Wow......The Pope says he's done. No joke!
Posted by ABE (+421) 8 years ago
First time in 600 yrs a Pope has resigned.
Says he's done at the end of the month.
Could be interesting, only one or two more to go before the
Fatima letters come true and the end of the world begins.
Top
supporter
Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr. (+14950) 8 years ago
Or not.
Top
supporter
Posted by Kelly (+2706) 8 years ago
Yeah! The Head Pedophile Protector is resigning! Now maybe something substantive can happen for all the victims he ignored over the years.

If you haven't seen Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence In The House Of God I highly recommend it. It is currently showing on HBO. It details how the current pope systematically covered up child sex-abuse for decades.

http://www.hbo.com/#/docu...xima-culpa

[This message has been edited by Kelly (2/11/2013)]
Top
Posted by Cactus Plains (+96) 8 years ago
So what? The Black veil of Evil is lifting???

What about the two Black Popes Kolvenbach and Nicholas Redass (I forgot his name). These dudes control the CIA and the security agencies of every country in the World?

Why do you think your name is in all CAPITALS on your check and important paper work.

They and the illuminati (jesuits)are the rule of Law around the World. They own everyone and have taken the Gold from Fort Knox.

Maybe SATAN and his demons have been raptured.

Don't get your hopes up as total destruction is in the works and nothing I can see is going to stopping it.

The sheep are too deep in sleep! Ignore the truth and it will go away? Right!

Cactus Plains

just joking! everything is wonderful can of beer, football game, nice couch and chair ... all is wonderful but don't forget to get you shots!

Vaccines kill millions more than pee shooter guns and the druggies behind the shootings.
Top
banned
Posted by Al Borden (+256) 8 years ago
Isn`t he supposed to put in 30 days notice? Or was that 30 years notice. Maybe he does not want to die in office and be paraded up and down the streets every day for a week or so like JPII. I wonder how many miles they put on his corpse before.......nevermind.
Top
founder
supporter
Posted by Amorette Allison (+11757) 8 years ago
I find it fascinating from a historical perspective. This hasn't happened since the Great Western Schism when there were two popes, one French and one Italian. I also found it amusing that he made his announcement in Latin and while some cardinals were gasping in astonishment, the other cardinals, whose Latin wasn't quite up to snuff, were nudging each other going "What did he say?"
Top
supporter
Posted by Don Birkholz (+1288) 8 years ago
I think he said, when he became pope, he was not going to be pope forever, he was going to quit the job, before he died. I don't see what all the shock is about.
Top
supporter
Posted by howdy (+4943) 8 years ago
Never did like this pope as well as the one before him...Glad he is resigning and am hoping he doesn't try to have influence about his successor but I think he will try...There is something about him that I just don't trust and he is the first pope in my lifetime about whom I have felt this way...Weird for me since I am not even Catholic LOL...Cannot explain why I feel this way but even his little evil looking grin gave me the shivers...oh well, just my two cents worth...
Top
supporter
Posted by Bridgier (+9193) 8 years ago
JPII wasn't any less reactionary than Cardinal Ratzinger, it's just that he was better able to keep it quiet.
Top
Posted by Elizabeth Emilsson (+797) 8 years ago
I don't think he's done, until God says he's done.
Top
supporter
Posted by Bridgier (+9193) 8 years ago
I think a friend of mine on FB said it best:

I don't think Pope Benedict should be allowed to abort his papacy - he should be forced to carry it to term.
Top
founder
supporter
sponsor
Posted by Hal Neumann (+9919) 8 years ago
If you are inclined to lay a little money on who will be the next Pope and like to play long shots: 1 will get you 666 if it's Richard Dawkins; 1 will get you a 1000 if it's Bono.
http://www.paddypower.com...pe-betting
Top
supporter
Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr. (+14950) 8 years ago
I am not understanding how the "Vicar of Christ" can simply resign without 1.) creating huge doctrinal issues, and/or 2.) creating huge hypocritical issues.

I just wish my horoscope had told me this was going to happen. But then, given my BD, it's all bull.
Top
supporter
Posted by Kelly (+2706) 8 years ago
THANK YOU RICHARD! I was thinking the same thing, but as I have an admitted bias concerning the Catholic Church, I didn't want to stir the pot too much.

