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AbdelRahman Siddig

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Can we live without a religion?

Many people associate the word religion to Islam , Christianity or Judaism
but religion word is much more than that
religion in short form is a "life style " believe or not
your life style is your religion
religion is a template with Basic fields
Who Made life ?
Why he made ?
What he want from you? in other word how should we spend our time in this word ?
any answers to the above question will form a religion regardless of the answers
Who Made life ? no one
Why he made ? I don't know
What he want from you? No thing
how should we spend our time in this word ? as I wish
this a complete religion
but the question will be is it True or false answers
What I want to say

"No one can live a single moment without a religion "

but he can live with true or false religion deepening on his answers

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  • Jun 19 2011: "Can we live without a religion?"
    yes.
    but it is risky.
    because no one could prove afterlife not exist.
    so it is risky like driving at high speed with no insurance.
    or building a home not resistant to earthquake.
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      Jun 19 2011: It isn't more risky than subscribing to one particular faith over all others. Maybe we're both wrong and we're both infuriating the mighty Norse God Odin. Maybe we're part of a cyclic universe and this conversation will happen time and time again. The difference is that, as an atheist I'm not constrained to a huge set of rules about what I cannot eat or what ritual I have to follow or what I'm not allowed to do this day or that. Until there's solid reasons to believe in the aferlife, you might as well pick any idea out of the hat of infinite possibilities and hope you got it right (although it may make no difference in the end).
      • Jun 20 2011: "It isn't more risky than subscribing to one particular faith over all others."
        I am Muslims and I have no risk. I do is doing pray some minutes in day and fasting one month per year. this makes life risky?

        "Maybe we're part of a cyclic universe and this conversation will happen time and time again. "
        I can not live with maybe and perhaps. I prefer to life with evidence. until know the most certain evidence I have found is Koran and TRUE Islam.
        also Imam Sadiq (PBUH) said:
        "God has 12000 universe."

        "Maybe we're part of a cyclic universe and this conversation will happen time and time again"
        not maybe. according to Islamic sayings this happened and happens again and again.

        but please note each human has only one life. and we will not have any new opportunity after our death.
        *** today is doing and not result. tomorrow is result and not doing ***
        prophet Muhammad (PBUH)

        I pick by wisdom. not random.
        also about eating the important ones is wine and pork, blood. eating of other does usually not happen so much in life.
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          Jun 20 2011: It's not particularly compelling. You've shown in the other thread that you yourself rely heavily on other people's interpretation of the Koran. An interpretation rife with manipulation.
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          Jul 11 2011: Matthieu makes an excellent point which bears repeating: if the reason to believe is to have "insurance" against the possibility of missing out on heaven (positive) or against the wrath of the Creator (negative), then believing in any faith is just as risky as having no faith, because you could very well have the *wrong* faith. This is one of the many problems with "Pascal's Wager" (an argument advanced in support of Christian faith, with the exact same rationale). To repeat Matthieu's words, "Maybe we're both wrong and we're both infuriating the mighty Norse God Odin."

          "I can not live with maybe and perhaps." Now you're getting to the real reason for religion. People crave security, and religion offers security above and beyond all else.
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          Jul 16 2011: Life is not meant to be risk-free or even "low" risk. What substantial good has happened without risk being taken?
          In that regard, by virtue of your decision to follow the teachings of Islam to the exclusion of all else, you have taken an extreme risk. It may very well suit your own definition of living life to the fullest, but others - those who adhere to different religious teachings and those who don't look to religion at all to find meaning in life - all are in a very real sense taking their own paths towards earthly death. Life is risky, but there is no "insurance" you can buy to minimize that risk.
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          Jul 16 2011: Tony - "people crave security, and religion offers security above and beyond all else"

          This is the elephant in the church/temple/mosque!

