The three fears that lead to religions
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I'm living in Korea. I live outside the university, party town. A weekend night and I can see hundreds of drunk university kids everywhere. Occasionally a police unit is called. I have seen officers talk to a drunk for an hour trying to get him into a car and take him home. There are very few cops on the streets as all the streets are monitored with cameras. Just go the speed limit and you don't have a problem. Motorbikes do not get caught as they do not trip the cameras. There are also uploads for you phone that will tell you which traffic sensors are running on that day. Taxis and buses use them to blow lights.
A few years back a man was throwing all his furniture out the window. Pissed at his wife for some reason. Probably found out she had a lover. There is a whole lot of that in Korea. Men and women as marriage is primarily a social status thing. *It's changing a bit, but if you child does not fall in love with someone from the right family, you can bet there are going to be problems. " Social climbing is a big thing here. Same in most Asian countries. Anyway,,,, on with the story....
So the police show up and stand around for about an hour. They talk to the woman and talk to the man. The man keeps launching furniture out of the 6th floor window and onto a garden area. It went on from about 3 am till 6am.
The next day at school I asked some of the Korean teachers, why didn't the police stop him. Ready for this...... drum role .......... "Why should they, it's his furniture and his apartment." The only concern that the police had was that no one was being injured. The man will have to replace the broken window and buy new furniture.
Another time I watched a young man kick all the glass out of a phone booth on a public sidewalk. (There are no more phone booths, cell phones killed them all.) Still, the people just walked by. No one tried to stop him and no one said anything to him. There are police cameras on the corners. They will find the young man and make him pay for the phone booth. It won't be hard to find him, he goes to one of the schools in the area and was wearing a school uniform. I have no idea if the police showed up or not.
Last story. I was driving like an idiot. Pulled out of a car wash where I had just had my car detailed for $15. I cut across the double yellow line, pulled into traffic and WHAM! The rear view mirror lit up like a Christmas tree.
The cop was in a white panel van, which is probably why I didn't see it. He was sitting in a gas station just waiting for an idiot like me to do something wrong. Anyway, I rolled down my window, put my hands on the steering wheel at the 11 and 1 position and waited.
The cop exited the van, walked up to the car and looked at me. "I'm sorry officer, I know exactly what I did wrong." I handed him my license. He looked at it, handed it back, and said in very good English, "Don't do it again." That was it.
No one is out trying to make a quota in this country. No one is scamming money for the government. These guys over here are like the cops I remember when I was a young child. They might scold you but they didn't empty your wallet while doing so. America, land of the free, MY ASS.
Okay, that said, there are a whole lot of great things in America. I will not argue against that. In many ways people do have a lot more freedom. "FREEDOM FROM THE POLICE STATE AND THE GOVERNMENT IS NOT ONE OF THEM." The constitution is being trashed by the state.
@Diotrephes: Can't argue facts. We currently incarcerate more people than any other country in the world. Forced labor in privatized prisons is little more than institutionalized slavery. Facts are Facts.
13 Amendment states: “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”
Love it!!! Great source.
(Edited for the following) I fucking love it when people post sources. I have been looking at the slavery system in the penitentiary system for years and never realized "SLAVERY IS COMPLETELY LEGAL" in the USA. Mind Blowing! I love it.
Nyarlathotep: "Lesson learned: next time, go to a laundry mat in a more affluent part of town."
As if there were any...
@Nyarlathotep and thread:
This is the real point. Be a rich white middle aged male and the police/justice system works for you. Be a person of color, the wrong age, and especially: poor and the police/criminal justice system in the US works against you. (To be fair this is also true in much of the rest of the world as well.) However the US can proudly (not!) be one of the few countries in the world that still has a bond system. And while there is no official "debtor" prisons in the US anyone that is poor and gets caught up in the system will tell you that it is indeed very real.
The short lesson is: the richer you are, (and to a lesser extent the more straight white male,) the more "above" the law you are, with the opposite being true for the poor. It is a terribly unfair system. All the data that backs my previous statement is easily accessible on the net from reputable sources. Studies have been done and shown a very powerful correlation between wealth and conviction rates (mostly in terms of plea deals that are all but forced on the poor.)
Even if a rich white person does actually get convicted, (usually picked on another rich white wealthy person,) How their sentencing and punishment plays out is very very different. A rich white male can usually get just a ankle bracelet and be homebound (except for work,) if they did not commit a violent crime. (And even sometimes if they do.) If they do actually go to jail, they can go to rich person jail. Where everyone gets their own room, lots of guards to keep things safe, their own tv/internet etc. one prison I heard of even has a 9 hole golf course. Work releases are common, and quite often these rich people can either live off their wealth or continue to get jobs even at a high level depending on the crime they are convicted for. None of this is true for the poor.
For the poor, being caught with some like pot in the wrong place can be a very negative life changing event, where for the rich is they ever actually even got busted for pot, it would barely be a slap on the wrist unless they were carrying many ounces of it.
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doG, of course it is insecurity.
Insecurity due to fear of death is the main reason. Insecurity due to fear of the unknown. Insecurity due to lack of intelligence to truly understand science. Insecurity for the safety of one's family. Insecurity for the fear of one's own safety.
