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Religious War?

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  • Wolfshead
    Itinerent player of pasteboards
    • Sep 2008
    • 883

    Religious War?

    No, not between Muslims and Christians.

    For years it was feared that the US would some day suffer a race war yet it seems we have moved past that even if we haven't gotten rid of racial bigotry altogether. Reading the articles on the primaries and recent legal wranglings one has to wonder if the climate is not building to a religious war in the US somewhere down the line. As a growing part of the population is becoming more tolerant of differences in people and their beliefs and ideals the Christian Right is growing much more strident in their fight to base our laws on their religious beliefs (while at the same time crying about Muslims and sharia) How long will it be before people say enough is enough, worship and live as you like but stop trying to drag the rest of us down your path? People don't want to take a hardline on the issue because they fear it makes them look intolerant but will the militant evangelicals take advantage of this attitude until the situation reaches a point where harsh words will be the least of people's worries? The situation seems to be going according to part of RAH's bit of Future History where the US becomes a Christian Theocracy and another revolution is needed to set things straight. We think it can't happen but just look at the GOP primaries, the evangelicals hold a lot of sway and control for their size. All it takes is a lot of voter apathy to swing power and considering that things like the Patriot Act and the suspending of the Geneva Convention slipped through during the last admin thee are no guarantees that worse cannot happen in the future.

    Man spends his time on devising a more idiot proof computer. The universe spends its time devising bigger idiots. So far the universe is winning.
  • Octo Seven
    Aklo Tagger
    • Dec 2011
    • 1074

    Given the fact the Grand Canyon's visitors' centre makes no mention of the wealth of knowledge there due to the idea of evolution being offensive to these idiots, means that perhaps a war of some kind is necessary. In fact, I think the whole history of life in this planet is pretty much embedded in the rock there in fossils.
    Last edited by Octo Seven; 02-09-2012, 04:45 PM. Reason: clean-up of a shitty stoned post


    • Brian
      has this to say:
      • Jul 2009
      • 496

      I'm still waiting for the concept of the separation of church and state to sink in. Give it time... it's only been 200 or so years here in the U.S of A.
      “The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.” - Albert Einstein


      • David Mosley
        Eternal Administrator
        • Jul 2004
        • 11823

        Originally posted by Wolfshead View Post
        How long will it be before people say enough is enough, worship and live as you like but stop trying to drag the rest of us down your path?
        I suspect this would be a war with three fronts; on the one hand you have your militant theists (I'm assuming we're talking about 'militant (so-called) Christians' here), the kind of people who aren't happy unless they're waving pitchforks and burning torches and yelling 'Burn the witch!'; then you've got your militant atheists, the kind of people who think all religion is superstition and anyone who professes belief in the supernatural is a congenital idiot who should have been aborted at birth, to preserve the purity of the gene pool. And then on the third front you've got everyone else, believers and non-believers, who kind of wish that people could just learn to accept each other's differences and stop trying to kill each other. They, of course, would be the poor buggers who get caught in the cross-fire between the other two combatant parties.
        _"For an eternity Allard was alone in an icy limbo where all the colours were bright and sharp and comfortless.
        _For another eternity Allard swam through seas without end, all green and cool and deep, where distorted creatures drifted, sometimes attacking him.
        _And then, at last, he had reached the real world – the world he had created, where he was God and could create or destroy whatever he wished.
        _He was supremely powerful. He told planets to destroy themselves, and they did. He created suns. Beautiful women flocked to be his. Of all men, he was the mightiest. Of all gods, he was the greatest."


        • Nathaniel
          Champion of the Balance
          • Nov 2006
          • 1989

          As someone who considers themselves a pretty militant athiest, I was going to say that that is a pretty straw man description of our position, David. Then I thought for a bit and had to concede that it is an unfortunately acurate descripion of at least some (and more than I would like to admit, probably) athiests.
          So as someone who might be better calling themselves "vocal" (ok, maybe a bit ranty) athiest, umm, sorry for those militant types.


