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Would we be better off without religion?

In the now defunct blog Smoke & Mirrors, Moonflake answers Hemant Mehta’s (The Friendly Atheist) list of questions that are commonly asked of atheists. I particularly like the answer to the question, "Would the world be better off without religion?"

Moonflake answers:

Depends how you got to that point. I don’t think the world would be better off if you banned religion outright. But it would certainly be better if we all became sufficiently advanced in our moral and critical thinking to realise that we did not need religion, and just got on with the business of being better humans.

I think that’s a spot-on answer. Religion shouldn’t have to be banned. In a perfect world, humanity would realize that it’s… well… smoke and mirrors, and could be free to focus on the real world and real people, without using 2,000 year old dogma as an excuse to act badly.

It’s a great vision for the future.