Why is it so difficult to leave religion?

What needs do mythology and religion serve in today's world and in ancient times? Here we discuss the relationship between mythology, religion and science from mythological, religious and philosophical viewpoints.

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Neoplato
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Post by Neoplato » Fri Jul 30, 2010 12:07 pm

When does maintaining a system, a set of rules, beliefs, truths, etc, becomes more important than the people that is supposed to be serving? -Andreas
When controlling the people and ensuring a stable society becomes more impoartant then ensuring the well being of those people within the society.

Or in other words, the self-preservation of the ruling class.
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Post by Clemsy » Fri Jul 30, 2010 3:04 pm

Yup. I think Neo has this right. "Maintaining the system" usually means maintaining the hierarchy.

Here's a bumper sticker slogan for you: "Want power? There's medication for that."

:lol:
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Post by Dionysus » Fri Jul 30, 2010 4:25 pm

When does maintaining a system, a set of rules, beliefs, truths, etc, becomes more important than the people that is supposed to be serving?
A) When it is killing people in the name of Peace (or Love).

B) When the propagation of ignorance is viewed as necessary in order to maintain its status quo.

C) When keeping your eyes in some book that lays out the truth is more important then opening one's eyes and gazing at the world.

D) When one's world-view is limited to an 8000 year old cosmology.

E) When the answers are more important than the questions.

On a different note: When the children of a faith are willingly sacrificed in order to maintain a sick and outdated priesthood. Peter's Church is in trouble.
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Post by Neoplato » Fri Jul 30, 2010 4:36 pm

OUCH! That may have been a wee bit harsh..... :shock:

....but not necessarily untrue. :wink:
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Post by sharibanflynn » Sat Nov 19, 2011 3:22 pm

perhaps religion is difficult to leave because it compensats for the hard and difficult times in life.. and God or Gods know we need some at times.
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Post by tat tvam asi » Sat Nov 19, 2011 5:28 pm

...perhaps religion is difficult to leave because it's difficult to leave behind the notion that death is not the end?
"Scholars conjecture that a sense of divinity in Nature co-evolved with the first emergence of human consciousness, perhaps 100,000 years ago. The earliest god was Nature."

As far back as we are able to look into the past, says historian Colin Wilson, "human beings seem to have worshipped nature, and connected it to a higher spiritual reality, which they called god or the divine."
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Post by sharibanflynn » Sat Nov 19, 2011 9:16 pm

yep! confer.. and Jung has it that out of pain came consciousness- (see Man and his Symbols pp72/90) ...Had a primal dream once that seemed to validate your reference- on a personal level and thereby validated it for me - like being taken back thousands of years and out of desperation the sly-man in me plotted to escape and in so doing became 'aware' of what my enemy was not- ie the ability to 'act'.. so the birth of the teminos of Dionysis - I guess -
mmmm.. just a thought.. which was first attended by women..after all they bit the applefirst.. ..so when do we get a bite then? about time don't ye think.. :?
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Post by Bhagavan Das » Fri Dec 09, 2011 10:21 am

Religion is reason in metaphors. Age of Reason Enlightenment in its final stages is in sync with religion. Reducing and rationalizing perception to reason as a guiding light brings collective consciousness to path that religion was on all along. Therefore Enlightenment is reconfirmation of conclusions, spiritual laws, natural laws accumulated throughout ages in religious teachings. Religion is depiction of reality in itself and one can not pick and choose reality. Objective of art is ultimate absolute depiction of reality in symbols, naturally study of art leads to religion, and art itself is reconfirming religious depiction of reality.
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Post by sharibanflynn » Sat Dec 10, 2011 11:32 pm

and the Goddess 'Reason' had her day giving birth to the semi god 'Enlightenment'.
And they danced the dance with religion but great was the resistence thereof..untill all joined in the colloective path. and out of Enlightmement came forth the spiritual laws via the path of conclusion. The Goddess called Nature joined the dance to include those who once followed her ways. So there were none who could choose otherwise as they embraced the interpretation of the senses Reason had named Reality.
But there was a division between those who strove to express difference, the artist. Some were called Objective by Reason and others were called Subjective as they strove to understand the nature of there new god Enlightenment. Symbols no longer held mystery, it was said. The road lead to...back to religion..the same teminos wherein the dance of difference continued.
Certainty is death said Jung! Mmmmmm... the dance does on... :oops:
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Post by onedone » Sat Dec 17, 2011 2:50 pm

There are people who come into what may be called religion but not necessarily the structured hierarchical systems. These are people who have had a genuine experience in context to a knowledge of the belief/religious writings that are present. This can be called a genuine religious experience that most often is life changing. What is a genuine religious experience is a topic unto itself but I believe it should be considered in context to this thread and topic. As subjective as it is and usually dramatic or to the core as far as life experience go, it is a lasting impression on the mind or psyche. To understand the experience a person then usually chooses a religion or theology that satisfies questions that a person may hold. Questions usually concerning truth [small t].
[Just some thoughts, I haven't read all the postings up to this point in replies]
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Post by sharibanflynn » Sun Dec 18, 2011 8:13 pm

