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Cogito ergo sum

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Society in a Godless World

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  • Society in a Godless World

    I'm beginning to work on this argument. It seems to me that if there genuinely is no God there are a few things that make no sense. How does society come about? Within the last century we've been busily killing each other with little to no provocation at what is supposedly the height of civilization - human nature seems to have only limited instinct toward cooperation and harmony. So how does human nature explain all the people we didn't kill and all the times we not only got along but acted altruistically?

    Is anyone familiar with any work along these lines and books I can check out?
    "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

    "Forgiveness is the way of love." Gary Chapman

    My Personal Blog

    My Novella blog (Current Novella Begins on 7/25/14)

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  • #2
    Humans seem geared toward a hierarchical society, as are most herd animals. There might be some way to trace it from there.
    sigpic1 Cor 15:34 εκνηψατε δικαιως και μη αμαρτανετε αγνωσιαν γαρ θεου τινες εχουσιν προς εντροπην υμιν λεγω

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Teallaura View Post
      I'm beginning to work on this argument. It seems to me that if there genuinely is no God there are a few things that make no sense. How does society come about? Within the last century we've been busily killing each other with little to no provocation at what is supposedly the height of civilization - human nature seems to have only limited instinct toward cooperation and harmony. So how does human nature explain all the people we didn't kill and all the times we not only got along but acted altruistically?

      Is anyone familiar with any work along these lines and books I can check out?
      What does formation of a society have to do with "God"?....and I am assuming the definition of "God" here is from a Christian context?
      "Height of Civilization" might depend on definition?---if we were to define "civilization"---as civil norms based on rules and law----we are very uncivilized. I might even say---"might" rules more than law.
      Co-operation and harmony---societies that value "might" cannot co-operate---they are too busy fighting each other. For harmony and co-operation to flourish, it needs to be a) valued b) and be based on the basic principle that humanity is of equivalent value---and that can only happen in a rules/law based global society---(civilized society) not one based on "might"

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Teallaura View Post
        I'm beginning to work on this argument. It seems to me that if there genuinely is no God there are a few things that make no sense. How does society come about? Within the last century we've been busily killing each other with little to no provocation at what is supposedly the height of civilization - human nature seems to have only limited instinct toward cooperation and harmony. So how does human nature explain all the people we didn't kill and all the times we not only got along but acted altruistically?

        Is anyone familiar with any work along these lines and books I can check out?
        I would recommend Tom Holland's book Dominion: Christianity and the Western Mind. He is an award winning historian in ancient history and an unbeliever. It goes in depth on how the Christian faith changed the Western world, and by extension much of the rest of the world. And how it ended the brutality found in the ancient Greek and Roman empires, how human rights and the enlightenment grew out of a Christian culture. And how it influenced science.
        Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jbnueb2OI4o&t=3s

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        • #5
          Originally posted by seer View Post

          I would recommend Tom Holland's book Dominion: Christianity and the Western Mind. He is an award winning historian in ancient history and an unbeliever. It goes in depth on how the Christian faith changed the Western world, and by extension much of the rest of the world. And how it ended the brutality found in the ancient Greek and Roman empires, how human rights and the enlightenment grew out of a Christian culture. And how it influenced science.
          I'll ... add it to a very, very long reading list. It sounds interesting but not quite what I'm looking at. I'll see if I can do a better job explaining later.

          Thanks!
          "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

          "Forgiveness is the way of love." Gary Chapman

          My Personal Blog

          My Novella blog (Current Novella Begins on 7/25/14)

          Quill Sword

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          • #6
            Originally posted by siam View Post

            What does formation of a society have to do with "God"?....and I am assuming the definition of "God" here is from a Christian context?
            "Height of Civilization" might depend on definition?---if we were to define "civilization"---as civil norms based on rules and law----we are very uncivilized. I might even say---"might" rules more than law.
            Co-operation and harmony---societies that value "might" cannot co-operate---they are too busy fighting each other. For harmony and co-operation to flourish, it needs to be a) valued b) and be based on the basic principle that humanity is of equivalent value---and that can only happen in a rules/law based global society---(civilized society) not one based on "might"
            Humans don't seem intrinsically bent toward being 'civilized' so how do we get like that without God?
            "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

            "Forgiveness is the way of love." Gary Chapman

            My Personal Blog

            My Novella blog (Current Novella Begins on 7/25/14)

            Quill Sword

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Teallaura View Post
              Humans don't seem intrinsically bent toward being 'civilized' so how do we get like that without God?
              Some of us are more willing to be 'civilized' than others.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Stoic View Post

                Some of us are more willing to be 'civilized' than others.
                Doesn't hold up to scrutiny.
                "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

                "Forgiveness is the way of love." Gary Chapman

                My Personal Blog

                My Novella blog (Current Novella Begins on 7/25/14)

                Quill Sword

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Teallaura View Post

                  Humans don't seem intrinsically bent toward being 'civilized' so how do we get like that without God?
                  That might depend on how one sees human history/evolution?
                  If one assumes that humans are/have been the weakest animal created.....then one explanation for us not having gone extinct is that we, humans, had to co-operate for our survival from very early on.....hunting in groups requires rules, strategy and organization---what to do with the hunted animal, how to divide it and/or use its parts also requires co-operation, sharing, division of labor and rules.

                  "God" concept is not necessary---but it is a very useful concept in maintaining peace for the long term---because if rules/law are based on the idea of a non-human "power"---then a justification to fight can be lessened. Dispute settlement becomes much easier with arbitration and compromise when rules/law are clear, just and consistent over time.

                  Perhaps one could say that humans have no option but to co-operate (build civilized societies) if we are to survive---its how the (ecosystem)nature of our earth and human biology... works. (non zero-sum). .....adding a "God concept" to this reality, simply makes it more palatable and workable for many?
                  ...and if humans are going to co-operate in very large, rules/law based, society...then a monotheist God-concept can add further benefits....particularly in forming ideas of equality.....?.....

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Stoic View Post

                    Some of us are more willing to be 'civilized' than others.
                    Said someone who grew up swimming in Christian waters...
                    Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

                    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jbnueb2OI4o&t=3s

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by seer View Post

                      Said someone who grew up swimming in Christian waters...
                      Hardly my fault...

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Teallaura View Post

                        Doesn't hold up to scrutiny.
                        You might want to scrutinize your OP then:

                        "we've been busily killing each other with little to no provocation"

                        "all the times we not only got along but acted altruistically"

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Stoic View Post

                          Hardly my fault...
                          Perhaps a main reason why you are willing to be civilized in the first place...
                          Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

                          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jbnueb2OI4o&t=3s

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by seer View Post

                            Perhaps a main reason why you are willing to be civilized in the first place...
                            So we agree, "Some of us are more willing to be 'civilized' than others."

                            There is lots of room for argument with regard to how much influence Christianity has had on that.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Stoic View Post

                              So we agree, "Some of us are more willing to be 'civilized' than others."

                              There is lots of room for argument with regard to how much influence Christianity has had on that.
                              It has had an immeasurable effect. Starting with inalienable human rights. If you have the desire order the book I suggested above: Tom Holland's Dominion: Christianity and the Western Mind
                              Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

                              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jbnueb2OI4o&t=3s

                              Comment

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