A couple good Sam Harris quotes

“there are at least three projects that we should not confuse:
1. We can explain why people tend to follow certain patterns of thought and behavior (many of them demonstrably silly and harmful) in the name of “morality.”
2. We can think more clearly about the nature of moral truth and determine which patterns of thought and behavior we SHOULD follow in the name of “morality.”
3. We can convince people who are committed to silly and harmful patterns of thought and behavior in the name of “morality” to break these commitments and to live better lives.”
“Because most religions conceive of morality as a matter of being obedient to the word of God (generally for the sake of  receiving a supernatural reward), their precepts often have nothing to do with maximizing well-being in this world. Religious believers can, therefore, assert the immorality of contraception, masturbation, homosexuality, etc., without ever feeling obliged to argue that these practices actually cause suffering. They can also pursue aims that are flagrantly immoral, in that they needlessly perpetuate human misery, while believing that these actions are morally obligatory. This pious uncoupling of moral concern from the reality of human and animal suffering has caused tremendous harm.”

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