The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

General discussion on the subject of religion, losing religion, and having no religion to lose...
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The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Austin Harper » Fri Apr 06, 2018 6:23 pm

Intelligence Squared had a recent debate featuring Michael Shermer and Heather Berlin against Deepak Chopra and Anoop Kumar. The debate is available in video, transcript, complete audio, and abridged audio.

Intelligence Squared wrote:The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God
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Does God have a place in 21st century human affairs? For many, the answer is an unapologetic yes. Belief in a higher power, they argue, is the foundation of human consciousness and the soul of all social, political, and scientific progress. Further, some claim, humans are biologically predisposed to embrace religion and require faith to live moral lives. Others are far more skeptical. For them, adherence to faith and religious tradition serves only to fracture communities and prevent humanity from embracing a more enlightened, reasoned, and just social order. As we look to the future in uncertain times, should spirituality and religion play a central role in human evolution, innovation, and discovery? Or has God become obsolete?
Dum ratio nos ducet, valebimus et multa bene geremus.

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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby ElectricMonk » Fri Apr 06, 2018 7:44 pm

WE have become Gods: using technology, humans are as powerful as most Olympians.
Our standards for deities have risen with our own abilities: unless a divine being can violate the laws of physics, we know that in theory we can match him.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Lausten » Fri Apr 06, 2018 9:27 pm

I don't like the language "we have become gods", but I get the meaning. What we've done is reach the things that our ancestors aspired to. We have made the blind man see and lame to walk. We have embraced the "other" and brought the beggars back into the community. We forgive the repentant and set limits on who is able to walk freely. You can call out from almost anywhere when you are in dire need and be lifted up and healed.

Now, if we could just get a handle on that compassion thing. We have done all of things with no help from gods. We created the languages of math and science that transcend the geographic and theological boundaries of all tribes and denominations and facilitated us bringing our minds together so we could work toward those things that our ancestors could only imagine as something supernatural.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby OlegTheBatty » Fri Apr 06, 2018 9:32 pm

Some countries even manage to pass sane firearm regulations instead of relying on thoughts and prayers.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Sat Apr 07, 2018 12:40 pm

We have never "needed" god. Just a function of evolution and ignorance. Hooray for Science!!! to say or think so is akin to saying we needed to be hungry at some point in time. Just ain't so.

As much as I like Shermer, I won't watch any show with the likes of Chopra on it. such drivel. Seeing him shot down isn't worth the pain of the set up.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Austin Harper » Sat Apr 07, 2018 3:34 pm

I think Heather Berlin made a good argument in her closing comments:
Heather Berlin wrote:Can we have a sense of purpose without God? For me as a scientist, that's not hard to answer. The excitement of discovery, the story of how we humans have used reason and science to illuminate the universe around us, while improving the quality of life for billions of people. That story is far more inspiring than any story told in a religious text or here on this stage and that story has the benefit of evidence behind it. It has the benefit of perhaps being true, at least to the best of our knowledge. The fact is, people do find other sources of meaning and purpose when they lose their sense of religion or even God. Atheists, as a group, are not wallowing in depression or existential angst, and they're no more likely to behave immorally than believers are. And we scientists are enthusiastic, engaged, and optimistic about the real world benefits our work is generating. For instance, the UN Sustainability Goals, none of which require a belief in God, include ending hunger and poverty, providing education and clean water for everyone, protecting the environment, reducing inequality. If that's not a sense of purpose, I don't know what is. And insofar as competing visions of God or what God is, are still a motive for violence in the world, or for oppressing women, homosexuals, or non-believers, then belief in God is currently holding us back. Now, many people still believe in God, and they need God in their lives, and that's okay. But that's not the motion you're being asked to vote on. The motion isn't does less of each of us needs God, the motion is the less we need God, we, as a human species, all of us together. And I'm sympathetic to the comfort that belief in God can give people, and I wouldn't be arrogant to claim that everyone needs that comfort, especially when more and more people clearly do not. It's an empirical fact that we humans, on average, need God less than we used to for explanations, for community, and for comfort. And if you agree, or even if you think the modern world has diminished any of the needs that God has once filled, then logically, the motion is correct. We need God less. And I urge you to vote for the motion.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Sat Apr 07, 2018 3:38 pm

ElectricMonk wrote:WE have become Gods:

I don't know about you, but I haven't become a fictional being.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Aztexan » Sat Apr 07, 2018 7:45 pm

Gods have been modernized and replaced. The dollar bill is a new god. An assault rifle is a god. For some, social media. A mirror. Technology. Pussy. All gods.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Sat Apr 07, 2018 10:11 pm

Aztexan wrote:Gods have been modernized and replaced. The dollar bill is a new god. An assault rifle is a god. For some, social media. A mirror. Technology. Pussy. All gods.

Fool of a human! There is only one god!

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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Austin Harper » Sat Apr 07, 2018 10:52 pm

Are you a god?
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Aztexan » Sat Apr 07, 2018 11:02 pm

Gawdzilla Sama wrote:
Aztexan wrote:Gods have been modernized and replaced. The dollar bill is a new god. An assault rifle is a god. For some, social media. A mirror. Technology. Pussy. All gods.

Fool of a human! There is only one god!

Image


I mentioned pussy.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Sat Apr 07, 2018 11:46 pm

You didn't capitalize it.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Aztexan » Sun Apr 08, 2018 12:40 am

I'm not a pimp.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Sun Apr 08, 2018 12:56 am

Aztexan wrote:I'm not a pimp.

I did the mail order course myself.

