April 28th, 2013
06:00 AM ET
When religious beliefs become evil: 4 signs
By John Blake, CNN
(CNN) - An angry outburst at a mosque. The posting of a suspicious YouTube video. A friendship with a shadowy imam.
Those were just some of the signs that Tamerlan Tsarnaev, accused of masterminding the Boston Marathon bombings, had adopted a virulent strain of Islam that led to the deaths of four people and injury of more than 260.
But how else can you tell that someone’s religious beliefs have crossed the line? The answer may not be as simple you think, according to scholars who study all brands of religious extremism. The line between good and evil religion is thin, they say, and it’s easy to make self-righteous assumptions.
“When it’s something we like, we say it’s commitment to an idea; when it’s something we don’t like, we say it’s blind obedience,” said Douglas Jacobsen, a theology professor at Messiah College in Pennsylvania.
Yet there are ways to tell that a person’s faith has drifted into fanaticism if you know what to look and listen for, say scholars who have studied some of history’s most horrific cases of religious violence.
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“There are a lot of warning signs all around us, but we usually learn about them after a Jim Jones or a David Koresh,” said Charles Kimball, author of “When Religion Becomes Evil.”
Here are four warning signs:
1. I know the truth, and you don’t.
On the morning of July 29, 1994, the Rev. Paul Hill walked up to John Britton outside an abortion clinic in Pensacola, Florida, and shot the doctor to death. Hill was part of a Christian extremist group called the Army of God, which taught that abortion was legalized murder.
Hill’s actions were motivated by a claim that virtually all religions espouse: We have the truth that others lack.
Those claims can turn deadly when they become absolute and there is no room for interpretation, Kimball says.
“Absolute claims can quickly move into a justification of violence against someone who rejects that claim,” Kimball said. “It’s often a short step.”
Healthy religions acknowledge that sincere people can disagree about even basic truths, Kimball says.
The history of religion is filled with examples of truths that were once considered beyond questioning but are no longer accepted by all followers: inerrancy of sacred scripture, for example, or the subjugation of women and sanctioning of slavery.
If someone like Hall believes that they know God’s truth and they cannot be wrong, watch out, Kimball says.
“Authentic religious truth claims are never as inflexible as zealous adherents insist,” he writes in “When Religion Becomes Evil.”
Yet there’s a flip side to warnings about claiming absolute truth: Much of religion couldn’t exist without them, scholars say.
Many of history’s greatest religious figures – Moses, Jesus, the Prophet Mohammed – all believed that they had discovered some truth, scholars say.
Ordinary people inflamed with a sense of self-righteousness have made the same claim and done good throughout history, says Carl Raschke, a theology professor at the University of Denver in Colorado.
The Protestant Reformation was sparked by an angry German monk who thought he had the truth, Raschke says.
“Martin Luther’s disgust at the worldliness of the papacy in the early 1500s inspired him to become a radical revolutionary whose ideas overturned the entire political structure in Europe,” Raschke said.
So how do you tell the difference between the healthy claims of absolute truth and the deadly? Scholars say to look at the results: When people start hurting others in the name of their religious truth, they’ve crossed the line.
2. Beware the charismatic leader.
It was one of the deadliest terrorist attacks in Japanese history. In March 1995, a religious sect called Aum Shinrikyo released a deadly nerve gas in a Tokyo subway station, leaving 12 people dead and 5,000 injured.
Two months later, Japanese police found Shoko Asahara, the sect’s founder, hiding in a room filled with cash and gold bars. Kimball, who tells the story of the sect in “When Religion Becomes Evil,” says Asahara had poisoned the minds of his followers years before.
Asahara demanded unquestioned devotion from members of his sect and isolated followers in communities where they were told that they no longer needed to think for themselves, Kimball says.
Any religion that limits the intellectual freedom of its followers, he says, has become dangerous. “When you start to get individuals who are the sole interpreters of truth, you get people who follow them blindly."
Charismatic leaders, though, often don’t start off being cruel. Jim Jones, who led the mass suicide of his followers in South America, was a gifted speaker who built an interracial church in San Francisco that did much good in the community. Few people at the beginning of his ministry could predict what he would become.
As time went on, though, his charisma turned cruel as he tolerated no questions to his authority and became delusional.
“Charismatic leadership is important, but in healthy religions, there’s always a process where questions are encouraged,” Kimball said.
Weaning followers away from corrupt charismatic leaders and bad religion can take years, but it can be done if one knows how to speak their language, says Ed Husain, senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York.
