Banning religion?

Discussion in 'Religion Archives' started by RedStar, Aug 8, 2012.

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Should we ban or restrict religion?

  1. Yes, ban it

    3 vote(s)
    9.1%
  2. Restrict it, but do not ban it

    6 vote(s)
    18.2%
  3. No, leave "religious freedom" alone

    18 vote(s)
    54.5%
  4. Other

    6 vote(s)
    18.2%
  1. RedStar The Comrade! Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    462
    No, I'm not trolling.

    Religion is, in many ways, a cause of many social problems. It is wholly scientifically illegitimate, and counter-productive. It is divisive and deceptive. Should religion, therefore, be banned?

    The argument against banning religion would stem from the idealistic "free speech" principle, but in this case, it is more beneficial for society to protect religious "free speech" or to do away with religion? Which is materially more beneficial? This is akin to another argument: is it more important to protect a man's right to "private property" or to seize his property and feed hungry children? Which is more important, ideals and principles or material benefit for society in general?

    Enver Hoxha, the leader of the People's Republic of Albania, instituted a number of anti-religious reforms. In 1946, the Agrarian Reform Law nationalized most of the property of private religious institutions (e.g. churches) and therefore removed the wealth from the institutions.

    Article 37 of the Albanian Constitution of 1976 stated "The State recognises no religion, and supports atheistic propaganda in order to implant a scientific materialistic world outlook in the people".

    Much as I don't like to quote from Wikipedia:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion_in_Albania#Communist_Albania

    These measures were largely successful. Although some Albanians continued to worship in secret, Albania today is one of the least religious countries in the world.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. seagypsy Banned Banned

    Messages:
    1,165
    you can outlaw religious activities but you cannot prevent faith and religious thinking. Sure over time you can gain control of the youth by causing ill will between the young and their parents. But I can't accept stripping the concept of parental love and trust from a child. I am atheist, but I am still human.
     
  3. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,526
    No need to ban it - just keep it private and between consenting adults. ;)
     
  4. Rav Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,396
    Banning religion is a ridiculous idea. It would never work anyway, and it's oppressive. People should be free to embrace whatever worldview that makes sense of their lives and provides a basis upon which they can carve out a meaningful existence. The one caveat is that I feel that the moment the actions that might flow out of such a worldview become oppressive to others is the moment that such freedom should be restricted.

    Freedom can't be absolute. It needs to be about the collective as well as the individual.
     
  5. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    15,058
    I think the underlying issue can be summed up in the following questions:
    1. How to develop a meaningful sense of personal identity while living in a pluralistic society?
    2. How to meaningfully function in a pluralistic society?
    3. How to productively deal with differences among people while living in a pluralistic society?
     
  6. lightgigantic Banned Banned

    Messages:
    16,330
    I guess that explains why Bruce Willis is facing criminal charges in Albania ... you know, being illegitimate and what not
    :shrug:
     
  7. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,526
    Why have you posted a link to Wiki's entry of "Armageddon" within "facing criminal charges"??
    And is your post supposed to have some contextual sense, LG?
    Perhaps you can explain?
     
  8. S.A.M. uniquely dreadful Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    72,822
    If you have to ban an ideology to counter its effects you've already lost the battle. Think Drug Wars, Prohibition. Banning doesn't change anything. The biggest example is the Soviet Union where religion was banned. China is another. Both have seen a resurgence in faith following a collapse of the system.
     
  9. Anew Life isn't a question. Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    350
    On religion..

    storied text is interesting..
     
  10. Buddha12 Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,951
    If there were no religions , someone would invent one.
     
  11. lightgigantic Banned Banned

    Messages:
    16,330
    Just looking at the facts and being super rational.
    Everything is there about bruce willis being scientifically illegitimate and wotnot.

    You will have to excuse me for not having the time to explain it to you but at the moment I am busy with other things, preparing for the coming christmas season by destroying all the christmas tree in the locality

    :shrug:
     
  12. Saturnine Pariah Hell is other people Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,070
    Too enforce an ideology will simply lead to those under it's oppression to resent and fight against it, banning or restriction of religion is not a solution but a set up for underground activities. The only real way to combat religion is to destroy its creditability or make it diaphanous, irrelevant and pointless to society as a whole.
     
