TED Conversations

This conversation is closed.

Does religion have any relevance in the modern world ?

Given that most religions are founded on ideas and teachings that come from books written hundreds, or even thousands of years ago, and that their relevance to modern ideas have been superceded by scientific discoveries, is it logical to have any belief in religion ?


Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • thumb
    Apr 16 2012: Faith cannot be superceded by scientific discoveries.
    And personally, though I consider myself an agnostic, I enjoy the sheer diversity of cultures and perspectives of people around me, and religion is a grave part of it. Though it's true that religion has often been misused for the purpose of illegitimate control, the core teachings, as Colleen points out, can be meaningful.
    • thumb
      Apr 16 2012: I agree Eun A Jo,
      I do not practice a religion, and personally think/feel that much of the dogma is limiting and controling, However, as long as a religious belief and practice does not adversly impact other people, I enjoy the diversity of cultures and perspectives of all people in our world:>)
      • thumb
        Apr 17 2012: Actually, no, the word supernatural means over, above, or beyond the scope of the Natural realm. Natural means of nature. Nature means the physical, observable universe. Secular Humanism doctrine insists that everything is natural including anything and everything Man can observe or imagine. I do not refuse to admit the existence of a cause over, above, and beyond the Natural which does, in fact, "limit and control" the Universe. I hope you will permit me to answer "No" to your question, I would find it both limiting and controlling if you do not. Thank you for your question Ms. Steen. Best wishes.
        • thumb
          Apr 17 2012: Thanks Edward,
          I'm aware of the meanings of natural and supernatural. It is not my position to "permit" one to answer one way or another, and in fact, "I enjoy the diversity of cultures and perspectives of all people in our world", as I mention in the comment above:>)

          In another post, you write..." do you consider religion to be a strictly human invention, or do you think there must be a supernatural component? Mr. Just and Mr. Monaghhan clearly believe religion is of human origin. I believe the distinction is critical. Which do you mean by your question, of human origin, or supernatural, or possibly both?"

          I believe religions to be of human origin. After a near fatal injury, the energy that powers the body left, and visited what you may describe as "over, above, or beyond the scope of the natural realm". I felt it to be very natural, in fact, maybe more natural than the earth school experience, because it was recognized that everything and everyone is interconnected with energy. There was no seperation because of religions.
      • thumb
        Apr 17 2012: What a delight to meet someone who also believes religion is a "wholly" human invention. Thank you!
        I suggest the next question is, "Is ____________ a religion (of human invention)?" [Fill-in the blank with the name of any of the many religions]. Imagine the impact of a true "No" answer. We would need to face the reality of someone, something, over and above us, something supernatural controlling and limiting us, particularly in our depraved tendancies. Best wishes young lady.
        • thumb
          Apr 17 2012: My pleasure Edward:>)

          As I said, I believe religions to be of human origin, and I do not think/feel that we are "depraved".
        • thumb
          Apr 19 2012: Edward, what makes you think we all need something above us or we will revert to the law of the jungle.

          Take a look from our perspective - If there are no gods we are as we are now.

          In fact our ancestors have been living in groups for longer than we have been modern humans.

          We are getting slightly better getting along, more equality, more civil societies. I don't need relgion or a god to live a reasonably good life. I am equipped with reason and instinct for both good and bad.

          I imagine the impact would be pretty much like any place is now. Perhaps we might be a bit more objective on some issues. Maybe we might make some progress on female equality in some places etc.

          The 10-20% of non believers in Australia are not any worse than the believers.

          Isn't it better to do good and be compassionate because you think it improves the human condition than because it is your gods will.

          In fact believe in god doesnt seem to make much difference at all to living a good or bad life.

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.