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Imagine there's no religion

Updated on March 1, 2017
Austinstar profile image

Lela earned a B.A. degree in Journalism from Sam Houston University in Huntsville, TX. She has been writing for the online world for years.

One of the most beautiful songs ever written...

The lyrics of John Lennon's song are so very profound that few people can "get" the message. My wish, if I had one that would come true in my lifetime is that there would be no religion.

We do not need religion. It was invented as a way to explain things that early man could not understand. Just like many early cultures, reading, writing and counting numbers was considered magical. Growing crops was something we couldn't control for hundreds, maybe thousands of years. Even leaving the sanctity of the caves was inconceivable at one time.

Religion started slowly, just like learning to read and write and count. Lightning hit a tree and created fire. It came from out of "nowhere", but it was good and man learned to use the fire, but he had to conceive of a way for fire to just "appear" out of nothing or out of the sky.

Our early brains had no knowledge of electricity, chemistry, the power of the written word (communication) and other mysterious natural things. Early man relied on trial and error to figure things out and when he couldn't imagine how things worked, he just conceived of a "higher power" like lightning bolts that explained what he could not.

Eventually, these conceptions became beliefs and religion was invented along with everything else we discovered in our world.

The Earth Today


Imagine there's no countries...

Imagine one great big gigantic world with all kinds of wonderful mysterious things in it! We really shouldn't have countries. We all live on the same planet, breathe the same air, get born, die and spend our lives trying to survive as best we can.

This is who, what, when, where, why and how we live. We are wonderful creatures! We have a fantastic planet to live on! We have come so very far from living in caves and worshiping fire! Or some god or gods in the sky or in the bowels of the earth. We have everything we need.

We don't even need to imagine the future, it will happen without us. We don't need to imagine the "afterlife". It will happen regardless of what we do or say today. The planet will soon be so crowded that we will have to eliminate the borders of countries. We will consume the Earth! Someday there will be no differences between us, we will all just be "human". Imagine that!

Imagine no possessions...

Possessions are "things" that people "own". These things are temporary at best. You are not born with "things". You are part of the Earth when you are born.

Things are what people fight over! Things are what separate us. Things are fun to have, but they do not last, they do not make you a better person. They do not think for you.

Imagine being paralyzed from the neck down. What are possessions going to do for you? You will certainly not be able to fight to keep your possessions. You will just be a human in a shell. Well, guess what. That is what we are in reality. We are just a human in a skin. We don't need possessions. We may only live a short time without food, clothing, and shelter, but that is all we really need and when you take those things away from others, you are harming them, your fellow humans.

As far as religion goes, you do not need it. It doesn't feed you, clothe you or shelter you. It's just some imaginary wish to understand "why" we are here and "where" we go when we cease being a human in a skin. You do not need to "possess" a god or gods for that.

Professor Richard Dawkins

Richard Dawkins
Richard Dawkins | Source

Imagine there's no religion...

You will be free to really understand your world.

You will be free to live and control your life.

You will be free to love your fellow humans even if they are "different" than you.

You will be free to share the planet with everyone.

You will be free to govern yourself and your family without some imaginary, ancient "god" telling you what to do, how to do it, when to do it, with whom you can associate, etc...

You will be free of the fear of being punished just for being born.

You will be free of the mind control of organized religion.

You will be free to live your life and allow others to live their lives!

You will be free to stop killing others over possessions.

You can imagine a life without judgment and jealousy and sin.

You can imagine whatever you want to. You are free to do so.

You will be free.

Better off without religion?

© 2011 Lela


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  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 4 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    No, I am not.

  • Joseph O Polanco profile image

    Joseph O Polanco 4 years ago

    So you're not claiming that the world would be better off if everyone were Atheist?

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 4 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    Joseph O Polanco - there are so many things wrong with your comment that I could expound on it for the rest of my life.

    Is the whole thing a quote? It appears to be more than one quote with some opinions thrown in.

    All I can say in this context that you are entitled to your opinion, but it does not appear to have any bearing on this hub.

  • Joseph O Polanco profile image

    Joseph O Polanco 4 years ago

    Correct me if I'm wrong but weren't Danton, Lenin, Sanger, Than Shwe, Stalin, Mengele, Mao, Kim Il Sung, Ceausescu, Honecker, Castro, Pol Pot, Broz Tito, Milosevic, Bonaparte and Mussolini oppressive, sadistic, democidal atheists who, collectively, butchered ***hundreds of millions*** of helpless men, women and little children?

