re: Dane | 2:09 p.m. Dec. 12, 2007 >>The Dark Ages were a time of
securlarism much like we see in many groups modern day society.
re: California Man | 7:17 a.m. Dec. 12, 2007 //The secularists of
Hollywood even in commercials and cartoons consistently portray men as stupid
and childish and women as intelligent and super individuals who can have a high
paying career and family and juggle it all swimmingly.//I don't
disagree with how Cali Man says Hollywood depicts men at all. However, the Zion version is not much better. A man who works 8 hrs/ day to
support a wife and say 4 kids then has to deal with traffic and then the home
life yada yada yadaWell. you can see why Utah has some of the
secular issues (drugs, etc...) that they do.
It seems to me the ultimate secularists were Stalin and Mao. Their idea was to
do away with God and pretty much enslave as many as possible. I believe the
figure of deaths attributed to the pair amount to over 50 million people. Throw
in the secularist Hitler and I’m thinking these kinds of folks give a bad
name to those under the banner of secularism. Religionists have done their
share also but nothing compares to our extremist friends the secularists. It
also seems to me that when liberal groups do courageous things like establish
voting rights for the victims of racism they too are following Judeo/ Christian
principles, even if they do not directly espouse them. To the shame of the
religious right they did not lead but followed in securing rights for their
fellow man.We all need to do better. Including me. How about you?
I would like to respond to "To Vox." At the last meeting of All Gay People
International the sub-committee on recruitment of adults did vote to increase
our efforts at making more heterosexuals into homosexuals. We will not be happy
until we take over the world. We did not talk about "influencing children."
Those kind of people are called pedophiles and are a completely different kind
of people, most of whom are heterosexuals.And, on a more serious
note, to those who want the U.S. to be a religious, if not Christian, nation.
How do we defend the rights of atheists, who are usually in the minority, to be
recognized as good citizens in no less way than religious folk? I am always
impressed with the fact that this great nation does not require a religious
standard in order to be considered a good citizen. As a religious person I want
to make sure this never changes because I want always to be free to practice my
religion even if the majority of this nation becomes atheist.
Its pretty sad that all of these "secularists" are so defensive over one group
of people's attempt to grow in knowledge. What are they all afraid of?
Seems to me that gay people are not really trying to be left alone but ARE
trying to change the world by using popular media to make homosexuality appear
desirable and "normal." They are recruiting, trying to strengthen their position
in society by influencing children to choose their lifestyle. This I will fight
against. And I hope they don't succeed in harming my children.
I sincerely hope your interpretation of Dr. Robinson's lecture is spot on,
Dennis, because nothing in this life causes more trouble than religious people
getting paranoid because someone told them their faith/beliefs are under attack
from Group X. I'd also like to clear up a few things for a certain few people:
(1) Gay people are not trying to destroy the traditional family -- they really
just want to be left alone and afforded the same rights and liberties as anyone
else. Is that really asking too much? (2) Hollywood liberals are not out to
destroy our cultural fabric -- they're simply doing whatever makes the most
money, an agenda that should make any conservative proud. And (3) If you want
the so-called nuclear family back, I suggest you lobby corporate America to
start paying people well enough again so that one parent can actually stay home
with the kids without risking bankruptcy and destitution. (Good luck with that
The sooner people learn to mind their own business (especially in religious
affairs) everyone will be better off.
Great secularists have changed the world in remarkably good ways. Many calling
themselvs Christians have brought great evil to the world. Great Christians can
lead others to God. Great secularists cannot. A great Christian who can
communicate with all people because he possesses the knowledge of God and the
knowledge of the world has the greatest power do good in the world.
I was actually at Dr. Robinson's lecture. Let me clarify a few things for many
of you who have so much to say based on a poorly spun newspaper article.First, Robinson is hardly the zeal-without-knowledge Christian
conservative that some, based on a few out of context quotes, are painting him
out to be. He is an intellectual historian who -- I am not exaggerating --
probably has a better grasp on intellectual history than all but maybe 5 people
in the world at most.Second, his speech was hardly the social
conservative go-get-them speech that the article makes it out to be. It was a
highly sophisticated, intellectual speech regarding the relationship of reason
and faith. The Des News just picked out the most politically charged
statements.Third, let me suggest one thing to those who play the
"secularism never hurt anyone and it is the religious people who are to blame
for everything bad in the world" card. You simply do not understand. There are
many (non-religious) books that could help you from renowned scholars. I
recommend Heidegger, Levinas, Dreyfuss, or anything from members of the Society
of Philosophical and Theoretical Psychology (of which Robinson is a member).
