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MrsSmith
07-02-2011, 10:03 AM
After replying in another thread, I decided to begin one on the religious basis of all our rights.


First Amendment - Freedom of religion. The basis for discrimination against gay people is religious.



The term inalienable rights (or unalienable rights) (http://psychology.wikia.com/wiki/Inalienable_rights) refers to a set of human rights that are said to be absolute, not awarded by human power, not transferable to another power, and incapable of repudiation.

Not awarded by human power, so awarded by...what? That is the question our society is ignoring today. What, or Who, awards these rights? If we ignore the "religious" basis of these rights, the divine authorship, allow our young to be taught and believe that God is some sort of petty dictator more involved in "who screws whom" than in the human race as a whole, where do we get the foundation and authority for our rights?

Without divine authorship, who grants those rights? And who can remove them at will? Society? The judicial branch of government? The human race that must constantly be constrained against murdering each other, enslaving the weak, discarding the "useless?" What grounds do we have to insist on any inalienable rights if we dismiss, discard, and disregard the Author of those rights? Without the 'religious' foundation, there is no foundation...

djones520
07-02-2011, 10:06 AM
After replying in another thread, I decided to begin one on the religious basis of all our rights.





Not awarded by human power, so awarded by...what? That is the question our society is ignoring today. What, or Who, awards these rights? If we ignore the "religious" basis of these rights, the divine authorship, allow our young to be taught and believe that God is some sort of petty dictator more involved in "who screws whom" than in the human race as a whole, where do we get the foundation and authority for our rights?

Without divine authorship, who grants those rights? And who can remove them at will? Society? The judicial branch of government? The human race that must constantly be constrained against murdering each other, enslaving the weak, discarding the "useless?" What grounds do we have to insist on any inalienable rights if we dismiss, discard, and disregard the Author of those rights? Without the 'religious' foundation, there is no foundation...

They are not awarded by anything. They are just there. Nobody created them and bequethed them onto you. If you want to believe that God created the right for you, that's cool for you, but that's not what the founders intended when they wrote that.

They were saying that the freedom to practice it was not something that the Government can grant you, because you always had it in the first place. It's only something that they can try to take away, hence the protection offered by that Amendment.

A good note to take as well is your referencing two differant documents, written more then a decade apart by differant people.

marv
07-02-2011, 10:51 AM
They are not awarded by anything. They are just there. Nobody created them and bequethed them onto you. If you want to believe that God created the right for you, that's cool for you, but that's not what the founders intended when they wrote that.

They were saying that the freedom to practice it was not something that the Government can grant you, because you always had it in the first place. It's only something that they can try to take away, hence the protection offered by that Amendment.

A good note to take as well is your referencing two differant documents, written more then a decade apart by differant people.

I agree completely. Rights are the desire of a human being. No one can enter my mind and force me to believe that what I do not choose to believe.

Having said that, I accept the Judeo/Christian precepts for personal behavior. It's expressed in the Declaration of Independence (http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/declaration_transcript.html) and the Constitution (http://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/). That is my free choice as the most acceptable of all alternatives. And a reminder; I'm an atheist. Rights emanate from the heart of man, and only constrained by an individual acceding to the will of another.

Novaheart
07-02-2011, 01:17 PM
Without divine authorship, who grants those rights? And who can remove them at will? Society? The judicial branch of government? The human race that must constantly be constrained against murdering each other, enslaving the weak, discarding the "useless?" What grounds do we have to insist on any inalienable rights if we dismiss, discard, and disregard the Author of those rights? Without the 'religious' foundation, there is no foundation...

Firstly, when considering the Declaration of INdependence you have to consider to whom it was addressed and its function in the founding of the nation. It was addressed to the King and its role was to challenge his right to rule, which he would indeed argue was found both in law and the somewhat but not completely contrived Biblical support for the Divine Right Of Kings.

