Why do religions exist?

Discussion in 'Belief and Spirituality' started by juice, Dec 16, 2018.

  1. RJM Corbet

    RJM Corbet God Feeds the Ravens

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    A soldier and a sadhu may have different moral codes: the soldier's work is to kill other human beings, but his personal code may prevent him from shooting a man in the back -- where a sadhu literally will not harm a fly. Although a person's own code may be at odds with the society in which he lives, he can be understood and reasoned with while he is honest to his own code?

    It is only when he goes against what he himself holds 'sacred' that he fails, imo. Most people have some sort of inner personal code, although others may not easily grasp exactly what that is.

    The truly frightening people are the ones who have no morals or standards at all, even their own personal ones? imo
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2019
  2. dfnj2019

    dfnj2019 Member

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    This is good to know because if the situation ever arises I will just turn my back to the shooter.
     
  3. Bhaktajan II

    Bhaktajan II Active Member

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    I saw a documentary about the invention of aviation flight, airplanes.

    I noted the dying words of this "pioneer":

    ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
    Karl Wilhelm Otto Lilienthal (23 May 1848 – 10 August 1896) was a German pioneer of aviation who became known as the "flying man". ... On 9 August 1896, his glider stalled and he was unable to regain control. Falling from about 15 m (50 ft), he broke his neck and died the next day, 10 August 1896 (about 36 hours after the crash).

    There are differing accounts of Lilienthal's last words. A popular account, inscribed on his tombstone, is "Opfer müssen gebracht werden!"
    ("Sacrifices must be made!").
    The director of the Otto Lilienthal Museum doubts that these were his last words.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Otto_Lilienthal
    ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

    I cynically thought to myself, The Japanese Airforce were greatfull for that sacrifice.
    I have quipped in the past "Why did it take humanity 1000's of years to invent a bicycle? The Egyptians had chariots. Why weren't scenes carved on Egyptian & Persian walls of folks on bicycles?"

    And then I am aghast when I was reminded in the documentary that the Wright brothers were bicycle makers.

    The airplane went on to kill more people then ever possible ---full bore ---along with ferrying holiday goers ever since.

    In olden times a "mechanical contraption" must imo appeared to be diabolical. Akin to why China had a closed door policy with the outside world, which conversely and somewhat undeniably pursued a grotesque path during the Victorian years.

    :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
    Japanese were wearing top hats like Lincoln within years of meeting US admiral Perry who played a leading role in the opening of Japan to the West with the Convention of Kanagawa in 1854. In 1852, Perry was assigned a mission by American President Millard Fillmore to force the opening of Japanese ports to American trade, through the use of gunboat diplomacy ---if necessary.
    First visit, 1853[edit]
    Perry finally reached Uraga at the entrance to Edo Bay in Japan on July 8, 1853. His actions at this crucial juncture were informed by a careful study of Japan's previous contacts with Western ships and what he knew about the Japanese hierarchical culture. As he arrived, Perry ordered his ships to steam past Japanese lines towards the capital of Edo, and turn their guns towards the town of Uraga.[13] Perry refused Japanese demands to leave, or to proceed to Nagasaki, the only Japanese port open to foreigners.[13]

    Perry attempted to intimidate the Japanese by presenting them a white flag and a letter which told them that in case they chose to fight, the Americans would destroy them.


    On March 31, 1854, the Convention of Kanagawa ("Japan and US Treaty of Peace and Amity") was the first treaty between the United States and the Tokugawa shogunate.

    Signed under threat of force, it effectively meant the end of Japan's 220-year-old policy of national seclusion (sakoku) by opening the ports of Shimoda and Hakodate to American vessels.[1] It also ensured the safety of American castaways and established the position of an American consul in Japan.
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    Jules Verne (1828 – 1905) the "Father of Science Fiction", along with H. G. Wells and Mary Shelley and even Charlie Chaplin's movie "Modern Times", and Upton Sinclair's book "the Jungle" and too IMO the fallen regard for American Victorian architectural design ---all was predicated on a vision of maniacal adaptations of old world norms.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2019
  4. wil

    wil UNeyeR1

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    I worry about this not at all. Of course I am a straight cis gender white male christian...statistically it is my privileged group that commits most horrific crimes and often against minorities.
     
  5. RJM Corbet

    RJM Corbet God Feeds the Ravens

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    Well I suppose a person can tick external boxes and still be completely cold and empty on the inside.
     
  6. RJM Corbet

    RJM Corbet God Feeds the Ravens

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    Sure. Of course I agree with that. But imo Nietzche and La Vey go beyond nihilism into a belief that the greatest good in life is 'will to power' over other people. It is a sociopath attitude, however you look at it.

