Does being religious or spiritual make you more ethical at work?

September 5, 2017 by Subramaniam Ananthram And Christopher Chan, The Conversation
India’s multifaith society is a perfect example of how various beliefs are integrated into work ethics. Credit: Ben Dalton/Flickr, CC BY-SA

Can religion and spirituality promote ethical behaviour in the workplace?It's a contentious issue, but our research comprising interviews with forty Indian top level executives suggests it might.

We found that virtues embedded within the various traditions of religion and spirituality (Hinduism, Jainism, Islam, Sikhism, Christianity and Zoroastrianism) play a role in ethical decision-making in the workplace.

Thirty three executives explained that these traditions promoted virtues such as integrity, flexibility, moral excellence, tolerance and responsibility. An executive in the automobiles sector reflected on the virtue of flexibility:

"…our Islamic religion teaches us to not shut the door on others' viewpoints. I employ this philosophy or value or whatever you want to call it in my job. I listen to my teammates. We work out our differences of opinion and come to some acceptable middle ground at all times trying to value our core beliefs."

Some executives even felt it was better to resign from their position when faced with an ethical dilemma.

They attributed this to the embedded ethical virtues in their religious and spiritual convictions while making this tough decision. An executive from the IT sector mentioned he had left his previous organisation because his religious background conflicted with the organisation's continuous copyright violations. He stuck by his integrity:

"I could not sleep at night for several nights and approached my Zoroastrian religious advisor who advised me to seek employment elsewhere. I left the firm for the current firm and feel I dodged a bullet."

However, seven executives who did not subscribe to a religious or spiritual group suggested that non-religious based virtues with a focus on humanistic ethics and professional pragmatism should be encouraged.

India is a multi-faith society, so it was suggested that such a view would help workers remain neutral. An executive from the media sector suggested workplaces should encourage non-religious and non-spiritual individuals to rely on their own humanistic belief system:

"Ethics have to be practised at a human level. Once we open it up to religious interpretation, there is scope for endless debate and confusion. Ethics to me is a secular topic. You need to be sensitive and weigh the consequences of business actions to set a code of . Religion can provide some kind of model, but to me it is a hindrance."

In religious-based spirituality, certain inspirations from one or more religious traditions may be drawn upon as a means to an end.

In non-religious spirituality there is normally an absence of religious belief. Instead, such spirituality is based on secular or humanistic values, such as interconnectedness with others at work or in a society and serving a higher purpose in life without necessarily referring to God or a Creator.

Recent studies have linked religiosity and spirituality to corporate social responsibility, altruistic behavior; and pro-social and ethical behaviors.

Other studies have challenged these conclusions however, with evidence of contradictory findings. Some have argued that religiosity and religious-based spirituality could promote unethical behaviour. For example, discriminating against another person who does not share one's belief system. It might even flow into hiring practices and how one treats another colleague at work.

Nurturing ethical decisions

Our paper published in May 2017 isolated the role of religiosity in the development of ethical virtues in India. These virtues included empathy, justice, temperance, transparency, conscientiousness, wisdom and moral fortitude.

The virtues translate into competencies that help foster ethical actions. For example, empathy relates to the variety of ways to connect with employees and foster quality working relationships. Actions include "nurturing a particular individual", "building friendly relations" and "not using seniority to get subordinates to do something unethical".

Moreover, temperance focuses on personal integrity and and assists in "avoiding contact with someone of dubious character" and "not wavering from one's ethical principles".

Conscientiousness embodies the ability to behave ethically in the face of temptation. An executive in the engineering sector stated that when his peer advised him to manipulate the price of products to include unreasonable markups, he refused to do so and advised:

"With my customers I will always try not to cheat them. I will see to it that they will get good quality."

Ethical dilemmas and paradoxes

Despite the rich tapestry of religions and spiritualities, unethical behaviours such as corruption, bribery, cronyism and nepotism appear to be rampant in India.

One conclusion might be that certain individuals rationalise their unethical behaviours as a result of external pressure to conform. Such pressure coupled with personal greed arguably override any intention to remain ethical.

Ongoing education in the form of seminars, workshops, training and case studies related to ethical virtues is important. For example, an executive with a consultancy service business explained:

"Our company has got workshops which we attend regularly and we read lot of books and journals. We come across a lot of practice related issues and what all things are happening in the world. That's how we try to update ourselves and try to have a positive mindset towards ethical practices."

These initiatives consequently promote ethical decision making in the workplace when the religious bases for those virtues are removed.

Several Indian multinational firms do business in multiple overseas countries and ethical standards and expectations may vary across countries and cultures.

An from the IT sector suggested emotional intelligence could be useful for those faced with an ethical dilemma in a cross-cultural context. That includes being aware, being in tune with others and having the foresight of how one's actions affect others. Indeed emotional intelligence could provide the clarity needed to discern whether the decision is ethical or not. It is also a skill that is sorely needed for leadership development.