          • opaloka
            digital serf 41221z/74
            • Jun 2006
            • 3746

            It's not really a war I'm worried about. More a question of persecution at the hands of those reacting against .. everything that's happened since 1850 or so. It's not just about religion, religion is just one of the current rallying points. Race and nation figure prominently too. Sort of a 'future shock' reaction.


            • Kymba334
              Eternal Champion
              • Jun 2011
              • 3167


              The U.S "Culture Wars" are part of an ugly political scenario that has been brewing for some time,probably since before Jerry Falwell coined the term Moral Majority back in 1979 ...coincidentally the same time that Tom Disch's On Wings of Song was first published. That book has a lot to say about the effects of the social polarization that this ongoing schism in the American body politic is having.
              Last edited by Kymba334; 02-10-2012, 09:45 AM.
              Mwana wa simba ni simba

              The child of a lion is also a lion - Swahili Wisdom


              • Morgan Kane
                Lost in the multiverse
                • Jun 2006
                • 1428

                Revolt in 2100 a novel by Heinlein describes a revolt against an american theocraty.

                In Stranger in a strange land, he describes the fosterites, a religious movement whose characteristics are very near some nowadays sects.

                I am an atheist, but i respect the right of people to believe as long as they respect my right not to believe.

                But i feel that religious people can very difficultly accept that people don't believe as they do . More, fundamentalists think that every one must live as they live.

                Secularism was imosed in France upon churcjhs and religions. A candidate to the next french presidential election proposed that the basic law about secularism telling that french republic does not recognize and does not give money to any cult be written in french xconstitution.

                Every representant of every religion protested and more strangely, right wing leaders who are campaining for secularism as they see it a weapon agaisnt muslims protested also.

                Catholic church condemned ideas about free thinking and human rights for a very long time ....

                Now a classical joke :

                Religion is like a It's fine to have one and it's fine to be proud of it, but please don't whip it out in public and start waving it around... and PLEASE don't try to shove it down my child's throat.


                • The English Assassin
                  Champion of the Balance
                  • Feb 2007
                  • 1673

                  Originally posted by opaloka View Post

                  Yeah, brilliant! The image above gets it right and really describes the state of militancy in the 'religious war' described above.

                  Let's look at so called 'militant atheists,' while they might be guilty of a certain righteousness, smugness and snobbery, that's about it...

                  Predominately atheists side towards moderate liberal policies (right or left). Their intolerance is towards intolerance or the imposition of assumptions upon society. While I have a problem with the assumptions of much of secular-liberalism by their insistance upon putting the needs of society/humanity/the-rule-of-law and other non-existent collective conceptual groups above the freedom of individuals (I think it restricts freedom of speech, the right to free expression and restricts the freedom of people to be arseholes if they want to be: a right that should be extended to all human beings, I believe), I have to say that I find the comparison with theist or pantheist militancy is frankly not one I recognise. For a start there is no organised Atheism that I know of today and there never has been. While there might be sectarian disagreements or doctrinal disagreements within a religious group, they are still bound by many more assumptions than any atheist is. Atheists have no such collectivism to their lack-of-beliefs. As others have said before, getting atheists to agree is like herding cats! While atheism is a meme, it is a meme with little to no ideology and certainly no dogma - therefore it can not be easily compared with theism.

                  Also, in the US (where this so-called 'war' is taking place) atheism has little to no political or social traction compared to the lobbying of the rightly named militant theist groups. If it is a 'war' then it is a one-sided one, more akin to ethnic cleansing of generally peaceful natives by an aggressive horde of zealots than any other kind of war I know of.

                  Atheists have a problem or two, for sure. Their instance of trying to cure the beliefs of others is a flaw and a patronising one. It is one that a younger me would no doubt have defended. I no longer care about changing anybody's mind. I do however reserve the right abuse and hate anyone who wants to impose their own beliefs upon me. This is a right theists and liberal-atheists would wish to remove from me. They can fuck off!

