Bill Maher: Gay Muslim activists. That is a very rare job description. You guys have big ones.
Bill Maher: [Megiddo, Israel] It seems peaceful, but this is where a lot of people believe the world will end. The irony of religion is that because of its power to divert man to destructive courses, the world actually could come to an end.
Bill Maher: If you believe that the world is going to come to an end - and perhaps any day now - does it not drain one's motivation to improve life on earth while we're here?
Bill Maher: The plain fact is religion must die for mankind to live. The hour is getting very late to be able to indulge in having key decisions made by religious people - by irrationalists - by those who would steer the ship of state, not by a compass, but by the equivalent of reading the entrails of a chicken.
Bill Maher: Rational people, anti-religionists, must end their timidity and come out of the closet and assert themselves. And those who consider themselves only moderately religious really need to look in the mirror and realize that the solace and comfort that religion brings you actually comes at a terrible price.
Bill Maher: The irony of religion is that because of its power to divert man to destructive courses, the world could actually come to an end. The plain fact is, religion must die for mankind to live. The hour is getting very late to be able to indulge in having in key decisions made by religious people. By irrationalists, by those who would steer the ship of state not by a compass, but by the equivalent of reading the entrails of a chicken. George Bush prayed a lot about Iraq, but he didn't learn a lot about it. Faith means making a virtue out of not thinking. It's nothing to brag about. And those who preach faith, and enable and elevate it are intellectual slaveholders, keeping mankind in a bondage to fantasy and nonsense that has spawned and justified so much lunacy and destruction. Religion is dangerous because it allows human beings who don't have all the answers to think that they do. Most people would think it's wonderful when someone says, "I'm willing, Lord! I'll do whatever you want me to do!" Except that since there are no gods actually talking to us, that void is filled in by people with their own corruptions and limitations and agendas. And anyone who tells you they know, they just know what happens when you die, I promise you, you don't. How can I be so sure? Because I don't know, and you do not possess mental powers that I do not. The only appropriate attitude for man to have about the big questions is not the arrogant certitude that is the hallmark of religion, but doubt. Doubt is humble, and that's what man needs to be, considering that human history is just a litany of getting shit dead wrong. This is why rational people, anti-religionists, must end their timidity and come out of the closet and assert themselves. And those who consider themselves only moderately religious really need to look in the mirror and realize that the solace and comfort that religion brings you actually comes at a terrible price. If you belonged to a political party or a social club that was tied to as much bigotry, misogyny, homophobia, violence, and sheer ignorance as religion is, you'd resign in protest. To do otherwise is to be an enabler, a mafia wife, for the true devils of extremism that draw their legitimacy from the billions of their fellow travelers. If the world does come to an end here, or wherever, or if it limps into the future, decimated by the effects of religion-inspired nuclear terrorism, let's remember what the real problem was that we learned how to precipitate mass death before we got past the neurological disorder of wishing for it. That's it. Grow up or die.
[after the closing credits]
Bill Maher: See you in heaven?
Julie Maher: [shrugs] Who knows?
Bill Maher: [laughs] Exactly.
Bill Maher: It's like the lotto. "You can't get saved if you don't play."
Bill Maher: Why is faith good?
Bill Maher: [in a deleted scene on the DVD] How spiritually advanced is Uranus?
Himself (Creme, Benjamin (II)): Very. Very. Very.
Bill Maher: [in a deleted scene on the DVD] Religions are maintained by people. People who can't get laid, because sex is the first great earthly pleasure. But if you can't get that, power is a pretty good second one. And that's what religion gives to people. Power. Power is sex for people who can't get or don't want or aren't any good at sex itself.
Bill Maher: [in a deleted scene on the DVD] And then we get here and five minutes after we arrive, the skies open up. It's completely nice and there was a rainbow above the thing we were shooting. So, I don't know, if God didn't want us to shoot, he sure fucked up today.
Bill Maher: [in a deleted scene on the DVD] No, it is not a surprise that a person would want to be a prophet. What's ridiculous is that other people let him. It's just too easy to start a religion. All you have to do is: A. think up some really powerful stupid shit. Some stuff that is so idiotic and weird that a person who believes it will be proving that ultimate virtue of faith; B. throw in some entitlements like life after death, washing away sins and free dental or whatever; and, C. wait. Just wait. Just say your bullshit and stick to it. Believe me, if you do that, if you just say it, they will come.
