I have often written that non-theism or ‘atheism’ is the natural condition of the universe into which we are all born.

Most atheists—perhaps all, because by definition—conclude the same, realising that non-theism is the default situation of a godless universe [although pace to Richard Dawkins, who prefers to cautiously allow that we cannot be entirely sure of this]. Nevertheless, whatever else, children are all born ‘atheist’ in the sense of not knowing anything of gods until elders start instructing them.

Religion is a taught fiction—which explains why there are so many religions and why so many gods.

Inevitably, indoctrination is directed first at unsuspecting and trusting children because they are the most easily drawn into the tangled web of belief and deceit that accounts for so much of our religious, social, world population.

When a believer asks me directly the driving question, I answer firmly that natural rationality and commonsense point to religion as being nothing but a giant fraud—and a deep-rooted long-lasting fraud at that.

By the same token, the gods that religions embrace are merely the deliberate poetic and literary inventions of story-tellers.

Gods exist nowhere but inside the heads of believers, and occupy and distort their valuable, limited, neuron-circuit space where unprejudiced clear brains should be.

Why does the human race go on suffering such beliefs, when in other so many other endeavours we benefit handsomely from the great works and discoveries of the scientists and engineers?

How long will it be before we break the cycle of worship and free the minds of our leaders who keep on believing the impossible about the irrational?

One would think that it is the duty of schools to teach the truth, the scientific truth, and nothing but the truth.
If this was done, science would win through, slowly but surely.
But not all schools do so. Many teach untruths under the banner of religious freedom---and religion is all lies. Again I say: Religion is nothing but a giant fraud.

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Exactly right Adriana.

Claudia: I'll make a point briefly because I am short of time (got to rush).
If there had been no christianity (and still better no judaism) [and even better no frontal-lobe-epileptic fantasising in the Arabian desert], the world would arguably have become a far better place than it is now and done it much sooner.
An early high point of civilisation was reached among the classical Greek democrats and philosophers. If that period had not been terminated and displaced by the Romans but allowed to prosper, great works of art and music and science would have appeared and developed in the course of time, and most likely one or two millennia sooner than they did.
The few successes that some might attribute to the christian period (as with the Renaissance) happened in spite of the dead hand of the church---just as we continue to witness today the effects of the dead hand of joyless Islam. Christianity was never in the vanguard of anything useful, but always followed far behind in the rear.
That's right.
Christianity grew from the roots of judaism.
For Islam to come into existence as a new religion it was founded by introducing a fresh prophet. By including some modified jewish and christian stories this added a degree of antiquity that was helpful in its early years of proselytising because it likely improved its apparent legitimacy.
Therefore, in the absence of any knowledge of judaism and christianity, islam, as we know it, would never have been invented.
Of course, maybe without Judaism, there would have never been Christianity or Islam.

I believe the original culprit for this mess was Zoroastrianism, who invented the concept of universal religion and rejected all other gods (contrary to early Judaism and other polytheistic religions). It's quite ironic that Zoroastrianism is near extinct now.
yeah, when the church is the only organization with money to commission art works you end up seeing a lot of religious work.

But on the other hand many ancient works were dedicated to gods and heroes.
Okay ... the contributions weren't by the church ITSELF ... but by talented people the church paid (and harassed!) to produce those works. Certainly, beautiful music and art would have existed without the Church ... but I still insist that without that influence, not only would some very beautiful works be missing but influences on those works on others (and AGAIN I note the story of Eric Whitacre) without them.

All I'm talking about here is simple cause and effect ... that's IT.
Has it occurred to you that those same two wolves are operant in the church? One they feed publicly for public approval. The other they feed just as publicly, though most people don't particularly bother to notice.

