Dawkins examines how religious faith infects the human mind and deludes people into believing in the absurd.
Dawkins interviews distinguished believers among the major faiths, Christianity, Judasim and Islam, and he politely challenges their denial of science and rationality.
It one remarkable interview, Dawkins chats with anti-abortionist Rev. Michael Bray, a friend and supporter of convicted (and executed) murderer Rev. Paul Hill. During the chat, Bray is cordial and well-spoken, but he condones the killing of doctors who perform abortions as justified by the Bible, and the fact that he smiles sincerely while spouting hate causes Dawkins to remark afterwards that he "quite liked" Bray, but then he quotes the Nobel Prize-winning American physicist Steven Weinberg:
"Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it, you'd have good people doing good things and evil people doing bad things, but for good people to do bad things, it takes religion."
And this notion that religion motivates people to commit morally reprehensible acts is the punchline to Dawkins' message.
Dawkins argues that religion, through its suppression of rational thinking, is downright harmful (especially to impressionable children) and we, as highly evolved being capable or rational thought must not passively tolerate the evil caused by faith.
I should note that Dawkins does NOT think that religion is the root of ALL evil. He repeated several times in an interview with the Center for Inquiry's podcasted radio show "Point of Inquiry" that he protested against the name of the series, but only managed to get the producers to add a question mark to the title, as if the show was asking, "Is faith the Root of All Evil?"
As a former Christian turned staunch Atheist, I wholeheartedly agree with Dawkins that faith is not the only thing that drives people to act immorally, but it is certainly a "root of evil" in this world.
Americans are notorious for proclaiming religious tolerance (especially among the faithful who are ironically often the most intolerant of religions that differ from their own), but as an American (and as a member of the human race) I will NOT tolerate religion whenever it is defies logic and reason.
I am frustrated and angry that Atheists are often accused of being intolerant whenever they question a person's faith, and yet the faithful rarely cry foul when science is ATTACKED outright.
All along the undertow
It's strengthening its hold
I never thought it would come to this
Now I can never go home...
But when we wake
It's all been erased
And so it seems
Only in dreams
Come sit next to me
Pour yourself some tea
Just like grandma made
When we couldn't find sleep
John Kricfalusi AKA John K AKA the creator of Ren & Stimpy has a blog:
After cooking an all pink Valentine's dinner (salmon, tomato bruschetta and rose wine) Sam and I went to Bob's Anti V-day party last night. It was a lot of fun, but we had to leave early because I had to drive Sam to the Beverly Hills Hotel for work the next morning.
Chauffering people around was the theme for today. I drove Wen around downtown LA because he got his eyes dialated during his a LASIK consultation. I waited in the freezing cold air-conditioned Laser Eye Center waiting room for two hours while two little boys entertained themselves by trying to annoy me.
The main game for these brats involved simply trying to make eye-contact with me. At first they only had to stand in front of me and I'd look up from my magazine. They'd giggle when our eyes would meet, but I quickly learned to ignore them, which meant that they had to try harder to get my attention. When I refused to look up they'd stick their faces in front of my magazine. It wasn't until I pulled the magazine to my face and tipped my hat down so my entire field off vision was blocked and they tried to knock the magazine out of my hands that their (pregnant) mother finally took notice and told them to leave me alone.
I felt bad because she punished the kids by whipping them with her keys strap, but the boys didn't seem fazed at all. In fact, them quickly resumed their game and started climbing on my legs and crawling under my chair.
After two hours, Wen finally came out and we went for Korean soon at BCD Tofu House, which was quite fascinating.
I didn't mind driving Wen around because I like driving his Prius, but Wen was clearly frustrated by my cautious driving. Everytime a stoplight would turn yellow, Wen would yell "GO!" when I'd stop.
Sam was still at work when I got home so I took a nap and had a series of really weird dreams (which were a bit more interesting than this boring blog entry).