Then you need to move on to the US Constitution which unlike the Declaration of Independence, is the legal framework for our nation. The only reference to God in the Constitution is the ceremonial practice of writing the date. The Supreme Court has upheld ceremonial deism. "So help you God... " , "In the year of our Lord...." in other words is an artifact.

The specific construction of the US Constitution is indeed unique to this country and was even more so at the time of its founding. However, no principle contained in it was or is unique to the US or the Western Asian religions. Many of the principles of our government are decidedly pre-Christian and outside the influence of Judaism.

Novaheart
07-02-2011, 01:23 PM
Without divine authorship, who grants those rights? And who can remove them at will? Society? .

The rights are granted by contract.

If indeed our rights were unalienable and granted by the all powerful God, then there might be some support for this claim. However, human rights and civil rights are clearly not unalienable nor are they fixed in time. It's sort of a legal fiction we created to establish that these rights were to trump everything including majority opinion.

In a sense, you are correct. Religion is an early form of government and has historically been created and used to back up the rules or laws. Threatening people with the wrath of God helps when people are no longer afraid of earthly threats.

CaughtintheMiddle1990
07-02-2011, 01:43 PM
Where in the Bible does God set up our Constitutional system? If God is such a fan of freedom, why is Heaven ruled like a Kingdom? That would say to me that God favors more a monarchy than a Representative Republic.

djones520
07-02-2011, 01:49 PM
Where in the Bible does God set up our Constitutional system? If God is such a fan of freedom, why is Heaven ruled like a Kingdom? That would say to me that God favors more a monarchy than a Representative Republic.

Take it from an Atheist who is much more wordly then yourself. Debate not religious topics with allegory.

Rockntractor
07-02-2011, 01:49 PM
Where in the Bible does God set up our Constitutional system? If God is such a fan of freedom, why is Heaven ruled like a Kingdom? That would say to me that God favors more a monarchy than a Representative Republic.

If you read in the Old Testament God was reluctant to allow Israel to have a king, he finally allowed them to anoint Saul but he warned them that they would be sorry.

Articulate_Ape
07-02-2011, 05:24 PM
They are not awarded by anything. They are just there. Nobody created them and bequethed them onto you. If you want to believe that God created the right for you, that's cool for you, but that's not what the founders intended when they wrote that.


We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

What in that passage do you find ambiguous, regardless of your personal opinion? Debating the accuracy of their statement is one thing, but suggesting that they were unclear in stating their position on the matter is another. It's just such inference that has distorted much of what was clearly defined in our founding documents thus leading to the state of our republic we see today.

fettpett
07-02-2011, 05:59 PM
Where in the Bible does God set up our Constitutional system? If God is such a fan of freedom, why is Heaven ruled like a Kingdom? That would say to me that God favors more a monarchy than a Representative Republic.


This:

If you read in the Old Testament God was reluctant to allow Israel to have a king, he finally allowed them to anoint Saul but he warned them that they would be sorry.

Go read the ENTIRE book of Judges, and before that how the Tribes were set up and run while they were in the desert. This was God's plan, NOT the Kingdoms. The Israelites only wanted a King because they saw the other people around them with one. It worked extremely poorly for them and the country/people quickly feel apart after Solomon.

MrsSmith
07-03-2011, 09:32 AM
They are not awarded by anything. They are just there. Nobody created them and bequethed them onto you. If you want to believe that God created the right for you, that's cool for you, but that's not what the founders intended when they wrote that.

They were saying that the freedom to practice it was not something that the Government can grant you, because you always had it in the first place. It's only something that they can try to take away, hence the protection offered by that Amendment.


They are just there...well, that's a lovely, stable foundation for our rights. :rolleyes: I can't see any government trying to reduce rights with such a solid foundation at all.



A good note to take as well is your referencing two differant documents, written more then a decade apart by differant people.

I didn't reference "two differant documents" (sic) at all, I quoted Nova and the definition of inalienable. However, now that you mention it, those writing our founding documents quite clearly label the founder of those rights as "the Creator." They make it clear that our rights have a religious foundation because they had seen how man-held rights tend to evaporate.