Like it not, the church is about power, plain and simple. If it were seriously interested in bettering the cause of humankind, the money they spend on vestments and ceremony and the Swiss Guard would go to feed the homeless and aid the helpless. They would learn the true dynamic of marriage in being married themselves, rather than resort to mindless dogma which is the round peg which fails to fit in the square, rectangular, ob-round, triangular, pentangular and the billions of other-shaped receptacles who are the people of this planet. It would recognize the need for contraception rather than dogmatically oppose it out of hand, never mind spreading rumors of condoms that spread AIDS ... and it would cease to project the assumption to those it cares for that it had the answers to it all.

Yet the Church does this to maintain their power over people, many of whom are too ignorant to know the difference or too frightened of hell or the authority they're presented with to act and think on their own behalf. I do not tolerate this and I will not tolerate this, now or in the future, and I will lobby against it and fight against it when confronted by it.

And yet I am at peace with myself and know myself to be so. I will fight the enemy when it presents itself, but only then. And when not, I live my life, chop my wood, carry my water, care for those I love and joyfully accept their care in return. I find my objective answers in method, in science, in logic, and those more slippery subjective answers in my own experience and judgment, which may be imperfect but remains mine and no one else's.
Loren, that was wonderfully said. Religion does so much damage and uses fear, threats, intimidation, and then tries to present itself as all-loving, all-caring. Their actions speak much louder than words. I look at the prison population which is exploding with "christians," the inner city gangs who pray and then go shoot a rival youth, and I listen to the abuse and fears that my friends who were raised in religious settings have gone through and I just cannot fathom how such fraud continues to be spoon fed innocent children. And I wonder if people taught children to value life, to be proud of who they are, to be kind, without the threats and dogma, if future generations might be able to set aside the idea of religion. Method, science and logic, is lacking in a great many people, and sadly, so is common sense. I have truly enjoyed reading your posts.
When I think of how, I imagine, one person at a time. And also that the written word can be so powerful. I know that trying to stay calm (not my strongest suit) and rationally discuss religious issues with others helps. In college I had an overly exhaustive, pushy christian professor, over several months she would bring up an issue and I would counter, I even brought up the Mae Enga and the Mbuti, I left anthro literature around and slowly she started to question her beliefs. When I left she still felf herself to be christian but she was willing to state that she now felt that other's had valid arguments and that christianity wasn't the only religion nor were atheists all a bunch of satanists, (her first opinion) And in writing classes I used short stories with compassion and empathy being the center of who a person was and that religion often suppressed a persons true self. Many students who were standofish at first began staying after to have discussions.

By the way, I loved the uncle/auntie comment. Especially because my brother happens to also be my sister!
Quite the opposite, Adriana, I have a great time in this web-site. I need to live in a world peopled by rational and commanding figures, like Richard Dawkins and Dr. Terence.

It is an honor to have him as my "friend" here. And it is a privilege to have you as friend too, and I appreciate you both more fully every time I read your posts.

I like the discussions of this group very much.

I don't try necessarily to highlight positive aspects of religion. I want to look at religion objectivaly because only then we will know what we criticize.

Zoroastrianism was not exactly the beginning of this infinite mess we have in Christianity today and Judaism belongs to a Western-centric view.

Atheist-Nexus is good for me.
That is a gracious response Claudia. Thank you.

And I like the applicability of your expression "this infinite mess" to the current state of the infection that is uncomprehending religion.
Human beings must use the weapon given to them by the beutiful process of evolution, the brain to release themselves from the tyrannical shackles that is religion. GOD IS ANTI HUMANS WHEN WILL CREATIONISTS GET THIS!!!!!!
Mostly, they won't, Kelvin. They don't want to. They took the easy way, because they're effete or they don't care or a hundred other lame excuses. Some may wake up, but honestly, I really don't expect the vast majority of believers to just drop their belief, even if the Pope admitted to the whole scam on Geraldo. I expect this to get ugly ... very seriously ugly, before anything positive by way of the removal of religion even approaches becoming more probable than just possible.

You can accuse me of being overly pessimistic ... but if you can see a scenario which causes a very large number of people who long ago sold out to the easy road to suddenly abandon it, you spell it out to me.




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