What is religion?
Posted: 09 June 2005 11:14 AM   [ Ignore ]  
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I have a question, and I would like a secularist’s honest opinion. When evidence is compiled against Christianity – for example racism in the church, witch burnings, and public discrimination against other religions - is the criticism against organized religion or religious thought and beliefs as a whole?

I’m only asking because I see more evidence against religion based upon organizations and not upon the philosophies and ideologies that make up that religion.

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Posted: 09 June 2005 12:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]  
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[quote author=“Anonymous”]I have a question, and I would like a secularist’s honest opinion. When evidence is compiled against Christianity – for example racism in the church, witch burnings, and public discrimination against other religions - is the criticism against organized religion or religious thought and beliefs as a whole?

I’m only asking because I see more evidence against religion based upon organizations and not upon the philosophies and ideologies that make up that religion.

Since I’m a Christian, you aren’t asking me and I won’t stand in the way of your question.

I’d merely like to add that I think getting clear what we’re talking about is definitely essential.  Try not using the word ‘religion’ and see if you can still articulate what you mean.  If we can’t, probably all we’re doing is sticking a stereotype on something.  Just my tip, for what its worth.  Clarity is always worth cultivating.  The things we want to believe are the things that will lead us astray.

Best of luck getting a decent answer.

All the best,

Roger Pearse

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Posted: 09 June 2005 05:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]  
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[quote author=“Anonymous”]I have a question, and I would like a secularist’s honest opinion. When evidence is compiled against Christianity – for example racism in the church, witch burnings, and public discrimination against other religions - is the criticism against organized religion or religious thought and beliefs as a whole?

I’m only asking because I see more evidence against religion based upon organizations and not upon the philosophies and ideologies that make up that religion.

Anon, this is such a subtle question that I have no idea how to respond to it except to say that I have many answers to your question. Roger’s input also triggers all kinds of motivations in me to respond, but my work is consuming almost all of my time and energy these days, as it will for the next year or so. If my opinion would mean something to you, private-message me and I’ll send you an 85,000-word manuscript that’s only been turned down by one publisher so far. I guarantee that it would answer your eloquent question. No charge for the printing costs if you agree to write at least one critiquing paragraph for every chapter you choose to read.

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Philosophy may in no way interfere with the actual use of language; it can in the end only describe it. For it cannot give it any foundations either. It leaves everything as it is.
Ludwig Wittgenstein

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