Madisonian
07-03-2011, 09:52 AM
They are just there...well, that's a lovely, stable foundation for our rights. :rolleyes: I can't see any government trying to reduce rights with such a solid foundation at all.




I didn't reference "two differant documents" (sic) at all, I quoted Nova and the definition of inalienable. However, now that you mention it, those writing our founding documents quite clearly label the founder of those rights as "the Creator." They make it clear that our rights have a religious foundation because they had seen how man-held rights tend to evaporate.

So we cannot have inherent rights based solely on the fact that we exist?
Using your assertion that all of our rights are religiously based, what if it were proved conclusively that there was no God. That would mean that governments would have the justification to revoke whatever rights they want since if the grantor of rights is not God (since it does not exist), nor the fact of a persons existence, it must be the government that grants them. If they grant them, then they can take them away.

Another often abused point...
In the Declaration, they did not use the term "the Creator" but "their Creator". Big difference.
You may believe your Creator to be the Christian God, I may believe my Creator to be a tree frog.
In either case our rights are the same, being that existence is the basis, not any specific entity.
If we limit it to "the Creator", now it must be defined on who the Creator is and who provides the definition. Somehow I doubt that you, me and rabid religious fanatics of any persuasion or perversion have the same entity in mind.
I don't know about you, but I don't want some Islamic cleric defining my rights based on his concept of his Creator.

MrsSmith
07-03-2011, 09:59 AM
The rights are granted by contract.

If indeed our rights were unalienable and granted by the all powerful God, then there might be some support for this claim. However, human rights and civil rights are clearly not unalienable nor are they fixed in time. It's sort of a legal fiction we created to establish that these rights were to trump everything including majority opinion.

In a sense, you are correct. Religion is an early form of government and has historically been created and used to back up the rules or laws. Threatening people with the wrath of God helps when people are no longer afraid of earthly threats.

By contract. Another really solid foundation. :rolleyes:

MrsSmith
07-03-2011, 10:03 AM
Where in the Bible does God set up our Constitutional system? If God is such a fan of freedom, why is Heaven ruled like a Kingdom? That would say to me that God favors more a monarchy than a Representative Republic.

God invented free will, otherwise we'd all just be puppets, jerked through life by instinct or brain chemicals or some other control mechanism. Obviously, God finds freedom so beautiful that He even chose to allow His creation to disobey His will.

Rockntractor
07-03-2011, 11:58 AM
The thought that a group of men most believers in the bible (while the others were at the very least theists) would base our rights on the deep beliefs they held is absolutely ridiculous Mrs Smith.
All of them just grabbed it all from the air with no connection whatsoever to the God they worshiped.

Novaheart
07-03-2011, 12:07 PM
The thought that a group of men most believers in the bible (while the others were at the very least theists) would base our rights on the deep beliefs they held is absolutely ridiculous Mrs Smith.
All of them just grabbed it all from the air with no connection whatsoever to the God they worshiped.

Yeah, all those Roman and Greek architectural styles on their buildings are pure Israel.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/imagecache/page_masthead/the_white_house.jpg

Rockntractor
07-03-2011, 12:15 PM
Yeah, all those Roman and Greek architectural styles on their buildings are pure Israel.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/imagecache/page_masthead/the_white_house.jpg

Exactly everyone I know has the same belief structure as the architects of their buildings and machines.
When I had my Toyota I was strong into Shintô .

Novaheart
07-03-2011, 12:20 PM
Exactly everyone I know has the same belief structure as the architects of their buildings and machines.
When I had my Toyota I was strong into Shintô .

I grew up in a Victorian house and well, you know the rest. :)

But seriously, there is no foundation for the accusation that the Founding Father based the constitution or the design of this nation in the Bible. Surely many of these men were devout Christians, others not so much. Even so, the case for a Biblical inspiration is not supported, it's retrofitted by living people. If they did indeed look to the Bible for design tips, then why is the First Amendment directly contradictory to the First Commandment?

