[extropy-chat] Re: Question for Samantha on religion in the US?

Brett Paatsch bpaatsch at bigpond.net.au
Wed May 25 00:36:30 UTC 2005

Dirk Bruere wrote:
> ....let it not be said that there is no Transhumanist religion, 
> because there is.
> And in common with all religions there are people that hate it.

Some people oppose religion almost reflexivly, and I am among
them, but I think a religion Samantha would found might well be
different, it would inevitably have a Samantha'ian flavour, and
it would be opposed like all religions are opposed, but Samantha
has a fierceness that does well in the face of  adversity and she 
clearly does have strong values that she is willing to champion.

I would not join Samantha's religion but I would and am 
encouraging her to consider her idea in a practical way by looking
at the legal aspects, because I think that exercise will be 
empowering to her, even if she does not ultimately go ahead 
with it. 

I think, many non religous people that were formerly religious
miss some of the sense of community and the ritual, perhaps
music and shared celebration of life that is found in religious
groupings.  Seems to me that Samantha might be among those
and that she is not alone. 

One does not have to form a religion to celebrate the birthday
of a friend or to be pleased that they decided to get married
or had a child, but some might like to have a community that
mixes those things and perhaps if that community just happened
to fit into the form of a religion that also supported things like
the right of its members to be cryopreserved or something,
then that community as a recognized religion would have a
moral claim that it could make to the society in which it was
legally based. 

I will not likely answer any clarion call to join up or to undergo
a cryonics process and I think that there are many like me
who also would not, but, some civil libertarians will answer a 
clarion call for support from practictioners of religions that do
not necessary agree with, because they hold that the religious
practise hurts no one and it is the legal right of people to practise
a religion that hurts no one. 

If Samantha sees merit in cryonics I could see her being an
excellent bridge to people who think of themselves as spiritual,
long for ritual and meaning, and maybe christians that find
some comfort in the idea of a resurrection. I think Samatha
could possible get a lot of converts from christianity. 

Anyway its just a thought, and I'm now leaving the ball in
Samantha's court, as I am already concerned that I may
have made my case a little too well and their may be
others who read this and who think yes, I think I will
found a religion, and their religions, reflecting their values,
may just become public nuisances, whereas I don't think
Samantha's would. 

Brett Paatsch

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