Religious belief – Aaim Austin http://aaimaustin.org/ Tue, 13 Sep 2022 03:11:44 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://aaimaustin.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/icon-5-120x120.png Religious belief – Aaim Austin http://aaimaustin.org/ 32 32 Religious belief linked to greater sexual satisfaction https://aaimaustin.org/religious-belief-linked-to-greater-sexual-satisfaction/ Sun, 11 Sep 2022 19:00:00 +0000 https://aaimaustin.org/religious-belief-linked-to-greater-sexual-satisfaction/ When psychologists and therapists offer advice to increase sexual satisfaction, they suggest communicate sexual desirestalking dirty, trying new sex positions, embrace the new, watching porn together, exercising, and introducing sex toys, among many other ideas. Unsurprisingly, given the cultural stereotypes, something they never recommend is “finding a religion.” But given the results of a study […]]]>

When psychologists and therapists offer advice to increase sexual satisfaction, they suggest communicate sexual desirestalking dirty, trying new sex positions, embrace the new, watching porn together, exercising, and introducing sex toys, among many other ideas. Unsurprisingly, given the cultural stereotypes, something they never recommend is “finding a religion.”

But given the results of a study recently published in the Journal of Sex Research, maybe they should. Research suggests that we can learn something from sexually satisfied believers.

holy but sexy

Vegard Skirbekprofessor of population and family health at Columbia University, and Nitzan Peri-Rotem, a social demographer at the University of Exeter, has teamed up to analyze the survey responses of 10,683 heterosexual adults aged 18-60 in the UK collected as part of the National Survey of sexual attitudes and lifestyles. They were particularly curious to see how participants’ self-reported religiosity correlated with their frequency of intercourse and overall sexual satisfaction.

“Results indicate generally higher satisfaction with sex life among those who considered religion somewhat or very important compared to those stating that religion was not important at all,” they found.

This is despite the fact that religious men and women reported slightly less frequent sexual activity than their non-religious peers. The disparity was greatest among religious and non-religious single people, but was negligible among cohabiting and married couples. Going through previous research, the authors found evidence that religious individuals derive more meaning from sex and tend to put themselves in situations that lead to more pleasurable encounters.

“Previous studies have shown that increased investments in long-term, exclusive partnerships and more time to develop satisfying, trusting relationships can impact sexual satisfaction, while sex outside of a committed relationship is often linked to lower sexual satisfaction,” they noted.

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Religious people are more likely to limit their sexual activity to relationships based on love and devotion. Sexual satisfaction is consistently higher within these types of dedicated partnerships.

Does secularization lead to worse sex?

Based on the results, the researchers speculate that the increase in secularization associated with delayed marriage in the Western world might decrease overall sexual satisfaction.

“Delaying couple formation is linked to less frequent sex, while increasing exposure to casual sex among people with lower religious orientation. Therefore, declining religiosity and increasing celibate population are likely to exacerbate these trends, which could potentially lead to lower sexual satisfaction,” they wrote.

As the study was conducted on individuals in the UK, it is difficult to say whether the results would translate to Americans. Healthy relationship education is obligatory in UK primary schools for children aged 5-11, and comprehensive sex education is compulsory in secondary schools for children aged 12-16. Within the American educational system, sex education is often below average or even absent between primary and secondary, especially in regions where religion is more important. This could erase the sexual satisfaction benefit observed in the current study, or reverse it altogether.

Yet the current study is interesting because it challenges a common stereotype that religious people have an asexual and generally unexciting erotic life. Although they have a little less sex, it seems that they perceive the quality to be higher and more fulfilling. Isn’t that what really matters?

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Does religious belief affect organizational performance? https://aaimaustin.org/does-religious-belief-affect-organizational-performance/ Tue, 02 Aug 2022 04:00:22 +0000 https://aaimaustin.org/does-religious-belief-affect-organizational-performance/ (iStockphoto/35007) Anyone who’s tried a Chick-fil-A sandwich on Sunday knows how much religious belief affects organizational politics at this company. Chick-fil-A honors Christian beliefs and closes on Sundays. Whether this affects growth and profitability is up for debate. And when the question is extended more broadly to organizations in general, we don’t have much to […]]]>
(iStockphoto/35007)

Anyone who’s tried a Chick-fil-A sandwich on Sunday knows how much religious belief affects organizational politics at this company. Chick-fil-A honors Christian beliefs and closes on Sundays. Whether this affects growth and profitability is up for debate. And when the question is extended more broadly to organizations in general, we don’t have much to add to answer the question.

The impact of culture on performance has interested me for several decades, having teamed up in 1992 with John Kotter to explore the subject. We have developed data suggesting that organizational culture has a significant impact on a composite index of annual net income growth, annual return on invested capital, and annual stock price growth. We have found that strong cultures can have significant positive or negative effects on performance. However, when combined with values ​​that promote adaptability (including openness, learning and sharing), the result is very positive.

Our conclusions were reached after collecting and reviewing survey data from hundreds of senior executives identifying the U.S. organizations with the strongest cultures, comparing it to performance data, and then conducting field studies of a sub- sample of companies identified to explain why some organizations with strong cultures had good and some had bad performance.

“The team found that companies exposed to Confucianism…outperformed their competitors located elsewhere.”

Other research has focused on the influence a CEO’s background can have on their attitude to uncertainty and their willingness to take risks, with subsequent results for the organizations studied. But there is not much research on how senior management beliefs influence an organization’s shared values ​​and behaviors and therefore its performance.

