I am starting this blog because I feel I must. Religion has poisoned the well from which humanity drinks for millenia, and while I long ago ceased believing in any sort of God, I have for years simply watched from the sidelines. I will do so no more. All religion is false, and most religion is dangerous and potentially violent. To see this, one need only to read today's news, or most any day's news. Religion creates wholly unnecessary divisions in largely nonnegotiable and unchanging terms. Every day in Iraq and elsewhere in the Middle East, the pious create hideous displays of carnage in the name of God. The greatest long term threat to humanity might well be the seemingly inevitable (though not imminent) marriage of frightening destructive weaponry with the religious convictions of someone like Osama bin Laden. I do not yet have children, but I expect to in a few years, and I worry about the world that the present generations will bequeath to them.
Here in the United States, demonizing gay people, impeding stem cell research, outlawing other people's abortions, and elbowing religion into the public square rank higher on the agenda of millions than truly important issues like global warming. As the next presidential election swings into gear, candidates are falling over each other to pander to religious ignorance and bigotry, and no one in the mainstream media will stand up to challenge the nonsense emanating from their mouths. Religion impedes the progress of nearly everything it touches. The situation that we find ourselves in would be comical if it weren't also so dangerous.
It is time to stand up, to say that we've had enough. In the coming posts, I will challenge the foundations upon which religion rests. I will focus mostly on Christianity, the largest religion in the U.S. and the one with which I am most familiar, but I will bring in other religions when I can. Moreover, my larger points will apply to all religions, and indeed the very irrationality and superstition that religion represents. I recognize that my potential impact is limited. Religion will not leave us any time soon, but if I can convince a single atheist to stand up and be counted as I am, a single self-described agnostic to get off the fence, or a single vaguely or casually religious person to critically examine the faith that he or she identifies with, it will have been worth it. I draw my inspiration from the brilliant quote from Edmund Burke at the top of my blog.
Although it should now be obvious, it is worth saying that I am not just nonreligious, I am antireligious. I believe that the path to wisdom is paved only by the shining light of truth. I am a freethinker, a skeptic, a humanist, and an atheist. And I'm proud of it.