Sunday, May 27, 2007

Savoy hotel - 27/05/07 meeting: Overlaps between Humanism and Religion

Discussions covered "The Overlaps between Humanism and Religion" & related issues. 15 Dorset Humanist members attended meeting. Brief summary of questions / topics discussed:-

Shared Values

  • Humanists and Religious both believe in
    • friendship, happinesses, justice, care of sick or impoverished, morals etc etc?
  • religions can cause wars (Dawkins) but is it also humans innate greed?
Values in children
  • can children can be indoctrinated by religious ethics influenced by parents, school etc?
Control of Humans by Religion
  • did humans make up the Bible?
  • is religion a means of controlling people?
Source of Religion
  • objects in the sky: moon, rain, thunder and lightening - did man invent god?
  • morals go further back than Bible; Bible advocates bad and good things; religious people are selective when they discuss Bible?
  • Golden Rule - Confuscious - Analects 500BC - predate Bible
  • humanists create their own moral values - religious just believe in Bible?
Pascals Wager & Religious levers
  • there is a payoff if you believe in god - the reward is heaven & paradise?
  • the Fear of Death; Malcomn Muggeridge / Thomas Hardy both became believers in late age; do people hedge there bets (Pascals Wager)?
Caring for other people
  • the Religious look after their own; have they a hidden agenda eg Salvation Army?
  • Humanists look after everyone?
  • some religions & humanists treat all with compassion & sympathy?

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