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Is religion organized superstition?

VIBEVIBE Posts: 54,384 ✭✭✭✭✭
edited January 2014 in R & R (Religion and Race)
Let this ride for a a couple days before moving, R&R is dead as fuck. It's grown, too.




Religion vs. Superstition

Is Religion Just Organized Superstition?

Is Superstition Always Religious?

Is there a real connection between religion and superstition? Some, particular adherents of various religious faiths, will often argue that the two are fundamentally different types of beliefs. Those who stand outside of religion, however, will notice some very important and fundamental similarities which bear closer consideration.

Obviously, not everyone who is religious is also superstitious and not everyone who is superstitious is also religious. A person can faithfully attend church services all their life without giving a second thought to a black cat walking in front of them. On the other hand, a person who completely rejects any religion whatsoever may consciously or unconsciously avoid walking under a ladder — even if there is no one on the ladder who might drop something.

If neither necessarily leads to the other, it might be easy to conclude that they are different types of beliefs. Moreover, because the very label “superstition” seems to include a negative judgment of irrationality, childishness, or primitiveness, it is understandable of religious believers wouldn’t want their own faiths to be categorized with superstitions.

We must, nevertheless, acknowledge that the similarities are not superficial. For one thing, both superstition and traditional religions are non-materialistic in nature. They do not conceive of the world as a place controlled by sequences of cause and effect between matter and energy. Instead, they presume the added presence of immaterial forces which influence or control the course of our lives.

Furthermore, there is also the appearance of a desire to provide meaning and coherence to otherwise random and chaotic events. If we get hurt in an accident, it is might be attributed to a black cat, to spilling salt, to failing to pay sufficient honor to our ancestors, to performing the appropriate sacrifices to the sprits, etc. There seems to be a genuine continuum between what we tend to call “superstition” and the ideas in animistic religions.

In both cases, people are expected to avoid certain actions and perform other actions in order to ensure that they do not fall victim to the unseen forces at work in our world. In both cases, the very idea that such unseen forces are at work seems to stem (at least in part) both from a desire to explain otherwise random events and from a desire to have some means of affecting those events.

These are all important psychological benefits often used to explain the reason why religion exists and why religion persists. They are also reasons for the existence and persistence of superstition. It seems reasonable to argue, then, that while superstition may not be a form of religion, it does spring from some of the same basic human needs and desires as religion does. Thus, a greater understanding of how and why superstition develops can be useful in gaining a better understanding and appreciation of religion.

Replies

  • Matt-Matt- stew Posts: 21,585 ✭✭✭✭✭
    not really because superstitions involve the member forming illogical beliefs about why something may happen

    religions usually involves members forming logical beliefs based on something they have read and have been taught.

    a person who does not believe in a particular superstition or a religion may regard both groups as having illogical beliefs, and thats a correct assumption about the superstions but an incorrect assessment of a religious group.
  • shit happensshit happens May da lawd be wit em These hoes lie and these niggas are fakePosts: 10,739 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Which group of hoes got dat ass?

    Superstitious hoes vs Religious hoes
    Ajackson17
  • VIBEVIBE Posts: 54,384 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Matt- wrote: »
    not really because superstitions involve the member forming illogical beliefs about why something may happen

    religions usually involves members forming logical beliefs based on something they have read and have been taught.

    So, if one was to have a black cat cross their path and they walk under a ladder, they might attribute their "bad luck" to those situations.

    Wouldn't sin be the same? "If I sin, then something bad will happen to me".

    If you look at Sodom & Gommorah, they believe god destroyed it due to sin. That's considered a superstition.

  • VIBEVIBE Posts: 54,384 ✭✭✭✭✭
    aaaannnnddd here it is moved to die, smh
    Bodhi
  • beenwizebeenwize Posts: 2,024 ✭✭
    I think so...

    "Whenever we read the obscene stories, the voluptuous debaucheries, the cruel and torturous executions, the unrelenting vindictiveness, with which more than half the Bible is filled, it would be more consistent that we called it the word of a demon than the word of God. It is a history of wickedness, that has served to corrupt and brutalize mankind; and, for my part, I sincerely detest it, as I detest everything that is cruel." -- Age of Reason (18th century), by Thomas Paine. Funny that he spoke of it being the words of a demon, when it really is!
  • Matt-Matt- stew Posts: 21,585 ✭✭✭✭✭
    VIBE wrote: »
    Matt- wrote: »
    not really because superstitions involve the member forming illogical beliefs about why something may happen

    religions usually involves members forming logical beliefs based on something they have read and have been taught.

    So, if one was to have a black cat cross their path and they walk under a ladder, they might attribute their "bad luck" to those situations.

    Wouldn't sin be the same? "If I sin, then something bad will happen to me".

    If you look at Sodom & Gommorah, they believe god destroyed it due to sin. That's considered a superstition.

    its not really a superstition if it says in the book that is the foundation of the religion that it was destroyed because they were wicked. If the bible is accepted as true, then from the viewpoint of the religious person, it's factual cause and effect. It's not just an assumption based on nothing.

    having something bad happen to you after walking under a ladder, and believing walking under that ladder caused that bad to happen, is an irrational stance and its based on absolutely nothing other than a supersition.

    you can walk under a ladder and it may fall on you. That's not really a supersition because the cause and effect are directly related and its completely logical to attribute the ladder falling on you as being caused by you walking under it. But if you walk under a ladder and like 3 days later you get robbed and you say its because of that ladder, then that is a supersticious belief because one has nothing to do with the other and trying to tie the two events together is a stretch.
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