Demonstrable consistency in ethical decision-making and leading by example are necessary to ensure ethics are reinforced. An inconsistent decision-making style with a high regard for ethics by leadership one day and disregard the next only conveys that compromises are acceptable.

Globalisation and the movement of labour are rendering workplaces in both developed (Australia, Singapore) and developing (Brazil, Malaysia) economies diverse. In such multi-faith workplaces, having an ethical approach that is inclusive and relying on the core virtues embedded in religiosity, spirituality and humanity might provide consistency in ethical decision-making.

Explore further: How do we regulate advanced technologies along social or ethical lines?

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rderkis
1.8 / 5 (5) Sep 05, 2017
Of course it does. But there is a huge divide between being religious/spiritual and just saying/pretending you are. Since no one can outwardly perceive the difference in another individual, I guess the question posed by this article is mute. Plus as with most things there are degrees of religious/spiritual personalities.
Da Schneib
5 / 5 (4) Sep 05, 2017
I'd say good ethics is a talent that should be encouraged whether it emerges from religion or not.

I'm very uncomfortable with equating humanism with spiritualism. I think a lot of humanists would be. We don't need any belief in unicorns or jebuses to tell us to be positively contributing humans who work to support society. It's insulting to claim we do. Not to mention ignorant.

I would argue that thinking that people need a jebus to punish them to ensure social behavior is a psychotic delusion promoted by churches to secure their own survival and exposes people who make this contention as unethical and immoral, not to mention those churches who make this contention.

Grow up and get over it.
TheGhostofOtto1923
5 / 5 (4) Sep 05, 2017
So youre asking religionists if their religions make them more ethical than non-religionists? And you expect to get objective responses?

"The researchers had noticed a rather odd finding in the field of criminology: on the one hand, criminals tend to have a problem with delayed gratification, but, on the other hand, most have strong religious beliefs. Religions often emphasize the afterlife and the consequences of evil deeds, and so the researchers puzzled over how the same group of people could accept the long-term consequences of their actions in the afterlife, and yet at the same time fail to take seriously the long-term consequences of their actions in this life."

-IOW most criminals are religious. Ask ken hovind, warren jeffs, jim jones, jim bakker, and a heavenly host of others.
https://en.wikipe...f_crimes
TheGhostofOtto1923
5 / 5 (3) Sep 05, 2017
-Also "Eliyahu Bakshi-Doron [who] was part of scam by civil servants who used false rabbinic credentials to earn wage bonuses"

Also "Anjem Choudary, one of the most notorious hate preachers living in Britain, is facing jail after being found guilty of supporting Islamic State."

Also "Timothy Kane, 59, who served as a pastor at St. Benedict, St. Gregory, and the Church of the Madonna in Detroit between 2008 and 2014, was convicted of embezzling $131,400 from a charitable fund of the Archdiocese of Detroit known as the Angel Fund."

A tiny sampling.
TheGhostofOtto1923
5 / 5 (4) Sep 05, 2017
Again, the study relies on anecdotal evidence from religious people who are asked to judge their own behavior, and this is used to extrapolate the relative moral value of their beliefs.

The study itself is unscientific. The study itself is UNETHICAL.
rderkis
2.3 / 5 (3) Sep 05, 2017
This is funny, people commenting on ethics when they can't even follow the simple rule/guide line of 1000 characters without trying to circumvent the rules with multiple continuous posts. :-)
Eikka
1 / 5 (2) Sep 06, 2017
We don't need any belief in unicorns or jebuses to tell us to be positively contributing humans who work to support society. It's insulting to claim we do. Not to mention ignorant.


You're exhibiting a certain framework of assumptions that are fundamentally unjustified. (Which isn't to say "wrong")

After all, even the UN declaration of human rights is an article of faith: it's the belief that these values -are- universally objective and justified.You cannot find any ground to such values that would convince a rational thinking individual that it must be so - without appealing to some sort of tyrannical deity, or to the tyranny of yourself to impose these values.

So it's rather ironic that you would call the religious man ignorant, when you yourself don't know what justifies your own morals.

E.g; why should one work to support society, if not for the returns? Then, if your basis of morality is personal greed, why not skip the complicated bit and just be selfish?
Eikka
1 / 5 (2) Sep 06, 2017
I'd say good ethics is a talent that should be encouraged whether it emerges from religion or not.


I'd say good thinking is a talent that should be encouraged, because from good thinking emerges good ethics.

I would argue that thinking that people need a jebus to punish them to ensure social behavior is a psychotic delusion promoted by churches to secure their own survival


True, but how would you solve the problem of cheating?

The absence of religion or what some would call "spirituality" implies strict materialism - i.e. the universe is a non-intelligent set of physical reactions and all values and morals are made up by thinking agents like humans. In other words, you arrive at nihilism. Then, being in that state you may observe that nothing compels people to behave ethically all the time, especially if nobody's looking and they can't get caught for kicking the cat or stealing the tip jar.

