Tuesday, October 17, 2006

My Initial Beliefs - Part Deux

In this post, I will highlight what got me thinking about this, and what the arching belief is.

I started thinking about this when the issue of whether the 10 commandments should be shown in front of the court or not (http://www.cnn.com/2005/LAW/03/01/scotus.ten.commandments/ ). That day (March 2 2005) I was listening to an interview on NPR, some hardcore rightist lady was blabbering for the showing of the 10 commandments in front of the court. The journalist asked her would she accept a passage from the Quran being posted in front of her kids' school? And the lady said there would be no problem.

That set off a train of thought in my mind that's been going on and on for a year now. Here's what got me thinking. Ok, the 10 commandments, strip out of them the strictly religious commandments, and what do you end up with? don't steal, don't lie, don't kill, etc.. And I thought, well what person would think it's bad to praise that. It is common to all religions, that stealing, killing, and lying is bad, and that being a good samaritan is good.

So I figure that there is a moral knowledge of good and bad which is common to all humans. My family is not a very religious one. I grew up not going to church strictly every sunday, not confessing on every trip, and not praying before I sleep. But I still grew up with the same moral framework as someone who goes to church every sunday, who prays multiple times a day, and who confesses every sunday. I am just as happy as he is as well. So church as a building and the priest as a messenger of God isn't the reason i'm in touch with God's teaching.

Then I thought, well, we all have evil inclinations. We have all thought about stealing something at some point, we've all lied, and we've all done or had an inclination to do evil in our lives. But this evil inclination is often countered by our feeling of good will and good intention. So there's a ying and a yang, a good and an evil, a God and a Devil. So I knew that was established.

Then I thought about buddhists. They have the same moral fabric as us Christians, Muslims and Jews, but they don't believe in God. I'm taught that whoever doesn't believe in God is a sinner, and will go to hell. That doesn't make sense to me yet. People make the argument that those people "haven't seen the light", bug God has infinite wisdom and power, why hasn't he shown those people the light? It doesn't make sense to me.

So what I concluded from that, is that humans all share the same good and bad qualities, regardless of religion.

Now it's important to note that I am not saying religion doesn't exist or God doesn't exist. I'm simply saying, similarly to what Socrates said, that:

A pious (Righteousness and good virtue) action isn't pious because it is loved by the Gods or the God's made it pious, a pious action is pious because it's good by nature and the God's simply approve and appreciate it's piety.

I'll finish off my beliefs in part 3


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