I’ve just been in a discussion with someone about pro-choice in relation to ethical dilemmas; ie: termination of a pregnancy or assisted dying. These subjects are of course controversial, but essential human rights, and it’s down to the individual to be certain that their choice is of a sound mind, and their decision is theirs and theirs alone. No one has the right to judge a person regarding what their decision about their body and life entails. Yet so many theists of the god worshipping variety seem to think that it’s their duty as servants of their god to condemn and project their resentment, because they believe that their creator is the only one to give or deny life, but this is so narrow minded. Humans deserve dignity and freedom of choice, and theists have no rights to judge. But take away theism that involves a god and things look considerably different.
As soon as a god appears in the picture, the importance of human life, or death gets sidelined as the focus becomes what their god demands from its followers. They claim their gods are morality givers, but as basic human rights go, most deity driven religions favour rights that are portrayed within the pages of their holy scripture, and other rights that aren’t covered are of little to no importance. Take the pro-life stance as a prime example. Only god has the right to take away life, so theists tend to be anti-abortion regardless of the situation and they place the priority of the unborn over the pregnant woman, yet as soon as the baby is born, they couldn’t care less, especially if the child grows up to be homosexual, or of no faith.
“I have three precious things which I hold fast and prize. The first is gentleness; the second is frugality; the third is humility, which keeps me from putting myself before others. Be gentle and you can be bold; be frugal and you can be liberal; avoid putting yourself before others and you can become a leader among men
Once you start to observe nontheistic religions, you notice a pattern, and that pattern is about humans caring for humans and other sentient life, and trying to lead a virtuous existence. Jainism is an ancient religion that originated in India and their main principle is ‘the function of souls is to help one another’. Another godless religion, Buddhism, is about trying to eliminate suffering, and Śīla is about expected ethical and moral behaviour that will lead a person down the path of liberation. Taoism, which is an ancient Chinese religion mainly focuses on compassion, humility and frugality that are known as the three treasures. They attempt to create an equilibrium with Tao, which is ‘the way’, and is about living in harmony with nature and energy of the universe ‘chi’.
“Religion is excellent stuff for keeping common people quiet. Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich.” – Napoleon Bonaparte
Most other religions that don’t observe a god work in a similar pattern of becoming the best person you can possibly be by following guidelines on how to lead an ethical, virtuous life, in harmony with nature. Yet, look at religions that observe gods and all of that tranquility vanishes. It’s about controlling the masses, and creating a theocratic way of life where disobeying laws can have severe consequences, especially in countries that adopt Sharia Law. Do religions really need gods if they’ve caused so many conflicts through history due to different interpretations of pretty much the same concept, just a different god?