  13. Thoreau OIF Veteran 2003-2011 Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,364
    I don't think banning religion is a good idea, nor is it even really possible. You can't control what or how people think. However, I think limiting their influence in society would be highly beneificial, especially in the political arena.
     
  14. spidergoat nameless monster Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    47,018
    Albania in the 70's was a shithole that people with the means to do so could not leave fast enough.
     
  15. Gremmie "Happiness is a warm gun" Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,540
    IMO, religion should never be banned...

    To say that it should, is the same as saying "free thought", or "opinion" should be banned.

    However, I reserve the right to disagree with said thoughts and opinions.
     
  16. Bells Frostbite! Staff Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    It wasn't successful. People were actually killed or incarcerated and tortured for believing in their deity of choice.

    From your link:

    The clergy were publicly vilified and humiliated, their vestments taken and desecrated. More than 200 clerics of various faiths were imprisoned, others were forced to seek work in either industry or agriculture, and some were executed or starved to death. The monastery of the Franciscan order in Shkodër was set on fire, which resulted in the death of four elderly monks.[23]

    Article 37 of the Albanian Constitution of 1976 stipulated, "The State recognises no religion, and supports atheistic propaganda in order to implant a scientific materialistic world outlook in the people",[25] and the penal code of 1977 imposed prison sentences of three to ten years for "religious propaganda and the production, distribution, or storage of religious literature." A new decree that in effect targeted Albanians with Christian names stipulated that citizens whose names did not conform to "the political, ideological, or moral standards of the state" were to change them. It was also decreed that towns and villages with religious names must be renamed. Hoxha's brutal antireligious campaign succeeded in eradicating formal worship, but some Albanians continued to practice their faith clandestinely, risking severe punishment. Individuals caught with Bibles, icons, or other religious objects faced long prison sentences. Religious weddings were prohibited.[26] Parents were afraid to pass on their faith, for fear that their children would tell others. Officials tried to entrap practicing Christians and Muslims during religious fasts, such as Lent and Ramadan, by distributing dairy products and other forbidden foods in school and at work, and then publicly denouncing those who refused the food, and clergy who conducted secret services were incarcerated.[23]

    You cannot regulate thought and belief.

    And that is horrific. How you can say that was successful is beyond me.
     
  17. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,526
    WTF??
    You'll have to explain further... as your point seems to escape me?
     
  18. Yazata Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,542
    Maybe not intentionally.

    It is? That case still needs to be made.

    It might be true when religious practices are socially or ethically disfunctional.

    But my own opinion is that in many cases something else is happening. Religion typically represents what people in any society think is highest and best. So leaders and would-be leaders will inevitably try to use religion to justify whatever it is that they want to do, and whatever is is that they want the people to support.

    The thing is, even if we got rid of religion, there would still be crimes and human-rights abuses. People will still have ideas (albeit more secular ones perhaps) about what's highest and best. And unscrupulous leaders will still try to wrap themselves in those new flags. It might be 'Marxist revolution' or something like that.

    It is? That case also needs to be made.

    Since religion often concerns itself with ideas about supernatural beings and states of affairs, it's hard to see how naturalistic science would have much relevance in helping us decide whether or not those ideas are legitimate.

    How do you propose to ban religion? Who would decide upon and perform the banning? What kind of control over individual people and their most deeply personal thoughts and behavior would this power have to command? How could anything other than an absolutely totalitarian power even attempt such a thing?

    And more broadly from the concept of individual rights, freedoms and liberties, and ultimately from the idea of the soverignty of the people.

    And who decides what is "more beneficial for society"? The people who comprise that society? Or some elitist revolutionary vanguard that's appointed itself to rule over the supposedly ignorant people in their "best interest"?
     
  19. kx000 Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,779
    Religion is partying, pretty much, kind of different. You all get religious. Ban modern churches? Nay. They have significant value, imagine the faithful when we overcome. WE will storm the churches. They are ours, we will amend our words taken from us and skewered.

    Love, love, love.
     
  20. spidergoat nameless monster Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    47,018
    I don't think they have much value to society, but that's irrelevant. It's impossible to ban religion without also becoming a totalitarian police state.
     

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