Lauryn Seering

Lauryn Seering

Let us introduce you to parts of the Holy Bible which you have not heard about in sermons from the pulpit, that may shock and dismay you and should certainly convince you that the bible ought to be X-rated.

Below you will find a pornographic view of sex and women, lewdness, depravity and sexual violence often ordered or countenanced by the biblical deity. Don't take our word for it-look it up for yourself.

GENESIS

4:17 Cain marries his sister?
4:19 Man "took unto him 2 wives"
12:13-19 Man prostitutes wife
16:2-4- Wife to hubby: "go in unto my maid"
17:9-14 "Ye shall circumcise the flesh of your foreskin"
19:1-8 Rape virgins instead of male angels
19:30-38 "Righteous man" impregnates his 2 daughters while drunk
20:2-12 Man prostitutes wife again
20:12 Woman married to half-brother
22:24 Bible's first "concubine"
24:2-3,9 Place your hand "under the thigh" (sexual organs) of someone swearing sacred oaths
25:1-6 Keeping mistresses is not adultery
Ch. 29·30 Sordid tales of surrogate motherhood
30:3 Woman gives handmaid for hubby's sexual use
30:9 More sordid marital triangles
32:25 God grabs Jacob's testicles
34:1-31 Brothers are riled when sister is defiled
34:25 Circumcised men "were sore"
35:22 Man sleeps with father's concubine
38:8-10 Onan's method of birth control (withdrawal ejaculation) not approved
38:12-30 Woman "plays the harlot" to seduce father-in-law
39:7-20 Woman tries to rape man
47:29 Man ordered to place hand under father's thigh

EXODUS
4:25 Mom cuts off son's foreskin with (ouch!)
stone
20:26 God specifies building of altar to prevent exposure to nakedness
21:7-11 Female servants can be used for sex
21:10 Rule permits polygamy
22:19 Death decreed for bestiality

LEVITICUS
12:1-8 Bible calls childbirth a sin
15:16-18 Sperm and intercourse are unclean
15:19-33 Menstruation unclean; elaborate rules
15:29-30 Women require sin offering for menstrual periods
18:22 Homosexuality declared an abomination
18:23 More bestiality
19:20-22 Man gets forgiven, slave girl gets flogging
20:10 Adulterers shall be put to death
20:13 Death decreed for homosexuals
20:15-16 Death decreed for bestiality (human & beast)
21:9 Burn whore-daughters of priests
26:29 Curse: Eat your sons and daughters

NUMBERS
5:11-31 Fidelity test (belly rot) for women only
25:1 "People began to commit whoredom"
25:4 "Take all the heads of the people, and hang them up before the Lord"
25:6-8 Holy man impales woman through her belly
31:17-18 Virgins raped as war booty

DEUTERONOMY
21:10-14 God okays captured maidens as trial wives
22:5 Men's clothing not to be worn by women & vice versa
22:13-21 A bride not a virgin must die
22:23-26 Virgin raped in city given no pity
22:28-29 Paying father to have sex with daughter
23:1 Man "wounded in the stones" (testicles) can't enter congregation
23:2 Children born out of wedlock condemned as bastards to 1Oth generation
23:10-11 Nocturnal emissions discussed
23:12-14 Defecation: Carry paddle, dig hole, & cover up
25:5-10 Woman has sexual cause to spit in man's face
25:11-12 A woman shall have her hand cut off for touching a man's penis
28:27 Hemorrhoids ("emerods") a punishment for sin
28:30 Lord's curse: Another man shall lie with groom's bride first
28:53-57 Curse: Eat your own body & children

JUDGES
3:20-22 Dagger in fat king's gut gets "dirt'' out
4:21-22 Hammer & nail murder by woman
8:30 Gideon had many wives, concubines
Ch.11 Virgin daughter sacrificed to God
14:20 Samson gives away wife to another man
16:1 Samson "went in unto" harlot
16:4-19 Biblical game of S & M
19:1-30 Woman raped and ruined by homosexuals
21:6-25 Amidst carnage virgins captured for wives

RUTH
3:6-9 To "hook" him as a husband, Ruth sleeps with Boaz. (4:9-10 Boaz buys Ruth)

I SAMUEL
1:5-11 Lord "shuts"" & "opens" womb
2:8 ''The Lord ... lifteth up the beggar from the dunghill"'
2:22-23 Priests' sons copulate at door of tabernacle
5:9-12 Philistines "smitten with emerods" (hemorrhoids) as punishment for stealing ark
6:1-5 To placate God, make golden hemorrhoids
18:25-27 200 foreskins gain David a king's daughter
25:22,34 A subject never mentioned in sermons

II SAMUEL
3:7 Concubine hanky-panky
11:1-27 Uriah murdered so David can get his wife
12:11-12 Obscene performance to be viewed by all Israel
5:13 David had many wives, concubines
Ch. 13 Amnon rapes his sister
16:2Q-22 Absalom rapes father's concubines on rooftop
20:3 David imprisons concubines for above

I KINGS
1:1-4 Virgin as therapy for sick old man
3:16-28 2 "harlots" feud-sexist tale
11:1-10 Wise Solomon has wives and concubines galore, promiscuous with "many strange women"
14:10, 16:11, 21:21 A subject never mentioned in sermons

II KINGS
6:28-29 "So we boiled my son, and did eat him"
9:8 A subject never mentioned in sermons
9:30-37 Unspeakable assassination of Jezebel
23:7 Male houses of prostitution destroyed

I CHRONICLES
1:32-33 More concubines galore

II CHRONICLES
11:21 King had 18 wives & 60 concubines

ESTHER
Ch.1-2 Sexual contest for new queen
1:11 Queen asked to "display'' body for men

PSALMS
45:10-17 Wily seduction by promiscuous Solomon

PROVERBS
5:3 "Lips of strange woman" warning
7:5-27 Intemperate warnings of "strange" women
30:20 Adulteress "eateth, and wipeth her mouth"

SONG OF SOLOMON
5:4 Man touches woman's "hole of the door'' and "my bowels were moved for him"
8:8 Little sister has no breasts

