Key reality underlying the 'game' of religion
(Top Posts - Distance From Belief
in theism - 022605, updated 040509)

There's a key reality to the methodology that underlies
the 'game' of religion. It's based on the evolutionary
instincts of survival/seduction, fear/threat, power/control,
meme propagation, and social communion ...

 o Survival/seduction -- Religion promises survival
    via seduction -if- you follow the tenets of the
    religion that's doing the seducing.

 o Fear/threat -- Religion threatens those who *don't*
    follow the tenets of the religion that's doing the
    threatening, promoting fear of God.

 o Power/control -- Religion claims absolute power
    and absolute knowledge, and promises said power
    and knowledge gives you control over your fate, if
    you believe.

 o Meme propagation -- Religion promotes transfer
    of religion (as the ultimate 'good') to children and
    in proselytizing religions, to others.

 o Social communion -- Religion provides a complex
    array of rituals by which social inducement to con-
    form is at play.

- - -

Religion provides nothing in the way of evidence.

Religion is mind control.

- - -

Standard religious illogic? You can't prove that
no God exists. Therefore, God exists, just be-
lieve. What is God? Their supposed answer to
all unknowns, the ultimate sugar daddy -and- your
best friend -or- your worst nightmare -and- your
worst enemy -if- you don't adhere to the tenets
of the religion at play. Their fundamental asser-
tion? God did it all, everything, and God is all-
powerful, all-loving, all-knowing, all-good, all-just,
all 'right'.

- - -

Someone gets sick. People pray. Person dies.
God had his reasons, and that person is in heaven,
so it's OK, God is Great. It's God's will.

- - -

Person suffers terribly. People pray. Person con-
tinues suffering terribly. It's OK, God is Great. It's
God's will.

- - -

About 230,000* drown in the recent tsunami. Religion
tackles that via various means ...

 o Some religious leaders & followers say they
    deserved it,

 o Some religious leaders & followers say God was
    punishing them,

 o Some religious leaders & followers say God was
    testing the survivors' faith,

 o Some religious leaders & followers say God was
    warning the survivors,

 o Some religious leaders & followers say it's a sign
    that God is about to end it all (end days mythos),

 o Some religious leaders & followers say that a sup-
    posedly all-powerful -and- all-loving God had noth-
    ing to do with it,

 o Some religious leaders & followers say Adam &
    Eve are to blame, not God.

- - -
Insert

2004 Indian Ocean earthquake
  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2004_Indian_Ocean_earthquake

Excerpts:

...

With a magnitude of between 9.1 and 9.3, it
is the second largest earthquake ever recorded
on a seismograph. This earthquake had the
longest duration of faulting ever observed,
between 8.3 and 10 minutes.

...

The U.S. Geological Survey initially recorded
the toll as 283,100 killed, 14,100 missing, and
1,126,900 people displaced. However, more
recent analysis compiled by the United Nations
lists a total of 229,866 people lost, including
186,983 dead and 42,883 missing.

The figure excludes 400 to 600 people who
are believed to have perished in Myanmar,
which is more than that government's official
figure of only 61 dead. If the higher Myanmar
figures are reliable, the death toll would include
at least 230,000 people. Measured in lives lost,
this is one of the ten worst earthquakes in re-
corded history, as well as the single worst tsu-
nami in history.

The tsunami caused serious damage and deaths
as far as the east coast of Africa, with the furth-
est recorded death due to the tsunami occurring
at Rooi Els in South Africa, 8,000 km (4,971
mi) away from the epicentre. In total, eight peo-
ple in South Africa died due to abnormally high
sea levels and waves.

Relief agencies report that one-third of the dead
appear to be children. This is a result of the high
proportion of children in the populations of many
of the affected regions and because children were
the least able to resist being overcome by the surg-
ing waters. Oxfam went on to report that as many
as four times more women than men were killed in
some regions because they were waiting on the
beach for the fishermen to return and looking after
their children in the houses.

In addition to the large number of local residents,
up to 9,000 foreign tourists (mostly Europeans)
enjoying the peak holiday travel season were among
the dead or missing, especially people from the Nor-
dic countries.

...

End Insert
- - -

- - -

Someone gets sick. People pray. Person recovers.
Many religious leaders & followers say God is Great,
and prayer works, and that's 'proof' that God exists.
Thank God. Praise God. Hallelujah. Heaven and God
are real. Relatives & friends, deceased, will be seen
again, in an immortal candyland of indescribable joy
& God-approved pleasure.

- - -

It's a mindtrap instilled in most children, and as evi-
denced by many of the posts by believers, once
instilled, even though believers struggle with the
shortcomings, and ponder doubting and disbelief,
it's such a seductive thing, for many, that they re-
fuse to simply accept a naturalistic approach to
existence.

You see, they have this supposedly all-powerful,
immortality-granting, hell-and-damnation threatening
'friend' called God (or some other name), and by
God, they're bound and determined to stick with
it, the belief thing, and pass that down to their
children, and in some cases, try to spread their
own version of God to others, come hell or high
water.

- - -