Thursday, December 11, 2008

The Dangers of Religious Dogma

The Dangers of Religious Dogma
It is impossible to prove that something does not exist when the description of such is too vague to be testable. Thus the human mind is free to have fantasies and make claims about the existence of a creator and a life hereafter, and no one can prove them wrong. So, what difference does it make in the affairs of man whether anyone has such beliefs?
Recorded history and archeology have demonstrated that man has held such beliefs and has added the concepts of worship, sacrificial offerings, prayer, obedience, original sin and the need for redemption, all to support the God-concept and thereby ease the anxiety of our unexplainable existence. Such beliefs require all sorts of dogma, e.g. a virgin birth, a triune God, an omnipotent and omniscient God, God-inspired scriptures, a church, priests and prophets, resurrection from the dead, in order to maintain the religious organizations which come to power. Without such dogma, these organizations would lose their influence and religious ideas would soon dissipate.

None of this is of any consequence until such time as the believers in such dogma want to impose their rituals on others or want government to promote their beliefs and favor their particular organization. The dangers inherent in such thinking have been demonstrated by such historical events as the Crusades, the Inquisition and the burning of witches. Such dangers are what this country’s founders were attempting to avoid when they amended the constitution to state "Congress shall make no laws respecting the establishment of religion----." It would have been helpful had they been more explicit, particularly if they had emphasized that there can not be any religious freedom unless it includes freedom from religion. If the state is allowed to discriminate against the non-religious, then it may discriminate against any particular religion. Yours may be next.
If the people are permitted to ask a political candidate to explain his/her views on religion, what purpose would this serve other than to influence one’s vote? If people are permitted to vote for, or against, a candidate based on the candidate’s religion, will they then move to exclude certain people from participation in the political process because of their religion, or lack thereof? If people can make such exclusions, it is but a short step for them to become inquisitors seeking to punish those who don’t measure up to their religious requirements. We can not afford to let this happen. Our constitutional rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are at stake.

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3 Comments:

At Sunday, December 28, 2008 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

and I agree with this...I do feel it is important to speak out and remind people that not everyone believes in some deity, assuming jesus for the most part. and that we don't have to be demure and retiring about our objections. They certainly have no hesitation to express their obscene certainties. Roar! Martha

 
At Tuesday, December 30, 2008 , Anonymous Frank said...

Again, thanks Martha for your comments.

Frank

 
At Thursday, January 01, 2009 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Religion is not the only source of dogma. There are political dogmas and scientific dogmas as well, for instance. Still, I agree with you that dogma in any of these guises is bad. We need to be free to question and reevaluate our beliefs based on new evidence, and people are unwilling to do this to their dogmatic beliefs.

-McCorquodale

 

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