ISAIAH
3:16 "the Lord will discover their secret parts"
9:20 Every man shall eat the flesh of his own arm
14:21-22 Slaughter children for fathers' iniquity
16:11 Bible boast: "My bowels shall sound like an harp"
36:12 Eating dung and drinking piss

JEREMIAH
16:4 Grievous, obscene deaths

LAMENTATIONS
2:19-20 Something to lament
4:10 Women boil children for food

EZEKIEL

4:12-15 God says: Eat bread defiled with dung
5:8-10 What's for dinner?
8:2 Lord's loins make guest appearance
16:15 Fornications pour out
16:36-37 Their "filthiness poured out ... "
23:1-40 Grisly tale related of two sisters who are whores
23:20 Sex organs and ejaculate of harlot's lovers compared to asses & horses
Ch. 24 Lord orders lewd "woman" boiled into "scum"
29:7-8 God performs bloody castration via a sword

HOSEA
1:2-11 God tells Hosea to take whore to wife
2:1-15 Complications ensue (lewdly described)

NAHUM
3:4-6 Lord: "I will discover thy skirts upon thy face"

MALACHI
2:1-4 Angry god will spread feces on your faces

MATTHEW
5:27-30 A man may lust, but it's not just
5:31-32 Man can divorce wife for fornication
19:3-9 Man who divorces and remarries is adulterer
19:12 Castrate yourself for Jesus
22:24 Woman must marry dead husband's brother

LUKE
2:21 Eight day old Jesus is circumcised

ACTS
8:38 Eunuch baptized
15:24 Circumcision is not commandment
16:3 Paul circumcises adult

ROMANS
1:26-32 Gay man and lesbians "worthy of death"

I CORINTHIANS
6:18-20 Abstain from extramarital sex
7:1-40 To be more holy, refrain from sex wholly
7:18-19 If you're not circumcised, stay that way

GALATIANS
5:1-4 Paul speaks against circumcision

I TIMOTHY
3:2,12 More than one wife OK, except for bishop

REVELATION
17:1-16 A drunken whore is stripped, eaten and burned

As Thomas Paine wrote in his classic book The Age of Reason: "Any system of religion that has anything in it that shocks the mind of a child, cannot be a true system." Paine also observed: "Whenever we read the obscene stories, the voluptuous debaucheries, the cruel and torturous executions, the unrelenting vindictiveness, with which more than half the Bible is filled it would be more consistent that we call it the word of a demon than the word of God. It is a history of wickedness that has served to corrupt and brutalize (hu)mankind."

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Dear Believer

You ask me to consider Christianity as the answer for my life. I have done that. I consider it untrue, repugnant, and harmful.

You expect me to believe Jesus was born of a virgin impregnated by a ghost? Do you believe all the crazy takes of ancient religion? Julius Caesar was reportedly born of a virgin; Roman historian Suetonius said Augustus bodily rose to heaven when he died; and Buddha was supposedly born speaking. You don't believe all that, do you? Why do you expect me to swallow the fables of Christianity?

I find it incredible that you ask me to believe that the earth was created in six literal days; that women come from a man's rib; that snake, a donkey, and a burning bush spoke human language; that the entire world was flooded, covering the mountains to drown evil; that all animal species, millions of them, rode on one boat; that language variations stem from the tower of Babel; that Moses had a magic wand; that the Nile turned to blood; that a stick turned into a snake; that witches, wizards, and sorcerers really exist; that food rained from the sky for forty years; that people were cured by the sight of a brass serpent; that the sun stood still to help Joshua win a battle, and it went backward for King Hezekiah; that men survived unaided in a fiery furnace; that a detached hand floated in the air and wrote on a wall; that men followed a star which directed them to a particular house; that Jesus walked on water unaided; that fish and bread magically multiplied to feed the hungry; that water instantly turned into wine; that mental illness is caused by demons; that a "devil" with wings exists who causes evil; that people were healed by stepping into a pool agitated by angels; that disembodied voices spoke from the sky; that Jesus vanished and later materialized from thin air; that people were healed by Peter's shadow; that angels broke people out of jail; that a fiery lake of eternal torment awaits unbelievers under the earth. . . while there is life-after-death in a city which is 1,500 cubed, with mansions and food, for Christians only.

If you believe these stories, then you are the one with the problem, not me. These myths violate natural law, contradict science, and fail to correspond with reality or logic. If you can't see that, then you can't separate truth from fantasy. It doesn't matter how many people accept the delusions inflicted by "holy" men; a widely-held lie is still a lie. If you are so gullible, then you are like the child who believes the older brother who says there is a monster in the hallway. But there is nothing to be afraid of; go turn on the light and look for yourself.

If Christianity were simply untrue I would not be too concerned. Santa is untrue, but it is a harmless myth which people outgrow. But Christianity, besides being false, is abhorrent. It amazes me that you claim to love the god of the bible, a hateful, arrogant, sexist, cruel being who can't tolerate criticism. I would not want to live in the same neighborhood with such a creature!

The biblical god is a macho male warrior. Though he said "Thou shalt not kill," he ordered death for all opposition (Ex. 32:27), wholesale drowning and mass exterminations; punished offspring to the fourth generation (Ex. 20:5); ordered babies to be smashed and pregnant women to be ripped up (Hosea 13:16); demanded animal and human blood to appease his angry vanity; is partial to one race of people; judged women inferior to men; is a sadist who created a hell to torture unbelievers; created evil (Is. 45:7); discriminated against the handicapped (Lev.21:16-23); ordered virgins to be kept as spoils of war (Num. 31:15-18), Deut. 21:11-14); threatened to curse people by spreading dung on their faces (Malachi 2:3); sent bears to devour forty-two children who teased a prophet (II Kings 2:23-24); punished people with snakes, dogs, dragons, drunkenness, swords, arrows, axes, fire, famine, and infantile; and said father should eat their sons (Ez. 5:10). Is that nice? Would you want to live next door to such a person?

