2014 May 24 Saturday
Romans Overrun Because They Turned Away From Jupiter?

If Jupiter is a real God doesn't it make sense that he would have helped cause the fall of Rome as Romans turned away from him and toward Christianity?

For those who doubt Jupiter's power consider: When the Romans believed in Jupiter and other gods of the Roman pantheon Rome expanded into a massive empire. Coincidence?

Janus, Jupiter, Saturn, Genius, Mercury, Apollo, Mars, Vulcan, Neptune, Sol, Orcus, Liber, Tellus, Ceres, Juno, Luna, Diana, Minerva, Venus, and Vesta. Surely, that's a lot of diety figures to anger. Is it any wonder that The Visigoths under Alaric, the Vandals under Geiseric, and the Ostrogoths under Totila managed to each sack Rome?

This lesson of history has been ignored for centuries. I say we rebuild their temples and see if our luck improves.

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2014 May 24 09:20 PM 


Comments
Dave said at May 25, 2014 12:22 AM:

I like your temple idea.
Some of these too,
http://www.graveyardofthegods.org/deadgods/listofgods.html

Great blog,
Thanks Dave.

Dave said at May 25, 2014 1:06 AM:

Not to anger the punctuation God!

Thanks,
Dave.

patrick said at May 25, 2014 1:54 PM:

You forget that the Christian Eastern Empire lasted 1000 years after the fall of the West and preserved much of classical Greco-Roman culture in a Christian context.
The name "Byzantine" was an invention of anti-Christian Enlightenment polemicists. They called themselves "Romaioi" or Romans.

bob sykes said at May 26, 2014 4:09 AM:

And of course, Constantinople was the capital of the Empire before the sack, not Rome, which was a backwater even then. Constantinople was the cultural, economic, political and geographic center of the Empire.

Furthermore, the Germans who overran France, Spain, North Africa and some of Italy did not destroy the Roman civilization in the West, they merely replaced the Roman ruling class and continued business as usual, preserving Roman institutions, laws, culture and commerce. The fall of the Western Empire did not occur until the Eighth Century when the Arabs overran North Africa and Spain (and nearly France) and closed the Mediterranean Sea to Roman commerce. Then the Dark Ages and economic collapse ensued, followed surprisingly quickly by the Middle Ages of high culture.

PS. The US is often compared to Rome. That's a good sign. There was a continuous Roman government from about 700 BC to 1453 AD, almost 2,200 years. That means we good to go until 3,800 AD, counting from the first colonial settlements.

Check It Out said at May 26, 2014 5:14 PM:

"For those who doubt Jupiter's power consider: When the Romans believed in Jupiter and other gods of the Roman pantheon Rome expanded into a massive empire. Coincidence?"

One thing did not lead to the other Randall, and before the Roman Empire there was the Roman Republic, remember? The Romans did not build the Roman Empire because they believed in a pantheon of assorted gods who to them were as faulty as humans: Venus was really a beautiful whore who had sex with both gods and mortals as she pleased, although Romans didn't exactly wish their wives to behave as their godess Venus. Jupiter was wanton capricious and unjust, and very, very promiscuous. Mars was a warrior god; not very smart, but very fierce. Godesses cutting their husband's penis, hybrids, half-human beasts, etc

In other words the Roman "gods" were for the Romans not exactly what Yahweh, or Allah is to you. For them the gods were the personification of themselves. They consider their gods to have the same limitations as they themselves. Their gods personified all human activities at the time.

Furthermore, as it is evident at least nowadays, countries with high standards of living are less and less religious. The U.S. is the exception, although we can see that when Americans were more liberal the country was a lot better and growing a lot healthier than today. In any case the rotten state of things in the U.S. is -if not caused- enhanced greatly by this new American religious fundamentalism.

Wolf-Dog said at May 26, 2014 6:12 PM:

Check it out, What percentage of Americans are religious today? It seems that the only significantly large religious group might be the Mexican immigrants who are traditional, but otherwise there are very few people (as a percentage of the US population) who seriously base their political decisions on religious considerations. Rather, some Republicans might mask their economic interests by using the word religion or god, etc, but the majority of Republicans are not seriously religious these days, it's all pretense.

Dave said at May 26, 2014 6:40 PM:

Perhaps the beginning of the end of the Roman Empire was the voice of The Oracle of Delphi, and of religious freedom.

