02 September 2007

Losing My Religion

"[I]t is not correct to say that modernism relied on a conviction about the steady disappearance of religious belief. Karl Marx and Sigmund Freud, to take two very salient examples, looked upon religion as virtually ineradicable -- the former precisely because he did identify it with secular yearnings that would be hard to satisfy, and the latter because he thought it originated in our oldest mistake, which was (and is) wishful thinking."
~ Christopher Hitchens, reviewing Mark Lilla's The Stillborn God

"[H]e kept his eyes fixed on a God above -- though most assuredly it was a false God, one of his own making, designed for the singular purpose of giving him stability and fortitude -- the power to persevere in a cause which was entirely pigheaded and wrong."
~ Scott Horton (describing Philip II of Spain)

"There is fertile ground for a preacher who tells people that they are 'anointed' and 'blessed' for driving a Yukon and hating gays; the preacher who tries to hold people to some kind of Christ-like ethical code, or criticizes materialism and bigotry, will find himself speaking to empty pews."
~ reader "Timber," commenting on Joshua Frank's interview with author Joe Bageant (Deer Hunting With Jesus)

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