Six Arguments Against Religion VI: The Illusion of Truth

This is the final post in the series of six arguments against religion, and it is subtle and very counterintuitive to most people. I’m going to use a couple of analogies to introduce it, which I hope will help me explain it.

Six Arguments Against Religion V: Regulating Virtue and Selling Salvation

When people lose their sense of awe, they turn to organized religion. When they no longer trust themselves, they turn to authority. — Tao Te Ching 72 (Stephen Mitchell’s modern Zen-influenced translation) God’s Cops Like any laws, the rules of religion tell you how to behave, and specify punishment for lawbreakers. Sir, we caught you…

Six Arguments Against Religion IV: We’re Not Like Those ‘People’

Suppose you belong to a religion that says you’re either in or you’re out — like (to pick an example at random on Easter Sunday) Christianity. Suppose you believe that if you don’t accept Jesus as your Personal Savior (TM), you’re going to hell. And you’ve got your badge, so you’re all set. And then…

Six Arguments Against Religion III: Think For Yourself

The Master is content to serve as an example, not impose her will. Sharp but not cutting, pointed but not piercing, straightforward but flexible, brilliant but not blinding. Tao Te Ching 58 In the previous two parts of this series, I’ve tackled two arguments against religion — that it gives a poor return on investment,…

Six Arguments Against Religion II: Hypocrisy

Last week, I laid out the first of six arguments about religion — arguments that I have found interesting and worth exploring in depth. The first argument was that if you chose the wrong religion, you’d waste years of your life. The second argument is that religious beliefs are frequently inconsistent. Christianity, for example, has…

Six Arguments Against Religion I: A Poor Return on Investment

After my “Evil Christianity” post a few weeks back, I’ve continued to think about issues of religion and belief. While my own ideas haven’t changed much, I’ve had the opportunity to discuss matters online and offline with a number of friends, both pro- and anti-religion. These six arguments against religion are ones I’ve personally found…