"The world holds two classes of men -- intelligent men without religion, and religious men without intelligence."
(Abu'l-Ala-Al-Ma'arri, Syrian poet / 973-1057)
"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)
"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 / 1837-1921 / American essayist)
"[...] since the order of world is regulated by death, perhaps is it better for God we do not believe in him and we fight with all our might against death, without raising our eyes heavenward where he keeps silent."
(Albert Camus / 1913-1960 / The Plague)
"I can't embrace a male god who has persecuted female sexuality throughout the ages. And that persecution still goes on today all over the world."
(Amanda Donohoe, British actress / born in 1962)
"It was, of course, a lie what you read about my religious convictions, a lie which is being systematically repeated. I do not believe in a personal God and I have never denied this but have expressed it clearly. If something is in me which can be called religious then it is the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far as our science can reveal it."
(Albert Einstein / 1879-1955 / Letter, 24 March 1954)
"Religion is an attempt to get control over the sensory world, in which we are placed, by means of the wish-world which we have developed inside us as a result of biological and psychological necessities. [...] If one attempts to assign to religion its place in man's evolution, it seems not so much to be a lasting acquisition, as a parallel to the neurosis which the civilized individual must pass through on his way from childhood to maturity."
(Sigmund Freud / 1856-1939 / Moses and Monotheism / 1939)
"It would be very nice if there were a God who created the world and was a benevolent providence, and if there were a moral order in the universe and an after-life; but it is a very striking fact that all this is exactly as we are bound to wish it to be."
(Sigmund Freud / 1856-1939 / The Future of an Illusion / 1927)
"The philosophy of Atheism represents a concept of life without any metaphysical Beyond or Divine Regulator. It is the concept of an actual, real world with its liberating, expanding and beautifying possibilities, as against an unreal world, which, with its spirits, oracles, and mean contentment has kept humanity in helpless degradation."
(Emma Goldman / 1869-1940)
"There was a time when religion ruled the world. It is known as the dark ages."
(Ruth Hermence Green / The Born Again Skeptic's Guide to the Bible)
"The other world gives no motive for doing well to him who finds no motive for it here."
(Paul-Henri, baron d'Holbach / 1723-1789 / The Conscience of an Athiest)
"I have examined all of the known superstitions of the world and I do not find in our superstitions of Christianity one redeeming feature. They are all founded on fables and mythology. Christianity has made one half the world fools and the other half hypocrites."
(Thomas Jefferson / 1743-1826)
"Religious suffering is at one and the same time the expression of real suffering and a protest against real suffering. Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people."
(Karl Marx / 1818-1883 / A Criticism of the Hegelian Philosophy of Law / 1844)
"He who lets the world or his portion of it, choose his plan of life for him, has no need of any other faculty than the ape-like one of imitation. He who chooses his plan form himself, employs his faculties"
(John Stuart Mill / 1806-1873 / On Liberty / 1859)
"The Christian resolve to find the world evil and ugly, has made the world evil and ugly."
(Friedrich Nietzsche / 1844-1900)
"There is not sufficient love and goodness in the world to permit us to give some of it away to imaginary beings."
(Friedrich Nietzsche / 1844-1900)
"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts."
(Bertrand Russell / 1872-1970)
"At present there is not a single credible established religion in the world."
(George Bernard Shaw / 1856-1950)
"One of the proofs of the immortality of the soul is that myriads have believed it. They also believed the world was flat."
(Mark Twain / 1835-1910 / Notebook)
"Christianity is the most ridiculous, the most absurd, and bloody religion that has ever infected the world."
(Voltaire / 1694-1778 / Letter to Frederick the Great)
"God is not without sins: He created the world."