76. Morality


The common view is that religion and gawd is the source of morality


cannot be the source of commonly accepted human orals and values. If he were, then we would expect to see evidence in the superior moral behavior of believers compared to nonbelievers. Evei Observable human and societal behaviors look just as they can be expected to look if there is no God.


Athiests make up about .2 percent of prison populations; Christians 80%'ublished studies do indicate that a child's risk of sexual abuse by a family member increases as the family's religious denomination becomes more conservative, that is, when the teachings of n more literally.3 Similarly,


While it is fine that religions preach moral precepts, they have no basis to claim that these precepts were authored by their particular deity or, sd, any deity at all.


5ut the Golden Rule is not the exclusive property of a small . Here are some other, ndependent sources showing that the Golden Rule was already a widespread teaching well before Jesus: BCE,


In The Doctrine of the Mean 13, written about 500 BCE, Confiicius says, "What you do not want others to do to you, do not do to others.'


jocrates (c. 375 BCE) said, "Do not do to others what vould anger you if done to you by others.'


No original moral concept of any significance can be found in the new testament. In the early twentieth century, historian


lat most of these restrictions evant to modern life and hardly form the basis for any g legal system. Indeed, the Code of Hammurabi (c. 1780 represents a considerably more significant historical step in ic development of laws of justice, containing not merely 10 but 281 detailed commandments.


Tie Church did not condemn slavery until 1888, after every i nation had abolished the practice.18


While they claim to appeal to scriptures and the teachings of the great founders and leaders of their faiths, they /guided by some personal inner ht that guides nonbelievers.