A Quote by sam harris on religion, belief, faith, koran, bible, and terrorism

Because they are believed to be nothing less than verbatim translations of God’s utterances, texts like the Koran and the Bible must be appreciated, and criticized, for any possible interpretations to which they are susceptible – and to which they will be subjected, with varying emphases and elisions, throughout the religious world.  The problem is not that some Muslims neglect to notice the few references to nonaggression that can be found in the Koran, and that this leads them to do terrible things to innocent unbelievers; the problem is that most Muslims believe that the Koran is the literal word of God.  The corrective worldview of Osama bin Laden is not to point out the single line in the Koran that condemns suicide, because the ambiguous statement is set in a thicket of other passages that can be read only as direct summons to war against the “friends of Satan.”  The appropriate response to the bin Ladens of the world is to correct everyone’s reading of these texts by making the same evidentiary demands in religious matters that we make in all others.  If we cannot find our way to a time when most of us are willing to admit that, at the very least, we are not sure whether or not God wrote some of our books, then we need only count the days to Armageddon – because God has given us far many more reasons to kill one another than to turn the other cheek.

sam harris

Source: The End of Faith: Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason, Pages: 34..5

Contributed by: HeyOK