    “It was Dostoevsky, once again, who drew from the French Revolution and its seeming hatred of the Church the lesson that "revolution must necessarily begin with atheism." That is absolutely true. But the world had never before known a godlessness as organized, militarized, and tenaciously malevolent as that practiced by Marxism.

    Within the philosophical system of Marx and Lenin, and at the heart of their psychology, hatred of God is the principal driving force, more fundamental than all their political and economic pretensions. Militant atheism is not merely incidental or marginal to Communist policy; it is not a side effect, but the central pivot.”

    ― Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

  • profile image

    God is dead. 6 years ago

    I truly believe that God is dead. This post was very informative useful. Keep up the good work.

    Regards (:

  • lone77star profile image

    Rod Martin Jr 6 years ago from Cebu, Philippines


    I agree that John Lennon's song was beautiful and contained a powerful sentiment.

    No countries? Great. Nothing to kill or die for. I like that. No selfishness. No me versus you. No outsiderness.

    No possessions? Nothing to protect or lust after or fight over. Great!

    And no religion? I agree with you that some religion was created to explain things and did a very poor job of it, but you miss a very big other reason -- our spiritual nature.


    Science is doing a bang up job explaining reality and anyone who ignores the fruits of science would be entertaining delusion.

    The reason most people cannot see their spiritual half is because of selfishness -- what we sometimes call "ego." This is the attitude that I'm right and you're wrong. This is the lack of humility which frequently trips up scientists.


    You see, skepticism was originally intended as a guard against falling for the easiest, most obvious conclusion. Physical reality is rarely that simple and often, richly complex (wonderfully so). Skepticism was a protection against bias. But alas, it has a built-in bias of doubt. For all physical phenomena, doubt works just fine. For anything spiritual or paranormal, doubt is the water pissed on the fire they're trying to study. Not very bright.

    And too frequently, skepticism descends into the darker forms of unsupported dismissiveness (the scientist saying, I already know better, so I don't have to research this like I do any peer-reviewed subject), and self-indulgent ridicule (like the childish ranting of some scientists after NASA researchers found arsenic-friendly microbes).


    How could scientists fall into such bad habits? Ego. It is, after all, an equal-opportunity destroyer. Nearly everyone has it, except for the religious few with sufficient humility.

    This kind of scientific madness held sway over North American anthropology for a few decades with the "Clovis first" dogma. Scientists feared digging below the Clovis horizon. It looked a lot like the "religion" you despise so much. That's because religion is not the problem. Ego is.

    Can science get rid of ego? Absolutely not.

    Can religion? No way, Jose.

    Only the individual can do this, but religion is supposed to help. And I'm not talking about primitive animism or cultural myth, like the Greek pantheon. I'm talking the spiritual enlightenment of Gautama Siddhartha, the in-born state of Yehoshua of Nazareth and likely dozens of other individuals nameless to history. Even Scientology has its value in opening up the doors to spiritual awareness.

    No religion? Some don't fulfill the promise of religion and should be discarded. But the mission for spiritual awakening has not yet been fulfilled. We still need religion, though we can help remove some of the warts that ego has installed in them.

  • dswan9 profile image

    dswan9 7 years ago from Amsterdam and London

    Peace is possible we just need to believe it ourselves and when ready put it into action. society is not quite developed enough yet for peace on earth.

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    So many have sung this song. And the number is growing. Lennon started a trend and made people think.

  • FCEtier profile image

    Chip 7 years ago from Cold Mountain

    My wife and I were shocked to discover that Dolly Parton covered "Imagine" !

  • profile image

    David Swan 7 years ago

    God is Dead ! God is Dead !

    That's what he said to me

    And Religion is a shadow

    And the waves come crashing down

    I believe God exists but I do not need religion to express it. My God is the god of everything, it sits comfortably alongside science. Science through Physics can see the nature of God, through Religion we can experience the nature of God.

    But then us human beings and are dysfunctional minds twist and turn the notion about what God is to suit our own tastes our own weaknesses, and you get this knee jerk reactionary madness we call Religion today.

    I hope we will naturally start to wake up and slowly let go of this organized religious bullshit and start to think and feel for ourselves.

    Supercool Hub

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    Hello PTP! Without idealism, we have nothing to shoot for, right? Just a thought.

    I do hope we evolve into better people someday. It's going to be awesome if we do. Qwark is a deep thinker, although a bit on the pessimistic side to my optimism.