          For me, religion would be the easy way out of the difficult yet beautiful labyrinth of life.
      • Jun 21 2011: many people interpret Koran.
        I only relay on some of them.
        some who are said by Koran itself.
        Koran itself like pieces of a puzzle guided us which interpret is accepted by God and Koran.
        Koran always has at least one alive true interpreter even today.
        I explained who are them here:
        http://www.ted.com/conversations/3351/understanding_quran.html

        "An interpretation rife with manipulation."
        agree.

        please reading different interpretations for science and general information about Koran does not mean relay.
        for relay only few interpretations are valid.
      • Jun 24 2011: "It's not particularly compelling. You've shown in the other thread that you yourself rely heavily on other people's interpretation "
        please read this thread:
        http://www.ted.com/conversations/3351/understanding_quran.html?c=266738
        carefully to know which interpret of Koran is reliable and which is not.
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hadith_of_the_two_weighty_things
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Fourteen_Infallibles
        each of them have lots of reliable interpret of Koran. and other is valid only if have enough certain proof.
        please not studying interpret in having more knowledge about Koran is different of reliable interpret.
        you know anythings in newspaper but not all things you read is reliable.
        only interpret having enough support by proof and rational and sayings of prophet and Ahl al Bayt are reliable. not any interpret.
      • Jul 11 2011: Dear Tony Kuphaldt,
        1- Pascal's Wager is a rational and logical argument independent of any religion. it is first step and next step is selecting true religion.
        2- religion as Insurance is the min. benefit of religion and benefits of believing is not limited to it. but as Insurance it is min. req. to be safe from Hell.
        3-"Maybe we're both wrong" this is logically true. then what? this causes leaving all religions completely?
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_religions_and_spiritual_traditions
        the reply is simple: researching among religions to find out which is the true religion God satisfy (by assumption that God exist in this Insurance plan)
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          Jul 15 2011: The main fault I see in Pascal's Wager is that it assumes the very doctrine it argues for: reward for belief and no reward for non-belief. The Wager is a valid argument for belief in God only if there is the possibility of a God who rewards those who believe in Him, *and* there is no significant risk incurred by believing. If the possibility of reward for non-belief and/or the possibility of punishment for wrong belief exists, then the Wager fails.

          If, for example, Buddhists are correct by teaching that eternal suffering is caused by craving, and that this cycle may be broken only by relinquishing those cravings, then Pascal's Wager may be used to argue for *not* clinging to a God who grants love and eternal bliss. This simple change in initial assumptions reveals Pascal's Wager to be a circular argument: it assumes the very thing it argues for.

          Another problem I see with Pascal's Wager is that it offers God as a means to an end, rather than an end itself. Many religious people I know would take offence at this notion, that God would honor the faith of someone who is merely looking to get a piece of heaven for themselves. To them, faith springs from a deep love of God with no expectation of reward.

          Thirdly, Pascal's Wager ignores the immediate harm done to the individual by believing in something as a means to an end. I would argue that choosing to believe in something primarily to appease a superior is to sell out your own integrity.

          There may very well be good reasons to believe in God, but a wager based on the probability of personal gain is not one of them.
      • Jul 16 2011: Dear Jim,
        what if God did not accept your self made religion at Judgement day?
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          Jul 16 2011: Dear S.R.,
          what if Odin did not accept your self made religion on Judgment day?
        • Jul 22 2011: Dude, come on. You're a Muslim. Don't you know how many Christian fundies out there believe you'll go to hell for this fact? You don't switch to Christianity for "safety". If you're concerned about hedging your bets, why don't you convert to Judaism? I think all the Abrahamic religions offer at least some concession to the Jews. Besides, religions are always raging about not worshiping other gods, but atheism gets a fairly mild admonition in comparison, so by your logic wouldn't atheism be the safest thing to go with? And what about Jainism and Wicca and Hinduism and the Buddhist religions and Scientology and Roman mythology and Mormonism and Shinto? If you think your religion is true, then that's great for you, and you should base your arguments on why you think so. But arguing that a person should believe because not believing is "risky" is not really a good argument.
      • Jul 16 2011: Dear Matthieu,
        Jim said that this is his beliefs so it is made by himself.
        I do not let myself make any reigion. because if only one human follow me I should be responsible for his sins at Judgement day and I am partner in every deed of him.
        I try to not say anything out of Koran and Hadith (sayings of Fourteen Infallibles)
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Fourteen_Infallibles
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hadith_of_the_two_weighty_things
        if I be successful do not not add anything from myself then it is not self made and it is Muhammad (PBUH) made which is actually God made.
        at Judgement day God is Judge and judge is based on rules of God. not rules of any one other.
        at Judgement day God says to who believe in anything other than God:
        http://tanzil.net/#search/quran/%D8%B4%D8%B1%DA%A9%D8%A7%D8%A6%D9%8A
      • Jul 18 2011: Dear Tony,
        it is talking about after death.
        Indeed not believing had rewards before death.