And sure enough, that's a close description of reality.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (2) Sep 06, 2017
However, seven executives who did not subscribe to a religious or spiritual group suggested that non-religious based virtues with a focus on humanistic ethics and professional pragmatism should be encouraged.

I'd argue: go with what works. Different people react to different incentives.

Despite the rich tapestry of religions and spiritualities, unethical behaviours such as corruption, bribery, cronyism and nepotism appear to be rampant in India.

Just because it says "Hindu" or "Christian" or "Muslim" on your file doesn't mean you actually believe in that stuff. It often just means that you never bothered to remove it or are keeping the label around for social reasons (to avoid conflict with parents, ostracizing by peers, or maybe even persecution)...or just for PR value if you happen to be in charge of a company, active in politics or generally in contact with customers.
Eikka
5 / 5 (2) Sep 06, 2017
Just because it says "Hindu" or "Christian" or "Muslim" on your file doesn't mean you actually believe in that stuff


Most people haven't the slightest clue about what they actually believe in. How many Christians do you know, who have actually read their bible?

Institutionalized religions are vague on purpose.
TheGhostofOtto1923
5 / 5 (2) Sep 06, 2017
This is funny, people commenting on ethics when they can't even follow the simple rule/guide line of 1000 characters without trying to circumvent the rules with multiple continuous posts. :-)
I can understand this sentiment from someone who has trouble reading papers, let alone entire physorg articles. Attention span limited to tv commercials and road signs.
TheGhostofOtto1923
5 / 5 (4) Sep 06, 2017
Most people haven't the slightest clue about what they actually believe in. How many Christians do you know, who have actually read their bible?
They don't have to. Their priests and ministers are there to feed them the pleasant parts and interpret them properly.

As hitchens and many others have pointed out for us, jesus is a personal god and believers are free to tailor him as they see fit.
Zzzzzzzz
5 / 5 (2) Sep 06, 2017
An opinion piece based on interviews. No scientific value or meaning. Not much value or meaning outside the scientific community either.
TheGhostofOtto1923
5 / 5 (5) Sep 06, 2017
The absence of religion or what some would call "spirituality" implies strict materialism - i.e. the universe is a non-intelligent set of physical reactions and all values and morals are made up by thinking agents like humans. In other words, you arrive at nihilism
I had to read this a couple of times. Are you saying that humans can't be moral without religion?

If this is what you are saying then it is perhaps the most ignorant thing you've said here.

People were moral before gods were invented. People are moral without gods now. How do you explain this?

Gods encourage immorality by requiring the attitude that unbelievers can't be good or honest or decent or fair. And this attitude is directed by all religions against believers of every other religion.

"No other gods before me" says the 10 commandments, meaning that unbelievers are incapable of following them.
Eikka
3 / 5 (2) Sep 06, 2017
Are you saying that humans can't be moral without religion?


Of course not. I'm saying that all systems of morality are a form of religion - as far as you accept the position of the moral nihilist who argues that morality is a construct. All such systems are based on faith that if you do this, things will be "better". The difficulty you face as a rational person then is to argue why the nihilist is wrong.

That doesn't imply we should accept Yahweh or start bowing to Shiva.

People were moral before gods were invented. People are moral without gods now. How do you explain this?


Were they? Again, what is morality?

Gods encourage immorality by requiring the attitude that unbelievers can't be good or honest or decent or fair


This applies to every system of values. Once you define good and bad, you necessarily make some people evil and others not, and especially those are evil who don't believe in your values.

You're just stating a truism.
Eikka
3.7 / 5 (3) Sep 06, 2017
It's more apt to say that gods were invented to justify the religion of morality. I.e. because people couldn't argue why things should go this way instead of that way, they invented God as an ultimate punisher to avoid saying "because I say so".

So the religion came first, gods later.
TheGhostofOtto1923
5 / 5 (1) Sep 06, 2017
There is an intrinsic moral code to life. It says that parents will protect offspring until they can reproduce. This often requires personal suffering and sacrifice.

In humans morality is tribal. It says that personal security, freedom, comfort, and reproductive rights must often be sacrificed for the good of the tribe.

Internal altruism coupled with external animosity is the moral code of the tribe. Tribes with a stronger moral code flourished while others perished. Over time it became biological as domesticated traits often do.

Today it remains a mix of culture and biology, of codified tribal law combined with the instincts of members who wish to do good for others expressly because it strengthens the tribe.

The tribe - whether it be community, clique, fraternity, gang, sports team, ethnic identity, religion, nation, or even species, is the progenitor of human morality.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Sep 06, 2017
Of course not. I'm saying that all systems of morality are a form of religion
People were moral before they invented religion. Tribes preceded religion. Heck, tribes preceded humanity. Jane goodall described distinct tribal behavior in apes; altruism toward members, animosity, violence, and war against neighboring tribes.

'Spirituality' - the spirit realm? - is not the basis of morality. Biology is. Survival to reproduce is.

