Author Topic: Believers Leave Punishment to Powerful God [Or Do They?]  (Read 387 times)

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Offline Jetavan

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Believers Leave Punishment to Powerful God [Or Do They?]
« on: May 25, 2012, 11:50:38 AM »
Believing in an involved, morally active God makes people less likely to punish others for rule-breaking, new research finds.

However, the researchers also find that religious belief in general makes people more likely to punish wrongdoers – probably because such punishment is a way to strengthen the community as a whole.

In other words, religion may introduce two conflicting impulses: Punish others for their transgressions, or leave it to the Lord.
The findings, published Tuesday (May 22) in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B, suggested that when people believed in a powerful, involved God and when they were reminded of that belief, they were less likely to punish....
When researchers looked at religious beliefs alone, however, they found that people with stronger beliefs were more likely to punish others after being reminded of those beliefs.
How this push-and-pull between punishment and mercy plays out on a daily basis is still unknown. There are many reminders of religion in daily life, Laurin said, especially in courts of law, where witnesses swear on Bibles and promise to tell the truth "so help me God."

"It would be really interesting to look at a courtroom that does that and a courtroom that doesn't do that in terms of how punitive the outcomes end up being for people who are on trial," Laurin said.  
« Last Edit: May 25, 2012, 11:53:06 AM by Jetavan »
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Offline dcommini

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Re: Believers Leave Punishment to Powerful God [Or Do They?]
« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2012, 12:27:51 PM »
so basically, believing in the Judeo-Christian God causes contradictions? Isn't this what people have been saying for years?

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Offline Punch

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Re: Believers Leave Punishment to Powerful God [Or Do They?]
« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2012, 01:53:13 PM »
I figure that if God didn't want me to punish them, He would have done it Himself already.
I would be happy to agree with you, but then both of us would be wrong.