Sunday, 8 November 2009


To teach a child to believe in God is to teach them to believe in the irrational. It is to teach them to value attachment to an invisible, unknowable mythical being over reasoning. It teaches that belief is more important than evidence. Not learning to assess the evidence in moral questions can be deeply damaging.

Theistic religions teach that things are wrong simply because God says so. This is very different from saying that something is wrong because it is harmful. which is an intelligent way of assessing the morality of any action.

The "Because God says so" principle of morality is highly arbitrary. "Thou shalt not kill" does not prevent Christians from believing in the death penalty or going to war. Instead of being a set of laws, the commandments become conveniently re-interpreted to meet the political stance of those who preach them. How can that which is supposedly inspired by a divine being be subject to political considerations? Is is not simply a case of religious leaders using religion to booster a political agenda?

Using the claims of the Bible or other holy books oversimplifies often complex questions and in many places continues to provide a justification for the persecution of gay people or others who don't conform to a "revealed" laws. It can and does lead to direct harm towards the powerless in societies, such as women and children.

Theism, therefore hampers proper moral development and sadly in may cases leads to violent behaviour by not teaching children to ask if what they are doing is harmful and take responsibility for it. The point is that a religious approach in in many ways permissive. It give a moral justification for harmful acts. For some it is a moral reason to ignore the deep harm Humanity is doing to the planet, for many, many in history it has justified war.

Intelligent morality is not about imposed laws but about the often difficult questions of assessing the balance between rights and duties, and freedoms and limitations. More than anything it is about seeking to objectively avoid harm. That does not arise from divine decrees or religious laws but through intelligent discourse in a free society. It arises from a recognition that as humans we have a responsibility to each other and the planet.

Following an imagine deity, whose words are open to widely differing interpretation is a dangerous distraction from our needs to address the problems of the world we live in. To feed such a diet to children is deeply harmful to their moral welfare.

Friday, 6 November 2009


There is not a single, solitary, objective piece of evidence for the existence of God. When this argument is put, there are defenders of faith who argue that no truth can be objectively proved. Can't it? I content that is a truth that if you step off a tall building without a parachute or other life saving equipment the impact will be fatal. It you don't like that example try standing in front of a fast moving heavy vehicle. There is no evidence to contradict the claim that unprotected falling from high buildings and stepping in front of fast moving trucks are detrimental to the human body. That is objective evidence and shows that such a thing undeniably exists.

God, on the other hand, is an entirely subjective construct, which has no basis in objective reality. We could, of course play Descartes' little game. Briefly summarized it goes: everything that exists must have been created; everything that is created must have had a creator; everything must have had an original or first cause; that first cause cannot itself have been created; the only thing that could exist without being created is God. God Exists! It is game, set and match to Descartes.But hold on! The match was a set up! It was fixed! Let us all agree on the idea that there was a first cause. It's hard to argue against. Let us now ask what objective evidence there is to help us define the nature of that first cause.

God is usually defined as non physical, pure spirit or supreme intelligence. OK, let's see if this makes any sense. Think hard, think really hard. Can you come up with a single verifiable example of anything which processes consciousness, without having a physical existence? I know we all love ghost stories, but the question is, is there the least thread of evidence for any such consciousness?

Don't we see how consciousness and intelligence develops as the child develops physically? We may disagree on the stages at which consciousness development, but no one has yet produced objective evidence, to show that human intelligence exists outside a physical context. Yet with God we are told infinite intelligence always existed outside of the physical. This contradicts all the objective evidence we know about the existence of intelligence.

But hold on! Somebody must have made the world! Must they?

From my window I can see a number of tall old trees. I have been thinking very hard about this and d I just can't seem to remember seeing anyone sculpture the branches. Now it is true that trees can have their branches trimmed but massive forests can grow with any interference of a living intelligence.

Now I can also see a church; it is a beautiful old building. I have read records of when it was build. Isn't there an attempt, by believers, to treat the trees in the same way as the church? Their logic seems to go: Buildings need to be actively planned. There need to be intelligence for them to be constructed, therefore mustn't living things also need one? They conclude that the Universe needed an architect.

Let us return to Descartes' argument. The first cause we are told was a non physical entity. Yet we have no evidence of consciousness ever existing outside the physical. On the contrary all that has conscious is first physical. The objective evidence supports physical and not non physical explanations for the beginning of existence. Does continuing existence need the interference of an active intelligence? No. As we have seen forests need no external intelligence.

So if the arguments for creation are so weak, why is faith in God so persistent? There are plenty of people who will testify to the value of faith. This is never rational or objective. We get wonderful claims like "God helped me to pass my exam," or "God helped my team win." This is the same God who did nothing to save the millions in Nazi concentration camps, or who year after year allows countless children to die of starvation.

Oh but it is not for us the question the ways of God, with all his divine love. So when good things happen God is praised and the bad things are, either nothing to do with him, or part of a greater plan we mortals can't grasp.

These claims are self contradictory and irrational. God is good because good things happen and a comfort in times of trouble but he is also all power, so could stop bad thing , yet doesn't. What a friend he is!

God is no more than a product of the human imagination. There is not a single shred of objective, verifiable evidence to contradict this.

This imagined deity has been used to justify wars, suppress populations, and confer a status of purity onto those who abused children. This imagined being has been called on by both sides in: Northern Ireland; the long conflict in the middle east; the terrible destruction of 9/11, the Iraq war, the war on terror; the list is endless.

All these conflicts and so many, many more have been driven by these deeply irrational beliefs.

A world free from this deeply destructive irrational idea would be far from perfect. There would still be wars, but at least it would be rid of one great source of harm. We would reduce the reasons for war and there would be fewer conflicts.

It is not so many centuries since a time of witch trials, or when claims of a round earth were treated as heresy. Belief systems do advance. Sadly they often take time to catch up with the evidence. If we are to build a more peaceful world, we need to start being realistic about how destructive a belief in God can be. This will start with individuals honestly assessing the true nature of their beliefs. The idea of God simply does not make sense.

Thursday, 5 November 2009


Imagine a character who was responsible fro the murder of many many thousands of people, who approved of his followers raping women and enslaving his enemies, including children. Names like Hitler, Stalin or Pol Pot might come to mind. They are all rightly condemned by all who care about human rights and dignity. Yet the character I am addressing is not one of these but the God of the Bible.

This claim may shock you. You will rightly want to know on what basis I make these claims. The answer is simple. Everything I am claiming comes from the Bible. If you want to know the true nature of the God of the Bible read the Bible. To help you I have provided links which list. the evidence against God.


If we take the evidence provided in the Bible God is not loving but a ruthless murderer. the link below lists the verses in which God commands, calls for or endorses murder.

In the next link we see the list of verses where God condones and approves of rape.