Secular Rights - defending the right of freedom from religion
Let the Twilight of Religion Begin...
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Is it love to tell people that an all-good personal God exists? No because it is to say that people should not be valued above all but he should for he is all-good and better than us and because all good including ours is really just his. That is putting belief before people. Religious people and secular people have a positive right and a fundamental human right to real relationships with others instead of people just or mainly doing good for them to please God. If it is okay to put your belief in God before people then how could hurting them in the name of God be wrong? Principles come before being comfortable. Keep away from religion.
If there is no God, then religion is idolatry. Do not put human feelings before human dignity by saying it does not matter as long as you enjoy worshipping. Is it not better to make an idol of good rather than God like atheists might do? It is less chancy!
Religious doctrine and rules are not important. Concern yourself with happiness and the happiness of people instead. Learn the truth about religion for there is no justice where truth is not put first. This is about honouring you through honouring the truth.
LESSON OF THE WEEK
DOES GOD REALLY RIGHT WRONGS?
One major argument for an afterlife is that one is needed for God to make up for injustices that happen in this life. In this life the good suffer while the horrendously wicked go unpunished and life is a stroll for them. This argument is an emotional one disguised as good sense. It says more about the kind of person that accepts it than anything else. The good will not want a reward or the wrongs done to them made right. And what is the point of having the wicked suffer when they are not on earth anymore? We need punishment as a tool but only in this life and its about protecting the innocent and not correcting a moral imbalance. Punishment cares about stopping the criminal but not fixing his dark heart.
Jeremy E Sherman Ph.D: "There is no God to enforce fairness. The universe does not right wrongs, it just rolls along. This assumption can be handy too. Itís motivational in that it puts the burden on us to work for fairness. But itís demotivational too. If the universe isnít fair, then to hell with fairness. Grab whatever you can and donít worry about consequences. No one is policing this dog-eat-dog jungle. Just be the biggest dog you can be."
Fairness means that it is not enough to believe there is something fair out there. There has to be really something fair. In other words, fairness demands that if you say somebody is fair or a fair God exists then it is unfair to think there is fairness when there is not. Fairness then is about truth and fact. To say there is a fair God is a foundational thing which means you are very unfair if you are wrong. Errors about fairness draw you to deliberate unfairness. When you are unfair by accident you will be more inclined when you find out to be unfair on purpose. Fairness matters so much that it does not matter if it is accidental or deliberate. There is more to right and wrong than good or bad intentions. Good intentions are not important if it is okay to cause loads of harm just because your intentions are noble. To argue that intentions alone matter is really just caring about how people feel about themselves not the truth and not the principles of justice and love and truth.
If it is true that there is no inconsistency between there being a good God and his making a universe that goes bad then God or not the universe and life are not fair and may never be.
I disagree with Sherman's argument that the universe being unfair is demotivating. If it is demotivating we can still fight that lack of motivation so even if it works it is not a strong enough argument that we should believe in God or support such belief. You can be fair because the universe is not fair. It is all the more reason to be fair. If the universe is not able to do sums that is not stopping you from doing them.
The idea that there is no God to promote justice means you have to do for others what a God should be doing for them. Even if there is a God we should be doing good for others that he is not doing and doing it with an f**k you attitude. Anger against how things are is a good thing if it drives us to help so much as one person who would not have been helped or helped so well otherwise. Better to rage against how things are even if this means insulting God than to be resigned to it and leaving people to suffer.
Religion centres on God's forgiveness. But it does not do anything. It is allowing a second chance but it not doing anything to help it to happen. Getting forgiven and getting reconciled are two different subjects. Forgiveness is like an abstract decree. God has supposedly attached things to the decree such as promising to help you and your life be better in the future but even if he didn't the forgiveness would be not lessened. What is attached to the decree does not mean the decree does anything but that it does not. Forgiveness is a core teaching and shows us how useless the doctrine of God is. Its as important to daily life as algebra.
People feel they have to forgive God. Sometimes they just do it automatically without even realising. The person who thinks they accept what God has allowed to happen to their baby and the viruses he has made that torment her in fact are forgiving not accepting. There is something obscene about forgiving God for what he allegedly does to children so clearly it is the case that God is a hindrance to real fairness not a support.
If we are here to sacrifice ourselves and to suffer why should God make up for our unjust suffering? It does not make sense. If morality is painful for us is God to compensate us for that? Do you compensate a child when you have to put stinging ointment on his wound? We would be expected to love our enemies altruistically even when they are tormenting us to death. Morality is tough business. Even if we canít do good for the enemy having a good will towards them is being self-sacrificing and that good will demands testing. If sacrifice is so good that no matter how terrible it is we must do it then there is no need for rewards. Indeed rewards would defeat the purpose and take away a chance to sacrifice.
You canít really make up for injustices for you cannot make them not to have happened. Even God cannot undo the past. Accepting that is better than getting rewards or told that the past was not so bad. God cannot really right wrongs for even he has to accept that the past is the past and try to make a better future. That is not righting wrongs but preventing things from getting worse. A gift given to a person who had a terrible past is just a gift and even if intended to be amends fails to be. A murder victim who goes to heaven to live forever is still a murder victim. Their existence is not as good as it should have been when you take account of the whole picture. The evil done to them still happened and that is a black mark - forever.