It hurts. badly. Kills millions, scares more. It is especially hard on women all other the world, and contaminates children shamelessly from a young age. It has infected more than 3/4 of the world's population. I'm not talking about an organic disease, but about religion. This merciless plague is the love of god. Are you religious? Please read more.
If you're a non-practitionner, benevolent, actively helping or enlightened religious person, you might think there's nothing wrong in your faith.
But there is no such thing as a good religion or an enlightened religion: religion cannot be enlightened because it requires one to believe in something in the absence of light (evidence). There is no such thing as a harmless faith in god: everytime we join our hands together and pray for the intercession of a supernatural being we stone a woman to death, we support past, present and future murderous cruisades. I can run a nice, open-minded religious orphanage in France but ultimately if I teach the kids to believe in god, then I precipitate lethal weapons into the hands of other children in Palestine.
Why am I saying this? Because the idea that it is OK to believe in a supernatural being is precisely the one which drives or has driven cruisades, terrorist attacks, the public stoning of adulterous women and all kinds of violences on children. If I help propagate this idea anywhere in the world as part of my good deed I also become an accomplice in this ongoing butchery.
What can I do?
We must help religious people to get out of this illness. We must stop saying "I respect your faith", "I respect your religion" and so on. Would we respect someone's aids, perhaps the second most frightening spreading virus after religion? No, we would help this person in this terrible struggle, and it goes without saying, he or she would refrain from doing anything that could propagate the virus.
So the first thing to do is to point to the body count.
Then, secure the idea not to believe in anything without evidence.
Finally, realize that one can do good things without buying the god package.
Atheism should follow shortly !
UPDATE 13/12/09: now that is just priceless!
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