And Jesus is a chip off the old block. He said, "I and my father are one," and he upheld "every jot and tittle" of the Old Testament law. (Matt 5:18). He preached the same old judgment: vengeance and death, wrath and distress, hell and torture for all nonconformists. He believed in demons, angels and spirits. He never denounced the subjugation of slaves or women. Women were excluded as disciples, and as guests at his heavenly table. Except for hell he introduced nothing new to ethics or philosophy. He was disrespectful to his mother and brothers; he said we should hate our parents and desert our families. Matt 10:35-36, Luke 14:26 (So much for "Christian family life.") He denounced anger, but was often angry himself. Matt 5:22. He said, "Think not that I come to send peace on earth, but a sword." Matt 10:34. (So much for "Peace on earth." He irrationally curses and withered a fig tree for being barren out of season. Matt 21:19. He mandated burning unbelievers. John 15:6 (The Church has complied with relish.) He stole a horse. Luke 19:30-33. He told people to cut off hands, feet, eyes and sexual organs. Matt. 5-29-30, 19:12. You want me to accept Jesus, but I think I'll pick my own friends, thank you.

One of Jesus's many contradictions was saying good works should be seen, and not seen. Matt. 5:16, 6:1-4. One of his mistakes was saying that the mustard plant has the smallest seed. Matt 13:31-32. The writers of Matthew and Luke could not even get his genealogy straight, contradiction the Old Testament, and giving Jesus two discrepant lines through Joseph, his non-father! (Matt. 1:1-16 vs. Luke 3:23-34).

I also find Christianity is harmful. More people have been killed in the name of a god than for any other reason. The Church has a shameful, bloody history of Crusades, Inquisitions, witch-burnings, heresy trials, American colonial intolerance, disrespect of indigenous traditions (such as American Indians), support of slavery, and oppression of women. Modern "fruits" of religion include the Jonestown massacre, the callous fraud of "faith healers," the sex scandals of televangelists, and fighting in Northern Ireland. Religion also poses a danger to mental health, damaging self-respect, personal responsibility, and clarity of thought.

Do you see why I do not respect the biblical message? It is an insulting bag of nonsense. You have every right to torment yourself with such insanity- but leave me out of it. I have better things to do with my life.

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Is America A Christian Nation?

The U.S. Constitution is a secular document. It begins, "We the people," and contains no mention of "God" or "Christianity." Its only references to religion are exclusionary, such as, "no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust" (Art. VI), and "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof" (First Amendment). The presidential oath of office, the only oath detailed in the Constitution, does not contain the phrase "so help me God" or any requirement to swear on a bible (Art. II, Sec. 7). If we are a Christian nation, why doesn't our Constitution say so? In 1797 America made a treaty with Tripoli, declaring that "the government of the United States is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion." This reassurance to Islam was written under Washington's presidency, and approved by the Senate under John Adams.

What about the Declaration of Independence?

We are not governed by the Declaration. Its purpose was to "dissolve the political bands," not to set up a religious nation. Its authority was based on the idea that "governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed," which is contrary to the biblical concept of rule by divine authority. It deals with laws, taxation, representation, war, immigration, and so on, never discussing religion at all. The references to "Nature's God," "Creator," and "Divine Providence" in the Declaration do not endorse Christianity. Thomas Jefferson, its author, was a Deist, opposed to orthodox Christianity and the supernatural.

What about the Pilgrims and Puritans?

The first colony of English-speaking Europeans was Jamestown, settled in 1609 for trade, not religious freedom. Fewer than half of the 102 Mayflower passengers in 1620 were "Pilgrims" seeking religious freedom. The secular United States of America was formed more than a century and a half later. If tradition requires us to return to the views of a few early settlers, why not adopt the polytheistic and natural beliefs of the Native Americans, the true founders of the continent at least 12,000 years earlier?

Most of the religious colonial governments excluded and persecuted those of the "wrong" faith. The framers of our Constitution in 1787 wanted no part of religious intolerance and bloodshed, wisely establishing the first government in history to separate church and state.

Do the words "separation of church and state" appear in the Constitution?

The phrase, "a wall of separation between church and state," was coined by President Thomas Jefferson in a carefully crafted letter to the Danbury Baptists in 1802, when they had asked him to explain the First Amendment. The Supreme Court, and lower courts, have used Jefferson's phrase repeatedly in major decisions upholding neutrality in matters of religion. The exact words "separation of church and state" do not appear in the Constitution; neither do "separation of powers," "interstate commerce," "right to privacy," and other phrases describing well-established constitutional principles.

What does "separation of church and state" mean?

Thomas Jefferson, explaining the phrase to the Danbury Baptists, said, "the legitimate powers of government reach actions only, and not opinions." Personal religious views are just that: personal. Our government has no right to promulgate religion or to interfere with private beliefs.

The Supreme Court has forged a three-part "Lemon test" (Lemon v. Kurtzman, 1971) to determine if a law is permissible under the First-Amendment religion clauses. (1) A law must have a secular purpose. (2) It must have a primary effect which neither advances nor inhibits religion. (3) It must avoid excessive entanglement of church and state. The separation of church and state is a wonderful American principle supported not only by minorities, such as Jews, Moslems, and unbelievers, but applauded by most Protestant churches that recognize that it has allowed religion to flourish in this nation. It keeps the majority from pressuring the minority.

What about majority rule?

America is one nation under a Constitution. Although the Constitution sets up a representative democracy, it specifically was amended with the Bill of Rights in 1791 to uphold individual and minority rights. On constitutional matters we do not have majority rule. When the majority in certain localities voted to segregate blacks, this was declared illegal. The majority has no right to tyrannize the minority on matters such as race, gender, or religion.

Not only is it unAmerican for the government to promote religion, it is rude. Whenever a public official uses the office to advance religion, someone is offended. The wisest policy is one of neutrality.

Isn't removing religion from public places hostile to religion?

No one is deprived of worship in America. Tax-exempt churches and temples abound. The state has no say about private religious beliefs and practices, unless they endanger health or life. Our government represents all of the people, supported by dollars from a plurality of religious and non-religious taxpayers. Some countries, such as the U.S.S.R., expressed hostility to religion. Others, such as Iran ("one nation under God"), have welded church and state. America wisely has taken the middle course—neither for nor against religion. Neutrality offends no one, and protects everyone.

