Religion is reversing our mental evolution

Religion Christianity File photo: Religion

Sat, 4 Jul 2020 Source: Samuel Adjei Sarfo, Contributor

Evolution of every specie moves inexorably towards the betterment and improvements in the stock of that living thing, not towards its devolution, devaluation or diminishment.

In this sense, human evolution ought to be for the betterment and improvement of the human stock; except that we can consciously and willingly move in reverse gear. And religion helps us to do exactly that.

The evolution of the predator is to perfect its skill for it to be a capable predator to its prey. For survival is all there is to it to the life of the predator. And even the pleasure of sex is preserved for those animals that can ensure the survival of the specie. So indeed, natural selection and the survival of the fittest are true aims of nature that also guarantee the best in the specie.

The only question remaining among humans is who is the fittest or the best. Because a range of mental faculties and human capabilities actually matter and are useful in human survival. And those useful faculties and abilities are found in every race and in every condition, even those extremely deformed or simply retarded. Human eugenics is therefore not tenable because nobody can figure out what quality any human being possesses which will be of use to humanity in general.

Sitting atop the hierarchy of all living things is the human person, and this human person did not get to the apogee of living things on account of his or her brawn. The human superiority came about on account of the human brain. This brain procured for humans the capacity to think and to improve through exceptional creativity, capacity and innovation.

Therefore it follows that the difference between humans and the lower animals is the human’s mental capacity to bring into being the instrumentalities of his survival, prosperity and happiness.

The domination of humankind over all creatures will, therefore, continue forever until perchance, some other animals become more intelligent than us through the evolution of their mental faculties. and surpass us in the use of their brains. In Jonathan Swift’s “Gulliver’s Travel”, this state of being occurred among horses who turned humans into yahoos. And in future, religion might terminate the evolution of humankind’s mental faculties and turn humans into playthings, just as amongst Jonathan Swift’s Brobdingnagians.

This is because the greatest threat to human’s intellectual growth, creativity and innovation, even as it has been since the beginning of time, is religion. Religion is the enemy to human intelligence and resourcefulness insofar as it has no discernible value for humankind but rather proscribes thinking and reasoning and relegates these to the nadir of sinning.

To give up thinking or reasoning altogether and to follow like sheep the wishes of the shepherd leading them to the slaughterhouse is the highest virtue of religious devotees.

In the dark ages, mankind’s knowledge and wisdom stalled for over a thousand years because of religion. People were burned or impaled or stoned or crucified or disembowelled or boiled or defenestrated on account of their disagreements with the dominant religious view, and it became an anathema to question any scripture believed to have been composed by God himself.

And so mankind’s knowledge and progress were made to subserve the purposes and intent of religion. People were made to pray in a certain way, to eat or fast in a certain way, to marry in a certain way, to have sex in a certain way, to give in a certain way to support the priests and their cronies, and to hate others who did not subscribe to their faith, to kill and rape and murder those they considered as infidels who would not worship as they did.

The world’s wars, fought on account of religion far outstrip those wars fought against any hostile purpose, and the reversals made in civilization on account of religion are infinite. Whatever humanity has lost in terms of progress, development, prosperity, science, technology and happiness have never been quantified and can never be quantified.

Suffice it to state that within the dark sanctum of the epochs of religious fervour, the apes and other beasts were busy evolving mentally and physically while we remained in the state of inertia: They never had any religion to impede their growth and development.

They never fought any wars to determine whose God was superior. They never divided their kill in order to give a tenth to their God, and they never consulted any divinities to ask for the future nor expend their energy in burnt sacrifices of their kill, nor in the building of gargantuan temples or gagoyle edifices or novel implements for torture.

These animals did not burn their fellows at the stake. They did not plunder the wealth of others nor did they rape one another in the name of their God. So for the millennia that humans spent propitiating their Gods through bestial savagery, these animals were still evolving in nature to become better, while we were diminishing in nature to become worse!

And indeed, these animals would have caught up with us but for the dawn of the enlightenment when humans suddenly woke up to put on their thinking caps again. We resumed our habit of using the brain to cause positive changes in the time of our enlightenment. Since this era, humans’ scientific and technological advancements have outstripped those of the animals and entrenched us in the lead once again while the religious phenomenon has receded significantly to the background of those who can use their brains to better their lot.

But danger still lurks: A powerful sections of the human hierarchy that benefits from holding on to religion wants us to go back to those dark ages that held our progress hostage in the paradise of ignorance. Without any compunction, we are being asked to abandon our thinking, our reasoning, our progress, our science, our epistemology, our intelligence and our rationality just to go and follow the ideas of the bronze age barbarians, scoundrels and rascals who lived thousands of years before us.

The writings, history and culture of these people are touted as the sacrosanct word of God which cannot be questioned. We are urged to believe and have faith that all wisdom and knowledge and logic and reasoning are all embodied in their scriptures, notwithstanding the parasitical greed of those who tout their content.

Nobody knows what these books say or do not say because they can be made to say everything and anything. Nobody knows who wrote these books because they are all ascribed to God who spoke to all manner of unknown men, even those who were still writing while dead. And as to those characters in the books, their lot was no more than that of savages or the brigands who committed genocide and rape and murder.

When they were promised milk and honey, they were given gall and vinegar and sent into captivity, just as they were in captivity and also sent others into captivity. Karma dealt with all of them as it should.

We are being made to live by the examples and instructions of these evil people who began with captivity and ended in captivity. And of those that urge us to go into this mental captivity and hopeless existence, we are being urged to feed them, to clothe them, to build mansions for them and to serve them till death.

When we will then inherit in death all that which they have already inherited in life. Meanwhile, they are teaching us everything and nothing at the same time, since the path to the godhead is everything we can do and nothing we can do at the same time. Every action can be given religious sanction no matter how preposterous, repugnant and evil.

And so if we continue in this path to nowhere, the lower animals will uninterruptedly evolve to overtake us and rule over us. And the fantasy of Jonathan Swift will finally come to pass: We will all become yahoos and intellectual dwarfs and be ruled by horses or other giant primates. After all, these animals are not wasting their time and resources in pointless worship of any god or in any internecine warfare and childish faith and belief.

And inasmuch as our brains become atrophied for lack of use in these ”spiritual pursuits”, and inasmuch as we willingly subjugate ourselves beneath those who style themselves men of God, we will definitely perish like those original people who taught us all this folly. We will become prey to all these predators who are daily robbing us in the name of God.

Very soon, we will be lesser than these animals who have not stalled in their evolution, and whose brains have not atrophied as ours. Then we will perish and find that there is no everlasting life or celestial kingdom; for in death, there is indeed no difference between humans and animals.

Columnist: Samuel Adjei Sarfo, Contributor