"I'm not going to do anything really shitty because in the Bible God says I shouldn't and if I do, I'll go to hell." = You have failed as a human being.
My religion preaches morality and kindness not just for a happy afterlife but more importantly for good in this lifetime.
They SHOULD but that's being a bit idealistic. Even without religion or fear of hell to guide people, we would still need laws to properly function as a society. The grim reality is that rules and threat of punishment (in one form or another) is necessary. Most people are jerks.
Religion is not the birthplace of morals. Norms are.
The Bible also says to stone homos and that if you rape a woman, you have to marry her. Not exactly the most ethical piece of work.
But I also voted this down because humans are cruel. We don't do certain things because we're afraid to get in trouble, law or afterlife. To take those away would just cause bad intentions to rise seeing as how nobody would stop them. Then we're back to our old tribal ways, and that's something we've been working on millenniums to stop doing.
I'd prefer to be nice and scared than mean and free. People ARE willing to give up rights in order to be safe, believe it or not.
The whole premise of this post is a little misleading. If somebody didn't think x was immoral, they wouldn't believe doing x would make you go to hell. So if you didn't already believe it was immoral, the whole heaven/hell thing wouldn't be relevant. Your morals would still be your morals even if you didn't believe you'd go to hell for breaking them.
If religion is what influences some people to behave in this way, that is fine. So long as they act this way, their reasons are not important.
In practice, no. In principal, yes.
How come not in practice?
He is saying that in practice the reasons are not important (like you say), but in principle they are.
I disagree. If you live your life in a such a way that, if there is a god, you would get into heaven, then you have lived your life well, regardless of whether or not there is a god. If you live as a generous, kind, and all around good person, then it shouldn't matter if you're religious or not. There is no difference between practice and principal pertaining to this issue to me.
The point is that a person shouldn't be a mindless minion driven by fear. People should be kind because they are good of heart, not because some all-mighty being tells them so.
In practice, which is solely based around action, it's all good if everyone acts ethical. However, what if you found out that 50% of the ethical-acting population only act in such a way because they are afraid of God, not out of the goodness of their own hearts? In principal, this is wrong. People should act out of their own kindness, not out of fear.
I get what you're saying, but I still disagree. If people feel that a god(s) will encourage them to be a better person, that's great. If people feel that they don't need a god(s) to be a better person, that's also great.
I don't think that's quite the same thing. Religion encouraging people to do good is great, but when people start being kind only because they are afraid (and wouldn't do good otherwise), I think that points to something inherently and morally wrong.
As I said before, I understand your point of view, but I respectfully disagree.
I'm not sure if I agree with AtheisticMystic...I was just explaining what he meant
BP032 is right.
I kind of agree with this. You shouldn't refrain from killing people because you don't want to get punished; you should not kill people because it's the right thing to do. However, if making killing illegal stops people from killing, I'm all for making killing illegal.
If you believe this, you should read "A Clockwork Orange" by Anthony Burgess. It's a fantastic novel about liberty, criminal justice, and human rights.
You can't really say this, because everyone has their own definition of anything and even if you decide to use that method, you still can't say that, because some people might do it, because it makes them feel better about themselves and while that isn't heaven, it's still a form of reward for behaviour... they might not do it if they were wired to be hurt every time they acted "morally". By this definition the only people who would be "good" would be the ones who do it, just because it's right or it's wrong and feel nothing when they do something good or something bad... which is also known as a psychopath? More times than not, these people end up becoming serial (sadistic) killers. SOOO, I guess what I'm trying to get at is that you're wrong.
This post has been done so many times
However, you on the other hand, have never been done.
All your righteousness is like filthy rags in front of God(Isaiah 64:6), no one will be saved by their deeds! (Galatians 2:16)
Religiousness will only lead you into pride or despair. Faith in Jesus Christ leads to salvation. God's gift of faith, and the continuing work of the Holy Spirit in the lives of the elect, results in good works. These good works flow from true, saving faith; they are a necessary result of faith, but are NOT to be considered necessary to the gaining of justification, which is by God's grace through faith alone, so that no man can boast! Amen.
I call bullshit
That's your call. But God calls you to repent.