The list goes on. Any person who just cannot understand any fear is doomed to the failure of the mental virus and mental disorder that is religion. It is mainly due to the fact that the person lack the intelligence for truly understanding rationality, critical thinking, logic, deduction, analytical thought.
Also think of the Bell Curve. ≅98% of the world's population fall into the area to the left of the rightmost vertical line. That represents the percentage of people who CAN be influenced by religion. The second right most vertical and leftward represents the percentage of people ≅85% who WILL BE influenced by religion. Thus, the reason at least 80% of the world's population IS religious to some degree.
Think Critically about it.
Yes I understand this arakish...I think critically, that's how I came to the same conclusion. Let me clarify, even when the religious have a clear understanding of fear, a clear understanding of why religion is a myth, and have the knowledge to rationalize this...still there is a failure in reason. As a matter of fact, as I understand, when this logic threat to their belief occurs, they double down and become more defensive, and in some cases radicalized in defense. That is irrational, to say the least. Responding to this threat, validates their full understanding of the threat. Yet they knowingly ignore reason and fail logic. Take a look at any quality religious apologist, WLC and the like, as proof. They critically evaluate the attack, learning all angles of attack, formulating a response that attempts to refute the challenge, to the point of dishonesty and beyond...clinging to religion This is not fear or ignorance based, as their understanding clearly dispels this...
...which for my pea brain, presently equals, WTF.
(Sorry if this is a little long, folks...)
Ahhh... Finally getting the chance to sit down and actually have time to respond to this thread with the story I have been waiting for an opportunity to relate. A bit of background first, if I may...
I have a cousin. She is a year or two older than me, and she is VERY religious. Totally immersed in it. She grew up on a farm out in the sticks under the roof of a stepdad who was an abusive, narrow-minded, bigot and bully who believed women should be "kept in their place" within the household. In other words, cooking, cleaning, and having babies were the only things women should be concerned with doing. (Side note: I am happy he was my uncle by marriage and not by blood. Just sayin'...) Anyway, my cousin is not very well educated, having been taken out of school at the age of 15 or 16. And she lived a very isolated/sheltered life (along with her Mom, two sisters, and two stepbrothers) in a sparsely populated rural area where only the major thoroughfares near the tiny town area (several miles away) were paved. And, yes, religion/church was paramount out there. And, again, very strict household ruled by the abusive stepdad.
Now, fast forward a few years, and my cousin is finally away from the farm, but not anywhere close to escaping from her childhood indoctrination. Incredibly low self-esteem and even lower self-confidence. At the age of almost 20, tried returning to school at one point in an attempt to graduate. Kept getting chastised so much by the stepdad while trying to study sometimes, she finally gave up and dropped out again. Fortunately, it was not very long after that she met a guy who was able to take her away from all of that. (Okay, at this point, I will start referring to my cousin as Sue, and I will call her husband Joe.) They got married, and Sue was now free from the clutches of the stepdad. And, thankfully, Joe was truly a great guy. Yes, he was also very religious and very deeply involved in the church. But he came from a good family, and he had a good job, and (more importantly) he was a truly decent man. Matter of fact, I always had a great deal of respect for Joe and genuinely liked him. He treated my cousin with true love and respect, and since they were both equally immersed in the church, they had a very happy life together. So much so, they eventually adopted a baby girl and raised her in a healthy and happy home. Sadly, Joe had several health problems, but he never let them slow him down. He was a very productive and genuinely charitable guy who was incredibly well-respected by his community, his employers, and most anybody he ever encountered. And he SINCERELY LOVED God more than any person I have ever known. ABSOLUTELY believed in his faith WITHOUT question. Oh, and the daughter loved that man as much as any daughter could ever love her father. He meant to world to that child.
Now, fast forward again, to a time a little over a year ago. The daughter is now a teenager. She and Sue and Joe are all at home one day just relaxing and being a family. When, suddenly, she and Sue hear a commotion coming from the bedroom. Severe coughing and hacking and other disturbing noises. And just as they are getting up to go investigate, Joe comes stumbling from the bedroom covered in blood that seems to be coming from his mouth, and as he approaches the living room, a cough from him sends a fountain of blood spewing across the carpet. Then he collapses, gasping for breath while slowly and agonizingly drowning on his own blood that continues flowing from his mouth. The teenage daughter reacts first and begins to attempt CPR, while Sue finally regains her senses and calls 9-1-1. But there was absolutely nothing they nor anybody else could have done to save him. Even if he had been standing in the middle of a hospital emergency room, it is doubtful that even the doctors with all their equipment could have prevented his death. Ruptured esophagus as a result of his various other health problems. He never stood a chance. However, try explaining that to a young teenage girl who was covered in her own father's blood while desperately trying to save his live. I think it goes without saying, the young lady was traumatized in a way that is difficult for most of us to comprehend.
