The World Doesn’t Need Religion

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The World Doesn’t Need Religion

Religion has screwed us up for a long time and we'd be better off without it. By "us" I mean Americans living in the 21st century. Without religions we would have fewer labels separating us from each other and we wouldn't hate Jews or Catholics or Muslims. If we didn't have religions, we wouldn't have to convert anyone or "save" anyone. If we didn't have religions, people could no longer get caught up in the fine lines of religious rightousness or be trapped in a double-standard morality. And most importantly, we would be truly free of religious engendered guilt that never quite goes away.

In America, people are less tolerant than before and words like Jew, Muslim, and Christian set us off and make us mad because we connect these labels with violence and war. We are planning to attack the "axis of evil" and in giving Iraq this label, we assume a moral duty on our part and the devil on theirs. There is no simple answer to the problems in the Middle East which are daily getting more and more out of control. But adding quasi-religious labels pushes us farther apart and increases the tension and opposition on all sides.

I grew up in a Catholic family and went to Catholic grade school and high school and I don't regret it. It was an interesting experience and surely formed a great part of my character. But looking back, I see that the system of organized religion is rigged and the deck is stacked more in favor of the church than it is in favor of the faithful. Consider for a moment the Christian need to convert and save people, two more activities that could be done away with if we didn't have religion. Converting more followers keeps the organized religion afloat and promising salvation is the hook that gets people's attention. No one knows what happens after death. But some religions offer a promise of heaven or hell and, like children, we willing believe in this fantastic fairy tale.

On another note, the church introduces us to the concept of guilt and tells us we are guilty even before we are born. This is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard. Nontheless, if we find God, or Jesus, or convert, or confess before we die, we're saved.
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