This is why a recent study
associating Confucian beliefs with the positive performance of Chinese companies caught my attention. In it, three researchers based in China and Singapore examined the current performance of Chinese companies located near the sites of Confucian schools that operated centuries ago in China. These are areas in which the leaders indoctrinated by Mao – “whose ideology suppresses Confucianism”, according to the researchers – have less influence today.

The team found that companies exposed to Confucianism, correlating their locations with the incidence of several measures of religious beliefs and practices, outperformed competitors located elsewhere. These companies make “greater social contributions, provide better employee protection, and have higher entertainment spending, more patents, and more trade credits,” the researchers write.

“The researchers conclude that ‘these corporate attributes correspond to the five fundamental virtues of Confucianism’.”

The researchers conclude that “these corporate attributes correspond to the five fundamental virtues of Confucianism: benevolence (compassion and altruism), righteousness (respecting and helping others), courtesy, wisdom (“using knowledge prudently”) and reliability.

One can ask all sorts of questions about this research. First, the timeline of cause and effect spans a very long time. Obviously, religion is only one factor contributing to leadership behavior and performance. Correlation rears its usual ugly head here as an analytical tool, but there are other efforts in this relatively careful study to link cause and effect. These concerns aside, the value of this research, like other serious endeavours, lies most often in the questions it raises, not in those it attempts to answer.

Is it useful to try to measure the impact of ideological and religious differences on organizational cultures and therefore on financial results? Where they are made public, do they influence the nature of the people attracted to the organization?

If we continue to examine the effects of prevailing religious or political beliefs on performance, will this influence who we hire, how we lead and manage, and how we perform?

Does religious belief affect organizational performance? Does it matter? What do you think?

Share your opinion in the comments below.

Editor’s note: Heskett explores the role of the leader in his book, Win from Within: Create an Organizational Culture for Competitive Advantage.

References:


Your comments on last month’s column

Have we seen the heyday of just-in-time inventory management?

The majority of those who commented suggested that we saw the JIT peak. Jacob Navon framed the argument this way: “We have spent the (last) 4 decades optimizing global production to the denominator of lowest cost and just-in-time delivery…a global production system optimized for the lowest cost is not very resilient. We will now optimize production for maximum resilience. This will bring costs back into the system…”

As Katherine Lawrence said, “Today’s JIT was born out of both hubris and myopia.” Citing the Ukrainian war and its impact on logistics, she points out that “our transport networks and systems are sensitive to variables that we can neither predict nor control, and we should not be shocked when the house of cards comes crashing down. “.

Arijit Chakraborti mentioned a predictable longer-term trend that reinforces Katherine Lawrence’s point. He said: “With the net zero (environmental) commitments of organizations and nations, optimal inventory levels will be recalibrated”, to favor the least polluting and slowest modes of transport, such as rail and train. water, rather than using JIT strategies.

Shoshanah Cohen commented, “I wouldn’t say those days are over, but…until we get back to the point where delivery times are both short AND consistent, manufacturers will need to have more inventory.

On the other hand, Raj Ramaswamy reminded us that, “With the advent of data science and AI, the days of inventory at (auto) dealerships are over.”

Finally, John Thorbeck asked, “should our inventory model be one or the other?” …data science makes this adaptation possible, by reducing excess production in its hardware and capability components. Do those who believe we’ve seen the peak in JIT use prevail? What do you think?

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What do the census results tell us about religious belief? –Insights magazine https://aaimaustin.org/what-do-the-census-results-tell-us-about-religious-belief-insights-magazine/ Thu, 07 Jul 2022 02:22:52 +0000 https://aaimaustin.org/what-do-the-census-results-tell-us-about-religious-belief-insights-magazine/ There was a flurry of stories following the release of the latest census results on the demise of institutional religion, Christianity in particular. Data showed that only 44% of Australians now identify as Christian, down from 52% in the last census. And on the other hand, 39% of the population now identifies as non-religious. The […]]]>

There was a flurry of stories following the release of the latest census results on the demise of institutional religion, Christianity in particular. Data showed that only 44% of Australians now identify as Christian, down from 52% in the last census. And on the other hand, 39% of the population now identifies as non-religious. The reported abandonment of the Christian faith has been happening for some time, but has accelerated over the past decade. Many commentators have delved into the guts of these results in an effort to discern what it all means.

Some authors focus on disenchantment of young people with institutional religion to illustrate the drift of Christianity. But researchers from the National Church Life Survey point out that the results are a a little more nuanced than that. They note other NCLS research that shows young adults between the ages of 18 and 34 are the most frequent attendees at religious services. One in three people in this age group (32%) use the services at least once a month. The least frequent group is in fact those aged 50-64 (only 11% frequent once a month or more). The church’s negligence or outright complicity in institutional child abuse is seen as having undermined faith and trust in religion. Sydney Anglican minister Michael Jensen agrees the behavior has eroded the moral authority of the church. But he also sees a loss of trust in institutions of all kinds– political parties, banks, unions and churches. He makes a distinction between belief in God and active spirituality, with religious affiliation. Anecdotally, he claims that people are still open to spiritual things, are intrigued by the person and teachings of Jesus and still looking for meaning beyond the routines of work and consumption. There is some support for this perception in other NCLS research, which shows that 40% of Australians believe it is part of the church’s role to give meaning and direction to life and 51% believing it should encourage good morals.