  • PieterTheProphet profile image

    PieterTheProphet 7 years ago

    Hello Austinstar I've been meaning to read some of your stuff and I am glad I picked this one. Idealistic..very much so and that's a good thing. Idealism is very much a part of human nature and I would suggest one of the reasons religion thrives in our species. An enlightenment moment also seems to be required..especially by our prophets, saints, what have you. Unfortunately, enlightenment only lasts for a moment and then it's just talk. That's where religion goes wrong. I think qwark is right in that we would almost have to be a different species altogether to find our way out of religious bigotry, but idealism continues to save us from ourselves.

    John Lennon's Imagine continues to be a great example of how that idealism thing works.

  • fucsia profile image

    fucsia 7 years ago

    I love this song, I love this Hub! The message is: freedom!! A great idea and a great page... Thanks!!

  • RealHousewife profile image

    Kelly Umphenour 7 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Again Austinstar - you echo my thoughts! You are very courageous to bring this up! I tried to make a bit of a connection to this very topic while I did not want to offend others. As an Indian - I respect mother earth so to speak. I they best showed how to praise what brought them good and fear what seemed to cause the unknown.

    Secondly, when I hear news about immigration laws - it makes me cringe inside. Who is to say where one human may tread and not another?

    It reminds me how divided too - the UNITED States really are. That is sad.

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    This lady must have good insurance. I have seen doctors encourage the family to "hope for a miracle", that is until the insurance won't pay anymore. After that they encourage the family to let their loved ones move on to "heaven". Such a joke.

    But again, the joke is on the religionists for believing in miracles in the first place. What is up with that?

    When my mom fell and broke her leg, I knew she would never walk again and that she would be dead in 6 months or less. I had to fight off all kinds of treatments recommended by her doctors. They wanted to do a stress test, an endocarotomy, a mammogram for crissakes. Then towards the end they wanted to insert the feeding tube. I told my sister that yes, modern medicine could keep her going for years with a feeding tube and respirator and whatever. I insisted she sign a Do Not Resuscitate Order and give her comfort meds only. If she wants to eat, she will. If she doesn't, then that means she's ready to go.

    She stopped eating and went peacefully in her sleep, probably helped along with some pain pills.

    Why is it that we encourage childbirth, but can't encourage end stages? And the religionists should never even want to hang around, they're going to a better place, right?

    Oh man, if I had end stage dementia, I hope to hell someone lets me go. Don't feed the vegetables!

  • profile image

    AKA Winston 7 years ago

    I am aware of a fundamentalist family that is considering having a PEG tube for feeding placed into their 90-ish mother who has end-stage dementia because they don't want to deprive her of a miracle if god is going to "bring her back."

    I don't object to someone holding out hope for the impossible if it involves tragedy or sudden injury, but this is ridiculous. The woman has a progressive disease that is following its natural course and she is so advanced in the disease that at this point having this surgery would be like putting a feeding tube into a carrot in hopes that god might make a vegetable human.

    This has nothing to do with any possibility for a reversal of the disease process but has only to do with wasting valuable medical resources chasing a delusion.

    As is always the case, the god concept does nothing to help but instead creates a dichotomy that does not naturally exist. Without the hope of a miracle, there is no choice. And the hope for a miracle is baseless. So all it does is exacerbate the grief, stress, and suffering this family has to endure.

    And they brought on themselves by believing a delusion.

    Imagine that.

  • SUSIE DUZY profile image

    SUSIE DUZY 7 years ago from Delray Beach, Florida

    Love that song and I agree with all it says.

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    You know it's like symbols and flags are really used to indicate "god". I've noticed lately that many symbols are related and they are almost universally used to "gather" people together for a cause. Just like religion in general.

  • Rod Marsden profile image

    Rod Marsden 7 years ago from Wollongong, NSW, Australia

    Austinstar, there's not much to see in the desert and I believe that is one reason for the development of the one God.

    One of the earliest names for the one God of the Hebrews begins with a W and sounds to me very much like the wind moving through sand.

    In Egypt a man of the royal line who became Pharaoh was not treated very well by the priests or even his own family in his early years. When he took the throne and came to rule over the two kingdoms he decided not to worship the Theban Gods but to worship one God only, the Sun God. The symbol of this God is the ankh. The ankh is a type of cross.

