Australian Census: A Vote For Jedi Is A Vote For Jim Wallace

It's expected that around 30 per cent of us will complete the Census online tonight, up from 10 per cent in 2006. And while it may be funny to enter Jedi or even Pastafarian as your faith if you're not particularly religious, you should know that your stat won't count, and that results are used by groups like the Australian Christian Lobby as an example of how many Australians share their viewpoint (whatever that may be).

That's fine for representing religion (I've no probs with God), but not so much when it's used as a platform to attack video games and try to cancel R18+, for example. Around 55,000 Australians said they were Jedi in 2006 -- that's a lot of wasted representative data.

The Atheist Foundation of Australia is also encouraging people to select "no religion" if you're personally not particularly religious, despite any family background.

For its part, the Australian Bureau of Statistics simply encourages you to "answer truthfully as it relates to you so decision makers can plan education, hospitals and aged care funding decisions."

You have until September 5 to fill out the census, but it needs to be based on a snapshot of where you were on the night of August 9. As with voting, there are fines if you forget to participate, even if you're travelling.

In the meantime, ABS has a cool infographic generator based on your own stats, complete with a fun narration by Shaun Micallef. [ABS]



    Up until recently I would have put something stupid like Jedi or Pastafarian... But after reading up about why it's a bad idea a few weeks ago I will definitly be putting down No Religion.

      You're not the only one ;)

        Why is it a bad idea?

          Read the campaign web site.

            "Do Christians really believe that stuff?"
            "Yes, I am afraid they do."

          Read the article.

      Same here - thought it would be a lol but will now be 'No Religion'.

    Well that's bloody messed up!
    They can't go "oh that's not a religion because I think it's silly." I mean Christianity makes absolutely no sense, obviously all those votes should be discounted as well!

    Ridiculously offensive. If they can pretend there is a mystical skyman who created everything it's equally logical (possibly moreso) to assume that a magical flying pasta creature created the world like this. At least his teachings aren't all about internalized misogyny, body shaming and hatred of those who're different.

    I've read a previous article urging the "no religion" vote so I probably would've put that down anyway, but this is incredibly offensive. Geez as I get older I really hate religion(mainly Christianity as it's so pervasive in our society) more and more, the way it's shoved down our throats at every turn as if it's not completely messed up and hurting our society CONSTANTLY. It'd be nice if people payed attention to REALITY rather than mystical fantasies of some vengeful skyman.

      The diffence is that very few people, rightly or wrongly, actually believe in the flying spaghetti monster - by the sounds of it, including yourself. Many people, rightly or wrongly, actually do believe in capital-G-God as defined by Catholics, Protestants, Muslims, Jews, etc, just like Hindus, rightly or wrongly, believe in their set of gods.

      The point of the census isn't to pass judgement on what people believe, or to find the person with the most entertaining deity, it is to find out (in the case of this question) what the population actually believes in. If you think all religion is mad, then there is an option for you - "no religion" - which is what I will be picking, being an old fashioned atheist. But I would very much like to know whether the trend towards atheism amongst the population is increasing, especially with all the talk around the school chaplaincy program going on at the moment, and the only way to know is for people to answer honestly.

        Jason I find it very hard to believe that you ever were atheist, possibly you were not sure if you had a belief in god or religion but to be an atheist is to be person that is strongly opinionated and well educated and is always looking for a reasons to fault their current beliefs, and don't get me wrong i'm not saying religious people aren't educated. Atheists are skeptical in nature and unlike religious people it is very rare if at all that you will find an atheist that will convert to a religion.
        I am not saying you are not entitled to your views but I certainly think you should brush up on your debating skills before jumping in head first with your emotional argument.

          Did we read the same comment? I didn't see any emotional argument or a need to brush up on debating skills. As far as your comment is concerned, I don't know where you get your definition of atheist, but it's not from any dictionary I've come across. Your main gripe seems to be that you think DP is not an atheist and can't debate, yet you make up a definition of an atheist (presumably your definition of yourself) and then "back it up" with the following nonsensical argument: "Atheists are skeptical in nature and unlike religious people it is very rare if at all that you will find an atheist that will convert to a religion". Seriously, what does that mean? Perhaps we also have different definitions of the term "debate".

