Imagine World Without Religion?
We've all heard the famous song by John Lennon "Imagine." We all watched the classic movie "It's a Wonderful Life" probably several times during the Christmas season. I recently saw the documentary by Dinesh D'Sousa "America: Imagine a World Without Her." What do they have in common? They share a common theme of "What If?" It is a powerful way to illustrate the value of some concept when they are missed. That is the premise of this hub. I want to list some of the things that will not exist if there is no religion. I'll leave it to each individual to decide whether it is positive or negative. For me, I believe Religion is a necessary institution for the survival of civilization. That is my personal bias. I'm open to thoughtful comments and opposing opinions. Peace be with you.
List of Non-Existence
Suppose you had a magic wand and you can make things disappear. Just for fun, you decided to remove Religion for the world. Perhaps you believe it's the source of so many conflicts and sufferings in this world. By making it go away, all will be better. But before you go ahead, I hope you will consider what also must disappear if Religion goes. Here is a list probably not comprehensive but will illustrate my point. Just as George Bailey was made to realize what would happen if he never lived in "It's a Wonderful Life."
The following will not exist if Religion is gone. I am using the Christian religion to illustrate my points but some similar arguments can be made for all the major religions around the world.
- The Holy Bible will not exist. The most printed books of all times approx. 6 billion copies.
- All religious music including Gospel music genre and many classical music that was inspired by God. Not to mention the best selling record of all times "White Christmas" which sold over 50 million copies.
- All religious themed artworks including paintings, sculptures, artifacts and relics. The "Last Supper" by da Vinci will not exist.
- No churches and Cathedrals and the infamous Sistine Chapel no more.
- No religious themed books including works by C S Lewis.
- No religious films.
- No more religious holidays - Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving... and all the associated pageantry.
- No more Saints to be role models for our young.
- No 10 Commandments and no more 7 Deadly Sins. What is a sin?
- No religious Universities including many Ivy League schools.
- No more teaching of parables. The Prodigal Son will return no more.
- No more missionaries and Catholic charities. One of the largest charities with billions of dollars to help the sick and the poor around the world will exist no more.
- No moral authority and no more "In God We Trust" on our money.
- No prayers such as the "Serenity Prayer" will have no meaning.
- No prophets to guide us.
- No Heaven or Hell or salvation.
- No room for miracles and the supernatural.
- Perhaps even no America as we know it. "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator..." - Declaration of Independence.
I want to address those who are atheists and humanist. You are mistaken if you believe Religion is your enemy. Some of the most kind and generous people I know are religious. They are peaceful and just want to be left alone. They have strong beliefs and are confident. They believe in justice and redemption. They are forgiving and loving. We can disagree on social issues and leave it up to the elected officials and the courts to decide. Our focus should be on countering tyrants and despots around the world. They are the human leaders that are causing the most damage and destruction. If you want to know what happens when religion is gone, just look back to history. Communist Russia and China was Godless for almost 70 years - 2 generations. See what happens as a result to a society that do not allow the believe in a higher power. Be careful what you wish for.
Finally, in response to Christopher Hitchen's challenge. "I challenge you to find one good or noble thing which cannot be accomplished without religion." My answer is the American experiment. We could not be the nation we are today without a religious foundation. I include the following quote from Alexis de Tourquville.
Some Related Links
- JOHN LENNON LYRICS - Imagine
Lyrics to "Imagine" song by JOHN LENNON: Imagine there's no heaven It's easy if you try No hell below us Above us only sky Imagine all the pe...