Secular Party of Oz

  (07 October 07)
  by Greg Spearritt

A new player in the 2007 Federal election has arisen, with Senate candidates in all States. The Secular Party of Australia, formed in 2006, has recently merged with the Freedom From Religion Party; 'freedom from religion' is now the key slogan for the SPA.

They claim to be about "comprehensive secularism":

Comprehensive secularism is the separation of religion from state institutions, impartiality between religions and the protection of human rights from violation on the basis of religious doctrine.

Can't see any problems here, though I'd want to protect human rights from the kind of violation we see in anti-religious regimes (e.g. China) as well.

Are religions "on balance harmful to society"? Pretty hard to find the point of balance, I reckon. I wouldn't like to judge it either way. Surely a case-by-case assessment of religious actions is a better way to go.

I do have a problem, though, with the claim that "the validity of any contention must in some way be tested on the basis of reason and observation". How about my contention that participating in a religious ritual can enhance my love of life and my contentment with life? Not sure where reason comes in there.


6 comments

Greg,

You say "How about my contention that participating in a religious ritual can enhance my love of life and my contentment with life? Not sure where reason comes in there"

I'm not sure where reason comes in there either - sounds like suoernatural superstition to me - or self delusion !

Posted by Brian Wilder

Greg,

You say "How about my contention that participating in a religious ritual can enhance my love of life and my contentment with life?"

It must be a personal thing, religious ritual is at best meaningless to me, but more often as not makes my blood boil as the symbols imply many things such as the worthlessness of people with out god, being born with original sin etc...

I prefer rituals like the Cup of tea, or taking time to reflect on others problems or my good fortune etc...



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