Countries such as Saudi Arabia and Egypt will often deploy imams to reach out to young men in prison who have adopted “Islamism,” or extreme forms of Islam sanctioning violence against civilians, says Husain, who has written about Muslim extremism.
These Muslim clerics know the Quran better than the extremists and can use their knowledge to reach extremists in a place that logic and outsiders cannot penetrate, Husain said.
“The antidote to extremism is religion itself,” Husain said. “The problem is not to take Islam out of the debate but to use Islam to counter Islamism.”
3. The end is near.
In 1970, an unknown pastor from Texas wrote a book called “The Late, Great Planet Earth.” The book, which linked biblical prophecy with political events like Israel’s victory in the 1967 Six-Day War, predicted the imminent return of an antichrist and the end of the world.
Author Hal Lindsey’s book has sold an estimated 15 million copies and spawned a genre of books like the “Left Behind” series. Many people are fascinated by the idea that the heavens will open soon because the end is near.
That end-times theology can turn lethal, though, when a follower decides that he or she will speed up that end-time by conducting some dramatic or violent act, says John Alverson, chairman of the theology department at Carlow University in Pittsburgh.
“A religious terrorist mistakenly believes that God has ordained or called him or her to establish the will of God on Earth now, not gradually and not according to the slow and finicky free will of other humans,” Alverson said.
Yet this impulse to see God’s intervention in human affairs now and not in some distant future can also be good, he says.
There are vibrant religious communities that teach that political and economic injustice must be addressed now. Liberation theology, for example, was a movement among pastors and theologians in Latin America that called for justice for the poor now, not in some future apocalyptic event, Alverson says.
“Hope is a good breakfast but not much of a supper,” Alverson said. “We can’t just live on the hope that justice will happen; we have to actually experience justice from time to time so that our hope can continue.”
4. The end justifies the means.
It was one of the biggest scandals the Roman Catholic Church ever faced, and the repercussions are still being felt today.
In January 2002, the Boston Globe published a story about Father John Geoghan, a priest who had been moved around various parishes after Catholic leaders learned that he had abused children. It was later revealed that Catholic officials had quietly paid at least $10 million to settle lawsuits against Geoghan.
Kimball says the Catholic scandal revealed another sign that a faith has turned toxic: Religious figures start justifying doing something wrong for a higher good.
“The common theme was trying to protect the integrity of the church,” Kimball said of some Catholic leaders who covered up the crimes. “You get all of these rationalizations that we can’t let this scandal bring the whole church down, so we have to pay off this family and send the priests off to rehab.”
Religion is supposed to be a force for good. Still, it’s common that everyone from suicide bombers to venal church figures finds ways to justify their behavior in the name of some higher good.
Those rationalizations are so pervasive that religious movements that avoid them stand out, scholars say.
Jacobsen, the theology professor from Messiah College, cited the civil rights movement. The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and his fellow activists renounced violence, even as they were attacked and sometimes murdered.
“They were willing to lay down their lives for what they believed in, but what’s incredible is, they practiced not retaliating when they suffered violence,” he said. “Those people really believed that God created everyone equal, and they were committed to the point of death.”
In some ways, it’s easy to say we would never adopt a form of religion that’s evil. But when we use the word “evil” to describe those who kill in the name of their faith, we’re already mimicking what we condemn, Jacobsen says.
In his new book, “No Longer Invisible: Religion in University Education,” Jacobson writes that calling a religion evil is dangerous because “bad or wrong actions can be corrected, but typically evil needs to be destroyed.”
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“To label someone or something as evil is to demonize it, putting it in a category of otherness where the rules of normal life do not apply, where the end often justifies almost any means,” Jacobson writes.
And when we do that, we don’t have to read about radical imams or look at angry YouTube videos to see how easy it is for someone to drift toward religious extremism, he says.
We need only look at ourselves.
About this blog
The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.
@Skorpio it is very normal.. when people blame others .. because they can't blame their ownself. For example, what ever you believe in .. you don't see or you don't want to talk about if any wrong doing.. you only see what others do wrong..
So the one you believe in is always perfect.. YOU NEVER DONE ANYTHING IN YOUR LIFE ...???? YOU ONLY SEE OTHERS ..
There is a reply button, Skippy.
"You can safely assume you’ve created God in your own image when it turns out God hates all the same people you do" -Anne Lamott
When the board is wiped a reply becomes a comment!
NT has summed up the position of most Christians quite nicely. Selfish. To the point of extremism.