    I am my own god may be expressed as a reaction against the norms of society, and as such attract a 'lost generation' disillusioned with the hypocrisy and inequality they see around them by lying and corrupt leaders, rotten clergy, etc.

    But followed to its conclusion by someone who has power, it leads to mass murderers like Mao tse Tung and Stalin and Robert Mugabe. Please feel free to add to the list.

    Also countless officials and office managers who murder the spirit by making life a daily hell for those under them.

    Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely, they say?

    EDIT: Sorry I'm not being argumentative or insisting I'm always right. It's a discussion forum where ideas are exchanged?
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2019
  7. A Cup Of Tea

    A Cup Of Tea An ordinary cup of tea

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    Not very well read on the subject, and I'm not disagreeing with you, but I also think that Nietzche alluded to an even "higher" stage of will power where using others would be considered a weakness.

    But I do think that Nietzches philosophy is very rough and highly problematic in many areas. It seems, to me, that it neglect the social aspect of being human.
     
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  8. dfnj2019

    dfnj2019 Member

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    No problem with any of your responses. First, power corrupts. The way power corrupts is psychological problem. It has nothing to do with a whether you have a left wing or right wing totalitarian type government. Marx had amazing insights into the problems of laissez faire capitalism like Entfremdung:



    The thing is, power corrupts. I read this amazing book on the way power corrupts people. The problem is even far worse than described by this simple quote, "Power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely." In his book, "Technology and Power" author David Kipnis talks about something call the Metamorphic Effect of Power. When someone perceives they have successfully influenced someone or experience someone as being submissive to a power holder's authority there is a pscyhology transformation that occurs for the power holder. Because we value self-reliance the power holder develops a feeling of contempt over people who are submissive to the power holder's authority. Kipnis coined this developing contempt as the Metamorphic Effect of Power.

    The Metamorphic Effect of Power changes the way a power holder will make decisions. Once the power holder has contempt people are no longer seen as equal human beings. The power holder's contempt makes the power holder see people under authority as sub-humans. Once the power holder sees someone as a being sub-human then sub-humans can be treated like ants with no moral consequence for stepping on one.

    The negative effects of the Metamorphic Effect of Power can been seen and felt in every level of our culture. The only way not to be affected by the Metamorphic Effect of Power is to be aware of its existence.

    As I said, it doesn't matter what type of government you have. People in power become corrupt because there is a flaw in human nature called Metamorphic Effect of Power.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2019
  9. dfnj2019

    dfnj2019 Member

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    The most interesting thing about the Wright brothers was the invention of the optimally shaped airplane propeller.
     
  10. Bhaktajan II

    Bhaktajan II Active Member

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    IMO, The most interesting thing about the invention of airplanes was the Bombing of London & Dresden & Pearl Harbor Attack, the Enola Gay, The Twin Towers Attack on the Muslim Anniversary Date 9/11, Glenn Miller & Amelia Earhart & Richie Valance & Jim Croce & Lynyrd Skynyrd's Band & Buddy Holly & The Big Bopper & Patsy Cline & Ricky Nelson & Reba McEntire's Band & John Denver & Stevie Ray Vaughan & Aaliyah & Otis Redding disappearances. But I may be pessimistic. So many people can holiday to far away places and stay in the restricted zones and eat the indigenous menus.
     
  11. dfnj2019

    dfnj2019 Member

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    Airplanes are just as evil has a fork or butter knife. I think human agents would be more responsible for the evils you've presented than the technology used to carry out the evil. I would argue human nature is the problem not our technology.

    Everyone is likely familiar with the 19th century British politician Lord Acton's quotation, "Absolute power corrupts absolutely." The problem is even far worse than described by this simple quote. In his book, "Technology and Power" author David Kipnis talks about something call the Metamorphic Effect of Power. When someone perceives they have successfully influenced someone or experience someone as being submissive to a power holder's authority there is a psychology transformation that occurs for the power holder. Because we value self-reliance the power holder develops a feeling of contempt over people who are submissive to the power holder's authority. Kipnis coined this developing contempt as the Metamorphic Effect of Power.

    The Metamorphic Effect of Power changes the way a power holder will make decisions. Once the power holder has contempt people are no longer seen as equal human beings. The power holder's contempt makes the power holder see people under authority as sub-humans. Once the power holder sees someone as a being sub-human then sub-humans can be treated like ants with no moral consequence for stepping on one.

