I feel the same way about Reason. Think of the millions slaughtered in the name of people thinking they have the Truth as determined by Reason - the French Revolution, communism, etc.
You should be picking up on at least some sarcasm.
When are the anti-religionists going to learn that it isn’t “organized religion” that makes humans do bad things, but that it is the innate savagery of human nature combined with the hubris of thinking they have found the one ultimate truth, whether it be rooted in the divinely inspired or the secular?
“Organized religion” is a lazy scapegoat. Organized religion follows the humanity it serves - it has been used to produce some of humanity’s greatest achievements as well as used to justify some its worst moments. The exact same could be said of the secular “worship” of Reason.[/quote]
The French Revolution didn’t happen for the sake of The One Truth. It happened because a HUGE number of people were angry, violently angry with the aristocratic state. Communism relied on the idea that, since workers controlled the means of production and therefore the entire economy was resting on them, that workers would eventually overthrow the establishment and set up a world wide communal system. The so called Communist states are hardly communist as they are not run anarchically but by a dictator or oligarchy. Communism has never been seen on a national scale, but the dictators of self-proclaimed Communist countries have done a great deal of slaughtering in the name of “improving” their economy through FORCED industrialization.
Just felt that should be clear.
I also wanted to say that I agree with some of your points. To hold up organized religion as the end-all-be-all source of ALL evil in the world is flat out insane. It ignores a great deal of societal, cultural, and economic pressures that interfere with rational thought, and is the REAL root of why people feel like blowing themselves up, or going to war, but it just doesn’t sound as sexy to say, “I’m going to go to war because I feel economically castrated and politically marginalized.” Its far more convenient to say “I’m going to kill you for my God.”
This doesn’t change the root cause of why people are fighting, it simply gives it a more universal rationalization.
In the same spirit, people feel as though any compromise they make hurts them terribly, and so EVERYONE refuses to compromise or seek solutions. This is even more pronounced when people are citing their religious beliefs as why they can not compromise, and gives people a reason to continue fighting. Its more a psychosis than a real problem of religion.
I won’t argue about whether or not rationality can be the cause for murder or war or suffering, mostly because I’m half an hour late for dinner. But I will say that rationality has led to huge advancements in medicine, politics, technology, and understanding how and why people do what they do that I feel far outweighs the benefits of religion. At least the worldly benefits.
Separation of Church and State is real, and your inability to find it in founding documents is no surprise. Oftentimes, when court decisions are made, the intent of the Constitution or one of its clauses must be anaylyzed, and the best way to do this is the look at the other writings of those who wrote the Constitution. In this case, there are wonderful records of the letters written by many of the Founding Fathers including Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, John Adams, and Benjamin Franklin among a long list of others which detail an explicit intention for the country to remain neutral regarding religious beliefs, or in other words, secular.
As if that wasn’t enough, the Treaty of Tripoli, read aloud and signed unanimously by Congress, then printed in newspapers across the new country explicitly states, “As the United States of America is not founded on Christianity…”
That essentially ended the argument for the religiosity of the USA. However, the states were not necessarily secular at inception, but became as much as the federal government took more power and super ceded the states.