I think it was on T/A that I read someone's response to a Christian who was rationalizing his religion. The dissenter pointed out that even among the other religions, Christianity is one of the least plausible, with "X" religion (I don't remember; something I had never heard of) being the most plausible.
I think that's an interesting thing to think about. Which religion do you think is the most plausible?
NOTE: Perhaps I should word it this way: which religion is the least preposterous? If I asked you to rank the religions (atheism is not a religion) by most plausible to least plausible, you would rank "1. X, 2. Y, 3. Z" and so on. You would not say "none of the above" because I'm not asking "which religion is plausible." I think we can all agree that none of the religions are plausible (at least not plausible enough to accept because, well, most of us here on Think Atheists are atheists :D)
Hmm interesting question;
I'll answer a slightly different question as we all know 'religion' is nonsense.
Which is the most understandable and tolerable ?
I would have to say Paganism,in it's many forms,why ?
Well,due to the era and lack of understanding our ancestors,any natural phenomenon was beyond their understanding so a 'god' did it. What they feared most was said natural event effecting their lives so they would do what ever they could to prevent the harvest from failing and the sun to return after winter etc .
Taking into account the understand available at the time,I get it.
Moving on to modern day Pagans,neo Pagans whichever term you wish to use.
Paganism today is a celebration of nature,they understand the connectedness of all things. The tree of life,the family of living beings is important to their beliefs. Taking deities out of the equation and the dancing naked in woods etc,it seems harmless,and in fact,positive enough to be valid. As a life choice,not a religion (for a religion,you need deities) the central tenet of Paganism is 'Harm none and do as you will' (none includes all living plants, animals etc) ,I find it hard to argue with that.
Another way to put it is this ; Just because we know the science behind that amazing electrical storm we're watching from afar,doesn't mean we can't be amazed and celebrate that the natural world is an amazing place and we're lucky to be part of that. We do it by sharing our knowledge (he says humbly),others choose get naked and take part in the 'creation' of spring,the beginning of new life.
I agree. All religion is nonsense... but some are... nicer then the others.
I think that nature, spirit, shamanism beliefs are understandable since before the scientific method this was pretty rational for that time... and then i´m talking about millennia ago.... the notion of the sun, moon, trees, ancestors and animals being forces that control everything around us is not too wierd when you live in a neolithic och even bronze-age environment. It went out of control when people started bringing one or more creators as "gods" into the picture. And all religion passed the border of usefulness many hundreds of years ago... when scientist began to unravel beyond what they had told us.
Those who practised this also learned alot from nature, unlike monotheistic and most polytheistic religions... they learned how to utilize medicinal herbs... and no i'm not talking of pot ;)
and they learned how to efficiently utilize what materials that was around them...
Dont get me wrong... i still think they are nuts... but we might be able to learn something from them... atleast when it comes to preserving nature... and use natures medicinal plants... it is only in the last decade that major drug companies have started to relly look for answers to alot of ailments in say the amazon.
I think this is a bit like asking what type of fairy is the most aerodynamic.
LOL! So true!
This is from the only Harris speech I've ever disagreed with completely. Nothing about lacking belief implies we must oppose religion at all, much less "oppose all faith claims equally."
I'll avoid getting into the rest of the "we should not embrace atheism and atheists should stop organizing, but I'm very honored to be here at this atheist gathering" speech before I get the twitches.
There are real, practical differences between the beliefs (and therefore actions) of an Amish Mennonite and a Wahhabi Muslim.
Absolutely. But being an atheist does not equal being a raging anti-theist. And being an anti-theist doesn't mean you have to oppose the beliefs and practices of Amish Mennonites with the same passion you oppose the beliefs and practices of Wahhabi Muslims.
You really think people here are unaware of the differences? Have I somehow missed all the posts here about the dangers of Janism, Taoism, and Mennonites?
Oh, I think I see what you're getting at now.
Definitions of terms like "religion" or "most plausible" or "least preposterous" are fuzzy. Some people may have read the question as "Which philosophical or religious worldview is the most acceptable or least absurd/irrational/ridiculous, etc?" when they gave their wide range of answers.
Others took it as "Which set of beliefs and practices often involving worship of a deity/deities is most likely to be true?" This is like asking an atheist "Which is more likely to exist - fairies, unicorns, or demons?" None. They're all the same level of imaginary. I think that's why the OP added the note for attempted clarity after people started giving this response.
Just to add a little to what jewlez said, I didn't take this discussion to have anything to do with the merits or dangers of the range of philosophical and dogmatic beliefs/practices of the various world religions (which is a discussion that is definitely interesting), but rather a reply to the questions "most plausible" or "least preposterous." Which is why I ended up saying that I thought that the question was unanswerable. It was actually the note of "clarification" that "If I asked you to rank the religions (atheism is not a religion) by most plausible to least plausible, you would rank "1. X, 2. Y, 3. Z" and so on. You would not say "none of the above"" Ah, see there's the rub, the problem is that you can't rank religions according to plausibility because they are all equally implausible, or equally plausible, however you want to look at it.
That's not to say in any way that I'm not actually interested in a discussion about the differences between religions...