    The negative effects of the Metamorphic Effect of Power can been seen and felt in every level of our culture. The only way not to be affected by the Metamorphic Effect of Power is to be aware of its existence.

    Also the "Technology and Power" Kipnis talks about how technology can be used to subjugate people under a central power holding authority. Technology creates power holders. And with the Metamorphic Effect of Power people use technology in very bad ways:

    "In the words of Jose Ortega y Gasset: "Technology provides men the leisure to realize their true potential" This, then, is the promise of technology: a material world of plenty and a spiritual world in which we have the leisure to realize our highest potentials and the freedom to contemplate God.

    Yet in nagging counterpoint to this optimism about the beneficent world of plenty provided by unlimited power is the suspicion that technology has another face. There is a world in which the freedom to choose and to control evens has been subtly altered so that there is less choice and less control. This is the world of "megatechnics," to use Lewis Mumford's apt phrasing, in which technology concentrates power and reduces individual choice."

    Does the system of technology we have in our lives exist to serve us or do we the people exist to serve the system is a fundamental question with the character of our culture. As a technologist, the Kipnis quote above has haunted me my whole career. I once had the delusional self-image that all the work I've done in my life has helped people have the power so they can have "the leisure to realize our highest potentials and the freedom to contemplate God." But instead, the reality, I fear is my whole life has resulting in making everything worse by concentrating power in fewer hands contrary to my personal values of creating a more egalitarian culture.
     
  12. Bhaktajan II

    Bhaktajan II Active Member

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    I'm afraid mate one historical fact will change your assessment:

    The first investors in airplane "technology" was the war department.
    [whoa...like a perennial scenario?]

    The Wright brothers are credited with inventing and building the world's first flyable airplane flight on December 17, 1903.

    The Manufacturer's Aircraft Association (MAA) was a trade association and patent pool of U.S. aircraft manufacturers formed in 1917.

    The U.S. military and other elements of the U.S. federal government pressured the Wright Company, the Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company, and other manufacturers to form the association to break a patent logjam that was preventing U.S. manufacturers from making airplanes that the U.S. military could use in World War I. Legally, the MAA was a private corporation which had an agreement with the airplane manufacturers to cross-license their patents without substantial royalties.

    TIMELINE:
    • Fall 1909 - The Wright brothers are approached by a representative of several New York financiers wanting to invest in aviation, including J.P. Morgan and Cornelius Vanderbilt. Within a few weeks they reach an agreement and form the Wright Company with capitalization of $1 million. Wilbur and Orville receive $100,000 and a third of the shares of stock. Suddenly, they are in the airplane manufacturing business.
    • Fall 1909 - The Wright brothers train their first crop of student pilots. In accordance with their Army contract, Wilbur trains the first military pilots at College Park, Maryland - Lieutenants Frank Lahm, Frederick Humphreys, and Benjamin Foulois.

    • http://www.
    • wright-brothers.org/History_Wing/Wright_Story/Airplane_Business/Airplane_Business_Intro.htm
     
  13. RJM Corbet

    RJM Corbet God Feeds the Ravens

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    @Bhaktajan II

    In fact a lot of technology is first developed by needs of wartime. However, imo, we live in a technological age and there's no going back to the the past? Individuals can try to simplify their own lives by resisting the use of invasive technology, but they don't have the right to try to force everybody else to do likewise?

    Those cults which want to force humanity to return to medieval technology (not you) seem happy to retain the modern technology that suits them: AK47 rifles and latest missile launchers etc, along with motorized transport, and of course You Tube and the internet?
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2019
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  14. Thomas

    Thomas Well-Known Member

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    I think that rather makes the point, doesn't it?

    Any technology will be looked at, reviewed and seized upon by human agents in pursuit of their goals, some beneficial, some not so beneficial.

    Inanimate objects can't be intrinsically evil.
     
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  15. Arif Ghamiq

    Arif Ghamiq Active Member

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    This reminds me of the short story by Ray Bradbury "The Flying Machine" - check it out if you are not familiar with it already.
     
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  16. Thomas

    Thomas Well-Known Member

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    Yay, read that a long, long time ago. I had the anthology "The Golden Apples of the Sun", and many of the stories contained therein made an impact.

    The Pathos of "The Foghorn" always stuck with me (the lighthouse and the sea creature)
     
  17. dfnj2019

    dfnj2019 Member

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    Interesting video on the thread topic:

     
  18. dfnj2019

    dfnj2019 Member

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    Here's another interesting video on the context of religion:



    Although I do not agree with the author's negative conclusions, the content is interesting and supports religion in my opinion.
     

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