Responding to "agree that religion in general is stupid"

So one of my friends posted on a picture displaying the differences between Jesus and Mohammad saying “Can’t we just all agree that religion in general is stupid? Both sides had their share of fanatics.”

I asked “Why would religion in general be stupid?”

He then replied “Because the Bible’s been translated and retranslated a billion times throughout history, and every time it’s been translated its ideals have circulated around the interests of the guys doing the writing. The Quran is allegedly pretty close to the source material (which is why they’re so protective about it) but there are more than enough fanatics of that nonsense blowing up and shooting people around the globe. The world would be a better place if people just tried to get along and stop trying to adamantly defend their own ideals at the expense of others.”

Then I responded “Ah ok so I guess ill start with the Bible translation deal. What’s funny is I used to use that back before I learned more about it. It is true to some extent but it hasn’t been translated as many times as you might think and its still very close to the original Greek (new testament). And even if you take any particular translation you’ll never find in context a way to justify doing bad things. On top of this Christianity isnt dependent completely on tye bible like Islam and the Quran (unless you talk to protestants). But according to the bible itself and history the real foundation of christianity is not the bible but tye church (the catholic church). So regardless of what one wacko does based on what he thought the bible was conveying to him, if he’s doing something contrary to the authority of the church then its against christianity.You said “The world would be a better place if people just tried to get along” that’s in a very large sense what is taught in the bible and in religion in general. religion religion in general is a way of life. A set of morals that keeps humans in check. Stops us from doing harm to one another. Its not religion in general that we should agree on as being stupid, but people.”

is what i said correct? If so let me know. Also what else can be said in response to what he said? How would you reply?

Can’t see anything wrong in your reply. I guess you might also wish to ask if he doesn’t think that when he says “The world would be a better place if people just tried to get along and stop trying to adamantly defend their own ideals at the expense of others.” he is actually doing what he’s condemning. Is he sure he is not defending his ideas at your expense? And does he think that calling something someone else believes “stupid” is a good way to “get along”?

good point!

Yeah I pretty much agree with what you said, I would have said it like this.

  1. Christianity is not a religion of a book, we are the body of Christ. Islam is a religion of a book.

  2. We know to more than 99.5% certainty what the original manuscripts of the New Testament said, and the other differences do not affect any important Christian doctrine.

  3. “The world would be a better place if people just tried to get along and stop trying to adamantly defend their own ideals at the expense of others.”

Notice the self-contradiction and hypocrisy of this statement. Stop trying to defend your beliefs, but mine can be adamantly defended. Of course the idea that we can create a utopia on earth if we got rid of religion is pretty much impossible to defend if you look at the 20th century of secularist dictatorships. Humanity is fallen and in need of redemption and guidance, this is very clear just by looking at the paper.

Also it annoys me how people speak about “religion” as if it were some nebulous concept that included things as wide-ranging as ISIS beheading civilians, Westboro baptist Church protesting soldier’s funerals and Cardinal Newman writing in his study.

Good response.

ok he has now responded to the last thing I said saying “But if laws exist to keep people in check in the first place (with tangible consequences and norm establishment as opposed to the threat of eternal punishment in the afterlife), what good is it? I find it to be an interesting cultural phenomenon with a rich history but that’s about where its apparent value begins and ends.”

Any ideas? This is a little interesting. Would I be correct in saying that seculars exist because of religion? Should I bring up that if religion didn’t intervene laws would still allow us to discriminate blacks? Objective moral truths?

Yea that’s pretty much what secularism is, a counter-religion with no positive morality or metaphysics of its own, just a negation of Christianity’s morality and metaphysics. Well, at least Secularists claim to want to keep the husk of Christian morality, but when they cut away its objective foundations, you just get an inevitable backsliding because humanity is fallen and in need of a savior. This backsliding is bright as day: 20th century genocides in the name of utopias, abortion, broken families, euthanasia, hook-up culture…and it’s only going to pick up speed the more post-Christian society gets.