Journalist Stan Grant sees census results in a broader and more historical perspective. He sees the decline of Christian belief as part of a widespread drift in the West from religion to other forms of faith and identity. It traces the evolution of secularism during the Age of Enlightenment and its division between the immanent (the world of politics and social order) and the transcendent (the world of spirituality and religion). He agrees that the church has been stripped of its moral authority by the child sex abuse scandal and alienated others by its stance on issues like divorce, abortion and same-sex relationships. But he also argues that secularization risks replacing the sacred with the cult of individualism, ugly nationalism and soulless consumerism. He quotes historian Tim Stanley who writes that across the West, “there is a dearth of purpose and spirit: we cannot agree on who we are or what we are, or even whether these big existential questions are important”.

Peter Senge, the systems scientist who became an organizational learning guru, once wondered at a major conference of American Christian ministers why books on Buddhism outsold books on Christianity in some bookstore. He replied that it might be because Christianity presented itself largely as a belief system, while Buddhism was seen more as a way of life. He advised ministers at the conference to rediscover and help others rediscover Christianity as a way of life. Interestingly, the early Christian belief was simply “Jesus is Lord” (no separation between the transcendent and the immanent) and the early Christians called themselves “Followers of the Way”. Perhaps the challenge and opportunity for Christian churches from these latest census results is to be less institution-focused and more concerned with following the way of Jesus, or in the words of the prophet Micah, “to do justice, to love kindness and to walk humbly with your God”.

Jon O’Brien, Uniting Advocacy Team

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To Boost Self-Mastery, the Research Is Clear: Nothing Beats Religious Belief https://aaimaustin.org/to-boost-self-mastery-the-research-is-clear-nothing-beats-religious-belief/ Tue, 14 Jun 2022 07:00:00 +0000 https://aaimaustin.org/to-boost-self-mastery-the-research-is-clear-nothing-beats-religious-belief/ Fascinating though rarely exploited research in the field of psychology has demonstrated the unique power of religious belief in promoting self-mastery. God. Spirit. Divine. Could it be that these three words (and others like them) have a singular strength in enhancing our powers of self-control? Even among non-believers? And with proven effects as big as […]]]>

Fascinating though rarely exploited research in the field of psychology has demonstrated the unique power of religious belief in promoting self-mastery.

God. Spirit. Divine.

Could it be that these three words (and others like them) have a singular strength in enhancing our powers of self-control? Even among non-believers? And with proven effects as big as a 91% boost?

If it sounds too good to be true, guess again.

These are the results of a series of extremely well-designed studies – with control groups and very sophisticated scientific methodology – carried out by a team of four university researchers and published in peer-reviewed journals. (The original study can be found and read online for free and is well worth a look, even if its conceptual framing – in evolutionary psychological terms – may be inconsistent with one’s own beliefs.)

It is studies like these that I am always looking for teachers and teacher trainers. Any advice or ideas that could help bring out the best in students – both in the classroom and, even better, throughout their lives – are gems that I am delighted to find and hold close.

(Student self-control challenges, as I described in another article written in this article, are unfortunately aplenty right now.)

Difficulties encountered by students performing what are technically called “regulatory functions” – such as dampening an impulse or delaying gratification – are a growing concern for teachers and administrators, not to mention parents at home. .

Anything that nudges kids toward better self-control and wiser driving is a welcome offer.

The only problem is that this need gives rise to what sometimes seems like an endless parade of new approaches whose greatest virtue is that, well, it’s something that hasn’t been tried yet. Few reasons to be optimistic. Unsurprisingly, most are forgotten within a few years because their results pale in comparison to their claims. Novelty sells, in the world of education as elsewhere.

This is where the work on religion and self-control comes in; it is of enormous importance. We’re not talking flavor of the week here, but rather the stuff of civilization; ideas and beliefs that have stood the test of time (we are talking about millennia). It is normal that they get their due in the scientific literature. It’s a rare but exciting moment where the two align.

The work I am referring to was carried out by a team of four researchers from Queen’s University in Ontario, Canada.

Their findings, which were published exactly 10 years ago, are extremely relevant to the present, even though they seem to have been largely ignored or forgotten in the decade since. To my knowledge, they have certainly not found their way into any teacher training program.

In the apt words of the study’s own authors, their findings “offer strong and direct evidence of the regenerative effect of religious concepts on self-control.”

“Religious beliefs fuel self-control resources,” they tell us, and “can provide important psychological ‘nutrients’ needed for a variety of socially beneficial behaviors.”

What encouraged the team to make such grandiose statements? Especially when the group itself seems surprisingly non-religious? (Their research frames all of this within an evolutionary psychology framework, ironically.)

First, the four experiments that were conducted were carefully designed to isolate causality and determine whether religious concepts played a causal role in shaping behavior. Previous research had been largely theoretical and involved, at most, “correlational designs”, which falls far short of establishing cause and effect.

This one did, and was able to rule out other possible explanations empirically, such as chance, personal beliefs, morality (more generally), and even fear of death (which some might associate with religion). It was the religious terms alone that did the bulk of the work.

Second, the striking results of the studies. It wasn’t just that religious concepts had some kind of effect, perhaps tenuous or minor. It was a considerable effect, enormous, even.

In the first experiment, which involved the subjects’ ability to exert their will (in this case, by “enduring discomfort” in the form of drinking an intentionally repulsive concoction of vinegar and orange juice of the researchers’ own making! ), those who were “primed” with religious concepts did 91% better than those in the control group. (To clarify, “priming” means surreptitious exposure to certain words, like “God” or “the divine”)

It is almost double the force of will, from a moment’s exposure to a sacred term or concept.

Later experiments also confirmed the positive power of religious terms, such as when measuring subjects’ ability to delay gratification (another form of self-control) and solve an impossible puzzle after first been, on purpose, mentally “exhausted”. ”

In these two experiments, those who were exposed to religious terms did 76% and 70% better, respectively.

