Écrasez l'infâme!

‘Destroy the despicable (sc. Catholic Church)!’ – this once was the device of French Enlightenment to call not only to unflinching criticism of religion but also to the abolition of all state-granted privileges enjoyed by religion. As the latter's own representatives know better than anyone, the abolition of these privileges will entail that the days of religion itself are also numbered – religion cannot survive without violence at its service. This device of the classical French Enlightenment is also ours.

Our general position regarding atheism is best resumed in the short and basic text ‘Why an atheist association?’ which you find on this site.

While the statements of any religion obviously are incredible nonsense, they nonetheless differ from individual delusions in that they are systematically and uniformly pushed into the brain by a purpose-built apparatus of experts from early childhood on and kept alive there for an entire lifetime, most particularly by regular meetings (‘church services’). This forced and systematic religious indoctrination of defenceless children has the most devastating and long-lasting consequences for the individual's psychic integrity and well-being; its toll of destroyed or crippled lives and intellectual darkness in any event exceeds by miles the harm caused by individual cases of sexual abuse committed by clerics which are at present played up by the media for other reasons.

Why the fantastic allegations made by religion despite their coarsely nonsensical nature remain in people’s brains so doggedly and lastingly and why despite the boundless variety of possible delusions or fantasies they once and again take on quite similar and reiterated forms or contents, can, however, only be answered by Freud’s ostracised science, classical psychoanalysis. If you want learn more about this, we recommend you in particular, apart from the original works of Freud himself of course, the book Mass Neurosis Religion by Fritz Erik Hoevels.

In Germany, as regards the fight for the separation of state and church our most important demand has always been and continues to be: Away with the Hiter concordat of 1933! It actually is a fact carefully concealed by the media and therefore little known abroad (and even within Germany!) that the concordat concluded in 1933 between Hitler and the Vatican is Hitler's only international treaty kept into effect by the German government until today! It grants the Catholic Church immense and blatantly unconstitutional privileges which were immediately extended also to the German Protestant Church and are maintained for both until this day. In 2005, it has been a small, but still noticeable success that we have been able, by a prolonged international campaign supported by numerous atheists and befriended organizations abroad, to force the German state, via a test claim in the Case of Dr. Nittmann, to abolish at least one of its many pro-religious and unconstitutional laws, in this case a particularly revolting one by which it had levied for decades a forced church tax on millions of unemployed non-church members! On the international scale, we have likewise always done what we could to defend those who are victims of infringements of the freedom of religion and of free speech in religious matters. We have thus, in the past, been for example among the first in Germany to take part in the defence of Salman Rushdie or Taslima Nasrin (for an in-depth analysis of their cases, see the two respective treatises of Peter Priskil, one of our authors) or, some years ago, for instance Italian Judge Luigi Tosti who had been convicted to 7 months of imprisonment for having refused to sit under the crucifix and was, thanks to an international campaign of solidarity, eventually acquitted of this scandalous charge by a judgment of the Italian Supreme Court of 17 February 2009.