          Is "No Religion" the same as Atheism? I honestly think there should have been an option for "Athiest" because "No Religion" is a catchall for people who don't have a religious belief of any kind. Athiesm is a belief, which is just as valid, that there is no god or higher power.

          Where was the choice for "Wicca"? where was the choice for "Druidism" or "Shamanism"?

          What is truly "crappy" (take that how you want) about this is that they only allowed for the "squeaky wheel" religions to be chosen OR "no religion". Now, I am a Christian.. though certainly not a fanatical one.. but I am very open-minded and believe everyone needs to make the choice for themselves based on the evidence/knowledge that they have.

          To not be given the choice to choose the true religious belief belies the very reason behind the census in the first place. It makes it skewed either for "squeaky wheel" religions or "no religion" but does not allow for other "genuine" and "valid" religious beliefs to be "counted".

            There was an "other" box.

            I disagree. Atheism most broadly is a lack of belief in Gods (the prefix "a-" denotes a lack of an attribute as in "asexual" or "apolitical"). Strong or positive atheists who positively assert that gods do not exist are a subset of atheism.
            Essentially if you answer anything other than yes to the question "do you believe in the existance of any gods" then you lack theistic belief and are an atheist of some form. Whether you are an implicit or explicit weak atheist or a strong/positive atheist is a different question.

      What is incredibly offensive are comments like "Christianity makes absolutely no sense". Not only is it offensive, it is outright arrogant. Many millions of people are Christians (or other things) because it does make sense to them.

      Surely, it is possible that either it:
      a) makes no sense to you because you have not investigated it properly
      b) makes no sense because you are not capable of understanding it at this point in your life
      c) makes no sense because you cannot reconcile the story of Christianity with your own experience of the world
      d) makes no sense because you have absolute 100% knowledge of an alternate truth which invalidates it - but why haven't you simply pointed us to this apparently 'obvious' truth which invalidates all other views of life?

      I will be answering the census question with 'I am Christian'. I was previously a positive-atheist however I took the time to investigate the history and was convinced of the alternative - it made sense to me.

      If you have taken the time to investigate your world-view I fully respect that and your right to tick 'no religion'. It really doesn't threaten me or Christianity in anyway.

      However, if you have not, then your comment is nothing more than an irrational outburst and gives little intellectual credibility to your 'No religion' position. I know many atheists who cringe just as much at this type of ill-considered outburst as so-called 'religious people'.

      We still have to live together with some level of respect....

        I think the idea of having an imaginary best friend (ie: God) as an adult is what makes no sense to most.

          not to mention an imaginary freind that got so mad at the people he made for eating an apple that he had to condemn them all, until he decided that by sending himself to earth and then killing himself as a sacrifice to himself he could finally forgive us...

          people demand respect... illogical beliefs do not

            Not all Christians are Catholic. Just Sayin'

        like how adam was over 900 years old and noah was over 500

          The years used then were likely to be lunar. After days the most common unit of time is the lunar unit, a solar year is really hard to work out. 500 lunar years equates to about 40 years.

        Yeah, whatever. You can keep your fairies. Science is actually very close to being able to explain the brain mechanisms that make people believe in such fairytale's, so once it can be explained away what will you do then?

          To quote John Lennox:
          The ability to pull apart a Rolls Royce and look at the engine and understand how internal combustion engines work doesn't mean that Mr Royce (or Mr Rolls...) doesn't exist

          You comment reminded me of this article:

          Specifically, this part:

          "...He found his proof in an MRI study of Apple fans. The same part of the brain that responds to religious images also responds to Apple products..."

            Of course it doesn't and why would it?

            His quote is a brilliant combination of a straw man and non sequitur, as well as a pretty poor example of an 'argument from design' proof of God.

