Organized religion, according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, is defined as “a belief system that has large numbers of followers and a set of rules that must be followed.” Prime examples of organized religions are the ones we are most familiar with, Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism and Islam.
Religion had been considered the crux of societies for centuries. Examples include the Holy Crusades between the 11th and 17th Centuries, where it was a “God-ordained” order to bring Christianity to the holy land of Jerusalem.
Have we, as a modern society matured enough now to forego our religious practices and archaic rules and rituals? It is the opinion of the author that we have, indeed. Organized religion should be banned, because it is the opium of the masses; it is a form of mind control that causes people tp suspend rational thought, and are thus, becoming gullible, and it is forcing us to look for fatalistic answers that may not even exist.
“… Opium of the People”
Karl Marx, German philosopher and socialist revolutionary, is perhaps most famous for his published works that inspired the Communist parties. While he himself was not a “Communist” in the sense of the word (he was a socialist), he did have many views that were unheard of in his time of the mid 1800s. One such view was on religion.
He has been famously paraphrased to have said “Religion is the opium of the people.” His true words were similar, according to The Guardian.com, and were, “Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people.” Marx’s position is true. If we continue to rely on religion, like a drug, it becomes our crux. We rely on it, trapped in its webs. We become so drugged up that we forget or deny religious atrocities, such as the Crusades or the Catholic priests sexually assaulting young boys.
Because it is part of the “religion,” part of the “structure,” we turn a blind eye and continue to buy into it. This is dangerous and detrimental to the growth of humanity.
Economic vs Religion
But is Marx entirely correct? Not everyone thinks so. According to Political Economy.com, Marx’s “views” were not based in a societal perspective, challenging us to break the chains of oppression. Rather they were economic, and were purposely said as a metaphor for the real world.
““ The religious world is but the reflex of the real world,” was at the core of his ideas. It was a symptom, an illusion.” In the real world were the economic ideals he wished to change, not necessarily the religious ones.
Is it possible that the famous phrase is not really true, and that there’s nothing wrong with having a religion? Perhaps, perhaps not.
Mind Control or the Word of God?
Religion can be considered a form of mind control, one that forces people to believe anything that is said to them. A perfect example of mind control and manipulation is from TV personality and pastor Peter Popoff.
Popoff was exposed in 1986 for using an earpiece to listen to his wife for so-called “revelations” from God, which was, just information of the church members from their membership cards. He would shout out their names and addresses, amazing the people. He would also receive their ailment information from his wife, and proclaim that he would heal them with the power of God.
The people truly believed they were healed of their sicknesses, from a limp to surprisingly, cancer. This was going on, reportedly for years, until Inside Edition exposed it all on camera in 1986.
If we just believe anything pastors, like Popoff, say to us, simply because they claim the word comes from God, we will never trust our own judgement and critical thought. We will blindly give away our money to the church, because supposedly, God demands it.
A World without Religion?
How would a world without religion look like? according to freedommag.org , society would differ vastly if we didn’t have religion, and not for the better. We would be a lot more lonelier, for example, because studies show that spiritually-inclined people feel happier, and are connected by a common place, such as a church they attend. A lack of religion would destroy that.
Another detrimental example to our society without religion would be a rapid increase in world hunger. 64 percent of food serving agencies are located in churches and other faith-based places. Without religion, world hunger would be even greater than before.
A world without religion also means a world without faith. People would not have a suitable answer to life’s questions, such as how was the world created? Why do we exist? What happens to us when we die? Until science answers these basic human questions, we require a faith-based anchor to provide those answers.
We must remember author George Carlin’s famous words: “Religion is just mind control,” because surely it is.
Is religion really necessary to our society? Some view religion as absolutely necessary to the survival of it. Without it, we might dissolve into chaos and a plethora of world problems.
But if we decide to actively remove ourselves from it, we might grow to be a more intelligent, less superstitious people.
Isn’t it time for us to think for ourselves, and be independent, spiritual people without having to rely on the chains of religion to bind us?
I think so. It’s time we grow up and stop letting God do the thinking and the saving for us.
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