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    Hi Winston. Yes, there were some tribes in the Americas that did human sacrifice, but they never claimed the victims were the very son of God (or gods as the case is for the Aztecs)

    The Northern American tribes including the Inuits and the N.A. Plains Native Americans did not practice ritual human sacrifice that I am aware of. They did offer the dead up for grabs on the funeral pyres as did the India Indians.

    The biggest difference that I see between the Western hemisphere and the Eastern hemisphere is the "one god" concept. As far as I know, the Western hemisphere evolved with gods to explain wind, rain, lightning, the seasons, women's issues, gods of war, etc... They invented the gods as they went along.

    The middle east just got tired of inventing gods for this and gods for that and just rolled them all into one package. That wasn't always the case, they started out with multiple gods to explain fertility, the earth, air, wind, and fire, etc.

    I have no idea where the concept of sacrifice even came from. There's really nothing in nature to explain why killing your first born male child will bring favor from a god. Or cutting off the tip of a penis is some sort of special "branding" for a god's favor.

    It's all pretty weird stuff when you really think about it.

  • Rod Marsden profile image

    Rod Marsden 7 years ago from Wollongong, NSW, Australia

    Jean, John was the Beatle who strove to do more with the music than just entertain. He wanted to enlighten and to inform. He was an idealist and wanted to right great wrongs. I remember the sleep in and how he helped out the hippy peace movement in the USA. He wasn't a hypocrite. If anything he was naïve. Yes, a pity he was murdered by a 'fan'.

    I also remember that when the Beatles broke up John went into doing some pretty weird experiments with sound. I guess he wanted to push forward the boundaries of what we think of as acceptable in music. Of course he could of just been having fun. Ultimately he will be remembered for Imagine if nothing else.

  • Jean Bakula profile image

    Jean Bakula 7 years ago from New Jersey

    Hi AustinStar,

    I get tired of all the religion people are pushing on Hubpages, I'm surprised it's allowed. I figure "live and let live" but don't like being preached to.

    As far as The Beatles (your topic before it was highjacked by religious extremists) I had crushes on all of them. Of course, Paul was the cute one, but I don't think he's aging well. I guess that Heather Mills woman really hurt him, he really seemed like he always wanted and needed to be a family man. I loved George when he was spiritual, and do indeed feel that I am a spiritual person, I try to treat others with respect and believe there is some kind of Universal Energy. But that's all. Spiritual is as far as I go. I have come to appreciate Ringo, I was looking at some old pics, he's the only one with blue eyes and that puppy dog expression, so lovable. And I think John was the intellectual, adore the way he went through stages, as we all do. I don't think he was a hypocrite. It's a pity that he was murdered in New York, when he loved it so much.

  • profile image

    AKA Winston 7 years ago

    The Aztecs sacrificed humans

    Jesus was a human sacrifice

    And the difference between human sacrifice and human sacrifice is....

  • akirchner profile image

    Audrey Kirchner 7 years ago from Washington

    One of my favorites, Lela - I'm not a John Lennon mega fan but I think this song says SOOO much!

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    Hi Merlin. Well the best we can do is put the information out there and eventually it will take root. Not in those with closed minds, but rather in those that are oppressed by religion and unreasonable doctrines.

    The pope can never admit that birth control is needed or wanted, but the vatican did crack just a tiny bit last year by saying the use of condoms could prevent disease.

    The religious folk need to save face somehow. They can't just up and admit one day that for their whole lives they've been lied to and deceived. But some day they will find "divine" guidance to give up the most damaging of practices I hope.

  • Merlin Fraser profile image

    Merlin Fraser 7 years ago from Cotswold Hills

    Hi Austinstar,

    Keeping in touch I noticed Rods' question; "Is education an answer? I hope so. I hope there is an answer."

    The unfortunate answer to his plea is NO! Because you cannot educate a closed mind and for all their protestation to the contrary the Religious mind is very firmly closed.

    You only need to look at the Forums here on HubPages to see that. True, in part, many of them may be from the more Evangelical wing of the God Squad Bible Belt who wouldn’t recognise the truth if it jumped up and bit them, but not all.

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    Hi Rod! I should add all those freedoms to my list! No joke. I sometimes wonder why those women don't rebel as we have when we didn't even have a vote in the U.S.

    I can't believe Muslim men will actually beat or stone a woman to death for showing her face. What a crock. Religion did this to those women. What shocks me the most is that the women encourage it in their daughters and continue to perpetuate the myth that women were made to be subservient and kept hidden away. But that is what they were taught and it is all they know.