        "If the possibility of reward for non-belief "
        at least one evidence for this should be. but bible and Koran and Torah says other thing.

        about Buddhism it needs research. I consider Buddhist beliefs specially returning to world after death false.

        anyway this is start and is not all. after start much research about religions and God is needed.
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          Jul 22 2011: There is no evidence of reward for non-belief, just as there is no evidence of reward for belief. Sadly, all we have to go on are the non-verifiable and contradictory claims of other people. What actual research -- and by that I mean the examination of primary data -- could one do to verify whether any particular life-after-death claim is real?

          Ironically, that's what Pascal's Wager was based on: an argument for faith based solely on the probability of reward for having faith, in the absence of evidence either for or against the existence of God. What I'm saying is that Pascal's Wager is a circular argument: it argues for the very thing it assumes. Assume that there is the possibility of reward for belief (with no reward for non-belief), and it leads you to the "safest bet" of belief. But if you admit the possibility of reward for non-belief, Pascal's Wager might just lead you to skepticism. Like all circular arguments, Pascal's Wager is arbitrary and therefore invalid.

          I am very curious what you would propose a person do as "research" to verify a religious claim about the afterlife, and specifically what one must do to enter Heaven.
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      Jun 19 2011: Why do we need the bribe of an afterlife to live a good and decent life right now?
      • Jun 20 2011: sorry.
        I did not understand.
        please explain.
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          Jun 20 2011: I mean all religions promise us a heaven if we live good lives on Earth, or threaten us with hell if we are bad.

          So then people are being motivated to be good only because they will go to heaven, and not because they genuinely care for and have consideration for other people.

          That is like a bribe.

          What will happen as a result is that people will stop being creative. They will only look to their holy books for what to do and what not to do. When a new situation arises that was not mentioned in the holy book, they will still react in old ways, which may not be suitable to the newer problems. The essence of being in the world is to adapt and change as the world changes. Strict adherence to centuries-old books without adaptation is like not accepting change and living in the past.

          I'm not saying there's no good in holy books, but we should be allowed to take the spirit of the holy books and reframe it for the changing times.

          For example, in this age of scientific research and rational explanation, the concept of an afterlife is, with all due respect, a little silly. It can still remain as a belief, but we should not base our behavior on that belief. That is very simple-minded.
      • Jun 21 2011: "So then people are being motivated to be good only because they will go to heaven, and not because they genuinely care for and have consideration for other people."
        not only for Hell.

        the pray and obeying God is in 3 category:
        1- for fear of Hell
        2- for greed of Heaven
        3- some pray and obey God because they found God worthy to appreciate.

        not the pray of all people are the same.

        "What will happen as a result is that people will stop being creative. "
        disagree. God wants to people be creative.

        "When a new situation arises that was not mentioned in the holy book, they will still react in old ways, "
        disagree. religion laws are like formula and has some principals and new secondary rules can be made according to new happenings. in Islam this is called fatwa.

        religion is compatible with change.

        "I'm not saying there's no good in holy books, but we should be allowed to take the spirit of the holy books and reframe it for the changing times."
        already religion is so.

        "For example, in this age of scientific research and rational explanation, the concept of an afterlife is, with all due respect, a little silly."
        many things were silly before discovery by sciense.
        until there is no evidece or proof for disproving afterlife a rational human does not deny it.

        "It can still remain as a belief, but we should not base our behavior on that belief. "
        why?
        the behaviors that religion wants are not silly. I do not know what special behavior you say? if there is any God we should obey it. perhaps you say some behaviors in deviated and changed religion during history. when a religion is expired and out of date God send his new and updated religion.