Okay, I imagine at this point you are wondering why I shared this story on this thread and how it could possibly apply to the OP. Well, to do that, I need to take you back to just a few weeks ago to when I had a conversation with Sue regarding her faith and her daughter. As you might expect, they had moved out of the house in which Joe died and had it up for sale. I was at the house using the front-end loader of Sue's brother-in-law to fill in a pit the inspector said needed to be filled in order for the loan to be granted to the couple wanting to buy the house. Anyway, as the daughter was still having difficulties recovering from the horrible event above, Sue had asked if I would be willing to talk with the daughter to try to help her cope with the situation. (Oh, and I should mention now that the daughter turned out to be not nearly as "religious" as Joe and Sue had hoped. Matter of fact, she claimed to be a lesbian and openly admitted to them her lack of belief in God long before Joe died. Interestingly enough, both Joe and Sue totally supported her, despite all the flack they took from family and fellow church members who did not agree with the daughter's choices.) Anyway, Sue asks me to talk with the daughter, because Sue got really really really concerned and worried when the daughter got upset one day and told Sue she was starting to get involved with Satanism. Well, naturally, my response was, "Absolutely! You know I would be more than happy to help you and that young lady any way I can." At the same time, though, I told Sue, "Just to be perfectly clear, however, you DO know I am an atheist, right? And I will tell you right here and now I will not pull any punches with her, and I will not lie to her about what I believe and how I feel about the bible and religion. YOU are her mother, and it is up to YOU to make the decision about whether or not you want her to hear what I have to say." Sue said she understood and agreed, but that led us to another conversation regarding how Sue's faith was shaken by the death of Joe.
In a nutshell, I asked Sue if she was angry about what happened to Joe, and had she yet had a chance to express that anger? Sue confessed to being angry, but was also confused/uncertain about "questioning why God allowed Joe to die like that." She further admitted she had started to have doubts about God over the past few months since Joe's death, but she was always afraid it would be "disrespectful to Joe" if she were to turn away from believing in God. I brought up several key points, contradictions, and inconsistencies in regards to religion, and she actually AGREED with every one of them. (Some of the points I made she had never even considered before.) And then I very bluntly told her, "You believe your God is so loving and caring. And Joe was beyond any shadow of a doubt one of God's biggest and best followers, right? Yet, this 'loving and caring' God of yours somehow thought it would be a wonderful idea to allow one of his most faithful subjects to DIE in a fucking brutal and horribly cruel manner IN FRONT OF HIS TEENAGE DAUGHTER, who will likely be traumatized for life as a result. And THAT is the type of God you want to worship???" Sue's response, "Yeah, I know. I have actually thought about all of that and I totally see what you are saying. But I just don't know if I can get by without the church and all of the people there who are my friends. I love going to church and being around everybody and all the singing and fellowship. I'm just not sure what I would ever do without it." And there you have it... *shrugging shoulders*...
To end on a possible happy note... My wife and I did finally get a chance to talk to the daughter recently, and I think we actually made some progress. I went and got her and brought her to our house to spend the day. We went out to eat for lunch, and then came back to the house where my wife taught her a few things about the gardens, and I was able to show her a few basics with my sewing machine. (She likes making costumes for the Comi-Con events.) During that time we had some really good conversations where she was allowed to open up and express herself without fear of judgment or upsetting us. We hope to have her over again soon.
The most painful pain known to man is a burn. It sodding hurts... fortunately most burns are minor, but most people know the feeling. I reckon Paul burnt himself at some point and thought Aha.. That'll do it.
I agree with you, but personally what held me back for years was the fear of going to hell. Even after I became an atheist it was something that kept me up at night, but I am glad to say that I am over that now.
@Skeptic Heretic: We get people on here all the time expressing a fear of hell. For me it was never a problem. I understand that the Christian version of hell was invented by the Christians who simply pulled it out of their asses. It is not a concept in the old testament so perhaps they got it, a bit from the Greeks and a bit from Zoroastrianism. Hell, it could have been the frigging Egyptians for all I know. What I do know is that it is not an original Christian teaching, not even all Christian Churches believe in the dogma, and that was good enough for me. Hell is Bullshit. Knowledge and education are the bane of religion. This is the argument I give to most theists. What was it that allowed you to "get over" hell?
I think atheists often find the idea of atheism comforting. There is no higher power holding them accountable and as far as they know, humans are the smartest minds in the universe. It makes atheists feel powerful and at the same
time gives them freedom.
@Jordan: Thank you for sharing your ignorant inane opinion. We are all going to change our ways because of your razor sharp insights.
RE: Higher power. If you think there is a higher power, we would love to hear about it.
If you want to hang about and just express your whiny ass opinions, you probably will not last long on the site.
You seem determined to rehash every tired old canard of apologist rhetoric. You Can't possibly know what "atheists" think until they tell you, as is just the lack of belief in any deity or deities. Beyond that an atheists may hold any view they wish. However given the vile immoral behaviour of the deities in both the bible and koran, it's hard to imagine any remotely moral person not being comforted by the evidence that such cruel sadistic beings don't exist.
Nope, that's not remotely how I feel. I don't believe in any deity or deities because no one can demonstrate any objective evidence to support the belief. It has nothing to do with power or freedom, beyond the power to try and think rationally, and free from unevidenced superstition.