Novaheart
07-03-2011, 12:22 PM
God invented free will, otherwise we'd all just be puppets, jerked through life by instinct or brain chemicals or some other control mechanism. Obviously, God finds freedom so beautiful that He even chose to allow His creation to disobey His will.

Spare me the Catholic apologetics.

Novaheart
07-03-2011, 12:22 PM
By contract. Another really solid foundation. :rolleyes:

When did women get the right to vote? How did that come about?

Articulate_Ape
07-03-2011, 03:22 PM
By contract. Another really solid foundation. :rolleyes:

Abraham would have been disappointed to find out that covenants are poor foundations, don't you think?

fettpett
07-03-2011, 03:24 PM
I grew up in a Victorian house and well, you know the rest. :)

But seriously, there is no foundation for the accusation that the Founding Father based the constitution or the design of this nation in the Bible. Surely many of these men were devout Christians, others not so much. Even so, the case for a Biblical inspiration is not supported, it's retrofitted by living people. If they did indeed look to the Bible for design tips, then why is the First Amendment directly contradictory to the First Commandment?

sure there is, many of those men were either founder of Bible Societies or high ranking members. Many of our legal structures came from Greek/Roman concepts, particularly Athens and Republican Rome. However the concepts of Freedoms also come from the Judea-Christian (early belief not as they were during the Catholic rule of Europe)

It's a fallacy to compare the Laws of God with the Laws of Men, especially going line by line between the Constitution and the 10 Commandments they are not the same

Madisonian
07-03-2011, 04:57 PM
God invented free will, otherwise we'd all just be puppets, jerked through life by instinct or brain chemicals or some other control mechanism. Obviously, God finds freedom so beautiful that He even chose to allow His creation to disobey His will.

Denominations believing that the only way to Heaven is through a born again ceremony accepting Christ as one's Savior, Lord and Master or not to eat certain foods at certain times (if at all) unless you want to spend eternity burning in Hell sounds pretty much like puppet mastery to me. Also sounds like a strange definition of the term "free will".

MrsSmith
07-03-2011, 08:10 PM
Abraham would have been disappointed to find out that covenants are poor foundations, don't you think?

Covenants are religious contracts made with God, certainly not the "contract" referred to by Nova.

MrsSmith
07-03-2011, 08:13 PM
So we cannot have inherent rights based solely on the fact that we exist?
Using your assertion that all of our rights are religiously based, what if it were proved conclusively that there was no God. That would mean that governments would have the justification to revoke whatever rights they want since if the grantor of rights is not God (since it does not exist), nor the fact of a persons existence, it must be the government that grants them. If they grant them, then they can take them away.

Another often abused point...
In the Declaration, they did not use the term "the Creator" but "their Creator". Big difference.
You may believe your Creator to be the Christian God, I may believe my Creator to be a tree frog.
In either case our rights are the same, being that existence is the basis, not any specific entity.
If we limit it to "the Creator", now it must be defined on who the Creator is and who provides the definition. Somehow I doubt that you, me and rabid religious fanatics of any persuasion or perversion have the same entity in mind.
I don't know about you, but I don't want some Islamic cleric defining my rights based on his concept of his Creator.

Dogs exist, what are their rights?

It will never be proved that there is no God, you can't prove a falsehood.

If you remove divine authorship of our rights, exactly why would governments not reduce them? No one grants them, they have no foundation, they just sort of blossomed out of thin air. Of course the government would have no problem with cutting them down.

As there is only one God, man's flawed understanding of Him doesn't really matter when considering the rights He grants to humans.

MrsSmith
07-03-2011, 08:15 PM
Yeah, all those Roman and Greek architectural styles on their buildings are pure Israel.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/imagecache/page_masthead/the_white_house.jpg
:rolleyes:
http://www.rense.com/general44/sdsbi.htm


As you walk up the steps to the Capitol which houses the Supreme Court you can see near the top of the building a row of the world's law givers and each one is facing the middle who is facing forward with a full frontal view - it is Moses and the Ten Commandments!

