I spent so many years thinking all these silly vestments, and hats, and rituals, and incense and ringing bells and holy days all meant something. But it’s all just a way to make the flock feel like there is some significance to the equally silly pretensions underlying all religion. It’s just an elaborate smokescreen to paint a veneer of respectability over a much more insidious process happening outside our view.
I understand the real human need for some sense of spirituality, a need for an explanation for the mysteries of nature before we had the ability or knowledge (read: science) to figure them out, and the subsequent creation of religious explanations for the unknown. I understand how religion filled that need, and if they had left it as a personal explanation that simply filled the gaps with god until science came along, we’d have been better off.
But then religion became an institution, with a hierarchy, and leaders, and that brought a natural inclination to usurp the respect that leaders generally create for their positions, and the power that came with it. It was inevitable that men would eventually figure out that there was nothing “behind the curtain”, so more elaborate curtains had to be created, with taboos and penalties (sin) for peeking. They took advantage of the human tendency to be awed by glitter and pomp, by the appearance of wealth and prestige.They hid their shallow beliefs behind a mask of believability, in the process deceiving us into thinking there was actual substance there.
Take all the “stupid fucking headgear” away and all you’re left with is men foisting their credulous nonsense on the rest of us, while taking advantage of our complacency, enjoying the power and prestige and wealth of their church behind the curtain. It’s this acquiescence to dress-up make-believe that directly led to priests’ abuse of little children, thinking the curtain hid them from view.