                  There is also a preference amongst atheists towards scientism, which is much less dangerous than religion-apologists pretend it is, but it is an assumption and does show a distinct lack of imagination and therfore should be criticised for what it is. However, when compared to the assumptions, dogma, stunted imagination, outright conservatism/authoritarianism, orthodoxy and aggression of militant theism, it is hardly the same thing, is it?! There's a difference between having an open mind or questioning our assumptions and saying that Creationism is the same thing as Darwinism - they are not.

                  The assumptions of secular-liberalism and scientism both deserve to be questioned more than they are in 'polite society,' yet let's not pretend that they are the same thing as Islam, Christianity or any other militant religious beliefs or even the moderate religious beliefs than support them. They are not the same thing, IMO.

                  Apologies for yet another long post!

                  1. a meeting or assembly for the open discussion of subjects of public interest
                  2. a medium for open discussion, such as a magazine
                  3. a public meeting place for open discussion


                  • Wolfshead
                    Itinerent player of pasteboards
                    • Sep 2008
                    • 883

                    See I started something with this one. Glad I did. People need to wake up to what is going on in this country. What really got me thinking about this subject was NJ and the fight to legalize gay marriage. The governor, who is sort of right center when it comes to social issues says he will not sign a gay marriage bill because he is hesitant to buck years of social and religiious tradition. WTF does religious tradition have to do with the passing of secular law? Shouldn't even be a consideration since the law does not require churches to perform gay marriages if they do not wish. Besides, whose traditions are we talking about here. A number of religions have condoned or even required polygamy throughout their history but it didn't seem to bother anyone that they were trampling religious tradition when it was outlawed in the US and the Mormon territories had to outlaw it as a condition for statehood. Combine this with the fact that PA, which hadn't had a serious abortion bill raised in its legislature in over 20 years all of a sudden had 5 introduced when the latest session took over after the last elections

                    As far as I'm concerned people can believe whatever superstistions they wish and live by whatever rules their high priests decide to set down for them. I will not tolerate these same people trying to force me or others who do not believe in their superstions to live by them and basically i am getting a bit tired of tippy toeing about the issue because one will thought to be intolerant or because most people have some sort of religious beliefs and so you just keep your opinions to yourself to avoid giving offense or starting arguments. May some arguments need to be started.

                    Man spends his time on devising a more idiot proof computer. The universe spends its time devising bigger idiots. So far the universe is winning.




                    • Lucid Sirius
                      Jester, ret.
                      • Mar 2009
                      • 465

                      Good thread. A few years ago I was driving along in a suburban-city place near where I live and there was a rally of some kind at a "mega-church." (One of those places that looks like a cross between a stadium and a strip mall.) They were rallying against gay marriage. Lots of bible quotations on signs, pictures of apocalyptic comings, all sorts of grumpy (white) people defending the faith.

                      My first reaction? Not anger, not astonishment, not incredulity, but sheer embarrassment. Why? I'm just old enough to have grown up in the US when religion was still considered (by the majority) to be a private affair. Not because it was dangerous or silly but because it was considered so precious, so central to a person's life and happiness that the idea of parading it around in public was thought a kind of near-obscenity.

                      Today the parade isn't made up of all religions and churches, though. Nowadays, evangelical Christian religion (mostly Protestant, some Catholic) seems caught up in marketing, selling itself, ginning up "controversy" and asserting itself into places like political life in a way we haven't seen since...well, maybe ever. Sure there was the particular and heavy idea of the Protestant God and all that when the early Colonists came over to take over the new world, but reading the documents back then and noting the different ways each new colony was set up, they seem positively broad minded compared to present-day Christianists who wish to make the US not only safe for certain kinds of approved Christianity but also make the US the "Sword of God" or something equally scary.

                      For the Christianists, never mind that pesky aside in a private letter Jefferson wrote (about that "wall of separation") but what the hell happened to rendering unto Caesar his stuff and keeping God's stuff apart? Is the Almighty, All-Knowing, All-Creating, Inconceivable Father of the Universe so nervous about two men wanting to settle down and have a good life? Or two women looking to adopt a couple of orphans and give them a good home?

