My last post set up for my next choice on the list perfectly, and I didn’t even plan it. But when I read that article this morning, I knew that now would be the perfect time to talk about God is Not Great by Christopher Hitchens.
I know there are a lot of people out there who vehemently dislike Christopher Hitchens, and I have to admit that he can come across as slightly self-important. But I think that comes from a lifetime of having to defend his own beliefs and stance on life in the face of a lot of blind ignorance.
I don’t think anyone can deny that religion itself will more likely than not bring about the demise of us all. Humankind has survived much done in the name of religion: the Crusades, the Inquisition, witch trials, suicide bombings. But barely. And as our weapons become more destructive and our interactions more closely-and globally-involved, the more imminent our self-destruction in the name of religion becomes.
We want so desperately to assign meaning and purpose to our lives. We all want our lives to mean something and to be a part of some greater plan. Religion fills that void too well. It allows people to lead unhappy and unfulfilled lives and think of that as the price they have to pay to achieve some sort of heaven or reward.
No matter how hard I try I don’t think I will ever understand the self-deception necessary to sustain religious beliefs. Pretending Santa Claus exists year after year does not prove his existence.
Other books that I find to be similarly good reads: Why I Am Not A Christian by Bertrand Russell, The Religion Virus by Craig A. James, Bloodline of the Holy Grail by Laurence Gardner, The End of Faith by Sam Harris.
Knowledge is power whether you believe or disbelieve. Why not arm yourself?