Good to hear from you, Proc -
I suppose that one could use the term "bigoted" that broadly, but I think there's a not-so-subtle difference between fanatical atheists who feel more rational and learned than the believers around them (and need to tell them so) and rational, learned people rejecting religion and/or faith because they have no need of superstition for comfort or ancient writings for behavior guidance. One becomes more rational and learned through education, experience and experimentation, coupled with a voracious appetite for substantiation of both facts and ideas and a mind open enough to avoid simply rejecting out of hand any reasonably plausible explanation of experiential phenomena.
Maybe I do spend too much time examining it. Of course, when discussing belief without plugging in the compassionate but slippery Perspective variable, it *is* all crazy. I see superstition as the ugly child of fear and ignorance — and it's a needy, whiny, negative little bastard that, if allowed to grow unchecked in the human psyche, self-replicates and replaces positive things like confidence, self-determination, skepticism and even curiosity with more fear and ignorance. The quality of ones judgement becomes tainted, decisions get made for the wrong reasons and people suffer. Basing one's view of their place in the universe on a raft of superstitions looks to me like an unhealthy, self-defeating, dangerous way of going about things. For example, the Mayans had some interesting ideas. For that matter, so do suicide bombers.
Fear and ignorance or confidence and knowledge? Lazy slave to someone else's ancient ideas or a willingness to work hard to develop your own brutally honest understanding of what life really is? Is it bigotry to wish for a more rational, educated, compassionate, honest, open-minded, forward-looking human race? Perhaps it is, depending on your Perspective...
Wow. That is a lot of words. It's dizzying how smart you are. It's like looking at Einstein's Math equations on the chalk board. How about this —> People need to feel connected to a higher power. The question is the connection. Lots of folks feel comfort in Jesus being their conduit or representative. It is something everyone can understand from the young, old and even folks born with mental capacity problems can know Jesus and also Jesus knows them. He is like a road out of the desert.... Why take that away from folks? How about the assurance of a poor widow who longs to see her husband again, or a Mother who lost a child wanting reunion in Heaven. Because you are smarter and think you know the answer? Read the bible yourself, looks like you have an affinity for words. The New Testament is probably shorter than the last book you read Open your mind.
P.S - I still think this sounds like a Brian Wilson tune....