There seems to be a sort of atheist movement that is not only motivated or characterized by their lack of a belief in God/s, but also by a firm belief that religion is bad. And that religious people are being fooled. That belief in God is symptomatic of some kind of psychological weakness or personal void. These people seem to believe that they are above that, or at the very least that they are seeing clearly through some kind of trap that so many of their fellow humans have fallen victim to. Many of them view believers with a kind of pity, often accompanied by a slow head shake, reminiscent of that sort of pity that a believer might express implicitly when telling an atheist, upon learning of their failure to see the light, that they’ll “pray for” them.
And these anti-religion atheists will often site the many atrocities through out human existence that can in many ways be attributed to religion, or to religious influences. There is no doubt that way too many people, in the name of religion, have done way too many terrible things. There’s no sane argument for genocide, whether the perpetrators believe God is on their side or not. But to say that religion is inherently bad because of those atrocities, a compelling argument though it may be, is misguided and flawed in its logic. Would the people who make such claims similarly argue that science is evil, because many atrocities (even many of the same ones) were made possible by science? Where do guns, chemical and biological weapons and atomic bombs come from? Either they were put here by a cruel but powerful God (a premise I suppose these atheists would reject) or they were man made, through innovations in science and technology. Is science evil? Is it less evil than religion?
Continue this discussion with me in Part 2, if you’re up for it.