Edit: I'm a fellow Taurean.

[This message has been edited by Kelly (2/11/2013)]
Top
Posted by Grim Reaper (+71) 8 years ago
Next thing you know Santa Clause, and the Easter Bunny will resign!!
Top
supporter
Posted by howdy (+4943) 8 years ago
I have reliable info that the tooth fairy hung up her wings last year...
Top
supporter
Posted by Jeff Denton (+763) 8 years ago
But he still believes in God and Jesus and all that stuff, right?
Top
Posted by Forsyth Mike (+475) 8 years ago
Some people are making it WAY too complicated.

1. He will still be a priest. He has not changed his beliefs. He is only resigning his position as Bishop of Rome.

2. He is allowed to resign according to church law.

3. He's only resigning because he feels he is not up to the job healthwise.

It's really not that complicated. I think it's a good thing -- it'll make future popes feel that they CAN pass the job along to a younger, more able-bodied person. The papacy is a gigantic responsibility.
Top
supporter
Posted by Bridgier (+9193) 8 years ago
The papacy is a gigantic responsibility conspiracy to further child-rape and wage theft .


FTFY.

To quote my son: "Wow, look what the Pope gave up for lent!"
Top
Posted by Mathew Schmitz (+284) 8 years ago
We need to lighten up on the dude. He is old and tired. Sounds like he just needs some rest. If he can't, in his opinion, fulfill the duties of the job, what should he do? I think it's the right call to step away when you aren't up to the rigors of the job. Whatever the job may be.
Top
founder
supporter
sponsor
Posted by Hal Neumann (+9919) 8 years ago
You're probably right Matt, hard to argue with that infallibility thing. But I think I'll still put 1_ on Bono to win.
Top
Posted by ungyded (+38) 8 years ago
not sorry to see this enabler gone.

once a nazi, always a nazi.
Top
Posted by Elizabeth Emilsson (+797) 8 years ago
I'm putting two zloty's on a South American Cardinal.
Top
Posted by milagros (+49) 8 years ago
Kelly,

I suspect we share a common passionate cause.

Sadly, the issue you address is not confined to the recent papal administration. See link:

http://www.cbsnews.com/83...06755.html

I also recommend the recent (within past two weeks) New York Times. The list goes on endlessly.

I have much much more if you are [email protected]
Top
Posted by Forsyth Mike (+475) 8 years ago
Lots of people are clearly in the dark about the whole infallibility thing.

The pope is only considered infallible when making decisions or teachings concerning interpretation of church doctrine, and then only after much consideration and prayer, and even then such a statement must be upheld by the church as a whole.
Top
supporter
Posted by Bridgier (+9193) 8 years ago
I believe there may be a chair involved as well.
Top
Posted by Mathew Schmitz (+284) 8 years ago
And a massive hat too.
Top
Posted by Mufasa (+92) 8 years ago
Top
Posted by redmondroughneck (+73) 8 years ago
The only reason the Pope is resigning is to marry his long time boy friend.
Top
founder
supporter
Posted by Amorette Allison (+11757) 8 years ago
SInce it has been mentioned he is giving up his writing--and he was a scholar, above all else--makes me wonder if his mental faculties are slipping and he doesn't want to be seen as a senile pope.
Top
supporter
Posted by howdy (+4943) 8 years ago
Amorette, that makes more sense than anything I have heard so far...perhaps he is senile or getting there fast which isn't that rare for the elderly...
Top
Posted by Oddjob (+194) 8 years ago
Perhaps Ratzinger doesn't want to be dragged around as a prop for 10 years in a permanent state of dementia like the Mormons did to Ezra Benson. It's the man's personal choice. He's allowed that.

