Sunday, November 23, 2008

In his November 23, 2008 editorial "A Question of Faith" Jeff Jacoby sees the word love at the end of religious faith and death symbolically at the end of Bill Maher's film Religulous? I see the word reality and truth as the substance of the agnostic's view and I see religion, throughout the ages, responsible for much division, hate, war, and death. Yes, sure, religion has created some humanitarian thought and action. It has given the world some ethical systems too. The Romans, the Greeks, the Egyptians and other ancient civilizations, gave the world all those things as well. One does not need the monotheistic faiths or any faith for that matter to do good in the world. Man, indeed, survives better when he cooperates with his adversary no matter what his belief systems are.

Since when, historically, has religion been a force for such extreme good? In my world view religion has been has been awash in a sea of blood and implicated in an orgy of war as religious texts give a permission slip for one man to kill the other over five thousand year old text repleat with scientific impossibilities which subvert natural law. Religion, further, espouses different things to different people. If six billion people adhere to a religious text then there will be six billion different interpretations of what that text is. Organized religion is responsible, I submit, for more discord than harmony, more division than unity and more hate than love. Moreover, might I add, having seen Bill Maher's film Religulous, seen its truth, and listened to Maher for years, I never have heard him say even once that the polio vaccine was unnecessary. Having suffered from polio myself before the vaccine was available I would have paid particular attention to anyone who said that.