Religion – thy name is superstition.
Religion divides the universe into spiritual and physical realms and all religions offer their adherents relief from their earthly problems through some sort of appeal to the spiritual. Religions locate the solution to society’s problems in the individual’s salvation. Socialists see the problems that wrack human society as material and political, and their solutions as likewise material and political, not supernatural. Socialists do not hold beliefs. They have an understanding of the world based on the best evidence available.
Ideas have no independant existence from human beings, and those ideas are determined by the material world in which we live. God only exists as an idea in society. Gods are products of the human imagination given powers to dominate the lives of those who create them.
Religion perform two essential functions. It buttresses the established order by sanctifying it and by suggesting that the political order is somehow ordained by divine authority. Its sanctification of the existing social order makes it a counter-revolutionary force. Yet it consoles the oppressed exploited by offering them in heaven what they are denied upon earth. By holding before them a vision of what they are denied, religion plays at least partly a progressive role in that it gives the common people some idea of what a better order would be. But when it becomes possible to realize that better order upon earth in the form of communism, then religion becomes wholly reactionary, for it distracts men from establishing a now possible good society on earth by still turning their eyes towards heaven.
Our position on organised religion is that religion is debilitating to the mind of the worker and thus to the progress which we wish to make as workers in advancing our interests. New Age religion is merely the old age religion in a new, modern form. Rather than obeying a priest, they choose the form of our own mental domination and the flight from reality into a magical world.
Banish Gods from the Skies, and Capitalists from the Earth
“God” is relegated more and more to the background. The “God” of the modern capitalist is a different “God” than the feudal lord or slave owner of more ancient times. And the “role” that “God” plays in the explanation of the working of the material world has changed. The role of “God” has changed from that of belief in predestiny, to "God" as a “personal God”, from “God” as the first creator of the world and the “cause” to “God” as an afterthought (agnosticism) who has no control and the question of belief in him as irrelevant. Socialism, as the science of society is the application of that science to the relations between men, a branch of natural history, holds a monistic view of the universe, each part is in inseparable causal relation to the rest, can leave no nook or cranny for “God”.
It has been religion that has had to do all the hard work of accommodating more and more scientific progress, which is why religions tend to become ever vaguer and more metaphorical. Those modifications of religion have been the reflexes of changed conditions and interests.
Christianity is not losing out to other religions, but primarily to a rejection of religion altogether. One in five Americans said they have no religious identity or did not answer the question, and more than one in four said they do not expect to have a religious funeral. In every single state there was a rise in the “nones” – see http://edition.cnn.com/2009/LIVING/wayoflife/03/09/us.religion.less.christian/index.html?eref=rss_topstories
There is no need to use force to end of religion, when it is already dying a natural death. Socialists no longer looks to the heavens for a supernatural savior, nor seek a Moses to lead us out of bondage. It is about becoming conscious of the strength that resides within ourselves and in the knowledge that who would be free, must free the mind from chains.