re: The Extropian religious war(answer to Eliezer's question)

From: John M Grigg (
Date: Tue Jul 17 2001 - 16:33:34 MDT

Eliezer wrote:
What I'm asking for, then, is a case where religion provides a cognitive benefit to someone with moderate strength and depth of rationality.

What do you think of this? A person who is part of a group and realizes the situation is so terrible that he/she must sacrifice their own life to save the others. Let's say they are soldier's pinned down by an enemy machine gun nest and one man must make a successful but suicidal charge. And think of a situation where there is simply not enough air or food to go around so one person must leave the group and die, or else everyone will perish.

The belief in a loving God who will make things right in the afterlife could have a decisive effect on a person in deciding to make the sacrifice of their own life. Especially, if they are someone of only moderate strength and depth of rationality.

To have the inner strength to make the ultimate sacrifice takes courage which must come from somewhere. I'm not saying an atheist could not do this also but the devoutly religious individual has an advantage here.

best wishes,


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