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Usefulness Versus Truth

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Posted by Mario Dovalina on June 11, 2001 03:10:57 UTC

"It is often argued that religion is valuable because it makes men good, but even if this were true it would not be a proof that religion is true. That would be an extension of pragmatism beyond endurance. Santa Claus makes children good in precisely the same way, and yet no one would argue seriously that the fact proves his existence. The defense of religion is full of such logical imbecilities. - H.L. Mencken"

I would never argue against the usefulness of religion as an institution: it provides some with strength, hope, and a feeling of worth. Some need it. I accept that. That does not make religion and its beliefs fact, however. That's all I'm concerned about.

I approach the issue of theology from the standpoint of science and fact. You approach the issue from emotion (and, though you probably wouldn't admit it, pragmatism.) Which is more useful? I honestly don't know. But I certainly know which angle of attack will (and has) provided the most accurate answers.


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