The Oracle of Delphi 'Pythia', and Flavius Theodosius.

The oracle at Delphi was commonly known as the Pythia, though her name was also Herophile. She was the Pythian priestess of Python, an archaic chthonic serpent. Later, Sibyl or Pythia became a title given to whichever priestess manned the oracle at the time. The Sibyl sat on a tripod over a cleft in the Sibylline Rock, gaining her often puzzling predictions from it. She sang her predictions, which she received from Gaia, in an ecstatic swoon; her utterings were interpreted by attendant priests during classical times...

From link: http://www.mlahanas.de/Greeks/LX/Sibyl.html
--
Flavius Theodosius (Cauca, modern Coca, Spain), January 11, 347-Milan, January 17, 395), also called Theodosius I and Theodosius the Great, was a Roman emperor. Theodosius was the last ruler of a united Roman Empire - after the division between his heirs it was never again ruled by a single man. He is also known for making Christianity the official state religion of the Roman Empire.

From link: http://www.mlahanas.de/Greeks/Medieval/Bio/TheodosiusI.h
--
A quote from Pythia:

391 A.D.

Tell the king; the fair wrought house has fallen.
No shelter has Apollo, nor sacred laurel leaves;
The fountains are now silent; the voice is stilled.
It is finished.
--
Within two years the Emperor Theodosius was dead. Within twenty the Western Roman Empire had fallen to Alaric the Visigoth, invaded by a barbarian for the first time in 800 years.

From link: http://www.mlahanas.de/Greeks/LX/FamousOracularStatementsFromDelphi.html


Dave said at May 26, 2014 7:19 PM:

Correction to comment: May 26, 2014 6:40 PM: is,

A quote from Pythia:

393 A.D.
--

Or around the mid 4-th century A.D. with Julian the Apostate (331/332– - 26 June 363)

'Tell to the king that the carven hall is fallen in decay;
Apollo has no chapel left, no prophesying bay,
No talking spring. The stream is dry that had so much to say.'

From link: http://www.mlahanas.de/Greeks/Oracle.htm

destructure said at May 26, 2014 11:08 PM:

check it out

"Furthermore, as it is evident at least nowadays, countries with high standards of living are less and less religious."

The countries with a higher standard of living were much more religious when they created that standard of living. So being less religious is a result of people having a higher standard of living, not a cause.

"The U.S. is the exception, although we can see that when Americans were more liberal the country was a lot better and growing a lot healthier than today."

Not true. The US is more liberal and less religious today than in the past.

"In any case the rotten state of things in the U.S. is -if not caused- enhanced greatly by this new American religious fundamentalism."

Religious fundamentalism isn't new. And the "rotten state of things" is a result of leftist ideologies to which you no doubt subscribe.

Audacious epigone said at May 27, 2014 8:03 PM:

Sol punished the conspiratorial Romans for offing Aurelian. But chi rho Randall, the Christian god did battle at the milvian bridge and won out decisively, heavily outnumbered though his earthly (and ignorant) troops under Constantine might have been. Also, the focus of the empire had begun to shift 1000 miles east of Rome even before the tetrarchy fell apart under Diocletian, who began laying the groundwork in nicomedia while simultaneously persecuting Christians in the name of the roman pantheon.

Patrick,

The 'Byzantines' were psychologically and culturally roman for sure. With the use of ever cheaper and more complete genetic sequencing I hope we are able to find out in the future how biologically roman (or not) they were as well.

James Bowery said at May 27, 2014 8:34 PM:

One wonders why there is all this talk of "barbarians" when Alaric, Theoderic, etc. were all Christians.

James Bowery said at May 27, 2014 8:50 PM:

"Alaric the Barbarian Goth Or...":

On the 24th of August for some reason the gates of Rome were opened by slaves and the city lay open for looting. But Alaric was a Christian, be it from the Arian branch, and Rome was for him a sacred city. He forbade the burning of churches and guaranteed the safety of everyone who sought asylum in a church. Looting was allowed, but in no way gold or silver used for Christian worship was allowed to be taken and raping was forbidden. His men (largely) obeyed and this Gothic barbarian, who by the way looked like a Roman and spoke Latin fluently, showed more mercy than a Roman general ever did. The blow to Rome was not so much material, as psychological.

