My Thoughts on Religion

, , 100 Comments


Let’s talk about religion this week. Whether you’re a believer or a non-believer,
religion has, and probably always will, play some role in society. This is why religion has been at least a part
of so many of the discussions I’ve had on this show, from interviews with an atheist
like Sam Harris, to a Catholic like Bishop Barron, to a christian Dinesh D’Souza, to
orthodox Jew like Ben Shapiro, to ex-muslim Yasmine Mohammed to atheist Muslim Ali Rizvi,
to Jew turned atheist turned Christian like Andrew Klavan, and so on. All of these religious descriptors exist for
each of these individual people, no matter how confusing they might be to anyone from
the outside looking in. I for one, have consistently enjoyed talking
to people from all walks of life and seeing what they believe and how they took, or did
not take, the leap of faith to get where they are in their spiritual journey. As I’ve said many times before, I am NOT a
believer, but I don’t really care whatever anyone else believes, as long as their religious
beliefs don’t take the form of legislating my life. In the privacy of your home, you can believe
in Yaweh or Jesus or Mohammed or the flying Spaghetti Monster and that’s none of my business. If your religious beliefs give you some sense
of purpose or inner piece then great, it’s when your belief bleeds into who I can marry
or wanting me to be thrown off a building when I have a problem with you…and your
beliefs. As for that leap of faith, I usually explain
my feelings about belief with a simple basketball analogy. If you told me you saw LeBron James dunk from
half court last night, well I couldn’t take that just on faith alone. I’d need some sort of evidence, like at the
very leaast seeing the videotape with my own eyes, as proof of your outrageous claim. So it seems only logical to me to treat the
biggest questions of the universe with the same intellectual rigor as my imaginary basketball
analogy. Belief aside, there are many attachments people
have to religion which often are cultural and based in tradition. For me, being Jewish is a connection to the
history, an often painful history, of the Jewish people, but also being aware of the
traditions, rich cultural heritage and historical ties that I have to the people who came before
me. While I’m not religious myself, it’s the educational
emphasis of Judaism which let atheists like Albert Einstein or Carl Sagan stay connected
to their cultural identity, without giving up their commitment to logic and reason. Without comparing myself intellectually to
anywhere near these two legends, it’s this type of understanding of Judaism I believe
in, but I have no desire to push this on you or anyone else. Joining me to discuss belief, religion, and
why Jews are funny is Rabbi David Wolpe of Sinai Temple here in Los Angeles. Rabbi Wolpe was named America’s most influential
rabbi by Newsweek Magazine and one of the 50 most influential Jews by the Jerusalem
Post. Where Larry David and Jesus half of Lenny
Kravitz fell on this list, we’ll soon find out…

 

100 Responses

  1. Ben Corwin

    June 15, 2017 5:35 pm

    I want to preface this by saying that I love the Rubin report, but I have to say that I'm sick and tired of hearing about a proof demand of divine consciousness (God). IT DOES NOT MAKE SENSE. To begin with, let's just agree that everyone believes in their own consciousness regardless of what science has to say about it (which isn't much). So why are we hanging our belief in God (pure consciousness) on the scientific method? Certainly, there are other types of truths than just scientific truths (Hint: Metaphysical truths). Secondly, no one ever seems to consider the implications of a divine mind. Did you ever consider that God is INTENTIONALLY withdrawn from our human experiences? That maybe factors of choice are involved? All this to say, God can still be known, but not like you want him/she/it to be known. You have to start by thinking about it differently.

    Reply
  2. Anthony Tyler

    June 15, 2017 5:52 pm

    Christianity – A messianic cult based upon some mythical figure – Jesus.

    Islam – A death cult who follows the teachings of a pedophelic warlord.

    Judaism – A religion who plagiarized heavily from various pagan religions who's Deity is a tyrannical dictator.

    Roman Catholicism – An organization that gives shelter and fortitude to pedophiles to avoid prosecution.

    JW's – Dorky virgins.

    SJW's – Cancer to society.

    SHEMHAMFORASH! Ave Satanas Ave Domini Inferni!

