The best fruits of religious experience are the best things that history has to show. . . . The highest flights of charity, devotion, trust, patience, bravery to which the wings of human nature have spread themselves have been flown for religious ideals.
— William James, The Varieties of Religious Experience
You find as you look around the world that every single bit of progress in humane feeling, every improvement in the criminal law, every step toward the diminution of war, every step toward better treatment of colored races, or every mitigation of slavery, every moral progress that there has been in the world, has been consistently opposed by the organized churches of the world. . . .
— Bertrand Russell, Why I Am Not a Christian