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Do Religions which preach peace fuel more wars than they prevent?
Posted 1/27/08 , edited 1/27/08
Right now pretty much everyone knows that religions like Christianity often have quotes in their holy texts like 'love thy neighbour' and 'thou shall not kill' etc etc. Clearly these teachings suggest peace and goodwill and you would think that Chirstians everywhere would strive to prevent wars and fighting at all costs.

But Religions always seem to be deeply involved in war. History is filled with religious wars such as the crusades etc all fought in a peace loving God's name. Indeed even today many soldiers would claim to be religious, wear a crucifix, pray 3 times a day and yet they would go against the very foundations of their peaceful religion by killing another man without even a second thought. Perhaps more sickening is the fact that so many soldiers claim that 'God is with them' and almost helping them to kill even though they are commiting sins of a huge magnitude. There are even soldiers who rely on their beliefs so that they can risk their lives: "if I die, I go to heaven" Without that reassurance many soldiers would be unwilling to risk their lives on the battlefield, and consequently would not fight at all. Surely therefore religious beliefs help to fuel wars that aren't even of a religious nature? Imagine for a second that no religion existed. Instantly the more obvious and openly religious wars would vanish (they still exist today remember). Perhaps even the soldiers would be less willing to fight without God's support in all other wars too. Perhaps without the peaceful teachings of Christ there would actually be less bloodshed in the world.

However, just how many wars do religions prevent? Indeed a man brought up to believe in peace under Christ would surely be less inclined to fight than an atheist. Another thing which must be considered is what would actually happen if religions were to disappear? What would replace it in society? Indeed do the religions which over time have grown into their positions of power and influence actually prevent a certain amount of anarchy? As you can see this can be argued either way.

I have used Christians as an example but this thread is about ALL religions. I'm pretty sure this is not a duplicate, but if I just missed it in my search then feel free to lock this one.

What do you think? Are Religions the black oil that fuels the flames of war or the pure water that douses the fire?

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34 / M / Pinsnotch2
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Posted 1/27/08
the crusades are a perfect example of how they created more chaos than peace
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26 / F / the united states...
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Posted 1/27/08
really they may preach peace but if they dont live it then its pointless... its like oh we must rid this world of jewish people so that we can be the ultimite race and have peace ... this is a bad way to preach peace.. or like they said the crusades.. i swear sometime religious /political leaders can get it all screwed up ... like america saying that we believe in equality and keeping people as slaves at the same time but yeah you get my point
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34 / M / Pinsnotch2
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Posted 1/27/08
lolz anyone realize it is always white people that start the wars?
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26 / M / s
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Posted 1/27/08
religion is just used for an excuse, if there wasnt any religion some other lame excuse would pop up like cause your house is more purple
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30 / Ronald McDonald's...
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Posted 1/27/08
^That's actually very true.


wolzen wrote:

lolz anyone realize it is always white people that start the wars?


That argument is...no argument. Wars have been fought in any country with non-white inhabitants before they first saw a Caucasian or that term even came up.

Religions, the ones that preach peace as well as any other, tend to be another reason for small and great wars, because they fuel prejudice against people of another religion/give people the idea of superiority above others. But there's lots of other factors that lead to the same thoughts. It's often manipulation of course, war wagers are going to take anything as an excuse to attack a wealthy, neighboring country and colonialize it and the masses will usually gladly accept that excuse. But that's more of a modern thing I believe, because remembering what I read about the wars in the old days, it seems that no one even thought about needing a reason to wage a war, other than concurring another country and thus expand and become a richer nation.
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27 / Earth
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Posted 1/27/08
kingsky123 I have to agree. Wars are fought for political reasons and power, not because of religion.
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28 / F / most likely in bed.
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Posted 1/27/08
You use whatever is popular belief to inspire people into going to war for you. I think it makes sense that religion was always used for Evil since it was always so popular. Even if religion is good it doesn't mean religious people are good.
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40 / M / your mom!!!
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Posted 1/27/08
power + religon = war ....unless your budest then it just equals massacre wich is what the chinese government did to the people of tibet!!
Posted 1/27/08
religion doesn't cause war. people do.
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27 / M / Los Angeles, Cali...
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Posted 1/27/08

loadeddragon wrote:

power + religon = war ....unless your budest then it just equals massacre wich is what the chinese government did to the people of tibet!!


HAHAHAHA!!! pacifists are awsome

but to stay on topic......

i find it strange that only monotheistic religions use their religion to start wars. christianity had the crusades, islam had various jihads in spain and sicily, and thousands of years ago, the jews invaded the levant to create their "promised land" (they havent been a political power since until very recently, but there are zionists in israel, and they are kept out of the army for fear of them starting a new war[which i think is inevitable])


you don't see other religions starting holy wars. the only occaision i can think of is when hindus and muslims were virtually at war with eachother in india, but thats one case.
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28 / M / The centroid of a...
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Posted 1/27/08

kingsky123 wrote:

religion is just used for an excuse, if there wasnt any religion some other lame excuse would pop up like cause your house is more purple


I agree with this guy.
Humans just do w/e they want, then find an excuse to cover their ass. In this case, religion is use to cover the asses of the hunger for power and the need to be better than everyone else.

Which is why Buddhism(not really a religion but w/e) is awesome because of their entire slacker mentality, they cant even be bothered to care enough to start a war with other people. =.=
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21 / F / Resembool
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Posted 1/27/08

excalion wrote:


Which is why Buddhism(not really a religion but w/e) is awesome because of their entire slacker mentality, they cant even be bothered to care enough to start a war with other people. =.=


I completely agree with you. Buddhism really is awesome. =) Its so peaceful and doesn't believe in violence of any sort.

And about the crusades, I think its pretty stupid for them to think that killing people in God's name is right. I mean, did they ever think that God would want them to kill other people? I thought Christianity gave hope to the sick and poor. Making them believe they had value. But killing people because of religious reasons only give them a bad name. =T Plus, it could've caused some of the believers to question their own religion.
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26 / M / Australia
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Posted 1/27/08
I believe religion has no more use in our era for in the past, they have been used by politicians and whatnot to inspire the citizens and make them believe that what they are doing is right (Crusades, jihad etc, the popes vendetta) and give people hope to go through tough ordeals that was faced in the past however that is not needed anymore for the main factor that brings us close together is not religion anymore but something else, so thats why you don't see George Bush saying that god is on his side ^^ (actually I dunno, prove me wrong)

I remember a quote from some pope talking about European "dangerous individualism" but meh
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27 / M / in a world where...
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Posted 1/27/08
since the dawn of life, organisms of all sizes fought and killed one another for many reasons....humans are no different other than we think in a more complex methods and we work in greater numbers. its not religion that causes wars... its ppl who think they r right and have seats of power. using the scapegoat of religion only trys to justify their views and convince the masses that killing others is in their best interest. so long as humans want something, peace will never last long
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