            His Rolls Royce analogy completely falls down. There is a fundamental difference in describing the origin of natural objects vs deliberately designed human artifacts. All of the observable, emperical evidence in relation to human artifacts (eg, a Rolls Royce) is that they were designed by, and require a human being. All of the empirical evidence in relation to the natural world is that there is no 'intelligent designer' required to explain it's existence.

            John Lennox should really stick to math.

        Jason made a point of respecting other people's choices.
        Regardless of your beliefs, the same respect should be shown for his choices.

          No. Just because a crazy person is polite - it does not make them less crazy. If Jason believed the moon were made of cheese, and others insisted it was rock, would his view still command respect?

          I'll answer for you: No. Be nice to people, but feel free to discuss and disagree with opinions - that's what discussion/debate/communication is all about!

            I have no problem with discussions, debates and conflicts of opinion. What I don't appreciate is people's spiteful attitude when expressing these opinions.
            You said it yourself "Be nice to people"
            I'm agnostic.
            I choose not to be a dick about it.

        Jason needs to show a little respect for someone's right to say that "Christianity makes absolutely no sense".

        Saying that it is "offensive" for someone to make the statement is a way of shutting down his right to say it.

        There is no need to be offended. Let him say his piece and you can say yours. Respect.

        Hey fellow athiests. Personally I don't like it when people try to force their beliefs down my throat so could you please stop doing that to religous people in the name of my beliefs. Live and let live, everyone can believe what the hell they want as long as it isn't pushed on me.

          Okay. I believe that everyone with the name 'Richard' should be brutally and painfully tortured just for the hell of it. Are you okay that I act on my belief?

        What is offensive is that someone like you Jason, who knows what it is to be an athiest before you "found God", would down-tread someone else who is also on their own path.

        "However, if you have not, then your comment is nothing more than an irrational outburst and gives little intellectual credibility to your ‘No religion’ position. I know many atheists who cringe just as much at this type of ill-considered outburst as so-called ‘religious people’."

        And your "outburst" is not emotional? Not ittational in the eyes of an athiest? Do we people have to stop speaking just so that "born agains" can live happily in their little bubbles? Think backward to how you saw the world when you were an athiest and if you are a Christian now, you would know that rather than slagging your brothers and sister as well as treading all over him/her, is not the way to move forward for both yourself and them.

        If someone said “Communism makes absolutely no sense” or "Objectivism makes absolutely no sense". I doubt Communists or Objectivists would find it "incredibly offensive". Get used to it religion is just an opinion about the world, just like philosophical and political schools of thought. It is not beyond being debated, or questioned. It has no special right to be offended.
      "For a group to be included in the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ classification of religion, it would have to show that there was an underlying belief system or philosophy, and that there is also some form of institutional arrangements or organisational structure."
      Jediism and Pastafarianism are not classified for this reason. Wicca, Santanism, etc. are.
      Thousands of people can submit "Jedi" as their religion, but it will not be classified unless they put the work in to define and institutionalise it.
      "Ridiculously offensive"? No, just common sense.

        Although, I imagine Santanism would be quite fun :P

          If you've read LaVey's stuff, it's just Bizarro Catholicism.

            Satanism, that is....Santaism is friggin' awesome.

            Not sure I would classify it as "Bizarro Catholicism".. more of a "Humanism" thing.. where it is all about the focus on the self rather than any external power, including Satan. Satanists, generally speaking, don't worship Satan directly, conciously or purposefully. They worship themselves.

      you will deny it right up to the point where you suffer for eternity :(

        God I hope you don't believe that crap. Oh no, I took 'gods' name in vain and swore. Guess I now how 'an eternity' of hell to look forward to. (rolls eyes).

      I think you are getting Catholicism confused with true Christianity. Human interpretation leaves a lot to be desired...

        So, there are an estimated 34,000 or so different groups in the world who all call themselves Christian. Hell, even in the first century CE there were at least three main separate groups calling themselves Christian - Jewish Christians, Pauline Christians and Gnostic Christians which can be further broken down into the Nazarenes, Ebionites, Marcionites, etc...

