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Lemuel K Washburn
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We do not say that another world is not worth a single thought, but rather that this world is worth all our thoughts, and needs them.
No church has all the truth, and no school either. So-called religion merely shows where the search after truth ended. But truth is the infinite reality, and it will always be for man to find.
No man ever yet tore down his altar and found a God behind it.
Every kiss of love imprinted by a mother's lips on the face of her babe gives the lie to the Christian doctrine of total depravity, and every gift which the heart of pity lays in the hand of misfortune brands this doctrine as false and a libel on our human nature.
It is a waste of words to talk about God and what he knows and what he does. No man knows that God does anything, that God knows anything, or that there is a God.
Lots of men who would not associate with infidels for fear of contaminating their characters are not yet out of jail.
When a minister says that God will help you, ask him to put up the collateral.
Where the cross has been planted only superstitions have grown.
What a queer thing is Christian salvation! Believing in firemen will not save a burning house; believing in doctors will not make one well, but believing in a savior saves men. Fudge!
Piety could do nothing better than imitate morality.
But it is neither as God nor as a man that Jesus must be regarded, but as a myth. No such person ever lived either as a human or divine existence. He is simply a creature of fancy, the fruit of the imagination. He is a character of the brain, the creation of religious genius.
To build one house for man is better than to build a dozen houses to God.
It rains on the just and the unjust, but rarely just enough on either.
There is no authority that can be quoted against a man but the authority of some other man.
The truths which God revealed have been overthrown by the truths which man has discovered.
A man cannot be happy who believes in hell, any more than he can sweeten his coffee with a pickle.
No creed can be stretched to the size of truth; no church can be made as large as man.
If God exists, what objection can he have to saying so?,
We are told that all things are possible with God, and yet God cannot boil an egg in cold water.
If the factory pays taxes and the church does not, it follows that the church will some day own the factory.
God cannot be put into the national Constitution without putting liberty out of it.
History shows that there is nothing so easy to enslave and nothing so hard to emancipate as ignorance, hence it becomes the double enemy of civilization. By its servility it is the prey of tyranny, and by its credulity it is the foe of enlightenment.
The cross everywhere is a dagger in the heart of liberty.
The more mystery is encouraged, the more deceit can impose upon the human mind.
An organization that requires the suppression of facts and the discouragement of knowledge in order to maintain its supremacy, is the relic of a tyranny which our free age and our free thought are in duty bound to remove from the earth.
The churches erected in the name of God will ere long be tombstones to his, memory.
What has God revealed to man that has ever helped him get a living?
Take away every achievement of the world and leave man freedom, and the earth would again bloom with every glory of attainment; but take away liberty and everything useful and beautiful would vanish.
A miracle is not an explanation of what we cannot comprehend.
There is greater argument in one fact than in all the creeds.
The doubter is the safe man; the man who can be depended upon. He does not build upon a foundation of guesswork, and the structure he erects will stand. Let us not fear doubt, but rather fear to have falsehood passed for truth.
Too long has this world been at the feet of the priest. Man is never in that position for his own benefit, but for the benefit of the priest.
We should scorn the person who would be mean enough to allow his fellow-being to be punished for his deeds. Yet we have a religion in our midst that is founded on this kind of meanness.
A true man will not join anything that in any way abridges his freedom or robs him of his rights.
It is plain enough that men and women care for God. This is too apparent to be disputed, unless men and women are hypocrites. What is not so plain is that God cares for men and women.
Prayer is a hook that never caught any fish. It is a gun that never brought down any game.
The feet of progress have always been shod by doubt.
No man ever got an answer to prayer that he could show to another person.
The character of God would stand vastly higher in human estimation if he had visited the garden in which he had placed the first human pair and picked up the serpent and cast him over the garden wall before he had a chance to tempt Eve, instead of waiting until the mischief was done, and then cursing the whole lot for what he might so easily have prevented.
If there were no ministers and no priests, how long would there be any churches?
Unless some people change their habits before they die, there will be a lot of dirty angels in the next world, if there is any next world.
It has been discovered that the man who was lost in thought was not a church member.
Religion is no more the parent of morality than an incubator is the mother of a chicken.
Hell is where cowards have sent heroes.
When the church teaches that confession is good for the soul, it teaches false doctrine; it is only good for the church.
If man had no knowledge except what he has got out of the Bible he would not know enough to make a shoe.
We could believe in God if he shortened the road for the lame, led the blind or fed the starving.
A great many people who worship Jesus would not let him come at the back door.
There is no sadder grief than that which lies at the bottom of a life that has been wrecked through deception.
A person has not much excuse for living who can make no better use of life than passing it in a nunnery.