One of the Great Mysteries of Hollywoodland is why this period of history -- as colorful and relevant as it is to the formation of the JudeoChristian era of Western Civilization -- has no more representation in cinematic history than does the Holodomor.

patrick said at May 27, 2014 9:28 PM:

Most of the Goths and Vandals were Arian Christians, who did not accept the Trinity or the full divinity of Christ. Arianism was one of a group of early non-Trinitarian strains of Christianity (other groups with similar theologies were called Ebionites or Nazoreans). After the Roman Empire under Theodosius the Great adopted Nicene/Trinitarian theology, non-Trinitarian beliefs survived in areas of the Middle East outside Roman control, where they contributed to the formation of Islam.
The reason for Alaric and Theodoric's religious affiliation is that Arianism was popular in Rome during the 4th century, and an Arian Christian named Ulfilas was the first to evangelize the Germanic people beyond the Roman frontier and translate the Bible into a Germanic language.

Phil said at May 28, 2014 3:23 PM:

James Bowery,

are you suggesting that Jews, Christians, Jewish-Christians, or some combination thereof subverted Rome from within and allowed the barbarians to invade and takeover?

Check it out said at May 28, 2014 4:44 PM:

"Rather, some Republicans might mask their economic interests by using the word religion or god, etc, but the majority of Republicans are not seriously religious these days, it's all pretense."

Agree. Perhaps it's time to do away with all the current gods, cause they are useless. Perhaps we should do away with all gods. Nothing good in history has come from the human intercourse with the gods. They are to f***en whimsical.

"The countries with a higher standard of living were much more religious when they created that standard of living. So being less religious is a result of people having a higher standard of living, not a cause."

No dummy, your electric light, clothes, car, planes, books, democracy, computer on which you type are all direct or indirect products of the elightenment which was brought about by all those wonderful humanists that sent all gods and religions where they belonged: into the realm of the absurd.

Can't believe how some are still depending on idiotic metaphysics. The fact that stupid politicians cannot solve any of the problems of today's world doesn't mean that religion will.

Check it out said at May 28, 2014 5:16 PM:

“It is time that we admitted that faith is nothing more than the license religious people give one another to keep believing when reasons fail.”

“The president of the United States has claimed, on more than one occasion, to be in dialogue with God. If he said that he was talking to God through his hairdryer, this would precipitate a national emergency. I fail to see how the addition of a hairdryer makes the claim more ridiculous or offensive.”

“We are all atheists about most of the gods that humanity has ever believed in. Some of us just go one god further.”

“Theology is ignorance with wings.”

“I am against religion because it teaches us to be satisfied with not understanding the world.”

“The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.”

“Religion is about turning untested belief into unshakable truth through the power of institutions and the passage of time.”

Check it out said at May 28, 2014 5:20 PM:

Religion has a surprisingly high correlation with poverty, according to a Gallup survey conducted in more than 100 countries. The more poverty a nation has, the higher the “religiosity” in that nation. In general, richer countries are less religious than poorer ones.

The biggest exception? The United States, which has the highest religiosity relative to its wealth on the planet.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/142727/religiosity-highest-world-poorest-nations.aspx

Check it out said at May 28, 2014 5:25 PM:

Gallup surveys in 114 countries in 2009 show that religion continues to play an important role in many people's lives worldwide. The global median proportion of adults who say religion is an important part of their daily lives is 84%, unchanged from what Gallup has found in other years. In 10 countries and areas, at least 98% say religion is important in their daily lives.

Each of the most religious countries is relatively poor, with a per-capita GDP below $5,000. This reflects the strong relationship between a country's socioeconomic status and the religiosity of its residents. In the world's poorest countries -- those with average per-capita incomes of $2,000 or lower -- the median proportion who say religion is important in their daily lives is 95%. In contrast, the median for the richest countries -- those with average per-capita incomes higher than $25,000 -- is 47%.

The United States is one of the rich countries that bucks the trend. About two-thirds of Americans -- 65% -- say religion is important in their daily lives. Among high-income countries, only Italians, Greeks, Singaporeans, and residents of the oil-rich Persian Gulf states are more likely to say religion is important.

Most high-income countries are further down the religiosity spectrum. In 10 countries, no more than 34% of residents say religion is an important part of their daily lives. Six of those are developed countries in Europe and Asia with per-capita incomes greater than $25,000.

In three of the four lower income countries on the list -- Estonia, Russia, and Belarus -- the Soviet government restricted religious expression for decades until the U.S.S.R.'s collapse in 1991. The final country is Vietnam, where the government also has a history of limiting religious practice.

