"Religion is excellent stuff for keeping common people quiet."
(Napoleon Bonaparte / 1769-1821)
""I have observed that the world has suffered far less from ignorance than from pretensions to knowledge. It is not skeptics or explorers but fanatics and ideologues who menace decency and progress. No agnostic ever burned anyone at the stake or tortur."
(Daniel J. Boorstin, American historian and author / 1914 - 2004)
"The fundamentalist violence is, so is it, an attempt to increase the stakes, i.e. to discourage the potential desertions by showing that defection will cost them dear, that those who adopt other values will be persecuted or even killed."
(Pascal Boyer / And Man Created God)
"If Jesus had been killed twenty years ago, Catholic school children would be wearing little electric chairs around their necks instead of crosses."
"An atheist is a man who has no invisible means of support."
(John Buchan, British author and statesman / 1875-1940)
"I am an atheist still, thank God."
(Luis Buñuel / 1900-1983)
"Man is, and always has been, a maker of gods. It has been the most serious and significant occupation of his sojourn in the world."
(John Burroughs, American essayist / 1837-1921)
"Where God hath a temple, the Devil will have a chapel."
(Robert Burton / 1577-1640 / The Anatomy of Melancholy, III)
"No, I don't know that atheists should be considered as citizens, nor should they be considered as patriots. This is one nation under God."
(George W. Bush)
"When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why
the poor have no food, they call me a communist."
(Dom Helder Camara / 1909-1999)
"If Jesus Christ were to come today, people would not even crucify him.
They would ask him to dinner, and hear what he had to say, and make fun of it."
(Thomas Carlyle / 1795-1881)
"The miracles of the church seem to me to rest not so much upon faces or voices or healing power coming suddenly near to us from afar off, but upon our perceptions being made finer, so that for a moment our eyes can see and our ears can hear what is there about us always."
(Willa Cather / 1873-1947 / Death Comes for the Archbishop / 1927)
"The great brainwave of the inventors of Christianity: "God is love!" And then? What does it change?
You may always preach a god of love to men, they will make use of him to sanctify their villainies and their crimes "for the good fight" as well as the massacres en masse, blessing priests leading the way."
(François Cavanna, French author / born en 1923 / Lettre ouverte aux culs-bénits)
"If there were no God, there would be no Atheists."
(G. K. Chesterton / 1874-1936 / Where All Roads Lead, 1922)
"Atheism is a way of humility. It's to think oneself to be an animal, as we are actually and to allow oneself to become human."
(André Comte-Sponville / born in 1952/ Presentation of Philosophy)
"To a child who dies, and to the parents of this child, will you speak, if religion consoles them, in praise of atheism? That one does not mistake: that, to my mind, does not prove anything against atheism and much against religion. "The heart of a heartless world, said Marx, the soul of soulless conditions." It is misery that makes religion, and it is why this one is miserable. Who would prohibit opium to a dying man? And what are we, out of oblivion or entertainment, anything else but dying?"
(André Comte-Sponville / born in 1952 / A Philosophical Education)
"Therefore, philosophy does not give sense in mind happiness. It keeps in mind the only truth. However, it is very possible that the truth may be painful, may be distressing, may be destructive of happiness or makes it impossible. Religion, unlike philosophy, is under the category of the useful one. It promises happiness and says what it is necessary to do and what it is necessary to be to deserve or to obtain it. Consequently, illusion is more important than truth if it gets happiness."
(Marcel Conche, French philosopher / born in 1922 / Sense of Philosophy)