1. We have added a Gift Upgrades feature that allows you to gift an account upgrade to another member, just in time for the holiday season. You can see the gift option when going to the Account Upgrades screen, or on any user profile screen.
    Dismiss Notice

Atheism as Religion

Discussion in 'Civ4 - General Discussions' started by Maverick667, May 9, 2007.

  1. mjs0

    mjs0 The 4th X

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2001
    Messages:
    1,063
    Location:
    Central Florida
    Haven't we come a long way...
    It used to be that you were only allowed to discuss certain ideas within strict parameters but not to attempt to support or prove them.
    (Perversely denying the right to insist something is proven is consistent with the Scientific method, in which nothing is absolute and proven except mathematics; theories, even so-called laws, are just shown to match current observations and not only are they open to later attempts to refute or modify, they are not good theories unless they actually include predictions which allow for such attempts.)

    Today, it seems to me that though scientists can now discuss and support theories without fear, even the most rigorously examined and tested theories can still be dismissed out of hand by some, not because they conflict with observable facts, but for personal reasons based on doctrine or its new bedfellows ideology and profit.

    Thinking about attempting to model all this real world societal behaviour in any simulation let alone a game like Civ actually made me smile. I realise much as people push for realism in Civ that sometimes for me the simplicity of the model is refreshing and playing the game and experiencing it is a form of escapism.
     
  2. Abegweit

    Abegweit Anarchist trader

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2003
    Messages:
    4,867
    Location:
    One step ahead of the authorities
    I'm an atheist and I certainly am not a follower of your religion. I find Dawkins to be an arrogant boor. As for the worship of reason, it is far more dangerous than the worship of imaginary creatures in the sky. Those who worship the latter at least have some humility and some notion of the limitations of human beings.

    I suppose saying this means I'm not a real atheist.
     
  3. Maverick667

    Maverick667 Warlord

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2006
    Messages:
    124
    Location:
    the Netherlands

    You're right about the war stuff it makes technology leap forward look at WW2 for example...

    Constant onorganised war, without places to hide and use science to benefit ones side of course makes it harder for science to progress...

    So it's not really more war more science, a bit less black and white...

    As for worshipping god making one humble, but it does make one humble towards god, it makes one arrogant against animals and plantlife. Because it raises the belief that we are some special kind of creations, made in the image of god.

    As for Richard Dawkins, the man is not a personal hero for me, but I greatly support his work although his debating qualities lack a bit (see The Root of All Evil? for example)
     
  4. Abegweit

    Abegweit Anarchist trader

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2003
    Messages:
    4,867
    Location:
    One step ahead of the authorities
    In the best religious traditions, it makes one humble about his place in the universe. Far more dangerous than the religious bigot is the Man with a Plan. God save me from him.

    A hundred million people or more were murdered by atheists determined to force the world to conform to their conception of Utopia. Like all fanatics, their failure was simply proof that they needed to redouble their efforts. Furthermore, their their personal morals were often atrocious. Consider the pedophile, Mao Tsetung who raped hundreds, perhaps thousands, of young girls.

    There are plenty of belief systems which are far more dangerous than those which incorporate Gods. For example, the politicisation of science in the 20th has been far more destructive of real research than the church ever was. It has even infected hard physics.

    Mmm. Plants and animals. My favourite things.
     
  5. Maverick667

    Maverick667 Warlord

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2006
    Messages:
    124
    Location:
    the Netherlands
    I like you're food remark...

    though I believe far more people have been killed by religion than atheism. This does not prove the badness of religion or atheism.

    But that's not the point, people should never force their believes upon others. But saying believing in god is less arrogant is nonsence ;)
     
  6. civvver

    civvver Deity

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2007
    Messages:
    5,854

    I don't believe it's quite the same thing. They suppressed religion, not necessarily endorsed atheism. It's semantics I guess. And like you said, atheism isn't the lack of religion, it's the lack of god.