As a secular humanist and ex-LDS, I find Romney's speech proclaiming "freedom
frequires religion" offensive and does not even compare to JFK's 1960 speech
that Kennedy emphasizes secularism when he becomes president, with no religion
as his deciding factor on issues. And I find this article disheartening. Would
America need a theocracy? Founding Fathers were mostly Deists; they opposed the
theocratic or autocratic idea of managing the nation. I for one will never vote
for Romney, and I intent to vote for Ron Paul at the Utah GOP primary February
5th. Mitt Romney, like Rudy, is a RINO and do not represent the genuine
principles of turning America around to be on the right track to prosperity
while eliminating tax waste and abuse and end the unjust wars. It's politics as
usual with empty promises and more disastrous policies as determined by the
ruling oligarch elite.
the man says "You must be informed. Adversaries of everything you
stand for are often informed, often passionate." i would submit that
the more informed one becomes the less religious and the more secular that
person becomes. it is therefore more difficult to find an informed and religious
person than it is to find an informed and secular person.I'm not
quite pulling this out of my yknow: among the members of the National Academy of
Sciences, comprised of the most elite scientists in the US, 93 percent reject
the idea of a personal God as posited by popular religions.
i do appreciate you way of thinking and will share with you great kowledge such
as my forefathers of the iroquois shared with the founding fathers..contary to
the prevailing beliefs that natives did not write their history down this could
be farther from the truth. Great recorders existed amongst these way before the
comming of the white man..people such as the mohawk, seneca, onandaga, all the
way through to the cherokee were so successful that they had no need of the new
english language or the trading system that it offered. One must bear in mind
that the people who made up this people along with the land was vast. what is
now present day ny well into canada..all was recorded therefor one will find
many LDS amongst these people dueto their great ability at record keeping such
as in the bom.It is in such poor stories such as Pocohantas which never happened
that the so called conquerors distort the current perceptions. John Smith,
hopefully no relation to Joesph, was a broken down merchant who fabricated a lie
which i cringe everytime that story is told to children. Two histories, one for
natives,one for new comers still exist libraries.
Randall, In Darwin you trust - In Darwin you will fail! Flesh is weak, in the
spirit you will find strength. That is the message here.
The problem with Secularists is not that they don't care about religion. It's
when they care so much about religion that they feel the need to attack it and
limit other people's freedom to practise it. What Robinson is asking is that we
prepare ourselves better to counter the arguments of Secularism and to be more
aware of the threat that it poses. In addition to Agressive
Secularism we need to be aware of two other threats to our society from
non-Secular sources: 1. Immoral Religionists whose hypocrisy, once
exposed, undermines faith in the weak and trust in the unconverted. E.g. child
abusing clergy, greedy & immoral telemarketervangelists, greedy & lying Creation
Science publishers2. Adherents of Immoral Religions who sincerely believe
that God permits them to do evil. E.g. Sharia-believing Muslims, amoral
Scientologists & extreme Calvinists who think their 'saved by grace' 'get out of
hell free' card means they can do no wrong, preaching hate & fear, picketing
temples & funerals, burning churches & maintaining racial segregation (yeah I'm
looking at you, SBC!).
Come on....give it a rest. Here we go, that Mormon conspiracy thing again. Did
you know the same idea is alive and well with the Jews in Boston and the
Catholics in everywhere else. And it isn't true over there either. Who cares
if someone disagrees with the church? Nobody. Except for the universities
tho--if they pay your salary, you need to toe the line. If you can't do that-
then you don't have to work there. It's the same at nearly every religious
school in the country. Ooooh! watch out for the Mormon mafia. Or else! Come
on...give me a break
Thanks for your opinion, Lynn Tilton (if that is your real name), but a person
would have to be a fool to use their real name if they have anything to say that
might go against the predominant religion. You could lose your job at the Church
universities or other "Mormon companies" in the valley, and be ostracized by
your neighbors, or in some cases people's spouses have left them when their true
feelings about the LDS church have become public.No, best to use
this forum for what it was intended: the FREE expression and exchange of ideas.
What was that all about? Simple people live simple lives? Actually no--life is
better enjoyed by living simply. That coming from someone like me(55 years old
with a BS and MBA and an increasingly growing business) The hard knocks of life
teaches us that it's better for our health and overall well-being to live as
uncomplicated as practical. A simpler life allows us the time to actually
think, instead of always reacting. Time spent in reflection, contemplation and
meditation increases one's intellect and understanding. Some of the most
illuminating epiphanies have come to me because I've made time to think. Let's
not be insulting to others. I also enjoyed Mr. Robinson's words and found great
value in what he said.
To LC,Please do not equate simplicity with truth. There can be no
guarantee that truth is simple, and certainly not all simple ideas are true.
Forgetting that fact may be the most blinding thing about the LDS faith.
Anyone who contributes comments regarding a news-breaking story should be bold
enough to use his real name. We must not hide behind secrecy. If we dare not
tell others at least our name perhaps it is better we remain silent.
You are correct. In general the simple minded do live simpler lives because in
part they are less consious of time and much like our loved pets they percieve
life more in space than in time; and if they are well trained they learn to obey
and to enjoy a timeless and happy life without giving it a thought.
