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  #1  
Old 09-01-2004, 01:46 PM
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sadashivan sadashivan is offline
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Question What is religion and how did it exist?

Religion is age old since the civilization came into existence. It began when human’s brain advanced to realize to have faith, and worship the systems of the society. Human lived in small groups, regulations and systems were formed to maintain discipline in the group. All small groups had own ideology that were obligatory to all group members. As they were too small in groups, system differed from group (society) to group. In order to initiate members to worship the system, an idol was formed that harmonized the ideology. Rituals were essential part that to be carried in occasions for rejuvenation. During this period their rituals were for natural resources like sun, moon, river, fire etc; spirits like group gods and character idols like devil or angel.

As I feel, ritual is a practice to follow the ideology and its inscription, like those who have faith in bible inscription are Christian and who have faith in Quoran are Muslims and have faith in veda are hindus. So Christianity is the system (religion) and Christians are society, bible is inscription and Jesus Christ is icon. A difference of opinion in society split up from Jews to Christianity or branches like Roman Catholic, Protestants, Orthodox Christians, Pentecostal or others.

So religion is a system of belief in society. A ritual is main part of religion that builds citizens of the society to trust, respect the ideology of the society. Each religion has its own inscription for its group. When number of followers grew and opted to join the group that resulted to expansion of particular religion. On the other hand in many cases conversion method by force or temptation was/ is also adopted to expand its wings


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  #2  
Old 09-01-2004, 05:18 PM
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Humans have always wondered where they came from and how their universe works. Religion was created as an explanation during times of great ignorance, superstition, and barbarity. It was also designed to bolster the authority of those in charge.

It lingers yet because it is a long-established tradition and a powerful memeplex.
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Old 09-02-2004, 07:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slick
Religion was created as an explanation during times of great ignorance, superstition, and barbarity. It was also designed to bolster the authority of those in charge.
Thanks I commend your opinion but in one point I disagree as I feel the religion was system to retain society intact.

Last edited by sadashivan; 09-02-2004 at 07:16 AM.
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  #4  
Old 09-02-2004, 11:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sadashivan
Thanks I commend your opinion but in one point I disagree as I feel the religion was system to retain society intact.
I think that is what he said... it was used to bolster the position of those in charge. Every successfull society has someone in charge. Religions are "easy" explainations of how and why we are here. They don't take a lot of effort to prove anything, but seem rational to the ignorant. Ignorance isn't stupidity, its a lack of information or knowledge, thats all.
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Old 09-02-2004, 12:44 PM
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Let's not forget life and death. Many rituals and the creation of the after life concept were meant to explain what happened to us after death. Seeing we did not know any different this practice started thriving some 7,000 years ago.
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Old 09-02-2004, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by RA
Let's not forget life and death. Many rituals and the creation of the after life concept were meant to explain what happened to us after death. Seeing we did not know any different this practice started thriving some 7,000 years ago.
Very good point!

It was also (and still is) used to sooth those left behind by the dead. With hopes if meeting them when THEY die. They are promised that if you lead a good life according to (insert religion here) they would meet up again. Its rather comical that at every funeral I've gone to the preacher always says such and such is in a much better place now, knowing damn well these people weren't all that good, But everyone around all agreed. I am going to a funeral of a friend today and I know damn well he wasn't all that religious, never went to church, and when he died of a heart attack in the bathroom on monday, he probably didn't have a chance to honestly repent. Its more soothing to me to know that he will just decompose and his atoms will return to the earth. He is not burning in hell or living in heaven waiting to meet up with his ex's or other people he didn't care for.
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  #7  
Old 09-02-2004, 04:58 PM
SpudWithKnife SpudWithKnife is offline
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I believe from what i have read, that Religion is inseperable from the Adam and Eve story. This doesn't neccesarily begin with the Biblical account in Genesis, though this has been the most widespread tale. Briefly, the first two humans, Adam and Eve, were in a different state than humanity today and since because they knew not sin. This describes a state of being, or consciousness, which is essentially God-like, and which differentiates between mystical experience and external modes of worship with belief in God as the foremost crutch.

Yes, i believe you are correct: religion is based on belief. It is also ritual, sacrifice, scriptures, prayer, and morals for society.

The most important of these is Scripture. It is LANGUAGE that seperates the believers from the knowers - the faithful book-keepers, from the mystics.

Adam and Eve were essentially the first Mystics.

What i would ask is, if life is fundamentally the same for every animate being, then how can it not be created that way? After all, evolutionary theory doesn't deal with the origin of life, but with the origin of SPECIES.
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Old 09-02-2004, 05:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sadashivan
Thanks I commend your opinion but in one point I disagree as I feel the religion was system to retain society intact.
Society will remain intact so long as it's members can communicate and reach a consensus about morality.
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  #9  
Old 09-03-2004, 12:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Itsdarts
Very good point!

It was also (and still is) used to sooth those left behind by the dead. With hopes if meeting them when THEY die. They are promised that if you lead a good life according to (insert religion here) they would meet up again. Its rather comical that at every funeral I've gone to the preacher always says such and such is in a much better place now, knowing damn well these people weren't all that good, But everyone around all agreed. I am going to a funeral of a friend today and I know damn well he wasn't all that religious, never went to church, and when he died of a heart attack in the bathroom on monday, he probably didn't have a chance to honestly repent. Its more soothing to me to know that he will just decompose and his atoms will return to the earth. He is not burning in hell or living in heaven waiting to meet up with his ex's or other people he didn't care for.
Died of a heart attack. At what age. you are probably around 43 to 44. I hope your friend was not a similar age.

