On the Origin of Religion
Hanover Historical Texts Project
Good Sense: or, Natural Ideas Opposed to Supernatural; being a Translation from a Work Called "Le Bon Sens"
corrected and carefully revised by H. D. Robinson
(Boston: J. P. Mendum, 1856) Page 8
Scanned by Aaron Gulyas, February, 1998.
How has it been possible to persuade reasonable
beings, that the thing, the most impossible to comprehend, was the most essential to them? It is because they have been greatly terrified; because when they fear, they cease to reason; because they have been
taught to mistrust their own understanding; because when the brain is troubled, they believe everything, and examine nothing.
Ignorance and fear are the two binges of all religion.
The uncertainty in which man finds himself in relation
to his God, is precisely the motive that attaches him to his religion. Man is fearful in the dark--in moral as well as physical darkness. His fear becomes habitual, and habit makes it natural; he would think
that he wanted something, if he had nothing to fear.
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