[FoRK] reas. conv. 12/1: MLK on "Love"

Jeff Bone < jbone at place.org > on > Mon Dec 4 10:08:40 PST 2006

On Dec 4, 2006, at 7:43 AM, Jeffrey Winter wrote:

>> My position is that belief in the spiritual --- of any
>> variety --- is in fact and indeed a serious and escalating
>> threat to the future survival and prosperity of the human
>> species and its eventual progeny.  It is nonsensical to
>> tolerate, defer to, or accord respect to such a threat."
>
> I find this notion that religion is a "threat" unconvincing, and
> frankly, ahistorical.

The magnitude of the threat posed by religion --- or threats in  
general these days --- is scaling rapidly away from historical  
precedent, and at an increasing rate.  Here's the basic line of  
reasoning:

   *  technology proceeds along a path of accelerating returns
   *  ...including killing technologies...
   *  ...meaning that the killing power of the individual accelerates...
   *  ...meaning that existential risks come from smaller and smaller  
groups, even individuals...
   *  ...and historically, religion incites more out-group hostility  
than other memeplexes

This attitude that the threats we face today are not *increasingly*  
and *unprecedentedly* existential is a sad and dangerously complacent  
attitude.  One shared, incidentally, among *many* Boomers.  How old  
are you, Mr. Winter?

> The bloodletting laid at the feet
> of theism is rooted in tribalisms of all sort, colored by
> religion certainly.

Certainly!  But religion --- take Islam, for example --- spreads  
super-tribally.  It --- and most religion --- *replaces* tribalism.

> Mostly it seems that antitheists just can't
> brook the notion that others don't think along the same lines that
> they do,

Oh, believe you me --- I'm QUITE aware that many other people don't  
think along the same lines that I do. ;-)  :-)  No illusions there,  
brother.

> and rationalize stances to perceived threats.  In some
> sense, it may be ultimately founded in the same sort of eschatalogy
> embodied in the theism they fear so much.

I seriously doubt that;  in fact, just the opposite.  The eschatology  
that many of us "anti-theists" fear is the eschatology of the  
theists, which seems to excuse and permit all manner of  
attrocities--- even venerates them.  For example, check this crazy  
wingnut shit out:

	http://www.bloggingbaby.com/2006/10/30/video-game-where-jews-and- 
atheists-must-be-killed-or-converted-d/

To say this kind of bullshit is merely some radical, extremist fringe  
of Christianity is to perpetrate the same crime that Muslim  
apologists make for their religion in the face of all the evidence to  
the contrary.

jb


More information about the FoRK mailing list