Implications

Social scientists have put forth numerous possible explanations for the relationship between the religiosity of a population and its average income level. One theory is that religion plays a more functional role in the world's poorest countries, helping many residents cope with a daily struggle to provide for themselves and their families. A previous Gallup analysis supports this idea, revealing that the relationship between religiosity and emotional wellbeing is stronger among poor countries than among those in the developed world.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/142727/religiosity-highest-world-poorest-nations.aspx

James Bowery said at May 28, 2014 6:26 PM:

Phil, although he dares not speak the of Jews but a few times in the 600+ pages of "The History of the Goths", Herwig Wolfram does let this slip on page 90:

"Jewish traditions were at that time in conflict with the culture of the great Helenistic Roman state. There was a multiplicity of political jurisdictions, such as, for example, the Roman emperor and his governors, the Hellenistic kings, the ethnarchs, the tetrarchs, and the oligarchic organs of Jewish self-government. In addition there was the personal power of the rich and noble, and various tribal institutions existed. Finally Jewish law held sway, a law that separated the peoples, the heathens, from the populus, the people chosen by God. This heterogenous New Testament "politics" unfolded before the backdrop of a Mediterranean culture based on public literacy, a culture that knew an advanced money economy with a banking and taxation system but that also experienced the tension betwen the city and its surrounding countryside."

It isn't so much that subversion of Rome from within allowed the "barbarians" to invade and take over as it is Jews formed an alliance with the Germanics via Jewish Christians. The mechanics of this alliance are probably unrecoverable, but my best guess is that there was some sort of Germanic counterpart to British Israelism promoted by Jewish Christians among the Germanics -- the "Goths" in particular -- and this was what allowed the Goths to reconcile their tribal beliefs in divine descent of, for example, the Amals, with the Jewish notion of a special status with the divine. As with British Israelism this accommodation of the pagan tribal bloodline was gradually replaced with Arianism leaving Jews as the only recipient of divine accommodation -- albeit in need of acceptance of Christ and the Messiah.

Phil said at May 28, 2014 6:56 PM:

James Bowery,

That's interesting. I think there may have been something similar going on with Charlemagne. Charlemagne viewed and styled himself as King David, and his court did as well. I believe he may have even believed himself to have descended from King David.

destructure said at May 29, 2014 4:01 PM:

check it out

"Religion has a surprisingly high correlation with poverty,"

Correlation doesn't imply causation which was the point of my earlier comment. Even your argument from the social scientists that "religion plays a more functional role in the world's poorest countries, helping many residents cope with a daily struggle to provide for themselves and their families" supports my claim that prosperity preceded the decline of religion rather than the reverse. The west was much more religious prior to becoming prosperous and only became less religious afterwards. Ergo, the prosperity was largely the result of those who were religious.

"No dummy, your electric light, clothes, car, planes, books, democracy, computer on which you type are all direct or indirect products of the elightenment which was brought about by all those wonderful humanists that sent all gods and religions where they belonged: into the realm of the absurd. "

"Humanists" didn't invent those things. Dummy.

“The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.”

Are you sure you're not arguing in favor of religion? As far as I'm concerned, several of those are features not flaws.

“Religion is about turning untested belief into unshakable truth through the power of institutions and the passage of time.”

Sounds like political correctness. I always suspected liberalism was a religion... as well as a mental disorder.

Check it out said at June 2, 2014 4:43 PM:

"Humanists" didn't invent those things. Dummy."

I suppose clergymen and popes did, idiot.

"I always suspected liberalism was a religion..."

Well you suspected wrong. Liberalism is precisely the opposite. Just like atheism is not another religion, fool.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=20M9nO2p2ps

Theism is a mental disorder. No form of theism has ever brought any good for humans.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vnAAoC1oBRo

Check it out said at June 2, 2014 4:55 PM:

@destructure:

Ok, I'll rephrase it to you. Religion not only has a surprisingly high correlation with poverty. Religion is the CAUSE of a great deal of suffering and misery

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/jul/02/religion-wars-conflict

https://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20080527175545AApHVL5

"Correlation doesn't mean causation" is only a dull platitude.

Religion causes poverty. And it also causes war, deception, dogma, cruelty, prostration and other evils. There. Is that clear enough?

destructure said at June 3, 2014 5:58 AM:

check it out

"I suppose clergymen and popes did, idiot."

