Oxford University Debate: Is Religion the Opiate of the Masses?

Source: Huffington Post

By Frank Fredericks

I had the esteemed privilege of opening the Proposition in the Oxford Union debate: This House Believes that Religion Remains an Opiate of the Masses. Debating at the Oxford Union, a debating society with over 170 years of tradition, is a rare honor that few people may ever get in their lifetime.

My remarks:
I’ll instruct you with the wise words of Jalaluddin al-Balkhi, known as Rumi:

“Sit, be still, and be silent. For you’re drunk, and this, this is the edge of the roof.”

It is a profound privilege to serve in the proposition of tonight’s debate. This House Believes Religion Remains the Opiate of The Masses. A debate commenced by Karl Marx in 1843; he wrote in A Contribution to the Critique of Hegel’s Philosophy of Right:

“Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soul-less conditions. It is the opium of the people”.

Perhaps one of the most quoted and misquoted postulations on religion, together tonight, we wish to further an old argument for a new generation of skeptics and faithful alike.

It is a profound privilege to be addressing you today. My fellow teammates have my veneration and admiration. Veneration for one, being the same age as my grandfather, and admiration for the other as a leading activist in tumultuous times.

Furthermore, it is my divine duty to introduce the Opposition:

Gabe Rusk: A Masters student in Religion, he is both the LGBTQIA+ Officer at the Union and as well as the International Grad Officer for the Oxford Student Union. He also has actual debate experience, so I expect nothing but utter brilliance from you this evening.

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3 replies

  1. Thank you Zia—for sharing of a good info.
    From my view, the main goal of religion as God say:
    in order His people can live in peace, hatmony and prosperity—
    After all prophet died, religion is misused by political leaders anc clerics.

    1.Political leader use religion as a toll to get to power.
    2.Most clerics use religion to earn money for living.

    Therefore, religion has became a root of conflict on earth.
    Religious conflict will not end until a true Masshiah come to this world.,

    This my comment

  2. Look at Rohingyaa conflict there is no a sign for peace
    Look at Yemdn conflict there is no sign for peace
    Look at Syria after defeating isis, Turkey, USA, Kurdith and Israel —Rusia, Iran and Hesbullah will devide Syria

    Look at Hamas and Israel conflict has been 70 years there is no sign for peace.

    God say: the root if conflict on earth are the extremist( Jews, Christian, Islam, Buddhist and Atheist) there are Evil-Agent on earth to destroy or take people to Hell with evil.

    My suggestion: the extremist should be defeated!
    Otherwith Evil agent will defeat good people, for sure!
    All ❤️

    • As for Hamas, it was created by Israel exactly for the purpose of having an excuse not to make peace. Long term planning at its best. (I told you so).

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