Third, and perhaps most amazingly, the participants represented a wide range of religious beliefs and backgrounds, ranging from Catholics and Protestants to Buddhists, Muslims, atheists and agnostics. The latter two, in fact, accounted for 34% of the participants in each of the experiments. (It bears repeating: this was a very carefully designed study.)

In other words, the observed effects did not just reflect participants’ strong religious beliefs or past commitments.

On the contrary, in fact, “the pattern of results did not vary by religious affiliation in any of the studies,” the researchers observed. “Furthermore, results for religious and non-religious participants showed the same pattern.”

To put it in other words, even a self-proclaimed atheist would experience a near-doubling of courage or self-control simply by unknowingly being exposed to a term like “spirit” or “God.”

It’s rather ironic, then, in a time when educators are trained to bend over backwards not to “trigger” individuals with different beliefs or worldviews.

And how tragic, by extension, that in so many forums, such as public schools, educators and staff must abide by these terms and beliefs, even as they and many of their constituents share them.

They are deprived, so to speak, of what can now be described as real, measurable, and immediate benefits to their psychological well-being and personality.

If there was a little more “divine” in the classroom, there might be less trips to the principal’s office for self-control issues.

The study, as a whole, would seem like a stunning vindication of what many parents and people of faith have known all along (and have long waited to be affirmed in our increasingly secular world): that religion has a role to play in all of this, and a decidedly positive one.

To that, I say Amen.

Let’s just hope I don’t get fired for this.

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Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan: Religious belief, communalism, different things: Kerala Chief Minister https://aaimaustin.org/kerala-chief-minister-pinarayi-vijayan-religious-belief-communalism-different-things-kerala-chief-minister/ Sun, 12 Jun 2022 17:33:43 +0000 https://aaimaustin.org/kerala-chief-minister-pinarayi-vijayan-religious-belief-communalism-different-things-kerala-chief-minister/ Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said believers have a major role in fighting communalism. Malappuram: Religious belief and communalism are two different things, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said on Sunday, urging those who believe in secularism to come forward and fight all forms of communalism prevalent in the country. Chief Minister Vijayan attacked the […]]]>

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said believers have a major role in fighting communalism.

Malappuram:

Religious belief and communalism are two different things, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said on Sunday, urging those who believe in secularism to come forward and fight all forms of communalism prevalent in the country.

Chief Minister Vijayan attacked the Sangh Parivar, alleging the group was trying to drive a wedge between the country’s minority communities and said it was engaged in a systematic program to change the basic structure of the Indian Constitution.

Inaugurating a national seminar on “The World of EMS” held as part of the 113th birth anniversary of communist stalwart EMS Namboodiripad, Vijayan criticized the Union government for its decision to repeal the article 370 which granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir.

“Reports of attacks on minority communities, including Muslims and Christians, come from all over the country. This program of the Sangh Parivar is not part of its so-called ‘aarsha bharatha’ culture. It is only propagated by any of the sages. It’s not there in any of the Vedas or Puranas. But they follow Hitler’s Nazi propaganda,” Chief Minister Vijayan said.

He said the Sangh Parivar was buttering up the Christian community in Kerala, but the same community was under attack in neighboring Karnataka.

“They are trying to drive a wedge between minority communities. We can see an example of this in Kerala. Sangh Parivar says they are with a particular community. Why? What we need to understand is that religious belief and communalism are two different things. Those who believe in secularism should come forward and oppose communalism,” he said.

He said that believers have a major role in the fight against communalism.

The left-wing leader said the Sangh Parivar’s communal agenda has fueled “minority communalism”.

“Those who propagate minority communalism think that they can protect the whole community. However, what they do not understand is that one form of communalism cannot be countered by another form of communalism We must fight communalism with secularism,” Vijayan said.

The Chief Minister said the Union government has affirmed that the problems in Jammu and Kashmir will be solved with the repeal of Section 370.

“Jammu and Kashmir was divided into pieces violating the promise made to the people of this region. The Union government claimed that the problems would be solved by repeal. But that did not happen and the people are still suffering, which proves their claim was wrong,” he said.

Addressing the crowd gathered in Malappuram, Chief Minister Vijayan said the current left-wing government is following in the footsteps of the first communist government led by Namboodiripad.

The Chief Minister has declared Namboodiripad to be the architect of modern Kerala.

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Religious belief must not infringe the rights of others | Letters https://aaimaustin.org/religious-belief-must-not-infringe-the-rights-of-others-letters/ Sun, 22 May 2022 21:21:00 +0000 https://aaimaustin.org/religious-belief-must-not-infringe-the-rights-of-others-letters/ The first sentence of the First Amendment to our Constitution says, “Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of any religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…” I believe that an issue relevant to the abortion controversy has not received the attention it deserves – the government’s quirky ban on promoting particular religious beliefs. […]]]>

The first sentence of the First Amendment to our Constitution says, “Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of any religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…”

I believe that an issue relevant to the abortion controversy has not received the attention it deserves – the government’s quirky ban on promoting particular religious beliefs. True, the Founding Fathers only mentioned Congress, but I have no doubt that they intended this prohibition to apply to all of government, including the judiciary and the states, which were not then fully developed.

When Roe v. Wade was first signed into law, national leaders of the Evangelical Churches publicly stated that they took no position because it was “a Catholic matter”.