The board hasn't been wiped, you hysteric.
What about NT stating this for all religious extremes. Yes some Atheist swear Reason is on their side. They are rational thinkers. That is DPRK propaganda !
Atheist, me?, you are such a joke.
What BS.,.,the Branch Davidians did not clash with anyone for Christ sakes.You are talking apple and oranges here. Islam declared war against the US.
The branch Davidians, by not abiding by US law, in a way did declare war on the US, forcing the US to respond.
They did not abide by law because of their faith.
David Koresh was a ped0phile. He had $ex with many of the under age girls in the group. He also justified this by his faith.
It's not fair to blame a "true" Religion for what its followers do. I could blame a whole race of people did for forcing Africans to come here as slaves, or the religious leaders and Founding Fathers of this country for turning a blind eye to the atrocities of that practice. Islam did not declare war on the U.S., nor did Christianity condone the evils of slavery. To use a metaphor from the New Testament, you can't get fresh wine from an old wineskin. Thus, the Religion must take on a new hue and form to meet the needs of the society for a given Age. Therefore, we have what is known as Progressive Revelation.
Like I said....apple and oranges
The Branch Davidians did clash with the ATF in Waco.
Also, when exactly did "Islam" declare war on the US?
Putting the incident at Waco in the same league as Muslim terrorism – if that's the subtle message – is erroneous, at best. The Branch Davidians, whether I agree with their philosophies or not, did not go out and attack or take the life of anyone, and nor did they infringe on anyone else's life. Koresh's group did not attack anyone; they were attacked themselves by an out of control FBI. And they were burned alive and murdered in the process. That stain will remain on the FBI forever. And the FBI, for all its "good," is one step from being a jack boot organization... right out of George Orwell and right along with Homeland Security.
Read more about what led up to the governments response.
David Koresh liked having $ex with underage girls as part of his form of "faith". They were hurting people.
I guess Jim Jones' group wasn't hurting anyone either?
I'll be my post is promptly erased.
The CNN 2013 "Crimes of the Century" about the 1993 Waco Tragedy is an obvious propaganda piece. Even those with little knowledge or interest in the tragedy can recognize the obvious evidence. There is minimal testimony, especially related to any important disputed evidence or fact, while fed with ATF and FBI present their description of what happened and who is to blame. These federal agents were actually there participating in the assaults by planning or authorizing them.
The program starts by characterizing Koresh as "crazy" and then falsely stating that an arrest warrant was delivered to Koresh before the ATF assault. I believe no evidence exists that a warrant was delivered or was even taken by an agent in order to be able to deliver it.
CNN has already been exposed as an organ of propaganda, which is a extremely unfortunate aspect of our changing American society.
Austin & Sun City, TX
Corrections: I meant "I'll bet . . . ."
. . . minimal evidence or facts presented by non-biased sources instead of by federal officials who . . . .
Correction: I meant "I'll bet . . . ."
Correction: . . . minimal evidence or facts by non-biased sources instead of by federal officials who . . . .
Morality is doing what's right no matter what you're told...
Religion is doing what you're told no matter what's right.
And that sort of religion includes Atheism. You are category 1.
"And that sort of religion includes atheism..."
Impossible... Atheism is specifically a LACK of religion.
As an atheist, no code or doctrine tells me how to behave or what is wrong; thus, your a.s.sertion is found stupid.
Atheism is a religion like bald is a hair color.
Blaise Pascal put it nicely: "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction."
Pascal never saw capitalism.
What John completely misses is only the most important history lesson of all time. Religion becomes evil when the sword of the state is confused with the sword of the spirit. The Inquisition is the primary case in point. The Catholic Church gained political power and confused the mission of the church with the mission of the state. The result was a bloody persecution of non-catholic groups and later Protestants. The great thing about Christianity is that it had a mission from the very beginning against we can measure such deviations of objective. the Muslim faith however includes in its mission political domination and that is a dangerous combination. Liberals usually fail to recognize this because they fully agree with using political power to further their agenda. The miss the fact that its not religion its the power of the state that is the most abusive force of all time. And so, they wrongly assume that all that Muslim's need do is renounce their allegiance to terrorism. What about their record of civil rights abuses to non-Muslims, their religious intolerance, forcing religious practices on people through Sharia Law? John misses this because he is a liberal and is addicted himself to accelerating the power of the state no matter what form it takes. The same is true for the religion of secularism. When political power is used to further the secular beliefs of atheism and materialism it results in bigotry against religion that is thinly veiled in this article.