Bill Maher: And I see you've got a lot of bling.
Jeremiah Cummings: I like gold. The people want you to look well.
Bill Maher: That's what pimps say about their women.
Jeremiah Cummings: [a Christian reverend] Okay, but now, but now, things like houses and cars and clothes and money, they come as a result of my seeking God first.
Bill Maher: I don't remember that in the New Testament specifically.
[a subtitle appears - "Because it's not there."]
Jeremiah Cummings: But it's there.
[Subtitle - "No it's not."]
Jeremiah Cummings: I remember it.
Bill Maher: A passage about...
Jeremiah Cummings: I remember it.
[Subtitle - "I'm sure you do."]
Bill Maher: The houses, the cars and the clothes, they'll come.
Bill Maher: I know what you're thinking. I'm standing in front of a green screen at a studio in Burbank, California, and they digitized the Vatican in behind me. No, no, that's really the Vatican. I ought to know. I just got thrown out of it. See, I wanted to interview the Pope, but I was willing to settle for a cardinal or a monsignor, or the flying nun - really anybody, but apparently I've been on the Catholic shit list for quite a while. But that's their loss, 'cause now I'm gonna say what I *really* think, which is mainly:
[referring to the Vatican]
Bill Maher: does that look like anything Jesus Christ had in mind?
[to Father Reginald Foster, a Senior Vatican Priest]
Bill Maher: When you look at a building like that, a giant palace, does it seem at odds with the message of the founder?
Reginald Foster: Well, certainly.
Bill Maher: [giggles] Well, thank you.
Reginald Foster: I mean, that's obvious.
Bill Maher: It really is obvious, isn't it? But does it bother you?
Reginald Foster: [stammering] Well, I mean - well, yes it does. I wouldn't - if I were the boss, I wouldn't be living there.
Bill Maher: The standard doctrine that I was taught as a kid...
Reginald Foster: Yeah, that's all gone. That's all finished.
Bill Maher: You know, Scientologists...
[sound of audience laughing]
Bill Maher: And right, you're like, "Oh, yeah, that's some crazy shit. Okay." Jesus with the virgin birth and the dove and the snake who talked in the garden, that's cool. But the Scientologists, they're the crazy ones.
Jose Luis De Jesus Miranda: You know, if I discover that I was Satan in person, I would do a good job, too.
Bill Maher: As Satan?
Jose Luis De Jesus Miranda: Because I would be faithful to my calling.
Bill Maher: It's how you do your work, isn't it? You know, at the end of the day, whether you're the messiah or you're Satan, it's loving what you do and giving it a hundred percent.
Jose Luis De Jesus Miranda: I give hundred percent.
Bill Maher: Do you think it's possible that when we're on something like marijuana or mushrooms and we believe we're having a really spiritual experience that we're just high?
Bill Maher: There's more than one mosque in the world that used to be a church and before that was a temple. Because it's a lot easier to just change the sign on the top and say "under new management" than it is to change the whole building.
Bill Maher: See, this is my problem, I'm trying - I mean, you're - you're a Senator. You are one of the very few people who are really running this country. It worries me that people are running my country who think - who believe in a talking snake. Um...
Mark Pryor: [Arkansas' Democratic Senator] You don't have to pass an IQ test to be in the Senate, though.
Bill Maher: That's religion. You pray. You bow. You kneel. You fast. You trim the balls of a giant space penis.
Bill Maher: [to journalist Ray Suarez] How did this country become a Christian nation? I've read a lot of quotes from all the founding fathers. There are a lot of quotes that explicitly say we are not a Christian nation.
[several quotes are shown]
Bill Maher: More people
Bill Maher: doubted evolution, than any other country on that list
[of industrialized nations]
Bill Maher: except I think it was Turkey.
Bill Maher: There's been more killing in the name of "my God."
Mark Pryor: [Arkansas' Democratic Senator] So you think we indigously
[made up word]
Mark Pryor: or just by our DNA, we just somehow know that killing another person is wrong? I'm not sure that is the case.
Bill Maher: Really? We need God to decide not to kill each other?
Mark Pryor: Well, you can look back at more primitive cultures and they were constantly at war.
