Religion as a Part of the Whole Issue

Ok, so I’ve been talking a lot about the recent issues with Islam and the rising anti-Muslim sentiment but I haven’t really touched on religion as a whole. I think religion as a whole is a huge part of the issues we’re having in this country at the moment. The blind faith built into Christianity and other faith systems tend to breed ignorance and distrust to “outsiders.” Without getting too deep into it right now, I’ll share a video from one the most famous proponents of Atheism (albeit not the absolute best), and one of my personal favorites: Richard Dawkins

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13 Responses to Religion as a Part of the Whole Issue

  1. thinkASAP says:

    “fancy Darwin talk” hahahahah

  2. thinkASAP says:

    PS Interviewer, that was not a debate. That was you being blown out of the water with logic.

    • Cody Deitz says:

      Yeah that wasn’t a debate. Once I find a decent debate of a good length, I’ll write a post.

      • Cindy Wilken says:

        Atheism is nothing new. There have always been non-believers. They have a right to deny Jesus Christ as a savior as much as I have a right to believe in Him. This does not make me ignorant btw. I would be more ignorant to believe that if we didn’t have religion, there would be nothing dividing people. Hahahaha…..people will always find something to argue about, fight over, and kill for….it’s human nature to do so. I do agree that religion can and does encourage people to be followers and not leaders, and for this reason, I do not really agree with many “religious” beliefs….but as for the Bible and its teachings, it has many good things to offer. Religion is a man-made institution and is not the same thing as having faith.

      • Cody Deitz says:

        You’re right. There have been non-believers as long as there have been believers. While I do agree with you that people tend to see the differences in others as opposed to the similarities, I think that’s oversimplifying the issue and wrongfully giving faith-based religious systems an excuse for their negative impact on society. It is completely impossible to talk about a world without religion because it is so closely tied in with just about every aspect of our society. But if we could imagine the world without religion, I think it would be a more peaceful place than our current world. With that being said, it’s clear that we could never experience a world without religion.

        I would also like to bring up your differentiation between Religion as an institution and faith. You made it appear as though you believe faith is not something man created. I would strongly argue that faith is indeed man-made and that it is undeserving of the “free pass” it is often given. What is so good about blindly believing in something without any real reason to do so? The best verse I can recall that discusses faith in the Bible is Hebrews 11:1, which says, “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” How can you be certain of what you do not see?

        I hope I’m not coming across too strongly here. I just think you brought up some very interesting points here.

  3. Cindy Wilken says:

    First, the world would not be a better place without faith. Was the world really a better place before Christ? It wasn’t! I think that faith and religion gives many people a reason to act morally, so to say that without it, they would be better people is ridiculous. Furthermore, there are many things in life that I cannot see but are certain are there. I do not see air, but I am certain I am breathing it right now. I do not see my mother and father’s love, but I know it exists. In fact, the most important things in my life are intangible. However, there is evidence it exists. I have faith in many things that I cannot see. Is faith man-made? Perhaps the word itself is, but I believe that it’s an ability to “see” things that are not tangible. With that said, it is not man-made. It is an ability given to us by God. I do think that religion and faith are different. You can have a religion void of true faith and visa-versa. They are not inclusive of one another. The “Big Bang Theory” is still just a theory. Until there is absolute proof that God does not exist, then I will continue to believe in Him. I have no reason not to believe.

    • Cody Deitz says:

      Comparing Air to God is a terrible comparison. While we cannot physically see air, we can feel it. We can account for air in countless ways. Comparing God to a concept is also nonsensical. To most Christians, God is an actual being. He is a real, tangible being at some level. Love is a concept. If you really want to get down to it, the emotions involved with the feelings of Love have more to do with brain chemistry than anything else, but that is besides the point.

      I’d be interested to hear you expound upon your thought that faith is the ability to “see” things that are not tangible. In all that I have read, faith is believing in something that has no evidence in favor of its existence. The Big Bang Theory may just be a theory, but there is far more evidence in its favor than there is in favor of the existence of any sort of supreme being.

      To continue to your last couple of sentences, it is absolutely impossible to prove that something does not exist. You would have to be able to be everywhere at once to legitimately claim that something, anything, does not actually exist. It is ridiculous to demand proof of nonexistence. In reality, you have every reason not to believe. The brightest minds in the scientific community do not think a deity is either necessary, or even conceptually possible in the universe.

      Let me give you an example of what I’m trying to explain. If I were to tell you that I have an invisible elf on my head that makes it rain, there is no way you would believe me. If I seriously insisted that there was an elf on my head that makes it rain, you would demand proof. I would say that I can’t provide any other proof besides the fact that it rains. You would ask to touch it, and I would tell you that it is not tangible, but it is indeed there. It would be asinine for me to demand that you bring me proof that the elf does not exist. It would be I who would be charged with providing proof because it is I who claim something beyond what you can see, touch, hear, etc. The same is true of any sort of god. It is you, the believer, who is charged with proof because it is you, not I, who claim something to exist beyond what I can comprehend with my senses.