The First Amendment deals with "Congress." Can't states make their own religious policies?

Under the "due process" clause of the 14th Amendment (ratified in 1868), the entire Bill of Rights applies to the states. No governor, mayor, sheriff, public school employee, or other public official may violate the human rights embodied in the Constitution. The government at all levels must respect the separation of church and state. Most state constitutions, in fact, contain language that is even stricter than the First Amendment, prohibiting the state from setting up a ministry, using tax dollars to promote religion, or interfering with freedom of conscience.

What about "One nation under God" and "In God We Trust?"

The words, "under God," did not appear in the Pledge of Allegiance until 1954, when Congress, under McCarthyism, inserted them. Likewise, "In God We Trust" was absent from paper currency before 1956. It appeared on some coins earlier, as did other sundry phrases, such as "Mind Your Business." The official U.S. motto, chosen by John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson, is E Pluribus Unum ("Of Many, One"), celebrating plurality, not theocracy.

Isn't American law based on the Ten Commandments?

Not at all! The first four Commandments are religious edicts having nothing to do with law or ethical behavior. Only three (homicide, theft, and perjury) are relevant to American law, and have existed in cultures long before Moses. If Americans honored the commandment against "coveting," free enterprise would collapse! The Supreme Court has ruled that posting the Ten Commandments in public schools is unconstitutional.

Our secular laws, based on the human principle of "justice for all," provide protection against crimes, and our civil government enforces them through a secular criminal justice system.

Why be concerned about the separation of church and state?

Ignoring history, law, and fairness, many fanatics are working vigorously to turn America into a Christian nation. Fundamentalist Protestants and right-wing Catholics would impose their narrow morality on the rest of us, resisting women's rights, freedom for religious minorities and unbelievers, gay and lesbian rights, and civil rights for all. History shows us that only harm comes of uniting church and state.

America has never been a Christian nation. We are a free nation. Anne Gaylor, president of the Freedom From Religion Foundation, points out: "There can be no religious freedom without the freedom to dissent."

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What's Wrong With The Ten Commandments?

Critics of the Christian bible occasionally can score a point or two in discussion with the religious community by noting the many teachings in both the Old and New Testaments that encourage the bible believer to hate and to kill, biblical lessons that history proves Christians have taken most seriously. Nonetheless the bible defendant is apt to offer as an indisputable parting shot, "But don't forget the ten commandments. They are the basic bible teaching. Study the ten commandments."

Do study the ten commandments! They epitomize the childishness, the vindictiveness, the sexism, the inflexibility and the inadequacies of the bible as a book of morals.

Actually, only six of the ten commandments deal with an individual's moral conduct, which comes as a surprise to most Christians. Essentially, the first four commandments say:
1. Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
2. Thou shalt not make thee any graven images or bow down to them, and if you do I'll get you and your kids and their descendants.
3. Thou shalt not take the name of the lord in vain.
4. Keep the Sabbath holy.
The exact terminology is found in chapter five of Deuteronomy. Two other versions of the "ten commandments" can be found in the Old Testament. One version, in Exodus 20, differs slightly from the Deu­ter­onomy version, while a third, in Exodus 34, is wildly different, containing commandments about sacrifices and offerings and ending with the teaching: "Thou shalt not seethe a kid in its mother's milk." This is the only version referred to in scriptures as the "ten commandments."

In essence, the first four commandments all scream that "the lord thy god" has an uneasy vanity, and like most dictators, must resort to threats, rather than intellectual persuasion, to promote a point of view. If there were an omnipotent god, can you imagine him or her being concerned if some poor little insignificant creature puttered around and made a graven image? Do you think that any god, possessing the modicum of good will you could expect to find in any neighbor, would want to punish children even "unto the third and fourth generation" because their fathers could not believe? How can anyone not perceive the pettiness, bluster, bombast and psychotic insecurity behind the first four commandments? We are supposed to respect this!

"Honor thy father and thy mother" is the fifth commandment, and it is, of course, an extension of the authoritarian rationale behind the first four. Honor cannot be bestowed automatically by an honest intellect. Intellectually honest people can honor only those who, in their opinion, warrant their honor. The biologic fact of fatherhood and motherhood does not in and of itself warrant honor. Until very recently parenthood was not a matter of choice. It still is a mandatory, not optional, happening for many of the world's people. Why should any child be commanded to honor, without further basis, parents who became parents by accident—who didn't even plan to have a child? All of us know children who have been abused, beaten or neglected by their parents. What is the basis for honor there? How does the daughter honor a father who sexually molests her? "Honor only those who merit your honor" would be a more appropriate teaching, and if that includes your parents, great! "Honor your children" would have been a compassionate commandment.

Commandments six through nine—thou shalt not kill, commit adultery, steal or bear false witness—obviously have merit, but even they need extensive revision. To kill in self-defense is regrettable, but it is certainly morally defensible, eminently sensible conduct. So is the administration of a shot or medication that will end life for the terminally ill patient who wishes to die.

Adultery, the subject of the seventh commandment, again raises the question of an absolute ban. For the most part fidelity in marriage is a sound rule, making for happiness; but some marriages may outlast affection. Some couples may agree to live by different rules. Until relatively recent times Christian marriages were not dissolvable except by death, so the ban of divorce coupled with the ban of adultery obviously created great distress. Adultery, it must be remembered, involves an act between consenting adults. How much more relevant and valuable it would be to have, for instance, a commandment that forbids the violent crimes of rape and incest.

"Thou shalt not steal" raises questions regarding the usefulness of a blanket condemnation, and may put squatter's rights ahead of public and private welfare. Should people who are cold or ill steal to ameliorate their situations? Should the child who is hungry steal? Surely this commandment cries for some amending clauses. One is reminded of the comment of Napoleon, who really had religion figured out: "How can you have order in a state without religion? For, when one man is dying of hunger near another who is ill of surfeit, he cannot resign himself to this difference unless there is an authority which declares, 'God wills it thus.' Religion is excellent stuff for keeping people quiet."