Troglodytes Entertaining All is a troll.
Nope, not a troll... Just someone who speaks a little too much truth for the religious nut jobs...
Oh, fuck off. You just made this political yourself, you asshole. You want a theocracy? Move to Iran.
being secular is not religious.
" the sword of the spirit"
Which spirit? How about Xena. Or maybe a good Scotch?
That's it! Double dot and Tom Tom are evil twins!
Not even close.
Well said. I like another view and your thoughts are on point! Kudos!
atheist like stalin, mao, plo pot killed more in the name of atheism than any religon.
The difference is that they committed atrocities because they had too much power... Religious zealots murder people in the name of religion.
As did the scientific creation of the H bomb . So why do we as humans use science to kill?
McVeigh killed many and he was Christian, but he didn't kill in the name of Christianity, he killed as a political statement. The people you list killed in the name of consolidating power, not in the name of atheism.
Wicked people will look for approval for their actions. The problem is people. You could either get serious about the true root of the problem, or continue to prioritize the defense of your beliefs.
Yep and he used science to do it!
"Atheism means only one thing, one doesn't believe in a god or gods, nothing more. Ideologies of any stripe taken to extremes get people killed."
What is your point? So what if a killer uses a scientific principle to fashion a weapon? The fault doesn't lie with science but with the person who chooses to murder.
Blaming science for atrocities is ridiculous.
One time a guy at my house got upset another guy and shoved a bicycle at his shins. When that happened, I did not blame sprockets, chains, and tubed aluminum.
Tom that is the point I was wondering if someone would conclude, thank you for making that point
If science brings about a perfect conclusion to knowledge, then why can't it save us from killing each other?
So you guys are concluding that science isn't flawed – we are? Didn't we create science to try to solve this dilemma?
In Al Gore's new book he says we are the arbiters of our own evolution, so why can't we fix this?
" crickets" so know has an answer? It is easier to just snipe at one another here than to face the fact that we are killing each other and we can't stop it
Correction, no one not know, would hate to have Tom get frustrated with a typo
Science is a tool, not an ideology. Do you blame the hammer for building a leaky roof?
Why would you think that science is going to "fix" people? People are flawed. Science is, as Richard said, a tool. Flawed people will use it for their purposes.
Oops–MEII said it, not Richard.
I believe, as many others do, that one of the biggest problems in this country is not speaking about Islamic radicalism. When we feel it's politically incorrect to question the actions of a person's religion who continue to perpetuate heinous crimes against others then I submit to you, we are no better than they. It's high time to question that religion and its true motives!
Change "that religion" with "all religion" and you may be on to something.
I declare this National Pway For a Bwain Day for the A&A's.
pound sand simpleton
I love how this author tells me what to look for in evil. Seems to me this guy doesn't know what he is talking about. There are right ways and wrong ways and frankly I am sick of the progressive left shoving their crap down my throat and calling me evil when they are the problem. So sick of CNN pretending to be a news network when all they do is stereotype Christians.
Do you believe the bible is the word of god?? Then you're fanatical, delusional and brainwashed... Period.
I'm asuming you are being sarcastic, but remove the sarcasm in your statement, and you have just made one heck of a point. Your bible is man made baloney.
Troglodytes Entertaining All is a troll and if you read his other comments very ignorant. Yes I believe in God. If you were to die tomorrow where do you think you would go Troglodytes Entertaining All? I feel sorry for lost souls like you. God have mercy on you.
Trog, sorry. I see you were not being sarcastic.
IT, it is YOU who will pay for all eternity if you don't bow down to His Noodliness, the Flying Spaghetti Monster. You will burrrrrrrrrn foreverrrrrrrrr!!! Seem silly? Yes? It is no less silly than your comment.
Fanatical atheism: Posting videos on youtube mocking al the crazy religious zealots.
As a species, humans clearly have a fanatical wing. Some fanatics use ridicule, some use violence. I don't like either but prefer ridicule to violence.
So a fanatical athies uses ridcule, while a fanatical religious follower uses violence? A moderate athiest simply does nothing, while a moderate religious follower condems nonfollowers to an eternal death and torture. I do not see those as two sides of the same coin. Seems to me like there would be a lot less violence without the religious coin.
"Yet there’s a flip side to warnings about claiming absolute truth: Much of religion couldn’t exist without them, scholars say."
That is the problem with most traditional religions. They are founded on the lunatic fringe leaving no room for discussion and advancement. The comments on this blog prove it daily.