    Reply
  3. Heather Watson

    June 15, 2017 7:13 pm

    Take my word for it on this… there are far too many places, with far too many people who will take the analogy with LeBron James dunking from half court, and the need for supporting evidence of such an event, and in response to that analogy they will tell you that you should not compare a basketball player to God. You can carefully explain to them that it is an analogy about belief and the required evidence for belief, and they will not understand that. To them, it is a comparison with LeBron James, to God. Needless to say, I have gone through this fiasco before.

    Reply
  4. Just Joey

    June 15, 2017 7:51 pm

    god dammit, why is EVERYONE in the alt right JEWISH? fucking hell, controlled opposition and the jewish question are real.

    Reply
  5. Samuel115s

    June 15, 2017 8:05 pm

    I have respect for religion as long as the religion has respect for me and dose not appose to my human rights.

    Reply
  6. Fr. Nicholas Rottman

    June 15, 2017 8:14 pm

    Mr. Rubin, I greatly respect your fair-mindedness, and I can tell you've had to articulate your thoughts on the question of religion many times. Here is the dilemma that many of us believer must deal with. We believe that there is an absolute truth and order to reality. Since that is what we believe, we can't simply keep our faith in our homes and churches (synagogues, etc.). To believe something without living it in our public and political lives would make us hypocrites. To do our best to convince others of our belief (hopefully with respect and charity) is also important since we believe that what is true for us is true for all, even if not all believe. Without demanding that you accept my view, I wish to know if you can see the reasonableness of it. Do you feel that this position is harmful to society or unethical in some way? Thank you for your report.

    Reply
  7. Drew M

    June 15, 2017 9:21 pm

    Here's the problem with your stance. Religion is not like a frat club where people just socialize do activities. Religion involves truth claims which impact every aspect of life, and one of those is morality. This, more than anything else, drives our legislation. Religion cannot be kept as only a private manner unless you don't really believe it.

    Reply
  8. MojoPin1983

    June 15, 2017 9:35 pm

    Dave, please try to have N.T. Wright or Ravi Zacharias on your show. William Lane Craig would also be interesting.

    Reply
  9. Deacon Parsons

    June 15, 2017 11:32 pm

    Sorry, but we have the 'free exercise thereof' clause. Everybody gets to vote their faith or lack thereof. We have a Bill of Rights that is sacrosanct, but sorry, Saul Alinsky was wrong, just screaming "it's my right" doesn't make it a right. You are young enough that you will probably live to see the backlash.

    Reply
  10. treiz

    June 16, 2017 1:31 am

    Your Lebron example is backwards. Your belief that something can come from nothing is the half court dunk, not my belief that a universe filled with cause and effect relationships can't cause itself.

    Reply
  11. Michael Groesbeck

    June 16, 2017 1:34 am

    Atheism is cultural suicide. Here is why

    1. Atheists speak against religious history (particularly war) & therefore attack the core of what makes & shapes the culture of a civilization.
    2. Atheists tend to not have children & thus cannot be expected to support the existence of a civilization.
    3. Atheists have no over-arching story or frequent life-long traditions & thus have little to nothing for people to unite around for social purposes. In short, they're anti-social, especially for only being able to criticize others for having story & tradition.
    4. Atheists treat everything as Deterministic & therefore the same as The Universe, negating Free-Will. Freedom, & Free-Enterprise as how people express themselves to begin with. Without the experience of free-expression, there is no such thing as culture. Therefore, Hard Atheism = Anti-Culture.
    5. Because Atheists are clearly ill-equipped, they will also not have an attitude of defending their culture. This leads to lax immigration policies that allow stronger cultures (religious) to enter into their territory with little contention . YES, I SAID IT! ATHEISTS ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE IMMIGRATION CRISIS. (It's not just how they tend to vote
    NOT EVEN JAPAN IS TRULY ATHEIST. The Japanese still largely hold onto Shintoism their culture & don't have lax immigration policies.

    Reply
  12. Raqko

    June 16, 2017 2:09 am

    What evidence would you accept for God's existence? If God came down and said "here I am" and showed his power to everyone, then you'd still get someone saying, "no, no, you're just a super powerful alien trying to trick us," and then God would say, "screw you guys, im going home." Point is, He couldn't prove what he is, there's no way for a human to tell the difference between greatly advanced power and infinite power. Until the End, of course..