There IS NOTHING beyond the physical.
Eikka
3 / 5 (2) Sep 06, 2017
There is an intrinsic moral code to life. It says that parents will protect offspring until they can reproduce.


Except this is not universally so - not regarding life. See all the animals and plants, and even people that simply don't.

In humans morality is tribal.


Except when it isn't. See the Objectivist. Unless you claim that Objectivism isn't a system of morality.

People were moral before they invented religion


You're confusing yourself as to what you mean by "moral".

One would do good to read Bertrand Russel's The Element of Ethics

Freely avaiable at:

http://fair-use.o...-ethics/

TheGhostofOtto1923
5 / 5 (1) Sep 06, 2017
Nihilism is a very bad word. It implies that nothing matters - not family, not offspring, not community, not even one's own life.

If humans were indeed nihilistic without religion then we would have died out a long time ago.

Humans found that surviving to reproduce was increasingly difficult on their own. They began living in tribes for protection. Tribes with a weaker tribal dynamic were consistently overrun.
Eikka
not rated yet Sep 06, 2017

There IS NOTHING beyond the physical.


The moral nihilist must be right, then, and you cannot arrive at a system of morality without also creating a religion of it. You MUST have faith in your own morals, or else why would you keep them?

Nihilism is a very bad word. It implies that nothing matters - not family, not offspring, not community, not even one's own life.


True, but it's only "bad" if you disagree with the argument. See, you're in contradiction: you can't derive morality out of what simply happens to be, yet you claim to know what is good and bad while simultaneously asserting that there is nothing but the physical.

If you reject the nihilist's point, you argue for spirits and ghosts to give you morality. If you accept the nihilist's point, you'll find that yours isn't necessarily true - but you choose to believe in it anyhow - ergo you have created a religion.
Eikka
not rated yet Sep 06, 2017
Humans found that surviving to reproduce was increasingly difficult on their own. They began living in tribes for protection. Tribes with a weaker tribal dynamic were consistently overrun.


That is a description of what is, not what ought to be.

If the tribal dynamics are eventually outmoded by circumstances, are the people who still follow it moral or immoral? What says life should go on?
TheGhostofOtto1923
5 / 5 (1) Sep 06, 2017
Except this is not universally so - not regarding life. See all the animals and plants, and even people that simply don't
Of course it is. Name one species whose individuals arent more concerned with dropping seeds or laying eggs than simply living until they die.
You're confusing yourself as to what you mean by "moral"
I told you exactly what I meant. Internal altruism, honor, self-sacrifice, coupled with external animosity and willingness to fight to protect the tribe.

You cannot have one without the other, a common misconception.

It is good and right and decent to fight to protect the group. This can be found throughout all the holy books, explicitly or implicitly. Religion IS tribalism, formalized, codified.
One would do good to read Bertrand Russel's The Element of Ethics
Philos, like priests, have devised clever ways of defending their own tribes and thus surviving to reproduce.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Sep 06, 2017
If you reject the nihilist's point, you argue for spirits and ghosts to give you morality
??? What about Biology? What about survival of the species?

"Most commonly, nihilism is presented in the form of existential nihilism, which argues that life is without objective meaning, purpose, or intrinsic value."

-which is of course rubbish. But sometimes, for the good of the tribe, you must convince members not to reproduce, most often to counter the effects of overgrowth, and this can be directed toward social or economic classes by clever priests and philos.

"There is a time to embrace and a time to refrain."
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Sep 06, 2017
That is a description of what is, not what ought to be
Good point. Humans have many traits that, while completely natural, are a direct threat to society.

Religions are an existential threat to civilization. The proof - they would all argue that this is true of all other religions but them. They all dream of one universal tribe which has filled the earth, and they are all willing to fight to make this happen.

Because fighting for ones tribe is also moral.
If the tribal dynamics are eventually outmoded by circumstances, are the people who still follow it moral or immoral?
The concept of the universal tribe seems to be the best interim solution as tribalism is not being bred out of us quickly enough. Although it is not for lack of trying.
What says life should go on?
Well life says so. But this is another one of those dopey philos questions which need be neither asked nor answered.
Da Schneib
not rated yet Sep 06, 2017
We don't need any belief in unicorns or jebuses to tell us to be positively contributing humans who work to support society. It's insulting to claim we do. Not to mention ignorant.


You're exhibiting a certain framework of assumptions that are fundamentally unjustified. (Which isn't to say "wrong")
Actually, it all boils down to three simple assumptions:

1. I'm here.
2. This is real.
3. You're all just like me.

If that's accepted, then the Golden Rule ("do unto others as you would have them do unto you") is an obvious corollary, and most of what's generally called "morality" is based on that. One can apply values ("society is good for everyone") on top of that, but that's what it all really boils down to.