And if your not a practicing Catholic, directly affected by church politics, why do you give a rats ass what they do?
Top
founder
supporter
Posted by Amorette Allison (+11757) 8 years ago
Problem is, Catholic politics affect all of us. Just try to get your insurance to pay for birth control.
Top
Posted by Mathew Schmitz (+284) 8 years ago
Well Oddjob, we finally agree on something. I don't remember hearing that it was a "until death do we part" job description. He's old and tired. Let him walk away while he still can. And part of the fault here lies with the church. Pick a Pope that doesn't have one foot in the grave. Whats wrong with young ideas? Oh wait........never mind. That was stupid. It's the Catholic Church we are talking about. Not bashing the church intentionally, but come on. How many times are they gonna fight the birth control war? And how many times are they gonna refuse to fight the pedophile war? They need some new young blood, and new young ways of thinking if they are even gonna survive. And that may be the biggest part of their problem. Young ideas may question the "heirarchy". That is no doubt scary to whoever it is that is actually running the show. Maybe they keep picking guys that are relatively old and feeble so they can be "handled"? Something to think about.
Top
Posted by milagros (+49) 8 years ago
Matt, agreed that the pope made the right decision in resigning. He did say he would do so if he felt he could no longer perform to the best of his abilities.

As for young ideas, it was tolerated by the Catholic hierarchy for approximately 33 days. Hence, Albino Luciani better known as Pope John Paul I became the pope who sought to bring "new ideas" and clear direction, not confined to the masses but his focus was on change within, meaning the hierarchy. Pope John Paul I's ideas were clearly voiced years before he became the pope, which leads one to ask why he was even placed into the position. Here is a worthwhile read about his "heretical" ideas:

http://www.mostholyfamilymonastery.com/15_JohnPaulI.pdf

"How many times are they gonna fight the birth control war? And how many times are they gonna refuse to fight the pedophile war?"

Until people stop supporting them? In the meantime, tithes are being paid into a system that can only be perceived as one that condones such actions. That particular "group think" is likely promoting the literal stall of awakening and any potential growth. Knowledge may give a person power but unless that power is accompanied by action and decidedly undertaken, the members have not taken responsibility. You would think that care and concern for victims would create some cultural shift within the ranks. When the victims initially expressed what had happened to them some family members would not believe them because it was "a man of God." Other family members upon discovery of such an evil victimization of their child went so far as to make them swear not to tell. It is the culture and until that veil of darkness is penetrated, nothing can be done. In the meantime, thousands of victims are felt by some to be to blame and who cares? So what, the victims received monetary "satisfaction." Let them be satisfied. They were blamed because they were brave enough to tell their stories. We do not hear so much about their experience in getting to the point they were able to cast off their culture and TALK.The perpetrators received much more care and attention than the victims who were faithful altar boys. Suffice it to say," In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends." Martin Luther King.

Certain religious dogma is designed to control the masses. It is piteous when adherence to such dogma is revered more than the truth. Adherence to such dogma has the ability to control the masses. Cheers to those victims who speak the truth. May they find freedom in their truth because they are no longer hiding behind dogma imposed upon them by those who love the church more than the children.
Top
supporter
Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr. (+14950) 8 years ago
Certain religious dogma is designed to control the masses.


All religious dogma is designed to control the masses. We will never experience true freedom until we eliminate religious belief from our society. Religion is the single biggest hurdle to progress we face.

[This message has been edited by Richard Bonine, Jr. (2/18/2013)]
Top
supporter
Posted by howdy (+4943) 8 years ago
Amen Richard, couldn't have said it better....
Top
Posted by Cactus Plains (+96) 8 years ago
With the Sun about to break over the poisoned hard grass plains I see enlightenment shining on religious dogma;

government
religion
media
education ... all MIND CONTROL of the m asses

SATAN, his nick name is Jack Ass; God of War and Red Hot Deserts, baths in the Vatican Gold that he stole and through the above 4 he has ruled the World since the days of the Tower of Baa ... Bel!

He has programmed DEATH to the Ecosystems of Eastern Montana and until the people wake up and take control of the local governments; we are doomed!

The Captive Feds and State have allowed the UN, NATO, and the CIA/Israelis to run the local government, in such a way as to poison all the people and ecosystems ... it is not going to stop ... until the God Mind of all reconnects ... when?

Cactus Plains
Top
supporter
Posted by Buck Showalter (+4461) 8 years ago
I think we should start a fund to hire William Shatner to perform dramatic readings of Cactus's posts.
Top
supporter
Posted by Gunnar Emilsson (+17321) 8 years ago
I was just ice fishing at Fort Peck this weekend and saw all sorts of poisoned eco-systems that CP speaks of. Apparently, the federal government has these planes that emit these things called "chemtrails", that have killed off a lot of vegetation and left in place this weird greyish popcorn-textured substance called "gumbo".