    I've just been reading about the Greek occupation of the holy land at about 184 B.C.E. and the Jews were told to stop circumcising their sons on pain of death. The Jews refused and were also outraged at the Greeks for their "nakedness" and their belief that Antiochus was a god in human form. (Sound familiar Christians?) They preferred to be martyrs for their invisible YHWH with a name they couldn't even pronounce.

    Because Yahwey had made a "covenant" with the Jews they absolutely could not stop mutilating their 8 day old infants to save their own squalid lives. They could kiss the pig alright, but stop cutting the tips of their penisis off they could not do.

    What kind of weird god would require his "chosen" people to suffer so much? They said God loved the Jews the most. He put them through trials to make them stronger and better. It's all horse hockey!

    Jews, Africans, Native Americans, whatever, we're all humans and there is no God that "loves" one race or religion over the other. To believe these things is total disrespect for whoever is not in your "club". It's just a way for preists/preachers/rabbis/ali babba or whoever to CONTROL you!

    People will rebel and overthrow governments that try to control everything and botch up the job. Why won't they rebel against religion with its sole purpose of controlling people? Some Rabbi or "angel" or someone promised the Jews that they were SPECIAL and if they kept cutting off the tips of their sons peepee, they would be God's chosen people forever. Who kept repeating this nonsense? Why?

    Sure it had a health reason at one point, but even that is debatable. Eating pork in hot climates has a health risk, but it's not a religious risk! All of the laws of Deuteronomy and Leviticus had reasons at the time. But that time is way past and people really need to wake up!

    I could go on and on, but it's been hacked to death and the religions still keep metaphorically cutting off their members' penis to prove that their religion is the REAL thing!

    Perhaps if they are so willing to be sheep then they should not complain when they are slaughtered and made fun of.

    I don't get it and I never will.

  • Rod Marsden profile image

    Rod Marsden 7 years ago from Wollongong, NSW, Australia

    Austinstar, Lennon's song Imagine was a favorite with my mother. It has been a favorite of mine for some years too.

    Countries with their borders remain a necessary evil I am afraid. To a great extent this has to do with religion. People don't all want to live or feel they can live the same way and there are culture clashes that do continually turn violent.

    A few years go the Dutch in order to avoid violence made a film for prospective migrants. They outlined the fact that they were a western style country not likely to change their ways and that anyone who cannot stand the sight of women with uncovered faces who wear mini-skirts and bikinis in the warmer months should think twice about migrating.

    I think the same should be said for both Australia and New Zealand. Women in both countries have freedoms not found elsewhere. I am for keeping these freedoms. There is the freedom shared by western women to dress as they will including not having a husband or father tell them how they should dress. There is the freedom not to have unnecessary operations in the name of some God or religion or just to keep the men folk happy. There is being entitled to the same educational standards as the males in the family. There is the right to leave the house without a male escort. There is the right to drive a car and also to have a separate bank account from husband or father.

    In terms of population growth the West and countries like Japan, South Korea and, to some extent, Red China are doing basically the right thing. What about the places in the world where population is still skyrocketing because of age old religious beliefs and people just plain not in the know to be aware of what they are doing to themselves and the planet will end in catastrophe for all? In 1964 the pope of the day had the opportunity to support contraceptive methods that actually do work but he dropped the ball. What's more, the present day pope and the one before that were and are so conservative they do create a big problem if we wish to curb world population.

    A world without countries or countries without borders? Right now they are both pipe dreams as the countries with great lifestyles struggle to keep what they have. They say future wars will be fought over clean drinking water and food. As the world population gets ,more and more out of control I can see how this is going to come about.

    Is education an answer? I hope so. I hope there is an answer.

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    The only label I really lay claim to is "human". My motto is - Reality is Normality.

    Thank you for the kind words mysterylady 89! I would like to see the better world some day.

  • mysterylady 89 profile image

    mysterylady 89 7 years ago from Florida

    Someone accused you of being an idealist. Of course, you are! You also are a realist as you point out some of the problems facing humanity. It is good to have a dream of a better world. That is why John Lennon's song is so powerful.

    Rated up and beautiful.

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    Excellent point Russell!

    You know, if you give a child a toy he will play with that toy and not try figure out the cosmic origin of the thing. He will just thoroughly enjoy the toy. Well, most kids anyway. We've been given the world and instead of enjoying the world, for some of us there is no way to enjoy it. That's just sad.

    Religions teach us to want "more". They prey on people's fears of losing what they have. I still can't believe people will give up everything to a church in exchange for nothing but vague promises.