Now, you can negate those assumptions if you like but I would say that most people would consider anyone who does insane. They seem like pretty minimal assumptions to me.
rderkis
1 / 5 (3) Sep 06, 2017
Wow, some of you, in your compulsion to appear smart by applying scientific reasoning to a spiritual subject that is beyond reason speaks of your stupidity. It's absolutely like arguing about how many angles can dance on the head of a pin.
Da Schneib
not rated yet Sep 06, 2017
True, but how would you solve the problem of cheating?
In my experience it solves itself. Humans have developed for over ten million years to detect cheating; all three of our closest living relatives are capable of detecting it and despise it. Just as we are better than they are at other social and intellectual activities, we are also better at detecting cheating, and this is the root of the saying, "Cheaters never prosper." Whether there are edge cases or not is another question; by and large, society operates according to these rules. Betrayal is the exception, not the rule.
Da Schneib
not rated yet Sep 06, 2017
Wow, some of you, in your compulsion to appear smart by applying scientific reasoning to a spiritual subject that is beyond reason speaks of your stupidity.
Seems to me that arguing it's "beyond reason" is a false premise. That looks pretty stupid from over here. I figured this stuff out when I was a teenager; do you mean to say you didn't? That would certainly account for your behavior here on physorg.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (2) Sep 06, 2017
I'm here.
2. This is real.
3. You're all just like me.

If that's accepted, then the Golden Rule ("do unto others as you would have them do unto you") is an obvious corollary,

Well, the first two are OK, but the third one is not. Not everyone wants/values the same things. sometimes people value diametrically opposite things. So I'd not follow the golden rule but use a modified version
"do unto others as *they* would have *you* do unto *them*"...if everyone applies this then everyone gets what they want and everyone is a lot more happy. (If you follow the golden rule everyone just gets what you want)
rderkis
2.3 / 5 (3) Sep 06, 2017
When atheists speak about religion it is like a man blind from birth arguing about whether the color red is the same as the color blue. They would just not be making any real sense.
But he would be trying to sound intelligent. And probably think his reasoning was better than everyone else's because he was more objective about color than everyone else that could actually see colors colors.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Sep 06, 2017
Humans have developed for over ten million years to detect cheating
Deception offers distinct competitive advantages and is rife throughout the natural world. See the chameleon and the cuckoo. Ever watch a squirrel feint to one side and then scoot off in another?

Alls fair in love and war.
"All of war is deception." sun tsu

And the bible too. See jacob the deceiver and sarahs confused wife/sister status.

But dishonesty, while natural and normal, is perhaps the one human behavior that threatens society the most. Which is why the purpose of most of our tech is to limit our ability to cheat.
all three of our closest living relatives are capable of detecting it and despise it
And where do you get this? The ambush is the preferred mode of ape warfare. And theres this:
https://www.youtu...SGe7zSIc

-Chimps hunting monkeys will trick them into running into the hands of other chimps.

Deception against tribal enemies is an honorable endeavor.
Da Schneib
not rated yet Sep 06, 2017
@anti, perhaps I should have said "you're all like me in these respects." That was all I meant; you're reading too much into it.
Da Schneib
5 / 5 (3) Sep 06, 2017
When atheists speak about religion they generally know more about it than religionists. Religionists generally only know their own religion because they think all the others are lying. They all want to talk only about their magic book written by stone age sheep herders, not anyone else's, and their own jebus/mohammed/buddha/whatever not all of them. The adjective here is "narrow-minded."

I read the entire bible when I was eight and again when I was thirteen. Cover to cover, King James version. Every word. I have read the Quran, in my thirties, though not the hadithas. I have read a fair amount of the Bhagavad Gita, though not all, at various points as I found the parts interesting. I am familiar with quite a bit of the Buddhist canon; it is not in a single book.

Your assumptions about atheists are ridiculous and insulting, and far from the truth.
Zzzzzzzz
3.7 / 5 (3) Sep 06, 2017
Human survival requires cooperation. Cooperation means individuals act with commonality - common goals, and a shared vision for the future.
A shared vision for the future requires one person to develop a vision for the future, and sell that vision to the others to gain their cooperation. Humans call this leadership. The mechanism by which this occurs requires a capacity for self delusion. That capacity is required to develop the vision for the future, and is it most certainly required to invest in a vision for the future, self developed or simply bought into. You got to "believe in it".
Religious belief systems are an extreme result of this process. The vision for the future involved is quite psychotic in nature, and there is a level of psychosis required of the investor. The term "faith" describes this psychosis - a belief that is maintained in the face of any and all contrary reality indications.
rderkis
1 / 5 (1) Sep 06, 2017
Like I said blind. I could read, hear, think all I wanted about the color yellow but if I never saw the color yellow how could I decide if it was a color I liked?
That is the way religion is to an atheist.
Da Schneib
3.4 / 5 (5) Sep 06, 2017
I tend to think it's a lot more like, a person without a religion is like a fish without a bicycle.

Especially when I see all the things the religionists do like blowing people up, being prejudiced, telling people they're going to hell, and generally ignoring all the morality they claim the religion is for in the first place.