But what I was saying is "Pussy", like "God".
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby KevinLevites » Sun Apr 08, 2018 4:51 am

I wonder how you define 'God'.

If you define God as that which is worshipped (a definition that I find to be very conveinient), then I agree with a few points made by ElectricMonk, and we have substituted other objects of worship for God.

This may rub religious people the wrong way, but I see this substitution process as very normal for humans.

The judeo-christian God used to, evidentally, one of many gods...and was worshipped by Canaanites in the bronze age as Ai.

Before that, people probably worshipped animal spirits...and so on.

How far back?

Jane Goodall (a hero of mine) asserts that bonobo chimpanzees worship waterfalls.

So...maybe a skeptic worships the mind?

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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Sun Apr 08, 2018 6:21 am

The better view is that skeptics/scientists don't worship anything. Always interesting how old ways of thinking/expression will carry forward to entirely different scenarios.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Aztexan » Sun Apr 08, 2018 6:31 am

I think sacrificing a virgin these days means layoffs in the IT department.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Phoenix76 » Sun Apr 08, 2018 7:01 am

Aztexan wrote:Gods have been modernized and replaced. The dollar bill is a new god. An assault rifle is a god. For some, social media. A mirror. Technology. Pussy. All gods.


Well, that is an answer from a true skeptic, but perhaps laced with a lot of cynicism. :?:

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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby KevinLevites » Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:00 pm

bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:The better view is that skeptics/scientists don't worship anything. Always interesting how old ways of thinking/expression will carry forward to entirely different scenarios.

Even if you say we don't worship anything, can we at least agree that skeptics have faith in rationality, and, rationality being an object of faith...is it still out in left field to compare this with veneration?

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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:13 pm

KevinLevites wrote:
bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:The better view is that skeptics/scientists don't worship anything. Always interesting how old ways of thinking/expression will carry forward to entirely different scenarios.

Even if you say we don't worship anything, can we at least agree that skeptics have faith in rationality, and, rationality being an object of faith...is it still out in left field to compare this with veneration?

Whoa, lovely loaded question. Leave faith and belief out of it and try again.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Aztexan » Sun Apr 08, 2018 4:44 pm

Phoenix76 wrote:
Aztexan wrote:Gods have been modernized and replaced. The dollar bill is a new god. An assault rifle is a god. For some, social media. A mirror. Technology. Pussy. All gods.


Well, that is an answer from a true skeptic, but perhaps laced with a lot of cynicism. :?:


It's also peppered with weed, sprinkled with cheese, and garnished with BS.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Sun Apr 08, 2018 6:28 pm

KevinLevites wrote:
bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:The better view is that skeptics/scientists don't worship anything. Always interesting how old ways of thinking/expression will carry forward to entirely different scenarios.

Even if you say we don't worship anything, can we at least agree that skeptics have faith in rationality, and, rationality being an object of faith...is it still out in left field to compare this with veneration?


Why am I always saying: "Just Look"? Well: just look:

Always interesting how old ways of thinking/expression will carry forward to entirely different scenarios.

...... and it carries forth just as noticed.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Mara » Mon Apr 09, 2018 7:16 am

Austin Harper wrote:Intelligence Squared had a recent debate featuring Michael Shermer and Heather Berlin against Deepak Chopra and Anoop Kumar. The debate is available in video, transcript, complete audio, and abridged audio.

Intelligence Squared wrote:The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God
Image

Does God have a place in 21st century human affairs? For many, the answer is an unapologetic yes. Belief in a higher power, they argue, is the foundation of human consciousness and the soul of all social, political, and scientific progress. Further, some claim, humans are biologically predisposed to embrace religion and require faith to live moral lives. Others are far more skeptical. For them, adherence to faith and religious tradition serves only to fracture communities and prevent humanity from embracing a more enlightened, reasoned, and just social order. As we look to the future in uncertain times, should spirituality and religion play a central role in human evolution, innovation, and discovery? Or has God become obsolete?


I chuckled at the assumption that 'soul' is the foundation of political and scientific progress, I am sure that is exacly what Nazi were thinking when they were pioneering research in many areas on involuntary participants... and what most of the current environmental and neuro scientists believe in today... Politics are not exactly ethical sphere either...

Chopra is not a very healthy man. No idea why he gets a platform, but then again, everyone can get a platform today.

Belief in God is a need, not a result of rational understanding, there is a difference between emotional IQ and cognitive IQ. Humans have been becoming more cognitively developed but emotionally we still use the same theories derived from experiments on monkeys in our child development text books (I have one at home). Those theories are still used toady, for example Attachment Theory, because they are effective, they check out.

It takes a strong, honest person to develop the level of objectivity to not need the feel-good stories offered by spiritual concepts, but it can be done, it just that most do not want to do it because...well, they feel good. It's a bit like being morbidly obese and still eating fish and chips every night ;-)

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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Austin Harper » Mon Apr 09, 2018 12:51 pm

Mara wrote:Chopra is not a very healthy man. No idea why he gets a platform, but then again, everyone can get a platform today.

I know it's a sort of anti-argument-from-authority fallacy, but if I see that Chopra has endorsed and idea I can with pretty good certainty dismiss it as bunk. The same goes for Dr. Oz.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Mon Apr 09, 2018 1:03 pm

If we don't need god what will I do with all these virgins slated for sacrificing? The current computer science classes are over-subscribed.
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Re: The More We Evolve, the Less We Need God

Postby OlegTheBatty » Mon Apr 09, 2018 6:43 pm

Gawdzilla Sama wrote:If we don't need god what will I do with all these virgins slated for sacrificing? The current computer science classes are over-subscribed.


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