The Catholic Church has always had an anti-abortion stance based on its theology. When I was a child, this Church prohibited “accelerating” abortion – which is vague and varies from woman to woman. Currently, this church, now joined by many evangelical churches, affirms that human life, a person with an immortal soul, begins at conception. Either way, it’s still theology. It’s still a religious belief, not backed by science or provable fact.

People also read…

It should be noted that four of the Supreme Court justices, Alito, Thomas, Gorsuch and Barret, are Catholic. It seems that their positions on abortion are more in favor of their church’s theology than the first sentence of the First Amendment, and therefore absolutely unconstitutional.

I support the rule of law. I support the right of every person to the free exercise of their own religious beliefs, as long as their theology, joined by governmental actions, does not infringe on the legitimate rights of others.

Claire L. Kelly, Stevensville

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Abortion: why does the court use religious belief? https://aaimaustin.org/abortion-why-does-the-court-use-religious-belief/ Fri, 13 May 2022 07:00:00 +0000 https://aaimaustin.org/abortion-why-does-the-court-use-religious-belief/ Democrats are generally reluctant to discuss religion, let alone debate it. They like to point out that Thomas Paine and Benjamin Franklin were notoriously atheists, Jefferson and dozens of other founding generation figures were deists (a close cousin of atheists and certainly not Christians), and that in two different places the Constitution explicitly rejects interference […]]]>

Democrats are generally reluctant to discuss religion, let alone debate it.

They like to point out that Thomas Paine and Benjamin Franklin were notoriously atheists, Jefferson and dozens of other founding generation figures were deists (a close cousin of atheists and certainly not Christians), and that in two different places the Constitution explicitly rejects interference of religion with government or vice-versa.

But it’s time to talk about religion whether we like it or not, because it’s not knocking on our door anymore: Sam Alito has just sent it into the house with a no-knock warrant and stun grenades threatening to catch fire.

Alito’s draft Dobbs v. Jackson opinion rests on two main premises.

The first is that the Supreme Court does not have to recognize a “right” that is not rooted in the “history and tradition” of the nation.

This right-wing duck has been around for years and has been used to argue against almost every form of modernity, from integrated public schools to same-sex marriage, more recently. It’s a handy pole around which you can twist just about any argument you want, because American history and tradition have been all over the map for the past 240 or so years.

For example, Alito might as well have pointed out that there were no federal or state laws regulating abortion when our republic was founded, and they didn’t really start appearing until the 1800s. , as doctors pushed for a license to lock midwives out of medical practice related to childbirth (which included abortion).

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Life begins at conception is a religious belief, not a fact https://aaimaustin.org/life-begins-at-conception-is-a-religious-belief-not-a-fact/ Wed, 11 May 2022 07:00:00 +0000 https://aaimaustin.org/life-begins-at-conception-is-a-religious-belief-not-a-fact/ For the editor: Reading letters from readers about their abortions and how they affected their lives was heartbreaking. The abortion ban is based on a religious belief that human life begins at conception. However, there is as yet no medical or moral consensus on the actual beginning of human life. For example, many members of […]]]>

For the editor: Reading letters from readers about their abortions and how they affected their lives was heartbreaking.

The abortion ban is based on a religious belief that human life begins at conception. However, there is as yet no medical or moral consensus on the actual beginning of human life.

For example, many members of the Jewish community do not believe that human life begins before birth. Prohibiting abortion on the basis of a Christian belief would therefore be a violation of their religious freedom, which is guaranteed by the Constitution.

Members of the conservative Christian religious community have been trying for years to impose their beliefs on the American public, and now it looks like they will succeed. I am certainly not a constitutional expert, but it seems to me that the principle of separation of church and state is violated here.

Could this ever become the legal basis on which this battle is fought?

John Beckman, Chino Hills

..

For the editor: I was very moved to read the letters from people sharing their experiences with abortion. But there is another side to the horrors of a world in which abortion is illegal: the experiences of women who miscarry.

In 1987, I was having a normal pregnancy. I went on a camping vacation and at a remote campsite I had a miscarriage.

In a world where abortion was illegal, what would that have looked like? I shudder to think of the interrogation I should have endured and wonder how I could have proven my ‘innocence’.

Up to a quarter of pregnancies end in miscarriage.

Claire Chik, Torrance

..

For the editor: Given the national outcry over Roe vs. Wade’s disappearance, your coverage, and the testimony in letters to the editor, it’s pretty obvious that most protesters believe abortions will be illegal nationwide. No, their legality will revert to the states.

For Californians, so apoplectic in the face of this possible decision, nothing will change. If you live among pro-lifers in an anti-abortion state, just go to another state. It’s easier than going to Tijuana, as one of your letter writers said.

Put away your signs and pack your bags if you’re in a red state that opposes the estimated 60 million children whose lives have been interrupted by abortion since 1973. Statistics indicate that the majority of aborted babies were people of color – does that make protesters racist?

Obviously, these children who are technically alive, facing the knife, have no rights.

Mark Collins, Altadena

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Why is the Supreme Court using religious belief to change secular law? https://aaimaustin.org/why-is-the-supreme-court-using-religious-belief-to-change-secular-law/ Tue, 10 May 2022 18:16:00 +0000 https://aaimaustin.org/why-is-the-supreme-court-using-religious-belief-to-change-secular-law/ Democrats are generally reluctant to discuss religion, let alone debate it. They like to point out that Thomas Paine and Benjamin Franklin were notoriously atheists, Thomas Jefferson and dozens of other founding generation figures were deists (a close cousin of atheists and certainly not Christians), and that in two different places the The Constitution explicitly […]]]>

Democrats are generally reluctant to discuss religion, let alone debate it.