Prayer is like a pump in an empty well, it makes lots of noise, but brings no water.
Laying up treasures in heaven never kept a man out of the poor-house.
Blessings on the man who first dared to doubt.
Trying to find God is a good deal like looking for money one has lost in a dream.
The power that conquers men to-day must be the power of enlightened opinion.
If we do not need to worship God six days in the week why do we need to worship him on the seventh?
No man ever knew Providence to interpose when his neighbor's hens are scratching up his garden.
The people who boast the loudest of carrying their cross are never around when man cries for help.
The man who wants to be an angel is never in a hurry to begin.
There is no justifiable Christianity in this age.
God's name is not considered good at the banks.
Our duty to the God of Christianity is to bury him.
The measure of liberty which man enjoys determines the civilization of the age in which he lives.
Priest and God have formed some of the worst combinations in history.
A higher respect for man has been one of the chief promoters of civilization.
The dogma of the divinity of Jesus should have died on the cross, when the man of Nazareth gave up the ghost.
The doctrine of salvation by faith is a libel on justice and has done more to undermine the virtue of the world than vice itself.
The minister must take his pious grasp off of the throat of Sunday.
People who rely most on God rely least on themselves.
A dogma is the hand of the dead on the throat of the living.
We do not want holy books, but true ones; not sacred writings, but sensible writings.
The thirty-nine articles of orthodoxy are only the ashes of the mind.
A church that sets up a religious faith as more essential than purity, than kindness, charity or goodness, is a dangerous institution.
The money man gives to get him into heaven is what he ought to use to improve the earth.
Most men would kill the truth if truth would kill their religion.
If you can forgive the man who wronged you, the neighbor who slandered you and help the poor about you, you need not be particular about making any professions of righteousness.
The original sin was not in eating of the forbidden fruit, but in planting the tree that bore the fruit.
The egg of prayer never yet became a chicken.
Prayer is begging from a pauper.
It takes the shingles from the widow's cottage to put paint on the house of God.
The church is a bank that is continually receiving deposits but never pays a dividend.
You cannot stuff your minds with the lives of saints and grow good on the stuffing.
The church wants us to believe that God will go out of his way to strike a blasphemer and work a week to save the soul of a murderer.
When religion comes in at the door common sense goes out at the window.
Christianity is like a slow clock -- always being moved ahead.
If wisdom and diamonds grew on the same tree we could soon tell how much men loved wisdom.
Christianity is a black spot on the page of civilization.
We must condemn Christianity, not Christians; strike the church, but spare the heart.
When men are hungry roast mutton is better than the lamb that taketh away wrath.
Do not thank God for what man does.
The convent is opposed to all that is sacred in human nature.
God never helps those who need the help of men and women.
The man who gets on his knees has not learned the right use of his legs.
The reason that revelation is always made to the simple is that the wise could not be imposed upon.
The person who can make a loaf of bread is more to the world than the person who could perform a miracle.
A great many men believe in providence until they get caught in a railroad accident.
When Christian ministers stand up in their pulpits and say Let us pray, if they would sometimes vary the invitation and say: Let us laugh, they would do their congregations more good.
People used to think that to mix religion with business spoiled the religion, now they think it spoils the business.
The foolish and cruel notion that a wife is to obey her husband has sent more women to the grave than to the courts for a divorce.
The man who accepts the faith of Calvin is miserable in proportion to the extent he carries it out.
To depend upon God is like holding on to the tail-end of nothing.
God has done nothing for men and women except to scare them out of their wits.
Civilization has come about by going to school more than to church.
Orthodoxy has put a false valuation on things. It calls a man good who goes to church, offers a prayer in public and accepts the Bible as the word of God; it calls a man bad who stays at home and enjoys himself with his family on Sunday, who eats without asking God to bless his food, and who does not expect to go to heaven on the vicarious railroad.
It is necessary to distinguish between the virtue and the vice of obedience.
Whatever tends to prolong the existence of ignorance or to prevent the recognition of knowledge is dangerous to the well-being of the human race.
The true man walks the earth as the stars walk the heavens, grandly obedient to those laws which are implanted in his nature.
Churches do not stand for moral influence. Not a Christian minister preaches salvation by good behavior. What a poor business Roman Catholicism would do among men if it advertised to save only those who were temperate, upright, intelligent and moral.
Priests will pardon thieves but not philosophers.
Nine times out of ten the man who declares that God is tender to the sparrow that falls is not the man to buy a winter's coal for a poor widow.
A theologian is a person who uses the word God to hide his ignorance.
Where are the sons of gods that loved the daughters of men?
The Subtle Fulmination of the Encircled Sea
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