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The Puritan hated bearbaiting, not because it gave pain to the bear, but because it gave pleasure to the spectators.
The Church is the handmaid of tyranny and the steady enemy of liberty.
She thoroughly understands what no other Church has ever understood, how to deal with enthusiasts.
A church is disaffected when it is persecuted, quiet when it is tolerated, and actively loyal when it is favoured and cherished.
Logicians may reason about abstractions. But the great mass of men must have images. The strong tendency of the multitude in all ages and nations to idolatry can be explained on no other principle.
With respect to the doctrine of a future life, a North American Indian knows just as much as any ancient or modern philosopher.
The doctrine which, from the very first origin of religious dissensions, has been held by bigots of all sects, when condensed into a few words and stripped of rhetorical disguise, is simply this: I am in the right, and you are in the wrong. When you are the stronger, you ought to tolerate me; for it is your duty to tolerate truth. But when I am the stronger I shall persecute you; for it is my duty to persecute error.
The real security of Christianity is to be found in its benevolent morality, in its exquisite adaptation to the human heart, in the facility with which its scheme accommodates itself to the capacity of every human intellect, in the consolation which it bears to the house of mourning, in the light with which it brightens the great mystery of the grave.
To punish a man because he has committed a crime, or because he is believed, though unjustly, to have committed a crime, is not persecution. To punish a man, because we infer from the nature of some doctrine which he holds, or from the conduct of other persons who hold the same doctrines with him, that he will commit a crime, is persecution, and is, in every case, foolish and wicked.
Many politicians of our time are in the habit of laying it down as a self-evident proposition that no people ought to be free till they are fit to use their freedom. The maxim is worthy of the fool in the old story who resolved not to go into the water until he had learnt to swim. If men are to wait for liberty till they become wise and good in slavery, they may indeed wait forever.
Nothing is so galling to a people not broken in from the birth as a paternal, or in other words a meddling government, a government which tells them what to read and say and eat and drink and wear.
The dissenter is every human being at those moments of his life when he resigns momentarily from the herd and thinks for himself.
We are as great as our belief in human liberty -- no greater. And our belief in human liberty is only ours when it is larger than ourselves.
If God is God He is not good, if God is good He is not God; take the even, take the odd.
The infantile cowardice of our time which demands an external pattern, a nonhuman authority....
Piety's hard enough to take among the poor who have to practice it. A rich man's piety stinks. It's insufferable.
The business of the law is to make sense of the confusion of what we call human life -- to reduce it to order but at the same time to give it possibility, scope, even dignity.
It is not in the world of ideas that life is lived. Life is lived for better or worse in life, and to a man in life, his life can be no more absurd than it can be the opposite of absurd, whatever that opposite may be.
That peculiar disease of intellectuals, that infatuation with ideas at the expense of experience, that compels experience to conform to bookish expectations.
We have learned the answers, all the answers: It is the question that we do not know.
To see the earth as we now see it, small and beautiful in that eternal silence where it floats, is to see ourselves as riders on the earth together, brothers on that bright loveliness in the unending night -- brothers who see now they are truly brothers.
The danger with the scholars conceptual theory is that it suffers a constant tendency to abstraction, to remoteness from real life ... the inherent logic of internal consistency is liable to become more important than correspondence with facts.
Every new and successful example of a perfect separation between ecclesiastical and civil matters is of importance.
[I]t is proper to take alarm at the first experiment on our liberties.
I have ever regarded the freedom of religious opinions and worship as equally belonging to every sect.
Because the bill in reserving a certain parcel of land in the United States for the use of said Baptist Church comprises a principle and a precedent for the appropriation of funds of the United States for the use and support of religious societies, contrary to the article of the Constitution which declares that "Congress shall make no law respecting a religious establishment."
Who does not see that the same authority which can establish Christianity, in exclusion of all other Religions, may establish with the same ease any particular sect of Christians, in exclusion of all other Sects?
During almost fifteen centuries has the legal establishment of Christianity been on trial. What have been its fruits? More or less in all places, pride and indolence in the Clergy, ignorance and servility in the laity, in both, superstition, bigotry and persecution. Enquire of the Teachers of Christianity for the ages in which it appeared in its greatest lustre; those of every sect, point to the ages prior to its incorporation with Civil policy.
Ecclesiastical establishments tend to great ignorance and corruption, all of which facilitate the execution of mischievous projects.
The purpose of separation ... &c.
Torrents of blood have been spilt in the world in vain attempts of the secular arm to extinguish religious discord, by proscribing all differences in religious opinions.
Religion flourishes in greater purity without than with the aid of government.
Our reason may prove what it will: our reason is only a feeble ray that has issued from Nature.
Silence is the element in which great things fashion themselves.
The decent moderation of today will be the least of human things tomorrow. At the time of the Spanish Inquisition, the opinion of good sense and of the good medium was certainly that people ought not to burn too large a number of heretics; extreme and unreasonable opinion obviously demanded that they should burn none at all.
They believe that nothing will happen because they have closed their doors.
A truth that disheartens because it is true is of more value than the most stimulating of falsehoods.
At every crossway on the road that leads to the future, each progressive spirit is opposed by a thousand men appointed to guard the past. Let us have no fear lest the fair towers of former days be sufficiently defended. The least that the most timid among us can do is not to add to the immense dead weight which nature drags along.
The church says the earth is flat, but I know that it is round, for I have seen the shadow on the moon, and I have more faith in a shadow than in the church.
I, personally, am unable to accept any revealed religion, Christian or not.
Whatever may be God's future, we cannot forget His past.
The Catholic Church has access to a major section of the American public. Our impact on the public will be directly proportionate to the persuasiveness of our positions. We seek no special status and we should not be accorded one.
The distrust and suspicion which men everywhere evidence toward their adversaries, at all states of historical development, may be regarded as the immediate precursor to the notion of ideology.
We, when we sow the seeds of doubt deeper than the most up-to-date and modish free-thought has ever dreamed of doing, we well know what we are about. Only out of radical skepsis, out of moral chaos, can the Absolute spring, the anointed Terror of which the time has need.
The whole system of Christian belief with its evidences..., all Christianity in short, so far as it has any title to that name, so far as it has any special relation to the person or the teaching of Christ, is overthrown.
Nowhere in the Gospels is intelligence praised as a virtue.
We will no longer be oppressed by the fascism called Christianity. We will no longer be oppressed by the mentality of the police state.
But I'm not a slave to a god
Pseudo morals work real well
I am truly amazed that after all this time, religious groups still need to attack entertainment and use these tragedies as a pitiful excuse for their own self-serving publicity. In response to their protests, I will provide a show where I balance my songs with a wholesome Bible reading. This way, fans will not only hear my so-called, violent point of view, but we can also examine the virtues of wonderful 'Christian' stories of disease, murder, adultery, suicide and child sacrifice. Now that seems like 'entertainment' to me.
Whether you interpret the Bible as literature or as the final word of whatever God may be, Christianity has given us an image of death and sexuality that we have based our culture around. A half-naked dead man hangs in most homes and around our necks, and we have just taken that for granted all of our lives.
I chose not to jump into the media frenzy and defend myself, though I was begged to be on every single TV show in existence. They want to blame entertainment? Isn't religion the first real entertainment? People dress up in costumes, sing songs and dedicate themselves in eternal fandom.
Dear god if you were alive
Letting a hundred flowers blossom and a hundred schools of thought contend is the policy for promoting the progress of the arts and the sciences and a flourishing socialist culture in our land.
The Subtle Fulmination of the Encircled Sea
Please Feel Free
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