Apr 132006

Each place has its own advantages – heaven for the climate, and hell for the society. –Mark Twain

We started our series on Smart Thoughts with Mark Twain, so it shouldn’t surprise you that I love many of his writings, and have lots of his sayings on this site. On of my favorite writings by Twain is his “The War Prayer.” It’s a short essay, and if you have never read it, you should.

Twain had a healthy skepticism toward religion. I don’t think he was an atheist, merely wise enough to see how we belittle God, and co-opt him for our own ends. I think it’s obvious in this quote that Twain believes that if everything thought to be sin condemns one to hell, then all the most interesting people will be there.

His cynicism comes through in another quote I have on the site. It’s an obvious jab at those that have made “sex” such a part of religious dogma. Twain says, “Of the delights of this world, man cares most for sexual intercourse, yet he has left it out of his heaven.”

The words of Twain have proved timeless, and these all the more so.

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