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Famous American Quotes 2

James Madison (1751 - 1836)

4th President of the United States

 

"Who does not see that the same authority which can establish Christianity in exclusion of all other religions may establish, with the same error, any particular sect of Christians in exclusion to all other sects?"

     A Memorial an Remonstrance addressed to the General Assembly of the    Commomwealth of Virgina, 1785

 

"In the Papal System, Government and religion are in a manner consolidated, and that is found to be the worst Government"

   to Adams, 1832

 

"The purpose of separation of church and state is to keep forever from these shores the ceaseless strife that has soaked the soil of Europe in blood for centuries."

 

...be the same species of folly which has dishonoured and depopulated flourishing kingdoms. 11. Because, it will destroy that moderation and harmony which the forbearance of our laws to intermeddle with Religion, has produced amongst its several sects. Torrents of blood have been spilt in the old world, by vain attempts of the secular arm to extinguish Religious discord, by proscribing all difference in Religious opinions."

The Writings, vol. 2 (1783-1787)

 

"Religious bondage shackles and debilitates the mind and unfits it for every noble enterprise, every expanded prospect."

 

"During almost fifteen centuries has the legal establishment of Christianity been on trial. What have been its fruits? More or less in all places, pride and indolence in the Clergy, ignorance and servility in the laity; in both, superstition, bigotry and persecution."

    Memorial and Remonstrance against Religious Assessments, James Madison, 1785

 

"What influence, in fact, have ecclesiastical establishments had on society? In some instances they have been seen to erect a spiritual tyranny on the ruins of the civil authority; on many instances they have been seen upholding the thrones of political tyranny; in no instance have they been the guardians of the liberties of the people. Rulers who wish to subvert the public liberty may have found an established clergy convenient auxiliaries. A just government, instituted to secure and perpetuate it, needs them not."

    Memorial and Remonstrance against Religious Assessments, James Madison, 1785

 

 

Thomas Paine (1737-1809)

American revolutionary writer

 

To Paine belongs the honor of naming our country the United States of America. He was the first to use the name in print, and it was his own creation.

 

"Whence arose all the horrid assassinations of whole nations of men, women, and infants, with which the Bible is filled; and the bloody persecutions, and tortures unto death, and religious wars, that since that time have laid Europe in blood and ashes; whence arose they, but from the impious thing called religion, and this monstrous belief that God has spoken to man?"

Cardiff

 

"I do not believe in the creed professed by the Roman church, by the Greek church, by the Turkish church, by the Protestant church, nor by any church that I know of. My own mind is my own church."

The Age of Reason

 

"All national institutions of churches, whether Jewish, Christian, or Turkish, appear to me no other than human inventions, set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit."

Ibid.

 

"Whenever we read the obscene stories, the voluptuous debaucheries, the cruel and tortuous executions, the unrelenting vindictiveness, with which more than half the Bible is filled it would be more consistent to call it the word of a demon than the word of a god. It is a history of wickedness that has served to corrupt and brutalize mankind."

Ibid.

 

"Toleration is not the opposite of intolerance, but is the counterfeit of it. Both are despotisms, The one assumes to itself the right of withholding the liberty of conscience, and the other of granting it."

Declaration of the Friends of Universal Peace and Liberty, 1791

 

"... the Bible is such a book of lies and contradictions there is no knowing which part to believe and whether any."

 

"Of all the systems of religion that ever were invented, there is no more derogatory to the Almighty, more unedifiying to man, more repugnant to reason, and more contradictory to itself than this thing called Christianity."

 

 

Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865)

16th President of the United States

 

"My earlier views at the unsoundness of the Christian scheme of salvation and the human origin of the scriptures, have become clearer and stronger with advancing years and I see no reason for thinking I shall ever changethem."

To Judge J.S. Wakefield, 1862

 

"The Bible is not my book nor Christianity my profession.  I could never give assent to the long, complicated statements of Christian dogma."

 

 

John F. Kennedy

35th President of the United States

 

"The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie -- deliberate, contrived and dishonest -- but the myth -- persistent, persuasive and unrealistic.  Belief in myths allows the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought."

Quoted from Marty Klein, "The Sex Lies of the Religious Right," Playboy (January,1996), also, Critical Thinker (March, 1998)

 

"Whatever one's religion in his private life may be, for the officeholder, nothing takes precedence over his oath to uphold the Constitution and all its parts -- including the First Amendment and the strict separation of church and state."

Look, March 3, 1959, from Albert J Menendez and Edd Doerr, The Great Quotations on Religious Freedom

 

"I believe the American people are more concerned with a man's views and abilities than with the church to which he belongs. I believe the founding fathers meant it when they provided in Article VI of the Constitution that there should be no religious test for public office. And I believe that the American people mean to adhere to those principles today."

Address to the American Society of Newspaper Editors, April 21, 1960, from Albert J Menendez and Edd Doerr, The Great Quotations on Religious Freedom

 

 

Albert Einstein

 

"The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weakness, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still purely primitive, legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this... For me the Jewish religion like all other religions is an incarnation of the most childish superstition.... In general I find it painful that you claim a privileged position and try to defend it by two walls of pride, an external one as a man and an internal one as a Jew. As a man you claim, so to speak, a dispensation from causality otherwise accepted, as a Jew of monotheism. But a limited causality is no longer a causality at all, as our wonderful Spinoza recognized with all incision..."

~ Albert Einstein. In a letter to the philosopher Erik Gutkind in January, 1954 after reading Gutkind's book, 'Choose Life: The Biblical Call to Revolt'. Letters of Note

 

"Thus I came... to a deep religiosity, which, however, reached an abrupt end at the age of 12. Through the reading of popular scientific books I soon reached a conviction that much in the stories of the Bible could not be true... Suspicion against every kind of authority grew out of this experience... an attitude which has never left me". 

~ Albert Einstein

 

"I received your letter of June 10th.  I have never talked to a Jesuit priest in my life and I am astonished by the audacity to tell such lies about me.  From the viewpiont of a Jesuit priest I am, of course, and have always been an atheist".

~ Albert Einstein Letter to Guy H. Raner, Jr.  July 2, 1945. Quoted by Michael R. Gilmore in Skeptic, vol. 5, No. 2.

 

"It was, of course, a lie what you read about my religious convictions, a lie which is being systematically repeated.  I do not believe in a personal God and I have never denied this but have expressed it clearly.  If something is in me which can be called religious then it is for the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far as our sceince can reveal it."

~ Albert Einstein. From Albert Einstein: The Human Side. edited by Helen Dukas and Banesh Hoffman, Princeton Univ. Press.

 

"A man's ethical behavior should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and  social ties and needs;  no religious basis is necessary.  Man would indeed be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death."

~ Albert Einstein

 

"I cannot imagine a God who rewards and punishes the objects of his creation, whose purposes are modeled after our own - a God, in short, who is but a reflection of human frailty." 

~ Albert Einstein, Column for The New York Times, Nov. 9, 1930.

 

 

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~ Biomed