Religion was invented to answer questions that us curious humans didn't have believable answers to. That's why religion changed so much since our humble societal beginnings, because as we learned, and discovered, we no longer needed our made up myths to satisfy our curiousity.
Let me show you:
Q: Is lightening really shot from the tip of a deity's finger, primarily used to strike down those who disobey or displease him?
A: Nope! It's a function of friction between varying temperatured air currents, and the static electricity built up and released all at once!
Q: Does the sea become stormy and rough when someone angers or displeases the deity that lives and governs it's area?
A: No, sea storms are primarily a function of atmospheric effects!
So now that we've explained waves and lightening, we really don't believe the same things anymore, right? Those belief's didn't die easily though, as generations had based their entire lives on these beliefs. "So you mean I've been sacraficing these white bull's every year to please the gods of agriculture, but the drought is really a function of El Nino?"
The religious folk of today suffer the same ailment. It's hard to let go of things that our family, society or lineage placed so much effort, time and spirit into. But like the beliefs of Zeus' lightening, eventually, the slower to react will catch up. Eventually, they'll start to realize that evolution makes a shitload more sense than some bored super-being playing with a terrareum.
What's changed, and will continue to change, is that we keep discovering and learning more, and satisfy our insatiable appetite for the truth - infallible and proven, not theoretical. As reality is revealed, and science continues to advance, we answer questions that were previously attributed to our catch-all called religion. The leaders in this effort in our world, have changed too, as they figured out over the past 2500 years, that simply tossing the unknowns into that basket of "religion" ("Oh, that must be some mystical, omniscient being's doing!") is kind of silly, given that most of the things we attributed to religion since this whole she-bang began, ended up being something much more believable and likely than angry superbeings
. When astronomers first witnessed a star "wobble" in their telescope, they decided not to say it was the god of space, Zarqon, playing billiards. They simply didn't create some silly explanetory myth, and went back to work to figure out. Eventually, it turned out the wobble was the gravitational effect on the star from other orbiting masses.
and *poof, he's gone.
What's HASN'T changed, is our curiosity and drive to fill in the gaps of our knowledge. Our pursuit to answer the questions doesn't end, and likely won't until we meet our very own end.
The point of all this, is to start getting comfortable with what you don't know
. Just because we can't explain exactly how we began, or what happens after we go, simply isn't a good enough reason to invent some silly myth. Historically, we've only dispelled
the myths of relgion. We've never once, not ever, decided, "shit, that there discovery proves there actually IS a god!"
Right? Seems to me like over history, science is undefeated against religion.
Next Chapter: To the religious: Why the Bible is a terrible piece of evidence to base your argument on.