        So which of those was the 'true' Christianity given they all existed immediately after the so called 'messiah' lived/died?

        And today, who are the 'true' Christians. You obviously don't think it's the Roman Catholics (but is that all of the RC's? what about the ones that reject Vatican II?) You've got 34,000 to choose from, but let's make it easier and crunch those down to 7 or so meta-groups: Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox/Assyrian Church, Protestants, Restorationists, Anglican Communion, Pentecostals and 'Everything Else'

        They believe mutually exclusive things, so what exactly is 'true' Christianity, or by that do you just mean whatever it is that you happen to believe?

          The fundamental message of Christianity is that Jesus came down to earth, died and then rose again to save us from our sins, and offer us eternal life. If this is not included, it is something different entirely.

          Denominations exist because of bickering over secondary matters. Denominations are the main reason i think that people discredit Christianity these days. All these people yelling slightly different things. Quite frankly, it's frustrating. A denomination is not necessarily right or wrong, and there are people in all denominations who are saved. there are also people in all denominations who are not saved, because they are not truly repentant of their sin and have not fully put their trust in Christ. That is what matters in Christianity.

          Me? I'm an Anglican Christian. I have thought about it a lot, even had doubts, but more and more I am convinced that the story of Christ is completely credible.

          I'm pretty sure i'm not crazy either. I believe in evolution and all sorts of fun sciencey stuff, and its complete compatibility with the Bible. I'm also pretty sure i don't support much of what the Australian Christian Lobby says. It makes Christianity look very bad, which is unfortunate.

    Yeah I think for too long Australia has been labelled a "predominantly christian" country, just because of the large number of people who consider themselves 'catholic' or 'anglican' because that's what their family is, or was many decades ago. It'll be interesting to see how the percentages change if people take notice of the campaigning that's going on and put down their own personal religious views.

      Surely, it is possible that either it:
      a) makes no sense to you because you have not investigated it properly

      I have investigated it to the best of my ability. It makes no sense whatsoever.

      b) makes no sense because you are not capable of understanding it at this point in your life

      Perhaps you are not capable of understanding the counter arguments at this point in your life?

      c) makes no sense because you cannot reconcile the story of Christianity with your own experience of the world

      Got me there. I have never seen dead people come back to life, so I have no reason to think it’s even possible, let alone possible of washing away something called “sin”.

      d) makes no sense because you have absolute 100% knowledge of an alternate truth which invalidates it – but why haven’t you simply pointed us to this apparently ‘obvious’ truth which invalidates all other views of life?

      Disbelief does not require absolute knowledge. Nice try, but you don’t worm out of your burden of proof this easily.

      Damn. Replied to the wrong person.

    Religion gets in the way of God, so I too will be putting down no religion.

    Just curious, what happens if you put Satanist as religion?

    This article raises a few questions for me:
    Why is it talking about religious preferences as 'votes' re the census? What are we supposedly voting for?
    What is the ACL? (Please don't use abbreviations if you're not going to give us an explanation of what they stand for - and the link doesn't explain what ACL is, either.)
    What does the census religious question have to do with video games and 18+ stuff? I'm completely lost there.
    "Around 55,000 Australians said they were Jedi in 2006 — that’s a lot of wasted votes." - for what? What am I voting for when I fill out the census?

    Totally confused!

      I believe what the article is trying to get at is if you say you are "Jedi" The Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) use it as part of their stats as percentage of "Religious People" in Australia, they are the leading campaigners against sense in this country..

      I don't know what ACL is either, google didn't help much:

      Automotive Components Limited
      Anterior Cruciate Ligament
      Access Control List
      Australian Cyber League
      Anglican Church League

      I'm going for Australia Christian Legion...kinda like the Legion of Doom only religious.

      "What does the census religious question have to do with video games and 18+ stuff? I’m completely lost there."

