Tag Archives: Organised Religion

Useful Beliefs

do you believe in Father Christmas, do you believe in a brave New Year?

do you believe in the ten commandments, is your life filled with fear?

To believe is to accept that something exists, or that something is true, when there is no evidence or proof to back up that belief.  Millions of children around the world believe in Father Christmas, Santa Claus, Kris Kringle, Saint Nicholas…..  He will remain in the hearts of children forever, and the children have proof, he brings them toys and other gifts every Christmas.  This belief is useful too, for doesn’t he have a list of who’s been naughty and who’s been nice, checking it twice before he leaves toys and presents for the nice children, and a lump of coal for the naughty boys and girls.  A perfect cautionary tale for parents to blackmail their kids into being nice near Christmas.

Some beliefs are neither useful nor true ~ like a Flat Earth.  Those who believe the Earth is flat are either deranged, or willfully stupid, or as thick as two short planks.  There is plenty of evidence to prove the planet Earth is more or less a sphere, as are all the other planets visible through a telescope.  Also believing in a flat Earth is not useful, since long-distance navigation is based on the great circle theory, which is navigating a ship or an aircraft using spherical trigonometry.  Ergo believers in a flat Earth should never ever get on an aircraft or go on a cruise.

One does not have to believe everything one hears.  ~  Cicero

Another belief that is neither useful or true is Alien Visitation.  There are plenty of spurious reasons given to prove that alien visitation happens all the time, and I don’t believe any of them.  There is also one crushing piece of evidence to disprove the very idea that creatures / people from the stars regularly visit the Earth ~ nothing can travel faster than the speed of light.  The nearest known exoplanet is 4.25 light years away, so allowing for basic physics that means a round-trip of about 12 years, even if our starship can get near the speed of light.  Just never going to happen.

One false belief that is useful is in Pythagoras’ theorem; the square on the hypotenuse is equal to the sum of the squares on the other two sides.  Or more practically just remember 3,4,5.  This is mostly true, but some believe it is always true.  Try navigating from England to New York using Pythagoras and the Gods only know where you will land.  Sometimes even the dearest held, and most provable belief is only mostly true.

Believing in God, any God, is maybe the most commonly held belief of them all, along with whichever prophet fits the religion of your choice.  This belief is useful to many, especially the clergy of every religion, but there is no proof whatsoever, and that’s the whole point.  Religion is all about Faith not Belief ~ and if you start to look into Faith you get into a circular argument.  Anyway I think religion isn’t based on faith, it’s about the fear of eternal damnation

Some say that real belief needs no proof.  And that faith is trust without reservation.  All I know is I trust scientific and engineering methodologies more than I trust priests and demagogues. And I believed in Love.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

the Earth is positively not flat

 

 

The Myth of Sin

Sin is its own punishment, devouring you from the inside.

There is no such thing as a sin, outside of what organised religions would have us believe, since a sin is defined as an immoral act considered to be a transgression against divine law.  And who decides what constitutes a transgression against divine law? ~ Organised religions of course.  Come to that, who decides what divine law is anyway? ~ Organised religions of course.  And, just what’s so wrong with the forbidden fruit?  It’s only an apple martini.

Sin is an absence of God.  Nothing more, nothing less.  ~  Simon Mawer

In any event, if the religions are to be believed, all of us are sinners.

Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to cast a stone.  ~  Jesus Christ

Except that in Buddhism there is no concept of sin at all.

So, if all of us Christians are sinners, and sin is merely an offence against what the church thinks is right and wrong, what use is the concept of sin, when that self-same church is mired in decades of sexual misconduct and child abuse?  It seems that we cannot actually sin against other people, or ourselves, we can only sin against God.

Perhaps we should approach the idea of sin and wrong-doing from the other direction, and consider that each of us should have a strong code of ethics and morals, because these relate to what we personally believe is right and acceptable, as opposed to what is wrong and unacceptable.  Just what is moral conduct, and what is immoral, base, wicked, and evil?

Humanists, psychologists, and most people with an ounce of intelligence, know that our basic notions of right and wrong come from deep within our subconscious mind, and that human morality is not only a learned behaviour.  Human morality is to a large extent instinctive and stems from the idea of reciprocity.  So a man to a woman; ‘I wouldn’t like it, and I’d get jealous if you cheated on me, so I won’t cheat on you…..’  Hence the 6th Commandment; Thou Shalt Not Commit Adultery.

There seem to be some basic notions of right and wrong, moral and immoral, which are common to almost everyone ~ however these notions of right and wrong are not immutable.  Right and wrong, moral and immoral, are not set in stone.

Thou Shalt Not Kill ~ unless you are a soldier fighting what you believe is a just war.

Thou Shalt Not Commit Adultery ~ that’s unless you are a swinger in an open relationship and your partner is cool sharing you with others.

It seems that there is no such thing as original sin, or sin at all, there is only a set of moral, ethical, value judgements.  Which have nothing whatsoever to do with God.

Some say that sin is too stupid to see beyond itself.  And that counting other people’s sins doesn’t make you a saint.  All I know is I’d rather laugh with the sinners than cry with the saints.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

this may be immoral

carnal and sinful

or perhaps not

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