Ditto, Former Student.True. True. True. Mr. Robinson's statements
have not only made my day, they've made my year. Amen. Life is still simple
and beautiful when we live simple and true principles. What a glorious
discovery simple truth is to those who have never seen or lived it. Truth is
Dr. Daniel Robinson is one of the most humane, kind, erudite and broad-thinking
men I have ever had the blessing of learning from. What a marvelous intellect,
and a wonderfully decent human being. God bless you, Dr. Robinson.
Some need the security of a group.Some do not.
It's amazing how things don't change. Way up here in the panhandle of Idaho, we
have several so-called Christian churches who actively spend time in their
classes ripping on what few Mormons happen to live here. And yet, the Mormons
haven't(as a matter of policy) spent any air ripping on the secularists. Yes,
we have our little problems just like everyone else. The difference is(at least
here in snowy north Idaho) we aren't the main culture and therefore don't
dictate the rules. We like our mostly non-mormon neighbors and are actively
involved in civic to-dos. We don't make excuses for how we believe and we
respect the responsible beliefs of others. I lived in Utah and was a policeman
for 15 years in the Salt Lake valley. I can proudly say I am a recovering
(active)Utah Mormon. I neither care or am in any form concerned by what a few
critics will say about my faith. We do the best we can in a world that is happy
to criticize me and find minuscule faults with my beliefs. So what if Romney is
found wanting. Show me a candidate who isn't?
Obedience to the law of tithing can be as humble a sum as a poor widow's mite.
That is why we have personal and private meetings with our Leaders so that our
worthiness to enter into the temple may be judged according to our own merits
NOT according to how that humble sum compares to that of the richest among us.
The saddest part of all is how LDS people treat their own kind. If their
brothers and sisters cannot come up with tithing money - the poor souls cannot
enter the temple.
While I consider myself to be spiritually inclined, I can easily recognize that
the Lockean notion that so-called secularists are inherently amoral is flawed.
Religions have long been major sources of moral ideas, but they are not the only
sources. One's own conscience can be a source of moral behavior just as easily
as a code someone writes down and preaches to others. Moreover, most people who
claim to be "moral" on the basis of a specific code are merely fooling
themselves -- just look at how many people who claim to be Christians go
apopleptic over pulling the feeding tube out of a permanently vegetated nursing
home patient but are fully supportive of bombing other people's children. To be
sure, examples like this confirm the fact that most (if not all) religious
people are actually at least as morally flexible as the so-called secularists
they deride as immoral or amoral. Small wonder that religion has lost so much of
its credibility -- too many of its practitioners behave hypocritically while
passing judgment on others who do not share the same beliefs. It's truly sad.
anon 5:40pmYou need to read about it instead of talking to them? I am sad
to hear that you believe your relatives' and friends to be "poor souls". You
sound like a caring person.
On more than one occasion, Buddhists from Tibet were in Salt Lake City. Their
insight and intuition told them there was a darkness here. They tried their best
to do what they could, but in Buddhist terms, the individual must take the
inward journey to cleanse their way of thinking. It's an internal vs. external
thing.I am sorry to say, the Buddhist monks had wasted their time.
Dear Curious -I happened to have relatives and other loved ones that I
worry about who are still behind the Zion Curtain.I don't believe in
giving up when there are so many poor souls that need help.Its just
another one of my character flaws I guess.
I got a good laugh out of Anonymous 3:29 's comment. He is a textbood example
of a hypocrite. He reminds me of the Mormon missionary I once ran into who told
me that he was extremely successful because he was so humble.
to anonymous 3:56pm If you are so happy to have left the area, why are you
reading this newspaper which reports news of this community and contributing to
Just prove your god exists, and have it pay us a visit, and then everything will
be settled. Until then, please be quiet.
Let's all become Muslims, they make most Christians look like secularists.
I wonder if Randall really believes in Darwin. If he does he will acknowledge
that in Darwin's last edition of his landmark book on the origin of species he
admits that the gene pool is not large enough for his origional ideas to work.
He states that there must be something else at work. What, maybe a higher
Fascism has definitely made an entry into America.Do a google search on
the 14 points of Fascism and see what I mean.Here is point #8Religion and Government are Intertwined: Governments in fascist nations tend
to use the most common religion in the nation as a tool to manipulate public
opinion. Religious rhetoric and terminology is common from government leaders,
even when the major tenets of the religion are diametrically opposed to the
government's policies or actions.
Truth is truth. Mormons and other enlightened churches, groups, and persons are
in the same corner! Too bad the corner is shrinking!