Its pretty scary.
Top
Posted by Oddjob (+194) 8 years ago
Mr. Bonine says

"Religion is the single biggest hurdle to progress we face."

I guess I have always held that the "Prime Directive" of religion in society is to instil into the populace the elementary human concepts, such as, self-reliance, self-control and basic morality. This having come down through the centuries in several forms such as the "Golden Rule" and most of the Ten Commandments. Simple rules for existing as a "civilized society".

Please understand that I am not asking for, nor do I need a history lesson on the development of the dogma and all the blood that has been spilled. I am not a "believer", but I cannot ignore the effects that my exposure to religion have had on making me who I am (and neither can you). I am only trying to deal with the rudimentary basis concepts in formulating my question, which is:

Without religion, who then takes over the responsibility or duty of teaching these elemental human concepts? How is instilling "civilization" achieved? "Right" and "wrong" are learned concepts.

Parents?

Government?

Public Schools?

Nobody?

Do we just decent into anarchy?

Would not whatever entity that evolved from the dissolution of religion, not be just another form of religion?

What is it that you would like to see achieved, Mr. Bonine? What concept or institution evolves from this metamorphosis of religion?
Top
supporter
Posted by Jeff Denton (+763) 8 years ago
I think we'e already there. Religion just slowed it down a little.
So I've been starting a rumor that the pope has to quit because he's converting to Islam. People just laugh. Hey, it could happen, right?
okay, in all seriousness... Try a Montessori-based school. Ours really was an incredible experience for the whole family.

[This message has been edited by Jeff Denton (2/19/2013)]
Top
Posted by milagros (+49) 8 years ago
No accountability is condoned and perpetuated even while 6,000 catholics signed a petition to prevent Cardinal Mahoney's attendance and voting privilege at the papal conclave to elect the new pope. I hope the 6,000 and more concede to the actions of Martin Luther and stand at the door of the Vatican in protest of such support of evil actions and those who freely roam the halls of the home of he who claims he is infallible.

http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=50141435n
Top
supporter
Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr. (+14950) 8 years ago
Please understand that I am not asking for, nor do I need a history lesson on the development of the dogma and all the blood that has been spilled.


Actually, you do need a history lesson, more than most I might add. Normally, I would be happy to accommodate you, but seeing as you believe that dependence on others is absolute anathema, I will leave it up to you to do your own reading and self-education.

Without religion, who then takes over the responsibility or duty of teaching these elemental human concepts? How is instilling "civilization" achieved? "Right" and "wrong" are learned concepts.

Parents?

Government?

Public Schools?

Nobody?

Do we just decent into anarchy?


I contend that most of the anarchy into which we are descending, is the direct result of people pushing their dogmatic point of view. Pick any disagreement in the U.S. today and there is a religious component to it. Remove religious dogma and superstition from the equation and society improves, not "gets worse" as you contend.

"Love your neighbor as you love yourself" and "Do to others as you would have them do unto you" are universal concepts that transcend religious dogma. They are part of human "DNA". Religion does not need to be part of the equation at all.

Outside of the two precepts listed above, right and wrong are actually pretty subjective.

Would not whatever entity that evolved from the dissolution of religion, not be just another form of religion?


Hopefully, the scientific method replaces all of the superstition of religious dogma. So, no it wouldn't be another religion.
Top
supporter
Posted by Kelly (+2706) 8 years ago
Exactly Richard! Saying that science is another religion, gives those of a particular religious belief the license to not believe. Which is easier, denial of a god (or science based as religion) or truth based on observable, measurable fact?
Top
Posted by Oddjob (+194) 8 years ago
From your reply, I can only assume that you didn't understand the question. It has nothing to do with history. The question is: please describe for me this future utopia which will be achieved by the elimination of religion and what societal institutions function for the purpose of instilling the basic tenants of the "Golden Rule". All human behavior is learned behavior. There is nothing in our "DNA" that gives humans an innate moral compass.