In general, to bear false witness is construed to mean "don't lie," and that is a valuable moral precept, except again it is stated in absolute terms. Lies have saved lives, they have preserved relationships, and every day they save hurt feelings. The truth is not always a reasonable or kind solution. Interestingly, in biblical times the dictum not to bear false witness against a neighbor was a tribal commandment and meant to apply only to persons within the tribe—it was quite all right to bear false witness against "strangers."

Finally, the tenth commandment, which riles the feminist blood, says: "Neither shalt thou desire thy neighbor's wife, neither shalt thou covet thy neighbor's house, his field, or his manservant, or his maidservant, his ox, or his ass, or anything that is thy neighbor's." In addition to rating a wife with an ox and an ass, the bible loftily overlooks the woman who might desire her neighbor's husband. Covetousness somehow does not seem like such a crime. If you can't have a comfortable house or a productive farm, what is the great harm in wishing you did? Covetousness may be nonproductive and unpretty, but to make a big, bad deal out of it is ridiculous.

Bible apologists sometimes will excuse the triviality of the tenth commandment on the basis that to covet, in a more superstitious age, meant "to cast an evil eye." Someone who coveted "his neighbor's house" was purportedly casting an evil eye on that property with a view toward its destruction. Whether one accepts the apologist's definition of covet or the more popular meaning, the tenth commandment lacks real importance.

Little in Christianity is original. Most of it is borrowed, just as the celebration of Christmas was borrowed from Roman and earlier pagan times. When the "lord" supposedly wrote his commandments on two tablets of stone and delivered them to Moses (Deut. 5:22), he was only aping earlier gods: Bacchus, Zoroaster and Minos.

Reflect for a moment that almost anyone reading this nontract could write a kinder, wiser, more reasonable set of commandments than those that Christians insist we honor. Try it!

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Why Women Need Freedom From Religion

Organized religion always has been and remains the greatest enemy of women's rights. In the Christian-dominated Western world, two bible verses in particular sum up the position of women:

"I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee." By this third chapter of Genesis, woman lost her rights, her standing—even her identity, and motherhood became a God-inflicted curse degrading her status in the world.

In the New Testament, the bible decrees:

"Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression." 1 Tim. 2:11-14

One bible verse alone, "Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live" is responsible for the death of tens of thousands, if not millions, of women. Do women and those who care about them need further evidence of the great harm of Christianity, predicated as it has been on these and similar teachings about women?

Church writer Tertullian said "each of you women is an Eve . . . You are the gate of Hell, you are the temptress of the forbidden tree; you are the first deserter of the divine law."

Martin Luther decreed: "If a woman grows weary and at last dies from childbearing, it matters not. Let her die from bearing, she is there to do it."

Such teachings prompted 19th-century feminist Elizabeth Cady Stanton to write: "The Bible and the Church have been the greatest stumbling blocks in the way of woman's emancipation."

The various Christian churches fought tooth and nail against the advancement of women, opposing everything from women's right to speak in public, to the use of anesthesia in childbirth (since the bible says women must suffer in childbirth) and woman's suffrage. Today the most organized and formidable opponent of women's social, economic and sexual rights remains organized religion. Religionists defeated the Equal Rights Amendment. Religious fanatics and bullies are currently engaged in an outright war of terrorism and harassment against women who have abortions and the medical staff which serves them. Those seeking to challenge inequities and advance the status of women today are fighting a massive coalition of fundamentalist Protestant and Catholic churches and religious groups mobilized to fight women's rights, gay rights, and secular government.

Why do women remain second-class citizens? Why is there a religion-fostered war against women's rights? Because the bible is a handbook for the subjugation of women. The bible establishes woman's inferior status, her "uncleanliness," her transgressions, and God-ordained master/servant relationship to man. Biblical women are possessions: fathers own them, sell them into bondage, even sacrifice them. The bible sanctions rape during wartime and in other contexts. Wives are subject to Mosaic-law sanctioned "bedchecks" as brides, and male jealousy fits and no-notice divorce as wives. The most typical biblical labels of women are "harlot" and "whore." They are described as having evil, even satanic powers of allurement. Contempt for women's bodies and reproductive capacity is a bedrock of the bible. The few role models offered are stereotyped, conventional and inadequate, with bible heroines admired for obedience and battle spirit. Jesus scorns his own mother, refusing to bless her, and issues dire warnings about the fate of pregnant and nursing women.

There are more than 200 bible verses that specifically belittle and demean women. Here are just a few:

  • Genesis 2:22 Woman created from Adam's rib
  • 3:16 Woman cursed: maternity a sin, marriage a bondage
  • 19:1–8 Rape virgins instead of male angels
  • Exodus 20:17 Insulting Tenth Commandment
  • 21:7–11 Unfair rules for female servants, may be sex slaves
  • 22:18 "Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live"
  • 38:8 Women may not enter tabernacle they must support
  • Leviticus 12:1–14 Women who have sons are unclean 7 days
  • 12:4–7 Women who have daughters are unclean 14 days
  • 15:19–23 Menstrual periods are unclean
  • 19:20–22 If master has sex with engaged woman, she shall be scourged
  • Numbers 1:2 Poll of people only includes men
  • 5:13–31 Barbaric adulteress test
  • 31:16–35 "Virgins" listed as war booty
  • Deuteronomy 21:11–14 Rape manual
  • 22:5 Abomination for women to wear men's garments, vice-versa
  • 22:13–21 Barbaric virgin test
  • 22:23–24 Woman raped in city, she & her rapist both stoned to death
  • 22:28–29 Woman must marry her rapist
  • 24:1 Men can divorce woman for "uncleanness," not vice-versa
  • 25:11–12 If woman touches foe's penis, her hand shall be cut off
  • Judges 11:30-40 Jephthah's nameless daughter sacrificed
  • 19:22–29 Concubine sacrificed to rapist crowd to save man
  • I Kings 11:1–4 King Solomon had 700 wives & 300 concubines
  • Job 14:1–4 "Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? not one . . ."
  • Proverbs 7:9–27 Evil women seduce men, send them to hell
  • 11:22 One of numerous Proverbial putdowns
  • Isaiah 3:16–17 God scourges, rapes haughty women
  • Ezekiel 16:45 One of numerous obscene denunciations
  • Matthew 24:19 "[woe] to them that are with child"
  • Luke 2:22 Mary is unclean after birth of Jesus
  • I Corinthians 11:3–15 Man is head of woman; only man in God's image
  • 14:34–35 Women keep in silence, learn only from husbands
  • Ephesians 5:22–33 "Wives, submit . . ."
  • Colossians 3:18 More "wives submit"
  • I Timothy 2:9 Women adorn selves in shamefacedness
  • 2:11–14 Women learn in silence in all subjection; Eve was sinful, Adam blameless
  • Why should women—and the men who honor women—respect and support religions which preach women's submission, which make women's subjugation a cornerstone of their theology?

