"It [the State] has taken on a vast mass of new duties and responsibilities; it has spread out its powers until they penetrate to every act of the citizen, however secret; it has begun to throw around its operations the high dignity and impeccability of a State religion; its agents become a separate and superior caste, with authority to bind and loose, and their thumbs in every pot. But it still remains, as it was in the beginning, the common enemy of all well-disposed, industrious and decent men." ~ H.L. Mencken
How Can We Be So Stupid?
Exclusive to STR
September 20, 2006
Reading an article about the recent quote made by Pope Benedict XVI of a Byzantine emperor from the Middle Ages regarding his negative outlook of Islam and Islam's founder Mohammad for their reliance on violence as a means to control people and win converts, I had to wonder how can we be so stupid! Don't people ask themselves how the Pope can even attempt to be critical of a religion that converts through the sword when Christians themselves had done it for hundreds of years? And if using the quote was an innocent mistake by the Pope in these days of extreme religious tensions and violence, why doesn't he make an honest and open apology to the Muslims that he has upset instead of saying he's sorry they misunderstood him? (According to the Church, he's allowed to make mistakes in matters that don't involve Church dogma. In matters of Church dogma, the Catholic Church makes the claim of infallibility of the Pope.) And if the religion of Islam is such a great worldview and from the one true God, how can it be so easily shaken by simple words, shaken to the point of violence in the streets, including the possible shooting to death of a nun?
This is the 21st Century! Science and reason have proven all of the unreasonable claims made by all three of the Abrahamic 'revealed' religions--Judaism, Christianity and Islam--false. We now know by application of our God-given reason and lots of hard work over generations that the Earth is NOT the center of the universe as the Bible falsely teaches. We now know that unicorns are not real. We now know that once your body dies, it remains dead. We now know that it is wrong to actually kill disobedient children. The list of facts that prove the Bible and Koran wrong go on and on and on! So why then do we still embrace this nonsense as a society and why do individuals who know better tolerate the serious discussion of the various 'holy' books of the various 'revealed' religions as if they were legitimate guides for our lives?
I'm not saying that governments should do anything. I'm strongly against government attempting to further control our lives. I just think that people who know better, people who know the Bible and Koran are just ambiguous ancient texts grounded in superstition, fear and ignorance that adhere to no reasonable or logical train of thought and therefore can be of no use to people or to society should openly say so. When we encounter people in the work place or at school, or anywhere for that matter, who are attempting to misrepresent the Bible or Koran as something positive that can be used to better society and individuals, we should politely and strongly speak out and expose these millstones around the neck of progress for what they are.
"No way of thinking or doing, however ancient, can be trusted without proof.' If we can get people to realize this truth of Thoreau's regarding religion, if we can get them to demand proof of the outrageous claims made by all of the 'revealed' religions, it's just a matter of time until they will demand proof from the governments of the world for such things as WMD, why paying taxes is necessary, etc. Proving the 'revealed' religions wrong is easy. Proving the governments wrong is also easy. The hard part is instilling in people the ability of independent questioning. To do this, we need to demonstrate to them that if you openly question Oz, your limbs will not magically fall off. Once this is done, once people get used to independent thought and action, everything else will fall into place.
How can we expect to make progress when we still seriously consider or tolerate without debate such nonsense as the 'holy' books and all the superstitious dogmatic garbage, such as infallibility, that the revealed religions spew?
If you need some starting points to expose the Bible as nonsense, visit the Bible monsters page at deism.com This is a great way to demonstrate how unstable and unreliable the Bible is! For a few good talking points on the Koran, visit our Islamic Superstition page. Another outstanding and in-depth source of contradictions of the Bible, Koran and Book of Mormon is the Skeptics Annotated Bible.
Armed with chapter and verse citations of obvious blunders of the Bible and Koran, we can do much to weaken the 'revealed' religions and to correspondingly strengthen individuals and eventually society.