They like to point out that Thomas Paine and Benjamin Franklin were notoriously atheists, Thomas Jefferson and dozens of other founding generation figures were deists (a close cousin of atheists and certainly not Christians), and that in two different places the The Constitution explicitly rejects religion interfering with government or vice versa.

But it’s time to talk about religion whether we like it or not, because it’s not knocking on our door anymore: Sam Alito has just sent it into the house with a no-knock warrant and stun grenades threatening to catch fire.

The draft opinion Dobbs v. Alito’s Jackson is based on two main premises.

The first is that the Supreme Court does not have to recognize a “right” that is not rooted in the “history and tradition” of the nation.

This right-wing duck has been around for years and has been used to argue against almost every form of modernity, from integrated public schools to same-sex marriage, more recently. It’s a handy pole around which you can twist just about any argument you want, because American history and tradition have been all over the map for the past 240 or so years.

RELATED: What It Was Like Trying For An Abortion In The U.S. Before 1973

For example, Alito might as well have pointed out that there were no federal or state laws regulating abortion when our republic was founded, and they didn’t really start appearing until the 1800s. , as doctors pushed for a license to lock midwives out of medical practice related to childbirth (which included abortion).

Alito neglected to mention that there were no state or federal laws regulating abortion at the time of the founding – and some states did not regulate the procedure until after the Civil War.

The year Virginia got a law regulating abortion, for example, was the same year – 1847 – that the American Medical Association was founded. Ben Franklin had been dead for over half a century and not a single signer of the Declaration of Independence was still alive.

So much for the “history and tradition” of Alito at the beginning of the republic and when the Constitution was written.

The first anti-abortion law in Mississippi — the state whose lawsuit prompted this ruling — was signed into law in 1839. George Washington had breathed his last 40 years earlier.

South Dakota got its abortion law in 1899; Delaware, Tennessee, and South Carolina got theirs in 1883. In North Carolina, it 1881in kentucky 1879in North Dakota 1877in Utah and Georgia 1876 in oklahoma 1875.

The first state to win an anti-abortion law was Massachusetts — the state so overwhelmed by Puritan religious fanatics that the founders nearly rejected them for admission to the union — in 1812.

It was so bad there that Ben Franklin fled Massachusetts for Philadelphia in 1723 at the age of 17, specifically, as he noted at length in his autobiography, to get away from the religious fanatics who ruled the ‘State.


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Which brings us to Alito’s second position and the crux of the matter: religion.

Alito’s main point about “unborn human beings” (a phrase he repeats over and over again in his ruling) is just one point across a wide range of religious beliefs.

He’s disguised it as law, with a healthy dose of pseudoscientific grumbling about fingernails and thrown heartbeats, but it’s really about Alito’s religious belief that ‘human life’ begins at conception. .

When a zygote, an embryo or even a fetus be recognized as a human being? At fertilization? On acceleration? To viability? At birth? All have been both legal and religious norms at various times and places in our history.

Science might suggest that humanity begins when a baby is born or delivered by caesarean section: at that moment it acquires independent power, is its own “me”. Before that, the nascent life is part of the mother; the fetus is an appendage of her body, after all, and entirely dependent on her for its blood supply, oxygen, and nutrition. If she dies, he dies.

Morality might argue that human rights of some sort should arise at the time of viability, when a fetus can survive as a baby outside the womb if forced to; it was the basis of the original Roe v. Wade. But morality, like religion, varies from time to time, country to country, culture to culture.

Some religious people hold, for example, that human life begins the moment their God decides that a baby should be born, even before fertilization. God informs the couple of this moment making them excited and ready for sex, so birth control devices that prevent the predetermined outcome of pregnancy are prohibited.

Other religions throughout history have recognized that life begins with the first breath, as implicit in Genesis 2.7 and 7.21-22.

All of these decision points boil down to the question “When does a soul inhabit a human body?” presented as law. There has never been a theological consensus on this issue.

In between are a plethora of decision points which are really the question “When does a soul inhabit a human body?” presented as law. Does “human” life begin “intentionally” when a couple prepares to have sex without contraception? At six weeks, when a bundle of cells that will become a heart starts shaking? When is a real heartbeat detectable? At the “acceleration”, when the movement of the fetus is detectable? At birth?

As recently as the 1960s, theologians were vigorously debate this issue in the pages of Christianity today and Christian Life magazines. There was no consensus, and (aside from single religions) there never was.

Like Jennifer Rubin Remarks in this week’s Washington Post: “Assuming life begins at conception (thus giving states unlimited freedom to ban abortion), Alito and his right-wing colleagues would impose a faith-based diet, destroying a half -century of legal and social change.”

The vast majority of politicians who loudly proclaim the ‘sacredness of human life’ in the ‘pre-born’ or ‘unborn’ stage also oppose the provision of food, shelter, education and adequate medical care.

Seriously, if these people cared one bit about “innocent children” they would stop the school shootings by getting the guns under control in this country. But they don’t. It’s just a lot easier to “love” a fetus that’s unresponsive, doesn’t need health care or education, and doesn’t have any special immigration status. Once he’s born, all bets are off.

This simple reality pretty much proves the cynicism of Alito’s charge that the state must be able to intervene with the force of guns and prison bars to “protect” a zygote or fetus. It is all the art of religious performance, with women as victims.

“There is ample evidence that the passage of [anti-abortion] laws was,” Alito writes, “spurred on by the sincere belief that abortion kills a human being.”

Yes, it is a belief. Period.

Tragically, this is not the first time that fundamentalists in this court have used the religious beliefs of its majority to change what should be secular law.