When attempts are made to base laws on the bible, women must beware. The constitutional principle of separation between church and state is the only sure barrier standing between women and the bible.

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Nontracts Full Text

Why Jesus?

Jesus has been held in high regard by Christians and non-Christians alike. Regardless of whether he existed in history, or whether he was divine, many have asserted that the New Testament Christ character was the highest example of moral living. Many believe that his teachings, if truly understood and followed, would make this a better world.

Is this true? Does Jesus merit the widespread adoration he has received? Let's look at what he said and did.

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What They Said About Religion

Freethought quotes by famous people.

I don't believe in God, because I don't believe in Mother Goose. --Clarence Darrow

Nature made us--nature did it all--not the gods of the religions.--Thomas A. Edison

It is best to read the weather forecast before praying for rain. --Mark Twain

The Bible and the Church have been the greatest stumbling blocks in the way of woman's emancipation.--Elizabeth Cady Stanton

Faith, n. Belief without evidence in what is told by one who speaks without knowledge, of things without parallel.--Ambrose Bierce

Question with boldness even the existence of God; because if there be one, He must approve the homage of Reason rather than that of blindfolded Fear. --Thomas Jefferson

Whenever we read the obscene stories, the voluptuous debaucheries, the cruel and tortuous executions, the unrelenting vindictiveness with which more than half the Bible is filled, it would be more consistent that we call it the word of a demon than the word of God. It is a history of wickedness that has served to corrupt and brutalize [hu]mankind. --Thomas Paine

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What Is A Freethinker?

Nontracts — the freethought answer to ubiquitous religious tracts. Brief but thorough, easy to read, 3 1/2 x 4 1/4-inch folded brochures address many common myths about freethought or religion. Order individual packs (12 for $4), a Sample Pack or by bulk (100 or more of the same nontract for $16).

free-think-er n. A person who forms opinions about religion on the basis of reason, independently of tradition, authority, or established belief. Freethinkers include atheists, agnostics and rationalists.

No one can be a freethinker who demands conformity to a bible, creed, or messiah. To the freethinker, revelation and faith are invalid, and orthodoxy is no guarantee of truth.

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What Does The Bible Say About Abortion?

Absolutely nothing! The word "abortion" does not appear in any translation of the bible!

Out of more than 600 laws of Moses, none comments on abortion. One Mosaic law about miscarriage specifically contradicts the claim that the bible is antiabortion, clearly stating that miscarriage does not involve the death of a human being. If a woman has a miscarriage as the result of a fight, the man who caused it should be fined. If the woman dies, however, the culprit must be killed:

"If men strive, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart from her, and yet no mischief follow: he shall be surely punished according as the woman's husband will lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges determine.

"And if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life, Eye for eye, tooth for tooth . . ."--Ex. 21:22-25

The bible orders the death penalty for murder of a human being, but not for the expulsion of a fetus.

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Ten Common Myths About Atheists

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Heathen's Greetings

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Cookie Cutter Christs

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Confused? Bible Contradictions

Dear Christian

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FFRF Co-Presidents

DAN BARKER and ANNIE LAURIE GAYLOR are co-presidents of the Freedom From Religion Foundation and co-hosts of Freethought Radio. A former minister and evangelist, Dan became a freethinker in 1983. His books, Just Pretend: A Freethought Book for Children and Losing Faith in Faith: From Preacher To Atheist (1992) are published by the Foundation. His newest book, Life Driven Purpose: How an atheist finds meaning, was published by Pitchstone Press in 2015. His previous book, the autobiographical Godless: How An Evangelical Preacher Became One of America's Leading Atheists, was published in 2008. A graduate of Azusa Pacific University with a degree in Religion, Dan now puts his knowledge of Christianity to effective freethought use. A professional pianist and composer, Dan performs freethought concerts and is featured in the Foundation's musical cassettes, "My Thoughts Are Free," "Reason's Greetings," "Dan Barker Salutes Freethought Then And Now," a 2-CD album "Friendly Neighborhood Atheist," and the CD "Beware of Dogma." He joined the Foundation staff in 1987 and served as public relations director. He was first elected co-president in November 2004.

Annie Laurie was also editor of Freethought Today from 1984 to 2009, when she became executive editor. The paper is published 10 times a year. Her book, Woe To The Women: The Bible Tells Me So, first published in 1981, is now in its 4th printing. In 1988, the Foundation published her book, Betrayal of Trust: Clergy Abuse of Children, the first book documenting widespread sexual abuse by clergy. Her 1997 book, Women Without Superstition: 'No Gods, No Masters'is the first collection of the writings of historic and contemporary women freethinkers. A 1980 graduate of the UW-Madison Journalism School, she was an award-winning student reporter and recipient of the Ken Purdy scholarship. After graduation, she founded, edited and published the Feminist Connection,a monthly advocacy newspaper, from 1980-1985. She joined the Foundation staff in 1985. She has been co-president since 2004. She co-founded the original FFRF with Anne Gaylor (see below) as a college student. Photo: Timothy Hughes

See Dan's bio »
See Dan's online writings »

See Dan's Debates »
Contact Dan »

See Annie Laurie's bio »
See Annie Laurie's online writings »
Contact Annie Laurie »

FFRF President emerita

Anne Nicol Gaylor
Photo by Brent Nicastro.

