TED Conversations

Farokh Shahabi Nezhad

CEO & Co-Founder at Idearun, TEDxTehran


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Is there any way to prevent religious debates from turning into a big fight?

People discuss lots of things, politics, sports, anything
But when they discuss religious opinions, most of the time, they get all angry and try to win even with fight.
why is that? why that can't be a normal subject?
and more important, How can we prevent this?


Closing Statement from Farokh Shahabi Nezhad

Tnx everyone for their replies. I enjoyed learning from different aspect for this problem.

I can only conclude this : Don't argue with someone unless they are open minded and ready to be changed and challenged.

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  • Feb 13 2013: Because religion doesn't subscribe to being falsified, i.e. all religions are contradictory, islam, christianity, etc. But people believe them because the human mind is irrational and doesn't work correctly. We can think of religion as vestigal.

    Most people don't understand what science has discovered about how the human mind works - most reason is unconscious. See here:

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      Feb 13 2013: Re: "the human mind is irrational and doesn't work correctly"

      My brain is working fine, thank you, even though it may be irrational it times. I might ask if religion is rational?
      Often people learn a religion in the same manner they learn a language, they are exposed to it and accept it without question.
      • Feb 13 2013: Which religion, which god? There are thousands. How would a single human be able to claim to have studied all the religions and all the gods that have ever existed throughout history? Yet you claim you can know, I think it is people who believe who suffer from hubris and delusion. Since the god they tend to believe in is one that is local to them geographically or of the era in which they lived. Isn't that a curious thing?

        As for your brain, you aren't capable of deciding what you do and don't know. Science has shown all sorts of deficits in how our mind works. i.e. it is not reliable.
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          Feb 13 2013: What part of my reply did you not understand? Perhaps your brain is not "working."

          I wrote, "Often people learn a religion in the same manner they learn a language, they are exposed to it andaccept it without question." Do you disagree with this statement?

          Regarding what "science has shown", please provide a reference. We can't debate generalities.
          Regard Dan Denett's, I think you undertood the point,

          "Here's my proposal. I'm going to just take a couple of minutes to explain it -- education in world religions, on world religions, for all of our children in primary school, in high school, in public schools, in private schools and in home schooling. So what I'm proposing is, just as we require reading, writing, arithmetic, American history, so we should have a curriculum on facts about all the religions of the world -- about their history, about their creeds, about their texts, their music, their symbolisms, their prohibitions, their requirements. And this should be presented factually, straightforwardly, with no particular spin, to all of the children in the country. And as long as you teach them that, you can teach them anything else you like. That, I think, is maximal tolerance for religious freedom. As long as you inform your children about other religions, then you may -- and as early as you like and whatever you like -- teach them whatever creed you want them to learn. But also let them know about other religions."
      • Feb 13 2013: Unfortunately you don't understand that even with Dennett's proposed courses, you still wouldn't have done enough because there are lost gods/religions that no one knows about.

        You just don't seem to understand that it requires resources that human beings just do not possess.
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          Feb 13 2013: Please do not assume to know what I understand, it does you the disservice, not me.
          Is this a discussion or do you feel the need to be right? The need to "be right" is the point of the discussion in a way.

          Let' s start here: I wrote, "Often people learn a religion in the same manner they learn a language, they are exposed to it and accept it without question." Do you disagree with this statement?

          Why does the brain support beliefs? Obviously there is a human benefit for it or it might not be supported evolutionarily.

          "A belief system is a set of mutually supportive beliefs. The beliefs of any such system can be classified as religious, philosophical, ideological or a combination of these. Philosopher Jonathan Glover says that beliefs are always a part of a belief system, and that belief systems are difficult to completely revise."

          Does evolution explain why the human brain supports religious belief?



          Complain to Dennett about his courses. Did you listen to his point?
      • Feb 13 2013: I really don't grasp why you are even replying, religion is false. It's demonstrably false. There is little need to teach lies to children and allow them to continue to exist.

        Are you religious in any way and do you believe in god?

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