You claimed those were invented by "humanists". They weren't. I never claimed they were invented by clergymen. Therefore, your comment is a straw man. Idiot.

"Well you suspected wrong. Liberalism is precisely the opposite. Just like atheism is not another religion, fool."

Liberalism with a lower case "l" isn't a religious belief. Liberalism with a capital "L" is. Similarly, atheism with a lower case "a" isn't a religious belief. Atheism with a capital "A" is. Liberals and Atheists will claim to be liberals and atheists (and people often omit the upper case in writing) but they're not. Whether they believe themselves to be or not is irrelevant. Whether they oppose traditional religion is also irrelevant. Most profess a common set of beliefs and values. That makes them religious. Fool.

"Ok, I'll rephrase it to you. Religion not only has a surprisingly high correlation with poverty. Religion is the CAUSE of a great deal of suffering and misery"

First, you referenced social scientists' theories that poverty causes an increase in religion and that it helps people deal with their daily struggles. Now you claim that religion causes poverty and "suffering and misery." You contradict yourself.

"Theism is a mental disorder. No form of theism has ever brought any good for humans."

First, this Harvard paper lists dozens of studies highlighting the advantage or religion over atheism.
http://www.hbs.edu/faculty/Pages/item.aspx?num=40219

And, now, I'll list a study demonstrating that Liberalism is a mental disorder.

On pg 287 of The Righteous Mind, Dr Haidt presents his findings on the ability of different groups to empathize across ideological divides. Haidt reports on the following experiment: after determining whether someone is liberal or conservative, he then has each person answer the standard battery of questions as if he were the opposite ideology. So, he would ask a liberal to answer the questions as if he were a “typical conservative” and vice-versa. What he finds is quite striking: “The results were clear and consistent. Moderates and conservatives were most accurate in their predictions, whether they were pretending to be liberals or conservatives. Liberals were the least accurate, especially those who describe themselves as ‘very liberal.’ The biggest errors in the whole study came when liberals answered the Care and Fairness questions while pretending to be conservatives.” In other words, moderates and conservatives can understand the liberal worldview and liberals are unable to relate to the conservative worldview, especially when it comes to questions of care and fairness.

"Correlation doesn't mean causation" is only a dull platitude."

No. It's a well-established principle in both science and statistics.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Correlation_does_not_imply_causation

"Religion causes poverty. And it also causes war, deception, dogma, cruelty, prostration and other evils. There. Is that clear enough? "

Atheistic communists murdered 100 million people in the last century alone.

Check it out said at June 4, 2014 4:45 PM:

"Atheistic communists murdered 100 million people in the last century alone." Hitler and Stalin were very religious. Communism is another form of religion and has nothing to do with atheism.

One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we've been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We're no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. it is simply too painful to acknowledge -- even to ourselves -- that we've been so credulous. (So the old bamboozles tend to persist as the new bamboozles rise.

"And, now, I'll list a study demonstrating that Liberalism is a mental disorder."

Your words are a mental disorder, but you cannot notice it due to your narcisism. Typical in most Americans. Finding the occasional straw of truth awash in a great ocean of confusion and bamboozle requires intelligence, vigilance, dedication and courage. But if we don't practice these tough habits of thought, we cannot hope to solve the truly serious problems that face us -- and we risk becoming a nation of suckers, up for grabs by the next charlatan who comes along.

In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion.

You can't convince a believer of anything; for their belief is not based on evidence, it's based on a deep seated need to believe. What I'm saying is, if God wanted to send us a message, and ancient writings were the only way he could think of doing it, he could have done a better job.

You see, the religious people -- most of them -- really think this planet is an experiment. That's what their beliefs come down to. Some god or other is always fixing and poking, messing around with tradesmen's wives, giving tablets on mountains, commanding you to mutilate your children, telling people what words they can say and what words they can't say, making people feel guilty about enjoying themselves, and like that. Why can't the gods leave well enough alone? All this intervention speaks of incompetence. If God didn't want Lot's wife to look back, why didn't he make her obedient, so she'd do what her husband told her? Or if he hadn't made Lot such a shithead, maybe she would've listened to him more. If God is omnipotent and omniscient, why didn't he start the universe out in the first place so it would come out the way he wants? Why's he constantly repairing and complaining? No, there's one thing the Bible makes clear: The biblical God is a sloppy manufacturer. He's not good at design, he's not good at execution. He'd be out of business if there was any competition.

