Grey Wolf wrote (In part):
|..... there has been thoughtless people on both side for many many years.|
I agree, subject to my comments to chwsks' comments below
I have a relative whom I managed to thoroughly confuse by saying to him: "You're a Theist, whereas I am an Atheist". Complete ignorance of what the label attached to that group of organisations means.
|Today an Agnostic/Atheist is just as likely to be a complete fool as any member of the Church.|
That implies that people are Atheist because of some kind of peer pressure. That is backwards IMO. Atheists have the courage of their convictions to have a position against the non-sensical & irrational traditional organisation, whereas theists are much more likely to belong because of peer pressure or tradition amongst other equally irrational reasons. The Theists are the sheep following the herd here, not the Atheists.
Atheists have the intelligence to not go along with the thoroughly ridiculous idea of religion. With Theists, it would be interesting to come up with a complete list of reasons why they follow along DESPITE
their intelligence / academic achievements.
I agree with Moschops
in his description of religion as a form of government providing societal structure.
The trouble is, that it can easily become a theocracy. Theocracies are all about power - if one can convince the population to believe in a religion, then one has power or at least influence over them, whether or not there is a separate functioning government. This easily translates to the religious organisation influencing the government. It is worse if the religious organisation is the government, and especially worse if the control the military or have a military of their own.
Religion has been the cause of many of the worlds problems throughout history and still is. It reminds me of the Family Guy skit where everyone was getting along fine, then religion was invented, so they started killing each other.
It is worth noting that here in Australia, there is going to be a Royal Commission (the highest form of inquiry in the Commonwealth) on the sexual abuse of children while in the care of various organisations (not limited to churches). Although I understand that what went on in these situations (about 10,000 submissions) is not endorsed in any way whatsoever by the vast majority of members of religious groups, it will be interesting to see what the conclusions / recommendations of the RC will be.
Why can't people treat each other how they would like to be treated themselves?