Chronicling the follies of religion and superstition, the virtues of skepticism, and the wonders of the real (natural) universe as revealed by science. Plus other interesting and educational stuff.
"Tell people there’s an invisible man in the sky who created the universe, and the vast majority believe you. Tell them the paint is wet, and they have to touch it to be sure."
“If people are good only because they fear punishment, and hope for reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed”.
“Skeptical scrutiny is the means, in both science and religion, by which deep thoughts can be winnowed from deep nonsense.”
The person who is certain, and who claims divine warrant for his certainty, belongs now to the infancy of our species. It may be a long farewell, but it has begun and, like all farewells, should not be protracted.
We live in a world in which 9 million children every year die before they reach the age of five; year after year after year. That’s a tsunami of the sort you remember from (Indonesia) 2004 every 10 days killing only children before the age of five. Think about these children. Think about their parents. Know that virtually all of these parents believe in God and were praying all the while that their children would be saved. And their prayers are not answered. Now the “afterlife” comes into the midst of this reality as a promise that all of this is going to make sense in the end; as if at the end of existence we’re all going to be let in on the punchline and have a mighty laugh with Almighty God for all eternity. Now, there is no evidence of that.
Therefore this concept of the afterlife really functions as a substitute for wisdom. It functions as a substitute for really absorbing our predicament, which is that everyone is going to die, there are circumstances that are just catastrophically unfair, evil sometimes wins and in justice sometimes wins, and the only justice we’re going to find in the world is the justice we make.
I think we have an ethical responsibility to absorb this down to the soles of our feet. And this notion of an afterlife, the happy talk, how it’s all going to work out and it’s all part of gods plan, is a way of shirking that responsibility.
Wouldn’t a swift death, at this very moment, be the best thing that could possibly happen to you?