    I'm not just talking about possessions here. Some religions want everything you possess and then they want your very soul (whatever that is). If one is never satisfied with what they have, then they are never satisfied at all.

    The church wants to profit materially. They can only take from those that want "more" in their lives. The ironic thing is that the people and even the churches don't need it.

  • Russell-D profile image

    Russell-D 7 years ago from Southern Ca.

    From my earliest days, my mother who died 3 years, 4 months short of 100, insisted religion is at the heart of all the world's ills. Religious group A, urged on by those who profit by their deeds, attacks religious group B, urged on by those who profit by their deeds... for an incident that may or may not have occurred thousands of years ago, kept alive by the religious profiteers. Give something to the poor and they're your friend until someone else has a better offer. I hope the kids make it a better world. David Russell

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    I always see religion as a crutch. It's an excuse to avoid whatever you wish to avoid. It's an excuse to explain whatever you do not understand. The lack of religion may also be an excuse for megalomaniacs. Humans do have an affinity for corrupting everything they touch. I agree that the world would be better off without humans. But we are here and we really do need to get our act together. Religion tends to divide humans and we would be better off over all if we either ignore it or eliminate it. We would also be better off if we eliminated our reliance on possessions. It's not just religion.

  • tmbridgeland profile image

    tmbridgeland 7 years ago from Small Town, Illinois

    AKA Winston, I must respectfully disagree. It is not hard to find direct causation between their atheistic worldview and the slaughters they perpetrated. However I will not debate this with you here. Either, I will write my own Hub and invite you to comment, or wait for your next relevant hub to comment. I don't intend to disrespect Austinstar by taking over her comment section on a tangent.

    AUstinstar, it isn't hard to imagine such a world, but it would not be one populated by human beings.

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    A few bad apples will always spoil the entire barrel, no matter whether religion is or is not present. It may not be possible for a one world harmonious people to share the planet. In fact, I would go so far as to say it is quite impossible.

    But just to be able to imagine such a world is a huge accomplishment for our brains. That is the message of the song.

  • profile image

    AKA Winston 7 years ago

    (Consider Stalin's purges, the Khmer Rouge genocide, Mao's mass slaughters. All done by atheists)


    You are confusing causation with correlation. While there is a meaningless correlation between these slaughters and an atheist totalitarianism, the cause of these slaughters was not atheism. After all, My Lai was done by American soldiers, hardly a bastion of atheistic fervor. No, the cause of the slaughters you name was political ideology embraced with the same fervor and devotion as a religion.

    On the other hand, the Inquisition was caused by the religious belief itself. There were no atheists in the torture chambers.

  • tmbridgeland profile image

    tmbridgeland 7 years ago from Small Town, Illinois

    Mindless adherence to religion can bring out the worst in people, certainly, but a lack of religion is no better. Consider Stalin's purges, the Khmer Rouge genocide, Mao's mass slaughters. All done by atheists. Merely removing religion isn't going to change human nature. The 20th Century demonstrated quite horribly what happens when evil atheists run things. (Not saying atheists are any more evil on average than the average Christian, just that they are no better either.)

  • Micky Dee profile image

    Micky Dee 7 years ago

    Without religion or with religion, we should be bound to the Golden Rule. There's no other law that makes more sense. Yet, the religious fail as much or more than the pagan at obeying this universal law. Great write!

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    Yes, it would be an imaginary world all right. It's the Star Trek scenario as well. It's a pipe dream. I would just like to point the direction out to those without the sense to imagine something so incredible.

    Perhaps we can sow the seeds of what the world should be like in 10,000 years.

  • Merlin Fraser profile image

    Merlin Fraser 7 years ago from Cotswold Hills

    You're singing to the choir here, I'm with you but I fear it is a pipe dream.... Far too many people need the crutch of religion or have a complete inability to let go this archaic notion of a supreme being and that there is something in the great beyond that will give their life some meaning.

    But I fear if we were to finally get rid of religion we would still be left with, Greed, Jealousy, Selfishness and Hate.

    It’s a fantastic idea to have one planet one people, a world without borders or barriers but I feel certain it would cause a war just to find out who would be in charge of it all....

    Perhaps if we went back to a time when the only transport was by horse or foot, banished the need for money and worked purely as a cooperative for the good of all.

    One day this will happen, but I fear it won’t be by choice... the people here present on this planet will see to that.

