I still conceive of religion as being a net negative for society, but I am not convinced that eliminating it entirely would make the world a better place. And considering the condition of "unintended consequences"...eliminating it might end up making the world a worse place.
I wanted to ask you about this statement.
I can understand anyone, Theist and or even an Atheist say or believing religion has done some good, though I beg to differ, and that religion could and should stay around.
So upon recognizing or in your case " still conceive religion as being a net negative on society" why should religion stay, there is no way to know if things will be better or worse. We do know how the world is with religion, and nothing is guaranteed, there is always risk with any venture. Who is to say something more positive will not come with out religion?
As far as unintended consequences that happens under any condition, isn't that what evolution is all about. And why worry about things we cannot control? If an asteroid destroys us tomorrow it doesn't matter any way. Who is to say equally with as much conviction that we would not evolve into a better world?.
Is it a fear of the unknown? If so, isn't fear and ignorance the glue that keeps religion in the fore front?
You don't want to get rid of us because the next guy will be worse? How does one prove that?
The fear that change may be worse than what is current has been used to keep slaves and the masses ( the masses oh boy lol) down for centuries by racist and well meaning ignorant people. Or by misguided school councilors. Will it shake up the status quo? Good for it. Have we become like that Pink Floyd song "Comfortably Numb"?
Freedom and Equality and fairness is about exercising their right to have a fair chance to succeed or to fail, but not by telling people don't do , don't go there, that it is safer here and that because the boogie man is out there.
Isn't that exactly what religion does?
Growing up in the late 50' and early 60" I have seen progress. You cannot tell me the sacrifices made then haven't made a change for the better, even in the south, the world did not fall apart. I think this country in many ways is better off because of it.
It may or may not be moving at a snails pace but atheism o and r non- believers are gathering in numbers and more free thinkers, and hopefully more critical thinkers are on the rise and not having to live in the closet in this country, as other civil liberties are and certain prejudges fall, though lowly, by the waste side. That in part to the world wide web. There are more secular groups and countries that have lower crime rates, not all do to the lack of practicing organized religion.
These are some of my reason why I don't fear the lost of religion and though I will not be alive if it ever came to fruition I think it would be glorious: a religious free world. or not, but at least we would have tried.
Also, unlike many in this country I was not raised in any religious setting. I was never indoctrinated. So there was never any need for any type of conversion.
I went out of curiosity to a catholic mass with a friend when I was 8. The priest stressed how bad we were and talked about sin and guilt, I knew then that that priest sounded like an ass to me. It was not an analyses at the time. It was merely a gut feeling, inexplicable,but I just felt something did not sound Kosher. LOl
Man, can I digress, oh yeah where was I...
What am I rambling and ranting about about.
Oh yeah,perhaps I will make it to one of the A2K dinners
I also owe you an answer about the question of no good reason and the question of complete certainty
until then, talk to you later