Have you considered that you are part of the problem when you make a
condescending statement like your last post?Like you, I am not
"afraid of being spanked by an invisible master." What an arrogant thing to
say.Just like you, I regularly decide the kind of person I want to
be. You probably have your sources and references that provide you guidance
whether it be parents, teachers, celebrities, great pieces of literature, or
whatever. For me, one source of guidance is my religion.You aren't
helping the dialog when you presume to be better or somehow more altruistic than
are religious adherents.
Home run Anonymous 3:29!If I were to run into you somewhere,I'd buy
you a drink or three.My wife (a former Mormon) and I left that area a few
years ago and except for the relatives we left behind don't care if we ever go
back to that god-forsaken place again.
This kind of hateful input is the reason this country is so divided. I may not
approve of your lifestyle and you may not approve of mine, but at least you
don't see me rallying people to "fight" against it. This is America, and you
have the right to your religion just as I have the right to not have a religion.
And that doesn't make me immoral. I don't do bad things because they are bad,
not because I am afraid of being spanked by an invisible master.
Why read all the book? I admit it! I would never fit in to Mormon culture. I
don't feel like a victim enough to be successful. I would get deeply depressed
thinking the world is out to get me. I live in a nation were people
can freely find me disagreeable. I wouldn't change that. I come from a family
that entered Utah in 1847. We took great pride in having different ideas. I
learned to not measure my beliefs by the yard stick used by others.Thank you for printing these commits. I'm a native Utah that sees I could
never fit in to LDS culture in Utah. I don't have the meanness. Name calling and
back bitting seem sophomoric to me. I'm glad there is a place in America where
people with these characteristics fit in.
BYU needs to do a better job of selecting guest lecturers. To try to rally the
studtent body to defeat secularism is extrem. It sounds like the days of
Orderville, Utah and the Mormon experiment with the law of concecration.
None of this is going to get Romney into the White House. So focus on yourselves
and how you can be better human beings.Oh, by the way, after reading
thousands of "there is no global warming" statements on these blogs, Mitt Romney
on this afternoon's debate admitted global warming was real and that we better
do something about it.
To the Iroquois law student: I do not doubt that your people have many good
principles to teach about governing. Luckily, we have the list of books that
Jefferson and Madison read since they kept such good journals. We've read and
studied many of them and can see that these great men sifted out basic
principles of freedom that, I assume, your people also have practiced. Some say
that the Constitution was written for the eighteenth century agrarian society
and needs to be changed for modern challenges. Those men did not design
political truths only for their time, but actually discovered the under-girding
principles of freedom that will work for any moral people, as John Adams stated.
I have a great deal of respect for many Native American peoples and in fact,
love to study their traditions and beliefs.
According to the dictionary, "secularism" is: indifference to or rejection or
exclusion of religion and religious considerations.In modern
context, secularism is the rejection of religion in favor of the human body of
knowledge. It is adherence to reason over faith.Secularism is, by
definition, amoral. Amoral does not mean evil. It means without morals. Since
there is no common moral standard, each secularist can define his/her own moral
code or none at all (just roll with the punches).One secularist may
reject smoking and another may accept it. One may reject homosexuality and
another accept it. One may reject philanthropy and another accept it. The same
is true for hunting, alcohol consumption, pre-marital sex, industrialization,
homosexuality, war, etc. Since there is no common morality, secularists are
amoral by definition.That being said, many secularists are great
people. Mormons would consider them to be moral as measured against the LDS
moral code as would evangelicals, Jews, Muslims, etc as measured against each of
their moral codes.Bottom line: Religionists need to quit viewing
Secularists as evil and Secularists need to quit pretending they have a moral
code. Each Secularist calls his own shots.
All this "debate" (if you want to call it that) means is that Rush Limbaugh has
a huge audience of fools here in Utah.
To me, this debate using loaded terms such as secularists and conservatives and
moralists and amoralists misses the mark, whereas discussing detailed social
studies proving the effects of moral and immoral behavior;the effects of
removing one's concept of God or lack of responsibility to God contrasted
against the scientific study of the social effects of believing one is
accountable to God;and the effects of enlightened knowledge for the improvement
of mankind, seems, to me, to be the more important issue, because, to me, this
implies one is helping and persuading more than one is attacking and debating
and contending. Surely if there is a God and his influence in one's personal
life can be tangibly felt through the light of Christ and the whisperings of the
comforting and peaceful Holy Ghost, that is a beautiful and wonderful thing;
however, we do a disservice to the pursuit of truth if we try to position the
honest in heart pursuing both spiritual and secular knowledge of truth as it
really is,was,and will be, as improper a thing to use one's brain. As someone
one said, "God either stands revealed or remains forever unknown," but surely no
one can debate against good research.
Give me a break, Lynn Tilton!Instead of preaching "they are out to get us"
nonsense, why not just for once take a look and see what the organization just
might be doing that is wrong?And yes, I know, I know, "this is what you
are told would happen in the last days."