As you enter the Supreme Court courtroom, the two huge oak doors have the Ten Commandments engraved on each lower portion of each door.

As you sit inside the courtroom, you can see the wall right above where the Supreme Court judges sit is a display of the Ten Commandments!

There are Bible verses etched in stone all over the Federal Buildings and Monuments in Washington, D.C.

MrsSmith
07-03-2011, 08:31 PM
I grew up in a Victorian house and well, you know the rest. :)

But seriously, there is no foundation for the accusation that the Founding Father based the constitution or the design of this nation in the Bible. Surely many of these men were devout Christians, others not so much. Even so, the case for a Biblical inspiration is not supported, it's retrofitted by living people. If they did indeed look to the Bible for design tips, then why is the First Amendment directly contradictory to the First Commandment?

You shall have no other gods before me

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

Yeah...directly contradictory. :rolleyes:

MrsSmith
07-03-2011, 08:33 PM
Spare me the Catholic apologetics.

If you don't like apologetics, stay out of religious threads.

MrsSmith
07-03-2011, 08:37 PM
Denominations believing that the only way to Heaven is through a born again ceremony accepting Christ as one's Savior, Lord and Master or not to eat certain foods at certain times (if at all) unless you want to spend eternity burning in Hell sounds pretty much like puppet mastery to me. Also sounds like a strange definition of the term "free will".

Maybe you should learn something about the entire subject, then it won't sound so strange to you...and will help you understand how your flawed understanding does not affect the reality of free will.

MrsSmith
07-03-2011, 08:39 PM
And I'm still waiting for somebody to come up with a solid foundation for our human rights without depending on the founder's statement that they are divinely granted.

Madisonian
07-03-2011, 09:32 PM
Maybe you should learn something about the entire subject, then it won't sound so strange to you...and will help you understand how your flawed understanding does not affect the reality of free will.

Oh, it does not sound strange to me, been around it all my life. Tithe 10% or your going to Hell. Eat meat on Friday and your going to Hell. Don't say the Rosary 20 times a day and your going to Hell. Don't confess your inner most thoughts to God's supposed representative on Earth and your going to Hell (or Purgatory for 10,000 years). Have sex with your spouse for the enjoyment of it and not to create more kids and your going to Hell. No, no mind manipulation there.
There is a flaw in understanding, but I hardly think it is on my side.

Madisonian
07-03-2011, 09:33 PM
And I'm still waiting for somebody to come up with a solid foundation for our human rights without depending on the founder's statement that they are divinely granted.

You have been given 2 or 3 that I have seen here. Solid is in the mind of the beholder.

MrsSmith
07-03-2011, 09:49 PM
Oh, it does not sound strange to me, been around it all my life. Tithe 10% or your going to Hell. Eat meat on Friday and your going to Hell. Don't say the Rosary 20 times a day and your going to Hell. Don't confess your inner most thoughts to God's supposed representative on Earth and your going to Hell (or Purgatory for 10,000 years). Have sex with your spouse for the enjoyment of it and not to create more kids and your going to Hell. No, no mind manipulation there.
There is a flaw in understanding, but I hardly think it is on my side.

Except, of course, that none of those things are true. Accept Christ as your Savior and you are going to Heaven. Period. Your understanding is completely flawed..

MrsSmith
07-03-2011, 09:51 PM
You have been given 2 or 3 that I have seen here. Solid is in the mind of the beholder.

"They just are." That's the only other foundation that's been given, if you can call that a foundation. That's solid? :rolleyes::rolleyes:

Novaheart
07-03-2011, 10:10 PM
"They just are." That's the only other foundation that's been given, if you can call that a foundation. That's solid? :rolleyes::rolleyes:

Reason and enlightened self-interest. If the Constitution were truly rooted in the Bible, and if the Founding Fathers were in pious agreement, then it wouldn't have taken so long to pound out the Constitution, it would not have required negotiation.