ANNE NICOL GAYLOR is a founder and president emerita of the Freedom From Religion Foundation. She served as executive director from 1978 to 2005, and is now working as a consultant to the Foundation. Born in rural Wisconsin, she is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin in Madison. She owned and managed successful small businesses and was co-owner and editor of an award-winning suburban weekly newspaper. A feminist author, she has done substantial volunteer work for women's rights (including serving as volunteer director of the Women's Medical Fund). Under her leadership the Freedom From Religion Foundation has grown from its initial three Wisconsin members to a national group with representation in every state and Canada.

Slideshow of Anne Gaylor & FFRF activism
See Anne Gaylor's online writings.

Director of Operations

LISA STRAND is director of operations of FFRF. She has more than 25 years of experience in nonprofit (primarily association) management, including 15 years as executive director of the Wisconsin Library Association. She is married with a daughter, as well as three cats, a guinea pig and an untended garden that will someday be beautiful.

FFRF Legal

REBECCA S. MARKERT attended the University of Wisconsin at Madison and received her B.A. in political science, international relations and German in 1998. After graduating from UW–Madison, Rebecca spent one year working as a legislative fellow at the German Parliament in Bonn, Germany. In the fall 1999, she returned to the United States and began working as a legislative correspondent and assistant to the chief of staff for United States Senator Russ Feingold in Washington, D.C. In 2002, she returned to Madison, Wisconsin, to work on Senator Feingold’s 2004 re-election campaign. After the campaign, Rebecca attended Roger Williams University School of Law and received her Juris Doctor in 2008. She joined the Foundation staff in October 2008.

Rebecca is the Freedom From Religion Foundation’s first staff attorney and primarily works on Establishment Clause cases. She is a member of the State Bar of Wisconsin, Dane County Bar Association, and is admitted to practice in the United States District Court for the Eastern and Western Districts of Wisconsin.

PATRICK ELLIOTT, the Foundation's second staff attorney, hails from St. Paul, Minn. Patrick received a degree in legal studies and political science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2005. He attended the University of Wisconsin Law School and received his Juris Doctor in 2009. While in school, Patrick took an interest in the First Amendment and constitutional law. He joined FFRF as a staff attorney in July 2010, after working part-time for the Foundation since February. Patrick is a member of the State Bar of Wisconsin, and is admitted to practice in the United States District Court for the Western and Eastern Districts of Wisconsin.

ANDREW SEIDEL graduated cum laude from Tulane University with a B.S. in neuroscience and environmental science and magna cum laude from Tulane University Law School, where he was awarded the Haber J. McCarthy Award for excellence in environmental law. He studied human rights and international law at the University of Amsterdam and traveled the world on Semester at Sea. In May of 2011, Andrew completed his Master of Laws at Denver University Sturm College of Law with a 4.0 GPA and was awarded the Outstanding L.L.M. Award. He has written a book on International Human Rights Law and his essay on the role of religion in government and the founding of our nation placed second in the FFRF's 2010 graduate student essay contest. Andrew is a former Grand Canyon tour guide and accomplished nature photographer; his work has been displayed in galleries in Colorado, Texas, Florida, Louisiana, and Maryland. He joined the FFRF staff as a constitutional consultant in November 2011.

ELIZABETH CAVELL received her B.A in English from the University of Florida in 2005. After college, Elizabeth spent a year as a full-time volunteer in AmeriCorps*NCCC. She attended Tulane University Law School and received her Juris Doctor in 2009. After law school, she worked as a deputy public defender in southern Colorado. She joined the Foundation as a staff attorney in January 2013, after working for the Foundation part-time since September 2012.

SAM GROVER received his B.A. in philosophy and government from Wesleyan University in 2008. He first worked for FFRF in 2010 as a legal intern while attending Boston University School of Law. In 2011, his article on the religious exemptions in the Affordable Care Act’s individual health insurance mandate was published in the American Journal of Law and Medicine. After receiving his J.D. from Boston University in 2012, Sam worked as a law clerk for the Vermont Office of Legislative Council where he drafted legislation on health care, human services, and tax issues. He returned to work as a constitutional consultant for FFRF in the fall of 2013. Sam has written a paper on counterterrorism and the law that was published by the Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism in Oklahoma City and has traveled to southern Africa to work under Justice Unity Dow of Botswana’s High Court.

KATHERINE PAIGE graduated magna cum laude from Wichita State University in 2010 with a B.A. in History, Political Science, and French. She attended law school at the College of William & Mary where she received her Juris Doctor in 2014. Katherine became FFRF’s first Legal Fellow in September 2014, specializing in faith-based government funding.

MADELINE ZIEGLER graduated magna cum laude from the University of Wisconsin – La Crosse in 2011 with a B.A. in English Literature and Political Science. She attended the University of Wisconsin Law School and received her Juris Doctor in 2014. She has worked at FFRF since May 2012, starting as a legal intern/extern, and currently works as a law clerk and legal publicist.

CALLAHAN MILLER graduated with honors from the University of Wisconsin — Madison in 2014 with a B.A. in Sociology and Legal Studies and a certificate in Criminal Justice.  She received a Distinction in the Major for Legal Studies and is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and Alpha Kappa Delta.  For the majority of her time as an undergraduate, she was a leading member of UW’s ground-breaking Atheists, Humanists, and Agnostics student organization.  She joined the FFRF team as an official staff member in January of 2015 after having previously been an intern and intends on going to law school herself in a few years.

FFRF Staff

JACKIE DOUGLAS is the office manager at the Foundation. She graduated in 2002 from the University of Wisconsin-Stout in Human Development and Family Services. Jackie is happily married, owns a home on the east side of Madison, and has a black cat named Lucky.

BILL DUNN is the editor of Freethought Today. He has a degree in history and mass communications (journalism emphasis) from the University of South Dakota and has worked as a reporter, copy editor and editor in South Dakota and Wisconsin since 1980. Bill joined the Foundation staff in July 2009. He has two daughters, Kaitlin Marie and Jamie Lee.

