By Dennis Renner
Of course the answer all depends on who you ask. With in religion itself you will find those who are completely against war and at the same time those who feel god has chosen them to do battle for his sake. There is a strange hypocrisy in religion. On one hand they preach peace, love and forgiveness and next minute they are reading scripture that tells them to kill all the people who don’t believe in their God. Stone all those who work on the Sabbath to death, murder all who are homosexual, and stone to death any teenager who is disobedient and rebellious. In one part of the Bible god teaches to love thy enemy and in another part he demands their death and the death of their children and their animals.
Particularly with in the Bible people can find scripture to fit the interpretation that they wish to apply. There is a schizophrenic message to the Bible. This is reflected in its followers. Some are fundamentalists who claim to take the bible literally and there are those who openly claim that the bible is just a collected works and must be read in the context of its positive message and not to be taken literally.
Regardless of whether it is in a church, the battlefield, a peace march, a civil rights march, or a KKK meeting there is an interpretation of scripture for all forms of Christians to preach their selected agenda. During the Civil War this was most evident as both the North, and the South were sure because of the Holy Scriptures that God was on their side. It is true that the South had powerful Biblical verses to back up their belief in slavery.
Those scriptures still exist today but very few Christians give them any merit. Thank goodness!
When we look back at the history of Christianity and the atrocities that have been committed through the dark ages, the Spanish Inquisition, the witch burnings and all the murders, tortured individuals and the genocide campaigns that were committed because of faith in the Christian God. It is a wonder that any moral or ethical person would even consider being associated with a religion with such a hideous history. It is a history where many of these atrocities were committed by Christians against Christians.
Any philosophy based in superstitious myth and the supernatural has a real problem with the principles of morals, ethics and particularly justice. With superstition and supernatural ideas anything can be twisted to fit whatever political winds are blowing. Religions never have to adhere to logic, reason, evidence, science, reality, or facts.
Faith only needs indoctrination, gullibility, fear and a certain level of ignorance to wield its power.
So does religion do more harm than good? There are those who would say look at all the charitable programs that religions fund. They will point out all the children who live in abject poverty that they are trying to help. They will point out hundreds of programs that all have a level of apostatizing and indoctrination included in their good works.
Religions main goal with all their charitable work is to add new followers to their selected philosophy; along with food a dose of brainwashing, along with lower education, a teaching of superstitions and a dose of fear. A mythical story designed to enslave your mind and keep you subservient throughout your life.
Yes religion really does more harm than good. It promotes over population by discouraging any kind of birth control. It promotes irresponsibility, teaching the poor to have more children than they can care for or feed. There by perpetuating poverty and suffering. Religion promotes myth over science, faith over common sense, and servitude to maintain its power and wealth. Religion is the ultimate con game and it is dangerous.
It has led to more wars, torture, murders, and genocides than any other cause in human history. Everyday our news media is filled with conflicts brought about because of religious superstitions.
The greatest harm that religion is attempting to commit is to invade our schools and control the minds of our youth. Religion wants to teach myth in our science classrooms. It is a battle over the control of our children and their future and whether their minds are free to learn science or a mind enslaving myth. Religion once again wants to indoctrinate our children with fear so they will be afraid to learn the truth about our natural world.
Science frees the mind of superstition and myth. Science is the destroyer of blind faith. Science is the way to medical cures, understanding life on earth, understanding our universe, and understanding how humanity will learn to live together in harmony with nature.
Let’s not let religion enslave another generation of our children. In this time of global warming, accelerated extinction, and unsustainable resource depletion, our youth will need all the education science has to offer to solve these and other problems facing humanity. This is no time to let harmful myths delude our children's minds.