Check it out said at June 4, 2014 4:55 PM:

When the movie Jurassic Park was shown in Israel, it was condemned by some Orthodox rabbis because it accepted evolution and because it taught that dinosaurs lived a hundred million years ago--when, as is plainly stated at every Rosh Hashonhan and every Jewish wedding ceremony, the Universe is less than 6,000 years old.

The politicians and the religious leaders haveve made a thorough mess of this world. We're in deep trouble because of them. Deeper than idiots like you can really understand. We should be teaching our children the scientific method and the reasons for a Bill of Rights. With it comes a certain decency, humility and community spirit.

One prominent American religion confidently predicted that the world would end in 1914. Well, 1914 has come and gone, and - whole the events of that year were certainly of some importance - the world did not, at least so far as I can see, seem to have ended. There are at least three responses that an organized religion can make in the face of such a failed and fundamental prophecy. They could have said, Oh, did we say '1914'? So sorry, we meant '2014'. A slight error in calculation. Hope you weren't inconvinenced in any way. But they did not. They could have said, Well, the world would have ended, except we prayed very hard and interceded with God so He spared the Earth. But they did not. Instead, the did something much more ingenious. They announced that the world had in fact ended in 1914, and if the rest of us hadn't noticed, that was our lookout. It is astonishing in the fact of such transparent evasions that this religion has any adherents at all. But religions are tough. Either they make no contentions which are subject to disproof or they quickly redesign doctrine after disproof. The fact that religions can be so shamelessly dishonest, so contemptuous of the intelligence of their adherents, and still flourish does not speak very well for the tough- mindedness of the believers. But it does indicate, if a demonstration was needed, that near the core of the religious experience is something remarkably resistant to rational inquiry.

If you want to save your child from polio, you can pray or you can inoculate....Try science. Advances in medicine and agriculture have saved vastly more lives than have been lost in all the wars in history.

In Thailand, diseases are treated with pills manufactured from pulverized sacred Scripture. Witches are today being burned in South Africa.... The worldwide TM [Transcendental Meditation] organization has an estimated valuation of $3 billion. For a fee, they promise to make you invisible, to enable you to fly.

In Italy, the Inquisition was condemning people to death until the end of the eighteenth century, and inquisitional torture was not abolished in the Catholic Church until 1816. The last bastion of support for the reality of witchcraft and the necessity of punishment has been the Christian churches. Think of how many religions attempt to validate themselves with prophecy. Think of how many people rely on these prophecies, however vague, however unfulfilled, to support or prop up their beliefs. Yet has there ever been a religion with the prophetic accuracy and reliability of science?


Check it out said at June 4, 2014 5:06 PM:

"The Bible is not my book nor Christianity my profession. I could never give assent to the long, complicated statements of Christian dogma." Abraham Lincoln


"History I believe furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil government. This marks the lowest grade of ignorance, of which their political as well as religious leaders will always avail themselves for their own purpose. "

"The Christian god can easily be pictured as virtually the same god as the many ancient gods of past civilizations. The Christian god is a three headed monster; cruel, vengeful and capricious. If one wishes to know more of this raging, three headed beast-like god, one only needs to look at the caliber of people who say they serve him. They are always of two classes: fools and hypocrites."

"Millions of innocent men, women and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined and imprisoned; yet we have not advanced one inch towards uniformity."

"And the day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerve in the brain of Jupiter. But may we hope that the dawn of reason and freedom of thought in these United States will do away with this artificial scaffolding, and restore to us the primitive and genuine doctrines of this most venerated reformer of human errors."

"Religions are all alike – founded upon fables and mythologies." "I do not find in orthodox Christianity one redeeming feature." "Christianity is the most perverted system that ever shone on man." "It does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are 20 gods, or no God. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg." Thomas Jefferson


"I have found Christian dogma unintelligible. Early in life, I absenteed myself from Christian assemblies." "Lighthouses are more helpful than churches." Benjamin Franklin

destructure said at June 5, 2014 3:21 PM:

check it out

"You can't convince a believer of anything; for their belief is not based on evidence, it's based on a deep seated need to believe."

So what you're saying is there is no way for me to reason with you because your views aren't "based on evidence" but a "deep seated need to believe"?