How typical of CNN!! Pick on the Christians and don't you dare say a word about the Muslims!!!
How typical of a Christian!! Deflect truthful criticism to another religious sect.
You are right JC and that other guy is a troll. He trashes anyone who defends God or a belief in him.
What are you talking about JC? CNN heavily criticizs (and sensationalizes) Islam all the time, as does this whole society of ours here in the U.S., whereas, our society ie inundated with pro Christian beliefs, and openly dismisses other faiths and beliefs that are not traditional Christian Baptist. Face reality JC, it is your ilk, Baptist Christians, that are far removed from any real oppression in this country, instead, encouraging and facilitating the debasing of other faiths not akin along Christian theology and fanaticism.
Clearly religion can and has produced evil on a deplorable level. So as not to sacrifice truth on the altar of emotion it should be noted that typically those most reprehensible are in fact ignoring the basic tenets of their purported faith. That said for those that feel that the answer lies simply in abolishing all religion, their shortsighted vision smacks of ignorance and bias. You have only to reflect on the deplorable conditions and utter hopelessness along with the murder of tens of millions of lives that nations officially atheistic produced to grasp the simple undeniable truth: the vacuum created without god sucks.
Words & ideas ARE fun & entertaining !
From my view, Atheism is as much a religion as Theism (ANY brand) is, for BOTH depend upon FAITH in the NON-knowable to secure their ideas : Neither can even come close to prove their case !
The fence-sitters, the Agnostics, have the high ground here !
That SOME agency created us is ALL we can know for sure - even the absolute "tangibility" of THAT is really not so clear, is it ? ? . .("Electrons" whirling about "protons" : Indeed ! : Just what does THAT mean ? ? ).
Fail. Atheism does not utilize faith in any way, moron. If you think it does, please explain what an atheist uses faith for.
Atheistic governments? Perhaps you are thinking of Communist governments, or Marxist, or Stalinist, or Maoist govenerments, since those are the philosopies by which those countries were run.
So claiming the end is near is a sign of religious extremism? That explains why the global warming crowd is so zealous, it's become their religion.
Except that the 'global warming crowd' doesn't claim the end is near, only the delusional Christians do...
The major difference is that the "global warming crowd" would like to see steps taken to avoid their Armageddon. The "Relious Crowd" seem all too eager to bring their Armageddon on.
I enjoyed this article and can see exactly what the author was talking about while reading the comments. It seems some people are expressing defense of their beliefs and are blaming others for problems that they themselves are guilty of. To insist "I am right, I know the truth because the Bible says so" is one of the 4 reasons listed. I'd say some of these comments are proof positive that the author is right in his opinions.
"....proof positive ...." Got tired of proof negative?
A church that was burnt down with its congregation inside while under siege with automatic weapons fire by Clinton is a poor example. Weren't NAZIS supposed to do stuff like that?
The author is confusing religion with truth. There are many religions, but only one truth. Biblical Christianity claims that there IS only one truth, and only one way to the Father and it is through the Lord Jesus Christ. Christian RELIGION has taken that to mean we are called to make people believe, where as the Bible says people must come to believe. Lets not confuse the truth that people must come to saving faith in Jesus Christ with supposed Christians who believe they are empowered to MAKE people believe. Read the Bible and stop listening to MAN. That's the only way to peace.
you just qualified in category 1 of the above article. Too funny.
Sounds like you know the truth and I don't.
I'm sorry, "Hugh Wahl", but "the Father" and "Lord Jesus Christ" are elements of mythology, therefore your assertions are unfounded.
Said the exact same way by 10,000 different religion worshipers in the exact same way with the exact same complete and total belief that they are right and the others are wrong, will done lol.
"Top Eleven Signs You're a Christian:"
11- You believe in a book (New Testament) that was written 80 years after your Messiah died by men who never met him and who believed the earth was flat and the Sun revolved around the Earth, but continuously deny modern science books.
10 – You vigorously deny the existence of thousands of gods claimed by other religions, but feel outraged when someone denies the existence of yours.
9 – You feel insulted and "dehumanized" when scientists say that people evolved from other life forms, but you have no problem with the Biblical claim that we were created from dirt.
8 – You laugh at polytheists, but you have no problem believing in a Triune God.
7 – Your face turns purple when you hear of the "atrocities" attributed to Allah, but you don't even flinch when hearing about how God/Jehovah slaughtered all the babies of Egypt in "Exodus" and ordered the elimination of entire ethnic groups in "Joshua" including women, children, and trees!