We must beware when our faith is attacked. Such attacks are designed to cause
LDS members to remove their focus on the reality of the Plan of Salvation and
the restoriation of the gospel. The goal is to cause us to engage in bickering.
Instead, the need is to restate our core beliefs and what we did to obtain
those beliefs. Then we must invite the attackers to make similar efforts to
learn for themselves the truth of the Book of Mormon.The task is to
encourage those who refuse to do this on their own to become more valiant in
caring for members of their own denomination. Whatever the denomination, many
suffer with poverty, addiction, destruction of family units, failure to keep the
Ten Commandments, etc.Athiests also should focus on helping those
who agree with them rather than engaging in bickering. No matter the belif,
when bickering becomes the focus everyone loses.
In response to "KK" above:The secularists were exactly the ones who
brought on the Dark Ages. Maybe you haven't EVER had a history class! The Dark
Ages were a time of securlarism much like we see in many groups modern day
society. True intelligence comes from God, like anything else. If you believe
otherwise, I pity you, and hope you can overcome your own disbelief and take
responsibility for your life.
Re Slugger:It's really quite simple. Secularists refer to those who
follow the tenets of religion as narrow-minded because when your argument is
flawed, the only power you have left is name calling.That is why
those who have a moral foundation based in religion are "backwards", "bigoted",
"repressed", and "narrow-minded" and those who do whatever "feels good" at the
moment are "open-minded", "tolerant", and "progressive".Like I said,
it's really quite simple. Those who do the name calling get to make up the
8)Religion and Government are Intertwined: Governments in fascist nations tend
to use the most common religion in the nation as a tool to manipulate public
opinion. Religious rhetoric and terminology is common from government leaders,
even when the major tenets of the religion are diametrically opposed to the
government's policies or actions.I really don't think intelligent
people want the above to come to pass.
I have to agree somewhat but diagree too, being a law student myself and a
member of the Iroquois nation ..it has been irrefutable that the so called
founding fathers did not take note of a people and the empire which they
governed at the time called the iroqouis. Conference after conference has
verified this and why not when looks at their system of justice of a very
complex people. But once again the old boat people syndrome wins out further
enhancing the so called conquerors approach from the western-ero point of view
such as landing inside of someone's backyard and then making the claim "hey, I
discovered you".But to give credit where credit is due goes against any
acknowledgement of such a concept being possible.Also if the BOM be of such
truth then why is it so hard for members to at least my people the Iroquios
involvement in this great document for surely my people were of great knowledge
when it came to governing principle. I would advise that if you really want to
know the truth there has even been the claim of this document being plagarized
from these great people.Contact the Iroquis Nation.
Securalism and true Mormonism go hand and hand. One has merely to read our
scriptures to recognize that comments by people like Romney don't represent the
teachings of the gospel and of the Church. Romney is a narrow-minded bigot and
they can be found in any Church but we should never let people speak ill of
Mormonism because of men like him. It is the duty of faithful Mormons to stand
up against the false teachings of men like Robinson and what he advocates. It is
our duty to defend our faith from being twisted into a right-wing religion
instead of the restored Church of Jesus Christ whom we follow. May God protect
us from those who would see our Church apostasize like the primitive Church did
because men like Romney wouldn't have a problem with that. If we do
nothing we will lose the fight and the Church will become apostate and agree
with the religious right. Forunately for us this hasn't happened yet and this is
why there is such anti-Mormon attitude on the part of the religious right while
those who adhere closing to the New Testament teachings of Christ don't attack
HA, man you are so lost! What "knowledge" are you talking about? The knowlege of
the world isn't exactly something a guy can depend on because it is continually
changing. A few hundred years ago the knowlege of the world said the earth was
flat but that so called "knowlege" soon gave way to NASA which "showed us" that
the world was indeed oval. So much for relying on the knowlege of the world!
Absolute truth ONLY comes from God sent revelation -that is the truth that is
the same yesterday , today and forever. Man has a finite view of the universe
and attempts to describe what he sees from his limited view point. God created
the universe as well as all of the laws that govern it.
I am not sure I understand what this article is encouraging people to do. As
far as I understand, as LDS people, it is great to explain our beliefs, kindly,
to those who wish to hear...and yes be educated on current issues and know where
we stand. But, having a mindset of arguing seems to suggest that one person
must win and the other lose. In such a psychological environment, neither
person wins. My LDS friends, love thy neighbor. Speak to them kindly--you know
this. Have courage, but let it be born of charity. Don't engage in a battle
which will tear someone down. Let the way you live demonstrate to message you
are trying to send. It is much easier for others to understand something if
they see it in action, rather than debated with them. Remember that God loves
all of his children. Peace on earth, good will toward men, let earth receive
The bearded man Robinson has some valid points. I cannot support him however as
he is not of my faith. It is a shame BYU let someone not of their own give this
Once again we have someone promoting fear to drive a wedge between people. How
many people do you know that really identify themselves as "secularist"? It's
only a movement in the minds of radical conservatives... Give me a break!