Hi Onedone,
Having gone through a life of seeking- from as long as I can remember..the 'experience' is perhaps the single post important life changer..agreed..Mmmm but the seeking has never changed.. except when you find! Having read the whole of Jung's Collective Works.. as part of the seeking.. I concluded (not unlike yourself) that first there is the seeking- then there is the believing..(long live doubt!) and eventually personal Subjective experience consolidates my seeking and then the finding that for every quality there is within it its own opposit...so.. peace holds war etc...,but but but what if...eventually there is a place (within..) that is beyond belief, transends personal subjective experience.. and does not leave you suspended between all that is good and all that is not good..Mmmm where no Guru can intrude as such knowing is beyond any human..where every gift is given according to ability to accept and need at the time .. not WANT- To be free from the want of it.. the seeking of it.. the preparation of it.. and just be amid and allow..But sure! Each to there own..then the personal subjective experience is replaced with the remarkable the astonishing and the simple knowing that I am NOW exactly where I should be in the Universe...period!
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Post by onedone » Mon Dec 19, 2011 12:09 am

Hi sharibanflynn
I understand the concept of duality and also the 'Now' is where I should be. What I am trying to understand and reply to is this initial question of 'why is it so hard to leave religion'.
It's seems to me like asking a person to create a void or more to the point of what this question is leading towards which is to fill this void with a secular or atheist belief. Which may or may not include myths, tales, etc.,.. Some may be 'satisfied' with this but many are not. Do I understand this correctly that a person should abandon any and all religion?
A simple answer to why it's so difficult may be that it satisfies an inner balance.
There's an article I could post about "men of the cloth", minister, priest,...that no long believe anything they have studied or continue preaching. A thing that as you can imagine is very difficult to confess. My point is it's not that difficult to leave religion or one's beliefs but I do think it is replaced with something else like a new theology, but this may still fall under the general category of religion.
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Post by sharibanflynn » Tue Dec 20, 2011 9:56 pm

Onedone..
Read an article not too long ago that offers an ans' to the question but have to head off tomorrow over the water so will relate same after Christmas.. the notion of disillusionment is perhaps also of the role we place or even the demand we place on an ‘appointed’ other to offer reassurance to our own doubt..mmm.. I am my own priest so there is no ‘get out!’ Embracing my own doubt.. I can say with certainty ..I am not sure! I think anyway..
But humour brings to the fore our ridiculous nature of the yes and no of it. If we did not have religion we could not have atheists: After all they must have something they DON’T believe in..Mmmm..

A change in Social structure perhaps brought about the notion of religion as to almost compensate for the now static modern life.. maybe as a way of social control- which it certainly does demand.. to the extreme oft' enough too! A more gentle approach (not via Theocracy but rather based upon Anthropology and archaeology) is the approach I will reiterate to you later..and assume the ‘what if...' approach. One point seemed to have great relevance to me personally was the discovery that at various times in the past those espousing organising religion out of (say) family and tribal beliefs offered ‘sacred ground’ for families to place their dead members in.. rather than outside their own homes or beneath the threshold of their dwellings= thus acquiring an allegiance or kinship libido (transference) normally the reserve of family.
So what if Religion is but the transference of kinship libido? And therefore essential- once the transference has taken place that is..A loving relationship initially anyway- ending in a riot of other...Mmmm not nice! as the result would be thousands of 'religious beliefs each devorcing from the last 'relationship'. but that cannot be true..:) But Sure, a lot of effort here discussing what is not necessary.. implies a necessity per se. sic.?
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Post by onedone » Wed Dec 21, 2011 12:36 am

Hi sharibanflynn
A part of this also has to do with a sense of security. Whether it's pleasing god[s], tribal/community rituals, whathaveyou. So this sense of balance/security in a god[s], king as god or religion, a faith that when all is well or troubled an answer will be provided to be rested assured. When I put the shoe on the other foot [so to speak] and with open mind look at the opposite which can be an atheist mindset. At first there seems to be a more open institutionally structured balance of peer reviewed facts in certain sciences i.e. math.. But there too as rarely admitted are many, many unexplainable experiences, occurrences, unexplained evidences and observations that lack any semblance of reassurance [without involving faith]. And when I hear someone say, it's only a matter of time before the answer comes, it sounds sooo similar to it's a matter of time before the Messiah comes [returns].
I'm simply pointing out IMO that this question of leave religion lacks any validity in terms of 'for something else', when that something else is no better an option.
I'm also very interested in Anthropology and Archaeology and perhaps we can share some links. Anyway, have a good Christmas on the other side of the pond. ; )
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Post by sharibanflynn » Wed Dec 28, 2011 8:08 pm

Hi onedone,
The notion of the need for security is accompanied by others (academics)-
Chatwin (1988) believes that religion is a response to anxiety and that movement (Across the landscapes) , by catharting this anxiety removes the need for religion...
Another (academic) Berman suggests that this movement makes religious ritual superfluous as the ‘..immediate experience that the need for anything more complicated than paradox is largely obviated..’(Berman, 2000:166)

Jung stated (not up to finding the quote right now) that the notion of religion with the ‘Holy Family’ takes away the prospect of worship of the nat’ mother as the ‘creator of mankind’: As she could not carry such adulation. (Not in all cases of course as we still get our ‘mammers boys’- who’s mothers would rather have their son’s dead than wed.)
Thank God there is a there is a God or the atheist would have nothing to not believe in.. so such are but trite to me.
I like the basis of those who believe in the matter of fact..but alas back to Mater/Mother Earth again.. 'the mater of time'..we float on a sea of images from the collective and words are the expression of same that change to suite the present gods.. Reason being the latest goddess to take up mankind’s energy. I like Hillman’s notion that each word is an angle birthing itself into our consciousness and having both history and pending modification before it sinks into the sea of unconscious again.
So the prospect of leaving religion is like leaving the origin of language..so yes it is a little more than difficult.. :roll:


Chadwin B. 1988- The Songlines. New York: Penguin Books.
Berman M 2000 Wandering God. Albany: SUNY.
I still work with people who are suicidal. my main interest is in sculpture via ceramics
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