      The religious point to the number of Australians sharing their faith as evidence they speak for the majority. This results in Fred Nile, Jim Wallace, Danny Nahlia, and George Pell weidling power that may not necessarily be truly representative. This has an effect on a wide range of topic, including abortion, homosexual rights, stem cell research, video games, pornography, and the rights of other religions to practice their faith.

      Not votes as such, but numbers will be used when lobbying the government for money and ear time.

      What is the ACL? (
      Australian Christian Lobby. Not the first we've discussed ACL on this site, but I hear what you're saying, so I've made it clearer.

      Re-read the article, should be clearer.

    Is Scientology an "acceptable" religion? If so, I find myself annoyed. Consider Scientology and "Jedi" religions... both were made up by a science fiction author in the twentieth century and takes your money for not a lot of return... I really don't grok the difference.

      As far as I'm aware, Scientology is not classified as a religion by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

      Now that's a freak cult that should be stopped. We can then follow up with the brainwashing done by virtually every other 'established' religion.

    Sorry, what, "wasted votes"? We're voting for the religion of Australia?

    Definitely putting down "No Religion". Also with what Corteks said, I'm assuming it's discounted because "Jedi" isn't a recognized religion? If so, who decides which religions are acceptable and which aren't? Hmm googling...

    All right, all right, you win. I'll put "no religion".

    But I reserve the right to wear a pasta strainer on my head whilst I do it.

    Hey Jason

    All religions are man-made, invented solely for the purpose of stunting your brain. Martin Luther-King (a friend of the people?) observed that reason is the greatest enemy of faith, just as Pliny the Younger noted that religion is truth to fools, false to the wise and useful to rulers.
    Don't be a sheep - use your brain and say No Religion

      Don't you see the irony in quoting Martin Luther King Jr.? He was a religious man, a Baptist Pastor until his death.

        of course is was Martin Luther (as in the Diet of Worms, 95 Theses, etc... in the early 1500's) who said that, NOT Martin Luther King Jr. the civil rights leader...

        he also said the "...reason is the devil's greates whore..."

        as well as "Whoever wants to be a Christian should tear the eyes out of his reason."

        cleary not someone who would use logic, reason and evidence to determine what is and isn't true/real...

      "Don’t be a sheep – use your brain and say No Religion"

      Wouldn't that be sheep-like?...

      Just sayin'

    I laughed when I saw the following at

    Do Christians really believe that stuff (the Nicene Creed)?
    > Yes, I am afraid they do.

    But yes - definitely put "No Religion" instead of "Jedi Knight" or "Pastafarian".

    * Keep religion out of politics
    * Stop the ACL from having a disproportionate influence on our lives.
    * End gov't-funded school chaplaincy (& replace them with actual qualified counsellors!)
    * Re-evaluate the tax-free status of non-charity religious organisations/events (what a nice new massive shiny sound system that Pentacostal megachurch has...)

    And re-word the damn Census question from "What is the person's religion?" to something less assuming!

      "And re-word the damn Census question from “What is the person’s religion?” to something less assuming!"


        Well no. Because religion is religion. You either practice is or you don't.

          You wouldn't have a question that says "what car does the person drive?" because it's a leading question that assumes everyone owns/drives cars.

          Instead you'd ask "does the person drive a car?" followed by "if you answered yes to the above question, please indicate which kind of car you drive".

    More than that, if people put Jedi or indeed anything else as their religion, the census will read it as. "This person has religious practices".

    This means that when the time comes for making big desicions about our country in the future. Those inclined can say "Look at the census, as you can clearly see 75% of Australians are religious. This is a religious country!"

    This only enforces how important it is to answer truthfully and carefully in the census!

    So if you aren't sick of rant videos yet check out

    I have read, the bible old and new testaments, the Qur'an, many asian texts, TAO, Buddhism, followed the history of Christianity as well as ancient belief systems.

    i can tell you non seem correct, but all have merit and all lend and borrow from each other.