                      When did gays and lesbians acquire the power to put the Fear of God into God? And why do his followers claim that outlawing civil marriage is more important than...just about anything else, like feeding the hungry, clothing the poor and taking care of the sick?

                      Just all boggles my mind. Now I should go see if there are any kids on my lawn and yell at them to get the hell off.
                      Last edited by Lucid Sirius; 03-05-2012, 09:33 AM.

                      "When we remember we are all mad, the mysteries disappear and life stands explained."
                      - Mark Twain, notebook entry, 1898.


                      • Wanderlust
                        Lemon Curry?
                        • Apr 2008
                        • 3627

                        Originally posted by Wolfshead View Post
                        WTF does religious tradition have to do with the passing of secular law?
                        Any fool can make a rule, and any fool will mind it.

                        ~Henry David Thoreau


                        • Wanderlust
                          Lemon Curry?
                          • Apr 2008
                          • 3627

                          Originally posted by Lucid Sirius View Post
                          When did gays and lesbians acquire the power to put the Fear of God into God? And why do his followers claim that outlawing civil marriage is more important than...just about anything else, like feeding the hungry, clothing the poor and taking care of the sick?

                          Just all boggles my mind. Now I should go see if there are any kids on my lawn and yell at them to get the hell off.
                          Brilliant. Especially that first bit.

                          Now, get off my lawn!!!
                          Any fool can make a rule, and any fool will mind it.

                          ~Henry David Thoreau


                          • Timberwolf
                            The White Wolf
                            • Feb 2012
                            • 287

                            Unfortunately what is being described here isn't new or confined ... it's been happening through the ages, and it always seems to come down to 'My god is better than your god (or lack thereof)'.

                            It is high time that faith (what you believe) was separated from religious orders (man made organisations that tell you what to believe ... usually with the flimsiest of justifications).
                            Twitter: The system that put paid to the old adage 'politicians only lie when their lips start moving'


                            • dreeness
                              "Love in the Time of Sakutia"
                              • May 2012
                              • 191

                              Militant Atheists...

                              Liberal admirers often mentally separated the atheistic Hitchens from the political Hitchens but in reality the two personas were inseparable. When, notoriously, he lauded Bush’s cluster bombs, he did so – typically – by combining his two passions. ‘Those steel pellets will go straight through somebody,’ he chuckled, ‘and out the other side and through somebody else. So they won’t be able to say, “Ah, I was bearing a Koran over my heart and guess what, the missile stopped halfway through." No way, 'cause it'll go straight through that as well. They'll be dead, in other words."

                              Because Hitchens was so rhetorically intemperate (recall his attack on the Dixie Chicks as ‘sluts’, his description of the war widow Cindy Sheehan as a ‘sob sister’ and so on); because, as Corey Robin says, he often evinced ‘a cruelty and bloodlust, a thrill for violence and apocalyptic confrontation, an almost sociopathic indifference to the victims of that violence and confrontation’ (witness, for instance, his reaction to the Fallujah offensive, his cry ‘the death toll is not nearly high enough … too many [jihadists] have escaped’); he was treated indulgently, even by liberals, as New Atheism’s mad uncle, whose uglier outbursts could excused on the grounds of his very eccentricity.

                              But his weaponised atheism was no anomaly.

                              Attendees at the convention can, after all, hear much the same thing from Sam Harris, another of the so-called ‘Four Horsemen’. Harris, like Hitchens, thinks that atheists have a special insight into the war on terror, which should, he says, understood as a conflict against ‘a pestilential theology and a longing for paradise’. Most liberals, he continues, fail to understand ‘how dangerous and depraved our enemies in the Muslim world are’. Indeed, ‘the people who speak most sensibly about the threat that Islam poses to Europe are actually fascists.’

                              More at link:

                              The Weaponization of Atheism » Counterpunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names

                              Further reading:

                              Mass killings under Communist regimes - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
                              The Ralph Retort