    The issue is no one can state what having an atheist civic would do for your civ that makes any sense. It doesn't make sense to increase production/commerce/science. In fact there's probably less commerce without religion since a lot of people buy stuff for religious purposes. Science is only hindered by oppressive religious leaders/organizations, not religion itself. That's why free religion gives a science bonus, for removing that oppression.

    What would an atheistic civic do? I guess it could make your people less unhappy, since they wouldn't believe in hell.
     
  7. sylvanllewelyn

    sylvanllewelyn Perma-newb

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2006
    Messages:
    1,382
    Would everyone PLEASE, PLEASE keep this thread strictly game-based?

    Let me re-phrase this thread: "If atheism is a religious civic, what would it do? If atheism is a religion, which tech will unlock it?"
     
  8. Abegweit

    Abegweit Anarchist trader

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2003
    Messages:
    4,867
    Location:
    One step ahead of the authorities
    The off-topic discussion is really far more interesting because the on-topic discussion is boring. It seems to me that Atheism in the game is simply a bad idea.

    Atheism is not a religion, although many atheists have belief systems which are every bit as unshakable as those who believe in Old Men on Chairs in the Sky. As for atheism as a civic, it would do nothing at all. At most, it would get some sort of heathen modifier, which is hardly a reason to switch to it.
     
  9. bds

    bds Warlord

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2007
    Messages:
    162
    Can you explain the physcology behind that or do you just like making things up?

    The belief in a hell/eternal death does not cause any unhappyness, i would have to say that the unhappyness comes first, as in, the idea of hell does not bother a someone unless they are contemplating suicide first... but then even although it bothers them in that situation it's actually a good thing because it acts as a deterent from killing one's self.

    Besides that, hells not a universial belief between all religions either and not even necessarily universial between all followers of a single religion.

    The reverse of free religion... as in, the less religions in a city the higher the happyness bonus (the more athiest, the more people are going to be happy that there under the rule of fellow athiest).
    Alternatively you could have forced atheism, which would have a negative dimplomacy modifier but no religion spread.

    scientific method

    I just love how everyone loves taking potshots at religion every chance they get :rolleyes:
     
  10. Plotinus

    Plotinus Philosopher Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2003
    Messages:
    16,816
    Location:
    Somerset
    It's perfectly possible to be an atheist but still believe in hell, although there probably aren't many people who do.
     
  11. Abegweit

    Abegweit Anarchist trader

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2003
    Messages:
    4,867
    Location:
    One step ahead of the authorities
    I think it's on this forum but it may be elsewhere. Someone has a tagline which goes like:

    I think people who believe in God are silly but then they think I'm going to hell so I guess it all comes out even in the end. :D
     
  12. sylvanllewelyn

    sylvanllewelyn Perma-newb

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2006
    Messages:
    1,382
    Fine, I'll join the mud-fight and get my hands (very) dirty.

    I'm a naturalist, not exactly an atheist. Some causes we can explain. Some causes we cannot yet explain, but have proven that it is explainable. Some causes we cannot as yet explain, but have not proven whether it is explainable or not either. Some causes we have proven that we, as human beings, can never explain.

    Spirits and gods are beings that can do amazing things, with rules of physics that we, as human beings, may never discover. But it may or may not break with our current ideas about the rules of physics. Simply because we may never have a perfect understanding of the rules of physics. Naturalism sides with the atheist, but may also be theistic.

    In the game, Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism are atheist religions, but that does not prevent Buddhism from having some supernaturalistic features in it (reincarnation). Therefore, atheism as a religion makes no sense, since it is only a catagory of religious thoughts. Atheism as a civic, on the other hand, makes a lot of sense:

    minus 1 hapiness per religion
    +25% science rate
     
  13. Abegweit

    Abegweit Anarchist trader

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2003
    Messages:
    4,867
    Location:
    One step ahead of the authorities
    I know atheists who don't believe in evolution. One of my personal heroes, Murray Rothbard, was one. It's a combination I find difficult to get my head around. Another guy I know believes in the LGM theory, although I can't figure where he thinks they came from.
     
