Lucas van Valckenborch, Tower of Babel, 1594.

Against religion

The case for faith

On September 12, 2001, the following paragraph appeared in the British newspaper the Guardian:

[Heretofore] many of us saw religion as harmless nonsense. Beliefs might lack supporting evidence but, we thought, if people needed a crutch for consolation, where's the harm? September 11th changed all that. Revealed faith is not harmless nonsense, it can be lethally dangerous nonsense. Dangerous because it gives people unshakable confidence in their own righteousness. Dangerous because it gives them false courage to kill themselves, which automatically removes normal barriers to killing others. Dangerous because it teaches enmity to others [who are] labelled only by a difference of inherited tradition. And dangerous because we have all bought into a weird respect, which uniquely protects religion from normal criticism. Let's now stop being so damned respectful.

 

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