In reality, it wore them out. They were trying to strike a balance between absolute liberty and absolute order, a balance between the needs of the one to the needs of the many, and a balance between tradition and innovation.

The Bible doesn't say that individual liberty is protected, it says that those who do it God's way will have everlasting life while those who do not will die.

John 3:16 "whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life"

Romans 6:23 "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."

CueSi
07-03-2011, 10:31 PM
Reason and enlightened self-interest. If the Constitution were truly rooted in the Bible, and if the Founding Fathers were in pious agreement, then it wouldn't have taken so long to pound out the Constitution, it would not have required negotiation.

In reality, it wore them out. They were trying to strike a balance between absolute liberty and absolute order, a balance between the needs of the one to the needs of the many, and a balance between tradition and innovation.

The Bible doesn't say that individual liberty is protected, it says that those who do it God's way will have everlasting life while those who do not will die.

John 3:16 "whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life"

Romans 6:23 "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."

You're right AND wrong. Reason and enlightened self-interest are the secular foundations for our rights.

But the Bible is so much more than those two verses, Nova. Seriously.

~QC

Novaheart
07-03-2011, 10:42 PM
....... Nova. Seriously.

~QC

LOL! When I read that, you know what I heard in my head. The second part would be "please".

CueSi
07-03-2011, 10:47 PM
LOL! When I read that, you know what I heard in my head. The second part would be "please".

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SKm5xQyD2vE

But...gayer. :p

~QC

Madisonian
07-03-2011, 11:50 PM
"They just are." That's the only other foundation that's been given, if you can call that a foundation. That's solid? :rolleyes::rolleyes:

So "they just are" is not a foundation, but they are granted by a deity that cannot be proved to exist one way or the other (He just is) is a solid foundation?

And to answer your "dogs exist" analogy...
A "right" in the context of man and the Constitution, is merely shorthand for an ethical principal. Non human animals are incapable of ethics or the capacity of reason that underscores them. They act on instinct, not reason. A man kills another man without reason and we call it murder based on ethical principals. A dog kills a squirrel without apparent reason and we call it acting like an animal because the dog is acting on instinct without the benefit of reason, of which it is not capable.

Secondly, rights can only be granted to those with the capacity to exercise them and the awareness that the rights they possess are also possessed by every other individual with the same capacity. This is why all rights are individual rights and there is no such thing as a group right be it Gay rights, Straight rights, Black rights, White rights or the most onerous, Civil rights. Show me a Civil and I will recognize his or her rights the same as I expect the Civil to recognize the same rights towards me.

Even in Man, it has long been the case that rights are not granted to those without the ability to understand or reason what rights (and responsibilities, the oft forgot corollary) are and their implications and our laws take great pains to protect them.

Constitutionally Speaking
07-04-2011, 09:57 AM
They are not awarded by anything. They are just there. Nobody created them and bequethed them onto you. If you want to believe that God created the right for you, that's cool for you, but that's not what the founders intended when they wrote that.

They were saying that the freedom to practice it was not something that the Government can grant you, because you always had it in the first place. It's only something that they can try to take away, hence the protection offered by that Amendment.

A good note to take as well is your referencing two differant documents, written more then a decade apart by differant people.


DJ,

I would have to respectfully disagree with you on this one.

It is clearly stated in the Declaration of Independence that "we are endowed BY OUR CREATOR" with certain inalienable rights"


This foundation in God was NEEDED in order to place the rights ABOVE the authority of any man or any of man's institutions.

As Jefferson said, " --- And can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are the gift of God? That they are not to be violated but with his wrath?"

Even Jefferson, one of the LEAST religious of our founders recognized that they were basing our very freedoms on the idea that ONLY God can grant rights and thus ONLY God can deny rights.