We should be teaching our children the scientific method"

Oh yeah? Do you have a scientific background? Because I do.

I'm not particularly impressed by your list of quotes. You seem to have selected them because they represent your own prejudices. Most of them could replace "religion" with "secular humanism" and make just as much sense.

Check it out said at June 9, 2014 5:09 PM:

"So what you're saying is there is no way for me to reason with you because your views aren't "based on evidence" but a "deep seated need to believe"?"

No and I see no reason for you to come to such rash -dogmatic- conclusion on somebody you know nothing about. Only believers are impossible to reason with. When two people favor reason there's a way to start considering a common ground objectively, and then build on, not forgetting to provide some sort of evidence on which to base your claims. So far you haven't made clear the grounds of your opinions or your "evidence" to support that religion makes a nation grow strong.

"I'm not particularly impressed by your list of quotes..."

Of course you're not impressed by my list of quotes. They are from thinkers like Carl Sagan, Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, etc, while you are only "destructure" who "has a scientific background". Narcissism is a recurrent trend in many Americans.

"You seem to have selected them because they represent your own prejudices. Most of them could replace "religion" with "secular humanism" and make just as much sense."

I really don't know what the hell you're talking about. Sicence -as you shuld know" is not based on prejudice


"Oh yeah? Do you have a scientific background? Because I do."

YEAH, I do. Now what?
I see you're assuming I didn't have it. If that's so that makes you only another dogmatic nobody.

I simply cannot adhere to the idea that religion nowadays is what a nation needs to become great. What's more, I see no reason or evidence to accept that religion has any useful purpose whatsoever. I'm an agnostic and I think -although I'm not sure- that you're a believer. If you are, this conversation is over. "Live Long and Prosper"

destructure said at June 11, 2014 5:02 AM:

check it out

"They are from thinkers like Carl Sagan, Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, etc,"

They're bright fellows. They're also prejudiced.

"YEAH, I do. Now what? I see you're assuming I didn't have it."

What field?

"What's more, I see no reason or evidence to accept that religion has any useful purpose whatsoever."

That's because you ignored my earlier link.
http://www.hbs.edu/faculty/Pages/item.aspx?num=40219

"I'm an agnostic and I think -although I'm not sure- that you're a believer."

If that's what you think then you're mistaken.

Check it out said at June 11, 2014 5:51 PM:

"They're bright fellows. They're also prejudiced."

Which is it? Are they bright or are they prejudeced. Or are you now inventing a new concept "bright can be prejudiced"?


"What field?"

None really I studied middle school, that's all...


"If that's what you think then you're mistaken."

Sure, I could never make a claim about you. That's why I wrote: "I'm an agnostic and I think -ALTHOUGH I'M NOT SURE- that you're a believer"
Yes, I could be mistaken. Maybe you're not a believer after all, but you certainly sound like one.

destructure said at June 11, 2014 7:18 PM:

check it out

"Are they bright or are they prejudeced."

They're not mutually exclusive. Plenty of intelligent, educated people are prejudiced. Everyone is to some extent.

"Maybe you're not a believer after all, but you certainly sound like one."

I don't have any supernatural beliefs that I'm aware of. But I recognize that religion can be beneficial even if the supernatural premise is mistaken.

destructure said at June 11, 2014 9:16 PM:

check it out

"So how much is the life of those few worth? Remember that most first world countries do not have capital punishment, that must be something to make us look around."

I addressed both of those in my last comment.

"True. So capital punishment is what you call prevention, right? So smart!"

Yes. Capital punishment is a deterrent. Not to mention it cuts down on repeat offenders.

"Capital punishment IS deliberate killing;"

But it's not the deliberate killing of an innocent person.

"On the other hand killing in self defense is NOT deliberate killing and therefore IS NOT a crime that law punishes."

When people use deadly force to defend themselves it's deliberate.

"Naive even for a teenage reasoning."

Not at all. Major crimes aren't even prosecuted unless a grand jury made up of regular citizens finds there is sufficient evidence. That's why the US DOJ has a conviction rate of over 90%.

"Why would you not abondon capital punishment if it doesn't bring about a lower crime rate?"

Who said it didn't?

"Really? Which ones, please."

Pretty much any that have abandoned capital punishment. The takeaway of Pinker's book The Better Angels of Our Nature is that homicide rates have been falling for centuries and more until they're only a fraction of what they once were. Today, the countries that have abandoned capital punishment tend to have both low homicide rates and low levels of diversity.