Think layman and you might understand secularism.
If another scholar of religion similarly argued of the dangers of secular
society and urged us to return to the traditional religious values associated
with Zeus, Odin, Shiva or Ra, would you folks be harrumphing your approval,
OK, We speak of Moral Secularists and Amoral Christian (LDS Included). Tell me,
what does a Moral Secularist base his Morality on? At least the Religious
person has a tenet to which that morality is based. The destruction of the
religious morality by secularism is what is disturbing, along with the disregard
to one's faith in their religion.
Why is religion continuously referred to by secularists as "narrow-minded"?
Plese explain, secularists....
What is a "secularist" anyway? Is it someone who wants freedom and equality for
everyone, and does not want to be forced to worship a particular religion, or be
forced to live by the rules of a particular religion? If so, that sounds like
America to me. Sign me up!!These "secularists" don't want to tell
religious people how to live their lives. They just don't want religious people
to tell them how to live their lives. We not only have freedom of religion in
America, we also have freedom from religion in America. The religious
extremists in our country are the aggressors and the persecutors. The
"secularists" are being persecuted and are just defending themselves.The best thing about right winger religious extremist labeling such as this is
it tells the fellow religious extremists who to bash and which side to take
without wasting time actually educating themselves about the issues.
Really a lot of unjustified assumptions in the arguments above, such as the
assumption that all secularists may be rapists or pornographers, or the
assumption that all religions advocate polygamous subjection of women or rape,
or that secularists are the only ones who protect children from abuse. Whew!From my perspective, there are good, bad, and dubious advocates on both sides.
Please try to understand this.Not all secularists are pornographers,
though most pornographers are secularists. Not all religionists are Islamic
women-subjugators, though most Islamic women-subjugators are religionists.
Secularist? Do you guys know that the term means? Secularism is not the
opposite of religion. We shouldn't let secularism be equated with atheism.
They are not the same thing and their differences are of critical importance.
The source of the violence and corruption secularists are fond of citing is not
religion, but individuals seeking power. Similarly, secularism has only a fluid
foundation for morality that could rationalize both Al Qaeda and the most
conservative American movements, but that does not mean all secularists are
amoral. Stereotyping works both directions. But secularism has no firm basis
for moral judgement aside from individual preference, and so any society based
on secularism is doomed to anarchy and failure.
Uh- I am a secularist and this kind of narrow minded talk scares me. I'm sure
most secularists would agree that we:1) Also find "rape" of a child
apalling.2) Do not think pornography should be viewed by children.Please do not make assumptions about us Mr. Robinson. I'm sure statistics
would probably find that since most Americans are Christian, most American
children are sexually abused by God fearing Christians, and most pornography is
downloaded by the same.
Just for the record, it is certainly not impossible to be a spiritually inclined
person who wants religion kept out of government, and vice versa, although some
people (witness the Ten Commandments display controversy in Alabama, or the
Pledge of Allegiance controversy in California) undoubtedly take things too far.
And that's the *real* problem: People who are extremist ideologues taking things
too far. The Ten Commandments are simply part of the Western legal tradition,
not an attack on the separation of church and state; by the same token, two
cells rubbing together in a womb are simply not the same as an eight-week-old
fetus. Unfortunately, we cannot reach sensible compromises on any hot-button
issue until the extremist ideologues on both right and left grow up and lighten
up. Dr. Robinson makes an excellent point in criticizing moral relativism, but
let's be clear here: Moral absolutism is just as dangerous, perhaps even more
so, and religiously inspired moral absolutism is the most dangerous form of all.
Think about it: the psychopaths who flew planes into the World Trade Center
certainly didn't do it in the name of Darwin!
Religion doesn't fail. People fail. God lives and he loves us all. This man is
merely saying for those of us of all creeds and religions who follow gods
counsels, (not because we are blind, but because we see), that we need to be
prepared for the onslaught of opposition from those who don't see or understand
truth and wisdom. One day we all will see God and know that he is, and we
will admit that his commandments are kind. Truly living them sets one free from
the pain and ugliness of this world. By living God's commandments we have peace.
Not that it is easy. It isn't. But worth it.Anyone who hasn't found this
to be true is good at rationalization. Don't buy into lies and crafty words of
people who think they know. This man speaks truth and wisdom. Filtered or not.
Addressing the comments of "Interesting". You have only read revisionist
history. My husband studied in law school, and both he and I in other classes
and on our own, the original writings of the founding fathers. If you had, you
would realize how religious they were. Some were in organized religions, some
were not, but they were all deeply religious. Jefferson and Madison spent many
years evaluating ancient political systems and comparing them to the Bible,
especially the ten commandments. They then put together a system based on
Judeo-Christian ethics. This is irrefutable when you read their works and not
the rehashed version of the revisionists.