Do you really think this Nirvana will be achieved by adherence to the "scientific method"? I am, and my credentials allow me to be called a scientist and I have been surrounded by them for most of my life. Many of them are\were self-appointed keepers of the scientific dogma which is equally as bad (and just as wrong)as religious dogma so I don't envision any salvation in science. Frankly, I'm surprised your educational experience and well documented opinion of mining engineers has put you on this road.

As long as humans have free will and the ability to form an "alternative" opinion there will be sadists, rapist, robbers and murderers. The elimination of religion just gets rid of that excuse for human failings.
Top
founder
supporter
Posted by Amorette Allison (+11757) 8 years ago
Much of Europe already does without religion. Guess what? They may be having financial problems but haven't collapsed in a pile of perversion.

Why can't people, just people, using their own judgement, decide what is evil and what isn't. I don't need god to tell me not to go around ax murdering innocent people. I bet other folks can come to that conclusion, too.

My question is the reverse: Why is religion necessary to dictate morality? Doesn't the morality vary depending on the religion? Can we determine a morality based on agreed upon standards, without deciding what someone in the sky wants? Birth control is moral or immoral depending on your sky god, not depending on any point of logic. Why do we need the magic teapot to tell us what to do when the magic teapots vary?
Top
supporter
Posted by howdy (+4943) 8 years ago
Well put, Amorette, so many people take the Bible literally which is incredibly stupid IMO...
Top
supporter
Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr. (+14950) 8 years ago
The question is: please describe for me this future utopia which will be achieved by the elimination of religion and what societal institutions function for the purpose of instilling the basic tenants of the "Golden Rule". All human behavior is learned behavior. There is nothing in our "DNA" that gives humans an innate moral compass.


It is really difficult for me to explain my personal metamorphosis and all that I have read and ruminated on concerning human behavior and the impact of religion in just a couple of paragraphs. I'd recommend reading "Sex before Dawn" to gain some of the perspective.

IMO, the elimination of religion accomplishes at least two objectives:

a) it eliminates the use of fear to control other people. It is astounding to look back over my life and see how I have been controlled by the fear of disappointing a "sky daddy" who almost certainly doesn't exist. If you don't do "x" or live a certain way etc. you will pay for your sin for the rest of eternity. Fear drives people to do and think a lot of really strange things. Fear breeds resentment which expresses itself in behaviors such as rape, robbery, murder, etc. Religion causes people to do things for others because they motivated by fear and hope to gain approval of the "sky daddy". They are not behaving that way because it is simply the decent "love your neighbor as yourself" way of doing things.

b) it eliminates the classification of people into groups of "believer-followers" and non-believers. I think this classification scheme is the most destructive force in our society. Group A telling Group B that they are inferior to another because they don't believe as Group A is the source of most of the current conflict in our society. Adherence to religious dogma diverts our attention from society reaching its full potential.

The end result is an open, progressive, and caring society. Religion has/is impeding progress toward that goal.

I wasn't as clear as I should have been when I suggested that the golden rule is in our DNA. I was speaking metaphorically. I didn't mean that the golden rule is transmitted genetically, Rather such "DNA" is transmitted through the "community" in which one is raised. It is well documented in societies that haven't been brainwashed by religion that golden rule is the natural behavior. Morality is not at all dependent on religion or some "sky-daddy" to be obeyed.
Top
supporter
Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr. (+14950) 8 years ago
This article does a better job of explaining why we are better off without religion.

http://atheists.org/conte...ristianity

Any religion that requires the acceptance of its ideas on faith alone is admitting that its doctrines cannot stand on their own merits nor withstand any critical examination. They require that their adherents accept as truth their authority, and Christianity is a perfect illustration of this point. The belief in a god is irrational, as are those who accepts the belief in a god. Once this leap of faith is made, it only takes short steps to abandon the standards of rationality and lose the ability to distinguish truth from falsehoods. When one examines the doctrines of Christianity, it is revealed not to be the bastion of wonderful moral standards. To the opposite, Christian morals are contrary to our well being and to our society.

