Christianity is singled out in this particular argument. My goal is not to offend, but rather to criticize specific beliefs that most moderate and fundamentalist Christians hold about morality and the universe. I’m going to argue that Christianity is harmful, that fallacious beliefs are the basis for delusion. I don’t claim to know everything, but I do know that Christianity severely violates reason and logic.
1.) Faith Makes You Ignorant!
Some say “faith isn’t hurting anyone, so why do you care?!” That’s a really annoying question. Anyone who asks this question is ignoring the effect faith can have on much or most of your life. I don’t think that anyone can honestly say that a belief in an afterlife doesn’t effect your views about this life. Your faith is strongly considered in terms of your career, your children’s names, where you want to live, how you dress, who you will marry, what you eat, who your friends are going to be, how you spend your money, who you vote for, etc (another reason one person’s beliefs effect others).
If you identify as a Christian, it’s likely you’re somewhat serious about it, after all, you’re reading this post. I’d like to give you the benefit of the doubt, and assume that you’d care if you were wrong about Jesus’ descent into Heaven, and his having walked on water. You see, if reality itself isn’t relative, and you believe in things that aren’t real, then you’re walking around with blind spots, walking into the unknown unknown each day. Up until now, you’ve been making decisions about your future, some of those decisions are ones you’d rather not make, you’d change your entire view on subject X if only you know that Y were false/true. Understanding reality means that we can make stronger predictions about the future based on our understanding of probability. Meanwhile, faith attempts to do this, but always fails miserably (science has always been the best fortune teller).
Faith literally is, by definition, the complete opposite of, and enemy to reason and logic. One cannot deduce or induce a god into existence without making an assertion. This is an iron fact.
Religion demands that you take God at his word, never questioning his authority or judgment. Faith slows discovery, skepticism and morality, and faith makes you willfully ignorant.
2.) Faith Harms Your Health.
When someone in a religious family or circle gets sick, here are some common thoughts:
“Why is God doing this to me/us?” “What did I/we do wrong?” “How can I/we ask God for healing?” “How can I/we change God’s heart?”
Christian families will scramble to organize a fundraising, a fundraising for spiritual, rather than monetary, currency to campaign and compensate God in hopes he will lend his courteous healing services (have you ever wondered if your life would be better if you just had more people praying for you?) You shouldn’t have to pray the way you vote! Faith and prayer do nothing compared to medicine, research and other forms of sober problem solving. The more you know about an illness, the better equipped you might be at helping to prevent or beat it, because doctors don’t know everything.
Also, in terms of general health, fundamentalists, do not accept that we humans are animals, and that our knowledge of evolution shapes and models our habits and diet. Faith can harm your health.
3.) Faith Makes You A Bigot!
Religious people, especially fundamentalists, are more likely than secularists, to discriminate against homosexuals, those of other religions, other races or those of different nationalities. Faith can make you a bigot.
4.) Faith Makes You A Walking Contradiction, and You Don’t Care!
Faith forces the fundamentalist to accept some areas of biology, geology, astrophysics, history and so on, while ignoring any data which contradicts the young-Earth model. For example, we take advantage of discoveries made by Einstein, Newton and countless other scientists every day. But when it comes to the age of the Universe, fundamentalists deny select aspects of the very laws of physics that make GPS and computers work properly. Fundamentalists are in favor of the use of DNA testing in court, yet they do not believe DNA can confirm our relation to other forms of life on Earth. We know that donkeys and horses, and dogs and foxes are related because of their similar DNA, not just because we think they look alike. Darwinian evolution is a proven scientific fact. It’s just as solid as the theory of gravity (but of course, that’s not enough for Ken Ham).
(see page on Evolution)
5.) God Is Like An Abusive Spouse, And You Don’t Care!
I’ve read that God murdered over 2 million people in the Bible (Satan 10), but you continue to make excuses for him as if he can do no wrong. God claims he is all good, yet he allows stillbirth, disease, deformity, cancer and all possible forms of abuse and torture to persist unchecked. Either God abuses humanity, or he is not omnipotent, either way, you make excuses for God’s evil nature and blame it on the world’s first campers. If God is omnipotent, then he must have created evil. An omnipotent god directly negates the idea of human free will. Some Christians may even accept that God is the author of evil, yet they don’t seem to care, and continue to respect and worship this rabid dictator. God is abusive, and you don’t bat an eye.
6.) Faith Makes You Immoral!
Faith is used as the justification for honor killings, child genital mutilation, slavery, bigotry, inequality and war. It seems as though humanity would be much more moral without ancient books telling us what is right, wrong and decent.
7.) Faith Promotes 100% Certainty!
When it comes to making decisions, no motivation is more powerful than having 100% certainty. The problem is that we humans are fallible, yet many of us overestimate our own faculties to the degree that we will bet our lives on what we think is true. The less in touch with reality you are, the more likely you are to make bad decisions. If your understanding of reality is distorted in addition to you being 100% confident in your decision making, you risk your own health, well-being or even your life or the lives of others around you. Scientists base their decisions on evidence, and probability based on that evidence. They are willing to change their minds, and remain objective. We should all try to think more like scientists do.
Objectivity, testing and reasoning are our best and only available tools for determining what is true. A person can be willing to kill or die for something that they think is 100% true. But even in matters of self-defense, one should always keep and open mind, whilst also taking action, and making important decisions.
Faith promotes 100% certainty, which is utterly pernicious. The delusional see no problem with it.