Are you an atheist? You’re going to hell. Are you a homosexual? Guess what, you’re going to hell, too. Wrong religion? Hell. Believe in God, but not Jesus? Hell. Bicycle repair man? Hell. Well, I guess not that last one, unless you are a bicycle repair man who is a murderer, but if you repent…
So, what is Hell exactly? Is it a firey pit where you will spend eternity in torment, having worms crawl through all of your orifices and crows pecking at your eyeballs? Is it merely the absence of God? Or maybe it’s just an eternity of being forced to watch the movie Junior starring Arnold Schwartzenegger over and over (I cried the next day when I realized that I had actually paid money to see the movie the night before). At any rate, Hell is whatever any particular religion tells you it is.
Hell has one purpose and one purpose only: fear. It’s the main motivator in converting people to religion. If you can scare someone bad enough, they will do whatever it takes to avoid the fear. However, in an odd twist, fear is also what keeps people in check and isn’t that what religion is really about, fundamentally? To avoid hell you have to accept Jesus into your heart and that’s all you need to do! Oh, well, I forgot to mention that you also have to do good works, go to church every week (don’t forget to give 10% of your income), stop sinning (remember, lusting after someone if you are married is adultery and hating someone is murder, so you’re basically screwed), and follow all the rules of the bible. Or you don’t. Just the New Testament. Actually, you just need Jesus. Oh, wait, you also have to follow the Golden Rule. Or…you know, it’s just a hell of a lot easier to just ignore it all together. As an atheist, all you have to worry about are local and federal laws and those are convoluted enough as it is without adding 600+ biblical rules.
Skeptical Rationalist and I were having a discussion about this very topic, some weeks ago, on a trip to a skeptical conference, when he brought up a very good point. Eternity is long, really, really long. It goes on forever. It will never end. Ever. SkepRat said (I am paraphrasing here), “Hitler is responsible for roughly twenty-five to thirty million deaths if you add Russian, gypsy, French, Polish, and homosexuals to the Jew total. So, when does Hitler pay off those deaths? At a year a death that’s thirty million years. At one hundred years per death that’s three billion years. But three billion years is just a couple of seconds to eternity. Let’s say there is a good person who is very kind, helps people, works at the homeless shelter, takes in stray cats, and doesn’t download songs illegally but is an atheist. This person is doomed to the same fate as Hitler. That’s the basical premise of Hell.” I must admit that I probably took some liberties with SkepRat’s wording (I am sure he said it more succinctly that I have), but his point makes a lot of sense. According to Christianity, Hitler is going to be down in Hell with most of the people he is responsible for killing.
Hell is just a religious tactic.
I am not afraid of Hell for two very important reasons. Number Uno, I am an atheist and there is no evidence that there is actually a hell. Number II, I ate at Taco Bell and at Arby’s in the same day and late that night/early the next morning I was living in hell. No woman can tell me I don’t know what it’s like to be pregnant*, because I swear to Pretend God that I had something in my stomach kicking and punching and making me cry in pain. I almost prayed to Pretend God just to make it stop. I was camped out in the bathroom that night, even had a little fire going so I could tell myself ghost stories just to take my mind off of the excruciating pain.**
One last note about Hell. Why is it considered a swear word? It’s a “place”, yet it’s a no-no to say. You don’t hear people going “Oh, Pittsburgh” when something doesn’t go right and you don’t hear people saying, “Just shut the San Diego up!” when some is talking to much.#
*I apologize to all women if this has offended you, but dammit, I was in a lot of pain that night.
**This actually did happen, though parts of the story have been embellished. I did eat at Taco Bell and Arby’s in the same day and I did spend the evening in the bathroom.
# BNFree would like it to be know that it’s officers are currently looking into the legal aspects of having Jay Pea committed to a mental institution. BNFree makes no claim of agreement with anything said in this blog. If you are an atheist, sketpic, freethinker, or a thinking person and find yourself agreeing with any aspect of this blog seek professional help.