In morals what begins in fear usually ends in wickedness; in religion what begins in fear usually ends in fanaticism. Fear, either as a principle or a motive, is the beginning of all evil.
On every full moon, rituals ... take place on hilltops, beaches, in open fields and in ordinary houses. Writers, teachers, nurses, computer programmers, artists,lawyers, poets, plumbers, and auto mechanics -- women and men from many backgrounds come together to celebrate the mysteries of the Triple Goddess of the Dance of Life. The religion they practise is called Witchcraft.
According to the oral tradition of Witches, we were once the priests and priestesses of a peasant Pagan religion. Members of this secret sect met at night beneath the full moon, for these were the "misfits" and "outcasts" who did not fit into mainstream society. Little has changed over the centuries and the Witchcraft community still embraces individuals frequently rejected in mainstream society. These include gays, lesbians, transgendered individuals, and other people with the courage to live their lives authentically in accord with who they are inside their hearts, minds, and spirits.
Religion and political expediency go beautifully hand in hand.
We have enslaved the rest of the animal creation, and have treated our distant cousins in fur and feathers so badly that beyond doubt, if they were able to formulate a religion, they would depict the Devil in human form.
Generally speaking, the errors in religion are dangerous; those in philosophy only ridiculous.
Religion deals in certainties and philosophy deals more in un-answered questions.
Opinion of ghosts, ignorance of second causes, devotion to what men fear, and talking of things casual for prognostics, consisteth the natural seeds of religion.
I think it's only in a crisis that Americans see other people. It has to be an American crisis, of course. If two countries fight that do not supply the Americans with some precious commodity, then the education of the public does not take place. But when the dictator falls, when the oil is threatened, then you turn on the television and they tell you where the country is, what the language is, how to pronounce the names of the leaders, what the religion is all about, and maybe you can cut out recipes in the newspaper of Persian dishes.
Most men's anger about religion is as if two men should quarrel for a lady they neither of them care for.
Ours is an age of criticism, to which everything must be subjected. The sacredness of religion, and the authority of legislation, are by many regarded as grounds for exemption from the examination by this tribunal, But, if they are exempted, and cannot lay claim to sincere respect, which reason accords only to that which has stood the test of a free and public examination.
The radical novelty of modern science lies precisely in the rejection of the belief, which is at the heart of all popular religion, that the forces which move the stars and atoms are contingent upon the preferences of the human heart.
Skeptical scrutiny is the means, in both science and religion, by which deep thoughts can be winnowed from deep nonsense.
The master in the art of living makes little distinction between his work and his play, his labor and his leisure, his mind and his body, his information and his recreation, his love and his religion. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence at whatever he does, leaving others to decide whether he is working or playing. To him he's always doing both.
Then he saw also that it matters little what profession, whether of religion or irreligion, a man may make, provided only he follows it out with charitable inconsistency, and without insisting on it to the bitter end. It is in the uncompromisingness.
Then he saw also that it matters little what profession, whether of religion or irreligion, a man may make, provided only he follows it out with charitable inconsistency, and without insisting on it to the bitter end. It is in the uncompromisingness with which dogma is held and not in the dogma or want of dogma that the danger lies.
In religion not to do as thou sayest is to unsay thy religion in thy deeds, and to undo thyself by doing.
Religious wars are not caused by the fact that there is more than one religion, but by the spirit of intolerance... the spread of which can only be regarded as the total eclipse of human reason.
Conventionality is not morality. Self-righteousness is not religion. To attack the first is not to assail the last.
The teachings of Buddha are eternal, but even then Buddha did not proclaim them to be infallible. The religion of Buddha has the capacity to change according to times, a quality which no other religion can claim to have...Now what is the basis of Buddhism? If you study carefully, you will see that Buddhism is based on reason. There is an element of flexibility inherent in it, which is not found in any other religion.
Religion is the possibility of the removal of every ground of confidence except confidence in God alone. Piety is the possibility of the removal of the last traces of a firm foundation upon which we can erect a system of thought.
On the day of Pentecost Christianity faced the world, a new religion, without a history, without a priesthood, without a college, without a people, and without a patron. She had only her two sacraments and her tongue of fire. The latter was her sole instrument of aggression.
Passion is universal humanity. Without it religion, history, romance and art would be useless.
Nations are equal in respect to each other, and entitled to claim equal consideration for their rights, whatever may be their relative dimensions or strength or however greatly they may differ in government, religion or manners
The problem with writing about religion is that you run the risk of offending sincerely religious people, and then they come after you with machetes.