- Man is a Religious Animal. He is the only Religious Animal. He is the only animal that has the True Religion - several of them. He is the only animal that loves his neighbor as himself and cuts his throat if his theology isn't straight. He has made a graveyard of the globe in trying his honest best to smooth his brother's path to happiness and heaven.
Mark Twain - Keyword(s): , Humankind , Happiness
- The moment you say that any idea system is sacred, whether it's a religious belief system or a secular ideology, the moment you declare a set of ideas to be immune from criticism, satire, derision, or contempt, freedom of thought becomes impossible.
Salman Rushdie - Keyword(s): Freedom , Ideas , Secular
- In science it often happens that scientists say, "You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken," and then they actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion.
Carl Sagan - Keyword(s): Politics , Mistakes , Science
- Geology shows that fossils are of different ages. Paleontology shows a fossil sequence, the list of species represented changes through time. Taxonomy shows biological relationships among species. Evolution is the explanation that threads it all together. Creationism is the practice of squeezing one's eyes shut and wailing "Does not!"
Anonymous - Keyword(s):
- Mammon, n.: The god of the world's leading religion.
Ambrose Bierce - Keyword(s): , Money , World , God
- No man treats a motor car as foolishly as he treats another human being. When the car will not go, he does not attribute its annoying behavior to sin, he does not say, "You are a wicked motorcar, and I shall not give you any more petrol until you go." He attempts to find out what is wrong and set it right.
Bertrand Russell - Keyword(s):
- Religion is part of the human make-up. It's also part of our cultural and intellectual history. Religion was our first attempt at literature, the texts, our first attempt at cosmology, making sense of where we are in the universe, our first attempt at health care, believing in faith healing, our first attempt at philosophy.
Christopher Hitchens - Keyword(s): , Philosophy , History , Literature
- The usefulness of religion - the fact that it gives life meaning, that it makes people feel good - is not an argument for the truth of any religious doctrine. It's not an argument that it's reasonable to believe that Jesus really was born of a virgin or that the Bible is the perfect word of the creator of the universe.
Sam Harris - Keyword(s): , Life , Truth
- A long and wicked life followed by five minutes of perfect grace gets you into Heaven. An equally long life of decent living and good works followed by one outburst of taking the name of the Lord in vain - then have a heart attack at that moment and be damned for eternity. Is that the system?
Robert Heinlein - Keyword(s):
- "I refuse to prove that I exist" says God, "for proof denies faith, and without faith, I am nothing." "Oh," says man, "but the Babel Fish is a dead give-away, isn't it? It proves You exist, and so therefore You don't. Q.E.D." "Oh, I hadn't thought of that," says God, who promptly vanishes in a puff of logic.
Douglas Adams - Keyword(s):
- There is a story, which is fairly well known, about when the missionaries came to Africa. They had the Bible and we, the natives, had the land. They said "Let us pray," and we dutifully shut our eyes. When we opened them, why, they now had the land and we had the Bible.
Desmond M. Tutu - Keyword(s):
- When a man really believes that it is necessary to do a certain thing to be happy forever, or that a certain belief is necessary to ensure eternal joy, there is in that man no spirit of concession. He divides the whole world into saints and sinners, into believers and unbelievers, into God's sheep and Devil's goats, into people who will be glorified and people who are damned.
Robert Green Ingersoll - Keyword(s):
- Instead of being born again, why not just grow up?
Anonymous - Keyword(s):
- There were honest people long before there were Christians and there are, God be praised, still honest people where there are no Christians. It could therefore easily be possible that people are Christians because true Christianity corresponds to what they would have been even if Christianity did not exist.
G.C. Lichtenberg - Keyword(s):