Andrewmarkmusic: decoding the headlines
and official narratives in short, terse pithy aphorisms!

This discussion delves into the pros and cons of religion. The first thing I would say is there is a major distinction between religion and the existence of God. If God doesn’t exist then the argument, it seems to me, distills into a strange type of ‘delusional Darwinism’! In a Godless universe, religion, then, according to Jones, is a net positive, even if the beliefs that instantiate the culture are metaphysically delusional. To me, this is a bizarre position to hold but I’d concede it could be the case.

My thinking here is that a Secular Society premised on the best use of logic, reason, and a secular law should be the overarching superstructure of society. Within the superstructure of secular society, people would be free to practice their religious beliefs but their beliefs wouldn’t be allowed the force of law when it comes to issues like bigotry, gender, sexual preference, etc. A secular society would be framed around the idea that all people are of worth and have the same legal rights and protections. Under that umbrella is where religiosity would live and have its being.

This idea, as far as I can see, would prevent theocracy–Sharia; The Noahide Laws, etc…At what point do we concede that The Scarlett Letter isn’t a good template for a society–shaming people based on various and sundry ghost stories?

The idea of a secular society is recent within the last 100 or so years and the idea, generally, has given more people a better quality of life than any other system as far as I can see.  Why we would want to go back to institutional religion as power and politics is something that I’m just not getting. There have to be hidden agendas here as I can’t see this is just about data–and yes, data can be skewed and interpreted in almost unlimited ways when someone has a hidden bias. Would anyone like to trip over to Conspiracy Lane?

Once again, I see this debate as another example of why humanity needs a new academy dedicated solely to the unbiased cross-cultural study of the world’s spiritual history and traditions.

A note: Jones’s intrinsic religion isn’t incompatible with a secular humanist superstructure. The superstructure would simply prevent abuse based on intrinsic bigotry, etc..

FWIW: I fall into the tiny category of number 3 in Jones’ religiosity map: a quest religiosity so I have a rather unique perspective on the whole bloody mess. But, it appears I’m not alone as The Freemasons, Jesuits, and a cabal of Jewish people are also ‘questers’ and I believe they have a plan! And always have! And that makes religion extraordinarily dangerous, but that once again is Conspiracy Lane.

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