Do we prevent somebody being hurt by superstition or faith by rejecting and challenging those things? 

Is it mistaken to support organised religion in membership or donations?

If people do good because they are human, not because God prompts them then is it right to risk giving God any credit when they alone own their good?

Patrick H

Faith, whether in religion or otherwise, is about control

Believers mistake choosing to believe for believing.  You cannot make yourself believe something but you can make yourself think you do.  This "faith" is trying to get power over your own mind so that facts and probabilities are thwarted and you are in control.  You want to be superior to truth.  But the truth does not care about what you want.


The notion that power corrupts but absolute power corrupts absolutely is interesting. The problem with power is that it does not last. The problem with power is that you know it cannot last. Does knowing it cannot last make us cling to it even more? It often does! When that happens then thinking God can remove it any time will make us cling to it even more more more. The ultimate power is being able to live forever. This absolute power should be maximally exceptionally potent at making us corrupt. God is about eternal life and even if he were not we would want him for its sake so we would all be making him about it. Thus the doctrine leads to a dark heart. Whether you think your powerful life is for now or for ever corruption will happen. You can get the benefits of power without having power as long as you keep on the right side of God the infinite and ultimate power. That is why trying to get control passively can be as bad or worse for you than having the power directly or actively.  You then become the same as one who has power but not the stress and bother that comes with it.  It is possible that believers are in fact using prayer to get a sense of power over others and their enemies and if so they are not open about those manipulative cynical prayers.  If people turn bad over power that in fact torments and imprisons them how much worse will they be with easy power?


If God exists and all things are created by him then clearly he is responsible for all that happens.  Even the things we are responsible for are no exception for it is because of his creative power that they are able to happen.  If I am responsible for killing x then God is more responsible and my role is nothing in comparison for he is creator not me.  We all hate the feeling of responsibility that we carry.  Is the motivation behind seeking and having faith in God to remove self-doubt by giving the responsibility to him?  That is very immature and is a manipulative situation to adopt.  The self-doubt is still there but redirected.  A truly good person will deal with it head on instead of such ineffective tricks that only seem to help but do not really help.


Believers always link God and morality and good together.  That gives them an advantage.  It is a subtle way and sometimes not so subtle of stopping you from trusting your moral perception or your perception of good so that you will let God do the "perceiving" for you.  Its a polite accusation against you.  It is manipulative.  They do not trust you and they let you know it and then try to get you to feel you cannot trust yourself and so should trust God instead.  And there are as many versions of God and what he wants as there are religions.  Even if a man is right about God he is right by chance and he is still only right because of luck. It is still only the man you are taking as an authority.


Absolute power corrupts mean that if you have absolute power over your mind or anything or if you could do magic you would abuse it when you feel like it.  You feel you answer to no one for the thoughts that you have.  The risk alone is bad.   

We love that power.  Enjoying absolute power is corrupt in itself.  That is why if you become a dictator and think you can do anything you will be a dreadful ruler.  You will become dreadful quickly and easily for you already are dreadful in your inner universe.

One thing that religious leaders love to do is use the idea of a God who sees into your heart so that they can make you afraid to think what you think  you should think or think what you want to.  Without the God idea, there can be no such thing as thought crimes.

Nothing means anything to you except in so far as it involves you feeling in control. You like to feel you control even if you do not control. The feeling we are in control is everything to us. All the other things we want boil down to it. Even God. Saying the need to have a sense of control is different from the need for meaning in life is like seeing a difference between dogs and terriers.

Feeling in control is necessary to feel safe.

Feeling in control is necessary to feel human and responsible.

Feeling in control gives you a little relief if things go wrong for you - you feel you didn't have to bring disaster on yourself.

Feeling in control is so appealing that people will resort to magic and drugs and alcohol and hypnotism to get the feeling even though these things rob you of real control. You are not really free when you are drunk though you may feel you are.

People soon learn that they cannot get everything their own way.

They know that certain bad things in life are inevitable. If they get terminal incurable cancer they have to face up to it.

They fear the unknown in case there are dangers lurking in it.

People try to relieve their fear.

They irrationally tell themselves that bad things happen to other people not them. Or they act as if nothing that bad can happen to them.

They don't like the fact that many things they don't want to be true are in fact true. They want to control facts by inventing facts. That is why religion keeps going on about Adam and Eve for example though we know there were no such pair. That is why Jesus is so adored despite the fact that he tricked people into worshipping a God who commanded murder and has priests and nuns and clergy and evangelists walking in his bloodstained steps.

People don't like the thought that their choices might not be really choices and that they are programmed by nature and their past and their genetics to think they are free. They want to think they control their choices and what they do.

The person of faith who thinks that God is going to be there for her in the middle of hell on earth actually thinks that having God's support guarantees that she will somehow cope. But there are no guarantees.


The person who feels that the faith is their faith is trying to wish reality away and use belief to create an alternative reality.  Sorry faith is about belief and belief involves evidence and reason and thinking.  You cannot make yourself have faith.  All forms of faith are not equal.  Some are worse and less justifiable than others.  So there is no "my" faith.  Catholicism says that faith belongs to the Church collectively.  That is basic core Catholic doctrine.  And the faith meant is the Catholic faith with its belief in Catholic doctrines and morals.  So it is our faith not my faith.  The person who talks about "my" faith is usually a cherry-picker.


Christianity claims it wants to make you fall in love with God.  It is like somebody who cat fishes.  Falling in love brings a lot of pain with it.  Even if it did not it would still be cruel to want people to fall in love with a God who does not exist or whose believability is weak.  Falling in love often leads to hatred and jealousy and violence and Christianity takes no responsibility for that though it should. It is bad in principle and we are surprised at how much bloodletting Christianity has done!! The faith has no genuine respect for believers so how can you expect it to be a good thing for many outsiders?  The Christians have always set up us versus them situations and that is the chief ingredient of violence and war.


A system of belief that does not teach its ministers and teachers to be ready to walk away should philosophy or science or whatever prove that the system is in error and or harmful is about control.  Catholic priests for example are expected to forget any disproofs of the faith they find and carry on regardless.