Not to mention not paying their taxes.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Sep 06, 2017
I read the entire bible when I was eight and again when I was thirteen. Cover to cover, King James version
Why? And how much of the kjv do you think you understood? Did you understand for instance that 'we may know them' actually meant 'we want to rape them', or that 'all is vanity' actually meant 'all is meaningless', or that the red sea was actually the sea of reeds, etc?

IOW what makes you think that your appeal to authority has any real value?
TheGhostofOtto1923
5 / 5 (4) Sep 06, 2017
That is the way religion is to an atheist
A Muslim or a Jew or a Buddhist would say with the same conviction and certitude that you were just as blind as any atheist, and they would be just as right as you.

Unless you can offer some proof that they're not? Anything?
barakn
4 / 5 (4) Sep 07, 2017
Like I said blind. I could read, hear, think all I wanted about the color yellow but if I never saw the color yellow how could I decide if it was a color I liked?
That is the way religion is to an atheist. -rdiculous

One false assumption made is that all atheists started life as atheists. Many if not most started out in one religion or another.
rderkis
1 / 5 (2) Sep 07, 2017
One false assumption


I am not making an assumption.
A color blind individual does not realize they are color blind till its pointed out to them, usually by a test.
If I am making an assumption, it would be because the vast majority of people, the world over, has a need, instinct, whatever it is that makes/pulls them towards a god. Some people lack that impulse and don't even realize it as a need, just like a color blind individual does not realize he is color blind.
Keep in mind I am not stating here one is better than the other.
Atheists lack that impulse/need/instinct(?) so they can never understand it, the same way a color blind individual, no matter how much he reads, studies, listens can never understand the beauty of the color yellow.
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (2) Sep 07, 2017
When atheists speak about religion it is like a man blind from birth arguing about whether the color red is the same as the color blue. They would just not be making any real sense.
But he would be trying to sound intelligent. And probably think his reasoning was better than everyone else's because he was more objective about color than everyone else that could actually see colors colors.

Yeah, but...
What if (s)he BECAME atheist after years of trying to work out how religious concepts (that made no sense) were possible?
In one way red and blue ARE the same - light. (At different wavelengths)

You'd be better at this if you were a better listener and less subjectively judgemental...
rderkis
not rated yet Sep 07, 2017
What if (s)he BECAME atheist after years of trying to work out how religious concepts (that made no sense) were possible?
You'd be better at this if you were a better listener and less subjectively judgemental...

And you in your arrogance are not?
Why is it most of the world's population is drawn to a god, but you are not? Do you just lack somthing basic? And like a psychopath, just think you are smarter than everyone else because they don't understand why everyone else feels empathy.
I don't know about other religions but even the writers of the bible understood this and said you must be drawn by God and you will not come of your own volition.
My guess is the koran and other religions point this concept out to.
As a child you see most other people drawn and struggling with religion, who does not want to fit in? So they struggle but are not drawn and can make no sense of the need for religion and come to the conclusion they are smarter than everyone else and more objective
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Sep 07, 2017
A color blind individual does not realize they are color blind till its pointed out to them, usually by a test
So heres a test for you... just how blind would you have to be to believe in a god that claimed to be perfect and yet either did not know the past or chose to lie about it?

And how blind deaf and dumb would you have to be to believe that this lying god was going to deliver on all the things that anybody ever wanted, just because he said he would in his book?

How blind rudicrus? How deaf? How dumb? How ignorant? How desperate?
TheGhostofOtto1923
5 / 5 (2) Sep 07, 2017
And what kind of person would willingly become a bigot just to get all that great stuff?

"Everyone who goes on ahead and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God. Whoever abides in the teaching has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house or give him any greeting, for whoever greets him takes part in his wicked works.' 2 John 1:9-11 ESV

-Perhaps it would be the people who were already selfish, ignorant bigots and just need an all-powerful skydaddy to tell them it was ok.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Sep 07, 2017
Why is it most of the world's population is drawn to a god
You know what a ponzi scheme is yes? Its where some shyster starts an idea with the promise to make people rich. They usually fail because people start to go broke in large numbers.

But imagine a ponzi scheme that convinces people to participate, and they dont go broke until AFTER theyre dead.

When we die of course there is nothing left capable of going anywhere. But the shyster only has to promise rewards of sufficient magnitude, and with sufficient conviction and authority, that people are willing to invest with no actual proof of reward.

And the kicker is that the shyster NEVER has to pay up.

There have been some pretty huge ponzi schemes out there. Stalin and hitler devised a few. But the religion meme is by far the largest con game ever devised. It promises people everything they ever wanted, and gets them to do the most abominable and disgusting things imaginable in order to get it.