Last year in Tandon v. Newsomthe same five judges again went too far even for John Roberts, decision 5-4 that a person’s religion was a legitimate basis for refusing to accept COVID lockdowns. The previous year, they reigned in Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn c. Cuomo that churches could ignore public health orders and subject their parishioners to fatal disease because of the personal beliefs of church leaders.

The court sped along this long and dangerous road with Burwell v. Hobby Lobbythat allows employers to violate federal labor law regarding insurance coverage because of their religious beliefs, even when those beliefs are not shared by employees who have been directly affected by their decisions.

And with Masterpiece Cakethe Court even ruled that companies can discriminate against their customers based on the business owners’ religious belief that homosexuals are hated by God.

Now, “religious people” are free to claim a wide variety of exceptions to US law, terms of employment, and even common decency simply by shouting, “I believe! »

Under Roe c. Wade, people who believed abortion was wrong were free not to get one. They never had to park in the parking lot of an abortion clinic.

Under this Dobbs draft decision, however, women’s bodies legally became state property, presumably from the moment of sexual intercourse.

Will Mike Pence’s menstruation registry be relaunched to track pregnant women? Will the state require the remains of miscarriages to be collected and preserved for burial, as Pence attempted to do in Indiana?

If a woman is using or abusing drugs or alcohol, for example, even though she doesn’t know she’s pregnant, you can easily see where that logic could lead to her being charged with a crime and imprisoned. Exotic diets, fasting, experimentation with psychedelics, extreme exercise: anything could lead a zealous prosecutor armed with this decision to a load of endangering children.

Will Mike Pence’s menstruation registry be revived so women can be tracked to identify abortions? Will the government require women to collect and preserve the remains of miscarriages for burial at a licensed funeral home, as Pence tried to enact when he was governor of Indiana?

Alito’s decision is an open attack on the right to bodily autonomythe right to make their own medical decisions and the right to Choose to have or not to have children.

And it’s all based on his personal religious belief — shared with four fundamentalist colleagues and now about to be imposed on the rest of us — that human life legally begins the moment a sperm meets an egg.

Law in the United States should be based on age-old consensus and the latest science; it should not become a waving flag of the majority religious perspective represented on the Supreme Court at any given time.

Every member of this tribunal who seems to have decided to ban abortion was indicted by a president who did not obtain a majority of votes and was confirmed by a group of senators representing well under half of Americans. .

Their appearance on the court was organized by wealthy right-wingers who proudly proclaim their belief that America should be run along religious lines.

Only an informed, politically active majority in America can right this wrong and establish majority rule in the world’s largest democracy.

Learn about the apparent downfall of Roe c. Wade:

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Reviews | Abortion: Why is the Court using religious belief to alter what should be secular law? https://aaimaustin.org/reviews-abortion-why-is-the-court-using-religious-belief-to-alter-what-should-be-secular-law/ Mon, 09 May 2022 13:21:21 +0000 https://aaimaustin.org/reviews-abortion-why-is-the-court-using-religious-belief-to-alter-what-should-be-secular-law/ Democrats are generally reluctant to discuss religion, let alone debate it. They like to point out that Thomas Paine and Benjamin Franklin were notoriously atheists, Jefferson and dozens of other founding generation figures were deists (a close cousin of atheists and certainly not Christians), and that in two different places the Constitution explicitly rejects interference […]]]>

Democrats are generally reluctant to discuss religion, let alone debate it.

They like to point out that Thomas Paine and Benjamin Franklin were notoriously atheists, Jefferson and dozens of other founding generation figures were deists (a close cousin of atheists and certainly not Christians), and that in two different places the Constitution explicitly rejects interference of religion with government or vice-versa.

But it’s time to talk about religion whether we like it or not, because it’s not knocking on our door anymore: Sam Alito has just sent it into the house with a no-knock warrant and stun grenades threatening to catch fire.

Alito’s draft Dobbs v. Jackson opinion rests on two main premises.

The first is that the Supreme Court does not have to recognize a “right” that is not rooted in the “history and tradition” of the nation.

This right-wing duck has been around for years and has been used to argue against almost every form of modernity, from integrated public schools to same-sex marriage, more recently. It’s a handy pole around which you can twist just about any argument you want, because American history and tradition have been all over the map for the past 240 or so years.

For example, Alito might as well have pointed out that there were no federal or state laws regulating abortion when our republic was founded, and they didn’t really start appearing until the 1800s. , as doctors pushed for a license to lock midwives out of medical practice related to childbirth (which included abortion).

The year Virginia got a law regulating abortion, for example, was the same year – 1847 – that the American Medical Association was founded. Ben Franklin had been dead for over half a century and not a single signer of the Declaration of Independence was still alive.

So much for the “history and tradition” of Alito at the beginning of the republic and at the time when the Constitution was drafted.

The first anti-abortion law in Mississippi — the state whose lawsuit prompted this decision — was signed into law in 1839. George Washington had breathed his last 40 years earlier.

South Dakota got its abortion law in 1899; Delaware, Tennessee and South Carolina in 1883; North Carolina 1881; Kentucky 1879; North Dakota 1877; Utah and Georgia 1876; Oklahoma 1875.

The first state to win an anti-abortion law was Massachusetts — the state so overwhelmed by Puritan religious fanatics that the founders nearly rejected them for admission to the union — in 1812.

It was so bad that Ben Franklin fled Massachusetts for Philadelphia in 1723 at the age of 17 specifically, as he noted at length in his autobiography, to get away from the religious fanatics who ruled the state.

Which brings us to Alito’s second position and the crux of the matter: religion.