"Conservatives tend to have a larger amygdala."
ha ha ha ha ha! Yeah ok, let's move on. You're the scientist, right?

Political Orientations Are Correlated with Brain Structure in Young Adults
http://www.cell.com/current-biology/abstract/S0960-9822%2811%2900289-2

"The amygdala has to do with a certain type of memory, quick decision-making, and emotional reactions as it is considered only a part of the limbic system. "

Yes. But it also affects other decision making. Studies show most people reach their conclusion first and then use reason to justify it after the fact.

"There's no "emotional reasoning" and the phrase is a contratiction in terms. Reasoning is the ability to come to discover the truth in something and emotions play no part in this process whatsoever."

That may be true when solving crossword puzzles but not when dealing with people. The amygdala plays a primary role in the processing of memory, decision-making and emotional reactions.

"IMO you're much more emotional than I.."
Yeah well, that's only IYO -in your opinion- and therefore in your subjective little universe.

Why do you resort to insults and personal attacks if you're not emotional?

destructure said at June 11, 2014 9:24 PM:

My bad. The last comment belongs on the nexr post.

Check it out said at June 13, 2014 3:02 PM:

"They're bright fellows. They're also prejudiced."

Which is it? Are they bright or are they prejudeced. Or are you now inventing a new concept "bright can be prejudiced"?

"I don't have any supernatural beliefs that I'm aware of. But I recognize that religion can be beneficial even if the supernatural premise is mistaken."

Well I simply cannot adhere to the idea that religion nowadays is what a nation needs to become great. What's more, I see no reason or evidence to accept that religion has any useful purpose whatsoever. I'm an agnostic and I think -although I'm not sure- that you're a believer. If you are, and I mean only IF, IF, IF you are, this conversation is over. "Live Long and Prosper"


"Why do you resort to insults and personal attacks if you're not emotional?"

I never said I wasn't emotional. I'm only human. In fact I enjoy emotions, but I use them to spice up my logical sausage. (Hope it doesn't sound too phallic for you.) Hey, but if it makes you feel better to put words I never said, in my mouth, that's ok, I'll take it.
Oh poor you. I'm sorry baby, I didn't realize you were so sensitive and felt insulted. Do you feel insulted when arguments and ideas are given back to you honey bunches? I'm sorry. Maybe my laughter insulted you too. Oh, it won't happen again; there, there. You're really a nice cute little lad.

You know, now that I ponder all this more carefully I think you're absolutely right. We should bring back Jupitier and start believing in it again, -oops, he I meant- Whatever, please excuse the sloppines. And yes, maybe as you've said, we should kill all them terrorists, deserters, traitors, rapists. Hey, why not all immigrants too! Yeah! my mouth is drooling now. And while we're satiating our blood thirst, maybe we can extend the orgy to legal immigrants like tourists, athletes and foreigners in transit to other countries. Who knows they might wish to stay in wonderful U.S. beyoind their permit expiration date.

I totally agree with you, you big stud. It would only be fair if you just ignored me as my well-deserved punishment.
Kisses.

destructure said at June 14, 2014 4:52 AM:

"Which is it? Are they bright or are they prejudeced."

If you think bright people can't be prejudiced then please tell us at exactly which IQ you think people cease to be prejudiced?

"I'm an agnostic and I think -although I'm not sure- that you're a believer. "

Once again, I don't have any supernatural beliefs that I'm aware of.

"I never said I wasn't emotional."

You also didn't say you weren't silly.

Check it out said at June 16, 2014 4:58 PM:

So which is it? Are they bright or are they prejudeced.

"Once again, I don't have any supernatural beliefs that I'm aware of."

It's not much you are aware of, is there? But ok, ok, fine: You don't have any supernatural beliefs that you are aware of. Congratulations. I get it and good for you.

"You also didn't say you weren't silly."

Boy, you ARE really stupid. You are exactly proving my point. I think you've lost track of the conversation there, kid.

Now, if it makes you feel better or you if really need it badly, I'll let you have the last word. This conversation if getting pretty redundant and is really going nowhere. So please, feel free and indulge yourself.


Post a comment
Comments:
Name (not anon or anonymous):
Email Address:
URL:
Remember info?

      
 
Web parapundit.com
Go Read More Posts On ParaPundit
Site Traffic Info
The contents of this site are copyright ©