1/17/2016 | Share this article: View Comments
Thought to ponder today: One of the major delusions mankind suffers from is the belief that faith is virtue.
Have you or someone you know suffered from anxiety, irrational fears, or panic attacks? Has the thought of there being an all-loving Father God watching out for humans been comforting, reassuring, and certain? Or not? Belief in such a being is among the "certainties" of faith. On the other hand, nothing is more certain than death. That's evidence for you. The strongest "certainty" of faith is the denial of this certainty through the belief in an immortal soul; without it, all the other beliefs are really irrelevant. And doesn’t faith mean you're gambling that there is such a god in the ﬁrst place? Don't you wonder, isn’t religious certainty just denying and hoping?
Christian fundamentalists will go to great lengths in protesting too much against their doubts and uncertainties. But martyrs are certain. Most believers aren't as certain as they are! Religions honor martyrs who are so certain of their faith they'll die for it, to support their claims as truth. Every religion has its martyrs, ergo, every religion is certainly true.
We live in a universe of uncertainties. Without uncertainty, religions, seers, prophets, and psychics would be out of jobs. Aware of uncertainty, we humans and even animals take every precaution to guarantee our plans will work out successfully. Every believer knows this, in spite of assertions of "In God we trust," that "Mighty Fortress" they can without doubt, rely on. They're lying to themselves.
Isn’t religious certainty just denying and hoping?Death, destruction, torture, suppression of free speech and human rights; this is what happens when men act with Absolute Certainty. It's what happens whenever religions or ideologies gain power; they feed off the very human fear of uncertainty. No father-god stops or hinders them. This invisible deity, like all the other gods, is unpredictable and arbitrary in his, in the language of insurance claims, "acts." He sends not only rain, but plagues, earthquakes, tsunamis, tornadoes, etc., on both the just and unjust. He doesn’t stop or hinder those who commit atrocities in his name. His whims predestine billions to eternal bliss or torture.
Because of the unpredictability of this god's behavior, all who believe in him must pray to and worship him, thus becoming like store owners paying protection money to keep gangsters from destroying their businesses. And in the mind of a fearful believer, won't an all-knowing god also demand blackmail payments of the one feeling guilt?
Since this god is taught to be "personally" involved with humans, believers are also taught to question their relationship with "him." In many ways, this relationship resembles that of a victim to her abuser: "Am I pleasing him? What have I done to displease him? How did I offend God for him to allow the illnesses or deaths of those I care about? Why me, why them, why now? Why is God punishing us? Why aren't I doing all I can to support those who spread his word and ﬁght against his enemies? Am I gambling on hope rather than trusting God? What's wrong with me that I can't believe? Is my deceased spouse in hell now because she didn't go to church?
In creating their "certainties," haven't religions created more anxieties, fears, doubts, delusions, and worries far beyond what are normal reactions to reality? Even animals shouldn't have to endure such stress. Do we wish anyone to pass on this tradition to our children? Isn't it morally responsible and mentally healthy to teach everyone how to handle uncertainty without dogmatic nonsense?