Africa Speaks Reasoning Forum

SCIENCE, SOCIOLOGY, RELIGION => Mainstream Religion => Topic started by: iyah360 on May 20, 2004, 01:51:49 PM

Title: *the use of state religion*
Post by: iyah360 on May 20, 2004, 01:51:49 PM
" . . . But among all the useful institutions, that demonstrate the superior excellence of the Roman government, the most considerable perhaps is the opinion which the people are taught to hold concerning the gods: and that, which other men regard as an object of disgrace, appears in my judgment to be the very thing by which this republic chiefly is sustained. I mean, superstition: which is impressed with all it terrors; and influences both the private actions of the citizens, and the public administration also of the state, in a degree that can scarcely be exceeded. This may appear astonishing to many. To me it is evident, that this contrivance was at first adopted for the sake of the multitude. For if it were possible that a state could be composed of wise men only, there would be no need, perhaps, of any such invention. But as the people universally are fickle and inconstant, filled with irregular desires, too precipitate in their passions, and prone to violence; there is no way left to restrain them, but by the dread of things unseen, and by the pageantry of terrifying fiction. . . "

- Polybius(born 208 b.c.) from "Rome at the End of the Punic Wars"

Title: Re: *the use of state religion*
Post by: preach on May 21, 2004, 09:25:31 PM
This quote is interesting and useful.It is testament that even as far back as the author's time religion was used as a means of control. It was used as a tool to instill fear into the hearts of individuals who would otherwise seek social and political reform. It is genius in the fact that after all of the years that religion has failed mankind, the scare tactic still works.