Why is religion so damn powerful when it's also so damn wrong?
1) Religion has answers for everything.
It doesn't have the *right* answers for everything, but it has answers, and for many people, that's enough.
2) Religion uses guilt to prevent you from leaving.
Religion compels you to live up to certain ideals whether or not they make sense...
And disobeying them, or even questioning them, means you're not really faithful.
3. Religion makes you feel special.
Doesn't everyone want to be one of God's Chosen People?
Don't you want to believe God created you personally and watches over you?
The whole concept of a Guardian Angel is silly, but it's the same principal: You're a special little snowflake. And so the billions of other people just like you.
There's value to believing that when you're a child. But at some point, you have to realize that if all of us are special, none of us are special.
4. Religion capitalizes on division
Religion loves to stoke the Us vs. Them mentality. We're okay; they're not. We're going to Heaven; they're not. God loves us; not them.
It's human nature to want to be accepted. We all want to be part of a welcoming group.
The problem is that it's that very mindset that causes so many problems. Because so many people believe that everyone who's not in your group needs to be converted or killed.
5. Religion makes morality really simple.
We all want to be good people. But not everyone agrees what it takes to be good.
Religion makes that simple. Follow our rules, and you're good! It requires no further intellectual thought. It's that easy.
6. Religion claims ownership of spiritual bliss.
Sure, a lot of things can make you happy now. But what's going to happen with your soul? Don't you want to be okay in the afterlife?
Religion steps in and says it'll make us happy in the one place we have zero control over: the afterlife. It's hard not to sign on to that deal.
7. Religion gets us while we're young.
There's a reason most people don't switch from one religion to another later in life.
You're taught to believe this stuff before you're old enough to question it.
8. Religion makes you think you can control the uncontrollable.
Life is unpredictable. Shit happens. But isn't it nice to think that your prayers might change the course of things?
Churches convince you to give them 10% of your income. They don't have to pay taxes because they're considered non-profits.
If you took the money we spent perpetuating religious lies and put it almost anywhere else, we could get pretty far in solving a lot of the world's problems.
In fact, it'd be way more effective than the prayers offered by people in churches.
Hemant Mehta, 2015