that people are not highjacking his teachings and making them say other than what he taught. However the problem is, humans are not perfect and no matter how hard you try, you will F it up at some point. Sometimes the journey is just as important as the destination.



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 10:26 PM
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Originally posted by logical7
reply to post by NOTurTypical
 





And as for your second comment, I'm not Roman Catholic.

you dont have to be a RC to believe what they invented. Right?


Begging the question fallacy.

Clicky.



edit on 6-2-2013 by NOTurTypical because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 10:34 PM
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Originally posted by logical7
reply to post by NOTurTypical
 





And as for your second comment, I'm not Roman Catholic.

you dont have to be a RC to believe what they invented. Right?


No you dont, because whatever faith, religion: Christian Scientist, Jehovah Witness, Lutheran, Calvanist, Babtist, Seventh Day Adventist, Anglican Episcopal, Methodist and you do not believe in Catholic Church doctrines I will tell you this; (if you wanted to abide by this faith system) the only thing to be done is: YOU must relinquish your soul and get your ass into the confessional otherwise you are not praying to God. ONLY the Priest can do this for you as your INTERPRETER (thereby knowing your name #of Hail Mary's to be prayed to/by your FINGERS on the Roseary).. Blackmail. If you Bypass Go on the monopoly board 200.00 bucks skipping the outrageous notions of the RC I'd say, if you can find one, go and buy the cola and drink a toast. If you believed any doctrine falacious or True, a present to yourself would be a ponyride carnival style and a box of CrackerJacks (prize inside). Those Catholics are VERY TRICKY. Watch out.
edit on 6-2-2013 by vethumanbeing because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 7 2013 @ 02:34 AM
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Originally posted by NOTurTypical

Originally posted by logical7
reply to post by NOTurTypical
 





And as for your second comment, I'm not Roman Catholic.

you dont have to be a RC to believe what they invented. Right?


Begging the question fallacy.

Clicky.




my mistake partly! I meant, you dont have to be a RC to believe in 'some' of the many things that they invented. Right?






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