Bye Bye Religion

“God is a concept far to important to leave to the religious.”
Philosopher Quentin Meillassoux

2022 – six years into the future, what should we expect?  It will be somewhat of a milestone, as it is 350 years since one of the greatest geniuses that ever lived passed away, at age 44, the Dutch philosopher, Baruch (Bendict) de Spinoza. Now, in times of change and permanent revolution, Spinoza’s work comes alive. Are we finally ready to talk about something potentially frightening? A powerful three letter word – GOD – the concept, and what I like to call the “death”, or to use a modern terminology, the “disruption” of religion as we used to know it. We are re-inventing Religion now. “Losing my Religion” and “Imagine… No Religion” as REM and John Lennon respectively once sang. The time has come.

Spinoza’s work builds on the Stoic philosophy (Stoicism), and he admired Seneca, his favorite philosopher. “The goal is to not protest how things are, but to try to understand the world and then bow down peacefully to necessity”. Seneca compared human beings to a dog on a leash – the more one pulls against what is necessary, the more one is strangled; therefore, the wise almost always endeavor to understand ahead of time how things are. How does politics work? What is love really like? Then change their direction in order to avoid being choked. Not much has changed, and the same applies for religion.  After Spinoza’s death, the work was forgotten, but later served as inspiration for great thinkers such as Hagel, Wittgenstein, Nietzsche and many others.  And now, nearly 350 years later, our society is finally maturing into his work.

We are currently moving from individualism to relationism, and the 7.3 billion people around the world are becoming interdependently connected. We set to shape one common belief and ethical system as we race toward 10 billon people by the end of this century.  That being the case, our personal belief systems and definition of ‘God’, as with anything else in the 21st Century, still remain our own. However, we are moving away from the superstitious ideas of the past and heading towards something more closely related to science and technology. For most people, it is something more impersonal, where we embrace other views and values. We broke out of the nation state and began flying across borders in the 1970s. Globalization kicked in and now we have connected everyone through Facebook, WhatsApp, Google, e.g. the internet. The forces in motion are strong, and now the belief-system is up for a change.

“I’m going to have to science the shit out of this”
Matt Damon (the Martian)

To understand how and why the universe works the way it does, we need to learn how to except the evidence, rather than protest against it by sending little messages up into the sky. – “Whoever loves God cannot strive for God to love him in return.” – Only a deeply distorted and infantile narcissism would lead someone to believe in God yet expect that he [God] would bend the rules and change the world for him in some way. Why would someone ask God to treat him better than others, or ask him to do special favors in exchange for nothing more than a prayer? In Prayer, an individual appeals to God to change the way the universe works – modern philosophy states that this is entirely the wrong way. In traditional Religions believers ask special favors of God, but instead shouldn’t we seek to understand what God wants? We can do so in one very practical way – by studying everything that is. Through reasoning we can transcend dogma to a divine eternal perspective.

Is this blasphemy? I encourage you to read it again, especially if you are of a strong religious faith. I am not talking about belief; nor am I claiming to be an atheist. I am a strong believer of the mysteries of the Universe, of science and technology. The God one refers to, in my opinion, is nothing like the one in the Old Testament, but rather nature, existence, a world soul, the universe and its laws, the mystery and the void. Reason, truth and the force in what is and what can be. Given the evidence we have been provided, we need to get rid of the structures defined several thousand years ago. It is time to say ‘Goodbye’ to the holy books written by inspiring storytellers and historians who were dictated by capitalists. It is time to welcome science, evolution and the 21st Century, because that is where we are.


As a species we have not changed or evolved much, especially with comparison to our technological leaps respective to how we connect and communicate. According to the futurist Ray Kurzweil, defining the “law of accelerating return”, we are moving towards, what he believes will be (technical) Singularity or post humanism in the year 2045. We race towards a time where machines can do anything human beings can do, only faster and better. This leads us to think intensively about where we are heading. Consider this simple yet complex question, from a philosophical stand-point which is supported by many modern thinkers: Why did we put the ‘personality’ God in the past anyways?

