What is Christianity?
We promote rational individualism, and are opposed to those who assert incoherent supernatural claims.
Was Mother Theresa driven to torture herself by her immoral actions? Did she doubt the existence of God? It seems that way.
Although perpetually cheery in public, the Teresa of the letters lived in a state of deep and abiding spiritual pain. In more than 40 communications, many of which have never before been published, she bemoans the "dryness," "darkness," "loneliness" and "torture" she is undergoing. She compares the experience to hell and at one point says it has driven her to doubt the existence of heaven and even of God. She is acutely aware of the discrepancy between her inner state and her public demeanor. "The smile," she writes, is "a mask" or "a cloak that covers everything." Similarly, she wonders whether she is engaged in verbal deception. "I spoke as if my very heart was in love with God — tender, personal love," she remarks to an adviser. "If you were [there], you would have said, 'What hypocrisy.'"
CBS News repeats the same hoary chestnuts.
But Stephen Prothero, who chairs the religious studies department at Boston University, says that atheists miss the fact that religion, while being a source of some terrible evil, is also the greatest force for good.
"And so, if you're gonna criticize — you know, religious people for the Inquisition, then you need to praise them for the civil rights movement," he said. "You need to praise them for getting rid of slavery in the United States, which they did. You can't sort of have it both ways. And similarly, if you're going to praise atheists for these things, you need to criticize the Stalinists. I mean, some of the most murderous regimes that we've had in the 20th century were atheistic regimes."
Don't worry Christians... Richard Dawkins has plenty of rational skepticism to go around.
Remember my Bible Challenge? I challenged Christians to find one good moral passage from the Bible. Zachary won with a passage from Ecclesiastes, and I just found another one:
My son, do not lose sight of these— keep sound wisdom and discretion,
and they will be life for your soul and adornment for your neck.
Then you will walk on your way securely, and your foot will not stumble.
If you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.
Salt Lake City is a beautiful town, with pleasant weather and friendly people. The Mormon religion seems to work out pretty well for heterosexuals (especially men, and even more especially back in the days of Joseph Smith's pro-polygamy teachings), but when it comes to dealing with homosexuals, they're just as bad as the average orthodox Christian institution.