    Reply
  13. abc64pan

    June 16, 2017 2:39 am

    I have a problem with violent religious people who follow violent religions too, but I also have a problem with religious people who peacefully dismiss you as being lost if you don't believe in their god; peacefully claim that their god will send you to a place of eternal torment if you don't believe in him; peacefully categorize your chosen lifestyle as "living in sin" and other "peaceful" religious activities. Words can do a great deal of damage too, even if the are peacefully uttered.

    Reply
  14. Ryan Jenks

    June 16, 2017 2:58 am

    Dave you need to be more intellectually honest when it comes to religion first the gay marriage issue wasn't Christians trying to stop a union between gays but protect the definition of marriage. To many marriage is a sacred covenant to each other and God and the state shouldn't be able to redefine what "marriage" is similar to genders. But a civil union between gays with the same state benefits as marriage, yes of course gays have the right to. Second, your analogy of religion and basketball is a terrible representation of "facts". Look at Descartes logical philosophy on God through the lens of cause and effect. The basketball analogy would be closer to: "scientists say a basketball went through the hoop because when studying the properties of each the basketball and the hoop, evidence shows a relationship that binds them together in action. When religion says the ball went through the hoop because a player used force to propel the ball through the hoop, scientists say there is no evidence of that." There may not be physical evidence, but it is very unlikely the ball propelled itself through the hoop, it is more likely something with greater or equal force propelled it through the hoop.

    Reply
  15. Very Liberal/Progressive Atheist

    June 16, 2017 3:03 am

    You have had some awesome people on your show and I love how they view religion

    Reply
  16. Sandy Kurniadi

    June 16, 2017 3:35 am

    Religion is all about heaven and hell concepts, if you got rid of it, i dont think religion would be as troublesome and would not have fanatics in them, just like everything else in live its all about what you want (heaven) and what you fear (hell)

    Reply
  17. Jacob Garrison

    June 16, 2017 3:38 am

    Why do people say "Catholic" and then "Christian" as if they are different at all? Catholicism is one of the oldest,largest, and by far most influential branch of Christianity.

    Reply
  18. David Schoen

    June 16, 2017 3:42 am

    "It does me no injury for my neighbour to say there are twenty gods, or no god. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg"

    Thomas Jefferson, Notes On The State Of Virginia. I think it perfectly exemplifies the classical liberal ideal

    Reply
  19. TofeldianSage

    June 16, 2017 4:01 am

    Dave, I don't listen to Atheists anymore. Of all the people who have something to say on the subject, Atheists are the least informed and the most dogmatic.

    Reply
  20. DSWynne

    June 16, 2017 4:02 am

    I consider myself a non-religious Christian. I take the view that your experience is YOUR experience, and that, at the end of the day, we all are going to die in some fashion. My problem with so-called "secularists", and by extension "atheists", is not that they do not believe in my religion or religion; my problem with them is their tendency to embrace statism, which means, to me, the gateway to collectivism (ie. Marxism, socialism, communism, etc.). That, to me, makes them dangerous.

    Reply
  21. Rob

    June 16, 2017 4:23 am

    if you need proof or evidence of a belief system, then all you have to do is study it. Historical, as well as tradition passed on by written word or mouth, tells a story. Maybe, it's not what we thought. They're plenty of deceivers out there. Make sure to back everything up with FACT. Then the truth can't be denied. For this guy to group belief systems in with "the flying spaghetti monster," it's obvious he's not well read. Seek and you will find, ask and you will receive. Just do yourself a favor, and put away your ego and pride as you seek and ask. Wonderful things await you. God bless.

    Reply
  22. I'm unsubscribing.

    June 16, 2017 5:03 am

    Even though I'm not religious I think Dave's comment at 1:50 is so bizarre. It seems to be that the biggest questions in the universe shouldn't necessarily just be something we can confirm with our own two eyes, because that doesn't have anything to do with "intellectual rigor."

    When people start pontificating about the "illogical religious people" and how myopic they are about the universe, I always think to myself, aren't you also being pretty shortsighted to think that the highest standard of intellectual confirmation of reality comes from the mind of man? Who's to say that, just because that's all you have ever known as one single human being? What would possibly make you believe that seeing is believing in the first place? That statement in and of itself is its own brand of myopia. And as somebody who does only truly believe things I see or hear, I consider this a weakness in myself because it is a result of my own indolence in avoiding complete and total conditioning to my environment and very limited understanding of existence.