What good is religion he asks? What good is secularism?

I don’t really see anything positive that secularism has brought. Christianity brought a revolution in human dignity (created in the image and likeness of God and whom God loved so much He took on our flesh and redeemed us), not to mention western civilization (universities, hospitals, charities, scientific method, legal system…). Secularism has brought a bunch of genocides (Mao, Stalin, Hitler, Pol Pot etc…) that killed over 100 million people last century. Usually atheists will then say “oh but they didn’t do it in the name of their atheism” well that wasn’t really true, but nevertheless they all share the same view: don’t worry about God or religion because there’s no God who’s watching what we’re doing anyway. This leads to disaster.

did Catholics really create scientific method?

The tradition of philosophy that led to the scientific method came from Oxford University in the medieval period. One notable figure was Bishop of Lincoln Robert Grosseteste, of whom historian of science A.C. Crombie said

A. C. Crombie calls him “the real founder of the tradition of scientific thought in medieval Oxford, and in some ways, of the modern English intellectual tradition”.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Grosseteste

Other big names in this development who were working at these church founded universities were Albertus Magnus, Roger Bacon, John Peckham, Duns Scotus, Thomas Bradwardine, Walter Burley, William Heytesbury, Richard Swineshead, John Dumbleton, Richard of Wallingford, Nicholas Oresme, Jean Buridan and Nicholas of Cusa.

There’s so many atheist myths about the Catholic Church, and the biggest and most important ones are to do with science IMO. Catholic historian Thomas E. Woods Jr. wrote a book called “How the Catholic Church built Western civilization” and did a TV series you can watch here (youtube.com/watch?v=m5siHd1P5zk&list=PL57857981F3CC5D78) about this subject, it’s very good.

wonderful! Thanks for that

Ok I replied with this (I borrowed a lot from estevao. Hope he doesn’t mind)
“Alright where do secular laws come from? They come from people. As i ended my last comment we discovered that people are kept check by religion. People have a fallen nature and generally tend to fall into greed or do harm to one another. What keeps secular laws in check? the same thing that keeps people in check. For example if it weren’t for religion it would still be lawful to discriminate blacks. When Martin Luther King Jr. Was in jail he wrote a letter saying “How does one determine whether a law is just or unjust? A just law is a man made code that squares with the moral law or the law of God. An unjust law is a code that is out of harmony with the moral law. To put it in the terms of St. Thomas Aquinas: An unjust law is a human law that is not rooted in eternal law and natural law”. Religion (Christianity in particular) is what kept the secular law in check and allowed the dignity of the person to prevail. Its value doesn’t end. This brings a very interesting question what good is secularism? Christianity brought a revolution in human dignity, not to mention western civilization (universities, hospitals, charities, scientific method, legal system…). Secularism has brought some of the worst genocides in history (Mao, Stalin, Hitler, Pol Pot etc…). Secularism is a counter-religion with no positive morality or metaphysics of its own removing the objective foundation.”

I will keep you guys updated if he replies.

I think that you are doing a wonderful job.

Since you are bringing him along to see that there must be a rigidly held set of beliefs and moral codes and that he himself holds to one…you will be able to point out to him that, in fact, he has a “religion” that he does not believe is stupid. :thumbsup:

Peace
James

Sorry to say this as it might cause offence. But Islam is a false religion. Muslims believe that Jesus substituted another man for Himself on the cross and then disappeared. That alone convinces me that it is false.

Throughout time, man has always felt the need to worship a higher being. If we take that away we end up worshippping ourselves and our electronic gadgets. Could there perhaps be a correlation between a decline in faith and soaring depression and suicide rates? The problem is not religion and faith, it is the emptiness it leaves behind when it has gone. What do you fill it with?

Best wishes,
Padster

By this measure, bird watching, mountain climbing and curing cancer and 1957 Chevy’s are stupid.

-Tim-

Hmm so I checked this morning to see if he responded and the thread is gone. He either deleted it or its some sort of glitch

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