  14. Abegweit

    Abegweit Anarchist trader

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2003
    Messages:
    4,867
    Location:
    One step ahead of the authorities
    This %25 science boost makes absolutely no sense to me. The Catholic church (and medieval Islam too) has done far more to help the advancement of science than to hinder it. Plotinius has made some very impressive arguments about this point right on this thread. I might add that the so-called Dark Ages were nothing of the kind. Science continued to advance during the period with innovations like the horse collar and crop rotation. What they actually lacked was massive empires, something that the world can do quite well without. Unfortunately we seem to be getting more and more of them.

    In contrast, the secular modern state (while not explicitly atheist, it is certainly non-religious) has destroyed science by politicising it. Whole disciplines, from medical research to climatology, have become ratholes, infested with paid hacks who don't get grant money unless they tow the party line. As I mentioned earlier, even hard physics has been infected with the disease.
    Not Even Wrong
     
  15. mjs0

    mjs0 The 4th X

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2001
    Messages:
    1,063
    Location:
    Central Florida
    I cannot speak from personal experience as I have never been a theist, but many friends and relatives who have come from that background speak of how they regret the loss of certainty in such things as life after death, but are much happier without the oppresive atmosphere of guilt, fear and especially judgement.

    I disagree completely with this. Under Free Religion the number of religions would have no impact on my life, if anything I would rejoice in more diversity not less hence the happiness bonus. However, religious influence on Government is certainly a concern especially when one controlling religion attempts to impose its doctrine, not just on atheists but theists with other beliefs.


    I would support having a way in the game (maybe through an aggressively secular civic that suppresses religion) to allow us to model some of the tyrannical secular societies such as the former Soviet Union. I do not believe this represents atheism any more than I would claim theocracy represents theism; fundamentalist secularism is the name I suggested earlier in the thread.

    I agree, both theists and atheists are the target of such barbs and I deplore both equally.
     
  16. Maverick667

    Maverick667 Warlord

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2006
    Messages:
    124
    Location:
    the Netherlands
    I believe I did, well here goes again ;)

    People who believe in god see him/her as a greater power, someone who created life, and the earth and stuff. They also believe that man was created in god's image, and therefor making man more important than the animals. I'm speaking of the Judeo-Christian god of course.

    I hope it's clear now ;)
     
  17. kcbrett5

    kcbrett5 Warlord

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2006
    Messages:
    267

    Name one cause that we have PROVEN we will never be able to explain. I am not aware that science had given up on trying to explain anything so I would be very interested to know this.
     
  18. King Flevance

    King Flevance Deity

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2005
    Messages:
    4,612
    Location:
    Kansas City, MO
    Oddly, the people I have met in my life that will beat a dog, shoot at animals with BB guns, and many other cruel treatment to animals are not Christian, Jewish, or consider themselves religious.

    However, most other Christians I know will not do such things because this is the 1 chance at life the animal has. So they treat them fair and good. Otherwise, they actually believe animals go to to heaven and will actually get angry if you tell them otherwise and call you cruel. Needless to say, these second people love animals alot more than the first group.

    But yes, the animals were put here to do what we wish with. But that doesn't mean the preist at my church on Sunday is gonna tell everyone to go home and beat their cats.
     
  19. kcbrett5

    kcbrett5 Warlord

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2006
    Messages:
    267
    I doubt many animals would agree with you about this. Certainly any of the thousands of animals every year that maul humans would not agree.

    Besides, animals were here long before people were, so how do you argue they were put here for us?
     
  20. King Flevance

    King Flevance Deity

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2005
    Messages:
    4,612
    Location:
    Kansas City, MO
    Well, considering animals don't get a say in the matter I think they kind of have to be OK with it. Besides, how do you know they wouldn't be OK with it? ;)

    It says in the bible God created animals before humans. Then, gave them to us.
     

Share This Page