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What Happens When A Country Gives Up Religion?


Mikefight
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<h1 id="a001354">What Happens When a Country Gives Up Religion: as Spain Shows, Nothing Much</h1> During Franco´s dictatorship Spain was a very Catholic country. After 3 decades of democracy, Spain is not really a Catholic country anymore. First, loss of religion became apparent with the legalization of divorce and contraceptives and the promotion of sex ed, followed by the decriminalization of abortion, the acceptance of drug possession for personal consumption (drug users are not criminals in Spain, but treated instead as medical patients) and a general acceptance of premarital sex. Also gambling in public places became commonplace, prostitution was legalized and regulated, and recently gay marriage became legal. So other than euthanasia, I can´t think of anything that the Church used to opposed that is not legal now in Spain.

 

 

In the 60s over 70% of the Spaniards said that religion played an important role in their lives. Presently it is around 20%, mostly old people. Religion in Spain is mostly becoming tradition. People marry in churches because they are beautiful and full of history, not because they go to church every Sunday. Interestingly, they still teach religion in most schools, but to most it is as if they were teaching Spanish history of a country that used to be religious and it is not anymore.

 

By now the only cultural group in Spain where people are mostly religious are Muslim immigrants, whose religious views on society are surprisingly similar to those of the Franco era when nudity, for example, was frowned upon. Nudity now makes part of the daily press in Spain, where nudist beaches and regular beaches are mostly mixed, and most people care very little about it.

 

But not only is Spain liberal in all the matters previously opposed by the Catholic Church. Spain is also liberal in other ways. For example, in Spain the use of P2P programs to download music for personal consumption is not a punishable offense. In Spain people openly use Limewire, eMule, Bittorrent without fear of being prosecuted. The record and movie companies can´t successfully prosecute people who download music for personal use and music and movie downloading is immensely popular. The only illegal activity in this area, and reasonably so, is people who download music, print CDs and sell them but few do so.

 

If anything, Spain proves that societies do not fall apart when they give up religion and almost everything that was illegal becomes legal. The story of Spain is not unique. Italy, another country where religion used to play a very important role in society, has also transformed most of its churches in tourist attractions. I guess --to the disappointment of people who equate religion with morality-- the story of Spain and Italy also prove that people do not need religion to behave ethically, as Spain and Italy have many less policemen and people in jail per inhabitant than the United States, which happens to be the last mostly religious wealthy country on earth.

 

http://english.martinvarsavsky.net/general...thing-much.html

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I don't really associate religion with morality......or atheism with morality. Or agnosticism with morality. Or any "ism" with morality. I've found with time and experience, a lot of times those two things aren't really as related as we might think.

 

Take, for example, the case of a guy who's a drunk and a lecher, then gets "saved" at a local church. Chances are, he's going to be busy every Sunday morning from now on (if he sticks with the program), but he will remain a tippler and a pervert. He merely wormholes his way around his newfound religious freedom to excuse himself.

 

The fact that criminal assholes (and virtuous saints) can be found within any philosophy or belief system to me, shows that personal morality and personal belief are only superficially related. Remember, Larry Flynt got saved in the 70s, and he never stopped publishing Hustler. Even when religious beliefs do affect a person's behavior the end result is usually the same: the person gives up and works around the religion/non-religion to retain their behaviors.

 

Anyway......This article is nothing new. Religion in Europe has been on a trend towards being a "custom" more than a real faith in an exclusionary One True God except for those pesky Muslim immigrants.

 

And for the record, P2P software is the fucking devil. I do not believe there is a single excuse for it. Because of such software, right now I can't even afford to copyright my own songs. This makes it damn near impossible for me to record them since people are such bastards that once they know the music and lyrics they'll just record it/perform it themselves. This is because ever since P2P came out the government's hiked the price AND requirements for copyrights like a bitch to try and stem the trend. It's the musician's worst nightmare. The tired "but it helps distribute the music" excuse just doesn't fucking make up for it. It costs money to make music and we're not getting any of it back. Plus the music industry is so desperate to rake in some cash that they'll basically only sign the bands they know without a doubt will sell millions - the Creed soundalikes and pop princesses. Right now it's harder than ever to get a record deal. Thanks a lot, freeloading assholes.

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That's right, because the RIAA's draconian policies to retain their despotic stranglehold on the industry couldn't possibly have anything to do with it.

 

P2P isn't blameless by a long shot, but when the only alternative is to further line the pockets of the fat fucking CEOs of the big five labels, for a lot of folks it comes down to the lesser of two evils.

 

You've got the blame half right, but don't forget to spread it to the other group which so richly deserves everything it gets.

 

As for the article...

 

Having seen Pan's Labyrinth Saturday night and realizing the Germans and Scandinavians aren't the only ones can make a good fuckin' fairy-tale; in combination with this, Spain is totally added to the list of places to live.