  • Joyus Crynoid profile image

    Joyus Crynoid 7 years ago from Eden

    I'm with you Austinstar. Imagine is one of the best songs ever written.

    There is a lot of reason to be pessimistic, especially in this country where the yahoos seem to be especially numerous. On the other hand you never know. I think that a growing number of the younger generation are beginning to see reality more clearly. Change often happens in rapid fits and starts. So I think it will happen a lot sooner than 10,000 years.

    I am cautiously optimistic about the youth-fueled revolution in Egypt. It will be really interesting to see what happens in the middle east over the next year.

  • Pcunix profile image

    Tony Lawrence 7 years ago from SE MA

    Unfortunately, we are a long, long way from any of this.

    We are approaching it though. In another 10,000 years or so we might even be close.

  • Jane Bovary profile image

    Jane Bovary 7 years ago from The Fatal Shore

    Nice job Austin. I learnt to play this on the guitar, (even though it's meant for piano). 'Imagine' is a kind of atheist anthem isn't it..? Ah, if only...

    I particularly like the bit about posessions, 'specially since I'm struggling to let go of a 'thing' at the moment.It made me feel better.

    Y'know, I agree with you about the *no countries*. I always felt that when they landed on the moon they should have put a flag down that represented humanity..not just one country.


  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    If you ever get to Las Vegas, go see the Beatles Help Circ production. Best show I ever saw in my life. It was truly amazing.

    I had a crush on all 4 of the Beatles growing up. I miss them terribly. And Jimi Hendrix too. There are current musicians that I love, of course, but I feel like we missed out on some good stuff when John and George died. They say you can't miss what you never had, but I do Imagine.

  • profile image

    AKA Winston 7 years ago


    Yes, I only used Islam and Christianity for the data point. Worldwide theistic belief make the non-believer even more of a minority.

    Btw, the hardest thing for me to do is to Imagine no John Lennon.

    Nice hub and keep up the good fight.

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    Well, Winston and Chris, there are always three sides to everything. There's your version, my version and the true version. The trick is to respect all. Sometimes it's possible, a great deal of time it isn't possible.

    Winston, you're only adding up to 4.7 Billion. I hear we were hitting the 7 billion mark this year. It's a crazy thing. We need to give up religion just to get the population under control! Go forth and multiply does NOT apply any longer people!

  • christopheranton profile image

    Christopher Antony Meade 7 years ago from Gillingham Kent. United Kingdom

    Every time that people praise John Lennon, I want to turn over and weep in the corner.

    He was the primest example of a hypocrit that the twentieth century produced.

    He preached universal love at the same time that he was bankrolling the terrorists that murdered thousands in Northern Ireland, and quite a few in mainland Britain as well.

    By all means, criticise religion. It needs it a lot of the time. But dont be fooled by that creature John Lennon.

    He was a nasty piece of work.

  • profile image

    AKA Winston 7 years ago

    3.6 billion people worldwide believe one of two things: either that god sent an angel to a man living in a cave so he could recite the words of god so that we today would know which rules to follow, or god is 3 beings in 1 who sent himself to himself as a sacrifice for human errors.

    1.1 billion people say the above are nuts.

    Democracy favors the moron.

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    Somehow I managed to eliminate religion in myself, Qwark. That was no small step. It was a HUGE burden off my shoulder and out of my life. I wish it were true for all.

    If only we could think of a way to get rid of religion. Got any ideas?

    Hi Jean. Are you any relation to Scott B? He's cool. The Beatles were so very far ahead of their times. I miss John and George. Paul is still going strong and I hope he never stops. Ringo is as cute as he can be. I hope we never lose the music!

  • Jean Bakula profile image

    Jean Bakula 7 years ago from New Jersey

    I always loved the song. My adult son is on a "Beatles" kick, and I forgot how many great songs they really had. John grew so much as a person, and it would have been wonderful to see what directions he would have taken had he lived for more years. I was listening to "There are places I remember, all my life, though some have changed. Not for better, but forever... Who thinks like that in their early 20's? Great hub.

  • qwark profile image

    qwark 7 years ago

    Hi Austin:

    Yep the "ole" pessimist me...:):

    " But I'm also a realist and I know that with the right encouragement, we might learn to get along. Eliminating religion would be a huge step in doing this."

    Yes, getting rid of religious belief would be a "huge step..." but also an impossible one.

    The "right encouragement" does not/cannot exist amongst a species as divided and ignorant as we.

    I love your idealism and you express it well but is has nothing to do with the real world of an infant species.



