rberq wrote:Understood. But one can believe in the PRINCIPLES taught by religion, without believing they were handed down by a big daddy in the sky.
I agree entirely. There is an annoying tendency among the faithful to claim that man is only kept from evil by belief in God. There are many non-faithful that are at least as moral and ethical as those of the faithful. God and religion is not necessary in order to be a good human.
But today, if you observe "good" religious people and "good" non-religious people, you can't really tell the difference until you see them pull out the Bible or the prayer mat. And then, do you think better of Pat Robertson, or of Jim and Tammy Bakker, because they hid their sleaze behind Bible thumping? Common sense logic argues against the God guy, wishful thinking argues for him.
You lose me here. I think no worse of Pat Robertson than I do of a non-believer who strays from morality. And it is entirely possible, given power of faith to be a factor in a person's recovery from falling, that Pat Robertson will pull things together sooner and maintain himself in good graces longer than his non-faithful counterpart. Or maybe not, faith is not a determinant in these things. If you find Pat Robertson to be more of a hypocrite, as a believer who has fallen, than the non-faithful person then I kindly remind you that the non-faithful person likely had a personal code, a belief structure of what is right and wrong, and he broke it just as much as Pat Robertson did. Maybe Pat Robertson is a more egregious hypocrite due to his being a leader in his faith, but himself as a person is no more hypocritical than the non-faithful person when they fall.
If we want to maintain a technological society rather than go back to caveman days, there is real value in using our brains to think with rather than wish with.
A great many technological advancements have been discovered and brought into the world by the faithful and the God fearing. It can be a powerful motivator to better ones self through education and to better the world through discovering His great mystery through practice of the sciences, engineering, the arts, and any number of other pursuits. And I also argue there is a strong anti-technology, anti-advancement strain within the secular environmentalist contingent. Many would be happy to see us turn back our society in the effort to stave off their Climate Change Armageddon. Before the Climate Changers were the Ice Agers, before them the Global Warmers, before them the Population Bombers, before them the borderline Luddite movement known as the Hippies, and the anti-nuke crowd, and the people who support government buying up and locking up vast tracks of land, and the "historical society" types who prevent renovation and rejuvination in the name of forever living in the past, and on and on. Christians, particularly Evangelicals, have gotten a bad rap on being anti-technology and anti-science and anti-education. I think it is way overblown and what relative few there are like that, there are likely non-religionists that match or best their technological prudishness and potential to damage those around them through activism.