      • Cindy Wilken says:

        Comparing air to God is perfect because we would not exist without either! You said that the proof of air is that we can feel it…so is the proof of God. I know he is there because I exist..so does the world for that matter. The thing that makes these “most intelligent minds” is God, and the reason they choose to denounce Him is because they want to take all the credit for their own intelligence. There are plenty of highly intelligent people who do believe in God. The analogy of the little elf is hilarious. Perhaps if a “highly intelligent” person said it……people might believe it? Just because someone who is seen as smart in our society says something, doesn’t make it true. Sometimes believing in what you can see and hear is more ignorant than believing in what you can’t. I use to be like you, Cody. Life experiences have changed my view. According to this video, I am delusional. Are we really going to go there? What an easy thing to say about people who have witnessed miracles. That is the oldest cop-out in the book. We could debate this all day, but at the end of the day, people who have been blessed by the Holy Spirit have evidence because they feel God, just as you feel air. People who have not been saved don’t. It is not a matter of intelligence.

      • Cody Deitz says:

        Air is absolutely nothing like God. Air can be empirically measured, touched, felt, and experienced. A deity cannot.
        How is believing in what you can see/hear more ignorant than believing what you cannot? That doesn’t make any sense.
        What you can experience with your senses is far more reliable than believing what someone has told you. Believing in a 2-thousand-year-old book
        as being literally correct is intellectually irresponsible at best. Even the gospels contain information that doesn’t agree with the other gospels. The common response to this argument is that the word of God is being delivered through man, and therefore has lost some of it’s exact detail and perfection. If there was ever a cop-out, this is it.
        I would argue that a belief or lack thereof in any deity is a matter of logic, rationalism, and intelligence. It is people believing what they have been told is true. And I would be interested to know what life experiences have caused you to take up a belief in a deity if you had none before. It must have been something pretty ground-breaking.

  4. Cindy Wilken says:

    I think anyone who knows me would say that I am rational, responsible, and intelligent, so who are you to say that my beliefs are none of those things. There are many rational people that feel the same way I do. Your senses are not as reliable as you think they are. I once thought I saw a giant glove, and when I got closer, it was a jacket. I once heard a noise that I thought was Hannah hitting her sister, and it was the television. I do not believe everything I hear, see, touch, etc. because it is all perception. Atheism is just as much a belief that can’t be proven as Christianity is. Don’t fool yourself into thinking it’s not. Isn’t it something someone told you, Cody. Isn’t it man-made? Isn’t it based on a book that men wrote. Magic tricks are made to make people believe in something that they see with their own eyes, but it doesn’t make it real. It would be ignorant to believe that just because you can or cannot see something it is or isn’t real. God is evident in all things.

    • Cody Deitz says:

      I’m not saying that one cannot be deceived by one’s senses. That obviously happens all the time.
      And no, atheism is not something someone told me. Atheism is the lack of a belief in a god or gods.
      Atheism is not a belief at all. It may have some aspects of dogma but it is not a system of belief. As
      I discussed in a recent post, Atheism is merely the lack of a belief in a deity, nothing more. Although
      many mistakenly believe that atheism is itself a religion, it absolutely is not. It is nothing more than a lack
      of a belief. That is all.

      I’m also not saying that just because I cannot see God, I don’t believe in him. I’m saying that in all the branches
      of science, absolutely zero evidence has been found that any sort of god or deity exists. The fact that
      the Earth itself exists does not prove god exists. Even if one were to believe that the existence of something
      as opposed to nothing warrants a designer of some sort, it doesn’t stop one from concluding that there
      are indeed multiple designers working together. So then you get into the whole argument about
      why you are a Christian and not a Muslim or a Jew or a Buddhist, etc etc. But that is another issue.

      People believe that God is evident in all things because they have been told so. And if they have come
      to that conclusion on their own merit, it is most likely founded on some form of designer argument, i.e.
      there is a creation therefore there must be a creator. This argument is not founded in logic. The argument
      generally compares nature to some complex man-made object such as a watch (or a clock). The theist says
      that the watch is full of complex mechanisms that work in synchronization to accomplish a common end.
      Since nature also includes many complex mechanisms, it must be the result of a superior being because
      the blind forces of nature surely could not drum up something so complex by chance. The problem lies
      in the fact that the only way to differentiate between things natural and things man-made is that those
      things which are man-made exhibit qualities not found in nature. So really, the argument fails to stand.
      Only if you don’t give it much thought does it make sense.

  5. Cindy Wilken says:

    I have given it much thought.

    • Cody Deitz says:

      I believe that you have. I just don’t think the design argument is what made you decide once and for all. I’m sure there were other more poignant reasons for your acceptance of belief.

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