Skip to main content

A simple question and a great answer

I asked…

What makes religion such a robust institution? It's baffling. I wonder how does religion manage to survive even in the face of mounting evidence that its sacred beliefs are based on blatant assumptions rather than careful observation of facts. How can people's faith in religion assume such unshakeable proportions?

The best reply I got…

It is quite literally a "no-brainer."  The capability for rational thought is a recent development.  Our ability to form beliefs is much older.  We believe things based on what we have been taught at a young age, and use our intellect to justify those beliefs.  It is very hard to change beliefs.  The brain does not like to think that it has been wrong about something.  In the face of contrary evidence, we will instinctively defend our existing beliefs more vigorously.

It takes discipline to recognize that beliefs should derive from facts. That is why the scientific method took so long to be developed, and why it is still so alien to the general public.  Until it becomes common knowledge that "common sense" is a myth, people will continue to believe irrational things on a massive scale.

and another one…

Low overhead. When what you are selling is property the existence of which has yet to be demonstrated, and you sell it on the basis of the buyer can only take possession of it after he dies, you really do not have to shell out very much
for your inventory. Every nickel that clinks in the collection plate is pure profit. With that set up, only about a third of the population has to be stupid enough to buy what you are selling in order for you to live very well indeed. Fortunately for the Elmer Gantrys of the world, closer to half of the population is stupid enough to buy, and most of the other half is too polite to say anything about holy swindles: this adds up to fat city for the priesthood.

Comments

saurabh said…
its quite baffling how much effort some ppl put just to show that they are not part of the crowd and to get some attention whatsoever!!!
Deepanjan said…
Agreed, but out of context.

Popular posts from this blog

The year that was

I'm wearing a rather striking shirt, one that makes me feel like a clown fooling around in a graveyard. Roving eyes latch on to me and make me too conscious of myself. Checkered in red, grey, black and maroon, I've excused myself into donning it and looking silly for two reasons. It's Friday and…more importantly, the last working day of the year. Tailored half-a-year back, I never had the courage to wear it, not until today. It's that time of the year when it's time to reflect on the events that transpired. Last year ended on the worst possible note. Dad had expired and I was numb with shock. The repercussions rippled halfway thought this year. Things were so abysmal initially that I had lost the will to live. Acrid in everything I did, I was immensely angered by time phlegmatically flowing through its cadence. It was as if Dad meant nothing to anybody. What right did people have to live the way they always had when Dad was no more? Why was much of the world still…

Searching for someone

I remember hearing a song by someone in a movie with Charlize Theron and Keanu Reeves as the protagonists. Charlize is a free-spirited girl who is terminally-ill while Keanu is an ambitious lawyer who is captivated by Charlize's ways. The most memorable thing about the movie, though, was the song. I tried to ferret some information about the song yesterday, and its unknown singer.


Searched for Charlize Theron via Wikipedia. Browsed through her filmography and zeroed in on Sweet November (2001), which rung a bell. I didn't remember the name of the movie and hoped this was the one.Clicked on Sweet November. The plot confirmed my doubt! This was indeed the movie I was looking for.Searched for Sweet November via Yahoo! Music. Managed to find the original motion picture soundtrack.Clicked on the link. Found the list of tracks. There were 13. Now which one was I looking for?Visited Amazon and searched for Sweet November. Gotcha! The list of tracks, however, gave no information about …