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Atheist Meme of the Day: All Religion Don’t Teach Peace

Scarlet letter Today’s Atheist Meme of the Day, from my Facebook page. Pass this on; or don’t; or edit it as you see fit; or make up your own. Enjoy!

It is simply not true that all religions ultimately share the same message of love, tolerance, and peace. Many religions teach hatred, bigotry, and conflict. And these religions are not the exception — they are very common. Pass it on: if we say it enough times to enough people, it may get across.

Comments

  1. CybrgnX says

    I will disagree on this.
    ALL religions are about hate-bigotry-conflict. I say this from the position of show me one MAJOR religion that isn’t about these things at some fundamental level. Things like the original Buddhism does not count because although it is about ‘becoming one with the higher power’ it is about an individual going there and there is no collective dogma. There is a newer form of buddhism that is a religion and is included at the start.
    An example of the 1st type is a xtian cult that accepts all into the fold and preach love, but then says the buybull is literally true, is at its foundation about hate & fear.

  2. Pseudonym says

    @CybrgnX: Baha’i. Oh, and the Quakers.
    I do observe that you the question is automatically loaded by explicitly excluding religions that are like “original Buddhism”. This is probably the most common form of the “No True Scotsman” used by atheists today.
    More importantly, though, this sounds a lot like the genetic fallacy or possibly the Discordian Law of Fives.
    But then, one could always fall back on Cardinal Richelieu’s dictum: “If you give me six lines written by the hand of the most honest of men, I will find something in them which will hang him.”

  3. says

    @CybrgnX: That’s cheating using definitions. Original Buddhism can almost definitely be considered a religion, and it is one of the non-hateful/bigoted ones.

  4. says

    Claims that Buddhism has no dogma or isn’t a religion reflect a lack of knowledge about Buddhism. If by “original” Buddhism, you mean Pali Buddhism, such as Theravada, it has some of the most rigid dogmas imaginable and some truly awful things to say about life, gender, and power. Theravada monks live under a set of unimaginably strict rules; Theravada nuns lived under an even stricter one when there WERE Theravada nuns; nowadays they no longer allow women in the Theravada sangha at all.
    My friend and I were at the beach the other day drinking beer when some Tibetan monks walked by. My friend remarked that of all the religions, Buddhism was the least objectionable. I agreed, but added that this was like saying that of all the gangs, the crips were the least objectionable.

  5. says

    I think that one of the main reasons religion is so closely tied to divisiveness and conflict is that by its very nature, a religion is making unfalsifiable claims about reality as it affects human existence. Since the “goal” of most every religion is to put people on the “true path” to something or other, it’s very, very hard for practitioners to remain benevolent to people who are not on the “true path.”
    It’s true that there are branches of most religions that teach some sort of inclusive doctrines, and say that all religions contain some truth. And that’s a fine doctrine when compared with the more rigid, hateful versions. But what I’ve often said on my blog is that FAITH is a catalyst for exacerbating the worst parts of human nature. Humans have it in their nature to be xenophobic, and any belief system which creates unfalsifiable “truths” about human existence will tend to give believers permission to hate on people who don’t believe those “truths.”

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