    Shouldn't it be reasonable to consider that the biggest questions in the universe mightnot be totally fathomable to us? Why isn't it reasonable to think that our power isn't the highest power, that we might be a hell of a lot weaker than we think we are? Why is a Catholic guy stupid for having faith in that if he feels a spiritual connection and believes it to be with a god? Where is the impossibility in that?

    Reply
  23. paperEATER101

    June 16, 2017 7:14 am

    sagan-worship, oy vey est mir, bro; guy was as lightweight as aunt zilda's babkas on the freaking moon

    Reply
  24. Alex S

    June 16, 2017 7:42 am

    Rubin, I don't skip your ads in particular. I hope this message reaches your sponsors. you need to continue to be funded

    Reply
  25. Sanno Ryujin

    June 16, 2017 8:47 am

    Einstein stated that he believed in the pantheistic God of Baruch Spinoza.[He did not believe in a personal God who concerns himself with fates and actions of human beings, a view which he described as naïve.He clarified however that, "I am not an atheist", preferring to call himself an agnostic or a "religious nonbeliever."

    Reply
  26. Cindy Benitez

    June 16, 2017 12:37 pm

    I think it would be interesting to have Dr. William Lane Craig on your show, an outspoken Christian apologist. www.ReasonableFaith.org

    Reply
  27. YEHOSHUA

    June 16, 2017 5:13 pm

    Anyone who is interested in Christianity I advice you to look up the likes of Ravi Zacharias, Prof. John Lennox and C.S Lewis, brilliant wise Christian men!

    Reply
  28. Stephen Garrett

    June 17, 2017 6:54 am

    Are we not living in the postpostpostmodern era at this point? Why are atheists still explaining atheism to us?

    Reply
  29. Brandon Ridley

    June 17, 2017 7:36 am

    Dave, you're the best at this. Also, please don't believe the nonsense that religious belief is a "leap" or that there is no good evidence for it. You're of course welcome to think my thinking is poor or that my evidences are bogus – but I'm a Christian because I think the evidence (and logic and reason and the rest) leads me there. I may be right or wrong and we can debate it, but I'd never tell someone that the secret to religious conviction is to shut your brain off. Just the opposite is true. It's even in the Bible.

    Reply
  30. Ian Paling

    June 17, 2017 8:37 am

    The only devout Muslim that you could interview would likely be the infamous Imam Tawhidi.

    Reply
  31. Method and Madness - New Ep Every Wk

    June 19, 2017 3:20 am

    this is a sensible man saying something quite sensible. the only thing i may add (as if dave is ever going to see this) is that the process of coming to a belief in a transcendent being is a matter of the heart and mind. these two are interdependent and can never be separated when it comes to forming a belief about anything.

    Reply
  32. 216trixie

    June 19, 2017 3:29 am

    The only reason we're talking about religion is because mankind is still lying to it's new children about an imaginary celestial dictator.

    Reply
  33. Nelson Jerónimo

    June 20, 2017 4:19 pm

    The thing is: I know God in a very existencial way. You would say I believe in God ( it's a different thing) and you don't belive. Meaning we believe in different things. Now, you say that my beliefs should stay inside my house and yours regulate the public domain… That could be a problem. For me, well I don't care about your beliefs, meaning that I would not change the way I live because of that. I'll continue to freely say that homosexuality it's wrong, gay marriage too, and so on… But I don't support the idea of any kind of punishement or that you should have rights taken away from you because of that. I think the way you, or me or anyone express their sexuality… that should stay in interior of our homes, more than religious beliefs.

    Reply
  34. Jimmy Green

    June 22, 2017 4:04 am

    Asking me contain my worship to the privacy of my home is in direct conflict with my freedom of religion. I am a Catholic everywhere and at all times. My religious beliefs impact every aspect of my life. Just as my beliefs bleed into those who seek abortions or same sex marriage, those current social trends bleed into my life when I am asked to participate in them. It's a difficult problem and solution is not to legislate behavior. I would love to see Dave interview Paul Darrow, who was featured in the documentary, Desire of the Everlasting Hills. Paul is a Catholic who struggled to reconcile his faith and sexuality and has found peace.