God is not a human, nor a figure sitting up in the sky creating Adam, Eve, Jesus or any other person from religious traditions. No, these are thoughts and theories created by humans, just like humans once preached that the world was flat and other concepts killed off with scientific progress such as E = mc2. God is not an architect, nor is he someone to fulfill our wishes, to hear our prayers and to create miracles. If we were in fact the “chosen creatures”, why would we be in such a hurry to destroy everything “he” gave us? So let’s stop pretending we can define God as a man, someone who lived in the past and flies above us. Let’s put down the bible and embrace the 21st Century.

We could think of the Infinite Universe, or even the Internet which connects all people, as a way of putting God into something we move towards. Let’s leave it up to the individual to define the mystery, the void, the special things we can not explain. And let’s leave it up to science to keep defining and researching the blind spots and topics not (yet) covered and proven. We are now moving in this direction instead on holding on to theories from the past. Belief is not bad, in fact, it helps us stay who and what we really are, what I call “Mensch”. There are still so many things we cannot understand and for that we need something to believe in. But by now we should look into building a belief-system together, something in front of us, the great universe, the infinite space or the self – the individual. So for any “UNMENSCH” driven by frustration and lack of belief, today seen and defined as a terrorist, – FACE IT – there is no quick path to a holy Allah or God, and no life after death, and if there would be, why do we believe in it? Why would we dedicate our lives to the next one? Wouldn’t that mean we are dissatisfied with the current one, and if we are, why not change it? Push the “reset-button” now and changing this life… it is much easier than to gamble for a next one.

Current and future religious beliefs are created by humans; as well as systems such as Individualism, developed by philosophers like René Descartes and Immanuel Kant. Maybe the whole concept is putting our God in the future, at least it will keep us focused for the next 25 years until we eventually reach singularity. We have a period of 15-25 years ahead of us to work on these concepts.

We are beginning to rely on machines too much; and like previous generations we fully underestimate the changes ahead of us, overrating ourselves as much smarter than previous generations (as stated by the French Philosopher, Michel Foucault). Although we now have (access to) an abundance of knowledge, it does not necessarily mean we are getting smarter. Categorically we are using our brains less. Eventually we will connect our 200 million patterns of information, e.g. our brain, in order to reach other structures on how we possess, access and save knowledge and information.

So what will be? Will we be moving to Mars? Maybe, at least I believe we will be able to move to other planets – we might even have to. Will we discover life on other planets or from other Galaxies? The question should rather be, why should we not? Or maybe we already have?

What was once the mystery of the future has caught up with “the now” and it is exciting. Society is so fast paced that there is no future anymore, we are living it. Once we discover something new, there is already something else out there that is ahead of us to be discovered, and this is most likely our biggest challenge.

So what is God then really? Well of course this is a question that far exceeds any knowledge that I have. But wouldn’t it be a start if we just left it up each individual to define and challenge it. We need to stop choosing a religion, then forcing everyone else to take up the same, that strategy belongs in the past. Belief, Hopes, Dreams and Imagination are crucial, but “now” is the time when we wake up and understand that we in fact can hit the “reset-button” to become more conscious.

So for now let’s put aside the bible and other holy books, and let us rethink and redefine our old concepts. The next Gx(Global)-Meeting could be us redefining God and Religion, re-working the old concepts together. Personally, I would love to see the “heads of religion” and various values systems coming together, working out one concept for all 7.3 Billion of us. The leading scientist, tech-freaks and philosophers all working together – wouldn’t that be nice? Let’s get this Gx meeting set up and have the Pope and the holy Dalai Lama make the guest list!

Whatever the road will be, at least six years from now, when we mark the 350-year anniversary of Spinoza, our mindset on the topic of religion will have changed radically because of the living-breathing law of accelerating return. Can we move towards one framework of values? Are we ready for it? Surely not (yet)! Are human beings in general good? Maybe? I believe we can “Do Good”. Will we cope with change?

… Well, being a radical optimist, I am sure we will.



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