Do We Truly Need A Religion To Live Moral Lives?

Do We Truly Need A Religion To Live Moral Lives?

When we have our own moral code, we become that much more free.
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This is not an argument for or against atheism. This is a clear opinionated stance on whether Religion is vital for us to lead moral lives, whether that be making decisions or caring about others. The most basic moral rules set forth by the Holy Bible come from the well known Ten Commandments. These set the ground rules for how we should treat each other. But should we derive our morals from a book written centuries ago when we already have a set of morals instilled in us at birth? I believe we already have a set of morals before religion is even considered an option (and I call it an option because it truly is). I know I can figure out that murder is wrong, and that surfing through the Ten Commandments is not necessary.

One can choose whether or not to follow a certain religion or not. So does this also mean if one does not follow religion, ones does not have morals? Too many religious followers, that would seem to be the case, but then again, it depends on how "strict" they are with practicing their religion. It seems to me that we can just pick what we like from religion and slap on the title "my religion" and there you have a Muslim, Christian, Jew, or any other sect of religion. A good example of this is the current dilemma with ISIS. ISIS claims they follow the rules of Islam while followers of Islam say ISIS does not represent the core values taught through Islam. This means that those following the words of ISIS are picking certain ideals from Islam to justify their act by simply stating it is done for Allah. Would there be such a denial from Muslims if there was a group that conducted peaceful uprisings? Probably not, because we really want to associate religion with peaceful ideals, no matter how people interpret it. Compare this to Muslims who consider themselves as "moderates". Isn't it weird how we have a term called "moderates" when referring to followers of any religion? This means that there are some who go strictly by that religion and then there are those who do not. which ones are practicing the correct way? If there is not a correct way to practice a religion, then that means there's no reason to follow a religion because we pick what we like anyway. We pick what best suites our individual needs because we know, deep down, that religion does not satisfy those needs. Religion is group based, and most of us aren't willing to conform to a group. We would rather act on our individual interests rather than the group's.

My main challenge for those who suggest we must follow a religion to gain a moral high ground is; what do followers of religion gain over those who live their lives without religion? I think one can acquire and use his or her morals with no need to venture in the fantasy world of religion that indirectly rewards and punishes with an invisible hand those who do not follow said rules. It would be safe to say that because morals derived from religion align with a non-theist's perspective of morals, it would mean man created the idea of religion, hence moral values

Cover Image Credit: Like Success

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12 Bible Verses For Faith In Hard Times

Remind yourself that God is always with you.
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Lately, I have felt lost at what God wants for my life. Ever since I've come back to UWG everything has been horrible. It seems that I can't catch a break. I'm trying my best to focus on school, work, and extracurricular activities. But it's hard when I'm having issues with my apartment/roommates and knowing my family back home is struggling and needs many prayers. All, I keep thinking is maybe Carrollton isn't where I belong anymore. I've asked God if He can guide me in the right direction. Below, I have found Bible verses that have helped get me through these rough, past couple of weeks.

1. Isaiah 43:2

"When you go through deep waters, I will be with you."

2. Psalm 37:5

"Commit your way to the Lord. Trust in Him, and He will act."

3. Romans 8:18

"The pain that you've been feeling, can't compare to the joy that's coming."

4. Proverbs 31:25

"She is clothed in strength, and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future."

5. Joshua 1:9

"Be bold. Be brave. Be courageous."

6. Ecclesiastes 3:1

"There is a time for everything and a reason for every activity under the heavens."

7. Isaiah 41:10

"Don't be afraid, for I am with you. Don't be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand."

8. Isaiah 66:9

"I will not cause pain without allowing something new to be born, says the Lord."

9. Psalm 91:4

"He will cover you with His feathers, and under His wings, you will find refuge; His faithfulness will be your shield and rampart."

10. Psalm 62:1-2

"My soul finds rest in God alone, my salvation comes from Him, He alone is my rock and my salvation."

11. Philippians 4:13

"I can do everything through Christ who gives me strength."

12. Jeremiah 29:11

"For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

Cover Image Credit: pixabay.com

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Since When Did Having Your Life Figured Out Become An Expectation?

There's no timeline for life, and there shouldn't be.

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Let's just cut to the chase. There shouldn't be an expected timeline of life that us, as humans, should be expected to follow. There isn't a certain age that we should be married by, or a time slot that we have to graduate in. It's just unrealistic because, well, life happens. And the majority of the time, we can't control it.

So then why does society pressure us into this schedule that seems to be looming over our heads? There's no consequence to not having children by 27, there's nothing wrong with having a steady significant other and not being engaged by 24. And really, nothing horrible is going to happen if your timeline doesn't match up with your best friend's.

A whole lot of things in life are out of our control. We don't know when we're going to meet "the one", or even if we already have. We don't know what job we will have after graduation, or if it will be a job we stay in for years to come. And guess what: it's okay. Because we have time.

One of the best lessons I have learned in my life is that we cannot control everything in our lives. We can't predict the future. Yes, you can feel as though you have your whole life planned out, but in the blink of an eye, everything can change. So moral of the story, don't stress about things that you can't control. Because all the time you spend stressing about them, is time that you could have spent enjoying the moment that you are in.

There's not a fairy that is going to come down and curse you for not having a job by 23, or forbid you from finding love because you haven't found it by 25. It's an unrealistic expectation. And guess what: life happens on its own, and we can't control all of it. Sometimes it may suck, and it can be entirely unexpected, but it's life. So put an anchor in the present, and have faith that you will figure it out.

Because you will.

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