Religion - Criticism

Criticism

Main article: Criticism of religion

Religious criticism has a long history, going back at least as far as the 5th century BCE. During classical times, there were religious critics in ancient Greece, such as Diagoras "the atheist" of Melos, and in the 1st century BCE in Rome, with Titus Lucretius Carus's De Rerum Natura.

During the Middle Ages, potential critics of religion were persecuted and largely forced to remain silent. There were notable critics like Giordano Bruno, who was burned at the stake for disagreeing with religious authority.

In the 17th and 18th century with the Enlightenment, thinkers like David Hume and Voltaire criticized religion.

In the 19th century, Charles Darwin and the theory of evolution lead to increased skepticism about religion. Thomas Huxley, Jeremy Bentham, Karl Marx, Charles Bradlaugh, Robert Ingersol, and Mark Twain were noted 19th century and early 20th century critics. In the 20th century, Bertrand Russell, Siegmund Freud, and others continued religious criticism.

Sam Harris, Daniel Dennett, Richard Dawkins, Victor J. Stenger, and the late Christopher Hitchens were active critics during the late 20th century and early 21st century.

Critics consider religion to be outdated, harmful to the individual (e.g. brainwashing of children, faith healing, circumcision), harmful to society (e.g. holy wars, terrorism, wasteful distribution of resources), to impede the progress of science, to exert social control, and to encourage immoral acts (e.g. blood sacrifice, discrimination against homosexuals and women). A major criticism of many religions is that they require beliefs that are irrational, unscientific, or unreasonable, because religious beliefs and traditions lack scientific or rational foundations.

Some modern-day critics, such as Bryan Caplan, hold that religion lacks utility in human society; they may regard religion as irrational. Nobel Peace Laureate Shirin Ebadi has spoken out against undemocratic Islamic countries justifying "oppressive acts" in the name of Islam.

Read more about this topic:  Religion

Other articles related to "criticism":

Yuri Knorozov - Critical Reactions To His Work
... and his thesis came under some severe and at times dismissive criticism ... Knorozov persisted with his publications in spite of the criticism and rejection of many Mayanists of the time ... since his position and standing at the institute was not adversely influenced by criticism from Western academics ...
Psychoanalytic Literary Criticism - Overview
... The object of psychoanalytic literary criticism, at its very simplest, can be the psychoanalysis of the author or of a particularly interesting character in a given work ... In this directly therapeutic form, the criticism is very similar to psychoanalysis itself, closely following the analytic interpretive process discussed in Freud's The Interpretation of Dreams ... However, more complex variations of psychoanalytic criticism are possible ...
TSR, Inc. - Criticism
... The company was the subject of an urban myth stating that it tried to trademark the term "Nazi" ... This was based on a supplement for the Indiana Jones RPG, in which some figures were marked with "NaziTM" ...
Yoot Tower - Criticism
... The game was dismissed by some game review websites and magazines as being too much a rehash of the original SimTower ... Many wrote the game off as being basically identical to its predecessor ...
Joseph Justus Scaliger - Academic Output
... that he composed and published his books of historical criticism ... He was the first to lay down and apply sound rules of criticism and emendation, and to change textual criticism from a series of haphazard guesses into a "rational procedure subject to ... Instead, they valued his emendatory criticism and his skill in Greek ...

Famous quotes containing the word criticism:

    ...I wasn’t at all prepared for the avalanche of criticism that overwhelmed me. You would have thought I had murdered someone, and perhaps I had, but only to give her successor a chance to live. It was a very sad business indeed to be made to feel that my success depended solely, or at least in large part, on a head of hair.
    Mary Pickford (1893–1979)

    I, with other Americans, have perhaps unduly resented the stream of criticism of American life ... more particularly have I resented the sneers at Main Street. For I have known that in the cottages that lay behind the street rested the strength of our national character.
    Herbert Hoover (1874–1964)

    I am opposed to writing about the private lives of living authors and psychoanalyzing them while they are alive. Criticism is getting all mixed up with a combination of the Junior F.B.I.- men, discards from Freud and Jung and a sort of Columnist peep- hole and missing laundry list school.... Every young English professor sees gold in them dirty sheets now. Imagine what they can do with the soiled sheets of four legal beds by the same writer and you can see why their tongues are slavering.
    Ernest Hemingway (1899–1961)