Criticism of religion  

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"However important it may be for all men to know the Truth, very few, nevertheless, are acquainted with it, because the majority are incapable of searching it themselves, or perhaps, do not wish the trouble. Thus we must not be astonished if the world is filled with vain and ridiculous opinions, and nothing is more capable of making them current than ignorance, which is the sole source of the false ideas that exist regarding the Divinity, the soul, and the spirit, and all the errors depending thereon." --Treatise of the Three Impostors


irreligion, blasphemy, libertinism, anticlericalism, materialism, heresy, profanity, counterculture, freethought, skepticism

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Criticism of religion is criticism of the ideas, the truth, or the practice of religion, including its political and social implications.

Historical records of criticism of religion goes back to at least 5th century BCE, in ancient Greece, with Diagoras "the Atheist" of Melos. In ancient Rome, an early known example is Lucretius' De Rerum Natura from the 1st century BCE. Criticism of religion is complicated by the fact that there exist multiple definitions and concepts of religion in different cultures and languages. With the existence of diverse categories of religion such as monotheism, polytheism, pantheism, nontheism and diverse specific religions such as Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Taoism, Buddhism and many others, it is not always clear to whom the criticisms are aimed at or to what extent they are applicable to other religions.

Every exclusive religion on Earth that promotes exclusive truth claims necessarily denigrates the truth claims of other religions. Critics of religion in general often regard religion as outdated, harmful to the individual, harmful to society, an impediment to the progress of science, a source of immoral acts or customs, and a political tool for social control.

See also

Criticism of specific religions

Notable critics of religion




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Criticism of religion" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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