The end of organised religion? My debate at TCD Metaphysical and Theological Societies

by Michael Nugent on January 28, 2015

Should we welcome the end of organised religion? I debated this at Trinity College Dublin Metaphysical and Theological Societies on Monday. The full debate will be online later.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Carrie January 29, 2015 at 2:51 pm

Excellent! Both I and my husband enjoyed watching this and had a few chuckles, thank you. And yes, of course we should welcome the end of organised religion. I am sure that your opponents disagreed *grin*

2 Michael Nager January 29, 2015 at 6:27 pm

The way I see it Michael is that if some invisible friend in the sky is not raised to the level of deification then it will be something else.

You yourself made a post entitled “My vegan library – 40 books on vegan ethics and recipes, plus some books opposing veganism”.

It’s food. When you talk about “ethics” then to my mind you are elevating the process of ingestion and excretion to an unwarranted level. If it is raised to the level of obsession then you invariably become an “us” person versus a “them” person. It’s sectarianism just with a different name.

An example of a distorted perception would be when I started doing powerlifting. It started off as just somewhere I went with my friend and I gradually got more an more into it, to the extent that my weight went down to 63.5 Kilos and my bench-press went up to 102.5 Kilos.

The shock of obsession came when I saw a film starring Rock Hudson as a Native American. When I had seen the film a few years before I admired his physique and when I saw it again I looked at Rock Hudson and thought, “What a fat bastard”.

I remember the craziness of growing up in part in Glasgow where people would hate each other from being Catholic or Protestant and commensurately supporting either Celtic or Rangers, but those same people would be hugging each other when Scotland scored or won at an international match.

My first obsession was reading I remember the first word I read was a the name of a village when I was three, and although I pronounced it wrong (and my grandfather and uncle ribbed me about it) the magic of getting that first word right has never left me.

By the time I was 16 I had a personal library of around 1,600 books. It was never quite 1,600. I learned chess at a very early age from my uncle who was Hungarian and I became obsessed with that parallel to the powerlifting – which presented quite a dichotomous picture when I turned up at tournaments.

When I was at Bonn University I fell in love with computers and that passion has not left me in over 30 years.

I guess I was just lucky that my obsessions didn’t really involve any kind of community dependence. I’m not an “ism” kind of person.

From my perspective it appears that people need what religion or a facsimile thereof supplies. Who’s to say what would replace religion would be better or worse?

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