    Reply
  35. Marshall Dan

    June 27, 2017 10:00 am

    I am agnostic. But you know what? I'll take Christianity as a foundation for society, (specifically Protestant.) It produces better societies.

    Reply
  36. Jennifer Wrightington

    June 28, 2017 2:03 pm

    Religion is not for privacy sake, it is to form a moral society bent on shaping itself and its' peoples into Saints and Sainthood, to live with God in Heaven forever, it is a tough road and the culture and history to embrace, but as G. K. Chesteron once said (paraphrasing) Christianity is not for not trying, it has been found to be hard to try. But isn't what real Sacrifice of Love (Him) is…..????

    Reply
  37. hold tight asnee

    July 1, 2017 11:28 pm

    Can u have a discussion with a Muslim u can't keep talking about Islam with out inviting someone who has connection to the religion. Also u will be hearing the same or similar point of views

    Reply
  38. Ahmad Abdelhadi

    July 2, 2017 7:15 pm

    All religions are man made. MAN wrote all religious books. As far as I know God didn't sneeze and words came out of him and just fell neatly into a book…. so yes man wrote all the religious books. And when MAN write one of the most powerful books on earth, he/she will manipulate, change and have some type of interest behind what they just wrote.

    Reply
  39. hooligan bubsy

    July 15, 2017 5:59 pm

    This guy's face was creeping me the fuck out and I couldn't work out why. Then I noticed that he has almost zero expression from the eyes and above.

    Reply
  40. TazKidNoah

    July 23, 2017 1:10 am

    +The Rubin Report
    soo ur NEVER GOING TO ACTUALLY INTERVIEW AN ACTUAL Muslim? like Yasir Qadhi or Hamza Yusuf or Hamza Tzortzis or Nouman Ali Khan?

    Reply
  41. x15rogersd

    October 28, 2017 12:34 am

    "The legitimate powers of government extend to such acts only as are injurious to others. But it does me no injury for my neighbour to say there are twenty gods, or no god. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg." – Thomas Jefferson, 1782

    Reply
  42. Ivan Garcia

    January 6, 2018 10:43 am

    I just want to be Christian without being harshly bastardized by today's society. Honestly, I don't care if you're Atheist, Buddhist, Muslim, or Jewish. I'll leave you alone and you'll leave me alone. We're a better society that way. Have a nice day.

    Reply
  43. Hadi Abdulhameed

    January 14, 2018 7:36 pm

    So he never interviewed an actual muslim like Shabyr Ali or Hamza Yusuf. Only some hilarious ex muslims i see.
    Your worldview is threatened mr. rubin ? XD

    Reply
  44. Hadi Abdulhameed

    January 14, 2018 7:40 pm

    Also btw you say albert einstein is an atheist?
    Damn you atheists are so desperate in raising you numbers i see XD.

    You can obviously tell from Einstein's writings that he is not what you call an atheist mr. rubin.

    Reply
  45. Bharat Mata ki Jai

    August 6, 2018 7:58 pm

    2:23 You are wrong. Sagan was Agnostic and said Atheism was stupid. Einstein was clearly not an Atheist and said it repeatedly multiple times. Einstein views varied from Agnostic to Pantheistic to Deist to Cosmic religion.

    Reply
  46. dmonarre dmonarre

    August 22, 2018 6:09 am

    That, "biggest question in the universe," is always brought up. This presupposes that logic, reason and the human faculty should MORE IMPORTANTLY be applied to the big rather than the small. The converse is true. Our minds are not fit for the big, and our rational capacities (here's looking at you Vienna Logical Positivist Empiricist) are truly unsuited for anything beyond the small. You're biggest question in the universe reflection supposes that there is an all encompassing theory of all, premised on rational, logical precepts. Only further delving into rationalism, mathematics, physics and formal logic itself shows you how much splintering and disagreement there is within those and all fields. Uncertainty and ASSUMED AXIOMS that help keep grand theories in all aforementioned fields afloat can deceive our species into truly believing that the human mind can wrangle in and explain all. It's just that those who trumpet these positions are more arbiters of p.r. and marketing than of truth. The truth is, we don't know the truth about most fields and reality itself. Mystery still permeates deeply and sometimes, the most unbelievable events take place beyond our predictions and understandings. Read any papers by Henri Poincare, Benoit Mandelbrot, or Nassim Taleb for the true short comings of our species.