    Christianity has the bleakest history of violence and non tolerant behavior, making it by far the worst IMO.

    However most people will believe what they want to based on the sheep mentality.

    if your open minded you will know and see the real reason behind the ideals of religion.

    Its all about mutual respect for others and yourself.
    Apart from Christianity and certain Muslim beliefs, which goes through periods of holy wars and salvation of the souls of the "heathens".

    Religion was invented as a way to teach people morals through a good story, and thats all the bible is.. a good story.. a good contradictory story.

    I wanted to put Bad Religion :(

    So why can't I state that I'm an athiest? There's a big difference between having no religion and, having seen my options, made a conscious and reasoned decision that all religions are harmful.

      Then by definition you practice 'no religion'.

    I believe the question should be removed as it could be used as a tool for persecution.
    If you believe the same join my facebook campain Sith for census 2011.!/pages/Sith-for-Census-2011/147124262033689

      Please remove that group can you. It's not a protest at all if the stupid ABS count you AS religious. There are better ways to protest this stupid question (and it is stupid the way it's asked)
      I for one would lobby that joke answers be counted as no religion, why they're not is completely stupid again.

    Hah, I love the high-horsed arguments as if Christians are somehow brain dead sheep who simply follow but dont comprehend. Showing your lack of understanding on the subject by doing making such inferences lads.

    Doesn't "No Religion" seem particularly ambiguous still? I'd be interested in knowing who is actually atheist, who hasn't made their mind up, who doesn't care, and who nominally selects their belief system but doesn't follow it.

    Also, is it equal to say a vote for "No Religion" is a vote for atheism?

    Noticed that Atheism Foundation of Australia are encouraging families to put their kids as "No Religion" if they haven't yet decided. Shouldn't they be left blank since saying they don't have a religion is essentially making up their mind for them in the same way as saying they believe in X faith system?

      No Mark, putting "No Religion" for children isn't making up their mind for them, its saying they don't have a religion, it's not saying they don't believe in god, or won't.

      You can't have a religion if you have never had exposure to one, so a child, isn't religious unless they have been indoctrinated into one.

      But it's okay to put your indoctrinated 'religious' child down as with a specific religion? Did your children ever decide or was that decision 'naturally made' for them by you? I.e. of course they are because I am. All children should be put down as 'non religion' as they cannot make a reasoned judgement.

    Just thought I'd share this amazing video with you all.

    I don't know about you, but to me, this proves that there is a God.

      How the hell to some pretty lights prove there is a god? It is called a magnetic field.

    The statement "take religion out of politics" is quite amusing to me. Without religion, why should law exist?

    If one is non-religious, then it's usually a safe presumption that they base their worldview on evolution (I'm sure there's others, but I'm speaking of the majority). In a world where we are simply the product of chance, and our thoughts and reasoning are solely chemical reactions and cellular interactions, there IS no right and wrong. No ethics whatsoever. Ethics are arguably the product of faith in a higher being. Let's just go all the way and get rid of law. :)

      "Arguably the product of faith in a higher being" ...You could argue that, but you don't have anything to back that up other than ad nauseum statements asserting this.

      Just because religious texts/fables have stories/rules that we have termed "ethics" does not count even remotely as proof or evidence that a "higher being" has told us to act this way.

      And the evidence is in nature anyway, look at dog/wolf packs, look at chimps/gorillas, meerkats, the list goes on.

      These are communal animals, just as we are, they have compassion, they feel empathy, they share, they cooperate, they steal, they fight...this reminding you of anything?

      You are right, there is no such thing as "right" and "wrong", when a shark kills something and eats it, its not right or wrong, it's just nature.

      Being communal animals however, our nature is to group up and work together, and being intelligent we can also logically think about what sorts of things will achieve this, we can call them "rules", "laws", "ethics" them what you like, evolution creates both love and hate, its rampant throughout the animal kingdom.

        I'm not a fan of the idea of religion but that argument is just as stupid. By that statement you could argue that a God gave all animals (or just some) the ability to work together or u could argue many creatures have evolved that way. It doesn't prove anything.