Pretty clever eh?
rderkis
1 / 5 (1) Sep 07, 2017
TheGhostofOtto1923 you sure are long winded. :-) You know I DON'Tread your post because you are on my ignore/blocked list. Of course I am assuming your trying to talk to me because your posts usually follow mine, I hope I am wrong because that would make you extremely stupid, since you know you are blocked/ignored by me. Besides on this particular subject I know you are spiritually challenged and feel no pull by God, and can't admit it. The majority of other people on the earth are not spiritually challenge like you.
TheGhostofOtto1923
5 / 5 (1) Sep 08, 2017
Rudicrus the cowardly godlover would never consider evidence that could weaken his faith. For it is written

1 Cor 6:9-10
Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God..."

-and I am sure otto fits into one of those categories. But lo!

"5 If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. 6 But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. 7 That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do." James1

-So as we can see rudicrus is only a vehicle for instructing others in the true faith of skepticism.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (3) Sep 08, 2017
When atheists speak about religion it is like a man blind from birth arguing about whether the color red is the same as the color blue.

Funnily enough - lots of us atheists were religious at one point in their lives (usually as kids - because most of us were brought up in a household where religion of one kind or another was parcticed.)
So yeah - we do know what we are talking about (and I'd bet dollars to doughnuts that I know my way around the Bible a lot better than you do. Heck, even in my highschool academics competition team I was drafted for my knowledge in math and 'bible studies'...and I was already an atheist then)
rderkis
1 / 5 (1) Sep 08, 2017
I am sight challenged (Color Blind). and I don't think colors really exist! Oh sure I know the lies spread by people who pretend they see colors. Here is what they say.
Quote"Color (American English) or colour (Commonwealth English) is the characteristic of human visual perception described through color categories, with names such as red, blue, yellow, green, orange, or purple. This perception of color derives from the stimulation of cone cells in the human eye by electromagnetic radiation in the spectrum of light. Color categories and physical specifications etc."

See I know more about what is written about color than most people. And I say color does not exist. When I was young I wanted to fit in so bad, I pretended to see colors but I am smarter now. :-)
Just because the majority of people on earth believe they see colors does not mean I am challenged in any way because I can't.
barakn
not rated yet Sep 08, 2017
One false assumption


I am not making an assumption.
A color blind individual does not realize they are color blind till its pointed out to them, usually by a test.
...
Atheists lack that impulse/need/instinct(?) so they can never understand it, the same way a color blind individual, no matter how much he reads, studies, listens can never understand the beauty of the color yellow. -rdickhead

Yeah, you made an assumption. You made a categorical statement about all atheists. Here's a fun little test. Change whatever category you referred to with the phrase "black people." If it sounds racist, the original version of the statement was also offensive and wrong. "Black people lack that impulse/need/instinct(?) so they can never understand it..." Yup. racist as hell. Your words pass the bigot test.
rderkis
1 / 5 (1) Sep 08, 2017
Yup. racist as hell. Your words pass the bigot test.


Yes, I am a racist, and bigot and ant other label your little mind can come up with. And I will tell you what, I will agree to any label you put on me, if by labeling people it makes you feel smart. Labeling people sure beats making a logical point, doesn't it?
In this day and age ANY label is considered bad. You could call me good looking, and I would get defensive and deny it, rather that just talking logicly. Good tactic by a person with a low IQ.

Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (1) Sep 09, 2017
What if (s)he BECAME atheist after years of trying to work out how religious concepts (that made no sense) were possible?
You'd be better at this if you were a better listener and less subjectively judgemental...

And you in your arrogance are not?
Why is it most of the world's population is drawn to a god, but you are not? Do you just lack somthing basic? And like a psychopath, just think you are smarter than everyone else because they don't understand why everyone else feels empathy. ...

Not smarter at all. Not better than others, either. Just... different.:-)
rderkis
1 / 5 (1) Sep 09, 2017
Not smarter at all. Not better than others, either. Just... different.:-)


That is all I have been trying to say. A challenged individual is not better or worse than anyone else.
If your visually challenged by being color blind, your not better or worse than anyone else.
Same goes for tone deaf, or many of the other challenged traits including spiritually challenged.
But as a colorblind person should not write about how there is nothing beautiful about a sunset, nether should a spiritually challenged person talk about the beauty of God.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Sep 09, 2017
nether should a spiritually challenged person talk about the beauty of God
We know that other types of addicts will gush about the benefits of their drug of choice and deny that anyone who hasn't tried it can have an informed opinion.

But that's why they call it DENIAL.

Drug addicts are as dedicated to ignorance and self-deception as religion addicts are. This is one more clue that they are the same thing.
rderkis
1 / 5 (1) Sep 09, 2017
Color blind
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (1) Sep 09, 2017
That is all I have been trying to say. A challenged individual is not better or worse than anyone else.

With "challenged" you imply YOU are better.
If your visually challenged by being color blind, your not better or worse than anyone else.
Same goes for tone deaf, or many of the other challenged traits including spiritually challenged.

"Spritually challenged" is NOT a physical defection. In the case of many atheists, it is a choice.
But as a colorblind person should not write about how there is nothing beautiful about a sunset, nether should a spiritually challenged person talk about the beauty of God.