The belief that there was a divine man who died for the sins of the world is a grievous and immoral notion. It amounts to human sacrifice. If this were even suggested in real life, such as someone offering to become victim of capital punishment for another's crime, there would be cries from from every corner of society denouncing this action. Given that, then by what possible stretch of the imagination does an immoral idea such as this suddenly become moral when it is the murder of the fictitious Jesus is a substitution for the "crime" of another person or persons? Obviously, the answer is to instill guilty feelings. There can be no other logical purpose. When you look at the base doctrines of evangelism, it is very apparent that fear and guilt are the basic emotions that are used by Christianity to convert its targets. Those who eventually walk away from their faith were probably converted through fear alone, as a fearful person may eventually rebel. However, those who become life long adherents were more than likely converted through both fear and guilt, because a person with deep feelings of guilt is not likely to rebel. The alleged "sacrifice" of Christ has served the church very well over the millennia.

The basic problem with Christian morality comes down to it being little more than a primitive system of reward and punishment. Be good, don't ask questions and stay in line and you will be rewarded. Be skeptical, ask questions and use your mind in a reasonable and rational manner and you are consigned to eternal punishment in the most horrible place, forever. Although some churches have modified this and a few have even eliminated, this system has remained fundamental to Christianity throughout the history of the church. The whole idea of heaven and hell is a perfect illustration of just how the the core of Christianity is against reason, rationality and even life, itself. The faith elevates ignorance and non-productivity and suppresses creative and innovative thought. One competent scientist is worth more than a thousand evangelists.

Christianity teaches its followers to meek and mild, to accept their lot in life. This might seem like humility at its best, but consider the fate of a country that adopts this attitude and how easy it would be for any despot to seize and keep power. Does this not assure the perpetration of evil and is this doctrine not carte blanche for every injustice imaginable? It is no accident that the bible lacks any story, tale or parable about the oppressed rising up against their oppressors. Hitler and many other dictators over the centuries all looked to the bible for justification of their actions. And they have found it there.

There are many other problems with the alleged "divine ethics" of the Christian faith. Slavery, which was widespread in biblical times and continues to be in many countries, is not only not admonished in the bible, but instructions on how to treat slaves is part of holy scripture. As a general rule, women are treated as second class citizens because Christianity is a male-dominated social hierarchy. The Apostle Paul even tells women to never speak in church, along with a plethora of other misogynist requirements.

Christianity not only brings on feelings of guilt, but its promotion of death over life is morbid. The fact that a cross, a symbol of suffering, torture and death is the icon of the faith illustrates that Christianity is a philosophy of death and has turned real human values into non-values. Suffering has become noble and death has become eternal life. Pictures and illustrations of blood gushing wounds on the fictitious Jesus abound almost everywhere and blood rituals such as communion are core practices in almost every church in the world. The bloody image of a man on a cross desensitizes the faithful and causes them to believe that suffering and misery are expected and death is the only escape. Christianity teaches that all people are evil and destined to a life of pain and suffering and hope only lies in the salvation of Christ and his assurance of a heavenly reward after we die and those who do not believe will be eternally punished. I find it hard to contemplate a more evil system.

The faith purports itself to be non-judgmental, as the notion of "judge not lest ye be judged" is often cited by Christians. Literally, this means that only the Christian god can judge anyone's actions to be immoral. This is one of the most damaging doctrines of the faith because it assures that the weak will be perpetually doomed to suffering under the strong. However, much like the ecological issue, the Bible makes up for this by assuring the weak that they will eventually inherit this new earth. It is the pinnacle of ignorance not to judge people like Osama bin Laden and Adolf Hitler, but to just turn the other cheek, believing that in the next life everything will be sorted out.

Of course, Christianity, by design, demands ignorance. Both naiveté and willful ignorance is at the core of a faith that is contrary to the development of knowledge through reason and rationality. It clearly teaches people people not to trust in reason, and to only accept - without question - the dogmas of the church. Faith is elevated above reason in every church to one degree or another and there have been countless lives wasted in the world's convents and monasteries. These lives are spent in poverty, reading the bible and praying for whatever. However, this subservience to Christ only amounts to an staggeringly immense loss of much human potential. The fact that billions of people are convinced that all the answers they need lie in the bible and thus they have no incentive at all to look beyond it. The religious withdraw from the world while the reasoned seek to improve it. This withdrawal from the world, coupled by the teaching that the earth was created solely for the benefit of the believer has contributed to widespread ecological disaster. This belief makes it easy to justify the destruction and wanton depletion of our natural resources because, after all, Jesus is coming soon and will give us a new earth.

