If you don’t believe a certain way you go to Hell?
Personally I have a problem with a belief system that uses a "bribe" to get good behavior. So why do people believe? Because if they don’t, they’ll go to Hell when they die? That doesn’t make sense. Beliefs have to make sense.
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It all is very much a control system but I believe the law does not apply to those who do not break it. “For society to work a controlling force must be placed on will and appetite, the less you have within the more there must be externally” This is a general quote from Edmund Burke.
I believe we love each other and try not to harm each other, these are core and unmoveable beliefs but pretty much everything else is flexible. We decide for ourselves what is right and wrong, not what we are taught or told. But in the spirit of fairness we do have to moderate our behaviour, it is common courtesy.
I think if I live up to my two core beliefs then, if hell actually exists (personally I do not believe it), it would be harsh to send me to there.
I think that what ever inspires you to be nice to people, be it religion or plain logic, that is what matters. Unfortunately a bulk of information that we are to live by, like the Bible, tends to serve to make people more judgemental of each other and this judgementality too often reaches a singularity, in people, where it embodies righteousness.
I’m sure the Bible says “As you are judging others, you yourself shall be judged” or “Judge not lest ye be judged”, I do not think it says “Judging others harshly is actually a sign of righteousness”. Condemning someone to hell because their daily lives are not dictated by a certain religion is as harsh a judgement as you can get.
I’m atheist but I haven’t always been. I’ve done a lot of thinking over the past couple of years and I made my decision about an year ago. I think everybody has their opinions and people really need to think for themselves and not let others think for you.