  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    Well, Qwark, I know you are such a pessimist and that you think we are killing ourselves and it may be true! But there is a small chance that things could go the other way and humans will learn to control their hideous hatred of scary (to them) things.

    You are right, I am an idealist. But I'm also a realist and I know that with the right encouragement, we might learn to get along. Eliminating religion would be a huge step in doing this.

    Successful as I am using it means to be good at surviving on a day to day basis without greed, jealousy, hatred, fear and damage to the Earth.

  • qwark profile image

    qwark 7 years ago

    Hi Austin:

    The "most successful humans?"

    That comment confuses me. "Successful?"

    "Best food clothing and shelter?"

    That comment confuses me? "Best?"

    "...but to live a good and enjoyable life that protects our species, we must learn to be successful at respecting the Earth and the natural world."

    Absolutely! But, the concept is pure "idealism."

    The problem is that "man" cannot do that, as he exists.

    I agree with you that "ALL" of what you write about is necessary for man to survive...but not plausible.

    We ARE "doomed" but the perpetrator will be "US" and maybe because of the inherent danger in the inanity of religion.


  • lightning john profile image

    lightning john 7 years ago from Florida

    Oh shoot! yes I did. ha ha

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    Hi lightning john, I think you may have meant to say "disease", but even if they are "holier than thou", they too shall one day be deceased. :-)

  • lightning john profile image

    lightning john 7 years ago from Florida

    Austinstar, that is an awsome idea! There is just too many people out there with that Holier than Thou decease.


  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 7 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    @tonymaco4 - Thank you for the nice words. I was sitting here thinking about what to write about and someone on the news talked about Lennon's "evil" song. I don't understand how anyone can think of our imagination as "evil"

    @OldPoolman - I have read most of Tony Hillerman's books and loved them. He really tried to understand the "religion" of the Native Americans. It is not really a religion at all, but a respect for the natural world. In that the Navaho and Choctaw agree as do most native American tribes. Half the word on one side and half on the other and the "religions" were conceived of so differently. Even the Northern tribes differed from the Southern tribes in this hemisphere. Perhaps the Southern tribes were more deadly because they lived by jungle laws. Possessing the easier ability to feed, clothe and shelter themselves led to the Northern tribes adopting a more share and share alike philosophy. If we can make it easier for the world's people to feed, clothe and shelter, perhaps we will no longer need wars or borders.

    @Qwark - People learn from the natural world. If they saw cleverness as a way to survive better, I'm sure they would imagine the brain as a tool or weapon. The most successful humans have the best food, clothing, and shelter (defenses). Emotions have evolved into religions and have no place in the sharing of food, clothing and shelter. I'm not advocating stoicism, by any means, but to allow emotions/religions to govern your beliefs, judgments and choices is not adequate as a solution to living on this Earth. We are all equally born to the human condition, but to live a good and enjoyable life that protects our species, we must learn to be successful at respecting the Earth and the natural world, not behave as if we are all doomed or controlled or dictated to by some imaginary "god". We must rely on ourselves.

    To do these things, we must eliminate the false hope and promises of "religion". "God" is not going to "save" us or love us or condemn us. We must learn to do that for ourselves with our brain tools.

  • qwark profile image

    qwark 7 years ago


    I voted this up and gave ya a "beautiful" rating!

    The "ONLY" critique I can offer is that it is pure, unadulterated idealism expressed very thoughtfully.

    If there we no god concept, man, having evolved as earth's prime predator, would create another reason to kill.

    If "he" (man) had not had to protect himself to survive, "he" would not have evolved the brain "he" now possess. "He" would be an entirely different creature.

    There is no doubt that "we" are the "killers" we are because we lacked fang and claw and had to depend upon advancing "thought" and "guile" to provide food and survive!

    Thus engendering continuing growth in natures effort to "perfect" the brain as a "weapon."

    Excellent "hub" Austin!


  • profile image

    Old Poolman 7 years ago

    Wow, talk about something to think about, this was beautiful. If you ever read any of Tony Hillerman's books he describes exactly what you said in your hub. When there were things that could not be explained to the people, the Medicine Man or whoever came up with a spiritual type meaning they could grasp. I would love to discuss this at length with you, but not in a hub comments thing.

  • tonymac04 profile image

    Tony McGregor 7 years ago from South Africa

    Brilliant, Lela, brilliant! t is a wonderful song with a really deep and important message. Thanks for the great write-up.

    Love and peace



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