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Biblical authority is the basis upon which all existing religious distortions are built. If we accept it’s true because god (the bible) says so, we can believe absolutely anything. People with the best intentions can be inspired to commit the worst atrocities, all while being certain they are doing god’s will. The bible comes to define reality instead of reality defining itself. The whole universe and all the infinite knowledge out there must be squeezed through the tiny lens of a dated and small set of texts. If an idea is inspired by god, it’s true because the bible says so. There’s no questioning the idea, because the idea is what god says and god defines everything. If biblical “truth” contradicts reality or morality, then the bible cannot be wrong. Our understanding of reality must be off, or our knowledge is be limited and god’s ways are mysterious. We no longer need to think critically or morally; in fact we must not. All evidence to the contrary of the religious belief (for instance science) must be rejected. The notion of divine inspiration causes people to bend and distort reality to fit into the biblical illusion because one must do so in order to function with a biblical worldview in tact. This often requires fantastical interpretations and theological justifications people that very rational and intelligent people would never otherwise accept, like hellfire torture being “loving” and “justice.” Supporting divine inspiration requires us to distort the meanings of words like “love” to mean the very opposite (torture, genocide, fear) because of a prior commitment to accept everything in the bible, including all the contradictions. If god does something immoral, it’s moral. If god does something unjust, it’s justice. If God commands genocide, the victims must deserve it.

This is also how fascists and dictators have gotten people to follow them throughout history. They inspire people to worship them, to believe everything they say based on their promises or miracles. It’s true because I said so, because of who I am, not because it makes sense. You must follow me because “to fear me is wisdom.” Then the people swallow all kinds of lies and believe they are doing right and have no responsibility for immoral actions, because the dictator told them so. I am not saying that the religious are fascist, but they do hold to sacred writings which contain fascist ideologies. Biblical authority can blind us to reason. Once we swear allegiance to the assumption that it’s true because the bible says so, reason becomes merely another tool to justify the divine agenda.

Just imagine if we based our medical worldview off a medical textbook that was two-thousand years old. We would be forced to bend two-thousand years of medical progress into outdated or plainly incorrect words and ideas and make all kinds of irrational justifications for doing so. Take for instance, the ancient medical view that disease was caused by an imbalance in the four humors thought to constitute the body’s fluids (black bile, yellow bile, phlegm, and blood). Imagine if our medical textbooks forced us to teach this. We would have to do all kinds of interpretive gymnastics and reject obvious evidence. This is how things work with assuming divine inspiration of an ancient text.

When people come out of a biblical worldview, they often feel they’ve wasted their lives living in some kind of a dream world and false reality. This isn’t quite true; they did many good things and learned so from the experience. But the reason they accepted this dream was they were trained through biblical inspiration to bend reality to fit into that worldview. Just as the beginning of religious manipulations (indoctrination) is biblical inspiration, starting to trust our own senses and basic moral instincts and following our questions is the beginning of freedom.

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