User Tag List

123 Last

Results 1 to 10 of 28

  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Posts
    686

    Default Was religion created as a limiter to human greed?

    I'm not a religious follower and don't believe in Gods pulling strings. Yet I do see the value and sense in some religious doctrine as being essentially useful to societal stability at large. Regardless of the name of religion and it's idealogy the common thread is that they all warn against human vices and encourage the development of virtues that restrict those vices. Let's call those human vices loosely these destructive behaviours.

    Selfishness/Lack of empathy.
    Envy.
    Laziness.
    Obsession with sensory experience (sex/food/alcohol/drugs).
    Obssession with material objects and power.
    Acts of violence.

    The tenents of most religions state that constant vigilance and the active cultivation of virtues is the way to avoid the destruction brought by these things. I can see where in a largely violent and imbalanced world such broad guidelines on people's behaviour would for the most part promote stability within a society. Human's don't have a good track record of knowing when something is enough. We are poor judger's of when our needs are fulfilled and it's merely our desires which are screaming out for attention. Ironically it seems to be that the further away from needs a human gets the greater the list of wants that present themselves. On the one hand we do desire progress and an increasing quality of life as the ages move forward, I am not arguing against that. But there seems to be no limit to where the desire for more goes.

    Accordingly were the doctrines really created as warnings to ourselves that without developing temperance and learning to rein in desire, we will ultimately cause the breakdown of society? I theorise that the creation of a judging entity overseeing that scheme is a human construct to put more power behind the warning. I recently read this treatise on the collapse of large societies throughout history. And the indicators of decline and collapse seem to correlate with a culture that no longer puts a an effective limiter on it's vices.

    http://www.newworldeconomics.com/arc...rJohnGlubb.pdf

    I do not intend to create a God debate here. More a discussion of the general principles of living and having stable society. I don't want to get into a discussion about whether or not a particular religion is hyprocritical. More so just human's ability or inability to place a check on it's own inclinations and behaviour. Are we missing a trick here or do we have effective personal and societal control of our natural inclination to want ever more than what we have?

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Posts
    1,628

    Default

    The way I see it, the first human religions were started by martyrs who witnessed extreme life experiences and visions and sought to rectify their old ways of life in search of the truth. This led to cults and followings. Eventually, new religions were spawned out of martyrs, followings of people who tried and sometimes failed to overturn an existing social order.
    Soon, "large" religions garnered the support of political institutions and cults were considered heretical. And now people think cults are crazy even though the people who join cults often have the vital zeal for a religion.

    That's my understanding. So, no, a greater "power" did not engineer religion to curb human folly. I see it as a Hanlon's Razor kinda thing.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Posts
    686

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Nihilogen View Post
    That's my understanding. So, no, a greater "power" did not engineer religion to curb human folly. I see it as a Hanlon's Razor kinda thing.
    So you agree. It's a human construct designed to keep an undesirable human trait in check.

  4. #4
    Senior Member blahblahbob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    MBTI
    INFP
    Enneagram
    5w4
    Posts
    128

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Chthonic View Post
    I'm not a religious follower and don't believe in Gods pulling strings. Yet I do see the value and sense in some religious doctrine as being essentially useful to societal stability at large. Regardless of the name of religion and it's idealogy the common thread is that they all warn against human vices and encourage the development of virtues that restrict those vices. Let's call those human vices loosely these destructive behaviours.

    Selfishness/Lack of empathy.
    Envy.
    Laziness.
    Obsession with sensory experience (sex/food/alcohol/drugs).
    Obssession with material objects and power.
    Acts of violence.

    The tenents of most religions state that constant vigilance and the active cultivation of virtues is the way to avoid the destruction brought by these things. I can see where in a largely violent and imbalanced world such broad guidelines on people's behaviour would for the most part promote stability within a society. Human's don't have a good track record of knowing when something is enough. We are poor judger's of when our needs are fulfilled and it's merely our desires which are screaming out for attention. Ironically it seems to be that the further away from needs a human gets the greater the list of wants that present themselves. On the one hand we do desire progress and an increasing quality of life as the ages move forward, I am not arguing against that. But there seems to be no limit to where the desire for more goes.

    Accordingly were the doctrines really created as warnings to ourselves that without developing temperance and learning to rein in desire, we will ultimately cause the breakdown of society? I theorise that the creation of a judging entity overseeing that scheme is a human construct to put more power behind the warning. I recently read this treatise on the collapse of large societies throughout history. And the indicators of decline and collapse seem to correlate with a culture that no longer puts a an effective limiter on it's vices.

    http://www.newworldeconomics.com/arc...rJohnGlubb.pdf

    I do not intend to create a God debate here. More a discussion of the general principles of living and having stable society. I don't want to get into a discussion about whether or not a particular religion is hyprocritical. More so just human's ability or inability to place a check on it's own inclinations and behaviour. Are we missing a trick here or do we have effective personal and societal control of our natural inclination to want ever more than what we have?
    It was created as a method for controlling society by the upper class. Christianity just happens to teach decent values when it's not in the hands of psychopaths. Islam is completely the opposite, it teaches cruelty, violence, hatred, brutality, domination, and sadism. Both these religions fulfill the need of ideological control which is being taken over by the TV and internet these days. Only some religions are concerned with regulating genuinely bad behavior, and, even then, only in the hands of someone who has a sincere desire for that. All religions are about control.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Posts
    686

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by blahblahbob View Post
    All religions are about control.
    Yes I agree. I think where I might not agree is what control they are trying to assert. I am well aware that doctrines over the centuries have been cut and tailored to suit individual interests and political climates. But I'm more interested in talking about the origins rather than the embellishments it has undergone over the centuries.

