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Why do people believe in God?
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Pukon_the_Treen
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 6:31 pm    Post subject:  Reply with quote

Quote:
I do find it odd when people parody a view which no-one holds


It seems to me that many of the religious right in America, from powerful individuals down to the ordinary citizenry, have a firm belief that in their political decisions they are doing God's will. Military action in the Middle East is not infrequently connected with the righteous fulfilment of biblical prophecy.
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genghiscant
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 8:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I seem to remember that George Bush & Tony Blair both claimed to be guided by God.
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Leonard James
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 8:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

genghiscant wrote:
I seem to remember that George Bush & Tony Blair both claimed to be guided by God.

That is the danger of all this Holy Spirit stuff. So many Christians seem really convinced that the HS is talking to them, and the consequences are frightening if they are in positions of power.
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hupo
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 9:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

cyberman wrote:

I do find it odd when people parody a view which no-one holds


Human beings are odd, (by definition?)... and then they get even  
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hupo
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 9:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh yeah of little faith      
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Shaker
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 19, 2011 6:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've just encountered these posts on the blog of biologist Jerry Coyne which suggest that increasingly sociologists are confirming what atheists (Marx famously included) have been saying since the year dot: that religious belief generally and theism particularly is a countermeasure against the uncertainty, randomness and contingency of life. The statistics really do seem to bear out Marx's widely quoted and almost equally widely misunderstood saying about religion being the opium of the people, insofar as religious belief is positively correlated with material and personal insecurity:

Does insecurity promote faith?

Do life's uncertainties promote religion?
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Samuel Vimes
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 19, 2011 8:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Shaker wrote:
insofar as religious belief is positively correlated with material and personal insecurity:

Does insecurity promote faith?

Do life's uncertainties promote religion?


But, as I'm sure you are aware, correlation does not necessarily equate to causation.  
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Shaker
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 19, 2011 8:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Samuel Vimes wrote:
Shaker wrote:
insofar as religious belief is positively correlated with material and personal insecurity:

Does insecurity promote faith?

Do life's uncertainties promote religion?


But, as I'm sure you are aware, correlation does not necessarily equate to causation.  


But as Thoreau so rightly observed, some circumstantial evidence is very strong, as when you find a trout in the milk.
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hupo
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 19, 2011 8:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Shaker,

I can't say that I have done a deep study on the two links you present yet I would like to say two things about the whole subject:

First, statistics: Statistics is a good way of getting a reasonably accurate picture of a situation, if the test is taken on a certain sized group.
That being the case it stands to reason, and fact, that a person who is, lets say, dying of a rare breed of cancer, is not effected at all by statistics saying that only 2% (for example) die of this cause. As far as he is concerned, he is 100% case!

There is the famous test of a group of people who all have one hand in boiling water and the other in a bucket of ice. The average is great but all these people will lose both their hands!!!

So much for statistics.

Second is Religion:
We need to accurately define "religion" before using it in any discussion and especially a debate.
So... What is religion?
(a few random findings on the web)
The belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, esp. a personal God or gods
a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, esp. when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency
a personal set or institutionalized system of religious attitudes, beliefs, and practices
I believe atheism is a religion also, one which cannot exist without the disbelief of another's religion. As a lot of religion does it believes and it disbelieves.
Atheism is considered a religion. A religion is a set belief or beliefs. If you don't believe in a higher power, you are displaying a belief.

As you can see, we are not in agreement as to what this "religion" is.
I for one, do believe in God and am not religious, meaning, I don't join groups, ceremonies, denominations and such. My relation with God is a personal one with no light & sound effects to boost it.

So the article you bring, Shaker, while worthy of study, have not overcome the  basic consensus necessary to get to any agreement.
My personal turning to God was not through any suffering, hard life, or such. It was an inner void (my description) that needed filling, and I made a concsious decision to turn to God.

Yet having said all that, it will be worth digging deeper into the two articles you mentioned

Thanks  
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SceptiKarl
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 9:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Which God will you be turning to hupo? Zeus? Thor? John Frum? Bacchus?

No don't tell me, .... the Jewish carpenter wins your faith.




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