        "That is very simple-minded."
        every thing has its price. people maybe befool a believer. but real believer does not care about it.
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          Jun 22 2011: My friend,

          "3- some pray and obey God because they found God worthy to appreciate".
          I'm glad for you if you believe this.

          Have your beliefs, have your religion, have your God, but please don't force others to do as you do.

          Because each and every argument that you put forth on behalf of Allah, a Christian can do the same on behalf of his God, a Jew can do the same on behalf of his Yahweh, a Zoroastrian can do the same on behalf of Ahura Mazda, a Buddhist can do the same on behalf of the Buddha, a Hindu can do the same on behalf of his numerous Gods.

          Your religion may be good from what you describe, but that is not what we see in the world. How you treat other people shows more of your religion than what is in the books.

          The Arabs from the 7th century onwards have been going around and destroying other cultures and Islamizing every civilization. Even in Iran they forced conversion of the Zoroastrians to Islam or massacred thousands who refused to convert. They are now a minority in their own country, or moved to other countries. I don't have to repeat facts from history here.

          To think that only you or your religion is true and only your God is true speaks of supreme arrogance and egoism. When different languages, skin colors and bone structures are equal, how can you say that one conception of the same Divine Spirit is lower than the other.

          Can you go into the minds of other people to see what they feel about their conception of God? If not, out of respect, leave every person to his/her own God an his/her own beliefs. We can only dare to demand civil behavior from one another and nothing more.

          From your arguments, I see that you are not willing to step outside of your beliefs and put forth reasonable statements. You use circular logic - "why is Koran good? Because we believe so. Why do we believe so? because the Koran says so. Why does the Koran say so? Because it is good"

          I will stop here. Peace be with you and to others around you.
      • Jun 28 2011: Dear Abhiram Lohit,
        religions are two type
        1- God made like Abraham religions
        2- man made

        the 2 are only superstition
        the one are now all expired unless Islam. why Gods sends new prophet? Jesus after Moses and Muhammad after Jesus (peace on them all)?
        is not the latest religion more original?

        it depends of if God exist or not.
        please first research it then about religion
        if God exist then God decides which religion is true and accepted not you.
        you say all are true. this is pluralism.
        please read:
        http://www.al-islam.org/religiouspluralism/
        http://www.al-islam.org/al-tawhid/default.asp?url=pluralism.htm

        not all beliefs are truth.

        please do not prejudice about me.
        yes some Muslims use circular logic. but not all.
        when I used circular logic?
        this is your belief.
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        Jul 20 2011: @ Abhiram ": Why do we need the bribe of an afterlife to live a good and decent life right now?"
        why do you gain skills to work for a company which will take care of your needs
        this the default nature of human
        run after gain and run away from pain
    • Jul 11 2011: You see the fact that an afterlife can't be proven as a risk and as a reason to be religious while in fact that fear is a product of your religion. I haven't got any fears about a possible afterlife because what can happen after I die can at best be positive and at least be neutral, because I don't have the outrageous belief that a being that created everything would punish me eternally for simply being human. Please stop using TED for evangelical purposes. You're all just preaching to the choir. The only people that feel the need to ask these kind of questions are people who need religion in the first place and want to convice others of theirs. This question is completely irrelevant and boring for people who are doing perfectly fine without religion.

      Oh, and everybody please stop bending the definition of religion. Everyone needs beliefs because it's simply impossible to fact-check everything you hear. Organized faith-groups with rules on how to live and what to believe on the other hand, are completely unnecessary and actually damaging in the long run (and they've been here for a looooong run already).

      P.S.: Using terms like 'TRUE religion' and 'real believers' really makes you sound arrogant and as brainwashed as all the other suckers who think their religion is true and real.
      • Jul 11 2011: "You see the fact that an afterlife can't be proven as a risk and as a reason to be religious"
        can this be a prove?:
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pascal's_Wager

        "in fact that fear is a product of your religion."
        no fear is from wisdom and logic and possibility of danger.

        "and at least be neutral,"
        at least is Hell.