LAURYN SEERING is the publicist & assistant webmaster. She was born in Wausau, Wis. and has also lived in Nagasaki, Japan. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Stout in 2012 with her B.S. in Professional Communications and Emerging Media, concentrating in Technical Communication and International Studies. She also received a double minor in Journalism and English. Lauryn moved to Madison in January 2013 and enjoys reading about astrophysics, basking in the sun like a turtle and creating art at coffee shops. Lauryn is a practicing Pastafarian

JAKE SWENSON started as FFRF’s first graphic designer in 2015. He was born in Rockford, Illinois, and graduated with a degree in fine art from the University of Wisconsin–Stevens Point. He enjoys music, cycling, photography, traveling, and coffee.

LISA TREU is our Director Of First Impressions at FFRF.  She comes to us after working in broadcasting for iHeart Radio in Madison, Wisconsin.  She hosted various radio programs for fifteen years.  Lisa and her husband ran their own Birdhouse/Birdfeeder manufacturing company called Northwoods Mfg., Inc. during the 1990’s where she had her own line of decorative birdhouses that she designed and painted herself.  Lisa is the wife of Harry and is the mother of twin daughters Katrina and Karinthia.  In her spare time she enjoys reading, painting, gardening, feeding the birds, getting silly with her daughters and lounging with her two cats.

ELEANOR MCENTEE has over a decade of experience as a nonprofit bookkeeper and is very dedicated to nonprofit organizations.  In her free time, she journals, spends time with her cats Steven and MacNcheez, and rides her Harley all over Wisconsin and more!

FFRF Honorary Board

honoraryboardmembers

The Freedom From Religion Foundation is delighted to announce the formation of a new FFRF Honorary Board of distinguished achievers who have made known their dissent from religion.

The FFRF Honorary Board includes Jerry Coyne, Robin Morgan, Richard Dawkins, Daniel C. Dennett, Ernie Harburg, Jennifer Michael Hecht, Christopher Hitchens, Susan Jacoby, Mike Newdow, Katha Pollitt, Steven Pinker, Ron Reagan, Oliver Sacks, M.D., Robert Sapolsky, Edward Sorel and Julia Sweeney.

“We are so pleased that these outstanding thinkers and freethinkers have agreed to publicly lend their endorsement to the Foundation, and its two purposes of promoting freethought and the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause,” said Dan Barker, Foundation co-president.

  • Jerry Coyne, Ph.D., professor of ecology and evolution at the University of Chicago, is author of the popular book 'Why Evolution is True' and the blog of the same name.
  • Richard Dawkins, probably the world’s most famous contemporary atheist and a distinguished evolutionary biologist, is Oxford professor emeritus. In his blockbuster book, The God Delusion, Dawkins writes: “The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction.”
  • Daniel C. Dennett is Austin B. Fletcher Professor of Philosophy, Tufts, and author of the bestselling book about religion, Breaking the Spell. In a newspaper article about his nonbelief, Dennett once wrote: “I’ve come to realize it’s time to sound the alarm.”
  • Rebecca Newberger Goldstein, author of 36 Arguments For the Existence of God: A Work of Fiction and a research associate in Harvard’s psychology department, is FFRF Freethought Heroine of 2011. Goldstein is a 1996 MacArthur Fellow (the “genius” award). She has taught at Barnard and in the Columbia MFA writing program and the Rutgers philosophy department. She’s been a visiting scholar at Brandeis and at Trinity College in Hartford.
  • Ernie Harburg, a retired research scientist, is president of Yip Harburg Foundation and co-author of Who Put the Rainbow in the Wizard of Oz? Ernie has dedicated his retirement to furthering the lyrics, music, memory and progressive views of his freethinking father, the lyricist Yip Harburg, author of classic songs such as “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” and of Rhymes for the Irreverent, recently republished by FFRF.
  • Jennifer Michael Hecht, poet, historian and author of the acclaimed Doubt: A History and The End of the Soul, told the FFRF 2009 convention audience: “If there is no god — and there isn't — then we [humans] made up morality. And I'm very impressed.”
  • Susan Jacoby, bestselling author of Freethinkers: A History of American Secularism, and program director of the Center for Inquiry-New York City, told FFRF convention-goers in 2004: "[President] Kennedy had to speak about his religion because he was suspected of insufficient dedication to the Constitution's separation of church and state. Today's candidates are suspect if they display too much dedication to secular government."
  • Robin Morgan, feminist pioneer, global activist, author of the groundbreaking "Sisterhood is Powerful" and more than 20 books, was formerly Ms. Magazine editor and consulting editor. She is the co-founder of the Feminist Women's Health Network and Women's Media Center and currently hosts "Women's Media Center Live" the radio "talk-show with a brain."
  • Mike Newdow is working pro bono to challenge such violations as the addition of “under God” to the Pledge of Allegiance. He told the U.S. Supreme Court during oral arguments: “I am an atheist. I don't believe in God. And every school morning my child is asked to stand up, face that flag, put her hand over her heart, and say that her father is wrong.”
  • Steven Pinker, Johnstone Professor of Psychology, Harvard, is author of The Blank Slate: “I never outgrew my conversion to atheist at 13.”
  • Katha Pollitt, “Subject to Debate” columnist for The Nation, author and poet, has spoken out regularly and energetically as a freethinker, in such columns as “Freedom From Religion, Sí!”
  • Ron Reagan, media commentator, describes himself in a radio ad he taped for FFRF as: “Unabashed atheist, not afraid of burning in hell.”
  • Oliver Sacks, M.D., the compassionate neurologist and bestselling author, describes himself as “an old Jewish atheist.”
  • Robert Sapolsky, a neurologist, Stanford professor and bestselling author, once suggested FFRF put up a sign at its conventions: “Welcome, hellbound atheists.”
  • Edward Sorel, satiric cartoonist and irreverent illustrator who is a regular contributor to The Atlantic, The New Yorker, and whose caricatures have been exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery, has been a Foundation member since the 1980s.
  • Julia Sweeney, comedian and actress, is writer/performer of the play, “Letting Go of God”: “How dare the religious use the term 'born again.' That truly describes freethinkers who've thrown off the shackles of religion so much better!”

In Memoriam 

  • Christopher Hitchens, the iconoclastic journalist, is author of the bestselling God Is Not Great: “Since it is obviously inconceivable that all religions can be right, the most reasonable conclusion is that they are all wrong.”

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