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God is Not Great – Christopher Hitchens

Hitchen’s book “God is Not Great” presents a detailed look at why religion spoils everything. The extent of logic and examples he presents concerning many different religious cultures and how they commit atrocities will shock even a moderate atheist. His chapter on child abuse and religion was particularly revealing. He describes in depth the torture inflicted on young children through female circumcision in many religions (including Islam) and male circumcision in the Judeo-Christian religion (among others).

I highly recommend this especially to those who wish to know more when demonstrating to the religious how religion does more harm than good. The minimal “good” that religion produces by no means justifies the increasing number of large scale demonstrations of greed, manipulation and bloodshed incurred by religion. I’ll let Hitchens take it from here and plug his own book:

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  • noreply@blogger.com (PJ)

    Male circumcision is practiced by Jews and Moslems, but male circumcision is NOT a religious requirement for Christians. In fact, the New Testament speaks out quite forcefully against circumcision. You can learn more by going to:
    http://www.catholicsagainstcircumcision.org/
    and
    http://www.acts15.org/

  • http://LiberatedMind.com noreply@blogger.com (Writings of a Liberated Mind)

    Correct, the main vein of Christianity does not require male circumcision, however it certainly does not campaign against this form alteration in the male genitalia. In America, which hosts the largest percentage of Christians when compared to other advanced nations, the rate of circumcision is equally as high. In america, 16% of people claim no religious affiliation yet 77% of Americans identify as christian. In America 54% of male babies are circumcised today in comparison to Europe’s less than 20% (accompanied by a 48% non religious populace).

    Routine infant circumcision never took off in Europe but circumcision enthusiasts promoted it in English-speaking countries from the late Victorian era.
    There are many stripes of fundamental Christians, especially in America to whom every word of the bible is to be followed. The Ted Haggards, etc. These people arguably do cherry pick by saying that the creation story is fact but owning slaves like the bible condones is no longer correct. In the same fashion, they are forced to cherry pick around Moses’ laws of circumcision and what the book of Acts says about every part of the human body being “sacred”. On a side note: if every part of the human body is sacred, what is the purpose for an appendix or a gall bladder?? Extra pieces? Or evolutionary left-overs that will be phased out as we evolve? I think you know what science says :)

    To your point, the most aggressive religion on male (and female) circumcision comes from Islam. Arguably in areas where cleanliness is difficult to maintain or in the bronze age when a person bathed once a year, circumcision was a likely alternative. (Although today medical practitioners are in agreement that circumcision holds no claims to cleanliness over uncircumcised) It is akin to bible passages that speak of bleeding a bird in order to heal a sick person or avoid eating certain types of animal. Perhaps good advice in the dark ages, but no longer do bronze age texts apply to our scope of knowledge and medicine, science and the universe… especially not the bible (a storybook with some good fables).

    Thanks for reading!
    WLM

    Sources:
    http://www.cirp.org/library/statistics/USA/
    http://www.gallup.com/poll/117409/Easter-Smaller-Percentage-Americans-Christian.aspx
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circumcision#Prevalence_of_circumcision