If the history of religion has shown us anything, it is the fact that it is inherently evil in its insistence that rational thought is to avoided at all costs. It keeps its believers in line through fear, and is the chief source of a vast majority of crime, either directly, indirectly or psychologically. The fact that atheists and agnostics are a small minority of the prison population shows that Christianity is not only nonessential to morality, but in many cases, the antithesis. Evil has a completely different meaning to an atheist than it does to a Christian. From a Christian point of view, evil is not following orders, thinking independently and questioning doctrines, dogmas and myth.

For those of us who are unbelievers, evil can best be described as the abandonment of our minds to the minds of others. To us, it is a travesty to blindly accept any doctrine on faith. We believe that the ability and willingness to stand alone, when necessary, and tell the majority that they are wrong is the pinnacle of virtue, and thus, atheism is the only honest, rational, and moral position to hold.
Top
supporter
Posted by Kelly (+2706) 8 years ago
Richard,

Thanks for posting this brilliant essay!
Top
Posted by Oddjob (+194) 8 years ago
Mr. Bonine

Thank you for your well thought out explanation of how you, personally, have arrived at your current position. It is quite understandable that logic would dictate that condition "A" exists because of the facts laid out in your response and the accompanying essay. A logical person could deduct that, if the cause for condition "A" is removed and condition "B" results, then it has to be improved, i.e., humanity would be better off.

I'm afraid I'm a bigger cynic than that, inasmuch as I believe that because we are sentient beings with basic needs, some thing, some entity or institution has to motivate the desire to be a moral person. In a godless or areligious society, what is that something going to be? What form of "motivation" will provide the incentive to be a moral person? As you stated before, the concepts of "right" and "wrong" are subjective. Some "guidance" is required.

What inevitably gets laid out as the argument in these discussions is why religion is bad and yes, the defense of that argument would fill volumes. Where it gets a little sticky is the rational that the societal condition is improved, if it would just go away. Just to say enlightenment will prevail is wishful thinking. Tell me how the human condition will then become awash in spiritual unity and interpersonal harmony..

I guess if we knew that, perhaps we could be better off now.
Top
supporter
Posted by Kelly (+2706) 8 years ago
In a godless or areligious society, what is that something going to be? What form of "motivation" will provide the incentive to be a moral person?


How 'bout common sense?
Top
supporter
Posted by Jeff Denton (+763) 8 years ago
Maybe mankind should strive to create people of quality rather than quantity. There could be, like, a plan to create a new person that plan would include a commitment to nurture that person and guide him or her into a quality human of good character.
Yeah, I know, that would go over real big. Say what???
Top
supporter
Posted by Big Dave (+434) 8 years ago
It is astounding to look back over my life and see how I have been controlled by the fear of disappointing a "sky daddy" who almost certainly doesn't exist.


So Richard, why the hedge?
Top
supporter
Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr. (+14950) 8 years ago
Simple. Because no one can prove or disprove the existence of a god completely. Even though there is a 99.999 % chance there is no god, one has to leave room for that .0001% chance of being wrong. It's not really that big of a hedge.
Top
supporter
Posted by Big Dave (+434) 8 years ago
So, after all the 1000's and 1000's of words you have written here on the subject of your "enlightenment" you're still not sure. Interesting.
Top
supporter
Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr. (+14950) 8 years ago
Sorry, you don't get to put words in my mouth. I am overwhelmingly certain. There is significantly more evidence that god doesn't exist than there is evidence for god's existence. What evidence do you have/why are you so sure god exists? Why live your life in a manner where you are obeying something you cannot prove exists. Enlighten me, Big Dave.
Top
founder
supporter
Posted by Amorette Allison (+11757) 8 years ago
I am positive there are no magic teapots. No bearded guys or many armed guys or anybody at all "up there" watching me. I'm on my own. Fortunately, I am an intelligent, compassionate person who can understand morality based on what is good for society rather than what some imaginary creature thinks is good.
Top
supporter
Posted by Gunnar Emilsson (+17321) 8 years ago
I am rooting for an old Italian guy to get elected pope, so that this piece of chicken can have its name restored to prominence.