        I've often wondered about the concept of being evolved chemical reactions. Some chemical reactions make feel good, some not. I like your car - I'll take your car - it makes me feel good.

        Also, I find it hypocritical to tell me not to put what I want on my census. Sod off! This is a tech website not an anti-religious lobby group. Since when did atheists become the measuring guide police on who is or isn't religious. . For all those so called "thinkers" out there...shame on you. It just shows what a bunch of bigots and hypocrites we are.

        I think it was Socretes that said he was one of the smartest people around because he was one of the few that knew he didn't know everything. Therefore if you believe you don't know everything, you're probably closer to being agnostic than an atheist.

      In a world where we are simply the product of chance, and our thoughts and reasoning are solely chemical reactions and cellular interactions, there is no higher authority to dictate right and wrong, enforced by the threat of eternal damnation.

      Ethics and morality is something everyone should decide on for themselves. Organised religions should concentrate on helping us make the right decisions rather than spending time, money and effort lobbying politicians into imposing their version of Truth on the rest of us.

      Just because someone isn't religious doesn't mean they don't believe in doing the right thing to share a better world with everyone else.

      We're just not expecting a payoff when our numbers up.

      That's a fairly superficial argument. This is very much one of those "I eat Fish, Fish eat fish, therefore, I'm a fish" kind of arguments. There has been much written about how morals are a function of our evolution. Try reading "The Science of Good and Evil" by Michael Shermer for a less trivial treatment of the topic.

      Ever wonder why the only 'thinkers' that find the Divine Command Theory or Natural Law Theory as a convincing reasons for the existence of morality are religiously motivated?

      Lol, Peter all that tells me is YOU wouldn't be a good person without belief in a higher power. I don't need god or even laws to make me be a good person. I am a good person because it's logical, mutually beneficial and it makes me feel good.
      And by the same token there are laws I have ignored in the past because they were idiotic, arbitrary and in no way harmed others.

      What's scary is when religious people say they WOULD murder, rape, steal etc if they weren't religious. Clearly they wouldn't, so WHY wouldn't they? What makes the rest of us not do that? What makes non-religious countries the ones with the least crime and violence? What makes nearly 100% of US prisoners Christians?
      It's built into us BY evolution. Societies where empathy doesn't function as well die out, so they don't have kids. It's as simple as that.

        What's even scarier is that many would (and do) if they think that's what their god is telling them to do.

          Again, that's a stupid argument and anyone that believes those figures has more faith than the Christians you mock. I've studied anthropology and never heard any of that. But...
          I'm extra evolved...I don't have those "ethical" limitations of the lesser evolved. I don't hurt people as such but I just take what keeps me happy. who r u to put me in ail and stop mevevolving?

    ugh! im christian, but the acl are complete conservative retards. i might put down no religion just so they dont get my 'vote'.

    on a side (but not unrelated) note, tony flabhead is also a conservative retard.

    I would like to point out to you all, that there was a time when Christianity did not exist, a time when a Greek scholar by the name of Plato derived a theory of fulfillment within the human soul, that we should govern our baser needs with reason, and to live our lives in a way to better our soul consequently bettering others, and the world.

    The word "soul" was also around before Christianity, although not in English. It defines who we are, not a creation of some supernatural link to an all powerful God.

    Believe it or not, this theory entailed a list of virtue and vice, the latter to be named "Sins."

    Christianity replaced living for the betterment of ones soul, to living for God. To not do others harm because of God, to fear God.

    I fear no God, and I am better for it. I live my life to better my soul, consequently bettering others and the world. I do this for me, for you, for you all. Not for God, not out of fear.

      Still, Plato was a prime influence in stalling scientific progress (believing 'ideas' were more real than the natural world). Carl Sagan said it best of Plato: "He taught contempt for the real world and disdain for the practical application of scientific knowledge." So we can argue his views on 'fulfillment' aren't exactly balanced.

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