Life Driven Purpose, pg 55

Dec 13, 2016

“I think most believers are good people. Although religious doctrine is generally irrational, divisive, and irrelevant to human values, some religions have good teachings sprinkled in with the dogma, and many well-meaning believers, to their credit, concentrate on those teachings. Surveying the smorgasbord of belief systems, we notice that they occasionally talk about peace and love. Who would argue with that? Sermons and holy books may encourage charity, mercy, and compassion, even sometimes fairness. These are wonderful ideas, but they are not unique to any religion. We might judge one religion to be better than another, but notice what we are doing. When we judge a religion, we are applying a standard outside of the religion. We are assuming a framework against which religious teachings and practices can be measured.

That standard is the harm principle. If a teaching leans toward harm, we judge it as bad. If it leans away from harm, it is good, r at least better than the others. If a religious precept happens to be praiseworthy it is not because of the religion but in spite of it. Its moral worth is measured against real consequences, not orthodoxy or righteousness. ”

–Dan Barker, Life Driven Purpose, pg 55


One comment on “Life Driven Purpose, pg 55”

  • 1
    maria melo says:

    Guess not, that most religious people are “good people” just because they are “relgious”, nor otherwise necessarly, that non-religious people are good people just because they are non-relgious. I am even not quite sure that religious doctrine is “irrational” (as some Roman Catholic Church doctrines are not for sure), any way, I rather prefer not to label (perhaps Iam considering it a real dilemma of the author that causes unnecessary psychological suffering to him, to label?)

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