Sunsets (and sunrises) are beautiful. The beauty of the Universe fills my every waking moment. That I choose not to give credit to a god is NOT "spiritually challenged."
Wake up, man. The Universe is way bigger than you realize...
Why does beauty require a god?
rderkis
1 / 5 (1) Sep 09, 2017
I guess I should have been more specific, I have muted/silenced the gohstotto, so I did not read what he said but I know he is spiritually challenged, therefore he could say nothing that means anything about spiritualism. Other then he tried when he was young but could NOT FEEL anything like 80% of the worlds population do.
But he can't let it lie and move on to somthing he knows about/feels, there must be somthing wrong with everyone else and he is just much smarter than all of them.
rderkis
1 / 5 (1) Sep 09, 2017
With "challenged" you imply YOU are better.


No, because I am challenged in at least 4 ways, but still you are no better than me.

"Spiritually challenged" is NOT a physical defection.

And just how do you know that?

[q[The Universe is way bigger than you realize...

I don't doubt that, but I do doubt that you know how big it is.

Why does beauty require a god?


Wow, that analogy went way over your head.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Sep 09, 2017
I guess I should have been more specific, I have muted/silenced the gohstotto, so I did not read what he said but I know he is spiritually challenged, therefore he could say nothing that means anything about spiritualism
-And we all know full well that you are reading my posts derkis and so let me just reiterate that lying, and especially lying to oneself, is an essential aspect of your faith.

No wonder. The first thing you see when you open your book is a picture of a Caucasian Jesus. Jesus was a swarthy semite. The FIRST THING your book tells you, is a lie.

It goes downhill from there.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Sep 09, 2017
Caught a little bit of a Jesus network today. In reference to the hurricanes the preacher was saying what a blessing suffering is to the believer.

A blessing. To lose your home, your savings, possibly even your family and your life.

""War is Peace. Freedom Is Slavery. Ignorance is Strength." These are three slogans of the Party, Ingsoc."

The doublethink of orwells 1984. To make the difference between truth and lie indistinguishable, superfluous. The god of infinite mercy and love will torture you forever if you accept the evidence he himself has left strewn about, that says he isn't real.

The sick notion that skepticism is a mortal sin. The revolting concept that martyrdom is the highest of virtues.

The perverse effigy you all wear around your necks of the torture murder of another human being, as a symbol of all that is beautiful and good about your religion.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Sep 09, 2017
Rudicrus is right - most of humanity has fallen for the god meme. And so by definition, most of humanity is insane. For that matter, so is your dog. By definition.

Not our fault - as animals we were never supposed to be able to imagine our own deaths, to hold resentment and guilt for an entire lifetime, or to live much past the age of 30.

This is the true loss of innocence described in genesis. Most of us are already insane.
rderkis
1 / 5 (1) Sep 09, 2017
TheGhostofOtto1923, I won't read what you say but are you really taking a 3000 characters per 3 replies, all at once?
That's just a wee bit long winded wouldn't you say?
Seeing as how you have no morals, I can understand how breaking the rules does not bother you in the least.
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (1) Sep 10, 2017
No, because I am challenged in at least 4 ways, but still you are no better than me.

Who said I was?!?

"Spiritually challenged" is NOT a physical defection.

And just how do you know that?

Because it's a completely inaccurate (and rather trite) meme invented by people insisting a god presented this Universe to us.
The Universe is way bigger than you realize...

I don't doubt that, but I do doubt that you know how big it is.

I don't. And that's how big it is.
Why does beauty require a god?

Wow, that analogy went way over your head.

An analogy then... Not a real belief...
Sad.
A "spiritual" person doesn't need a god, BTW...
rderkis
1 / 5 (1) Sep 10, 2017
No, because I am challenged in at least 4 ways, but still you are no better than me.


Sorry but there is no reasoning with you. I am sure it's not your fault. But to be both spiritually challenged and mentally challenged. I am REALLY sorry for you! My prayers will be for you.
Perhaps you just need some education in logic and you are not mentally challenged at all! :-)
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Sep 10, 2017
TheGhostofOtto1923, I won't read what you say but are you really taking a 3000 characters per 3 replies, all at once?
That's just a wee bit long winded wouldn't you say?
Seeing as how you have no morals, I can understand how breaking the rules does not bother you in the least
No those posts were all 1 sentence long. You liar.

Hey here's your favorite song
https://youtu.be/3OEkivwz1Bk

From sunday school. Remember?
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (1) Sep 10, 2017
No, because I am challenged in at least 4 ways, but still you are no better than me.


Sorry but there is no reasoning with you. I am sure it's not your fault. But to be both spiritually challenged and mentally challenged. I am REALLY sorry for you! My prayers will be for you.
Perhaps you just need some education in logic and you are not mentally challenged at all! :-)

And I will send out well wishes for your "challenges".
One of which being your inability to see beyond yourself...
Logic does not stop with what you decide you are satisfied with.

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