Religious Right? Secularism

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Religious Right? Secularism

Post by mom3 » 09 Nov 2017, 09:58

An interesting thought piece from the Deseret News. ... ation.html


But at BYU on Tuesday, Notre Dame political science professor David Campbell said that the political movement known as the religious right would do better to look itself in the mirror than express outrage when Democrats, liberals and progressives rail against religious expressions in the political arena.
"If my argument is right," Campbell said, "there’s this tremendous irony that the religious right was formed to advance the cause of religion in the public sphere, but it has actually contributed to a decline in religious affiliation in American society."
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Re: Religious Right? Secularism

Post by nibbler » 09 Nov 2017, 12:25

This is a tough topic to comment on because the conversation could get too political.
Mahatma Gandhi wrote:I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.
I think that during the most recent presidential election many people that don't have skin in the game (or they have lots and lots of skin in the other team playing the game) started to see things this way.

The article mentions this, and I'll state it a different way here.

From what I've observed people put politics before religion but they believe that their religious beliefs steer all of their political choices.

During the most recent presidential election in the United States I saw people on both sides of the political coin diminish the sins of their candidate and magnify the sins of the opposing candidate. Pretty common, nothing to see here. But...

One side has been decrying the sins of the other as the reasons why the opposition can't be trusted in office and they've been doing it for decades. Now someone comes along who is flawed enough to where the flaws cannot be as easily hidden or ignored and the same side that cited the sins of the opposition as making someone unfit for the office were either rushing to excuse the behaviors of their candidate or they appeared to be completely oblivious to them.

That's a tough position to put people in when they recognize the flaws. Those kind of actions can be viewed as hypocritical.

I'll be honest. I really, really struggle with my evangelical friends and family. Some of the positions they take come across as showing a complete lack of compassion/empathy. The article talks about the ties between politics and religion, so sometimes it gets hard to not associate what I perceive to be a lack of compassion and empathy with their religion.
And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold

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Re: Religious Right? Secularism

Post by On Own Now » 09 Nov 2017, 13:18

Whether they are religious or not, conservative or liberal, no matter their race, sex, or orientation, human beings have a very strong tendency to think that their own perspectives are the clearest, that their ideas are the most rational, and that their values are the most enlightened. Anyone who disagrees, on the other hand, is easily seen as deficient... because after all, if my viewpoint is the right one then everyone who doesn't agree with me is wrong, by definition.

Yet, in our world, which is overflowing with people who all think themselves smarter than their neighbors, people still don't know who has the right of way at a traffic circle, they lose their keys frequently, forget important dates and appointments, and constantly butt-dial each other.

In other words, we aren't all as omniscient as we think we are, and a little bit of allowing others to have opinions that differ from our own without having to psychoanalyze the other person would probably be a good thing.
"Let us therefore no longer pass judgment on one another, but resolve instead never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of another." --Romans 14:13

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Re: Religious Right? Secularism

Post by Roy » 09 Nov 2017, 13:47

A wise person once told me that in order have a productive disagreement with someone - I must present my argument as my perspective and acknowledge that I may be wrong.
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Re: Religious Right? Secularism

Post by AmyJ » 09 Nov 2017, 13:52

Roy wrote:
09 Nov 2017, 13:47
A wise person once told me that in order have a productive disagreement with someone - I must present my argument as my perspective and acknowledge that I may be wrong.
This is one of the key principles of our marriage. We are both strong-willed, divergent thinkers who do/see/think about things very differently.

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Re: Religious Right? Secularism

Post by hawkgrrrl » 09 Nov 2017, 15:29

This is honestly what bothers me about the religious right. I disagree with their values, and I disagree with their politics--which ARE in fact, not religious at all, but are incredibly secular. The left does this, too, when it equates social justice or social funding with Jesus' injunction to care for the poor or downtrodden. Political parties and aims should be about public policy and the public good, not a manifestation of private devotion.

For example, you can say that you would never have an abortion for religious reasons and yet see why abortion should remain legal for social reasons; it can be shown to benefit society. We do stuff like this all the time. Religious people can say "Adultery is bad" without jailing or fining adulterers. It's really just that the religious right wants to preserve status quo which pretty much always means upholding white cishetero male privilege rather than taking the rights of women and minorities equally seriously.

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Re: Religious Right? Secularism

Post by SamBee » 09 Nov 2017, 17:46

Personally I consider the Democrats to be a right wing party too... as for so called liberals, they are in the soggy center at best, not on the left.
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Re: Religious Right? Secularism

Post by Curt Sunshine » 10 Nov 2017, 21:21

I just want to say that On Own Now's comment is a prime example of why I am ecstatic to have OON here.

I see through my glass, darkly - as I play my saxophone in harmony with the other instruments in God's orchestra. (h/t Elder Joseph Wirthlin)

Even if people view many things differently, the core Gospel principles (LOVE; belief in the unseen but hoped; self-reflective change; symbolic cleansing; striving to recognize the will of the divine; never giving up) are universal.

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Re: Religious Right? Secularism

Post by Beefster » 10 Nov 2017, 22:17

We are all wrong (myself included). I don't trust anyone to make optimal decisions for others, society, or even themselves. We all have flaws in our worldview, so I think it's time we stop arrogantly assuming we're right and just love each other. It's time we respect other people's ways of doing things even when we disagree. We should not impose one way of doing things on others.

The arrogance of "I'm right and you're wrong" is devisive and destructive to society regardless of whether it comes from the left or the right. And it's coming pretty hard from both sides.

It's still fine to criticize ideas- and in fact, that is a key ingredient to obtaining truth IMO. But we should be criticizing ideas and not people. Ideologies, but not tribes. Doctrines, but not religions. Culture, but not groups. Management, but not managers.

We need more love and truth. We need less hate and slandering.
Boys are governed by rules. Men are governed by principles.

Sometimes our journeys take us to unexpected places. That is a truly beautiful thing.

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Re: Religious Right? Secularism

Post by dande48 » 10 Nov 2017, 23:52

mom3 wrote:
09 Nov 2017, 09:58
But at BYU on Tuesday, Notre Dame political science professor David Campbell said that the political movement known as the religious right would do better to look itself in the mirror than express outrage when Democrats, liberals and progressives rail against religious expressions in the political arena.
Just looking at this quote for a second... this is how I read it:
"Instead of railing in outrage against those who rail in outrage against you, you should look in the mirror, and see the correction you need to make within your own ideologies."
Wonderful sentiment! We all would do better to self reflect than rail in outrage against anyone. But at the same time, it feels like "the pot calling the kettle black". The overall theme of the message may be true; I can see how the religious right can spur secularism, much in the same way feminism caused Donald Trump to get elected. You push too hard for too long, and then the pendulum starts swinging in the other direction.
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