    Do you think that humanity has a proper handle on it's own propensity for greed and does not need any external control mechanism?

  6. #6
    Senior Member blahblahbob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    MBTI
    INFP
    Enneagram
    5w4
    Posts
    128

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Chthonic View Post
    Yes I agree. I think where I might not agree is what control they are trying to assert. I am well aware that doctrines over the centuries have been cut and tailored to suit individual interests and political climates. But I'm more interested in talking about the origins rather than the embellishments it has undergone over the centuries.

    Do you think that humanity has a proper handle on it's own propensity for greed and does not need any external control mechanism?
    Not remotely, I think people are greedy, manipulative, cliquish, naturally cruel and sadistic, violent and abusive. Humanity has never been more greedy than it is now.
    Likes five sounds liked this post

  7. #7
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Mole's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    18,529

    Default The Origin of Religion

    Religion is very, very old and predates control by the cerebral cortex.

    At first we were controlled by the voice of God heard through the bicameral mind.

    But as consciousness arose the bicameral mind started to break down and we could no longer hear the voice of God and had to rely on the critical faculties of the cerebral cortex.

    So to discover the origin of religion click on http://selfdefinition.org/psychology...meral-Mind.pdf

  8. #8
    Permabanned
    Join Date
    May 2009
    MBTI
    ISFP
    Enneagram
    6w7 sx
    Socionics
    SEE Fi
    Posts
    25,301

    Default

    It depends on the religious beliefs, but many actually appear to be early forms of science and psychology. A lot of the ancient Jewish laws surrounding food or sex were about things like disease, and they saw benefit in engaging in particular behavior that helped them to cope with and explain life. In Taoism, Buddhism and other Eastern doctrines, there's a highly beneficial self regulating advice, in which Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (a very effective form of therapy) is very similar. ..stop making things about you, reframing that, look at the other persons perspective, meet in the middle, happiness is found in moderation, health can be found if one doesn't binge and follows natural rhythms of life, deep breathing and certain postures enhance relaxation, clear the mind, exercise the body.

    Pagan religion is replete with early natural medicine, and most religion, pagan or Abrahamic, value the setting of a focused intention (whether called prayer, spells, or meditation) in order to manifest things in one's life.

  9. #9
    failure to thrive AphroditeGoneAwry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    MBTI
    INfj
    Enneagram
    451 sx/so
    Socionics
    ENFj Ni
    Posts
    5,651

    Default

    Yes, but it's all still not as effective as loving the One God. It all comes from Him.

    And the Hebraic Laws are still applicable today! I love God's Law~ Praise Him
    Ni/Ti/Fe/Si
    4w5 5w4 1w9
    ~Torah observant, Christ inspired~
    Life Path 11

    The more one loves God, the more it is that having nothing in the world means everything, and the less one loves God, the more it is that having everything in the world means nothing.

    Do not resist an evil person, but to him who strikes you on the one cheek, offer also the other. ~Matthew 5:39

    songofmary.wordpress.com


  10. #10
    Permabanned
    Join Date
    May 2009
    MBTI
    ISFP
    Enneagram
    6w7 sx
    Socionics
    SEE Fi
    Posts
    25,301

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by AphroditeGoneAwry View Post
    Yes, but it's all still not as effective as loving the One God. It all comes from Him.

    And the Hebraic Laws are still applicable today! I love God's Law~ Praise Him
    You can actually get a form of CBT especially tailored to Christians or Muslims, as well as Buddhists and Taoist and garden variety atheists. I suspect the developers of CBT to be Jungian rather than Freudian in their approach, they saw the underlying major themes in most world religion.

    Which indeed makes a sound basis for belief in a rational higher power, no matter what you call it. How did so many people come to similar conclusions?

Similar Threads

  1. Is anyone else addicted to human evolution?
    By Elfboy in forum Science, Technology, and Future Tech
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 04-22-2011, 10:02 PM
  2. [ENTP] Why do ENTPs perceive any form of disagreement as a challenge to an epic duel?
    By Thessaly in forum The NT Rationale (ENTP, INTP, ENTJ, INTJ)
    Replies: 72
    Last Post: 04-14-2010, 03:23 PM
  3. Was it “politically expedient” for Obama to “accept” the Nobel Peace Prize
    By Vizconde in forum Politics, History, and Current Events
    Replies: 169
    Last Post: 10-13-2009, 05:28 PM
  4. The USA was not founded as a Christian Nation
    By Venom in forum Politics, History, and Current Events
    Replies: 137
    Last Post: 10-29-2008, 02:49 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
Single Sign On provided by vBSSO