Thursday, July 16, 2009

Irrelevance and Morality

The question of Morality™ is viewed in the Christian apologist books I have read as the quintessential reason for religion. They essentially attempt to make morality a trademark of religion, as if before religion there was no morality. Never mind that many disparate religions have the same morality, that is not relevant. And never mind any of the other completely rational dismissals of this presented in the New Atheist literature, those especially are not relevant as they are seeds of the Devil.

Be real. Morality really comes down to common sense. The golden rule is sheer common sense. If that does not make sense to you (and I do admit common sense is not as common as many would have you believe), if you still feel the need for guiding principles in life, I have the following rule to guide you through the maze of religious morality: Any time you see a moral code/fable/law/etc., switch God/Bible/Mohammad/Buddha/etc. with Easter Bunny. If it still makes sense, most likely it is a good example of morality.

Take the ten commandments as an example (if this list of ten commandments does not exactly match your particular religious sect, you have my insincere apology). The revised version is as follows:
  1. The Easter Bunny says you shall have no other gods before me (pretty arrogant of the EB and completely pointless)
  2. The Easter Bunny says you shall not use The Easter Bunny's name in vein (Easter Bunny dammit! What is the harm in that? It's actually really funny and would immediately lighten your mood.)
  3. The Easter Bunny says remember the Sabbath and keep it holy (complete nonsense)
  4. The Easter Bunny says honor your father and mother (seems reasonable and rational)
  5. The Easter Bunny says you shall not murder (again, perfectly reasonable)
  6. The Easter Bunny says you shall not commit adultery (probably a good idea if you want to stay married)
  7. The Easter Bunny says you shall not steal (straight forward)
  8. The Easter Bunny says you shall not bear false witness against your neighbor (lying, definitely not a good idea)
  9. The Easter Bunny says you shall not covet your neighbor's wife (sort of a repeat of 6, but whatever)
  10. The Easter Bunny says you shall not covet anything that belongs to your neighbor (you mean like wishing you could steal from him?)
Without question, by following only those that pass the Easter Bunny test, you would live a moral life. And you could do so without the crutch of religion. Unless you count the worship of the Easter Bunny as a religion, which I don't, its more of a hobby really.

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