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Book details
  • Genre:RELIGION
  • SubGenre:Atheism
  • Language:English
  • Pages:376
  • eBook ISBN:9781483501451

Allah, Jesus, and Yahweh

The Gods That Failed

by Gordon Harrison

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Allah, Jesus, and Yahweh deals with the moral and intellectual damage caused by religion—the subject of many of today’s headlines. There have been at least five major religious invasions from Asia into Europe. In particular, the Middle East seems a virtual hatchery for faith and fanaticism. It’s the birthplace of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam not to mention the earlier Zoroastrianism and the much later Baha’ism plus a plethora of minor cults and lunacies. The parlance in vogue for this present invasion is a clash of civilizations—East versus West! But this is not entirely the case. There is a clash, but we have confused the combatants. Many in the West do not intend to fight for the preservation of Christianity; some in the East feel the same about Islam. What we will defend is freedom, democracy, and the values of the Enlightenment versus submission, dictatorship, and the buzz of the hive mind. A colossal clash of ideals is underway between the Enlightenment and the Army of the Night—those who feel they have absolute certainty without evidence. There is a tide in the affairs of men and women, and we are afloat on a vast wave of moral and rational criticism of religion. Witness The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins, God Is Not Great by Christopher Hitchens, The End of Faith by Sam Harris, and Breaking the Spell by Daniel Dennett. Allah, Jesus, and Yahweh takes a deeper view of time and a more humorous Mark Twain narrative approach than these authors. It begins in September 480 BC at the Battle of Marathon—the first Asiatic religious invasion—and moves through history right up to Ayaan Hirsi Ali and beyond. When speaking of religion, Nobel laureate Steven Weinberg said it best to The New York Times, on April 20, 1999: With or without religion, you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion. Religion is certainty without proof; science is proof without certainty. From re
Freedom is the keystone for happiness, democracy, and Western Civilization. Without it, you may as well live in present-day North Korea or Saudi Arabia or medieval Europe. We will explore freedom’s origin in Chapter 1, and although freedom has many tributaries, its Greek source is clear. Major contributors are the Age of the Enlightenment plus the United States Declaration of Independence, with its “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” Perhaps you feel that freedom once won will always be with us. If so, then Chapter 2 is for you. Both psychology and history teach us how quickly it can be lost. Freedom is a river, but rivers may be dammed and their turbulent creative waters turned into compliant lakes bent to a single purpose. We will investigate this perilous danger with an eye to avoiding it. Some believe that religion and science can’t be in conflict because their areas of interest and expertise don’t overlap. Chapter 3 exposes this myth by contrasting the research methods of biblical scholars and scientists as they both seek to discover the beginning of time. Their conclusions are astoundingly different. For people everywhere, their results have far-reaching consequences. Whichever path you follow—religious or scientific—will profoundly influence all aspects of your life. For all those who believe the Bible is an unerring source of perfect morality, I suggest they read Chapter 4, “On human Bondage.” This chapter concentrates on one great moral failure in the Bible and the Qur’an: both are pro-slavery from beginning to end. Not a word, not even a murmur against slavery in all their “sacred” books. The final page of this chapter reveals the first person in recorded history to speak out against slavery—he/she was not a member of the Abrahamic religions. Chapter 5 discusses numerous topics found nowhere else in anti-theistic writings. For example, the Roman God Mithras was the model for Jesus and most church ritual! Since both Mithras and Jesus were saviors, celebrated the Eucharist, and had identical birthdays, this parallelism disturbed early Christians. This chapter discloses who Mithras was and why he became the archetype for Jesus. After the triumphant early Catholic Church eradicated Mithraism, it turned its weapons inward to stray Christian sects, like Gnosticism. This group had some intriguing ideas on the origins of the name Jesus and his number, a subject called gematria mentioned nowhere else in today’s literature. The curious relationship between Shakespeare and the 46th Psalm deserves investigating. We end this entertainment with a full course of bubbly, hot, cheesy Pastafarianism with meat balls plus a side order of quotations from their sacred text, The Loose Canon. Chapter 6, “God’s Messengers,” gives the reader a hilarious look at the second, more recent, team of God talkers: Muhammad and Joseph Smith uncovering delusion and fraud respectively. Mark Twain, who owned a copy of The Book of Mormon, wrote, “It is such a pretentious affair and yet so slow, so sleepy, such an insipid mess of inspiration. It is chloroform in print.” But comic relief is close at hand with the magic underpants Mormons wear and their penchant to polygamy. Evidently, with thirty-seven wives, Smith didn’t have his magic undies on most of the time. But the winner in the absurdity sweepstakes is the Mormon belief that when Jesus returns he will keep a summer home in Jackson County, Missouri, the original Garden of Eden don’t you know. For all those who falsely believe we would be running naked through the streets without the God-given morality of holy books, I recommend Chapter 7, “Morals and Man.” We can do better—we have done better—than an Old Testament that descends to the level of stoning women and children to death for a little dalliance or disobedience. A close reading of the New Testament reveals a side of Jesus rarely mentioned. He was not always a paradigm of great moral
About the author
Gord Harrison is the author of several popular books on religion, nature, and art. When he isn't writing, he's photographing the wildlife of the Ontario hinterlands. Before this and after earning a Master of Mathematics degree from the University of Waterloo, he taught calculus and algebra.