Top
Posted by Oddjob (+194) 8 years ago
Kelly Said:

"How 'bout common sense?"

HaHaHA!

Yeah, right.

Seems to be in pretty short supply on both sides of this equation. "Common sense" is as subjective as "right" and "wrong". Being "right" is seldom in question to the doer. The receiver may have a difference of opinion.
Top
supporter
Posted by Kelly (+2706) 8 years ago
So the right or wrong of killing another human is subjective? That is news to me.
Top
supporter
Posted by Bridgier (+9193) 8 years ago
I think if you think about that for a moment Kelly, you'll realize that perhaps you're overstating your case.

The killing of a human is merely the act, it's the context and intent that establish the ethics, and those are going to be subjective.

[This message has been edited by Bridgier (2/26/2013)]
Top
Posted by Oddjob (+194) 8 years ago
If it's news to you, you must be living in a vacuum.

Bridgier Said:

"The killing of a human is merely the act, it's the context and intent that establish the ethics, and those are going to be subjective."

You are exactly on target. You must be well versed in the Bible, the Torah, the Qur'an and the rest, mankind's classic achievements in the attempt to index "common sense".
Top
supporter
Posted by Bridgier (+9193) 8 years ago
I don't think being well versed in any of those things allows you to argue the subjective differences in context between murder and killing.

I could just as easily say that you needed to be able to intelligently discuss the philosophy of John Rawls to be able to accurately distinguish between the two.
Top
Posted by Oddjob (+194) 8 years ago
So the subjective difference between murder and killing in view of social justice and political justice is, it's OK for large groups but not for the individual.

Same subjective difference in context as religion.

This is progressive?
Top
supporter
Posted by Bridgier (+9193) 8 years ago
The point I was trying to make was - you can build a subjective reference structure to determine the ethical content of an act without making recourse to a theistic model.
Top
Posted by Oddjob (+194) 8 years ago
Granted.

You can take moral dictates from a "god" or you can take them from the state. The only difference is the metaphysical aspect. The end result is the same. Oppression and control.
Top
founder
supporter
Posted by Amorette Allison (+11757) 8 years ago
I take them from myself. From my own standards and those I share with the society around me. The state doesn't enter into my morality.
Top
Posted by Oddjob (+194) 8 years ago
Then quit paying your taxes. Let me know how that works for you.
Top
supporter
Posted by Jeri Dalbec (+3243) 8 years ago
How about "Living the Wisdom of the Tao"...now there is Peace if you are looking for it!
Top
founder
supporter
Posted by Amorette Allison (+11757) 8 years ago
I happen to think paying my taxes is moral. I don't get the comparison.
Top
Posted by Chief No Talk (+11) 8 years ago
Once again the controversy arises: should our money say, "In God We Trust" or "In the Pope We Hope"?
Top
Posted by Elizabeth Emilsson (+797) 8 years ago
Benedict will be Pope Emeritus. He will be addressed as " His Holiness." He had to give up the ring everyone kisses. I hope they sanitize it before it passes to the new pope.

[This message has been edited by Elizabeth Emilsson (2/28/2013)]
Top
Posted by Forsyth Mike (+475) 8 years ago
Each pope has his own ring (called the Ring of the Fisherman). The previous pope's ring is destroyed when a new pope takes office.
Top
supporter
Posted by howdy (+4943) 8 years ago
With the huge and I mean huge wealth that the Catholic church possesses I am sure Jesus would be so proud of their greed and gold thrones...wouldn't wish to be in their golden slippers come judgment day...
Top
Posted by Elizabeth Emilsson (+797) 8 years ago
Maybe he'll getback his red designer shoes instead of golden slippers when he gets to those pearly gates.
Top
supporter
Posted by howdy (+4943) 8 years ago
the cost of those red designer shoes is disgraceful when one thinks of all the starving children that bow and kiss his ring...wonder how many kids would be fed with just the price of those shoes...{shakes head}
Top