Alito’s main point about “unborn human beings” (a phrase he repeats over and over again in his ruling) simply represents one point on a wide range of religious beliefs.

He’s disguised it as law, with a healthy dose of pseudoscience grumbling about fingernails and thrown heartbeats, but it’s really about Alito’s religious belief that ‘human life’ begins at conception. .

When a zygote, embryo or even fetus be recognized as a human being? At fertilization? On acceleration? To viability? At birth? All have been both legal and religious norms at various times and places in our history.

Science might suggest that humanity begins when a baby is born or delivered by caesarean section: at that point it acquires independent agency, is its own “me”. Before that, the nascent life is part of the mother; the fetus is an appendage of her body, after all, and entirely dependent on her for blood supply, oxygen, and nutrition. If she dies, he dies.

Morality might argue that human rights of some sort should arise at the time of viability, when a fetus can survive as a baby outside the womb if forced to; this was the basis of the original Roe v Wade decision. But morality, like religion, varies from time to time, country to country, culture to culture.

Some religious people hold, for example, that human life begins the moment their God decides that a baby should be born, even before fertilization. God informs the couple of this moment making them excited and ready for sex, so birth control devices that prevent the predetermined outcome of pregnancy are prohibited.

Other religions throughout history have recognized that life begins with the first breath, as implicit in Genesis 2.7 and 7.21-22.

In between are a plethora of decision points which are effectively the question “when does a soul inhabit a human body” framed as a law. Does “human” life begin “intentionally” when a couple prepares to have sex without contraception? At six weeks, when a bundle of cells that will become a heart starts shaking? When is a real heartbeat detectable? To “acceleration” when fetal movement is detectable? At birth?

As recently as the 1960s, theologians were vigorously debate this issue in the pages of Christianity today and Christian Life magazines. There was no consensus, and (aside from single religions) there never was.

Like Jennifer Rubin Remarks in the Washington Post this week:

“Assuming that life begins at conception (thus giving states unlimited latitude to ban abortion), Alito and his right-wing colleagues would impose a faith-based regime, undoing half a century of legal and social change. “

The vast majority of politicians who loudly proclaim the “sacredness of human life” at the “pre-born” or “unborn” stage also oppose every child having food, shelter, education and adequate medical care.

Seriously, if these people cared one bit about “innocent children,” they would stop the school shootings by getting guns under control in this country. But they don’t. It’s just a lot easier to “love” a fetus that’s unresponsive, doesn’t need health care or education, and doesn’t have any special immigration status. Once he’s born, all bets are off.

This simple reality pretty much proves the cynicism of Alito’s charge that the state must be able to intervene with the force of guns and prison bars to “protect” a zygote or fetus. It is all the art of religious performance, with women as victims.

“There is ample evidence that the passage of [anti-abortion] laws,” writes Alito, “stimulated by the sincere belief that abortion kills a human being.

Yes, it is a belief. Period.

Tragically, this is not the first time that fundamentalists in this Court have used the religious beliefs of its majority to alter what should be secular law.

Last year in Tandon vs. Newsomthe same five judges again went too far even for John Roberts, decision 5-4 that a person’s religion was the basis for refusing to accept Covid lockdowns. The previous year, they reigned in Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn c. Cuomo that churches could ignore public health orders and subject their parishioners to fatal disease because of the personal beliefs of church leaders.

The Court has accelerated down this long and dangerous road with Burwell v. Hobby Lobby that allowed employers to violate federal labor law regarding insurance coverage because of their religious beliefs, even when those beliefs were not shared by the employees who were directly affected by their decisions.

And with Masterpiece Cakethe Court even ruled that companies can discriminate against their customers based on the business owners’ religious belief that homosexuals are hated by God.

Now, “religious people” are free to claim a wide variety of exceptions to US law, terms of employment, and even common decency simply by shouting, “I believe! »

Under Roe v Wade, people who thought abortion was wrong were free not to get one. They didn’t even have to park in an abortion clinic parking lot.

Under this Dobbs draft decision, however, women’s bodies legally became state property, presumably from the moment of sexual intercourse.

If a woman is using or abusing drugs or alcohol, for example, even though she doesn’t know she’s pregnant, you can easily see where that logic could lead to her being charged with a crime and imprisoned. Exotic diets, fasting, experimentation with psychedelics, extreme exercise: anything could lead a zealous prosecutor armed with this decision to a load of endangering children.

Will Mike Pence’s menstruation registry be revived so women can be tracked to identify abortions? Will the government require women to collect and preserve the remains of miscarriages for burial at a licensed funeral home, as Pence tried to enact when he was governor of Indiana?

Alito’s decision is an open attack on the right to bodily autonomythe right to make their own medical decisions and the right to Choose to have or not to have children.

And it’s all based on his personal religious belief — shared with four fundamentalist colleagues and now about to be imposed on the rest of us — that human life legally begins the moment a sperm meets an egg.

Law in the United States should be based on age-old consensus and the latest science; it should not become a waving flag of the majority religious perspective represented on the Supreme Court at any given time.

Every member of this Court who appears to have decided to ban abortion was nominated to the Court by a President who did not obtain a majority of votes and was confirmed by a group of senators representing well under half of the Americans.

Their court appearance was orchestrated by wealthy right-wingers who proudly proclaim their belief that America should be run along religious lines.

Only an informed, politically active majority in America can right this wrong and establish majority rule in the world’s largest democracy.

This summer and fall, the voter registration window will close in some states: make sure your registration hasn’t been purged and everyone you know is ready to go to the polls in November.

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