        "because I don't have the outrageous belief that a being that created everything would punish me eternally for simply being human."
        your belief does not change situation if Hell exist.
        not for being human. but because you had wisdom at your life and did not seek and find and obey God.

        "Please stop using TED for evangelical purposes."
        1-I am not christian
        2- I do not see such think in ted terms

        "P.S.: Using terms like 'TRUE religion' and 'real believers' really makes you sound arrogant and as brainwashed as all the other suckers who think their religion is true and real."
        OK. but this not prove 'TRUE religion' and 'real believers' not exist even if all religious people be brainwashed.

        also washed brain is more clean then unwashed brain!
        • Jul 11 2011: You talk about proof for statements about beliefs in gods and the afterlife while there simply are none, no matter how many interesting links you post here or how many times you ask others to prove their statements.

          You say that the fear of hell is due to 'wisdom and logic and possibility of danger' while only the possibility of danger is a real (and in my opinion) the only good reason for fear. Seeing that hell is as likely to exist as fairies and unicorns and equally unprovable, for me the probability is so low that it's not something to worry about.
          My mother, who loves me, always used reasonable punishment when I did something wrong and only to teach me something. Believing that a being, which is infinitely more intelligent and loving than my mother, could punish me for eternity without the possibilty of me learning from the experience is something I have no reason to believe.

          I'm sorry to say this but you try to come of as a rational person while at the same time you're completely oblivious to the irrationality of your beliefs. Like all the other fruitless 'discussions' I've had with religious people this won't go anywhere because your faith is sealed in a part of your brain which has shut itself off from reality and that's one of the things which makes religion so scary to me.
      • Jul 13 2011: OK
        so better to wait to see the result of your low probability after death.
        see you there!
        • Jul 22 2011: So you admit that if Hell does exist, you'll be there?
      • Jul 14 2011: Dear iqbal,
        also kind of statements of who can not prove afterlife not exist but believe it.
        they are called materialists.
        they believe only material exist with no prove for not existence of soul and God and Hell and NDE and sleep dreams (seen by soul not for reflection of day activities) and many other non-material facts.
        I wonder how they reject what they do not know and can not prove it not exist although there are many facts about their existence (even science have no clear explain for them)

        which kind of statements are more irrational? my statement or materialists statements?
        also I say this statement as final reply to who do not consider any value to some arguments like http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pascal's_Wager and are not ready to accept anything non-material exist.
        this is my final reply after lots of arguments. not my first reply.
        but terrorists have no talk their first reply is killing before any talk.
        Muslims first talk then kill only who block Muslims from spreading their ideas.
        terrorists first kill then not talk.
        what are called who kill Muslims in Palestine, Iraq, Bahrain, Pakistan,...? are they terrorists? or only Muslims are terrorist? and when Muslims are killed "terrorist" change name to "human right" and "peace in middle east"?
        what is the name of killing children in Palestine?
        http://rememberthesechildren.org/about.html
        http://www.ifamericansknew.com/stats/children.html
        http://rememberthesechildren.org/remember2000.html
        why word terrorist is used only for Muslims? who decide about this? do you disagree TV learns this to people? who controls the larges TV channels?
        • Jul 22 2011: Personally I found the terrorist statement offensive, and I'm not even Muslim. I have a problem with this statement: "Muslims first talk then kill only who block Muslims from spreading their ideas. terrorists first kill then not talk." Why do you have to kill anyone? Why can't we all just have our beliefs, and cohabitate. I know religion will not die anytime soon, so morals won't be made out of hoping for other's welfare but for our own selfish gain in the afterlife. However, why can't you be a Muslim over here on the right, and this other person be a Christian over here on the left, and this other person be another religion, or have a lack of religion, and everyone just admit that they failed to convert the person, and still be nice to them and give them equal rights to live, be happy, and be free. I'm tired of religions causing people to kill each other just because groups of people will not change their religion to all be the same. Just stop killing, that's something I really ask for. Stop killing, and hurting, and discriminating. Just accept that someone is going to believe differently than you, and that's ok for them.

          We all decide to have different toothpaste, hair colors, clothes, and shoes, without killing each other. Why can't we have different beliefs and rituals?

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