There will never be anything less than a separation between church and state in
America.And mormons best leave their brand of theocracy behind the walls
of their wards. Doing this will keep them from being frustrated and freaking
I'm all in favor of a robust, honest and searching debate about the value of
secular thought in a modern society.An intellectually honest look at
what the Bible actually says, contrasted with what the sciences of genetics,
biology, archeology and geology have to say about our world and how we came to
be here, should be enlightening.
I agree with Randall way at the top of this thread -- we shouldn't confuse
secularists with amoralists. I've known many secular people, especially when I
lived in California, who were quite moral. But there are those in
the secular community, typified by Hollywood and other elites, who are immoral
and want to influence more Americans, especially young people to adopt their
immoral views. We need to deal with the shades of gray here and not just label
things as black and white. But there is a fight to be fought, and
we're losing ground (we religious moralists) in the popular media which is
influencing so many minds. We also lose when the weak among us
violate the morals they profess, as others have mentioned above. These are
people without integrity who profess religion, because it's popular or expected
of them or gives them some social advantage, but "inwardly are ravening wolves,"
to quote Jesus. But please, secularists, don't judge the rest of us religious
folk badly because of the few wolves out there.
I loved the way these professors described things and I love that they are on
the same page, morally, as the LDS population. We need more people like them to
stand up with us in the fight against the adversary.
Yes he's right, we should focus on abortion and gay marriage as the two most
important issues. Look how well it's worked so far- who cares about health care,
education, the fact that we're all choking on our pollution, a war that no one
is sure what its purpose is... at least we eliminated abortions, right? What,
the repubs haven't donme anything about it? Oh, we at least the gay movement has
gone away. What's that? They're not? Hmmm. well we should still only focus on
those 2 irrelevant issues anyways. It makes us feel good
What I find funny is that we all see value in supporting secular middle-eastern
countries, which are increasingly become an anommily. But when it comes to our
country, SOME of us want to insist that we are not a secular nation, and that we
are one nation under god. We cringe at these middle eastern countries with
Muslim theocracies, yet we vote in a guy who's done everything in his power to
create his own theocracy in America, and evangelical Christian one at that (you
know, the same guys who are constantly attacking Mormons by saying they are not
Christians). I don't get it. And then there is this revisionist history that
says "our founding forefathers intended this to be a Christian Nation!" BS!
Nothing is further from the truth, many of our founding forefathers wanted
nothing to do with organized religion, and would be rolling in their graves if
they knew these idiots running for the highest office in the land we're twisting
their words and their meanings! A theocracy is great until it no longer
represents YOUR religion. Think about that, Christianity is NOT the fastest
growing religion in the world. All praise Alla or Buddha
What would you think "unfiltered wisdom" might be? What would be the raw,
unrefined resource?All wisdom is filtered through the greatest
minds, and even the lesser ones. It does not exist in some independent,
platonic realm.Try to think more carefully about what wisdom is, and
you will understand that wisdom without filters (great minds) is no wisdom at
What a wonderful contribution. You are correct, of course, and the Secularists
do fight a good fight. As one, I appreciate yours and many of the insights
above.I am encouraged!
More sound advice may be to "take care of your own" before waging an all out war
upon secularism. Incest, mental, emotional, and physical abuse in patriarchal
and religious environments is a disturbing dilemma when teachings are counter to
commonplace practice, and forgiveness with out appropriate treatment (and I use
that term carefully) is granted while wives take prozac and little children
suffer and grow up to continue the cycle. Educate youth to take charge of their
own lives, to think for themselves, to expand their knowledge, to be their own
warriors and stop the blind sheep syndrome!
Re: What?!I don't think he meant censorsed wisdom. I took what he
said to mean "purified." Ideas and "knowledge" are like water seeping through
granite in the mountains. They start off with impurities, inaccuracies. Over
time they are filtered through experience and application, testing an refining
and molding them until they come through the filter as wisdom. Wisdom that can
stand the test of time. That is what he asked the students to seek out.
I like this guy. I completely agree that there should not be a rift between
science and religion. The goal of both should be a pursuit of the truth. Just
as there are erroneous religious views there are erroneous scientific views. We
do the best we can in the pursuit of what truly is.
"Filtered wisdom?!" Filtered wisdom?! What?! Filtered by whom, exactly?
Filtered wisdom smacks of fascism.
I love the part about "a world in which children are educated, not raped."
Since when has religion kept a child from being raped? It seems to me religion
and rape have a long history together.That bugbear of
fundamentalists everywhere, "the separation of church and state" seems to go
hand-in-glove with ol' Joe Smith's 11th Article of Faith, "We claim the
privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our own
conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where,
or what they may." It seems the best way to respect the 11th is to make good
and sure that no one single faith runs the country.