6 – You laugh at Hindu beliefs that deify humans, and Greek claims about gods sleeping with women, but you have no problem believing that the Holy Spirit impregnated Mary, who then gave birth to a man-god who got killed, came back to life and then ascended into the sky.
5 – You are willing to spend your life looking for little loopholes in the scientifically established age of Earth (few billion years), but you find nothing wrong with believing dates recorded by Bronze Age tribesmen sitting in their tents and guessing that Earth is a few generations old.
4 – You believe that the entire population of this planet with the exception of those who share your beliefs – though excluding those in all rival sects – will spend Eternity in an infinite Hell of Suffering. And yet consider your religion the most "tolerant" and "loving."
3 – While modern science, history, geology, biology, and physics have failed to convince you otherwise, some idiot rolling around on the floor speaking in "tongues" may be all the evidence you need to "prove" Christianity.
2 – You define 0.01% as a "high success rate" when it comes to answered prayers. You consider that to be evidence that prayer works. And you think that the remaining 99.99% FAILURE was simply the will of God.
1 – You actually know a lot less than many atheists and agnostics do about the Bible, Christianity, and church history – but still call yourself a Christian.
There is zero truth to either testament. There was never a historical Jesus. His disciples never met him. The Romans never crucified him. There was never a historical Israel. King David never existed. Moses was a reinterpretation of the pharoah. And most importantly of all, the bible had to be rewritten to exalt a single god because it originally featured a pantheon similar to the greeks.
Yet Tom n co behave like Jehovah Witnesses here!
What is that American proverb?
If it talks like one, looks like one and moves like one...
Of course it is one!
Well Mr. Wahl,
As usual, your comment comes accompanied by an army of armchair intellectuals specializing in the trivial pursuits of T-shirt philosophies. hal 9001 and Starman have done nothing more than beg the question. The blog by Sandlalista is especially funny with 11 reasons why anyone is a Christian. Shows he/she knows absolutely zero about Christianity or religion. 11 statements that beg more questions than available answers. And of course, Seyedibar makes a whole paragraph of "truth claims," he/she bears the burden to prove are true.
Of course you and I know this article is misleading. You could apply these 4 principles to anyone including the godless atheism of Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, Mao Zedong, and further to Genghis Khan, Louis XIV, Napoleon etc. It is intellectually simple to assume that religion is the root of all evil; religion killed Christ after all. Religion does not presuppose the goodness or bad of anyone, but can provide an effective cloak for a personal agenda of hate and evil to be used for or against just like many other world views. Interesting.
You can't believe in free will if you believe God gave it to you???
I knew most Atheists are plain dumb!
AM, when you learn to make a coherent argument, alert the media. As it is, your posts are simply laughable.
I don't give a sh!t what anyone believes. I have nothing against those who believe in god as long as they don't attempt to force their beliefs into law or tell me how to live my life.
How would anyone proselytize for atheism, you dolt? Do you think there's a weekly service or something?
Get a clue. The only reason you spew such crap is because you're mad when anyone points out the idiocy of your claims and lousy writing you do to make them.
Seeing that Tom Tom seems to produce the reactions which her stupid actions deserve....
When someone as dumb as you are dislikes me, I know I'm on the right track.
The problem is religion itself. Its all based on blind faith, otherwise it doesn't work. You have to believe in a God that you can't see, hear or feel and believe some pieces of scrolls that were written in a primitive ancient time. As the article states religion must keep changing, changed by ordinary humans to conform to the modern world. Then what's the point of believing the original scriptures? Its all fake and if we didn't have religion it would be one less reason to kill each other.
Personally I think people are the problem, religion just exacerbates and encourages destructive acts. After all, religion didn't invent itself.
Despite religious beliefs, you can't underscore the fact that most if not all of these tragedies were planned and executes by the FBI.... which, pretty much nullifies the attempt of this article.
What people like you don't understand is that religious extremism and terroristic tendencies are what made the FBI get involved in the first place. Quit glorifying Koresh! Read some of what the people who left his cult before Waco had to say. The man was a degenerate, and you're holding him up as some paragon of virtue? Pugleeeeeeze!
Oh, please, Grant. You're the sort of anti-government ninny who hates anything to do with "THE GOVERNMENT" until your home is flooded or destroyed by a tornado. THEN you're screaming because FEMA didn't show up with money fast enough to suit you.
In addition, you're so stupid you don't have a clue what the word "underscore" means.