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Oh I know that. If I could offer one suggestion to the record industry, it would be "Perhaps the slumping CD and music sales could be alleviated by putting out music that's worth buying?"

 

They can be real assholes, I know that. They're demanding, pushy, manipulative, dismissive, and really think too much of themselves. Their self-righteous belief that they control pop culture has lead to one of the biggest public disregardings of fashion and culture in general in years.

 

But by God, it just so pisses me off that people act like P2P is some harmless little thing that "really helps" the musicians it rips off. You wouldn't steal a painting by a homeless guy just so you could photocopy it for your friends. Just because it's hasn't been accepted by a gallery doesn't mean that that homeless guy appreciates you spreading his work around without pay. Even if it HAS been accepted by a gallery (or signed to a record deal) - would refusing to pay for your enjoyment of the picture or the music, be any different than your refusal to pay for a massage session or for anti-anxiety medication? What if the masseuse or the doctor enjoys what they do? Does that mean that they should do it for free for the sake of their respective arts?

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Can't find anything to disagree with there. I'm not in the habit of sharing those files I download (which puts me in the position of pissing everyone off; the artists for stealing their work and the 'peers for "leeching"), but then I've never tried to justify it as some kind of benevolent act. It also helps that the only things I've downloaded recently are episodes of Lost, Heroes and Smallville, which isn't technically costing them money (as I wouldn't buy/rent the seasons anyway).

 

As I said, though, I don't try to justify it. I know it's wrong, but I'm kind of a bad person.

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are we still talking about countries that give up religion? Well how about japan? They don't pray to any god and they don't do any public display of affection (suppression) but then they are known to have some wild and kinky porn (expression)

 

oh and a hi to all of my fellow exchristian that made me a one hit wonder of this site.

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Exactly. Europe and Asia have pretty much given religion the boot. Not officially in most cases, they just outgrew it, out educated it. America is way behind the times in its isolated new world.

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Well actually, the religious situation in Asia is a hard one to correctly interpret, because their religious traditions are so different from ours. Many are Buddhists, which doesn't neccessarily believe in a creator God or even of lesser deities (beyond the tooth-fairy level), but could be said to regard Buddha and his teachings in a religious way. Also localized "traditional" religion still has a following.

 

The way I describe Eastern religion is that, it allows its followers to be nonreligious. Our Abrahamic religions demand that we love, fear, and honor our God with all our mind, body, and soul, and spend every waking moment praying, fasting, repenting, praising, etc. It demands that we make our religion our very lives. Whereas in Asian traditions the gods are just there when you need them or want them, nothing more. They're really not the kind to take offense or to really even care about the average day-to-day lives of humans. Because of this, a person can practice or believe in a religion, without ever really making it a central part of their lives.

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Nicely put, Sage :goodjob:

 

Yes, America is sadly behind the times. In this semi-isolated end of the world, we've taken things on their own course, many times independent from the rest of our human brethren in our ancestral homes on the other side of the earth. In manners regarding religion, there is generally more progress to be found "back home" then here in the "wilderness."

 

Giving up Xianity cannot but have positive effects for a nation, especially in the long run. There is non-religiousness, Atheistic religions (traditional Buddhism being the best example, though any religion can be interpreted in an Atheistic context), and Theistic religions that do not posit the illogical tyrant god of the Abrahamic cults. Since all religions are human products, we possess all the power to destroy or modify them to suit our needs.

 

It's high time the West finally does this.

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I think religion should be given the boot altogether. If it makes a religious person feel better then let them have it. However, it should take second tier to reason and rationality. We should not allow religion to dictate foreign policy and anything that has to do with government. That is why we look so idiotic compared to other first world countries. Religion should take a backseat. But America is still a young country so we have a ways to go.

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Giving up Xianity cannot but have positive effects for a nation, especially in the long run. There is non-religiousness, Atheistic religions (traditional Buddhism being the best example, though any religion can be interpreted in an Atheistic context), and Theistic religions that do not posit the illogical tyrant god of the Abrahamic cults. Since all religions are human products, we possess all the power to destroy or modify them to suit our needs.

 

It's high time the West finally does this.

 

I agree with this statement almost entirely, except for the first sentence, because it leaves open the possibility that a nation can give up Christianity and replace it with Islam.

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If it makes a religious person feel better then let them have it. However, it should take second tier to reason and rationality.

 

Well-said :)

 

I agree with this statement almost entirely, except for the first sentence, because it leaves open the possibility that a nation can give up Christianity and replace it with Islam.

 

Naturally, that's not what I meant, but you are correct in positing that replacing Xianity with Is-lame is by no means a good thing.

 

We must never forget that other Abrahamic cult, and that not only the cross is our enemy.

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