It is such a shame that we must put labels on ourselves and each other. Every
person I know of another religion are good people seeking to do the best they
can. Those who claim no religion are the same. They are not demons but good
people searching their way through life. Isn't it a shame that we can't cast off
labels and come together as the good honest people we are and in unity search
for truth? As the song says, "What the world needs now is love!" To find truth
we must go forth together, leaving our hostility, bigotry, racism, and all other
isms behind. We must go with open minds, respect for all humanity, and a desire
to discover ideas and concepts, solutions to problems, all for the benefit of
all. If a small group could start this, composed perhaps of several people from
many religious and non-religious groups, maybe we could set an example for all.
May there be pece on earth and goodwill toward all men!
All Romney is doing is insuring that the American public views politics is at
its all time skankiest.
Secularists fight the good fight. Knowledge is a wonderful thing. Embrace
knowledge and let go of the antiquated mystical teachings of the dark ages (and
the 19th century for you of the LDS persuasion).
In response to Randall aboveThe secularists claim high moral ground
of protection of children and women when in reality most of them want to
separate them from the family and religion. They lead the charge to force our
children to be educated with their dogma in public schools and encourage women
to leave their children in the hands of "day-care" providers who could never
love their children like a mother can.The secularists of Hollywood
even in commercials and cartoons consistently portray men as stupid and childish
and women as intelligent and super individuals who can have a high paying career
and family and juggle it all swimmingly.The homosexual agenda is to
kill the nuclear family and supplant it with surrogate mothers for gay couples
and sperm donors for lesbians. Most gay men aren't interested in fidelity or
marriage they are just interested in legitimizing their depravity and in the
process the institutions of marriage and family are in serious danger.
We don't need this kind of incitement. Romney is over. Spirituality operates on
a totally different level than the fight this guy advocates. The secularist
argument is simple to understand when you take into account the truth of the
apostasy. Religion has failed on so many levels. Why shouldn't they work to
bring about a better world in the best and most reasonable way they know how? We
Mormons call that urge to do good the light of Christ. If it is less clouded for
them without the politics of religion mucking it up - If they are more prone to
act out of it from the secular perspective, more power to them. Let's face it,
all the flap about Romney's religion is perpetrated by professors of religion
who don't know they have something MUCH better to do. As is often the case
secularists end up doing much of our work for us. For this they have my
admiration and respect. It seems to me a secularist who works for a better world
is more righteous than a Mormon who doesn't.
I think Randall says it best. To be honest with you, I am eager for a fight.
Hopefully this fight will be limited to words. Looking back at history, I don't
see a lot of reason to have this hope. What's needed is an organized,
concerted effort to proselytize against immoral religion. Religion thus far
has had it easy.
I agree with Danny Chipman. I would like to gain the insight of this well
informed man, and I wish there were more people like him. He will have a
positive influence on those who are teachable, and not set on being politically
His counsel sounded much like Elder Ballard's counsel in his most recent
conference address, "Faith, Family, Facts, and Fruits". Elder Ballard
challenged, "...there is a great need for clear, simple statements that present
those who are curious with the basics about the Church as it is today. Let me
share with you some of the things we have found to be helpful. You may want to
prepare your own list of talking points that will assist you in explaining what
we believe to your friends and acquaintances of other faiths. It may be helpful
for you, as it is for me, to have on one page a few facts about the Church as it
is today to give to them along with a copy of the Articles of Faith."
Hmmmm. I thought the rape comment was figurative. I guess you could look at it
as either one. But the figurative road is definitely more applicable if you
think of the assault we as people of faith face in areas such as marriage,
family, sexual identity or just regular identity. If I am not the same as you I
don't deserve to exist because that makes me a bigot or racist or stupid. The
forcing of values is a type of rape; the force of anything is a figurative rape.
Thank you Mr. Robinson. Merry Christmas.
This is a truly wise man. Good looking, too! I wish there were more people
like him in this world. I hope I can also gain the same sort of insight and
intelligence he's mastered.
Unfortunately, your friend confuses secularism with amorality. While
secularists have some values that don't fit with fundamental religions, they are
in no way amoral.He posits that raping girls is a result of
secularism. Quite the opposite is true. It is the secularists who have led the
charge against child abuse and fought religions who would forcibly marry their
daughters.It is the secularists who defend women in violent
marriagesIt is the secularists who are attempting to save the world
and her species from the heat of corporate greed.It is the
secularists who defend the world from the abuse and over-reaching power grab of
religions.In Darwin we trust!
Fascinating. More power to him.
Mitt Romney attacked secularism? Does he think that religion has a monopoly on
morality? It wasn't conservative religions that were at the forefront of the
civil rights movement. It was the secularists and the liberal religions. Now
that its popular, the conservative religions have come along. Just as Romney
wouldn't attack another religion for their shortcomings, why is he attacking
secularism as a whole?, which makes mistakes but is less tradition based and
more reason based?
He seems like the kind of man I'd like to have as a friend!