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Religion can blind followers to the truth

April 6, 2005 Articles, Princeton writings
I am secular.  In a society that is very religious this is an invitation for scorn. I was not always secular, however.  I was once a devout Christian.  Up until my eighteenth birthday I would have described myself as a believer. I had started going to church as a young lad because my parents were too busy working to take me out.  So when local church officials came knocking on my door and asked if I wanted to go to Sunday School – where there would be other kids to play with and, best of all, free food – I acquiesced. I was a very committed Christian.  At one time I led the church youth group and headed a Bible study unit.  Just as much, my social values were conservative:  I summarily opposed abortions; I thought homosexuality was wrong.  These were the norms I was taught at church. Now I see religious intolerance as one of the great challenges for a pluralistic and compassionate society.  I say this because I see how religion is oftentimes used as a veil for hate:  How is denying human rights (i.e., marriage) to gays seen as moral?  Likewise, is it just to bring a…




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