"The feeling of awed wonder that science can give us is one of the highest experiences of which the human psyche is capable. It is a deep aesthetic passion to rank with the finest that music and poetry can deliver. It is truly one of the things that make life worth living and it does so, if anything, more effectively if it convinces us that the time we have for living is quite finite."
"The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully."
"This is such bullshit. Do they have a whole farm system? Do they have websites? Show me the country that has the Christian fundamentalist training camp where they're on the monkey bars. This is just not the same. Look, I'm no fuckin Catholic or Christian, but one is herpes and one is cancer."
"One of my ancestors, some weakling, said ‘Look there’s no way I can beat that guy. But what if I trick him into thinking if he doesn't kill and rape people while he’s down here, when he dies there’s a magic city in the clouds and he can go up and have all the cake he wants?’ Now that’s not a very well formed plan but he went and told the big psycho. And psycho heard that and said ‘Uhh, I like cake.’
That’s religion, it’s the ol’ sky cake dodge; it worked!"
"I'm always reminded of the great mathematician, a Frenchman called Laplace, who wrote a book called Cosmic Mechanics. And the great Napoleon, who was a highly intelligent man, tried to read this mathematically difficult book. And he got to the end of it and he went to Laplace and said, 'Why is there no mention of God in this book about the Universe?' Laplace said something very profound: 'I had no need of that hypothesis.'
In other words, adding God to the argument makes no difference to the science. If you wish to add God to the argument, I am perfectly happy with that. But the science can stand on its own two feet."
"The question I get asked by religious people all the time is, without God, what’s to stop me from raping all I want? And my answer is: I do rape all I want. And the amount I want is zero. And I do murder all I want, and the amount I want is zero. The fact that these people think that if they didn't have this person watching over them that they would go on killing, raping rampages is the most self-damning thing I can imagine."
"The only sense to make of tragedies like this is that terrible things can happen to perfectly innocent people. This understanding inspires compassion.
Religious faith, on the other hand, erodes compassion. Thoughts like, “this might be all part of God’s plan,” or “there are no accidents in life,” or “everyone on some level gets what he or she deserves” - these ideas are not only stupid, they are extraordinarily callous. They are nothing more than a childish refusal to connect with the suffering of other human beings. It is time to grow up and let our hearts break at moments like this."