posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 02:54 PM
Here's a short essay I wrote earlier today...after being unable to sleep, of course. I left out a number of important issues, but it was intended to
be a very brief summary of my beliefs and the beliefs of many other atheists I know, and even some agnostics. It's called Organized Religion in
America & The Belief in God.
Organized religion in America is among the most profitable of businesses. Yes, it’s true: despite its image as a savior of people young and old, a
safe house for the downtrodden and the underprivileged and one of the more important stops on the road to the redemption of the fabled soul, organized
religion is on par with groups as esteemed as the most powerful of organized crime families and the largest of morally bankrupt, money-laundering
multinational corporations that are more willing to leave hard working employees in the unemployment line than to conduct their business in a lawful
fashion. In 2005, the Vatican, even after paying 8.9 million dollars of extraordinary expenses related to the death of Pope John Paul II and the
election of Pope Benedict XVI, admitted to a surplus of more than 12 million dollars--all of it tax-free. To make matters worse, the American
government officially sanctions this through the Internal Revenue Service (Section 501(c)(3)), primarily by allowing any group that declares itself a
religion and files the necessary paperwork to avoid taxation--provided they do not engage in “political or legislative activity.” What this
carefully worded legal jargon does not acknowledge, however, is that religion is, in itself, a political activity.
You see, God is a fairy tale for adults--an imaginary friend, if you will. Mankind, in general, is so frightened of death and the uncertainties of
life that it only makes sense for a large majority of people to turn to an all-knowing, all-seeing, all-controlling entity in a desperate attempt to
find the answers to unanswerable questions and to provide themselves with a bit of a cosmic security blanket. What these people fail to realize,
however, is that, in the process of surrendering to an ideal, they’re being dishonest to themselves and everyone they associate with--in a sense,
betraying themselves and their own sense of humanity. The religious are so uncertain of the ability of their fellow man to govern themselves, to seek
social advancement, to work with their best interests in mind, that attributing everything--the negative and the positive, the known and the
unknown--to an unseen force seems logical and, indeed, plausible. The non-believer--the “infidel,” if you will--trusts in his own abilities, his
own strengths and flaws and embraces the natural state of mind: one of godlessness and, ultimately and unavoidably, emotional sincerity. Despite the
fact that all of us are born an atheist and only altered when a religious belief is thrust upon us or embraced over time, non-believers are thought of
as the outcasts of society while the religious are supported unconditionally. This is, of course, an issue that is not restricted to our country or
our specific time in history, though widely held religious beliefs have seemingly changed quite dramatically throughout the ages.