Friday, October 28, 2005

Thoughts on Religion

Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason was an attempt to limit reason in order to make room for faith. He knew evidence and argument could not sustain the people’s belief in god. As a healthy individual, I believe my confidence in reason and its ability to perceive reality accurately has led me to deny faith. I long ago identified the reason for my atheism (which is only a denial of the claims of theists) and found that it was precisely my lack of trauma or suffering that caused me to reject faith. Wishing (prayer) and unquestioning obedience to scripture or tradition are the hallmark of someone who is unable to deal with reality. Unlike many theists who worry about death, my thoughts were with life. As someone with self-esteem and self-confidence I did not find it plausible that an omnipotent being exists controlling the natural world nor did I consider morality the domain of religion. I understood that being moral did not mean doing good actions out of duty (or out of desire for salvation) but was tied to reason. Hence my pleasant and quite wonderful childhood led to my atheism. In short, I’ve always thought those with a benevolent sense of life tend to be atheists.
By contrast, many children of religious parents are brought up in an oppressive environment. It ought to be no surprise to parents of faith when they’re children do not follow down the same path; their path brought nothing but misery and depression. Hence when children are brought up around the boredom of reciting ancient fables and chanting simple hymns they’re view of life becomes grim. They’re education on the true nature of good becomes distorted. No surprises then when you hear a porn star came from a strict religious background or that Nietzsche came from a very religious family. Attempts by modern practitioners of faith (in particular evangelical Christianity) to commericalise religious belief and make religion “fun” show how desperate believers have become. While they have kept America religious, the meaning of that has become less and less. The widespread decline of religious life in America demonstrates that healthy, self-confident men do not need god, instead they find it an absurdity and an insult to our intelligence.
Related Links:

The Pillars of Unbelief — Kant
Wikipedia: Immanuel Kant


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