• Christopher Tanner

Religion: Best Intentions, Useless Today

© Jordan Smith

I feel like religion definitely had a purpose, many years ago. Its inception was our first attempt at scientific exploration and philosophy. Before our species had the scientific knowledge to ponder such questions as why items fall to the ground? Or how does it rain? We first had the thirst for knowledge – curiosity. This is a lovely statement about the good nature of humanity and in fact most life on earth. We are a curious bunch. Ignorant of basic facts, and without any true measurements or understanding of life, we, as a species attempted to fill the gaps in our knowledge with explanations – sadly this lead to a one size fits all answer ‘God did it’

As we know from religious scripture, all 3 of the monolithic religions tried and completely failed to understand science. From the old Jewish bible which claims men come from dirt & women come from the ribs of men, to the Quran which claims the sun sets in the mud & sperm comes from the back bone & ribs (spot the copycat pattern?) To the new Testament which claims men can rise from the dead and walk on water.

Funnily enough, religious claims of astounding miracles happened often up until the invention of the camera and video camera, then suddenly, God stopped letting people walk on water or showing himself in the clouds – then Photoshop was invented, and back came the claims of divinity – along with airbrushed supermodels and images of teenagers with oddly placed beer cans in their hands. I’m not saying there is a connection between the fact miracles disappeared when humans had the opportunity to prove or disprove them … Actually I am, miracles are bullshit, the connection is clear.

There was a short time and place, when everything around us seemed fearful, imagine living in a field your whole life, feeding off of grass or live animals, only to hear the rumbles of the deep, have the ground shake before you, and off in the distance you watch the mountainside erupt with bursts of lava and deadly black smoke which blocked the sun from the sky. 20,000 years ago, I would have been so terrified, I too would assume invisible and angry forces were at play. But alas, in 2015, we know how volcanoes work, we can even measure the likelyhood of eruption as to be as safe as possible. We know men can walk on water … When it is really cold and the water turns to ice. We know how it rains, and the perfect life cycle it revolves around. All of these questions would never have been answered if we stuck to the ‘God did it’ explanation. Thankfully, we have been blessed by scientists who, of course many of them were religious (who wasn’t in the days of galilio) but all of them were human; this gave them an inner curiosity and need for real knowledge. Sure, they can say God created everything, but that doesn’t stop them examining what is around us that God created, right? This line of thought have brought about the technology I have, I sit here writing a blog on a tablet, in English, which will be available to nearly all 7 billion odd people on the planet! How fascinating!

The need to really know the truth behind natural phenomenon, has slowly eroded the need for supernatural meanings. We are now at a point where the only reason religion still exists in my opinion is because we humans fear death & find happiness in believing our loved ones are still somehow with us. Imagine only 300 years ago, when religion supposedly held the answers and moral high ground on everything from biology, cosmology, sexuality, health and lifestyle choices – now it barely holds on to such things, and only holds strong by manipulating our human weakness of fearing the unknown. It’s rather sad really.

There was a time when we would ponder the grubby, dank, grey skyline, we would look at the dreary colours and lifeless souls walking to and fro – we would wonder why? How? God must be the cause?

Now we know better, due to science we fully understand, those dreary days were created so L.S. Lowry could paint a masterpiece.

Drop the religion, you don’t need it!

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