My intention is not to spark a debate or to offend anyone with this post. I merely want to put down some (rather confused) thoughts after reading The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins.
The God Delusion is a very persuasive and compelling argument against religion, drawing from Darwin's Natural Selection and Human Biology, and has given me plenty of material to discuss with my partner and argue about!
I can't say that I have been a very religious person, but I'd like to think that there is more to life in a spiritual sense than what Dawkins is trying to prove. It comes down to the age old question - why are we here? We humans need a reason, we need something to believe in and something to hope for, otherwise what is it all for? When we lose someone we love we live in hope that they will be waiting for us 'on the other side'.......
Dawkins argument is that religion is purely a way for those in charge to control the masses, the fear that an almighty being can hear our innermost thoughts and the threat of eternal damnation was a good tool way back when, but in these enlightened times we should know better. Indeed, I am the sort of person who needs proof to believe in something; I haven't had a religious experience - so I JUST DON'T KNOW - and Dawkins can even explain away some religious experiences.
How about Jesus Christ? My opinion has always been that he was a misguided cult leader and Dawkins leans towards that direction too. The Bible must be taken within the context of the time, you can't really take it literally with what we know today. Some of the scriptures are quite appalling and include rape, violence and murder. It is a handbook for warfare, and the same could be said of The Iliad but we haven't taken that literally and built a religion around it, so why do we hold such faith in The Bible?
Religion takes up a massive amount of money, time and energy, it creates so much guilt in people to the point that some are drawn to suicide. Think of the lives that are lost in religious wars, honour killings, and martydom? Imagine how happy we could all be if there was no religion. But, would we really be that happy with nothing to believe in?
I agree with much that Dawkins says, but I still can't shake the belief that there is something out there that is bigger than what we could possibly imagine or comprehend. There is so much more that we don't know about our origins, but maybe that is my own indoctrination and Dawkins is right; but I sincerely hope not!
I wonder though, if when the end is near for Dawkins, do you think that he may actually change his mind?
Just a thought.......