[subtitled "Modern Culture," war footage is shown]
Mark Pryor: [subtitled "Modern Culture," war footage of bombings and mass destruction is shown]
Bill Maher: But it's not really a wise list of the ten. The first four are about just worshiping God, and, basically, a jealous god. And he doesn't want you to have any other gods. The only two that are really laws are: don't steal and don't kill. Why is this the wisest group of ten that doesn't include child abuse; it doesn't include don't torture; it doesn't include a lot of things, rape, that, I think, if I were making a list today, we would probably include.
Mark Pryor: [Arkansas' Democratic Senator] Society is so different today. Our society is so radically different...
Bill Maher: And that's what I'm asking. We're in a different culture. Can you think of anything else that we still cleave to from the Bronze Age?
Mark Pryor: Well...
Bill Maher: Do you believe in evolution?
Mark Pryor: I don't know. The scientific community is a little divided on the specifics of that. And I understand...
Bill Maher: I don't think they are.
Mark Pryor: No... no... well...
Bill Maher: I think they pretty much agree.
Mark Pryor: [grins] I don't know what happened...
Bill Maher: [a tenet of Mormonism] Dark skin is a curse from God,
[photos of Michael Jackson's transformation pop up at the bottom of the screen]
Bill Maher: but if you're sufficiently righteous, a dark-skin person can become light-skin.
Himself (Bachman, Tal): [an ex-Mormon] In the founding scriptures, you open the doctrine covenant, you read the autobiography of Joseph Smith. He quotes Jesus Christ as telling him that every other creed on Earth is, quote, an abomination. That's not a very ecumenical statement.
Bill Maher: The idea that Christianity is American, I think, is an amazing entitlement to a people who are always trying to meld God and country.
Himself (Gardiner, Bill (V)): The Garden of Eden was in Missouri, according to Mormonism. The new Jerusalem will be there.
Bill Maher: Branson, I hope.
Bill Maher: Who are you?
Jose Luis De Jesus Miranda: I am Jesus Christ man. The second coming. The Old Testament talk about me clearly. And the New Testament also.
Bill Maher: The other guys are selling certainty. Not me. I'm on the corner with doubt.
Bill Maher: Now, the angels went to the house of the one Godly man in town - Lot. And the townspeople tried to rape them. Now, Lot, not wanting his town to get the reputation as the kind of place that would rape angels, offered up to the mob his own daughters to rape. And he was the good guy in town. Which brings me to this question: If I ever had to swear an oath, why would I want to put my hand on the King James Bible? I think I could find more morality in the Rick James Bible.
Bill Maher: But the Jesus story wasn't original.
Man at The Holy Land Experience: How so?
Bill Maher: [an explanation appears in subtitles as The Bangles "Walk Like an Egyptian" plays] "Written in 1280 BC, The Book of the Dead describes a God, Horus... Horus is the son of the god Osiris... born to a virgin mother. He was baptized in a river by Anup the Baptizer... who was later beheaded. Like Jesus, Horus was tempted while alone in the desert... Healed the sick... The blind... Cast out demons... And walked on water... He raised Asar from the dead. 'Asar' translates to 'Lazarus'. Oh yeah, he also had 12 disciples. Yes, Horus was crucified first... And after 3 days, two women announced... Horus, the savior of humanity... had been resurrected.
Bill Maher: If Santa Claus can hit every house in the world in one night...
Steve Burg: No, I don't believe in Santa Claus.
Bill Maher: Of course not. That's ridiculous. That's one man flying all around the world and dropping presents down a chimney. That's ridiculous. One man hearing everybody murmur to him at the same time... that I get.
Bill Maher: And you know what else was very confusing to me I remember vividly was Santa Claus and Jesus.
Julie Maher: You were so mad at us.
Bill Maher: So mad at you, why? Oh, when...
Julie Maher: When you realized there was no Santa Claus.
Bill Maher: And then when I found out there was no Jesus... boy, was I pissed.
Bill Maher: The only appropriate attitude for man to have about the big questions is not the arrogant certitude that is the hallmark of religion, but doubt. Doubt is humble, and that's what man needs to be, considering that human history is just a litany of getting shit dead wrong.
Bill Maher: Faith means making a virtue out of not thinking. lt's nothing to brag about. And those who preach faith and enable and elevate it are our intellectual slaveholders, keeping mankind in a bondage to fantasy and nonsense that has spawned and justified so much lunacy and destruction.