    Reply
  47. mazzmarymaria

    September 3, 2018 11:35 am

    No interview with an actual Muslim of course. and an "atheist muslim" is an atheist likewise and "ex-muslim" is not a person who is no longer a muslim. Do people go around saying I'm an atheist Christian?

    Reply
  48. Out Of Oblivion Productions

    October 2, 2018 3:07 pm

    I want to do what I want to do and if I can't do it, I'm going to have a hissy fit. How grown up.

    Reply
  49. Fernando Curiel

    October 26, 2018 8:10 pm

    Actually Albert Einstein was secular Jew who actually believed in God, before he was a Pantheist.

    Reply
  50. lourak613

    November 14, 2018 3:53 am

    This man is childishly naïve. It's one thing to claim atheism – but to presume that you can appreciate your "Jewish heritage and culture" outside of being religious, is mere lunacy. Why? Well – go and look at how many Jews (born of Jewish mother) there are, who can claim non-religious ancestry going back more than 2 or at most 3 generations. Inevitably, intermarriage occurs, and that branch of the tree of Judaism is broken and lost forever. So don't tell me there is such a thing as appreciating Judaism, and being proud of being a Jew, if you are not committed to perpetuating the religion. And without religious observance and ritual, the statistics are clear that it cannot be done. Hence, the reform and other corrupt versions of "Judaism" have to rely on innovations such as patrilinear descent, in order to keep things going just a little bit longer. But ultimately, they don't truly care about the certain demise of their own people,since they don't identify with historically, normative Judaism. They think they can have their cake and eat it too…

    Reply
  51. Sandor Fekete

    December 20, 2018 5:20 am

    Albert Einstein was not technically an atheist, but associated his world view more closely to that of pantheism.
    https://pantheism.com/about/luminaries/albert-einstein/

    “Scientific research can reduce superstition by encouraging people to think and view things in terms of cause and effect. Certain it is that a conviction, akin to religious feeling, of the rationality and intelligibility of the world lies behind all scientific work of a higher order… This firm belief, a belief bound up with a deep feeling, in a superior mind that reveals itself in the world of experience, represents my conception of God. In common parlance this may be described as “pantheistic” (Spinoza).”

    Reply
  52. S Mutib

    January 7, 2019 2:10 am

    So you're basically agreeing with what TYT says and pretty much the whole left. Then why the fuck would you go on PragerU that is funded by the Wilks bros who want to impose their RELIGION and ban gay marriage? Isn't that HYPOCRITICAL?

    Reply
  53. XpFlowExclusive

    January 18, 2019 4:38 am

    Damn rubin said it so politely but he directly shitted on believers through the whole vid. Saying stuff like……
    Religion plays a big part of our lives and people lives. And I'm okay with it unless u push your faith on me. It's great to be preached home( no, Christian want to save everyone, I wouldn't stop you from doing something but if u want to go to a bakery and ask people to bake a cake and they refuse becuase of there beliefs and u decide to sue them,then we have a problem with u.) and then say….. All of these believers come with faiths without evidence. And align that message with an basketball analogy. ( Christian faith is with evidence. The Bible definition of faith is to believe what is true.) and its cool that athiest like Albert Einstein and another guy sticks to there faith but will put it down in a reasonable discussion. ( Like wow, religion is dumb to you) well thanx for sharing.

    Reply
  54. Xavier van Roman

    March 22, 2019 1:23 am

    I also dont care if you are not religious or dont believe in God or if you are a man who is in sexual relationship with man but you dont bring my God and religion between your talk show

    Reply
  55. Michael Svoboda

    March 26, 2019 5:46 pm

    I hope you know better after interviewing Rucka, Dave. Politics rest on ethics, religion is cancer.

    Reply
  56. HuckleB680

    April 18, 2019 1:48 am

    religion can be beneficial or harmful depending on how it's used, but any religion that believes in a flying spaghetti monster sounds awesome. I must convert to it!

    Reply

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