The after life thing is very hard for people. Very difficult to dismise. I would say Afterlife is probably the most difficult question any human could ask themselves. If not for an after life religion may cease to exist.

that would be a good thing.
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Old 09-03-2004, 12:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpudWithKnife
I believe from what i have read, that Religion is inseperable from the Adam and Eve story. This doesn't neccesarily begin with the Biblical account in Genesis, though this has been the most widespread tale. Briefly, the first two humans, Adam and Eve, were in a different state than humanity today and since because they knew not sin. This describes a state of being, or consciousness, which is essentially God-like, and which differentiates between mystical experience and external modes of worship with belief in God as the foremost crutch.

Yes, i believe you are correct: religion is based on belief. It is also ritual, sacrifice, scriptures, prayer, and morals for society.

The most important of these is Scripture. It is LANGUAGE that seperates the believers from the knowers - the faithful book-keepers, from the mystics.

Adam and Eve were essentially the first Mystics.

What i would ask is, if life is fundamentally the same for every animate being, then how can it not be created that way? After all, evolutionary theory doesn't deal with the origin of life, but with the origin of SPECIES.
Hmm! Is incest a sin.
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  #11  
Old 09-03-2004, 10:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RA
Died of a heart attack. At what age. you are probably around 43 to 44. I hope your friend was not a similar age.

The after life thing is very hard for people. Very difficult to dismise. I would say Afterlife is probably the most difficult question any human could ask themselves. If not for an after life religion may cease to exist.

that would be a good thing.
You are correct, I'm 44, and my friend just celebrated his 40th birthday on June 26th. That was the last time I saw him alive. WAY too young if you ask me, but what can you do? He wasn't a smoker nor a drug user, but did enjoy the occational alcoholic beverage. It was kind of an odd service, it was held in a baptist church, yet the pastor was from a Presbityrian church and a professed Calvinist. Not sure what happened to the Baptist preacher of that church. Anyway, it turned out that when my friend was in the Marines he wound up talking to the Chaplin and convinced him he needed "saving". The Calvinist declared it was his belief that once saved, always saved. Which probably made the family at ease knowing Jeff never went to church.

I agree that the prospect of the afterlife has probably kept religion alive much longer than ever thought of. I think its that "soul" thing that has people confused.
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  #12  
Old 09-04-2004, 07:35 AM
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What I believe:

• I believe in spirit (“Atma”) may be because I am from India and Hindu, and each life form is controlled by negative/ positive factors.
• Each life form has its own objective on earth. We are being Atma(spirit) on earth to gain energy. We are reborn until the required energy is achieved what helps to create environment.
• We are here to create environment for future. To shape anything in this universe, negative and positive have to join together.
• Behavior differentiation depends on percentage of negative/ positive factors in us. We are on earth with purpose predetermined by super natural power (In Hindu we call “Parmatma”).

Purpose of religion is to build strong society and that strong society generates strong environment. Environment is essential factor for any doing.
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Old 09-04-2004, 07:58 AM
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Quote:
What I believe:

• I believe in spirit (“Atma”) may be because I am from India and Hindu, and each life form is controlled by negative/ positive factors.
• Each life form has its own objective on earth. We are being Atma(spirit) on earth to gain energy. We are reborn until the required energy is achieved what helps to create environment.
• We are here to create environment for future. To shape anything in this universe, negative and positive have to join together.
• Behavior differentiation depends on percentage of negative/ positive factors in us. We are on earth with purpose predetermined by super natural power (In Hindu we call “Parmatma”).

Purpose of religion is to build strong society and that strong society generates strong environment. Environment is essential factor for any doing.
I agree with your purpose for religion, however that is the ideal purpose for religion and not what it is largely today unfortunately. I have been brought up in eastern philosophy as well at start but I don't understand why people say they believe something because of where they are. You either believe it or you don't there needs to be no justification for it. Kind of like when people say I am a Christian because my parents are. I just don't understand why you would do that or rather I do understand but don't agree with it.
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  #14  
Old 09-04-2004, 03:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Itsdarts
I agree that the prospect of the afterlife has probably kept religion alive much longer than ever thought of. I think its that "soul" thing that has people confused.
If one were to go to the afterlife but their body still remained here it may cause some confusion as to what went to the other side/heaven/pearly gates/to the west/other side of the mountain or wherever.

So to explain the implausible it was needed to come up with something that would transgress to the other side. Thus the concept of the soul.

This concept is utterly rediculous. Humans are very pompous to assume that we have some godly soul whilst all other living creatures just merely die and thats it. Poppycock. Utter nonsense.
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  #15  
Old 09-04-2004, 03:38 PM
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Originally Posted by sadashivan
So religion is a system of belief in society.
Can someone enlighten me about religion and whether or not they all believe they are not allowed to judge people? I know Christians are not allowed to judge, that's for sure. And if this is the case, that no religion is allowed to judge, religious people should not be judges or legislatures or politicians because they would be breaking their rules and then they go to hell. Right. Only Atheist should be allowed to judge, since they are not religious.

WTF? Somebody tell me this is not so! Just say it isn't so! Just say it isn't so! Say it's a bad dream and this is not real!

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